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Vol. 12 No. 77

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

. . . putting the people first

Rabiul Awwal 14, 1435 AH

N150

Inflation rises to 8%, 2015: Nigeria needs prayers, says NBS >> Pg 19 fasting to survive - Obasanjo >> Pg 3

Desperate moves to save Tukur's job  Party Caucus in crucial meeting  As chairman recants, denies daring Jonathan >> Pg 2

Dozenskilled in Borno, Adamawa bloodbath  Gov Shettima condemns blast, seeks probe  Angry mob razes SAS'campaignoffice in Maiduguri >> Pg 2,3 The scene of the bomb blast, yesterday around the Post Office Area of Maiduguri, in Borno.

Photo: NAN

Severancepackage:FG,electricityworkersreachtruce

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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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News CONTENTS

Desperate moves to save Tukur’s job

News

By Lawrence Olaoye

2-10

Editorial

12

Op.Ed

13

Letters

14

Opinion

15

Metro

16,18

Business

19-22

Stockwatch

23

S/Report

24,25

Property

26

Motoring

28

Arts

29

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n apparent desperate moves to retain his seat as National Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Bamanga Tukur yesterday conferred with party stakeholders from his home state, Adamawa, including Professor Jibril Aminu, Air Commodore Dan Sulaiman, and others in private residence in Abuja, where a committee was set up to douse the tension. The committee, consisting of eminent PDP personalities from Adamawa state, was billed to meet with the Chairman of the PDP recognized Nigeria Governors’ Forum and governor of Plateau state, Chief Jonah Jang, as well as Chairman of the PDP Governors’ Forum and governor of Akwa Ibom state, Chief Godswill Akpabio. This is happening just as the Caucus of the PDP, made up of key stakeholders, including President Jonathan, his deputy, Namadi Sambo, Chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT), Chief Tony Anenih, Tukur, several governors on the platform of the party, as well as minister in the federal cabinet, went into a crucial meeting last night. The meeting, which was on, up to our press time last night, sources said, was aimed at resolving some of the numerous crises rocking the party, ahead of tomorrow’s NEC meeting. Conspicuously absent at the Caucus meeting, however, is former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who recently wrote a letter to the PDP chairman threatening to withdraw his membership of the party. However, the fence-mending com-

...says ‘I’ve not resigned’

mittee consisting of Aminu, Dan Sulaiman, Gen. Anthony Haldu Hananiya and Dr. Umar Ardo, is to interface with the stakeholders on the build-up of opposition against Tukur’s leadership of the party. Although the outcome of the meetings with the party chieftains has yet to be made public as at press time last night, there were indications that such would form the basis of Tukur’s decision on whether or not to resign ahead of tomorrow’s NEC meeting. A member of the fence-mending panel, Dr. Ardo, who confirmed its mandate, said the need to approach the two governors became necessary given the positions they hold on behalf of the party. “We decided to explore this option with the national chairman as we agreed that it would not be right to take any action without hearing from them since they hold key positions on behalf of the party and our position would be decided by the outcome of the meeting with them”, he disclosed. In the meantime, Tukur yesterday recanted his statement of Monday, saying he never said President Jonathan lacked the power to remove him from office except a constituted National Congress of the party. Reacting to reports that he dared Jonathan on his removal, Tukur in a rejoinder he personally signed said: “My attention has been drawn to a scurrilous write up which was carried today in electronic and print media to the

effect that “Tukur dares the President” or “Jonathan cannot remove me” or “Only convention can remove me”. “I am a man of considerable experience in organization, political and government. I am an important stakeholder in PDP and my track record shows that I have rendered impeccable service to the nation. My role as PDP national chairman is to help the further growth, preservation and well being of Nigeria using a disciplined platform. It is this platform that am helping to ensure, exist in our great party the (PDP) with the help of well meaning Nigerians and prayers to almighty God, we hope to succeed. “Given the back ground which I have stated it is totally out of place for me to lecture Mr. President as suggested in the scurrilous article and write up. It is preposterous and smacks of an undisciplined mind which definitely I am not. “I am confident that any discerning Nigerian, particularly his Excellency the President, Commander-in-Chief, will easily see through this shallow mischief. I have taken the time to make this statement in my continuous role to help guide the ship of Nigeria to safe waters, in spite of political turbulence. I want to assure Nigerians and the outside world that the chairman of PDP (my humble self and Mr. President) are standing shoulder to shoulder to transform Nigeria. As for the mischief makers all I can say is that “from their works ye shall know them”, he stated.

Equally responding to speculations that he had resigned his position owing to the pressure piled on him by some governors and stakeholders in the party, Tukur said he had no resigned. The PDP chairman expressed shock on the report, which according to him, was being sponsored by those he described as “desperate hawks” within and outside the PDP. “You all met me here talking to you as the PDP chairman. Yet, some enemies of the party went to the media to say I had resigned. It is unbelievable that party members could be mean, vile, treacherous and vindictive while playing such stunt. “This is not the first time they would do this. They had sponsored media reports severally to say I had resigned. Yet Almighty God has continued to shame them because, they were not the ones who kept me on this seat. “They went further to sponsor media reports that I was to confront our president over an issue they could not expatiate on. The agents of darkness have taken over the place. Nigeria and members of our party should beware. “I am in good terms with Mr. President, the leader of our party. We met often and take strategic decisions together. No one, not even the devil can make me be in needless confrontation with the president. We are one in the spirit and the enemies would be shocked to see PDP back on stream,” he said.

Dozens killed in Borno bloodbath From Mustapha Isah Kwaru, Maiduguri

NNPC insists on N50 retail price of kerosene –Page 6

Int’l

31-34

S/World

35

Digest

36

Politics

37-38

Newsxtra

39

Sports

41

Columnist

48

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t least 30 persons were feared killed yesterday afternoon after a suspected suicide bomber detonated Improvised Explosive Device (IED) in the popular GSM market along the Post Office Road in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, survivors and hospital sources told newsmen. Horrifying sound of the unexpected explosion caused serious pandemonium and stampeded on many major roads leading to the scene of the blast as the major commercial centre of the town, Maiduguri Monday market, shops and other business centres were immediately shutdown. Similarly major roads and streets were deserted with residents forced to stay indoors for fear of the unknown. Security was immediately intensified as many roads were blocked, with soldiers backed by armoured tanks patrolling various parts of the town. Witnesses said that the incident happened when traders were busy conducting their business activities. A middle-aged man, who disguised as a customer reportedly entered the ever busy market and penetrated into the large crowd before detonating the explosive, which was hidden under his dress. The scene of the blast turned a gory sight as several human flesh and parts littered the area, witnesses said. Mallam Fantami Ali, a trader at the GSM market, said he counted at least 30 dead bodies after the blast. “We were busy conducting businesses at the market when we heard a loud explosion on the road. We later realized that it was a suicide bomber using a fire wood seller’s pick up that detonated his bomb at the middle of the road during a busy hour at the market,” he stressed. Ali said about 50 other persons were also injured in the incident. A Red Cross official who helped in

evacuating the victims, Mallam Ibrahim Mubi confirmed the development but said he could not give the actual number of the casualties. Both the state Police Commissioner, Lawan Tanko and spokesman for the 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maiduguri, Col. Mohammed Dole, confirmed the blast. According to Tanko, 17 persons died in the incident. “We counted about 17 dead bodies as at 2.30pm but the evacuation is still ongoing. “We also counted five injured persons that were carried to hospital for treatment’’, he said. The bomb blast of yesterday was ultimately greeted by protest by some youth who alleged that the latest ordeal was traceable to the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff’s (aka SAS’) return. SAS had been away from the state for a long time. The youths went about smashing every car on the road with the sticker or poster of the former governor or his alleged political son, Mohammed Imam, who he believed to be Sheriff’s anointed to take over from the incumbent, Alhaji Kashim Shettima in 2015. It would be recalled that the state witnessed the dirtiest of politicking in the last four days with the pelting of both Shettima and Sheriff by alleged political thugs sponsored by opposing camps. Immediately the bomb exploded therefore, the youths took to the empty streets shouting: “Sheriff means no good for us and he has brought this present bomb explosion”. The irate youths destroyed the political office of the erstwhile governor at the UTC area of the state, along the popular Kashim Imam Way and had headed for the highbrow GRA in attempt to touch the imposing ‘Palace’ of Sheriff but were turned back by the military and police. A military source revealed that

Sheriff who was still in the state as at the time of the explosion around 1:30pm was ferried to the airport to his waiting jet by the police, to avoid possible lynching by the angry mob. In the meantime, Governor Shettima has condemned in strong terms, yesterday’s bomb explosion at a time the return of peace was being celebrated by residents. Special Adviser to the governor on Communications, Isa Umar Gusau, in a statement, quoted his boss as describing the incident as “most cruel, evil and inhuman”, while also expressing his deep condolences to the families and friends of all affected victims. “Governor Shettima has directed the security to carry out a full scale investigation on the bomb explosion which resulted in the unfortunate youths rampage that led to the breakdown of law and order. Shettima also condemns uprisings in the last three days in the state capital which he described as “unfortunate” even though avoidable. The governor directed the state Ministry of Health to ensure proper medication for all victims who might have suffered injuries with government bearing all costs of treatment’’, the statement said. ‘’The Borno state government will take firm measures to continually protect lives and property of citizens. “As part of such measures, Governor Shettima today (yesterday) met with the National Security Adviser in Abuja during which issues of security of lives and property of Borno citizens was the agenda. “Governor Shettima is already on his way back to Maiduguri. He appeals on all residents to remain calm and law abiding”, the statement further said. But in his reaction to the blast, the former Borno governor, SAS said the bomb blast was not from the dreaded Islamist Boko Haram sect, but an act

of arson targeted at him while in the state for a condolence visit. Chairman, SAS campaign organization, Malam Bako Bunu said in a statement that the fact that Sheriffs’ property at the old UTC was also targeted was a clear indication that the former governor was the prime target. He said the fact that there had been no bomb incident in Maiduguri for the past 11 months until the former governor visited also gives the impression that the sustained opposition against his visit was a calculated move to stop him. “It is sad that vehicles bearing Ali Sheriff’s posters were either vandalized or burnt which further points to the fact that Sheriff was the actual target,” Bunu said. According to Bunu, the bomb explosion was the handiwork of a former chairman of the Maiduguri Metropolitan Council and another highly placed official of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) who has always been suspected to be the brain behind violent activities in Maiduguri. “It is an open secret that out of desperation to gain political control of Borno state and out of fear of the growing relevance of Ali Sheriff politically, a group of people has been hiding behind the current insecurity in the state to stop his visit. “We are aware that the Boko Haram incident was used as an alibi for some people to perpetrate mayhem and distract the attention of the security operatives”, Bunu claimed. He said: “We consider it even childish that highly placed government officials can condescend so low as to instigate thugs against their leaders. “It is a pity that upon all the good things Sheriff did for Borno state; his reward has been to instigate public anger against him and attempt to link him with terrorist activities”, the statement further said.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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13 insurgents, one soldier killed in Mubi attack – Lt. Col. Martins

From Umar Dankano, Yola

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he Commanding Officer, Special Operations Battalion of the Nigerian Army, Mubi, Adamawa state Lt. Col. Beyedi Markus Martins has disclosed the details on how his command repelled an attack killing 13 Boko Haram Insurgents during an operation on the 18th December, 2013 which also led to the death of a gallant officer. Col. Martins told a press conference yesterday at the Command headquarters in Mubi Town that the military refused to disclose the development after the incidence for strategic security reasons until now. He said when the Boko Haram struck the Popular Bureau de Change in the town, he was imme-

diately alerted by the Chairman of the Bureau de Change Operators making him to immediately send his troops to the market. Martins however said when one of his officers was felled by the Boko Haram elements, he immediately went to the scene where a fierce gun battle that lasted for seven hours ensued between the military and the insurgents. “When one of my soldiers was shot death, I immediately went to the scene where we faced the insurgents for 7 hours before we finally subdue them and killed 13 out of the 20 that were on that mission” he stressed. He said they have succeeded in killing two of the coordinators of the Boko Haram Insurgents in the areas saying that with that feat, they have weakened insur-

gency in the area. “During the fruitful operations, we succeeded in Killing two of the kingpins that are usually behind attacks in Mubi namely Abdul Baki Mubi and Abdul Razak Mubi and with that feat, I believed that insurgency in this area will become a thing of the past because with this development, we were able to neutralized their power of operation”, he explained. The military also showcased the cache of weapons that was confiscated from the insurgents which includes 8 AK 47 assault Rifles, 1 police teargas gun, 1 Rocket Propelled Grenade and three Improvised Explosive Devices (IED’s). Col. Martins also handed over the money and other valuable

items recovered from the insurgents which include the sum of N3.5 million, 12.5 million Cameroon Francs as well as 50,000 Central African Republic Francs and 104 pieces of various brands of mobile handsets with 95pieces of cell phone batteries amongst others. Responding on behalf of his members, the chairman of Bureau de change operators in Mubi, Alhaji Muhammad Nuru Dahiru, expressed gratitude to God and the military for the development. “This is the second time the military would be recovering our money from the insurgents and we are very grateful to the army and pray for their continuous successes”, Nuru said.

Yelwa’s 133kv substation contract suffers setback From Ahmed Idris, Birnin Kebbi

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he Chairman Yawurawa Youth Development Association in kebbi state, Barr. Abdulazze Saidu, has called on the Minister of Power and Steel to investigate the contract awarded by the Power Holding Company of Nigeria Plc [PHCN] to Electromontaz Consortium for the construction of 40MVA 132/133kv substation at Yelwa in Kebbi state. In a statement in Birnin Kebbi yesterday, the chairman lamented the condition of the contract adding that the contract is suffering a setback and neglected by the construction company itself. He said, presently the people of Yauri were confused over the contract as the company handling the project has started moving their tools away from the site to an unknown destination, while they have been left in total black out, ‘’we don’t have full current, no light for the past 20 years’’.

L-R: Kaduna state Governor, Alhaji Mukhtar Yero Ramalan, and National Chairman, Fityanul Islam, Sheikh Sani Khalifa, during the Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday in Kaduna. Photo: NAN

News

Defunct CPC threatens to pull out of APC in Kaduna

From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna

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he defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) has threatened to pull out from the merger party, All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kaduna state if their grievances are not addressed by the leadership of the party in the state. Members from the defunct CPC in Kaduna State made their position known in a letter written to National Interim Chairman of APC, Chief Bisi Akande dated 30th December, 2013 and signed by all Chairmen, secretaries of former CPC. The letter said, CPC as a party was seriously committed to the merger and shall make necessary sacrifice to make it work in the state but CPC will not allow itself to be shortchanged by certain selfish individuals. “The sacrifice we vow to make does not mean that we are weak and any attempt to treat us so will be resisted. “We have mutual respect for all brothers and sisters within the other legacy party and we fully respect their right to have their representation but they should also respect our strength in the state so that peace and harmony will flourish in APC,” they stated. The aggrieved CPC members charged the National headquarters to produce a uniform guideline based on a national formular or module that should be used in all state. “We did not intend to cause harm or to demean the personality or office of anybody but to forestall chaos and rancor within the APC in Kaduna State. We therefore call on the national headquarter to draw the attention of the Kaduna State caretaker committees to desist from all act and action that would sow discord among members of the legacy party. “If the matter is not addressed urgently we are prepared to find a new platform for ourselves,” they stated.

2015: Nigeria needs prayers, fasting to survive - Obasanjo From James Ogunnaike, Abeokuta

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ormer President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday charged religious organizations in the country to fervently pray and fast for Nigeria as the country prepares for a critical stage in her democratic experience in 2015. Obasanjo stated this while playing host to the National President of the Pentecostal Federation of Nigeria (PFN),

Reverend (Dr.) Felix Omobude, who visited him in Abeokuta, during the cleric’s two-day working visit to Ogun state. The ex-president, who described Nigeria as “God’s Project”, which existence ‘is by His making’, also emphasized that it is only God that appoints leaders for a country, notwithstanding the political scheming and campaign promises. Obasanjo was however optimistic that even with the current political situation in Nigeria,

God will see the country through. “My short span of life has seen a few unexpected things in this country when we thought that the end would just happen, but God made us to scale through “I personally never thought we would have a leader like late Sani Abacha in this country. I was a victim; but God saw us through that situation. “There is no situation we see or worry about that God will not see us through. That is my belief

and that is what gives me confidence. It gives me courage; it gives me the ability to work for the country’s unity. “I always say that I’m an incurable optimist about this country. If there is anything that I would ask of you, it is that you should never stop fasting and praying for Nigeria. “No matter what is happening, all will be well. And those of you who believe all will be well for Nigeria should continue to shout Hallelujah.God has done it

for us”, he stressed. Responding, the PFN president, described Obasanjo as a special treasure to Nigeria who would continue to be relevant in every affair of the country. Omobude however, assured that the PFN would not fail in its calling to pray for the peace, unity and progress of Nigeria, stressing that it is part of the pastoral duties of all churches and Christ’s followers to pray for the country’s leaders and its peace.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

News Navy arrests 21 persons, impounds 2 oil vessels in Yenagoa

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he Nigerian Navy said it had arrested 21 suspects and seized two vessels at the waterway and creeks of Agbami Oil field and Obi Creeks in Southern Ijaw local government area of Bayelsa state. A statement by the Flag Officer Commanding the Central Naval Command, Rear Admiral Sidi-Ali Hassan Usman, said the suspects were Nigerians and that the vessels lacked the necessary permits to lift crude oil. “The two vessels were laden with 2.1million litres of crude oil at the time of arrest. “The vessels were intercepted at separate points along the Ebi Creeks and Agbami Oil Field between Dec. 26, 2013 and Jan.14. “They were unable to tender relevant documents such as Nigerian Port Authority bunkering permit and the NNPC nomination for crude oil lifting. “And they lack the certificate of registration with the Joint Military Task Force. They did not have the Naval Headquarters approval for the movement of petroleum products within the command area of responsibility. “The determination of the Nigerian Navy and the Central Naval Command to completely eradicate oil theft, illegal bunkering and other illegality in the Nigeria waters is total.” (NAN)

Muslim faithful in a rally mark the Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday in Abuja.

Photo: Mahmud Isa

Anti-gay law: Muslim youths hail Jonathan From Ayodele Samuel, Lagos

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ational Council of Muslim Youth Organisations (NACOMYO) has commended President Goodluck Jonathan for giving assent to the bill banning same sex marriage, even against International outcry. National President of NACOMYO, Alhaji Kamal’ Akintunde, in a release yesterday noted that the

bill passed due legislative process and therefore became imperative for President to sanction it in line with democratic norms. NACOMYO, while emphasizing the need for the enforcement of the new law, noted that gay marriage is alien to Nigeria’s culture, as well as being anti-social capable of destroying value system in the country. It counseled the International

Community, especially America, which has opposed the law as a violation of human rights, saying that Nigerians are culturally and religiously sensitive and would not tolerate anything that will seem to undermine their religious and cultural values. The organisation also commended the National Assembly for being united on the issue, noting that ban on same sex marriage

is a sensitive issue that attracted common disposition from majority of adherent to the various faiths in Nigeria. It therefore urged Nigerians to eschew sentiment and sustain such understanding and cooperation in other developmental areas, by living harmoniously with one another in the overall interest of country’s growth and development.

Karu international market would be ready by March - Al-makura By Umar Muhammad Puma

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he much awaited Karu international market to commence operation by the end of March 2014, Governor of Nasarawa state, Umaru Tanko Almakura has said. The governor who was on an inspection tour of some of the project undertaken by his administration in Karu local government area of the state, said even though there was some hiccup in the execution by some contractors, the market would be ready for busi-

ness by the end of the March. “Out of the two thousand shops that were earmarked for the first phase completion, a total of 1, 850 were completed fully, we have about 150 shops to complete the first phase”, he said. He stressed that the fund for the completion of the first phase has already been provided, saying that unfortunately, some of the contractors could not meet up with the dateline given to them. According to him, “We have asked them to move to the site and complete the remaining job

within the next 30 days, because of our timeline for the market to become operational”. He revealed that the contract for the phase two of the market would be awarded as soon as the phase one is completed, adding that the phase two would be completed by the end of year. “All in all, before the end of the year, we would have about 5, 000 shops in Karu international market”, he said. He assured the people of the state that the process of shop collection would be transparent,

“whoever is interested in taking a shop at the market is free to do so, all he needs to do is to buy the form and fill the process, which would end by the end of February this year, so that by March, those that has gotten their allocation would start moving in to the market”. “This is very viable ventures and we are sure that within one, two three years we should be able to recoup all the investment we have put on the market”, he said. The governor said the market when completed, would ease traf-

fic congestion along MararabaKeffi express way, and would provide an explosion of commercial activities in an organised manner by the time the market is completed. Some of the project sites visited by the inspection team included the ongoing Rugan Hashimu road linking Nyanya, through Abacha road to the Karu International market, as well as the site for the construction of Multi-million Naira dam in Nyanya Gwandara.

Severance package: FG, workers reach truce

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he Federal Government and the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) have agreed that payment of severance benefits to former workers of PHCN would be completed by end of January 2014. This is contained in a resolution reached at the end of a reconciliatory meeting between the two in response to 14 days ultimatum letter by the NUEE. The resolution which was made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja yesterday was signed by Dr Clement Illoh, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity. Others were Amb. Godknows Igali, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, (FMP),

Mrs Omojola Martina, Representative of Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), and Mr Mansur Musa, National President, NUEE. Mr Olusegun Babatunde, General Secretary NUEE, Mr Bede Opara, President General, Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied Companies (SSAEAC) AND Mr Abiodun Ogunsegha, General Secretary, SSAEAC also signed. They resolved that: ``The allegation of non-payment of entitlements to staff covering July 2012 should be referred back to the implementation committee for conclusion within January 2014. ``The complaint of victimisation of labour leaders to be handled by the FMP and BPE in accordance with extant regulations

within January 2014. `` Workers who are being owed salary arrears and have not been severed will be paid by the federal government and should stay in position until they are paid. ``The FMP and BPE would fund a workshop to be organised by Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity in the first week of February 2014 for the new investors, unions and other stakeholders in the industry.’’ They also resolved that all admitted casuals would also be paid on or before the end of March 2014 while progressive payments would be tracked It directed that all pensions should be processed and payments effected accordingly.

``Furthermore, the 7.5 per cent employer pension contribution of July 2012 to Oct. 31, 2013 will be paid. ``Payment of deductions from Nov. 1, 2013 to date will be paid by the new operators into workers Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA). ``BPE and FMP are to fast track approval and payment of death benefits to beneficiaries within one month’’, it was further agreed. On staff re-engagement letters said to be withheld by some new investors, it was agreed that the BPE should submit comprehensive list of the re-engaged staff for confirmation. It also directed the implementation committee to set up verifi-

cation subcommittee to establish payment of certain entitlements listed in agreement of Oct. 2013 and identify those stations that had paid or not. The resolution stated that any reduction in the stoppage of salaries and wages of staff by the new investors was a violation of Section 21 of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005. It directed that such deductions should be reversed by defaulting operators where it occurred. ``BPE should submit the list of the 483 unclear Retirement Savings Account (RSA) Holders to the technical sub-committee for rectification. (NAN)


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2013

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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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News

Eid-el Maulud

Yari calls for peaceful coexistence

L-R: AD. Director General, Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Alhaji Musa Mayaki, Chairman, Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), Alhaji AbdurRahman Balogun, Director General, Voice of Nigeria (VON), Malam Abubakar Jijiwa, and Executive Secretary, Abuja National Mosque, Alhaji Ibrahim Jega, during the 8th Annual Public Lecture to mark Maulud, yesterday at the National Mosque, in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

From Ibrahim Sidi Muh’d, Gusau

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overnor Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar of Zamfara state on his part, called on religious followers in the state and across the nation to live in peace, for progress and prosperity. In a statement by the Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Muhammad Birnin Magaji, the governor enjoined Islamic adherents across the nation to live peacefully and promote tolerance as taught by the holy Qur’an. Governor Yari said no religion encourages violence as means of resolving misunderstandings, but rather preach tolerance.

Eid-el Maulud: ‘Emulate the Holy Prophet,’ PDP urges Nigerians

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he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on all Nigerians to use the occasion of this year’s Eidel Maulud to unite in praying for the peace of the nation and reflect on the virtues of love, peace, brotherliness and forgiveness, as exemplified in the life and teachings of the holy Prophet Mohammed. PDP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, in a goodwill message to Muslims on the celebration of Eid-el Maulud yesterday urged Nigerians to emulate the prophet who dedicated his entire life for the good of others saying such is needed to move the nation forward. The party said “Islam remains a religion of peace” and urged “all true adherents to hold unto the faith and ensure that nobody under any guise whatsoever throws them off the truth”. Charging Nigerians to use the festival to extend the hand of fellowship and care to the less privileged among them, the PDP also urged them to forgive one another and resist the antics of desperate and unpatriotic elements who delight in causing disaffection among the people. On its own part, the PDP assured that it will continue to provide a level playing ground for all citizens to advance their views, interests and aspirations without compromising the overall interest and unity of the nation.

Maulud: First Lady urges women to be agents of stability, progress

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he First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan yesterday called on Nigerian women to use their natural endowments to be agents of stability and progress in their respective communities. She made the call in Abuja in

a goodwill message to the Muslim faithful to commemorate Eid-el Maulud - the birthday of Prophet Muhammed. The message was signed by the Director of Information in the Presidency, Mrs Ayotunde Adesugba, and made available to

the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). The first lady said women had God-given talents to be agents of peace and positive change. She appealed to them to use the talents for societal development. ‘’I urge you to intensify prayers for your families as well as for the

peace and development of the nation.’’ She urged Muslim women to seize the opportunity of the celebration to re-dedicate themselves selfless service, tolerance, good neighbourliness and justice as propagated by Muhammed. (NAN)

Fashola, Jang, others task Nigerians on restraint, tolerance, perseverance

Bury differences, Dahiru Bauchi urges Muslims

ov. Babatunde Fashola of Lagos yesterday urged Nigerians to use the opportunity of Prophet Muhammed’s birthday celebration to tolerate one another and imbibe the virtues of perseverance and restraints. In a goodwill message signed by his Special Adviser on Media, Mr Hakeem Bello, the governor said the commemoration should inspire Nigerians to renew their belief in God and their country, adding that Nigerians should be determined to promote peaceful co-existence.

From Ahmed Kaigama, Bauchi

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He said that Prophet Mohammed preached and lived for peace, adding that He was revered and widely followed for his honesty and perseverance. “While commemorating this auspicious occasion, let us renew our faith in our nation,’’ he urged. The governor urged Nigerians to use the opportunity to pray to God to restore to the country lost values including respect for human life. In his goodwill message, Gov. Jonah Jang of Plateau admonished Muslims to use religion as a

platform to build the society. The message released in Jos was signed by the Director of Press and Public Affairs in the Government House, Mr James Manok, urged Muslims to use the opportunity of Eid-el Maulud celebration to recommit themselves to peaceful coexistence and religious tolerance. He also urged Muslims to use the period to pray for good leadership. The governor reassured Plateau people of his administration’s determination to complete all development projects in the state. (NAN)

NNPC insists on N50 retail price of kerosene

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he Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has assured that all its products will remain available to all Nigerians and at approved official prices. The NNPC gave this assurance yesterday while dispelling rumours and allaying fears that it had increased the price of some of its products like kerosene. The corporation urged Nigerians to ignore the rumour, saying that all prices remained same. An NNPC product dealer in Abuja, Alhaji Yakubu Sa’idu, confirmed that there was no truth that the NNPC had increased the price of any of its products, including kerosene. According to him, the price of kerosene still sells for N50 per litre,

and like other products, remain the same. He stressed that just like the NNPC made the products available during the Yuletide, so did it make it available during the Eid el-Maulud celebration. When our correspondent visited the NNPC product depot and station at Karshi, Abuja, a large crowd was seen buying kerosene for N50 per litre. The depot manager, Alhaji Isyaku Sa’idu, said: “There is always a large crowd here every time, coming to buy petrol, diesel and kerosene because they are sure to get the products here at the PPPRA-approved rates.” While confirming that some filling stations, especially those operated by some independent marketers, have devised a means of

cheating the unsuspecting public, he said it was not untrue that some retail outlets were in the habit of selling kerosene at N120 per litre which is more than 100 per cent of the official price. An NNPC official who also spoke with our reporter at the NNPC Depot in Suleja assured that the products were very much available and it was from there that zones like Abuja are serviced. Warning independent marketers to desist from sharp practices but strictly adhere to the PPPR recommended price of N50 for kerosene, another NNPC station manager in Abuja, Mohammed Tanimu, said: “There was no need for panic-buying or hoarding as the price of the product remains the same.” (NAN)

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uslims faithful in Bauchi State has celebrated the birthday of Prophet Muhammed Peace be upon him peacefully, just as a reknown Islamic Scholar Sheikh Dahiru Usman Bauchi urges Muslims to bury their differences. Dahiru Usman Bauchi who led all night event of the celebration yesterday in Bauchi advised Muslims community to live in peace with one another and always pray for peace and stability for the development of the country. According to him, “its importance for all Muslims to bury their differences and recognises the faith of each other since we believe in the same God Same Prophet Mohammad Peace be upon him, Muslims offer five daily prayers, they give alms, fast during the month of Ramadan, Perform pilgrimage and our book is one the Holy Qur’an for that no need of division Muslims most embrace each others as brothers and sisters. Our correspondent who monitored the event reported that Muslims from the United State of America, Egypt, Morocco, Senegal, Chad, Niger Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Ghana and 36 state of the country witnessed the occasion. Special Prayers were offered for Peace Stability in Nigeria and other Muslims World face with security Challenges like Syria, Egypt, Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Sundan and other Muslim world.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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unmen have shot Mr Callistus Ewelike, a photojournalist working in the State House in Abuja for the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). The shooting took place yesterday in front of his residence in Nyanya, Abuja, between 10p.m. and 11p.m. Two men were said to have alighted from motorcycle when the victim was coming out from his car. One of the assailants reportedly confronted him and shot him in the neck at close range. The assailants reportedly sped

Gunmen shoot NAN’s State House photographer in Abuja

News

Brutalisation of Ejigbo 2: Fasehun orders OPC manhunt

order for the manhunt and arrest of the assailants. It will be recalled that armed men had also visited Ewelike’s residence late last year. he Founder of the O’odua They had forced themselves People’s Congress (OPC), into the house and robbed him of Dr Frederick Fasehun his work tools including camera, yesterday ordered a manhunt by laptop computer and other the group for those involved in personal effects. (NAN) the alleged torture of two women in Ejigbo, Lagos State. Fasehun also commended the Lagos State House of Assembly and the Majority Leader, Mr Mojibayo Adeyeye, for placing N1 million and N250,000 bounties respectively on the culprits. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Lagos House of Assembly, after a public hearing on the matter on January 8, 2014 promised a reward of N1 million for information that would lead to arrest of the culprits. A NGO, Women Arise, had on December 23, 2013, staged a protest to the assembly to create awareness on the abuse and brutalisation of the women sometime in February, 2013. The women were accused of stealing pepper. In a statement in Lagos, Fasehun ordered members of the congress to hunt for the culprits and turn them over to law enforcement agents. According to him, the move The suspected armed robbers paraded by Kwara state Police Command, yesterday in Ilorin. by the assembly and the majority leader cleared Nigerians of Commanding Officer, Special Operations Battalion of the Nigerian Army, Lt. Col. Beyedi Markus Martins (right), displaying some arms corporate guilt in human rights recovered, after his command repelled recent attack and killed 13 insurgents in an operation, during a press conference, yesterday violation. He, however, urged members in Mubi, Adamawa state. of the public to discountenance insinuations that members of the OPC had a hand in the incident. he Sokoto State Police Alhaji Shaiubu Gambo, the was a house help to a Nurse and hands in the alleged murder are ``The treatment meted out Command has arrested nine Commissioner of Police, told the “the suspects took the advantage brought to justice, “ he said. to them violently contradicts suspects allegedly connected News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in when her mistress left for work to Gambo called on the residents everything OPC stands for. to the defiling and killing of a Sokoto yesterday that investigations attack the deceased”. to assist the police with relevant ``OPC is an organisation minor in Nakasari area of Sokoto had begun to ensure a diligent “We will do all that we can to information that would help them specifically dedicated to South Local Government Area of prosecution of the suspects. get to the root of the case and to in unravelling the mystery of the promoting the corporate interest the state. He said the nine-year old girl ensure that all those that have case.(NAN) of the Yoruba nationality and upholding the dignity of the Yoruba man or woman. ``Authentic members of OPC could be easily recognised he FRSC has confirmed village, involved a Toyota Hiace Motajo said that nine people Motajo said the remains of through identity cards bearing the death of eight bus belonging to the Bauchi were involved in the accident those who died were deposited their personal signatures, and people in a ghastly auto State Government and a truck. but five men, two women and a at the morgues of the Kogi State issued by the group’s national accident on Okene-Lokoja road He said that the bus, with boy died. Specialist Hospital and Ankuri headquarters,” Fasehun said. yesterday. registration number BA 04 He said the only survivor, a Hospital, Lokoja. According to him, the police The state Sector Commander A28 and the truck with number man believed to be the driver The sector commander said can testify that OPC vigilante of the FRSC, Mr Kunle Motajo, Lagos SMK 694 XB, were of the truck, sustained injuries that the obstruction caused by operatives never resort to extratold newsmen in Lokoja that travelling in opposite direction and had been rushed to the the accident had been removed judicial treatment, torture or the accident, which occurred at when they collided while Kogi State Specialist Hospital and the road opened for free killing of apprehended offenders about 7 a.m. at a spot in Osara approaching a narrow bridge. in Lokoja for treatment. traffic flow. (NAN) irrespective of the nature of the offence. From Ahmed Kaigama,Bauchi Fasehun said that an average OPC member had been trained ive Persons have been and had sworn to hold as Four of the suspects pleaded the Bauchi state police command’s information. arraigned in Court for All effort by our correspondent sacrosanct, human rights. alleged gay activities in guilty while one denied the Police Public Relations Officer, He urged relevant authorities charges and he case will come up DSP Haruna Mohammed said to get the Chairman of the Sharia Bauchi State. Police are aware of the case but Commission, Alhaji Mustafa to bring the criminals and their While confirming the incident, on 23rd January, 2014 for trial. Our correspondent gathered the suspects were arrested by the Baba Ilelah failed but in an recent godfathers to book. a senior Hisbah official who “This will serve the purpose pleaded anonymity said the that the action contravenes the Shariah Commission and they interview with reporters in Bauchi suspects, who were arraigned Islamic laws which the state is were taken to court and asked state, said that the suspects were of justice as well as act as a deterrent to others,” he said. operating. our correspondent to reach out arrested and will be charged to before Upper Shariah court have (NAN) Also confirming the incident, to the commission for further court after investigation. been remanded in Prison custody. off the scene when the gunshot attracted residents of the area. Nothing was stolen from the victim. Ewelike was taken to a nearby hospital by his neighbours and later transferred to the National Hospital, Abuja where medical doctors are currently preparing him for surgery.

He is said to be in a stable condition. The Police Public Relations Officer, FCT Command, DSP Altine Daniel, confirmed the incident. She said the Commissioner of Police, Mr Femi Ogunbayide, had directed full scale investigation into the shooting and had given

Police arrest 9 for alleged rape, murder of minor

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8 killed in crash on Okene-Lokoja road

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Five gay in Bauchi Sharia court over sodomy

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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Photo Splash

Horse riders during Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday at Hadejia, in Jigawa state.

Truck loaded with children going to their destination after the Maulud prayer, yesterday at the National Mosque, in Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

L-R: Immediate Past President of Ogoni People, Justice Peter Akere (rtd), a Leader of Khana Local Government Council, Dr. Eddie Wikina, and a leader of Eleme Local Government Council, Mr. Marcus Eji, during a news conference on alleged police attack on Senator Magnus Abe, yesterday in Port Harcourt Rivers state . Photo: NAN

Photo: NAN

Children in a procession during Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday in Suleja, Niger state. Photo: NAN

The newly turbaned Mutawallen Achida, Alhaji Bashir Gidado Jegawa, on horseback after his turbaning, recently in Achida, Sokoto state.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2013

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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

News

Niger PDP suspends 6 councilors in Lapai

From Yakubu Mustapha, Minna

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ix councilors in Lapai local government area of Niger state have been suspended by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Working Committee in the state. Those suspended include Alhaji Abdullahi M. Liman representing Arewa/Yamma ward, Alhaji Gimba Sulaiman elected to represent Duma/Zago

ward as well as Alhaji Abdullahi Wakili for Muye /Egba ward. Others are Alhaji Yusuf Ibrahim representing Gabas/ Kudu ward, Alhaji Danladi Usman for Gupa/Abugi ward and Saidu Ibrahim, representing Evuti / Kpada ward. A statement issued yesterday in Minna by the acting Secretary of the party in the state, Alhaji Hassan Mohammed Saba, did not give any reason for the suspension, but said the SWC

approved the action. Saba who doubles as the Public Relations Officer of the party said that the case involving the six councilors has been handed over to the ‘disciplinary committee for further action’. Investigations however revealed that the six affected legislators had sat on January 6, this year and impeached their Speaker, Hon. Usman Mohammed as well as his Deputy, Hon. Aliyu Attahiru,

representing Takuti/Shaku and Ebbo/Gbachinku wards respectively. The speaker accused the councilors of violating rules in the impeachment process. He said when contacted on phone that, “the aggrieved colleagues lacked knowledge of legislation”, adding that they also failed to reckon with the legislature’s sitting days. He also alleged that his impeachment was politically

motivated by some politicians in the area who were not happy with the present administration in the council. It was reliably gathered that the aggrieved members sat on Monday around 2am as they broke the entrance door of the chamber to sit and impeach the Speaker, contrary to the accepted days and time for sittings. All efforts to get the comments of any of the affected councillors proved abortive.

Group applauds Interior Minister’s stewardship By Sunday Ejike Benjamin

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group of activists under the aegis of Progressive Activists Coalition (PAC), has applauded the Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Morro in his stewardship of the Interior ministry. The group led by their coordinator, Comrade Philip Agbese, also called on detractors to desist from any

Kebbi loses N7bn IGR in 9 months

form of calumny against the minister whom they said has performed creditably well in his assignment. The group in reaction to criticism attributed to the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), condemning the initiative by the interior ministry to raise revenue through the recruitment exercise by placing a fee of N1000 on the online registration fee for recruitment into the immigration service.

According to Agbese, who spoke on behalf of the group, noted that it was not new to find agencies of government charging some form of fees for recruitment as now criticised in the case of immigration. He cited recent recruitments by military establishments like the Nigerian Army and Navy where similar fees were charged. The coalition of activists, further noted that the said criticism was a handiwork of paid hands and impostors. The

group observed that Comrade James Wale Ajani, who claims to be the national president of NYCN, was an impostor claiming to speak on behalf of Nigerian youth. “We use this medium to call on James Wale Ajani and his co-travellers to desist from using the well meaning youth of Nigeria to cause disaffection. It is also unfortunate that, the said Ajani claims an office to which we make bold to say, is an impostor and impersonator

and so we make bold to demand that he desist from parading himself as such or face the law”, he said. Agbese further encouraged the minister to continue in his wonderful job at transforming the ministry not minding distraction from his many detractors. “ it is pertinent to add here that Comrade Morro has proven to be a true Comrade indeed, it is based on this record that commend him and declare our full support for him.

From Ahmed Idris, Birnin Kebbi

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he Kebbi state government has announced that it lost N7.149 billion as internally generated revenue between April, 2013 and this month. The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Aminu Usman, who made this known to newsmen at a press briefing, said it was disheartening that the backlog of revenue in question accrued from the non payments of dues by employees of both Federal, state and local governments, private companies and individuals. He said the state government was left with no option than to drag the affected organizations to court for default. According to him, the breakdown of the lost revenue showed that the 21 local government employees owe N2.5 billion, federal government agencies-N3.6 billion, while private sector organisations and individuals owe N638 million. Aminu further disclosed that the court has ordered that the offices and business premises of the defaulting organisations should be closed down until when such debt is settled. Similarly, he said officers at the state Revenue Board shouldered with the responsibility of collecting income would be retrained to ensure effective mobilization and improve the revenue base.

Nigerian flags hoisted in preparation for the Armed Forces Remembrance Day ceremony, yesterday at the National Arcade, in Abuja. Photo: NAN

FG launches crop processing centre in Kogi From Omale Adama Lokoja

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he Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwumi Adesina has said that the present administration plans to make agriculture lucrative business that will usher in unprecedented wealth creation. Adesina stated this yesterday at the launch of Alape Crop Processing Zone in Kabba Bunu LGA of Kogi state, stressing that

the government will save N14.5 billion from importation through the processing of 62,000 metric tones of starch and 45,000 tones of sweetener locally. According to the minister, the Alape crop processing zone will help in storage and processing of cassava, improve road, water, gas supply to the zone and attract between N666 billion to N1.4 trillion to the economy. Adesina described the take off of Alape Crop Processing Zone as

a dream come true, adding that it was capable of generating 8000 jobs with the full backing of the federal government. In his remark, Governor Idris Wada of Kogi state said the state government adopted the agricultural transformation agenda of President Jonathan with its potential to improve the economy. The governor commended the federal government and Cargill Group of Companies for

their interest in investing in Kogi state. He said the state was working towards establishing a 15000 hectres cassava farm, assuring the public that the produce from the farm will assist several agro-allied and sweetener industries to be established in the state. Speaking on behalf of Cargill, the American investors, Emeri Koenig said the group has in the last 150 years invested in 67 countries across the world.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 11

Money Sense 8 ways of making money from selling your skills special delicacy? Do you have a surefire way to ask a boy or girl out? Make a video about it and watch the views rack up. 5. Sell your artwork. You can draw amazing pictures for people, perhaps, or maybe even take wonderful black and white pictures if you’re a good artist. Why not make some extra money on the side by selling your paintings, landscapes, or profiles? There are lots of online websites like Facebook yard sales where you can list or auction off your artwork to people around the world.

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n this era of limited paid employment space, whether you are endowed with variety of natural skills or gained a variety of new skills through work experience? Here are 8 possible practical ways of making money from selling your Skills. 1.Start a tutoring trade for N500 per hour.

This is an effective way to earn money and works really well if you are excellent in certain school subjects such as mathematics and language. Really try to teach your pupil different ways of overcoming problems or thinking about the subject. You won’t get that many repeat clients if you’re not a good teacher and you charge a lot of money for the privilege. 2 Create a website. Make a website that features something that you know is abnormally popular, and have a section of your website devoted to a fan club for the thing/ animal/food etc. Ask people to join for a token per person, let’s say N2, 000! You’re rich, if people think it is worth it! Most of the popular website names are already in use, but if you think of a good one that is not in use, then your website could be a bang! 3. Make money by playing music. People love hearing music, and live music is even better. If you know how to play an instrument and you’re not making money playing it, you’re

missing out on an opportunity. Try these simple ideas to monetize your skills: Try teaching some kids or adults an instrument you already know. If you know how to play any instruments like guitar, drums, piano, etc, advertise to teach others for N500 –N1, 000 a week. If you provide musical entertainment, go in a public area and put out a hat and a sign to advertise your “act.” This may sound funny; but people may give you a bit of money if you’re good enough. They will probably only give you change, but you could make lots, if you keep at it. However, ensure you carry a check that the location allows this type of activity so that you don’t end up in trouble. 4. Start a YouTube series to promote your talent. If you get popular, you can apply for the Partnership programme and get paid. (If you are under 18, you will need your parent’s email address, but that shouldn’t deter you from trying.) If you can suddenly get your video to go viral, you could

6. Teach someone how to use electronics. You’re a computer whiz;

be making enormous money each month, with the added possibility to make more with successive videos. Try video game tutorials. What’s the latest video game trend? If you can make or do something splendid in a popular video game, you’ll certainly get some followers. Teach people how to solve a popular problem. Do you know a really cool way prepare a

you make jokes about 404 errors; you have dreams about assembling and disassembling all sorts of electrical gadgets. If you fit this profile, you should definitely consider making some money by helping other people out. A computer is an awful thing to waste. Why not make a website advertising your expertise? Of course, advertise the fact that you’re still young, but offer great prices and endorsements describing how professional and useful you are. Who knows — your business could take off! 7. Put on a show in your neighbourhood. Who says you need to be a grown-up in order to put on a show? It can be a talent show, a sketch comedy show, or something else. If you’re into doing a one-man thing, you can keep all the profits of your show. If you involve other people in your show, you should of course be prepared to pay everyone who helped you out or performed with you in your show. The fee should be something like N50-N100 per ticket. 8. Make PowerPoints for

people. If you are especially good at designing PowerPoints, you can get information from people and then format a presentation out of it for them. There are some online sites where you can work freelance for people if you are chosen for such job.

Money Tip: 5 secrets for turning hobby to business •Persevere Success does not come overnight in any field. Family and friends may be somewhat skeptical of your endeavors. Keep going, learn from the rejection letters, and dream! •Educate Yourself Learn everything there is to know about your craft - its history, techniques, etc. You never know when someone might ask you about it. Learn social networking. Use online photo boards to showcase your talent. Keep the world updated on what you are doing. Also, learn business skills. What criteria are required by law for your craft? How can you market your craft? How much time needs to be devoted to it? What are realistic income expectations? What are material costs? •Join Organizations There are guilds, clubs, councils, specific to arts, crafts, materials, etc. These groups have various resources for their members. One of the added benefits of becoming a member of a group is support - they want you to succeed. Another perk is making new friends! •Keep excellent records If you want your hobby to become a business, you have to treat it like one. Tax forms and the like are a necessary evil. Besides, it is nice to know at a glance how you are doing financially. Once you have some numbers to work with, you can produce a budget you can stick with. •5. Stay up-to-date Keep current of all things happening in your craft - who and what are new. You do not want to be thrilled by your new discovery, only to find out it’s been done by someone else already. Subscribe to blogs written by leaders in your craft, or at the very least people you respect. You can learn a lot by reading them. Culled from www.voices. yahoo.com

Quote I had to make my own living and my own opportunity! But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them! – C.J. Walker


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

EDITORIAL

Ariel Sharon: A death worth celebrating? slaughtered more than a quarter million women, children and the elderly in the Sabra and Shatilla camps. Not only the world was outraged but even in Israel public opinion against the slaughter boiled over. An Israeli commission of inquiry headed by a Supreme Court judge, Mr. Yitzhak Kahan, found Israel indirectly responsible for the atrocities. Mr. Sharon, as defence minister, bore personal responsibility because having permitted the Phalangist militia

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he former Israeli Prime Minister, Mr. Ariel Sharon, who suffered a massive stroke on January 4, 2006 and had been in coma ever since died late last Saturday. He was 85 years old. Sharon whose military and political careers were dogged by controversy was adored and reviled in equal measure by opponents and admirers. A career soldier, he rose to the rank of a General and fought in all of Israel’s wars with its Arab neighbours– particularly the 1948 war, establishing the Israeli state and 1956, precipitated by an inglorious plot by the British, French and Israelis to retrieve the Egyptian canal, which President Gamal Abdul Nasser had earlier nationalised. Even the United States, an ally of the three plotting nations, was outraged and denounced the war. It was followed by the 1967 six-day war and Yom Kippur in 1973. Sharon’s most reprehensible action would be his role as defence minister, a job he held between 1981 and 1983. Israel had invaded and occupied southern Lebanon in 1982 and maintained a proxy Lebanese militia, the Phalangists, that entered two camps holding several thousands of Palestinian refugees under Israeli military watch. In fact, the Israeli soldiers held and watched over the parameter fences of the camps, while its proxy Phalangist militia entered and

Sharon, nicknamed The Bulldozer for his relentless aggressive drive, was not a particularly conciliatory leader. to enter the camps, he was in no doubt as to what they would do. The commission recommended Sharon’s sack as minister and barred him from holding a ministerial job again. He refused to quit and the then Prime Minister, Mr. Menachem Begin refused to sack him. He later stepped down as defence minister but remained in the cabinet as minister without portfolio. He fizzled out of public life only to re-emerge in 2000, while the Prime Minister, Mr. Ehud Barak, was engaged in exploratory peace

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talks with Palestinian leadership. He made the notorious and provocative visit to Haran al-Sharif, which Israelis call the Temple Mount in East Jerusalem and triggered the second Palestinian uprising or Intifada. That effectively ended the fledgling peace process and in 2001, he became Prime Minister, a job he held until 2006 when he suffered that fatal massive stroke. As prime minister, he expanded the building of Jewish settlements in occupied Palestinian lands but in a dramatic move that would anger his right wing supporters, he closed the settlement in Gaza and withdrew 5,000 Israeli settlers. While doing that he clamped a security siege over a territory of 1.5 million Palestinians. Since Sharon’s death, encomiums have poured in from the West, with US sending Vice President Joe Biden to his burial early this week. The Palestinians and Arab world are generally appalled by this veneration of a man they say had a lot of their blood on his hands. Sharon, nicknamed The Bulldozer for his relentless aggressive drive, was not a particularly conciliatory leader. He was averse to any settlement that traded away Israelis’ entrenched privileges and that, in our view, was not a mark of statesmanship. Even for the Israelis, the security he championed through use of force is not sustainable and urges a rethink.

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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 13

Opinion

No jobs? Well, the machines took them (I) By Peregrino Brimah

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elcome to 2014. While many of us in developing nations are embroiled in trivial and non sequiturethnic, religious and political/governance battles, there is a new and most powerful ‘race’ that is slowly but steadily conquering the world and promising to deprive us of what we yet have today, and the job security we aspire for. Knowing that most criminality and terror is rooted in competition for opportunity, land and the pursuit of happiness, I dare say we are lucky… that we have not yet been allowed to advance, thanks to our frictions, and as such do not yet critically experience this most serious and unavoidable new competitive threat to humanity. We can barely cope with human-human competition, talk less the machine revolution. The job loss in America, as much as it is blamed on simple and rather comforting explanations like, increased global competitiveness, exporting jobs, inept

administrative policies and the like; is highly attributable to this new ‘race’ of monsters. It is the machines; the blessing of advancing technology, creating a race of gadgets that are surely and steadily replacing jobs, primarily in the ‘developed’ world and eventually everywhere. This December, the CEO of Amazon, the world’s biggest online store, Jeff Bezos revealed the companies “Prime Air” drone project which intends to deliver light weight packages to customers within 30 minutes of clicking ‘buy now.’ 80% of Amazon orders are lightweight; this translates to almost 80% replacement of human low skill deliveryman labor. UPS, the world’s largest package delivery company is also

researching the utility of drone technology to deliver packages. All these are in the test phase and are expected to fully roll out within the next 4 years. Already in the biggest stores like Wal-Mart, machines have been replacing most human checkout kiosks/ tills. And the thing about these automatic checkout points is their humanness. They, unlike simple computers of the past, interact in conversation style with the customer. The machines say, ‘welcome,’ ‘please scan your item;’ ‘please put it in the bag.’ And wish you off with a friendly bye-bye, ‘thanks for shopping with us.’ By the end of 2014, there will be 430,000 selfcheckout points in Wal-Mart stores around the United States. That is almost half a

million jobs lost in the US. It takes only one attendant to supervise up to six checkout lanes. The same trend has been occurring in BJ’s, CVS, M&S and practically all major retail stores worldwide. This equals millions of every day staff who are being laid off by a better ‘race,’ the race of machines. US president Barack Obama can simply not catch-up with this rate of job replacement by machines that are cheap to operate, do not require health-care, do not complain, are always punctual and are purchased only once for a fraction of the yearly wage of a human, and work continuously, no pain, no lunch-break, no monthly cycle, no pregnancy, no picking-up kids, no leave; requiring only occasional visits by technicians.

For those of us who work or seek careers abroad, one must consider long-term job security when selecting a profession. You just cannot go wrong with computers and entertainment. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for marketing, manufacturing, and even professional careers like medicine, law and engineering. In your career field, you want to make yourself indispensable. Someone, a researcher or computer skilled programmer/developer who will still be employed till the tail end of the machine race replacement era.

But it gets even worse— for us mortals, that is. It’s not only low skill labor that is at risk of replacement by machines, but practically all types of professions, bar none. Our years of interactions through machines, like the computer-internet, our cell phones, and all other devices, has provided an invaluable pool of information about human interaction that is being mined and researched on by Google, faceBook and other central corporations. Do not think you are so unique, or your reasoning is peculiar to human beings and not replaceable with machines. Ever spoke to an automated machine on the phone before? Think about how these have advanced over the years, also reducing several phone desk staff with single automated responders which interact with you and try their best to resolve your problem before finally transferring you to a live agent. As time goes on, these automatic telephone responders are being developed to handle more and more in conversation style with customers.

Nigeria’s deep waters run shallow (II) Contd from yesterday By Toyin Akinosho

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here were more sweeteners. The 1999 law caused petroleum tax payable under the PSC arrangement to be fixed at 50% flat rate of chargeable profits for the duration of the production sharing contracts against the rate of 85%, prescribed by the Petroleum Profit Tax Act operable in the Joint Venture arrangement. The law also prescribed an investment tax credit (ITC) as capital expenditure and is fixed at a flat rate of 50% of the qualifying expenditure, in accordance with the production sharing contract term for the applicable accounting period. This is set off against tax liabilities. As these contracts were signed at a time of poor knowledge of the working of the deep water petroleum system, and against a backdrop of oil prices of less than $20 per barrel, the government included three re-opener clauses which could have given the Nigerian government far more take than was granted in the contract, if the deep water projects ever turned

more profitable than envisaged. The clauses were: A re-examination of the fiscal terms, if oil prices reach $20, as the profitability of the licences would be greater and the need to equitably have more government revenue would be established; a re-examination and re-negotiation of the fiscal terms, for more equity in favour of government, should there be discoveries above five hundred million barrels; and an overall review of the contract, after Fifteen years. By 1997, the Bonga and Erha oil fields, each with reserves exceeding 500Million Barrels, had been discovered by Shell and ExxonMobil respectively. By 2001, oil prices had surged far ahead of $20 per barrel. Except for the dip in 2008, oil prices have hovered around $100 and more for the past six years. Bonga and Erha were both in production by 2006. In 2007, each of them was producing in excess of 150,000BOPD. In effect, all the requirements for the re-opener clauses had been met by 2008, 15 years after the contracts were signed.

In 2008, Chevron commenced production from Agbami field, described by Offshore magazine as “a $7 billion project containing an estimated 900 million barrels of oil equivalent of recoverable hydrocarbons, the largest deepwater discovery to date in Nigeria”. Whereas Bonga and Erha produce less than 150,000BOPD today, Agbami is still delivering in excess of 250,000BOPD, in short, over 1 million barrels every four days. In 2009, TOTAL brought, on stream the Akpo field deep water development. The company itself claimed that the field had proved and probable reserves estimated at 620 million barrels of condensate (around 50° API), and more than 1 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas. “It is one of the largest deep offshore projects ever undertaken”, the company said in a release. Akpo is currently producing 175,000BCPD. Condensates, named for the chemical process by which the hydrocarbon comes out of the ground (it’s gas in the reservoir and condenses as light oil as it emerges in the surface), are sold as crude oil. The Nigerian state considers

itself as having not benefitted from these large finds, in spite of the re-opener clauses. Based on an estimate of $72 per barrel, in late 2012, revenue projection by the government, for 2013, according to NNPC data, indicated that the IOCs operating 800,000BOPD from PSC fields in deep water terrain contribute $7billion annually compared with production of 1.4million BOPD Joint Venture fields that contribute $39 billion annually. These figures were provided in a paper by Abieye Membere, the NNPC’s Group Executive Director for Exploration and Production. Government bureaucrats have expressed their anger both in public and private. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, the country’s Central Bank Governor has reportedly called on multinational companies to “renegotiate this or get out”. At an economic conference in Abuja early in 2013, he reportedly remarked: “These discussions are not just economic discussions; they’re discussions that go to sovereignty.” “Unfair fiscal terms” for the deep water operations, which account

for 40 per cent of Nigeria’s oil production, cost the country $5 billion a year in lost revenue, and contribute to the decline of the foreign, currency reserves of Nigeria, Sanusi was reported to have said. Last June, Phillip Asiodu, who was minister of state at the Petroleum Ministry in 1993, asked in an interview in a local daily, The Guardian, “What is the explanation for waiting for thirteen years and getting lower revenues, when within our existing contracts and laws, we could have improved”? The total legislated government take in terms of taxes from deep water fields is 61% today. “Current fiscal terms whereby government take is about the lowest among peer countries is unfair to the country”, Membere laments, noting that “the highest income received to date (from the PSC deep water fields) is 49 per cent”. International oil companies would not discuss these issues in public. In private, however, some of them express the opinion that the Nigerian government should have simply called for renegotiation,


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Opinion

2015: Atiku Abubakar and destiny By Mike Adekaa

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lhaji Atiku Abubakar is not a mean personality in the political history of Nigeria. During the aborted political transition programme of former military President, Rtd.General Ibrahim Babangida(the Maradona of Nigerian politics), Atiku contested in the governorship primaries in his state under the umbrella of the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP). Unfortunately for the Turaki, the contest between him and Alhaji Bala Takaya was so fierce and marred by some irregularities that led to their disqualification from the contest. Alhaji Atiku being a dogged political fighter knew that he would live to fight another day. Behold, an opportunity presented itself in 1999 when he contested this time under the ticket of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and won. By divine promotion Alhaji Atiku was sworn in as a Vice President, and not as a governor, when he was found to be the most suitable deputy to Chief Obasanjo who just entered into the school of politics by providence and needed a sound and an astute politician to tutor and support him. I wrote an article in 2011 titled, “Atiku still a political force to reckon with” which was published by the New Nigerian of 20th February, 2011.

In that article, I enumerated the political battles fought by the former vice president right from the time of the defunct SDP in the nineties and up to 2011 when he gallantly lost the PDP primaries to the incumbent President, Goodluck Jonathan. He however made the PDP primaries very interested not only to PDP members

WRITE TO US Peoples Daily welcomes your letters, opinion articles, text messages and ‘pictures of yesteryears.’ All written contributions should be concise. Word limits: Letters - 150 words, Articles - 750 words. Please include your name and a valid location. Letters to the Editor should be addressed to: The Editor, Peoples Daily, 1st Floor Peace Plaza, 35 Ajose Adeogun Street, Utako, Abuja. Email: opinion@peoplesdailyng.com SMS: 08134607052

but also to members of other political parties and even the international community. He proved to be the only presidential material Mrs. Sarah Jibril was contracted (?) by the PDP to entertain delegates which role she was appropriately compensated for with a political appointment. In all these political battles, the Turaki Adamawa has remained focused, unshaken and undaunted. I finally advised him to remained calm, re-strategize, oil his political machineries and prepare to fight another day. There is a saying that once there is life, there is hope. After all, an American president contested for about eight times and

eventually entered the white house. Who say it cannot happen in Nigeria. .This time I am taking a look at the chances the Turaki has in 2015 and if he loses, will there be any hope considering he is now 68?. At present, Atiku belongs to the Peoples Democratic Party, the ruling party which has been in anarchy and on a verge of collapse since last year. Only God knows what is in the mind of this political guru who has the mathematical acumen to maneuver. At the moment, he seems to be a man of the people carrying along every body irrespective of their political affiliations. Since last year, he has

been touring the crannies and nooks of the country making presentations at conferences/ workshops, reaching up to former heads of state, present governors, former ministers, governors, national assembly members and

other high profile political giants across the country. He is also being conferred with more traditional titles wherever he goes. There seems to be affection between him and many sitting governors irrespective of their party affiliations. The political calculus is that if the incumbent still contest and wins he will complete his second tenure of four years which the constitution guarantees. By this time the Turaki will be over 70, putting him in a disadvantageous position. On the other hand, if the incumbent president decides not to contest (which will be unbelievable) and fields

a candidate from the north and the person wins, Atiku will have to wait for another eight years, if not sixteen years. Even if a single term comes into existence, he will still face the same scenario. The options now open for the Turaki , in case the incumbent President decides to contest and wins the primaries, is to woo the new APC and PDM to adopt him as their consensus candidate. However, the victory of Atiku at PDP’s primaries is likely to change the fortunes of the party as all dissenting voices are likely to retrace their steps to PDP .This means that it is only a new candidate that will be capable of restoring the hope of PDP in the 2015 elections. Judging from the way President Jonathan is running the nation, the disenchantments in many quarters, from elder statesmen and high profile corruption cases in the country which have remained unresolved, the PDP may end up dumping him to brighten its chances in 2015. More so the insecurity situation which seems to overwhelm the present government is likely to count against President Jonathan. What I see coming in 2014 is a mass defection from the ruling party which has proved incompetent in resolving Nigeria’s socio-economic problems. Mike Adekaa is reachable on M_adeks@yahoo.com

Between FCT teachers and the minister By Abubakar Ikunaiye

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f education is truly the best legacy one can bequeath to his or her child, something very crucial and urgent must be done about the suffering teachers in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Their traumatic predicament and its attendant consequences have assumed an alarming proportion. This complaint should be the third, if not the fourth time, I have made under this platform. Before the last struck that broke the camel’s back, teachers working in public schools, especially those in primary one to JSS3 had been perpetually subjected to a very callous and inhuman treatment, such that their pay package was nothing to write home about. A situation where a level 8 officer receives less than N45, 000 per month and is unable to pay his or her annual rent is pathetic. In a particular year, he could be paid 136, 000, then another minister would come and say it is too much, (accommodation allowance for a public civil servant in Abuja for that matter!), then reduces it by 30%; another one may want to reduce it by 50% and so on. Also very disgusting is the calamitous method of salary payment to teachers working

at the primary school level, particularly those under the payroll of the six Area Councils in Abuja (equivalent of six local government areas). It has become the tradition in FCT that the Area Councils will not pay the primary school teachers their monthly salaries until it has entered the second or third week of the following month. Sometime early last year, the minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Senator Bala Muhammed, ordered a screening exercise for FCT Teachers and the nonteaching staff of both primary and secondary schools so as to determine (as alleged) the work-force size and basically unravel some irregularities in the employment and qualifications of the staff. That screening exercise, to the best of my knowledge, was

not only carried out in a hurry but it was haphazardly done too and hence its outcome had expectedly created untold hardships. Names of over 6, 000t staff were initially released as ghost workers just because of failure to produce originals of one credential or another. More unfortunate on the side of these staff, is their weak and inactive union (NUT, Abuja chapter) which merely went on a-two or three-day cheap strike action after much pressure from the affected staff and consequently some 2, 000 were recalled to represent their originals. And they did. However, the majority of the affected staff running into up to over 3, 000 are yet to be given the same opportunity that was selectively given to some. Many of the affected teachers and non-teaching staff alike

were now seen around the city living like frustrated wanderers even as they still go to work and perform their legitimate duties with high level of diligence. Investigation revealed that most of these hapless victims (mostly teachers) have neither been paid salaries for the past three months nor given fair opportunity to represent their credentials in their original form and they are in most cases married men and women with large families. The politicization of civil service jobs in FCT must be brought to an end. There are three cardinal units under FCT administration that are considered most vital, namely: 1) Abuja Geographical Information System (AGIS) 2) FCT Development Control, and 3) the FCT Universal Basic Education Board. The first one is the juiciest and

It has become the tradition in FCT that the Area Councils will not pay the primary school teachers their monthly salaries until it has entered the second or third week of the following month. Sometime early last year, the minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Senator Bala Muhammed, ordered a screening exercise for FCT Teachers and the non-teaching staff of both primary and secondary schools so as to determine (as alleged) the work-force size and basically unravel some irregularities in the employment and qualifications of the staff.

one cannot easily work there except you are connected. They are solely and primarily in charge of land allocation and revocation in any part of the FCT aside other auxiliary duties. The second one is in charge of demolition of houses and destruction of people’s property in any part of Abuja, all in the name of protecting and ensuring the Abuja Master Plan (AMP) and any staff would like to be posted there to work simply because the more properties they demolish, the more money they make. The last, and probably the least, is the FCT Universal Basic Education Board, popularly known as ‘BOARD.’ This third one unfortunately typifies the popular saying: ‘monkey dey work baboon dey chop.’ My findings still proved that most of the Area Councils’ workers, especially those in the education sector, were yet to collect their December salary. On a final note, I want to appeal and strongly recommend that all concerned stakeholders in the public and private sectors of the economy should as a matter of urgent national importance intervene in the matter of the FCT education sector. Comrade Abubakar Ikunaiye is with the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun state.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 15

Comment

Jonathan’s House of Impunity By Bamidele Ademolaolateju

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climate of impunity exists in our land because of the failure of the Nigerian state to further the rule of law, strengthen the judiciary, prosecute criminals and make examples out of those who plunder our resources. This ominous cloud of “who fit catch me” brought a Jonathan to us. In this country; everyone has been corrupted with and by money. Stolen money fuels impunity. Everybody wants to make as much money as possible for the sake of making money only. The dubious rich exhibits such lavish lifestyle that can only be described as obscene. Their ranks are filled with an array of economic saboteurs buying private jets and every available property in choice areas as if the land will vanish under their feet if they fail to buy. A general lack of accountability and outright stealing in high places without consequence sets the Nigerian stage as a country of anything goes. To cap it all, life is cheap because no one really gives a damn. Everybody practices the law of the jungle where the powerful at every strata preys on the defenseless. We live in a country where a bunch of faceless men dab chili in the eyes of women and sodomize them with sticks and bottles for stealing pepper without fear or consequence. University students were lynched openly in broad daylight with police cover over allegations of petty theft while pension fund looters who made

away with billions are rescued by the high and mighty. That is the story of our country. Small crooks graduate into major league crooks. Impunity feeds itself into an infinite spiral when people in the corridors of power undermine the country and their fellow citizens wholly and brazenly without conscience. This is because they benefit from the chaotic Nigerian state and justice is often perverted for maximum protection. The government on its own steam routinely intimidates dissenting voices and the opposition. They create an atmosphere of fear and insecurity by fanning the embers of religious schism and ethnic intolerance. Knowing we will sit on our hands praying to God to deliver us, the government protects drug barons, fraudsters, assassinates opponents and gives cover to murderers and convicted felons while we keep vigil. With government sanctioned indifference, the right to take lives without fear of any consequence is seared in

the minds of criminals. To complete the cycle, our criminal justice system is a study in systemic failure; felonies including murder are never investigated with any vigor, dedication or sense of outrage. This country is what it is because we accept and rationalize every infraction and malfeasance visited on us by our traducers as our manifest destiny. That is why the aviation minister can misappropriate funds and still have the effrontery to travel with the president on a bilateral mission. That is why the president does not give a damn and undermines our collective will by retaining seasoned crooks, academically dishonest people and insolents in his cabinet. $10.8.billion was not remitted into the national purse and Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) rushes in with voodoo accounting to explain away the $10.8billion. After all, it is just N2trillion Naira ONLY. Before now, the scandalously inflated BMW

purchase did not inflame this President, certificate forgeries did not violate his sense of decency, the proposed acquisition of a zoological beast for Asorock at enormous cost to taxpayers does not bother him, the unholy travel expense of N2billion by her Royal Deepness, Queen of Crude and custodian of our purse strings does not faze him, it is the leak of a letter that gets his goat. A letter calling our attention to how the NNPC tin gods share our money was what got him screaming on phone instead of him sacking his corrupt women. In his trademark doltishness, he called Sanusi Lamido Sanusi the Central Bank Governor up and told him to resign. Of course, Sanusi who is never afraid to bell any cat showed the President that his inane cattiness is a poor substitute for wit. He told the President he has no such powers. He reminded him to look more closely at his never-ending cascade of extortionist ministers over whom he has constitutional

If we keep praying instead of cutting this charade constitutionally, this president will transform into a junior league dictator and write the testament for our breakup. His presidency is a churning swirl of corrupt currents, moral dislocation and impunity, we must find a way to limit its splashes. Mr. Jonathan is a bare-faced ethnic jingoist and an irredentist whose pretensions to meekness are well known. He is a maestro of faux sincerity who has continued to show wanton disrespect for the Nigerian people. We must cease to be taken in by his deceptive exterior.

Bamidele Ademola-Olateju is on twittet@olufunmilayo

CAF/FIFA and awards in football

By Abiodun Aremu

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efore the Eurocentricpropelled African football awards took place recently, I discussed with a football enthusiast, questioning the rationale in determining African and World Footballers of the Year based on football competitions in Europe. An African Footballer of the Year award ought to be based on the performances of players (irrespective of their nationality) who partake in competitions based in Africa, i.e., Africa Cup of Nations, African World Cup and Olympics qualifiers, African Champion & Winner cups and African regional competitions. If the competitions in Africa were used, there was no way Yaya Toure and Mikel Obi would feature at all, even

powers to hire and fire. Enough of nonsense! Sanusi’s refusal to resign is a pointer to Jonathan that he must focus his tour de force performance on examining the harum-scarum ways of his women and mossy tropes within his party. If we keep praying instead of cutting this charade constitutionally, this president will transform into a junior league dictator and write the testament for our breakup. His presidency is a churning swirl of corrupt currents, moral dislocation and impunity, we must find a way to limit its splashes. Mr. Jonathan is a bare-faced ethnic jingoist and an irredentist whose pretensions to meekness are well known. He is a maestro of faux sincerity who has continued to show wanton disrespect for the Nigerian people. We must cease to be taken in by his deceptive exterior. His litany of sins mounts by the day; he actively promotes, encourages and condones corruption; he subverts the constitution; he exhibits willful disregard for the legislature and the judiciary; he uses the states’ security apparatuses to intimidate the opposition or whoever stands in his way; he harbors and gives protection to gun runners and terrorists disguised as militants; he shelters appointees proven to engage in corrupt enrichment and certificate forgeries among other disgraceful conducts capable of undermining their office and in violation of the oath they took. This list runs longer.

as finalists. Even Vincent Enyeama would have made the LIST above both winners. All the assessments used were based on their participation in Euro competitions. Equally, the World Best Footballer of the Year should be chosen from among the best footballers in all the continents,

i.e. from all d continents’ bests and using the added criteria of their performances in FIFA competitions – World Cup & Olympic qualifiers, FIFA Confederation Cup, World Cup, World Clubs Cup and FIFA rated international matches. It is the height of absurdity and underdevelopment to crown

a World Footballer based on Euro leagues & Champion cups; which is what will happen in few days to come. And to sustain this warped dominant consciousness, TV rights controlled by big capital and businesses have been used to give prominence to Euro leagues. How many in

An African Footballer of the Year award ought to be based on the performances of players (irrespective of their nationality) who partake in competitions based in Africa, i.e., Africa Cup of Nations, African World Cup and Olympics qualifiers, African Champion & Winner cups and African regional competitions. If the competitions in Africa were used, there was no way Yaya Toure and Mikel Obi would feature at all, even as finalists. Even Vincent Enyeama would have made the LIST above both winners. All the assessments used were based on their participation in Euro competitions.

Africa care to know the highest scorers in African, South American, Asian leagues? Why do Messi, Ronaldo and other overhyped players underperform at global competitions when they are even confronted by lesser publicised and rated teams/ players? The true worth of a global award should be based on all round competitions and not goals scored in Euro leagues. After all, Euro leagues do not qualify as FIFA competitions. This was the same backward consciousness that made people refer to the two European wars (1914 – 1919 & 1939 – 45) to economically and politically dominate the rest of us as World Wars 1 & 2. Abiodun Aremu can be reached via biod_abi@ yahoo.co.uk


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 16

DRTS intensifies removal of ‘Keke NAPEP’ from city centre By Stanley Onyekwere

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n its resolve to ensure the restriction of operations of the popular commercial tricycles otherwise called Keke NAPEP, from the Abuja city centre, the Directorate of Road Traffic Services (DTRS) said it is embarking on an intensive raid on the operators flaunting the subsisting ban on their activities within the city. The spokesperson of the DTRS popularly called Vehicles Inspection Office (VIO), Mr. K. K. Iloduba, who made the disclosure

… arrests 30 operators in an exclusive interview with Peoples Daily, said Keke NAPEP operators have no business coming into the city centre. He said the enforcement has already begun, as recently, officials of the directorate arrested over 30 Keke NAPEP operators, including commercial mini and coaster buses at Area 1, AYA and Bannex axis of the city centre. “We are determined now to remove tricycles ( Keke NAPEP)

from the city highways to the outskirts and satellite towns of the FCT, that was the original plan. “2013 was choked up with a lot consultation and interactions with the operators, but, this year, we have realised that they are not meeting their part of the agreement, to stay away from the city centre. “So this time around, we are working towards the total removal of tricycles from the city

Traffic gridlock at City Gate on Airport Road, on Monday in Abuja.

centre, because the agreement is that they should operate at the satellite towns and suburbs, but they are flaunting that agreement time and time again. Also, Iloduba disclosed that the DRTS is stepping up strict enforcement on ban of unpainted taxis and motorcycles from operating within the city centre as well as in the area of road worthiness of vehicles in the FCT. “We are also looking at improving our feeder route enforcement of operation of mini buses and operator licensing scheme”, he added.

Photo: NAN

Eid-el-Maulud: Scholar tasks Muslims, Christians on tolerance By Usman Shuaibu

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n Islamic scholar based in Tunga-Maje, in Gwagwalada Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Malam Musa Abdul-Wakeel Yelwa has enjoined both Muslims and Christians to demonstrate the spirit of tolerance, unity

and forgiveness towards one another wherever they found themselves. Yelwa, who made the call yesterday in a telephone interview with Peoples Daily, to commiserate the birth of Prophet Mohammed, (SAW) urged Muslims to be worthy ambassadors by exemplifying the virtues and attributes as

well as lessons of Prophet Mohammed during his life time. He used the occasion to intimate Christians, on the fact that Islam is not a religion of terrorism, but a religion of peace, while calling on adherents of both faiths to live in peace with one another. He further called on them

to pray for God’s intervention on the situation of insecurity in the country, and appealed to religious leaders to intensify prayers for stability of the nation. On his part, an Islamic scholar, Malam Murtala Sani, urged government to provide basic amenities for the less privileged in the society.

AMAC: Two win FCT Qur’an recitation competition

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wo residents of Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) have emerged winners of the 28th edition of Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Qur’an recitation competition organised by the Abuja Muslims community. Mallam Nura Aliyu, from AMAC, emerged the overall winner in the male category while Mallama Hafsat Sanni,

also from AMAC, won the female category. The FCT Minister, Sen. Bala Muhammed, at the closing ceremony, commended participants for their commitment towards seeking knowledge of the Qur’an. Muhammed, represented by his Chief of Staff, Alhaji Ya’u Gital, said, according to Islamic perspective, there is

no winner or loser in Qur’anic competitions as all the participants were winners in the eyes of Allah. He urged parents to always encourage their children to take active part in memorising the Holy Quran, not only when there was competition. He expressed gratitude to the organisers for the initiative geared towards deepening the

understanding of the Holy Qur’an. Earlier, the Emir of Jiwa, Alhaji Idris Musa, urged the participants to encourage those that did not participate in the competition to do so, to deepen their religious beliefs, and urged Muslims not to engage in any activity that could dent the image of Islam and the peaceful coexistence of the nation.

Bala hails FG over solar energy in parts of FCT By Stanley Onyekwere

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he Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Minster, Senator Bala Mohammed has extolled the Federal Government for the choice of Abuja as pioneer base for its Light-up Rural Nigeria (OLRN) project, aimed at overhauling the power sector with a view to promoting growth of rural communities. He made the commendation at the launch of the first pilot stage of OLRN project, at Durumi-Mpape, in Bwari Area Council, of the FCT, saying the intention is to utilise 100 per cent solar energy to power hundreds of communities. President Goodluck Jonathan had on Monday, inspected and commissioned the OLRN project to power over 1000 households in three communities in the FCT as one of the several temporary interventional projects to bridge the gap of electricity supply in the country, especially rural communities. The pilot projects were carried out simultaneously at Durumi, Shape and Wura communities of the FCT respectively. According to the minister, the project is consistent with the drive by FCT Administration, to move development to the Area Councils and satellite towns, as the role of power in the economic transformation of any community cannot be overemphasised. Bala said: “The FCT and Nigeria as whole is endowed with huge renewable energy resources that compare with the best in the world, adding that “the initiative, as a Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement was capable of harnessing alternative energy sources such as solar, wind, hydro and biomass potentials. “It is generally agreed that one of the dynamic ways to stem rural urban drift and improve life in the rural areas is by providing reliable social amenities. The Minister, who pledged FCTA’s total commitment to making the initiative succeed in the nation’s capital, however charged the Area Council administrations to leverage on the facilities by providing complementary social amenities to the various communities.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 17

Metro

Some almajirai roaming for alms along Zuba road on Sunday, in Abuja.

Hawkers out for business along Kugbo hill, yesterday in Abuja.

Labourers waiting for patronage, recently in Mabushi, Abuja.

An aged man buying chickens, at Dutsen Alhaji Junction on Sunday in Abuja. Photos: Mahmud Isa

The Operation Light-up Rural Nigeria (OLRN) project launched by President Goodluck Jonathan, on Monday at Shape community, in Abuja.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Metro INSIDE FCT COURTS

Police arraign labourer for stealing 2 bags of rice

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he Police have arraigned a 20-year old labourer, Suleiman Isah, at the Wuse Zone 2 Senior Magistrates’ court, Abuja, for allegedly stealing two 50kg bags of rice. Isah, who resides at Wuse Zone 6, Abuja, is accused of stealing the bags of rice valued at N26, 000 from Shop 36 at El-Rufai Plaza in Wuse market,

The Police prosecutor, Sgt. Abdullahi Adamu, told the court that on January 3, the shop owner, Mr. Musa Shuaibu, reported the accused to the Wuse Market Police Station He said the accused entered the shop on Jan. 2 and stole one 50kg of Mama Gold brand of rice and another 50kg bag of Royal Stallion brand of rice.

was found in possession of the said stolen rice. He said the offence contravened the provisions of Section 288 of the Penal Code, but the accused pleaded not guilty to the charge, which attracts seven years imprisonment. Senior Magistrate Grace Adebayor-Eisape granted him bail in the sum of N100, 000

Adebayo-Eisape said the sureties must be fully employed in a recognised company orr organisation, and must live within the jurisdiction of the court. She also ordered that the sureties must swear to an affidavit to support his or herr claim of means of livelihood, and adjourned the case to January 20 for hearing proper.

Photo: NAN

Man bags 7 months’ imprisonment for stealing turkeys A

Grade 1 Area court in Gwagwalada, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has sentenced a 20-year old businessman, Abubakar Bawa to seven months imprisonment for stealing two turkeys. Bawa of no fixed address was arraigned and convicted on a twocount charge of criminal trespass and theft. The Judge, Alhaji Hassan Muhammad, who convicted Bawa after he pleaded guilty to the offences, however, gave him an option to pay N15, 000 fine.

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ne Amina Bature, 28, of Kubaru village, near Aso Pada has dragged her husband, Yusuf Bature, 32, of the same address before a Grade 1 Area court in Mararaba. The mother of four, who is seeking dissolution of her 15-year old marriage, accused her husband of intimidation and theft.

“For the fact that the accused has no previous criminal record, he is hereby convicted as charged. “He (Bawa) is therefore sentenced to two months’ imprisonment for the charge of criminal trespass or to pay N5, 000 fine. “Also, he is sentenced to five months’ imprisonment for the offence of theft or to pay N10, 000 fine. “In addition, he is ordered to pay N50, 000 to the nominal complainant as compensation. These are in line with the

provisions of Section 365 of the Criminal Procedure Code and Section 8 of Criminal Code Law,” he said. The court also orders the police to release the stolen turkey and three chickens found in the convict’s possession during investigation, to the nominal complainant. Earlier, the prosecutor, Cpl Usman Umaru, had told the Court that Bawa trespassed into the compound of Mrs. Obami Freda of Flat 15, Old Kontagora Estates, on December 24, 2013.

Umaru said the convict stole two turkeys valued at N20, 000 and 30 broilers worth N42, 000, two she-goats, and a goat worth N30, 000. “The complainant on January 3, saw the convict with one of her turkey and three chickens before he was arrested,’’ he added. Umaru said the offences contravened the provisions of sections 342 and 287 of the Penal code. Bawa had pleaded guilty to the charges and begged the court for leniency. (NAN)

Amina said Yusuf had been beating her with a stick used in controlling cows. “He always beat me with cow stick and has also sold my property without my consent. “Two days ago, he carried the cow stick as usual to beat me and I ran to the court. “I am no longer interested in the

marriage, the court should separate us,” she said However, the husband denied the wife’s allegations. The Presiding judge, Mr. Albert Maga, granted the accused a bail in the sum of N100, 000 and a surety in like sum. Maga, said that the surety must be a responsible citizen with landed

property and must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court. He also ordered that the surety write an undertaking that the accused will not commit a similar offence pending determination of the case. He adjourned the case to January 23, for continuation of hearing. (NAN)

Bizman docked over breach of trust, cheating

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he police have arraigned a 37-year old businessman, Mohammed Nti, of Durumi Village, Abuja, in an Abuja V Magistrates’ court, for alleged breach of trust and cheating. The prosecutor, Cpl Musa Abdulahi, told the court that Rabiu A Isah of Arab Road, Mpape, Abuja, reported the matter at the Mpape Police Station, Abuja, on December 30, 2013. Abdulahi said the accused collected N54, 000 from the complainant and promised to supply him with diesel, but he did not. h He alleged that the accused converted the money to his personal use and absconded to an unknown destination. The prosecutor said efforts by tthe complainant to trace the accused failed, as he could not reach him on phone, until he was tracked down by tthe police. He said the accused could not convince the police on how he spent tthe money during investigation, noting that the accused’s action contravened the provisions of sections 312 and 322 of the Penal code respectively. However, the accused denied the charges when read to him. The Presiding Magistrate, Mrs. Hauwa Aliyu, granted the accused bail in the sum of N50, 000 and a surety in like sum. Aliyu said the surety must have a fixed address and must reside within tthe jurisdiction of the court as she adjourned the matter to January 20 for hearing proper. (NAN)

… another charged over conspiracy, assault

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he Police have arraigned a 30year old businessman, Collins Iwuagwu, in a Wuse Senior Magistrates’ Court for alleged criminal conspiracy, force, assault and cheating. The Prosecutor, Cpl. Stanley N Nwodo, told the Court that Iwuagwu and one other now, at large committed t offence in May, at No. 153, Ademola the A Adetokunbo Crescent, Wuse II, Abuja. Nwodo said the accused person assaulted Mr. Dominic Mmaduekwe and threatened to deal with him HesaidIwuagwuandMmaduekwe w were engaged as contractors to renovate a property located at No. 153, Ademola Adetokunbo Crescent, Wuse A II in Abuja. “The accused cheated and assaulted his business partner (Mmaduekwe) over a disagreement t they had,’’ the prosecutor said. He said the offence contravened t provisions of sections 97, 265, the 266 and 325 of the Penal Code. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the accused p pleaded not guilty and denied all t charges. the The Magistrate, Mrs. Ramatu Gulina, admitted the accused to b in the sum of N300, 000 with bail a surety in like sum. Gulina ordered that the surety must be a civil servant not below Grade Level 06 and must b be b resident within the court’s jurisdiction. She adjourned the j case to February 8 for further hearing. (NAN) h


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

INSIDE

Isa_abdulwahab@yahoo.com, Isaabdulwahab@gmail.com 08033045613

Maximizing economic impact of Sokoto airport in the North– west region - Pg 20

IEI settles N1.2bn as claims in 2013 -Pg 21

MD/CEO of Fortis Mobile Money, Mr. Henry Nwawuba (middle), a Director of Alford Conferences, Mr. Moses Obisesan (left), and MD/ CEO, Alford Conferences, Mr. Frederick Apeji (right), during a visit by the management of Alford Conferences Limited to Fortis Mobile Money Limited, in preparation for the forthcoming Mobile Money Women’s Conference 2014, on Monday in Abuja.

Inflation rises to 8% in December –NBS

By Abdulwahab Isa

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rom 7.9 percent in November, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) commonly referred to inflation peaked at 8.0 percent in December, National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said yesterday in its monthly report. Stating reason for a slight

increase of 1.0, NBS says prices rose on the back of increases in eight of the eleven nonfoods Classical of Individual Consumption to Purpose (COICOP) divisions which contribute to the Core sub-index. “The Core sub-index rose by 7.9 percent in December, marginally higher from 7.8 percent recorded in November.

This is the sixth consecutive month of an increase in the core.” The increases in the divisions , says NBS were offset by slower increases in “Alcoholic Beverage, Tobacco and Kola”, “Housing Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels”, and “Transport” divisions. In the food sub-index,

Sanusi to address infrastructure forum in Brazzaville BY Sunday Etuka

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he Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, is billed among other eminent personalities in Africa to give insightful talk on possibility of infrastructure bubble in Africa. The forum comes up on February 5-7, 2014 in Brazzaville will dissect among other things, whether infrastructure bubble poses a real threat to the continent or is simply a groundless concern. Organizer of the forum, the Build Africa Forum also announced President Vicente Fox, Professor Xavier Sala-I-

Martin at the Global Forum among personalities billed to give talk on Infrastructure. Other eminent personalities expected in attendance include, global players like Robert Gumede, founder and owner of Guma Group (South Africa); Otavio Azvedo, President of Andrade Gutierrez (Brazil); Mario Pezzini, Director of the OECD Development Center (France), Tas Anvaripour, Director of AfDB’s Africa50 fund (Tunisia), Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian Airlines (Ethiopia); and Cesare Trevisani, CEO of the Trevi Group (Italy), among many others. Invited speakers are expected

to share their experiences in policy-making and speak to the power of infrastructure as a tool for growth and economic and social development. President Fox is a visionary leader with a deep understanding of the economic and social challenges facing emerging economies; President Fox is one of the world’s most important voices on the contemporary geopolitical landscape and the role of business in the developing world. President Fox will share his experience in developing Mexico’s economy and industry and offer insights into the challenges and opportunities facing emerging economies.

“it grew at the same rate in December as recorded in November (9.3 percent). Prices increased in major food classes such as Bread and Cereals, Meat, Fish and Dairy classes. Prices rose by less however, in the “Potatoes, Yams and Other Tubers”, Fruit, Vegetables, and “Sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery” classes, yielding the unchanged year-onyear rate” the report stated.

How NNPC wet the country with petroleum products in 2013 -Pg 22

Exchange Rates CBN as at 10th JANUARY, 2014 Buying

Selling

$

154.7

155.7

254.65 256.29

£

210.24 211.60

Riyal

41.24

41.51

YEN

1.47

1.48

CFA

0.301

0.321

MANAGEMENT TIP OF THE DAY Learn to hear the coaching in criticism

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riticism can be hard to hear, but pulling value from it is essential to your development and success. Luckily, it’s possible to strengthen your capacity to receive feedback. To get more from criticism, recognize that some feedback is evaluative (“Your rating is a 4”) and some is coaching (“Here’s how you can improve”). Work to hear the coaching in feedback; don’t get stuck on the evaluation. Next, don’t wait for a formal

review: ask for bite-size pieces of coaching from a variety of people throughout the year. Instead of asking an unfocused question like “Do you have any feedback for me?” make the process more manageable by asking, “What’s one thing you see me doing (or not doing) that holds me back?” This way, you’ll get more concrete information. Source: Harvard Business Review


PAGE 20

Aviation analysis

PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Maximizing economic impact of Sokoto airport in the North–west region The development of airport terminals across Nigeria no doubt is opening up hitherto comatose economic potentials of regions in the country. while others are still undergoing renovations, Suleiman Idris explores the economic impact the Sokoto airport will bring to the North West region when completed.

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n emerging economies of the world, the presence of airports represents a strategic asset to a region and makes considerable contribution to the local and regional economy around them. Economic investments which were once at their lowest ebb have been lifted where such visions has taken root. Take South Africa for example, the case for Integrated Airport Planning & Development presented by Bongani Maseko who was Acting Managing Director last April is a step that not only bring about development but unlock the positive impact of connectivity that airports creates and sees consumers also benefit from the improved customer services that will arise. In 2009, Adrian O’Donoghue, Policy & Research Officer for the Border, Midland and Western (BMW) Regional Assembly, a policy think tank group that developed a framework on how the government of Ireland can maximize the economic impact of airports in the BMW region affirmed that the success of any airport is linked with the economic wellbeing of the region it serves, while the degree of connectivity of a region forms the foundation for economic competitiveness. In the last two years, one of the cardinal objectives of the Goodluck Jonathan administration is the need to give life back to the country’s comatose airports infrastructures with a view to resuscitating their economic importance and potentials which among others bring about job creations and stimulate economic and business activities. Thus strategically, the Aminu Kano International Airport, Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, Abuja Airport, the Enugu Airport and the Port Harcourt International are regional airports that have received tremendous uplift as part of the remodelling exercise of the aviation ministry and no doubt open up the economic potentials of those regions. The commencement of direct flight from Kano to Instanbul by Turkish Airways and the Ethiopia Airline direct flight from Enugu to other parts of the globe are two positive instances. Others foreign airlines have lined up requests for permission to commence direct flight operations from such airports and others in the pipeline when they eventually open for commercial operations. One region in the country still devoid of a vibrant economic activity by not taken advantages of an airport location is the north western part of Nigeria. Though

Sokoto airport. the region boasts of historic and religious tourist sites, the awesome annual Argungu fishing festival and tremendous agricultural produce that are still consume locally and the rest left to rot due to the absence of adequate transport facilities that would have transport them to other part of the world where such cash and food crops are need as raw materials for industry. One airport that will serves as a significant catalyst for the economic revival of the region which include Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara states is the Sultan Saddik Abubakar III Airport, Sokoto, Since it commissioning on July 17th 1983, the terminal has merely been viewed to have been cited for political reason by the Shagari administration but economic realities now indicates that with the right development plans put in place through the collaboration of the federal, states and local governments in that region and the advantage of being bordered by two neighbouring countries, the facility can transform to become a rallying point for the region’s economic prosperity. The decision to revamp the airport by the present aviation minister through the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) is a right step in the right direction. Presently it has reached advanced stage of completion and will be open for improved commercial flight operation in no distance time. In economic context, the region’s economy is characterised by lower levels of income per head, higher levels of unemployment and employment in low valued added

sectors, this is demonstrated by the fact a larger percentage of men in the region are either engage in subsistence agriculture , fishing, mining and other low income generating activities. Alhaji Abubakar Othman and Saidu Mustapha are two successful businessmen in Agege and mile 12 areas of Lagos, during an interaction, albeit they have established reputable network of transporting the farm produce from the 3 states in the region to Lagos, Abeokuta and Ibadan, both still opined that the economic potentials of the region is largely untapped with the near disuse of the airport facility. “Imagine the investment opportunities the airport will attract to the region when the airport is fully functional, cargoes from 58 local govt areas will be massive, we would not only serve Nigeria but Europe and the outside world”. Othman said with an air certainty. He said “ people all over the world read about the great Sokoto Caliphate but because of the location of the state, many couldn’t come down to visit the city, that is what an airport can bring about”, said the Sokoto state born businessman. For Mustapha, the revival of the terminal will encourage trans-border trades between Nigeria and its two foreign neighbours that surround the state. He explained that industries in Lagos source for raw materials from other states. He began counting on his fingers the agricultural produce from the region to include millet, guinea corn, maize, rice, beans, wheat, cassava, potatoes, groundnut,

cotton, sugar cane, and tobacco. Fruits and vegetables grown include oranges, mangoes, cashew, bananas, lettuce, spinach, okra, cabbage, pawpaw and guava. “All these are what we can transport to where they are needed within a few hours if we put the airports into use” he told our correspondent. It is noteworthy to say that to be competitive in regional locations, enterprises in the North West must have access to infrastructural facilities that are at least on a par with competitors. It is recognised that inadequate transport infrastructure has been one of the major barriers restricting development in region. This includes the provision of quality access to and within the region via airport facility, linking the corridors and international access points. These underdeveloped linkages act as a barrier for inward investment, enterprise development, inbound tourism and overall quality of life for people. Development experts also posit that the presence of a viable airport in the region will generates economic activity, stimulates economic growth and creates employment. An airport is a location factor for businesses and opens up regional markets to foreign customers, businesses and tourists. The financial and business services sectors and high valued added actors, have been identified as ‘air intensive’ industries i.e., businesses which make the greatest use of air transport and for whom accessibility to air

services will have the strongest influence on location decisions. They said the air transport industry will also have important multiplier’ impacts, which mean that its overall contribution to employment and Gross Domestic Product of the region will be much larger than its direct impact. Spokesman for the aviation parastatal and General Manager Cooperate Communications of FAAN Mr. Yakubu Dati also affirm the importance of the Sokoto airport to the economy of the region and the country at large saying it holds a lucrative berth for the country’s aviation. “Aside the agric potentials the region adds to the economy of Nigeria, we are looking at opportunities whereby storage facilities can be cited at areas around the airport. Companies from far and near can simply fly into the states and purchase their farm produce and smoothly transport them via cargo planes. I can assure you that very soon, the perishable goods you find there will be flown out of this country to Europe, Asia and America within hours and that will empower the farmers economically. Again the large arable farmland will attract foreign farmers who will realise that their produce can be ship out of their location easily” Enumerating direct and indirect benefits of the remodelled terminal Dati said the airport itself will generates direct and indirect employment, “examples of these include Aircraft and operational related activities such as air tr affic control, refuelling, security and maintenance; Passenger related activities such as checkin, border control, retail and catering, car-hire, taxis and public transportation; Freightrelated activities such as loading and unloading; and Airport -related supports from the business services sector, e.g., call centres, IT support, accountancy, legal presentation etc” It is noteworthy to also emphasis that the presence of such facility also generates induced impacts i.e. the spending of those directly or indirectly employed in the air transport sector supports jobs in industries such as companies producing consumer goods and a range of service industries (e.g.) restaurants, banks, conference centres, car rental and tourism activities etc). However with the completion of the Sokoto airport in sight, it will be remarkable if the states and local government areas in the region will put efforts together and unlock the sleeping giant that is the Sokoto airport.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 21

Pension&insurance

STI assures stakeholders of improved performance Stories from Ngozi Onyeakusi, Lagos

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s fallout of its just concluded management retreat/ budget session held in Lagos, Sovereign Trust Insurance has assured its stakeholders of improved performance come 2014 and beyond. The firm said that to achieve the feat, it has reorganized its business operations. According the Managing Director, of the company, Mr.

Wale Onaolapo who gave the assurance at the event, this became necessary to sustain high level of performance, ensure staff optimisation, and promote exceptional customer relationship management. The development, he explained, came on the heels of the recently concluded management retreat/budget session of the underwriting firm. He said: “To effectively optimise operations in the new financial year, the performance of the company

was brought under review while at the same time, x-raying the challenges encountered in the course of the past year with a view to identifying opportunities in them as well as chart the way forward in 2014. “The company has approved the implementation of a new organisational chart for the operations of the company in 2014 in its continued effort to ensuring robust human resources. Under the new dispensation, all revenue generating units

are to function under the marketing and business development division with supervision by the Divisional Head/General Manager, UgochiOdemelam hile ToluFasoranti will be responsible for operations as it relates to brokers’ business. “TayoOgundipe takes charge of the operations in the Ikeja Area Office and as well supervise the affairs of all the other three area offices in Lagos; namely, Apapa, Surulere and Lagos Central. An Assistant General

Manager, Emmanuel Anikibe will now head the Retail Business Department of the company. The eastern operations will now be co-ordinated by the Area Manager in Port Harcourt, Angela Uche-Onochie, while MuyiwaAwodire, Head of Ibadan Area Office will monitor the activities of all the branch offices in the Western Region.” To further ensure the actualisation of the organisation’s operational goals, the management has also engaged a seasoned insurance marketer to handle the Northern Region.

Equity Assurance grows premium by 17%

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L-R: Chairman, HMG Group, Alhaji Hamza Gado Nasko receiving the award of Young Entrepreneur and fellowship, from National President, Arewa Youth Forum, Gambo Ibrahim Gujungu, during a ceremony organised by the forum, recently in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

IEI settles N1.2bn as claims in 2013

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n its effort to leave up to its responsibility of settling genuine claims promptly, International Energy Insurance (IEI) Plc said it has paid claims amounting to N1.2billion to its policy holders in the 2013 financial year. This figure represents an increase of 21.2 per cent when compared with the N990 million settled in the previous

year. Commenting on this, the Managing Director, IEI, Mrs. RoselineEkeng, said that the company believes in prompt claims settlement. According to her, proficiency, integrity, innovation, dependability and friendliness form the company’s core valuesand also demonstrates its capability and service reassurance.

She gave the breakdown of the claims paid to include motor, fire, general accidents, marine cargo, marine hall, bond, oil and gas, industrial all risks, public liability and aviation. Ekeng said: “Transparency and reliability are the most enduring values to earn customers trust. Today’s business environment requires more open hands and doing what you say. The customers are wiser and more

exposed today to global best practices, and no well-meaning underwriter will hide under any guise. “IEI prides itself of having the most technical and experienced energy underwriting unit in Nigeria having identified energy insurance as yawning gap.” She added that the firm prepared itself to fill the gap, in addition to providing other general insurance businesses

quity Assurance Plc said it recorded gross premium income to the tune of N2.61billion in the 2012 financial year. This showed a growth of 17 per cent when compared to N2.23billion written in the preceding year. The firm equally recorded115 per cent surge in its operating profit within the same period. This is contained in statement made available by the company in Lagos, accordingly, Equity Assurance said that performance has reflected the company’s capacity to expand its market share in a highly competitive industry. Its audited accounts for the financial year under review showed an operating profit of N97.56m, when compared to a loss of N654.26m recorded in the 2011 financial year. The company said its gross premium income went up by 17 per cent to N2.61bn in the period under review from N2.23bn in the preceding year. The insurance firm grew its total assets for the period under review to N7.80bn from N6.93bn in 2011, an increase of 13 per cent. According to the statement, these figures were disclosed during the firm’s 26th Annual General Meeting at Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State. The company’s Chairman, Mr. Adetutu Buraimo, ascribed the growth in the overall performance to aggressive and expanded marketing drive, confidence of the market in the current composition of its management team, cost optimisation of resources, robust information technology and diversification of its investment portfolio. The chairman explained that the company had investment in Equity Resort Hotel (formerly Gateway Hotel), Ijebu-Ode; EA Capital Management Limited; Managed Healthcare Services Limited and Equity Assurance Limited, Ghana.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 22

Business analysis

How NNPC wet the country with petroleum products in 2013 By Etuka Sunday

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nspite of challenges raging from insecurity, unemployment, corruption cases, extra-judicial killings, oil theft and pipeline vandalism that greeted the country last year, there was no fuel scarcity as was normally the cast in the past especially during yuletide season. The Nigerian Oil and Gas Sector under the leadership of Diezani Alison-Madueke, against all odds maintained an unprecedented sanity in the supply and distribution of fuel nationwide to Nigerians. This display of stewardship was clearly witnessed during the Muslim and Christian celebrations as the perennial long fuel queues in the filing stations especially during those periods were not experienced together with the usual exorbitant transport fares. Most of the motorists confirmed that the yuletide season was a huge success because they were able to travel smoothly with full tank of fuel in their cars and could buy at any point when there was need to refill the tanks without stress. Every right thinking Nigerian would be inquisitive to know how the industry was able to achieve this feat considering the persistent oil theft and pipeline vandalism that had been a clog in the wheel of progress and economic prosperity of the sector and the country at large. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) however attributed the achievement on the determination of the Minister of Petroleum Resources by directing it and its downstream subsidiary company, the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company, PPMC embarked on an aggressive revamp of key downstream facilities including PPMC depots and product supply pipelines which have previously remained dilapidated. The General Manager, Media Relations Department, Group Public Affairs Division (NNPC), Dr. Omar Farouk Ibrahim had explain that at last count only three out of the 23 PPMC inland storage depots spread across Nigeria are awaiting repair works. The previously dilapidated depots and ancillary pipelines in Aba, Benin, Suleja, Gombe, the PPMC product evacuation and reception jetty in Okrika among others according to him, received turned around maintenance and

NNPC Towers

had since been positioned for better. Other steps taken to ultimately improve efficiency in supply according to the corporation include; the deployment of the Horizontal Directional Drilling technology as a solution to pipeline vandalism especially in flashpoint areas like Arepo and Ije-Ododo and the approval of the Sub-sea By-pass Line project aimed at getting imported heavy crude to the Kaduna Refinery. It is on record that some of these pipelines and depots had been abandoned for upwards of 10 years, but the aggressive effort by the Minister to clear led to the marching orders to clear the pipelines right of way and fix the pipelines for efficient distribution of products across country. For a start, the Nigerian Army Engineering Corps was awarded the contract to clear the pipelines right of way across the country. Also work has been completed on the Atlas Cove – Mosimi – Ibadan axis; Port Harcourt – Bonny line have also been completed while work is ongoing at other lines where people have encroached to the point that they actually built houses on top of the pipes. The Corporation said in order to supplement the effort of the inland depots, the PPMC also maintains on a sustainable basis large stock of products at sea on massive vessels especially in the offshore Lagos

area to serve as supply buffer on 32 days product sufficiency level at forward consumption. It said although the NNPC has succeeded in keeping the country wet, it was coming at a huge price. The cost is exacerbated by the fact that the huge demurrage associated with maintaining the armada of storage vessels on high sea is not contemplated in the prevailing template as provided by the Petroleum products pricing regulatory agency PPPRA. “The result is the outstanding shortfall of USD 10.8 billion which came to the fore during the recent meeting of stakeholders to reconcile the phantom missing USD 49.8 billion as alleged by the Central Bank of Nigeria.” NNPC explained that the disputed USD 10.8 billion is the result of subsidy claims, unrecovered crude/product losses, and cost of strategic petroleum storage which is currently not captured in the PPPRA template for refunds. ``This figure is also well known to all stakeholders at the Federation Account Allocation Committee, FAAC monthly meeting and is reported on a monthly basis,’’ stated the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala at the Press Conference to dispel the rumour of alleged missing USD 49.8 billion fund’’. The free flow of petroleum

products according to NNPC was also sustained and propelled within the period as the subsector witnessed the full activation of handful of reform programmes which ultimately led to the recorded reduction in national consumption of petrol from 60 million litres per day as witnessed in 2011 to 40 million litres per day leading to savings in billions of Naira. In a widely publicized press meeting, Mrs. Alison-Madueke attributed the success to President Goodluck Jonathan’s Transformational Agenda in the downstream sub-sector, which led to strategic reform initiatives in the management of petroleum products supply and distribution. “In spite of these savings, we have also been able to maintain stability of products supply, while putting in place, stringent regulatory conditions which would make it difficult for dubious marketers to short change the system,” she said. The minister said the federal government had done extremely well in the area of halting fuel subsidy scams in the country, stressing that government’s efforts at transparency and accountability were yielding positive results. However, the grave phenomenon of oil theft and its global support system represents another face of terrorism counteracting the efforts of the federal government in sustaining

the trajectory of the high-growth economy, and the enhancement and wellbeing of Nigerians. Despite the scourge of crude oil theft, Mrs. Alison-Madueke enthused that the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry has been placed on the path of growth and irreversible progress engendered by the transformation footprints of the President Goodluck Jonathan administration. It was in protection of this laudable improvement that the federal government last week said that it has no plan to increase the pump price of petroleum products from the current price of N97 per liter as being speculated and directed the relevant agencies of government including the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to deal with oil marketers that may have the mind of hoarding the products or increasing the price. Apart from tackling the issue of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism, the federal government and the National Assembly must work together to ensure the passage of Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) currently before the National Assembly since it is capable of turning around the petroleum refining sub-sector in the country. The PIB would also engender a regime where petroleum products will be delivered at cost reflective prices.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 23

Stock Watch

Report as at Monday, January 13, 2014

The were no transtions yesterday at the NSE due to the public holiday.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 24

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Special Report

Nairobi Police: Burying young boys instead of old men By David Whitty

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any families in Nairobi claim that their young sons had been shot and killed by the police for committing small crimes, or even shot for no known reason. But the police deny that there is an unofficial “shoot to kill” policy. Maryam Awadh, a grandmother and market trader, said that her 22-yearold son, Mahamud, was trying to steal some wing mirrors off a car, on 23 November 2012, when the police started chasing him. “He started running to try and reach me here in the market, but the police shot him in the legs,” she said. As a crowd gathered, someone phoned Mahamud’s eldest brother to tell him what was happening. I met him a few streets away from Maryam’s stall, and he told me about that phone call. “The eyewitness said that the police were chasing the crowd away when I heard three gunshots,” he said. But when Mahamud’s family collected his bloody body from the back of a police van at the station headquarters in Pumwani, they discovered that it had seven bullet wounds. Mahamud left behind three Pumwani is a poor area of Nairobi. Crime is common in its crowded, busy streets young children. “How can the police become the judge, the jury old Ibrahim Kanyiri happened peeling a bucket of potatoes to pulled out his gun and shot and prosecutor at the same upon a commotion at the say what happened next. my brother six times”. Tears time... sentencing people to marketplace “My brother was short- rolled down her face as she when police death for small crimes?” asked started whipping the crowd to tempered, and so when the remembered her younger Mahamud’s brother. police started whipping him, brother. move them back. It was discovered that many “The police lack any His sister, Asha, sitting he fought back. When the people avoid Pumwani because outside her small shack on policeman saw Ibrahim was humanity. It is not only my of its criminality. Two boys a muddy alley, paused from getting the better of him, he brother who has been shot in aged around 10 went either side of a car stuck in traffic. One distracted the driver while the other reached in and stole a mobile phone from the passenger seat. “If the police had seen that they would have shot those boys,” said Mahamud’s brother as the boys melted into the crowd, and the windows of the car were rapidly closed, too late. However, not all those said to have died from police bullets were suspected criminals. The reason Asha, whose brother was killed by police, says they lack humanity. On 9 July 2011, 20-year-

I have washed the bodies of five young men shot by the police this year alone. The youngest I have seen was eight years old. These days in Pumwani, we are burying young boys instead of burying old men

Maryam Awadh said police shot her son for stealing car wing mirrors often transferred elsewhere after a shooting incident. One father who spoke about his son, Isaac Ouna, said he confronted the officer, whom he said was responsible for killing his 17-year-old son, Ali Lubanga Ouna, on 27 August 2007. “He was looking for his grandmother when he was shot by the police five times. cold blood by the Police; a lot of my neighbours here have lost their boys.” “So many young men have been killed by the police”. This phrase is heard wherever you go, and no official record to show these killings. Pumwani is a close-knit place, where everybody knows everybody. As you pick your way carefully through its muddy lanes, greetings are constantly called out to passersby from doorways. “We are one big family,” one teenager said, and so every death is collectively remembered. But relatives say the deaths are not recorded officially by police so there is no evidence and no list of the victims’ names. And eyewitnesses are too scared to come forward to testify. A citizen of Pumwani, Isaac

Ouna confronted police about his son’s death One man who says he can estimate the total number killed by the Police is Jusuf, the undertaker at the Mosque. That is because he cleans and prepares all the bodies for burial. He says that “492 young men have been killed by the Police in Pumwani so far”, adding: “Some bodies had four bullet wounds, some eight, some even 12. When they try to surrender and put their hands up they are sometimes shot in the joints of the elbows, so they cannot raise their hands.” I was given the names of the policemen involved in the alleged shootings by those families who spoke on the matter, because people know all the Police by name, and there are always many eyewitnesses. But they said the policemen are

To this day, I still don’t know why he was killed because he was a good boy, never involved in crime. He even used to clean the police cars, and sweep the station offices. “I spoke to the officer responsible, and he agreed that he was the one who shot Ali, but there is nothing I can do to him. And then the officer was transferred, so I never saw him

Asha, whose brother was killed by Police, says they lack humility

Isaac Ouna confronted police about his son’s death again.” Isaac said he had seen the station incident book and Ali’s death wasn’t recorded. He also said every time he had tried to get justice, he was chased away from the station. Isaac has to look at the police station every day because his stall, selling a meagre collection of single cigarettes and juices, stands opposite it, across a muddy junction where buses

stop to pick up passengers. It is the base for the Administrative Police, who locals accuse of being trigger happy. They told me that the police wouldn’t speak to me. “Everyone knows a BBC journalist is asking questions in Pumwani, which means all the police informers know too”, they said. But on the second attempt

Commander Kusola: “No police officer is above the law”

to gain entry to the station this BBC reporter was granted an interview by station commander Mohammed Kusola. “No police officer is above the law,” Commander Kusola says. When he was told of the allegations about policemen from his station, killing young men from Pumwani, he said: “That is not true, at all.” When asked whether there was a shoot-to-kill policy of petty criminals in Pumwani, he emphatically replied: “Never! All those killed had guns. They were asked to surrender and they did not.” “ Asked whether the police could shoot if they asked you to surrender and you ran away. Kusola said, “If you ran away with what?” “Some stolen wing mirrors?” “That’s a very petty crime, a police officer cannot use a gun for that,” he replied. “What about if you have a physical fight with a police officer, can he shoot you in response?” “He cannot,” Commander Kusola said. He allowed a peep through the incident book for fatal shootings by police in the past 12 months, but no mention of the killing of Mahamud Awadh last November was found. Despite the killings by the police, crime is still going up. The police in Kenya still shoot armed criminals dead. There are almost daily incidents reported in the newspapers. The Pumwani police station records showed that, just in this area of Nairobi alone, four armed criminals were killed by police between 24 October and 12 November 2013. But Asha says the use of lethal force by the police is not making Pumwani a safer place. “Here there is crime, you cannot deny that. The police use shooting as a way of eliminating crime. But instead of the crime going down, it is going up.” And Jusuf, the undertaker, believes his work of preparing and washing the bodies of young people from Pumwani will not change any time soon. “I have washed the bodies of five young men shot by the police this year alone. The youngest I have seen was eight years old. These days in Pumwani, we are burying young boys instead of burying old men.” BBC Africa


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Property

Unique Interiors to hold 3-day exhibition T From Suleiman Idris, Lagos

o enhance and promote the quality of interior decoration in Nigeria, a foremost interior décor expert, Unique Interiors, is organising an exhibition that would bring together virtually, all the stakeholders in the industry. The 3-day exhibition, co-organised by Flair Finishes and Nile Support Services, is slated for February 27- March 12014. It has as its theme: “Uniqueness with a Professional Touch”, the 11th in its series organised by Unique Interiors. The exhibition is committed to the vision that a better future for the industry can be achieved thereby contributing to the growth of the Nigerian economy through its creativity. Expected at the event are: Interiors and exteriors designers and decorators, building materials and fittings companies, plumbing, heat-

ing, fire prevention and ventilation, Brick and block-making equipment companies, aluminium manufacturers and sellers, equipment and fittings companies, paints and surface finishes companies, electrical and electronics companies. Others are window frames and glazes, floor tiles manufacturers and sellers, oil and gas companies, among others. Briefing the media at her EbuteMeta Office last week, the organiser, Mrs. Debola Majekodunmi, said the exhibition is aimed at making décor and design more accessible to homeowners, providing plenty of ideas and giving detailed information on interior designs. “The exhibition is committed to the vision that a better future for the industry can be achieved thereby contributing to the growth of the Nigerian economy through its creativity” she said, noting that since inception in 1997, the exhi-

bition has established itself as the premier platform for Nigeria in the built environment to showcase goods and services in the industry to the global market. Speaking in the same vein, Mr. Dapo Orelaja, a renowned Business and Development Consultant, said the event will bring together professionals, especially, interior designers and decorators, architects, electronic equipment manufacturers and merchants, artists, real estate practitioners, landscapers, horticulturists and facility managers under one roof to exchange ideas with the sole purpose of galvanizing growth in the industry. The theme of the event is: “Uniqueness with a professional touch and Industries: Architecture, interiors Design, manufacturing, facility management and others”. Expected Exhibitors at the event include Home owners, government officials, contractors,

consultants, project managers, architects, engineering, builders, quantity surveyors, interior designers, procurement managers, operations managers, CEO and Executive Directors, managing directors, construction related associates and groups, financial institutes and funding agencies, agents and distributors, specifiers, interested general public. The event is to be an interactive showcase of products and services (exhibition) from all participating industries, including a symposium where discussion key topics in the participating industries to be facilitated by International Facility Management Association (IFMA) the Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA), the Interior Decorators Association of Nigeria (IDAN), the Female Architects of Nigeria (FAN) and other exhibitors. Expected to grace the occasion is the first lady of Lagos state and

other dignitaries. Besides, the event would afford all stakeholders present to exhibit their goods. It is going to be a one-talk shop where participants would have the opportunity to show cases their gods. “The event is not necessarily where to make sales only, but rather, a place where the best would be revealed; a place where ideas could be exchanged, new techniques learnt and modern technologies unfolded”. said Orelaja. Speaking on the past events, Majekodunmi, while admitting that there were challenges at the initial stage, added that the exhibition is now gaining recognition. Thirty-two (32) firms have already expressed their interest to attend the event. Notable among them are electronics giant, LG; Samsung; Bedmate; Lifemate, among others.

PHOTO OF THE WEEK 4-bedroom House for sale in Jabi, Abuja Developer showcases Durumi Evergreen Residences in Abuja By Stanley Onyekwere

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Property Description: 4 bedroom terrace duplex in an estate in Jabi, Abuja Lovely 4 bedroom terrace duplex located in a prime location by

the lake view area in Jabi, Abuja. Facilities include: Play ground, Gym, Supermarket, and borehole. This estate is serviced with

standby generator and a dedicated transformer. Price: 72, 000, 000 (Source: Proprty24.com)

Properties for sale in Abuja 4-bedroom House for sale in Apo, Abuja 4 Bedrooms semi-detached bungalow all with a BQ, fully kitted kitchen and bathroom to modern taste. A motorized borehole with 2 overhead tanks, satellite dish and decoder with installed channels fully networked to all rooms. Price: N45, 000, 000 Property Description:

n indigenous real estate firm, Urban Shelter Limited, is dazzling the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), with the introduction of its exotic, but affordable estate, popularly known Durumi Evergreen Residences. The estate, designed to have 150 housing units comprising of 3 bedroom apartments, 4 bedroom terrace, 4 bedroom detached duplex, 5 bedroom detached duplex and 6 bedroom maisonett, is nestled in Plot 1129Durumi District, Cadastral Zone B02, Abuja and built on 6.411 hectares of land, a stone-throw from the American International School. Done in partnership with Kano state government, the development no doubt, would further add flavour to the transformation path of Abuja in the area of property development. Its style of design affords all the echelon of the society, to key into the project. The private real estate developer says that as land master planner and creators of extensive real estate in Abuja, it is working towards meeting the housing challenge of millions of Nigerians. Calling on would be homeowners, the developer said, “This is your opportunity to own prime real estate in one of the most desirable sought after locations in Abuja, which once completed will promote harmonious living and encompass unique

amenities to meet your discerning tastes.” It added that every home is beautifully appointed and finished to the highest standard, adding that attention has been lavished on even the smallest details from glorious paint finishes to fabulous and magical outdoor spaces all contribute to create a very special environment. Gourmet kitchens are state of the art and feature marble/steel/granites topped breakfast bars, separate from expansive and luxuriously finished living areas. Custom built cabinetry and branded stainless steel appliances offering style, form and functionality. Evergreen Residences will engender a lifestyle of its own combining a sense of modernity and contemporary living in its own right, coming with features including estate wide telecom system, Close Circuit Television (CCTV), wireless internet service, finger print access to communal areas, sophisticated fire alarm system, Hi tech unit burglary system, rapid response emergency unit, swimming pool, landscaped and maintained gardens and dedicated communal recreational ‘green zones’ and state of the art gymnasium and exercise room. Other features are ample private and visitors parking, access to retail shops and restaurant/ coffee lounge, dedicated prayer room, 24hour security and 24-hour power supply with dedicated generators with automatic change over system.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 27

Property Abuja properties, haven for money laundering, says EFCC boss By Stanley Onyekwere

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he Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Lamorde, has said that property acquisition in Abuja, in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has become an

avenue for money-laundering by unscrupulous persons. He said evidence of the trend is the number of palatial, but unoccupied houses that dot the Abuja landscape. The EFCC boss, who was speaking during a courtesy visit to the FCT Minister, Senator Bala

Mohammed in Abuja recently, stated that the commission had uncovered money-laundering schemes in the FCT, in which the perpetrators disguise the proceeds of crime by investing in properties. He explained that those involved in this nefarious act

do not purchase properties with bank instrument but prefer to pay for their acquisition with cash. He further revealed that the laundered funds are frequently converted into foreign currencies through the Bureau de Change before the purchases are made. He noted that the perpetrators

do not bother to change ownership after such acquisitions, making it difficult to verify the identities of the new owners or the sources of fund. He disclosed that over 270 cases of land scam were reported to the commission in the last three years.

Nigeria is most expensive office space market in sub-Saharan Africa – Report From Suleiman Idris, Lagos

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report on the property market in sub-Saharan Africa prepared annually by one of Africa’s leading commercial property service providers, Broll Property Services has shown that Nigeria is the most expensive market for the office space segment of the market. The report explains that, as against Ghana’s $37 monthly for a square metre in a Grade-A office space and $26 apiece in Mauritius and Madagascar for the same period, a square metre in an Grade-A office space in Lagos or Port Harcourt could rent for as high as $70 a month, making it 100 percent higher. Broll claims that despite the availability of prime properties in major city centres such as Lagos and Abuja, the needs of some international tenants seeking befitting office spaces are yet to be met, thus increasing the rents of the available spaces as demand for same outstrips supply. Looking at other sub-Saharan African countries, in Rwanda and Namibia, respectively, the rents are $20 and $18 per square metre, while it is between $15 and $19 in Kenya within the same period. In Malawi, rent per square metre ranges between $13 and $6 monthly, while Zimbabwe’s paltry $11 per square metre has been attributed to poor economic

climate as most office spaces in major cities remain vacant. “Despite the springing up of several A-grade structures in recent times such as Maersk House, Churchgate II Towers, Eko Towers, FF Towers, and Mansard Place all located on Victoria Island axis of Lagos, rentals for these developments have remained relatively high with yearly rents ranging between $600 and $850 per square metre,” the report further explained. Obi Nwogugu, head, real estate unit, Africa Capital Alliance, had earlier told our reporter that “the office space market has seen continued growth in recent times”, estimating that the market is expecting about 250,000 square metres office space in the near future between Ikoyi and Victoria Island axis of Lagos where there is business hub. Meanwhile, the global office market is expected to witness a steady growth in 2014, as companies globally demand for a conducive workplace that improves productivity and workplace satisfaction which are rare in old office stock, a recent report by Cushman & Wakefield has said. Market observers believe the growth will also be visible in Nigeria’s commercial space with the delivery of major projects such as the Kanti Towers in Victoria Island, while work has intensified on the 15-floor Civic Centre Towers also in Victoria Island, Lagos.

Decent buildings such as this may still be unavailable this year

Why properties may continue to suffer downturn in 2014 From Suleiman Idris, Lagos

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Our property of the week is this glamorous and exquisitely designed 5 Bedroom House located at Lekki Phase 1, in Lagos. This home is located at Lekki Phase 1, which is situated in the heart of Lagos. With luxury attributes like a gym and swimming pool, this home is certainly a delightful modern abode.

report on the property market in sub-Saharan Africa prepared annually by one of Africa’s leading commercial property service providers, Broll Property Services has shown that Nigeria is the most expensive market for the office space segment of the market. The report explains that, as against Ghana’s $37 monthly for a square metre in a Grade-A office space and $26 apiece in Mauritius and Madagascar for the same period, a square metre in an Grade-A office space in Lagos or Port Harcourt could rent for as high as $70 a month, making it 100 percent higher. Broll claims that despite the availability of prime properties in major city centres such as Lagos and Abuja, the needs of some international tenants seeking befitting office spaces are yet to be met, thus increasing the rents of the available spaces as demand

for same outstrips supply. Looking at other sub-Saharan African countries, in Rwanda and Namibia, respectively, the rents are $20 and $18 per square metre, while it is between $15 and $19 in Kenya within the same period. In Malawi, rent per square metre ranges between $13 and $6 monthly, while Zimbabwe’s paltry $11 per square metre has been attributed to poor economic climate as most office spaces in major cities remain vacant. “Despite the springing up of several A-grade structures in recent times such as Maersk House, Churchgate II Towers, Eko Towers, FF Towers, and Mansard Place all located on Victoria Island axis of Lagos, rentals for these developments have remained relatively high with yearly rents ranging between $600 and $850 per square metre,” the report further explained. Obi Nwogugu, head, real

estate unit, Africa Capital Alliance, had earlier told our reporter that “the office space market has seen continued growth in recent times”, estimating that the market is expecting about 250,000 square metres office space in the near future between Ikoyi and Victoria Island axis of Lagos where there is business hub. Meanwhile, the global office market is expected to witness a steady growth in 2014, as companies globally demand for a conducive workplace that improves productivity and workplace satisfaction which are rare in old office stock, a recent report by Cushman & Wakefield has said. Market observers believe the growth will also be visible in Nigeria’s commercial space with the delivery of major projects such as the Kanti Towers in Victoria Island, while work has intensified on the 15-floor Civic Centre Towers also in Victoria Island, Lagos.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Motoring

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icture this: You’re driving on a highway. The wind is gusting, bringing with it a wall of sand that cloaks the freeway ahead and pelts the car’s paint with mother nature’s idea of microdermabrasion. As other cars blow about in their lanes, the 2013 BMW X5 you’re driving just plows forward as if on a tranquil spring cruise. Then the freeway starts to twist and increase in elevation. Yet the X5 keeps charging on while other, less composed SUVs have to slow down. It’s in these extreme circumstances when the X5 really proves itself, demonstrating a staggering degree of stability and handling prowess for something so big and heavy. It may not be the sort of SUV that ad agencies will show fording a river or climbing a rocky mountain trail, but the X5 has a toughness and solidity all its own. At the same time, this luxury midsize crossover comes with the equipment, quality construction and high-end trappings one expects from BMW. However, the 2013 BMW X5 isn’t the most spacious choice for family hauling purposes. BMW’s own X3 isn’t that much smaller, for i n -

the last three digits represent the engine. A high-performance version known as the X5 M is covered in a separate review.

stance, and while the X 5 does offer a third-row seat, it’s laughable compared to those in the less expensive Acura MDX and Infiniti JX. There are also other sporty choices such as the Infiniti FX and Porsche Cayenne one would likely want to consider. But overall we think pretty highly of the X5. And if your drives regularly involve Nevada sand storms, well, you know what to get. The 2013 BMW X5 is a midsize luxury crossover SUV that seats five. An optional third-row bench adds two more seats, though they are quite small. Five trim levels are offered: xDrive35i, xDrive35i Premium, xDrive35i Sport Activity, xDrive35d and xDrive50i. “xDrive” indicates that it has standard all-wheel drive, while

HD radio, an auxiliary audio jack and an iPod/USB audio interface. The xDrive35i Premium, xDrive35d and xDrive50i add a panoramic sunroof, power-folding and auto-dimming mirrors, front and rear parking sensors, a power liftgate, rear privacy glass, heated front seats, leather upholstery and a power-adjustable steering wheel. Many of these items are optional on the base X5. The xDrive35i Sport Activity adds a sport-tuned suspension, 20-inch wheels, sport seats, a sport steering wheel, darker exterior trim and an increased top speed. These items are optional on the xDrive50i as part of the Sport Activity package. The four upper trims offer

additional options. The Convenience package adds rear- and top-view parking cameras, keyless ignition/entry, four-zone

BMW X5 really proves itself Standard equipment on the xDrive35i includes 18-inch wheels, automatic and adaptive bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights, foglamps and automatic wipers. Inside, you get keyless ignition, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, 10-way power front seats with memory functions, leatherette premium vinyl upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, the iDrive electronics interface, Bluetooth phone connectivity, the BMW Assist emergency communications system, and a 10-speaker sound system with a CD playe r ,

automatic climate control, rear manual side sunshades, a navigation system, voice controls and real-time traffic information. The Cold Weather package adds a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats and headlight washers. The Technology package adds a head-up display, a side-view parking camera and automatic high beams. The Luxury Seating package gets “multicontour” 14-way power front seats with four-way lumbar, adjustable side bolsters, ventila-

tion and massage. T h e keyless ignition/entry, automatic high beams, head-up display, navigation system, 14-way seats and satellite radio are also available as stand-alone options. Others include an adaptive adjustable suspension, active steering, adaptive cruise control, power soft-close doors, extended leather upholstery, a rear-seat entertainment system and the BMW Apps suite of Internet-based smartphone features. The xDrive35i Sport Activity and xDrive50i are also eligible for the M Sport package. This adds additional power, 19-inch

wheels, special exterior and interior trim, an M division sport steering wheel and the other Sport Activity features for the 50i. The xDrive35i models feature a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 that produces 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque. Both this engine and the 50i get an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive standard. According to BMW, it will go from zero to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined. With the Sport Activity’s M Sport package, output increases to 315 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque. The xDrive50i gets a twinturbo 4.4-liter V8 good for 400 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. BMW says it’ll hit 60 mph in 5.3 seconds, while EPA-estimated fuel economy is 14/20/16. With its M Sport package, output goes up to 440 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque. The xDrive35d features a diesel-powered 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 that produces 265 hp a n d 425 lbf t of

torque. It gets a sixspeed automatic and all-wheel drive. In Edmunds performance testing, it brought the X5 from zero to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds. It returns an EPA-estimated 16/26/22. Every 2013 BMW X5 includes stability and traction control, antilock brakes, automatic brake drying, front side airbags, side curtain airbags and adaptive brake lights. The latter flash the taillights under sudden extreme braking as a warning to trailing motorists. Also standard is the BMW Assist emergency communications system, which provides automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle recovery and on-demand roadside assistance. Source: Edmunds.com


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 29

Arts & Culture

Picasso, Magritte feature in Christie’s February auctions

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Picasso portrait of his lover and eventual wife Jacqueline Roque and a canvas by Belgian surrealist painter Rene Magritte are among the star attractions of February auctions that Christie's said on Monday could net almost $380 million. Christie's estimated that those works and others to be sold in four auctions on February 4-5 and a fifth on February 7 in London could raise between 156.7 million and 228.3 million pounds ($260 million-$376 million). The Picasso, entitled "Femme au costume turc dans un fauteuil" (Woman in a Turkish costume seated in a chair), 1955, is valued at 15-20 million pounds and is on sale for the first time in 55 years, Christie's said in a press release. The painting is one of a small group of portraits by Pablo Picasso showing Roque in the costume of an "odalisque", a woman of the harem. It is "a colorful, sexually charged celebration of Jacqueline, whom Picasso would marry six years later and who would become one of the most important muses of the artist's life", the release said. Magritte's "Les chasseurs au bord de la nuit" (The hunters at the edge of night), 1928, was part of an exhibition of the painter's works at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and has an estimated value of 6-9 million

pounds, Christie's said. The Picasso is the centerpiece of an Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Auction on February 4 while the Magritte is in The Art of The Surreal Auction on the same day. "This stellar sale presents international collectors and institutions with rare opportunities to acquire exceptional works with illustrious provenance by key impressionist and modern masters," Jay Vincze, Christie's International Director and head of its Impressionist and Modern Art Department, said in the release. "The global market for this category continues to expand and deepen year on year, underpinned by passion for the beauty of the period and an increasingly far-reaching appreciation and understanding of the importance of late 19th century and early 20th century art movements." The surrealist auction is comprised of 54 lots. In addition to the Magritte it features Joan Miro's "Femmes et oiseaux" (Women and Birds), 1968, estimated to be worth 4-7 million pounds, and Carlo Carra's "Solitudine" (Solitude), with an estimated value of 2.5-3.5 million pounds. Also up for grabs is Magritte's "Le regard interieur" (The inner gaze), from the collection of the late Valerie Eliot, widow of poet T.S. Eliot, with an estimated value

of 500,000-700,000 pounds. "Twenty-five years on from holding the inaugural standalone Dada and Surrealism sale and 14 years since Christie's established its annual auction in the field, the global demand for this pioneering movement continues to go from strength to strength," Olivier Camu, Christie's deputy chairman for Impressionist and Modern Art, said in the release. The impressionist auction features works from collections including Modern Masters: Works from an Important Private Swiss Collection. It includes Juan Gris's "Nature morte à la nappe à carreaux" (Still life with checquered tablecloth), 1915, valued at 12-18 million pounds, and Piet Mondrian's "Composition No. 2 with Blue and Yellow", 1930, estimated at 8-12 million pounds. Other works in the sale include Alberto Giacometti's "Trois hommes qui marchent I" (Three men walking I), 1948-1950, valued at 6.2-8 million pounds; "Les cylindres colores" (The colored cylinders), 1918, by Fernand Léger, formerly in the collection of Louis Carre, the dealer who was closely associated with the artist, estimated at 5-7 million pounds; and Claude Monet's "L'Eglise de Varengeville; soleil couchant" (The Church of Varengeville; at sunset) 1882, estimated at 4-7 million.

Workers pose with Pablo Picasso’s ‘’Femme au costume turc dans un fauteuil’’, a portrait of his lover Jacqueline Roque painted in 1955, at Christie’s auction house in London January 13, 2014. Credit: Reuters/Andrew Winning

Artiste blames Nigerian media for giving prominence to bad music

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r Segun Akinlolu, a Nigerian contemporary folk musician, popularly known as Beautiful Nubia, said that the mass media should be blamed for giving air time to bad music. Akinlolu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that it was the media that pushed out all types of music thereby taking hold of the people’ minds. According to him, there was a natural process where people thought deep and listened to more reflective music. ``We should try to push out music the people need, on honesty, hard work, good neighbourliness, sincerity, love and protecting one another all for the society to change. ``Every good music should

have a message to deliver and for people to appreciate it and also dance to it. ``The musician has to impact on the society through what they are singing, which I believe should continue to be that way,” he said. Akinlolu said that present generation represented the attitude, personality, confidence of the people, now matched with a fusion between western influences and Nigerian music. ``But the media should be the ones to dictate what goes out. They should not because they want to make money play all kinds of music. ``Music is not about making noise and jumping about, but impacting positively on the listeners,” he said.

Akinlolu said that he had no problems with musicians whose music primarily dwelled on women and love since it provided them an income, ``but some sanity had to come into play''. ``That is what the public wants, but there is no impact on the society through what they are singing," he said. Akinlolu said that when artistes used their music to underscore the ills of the society, then they could take pride in their work not exposing women’s anatomy. ``My music is a tradition-natural music, new music that reflects who we are, traditional music brought in a different way out in a contemporary way,” he said. NAN reports that Akinlolu has eight albums to his credit. (NAN)

FROM THE LIVE STAGE with Patrick-Jude Oteh 0803 700 0496, 0805 953 5215 (SMS only)

A raisin in the sun

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y boss raves about Lorraine Hansberry’s classic ‘A Raisin In The Sun’. Apart from the fact that he had acted in it before a very stellar audience, he always said that the play is simply one of those very simple plays that touches something in your very soul. You will never leave the theatre the way you came. Something ‘got to touch you!’ I believed him after watching the musical ‘Raisin’ and the VHS from his own production and the commercial video starring Sidney Poitier. Walter Lee Younger is 35 years old. He has a dream that will get him and his family out of their tiny apartment – he shares this tiny apartment with his wife, his son, his mother and sister – in Southside Chicago. With plenty of money coming in from this dream, he will get his freedom, his dignity and the ease to enjoy life. The dream unfortunately fails. Initially he complains that like all Black men, their wives do not support them in the way they deserve. He tells us that it is another matter when a man wakes up and his wife builds him up and he feels that he can own the entire world but that his own wife does not give him that support. What led to this tirade was his son asking for 50 cents or in the alternative to go and carry goods at the grocery store to earn the 50 cents! A Raisin In The Sun written in 1954 premiered on Broadway in 1959. It was the first successful Broadway play about the Black experience in an America that was still dealing with the challenge of what to do with Blacks in their midst. The play portrayed a Black family with the kind of realism that could not be imagined. It also showed up Blacks with the kind of complexity that showed that they too have problems that are common to the whites. The play forever changed American theatre because it forced both Blacks and Whites to examine and re-examine their dreams of America. Lorraine Hansberry was the first person that the statement ‘young, gifted and black’ was first applied. Her play brought forth the fury, force, precision, compassion and humanity of the plays of Arthur Miller and Eugene O’Neill. But what set Hansberry’s Raisin apart was the fact that her play dwelt on a Black family. Remember how Arthur Miller re-defined tragedy in Death Of A Salesman by making us see that a poor salesman, Willie Loman could also have a tragic life in circumstances that made us realize that poor people can also experience tragedy like the high and mighty and royalty. Before Lorraine brought forth Raisin, Blacks were only brought on stage for playing the piano, singing, comic relief or were cast as specific stereo types. She changed all these. Like all great works of art, Raisin seems like it has been with us for centuries. It dates to the beginnings of the 20th century but that is because it has become a part of the universality of human experiences. What is particularly moving about Raisin is its simplicity. The simple language, the simple lives it sets out to portray, the simple dreams and the finality of the life of Walter Lee. Is it wrong to dream of a better life? Is it wrong to want to move into a larger apartment with a large family? Is it wrong to give your son 50 cents instead of going to carry groceries? You remember the story of Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart – what was his drive? He wanted to escape the life and legacy of his father. He wanted to be successful by the terms set by his society on the definition of success. It is really not asking for too much. Just the basics. I am extremely happy that Raisin has been included in the current reading list for Literature at the ‘O’ levels. Hansberry was the first Black female author to have her work staged on Broadway. She also became the first Black playwright, the 5th woman and the youngest ever American to win the New York Critics Circle Award. After blazing forth like a meteor, Lorraine Hansberry died tragically at the age of 34 after a bout with cancer.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 30

Arts & Culture Book Review

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When life gives you a second chance

amuel Adegboye is an economist and a Pastor. He was the best student in the education department of the University of Abuja during the 1997 to 1998 academic session. He had worked earlier at the federal ministry of trade and investment, Abuja before retirement. But in his book: Rescue from the jaws of death, Adegboye is not writing economics, a field he knows so well. Rescue from the jaws of death succinctly captures the near death experiences of this budding writer and the divine grace of a second chance which brought him back to the land of the living. In this book: Rescue from the Jaws of Death, the author recounts his ordeal and pains while going from one hospital to another. It reflects his gratitude to God for saving his life and also reveals his unflinching faith and trust in God his creator. The writer speaks on his divine call by God to start a church, His Amazing Grace Global Ministry where the power of God is made manifest. This book will bring tears to your eyes and encouragement to those who may be going through similar challenges of life and who may have their backs turned to the wall in the erroneous thought that God has forsaken them. Inspirational quotes are a prominent part of this book. The aim is to give hope to the reader that in all things, if you look on the sunny side of life, especially with your eyes focussed on the power of God to deliver, you will have respite. The story of the reader is no doubt that of a man who has worked hard to make good his better and his better best. It is the story of a man who climbs the mountain to see sunshine on the upward beyond. Pastor Sam Adegboye was involved in a ghastly accident on August 13, 2006 which got him paralysed due to a spinal cord injury. This book captures textually and pictorially, the account of his experiences as he moved from one orthopaedic hospital to another in search of medical help and how the unseen hand of God touched him on every step of the way. The 90 page book is written in five chapters. The foreword is written by Amb. Olutola Onijala who aptly recommends the book to the reading public with these word, “this book is a must-read for all who may be going through one travail or the other. We can also draw a lesson from Pastor Sam’s book that in all aspects of life, we should look at what we have left and not what we have lost”. Chapters one and two speaks on his encounter with the saving grace of God when he got involved in a ghastly car accident on his way back to Abuja from Lagos where he had attended a national convention. Chapters’ three to five speaks on how he re-dedicated his life to the service of God. Chapter five specifically stresses the need to forge ahead in spite of whatever challenge life poses. Be resilient always. The writer of this book has conveyed a strong message that even in your travails, do not quit.

Book Title: Author: Reviewed: Year of publication: Publishers:

Rescue from the jaws of death Samuel Adegboye Miriam Humbe 2013 His Amazing Grace Global Ministry, Abuja

Crime writer, Jo Nesbo, takes on Macbeth

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t is a play that contains visions of bloody daggers and probes the darker recesses of the human mind. So it is perhaps not such a surprise that crime writer Jo Nesbo - creator of the best-selling Harry Hole detective series - has been chosen to retell Shakespeare's murderous tragedy Macbeth. Nesbo is the latest contemporary author to be commissioned by the Hogarth Shakespeare project to rewrite the Bard's works for a 21st Century audience. The best-selling Norwegian author said the play's dark themes did not "feel too far from home". The project launches in 2016 to mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death. "Macbeth is a story that is close to my heart because it tackles topics I've been dealing with since I started writing," Nesbo said.

Nesbo calls Macbeth “a thriller” with a “crime noir-like setting” The tragic protagonist of 'The Scottish Play', he continued, was "a main character who has the moral code and the corrupted mind, the personal strength and

the emotional weakness, the ambition and the doubts to go either way." He described Macbeth as "a thriller about the struggle for pow-

er, set both in a gloomy, stormy crime noir-like setting and in a dark, paranoid human mind. "I will not attempt to do justice to William Shakespeare nor the story," he went on. "I will simply take what I find of use and write my own story. "And, yes, I will have the nerve to call it Macbeth." Nesbo's books have sold more than 20 million copies worldwide. The Harry Hole novels include The Snowman, The Leopard, Phantom and, most recently, Police. Already announced as authors on the new Hogarth Shakespeare list are Margaret Atwood, Howard Jacobson, Anne Tyler and Jeanette Winterson. The writers have been charged with producing new versions of The Tempest, The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew and The Winter's Tale respectively.

POEM OF THE WEEK What Is Remembered? You taught me how to live, how to be brave teacher, as brave as Rilke, how to be happy and how to anchor it in my heart. You loved me through illness, and monkish maturity. In the light of day you taught me the secrets of love In your cement garden, in the time of terrorists. There were Decembers when I wanted to live by bread alone. You taught me how to be lost; (it was a long way down From life). You taught me how to pray, meditate in the evenings. There was still the girl in me, threads of velocity, of grace, A million accidental pieces of beauty, the finest things Of being human. And so I began to build my empire with lots of love. I began using the alphabet, focused, intent on using the wonder Of flowers, goals, dreams, the silent scream of the urban burnout Of Sarajevo, and so I would trace the patterns of hearts I found In everything. I have eyes that can see the picture of health In everything, that can cast rain down from the heavens That can taste it and review it in my head. Is it pale, wet, drowning me, And my soul, my spirit? Come out Ghost behind the door. Come out, I beseech you. What does snow feel, taste like? Like any cold, wet thing, like rain, like your open mouth? The origin of the sound of your weeping restored something in me. A bullet is not pure. It is a stranger in an even stranger World made of dunes, rivers, Humanity’s mortality. A stranger to the heart like Hiroshima was to the stars. It filled my father’s lungs with the thumbprints Of doctors as surgeons in the provincial hospital Did ward rounds and planted their instruments. There were spots of blood on his lungs, a growth in his bladder. Infirm he moved differently in the world. I turned to the hallucinogenic rainbow of Hollywood, And that mosaic of brilliant colour, Technicolor flash beats. Monroe danced while Barbra sang while Hitch killed me. All this time while you killed me I was governed By lists and I know you’re never going to read Glaciers. I analysed Kubrick’s filmmaking formulas and skills While sex kittens sashayed an uncommon pornography, Funny girls made me put my invincible happy face on, Corrupted something inside of me. I needed you Like routine, but you crushed me with your rustic manners.

QUOTE

“The duty of literature is to note what counts, and to light up what is suited to the light. If it ceases to choose and to love, it becomes like a woman who gives herself without preference.” - Anatole France


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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International

Sharon: The architect of terror ANALYSIS

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n many ways, Ariel Sharon was the most complete Zionist of his generation. He embodied an expansionary, rapacious view of Jewish privilege in Palestine - the essential Zionism - well after many of his coreligionists had claimed to settle for less. His prophetic insights into his society enabled him to wield his wily politics and martialism to great effect. His lifelong campaign of ethnic cleansing, the eagerness with which he employed atrocities against Palestinian and Lebanese civilians and his relentless savagery enabled the emergence of the Greater Israel he longed for. For Palestinians and human rights advocates the tactics and strategies he employed form the greater part of his legacy. Yet it would be a mistake to overlook his contributions to the settlement programme and the related fragmentation of the Israeli army - legacies which will continue to shape the deepening rents in Israeli society for decades to come. Ariel Scheinerman was born in British-occupied Palestine in 1928 to Jewish immigrants from presentday Belarus. His well-educated parents arrived in Palestine as members of the third wave of European immigration under the aegis of Mapai, an exclusively Jewish labour movement. It is unclear when Scheinerman changed his name to Sharon but in doing so he reaffirmed the Jewish-Israeli habit of attempting to break with European Jewry and all its associations. At 14, Sharon joined a paramilitary youth group; he eventually became a member of the Haganah- the militia that later gave rise to the Israeli army. Sharon’s daring and willingness to lead attacks against civilians marked him for command among his fellows. In 1953, he orchestrated the massacre of 69 Palestinian civilians in Qibya while leading “Unit 101” - an infamous Israeli army unit dedicated to extracting high civilian costs among Palestinian communities that resisted the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. The murders of mostly women and children served to foreshadow Sharon’s responsibility for Sabra and Shatila decades later. Sabra, Shatila and Hezbollah Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982 was ostensibly designed to prevent Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) guerrillas from striking Israeli outposts near the Lebanon-Israel border. His forces shelled and besieged Beirut while world powers negotiated an end to the devastation. The Israelis agreed to withdraw in return for Yasser Arafat’s exile to Tunisia. Arafat and his fighters were forced to abandon the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps - densely populated and impoverished urban ghettos on the outskirts of Beirut. The civilians there were left defenceless against the Israelis and their allies, the Lebanese Phalange militia.

Ariel Sharon’s visit to the al-Aqsa mosque prompted the second intifada [AP] After the departure of the PLO, Sharon invited the Phalangists into the camps where they spent two days massacring approximately 3,000 Palestinian and Lebanese men, women and children. Robert Fisk, a journalist with the Independent newspaper, was one of the first people to arrive in Shatila after the Israelis withdrew. He describes the extent of the atrocity in his book Pity the Nation: “What we found inside the Palestinian camp at ten o’clock on the morning of September 1982 did not quite beggar description. But these people, hundreds of them had been shot down unarmed. This was a mass killing, an incident - how easily we used the word ‘incident’ in Lebanon - that was also an atrocity. It went beyond even what the Israelis would have in other circumstances called a terrorist activity. It was a war crime. Bill Foley of AP had come with us. All he could say as he walked round was ‘Jesus Christ’ over and over again. We might have accepted evidence of a few murders; even dozens of bodies, killed in the heat of combat. But there were women lying in houses with their skirts torn up to their waists and their legs wide apart, children with their throats cut, rows of young men shot in the back after being lined up at an execution wall. There were babies - blackened babies because they

had been slaughtered more than 24-hours earlier and their small bodies were already in a state of decomposition - tossed into rubbish heaps alongside discarded US army ration tins, Israeli army equipment and empty bottles of whiskey. Where were the murderers? Or to use the Israelis’ vocabulary, where were the ‘terrorists’? When we drove down to Chatila, we had seen the Israelis on the top of the apartments in the Avenue Camille Chamoun but they made no attempt to stop us. It was only when we were driving back past the entrance to Chatila that Jenkins decided to stop the car. ‘I don’t like this’, he said. ‘Where is everyone? What the f**k is that smell?’ Down a laneway to our right, no more than 50 yards from the entrance, there lay a pile of corpses.” Nor were the Palestinians the only civilians he terrorised in Lebanon. The vicious assault on Lebanese Shia during the march to Beirut gave rise to Hezbollah. Israel’s ill-fated 20-year occupation of southern Lebanon further galvanised and strengthened the movement. Its fighters quickly began to inflict casualties on the Israelis eventually causing them to withdraw from most of Lebanon in 2000. Jewish-Israelis initially rejected Sharon’s sectarian brutality and war crimes, if not his objectives. A governmental panel censured him

and forced him to resign from his post as minister of defence after investigating his role in Sabra and Shatila. Yet, in 2001 JewishIsraelis empowered him as their prime minister. His notoriety qualified him for the pacification of the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories during the second intifada - an uprising he helped spark in the fall of 2000 when he led a phalanx of troops onto the al-Aqsa mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem. Settlements and Gaza Sharon’s victories extended beyond the narrow confines of Palestinian refugee camps. In the 1960s he presciently foresaw the development of a “peace process” and helped to undermine the establishment of a Palestinian state by forcefully promoting Israel’s mass colonization programme in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. The political consensus on settlements - every Israeli Prime Minister since 1967 established them - only began to break when Sharon himself decided to withdraw 8,000 settlers from among 1.2 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip in 2005. The politically expedient move was intended to promote the view that Israel was no longer responsible for the lives of the Palestinian refugees; that the Gaza Strip was no longer occupied. It was accompanied by a decision to build an annexation wall through

Nor were the Palestinians the only civilians he terrorised in Lebanon. The vicious assault on Lebanese Shia during the march to Beirut gave rise to Hezbollah.

the West Bank. Today the wall stands as an enduring legacy. A violent and alien object imposed on the Palestinian landscape, tribute to the man who decided to build it. Sharon’s “disengagement” was heartily welcomed by liberal Zionists who have always fretted over the fertility rates of Palestinians and African immigrants. The settler withdrawal and subsequent Israeli siege were the first steps towards jettisoning undesirable non-Jewish people from Israel. Those decisions would help resolve the “tension” between the Jewish and “democratic” attributes of the state. Nearly nine years later, their hopes continue to go unfulfilled. Few have accepted the claim that the Israeli occupation of Gaza has ended, particularly after the Gaza massacre and the murder of nine activists aboard the Turkish Mavi Marmara in 2010. Among colonists in the West Bank, it increased the perception and fear that the Israeli army may one day be commanded to evict them from their settlements. Their fears were not unfounded. All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law; no country recognises them as legitimate. An eventual peace deal with the Palestinians would have likely entailed their evacuation. The colonists’ response, beginning in 2005, was to join the army in greater numbers than they had previously done. Settler rabbis and politicians encouraged young members of their communities to enlist expressly to prevent more settler evictions by the army. The prospect that growing numbers of conscripts are prepared to refuse orders has alarmed Israeli politicians, particularly Ehud Barak, a former minister of defence. Today, there are few distinctions between settler militiamen in the West Bank and the Israeli army, and they are growing increasingly difficult to discern. That fact has diminished the likelihood that any Israeli politician will risk evacuating settlements. No Israeli leader is prepared to risk even a limited mutiny within the army. That means that Israeli apartheid will persist and deepen with time. It also means that the Palestinian struggle for equal rights will only grow in force and viability. It means that the BDS movement will continue to undermine Jewish supremacy in Palestine. And thus, Sharon’s most enduring legacy will likely be one of failure. He spent his life terrorising civilians and building settlements to secure the existence of the Jewishprivilege state. He led his people backwards into the 19th century, down a path of pariah-hood, isolation and apartheid. Yet Jewish supremacy in Israel cannot last; democracy cannot be delayed forever. The perfect Zionist, his life was the perfect indictment of Zionism. Source: Al Jazeera


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International

Egyptians vote in referendum amid tight security

Hundreds drown escaping violence in South Sudan

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gyptians are voting amid tight security in a twoday referendum on a new constitution that could pave the way for fresh elections. The new charter aims to replace the constitution passed under Islamist President Mohammed

Mursi months before he was ousted by the army. The military wants a strong Yes vote to endorse Mr Mursi’s removal. His Muslim Brotherhood, now designated a terrorist group, is boycotting the vote and there are

fears of violence. Five people have been killed in vote-related violence. One person died during an anti-referendum protest in Bani Suef, south of Cairo, the governor there told the BBC. Three people were killed in

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t least 200 South Sudanese civilians have drowned in a ferry accident on the White Nile river, an army spokesman said. Army spokesman Philip Aguer told AFP news agency yesterday that the boat had been overloaded with people trying to escape the violence. “The reports we have are of between 200 to 300 people, including women and children,” he said. “They all drowned. They were fleeing the fighting that broke out again in Malakal.” Meanwhile, battles raged in several cities in South Sudan yesterday. Heavy fighting was reported in Malakal, the capital of oil-producing Upper Nile state, as rebel forces staged a fresh attack to seize the town. Control of Malakal has already changed hands twice since the conflict in South Sudan began on December 15. “There is fighting anew in and around Malakal,” United Nations aid chief for South Sudan Toby Lanzer said, adding that the peacekeeping base had been swamped with almost double the number of people seeking shelter, rising from 10,000 to 19,000. The army reported heavy fighting south of Bor, as the government sought to retake the town from rebels, the largest in their control. “We are marching on Bor, there was very heavy fighting late on Monday,” Aguer said. However, he rejected rebel claims to have captured the river port of Mongalla, situated between Bor and the capital Juba. “We are north of Mongalla, we remain in full control there,” Aguer said. According to the United Nations, about 400,000 civilians have fled their homes over the past month. The fighting is between South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar.

Voters showing off ballot ink

clashes with security forces in the Upper Egypt city of Sohag while a further death was reported in Nahia, in the Giza district of Cairo. Shortly before voting began, an explosion took place near a court building in Cairo’s Imbaba district, although no casualties were reported. A huge security operation is being mounted for the two days of voting. Some 160,000 soldiers and more than 200,000 policemen are being deployed nationwide. Army chief Gen Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visited one polling station in north Cairo, telling guards there: “Work hard. We need the referendum to be completely secured.” Orla Guerin in Cairo says this has been a distorted campaign, with endorsements for the new constitution flooding state-run and private TV and radio. However, spotting any posters from the No campaign is a lot harder and people have been arrested for putting them up, our correspondent says. Democratic or not, she says, the referendum is seen by many as more than a ballot on a new constitution - it is widely viewed as a verdict on the removal of Mr Mursi.

Congo’s defeated M23 rebels regrouping - UN

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ongolese rebel group M23 appears to be regrouping just two months after the Tutsi-led insurgency was defeated by Congolese troops and U.N. peacekeepers, the top U.N. official in the Democratic Republic of Congo said on Monday. Martin Kobler told the U.N. Security Council there were “credible reports of emerging M23 activities in Ituri in northeastern Congo” and called on the Congolese government to speed up the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of ex-M23 fighters, who ended their 20-month revolt in November. “At the same time, I call upon the governments of Uganda and Rwanda to do everything possible to prevent M23 elements from sheltering or training troops on their territory. We should tolerate no military re-emergence of the

M23,” he said. Kobler told reporters after briefing the council that “there might be a danger of renewed military infiltration of the country” by M23. U.N. experts - who monitor violations of U.N. sanctions on Congo - have long accused neighboring Rwanda and Uganda of backing M23, claims that both governments have rejected. In a report to the Security Council’s Congo sanctions committee in December, the experts said they had credible information that blacklisted M23 leaders were moving freely in Uganda and the group was still recruiting fighters in Rwanda. M23 is one of dozens of rebel groups in eastern Congo. Millions of people have died from violence, disease and hunger since the 1990s

as armed groups fought for control of the area’s deposits of gold, diamonds, copper, cobalt and uranium. Mary Robinson, the U.N. special envoy to the Great Lakes who is charged with implementing a regional peace deal, told the 15-member Security Council that Congo and neighboring countries

With fewer than 250 mature lions of breeding age, there are concerns the entire population could disappear. The research by Panthera, a

non-profit organisation, was carried out in 17 countries, from Senegal to Nigeria, and took more than six years. West African lions are genetically distinct from others in Africa. In 2005, West African lions were believed to live in 21 different protected areas. But the survey, published in the scientific journal PLOS One, suggests lions now exist in just four of those sites. The report says lions now roam in just 1.1% of their historic range in West Africa. The majority of their habitat has been converted for agricultural use, says Philipp Henschel, co-author of the

needed to take some confidencebuilding steps. These steps included showing “none is harboring individuals responsible for grave human rights violations, none is giving any kind of support or assistance to armed groups, none is interfering in the affairs of a neighboring country.”

Congolese soldiers stand next to their burning vehicle after an ambush

Lions ‘facing extinction in West Africa’

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here has been a “catastrophic collapse” in the number of lions in West Africa, with only around 400 left in the region, a new survey suggests.

A lion cub photographed in Nigeria

report. Panthera is calling for the lion to be listed as critically endangered in West Africa. “Our results came as a complete shock; all but a few of the areas we surveyed were basically paper parks, having neither management budgets nor patrol staff, and had lost all their lions and other iconic large mammals,” Mr Henschel told the BBC’s Sivarama krishnan Parameswaran. The conservation of lions in West Africa have been largely neglected, whereas in eastern and southern Africa where millions of dollars a year are spent, he said.


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International Syrian government forces advance as rebel infighting rages

Syrian army soldiers loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad walk with their weapons in the Aleppo town of Naqaren

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he Syrian government has retaken territory around the northern city of Aleppo, the military said yesterday, after two weeks of rebel infighting that has weakened the insurgency against President Bashar al-Assad. The internecine conflict among various rebel groups will allow Assad to portray himself as the only secular alternative in Syria to a radical

Islamist regime when peace talks begin in Switzerland on January 22. His military advances will give the Syrian government delegation greater leverage at the negotiating table. An army statement said government forces had pushed out from their base at Aleppo’s international airport, southeast of the city, and were moving towards

an industrial complex used as a rebel base and the al-Bab road, needed by insurgents to supply the half of Aleppo under their control. It said that government forces, along with militia loyal to Assad, were in “complete control” of the Naqareen, Zarzour, Taaneh and Subeihieh areas along the eastern side of Aleppo, which was the major Arab country’s commercial hub and

most populous city before the conflict erupted in 2011. In the past year, the Syrian government has pushed back at rebels across the country, besieging restive suburbs around the capital and pushing opposition fighters from towns near the Lebanese border and along the road linking Damascus to the coast. Assad’s forces took ground in central Homs province and his forces regrouped as rebel rivalries grew. While the embattled leader avoided U.S. military strikes by agreeing to give up his chemical arsenal, his forces continue to bomb opposition territory from the air and using long-range artillery. But neither side appears to be able to break the overall deadlock. While the army has been able to take some towns on the outskirts of Aleppo, rebels have held their ground in the districts of the city they entered in 2012 and the government has not made major advances in the urban areas where opposition fighters are dug in. Fighting between the al Qaedalinked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and rival Islamists and more moderate rebels have killed hundreds of people over two weeks and shaken ISIL, a militant faction led by foreign jihadists.

China sentences doctor to death for selling babies

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doctor has been sentenced to death, suspended for two years, for selling babies born at a hospital in northwest China’s Shaanxi province. Zhang Shuxia, a former obstetrician with Fuping County Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital, was sentenced yesterday for selling seven babies, one of whom later died, to human traffickers. The penalty is normally commuted to life imprisonment. Zhang obtained most of the newborns by telling their parents that they were sick or had died, before selling them to traffickers for prices reaching 47,000 yuan ($7,800), the court said. The court found that Zhang had

persuaded a mother to give up a pair of newborn female twins last year by saying that one had died of disease, while the other had injured arms and legs. Another baby she sold was later found dead in a ditch, dumped by a trafficker, the court said. Zhang had received 20,000 yuan ($3,310) each for several female babies, it added, while one male baby fetched 47,000 yuan ($7,800) in 2011. Her actions came to light on July 20, 2013, when a mother surnamed Dong suspected her baby had been abducted and reported the incident to police. The baby was found in good condition in neighbouring Henan Province on August 5, 2013 and

Zhang was detained in August. Her trial began on December 30 and was the focus of widespread media attention.

Some of the babies she abducted were later found by police and returned to their parents, the court said.

Zhang (centre) during her sentencing

Thai protesters target ministries, threaten stock exchange

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rotesters trying to topple Thailand’s government tightened a blockade around ministries yesterday and their leader warned the prime minister that she could be targeted next, as some saw more than two months of turmoil inching towards an endgame. Major intersections in the capital, Bangkok, were blocked for a second day, and a hardline faction of the agitators threatened to storm the stock exchange. Protest leaders say demonstrators will occupy the city’s main arteries until an unelected “people’s council” replaces Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s

administration, which they accuse of corruption and nepotism. The unrest is the latest chapter in an eight-year conflict pitting the Bangkok-based middle class and royalist establishment against the mostly poorer, rural supporters of Yingluck and her brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, a former premier ousted by the military in 2006. Although the capital was calm and the mood among the tens of thousands of protesters remained festive, analysts said the scope for a peaceful resolution of the crisis ahead of elections called for February 2 was narrowing. “There is no clear way out,” the

International Crisis Group (ICG) think-tank said in a report. “As antigovernment protesters intensify actions, the risk of violence across wide swathes of the country is growing and significant.” Ministries and the central bank have been forced to operate from backup offices after protesters led by Suthep Thaugsuban stopped civil servants getting to work. “In the next two or three days we must close every government office,” Suthep told a crowd of supporters. “If we cannot, we will restrict the movements of the prime minister and other ministers. We will start by cutting

water and electricity to their homes. I suggest they evacuate their children.” Groups of demonstrators marched peacefully from their seven big protest camps to ministries, the customs office, the planning agency and other state bodies on Tuesday, aiming to paralyze the workings of government. A student group allied to Suthep’s People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) threatened to attack the stock exchange, with faction leader Nitithorn Lamlua telling supporters on Monday it represented “a wicked capitalist system that provided the path for Thaksin to become a billionaire”.

Asia & Middle East

Dubai leader backs easing of Iran sanctions

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he ruler of Dubai has told the BBC he supports the idea of lifting sanctions against Iran. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, also the prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, said everyone would benefit if Iran was given space. A limited easing of sanctions begins next Monday after the finalising of a deal on Iran’s nuclear programme. However, a Saudi government adviser called Sheik Mohammed’s comment’s on Iran “mind boggling”. The adviser criticised the Dubai emir for speaking out while the UAE and Iran both claim three disputed islands in the Gulf, that are currently occupied by Iranian forces. “It’s not surprising that the Dubai ruler would say such a misleading statement about Iran. Their main imperative has always been narrow and trade focused,” the adviser told the BBC. “But this will surely not impact [on] the policy of the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] on Iran and it is mind-boggling that he would say this when the Iranians are still occupying legitimate sovereign islands belonging to their brothers in Abu Dhabi.” Dubai has long had strong trade links with Iran and is home to nearly half a million Iranians. Sheikh Mohammed told the BBC: “You see, Iran is our neighbour and we don’t want any problem. Lift their sanctions and everybody will benefit.” Iran has agreed to allow regular inspections of its nuclear facilities in return for the easing of sanctions. It has always denied assertions by the West that it is trying to produce nuclear weapons. However, Israel has not ruled out taking military action to stop Iran developing a nuclear capability. Sheikh Mohammed said former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had reassured him that Tehran had no intention of building a nuclear weapon. “I think that they’re telling the truth when they say [the nuclear programme] is just for civilian power,” he said. “I talked to Ahmadinejad and he said ‘if I send a rocket to Israel, how many Palestinians will I kill? And then the US and Europe will destroy my cities. I’m not crazy to go for that. It’s a weapon of the past’.”

al-Maktoum


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International Europe and Americas

France’s Hollande bids for relaunch amid affair scandal

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rench President Francois Hollandeheld a news conference yesterday outlining plans for the economy, with media interest more on recent allegations about his private life. Last week, the magazine Closer alleged Mr Hollande was having an affair with film actress Julie Gayet. Mr Hollande did not deny the report but said his privacy had been invaded. His partner Valerie Trierweiler is in hospital suffering from “shock” over the revelations, her aides say. She was admitted on Friday and is expected to remain in hospital for a few days. The news conference, a longplanned event aimed at unveiling policies to help France’s struggling economy. Mr Hollande is outlining ideas to combat unemployment - a key pledge in his campaign. More details are being given on a proposed “responsibility pact”, which would introduce tax cuts for firms in return for a commitment to hire more workers. The French economy shrank in the third quarter of last year, reflecting a period of low growth as well as two recessions in the past five years. Figures from October showed that 3.27 million people were out of work - 10.3% of the workforce. That represented a sharp rise from August 2012, when unemployment went over three million. There is a public interest in the infidelity allegations by Closer where they relate to Ms Trierweiler’s status as first lady. She has an office in the Elysee Palace with six staff, which is supported by public money. Axelle Lemaire, an MP from Mr Hollande’s Socialist party, told the BBC she did not want to see “politics run by celebrity magazines”. “I’m sorry to say I think this is a very British way of seeing things. What is important is the announcement he’s going to make this afternoon... [concerning] the economy, investment, the fight against unemployment.” However, sales of the issue of Closer containing the allegations were 50% higher than normal, according to the magazine’s publishers.

Hollande

US raises concerns about Iran-Russia oil deal

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he US White House has raised concerns about a recent report that Iran and Russia are negotiating an oil-for-goods swap worth $1.5bn a month, a deal a spokeswoman said could trigger US sanctions. Such a deal would significantly boost Iran’s oil exports, which have been slashed by more than half to about 1 million barrels a day by US and European sanctions aimed at forcing Iran to accept curbs to its nuclear programme. Russian and Iranian sources close to the barter negotiations said the deal could see Russia buy as much as 500,000 barrels a day of Iranian oil in exchange for Russian equipment and goods. “We are concerned about these reports and Secretary (of State John) Kerry directly expressed this concern with (Russian) Foreign Minister

(Sergei) Lavrov today,” Caitlin Hayden, spokeswoman for the White House National Security Council, told Reuters agency on Monday. Iran’s foreign minister said his country had similar concerns over the deal. “There is a very serious confidence deficit vis-à-vis the West in Iran,” Mohammad Javad Zarif said. “Our people believe that our peaceful nuclear programme has been dealt with in a totally unfounded way. The Iranian people have been subjected to various pressures that have run counter to international law.” Reza Marashi, Research Director at the National Iranian American Council and former US State department official, told Al Jazeera he understands the US concerns. “I think there is concern on the part of the United States because right now we feel we have Iran in a good place; meaning that were are

in the diplomatic process in an effort to try and get a larger deal, a final deal, that solves all of the problems and there is concern that we can empower elements inside of Iran that are opposed to diplomacy if we go forward with this deal between Iran and Russia,” Marashi said. In Washington, President Obama urged Congress to resist the temptation to approve further economic sanctions against Iran, saying: “Now is the time for us to allow the diplomats and technical experts to do their work.” “What we want to do is give diplomacy a chance and give peace a chance,” Obama said after a meeting with Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy in the Oval Office. “My preference is for peace and diplomacy ... now is not the time for us to impose new sanctions,” Obama said.

Iran agreed on Sunday to limit its enrichment of uranium and allow more international monitoring for six months in exchange for about $7bn in sanctions relief. The agreement with the P5+1 group of major world powers includes a pause on efforts to further reduce Iran’s exports of crude oil – although it does not allow major buyers to increase their imports. Russia is part of the P5+1 group, but has not been part of the sanctions efforts, led by the US and Europe. “If the reports are true, such a deal would raise serious concerns as it would be inconsistent with the terms of the P5+1 agreement with Iran and could potentially trigger US sanctions,” Hayden said. Iran and the P5+1 group will likely begin talks on a long-term nuclear deal in February – talks that both Iran and the US have said will be difficult.

Police start to disarm vigilantes in Mexico

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exican security forces sent to quell unrest in the western state of Michoacan have started disarming local vigilante groups, state officials say. The “self-defence groups” took control of a number of towns in an effort to drive out members of a drug cartel.

The army moved into Nueva Italia, where vigilantes and members of the Knights Templar drug gang engaged in a fire fight on Sunday. Mexico’s interior minister has urged the vigilantes to lay down their arms. The minister, Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, said they should either join the

Mireles (centre) and his fighters

police force or disarm. Soldiers and marines have also moved into the towns of Nueva Italia, Paracuaro and Antunez. Leaders of the “self-defence groups” have given contradictory statements as to whether they would disarm. The leader of the General Council of the Community and Self-Defence Groups of Michoacan, Jose Manuel Mireles said in a video message from Mexico City - where he is being treated for injuries sustained in a helicopter crash - that he would “heed the call from the interior minister”. But in a subsequent video published on YouTube, Mr Mireles denied he had ordered his group to disarm, saying he could not give such orders without calling a meeting of the group’s general council. Other vigilante leaders were adamant they would not lay down arms. Estanislao Beltran who heads

a vigilante group in the town of Tepalcatepec said two of his men had been killed amid a tense standoff with federal security forces. “We’re here to the death, all of us,” he warned. There has been no official confirmation of the alleged killings. Hipolito Mora, who founded one of the first “self-defence groups” to emerge in the town of La Ruana also said that his movement “would continue”. The vigilantes argue that the federal forces should concentrate on targeting the Knights Templar drug cartel before asking them to disarm. “Our objective is to clean [this area] of the Knights Templar,” Mr Beltran said. “If the federal government catches all the top leaders of the Knights Templar, like alias Chayo, alias Tuta, and alias Quique, which are the ones behind all the kidnappings, then we can see what we do.”

Florida man shot dead over texting in cinema

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retired police officer shot dead a fellow cinemagoer in Florida in an argument over texting, police say. Ex-officer Curtis Reeves, 71, opened fire after asking a man sitting directly in front of him to stop texting several times, a Pasco County Sheriff spokesman said. Chad Oulson, 43, died in hospital. The two men, accompanied by their wives, had been watching the previews for a matinee screening in Wesley Chapel, north of Tampa, on Monday. The victim had explained that he was texting his three-year-old daughter, witness Charles Cummings told FOX 13 television. Mr Reeves has been charged

with second-degree murder. The two couples had been waiting to watch the new war film Lone Survivor at the Cobb Grove 16 cinema in Wesley Chapel when the row broke out. Mr Reeves apparently stormed out of the auditorium to get a manager, but returned without one. “Three seconds, four seconds later, the argument starts again,” Mr Cummings said. “Their voices start going up; there seems to be almost a confrontation. Somebody throws popcorn, I’m not sure who threw the popcorn, and, bang, he was shot.” Mr Oulson’s wife, Nicole, was wounded as she had placed her

hand over her husband just as he was shot, sheriff’s spokesman Doug Tobin said. A nurse in the audience tried performing emergency resuscitation on the victim while an off-duty Police at the Cobb Grove 16 cinema, the scene of the shooting

sheriff’s deputy detained the gunman, according to reports. “The male victim is deceased. The female victim was injured with non-life-threatening injuries,” Mr Tobin said.


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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Strange World Artist sews family portraits into his palms

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his has to be one of the most bizarre artforms I’ve ever seen. Spanish artist David Cata has taken ‘hand embroidery’ to a whole new level. Using needle-and-thread, he embroiders portraits of people who have impacted his life on to his palms. He calls the series of works ‘a flor de piel’, which means ‘Under the Skin’. You have to be a pretty intense person to be able to do something like this. Granted, he only embroiders the top layer of his skin, but it’s still got to hurt when he accidentally pierces his flesh! I watched two videos of his work – one where he sews on to his palm and the other where he (rather brutally) rips out the stitches. I really couldn’t finish watching the latter. Let’s just say that there was some blood involved. According to David, Under

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hat’s 31 inches long, one inch thick, has no legs, and slithers through the ground? No, it’s not a snake, it’s an earthworm! The Giant Gippsland, found in Gippsland in south-eastern Australia, is the world’s largest species of earthworms. Fully stretched, it can measure up to two meters in length. These slithering giants are surprisingly gentle creatures. They are quite hard to spot, spending most of their lives deep underground. Higher water content in the soil helps them breathe better. Their burrows can be as deep as 3 to 5 feet below the surface. Sometimes, heavy rainfall forces them to emerge out of the dirt. You might find

a motorcycle with Wheelies, over a cool biker dude. Wheelies are fun and quirky, and can show 30 seconds of video on a loop, managed by a web application. But they’re still in development stage. World Moto hopes to evolve the product to be able to stream video and play full length movies. Very practical. Not. Wheelies make use of persistence vision – the illusion of motion generated by static images moving at high speeds. In layman terms, this means that the images are actually rotating with the wheels, but appear to be static. Each Wheelie has 424 LED lights mounted on an eight spoke wheel. A computer tracks the wheel’s speed and the position of each spoke, and controls the lighting of the LEDs.

Chris Ziomkowski, World Moto’s chief technology officer, says: “You have to track the where the wheel is at any given time and have to know the exact position of each blade. Then you have to light the LEDs based on what you want the picture to be, and you have to do that very fast.” He said that he got the idea for Wheelies after watching a spinning lightsaber in a Star Wars film several years ago. World Moto recently displayed this stunning piece of technology at the Sign Asia Expo. They haven’t fixed a price for it yet; it would depend on the size of the wheel. But be prepared to shell out something in the range of $1,000 if you want one of these. In the past, the Thai company has been in the news for developing the world’s first meter system for motorcycle taxis.

David sewing a portrait on his palm

the Skin is an “autobiographical diary” that is supported by his body. On it, he writes the story of

Giant Gippsland – The World’s largest and most extraordinary earthworms

A giant Gippsland

marked me throughout my life, family, friends, couples, teachers. Their lives are interwoven with

mine to build my story, a story that ends when I run out of leaves to write about.” On his website, David wrote: “Every people we meet makes us in some way. Their image projects on us, reminding us where we came from. Their lives turn into a part of ours. Every stitch over my skin represent them.” “Every moment lived stays in the memory to be finally forgotten,” he said. “Somehow, this fact is painful, since there are only material things and traces that people leave behind.” I suppose it is this pain that David chooses to portray through his art. The embroidered palms seem to symbolize union and separation; pain and love. “Physical pain is not a boundary,” David adds. “It unites us more by thinking that my hand has been marked, by thinking that, at that time, my hand has touched their hand.”

also find their burrows in places where there’s been a landslip. They are quite fragile – reckless handling can crush and kill them. Only a particular type of moist soil is suitable for their survival. If you happen to walk over their waterfilled burrows, they will respond to the vibration of your footsteps. They start to crawl about and make squelchy noises that are quite easy to hear. So even though the Gippsland Giants are pretty rare, you’ll know when they are around. Giant Gippslands lay huge egg cocoons that look like brown bean pods. They lay only one egg at a time, which takes a whole year to hatch. The babies aren’t cute or tiny; they qualify as humongous in earthworm terms at 7 inches long! They don’t grow very rapidly though. It takes them about five years to reach their maximum length. We do not know exactly how long they live, but the estimated age of these remarkable creatures is 20 years. Despite their size, the population of the Gippsland Giants in Australia is pretty small. The main causes are frequent loss of habitation, along with a slow rate of reproduction. These earthworms have been labelled ‘vulnerable’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species.

his life. He says that he sews on the palm of his hand, “the faces of all the people who, somehow, have

Thai company turns motorcycle wheels into LED screens

Wheelies’ are the latest accessories for motorcycles, developed by World Moto, a Bangkok-based tech company. Their invention allows bikers to convert a bike’s front wheels into full color LED screens – displaying mobile billboards, videos, animation or text of their choice. What’s great about Wheelies is that the display is stationary even when the wheels are in motion. According to Paul Giles, CEO of World Moto, “The technology has the potential to turn essentially any wheel in the world into a brilliant, full-color billboard or video screen.” He said that the idea could appeal to motorcyclists who want to put a face on their wheels. “It gives their bike a face, sort of like an avatar.” The ad for the product is amusing – it shows a gang of ‘hot’ girls choosing a geek on

A ‘wheelie’


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Digest

How coffee can perk up your memory By Robin Yapp

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offee doesn’t just perk you up – just one mug a day can give your memory a boost too, experts claimed yesterday. In a study of more than 100 people, scientists said a 200mg caffeine pill – equivalent to a strong mug – taken soon after a learning session improved image recall.

Participants had to identify pictured objects as either outdoor or indoor items, before taking either the pill or a placebo five minutes later. Saliva samples were taken beforehand to measure their caffeine levels and again one, three and 24 hours afterwards. The next day, they were shown some of the same images, plus similar ones and random new ones. Both groups correctly identified

pictures as being new or old, but those on caffeine were better at spotting the similar alternatives. Those who received the placebo incorrectly identified these as the originals from the day before, showing that caffeine enhances certain memories at least up to 24 hours after it is consumed, according to the findings published in the journal Nature Neuroscience. Dr Michael Yassa, of the University of California, Irvine,

said: ‘Caffeine enhanced consolidation of long-term memories. ‘We have always known caffeine has cognitive enhancing effects, but its particular effects on strengthening memories and making them resistant to forgetting has never been examined in detail in humans. We report for the first time a specific effect of caffeine on reducing forgetting over 24 hours.’ The brain’s ability to recognise the difference between two similar items reflects a deeper level of memory retention, researchers said. Dr Yassa added: ‘If we used a standard recognition memory task without these tricky similar items, we would have found no effect of caffeine. However, using Improved: Those who took a dose of caffeine after a period of learning these items requires the were able to identify pictures more effectively the following day than those brain to make a more who did not take the pill

Boost: Researchers found a strong cup of coffee can improve people’s ability to recall images difficult discrimination, what we call pattern separation, which seems to be the process enhanced by caffeine.’ The research is different from most earlier experiments that found caffeine had little or no effect on long-term memory, because the subjects took the caffeine only after they had viewed and tried to memorise the images. Dr Yassa said: ‘Almost all prior studies administered caffeine before the study session so if there is an enhancement, it is not clear

if it is due to caffeine’s effects on attention, vigilance, focus or other factors. ‘By administering caffeine after the experiment, we rule out these effects and make sure if there is an enhancement, it is due to memory and nothing else.’ The caffeine-induced improvement was not seen with smaller doses of caffeine or when it was given an hour before viewing the images. Source: Dailymail.co.uk

Playing classical music to children can improve their listening skills By Sarah Harris

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laying classical music such as Beethoven and Mozart to young children boosts their concentration and self-discipline, a new study suggests. Youngsters also improve their general listening and social skills by being exposed to repertoires from composers including Ravel, Shostakovich and Mendelssohn. In addition, they are likely to appreciate a wider range of music in later years, according to a study from the Institute of Education, (IoE), University of London.

Susan Hallam, professor of education and music psychology at the IoE, evaluated a programme developed by Apollo Music Projects which introduces children aged seven to ten to classical music and its composers. The scheme involves a whole school assembly followed by six lessons at class level, with children experiencing different instruments and musical concepts and a formal concert. Musicians explain what children should listen for and launch question and answer sessions. As the sessions

Listening to classical music such as Beethoven (right) and Mendelssohn (left) boosts children’s concentration and self discipline as well as improving their general listening and social skills, according to new research

progress, the listening tasks become more complex. The programme has been delivered to 4,500 children in 26 primary schools in Hackney and Tower Hamlets, East London, as well as to over 22,000 youngsters in assemblies and concerts. 26 members of staff and 252 children in nine primary schools were questioned about the programme. Teachers rated developing the ability to listen as the main benefit, followed by musical knowledge and development and the boosting of concentration levels, aspirations, self-discipline and personal and social skills. Some staff also pointed to improvements to English. One teacher said: ‘The children really enjoy the sessions. I think that listening to music in such an intimate environment (ie the classroom) engages them and allows them to develop their listening skills.’ Another said that pupils’ communication skills improved. In a report on the scheme, Professor Hallam said children developed ‘enhanced listening skills and the development of other skills necessary for careful listening to take place including concentration and self-discipline’. She added: ‘For some of the children the programme was inspirational. The children’s positive reactions suggest that they were ‘open-eared’ and had not developed prejudices against classical music.

Susan Hallam, professor of education and music psychology at the IoE, evaluated a programme developed by Apollo Music Projects which introduces children aged seven to ten to classical music and its composers. The scheme involves a whole school assembly like the one pictured (stock image)

‘We know that preferences for music are affected by the extent to which individuals are exposed to them, the greater the exposure the greater the liking. ‘Opportunities to listen extensively to classical music in the early years of primary school are therefore likely to lead to children appreciating a wider range of music than might otherwise be the case.’ Mary Igoe, a former head teacher from Columbia Primary School, Bethnal Green, East London, who experienced the programme, said: ‘The skills of careful listening and differentiating musical sounds transfer

to other areas of the curriculum and improve their (pupils’) ability to concentrate and attend to details.’ Meanwhile a study from the University of St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, last September suggested that musicians have sharper minds and are less likely to suffer a mental decline. Researchers said that mastering instruments such as the piano, flute or violin improves people’s ability to pick up mistakes and fix them quickly. They perform tasks faster and do not allow occasional slip-ups to derail them due to their hours of practice. Source: Dailymail.co.uk


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

PAGE 37

PDP/APC rivalry: Role reversal imminent in Reps

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ince the formation and subsequent registration of the All Progressive Congress (APC), courtesy of the merger of some opposition parties, there has been wind of change across the political environment in the country. Unfortunately for the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the merger of some opposition parties which metamorphosed into the APC came when its big umbrella was being tossed around by a heavy political tornadoes. The crisis that rocked the PDP then peaked when during the party’s special National Convention at the Eagle Square in Abuja, some governors and their supporters pulled out to hold a parallel national convention at the Shehu Musa Yar’adua Center also in Abuja where they elected some key officers under the name of new PDP. Before the dust raised by the formation of a ‘new Peoples Democratic Party, PDP’ could settle, five governors on the platform of the ruling party including Admiral Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara State, Mr. Rotimi Amechi of Rivers State, Alhaji Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of Kano State and Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto state abandoned the struggle to legalize the so called ‘new PDP’ and defected to the All Progressive Congress, APC. Apparently towing the line of their various governors who have left the PDP to join the APC, some 37 members of the House of Representatives, who were elected to the National Assembly on the platform of the ruling party also denounced their membership of the party and moved to the opposition APC. The movement of these 37 federal lawmakers from PDP to APC is currently threatening the majority advantage the PDP has enjoyed in the House of Representatives since 1999 as the All Progressive Congress; APC now has 172 members as against the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP’s 171. However, despite the fact that APC now enjoys simple majority in the House, it still requires ten more members to attain the height of simple majority for it to control the leadership of the Green Chamber. As the House of Representatives is expected to resume sitting on next week, there are strong indications that more members would defect from the PDP to the APC, an action that would continue to swell the number of APC members in the House. In fact it was gathered on a

The opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) is poised to take over he leadership of the House of Representatives notwithstanding the last ditch efforts being made by the leaders of the threatened Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to persuade some of its disgruntled members in the House to remain in the party. In this piece, Lawrence Olaoye takes a cursory look at a likely role reversal between the PDP and the APC as the former prepares to take the minority seat.

Speaker Tambuwal

Hon. Godfrey Gaya

Majority Leader, Mulikat Akande-Adeola

good authority that 90 percent of federal lawmakers from Benue State would be defecting to the APC as soon as the House resumes next week Tuesday alongside many other members. According to our findings, it is only Hon. Christiana Alaga who is said to be loyal to the Benue state governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam that would remain in PDP among other members from the state. Further investigations revealed that the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal for fear of losing his seat if the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP becomes minority in the House is aso contemplating defection to the APC. This is noteithstanding several oressures being mounted on him by the leadership of the ruling party which is currently embroiled in a life threatening internal crisis. Should the Speaker defect to the APC as being speculated and the APC garners the required 182 members to topple PDP as the party having majority of members in the House of Representatives, PDP will be left with no other option than to settle for minority positions such as Minority Leader, deputy Minority Leader, Minority Whip and deputy Minority Whip. In this case, it is not expected that people like the present Majority Leader, Hon. Mulikat Akande-Adeola, his deputy, Hon. Leo Ogor or even the deputy speaker, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha would jostle for such positions. Indications are that there would be a total ovhaul of the leadership. Pundits are of the opinion that should the People’s Democratic Party, PDP become minority in the House of Representatives; there are members who are so loyal to the party and qualified to occupy such positions. Some members being suggested by political analysts include Hon. Godfrey Gaiya from Kaduna State, Hon. Muktar Ahmed from Niger State, Hon. Bashir Kazaure from Jigawa state, Hon. Bello Kaoje from Kebbi State and Hon. Christiana Alaga from Benue State.

Gaiya is a member representing Jaba/Zangon Kataf federal constituency of Kaduna state whom some analysts are tipping for the position of the Minority Leader in the House. Gaiya who is currently the Chairman, House Committee on Sports is a strong member of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP who has always believed, preached and prayed for the unity and growth of the party at all levels. Although he was a strong supporter of the Speaker of the House Representatives, Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, one of his aides disclosed that he has no plans to leave the party alongside Tambuwal. “Apart from Gaiya’s strong belief in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Party is like a religion in part of Kaduna State where he comes from. It is suicidal for anybody seeking political position in that area to join any other party apart from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP”, he further disclosed. Hon. Muktar Ahmed from Niger State is another strong member who may also be good for one of the minority positions. Although Bello Kaoje from Kebbi State is a new comer to the House of Representatives, those backing him are of the opinion that his connection to the ‘Sambawa dynasty’ can qualify him for one of the minority positions. Same also go for Hon. Christiana Alaga from Benue who is said to be a strong member of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP and also very loyal to the state governor, Chief Gabriel Suswam. As a woman whose loyalty to the party is not in doubt, she is qualified to occupy one of the minority seats. The South West having produced the Majority Leader and the South East which produced deputy speaker when PDP held sway in the House is not being considered by political observers should the party become minority in the House of Representatives. Though the leadership of the ruling party is leaving no stone unturned to retain its majority, including instituting legal action to cower those aggrieved lawmakers bent on ditching the PDP, development in the National Assembly has become even more interesting as intrigues unfold on daily basis. Whether the PDP would be able to contain the proposed mass exodus of its members in the House of Representatives or not would be determined by the political temperament of the lawmakers and other stakeholders who are bent on effecting a change in the polity.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Politics PDP chieftain warns politicians against use of religious sentiments

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lhaji Ahmed Gusau, former Minister of Solid Minerals, yesterday advised against the use of religious sentiments in the run up to the 2015 general elections. Gusau, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), gave the advice at a news conference in Sokoto. He said, ``what is important for Nigerians is to put the Nigerian agenda forward and collectively and logically pursue it. ``The time has therefore come for all Nigerians to combine forces for the development of the country; otherwise, we are wasting our time’’, Gusau said. The former minister stressed that ``God in His mercy decided to make Nigeria what it is today and there is no way anybody can change history. ``We are Nigerians; we have experienced a transition of more than 15 years under democracy. ``It is about time to grow up and set our sentiments aside. Let us now graduate as democrats. I think it is about time to agree that we are matured politically.’’ Gusau called for free, fair and peaceful elections in the country before and after 2015. He held that it was only with the success of future elections that Nigerians could really reap the benefits of democracy. The PDP stalwart said the country needed harmony to forge ahead and cautioned those unnecessarily heating up the polity. ``We are wasting a whole lot of time arguing, fighting, blackmailing and making unnecessary comments instead of examining the successes of democracy.’’ (NAN)

Senate President David Mark (right), in a handshake with British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Andrew Pocock (left), during the envoy’s visit to the Senate President, recently at the National Assembly in Abuja. With them is Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice, Mr. Jeremy Wright (middle). Photo: Mahmud Isa

APC factionalised in Jigawa, elect officers From Edwin Olofu, Kano

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faction of Jigawa state chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has emerged following the leadership tussle that is rocking the party in the state. In a communiqué issued by the legacy parties of APC in Jigawa state which comprise of the defunct ANPP, CPC and ACN and made available to reporters in Kano yesterday, accused the three gubernatorial candidates of the defunct parties of APC of hijacking the leadership of the party, in the state for their ordinate ambition.

It would be recalled that Alhaji Badaru Abubakar, emerged chairman of the interim committee of the APC, while Ibrahim Hassan was appointed as the secretary and Alhaji Faruk Adamu Aliyu was given the slot of Treasurer. The three leaders were the governorship candidates of ACN, ANPP and CPC. As a result of this development, a group known as ‘Legacy parties’ of APC in the state has elected their on leadership to run the affairs of the party. Parts of the communiqué read “After a critical look at the activities, it was observed that

the Jigawa state harmonization committee has been hijacked by the governorship candidates of the defunct ACN, CPC and ANPP, who unilaterally declared themselves as the protem leaders of the party on the 5, January, 2014.” The group also accused the three governorship candidates of interested in influencing the forthcoming registration exercise as well as determining those that will emerge as leaders of the party during the congresses. “We believe they are only promoting their personal interests rather than the collective interest of the party in the state.”

Cross River 2015: Group backs Agba for governor By Ikechukwu Okafiradi

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ope Arewa Development Initiative (HADI), a pan Northern Pressure group, has restated their conviction that Mr. Jeddy Godwin Agba is competent and the most qualified to succeed Governor Liyel Imoke as Governor of Cross River State

come 2015. In a press conference in Abuja addressed by its National President Alhaji Muhammadu Ibrahim, in Abuja recently, the initiative whose membership cuts across the federation recalled that its members have benefited from Agba's generosity and patronage. They expressed gratitude to the state governor, Liyel

Imoke for publicly stating that the governorship slot has been zoned to the northern senatorial district of the state where Agba incidentally hails from. The initiative stressed that they were particularly impressed with Imoke’s statement that he has not anointed any candidate to succeed him.

LP scribe advocates adequate political orientation for security agents

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ogi state Secretary of Labour Party (LP), Mr Ibrahim Itodo, has advocated critical, adequate and effective political orientation for security agents charged with provision of security during elections. Itodo, who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday in Lokoja, said this was to ensure conduct of free, credible and result-oriented elections with minimal irregularities.

``As the 2015 general elections approach, there is need for adequate political orientation of stakeholders, especially the security agencies because without the active participation of security agents, it will be difficult for political parties to perpetrate fraud.’’ The LP scribe argued that with adequate political orientation and awareness on the part of all stakeholders, only politicians with potentials to make positive impact

on the lives of the electorate would be elected into office. He noted that imposition of unpopular candidates on the electorate, which was the bane of democratic practice in the country, would be resisted by voters with the proper orientation. ``Imposition may lead to apathy or outright nonparticipation which can provoke mayhem,’’ he said and called for formidable and credible opposition.

Itodo, however, described the PDP as an elephant which might be difficult to wrestle saying: “In spite of the current intra-party crisis rocking the party, the PDP is like a cult and the members will resolve their differences before election.” On the chances of the state chapter of APC, Itodo noted that internal wrangling arising from leadership tussle was weakening the congress and charged them to work on their unity if they hoped to make any impact during elections. (NAN)

Kwara PDP takes over secretariat amidst resistance from nPDP From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin

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embers of Peoples D e m o c r a t i c Party(PDP) Kwara State yesterday took over the old Secretariat of the party amidst strict resistance from members of former new Peoples Democratic Party(nPDP) now in the All Progressives Congress (APC). At about 9am, members of PDP and the newly inaugurated Caretaker Committee have been at the Secretariat along Nupe road to support their leaders. Our Correspondent who was at the scene observed that anti riot policemen fully armed with many patrol vans manned the two entrances linking the old secretariat. At about 1pm, members of the PDP led by caretaker committee entered the secretariat with the PDP flag raised inside the premise. This development angered former nPDP members who had gathered in hundreds at one entrance. They however forced themselves outside the Police blocks and pull down PDP flags. But anti riot Policemen attached to the secretariat restored normalcy as Caretaker Committee executive entered their offices and held brief prayers. While speaking with Journalists in front of the Secretariat, Chief R.E.X Olawoye, a member of the Committee said the reoccupation of the Secretariat by PDP was to show their members that the party is alive in the state. Olawoye who expressed satisfaction about the conduct of PDP members said they were peace loving people who did not react to violent move by former nPDP supporters.


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News Extra

Sokoto: Achida agog for new Mutawalle

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he town of Achida, in Sokoto state was agog recently when one of its illustrious son and philanthropist, Alhaji Bashir Gidado Jegawa was turbaned as the Mutawallen Achida by the DanMalikin Sokoto, Alhaji Umaru Abubakar on behalf of the Emirate council. The ceremony, witnessed by many from all walks of life, also showcased an exciting mini durbar. The new Mutawallen Achida, a senior staff with MTN, and professional with outstanding records in his field, is also a philanthropist who has touched the lives of many in his locality and country as a whole. In his words of advice, the DanMaliki Achida, Alhaji Umaru Abubakar counseled the new Mutawallen to continue with his selfless service to humanity as he would be rewarded by the Almighty Allah in the hereafter. “You have been known for your kind philanthropic gestures across Achida and beyond. I want to appeal to you to continue with this noble role. He also said, “henceforth, as the new Mutawallen of Achida, you are part of the decision making body of this town.” In his response, the new Mutawallen Achida, Alhaji Bashir Gidado, expressed gratitude to the Danmaliki and the entire people of Achida for the recognition.

Muslim faithful coming out from the National Mosque after Maulud prayer, yesterday in Abuja.

Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

Eid-el-Maulud: Christians and Muslims feast together From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna

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n line with religious harmony, the Coordinator of Peace Revival and Reconciliation Foundation, Pastor Yohanna Buru, yesterday, hosted hundreds of Muslims and Christians to a gettogether feast in commemoration of the Eid-el-Maulud.

Pastor Buru said the time has come when Nigerians, whether Christians or Muslims would understand that the foundation of their religions is the fear of God and peace. He said no true Muslim or Christian will hurt someone because the person does not accept his own religion.

In his remarks, Sheikh Salisu Maibarauta said the Birth day of the Prophet, SAW, is an important day of remembrance to all Muslims and whosoever felicitates with Muslims should be appreciated because it shows respect for the religion, stressing that in every Muslim household you find people bearing the name of Prophet Isa,

also known as Jesus. Kaduna State Governor, Alhaji Mukhtar Ramalan Yero in a related development, called for peaceful co-existence between Muslims and Christians, while addressing the mammoth crowd that besiege the famous Murtala square to celebrate the Eid-elMaulud festival.

of criminals and 2 Policemen were also recorded during encounter at various points and the 2 recent attacks of Police Stations by bandits. He informed that the total Number of 2462 cows, 1396 sheep, and 46 donkeys were recovered from rustlers in 2013. In the same vein, 41 motorcycles,10 motor vehicles, 8 AK 47 rifles,1 TO6 rifle, 23 dane

shells, 8 cartridges, 265 live ammunition were successfully recovered from the cattle rustlers, armed robbers and other criminals. In area of other crimes, the Command had recorded 8 cases of mischief by fire, 25 sexual offences, 25 reported fraud cases, 34 cases of belonging to gang of brigandage and 49 cases of belonging to gang of

achievements, the Command had controlled 2 religious cases in B/Magaji and T/Mafara local governments respectively, which the CP said had led to the death of a serving Councilor and burning of a Mosque in B/ Magaji. He however narrated that, 3 suspects were arrested and charged to court for prosecution, pending arrest of others who are still at large.

Kebbi state government to implement new 2013: Zamfara police record 66 cattle rustling, armed robberies From Ibrahim Sidi Muh’d, Commissioner of Police, CP guns,13 knives, 26 cutlasses,14 thieves. WAEC policy Gusau Ahmad Ibrahim said, 24 deaths locally made pistols, 49 empty Amongst other

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ebbi state government has expressed its resolve to implement federal government’s policy on WAEC examination. The state Commissioner of Information, Alhaji Sani Kanya, made this known while briefing newsmen shortly after the Executive Council meeting yesterday at Government House in Birnin Kebbi. He said, “Council has discussed vital issues, specifically the issue of new federal government curriculum on WAEC and we have resolved to implementation it”. Adding, that a directive has been given for procurement of computers to all government primary and secondary schools so as to implement the policy across the state. The commissioner, who could not state the cost implication of implementing the new curriculum, however said “it is mandatory for students in the state to comply. “Students seating for the next WAEC and NECO examination will be made to go through the system. “Usually the federal government has powers to make policy and education is a bit different from what we know because children now are supposed to be computer literate right from primary school up to tertiary level.

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he Zamfara state Police Command, has recorded 66 cases of cattle rustling, and armed robbery with its attendant 41 cases of killings {capable homicide) which brought the number of arrest of suspects to 702, in year, 2013. At a Press conference yesterday, the state

Plateau attacks: STF to restructure to smaller units

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s unknown gunmen continue to hit Plateau communities, the Special military Task Force (STF) says it is restructuring its sector commands into smaller units to bring troops closer to the vulnerable areas. “We have re-sectored the commands into smaller units so that our response time will be faster. We have also deployed more men to the vulnerable areas to ease the movement of troops to support teams in areas that come under attacks,’’ STF Commander, Maj. Gen. David Enetie, said on Tuesday. Enetie told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Jos that communication had also been beefed up to speed up information flow to effectively tackle the problem.

He described the penultimate Monday attack on Shonnong communities in Riyom as “very sad’’, pointing out that the situation would have been worse if the STF men had not rushed to the scene to repel the attackers. While describing the Shonnong terrain as “very challenging’’, he said that the attackers took advantage of the serenity in those areas to hit them since other usually crises-ridden areas were well secured by the STF men. He dismissed as “very untrue”, allegation of complicity by STF men in the Shonnong attacks. ``On the contrary, the leader of the Shonnong community, one Mr Iliya, commended the STF for doing a great job. You can check that out with the Chief,’’ he said.

He said that the STF men were ``neutral arbiters’’ in the Plateau crises, and challenged everyone to see himself as a stakeholder in the peace process. Enetie also rejected suggestions that the attackers had more sophisticated weapons than the STF men, saying ``What we usually do is to get the shells of bullets fired by the attackers and try to study them to ascertain which guns could be used to fire them. “From what we have been able to confirm, the attackers generally use AK 47 riffles. Such weapons are not superior to what we have. “I think the only thing one is sure of is that there are many illegal weapons in the hands of many in Plateau, but to say that such weapons are more than what

the soldiers have, is not true,’’ he said. Enetie, however expressed satisfaction that the STF had been able to contain a major cause of conflict – cattle rustling. “We have been able to check that and shall continue to do even more to check the cause of violence in Plateau. What we have always solicited is the support and cooperation of everyone,’’ he said. The STF boss expressed the hope of an end to the hostilities “from the tunes of our discussions with all stakeholders’’. Enetie advised community, tribal and religious leaders to be sincere in their contributions to discussions and agreements toward a peaceful Plateau. (NAN)


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

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Photo Splash

Children having fun, during Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday at the Millennium Park, in Abuja.

Photo: Justin Imo-

L-R: Bursar, National Teachers Institute (NTI), Mr Abdulkarim Atto, DirectorGeneral, NTI, Dr Aminu Ladan Sharehu , and National Coordinator, Strengthening Mathematics and Science Education (SMASE), Mr. Chimezie Aguiyi, during the first cycle training workshop at the NTI, on Monday in Kaduna.

Chief of Naval Staff, Vice-Admiral Dele Ezeoba (middle), with President, Nigerian Navy Officers Wives Association (NOWA), Mrs. Vivian Ezeoba (right), during the foundation laying ceremony of hostel and blocks of classrooms at NOWA Educational Centre, on Monday at Karshi, in Abuja. Photo: NAN

Supervising Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, briefing journalists on activities of the ministry, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN

Emir of Bauchi, Alhaji Rilwanu Adamu, praying during the Maulud Nabiyy celebration, yesterday in Bauchi. Photo: NAN


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Stories by Albert Akota

M

ozambique and Nigeria will square up in an African Nations Championship (CHAN) game at the Cape Town Stadium today. Both teams know they will have to win to keep alive their chances of reaching the quarterfinal stage of the tournament after losing their opening games. The Mozambicans were defeated 1-3 by South Africa in the tournament’s opening match while the Nigerians surprisingly lost 1-2 to their Malian counterparts. Nigeria’s Super Eagles go into this game as favourites, as they have not lost in their last three meetings against the Mambas of Mozambique. In three previous international matches, Nigeria have defeated Mozambique twice in 2009 and 2010 with the other tie ending goalless. Already, Mozambique head coach, Joao Chissano, has

PAGE 41

Eagles face Mozambique in “do or die” clash today Salami deflected the pressure off his team by insisting that Nigeria are condemned to win. “The (Super) Eagles are

the big brothers in Africa, the African champions and the coach (Stephen Keshi) is the African Coach of the Year. We don’t

T

have any of those accolades, so the pressure is on Nigeria not Mozambique. “With their massive fans and

he 2013/14 Nigeria league season will kick off on February 23, the League Management Company has announced. “We will commence the new season by the weekend of February 23-25,” announced chairman of the LMC, Nduka Irabor after a meeting with the 20 clubs in Abuja. Last season ended in October, but the start of the new league campaign has been delayed by various vexed issues including a face-off between the LMC and the club managers. Irabor also disclosed that the traditional a preseason tournament, the Super 4, will be played between January 24 to 28. “We hope this tournament will help prepare our teams who will feature in international competitions this year,” he said. Champions Kano Pillars and Enyimba will represent Nigeria in the CAF Champions League, while Bayelsa United will feature in the CAF Confederation Cup. El Kanemi will be the fourth team for the Super 4 after they placed fourth last season.

Francis ruled out of today’s tie as Kwambe promises victory

the Vuvuzelas, Nigeria will again be under pressure to perform as African champions,” Chissano said. Chissano will be banking on the like of Diogo Alberto, Josemar Machaisse, Dario Khan, Guilherme Manhique and Francisco Miocha to give Nigeria a run for the points. Keshi, on the other hand, believes his men now recognise the importance attached to the game against Mozambique after their opening day loss to Mali. “The pressure was massive and I expected this type of happening but I am certain they now know they have to satisfy themselves and have confidence in themselves. “We have lost the opening game and we have to forget that and fight for qualification in the remaining two games,” Keshi said. It is expected that the Nigerian manager might overhaul his starting team for the Mozambique match after their leggy start to the tournament.

2013/14 NPFL football season begins on February 23

Rangers

Keshi backs under-fire Agbim Benjamin Francis still injured

I

njured Benjamin Francis looks set to miss today’s CHAN clash against Mozambique, while Solomon Kwambe has promised improvements. Heartland left back Francis has not trained with the rest of the squad since he was injured in the Mali match at the weekend. However, central defender Kunle Odunlami has staged a remarkable recovery from his own injury and trained with the team on Monday. Goal scorer against Mali, Gbolahan Salami, is also expected to be rewarded with a starting shirt after the attack led by Ifeanyi Ede lacked bite. “There will be one or two other changes and won’t be surprised if a player like Gbolahan Salami starts this game,” said team

spokesman Ben Alaiya. In the meantime, Sunshine Stars defender Solomon Kwambe has promised new and improved Eagles against Mozambique tonight at the Cape Town Stadium. Kwambe, who admitted that the Eagles were far from their best in the game against Mali, said that: We have put the Mali game behind us. “We know we played very badly in the game, but we have resolved to make it up in this game. “All we need to do now is play our game, which we did not do against Mali. “We do respect Mozambique as a team, but I believe that we have what it takes to overcome them.”

T

he Chief Coach of the Super Eagles Stephen Keshi has defended goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim, who has come under fire following a 2-1 loss to Mali at CHAN. Agbim was blamed for the two goals scored by Mali even though he later made several saves to deny the fellow West Africans more goals. Keshi picked Agbim and defenders Azubuike Egwuekwe and Kunle Odunlami as the only players who did well against Mali at the weekend. Goalkeeper trainer Ike Shorunmu has also passed a vote of confidence on the Enugu Rangers shot stopper. “He made several saves if not, we would have conceded five, six goals in that game,” Shorunmo defended. “If you look at the team as a whole, he played well and should not be blamed.”

Keshi said he now expects his team to post an improved performance on Wednesday. “The players have now overcome their stage fright, so I think they would come out to play on Wednesday. We did not play our game on Saturday but I am sure that would be different today,” he assured. In the meantime, Sunshine Stars midfielder Ikenna Hilary,

Agbim is under fire

who started against Mali, is now an injury doubt for today’s Group A match against Mozambique after he limped out of training on Monday night. There are also sign that Abdullahi Shehu of Kano Pillars may get the nod to start in the game against Mozambique after he brought some stability to the Eagles midfield in the second half of the game against Mali.


PAGE 42

PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2013

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THIS SPACE IS FOR SALE THIS SPACE IS FOR SALE

THIS SPACE IS FOR SALE


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Sports

Australian Open 2014: Dancevic complains of “inhumane” treatment

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ustralian Open organisers have been criticised for forcing players to compete in intense heat as temperatures hit 42C in Melbourne. Canada’s Frank Dancevic required medical attention after fainting in his first-round match and said it was “inhumane” to allow players to compete in such testing conditions. The fourth seed, who recorded a straight-sets win over Japan’s Go Soeda in his first match of the tournament, added: “At 3pm, the conditions were very, very tough. Players draped bags of ice around their necks and retreated

into the shade at the back of the courts between points, while some spectators queued in front of large electric fans that blasted water at their faces. However, the tournament’s chief medical officer, Tim Wood, insists that the risk to players’ health in the extreme heat was minimal. Tournament officials have not invoked emergency heat rules which allow them to halt play and close the roofs on the centre and second court, although they have allowed a 10-minute break between the second and third sets for women’s singles and

junior singles matches. The day’s peak temperature of 42.2C was short of Melbourne’s January record of 45.6C, which came during the notorious Black Friday bushfires of 1936. Organisers use the Wet Bulb Global Temperature composite, which also gauges humidity and wind, rather than the temperature alone when assessing extreme heat conditions. Speaking before Dancevic’s collapse, former world number one Roger Federer felt conditions were not dangerous, adding: “It’s just a mental thing.

Even Australian Lleyton Hewitt found the temperatures hard to deal with

Murray beats Soeda in Australian Open first round

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ndy Murray made the ideal start to his Australian Open campaign with a quick win over Japan’s Go Soeda in searing heat. On a day that saw the temperature exceed 40C, the Wimbledon champion spent just 87 minutes securing a place in round two with a 6-1 6-1 6-3 victory. Murray, who was playing only his third competitive match since returning from back surgery, will face

Andy Murray

Triple Coronation Cup winner dies

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hree-time Coronation Cup winner St Nicholas Abbey has died after losing a battle against serious illness. The seven-year-old, who was trained by Aidan O’Brien, won six Group One races but suffered a leg fracture last summer. His owners Coolmore Stud in Ireland helped the horse when he suffered from life-threatening laminitis. An ante-post favourite

for the 2010 Derby at Epsom, he missed the race through injury but went on to win the Coronation Cup at the course a record three times from 2011 to 2013. In a statement, Tipperary-based Coolmore said: “This is extremely unfortunate as St Nicholas Abbey had been in terrific form, the laminitis was resolving very well and the fracture had healed better than expected.

St Nicholas Abbey

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o Farah will face world record holder Wilson Kipsang in a strong field competing at the 2014 London Marathon. British double Olympic and world champion Farah ran half the race in 2013 and will make his full debut in the event on 13 April. The 30-year-old will also face Olympic and world marathon champion Stephen Kiprotich over the 26.2-mile course. Farah became only the seventh man to win both the 5,000m and 10,000m at the same Olympics in the 2012 London Games. Following his appearance in half of the 2013 London Marathon, he also won both titles at the World Championships in Russia last August. Reigning London Marathon champion Tsegaye Kebede and London course record holder Emmanuel Mutai are again competing in this year’s race. Kenenisa Bekele is the only notable absentee, with the Ethiopian set to make his marathon debut in Paris on 6 April instead.

and air-conditioning. Soeda, the world number 112, posed little threat after a solid opening service game and Murray took a grip on the match, moving well and breaking twice to win the first set with a flurry of winners. Murray had made a similarly impressive start in his only other tour match of note this year against Florian Mayer in Doha on New Year’s Day, only to fade dramatically as a lack of match practice caught up with him.

Hazel considering Commonwealth Games comeback

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London Marathon: Farah to compete against Kipsang

Mo Farah

France’s Vincent Millot, the world number 267, in round two. He might have expected to avoid the worst of Tuesday’s heat with his match scheduled not before 5pm local time. The soaring temperature had been widely forecast and there seemed every chance that the tournament’s ‘extreme heat policy’ would be in force by the time the Scot took to Hisense Arena, which has a retractable roof

eptathlete Louise Hazel has confirmed she is considering making a comeback for this year’s Commonwealth Games. Hazel announced her retirement in September, but called Jessica EnnisHill’s announcement of her pregnancy as a “game changer” for her. The 28-year-old Commonwealth champion said “the temptation is there” to defend her title in Glasgow. She added: “My body is still in good shape. It’s definitely something I’m not ruling out.” Olympic champion EnnisHill announced on Friday that

Louise Hazel

she is expecting her first child and will miss the Glasgow Games in late July. Hazel, who won gold representing England in Delhi in 2010, will consider a return over the coming weeks. “Six months ago when I retired, I was focused on starting my business,” she added. “But that is now up and running and my body is still in good shape. “I love competing at the Commonwealth Games. The banter with British teammates that are Scottish, Welsh or Northern Irish was fantastic. You wanted to take them down!”


PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Unfair officiating dampen fans’ interest from league, says NNL

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he Nigeria National League (NNL) has identified unfair officiating as part of the problems hampering fans’ interest in watching the league matches. The Chairman of the league, Chief Emeka Inyama, disclosed this in an interview with newsmen in Abuja. He said that security challenge and the fear of the unknown also stopped club supporters from coming out in large number to watch the league. The league chairman said that unfair officiating on the part of the Nigerian referees and indiscipline portrayed by the players were part of the problems. He said that if the issue of unfair officiating was solved, most of the problems of hooliganism during matches would be resolved. “The truth of the matter is that, if we are able to remove unfair officiating in the league, we would have solved the problem of hooliganism by 90 per cent. “The reason why the league is going down is because of the security challenge, unfair officiating, and indiscipline on the part of the players. “Somebody cannot pay to watch a match and get to the pitch seeing a player beating up a referee and nothing is being done, that will be a kill-joy, `` Inyama said.

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Sports Junior Tennis: Talents abound at grassroots, says coach Stories By Albert Akota

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he Nigeria National Tennis Coach, Ubale Mohammed has said that a lot of talents abound at the grassroots level in the

country. Mohammed disclosed this in an interactive section with newsmen in Abuja. He said that the country had been doing very well in the game of tennis, especially at the grassroots level, adding that Nigeria had a very strong grassroots programme. “The Nigeria Tennis Federation (NTF) has been in partnership with the International Tennis Federation (ITF) on a project known as the School Tennis Initiative. “The partnership, which has since been on now is basically for children in primary schools and has yielded a lot of positive results in terms of the discovery of young talents,” he said. He said that the decision for the country to host the qualifiers was a result of its positive contributions in terms of grassroots tennis. Mohammed urged the government, individuals and corporate bodies to fund the grassroots programme for the purpose of continuity.

Marry Ahmed

He noted that the country would be a force to be reckoned with if the nation’s young talents were properly harnessed. The round robin matches played, Nigeria’s Gabriel Friday defeated Vincent N’tcha in two straight sets 6-0, 6-3. Daniel Joshua lost 3-6, 0-6 to Michael Osewa, all of Nigeria in the male U-12 category.

In the female U-14 category, Mattu Kamara of Sierra Leone lost 0-6, 6-1, 4-6 to Nigeria’s Charity Patrick. Aichata Keita of Mali defeated Joyce Sunday 6-1, 7-5, while Barakat Quadri of Nigeria defeated Djeneba Diarra of Mali 6-1, 6-0. In the male U-14 category, Peter Lawal of Nigeria beat Mali’s Bourama Kouma 6-1, 6-1, while Amadou Balde

of Senegal lost 1-6, 1-6 0-6 to Abdoulaziz Bationo of Cote d’Ivoire. Togo’s Daniel Goudjinou defeated Michael Ayoola of Nigeria 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, while Delmas N’tcha of Benin defeated Nigeria’s Chidera Anozie 6-3, 5-7, 4-6. In the female U-16 category, Faith Sunday of Nigeria beat Marie Ange of Cote d’Ivoire 6-4, 6-1, 6-1 while, Zainab Oladimeji of Nigeria also defeated Habibatou Diallo of Mali 6-2, 6-0. Also, Nigeria’s Elizabeth Pam beat Fortune Aniso also of Nigeria 6-0, 6-0, while, Astan Doumbia of Mali defeated Amandine kouadio 6-4, 7-5, 6-1. In the male U-16 category, Dominique Gandonou of Benin defeated Bassie Kargbo of Sierra Leone 6-4, 6-3, while, Togo’s Antoine Gbadoe beat Godgift Timibra of Nigeria 6-3, 4-1 rtd. Also, Michael Michael of Nigeria defeated John Marah of Sierra leone 6-2, 6-0, while Pape Gaye lost 0-6, 0-6 to Martins Abamu of Nigeria. The winners of the U-14 and U-16 categories would represent their countries at the main continental championship in Kenya in March. The qualifiers which started on Jan. 13 are expected to end on Jan. 20.

NRA wants improve remuneration for Referees

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he Nigeria Referees Association (NRA) has appealed to the League Management Committee (LMC)

to review the remuneration of Referees to ensure fair officiating in the 2013/2014 Glo Premier League season.

Referees

The National President of the association, Ahmed Maude, made the call in Lagos. Maude said that improved incentives would spur the referees to officiate matches without fear or favour, pointing out that officiating was part of the criteria required to certify the credibility of the league. “We cannot over-emphasise the fact that match officials have a primary role in the development of the nation’s league. “A good league is judged by the credibility of its officiating; the LMC, therefore, needs to improve on the remuneration of our officials and we are appealing to the committee to look into this

before the league kicks off in February. “Referees are an integral part of football, but are often overlooked. We are booed a lot by fans when their anticipations are not met. “We are also unfairly accused and molested at some match venues,” he said. “Our remuneration should, therefore, be enough to compensate for all the challenges that referees go through,’’ he added. On their level of preparedness for the season, Maude said that the referees were ready whenever the LMC and club managers fixed a date for the commencement of the season.

the country,” he said. Mohammed also noted that the country had been doing very well so far in the qualifiers. “My players have won all their matches so far.Two of our players however took ill on Sunday night and had to be walked over in their first match in the female U-14 category. “However, it is too early to predict if we will finish tops in the qualifiers, but I know that we are going to do well by God’s grace,” he said.

The qualifiers were initially billed to feature competitions in three categories of Under-12, Under-14 and Under-16 in both the male and female events. The winners of the U-14 and U-16 categories will represent their countries at the main continental championship in Kenya in March. Winners in the U-12 category will participate in the talent identification project in Casablanca, Morocco at a date yet to be communicated.

Junior Tennis: U-12 female category cancelled

T Emeka Inyama

he Nigeria National Tennis Coach, Ubale Mohammed said that the Female Under 12 Category in the qualifiers for the Africa Junior Tennis Championship (AJTC) had been cancelled. He said that the female Under 12 category had to be cancelled due to circumstances beyond the control of the Nigeria Tennis Federation’s (NTF). The coach attributed the cancellation to the fact that it was only Nigeria that presented

players for the category. “That formed the decision by the Local Organising Committee (LOC) to unanimously decide to cancel the category from the qualifiers. “Out of the nine African countries participating in the qualifiers, only Nigeria presented two players for the female U-12 category, so, the LOC in its wisdom thought it wise to scrap it. “The LOC also decided to upgrade one of the two players to take part in the U-14 category for


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2013

Sports

Barkley suffers of broken toe

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verton and England midfielder Ross Barkley has a broken toe and could be out for up to six weeks. Barkley, 20, has excelled for the Toffees this season, but suffered the injury during his side’s 4-0 FA Cup third-round win over QPR on 4 January. He missed last Saturday’s 2-0 victory over Norwich with the problem. Everton say Barkley has a “small fracture” and the length of his absence depends on how

Matri poised for Fiorentina switch

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lessandro Matri will complete a move from AC Milan to Fiorentina today, pending the successful completion of a medical. The 29-year-old “said his goodbyes, hugging one by one the Rossonero staff and all of his teammates” at the Milanello training ground yesterday, according to an announcement on AC Milan’s official website. He is set to undergo a medical in Florence on Wednesday before completing a transfer to the Viola, who have found in the former Cagliari and Juventus forward the man they were looking for to stand in for the injured Giuseppe Rossi and Mario Gomez. Details of the transfer have yet to be confirmed, but Matri appears likely to sign a permanent contract with Fiorentina, who become his fourth club in Serie A. The Italian striker scored a total of 31 goals for Juventus before moving to Milan in the summer. He made only 15 appearances under former AC coach Massimiliano Allegri, who also worked with him at Cagliari, scoring one goal -which came in the 3-2 defeat to Parma.

Matri

quickly the injury heals. The player is now set to miss the Merseyside derby against Liverpool at Anfield on 28 January, and could also be out of Premier League games against Tottenham and Chelsea in February. Everton defender Leighton Baines fractured his toe when the Toffees met Liverpool at Goodison Park in late November, an injury which saw him miss six matches. Barkley’s injury did not

prevent the midfielder, who has earned three England caps this season, from travelling with the squad to a warm-weather training camp in Tenerife ahead of their trip to West Brom on Monday, 20 January. Everton, who recently signed 27-year-old Republic of Ireland international winger Aiden McGeady from Spartak Moscow for an undisclosed fee, are fifth in the Premier League, seven points behind leaders Arsenal.

alatasaray manager Roberto Mancini has denied he is attempting to sign Nemanja Vidic. The former Manchester City manager admitted he is an admirer of the Manchester United captain, who is out of contract at Old Trafford in the summer, but said he will not move for the Serb in the January transfer window. Vidic’s future has been the subject of speculation with United reportedly eager to

extend his deal at Old Trafford for a further year and his agent, Silvano Martina, claiming the defender would not stay. The 32-year-old, who joined United from Spartak Moscow in 2006, will be available on a free transfer at the end of the season and has been linked with Juventus, Roma, Napoli, Monaco and Galatasaray. And Mancini said in the Express: “Every manager would want a player as experienced as Vidic on their team.

Ross Barkley

Mancini denies chasing Vidic G “He is the type of player who can really make a difference; however, I need a player who can play Champions League football. “It doesn’t matter how good he is I need a player ahead for the Champions League urgently and as a result Vidic isn’t in our plans.” United could lose three stalwarts of their back four next summer when Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra’s current contracts also expire.

Nemanja Vidic

Seedorf set to take over as AC Milan manager

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larence Seedorf says he is to become the new AC Milan manager after announcing his retirement from playing. The 37-year-old, who played for the Serie A giants from 2002 until 2012, will replace Massimiliano Allegri, who was sacked as head coach on Monday after a poor start to the season. “I am retiring from football after 22 years,” said Seedorf. “My aim is to dream again.” They have won only five of the first 19 games this season, and are 30 points behind leaders Juventus. Allegri’s sacking came after Milan lost 4-3 to minnows Sassuolo on Sunday. Former Netherlands midfielder Seedorf made more than 400 appearances for Milan, helping them win two Serie A and two Champions League titles. He was also the first player to win the Champions League with three different clubs - Dutch side Ajax in 1995, Spanish giants Real Madrid in 1998 and Milan, in 2003 and 2007. He has also played for Inter Milan and Sampdoria and, after leaving Milan, the Dutchman joined Botafogo in 2012 where he finished his playing career. “This experience at Botafogo has helped me grow a lot and will no doubt help me in my next step as coach of AC Milan,” Seedorf added.

Clarence Seedorf

Bruyne set to leave Chelsea for Wolfsburg

Kevin De Bruyne

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helsea midfielder Kevin de Bruyne is expected to make a £16m move to German club Wolfsburg in the next 48 hours. The Belgium international, which spent last season on loan at Werder Bremen, has started just five matches since joining Chelsea from Genk in 2012.

Kevin de Bruyne’s mother was born in Ealing, west London, making him eligible to play for England. However, he opted for the country of his birth, making his debut for Belgium in August 2010 while still a teenager. The 22-year-old is expected to sign a five-year deal and his

fee could rise to close to £20m with add-ons. De Bruyne’s sale will allow Chelsea to pursue a deal to resign midfielder Nemanja Matic, 25, from Benfica. Blues boss Jose Mourinho walked out of a news conference earlier this season after being irritated by questions about De Bruyne. The Portuguese has identified Matic as a key target in this transfer window and talks are under way between the clubs over a fee that is expected to exceed £20m. The Serbia defensive midfielder, who is in Zurich to attend the Fifa Ballon D’Or ceremony, left Chelsea in 2011 as a makeweight in the deal to sign David Luiz.


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PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

Some Interesting Facts

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he three most valuable brand names on earth: Marlboro, Coca-Cola, and Budweiser, in that order. • To escape the grip of a crocodile’s jaws, prick your fingers into its eyeballs. It will let you go instantly. • The average person falls asleep in seven minutes. • The “pound” (#) key on your keyboard is called an octothorp. • The only domestic animal not mentioned in the Bible is the cat. • Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated. • The average person’s left hand does 56% of the typing. • Dreamt” is the only word in the English language that ends in “mt”. • It’s impossible to sneeze with your eyes open. • In Chinese, the KFC slogan “finger lickin’ good” comes out as “eat your fingers off”. • A cockroach can live for 10 days without a head. • We shed 40 pounds of skin a lifetime. • Yo-Yos were once used as weapons in the Philippines. • Mexico City sinks abut 10 inches a year. • Brains are more active in sleeping than watching TV. • Blue is the favorite color of 80 percent of Americans. • When a person shakes their head from side to side, he is saying “yes” in Sri Lanka. • There are more chickens than people in the world. • The thumbnail grows the slowest, and the middle nail grows the fastest. • There are more telephones than people in Washington, D.C.

• The average four year-old child asks over four hundred questions a day. • The average person presses the snooze button on their alarm clock three Times each morning. • The three wealthiest families in the world have more assets than the Combined wealth of the forty-eight poorest nations. • The first owner of the Marlboro cigarette Company died of lung cancer. • Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair. • The world’s youngest parents were 8 and 9 and lived in China in 1910. • Our eyes remain the same size from birth onward, but our noses and ears Never stop growing. • You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching TV. • A normal person will die

Leisure

from total lack of sleep sooner than from starvation. Death will occur about 10 days without sleep, while starvation takes a Few weeks. • Chewing gum while peeling onions will keep you from crying. • The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows. • When the moon is directly overhead, you weigh slightly less. • Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, never telephoned His wife or mother because they were both deaf. • A psychology student in New York rented out her spare room to a Carpenter in order to nag him constantly and study his reactions. After Weeks of needling, he snapped and beat her repeatedly with an axe Leaving her mentally retarded • Colgate faced a big obstacle marketing toothpaste in Spanish speaking Countries because Colgate translates into the command “go hang Yourself.” • Like fingerprints, everyone’s tongue print is different. “Bookkeeper” is the only word in English language with three consecutive Double letters. • The sentence “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” uses every Letter in the English language. • If the population of China walked past you in single line, the line Would never end because of the rate of reproduction • China has more English speakers than the United States. • Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell. • Each square inch of human skin consists of twenty feet of blood vessels. • An average person uses the bathroom 6 times per day.

Say what?

SUDODKU SUDODKU EASY 19

PHOTO OF THE DAY

Human nature: This photograph of human towers being built at a festival in Catalonia, Spain was taken by David Oliete and was highly commended was competition judges


www.peoplesdailyng.com

PEOPLES DAILY, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2014

. . . putting the people first

QUOTABLE QUOTE I think that this law is made for a people and what the government has done is consistent with the preference of its environment. –Presidential spokesman, Dr. Reuben Abati, on why President Goodluck Jonathan has signed the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Bill passed by the National Assembly

SPORTS Obasanjo is free, free at last? LATEST

Spanish react to Ronaldo’s coronation

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here was plenty of pride and just a hint of smugness in the Madrid media yesterday morning as Cristiano Ronaldo’s 2013 Ballon d’Or victory was celebrated. Marca’s front cover pictured the Portuguese wiping away a tear, with the headline ‘Lloro’ a pun on the words ‘cried’ and ‘golden’. Inside AS Editor Alfredo Relano wrote that Ronaldo had deserved to take the prize ahead of fellow finalists Lionel Messi and Franck Ribery. “Cristiano Ronaldo won the 2013 Ballon d’Or, and it was fully justified,” Relano wrote. “…This has been a bad year for Messi, while Cristiano has maintained his insistence on excellence. Ribery, ‘the best of the rest’ was just third. Which is already a lot? “But even more was Cristiano, who yesterday was sincerely emotional on receiving the prize he had worried so much about, after suffering for so many years.” Marca took the chance to poke fun at Messi and his fashion sense in a blog on their website which hoovered up the best and worst of the twitter reaction to the ceremony. More seriously, El Pais writer Jose Samano picked up on how Ronaldo’s moment of triumph with his three-year-old son accompanying him on the podium and his mother crying proudly in her seat had served to humanise a player who for years was seen as egotistical and unfeeling. “With his son in tow, Cristiano left in Zurich an image to remember, the poster of an emotional hero, a mortal divinity,” Samano wrote. “Bit by bit, Cristiano has left behind the image of a capricious showoff. We now see a superstar footballer who is more and more commendable, a person who is more and more substantial.” The Catalan press was less delighted at the result, with Mundo Deportivo maintaining some objectivity by leading with ‘Cristiano Wins’, while also finding room on its cover for Messi vowing to return stronger in 2014.

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ow that former President Olusegun Obasanjo is free at last, he can do a lot of good for himself, for Nigeria and for mankind. OBJ as he is most popularly known has worked very hard all his life. Like the rest of us he has had his ups and downs. He served his country at its highest levels, as military head of state and as a twice elected civilian president. He was fortunate to be the one who accepted the surrender instruments from the defeated Biafran forces and government. Only a few soldiers can tell of such experience. OBJ is one of them. He also helped form the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which has gone on to win elections, state and national, for two decades. He served as its (PDP) leader as flag bearer and chairman of BOT. There is almost nothing one could be in Nigeria that he has not been. He can truly say “been there, done that” of himself. Internationally, OBJ is well known. He has served as a member of the Commonwealth’s Eminent People. OBJ has been an election observer to several countries and written reports praising or denouncing the elections. OBJ is blessed with a large family of very successful children who have risen to high academic levels and who have high political and commercial accomplishments. OBJ may deny it but he has been twice blessed. Now that he no longer aspires to be president, no longer aspires to be PDP BOT chairman and has “suspended” himself from PDP, he can now do some really nice things. He can now move to that highest level in Abraham Maslow’s pyramid of hierarchy of needs often described as self actualization. At this level, self-actualizing people are self-aware, concerned with personal growth, less concerned with the opinions of others, and interested in fulfilling their potential. It is at this the level that many past US presidents and world leaders do/did their best works: Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, etc. It is at the self actualization level that people realize what is important and what is not all that important. It is at this level that they devote all their energy to doing good for mankind. It is amazing that until just few days ago, OBJ did not realize that there is life outside politics.

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GUEST COLUMNIST Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba

Olusegun Obasanjo

It is a pity that it took a failed attempt to destroy Goodluck Jonathan’s presidency for OBJ to come to realize that he needed to relax and enjoy and count his blessings. Here are some suggestions for the ex-president who is fully loaded with wealth; and Nigerian and international connections. His troops conquered Biafra. He can go back to the defeated people and start rehabilitating them and integrating them into the larger society. Many exsoldiers took this route to win

the peace after a war. Mr. John McCain of US was shot down and imprisoned during the Vietnam War. Mr. John Kerry, now US Secretary of State, fought in that ugly war. Both men are on record for reconciling US with Vietnam and making the bitterness of the war less bitter. OBJ can take a leaf from them. He can build a war memorial for victims on both sides of the conflict or a museum. These would be places where people would learn that war is very bad and something that need not be duplicated. Mr. Clinton was the president during the Rwanda atrocities in the early 1990s. He has led the team to apologize for US’s lukewarm response and has been doing a lot of good in Rwanda and Africa. Mr. Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years by the Apartheid regime in South Africa but after he left office as his country’s first elected president, he worked assiduously to make sure that the bitterness of that era was not South Africa’s heritage. If integrating Nigeria as one indivisible entity is not OBJ strong suite he can look at something like education. Bill Gates is scoring the world with his billions trying for ways to end poverty, to eradicate or lessen the impact of diseases

Now that he no longer aspires to be president, no longer aspires to be PDP BOT chairman and has “suspended” himself from PDP, he can now do some really nice things. He can now move to that highest level in Abraham Maslow’s pyramid of hierarchy of needs often described as self actualization. At this level, self-actualizing people are self-aware, concerned with personal growth, less concerned with the opinions of others, and interested in fulfilling their potential. It is at this the level that many past US presidents and world leaders do/did their best works: Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, etc. It is at the self actualization level that people realize what is important and what is not all that important. It is at this level that they devote all their energy to doing good for mankind.

such as polio and malaria and improve education. I am not sure that OBJ has Bill Gates’ wealth, but he can do what Mr. Gates is doing worldwide in Nigeria, beginning in the South-west where there are millions of kids who need education from primary school to university, books and other supplies, scholarships etc. He could provide counsellors to advise and mentor young people and help them stay in school. He could build craft making schools in each zone to train the kids who are not university materials. Agriculture is an area that Nigeria needs to work hard on. The country has the potential to be able to feed itself. OBJ can devote his immense energy to exploring ways to help farmers and future farmers. He can sponsor academic discussions by agric officers or researchers in Nigerian universities in this area. Fortunately, OBJ has shown interest in this field. It would not be how he could make more money but how others could improve on the quality of crops and processing of produce or even how to distribute and preserve harvests. He could award a number of scholarships in this area. Professor Chinua Achebe had what was known as Achebe Colloquium. He spent a great deal of time to build it up at Brown University. It became an annual gathering where experts in various areas of Africa’s needs met to discuss and challenge each other on the future of Africa. An OBJ Colloquium at some university could accomplish the same thing by bringing together experts to dialogue on Nigerian, West African, African and or Africans-in-Diaspora matters. What can be done is limitless but it takes a person with deep pockets, worldwide connections, and Mike Tyson type of energy to attempt them. OBJ could also join hands with the likes of Clinton, Gates, Bush, and even co-opt Dangote to join hands in solving some of these things. If OBJ does these kinds of things he would be a happier man. If he sits back, plots how to get even with those on “his enemies list”, he will find that he would not be able to deal with them. He would die a bitter man. Let OBJ repay evil with good, assuming that evil was done to him. Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba wrote in from Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

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Peoples Daily Newspaper, Wednesday 15, January, 2014