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Thursday, January 16, 2020/ Jumadal Ula 20, 1441 AH

2102 Days after

Presidency cites risk of aggressive regionalism

>>>page 3

Vol. 33 No. 037 N150



. . . putting the people first

The nation awaits rescue of the remaining abducted Chibok schoolgirls

Emir of Potiskum's convoy attacked, 6 killed -Police

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Atiku to PDP: Accept S/Court judgement on Imo guber

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Uzodinma sworn in as gov, freezes state accounts

President Muhammadu Buhari Laying the Wreath during the Wreath Laying Ceremony to mark the end of 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebrations held at the Eagle Square, yesterday in Abuja.

How I was duped of N68.9m -Ex-Minister pAGE 2

Contract scam: EFCC inspects abandoned projects in Kebbi pAGE 7

SEC, ICPC to combat capital market crimes pAGE 19


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

News 2-10, 14


By Lawrence Olaoye




he Presidency has described the nation’s civil war as a warning against the dangers of aggressive regionalism, ethnic baiting and political corruption. In a statement made available to newsmen yesterday to commemorate the 50 years


Politics 15-17 Health Business


News Editor, Ese Awhotu

Presidency cites risk of aggressive regionalism


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PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020


of the civil war by the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on media and publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, cautioned leaders and parties to stop preaching inflammatory rhetoric capable of triggering another crisis in the country. He wrote: “As the nation

commemorates 50 years of the end of the nation’s tragic civil war today, we remember the victims of the conflict and honour those on both sides that lost their lives. Their tragedy shall be neither forgotten nor repeated. The war serves as a potent warning on the dangers of aggressive regionalism, ethnic

baiting and political corruption. In it, we must forge common memory that can serve as a bridge to a future free from the ravages of sectarianism. “ We remember the past to draw its lessons; on how we move forward together and live in peace. Unfortunately, there are some who fail to recognise them

and instead repeat its mistakes, preaching inflammatory rhetoric meant only to divide. We call on all leaders and parties to moderate their language. “There were no victors in this war. Yet in rejecting division and embracing unity, we ensure those lives lost were not in vain.”




World News


Africa News


World News


Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya holding a soldier’s child, dressed in military attire, during the Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration, yesterday in Gombe.

Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo, Laying the Wreath during the Wreath Laying Ceremony to mark the end of 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebrations held at the Eagle Square, yesterday in Abuja.

How I was duped of N68.9m -Ex-Minister


Bauchi declares 15th January as prayer day for late Sir Tafawa Balewa Page 8

Environment 25 Feature


Sports 30-31 Back Page


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former Minister of Power and Steel, Bashir Dalhatu, on Wednesday told an FCT High Court in Zuba, FCT that he N68.9 million to a fraudster. Testifying as a prosecution witness in a case filed by the EFCC against a businessman, Imeh Akpan, charged with two counts bordering on Criminal Breach of Trust, The former minister said he was introduced to the accused person sometime in 2004 through his friends late Aliyu Alkali and one Haruna Ningi. He alleged that the accused person told him to invest in the Aviation industry by buying shares in the airline he was floating. “He informed me that the business was profitable at that time. He said the business was a win-win. “At the end of the presentation, I accepted to buy shares to the tune of N1. 8 million representing 34 per cent of the company share capital. “He (the accused person) told me that he was in the process of

negotiating with First Atlantic Bank to obtain a loan facility for his company, Commodore Aviation Services,’’ he said. The former minister said the accused told him that the loan facility was to enable the accused person buy aircraft to be used in the country by the Commodore Aviation Services. Mr Dalhatu told the court that the accused met him again and request to assist him with N50 million to facilitate the loan. “I agreed to provide the N50 million security deposit on two conditions; one of the conditions was to open an interest saving account in the name of Commodore Aviation Services and keep the money there. “The second condition I gave him was that the interest that accrued from the account would be his own and it should be reverted back to him at the end of six months,” he said. Mr Dalhatu explained that the six months period was the time within which he and the bank

agreed to disburse the funds to the company. The former minister said it was also agreed that neither him nor the accused person would remove any amount from the security deposit account, adding that on this understanding, an account was agreed to be open with two signatories. Mr Dalhatu said on May 28, 2004 a cheque of N58 million representing the shares and security deposit was delivered to Commodore Aviation Services and acknowledged by Haruna Ningi on behalf of the company. He said the accused person also approached him to provide further funding of N10. 7 million to kickoff the operation of a National Airline in Niger Republic which he also obliged him. ‘’After a while it occurred to me that the business was not as good as he said. ‘’The accused person frustrated my request for an audit exercise in spite of my persistence. ‘’I therefore asked the accused

person for the return of my money and whatever interest that might have accrued on the money that also become impossible. ‘’I later discovered that the cheques for the security deposit were credited to an existing account of Commodore Aviation Services and identical to the suggested name given to me where he was a sole signatory,’’ he said. He said in January 2013, he went to EFCC with a petition enumerating the frictions between him and the accused person, and urged the commission to investigate and prosecute him if they found adequate grounds to do so. After his testimony, the Defence Counsel, Steve Imoke, prayed for an adjournment to cross-examine the minister. The EFCC Counsel, Fatima Ado-Gwaram, did not object to application. Justice A.O. Ebong, granted the prayers of the defence counsel and adjourned the matter until March 2 for cross-examination.(NAN)

Tambuwal appoints media aide, 3 others as Perm Sec From Raji Bello, Sokoto


overnor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State has approved the appointment of Mal. Abdullahi Sarkin Danko, as Permanent Secretary in the state civil service. This was contained in a statement made available to Journalists in Sokoto on Wednesday by the Governor’s Special Adviser on Media and publicity, Muhammad Bello. Until his appointment, Danko was a Senior Special Assistant to Governor Tambuwal on Media and Public Affairs.

Also appointed in the same capacity are Hajiya Amina Muhammad Jekada, the incumbent Director-General of the state’s Parks and Gardens, Alhaji Bandado Shehu Bandi, head of department of Fine Arts at the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto; and Hussaini S. Gobir, a director under the State Universal Basic Education Board. According to a circular released by the state government, the four administrators were recommended for the appointments as a result of the existence of vacancies “created within the state establishments

which needed to be filled for effective service delivery.” “In this regard, experienced and hardworking officers were identified and found worthy for the appointment as Permanent Secretaries,” the circular, signed by the state’s Head of Civil Service, Dr Buhari Bello Kware, stated. Danko, a 1995 graduate of Education History from Usman Danfodio University, Sokoto rose through the ranks from being a reporter to director. Jekada, who bagged a Bachelor of Arts in Geography from Ahmadu Bello University,

Zaria was employed in the state service as a Town Planner in 1992. Bandi, who began his civil service career in 1988 as Assistant Education Officer has Bachelor of Arts and Master’s degrees in Fine Arts from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. Gobir, a Bachelor of Education graduate, joined Sokoto Local Government Education Authority in 1990 and held positions there as Schools Supervisor and Head of Department of Planning. All the appointments take immediate effect, the statement further said.

Armed Forces Remembrance Day: Atiku extols sacrifices of military personnel By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja


ormer Vice President of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar has paid tribute to members of Nigeria’s armed forces for what he called their invaluable, incalculable and immeasurable sacrifices in the defence of the country’s territorial integrity. In his goodwill message to mark the Armed Forces Remembrance Day on January 15, Atiku reminded of the contributions of these patriotic and amazing military personnel who have put their own lives on the line for the sake of others. According to him, “While we sleep in our homes, these amazing patriots are in the field fighting to protect us, leaving the comfort of their own families for our sake. “People who expose themselves to these daily risks to their own lives in order to protect others deserve our highest esteem, and I am sure no reward is enough for their patriotic services”, he said. He addted, “The scourges of terrorism and armed banditry have put a greater burden of responsibility on the shoulders of these men and women in military uniform.

“Despite these additional challenges of internal security, members of our armed forces are still carrying out their duties with vigour, zeal and commitment. “The members of our armed

forces should remain united at all times because millions of Nigerians perceive them as role models of unity and national integrity. “The Boko Haram terrorists

have tried to divide members of our armed forces, but they have stood united against these cold hearted killers. “Nigerians should continue to pray for these great patriots

who have sacrificed their own comforts for our sake because we cannot adequately pay them back for their professional and patriotic services to the country” he admonished.

Maina’s sister disowns bank account linked to her By Vivian Okejeme, Abuja


he fourth prosecution witness, Mrs Nafisat Aliyu, younger sister to Abdulrasheed Maina, exchairman, defunct Pension Reform Task Team, has disowned a bank account linked to her name. The ex-Pension boss and his son, Faisal Maina alongside his firm, Common Input Property and Investment Ltd, are facing a 12-count charge bordering on money laundering. They pleaded not guilty to all the charges brought against then by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC). Led in evidence in chief by the prosecution counsel, Mohammed Abubakar, the PW4, Nafisat, told the court that she was unaware of how the account with number 4510002792 was opened.

In her testimony, the witness informed the court that one Toyin Meseke, a staff of the new generation bank, was a tenant in their family house in Karu, Abuja, and also a friend to her younger brother, Khalid. “They used to come to my house to eat then,” she said. She said Toyin came to her house some years back and asked for her utility bill, and that about three to four years after, she started receiving alerts. She said she confronted him and asked him why she was getting alerts from the bank. “I threatened to go to his office to create scene if he does not do something. “And he apologised saying he would do something about it. “It did not occur to me that without my number, Toyin could still make any transaction. “It was later on that my sister, Fatima was arrested by

the EFCC in Kaduna. “With this development, I drove myself to the EFCC office, because I was told that the EFCC would definitely come for me. “So, I sat back and narrated the same story to them when they asked me If I knew anything about the account,” she said. Further in her testimony, Nafisa said her address, phone number and signature were false in the account opening form, said that only her international passport and photograph were genuine, adding that her occupation in the account opening form was import and export while she is a civil servant. Giving the graphic details of the bank transaction, counsel to the anti-graph agency submitted that on January 21, 2011, there was a transaction of N12. 4 million in the account. He said that there was

another credit alert of N9. 943 million on Sept. 21, 2011, said on Feb. 1, 2012, there was a transfer of about N2. 31 million from the account to Abdulrasheed Maina. However, Nafisat denied knowledge of the transactions. “My name is there in the account, but I don’t know anything about it. I did not deposit such amount there, and I did not know anything about the transactions,” she said. The witness, who told the court that she did not mean to tarnish Maina’s image, said Maina is one of her favourite brothers, as they are from the same father and mother. “I am not here in any way to tarnish my brother’s image. I just found myself in a situation that nobody ever wishes to be,” she told the court. In the meantime, the trial continues today Jan.16, for cross examination.


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020


Nigeria, Turkey seek stronger ties on infrastructural devt By Mashe Umaru Gwamna


he Minister of State for Works and Housing, Engr. Abubakar Aliyu has stressed the need for more collaboration between Nigeria and Turkey for infrastructural development. Engr. Aliyu said this when he received on behalf of the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, the Turkish Minister of Trade, Rushar Peckan who paid a courtesy call on the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing recently. He said, “In order to achieve success in our development since Nigeria and Turkey have common development goals, there is need to share knowledge in technological investment and collaborate in engineering design and construction for the purpose of providing infrastructure for development”. A statement signed by Stephen Kilebi DD(Press and Public Relations)said the minister expressed the willingness of the Ministry of Works and Housing to collaborate with investors in the road infrastructure sector. He added that his Ministry was ready to partner with Turkey in the areas,of development of

Asaba airport gets direct flight to Kano From Nosa Akenzua, Asaba


he Asaba International Airport has recorded another milestone as Aero Contractors commences direct flights from Asaba to Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano with effect from Jan. 20. A statement by the Delta State Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Aniagwu indicates that the Asaba to Kano flight is slated for 9.50am Mondays to Fridays and Sundays. He noted that the growing business activities in the airport was as a result of the huge investments made by the Okowa administration to upgrade the airport. "As part of the upgrade of the airport, the administration has concluded the air filed lightings and is about to concluding the final processes that will lead to the calibration of the Instrument Landing System (ILS). "It would be recalled that the last quarter of 2019, AZMAN Air commenced operations at the Airport and since then sustained daily return flights from Asaba to Abuja and also Asaba to Lagos. "I therefore urge air travellers and Deltans to take full advantage of the innovations and opportunities from the airport to enjoy world class air transport services to their various destinations." Aniagwu stated.

various Greenfield and Brownfield projects across the nation, mass development of affordable housing in selected city centres across Nigeria, capacity development and mentoring for Public-Private partnership officials . Earlier, the Minister of Trade

for the Republic of Turkey, Rushar Pekan disclosed that the purpose of the visit was to seek increased collaboration with the Ministry of Works and Housing with the view to increase Turkey’s trade volume in Nigeria in road construction and engineering.

Pekan who described Nigeria as one of the most important countries and the biggest economy in Africa noted that Nigeria had great potential in road construction and engineering adding that her country was blessed with experts in that field.

She therefore urged the ministry to consider Turkish investors in those areas. She was accompanied on the visit by the Turkish Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency Melih Ulueren and some Turkish investors.

Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya holding a soldier’s child, dressed in military attire, during the Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration, yesterday in Gombe.

kebbi Varsity of Science and technology (ASUU) calls off one month strike

From Ahmed Idris Birnin Kebbi


he Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) Kebbi State University of Science and Technology Aliero (KSUSTA) Branch had conditionally suspended its strike action embarked on 17th December 2019. In a press release issued and signed by the Chairperson Dr. Ibrahim Garba Wawata stated that the strike action became necessary due to the breach in the implementation of the signed Memorandum of Action (MoA) between the Union, University Management and the Kebbi State Government on the 1st April, 2018. Consequently upon the resumption of the strike action, the Union met with the Kebbi State Government negotiation team led by the Head of Civil Service of Kebbi State; Tanko Musa Magaji mni on the 20th December 2019, and the University Governing Council led by Gen. (rtd) Senator Muhammadu Magoro on the 2nd January 2020. The meeting

resulted to reaching to another MoA between the Union and Kebbi State Government on 20th December, 2019. He added that some issues addressed in the MoA are the meeting with the Council Chairman and Visitor where the funding of the maiden Convocation ceremony was agreed and the date was fixed tentatively for March 2020, and also the release of the nominal roll by the University Management to the NUPEMCO for the Academic staff pension contributions. The upfront payment of the sum of One hundred million Naira (N 100,000,000.00) for Earned Academic Allowance (EAA) out of Four hundred and twenty nine million, four hundred and eleven thousand two hundred and seven Naira Eight kobo (N 429,411,207.08) approved by the Visitor the Executive Governor of Kebbi State, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu to the staff of Kebbi State University of Science and Technology Aliero. The remaining balance of Three hundred and twenty-nine

million four hundred and eleven thousand two hundred and seven naira eight kobo (N329, 411, 207.08) is to be settled within 14 Months, with effect from February 2020. The Ministry of Higher Education in its effort to ensure the payments of 12 months out of the outstanding 46 months of annual increment has put a memo to the Visitors, while the remaining 34 months and the outstanding promotion arrears were to be settled within 12 months of the year 2020. However, the Union called for the conditional suspension of the strike action, expressing hope that the State Government and the University Governing Council will look into addressing the following issues such as, “ the substantial review of the sum of five million naira (N5, 000, 000) monthly overhead cost given to the University which could hardly settle electricity and internet bills. “To work assiduously in addressing the issues of implementation of promotions, annual increments and payment of arrears, also there is the need

for infrastructural development such as; students’ hostels, staff housing, road network and staff offices, and the installation of cutting edge equipment in the laboratories, Staff training and development. “The domestication of the University miscellaneous act into the law of the University with implementation of the 70-year retirement age and payment of full salary to retired professors. To upgrade the University clinic to carter for the growing population of the University.” In line with the above development, the Union acknowledged the effort made by the Kebbi State Government, Ministry for Higher Education, Kebbi State Negotiation team and the University Governing Council for their commitment to the implementation of the reached MoA. “Finally, it is hoped that the University management and Kebbi State Government will play the role expected of them in order to honour the reached MoA, with a view to uplifting the University education in the state and country at large.”

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PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja


ormer Vice President and Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the last election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has advised his party and its leadership to accept Monday’s decision of the Supreme Court which nullified the election of Hon Emeka Ihedioha as Governor and pronounced Senator Hope Uzodinma as validly elected Governor of the state. This is just as Senator Hope Uzodinma has been sworn in as the governor of Imo State. The governor-elect and his deputy, Professor Placid Njoku, were sworn in by the Chief Justice of the state, Justice Pascal Nnadi. The swearing-in ceremony was held at the Imo State Government House, hours after Senator Uzodinma received his certificate of return from INEC in Abuja and one day after the Supreme Court nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha and declared him the elected governor of the state. Atiku specifically counselled the PDP to accept the judgment, however unexpected and unpalatable it may be. The former Vice President, in a statement signed by him, pointed out that the Rule of law must guide the nation’s paths even if logic sheds light on a different path. While pledging that he stands fully with the Peoples Democratic Party, the presidential candidate stressed that in good and bad times, the PDP must continue to be the object of hope that the Nigerian people have for their escape from the prevailing despotism and despair that has gripped almost every aspect of our national life. The statement reads in full: “With regards to the judgment of the Supreme Court, which nullified the election of the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Emeka Ihedioha, as Governor of the state of Imo, I can only say that since the Supreme Court is final, we must accept its judgment, however unexpected and unpalatable it may be. “The Rule of law must guide our paths even if logic sheds light on a different path. “Let me state unequivocally that I solidarize with Emeka Ihedioha, a man I know to be a


Atiku to PDP: Accept S/Court judgement on Imo guber Uzodinma sworn in as gov, freezes state accounts

great leader of men and resources. “In the fullness of time, I am convinced that he will overcome this setback and emerge stronger. “I also stand fully with the Peoples Democratic Party. In good and bad times, we must continue to be the object of hope that the Nigerian people have for their escape from the prevailing despotism and despair that has gripped almost every aspect of our national life. “We provided genuine democracy for this nation once before, and I believe it is our destiny to democratically restore what has been lost due to the encroachment of anti-democratic agents. “Philosophers have said that tough times never last, but that tough people do. I urge the people of Imo and the entirety of the

Nigerian people not to give in to despair. “This nation has gone through despotic times before, and we have survived them and thrived. I am very confident that this history will repeat itself. “My greatest desire, and one I hope to see again in my lifetime, is that Nigeria will fulfil its potential as the land of Unity and Faith, Peace and Progress. “These four ideals have been missing from our borders for a while, and all freedom-loving Nigerians ought to henceforth work together to bring them back. So help us God”, it said. The National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, former Governor of the State, Senator Rochas Okorocha and governorship candidate of

APGA in the 2019 governorship election, Ifeanyi Araurume were among those in attendance at the Uzodinma’s swearing-in ceremony. Others in attendance were the APC National Vice Chairman, Emma Eneukwu, APC National Organising Secretary, Emma Ibediro, the Speaker of the Imo House of Assembly Chiji, as well as Ahmed Gulak and Andy Uba, were also in attendance. The governor-elect, Senator Uzodinma had told newsmen in Abuja that he owes his gubernatorial victory at the Supreme Court to a functional judiciary. Uzodinma who spoke after he received the Certificate of Return from the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) as the governor-elect of Imo State, described the Supreme Court’s

judgment as justice for the Imo People. “We owe this victory to the almighty God, we owe it to the functional judiciary, the Supreme Court used the eagle eyes of the law and gave us justice, and there is so much excitement down there in Imo state,” Uzodinma said. Senator Uzodinma told newsmen that the verdict was the wish of the Imo people who came out and voted for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and himself. He also noted that there is happiness in Imo State, adding that this is a sign that the peoples’expectations and the mandate which they have given him, was protected. Uzodinma gave assurance to deliver for the Imo people

Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau (2nd R), releasing pigeons, during the Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration, yesterday in Jos. Photo: NAN

Emir of Potiskum’s convoy attacked, 6 killed -Police

From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna


aduna state police Command has confirmed that four people were killed when gunmen opened fire on the convoy of the Emir of Potiskum, Alh Umar Bubaram, along Kaduna Zaria road. The Police Public Relations Officer PPRO DSP Yakubu Abubakar Sabo disclosed this in a statement made available to the media in Kaduna yesterday. The statement stated that the Command received information through DPO Maraban Jos that,

at about 2245hrs, he got a distress call from a good Samaritan that, some unknown Armed Men in large Number dressed in military camouflage intercepted some commuters at the outskirt of Kaduna Metro along KadunaZaria Expressway The statement added that on sighting the escort vehicle of the Emir of Potiskum, Alh Umar Bubaram, the hoodlums started shooting indiscriminately at the commuters and took some yet to be identified persons to unknown destination. “Upon receipt of the

information, the Command immediately mobilized teams of operatives with Armoured Personnel Carriers to the scene where some victims of the attack were rescued to safety but sadly six (6) persons including four aides of the Emir were reported killed while Five (5) others sustained varying degrees of injuries. Both the dead and injured victims were conveyed to Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital for deposition and treatment. “Consequently, the Commissioner of Police, CP Umar M. Muri has directed that more

Police operatives be deployed along the axis to reinforce the existing operational units of SARS Anti-Kidnapping and PMF personnel currently on the operation. “He equally alerted intelligence gathering units in the area to redouble their effort to ensure that the victims are rescued unhurt and the culprits are brought to book to face justice. “The CP also visited both the scene of the incident and the injured persons including the Emir at Barau Dikko Hospital with a view to fortifying security

deployment along the axis and to assure the victims of the Police current efforts on the incident. “The Command assures Members of the Public that, it will ensure the safe rescue of the victims of this ugly incident and calls on the good citizens of the State to continue to support the Command with relevant information that could help the Police to fish out criminals from our midst “Update on the current Police investigation of the incident will follow accordingly please,” the statement reads.

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020


News Group warns against negative comments on Tor Tiv From Uche Nnorom, Makurdi


dzough U Tiv, an umbrella body of the Tiv nation has unequivocally condemned utterances credited to the Minister for Special Duties and Inter Governmental Affairs, Sen. George Akume against the Tor Tiv Orchivirigh, Prof. James Ayatse. The body in a letter entitled Affront on Tor Tiv, Orchivirigh Prof. James Ayatse, Begha U Tiv signed by its President Engr. Edward Ujege and Secretary General Boniface Ukende noted that such utterances and comments are sacrilegious and injurious to the respect of Tor Tiv stool, the Tiv Traditional Council and the entire Tiv nation. "We specifically wish to state that our paramount ruler’s reputation and distinguished record are beyond any attempt at character assassination. "Mdzough U Tiv reechos the stand of the Tiv Traditional Council that you should urgently appear before the Council to clear your name and resolve the issues for the overall benefit of the Tiv nation. "On a general note, Mdzough U Tiv is calling on you to deescalate the tension in order to keep the peace. We further appeal to you that no matter your elevated position of authority and resources you should use those blessings to advance the cause of Tiv unity, progress and tradition, without preconditions", Mdzough U Tiv appealed.

LGCs exist only to pay salary in S/South, says Enang By Musa Adamu


ocal Governments Councils (LGCs) in the south - south region of the country have been described as only salary payment points. The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Ita Enang, who made the observation called on the federal government to save that tier of government in the region. Speaking on the Federal Radio Corporation Network Service programme: Issues of the Moment, recently in Abuja, Enang said LGCs in the region only come alive during monetary allocation by the Federal Account Allocation Committee, (FAAC). A statement by Edet

Ekpenyong Etuk, Chief Press Secretary to the SSA to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, noted that Enang explained that the intervention of the federal government was necessary to enable them provide essential services to the people at the grassroots. Speaking on the theme: “2020 and the politics of development in Nigeria” Enang regretted that LGCs in the region exist only to pay salaries a. He said: “Most of the Local Government have been taken over by weeds while most of the Primary Health Care Centers do not functions nurses staying at home and collect salaries for doing nothing because government and governance at that level has collapsed.

“When we talk about politics and development, it has to progress from the grassroot, every tiers of government are involved because when the Federal Government is sharing money, they share to the federal, state and local government level. “The Local government has been kidnapped, arrested, imprisoned and bastardised by the governors, supported by the House of Assembly. The Supreme Court has done his best to redeem the LGC in view of its past judgments. Unfortunately, the fact is that governor still behaves as if they are law unto themselves.” He said that Local Government administration was doing better in the northern part of the country and in the western part

of the country where they do not have oil money, adding that government and governance was worst in the in the Niger Delta areas where there is oil money. He noted that governors had not been responsive to development considering the amount of money that goes to each state of the federation especially states in the SouthSouth region. He, however commended South East and North especially Ebonyi and Kebbi states. He called on Accountant– General of the Federation and Attorney-General of the Federation to monitor the spending of allocation of funds to the states so as to rescue the Local Government Areas. President, Muhammadu Buhari (middle), Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo, Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, President of the senate represented by Senate Leader Senator Abdullahi Yahaya and Speaker Rt Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, FCT Minister, Mohammed Musa Bello, with others, during the Wreath Laying Ceremony to mark the end of 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebrations held at the Eagle Square, yesterday in Abuja.

Armed Forces Remembrance Day: Gombe Governor honours fallen heroes By Ese Awhotu


ombe State Governor, Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya on Tuesday led other dignitaries in laying of wreath in commemoration of the 2019/2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration in Gombe. The event, which marked the climax of the 2019/2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day and Emblem Appeal Fund, was

attended by Government officials, heads of security agencies, traditional rulers and members of the state branch of the Nigeria Legion as well as family members of the fallen heroes. According to a statement by Ismaila Uba Misilli Senior Special Assistant ( Media and Publicity) to the governor, special prayers were offered by both Christian and Muslim military clerics for the repose of the souls of the fallen

heroes and for the peace of Gombe state and the nation in general. Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya paid glowing tribute to the fallen heroes who paid the supreme price in the effort to keep the Nigeria at peace and one indivisible country. Speaking to journalists shortly after the event, Governor Yahaya praised the gallantry of the Nigerian armed forces in the fight against insurgency in the

north east and other criminal activities as well as in protecting the territorial integrity of the country. He said his administration will continue to assist security agencies in maintaining law and order in the state, calling on the citizenry to continue to show solidarity and support to the living and fallen heroes as well as their families. Deputy Governor, Dr. Manassah Daniel Jatau,

Speaker of Gombe state House of Assembly, represented by his Deputy, Hon. Siddi Buba, Acting Chief Judge, Justice Muazu Pindiga, Commander, 301 Artillery Regiment, Commissioner of Police and Representative of the traditional institution and Mai Tangle, Dr. Abdu Buba Maisheru ll also laid the wreaths at the symbiotic tomb of the unknown soldier. The Governor later released white pigeons to signify peace.

Marmot crowd as Adamawa holds Armed Forces Remembrance Day From Umar Dankano, Yola.


he famous Mahmud Ribadu Square Yola in Adamawa state capital was almost filled to capacity by people yesterday to witness the 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day ceremony. Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri,service commanders,chief judge and grand Khadi and a representative of the Lamido Adamawa, Dr Aliyu Mustapha laid the wreaths as a mark of respect to our fallen heroes who paid the

supreme price for the peace and harmony of the country. Some people who attended the event in anticipation to witnessing the military parade were disappointed as the exercise never took long enough as expected by spectators, it was however, very impressive as people expressed their satisfaction. In an interview with the Brigade Commander 23 Armoured Brigade Yola, Brigadier General Sani Gambo Mohammed declared that the Army is doing its best in the

face of the insurgency. While applauding the effort of the federal government in ensuring that the Boko Haram sects are degraded, General Mohammed called for support, co operation and information from the generality of the people to enable the military perform optimally. Nigeria Legion Chairman, Adamawa State chapter,Bashir Babayola appealed to the military authority to ensure prompt payments of their pension and other entitlements to enable

them meet up with their financial obligations. Babayola equally called on the State government to honour their pledges as most of the pledges made are not redeemable. Babayola decried that from 2017 to 2019,unredeemed pledges profile from the state government alone is over N20Million stressing that this year his union realised N900.000. He stated that the state government under Governor Fintiri has not pledged anything yet saying

that hope is not lost Another retired soldier, Abubakar Ismaila told our correspondent that "the authority is not caring for the retired soldiers, lamenting that in most cases some of our children are out of schools for lack of money ". According to Abubakar Ismaila, "I wouldn't know if the present retirees are being taken care of but for those of us who actually fought the civil war, I can't explain the situation even as some have died without receiving their gratuity. "


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Armed robbers machete 3 NURTW drivers, 5 others in Delta From Nosa Akenzua, Asaba


ampaging armed bandits on Tuesday allegedly attacked three National Union of Road Transport Workers ( NURTW) drivers, conductor and four others with machetes along the dreadful Bomadi- Ohoror road in Delta State before disappearing into unknown destination. It was gathered that the hoodlums ambushed the drivers and others on the road. They were said to have at gunpoint including display of their machetes rounded up the drivers and others in the vehicles and robbed them after they allegedly machete the drivers. But one of victims, Ebi Esther who spoke to journalists in the area said that the incident occurred around a deplorable spot on the road near Odorubu Community in Patani Local Government Area, adding” we ran into the robbers at the bad spots near Odorubu Community, the robbers came out of the bush all dressed like black Ninjas and stopped our motor with gunshots ,they took all our money, phones and other valuables, they are small, small boys and one of them stabbed my hand and took away my money, they hurriedly ran into the bush and abandoned their vehicle without plate number.” But the Bomadi Chairman of the NURTW, Stanley Ogbakiri who confirmed the incident to journalists, however appealed to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to as matter of urgency carry out repair work on the highway deplorable spots, adding that” my passionate appeal to the Governor is that many people have been maimed and killed on this road and the state government should please come to our aid and repair the road to curtail criminal activities.” Another victim, Happy Funtoru said that” three vehicles ran into the robbers on the spot and we were attacked with machetes and some of us were heavily injured but God on our side and we are calling on the state government and the Police to come to our aid and help us.” Speaking with journalists in Asaba, the state Commissioner of Police, Hafiz Mohammed Inuwah who confirmed the incident said that the police have been mobilized to the area to collaborate with the JTF taskforce on the road, adding that the Police were determined to protect the lives and property of the people and assured that the police will bring the hoodlums to arrest.

CRIME News Fraud allegation: EFCC inspects abandoned project in kebbi From Ahmed Idris Birnin Kebbi


he Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), has launched an investigation into abandoned projects in Kebbi State with a view of bringing contractors handling the projects to book. Addressing newsmen yesterday in Birnin Kebbi, the North West Head of EFCC, Abdullahi Lawan, said that he was in the state with his team to

inspect abandoned projects in order to launch investigation on the reason for their abandonment by contractors. According to him, the inspection tour was planned to be carried out in the three states of Sokoto, Zamfara and Kebbi, which the zonal office over sees, saying the wisdom for the investigation was to check corruption which largely perpetrated through construction projects. He added that his commission

had so far inspected projects in Vocational Training Center in Anbursa, proposed state secretariat, Streetlight project in the state capital and Kebbi state Agricultural and Rural Development Agency. “Last year, we made mentioned that we are going to embark on monitoring and evaluation projects in the three state under the Zonal Office. It is observed that most fraud perpetrated are

through contractors who, were awarded contract and at the end abandoned the project. We are here to see the projects that were abandoned. “ We were also in Zamfara State, we inspected three projects. In Kebbi State, we want to inspect about five projects. After the inspection, we will commence investigation. The projects we are inspecting are projects concerning construction.”

Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State laying the wreath at the 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration, yesterday in Sokoto.

Court remands 37-year-old father for allegedly raping own daughter


n Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday remanded a 37-year-old man, Sunday Stephen, in Kirikiri Correctional Service for allegedly raping his 16-year-old daughter. The Chief Magistrate, Mr P.E. Nwaka, who did not take the plea

of Stephen ordered that the case file be sent to the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) for advice. Nwaka adjourned the case until Feb. 13, for mention, Stephen, who resides at No.14, Adeniyi St., Alakuko, a suburb of Lagos, is facing a count charge of

rape. Earlier, the Prosecutor, Insp. Christopher John, told the court that the defendant committed the offence on Dec. 24, 2019 at his residence. John alleged that Stephen forcefully raped his daughter

without her consent. “The case was reported to the police and the defendant was arrested,” the prosecutor said. John said the offence contravened Section 260 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015. (NAN)

Navy seizes 1,439 bags of smuggled rice in Akwa-Ibom


he Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base, (FOB) Ibaka in Mbo, Akwa Ibom, has arrested six suspected smugglers, seized 1, 439 bags of smuggled rice between December 23, 2019, to January in the state. Peter Yilme, the Commanding Officer of FOB, stated this while handing over the suspects and items to the Nigeria Customs Service on Tuesday in Mbo Local Government Area of the state. Mr Yime, a captain, said the command would remain steadfast in fighting illegalities on the waterways in line with the directive of the Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok Ibas.

He, however, said that some of the suspects escaped on sighting the Navy gunboats. He said the arrests were made along the Unyenge, Effiat, and Mendoro creeks between December 2019 and January by Navy officers and men on routine patrol in their gunboats. “I handover 1, 439 bags of rice and six suspects to the Superintendent of Customs, Garuba Hassan in line with the directives of the Chief of Naval Staff. “We are committed to rid the waterways of all forms of illegalities. “I commend the untiring

efforts of the officers and ratings in ensuring the mandate and tasks of the Base are achieved. “I also appreciate the immense effort of the Chief of Naval Staff, for providing the necessary platform and logistics support for the Base to carry out its operations,” he said. One of the suspects, Wede John, from Bayelsa, said that he usually transports fish and was carrying rice for the first time when he was arrested. He said, “I don’t know the owner of the rice and didn’t know that rice was loaded into the boat. This is my first time of carrying rice.

“I usually transport crayfish and dry fish to Oron Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom. I was carrying rice from Bakassi to Unyenge when I was arrested,” he said. Another suspect, Awagoyi Philp, a boat driver said the owner of the rice promised to pay him N20,000 for carrying the rice but that he was yet to collect the money. He said, “I drive boats and I was paid to drive the boat that carried the rice. This is my first time. The owner of the rice promised to pay me N 20, 000 and is aware that I have been arrested”.(NAN)

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020



Ile-Arugbo demolition: Judge urges parties to explore out of court settlement


High Court sitting in Ilorin, Kwara State on Wednesday advised all parties in Ile-Arugbo demolition to explore all avenues of out-ofcourt settlement in the interest of peace and justice. Justice Abiodun Adebara gave the advice while addressing counsel and parties in the case. News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ile-Arugbo building, demolished on January 2, belonged to ASA Investment Limited believed to be owned by the Second Republic Senate Leader, Olusola Saraki. Mr Adebara ordered that a notice of summons be pasted on the Police Headquarters board and state Commissioner of Police office for him to appear in court on the next hearing. He however adjourned the case until January 24, for hearing of pending applications and interim injunction. Earlier, Counsel to the claimant, Abdulazeez Ibrahim, SAN, made an attempt for the court to give an interim order for another injunction. Mr Ibrahim argued that interim injunctions can be extended within seven days of making the order. “We are ready for settlement as advised and would make some approach. “We are a peace loving people so, we will explore all possible opportunities for settlement.” he said. Also, counsel to the state government, Salman Jawando, SAN, said: “we are ready if the parties involved show interest. Settlement will be in the interest of Kwara.”(NAN)




pinal cord injury patients have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to approve the establishment of rehabilitation center for them in Northern Nigeria to ease their suffering. The patients have also revealed that about seventy percent of them are from poor families that cannot afford medical expenses of the ailment. Speaking at the inauguration meeting of Northern branch of the Spinal Cord Society, held at Mallam Aminu Kano Teaching

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Bauchi declares 15th January as prayer day for late Sir Tafawa Balewa From Ahmad Mohammed, Bauchi


auchi State Government has declared 15th January of every year, as lecture and prayer in honor of the late Nigeria's Prime Minister, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa. The state governor, Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed announced this yesterday at the maiden edition of the Annual Memorial Lecture and Prayer in honor of the late Prime Minister held at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Tomb, Bauchi. The governor said the lecture and prayer is to orient citizens of the state on the lifestyle of the late Prime Minister in order to encourage younger generation to emulate him. He said , the state government will promote culture through organizing such event

considering the contributions of Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa to the independency of the country. Represented by the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Modibbo Ahmed, the governor recalled that the late Prime Minister had worked positively during the first republic with other regions and tribes of the country. " Late Nigeria's Prime Minister, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa is a property of not only State, country and International in general. We must emulate his legacies for the country to progress." To this end, the governor said through the State Ministry of Education will come up with reading book to train students on the legacies and lifestyle of the late Prime minister for the future of the country.

Governor Bala reaffirmed the determination of his administration towards the advancement of culture and tourism for the economic development of the state. He said to improve revenue drive of the state, the state government will work in synergy with experts by considering their inputs in its activities. A member of the family of the late Prime Minister, Malam Bilyaminu Tafawa Balewa described as a welcome development, the declaration of 15th January every year as a day for lecture and prayer for the late Prime Minister. Bilyaminu appealed to the state government to consider resuscitating the tomb to attract more visitors and to support the family to come up with a foundation.

L-R: Chairman, Nigeria Legion, Lagos State Chapter, retired Col. Samuel Akande; Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Kazeem Alogba; Acting Commander, Logistics Command, Nigerian Air Force, AVM Cosmos Ozougwu; Flag Officer Commander, Western Naval Command, Real Admiral Oladele Daji; Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State; General Officer Commanding, 81 Division, Nigerian Army, Maj.-Gen. Johnson Irefin; and Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Hakeem Odumosun, during the 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration, yesterday in Lagos. Photo: NAN By Ese Awhotu

G L-R: Commissioner for Environment, Mr Tunji Bello; Wife of Lagos State Deputy Governor, Mrs Oluremi Hamzat; Wife of Lagos State Governor and Chairman, Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO), Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu; Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs, Mrs Yetunde Arobieke; Iyaloja-General of Lagos, Chief Folasade Tinubu-Ojo; and Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, Mr Hakeem Odumosun, at a seminar on Market Sanitation and Security for Market Leaders, in Lagos State, organised by COWLSO and Ministry of Local Government and Community Affairs. Photo: NAN

Niger: Tafa LG Chairman promises to repair roads By Usman Shuaibu


he Executive Chairman of Tafa Local Government Area of Niger State, Hon. Ibrahim Mami Ijah, has promised to repair the dilapidated roads in the area through the assistance of the Executive Governor of the state, Hon. Abubakar Sani Bello Lolo. He also said his administration would focus on the development of Tafa community in the interest of

the people residing there. Ijah made the promise in an interview with newsmen in his office in Tafa on Wednesday, saying that he would operate an open door administration or policy. He further painted out that his leadership would do everything possible to bring the people together for the sake of peace in the area. Commenting on the education

of the youths, the chairman said he would not hesitate to give priority attention to the education of the youths. His words: “Committee on Education was set up and gazetted by Niger State Education Board and that the Commissioner of Education, Hon. Mohammed Sani Idris is the Chairman of the committee”. This, according to the Chairman, the committee will help

the admission seekers in various institutions. On the skills acquisition, he said he would complement the efforts of the state government and President Muhammadu Buhari to empower the youths through the skills acquisition programme. While speaking on the revenue generation of the council, he said his administration would focus on the revenue generation to move the Tafa community to the next level.

Establish rehabilitation center for us in north, spinal cord patients beg Buhari From Kano

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Hospital (AKTH) in Kano, yesterday, acting chairman of the group, Abdul'aziz Ibrahim said the essence of forming the association is to help themselves ease their suffering. According to him, persons with spinal code injury are in a difficult situation which needs to be told to the world in order to come to their aid, adding that most of them cannot afford to pay the exorbitant medical expenses of the ailment. Ibrahim, who is the chairman of the Sokoto State Association of Spinal Cord Injury Persons disclosed that the society, if actualized, would be up and

doing in bringing succour to their members through, legislation, enlightenment and advocacy, among others Part of the group's thrust, according to the acting chairman, is to urge the federal government to establish rehabilitation center for them in the northern Nigeria, noting that there is no such facility in the whole region. "You would not understand our condition unless if you are also suffering from the same ailment. This is the ailment that make a person live a miserable life. " Its expenses are exorbitant while about 70 percent of the patients are from poor family.

They cannot afford the medical expenses. MRI scanning alone is N65, 000 to N75,000. Surgery is about N1.5 million. "So these factors, among others, are what prompted us to form a society to help ourselves out. It is in this light we wish to call on President Buhari to approve for establishment of rehabilitation center for us," Ibrahim said He added, "We will make sure that, this society, comprising of all the 19 northern states, has become powerful in a bid to help ourselves." Part of the resolutions of the meeting, according to Ibrahim,

was the adoption of name of the society as Arewa Spinal Cord Injury Society of Nigeria (ASCIN), adding that they will soon embark on registration with Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). In his remarks, the representative of Northern Elders Forum (NEF) Nastura Shariff said he has been assigned by the forum to represent it in the meeting in view of its importance. Shariff, who is the chairman of Northern Youth Coalition, said the NEF had pledged to sponsor registration of the arewa spinal cord injury society with CAC, adding that his group would also help the society to take off.

ombe state Governor, Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya has constituted a nine-man committee for the payment of compensation of all lands acquired by the past administration for development purposes. The state Commissioner of Finance and Economic Development, Muhammad Gambo Magaji is to serve as chairman. Members include: Attorney

Gov Yahaya approves N246m as compensation for lands acquired by past govt General and Commissioner of justice, Barr. Zubair Muhammad Umar, Commissioners of Lands and Survey and Works and Transport, Danladi Adamu and Engineer Abubakar Bappah respectively. Others are Commissioner of Police, Gombe state command,

Director, State Security Service, Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and Senior District Head of Gombe while the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Lands is to serve as secretary. The committee is to among other duties verify all cases of

compensations in the state with a view to commencing immediate payment. The Governor has already approved the sum of two hundred and forty six million naira for the payment of GDP34, a 206 hectare area acquired by government in 2015 from 192

individuals. Governor Yahaya has graciously revalidated the approval of the past government and released the money to reduce the suffering of those whose lands were acquired but not compensated by the last administration.

Zaria – Pambegua road: Group expresses dismay over poor quality of work From Femi Oyelola Kaduna


Group, Equity Alliance had expressed dismay over the poor quality of work on Zaria – Pambegua road and Zaria – Hunkuyi – Kafur – Gidan Mutum Daya Road, in Kaduna State by the contractor . The chairman of the group, Magaji A. Baba. stated this in a statement made available to the media in Kaduna yesterday. The Group called on the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola to revoke the rehabilitation contract as a result of negligence and poor performance of the contractors. The Group added that they have gone round the sites of the roads to ascertain the level of progress , saying what they saw is disappointing, despite the fact that contracts were awarded two years ago. “This has led to the serious problems that resulted to loss of lives and property as a result of accidents.” According to the statement,

the work has not exceeded 10 percent progress and it is substandard, particularly the mix ratio on the drainage work and some pot holes on newly reconstructed parts which show incapability of the construction companies handling the projects.

The group lamented that the 88km road from Zaria to Pambegua has taken a long time to complete without any justifiable reason. While advising the Minister to take all the necessary measures to revoke the contracts

and award to serious and competent contractors to do the work, it warned that failure to take action within three weeks, the group will file a suit against the Ministry and the contractors in a court of law.

Tambuwal, El-Rufai seek more support for armed forces Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, has appealed to the National Assembly to hasten the enactment of a law to improve the welfare of families of dead and retired soldiers. Tambuwal’s call came on the heels of a pledge by Gov. Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna State, to provide N1 million to each member of the armed forces who died in active service in the state. Both spoke during the 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration held across the country on Wednesday. Tambuwal said in Sokoto that it was important to address the welfare of armed forces personnel whether dead or alive, to serve as incentive to those in service to give their all. He said war veterans had

made enormous sacrifices to ensure peace, stability and progress in the nation. “I want to assure you that my government would continue to support families of slain war veterans and retired ones, as well as motivate the present soldiers,” he said. Tambuwal said series of activities were conducted within the week, including an ongoing free medical screening and treatment of ex-service men and their families. ”They deserve to be honoured by the society through sustaining their needs and catering for their families health, education, housing and others. ”Such gestures would motivate the preset servicemen while the retired and deceased families would feel the society

appreciate and recognise the sacrifices made by their loved ones,’’ he said. Kaduna Governor on 2020 Armed forces day In Kaduna, El-Rufai pledged to donate N1 million to each family of military and police personnel who died in active service, to support them as they struggle to cope with the death of their bread winners. He hailed the armed forces contributions to peace in the country, and commended their patriotism and commitment to the nation. “We are still not where we ought to be as there are still remnants disturbing our people, but the armed forces have played very important roles. “Here in Kaduna, without the Army, Airforce and Navy supporting the Police, I think the

rate of criminality, kidnapping and other forms of banditry would have been out of control,” he said. He called on Nigerians to appreciate and support the armed forces personnel who are putting their lives in danger so as to ensure peace in the country. The governor promised to support them with logistics, adding that the state government would soon unveil a new policy to support families of the fallen heroes. He urged Nigerians to be tolerant of one another, remember their common humanity, de-emphasise differences in ethnicity and religion and work together to make the country economically stronger, so as to create opportunities for people.(NAN)

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020


N ews

NCF to hold 18th annual memorial lecture Jan. 16.


he Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) says the 18th edition of the Chief S. L. Edu Memorial Lecture is aimed at bringing environmental issues to the front burner of national discourse. A statement by Mr Oladapo Soneye, NCF’s Head of Communication on Tuesday said the annual lecture is scheduled to hold in Jan. 16 in Lagos. Soneye said the theme for this year’s lecture is: “The Role of Traditional Leaders in Protecting and Restoring the Nigerian Environment”, would be delivered by His Eminence, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar CFR, mni, the Sultan of Sokoto. “The lecture series aims at bringing environmental issues to the front burner of national discourse while articulating solutions through speakers from diverse backgrounds. “The event equally serves to award scholarship grants to two PhD students whose research are in the field of environmental sciences in any Nigerian universities. “The grant is sponsored by Chevron Nigeria Ltd. and seeks to promote research works in nature conservation, biodiversity preservation, environmental management and sustainable livelihood.” “Chief S.L. Edu Memorial Lecture is an annual event organised by NCF in collaboration with the family of Chief S.L. Edu and supported by Chevron Nigeria Ltd.’’ Soneye said the lecture, which would be open to members of the public would have in attendance the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Chief Philip Asiodu, Chief Emeka Anyaoku and Alhaji Ahmed Joda, Erelu Abiola Dosunmu. Others include traditional rulers, business executives, community leaders, members of CSOs and the academia, amongst others. NCF is the foremost environmental conservation NGO with projects spread across the country that focus on the foundation’s priority areas such as biodiversity conservation, environmental education, policy advocacy and improvement of livelihood of communities. (NAN)

UAE commends Buhari’s leadership in oil, gas sector


he United Arab Emirates (UAE) has commended the agility of President Muhammadu Buhari in ensuring a strong and stable oil and gas sector in Nigeria. Fahad Al Taffaq, the UAE Ambassador to Nigeria, made the remark when he visited the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timpre Sylva, in Abuja on Wednesday. In a statement signed by Alhaji Garba Deen Muhammad, the spokesman for the minister, Al Taffaq, lauded the agile leadership

of Buhari in stabilising the oil and gas sector. He also applauded the competence shown by the minister and the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Malam Mele Kyari, in the sector. He expressed the UAE’s commitment to investing in Nigeria’s petroleum sector and promised to facilitate high level bilateral opportunities that would deepen the cooperation between both countries. Al Taffaq reiterated the need to

deepen the existing collaboration between Nigeria and the UAE. He promised to facilitate opportunities that would see to the creation of brand-new projects in the short, medium and long term for the benefit of the two countries. Responding, Sylva said that 2020 remained an important year for Nigerian s it proposed marginal field rounds and major bid rounds in the oil and gas sector. He noted the Nigeria values its relationship with the UAE and would continue to sustain it. He said “2020 is an important

year for Nigeria with the proposed marginal field rounds and major bid rounds.” According to him, the UAE has the financial muscle to fully participate in the process. Marginal Field refers to an oil field that may not produce enough net income to make it worth developing at a given time. However; should technical or economic conditions change, such a field may become commercial field. It is usually associated with small pockets of hydrocarbons that have a plateau of a few years(NAN)

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo receiving a souvenir from the President, Law Students Association of Nigeria (LAWSAN), Emmanuel Nwobodo, and other members of the LAWSAN delegation during their visit to the Presidential Villa, yesterday in Abuja.

Access Bank splashes over N50m to customers in DiamondXtravaganza draw


ccess Bank Plc has splashed over N50 million to about 1,044 customers in its DiamondXtravaganza Season 11 reward promo aimed at enhancing savings culture. Mr Robert Giles, the bank’s Head, Retail Products, said at the reward ceremony on Wednesday in Lagos that the initiative was introduced in 2008 to boost savings culture and financial inclusion. Giles said that the Diamondxtra initiative which had been running for 11 years had constantly grown with the number of prizes given out every year. He stated that over N50 million was given out in form of cash to winners accross the country. Giles said that the bank had given out five billion naira to lucky customers since the inception of DiamondXtra initiative. “As at the end of last year, we have given out N5 billion in prizes since inception. “We had over 20,000 beneficiaries and as at last year,

we had over 4,000 beneficiaries in which we gave out over N50 million today,” he stated. Giles described DiamondXtra, as a unique product introduced into the market by the bank based on feedback from customers. He explained that salary for life, rent for a year and educational support were all introduced based on customers experiences and feedback. Giles noted that the initiative had helped in growing the bank’s deposit base and as well helped in transforming the lives of Nigerians by giving them the chance to win. “Now we are seeing that customers are able to use that fund to start new businesses and this is impacting on their lives. “This product has been a successful product since the launch and we have significantly more than one million customers who save with DiamondXtra and you do not have to have a large amount to save. “For every N5,000 you save, you get one entry into the prize draw and that entry could win

you any category of our prizes,” he stated. “The special thing about season 11 is the difference we are making for people by giving rent allowance for a year and we had winners today who won in that category as well as education grant for five years, that is something that is really impressive in this season,” Giles said. Giles who appreciated the bank’s customers for their suppport over the years said that DiamondXtra Season 12 would kick off in February with a lot of goodies. Also speaking, Adaeze Umeh, the bank’s Group Head, Consumer Banking, stated that it would add more exciting features in Season 12 as well as more winners. “Season 12 is going to be much bigger because we have gotten feedback and insights from our customers. “This initiative has been there for 11 years and so we have a lot of strong followership and each season we try to build in what our customers love and will want

in a new season as it is a product aimed at transforming lives. So, we encourage Nigerians to keep fate in us even as we get to launch the new season next month”, Umeh said. Ms Vivian Onyebukwa, a journalist , who won N500,000 commended the bank for the inititiative aimed at changing lives and enhancing saving culture. Onyebukwa said she had been a customer of Access Bank for years and never expected to emerge a winner. “I feel so happy and so excited. I never believe I would become a winner in the first place. All I had to do was to top my DiamondXtra Savings account which I started with N5000 before I constantly topped it with bigger amounts which as a result made me N500,000 richer today. “I want to say a very big thank you to Access Bank, I will also encourage other Nigerians especially my colleagues to partake in this initiative because this bank ends up making their customers happy”, she said. (NAN)

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020




This must not die

ust recently, the Federal MDAs, functions and economic Government directed all activities performed by all federal ministries, departments government agencies. These and agencies (MDAs) to publish reports must be ready within seven summaries of their financial days after the end of the month.” inflows and outflows every day. At last, the Federal Government President Muhammadu Buhari is taking the needed steps to gave the directive at the launch of enforce the FoIA, five years after the Financial Transparency Policy the enactment of the legislation and Implementation aimed at making Guidelines in Abuja. governance more He was represented by transparent and Mr. Tayo Alasoadura, accountable to the Minister of State for the people. It These outstanding requires MDAs to Niger Delta. The President projects are well set up freedom of said the directive was advanced in terms information bureaus part of an effort to of their preparation, manned by experts to encourage transparency attend to journalists consistent with and accountability in and other persons the 2016 Debt public finances. He who have inquiries Sustainability said, “The government to make. The Act has committed to Analysis undertaken prescribes penalties, by the Debt full implementation including fines and of the Freedom of Management Office i m p r i s o n m e n t , Information Act 2014 so and were approved against officials who that government-held fall foul of the Act. by the Federal datasets can be availed Executive Council in Regrettably, this and used by the mass legislation looks good August 2016 under media and the public only on the paper on the 2016 – 2018 at large. All MDAs are which it is written; required to promptly External Borrowing i m p l e m e n t a t i o n Plan. respond to additional has been zero. requests for information Bureaucrats still use beyond what is published. the so called Official “With these reports, the Secrets Act to deny the news media treasury will publish payments access to information that the of at least N10 million while all public needs to have. What the MDAS must publish payments FoIA offers is taken away by the above N5 million made out of all OSA. It is obvious that the two laws public funds under their purview. cannot coexist; one must give way. The reports must include the It is clear which one should go - the MDA responsible, the beneficiary, Official Secrets Act, of course. the purpose and amount of each Another problem is getting state payment. Accounting Officers are governments to key into the FG’s responsible for providing answers initiative. Different political parties to any questions from the public are in control in the states. Those relating to transactions completed in opposition to party at the centre by entities under their charge. (the All Progressives Congress) “All MDAS must publish may not welcome this transparency monthly budget performance drive just to differ from the FG. reports. These reports must include However, we urge that they place the performance of the budget the public good over and above by various dimensions, including party positions or interests.



Chairman “To be the market Malam Wada Maida, place of ideas and Oon, Fnge the leading player in the industry by putting the people first, upholding the Chief Operating Officer Editor, Daily truth, maintaining the Hameed M. Bello, PhD highest professional and ethical standards while Manager, administration delivering value to Hassan Hammanyaji our stakeholders”


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Letter to the Editor

Regulating Religious Excesses Through Moral, Social Obligation (II)

By Abubakar Bello


xcesses of spiritual leaders are numerous, as one was pointed out earlier, it may well be described as tip of the iceberg. Particularly when it comes to accordance of deserved acknowledgment and respect to the rights of others. Regardless of whether one is an adherent of such faith or not. Spirituality or religiosity is supposed to guide adherents on recognizing the right of others as against denying it. Even in mono-religious enclaves such as Makkah, Madinah or the Vatican, co-faith members have the right not to be disturbed on the course of performing religious sacrament by other members despite the fact that they all practice and believe in the same faith. Religious rites or practices that constitute public nuisance such as dishingout sermons and noisy incantations over public address systems in residential neighborhoods especially during early hours of the morning or late at night is not religiousness but deviation from religion and what it teaches. Some prayer centres or congregations stay up until midnight and even beyond preventing neighboring residents from having good rest with disgusting noise. If we are truly religious as we claim to be, then religious morals should poke our conscience that God will not be pleased with any prayer, incantation or rite that was offered to the displeasure or discomfort of others. Disturbing the peace of others and denying them serenity at retirement hours of the day with unbearable noise from loudspeakers regardless of whether those being bothered believe in God or not is insensitivity of the highest order. No justification can stand for any religious act that is offered to the detriment of others. Many share this opinion of regulating religious excesses especially the ones that involve public inconvenience but because of the sensitivity of issues with religious tendencies in this part of the world, fear of possible ostracism or misinterpretation or deliberate misplacement of facts by those whose interest may be threatened would result in excommunication or libeling. It’s easy for one to be crucified or accused of hypocrisy or termed apostate for speakingout particularly when your argument is deliberately misunderstood and given pseudo interpretation. Public disturbance even if not in the name of religion must be controlled and discouraged by self-regulation and state authority. Ego and impunity are mostly the causes of such insensitivity that is gaining momentum because those who ought to speak up and stand against such outrageousness on public rights are mute. No prayer house or congregation needed to be told that blaring sound in a residential neighborhood is an infringement on the rights of residents especially during the wrong hours of the day. Spiritual leaders are supposed to know that better, and ensure their subjects are educated on what constitute public nuisance and by extension disregard to the right of others –if they did not sanction it in the first place. As mentioned elsewhere, infallibility is a reserved quality for prophets and angels which underscores the fact that any ordinary mortal being is susceptible to error and bias no matter their level of religiousness. Spiritual leaders are not exempted just like their followers, but committing an error out of mistake and forgetfulness is forgivable. However, when such deviation sprang out of shallowness of knowledge or sheer ignorance or ego and selfishness, then control mechanism must be enforced by the society as a collective entity or the state. This again calls for checks and balances between leadership and followership and

between society and citizens in order to tame unwanted excesses. If immoderations are allowed unchecked or neglected, a recipe for societal decadence and disaster is bound to engulf us all. Courage must be summoned by all and sundry including the state through its law enforcement agencies to clear our conscience and see the reality in every of our conduct particularly the socio-existence aspect. Our affiliation to certain faith or creed should not becloud our sense of good judgement and right-thinking towards rebuking excesses committed by members of our faith or other faiths, groups or sects. It has become a free for all platform where religious gladiators of different sect stage their proxy fight by playing cassette of provocative tirades. This unacceptable use of public address system by prayer houses indiscriminately may have been the springboard for local herbalist merchants who storm public places with all sort of indecent marketing utterances and music blaring over loud speakers. Thanks to some regulation on that by Kano state government which is quite commendable. The act of unruliness in our various ways under pretexts of worship is not different from what Shi’ite are known for which is the attitude of obstructing traffic during processions. Their impunity during processions such that cost them dearly in Zaria last year and more recently in Kano may be informed by the stance that what is good for the goose is also good for the gander. If some religious congregations will obstruct traffic on Fridays or Sundays and public address systems are used indiscriminately without recourse to public inconvenience, and law enforcement agents find it tolerable, then other sects or groups will have justification not to be prevented from what may constitute some manifestation of their religion too. Because sensibly, no basis of harassing and prevent one religion/sect and seeming indifferent to the other under the same law. For clarity however, where it becomes necessary and generally acceptable and understood, such religious act as call to prayer (Azan) which in its essence and purpose is done aloud, no objection applies to that and it will not constitute public nuisance because of its brevity and precise nature. Either ways, no divine religion would sanction violation and intrusion into the basic right of others. To abuse the right of others, no matter insignificant or negligible it may seem, should not be treated lightly because it infringes upon the right of God Himself. Let religious morals guide us in standing for the truth even where the buck of the pain falls on us. That way alone, many of our social problems would be solved. It will make us more positively sensitive and prudent in relating with others and ourselves. It will promote respect for the right of others be they adherents of the same faith or not. Again, what moral ground do we have in piety and holiness if we cannot rebuke our excesses that trample upon the basic right of others? What level of piousness must we attain to feel the empathy of what denying the right of others is? Who will summon that courage to challenge our religious excesses and seek for redress? Who will feel morally pricked by such challenge from both the religious leadership and its followership and amend for the better? Who will call for checks and balances in our society for our common good? I think we do not need any form of compulsion from authorities before the right thing will be seen as really being right. Abubakar Bello wrote from Jos and can be reached at abubakarsadiq525@



PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Biafra: Fifty years after By Tony Ademiluyi


anuary 15, which is in about 24 hours’ time, will mark the 50th year anniversary of the Nigerian Civil War which was fought between Nigerian forces and the secessionist Biafran side led by Lt-Col. Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu. The war was a very bloody one as about three million people reportedly lost their lives. The images of starving children which were beamed all over the world left a heart-wrenching image in the mind of Steve Jobs that he vowed never to be a Christian again as he questioned the logic of a good God who allowed his creatures to suffer in the most horrifying manner. The subject of this war is a very controversial one as it brings back tragic memories and tears from even the stone-hearted. There have been different accounts about the war as a copious number of books have been written on the subject. The remote cause of the war was the first military coup in the country which occurred on January 15, 1966 spearheaded by Major Chukwuma Kaduna Nzeogwu of the famous Five Majors. The then Premier of the Northern Region, Alhaji (Sir) Ahmadu Bello, was murdered in his residence. The likes of Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, the then Prime Minister, Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola, the Premier of the Western region, and Chief Festus Okotie-Eboh, the finance minister, were killed in the most gruesome manner. Some top military officers were also sent to meet their Creator on that fateful day. Brigadier General Samuel Adesujo Ademulegun, the Commander of the First Brigade in Kaduna, was killed alongside

his pregnant wife; his deputy, Col. Shodeinde, was also murdered. Brigadier General Zakari Maimalari, the most senior northerner in the armed forces, was killed in Lagos. The only Igbo who lost his life was the then Quarter-Master General, Lt-Col Arthur Chinyelu Unegbe, who was dispatched to his ancestors because he refused to hand over the keys of the armoury to the coup plotters. With the exception of Major Wale Ademoyega, the rest of the coup plotters were of Igbo extraction which made it to be tagged as an Igbo coup. This made anti-Igbo sentiments very high especially in the north as they lost their two major leaders in the persons of Bello and Balewa and many of the top brass of their military officers. When Major General Thomas Johnson Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi came to power, many Nigerians especially the northerners, expected him to decisively punish the coup plotters for their heinous crimes. He didn’t do much and he further provoked Nigerians by making the nation a unitary one. There was the fear of Igbo domination as they commanded high heights in the army. These fears led to the counter coup on July 29, 1966 when Ironsi and the then military governor of the western region, Lt-Col Francis Adekunle Fajuyi were killed. The coup was said to have been masterminded by the then Captain Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma. The pogroms in the north began and the then Military Governor of Eastern Nigeria, LtCol Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu asked all Igbos living in the north to return home and he could no longer guarantee their safety there. There was the personality and ego clash

between Ojukwu and Gowon. The former said that the military hierarchy should be respected as Babafemi Ogundipe was the most senior military officer and as such should have been the Head of State and not Gowon. He therefore wouldn’t recognise him as his boss. Things came to a head and the then Ghanaian military Head of State, General Joseph Ankrah, invited both men to Aburi, Ghana for a peace meeting. In that historic meeting, Ojukwu canvassed that the best form of government for the country was a confederation which Gowon agreed to while there. When they returned to Nigeria, Gowon changed his mind and broke up the four regions into 12 states to weaken the powers of Ojukwu. This didn’t deter the son of Nigeria’s former wealthiest man from declaring a independent state of Biafra which led to the brutal 30-month war. Ojukwu disappointed many of those who believed in his cause as he left them in the lurch when he and his family went into exile in Cote d’Ivoire leaving the rank and file who viewed him as a liberator to their fate. The war was prosecuted without a single borrowing due to the sagacity of the then Federal Commissioner of Finance and Vice-Chairman of the Federal Executive Council, Chief Obafemi Awolowo. He was quoted to have said that ‘starvation is a legitimate weapon of warfare.’ There were blockades which prevented food and essential supplies from entering the war zone. The war ended with a ‘No victors, no vanquished’ slogan by Gowon but it was all on paper as only 20 pounds was given to each bank account holder irrespective of the amount that they had in the bank. The tribe lost out in the military and civil

service and they only had commerce to take refuge in. There is hardly any government presence in the states as their roads are one of the worst in the country. Their cry of marginalisation is legitimate as they are agitating a better deal from the Nigerian state. The Igbo presidency is the current hot potato which is dominating the discourse as the nation marches towards the 2023 elections. There is an unwritten rule of power rotation between the North and the South. The South-West and South-South have produced presidents and so in the interest of justice and fair play, the South-East should be supported to have a son or daughter of theirs to sit in Aso Rock. They have never produced a civilian president and so it is high time they were backed by the other zones to power. Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, a proud son of theirs, was a key proponent for a United Nigeria. He ensured that the secession clause wasn’t inserted in the 1960 Independence Constitution and gave up his ambition to be the nation’s first Prime Minister for peace to reign. Also during the civil war, he later defected to the Nigerian side where he still preached his never changing gospel of a One Nigeria. It is high time the Igbo were compensated for Azikiwe’s selflessness just like the Yoruba were compensated for Abiola’s political loss when democracy returned to the country in 1999. Anything short of this will see their agitations spiral out of control which will be highly detrimental to national interest.

claims of the defeat of Boko-haram which the administration had promised to vanquish within six months of coming to power but it appears that the insurgency group is stronger than they were five years earlier. They have killed more than they did previously. Members of the insurgent group are arrested, released or enlisted into the state army. Instead of facing Boko Haram the government would prefer to send soldiers into the street to harass and intimidate hapless civilians under diversionary and farcical codenamed operations. The South East is like an occupied territory where at every one kilometer you have a road block and a combine team of security operatives intimidating, harassing and molesting hapless citizens. Again, the present regime has failed woefully to address the menace of herdsmen in Nigeria, fueling speculations in many quarters that they are government sponsored. Under this administration, the Fulani herdsmen have been lionized into a killer squad. At the last count, they have massacred over fifty thousand Nigerians in cold blood in the last five years. Communities have been sacked, farm lands ravaged, people kidnapped, women raped… Worse still, nobody has been arrested or tried for this ugly state of affairs. Miyeti-Allah is still talking tough, the service chief are still keeping their jobs. All we hear is half-hearted promise of bringing the culprits to book. Our highways have been turned into a death trap. Abuja/Kaduna Highway, Lagos/ Benin Highway, Abuja/Benin Highway and other major highways are no-go areas. Armed banditry is the order of the day. Every day we are inundated with gory tales of how savage, barbaric dare-devil bandits would emerge from their den in the bush and with relish and without provocation spray innocent travellers with bullets. Travelling on our highways is now like embarking on a suicide mission. People observe special fasting and prayer sessions and night vigils before traveling and do special thanksgiving upon successful return. Thus, it is in the light of this that the public reaction to the issue tilted heavily in favour of the action of the South West leaders in the formation of Amotekun. In the South, it is hailed unanimously as a step in the right direction. To many, the regional security is

long overdue. Accordingly, many concerned Nigerians have commended the initiative of the South West governors and enjoined the leaders of the other regions to emulate their South West counterparts. Admittedly, even though I praise them for taking the initiative I would also add that that they are not pro-active enough having waited for five long years before reacting. Of course it is expected that they took the initiative. South West is about the only region in the South that has thick forests that has provided a safe haven for these savage herdsmen and bandits. Unconfirmed security report has it that they have over 3000 camps within the forest of the South West. Nevertheless, while we commend the initiative of establishing regional security outfit, we must not lose sight of the possible unsavory consequences. On the positive side, they may complement the effort of our constitutional security agencies but on the other hand, they may turn out to be an instrument of extortion, harassment of non-indigenes and harassment of political opponents. We should expect jungle justice; there will be extra-judicial killings, people would use them to settle personal scores and there would be arms proliferation. We cannot forget in a hurry the menace of OPC when OBJ was in power, wherein they held their own court sessions and pass death sentences and burn people alive. Of course, the horrific activities of Bakassi, Egbesu and other splinter groups of that era are still fresh in our minds. Moreover, contrary to the assertion of the governors, we cannot rule out the infiltration of the outfit by miscreants and other criminal elements that might use the outfit to foment trouble. Furthermore, as other regions join as they are meant to following recommendations from different quarters, they might metamorphose into regional armies with obvious dour centrifugal consequences. No doubt, the establishment of regional security outfit is clearly a vote of no confidence on our security agencies and by extension, on the government of the day. In other words, it is an indication of failure of governance. The current regime has failed woefully to deliver on its campaign promises. This is advertized in many areas—misplaced priority, corruption, nepotism, paying lip service to entrenched

national problems, failure to learn from the past, inter alia. There is failure of leadership when the government fails to cater for the interest of those it is meant to. In the first place, the primary essence of leadership or governance is the people—their security and welfare. And when the people, the subject of your mandate are made vulnerable by your actions or default, it indicates failure of leadership, failure of governance. Leadership at national level is about constructive engagement, interest aggregation and goal congruence not parochial interest. Why would government react quickly to suppressing IPOB agitations and pamper murderous herdsmen and Boko Haram terrorist? Why should government be more interested in tackling free speech while glossing over more poignant issues bothering on national security? That is misplaced priority. Again, the present regime has shown unusual unwillingness to learn from the past. When the issue of resource control came up following OBJ’s initial refusal to pay the statutory 13% to oil producing states, instead of addressing the issues raised in the Resource Control agitation, he thought he could suppress it with the sleight of arm. He clamped down on the agitators, destroyed Odi, forcing the agitators to go underground and resurfaced in a more sinister dimension. Later they began to kidnap expatriate oil workers. That is the origin of the scourge of commercialized kidnapping that is ravaging the nation, Nigeria today. This is what happens when you apply wrong antidote to a fundamental issue. Those who refuse to learn from the past will always totter and grope blindly and aimlessly. Failure to learn from the past is to start and stand on a shaky foundation. When you don’t learn from the past, tackling present challenges and planning for the future would always be on hotchpotch basis. In conclusion, I would advise the present regime to change from its myopic swingeing policies and frontally and sincerely face core national issues and accommodate disparate interests. That is the only way to avert the emergence of regional armies, schismatic disturbances and separatist agitations. Gozie Irogboli can be reached on

Ademiluyi, a public affairs analyst, wrote in from Lagos

The implications of establishing regional security in Nigeria

By Gozie Irogboli


hen the opinion of one of the respected top politicians of the old era was sought concerning the overthrow of the government of Alhaji Shehu Shagari by the military in 1983, he replied succinctly that it was “unfortunate but necessary.” And when I learnt of the recent establishment of regional security force, the Western Nigeria Security Network (WNSN) code-named Operation Amotekun, by the six states of the South-West Nigeria, my honest reaction was like that of the aforementioned renowned politician. It is not a position of aloofness but that of reality. The formation of regional security is unfortunate because, it might snowball into something that will be of grave consequence to the nation in the long run. It is unfortunate because it portends great danger in future if not properly regulated and controlled. But, while it is considered unfortunate, it is also necessary and expedient because of daunting security challenges facing the nation at present. Yes it is necessary because it would among other things entail curtailing the menace of herdsmen and armed banditry that has turned Nigeria a terrorist nation and a pariah state. I am not a lawyer. I do not know the constitutionality of what they have done. But in the face of the current precarious security situation the country has been plunged into, I think it is expedient and pragmatic and indeed commendable. Security is a necessity and no responsible leader would fold his arms and watch his people terrorised in the way and manner it is done in the country at present. Put mildly, the security situation in Nigeria currently is deplorable. The level of insecurity and anxiety in Nigeria is worse than that of the far-flung era of slavery and slave trade. The government of the day has shown apparent like of capacity or rather unwillingness to tackle the security challenges facing the nation despite the billions of tax payers’ funds that are appropriated annually for that purpose. From all fronts, Nigerians live in perpetual fear of attack. Human life is worth nothing in Nigeria. The land is polluted with blood of the innocent. Boko Haram appeared to be more rejuvenated. There have been claims and counter

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020



21 Years on, Nigeria’s democracy still sick By Muhammadulfatiu Adepeju


fter 20 years of uninterrupted democracy, Nigerians are yet to experience true liberty, transparency, economic opportunities and other dividends of pristine democracy. The indicators of democracy are hardly visible, and where visible they are mere travesties. According to American political scientist, Larry Diamond, democracy consists of four key elements: a political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections; the active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life; protection of the human rights of all citizens; a rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens. Since 1999, Nigerians have gone to the polls on six occasions; none

could be considered free and fair if compared to the globally accepted standard. Cases of vote-buying, ballot snatching, and stuffing, disenfranchisement, child voting, voting by proxy and other electoral malpractices trail elections in the country. In the 2007 elections, Chief European Union observer, Max van den Berg, remarked that the polls were a dismal show of zero credibility. It is no surprise that every presidential election in Nigeria, except the 2015 election; famous for its historic concession, had its results contested on wings of irregularities and illegitimacy. Consequently, voter turnout, which is a key indicator of the validity of democracy, has continued to wane. In 2003, voter turnout was at about 69 percent. Sixteen years later, it was a record-low 34.8 per cent, the lowest in West Africa. Nigerians do not hide

their distrust in the government, its institutions, and political processes. Nigeria hasn’t improved since the return to democracy; human rights abuses by security agencies, including the Department of State Services and the police Special Anti-Robbery Squad are big blots on the country’s protection of human rights—and by extension, democracy. With the increasing epidemic of corruption in the country, even the judiciary has lost its integrity. A death sentence is in the offing as the penalty for undefined hate speech on social media. Things are so bad an ex-governor, who diverted about ₦1.2bn that could have pre-empted deaths on roads, reduce maternal mortality, or help the sick, is in prison receiving allowances as a legislator. It is that bad. According to the 2017 Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual Democracy Index, there are only 19 fully-

democratic countries in the world and only Mauritius, which started its democratic streak in 1992, is the African country on the list. Nigeria is no way close to making the list. Nigerians, like many Africans, still believe strongly in democracy. However, voter apathy will only expose the endangered, fragile system to more ruins. Nigerians must not only decide on Twitter, but visit polls to perform their civic duties as and when due; healthy discussions should substitute media whines. Authorities should also cease crackdowns on civil liberties, media suppression. Instead, they should embrace transparency. Only then would the country experience the real dividends of democracy. Muhammadulfatiu Adepeju is a writing fellow of African Liberty, a journalist, and social commentator. You can follow his tweets: @MFatiu_ Adepeju

How lecturers underdeveloped the universities By Douglas Anele


owever, and this is the crux of the matter, those responsible for running the universities on daily basis have, through financial rascality, misused available financial resources. Wastages and corruption in the system are legion. They include explosive increase in the purchase of official cars, frequent unnecessary trips by top management of universities many of whom are senior academics, huge allowances and gifts for members of university councils, lavish convocation ceremonies, overpriced contracts awarded to relatives, friends and cronies of VIPs in various campuses most of which are poorly executed, and so on. I am sure that many senior academics at different levels of authority will have serious cases to answer if the federal and state governments undertake thorough independent audit of the entire financial transactions of universities. Hence, although our political leaders deserve opprobrium for neglecting the universities and wasting available resources on selfaggrandisement, sometimes criticism of government for not providing basic facilities in our institutions of higher learning is misplaced because highly placed lecturers in positions of authority oftentimes misappropriate available funds. Meanwhile ASUU leaders and activists insist that government must provide everything universities need to function, even relatively inexpensive items these institutions, through imaginative financial management, can comfortably provide for themselves. In this connection, any university that does not have good classrooms, decent toilets for both staff and students, markers and dusters for lecturers, fairly good library and basic equipment like Bunsen burners for laboratory work ought not to have been licensed to operate by the NUC in the first instance. Approving half-baked universities just because of the explosion in the number of candidates seeking

university admission is a waste of time, money and human resources. Yet, NUC continues to approve such universities, with the active connivance of senior academics and Professors for whom “anything goes” as long as their financial demands are met. Now, instead of Vice Chancellors wasting money on things of tangential value, such as creating new directorates, lavish convocation ceremonies and purchase of vehicles among others, they should use such funds to provide affordable items for teaching and learning. It is pertinent to observe that, in virtually all universities transparent accountability with respect to funds for capital projects and money derived from internally generated revenue is lacking. For a change, ASUU should be demanding from university authorities across the country proper accountability with respect to the subventions from government for capital expenditure, instead of blaming government all the time for petty items like Bunsen burners, toilets, fans etc. It is well known that the new buildings and facilities in various campuses are below the standard established in the years from 1962 to around 1990, which is a reflection of unimaginative planning and lack of Platonic aesthetic sensibility amongst university authorities. This is corroborated by the fact that buildings constructed in Nigerian universities from around the 1990s, supervised by senior academics in the relevant departments as consultants, are ghettoes compared to the world class structures built before that time at the University of Lagos, such as UNILAG library, faculty of engineering building, the Senate Building the Council Chambers, Main Auditorium, etc. Another problem is the ethnicisation of key positions in the universities, and I will use appointment of Vice Chancellors to illustrate the point. Ideally, by its mandate, a university is supposed to be universalistic in orientation since its mission consists in the pursuit of knowledge of The True, The

Good and The Beautiful. This implies that merit, excellence, and proven record of performance must be the decisive factors in the selection of candidates for the elevated position of VC. Nevertheless, for a sizeable percentage of lecturers the most important factor is the ethnic origin of a potential VC; the question of merit and competence is secondary. On several occasions, lecturers from a particular ethnic group where a university is located insist that a “son of the soil” must be the VC or else they will make things extremely difficult for any nonindigene who has the audacity to take up the post. It is a measure of increasing indulgent narrow-minded provincialism in the academia that virtually all VCs in our universities hail from the culture area where the institutions are located. Once upon a time, when Nigerian universities were truly Ivory Towers, the Vice Chancellors of the Universities of Ibadan, Lagos, and Nigeria, Nsukka, hailed from the same ethnic group, and from my research, they performed well. Why must the VC of UNN be an Igbo? Must the VC of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, be a Yoruba? I am not aware of any principled stance of ASUU against the ethnicisation of Vice Chancellorship in our universities, which is unfortunate because that position is critical in the proper day-to-day management of universities, and ethnicity is neither a necessary nor sufficient criterion for selecting the most qualified candidate for the job. Anyway, Nigerian academics in general have retreated into the cocoon of ethnic parochialism, because it provides many of them a strong platform for negotiating and competing effectively in the system to make up for deficiencies in cognitive and emotional intelligence as well as in character. Even in the recruitment and promotion of lecturers, several heads of departments, deans of faculties, provosts of colleges and VCs have consistently sacrificed merit on the altar of ethnicity. Students even

allege that some lecturers give preferential treatment to students from their ethnic group while grading examination scripts, tests and take home assignments. To summarise: the proclivity of an increasing number of lecturers to put ethnic considerations before merit and capacity to perform is a dangerous trend that has impacted negatively on our universities; colleagues should begin to think seriously about how to discourage the practice. Lecturers are mainly responsible for the skewed procedure and requirements for promotion of academics, which allows square pegs to be in round holes in our universities. Now, the criteria for advancement from one cadre to another are set by academics with the approval of university councils. I maintain that the system is inadequate because it places too much emphasis on journal publications, especially foreign ones, and neglects quality of teaching. Many truant lecturers with poor teaching skills have successfully exploited the weaknesses in the system and became Professors either by cloning and plagiarising works written by others (including graduate students), publishing in non-existent or very obscure journals or by recycling the same set of ideas in different publication outlets. Indeed, some desperate colleagues connive with unscrupulous individuals outside Nigeria to float phantom journals just for attaining the professorial rank after which the so-called journal will sink into oblivion. Of course, some lecturers neglect teaching, and concentrate on publishing half-baked and badly argued ideas in order to be “high flyers” in the system. I just cannot understand why ASUU has never worked to ensure that a good system for students’ evaluation of lecturers’ performance is instituted in universities as one of the factors that determine the career movement of lecturers. Douglas Anele is a Public Policy Analyst.


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

News Niger begins payment of 30,000 minimum wage January -Gov Bello

From Yakubu Mustapha, Minna.


ollowing the Nigeria Labour Congress in Niger state issuance of a 21 day ultimatum to the governor, Abubakar Sani Bello led state government for it to implement the new minimum wage of N30,000 or face indefinite strike which expires 4th February 2020. Governor Abubakar Sani

Bello has conceded to the NLC threat disclosing that the state government will commence the payment of the new National Minimum Wage this January. The Governor made the disclosure when he received the chairmen of the 25 local government councils on a solidarity visit over the recent Supreme Court verdict affirming his election as the duly elected

Governor of the state. Governor Bello said that a committee has been set up already and considerable progress has been made in an ongoing negotiation to begin the implementation of the new minimum wage. “At the moment our top priority is to address those that have been affected directly by the minimum wage and what it means is, anyone who is below the minimum wage

policy “I have given the directive that it should be implemented this January, so that those that are entitled or fall within the class of minimum wage will get”, he said. According to him, those that are not directly affected by the N30, 000 minimum wage will be taken care of in the next phase which is the consequential adjustment. “If you implement the new

NITDA trains over 100 women on ICT in North Central From Gambo Ahmed, Lafia


s part of effort of the present administration of President Buhari towards empowering women technologically, over 100 women are to be trained on Information Communications Technology in North Central Zone by the National Information Technology Development Agency NITDA. Declaring the official training open for the participants drawn from Nasarawa, Kogi, Kwara,

Plateau, Niger and Benue respectively yesterday at the Nasarawa State Polytechnic ICT Hall Lafia, the state Governor, Engineer Abdullahi Sule described the initiative as laudable aimed at empowering women to be independent as well as abreast themselves with global technology. Governor Sule who also assured NITDA that the state government is fully committed to give ample support to the imitative as according to him “ICT knowledge gives efficiency, transparency,

accountability and it challenge cases of fraud. Digital technology is contributing immensely to the GDP of every nation. The need to embrace it is paramount”. In his opening remark, the Director General of NITDA Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi said that the ICT training is an intervention by the Federal Government which is tailored toward empowering women for the better. His words, “It will improve the living standard of women and their families. The scheme is

designed to train 100 women from the North Central. The intention again is each woman will also train 3 women each”. The D.G further reiterated that after the successful training, each woman would be provided with a Laptop, adding that the world today is digital in nature. “We are living in a very exciting time where technology has tailored almost everything we do. Internet has transformed the way we live, think and move” Kashifu added.

minimum wage, then you find out that there will be the need for consequential adjustments for all". The Governor noted that paying salaries is not just the only function of government, adding that, at the moment, 80 per cent of the state's income goes into salary payment. He expressed unhappiness that the state civil servants were not enjoying the best as they should, stressing that, with a workforce of no fewer than 27, 000, and the state population of over 4 million, executing capital projects and paying salaries regularly have been extremely difficult.

Jigawa to construct 35 new maternity wings in BHCCs From Dutse


.L-R: Kwara State Governor,Mr. Abdulrahman Abdulrazak; President, Hepatitis Zero NIgerian Commission, Dr. Mike Omotosho, his wife Misi; and  Senator Ibrahim  Oloriegbe, during the Fifth Edition of the Foundation’s Annual Lecture on Tuesday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

NIS not recruiting, warns against fake recruitment sites


he Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has warned applicants against patronising fake recruitment sites as the Service was not recruiting. A statement by its spokesperson, Sunday James, said on Tuesday in Abuja that the NIS Comptroller-General,

Muhammad Babandede, issued the warning while reacting to the reported existence of fake NIS websites across the country. It particularly noted that the website – https/nis/ – where unsuspected Nigerians were being duped, was fake. “The service is hereby

disassociating itself from the fake claims and advising Nigerians against subscribing to it as no recruitment is ongoing in the service. “The service recruitment exercise is always advertised in reputable national dailies, televisions and on its website – – and

it is usually free,“ the statement noted. He advised the general public to desist from patronising fraudsters and report any suspected case to the following platform and telephone number – nis.servicom@ and 07080607900.(NAN)



igawa State Executive Council has approved the award of contract for the construction of 35 maternity wings in various Basic Health Care Centres across the state. The Commissioner of Information Youth Sports and Culture, Alhaji Muhd Alhassan disclosed this while briefing journalists shortly after the meeting held at Government House Dutse. He explained that, this is part of the present administration’s effort to ensure easy access to hospital for pregnant women especially in rural communities adding that, the contract was given at the total sum of N601 million. The commissioner maintained that, the state executive council also approved the contract for the upgrading and conversion of motorised water scheme to solar powered scheme as well as the construction of new ones at the cost of over 700 million naira. According to him, the construction of solar powered water in the state will help in adequate water supply in the state. Some of the local government to benefit from the projects include Dutse, Birnin Kudu, Gumel, Hadejia, Ringim and Jahun local governments at a total sum of over N700 million.


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

From Umar Dankano, Yola


he Supreme Court judgment that sacked ex-governor Emeka Ihedioha of Imo State has in no way rattled Adamawa State government, Senior Special Adviser on Public Affairs to Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, Barr Joshuwa Wugira said. The Supreme Court has yesterday quashed the election of Ihedioha and declared Hope Uzodinma as the substantive governor of Imo State in a landmark judgement which took the nation by storm. In a phone chat with our reporter, Wugira who is a legal practitioner, dismissed optimism by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Adamawa State in the wake of the Imo ruling, saying that the cases presented in the two states are completely opposite. “The two cases are not even close to each other. So there is no cause for concern. Nobody is even worried. “Those that are making noise are political jobbers who want to capitalize on the judgement to derive personal gains. “The case that hope Uzodinma brought was completely different from the one presented by the APC. “Uzodinma has presented result sheets and witnesses to convince the court that votes belonging to him were excluded during counting in the governorship election. “But APC in Adamawa complained that card readers were not used, adding there was massive irregularities, but yet cannot produce a single witness to prove their case,” he said. The Adamawa State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Yola on October 11, 2019 dismissed the petition filed by All Progressives Congress challenging the election of Governor Ahmadu Fintiri of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The tribunal, headed by Justice Adediran Adebara, while giving its judgment on the petition on Friday, declared that the petition was dismissed because it lacked merit. The tribunal chairman said the petitioner also failed to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt. Adebara said the petitioner could not prove the case of overvoting and non-compliance with the Electoral Act, as well as irregularities during the March 2019 re-run governorship election. The judge averred that even the witnesses of the petitioner were inconsistent in their submissions, prompting him to discard their

S/Court Ruling: No cause for alarm -Gov Fintiri submissions. Similarly, the Appeal Court sitting in Yola on December 5, 2019, affirmed the earlier judgment by the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal upholding the victory of Adamawa state governor, Ahmad

Umaru Fintiri. The tribunal had earlier dismissed the motion filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) against the election of Fintiri on the grounds that the petitioner failed to prove allegations of electoral irregularities.

The court presided over by Justice Ali B. Gumel dismissed the appeal by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and affirmed Fintiri as duly elected governor. The APC state organizing secretary, Ahmad Lawan, however

said the party would approach the Supreme Court for redress. “We are waiting to receive the judgement for the next line of action. But we will definitely go to the Supreme Court to retrieve our mandate,” he said.

Tambuwal urges National Assembly to pass Legion Establishment Bill From Raji Bello, Sokoto


overnor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State has called on the National Assembly to hasten the process of passing the bill for the amendment of the Nigeria Legion Establishment Act. The Bill is aimed at improving the welfare and well-being of the families of the fallen heroes, retired military

personnel, as well as injured military personnel. Tambuwal who spoke at this year’s commemoration of the 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day in Sokoto, said the passing of the bill would provide opportunity to cater for the welfare of the children of fallen heroes and their widows. He said: “one of the best ways to honour Nigeria’s fallen heroes is to take care of the loved ones they left

behind. Tambuwal appealed to the National Assembly “to do whatever it takes to expeditiously pass the bill so that there could be an improvement in the welfare and well-being of our retirees and members of the families of the fallen heroes.” He commended the armed forces for their sacrifices in helping to secure and keep the nation as one indivisible entity.

The Governor also solicited for more support to the children and wives of the fallen heroes that paid the supreme prices for the unity and peace of Nigeria. The 2020 Armed Forces Remembrance Day which took place at the Maigero Theatre Complex in Sokoto, featured a medical outreach organised by the armed forces, a parade and laying of wreaths in honour of the fallen soldiers.

R-L: INEC National Commissioner in charge of Legal, Dr. May Agbamuche, presenting Certificate of Returns the Supreme Court enthroned Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma, at the INEC headquarters, yesterday in Abuja.

Reps member spends N12.5m to sponsor 500 indigents for WAEC From Yusuf Shekarau, Jos



he member representing Jos north, Bassa federal constituency, Hon. Haruna Maitala have paid the West African School Certificate Examination (WAEC) fees of not fewer than 500 indigents persons from his constituency through his education empowerment initiative. The member, according to his senior legislative aide, Abdulkadir Hassan, selected the beneficiaries

across wards in the constituency. He said, “the selection exercise was free of bias of all kind, not minding gender, ethnicity or religion. It was done to ensure that those who have reposed confidence on the member and gave him the mandate of taking over their affairs in the parliament, have begin to feel the impact of his leadership”. He said N12.5milion was paid to seeing that the 500 beneficiaries wrote the forthcoming WASCE. Abdulkadir also unveiled further plans to supporting

much more indigents from the constituency in the forthcoming Unified Tertiary and Matriculation Examination (UTME). Earlier, the deputy chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Jos north chapter, Ezikel Izant, appreciated the development, nothing that the gesture is part of the determination to fulfilling their campaign promises, in line with Governor Lalong’s vision for a rescue administration and the resolve to take Nigeria to the next level.

Zainab Bala, a beneficiary of the initiative, said “I felt highly elated that the support was given to me when I needed it the most”. She expressed gratitude and prayed God to continue to support the member in the discharge of his responsibility. Juliet Joseph, another beneficiary of the programme said she was excited for the gesture and appealed to the member, to continue to do much more programmes that will benefit his constituents, plateau state and Nigeria at large.

Uzodinma orders banks in Imo to freeze state accounts By Ikechukwu Okaforadi


he current Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma, has issued an order freezing all bank accounts belonging to the state government with effect from January 14, 2020. According to the report, the

“Order of Post No Debit” was issued by the Director-General of Hope Uzodinma’s Campaign Organisation, Chief Cosmas Iwu, to all financial institutions and the Accountant-General of Imo State. It said no bank should honour any transaction from the government of the sacked Governor

of Imo state, Chief Emeka Ihedioha, or his officials. The Supreme Court on Monday sacked Ihedioha, who was declared the winner of the March 9, 2019 Imo State governorship election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party. In his place, the apex court

declared Ihedioha, who flew the flag of the All Progressives Congress for the election, as the validly elected governor of the state. The order reads: “Following the Supreme Court judgment of 14th January 2020, I am directed by His Excellency, Senator Hope Uzodinma to take this to your authority/

instruction to place a Post No Debit (PND) order on all accounts of the Imo State Government maintained in your various institutions. “You are by this letter directed to comply and await further instructions from the office of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Imo State.”

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020




PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020


Sack of Ihedioha: My hands are clean -Osinbajo By Ikechukwu Okaforadi


ice President Yemi Osinbajo has rebuffed reports that he had hinted former Governor Emeka Ihedioha on the likely outcome of the Supreme Court’s judgement when he visited Imo state last week Thursday. According to a statement released by Laolu Akande, spokesperson of the Vice President of Nigeria, described the reports as false and

mischievous. To add to this, Jackson Ude, the former Director of Strategy and Communication to President Goodluck Jonathan, publisher and founder of was one of the rumour peddlers. On his Twitter page on Tuesday, Ude wrote: “VP Yemi Osinbajo hinted former Governor Emeka Ihedioha on Thursday that there was a gang up against him and he

must reach out to some folks in Abuja ASAP. Ihedioha flew with the VP to Abuja, but his efforts to reach out was just too little, too late. The gangsters won!.” Laolu Akande, however, confirmed that Osinbajo was in Imo for a private event and had nothing to do with the verdict which nullified Ihedioha and declared Hope Uzodinma as the rightful governor of Imo state. The statement by Laolu Akande read: “I have seen reports suggesting that VP Osinbajo

had a discussion with former Gov. Ihedioha about the Imo Guber case in the Supreme Court when he visited Imo last week. This is false and mischievous. The VP went to Imo for a private event and no such discussions took place. “Besides, it is completely out of character for the VP to discuss on-going court cases with interested parties, with insinuations of illegal and unethical conspiracies. Please ignore such fake reports wherever you may find it. Outright

Lawan congratulates APC, Imo Governor-elect By Musa Adamu


R-L: Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, with the Founder of Global Women Empowerment Network (GWEN), Tess Cacciatore, during the visit of GWEN/Jeta Amata’s delegation to the minister’s office, yesterday in Abuja.

Group hails Uzodinma’s Supreme Court victory By Ikechukwu Okaforadi


he South East Revival Group (SERG) has described as a good omen, validation of the election of Senator Hope Uzodinma as the Governor of Imo State, urging Imolites to “see the Supreme Court verdict as an act of God since there

cannot be any more appeals within the human jurisdiction.” This was contained in a statement issued in Nsukka, Enugu State by the Coordinator of the group, Willy Ezugwu to congratulate the new governor. “We are convinced that of all the governors that have administered Imo State,

Senator Hope Uzodinma will outperform them. “Therefore, we urge the new governor to reconcile Imolites, rebuild the state as a man sent by God to put smiles on the faces of the good people of Imo State. “With the Supreme Court verdict, we can only appeal to God but we believe that God

has spoken. “It is time to take up the job of rebuilding Imo State in particular and south east in general and delivering dividends of good governance without fear or favour”. Recall that the Supreme Court on Tuesday unanimously sacked Chief Emeka Ihedioha and declared Senator Uzodinma duly elected.

Supreme Court Judgment on Imo State, sad commentary -PDP By Lateef Ibrahim


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has expressed surprise at the judgment of the Supreme Court on the Imo state governorship election, describing it as yet another very sad commentary on the nation’s democratic order. The PDP said that it finds it difficult to understand how Senator Hope Uzodinma/ APC, who came 4th in the March 9, 2019 governorship election, with just 96,458 votes, will suddenly, by the token of the judgment of the Supreme Court, defeat Gov Emeka Ihedioha/PDP that scored 276,404 votes. The party said this in a statement yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary,

Mr Kola Ologbondiyan in Abuja. The leading opposition party said that it (the PDP) and indeed, most Nigerians, are still at a loss as to understand the basis upon which the Supreme Court arrived at its decision. The party said that it is lamentable that the destiny of the people of Imo state is being taken from the governor they chose and voted for and handed over to individuals and a political party that do not have their blessing and mandate and which they rejected at the election. According to the statement, “The Party finds it difficult to understand how Senator Hope Uzodinma/APC, who came 4th in the March 9, 2019 governorship election, with just 96,458 votes, will suddenly, by the

token of the judgment of the Supreme Court, defeat Gov Emeka Ihedioha/PDP that scored 276,404 votes. “In fact, the PDP and indeed, most Nigerians are still at a loss as to understand the basis upon which the Supreme Court arrived at its decision. “The party says it is lamentable that the destiny of the people of Imo state is being taken from the governor they chose and voted for and handed over to individuals and a political party that do not have their blessing and mandate and which they rejected at the election. “The people of Imo state are now confronted with the challenge of having a government that they cannot identify with and which cannot connect with them, having

not emanated from them. “Moreover, all the gains, including the development and stability already achieved by the people-based government, under Governor Emeka Ihedioha/PDP administration in the state are now heavily jeopardized. “Indeed, the mournful and despondent ambience that now pervades in Imo state is a loud testimony that the judgment did not reflect the expectation of the people of Imo state as expressed at the polls”, he said. While recognising that the judgment of the Supreme Court is final, the PDP however urged all party stakeholders in the state to remain united and calm, and await further instruction from the national leadership “on this very sad development”.

resident of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has congratulated Senator Hope Uzodinma on his victory at the Supreme Court which on Tuesday declared him the winner of the March 19, 2019 Imo State governorship election. Lawan also congratulated the All Progressives Party (APC) in the state for peacefully retrieving its mandate through the constitutionally stipulated judicial process. The Senate President said the unanimous decision of the sevenmember panel of the highest court in the land has cleared any doubt on the victory of the APC in the election. “This is a victory for democracy, the rule of law, the All Progressives Congress and the good people of Imo State. “The new Governor-elect should be magnanimous in victory and see his mandate as a call to serve his people conscientiously and to the best of his ability,”

Lawan said. The Senate President wished the governor-elect a successful tenure in office. He also praised the Nigerian Judiciary for reasserting itself as a sacred chapel for judicious resolution of disputes. Ozekhome says – Supreme Court verdict on Imo guber needs analysis A senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Ozekhome, has claimed that the Supreme Court judgement declaring Hope Uzodinma winner of the 2019 Imo governorship election, should be analysed to see if there is justice in it. On Tuesday, Ihedioha who the

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared winner of the election was sacked by a seven-man panel of the Supreme Court after Uzodinma, who came fourth, challenged the outcome of the election in court. Reacting in a statement, Ozekhome said the Supreme Court decision was final but analysts must check whether the judgement was delivered according to the law. He said, “There is ordinarily a presumption by the society that the Supreme Court, being the final court of the land, is supposed to be right in its decisions, after rigorous and painstaking perusal of cases brought before it between feuding

parties.” “However, the next stage is for legal pundits, analysts and academicians, to dissect the judgement thoroughly, to decipher if it met the justice of the case, having regard to the available facts. I do not have these facts, not being one of the counsel in the appeal. They must interrogate whether the judgement actually delivered justice according to law. “After all, law is but a handmaid instituted by man to deliver justice. The two are siamese twins. One without the other is bare and vacuous. One area that needs critical analysis and interrogation is what makes a candidate that came

4th in an election to be declared the winner of that election. Another area that requires an urgent answer is why INEC has so failed the nation that presidents and governors are now being packaged and delivered for the country and states, against the clear choice of the electorate at the polls. “If INEC got its acts right, the judiciary’s frequent interventions would have been greatly minimised. Today, INEC is neither independent, impartial, nor well equipped to count the electorate’s votes and also allow such votes to count. That is the sorry state we are in today, especially since 2015. May God help Nigeria.”

Cross River Commissioner for Environment, Mr Mfon Bassey (2nd, R), inspecting the Calabar Waste Dump Site alongside other officials of the Ministry, yesterday in Calabar. Photo: NAN

Senate President condemns attack on Emir of Potiskum By Ikechukwu Okaforadi


resident of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has condemned the gun attack in Kaduna on the convoy of the Emir of Potiskum, Yobe State, Alhaji Umaru Bubaram. Gunmen on Tuesday night attacked the convoy of the Emir around Maraban Jos on KadunaZaria road, killing some of the Emir’s aides and leaving others injured. Lawan expressed his condolence with the revered Emir and the families of those killed in the sad incident. The Senate President also prayed for speedy recovery of the Emir and others who were injured. Lawan called on the security agencies to ensure that everyone with a hand in the heinous crime is brought to justice. He also called on the security agencies to ensure quick rescue of those who were abducted in the incident.

South, Middle belt leaders rejects disbandment of Amotekun By Musa Adamu


outhern and Middle Belt leaders have rejected the directive of Abubakar Malami declaring Operation Amotekun as illegal, describing the statement as an abuse of office. According to a statement signed by Yinka Odumakin (South-West); Gen CRU Iherike (South-East); Senator Bassey Henshaw (South-South) and Dr Isuwa Dogo (Middle Belt), the leaders said the right to preserve one’s life cannot be under any exclusive list.

“The attention of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF) has been drawn to the illegal diktat by the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr Abubakar Malami SAN declaring Amotekun, the SouthWest security (not military or police) outfit illegal. “We consider his action as an abuse of office to suppress the rights of federating units to secure themselves and in furtherance of the widely – held suspicion that sections of the country are deliberately being rendered vulnerable for herdsmen

and other criminals by the Federal Government. “We ask the Governors of the South-West to ignore Malami and allow him to go to court to challenge their decision as he cannot constitute himself as a court over elected governors. We are not under military rule. The right to preserve your life cannot be under any exclusive list other than the list of those who have no value for human lives. “The ultra vire action of the AGF has further exposed Nigeria as a

country under command and control and governed by a conquest mentality. “We ask Malami to tell us what makes Amotekun illegal and Hisbah legal. “He should further explain to us what makes Civilian JTF legal in the North East where there is war and in Zamfara and Katsina and Kano where there is no war, while Amotekun is his only illegal take. “This is a defining moment to decide if we are under segregation and different laws in the country,” the statement read.

ART& Culture PAGE 18

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

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PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Hiding in plain sight: the faces of modern-day slavery


ixty metres underground, Lisa Kristine is enveloped in darkness. It’s hard to breathe. The air is heavy with dust and fumes, and she feels the heat of bodies shuffling around in the shadows. She can hear the sound of tools hitting stone, of men coughing. They are in an illegal mine in Ghana. The men are here to break stone and carry the pieces to the surface in the hope that some of the fragments might contain gold. But, Kristine is here for something else – their photographs. pAbove ground she takes pictures of the young men and boys who pound the stones and pan for gold. Their arms are coated in fine powder. Their faces are drenched in sweat. Kristine is documenting more than the miners’ back-breaking labour; she is capturing the faces of modern-day slavery. A self-described “native San Franciscan”, Kristine has established her career photographing indigenous people around the world. She recalls being fascinated by images of tribes in her mother’s National Geographic magazines and anthropology books. “I believed they were unshakeable,” she recalls. “I remember thinking, ‘What is it that they have?’ Because I needed that in my own life.” At 18 years old, she left home and travelled to numerous places, including Kenya, Peru and Bhutan, to emulate the inspiring images she had seen in her childhood. Then in 2009, a conversation changed her life. While exhibiting her photographs at the Vancouver Peace Summit, she met someone from Free the Slaves, a non-profit organisation fighting modernday slavery. “I had known that trafficking existed, but I just had no idea of the sheer numbers. It really struck me,” she says. The numbers are indeed staggering. More than 40 million people are enslaved around the world, according to the Global Slavery Index. That is more than the transatlantic slave trade, which held 13 million people in bondage from the 15th to 19th centuries. Today’s figures include those in forced labour, which accounts for more than half of victims at 24.9 million, and forced marriages. Women and girls are disproportionately affected, accounting for 71 per cent of the victims. Though they are no longer in shackles, modern-day slaves are still bound by fear and the threat of violence. The problem cuts across various industries, including domestic work, textiles and garments, agriculture, fishing, mining and construction. It is highly profitable, generating as much as $150 billion (Dh550.87bn) every year. After that meeting, Kristine struggled to sleep for weeks. She flew to Los Angeles to talk to the

This photograph titled ‘Blue Hand’ shows a man enslaved in illegal gold mining in Ghana. “They are forced to spend 48 to 72 hours deep in the mines shafts,” says Lisa Kristine, an American photographer who spent years documenting modern day slavery around the world. Photos: Lisa Kristine.

‘Stacking’. In the brick kilns of India and Nepal, men, women and children are all involved in the process of making bricks. “They suck dust into their lungs all day, every day,” says Kristine.

‘Threads’ by Lisa Kristine. Speaking about the subject of the photograph, she says: “He is more than 50 years old and is enslaved weaving carpets to pay off a modest loan he took 12 years ago. He doesn’t know if he’ll ever be free to work for someone else.”

founders of Free the Slaves about ways in which she could help. By connecting her to their network of abolitionists in various countries, she was able to visit villages and cities where slavery persisted – mines, textile factories, fishing towns. “It was strange because you can pass by these things every day and just assume that the people there are working, but you don’t have any notion that they have no rights or that they’re not getting compensation. In that regard, slavery hides in plain sight,” she says. Her first trip was in 2010, to the brick kilns of India. The secondlargest brick producer worldwide, the country has 200,000 kilns with an output of 250 billion bricks a year. Kristine visited a kiln in Uttar

‘Currency’. Trafficking is rampant around Ghana’s Lake Volta, where children work on fishing boats. “Every kid on the lake knows of another child who died in the nets. Most of the children suffer from skin diseases and parasitic worms. Malaria is common. Medical care is not,” says Kristine.

‘Price by Gold’. Kristine says: “Most of these boys and men come from northern Ghana hoping to strike it rich working at legal mines. When they can’t get a job, they borrow money at usurious interest rates or join teams of slaves known as gangs. The gangs work in areas abandoned by big companies. They can only sell their gold to the moneylender at a price he sets. They are trapped by illegal, fictitious debt, and are often hunted by local police and private security guards for trespassing. Many of them talk about wanting to escape. Some of them believe they will become rich if they work just a little longer and harder.”

Pradesh, where men, women and children were all involved in the process, from moulding the clay to stacking and loading bricks for transport. Kristine’s images are haunting, revealing the scale and intensity of the brick kiln operations. Her subjects are blanketed in rustcoloured dust, their faces lined with exhaustion. Workers carry up to 18 bricks on their heads, each weighing more than a kilogram. In the kilns, temperatures can rise to 54°C. Kristine recounts how

In ‘Family Portrait’, Kristine depicts how slavery can last through generations. The dyed black hands are of the father’s, and the blue red and hands are his sons’s. Using their bare hands, these silk dyers in an Indian village dip the cloth in barrels filled with toxic dye.

‘Stratum’. Kristine says: “Entire families are in bonded labour slavery. Often, families get a loan for an emergency or to pay a broker a fee for getting hired on a new job. Slaveholders, the only people near with any money to lend, trick the borrowers into slavery through illegal, exorbitant interest rates that are impossible to repay. Children inherit the bogus debt from their parents. Generations of families have been enslaved for a loan of just $18.”

even the abolitionists were affected, some vomiting and nearly fainting from the extreme conditions. Overwhelmed, she started to cry, but an abolitionist quickly stopped her. “He shook me and said: ‘Lisa, you can’t do that here. It’s not safe for you and it’s not safe for them,’” she recalls. “In that instance, I realised that I’m here to witness. I’m here to do what I can do to help.” During these trips, Kristine had to follow specific directions – to keep to herself, not to offer the slaves money or promises that they would be rescued. “The connection I would have would be shining a

light on the issue,” she says. Often, she would only have about 10 to 20 minutes to take her photographs. Staying longer increased the risk of being spotted by slaveholders. In one instance, Kristine found herself unable to leave a gold mine in Ghana as security guards with AK-47s turned up after hearing that a photographer was there. “It was nerve-racking at times,” she says about her experiences, adding that she and the abolitionists had to be ready to flee at any moment. Like the slaves in Ghana’s mines, the workers in the kilns of India and Nepal are trapped in a form of debt bondage. Victims are enticed by false job prospects and cash loans with exorbitant interest rates. They sign pledges to pay back the debt, which keeps growing even as they work for years without pay. That’s how entire villages can be enslaved for generations. And the danger, of course, is if you’re born into it, you will never know that you are enslaved because that’s just how you’re living. In Kristine’s photograph Threads, for example, the subject has been enslaved for 12 years over an initial debt of about $20. Worse still, when a slave dies, their family and children often inherit the debt, ensnaring more victims in a cycle of bondage. “That’s how entire villages can be enslaved for generations. And the danger, of course, is if you’re born into it, you will never know that you are enslaved because that’s just how you’re living. There’s nothing to compare it to,” she says, explaining that the work of abolitionists is to educate victims on their rights and eventually help them gain their freedom. Another industry rife with forced labour is the textile business. In a photo titled Family Portrait, Kristine poignantly depicts generational slavery with the stained hands of a father and his two sons, silk dyers who are trapped in servitude. When choosing their victims, traffickers target the most vulnerable – those mired in poverty, the poorly educated, migrants and children. The Global Slavery Index estimates that 10 million children are trapped in bondage worldwide. Along the shores of Ghana’s Lake Volta are fishing villages only accessible by water. Here, as many as 10,000 children, typically boys and some as young as 6, are enslaved. Most have been sold to traffickers by their own families who are destitute or have been told that their children can have better lives working in fishing. They toil for hours a day, with little to no food, and face abuse at the hands of their masters. Given the job of untangling fishing nets caught in the lake’s submerged trees, these young boys dive into the water, which goes down to 75 metres at its deepest.

Culled from https://

L-R: National Coordinator of Next Level Agenda and SDGs 2030 Programme, Dr M.A. Ibrahim and the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, during a meeting in the minister’s office, yesterday in Abuja.

SEC, ICPC pledge colloboration to combat capital market crimes By Etuka Sunday


he Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) yesterday pledged to collaborate in combating crime in the Nigerian capital market. This agreement was that reached when the management of the SEC met with the management team of the ICPC in Abuja. Acting director-general of SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk, said the visit was necessary in order to seek collaboration, and also leverage on the expertise and mandate of the ICPC in tackling corrupt practices especially fraud, which has been prevalent in the Nigerian Capital Market and which is a major obstacle to the actualization of the objectives of the Commission. Uduk said, the objective of regulating the capital market is to protect investors, maintain fair, efficient and transparent Market

by ensuring integrity in the market place and by preventing fraudulent practices. This shared goal she added, has necessitated a collaboration with relevant anti-corruption and law enforcement agencies in a bid to ensure that the market is fair to all investors. According to her, “we are aware that your agency is established to curb corruption in the public sector, but as an agency of government we owe investors the duty to protect their investments, hence the need for this collaboration. Udukuk said, the Capital Market has witnessed incidences of fraud by market operators who have converted and diverted investors funds and utilised same for the acquisition of personal properties within and outside Nigeria adding that this potentially undermines investor confidence. “We believe that this collaboration will be mutually beneficial to both agencies. Promoting market integrity and the integrity of the regulator is important for facilitating the liquidity

and depth necessary to attract local and foreign investors. This naturally translates to sustainable growth and development of the economy which impacts the lives of every citizen and resident. “We are confident that creating awareness within the Commission, on relevant laws and regulations administered by the ICPC, would project the Commission as a lawabiding institution, aid our fight against market abuse, and further boost investor confidence in the regulator and the market. “Given that technology and globalization has made it easy for assets to be dissipated or to disappear without a trace, swift and effective ways of safeguarding and tracing assets has become even more relevant. The Commission therefore seeks to leverage on your intelligence network in other countries, for the tracing and recovery of assets belonging to innocent and hardworking investors in the Nigerian Capital Market.

In his remarks, ICPC Chairman, Prof Bolaji Owasanoye said the capital market is very important to any economy that wants to grow, stating that the ICPC is ready to partner with the SEC in order for the nation to reap the benefits of a vibrant capital market. “I understand the need to protect investors because the capital market has been so badly affected by the activities of fraudulent individuals and organisations. We are happy to collaborate with SEC to look at those who are giving the investment climate a bad name by collecting investors funds and disappearing. We have powers to trace such people and seize their assets”. Owasanoye said, the capital market is technical and that underscores the need for mutual understanding between both organisations adding “We can train you on issues relating to how to ensure that your processes are not susceptible to corrupt practices while you on the other hand train our staff on capital market issues”.

AfDB set to unveil 2020 African Economic Outlook


he African Development Bank will launch the 2020 edition of its flagship African Economic Outlook (AEO) report on Thursday, 30 January 2020 at its headquarters in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. Bank Group President Akinwumi A. Adesina will unveil the report in the

presence of African ministers, diplomats and representatives of international bodies. The theme for this year’s report is: Developing Africa’s workforce for the future. The annual publication highlights economic prospects and projections for the

continent as a bloc and for each of the 54 countries. It offers short- and medium-term forecasts on key socio-economic indicators such as growth, poverty and jobs, while at the same time examining the challenges and progress made.

The report, produced by the Bank’s economic experts, serves as a tool for policymakers, academics, investors, development and financial industry professionals and the media to inform policy dialogue and enhance planning and operational efficiency.


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020



PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

How I made N10,000 daily from Masa Business -Babangida

A roadside business man, Babangida Muhammad frying Masa at Gwarimpa 3rd Avenue, Abuja

By Raheenah Bello


ifferent kinds of things can be done to earn a living. For most people you have to start big and or invest big money before making profit. However, no matter what you start up as a business or the little amount you put into the business your effort determines the profit made. So, what kind of small business could one possibly start? Babangida Muhammad is a roadside business man, who sells masa at Gwarimpa

3rd Avenue, Abuja to earn a living. According to him, he earns nothing less than ten thousand (N10,000) a day. He works morning and evening hours but as business can be, not everyday is fruitful but he earns more during the weekends since people don’t go to work. Generally, he works with four mudus for daily sales which costs him about four thousand naira (N4,000) for preparation. His target audience are those who book in large quantities for weddings or daily breakfast. He says some of the challenges he faces in the business include funds

being raised for preparation since he pays about fifteen thousand naira weekly for the place. He would like to get another place suitable for the business which is affordable. He says masa is porpularly known as masar Bauchi in the north. Irrespective of the state or town it is made, masa originated from Bauchi state. Traditionally, in Hausa land, masa is used occasionally during festive periods as snacks, for breakfast or as appetizers before the main meal. It is basically a slightly fermented rice meal that is accompanied with Nigerian soup like Mayan taushe.

However, it can also be made of maize,millet not only rice. It can be prepared in two ways with sugar and also without sugar,the type eaten with soups are usually not sweetened. It can be prepared by blending raw rice,millet,cowpea,groundnut and other ingredients such as vegetable oil,sugar, salt, skimmed milk,starch,tamarind juice and also yeast to make it rise and puffy. His recipe for preparation includes: three cups of tuwo rice, three tea spoons of precooked rice, two table spoons of active dry yeast, a tea spoon of baking soda, Four table spoons of sugar, one quarter cups of warm water, a pinch of salt, vegetable oil. Soak your rice for 8 hours or more. It is best if you leave it in water overnight. After the time has passed, wash the rice, put it in a blender with the precooked rice and a cup of water and blend them together until smooth. Make sure you blend well but do not worry if you encounter some small grains. Add water gradually, as you do not want your mixture to get to watery or too thick. Use the remaining water to proof the yeast. By that, it means mixing 1/4 cup of water, a teaspoon of sugar and yeast and setting the mixture aside for about 5-10 minutes. Unload the rice mixture into a large bowl, add the proofed yeast, soda, the remaining sugar and some salt and mix the whole thing together. Cover the bowl with the mixed batter with a clean kitchen towel and leave it for 6 to 8 hours. Alternatively, you can leave it overnight. When the time is up, put a little bit of oil on the pan and fry your batter. It is best if you separate the batter into smaller pieces and fry them in batches on both sides until they are golden-brown. After you are done with frying, serve your masa with maple syrup, honey, suya, hot sauce or any other condiment of your choice. Also the use of dry masa flour is rapidly growing because of its convenience,with the use of dry masa flour you don’t have to go through the whole process of soaking of rice and the rest. Some of the nutritional benefits include potassium, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc.

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Heavy traffic jam, along Goodleck Ebele Jonathan way, yesterday in Abuja.

By Stanley Onyekwere


n order to ensure better and effective service delivery to residents of Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Department of Monitoring and Inspection has declared that there will be no compromise on standards. Making this assertion, the Director in charge of the Department, TpL Olawale Labiyi, said it is set to surpass its achievements of 2019 by strengthening all its divisions. Labiyi reiterated that the work of the Department is to monitor projects that is meant to serve the interests of the public, and any attempt to lower standards means that the public will be shortchanged. The Director, who spoke during the Department’s first management meeting of the year, reminded the staff to restrategise on how to improve in 2020. According to him, the main goal of

2020: Residents assured of improved monitoring of projects 2020 is to ensure that the Department does not compromise on standards. He said: “We have to look at what we set out to achieve in 2019, what we were able to achieve, what we could not achieve and the reasons behind it.” He noted that part of what the Department achieved in 2019 was procurement of 3 utility vehicles, the strengthening of feedback and Implementation Division with more staff and utility vehicles. He added that oher areas of achievement were the ability of the Project Monitoring division to handle

more files, visit far flung areas for Inspection because of the allocation of two vehicles to them. He equally revealed that the inspectorate Division was also modified with additional schedules of duty which saw the division handling the inspection of supplies of different Secretariats Departments Agencies (SDAs). Labiyi therefore expressed joy over the creation of the Public Relations unit, which according to him, has seen the public getting more information about the FCT through the activities of the Department.

Similarly, the Head of Regional Division, Mr. Stephen Ayakpat, noted that in 2020, there was a need to take cognisance of security to enable the Division achieve more. According to him, they will require security escorts to ensure safety of lives during Monitoring exercises in remote areas. Not left out, the Head of Inspectorate Division, Mrs. Ada Okenyi, advocated for periodic, unscheduled visits to facilities, especially capital projects, which according to her will add value to the work of the Department.

Sanitation: FCTA opens bid for AEPB’s 47 lots of cleaning contract By Stanley Onyekwere


s part of measures to keep Abuja clean, the FCT Administration yesterday opened bid for no fewer than Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) 47 lots of cleaning, supply of vehicles and other materials like computers. Our correspondent reports that the the opening bids for the AEPB Environmental/ cleaning sanitation which is the FCTA through its Procurement Department advertised four and half weeks ago. Speaking on the sidelines of the exercise, Director FCT Procurement , Ibrahim Gusau,

said the pre-qualification (technical bid) exercise is for a three-year contract for the advertised 47 lots. Gusau noted that the Department in line with the Procurement Act invited organisations such as Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), ICPC, NGOs and the media, to witness the exercise. He disclosed at the first attempt to open the technical bidding last year, more than 450 companies bidded and it was cancelled because of complaints and petitions. According to him, after the pre-

qualification (technical bid) exercise , the companies that are credible, are going to be called for financial bid maybe within the next three to four months. He assured that the Department is going to do its best to ensure that it is fair, credible and listen to complaints. “We have advertised for 47 lots of the cleaning and supply of vehicles and materials like computers. It’s a three-year contract, and we hope that the companies that will win are capable of doing the work. “We have to do due diligence, to make ensure that the companies are qualified, because at times companies that are not

qualified come and bid, and at end of they didn’t win they will complain. You know cleaning of the city is a very difficult task, you have to have the manpower. “We want to be very transparent and make sure we follow the due process. At the end of this bidding, we hope to achieve our aim, which is to be transparent, credible and fair. “We are not going to do anything that will truncate the exercise. This work is for the public and the administration, because we want to make sure that the city is cleaned,” the Director stressed.

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Page 22

world news


US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin speaks to the news media outside the White House in Washington, DC, USA, 15 January 2020. US President Donald J. Trump is scheduled to sign a trade agreement with China. EPA

US and China poised to sign ‘Phase One’ of trade deal


S Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Wednesday that some technology and cybersecurity issues will be resolved in the next chapter of a deal to end the trade war between the United States and China. The comments came as the US prepares to ink the first part of a new multi-part trade deal with China, something US officials have desired. As part of the ‘Phase One’ agreement, China said it would tighten intellectual property rules, increase agricultural purchases and open up its financial sector. In return, the Trump administration agreed to cut a 15 per cent tariff rate in half for $110

billion worth of products targeted in September and delay planned escalations. The tariff rates of other tranches, with a total trade value of roughly $250 billion, will remain the same as an enforceable mechanism. Additional rollbacks of tariffs in ‘Phase Two’ will arrive as tech and cybersecurity issues are worked through. Mr Mnuchin seemed confident that China would implement an mold laws to follow through on its commitments. Speaking about the trade deal, Secretary Mnuchin said “I think a very significant amount of the technology issues are in Phase One. There are other certain areas of services away from financial

services that will be in Phase Two. There are certain additional cybersecurity issues that will be in Phase Two.” The treasury secretary thought “there [are] still more issues to deal with and we’ll address those” but warned the US can hike tariffs if China isn’t meeting trade deal agreement. There still [are] more issues to deal with and we’ll address those The only component of the agreement that won’t be made public is a confidential annex with specific purchase amounts, they said, because it could influence market behavior. Trade negotiators had planned to begin efforts de-escalate economic tensions after the first

Siemens’ CEO says it’s ‘regretful’ that the UK has chosen to leave the EU


ritain’s exit from the European Union, by end of the month, is unlikely to have a “direct impact” on Siemens’ operations in the UK, according to its chief executive, who said it was regretful that the continent’s third-largest economy will no longer be part of the bloc. The industrial company, one of the largest in Europe, maintains a staff of 14,000 over 14 manufacturing sites with much of the production largely serving the local market. “We are very localised in the I’m assuming there’s not going to be a big direct impact,” Joe Kaeser told The National in an interview in Abu Dhabi. “Should Brexit lead to a slowdown in the British economy, we may be affected indirectly because not as many people are trading any more or not as many

Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser said direct relationships in the US the company’s biggest market - were more important than the outcome of the US presidential elections. Khushnum Bhandari for The National

people need power anymore. Although I very much regret for Europe that the third-largest economy will not be part of it anymore,” he added. The United Kingdom will formally leave the EU on January 31 in accordance with a 2016 referendum in which the British public chose to leave the 28-member single-market bloc. The International Monetary Fund warned that Britain could be plunged into a two-year recession in the event of a no-deal Brexit, which refers to the country’s departure from the bloc without a withdrawal agreement. In November, Siemens advised its customers in the UK that steps were being undertaken to “ensure business continuity” should there be a more disruptive outcome from the country’s withdrawal process.

PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

stage is signed, but President Trump has said he may wait until after the presidential election to finalize Phase Two, which could address thornier issues such as the large-scale subsidies China offers its companies. Speaking jointly Mr Mnuchin and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said that “There are no other oral or written agreements between the United States and China on these matters, and there is no agreement for future reduction in tariffs,” indicating that this deal was tentative and could be pulled back from by the US side if they deem China isn’t sticking to their side of the deal.

Russian government resigns as Putin plans future The Russian government is to resign, hours after President Vladimir Putin announced plans in parliament to change the constitution. Mr Putin has proposed a nationwide vote on changes that would shift power from the presidency to parliament. He has asked Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to take up the post of deputy head of the National Security Council. Mr Medvedev said the president’s proposals would significantly change Russia’s balance of power. “These changes, when they are adopted... will introduce substantial changes not only to an entire range of articles of the constitution, but also to the entire balance of power, the power of the executive, the power of the legislature, the power of judiciary,” Mr Medvedev said. “In this context... the government in its current form has resigned.” The announcement came as a surprise, and in a statement Mr Putin thanked the government for what it had achieved. BBC Moscow correspondent Sarah Rainsford said the reason why Mr Putin had removed Mr Medvedev was unclear. President Putin’s fourth term in office is due to end in 2024, and under the existing constitution he would not be entitled to another term.

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South Africa: Old Mutual Wins LongStanding Case Against Peter Moyo

r o m A f r i c a Morocco to Build 2nd Airport in Marrakech, Increase Hosting Capacity in Major Airports


he insurer’s appeal against an earlier ruling that temporarily reinstated Peter Moyo as CEO was upheld by the Johannesburg High Court on Tuesday, 14 January 2019. Old Mutual said it was now free to appoint a permanent CEO. The ruling has sent Old Mutual’s share up by more than 3% to R19,78 during Tuesday morning’s trade. Old Mutual has emerged victorious in its seven month-long battle with its axed CEO Peter Moyo, with the Johannesburg High Court upholding the insurer’s appeal against an earlier ruling that temporarily reinstated him. On Tuesday, 14 January, the high court upheld Old Mutual’s application to appeal against a 30 July 2019 ruling by Judge Brian Mashile that ordered the insurer to temporarily reinstate Moyo as CEO and blocked Old Mutual from appointing his successor. In essence, a full bench of judges found that Old Mutual had lawfully dismissed Moyo. In a judgment written by Judge Pieter Meyer and concurred by Judges Raylene Keightley and Keoagile Matojane, Moyo has also been ordered to pay Old Mutual’s legal fees for its appeal application. Old Mutual spokesperson Tabby Tsengiwe said Old Mutual welcomes the judgment and it vindicates the insurer for its decision to fire Moyo.

Marrakech’s Menara Airport oroccan Airports Authority (ONDA) has announced plans to equip Marrakech with a second airport, in addition to opening new terminals in all the major Moroccan city airports by 2025. ONDA also aims to build a third terminal at Casablanca’s


Amid fears of U.S. Africa pullout, French minister to travel to Washington

Trump impeachment: Democrats announce new evidence ahead of vote


emocrats in the US House of Representatives have unveiled new evidence as part of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. On Tuesday, they released a trove of documents relating to the allegation that Mr Trump put pressure on Ukraine to investigate a political rival. The president denies the allegation and has branded the inquiry a “witch hunt”. The new materials include text messages that suggest the former US ambassador to Ukraine was put under surveillance. They were obtained from the Ukrainian-American businessman Lev Parnas, an associate of Mr Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Senior Democrats said they would send the documents to the Senate alongside the formal articles of impeachment.

The House will vote on Wednesday on whether to send these articles to the Senate. As Democrats control the House, this vote is expected to pass meaning the impeachment trial can begin in earnest next week. Why Ukraine is so important to the US Who’s who in this story? Mr Trump was impeached by the House last month, on accusations of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. He denies trying to pressure Ukraine to open an investigation into his would-be Democratic White House challenger Joe Biden. What is the new evidence? The materials include letters, phone records, notes and flash drives from Mr Parnas, who was born in Ukraine and is a close associate of Mr Giuliani. BBC

Page 23

French Defence Minister Florence Parly leaves the Elysee Palace following the weekly cabinet meeting in Paris, France December 18, 2019. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier


rance’s Armed Forces Minister said on Wednesday she would travel to Washington in the coming days to discuss the United States’ military support to French forces in the Sahel region amid growing concern of a U.S. exit from the area. “Indeed, we count on the precious support of the United States for the success of this consolidated effort,” Florence Parly told lawmakers, referring to French and African operations in the region. “I will be in the American capital in the coming days to consolidate the existing deployment,” she said.

International Airport to increase the hosting capacity from 10 million to 23 million passengers. As part of the national plan, Agadir’s Al Massira airport will see an extension to raise the hosting capacity from 2 million to 7 million passengers. All the projects are set to be

completed by 2025. Casablanca’s airport reached 10 million passengers on December 26 while Agadir’s airport reached 2 million passengers on January 1. ONDA organized a ceremony to celebrate the achievement at both airports.

The objective of the plan is to increase the hosting capacity of around 60 million passengers and reduce congestion problems. The year 2019 was marked by several foreign airlines launching direct flights to different Moroccan cities.

Ethiopian Airlines to build international airport “bigger than Charles de Gaulle”


thiopian Airlines has announced plans to build Africa’s largest airport, with construction possibly beginning as soon as this July. The airline’s chief executive Tewolde Gebremariam told the Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation the airport may be bigger than France’s Charles de Gaulle. It would be sited on 35 sq km of land between the town of Bishoftu and Zequala mountain. Bishoftu is about 48km southeast of the capital, Addis Ababa. When the idea of building at Bishoftu was discussed in the past, an airport with a capacity of 80 million was mentioned. He added that authorities in the Oromo region of Ethiopia are cooperating to secure the land. The new facility would reduce congestion at Bole, Addis Ababa’s present international airport. Ethiopian Airlines is Africa’s largest airline by fleet size and revenue, however the country’s air infrastructure has not kept pace with its growth. Less than a decade ago, Bole handled fewer than a million passengers a year, but that rose to 7

million in 2014. Passenger numbers are expected to continue increasing by about 18% a year. A $225m terminal, funded by China and built by China Communications Construction Company, was completed at Bole in January last year, with 28 check-in counters and seven gates. The Chinese company is presently working on a $138m project to expand and renovate

Terminal 1. Other plans for international airports have been announced in the past. In 2012, former Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn reportedly gave the green light for a project near the town of Mojo, 65km south of Bole. Bishoftu, a settlement of about 100,000 people, was the site where the Ethiopian Air Force trained its first pilots in 1946.

Bole’s Terminal 2 was completed in January last year (Vob08/CC



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PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

Koizumi is first of Japan’s top ministers to take paternity leave


Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif speaks at a global conference in New Delhi, India. AP

Iran’s Javad Zarif: The US is ‘fuelling mayhem’ in the Middle East


ranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif accused the US of “fuelling mayhem” in the Middle East because of its “arrogance and ignorance” as tensions between the two countries peak following the killing of a top military commander Qassen Suleimani. Speaking at a gathering of global diplomats and policymakers on the second day of India’s flagship geopolitical Raisina Dialogue in New Delhi, Mr Zarif said that the US harboured a myopic vision of the region and expected people in Tehran to celebrate the killing of the military leader. Instead, it rallied support for the leadership, although there were protests later over the mistaken downing of a Ukrainian passenger flight, which killed 176 Iranians and foreign nationals. Mr Zarif and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov attended the event as global efforts to deescalate tensions between the US and Iran are under way. “This ignorance and arrogance has been fuelling mayhem in the

region, not just in Iraq,” Mr Zarif said. “The US looks at everything from their own perspective and not from the perspective of the people in (the) region.” Sulemani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, was killed in a drone strike by US forces outside Baghdad airport in early January, leading to fraught relations across the region. Iran retaliated by launching over a dozen ballistic missiles strikes at least two bases where US military and coalition forces are stationed in Iraq. Mr Zarif said Suleimani had been in Iraq to deliver a diplomatic message to its prime minister and to calm Iraqis who were enraged by the US killing of 25 members of the Iraqi Armed Forces in response to the death of an American contractor. He also claimed that the killing was not in response to attacks on the US embassy in Baghdad in the proceeding days, but had been orgamised seven months before. Students light candles

during a memorial ceremony for passengers of Ukraine airplane, at the Tehran university in Iran. EPA On the shooting down of the Ukrainian flight, he said it had been a “mistake” but blamed the unrest created by the US for the disaster. “Why did that happen? Because there was a crisis,” he said, adding that Sulemani’s assassination has come as a setback in the war against ISIS, which he helped to fight against. He also spoke of the despair among the young generation in Iran as the country has incurred hundreds of billions of dollars in damages since the US imposed sanctions two years ago, crippling the economy. The International Monetary Fund estimated that Iran’s economy is contracting at a rate of 9.5 per cent a year. Oil exports were effectively zero in December and inflation is running at nearly 40 per cent. “The US has never brought peace and stability in the region,” he said.

His views were echoed by his Russian counterpart Mr Lavrov, who expressed concerns over the unrest in the region and promised Russia would make efforts to maintain peace. “We are very concerned with what is going on in the [Arabian] Gulf,” he said, suggesting that the Gulf countries collaborate on a joint security mechanism. “We have been suggesting to the Gulf countries that they start thinking about collective mechanisms, starting with confidence building measures and military exercises,” he said. Mr Lavrov also expressed hopes for a resolve in Libya, a day after renegade Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, who is fighting to seize control of the country, left Moscow without signing an agreement that would have formalised a tentative ceasefire. Russia and Turkey attempted to broker a ceasefire between Field Marshal Haftar and Fayez Al Sarraj, Prime Minister of the UNbacked Government of National Accord in Tripoli.

apan’s environment minister has announced that he will take paternity leave when his first child is born this month, the first time a cabinet minister in the country has publicly committed to such a move. Shinjirō Koizumi, a mediasavvy 38-year-old, married to a former television anchorwoman, told a ministry meeting it had been a difficult decision to balance his duties as minister and his desire to be with his newborn. “I want to take a total of two weeks off flexibly, making exceptions for important public duties,” he said, adding that he hoped his decision would help to change perceptions and encourage other fathers to follow suit. He said he would not take the weeks off consecutively and expected to work remotely or have shortened days during the leave period, which would be spread over three months from his child’s birth. The chief cabinet secretary, Yoshihide Suga, told reporters that he hoped Koizumi’s decision would have a positive impact on attitudes towards male parenting. With Japan facing an ageing population and a dwindling birthrate, the government recently began promoting paternity leave. In December it adopted a policy allowing public servants to take more than a month of paternity leave. The son of a former prime minister, Koizumi was named environment minister in a cabinet reshuffle in September, becoming the third youngest Japanese minister since the end of the second world war.


Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, attends a company event in New Delhi, India, Jan. 15, 2020.

in the Indian capital. The company said the latest investment would help bring more than 10 million Indian businesses online as it sets up digital centers in 100 villages and towns It will also aim to export goods worth $10 billion from India by 2025. Amazon says the initiative aims at empowering small businesses and that it already works with more than half a million sellers on its platform. The announcement however failed to convince protesting traders who held demonstrations holding posters saying “Jeff Bezos Go Back.”

More such protests are planned on Thursday. Members of the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) hold placards and shout slogans during a protest against the visit of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, to India, in New Delhi, Jan. 15, 2020. “They [online companies] are indulging into predatory pricing, deep discounting which has resulted in great damage to brick and mortar businesses due to the business designs of companies with deep pockets,” according to Praveen Khandelwal, the head of the

Climate activists ‘may turn to violence’, experts fear

Serge Stroobants, Director for Mena and Europe at the Institute for Economics and Peace, at the regional launch of the Global Terrorism Index in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath / The National

E Shinjirō Koizumi and his wife, Christel Takigawa, a former TV anchorwoman, are expecting their first child later this month. Photograph: STR/JIJI Press/ AFP/Getty Images

Confederation of All India Traders, which represents tens of millions of small traders. Accusing the company of discriminating against small sellers by promoting larger ones, Khandelwal added, “they have done nothing to empower small traders.” On Monday, India’s anti-trust regulator opened an investigation into the business practices of Amazon and its Indian competitor Walmart-owned Flipkart, looking into allegations of deep discounting and preferential treatment of some sellers on their platforms.


By Mashe Umaru Gwamna

nvironmental activists could soon turn to violence due to what they see as a lack of action to tackle climate change, a terrorism expert

Amazon’s Bezos Announces $1 Billion Investment in India as Small Businesses Protest mazon founder and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos announced a $1 billion investment in India on Wednesday, calling the South Asian country a key growth market. The announcement comes as hundreds of small traders protest against the world’s biggest online retailer, saying Amazon’s business practices are hurting local stores. “I predict that the 21st century is going to be India’s century,” Bezos, dressed in a blue traditional Indian jacket, said at a company event that brought together small businesses

Environment PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

said. Serge Stroobants, an officer in the Belgian army and respected academic, said that a resurgence in ecoterrorism was one of the threats security services were braced for – as he laid out the findings of research on terrorism’s effects. The latest edition of the Global Terrorism Index, which is published every year by the Sydney-based Institute for Economics and Peace think tank, also noted a fall in deaths from terrorism in 2018 with almost 19 in every 20 fatalities taking place in the Middle East, South Asia or Africa. A lot of institutions are looking at the evolution of the climate change movement Serge Stroobants, Institute for Economics and Peace There has been a growing threat from far-right extremists in the West, as well as from female terrorists, mainly by Boko Haram in Nigeria, the report said. Meanwhile, unsophisticated “lone wolf” attacks, carried out by people not affiliated to any organised group, have become more common. Speaking about potential trends at the regional report launch in Abu Dhabi, Mr Stroobants said a rise in environmental activism may lead to violence, and warned of the risk of terrorists utilising drone

technology to carry out attacks. “We have to be very careful about windows of opportunity and weaknesses,” he said. “A lot of institutions are looking at the evolution of the climate change movement.” Mr Stroobants, the director of Europe and Mena at the IEP, said the demands for radical action, as well as a lack of trust in governments and democratic institutions to enact the necessary policies, could reach a “tipping point” where some resorted to violence. “A lot of counter-terrorism organisations are really, really keeping a close eye on this,” he said. “When you look at the urgency put into the narrative for action, linked to decreditation of the governments, you take away the potential legal and democratic potential to influence the government. “Theoretically, this could lead to the use of some form of violence, we need to be careful of this potential evolution. We should not let violence take over in this debate.” This month, British police said they had made a mistake it categorising the group Extinction Rebellion, which has engaged in acts of peaceful civil disobedience to raise awareness of climate change, as an “extremist” organisation. Globally, the Terrorism Index named Afghanistan as the place most affected by terrorism, replacing Iraq, where the success of military action against ISIS

was credited with a reduction in incidents, leading to it dropping into second place. Nigeria and Syria were noted as the other countries where the effects of terrorism were “very high”. In 2018, the number of deaths caused by terrorism fell by 12.5 per cent, to 7,551, the lowest since 2012. The Taliban was named the world’s deadliest terrorist group in 2018, responsible for 6,000 deaths, followed by ISIS, the Khorasan Chapter of the Islamic State that operates in Afghanistan and Asia, and Boko Haram in Nigeria. These four groups were behind 60 per cent of all deaths in 2018. The report ranked 163 countries based on how affected they were by terrorist acts, with the UAE coming 130th. Terrorism was classed as having a “very low” impact on the country. Mr Stroobants said that, while security agencies had become better at stopping attacks, more effort was needed to tackle the ideologies that attract people to extremism. Conflicts, too, he said, had played a major role in fuelling terrorism. “We focus the efforts on counter terrorism on making sure nobody can press a button or pull a trigger,” he said. “But we are very, very bad at making sure that people do not develop the idea to create a device with a button or a trigger. “We are good at taking away the capabilities, but the ideologies are still there.” Culled from



PEOPLES DAILY, Thursday, January 16, 2020

appointed military governor of Eastern Region • July 1966 - Second coup masterminded by Murtala Muhammed, Lt Col Yakubu Gowon becomes head of state • June to October 1966 - Riots in northern Nigeria targeted at Igbos, killing many and forcing up to a million to return to south-eastern Nigeria • May 1967 - Ojukwu declares independence of the Republic of Biafra • July 1967 - War begins • October 1967 - Biafran capital Enugu falls • May 1968 - Nigeria captures oil-rich Port Harcourt • April 1969 - Umuahia, new Biafran capital falls to Nigerian forces • January 1970 - Ojukwu flees Nigeria • January 1970 - Biafra surrenders Mr Ago left the army and went in search of his family, whom he had not heard from in more than two years. He collected his portion from an allocation of raw rice to his unit, then set off towards the village of a relative, where he suspected his parents and siblings would be holed up. “I had to carry the rice while starving myself, carrying it across rivers and forests until I found them,” he said. Many of his friends and classmates had died at the battlefront. But his family was delighted to see that the son and brother they assumed dead was alive. And they were glad that he had turned up with food. Hunger killed more Biafrans than bullets and bombs. When the university was reopened a few months after the war ended, Mr Ago returned to UNN, eventually graduating with a degree in plant and soil science. “I think we would have done better if we had handled it with a little bit more intelligence,” said Mr Ago. “I think now that Ojukwu… thought he was Jesus Christ. “He thought he could do magic. If he had slowed down and allowed some people who were with him to advise him properly, we would have come out better than we did.” ‘They only had knives and cutlasses’ Felix Nwankwo Oragwu, scientist He was a physics lecturer at UNN when the civil war began. For the next 30 months, he headed the Research and Production (RAP) group comprising Igbo scientists from various fields. Its primary responsibility was to provide technological support to the Biafran army, which was poorly equipped.

Hunger caused the deaths of many people during the conflict


Remembering Nigeria’s Biafra war that many prefer to forget T he deaths of more than a million people in Nigeria as a result of the brutal civil war which ended exactly 50 years ago are a scar on the nation’s history. For most Nigerians, the war over the breakaway state of Biafra is generally regarded as an unfortunate episode best forgotten, but for the Igbo people who fought for secession, it remains a life-defining event. In 1967, following two coups and turmoil which led to about a million Igbos returning to the south-east of Nigeria, the Republic of Biafra seceded with 33-yearold military officer Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu at the helm. The Nigerian government declared war and after 30 months of fighting, Biafra surrendered. On 15 January 1970, the conflict officially ended. The government’s policy of “no victor, no vanquished” may have led to a lack of official reflection, but many Nigerians of Igbo origin grew up on stories from people who lived through the war. Three of those who were involved in the secessionist campaign have been sharing their memories. ‘We thought we were magicians’ Christopher Ejike Ago, soldier He had just finished grammar school and started training as a veterinary assistant at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), in south-eastern Nigeria, when the civil war began. Almost every student he knew became part of the war effort. He joined the Biafran army and was assigned to the signal unit, whose responsibilities included “active intelligence and eavesdropping on the Nigerian military”. “We thought we were magicians,” said 76-year-old Mr Ago. “The Nigerians who were pursuing us were trained soldiers. We were not. We were drafted into the war, given two days’ training. “Plus the fact that we were hungry. Some of us, our skin was getting rotten. Nobody can fight a war like that.” In January 1966, some senior Nigerian army officers, mostly of the Igbo ethnic group, assassinated key politicians during a coup in the West African state. Those killed included Ahmadu Bello, a revered leader in the north. This led to months of massacres against the Igbo living in the north. Tens of thousands were killed while about a million fled to what was then known as the Eastern Region. These events sparked the decision to secede, spearheaded by Ojukwu, who was then the military governor of the Eastern Region. In the months preceding the war, Ojukwu often visited UNN, the only university in south-eastern Nigeria at the time, to meet with students and prepare them for secession. Mr Ago looked forward to these visits, and joined the crowd who gathered at the university’s Freedom Square. “Once his helicopter touched down, everybody went there and, practically, school shut down. “He had this incredible sense of humour. He spiked everybody up and we formed songs and were singing and enjoying ourselves.” In the first year of the war, the Nigerian government captured the coastal city of Port Harcourt and imposed a blockade, which cut food supplies to Biafra. Image copyright Evening Standard Image caption Nigerian troops seen in one of Biafra’s main cities, Port Harcourt, in 1968 after fierce fighting Mr Ago remembers the overpowering hunger that often forced Biafran soldiers to catch and eat mice. He also remembers the last year of the war when his unit was continuously on the move, fleeing the advancing Nigerian army. “Somewhere in the middle of the war,” he said, “the Biafrans made some dramatic successes that gave us hope that we might hold the Nigerians until at least some help from outside came.” By late 1969, all hope was lost. Biafra timeline • January 1966 - Nigerian government overthrown in what was seen as an “Igbo coup” led by junior army officers • January 1966 - Lt Col Odumegwu-Ojukwu


The RAP’s most notable product was the “ogbunigwe”, a weapons launcher of remarkable and devastating effect which influenced the outcome of many battles in Biafra’s favour, according to historical reports. “Without us, the war would have lasted only about 30 hours,” said the 85-year-old. “When the war started, there was not a single weapon either in a store or anywhere throughout Biafra. They only had knives and cutlasses. No gun, no bomb, no nothing.” In the aftermath of the war, the Nigerian government did not want to impose any form of collective punishment. Nevertheless, the Igbo faced some devastating consequences, particularly economically as the Biafran currency that people had accumulated became worthless. Many Igbo still feel sidelined in Nigerian politics, as since the civil war no-one from the ethnic group has become president. Increasing cries of marginalisation have led in recent years to the emergence of Igbo groups agitating once again for secession, particularly the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob), formed by UK-based BritishNigerian Nnamdi Kanu. Mr Oragwu wishes that the Igbo had paid less attention to the scramble for power at the centre, and instead distinguished their region by advancing the technological gains of the war. “Biafra would have been a technological nation and would have been able to compete with anybody,” he said, anger in his voice. “That is what makes me sad. By this time, we would have been competing with at least South Korea.” The scientist’s wartime accomplishments had caught the attention of the Nigerian authorities and he was invited by the government to pioneer a special science and technology programme for the country. He was behind the setting up of four universities of science and technology in different regions of Nigeria and after retirement he published Scientific and Technological Innovations in Biafra, a book he hoped would inspire young Nigerians. “Nigeria was programmed by the British colonial authorities not to participate in production and

In the aftermath of the war, the Nigerian government did not want to impose any form of collective punishment. Nevertheless, the Igbo faced some devastating consequences, particularly economically as the Biafran currency that people had accumulated became worthless. Many Igbo still feel sidelined in Nigerian politics, as since the civil war no-one from the ethnic group has become president. Increasing cries of marginalisation have led in recent years to the emergence of Igbo groups agitating once again for secession, particularly the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob), formed by UK-based BritishNigerian Nnamdi Kanu.

manufacture of global technologies,” he wrote in the book. “The war gave the opportunity to… reject the colonial design.” ‘An incredible period’ Edna Nwanunobi, teacher She was teaching English and French in a secondary school in Port Harcourt in southern Nigeria when the civil war began. While the UK backed Nigeria, France was the most prominent supporter of Biafra. But English was more widely spoken in Biafra, so translators were needed whenever French officials visited Ojukwu. Ms Nwanunobi joined the Biafran ministry of foreign affairs as part of a handful of translators who worked directly with Ojukwu. “The war was an incredible period,” said 82-yearold Mrs Nwanunobi. “Everybody was forced to go home so you were forced to fraternise with your people more than any time before. “And people who worked in every Biafra office were high level people. These were people who were doing all sorts of things and the war forced them out of their positions.” She enjoyed working directly with the Biafran leader, whom she and her colleagues fondly referred to as “Brother OJ”. “He was a gorgeous person,” she said again and again. “And he was disciplined. If any meeting lasted more than two hours, he wouldn’t be party to it.” Her most memorable assignment occurred after the Biafran military captured six Italian oil workers employed by the Nigerian government. Officials from different European countries travelled to meet Ojukwu to appeal for their release. “That was the largest assembly we had,” she recalled. “Even the Vatican sent representatives.” During the meeting, Mrs Nwanunobi conveyed to Ojukwu that he stood the risk of losing European support. He promised to consider the matter, and the Italians were subsequently released. Mrs Nwanunobi met Ojukwu for the last time on 23 December 1969, when she lined up outside his office with her colleagues, to receive a Christmas gift and a handshake from him. A few days later, she left the country for the Biafran office in Paris. During a stopover of several days in Lisbon, she heard that Biafra had surrendered. Her first concern was for Ojukwu. “I was worried that he would come to harm,” she said softly. “I didn’t want anybody to disgrace him.” Her worry lifted when she learned that her boss had escaped in his private jet, and was granted asylum by Ivory Coast, a francophone country. Mrs Nwanunobi spent much of the 1970s in Canada before returning to Nigeria in 1977, where she resumed work as a secondary school teacher. Ojukwu himself remained in exile for 13 years. After he was officially pardoned by the Nigerian government, he returned in 1982, with multitudes pouring onto the streets of his home state of Anambra to welcome him. He died in November 2011 and was given a full military burial in a ceremony attended by then Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, some other African leaders and members of the diplomatic corps. Fifty years after the Biafran conflict, Nigeria is still battling to maintain its unity, with various groups, not just the Igbo, calling for the restructuring of Africa’s most populous state. It is probably for this reason that the war is barely mentioned. The government has nothing to gain by reminding Nigerians that secession happened before and can be attempted again. Source: BBC



THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1) Mokwenye Iloba Justice --Chairman 2.)Atalor Polycarp Abhulimen --Secretary 3) Mokwenye Ifeyinwa Angela 4) Ekenulo Uzoma Francis THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE : 1.Giving to the less privilege, comfort the heartbroken, encourage the hopeless, care and support to the needy. 2.To engage in health care programs, Charitable works, give support and care for the less-privileged.




Ajegunle Country Club




THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Rekson Chuks Isaac 2. Hon. Ogholemu Ovie Paul 3. Edith Oritsegbubemi Amatotsero

THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Abdullahi Audu Shuaib 2. Kadri Monsurat Omotayo Adunni 3. Ibrahim Maryam Dada 4. Olagunju Adegboyega Sulayman 5. Orolu-Balogun Mutiat Toyosi






Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, pictured here in June 1968, was a charismatic figure


PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE : 1.To educate and assist Muslim women in the recognition of their rights with a view to strengthening the family and thereby the society. 2.To strengthen the bonds of cooperation, benevolence, compassion and assistance among women all over the world. 3.To Provide a strong forum to express the viewpoint and reflect the thought of Muslim women on all issues, and to represent them at the international level. ANY OBJECTION TO THIS REGISTRATION SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO THE REGISTRAR_GENERAL, CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION, PLOT 420, TIGRIS CRESCENT , OFF AGUIYI IRONSI STREET , MAITAMA , ABUJA WITHIN 28DAYS OF THIS PUBLICATION. SIGNED : ELIAS RILWAN ADEBIYI

THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Chibuikem Emmanuel Onyekachi - CHAIRMAN 2. Dennis Onyekachi Ngene 3. Chinemerem Juliana Onyekachi - SECRETARY THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE : 1. To provide Social, Educational and Economic Empowerment to Women and Children. 2. To defend and safeguard the rights of Children and provide for the well being of Children in need, more particularly,or otherwise Children exposed to any form of abuse, and Children deprived of education. 3. To care for and render free treatment to Children suffering from ill health, physically and mentally. 4. To identify the The lord beggars and impress upon them the significance of dignified living and persuade them to take up an alternative livelihood and to take such measures so as to equip them in attaining such means of living. 5. To persistently sensitize and provide capacity building among the general public, more particularly, i. Students in schools and colleges, ii. Employees in corporate houses and other organizations. ANY OBJECTION TO THIS REGISTRATION SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO THE REGISTRAR_ GENERAL, CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION, PLOT 420, TIGRIS CRESCENT , OFF AGUIYI IRONSI STREET , MAITAMA , ABUJA WITHIN 28DAYS OF THIS PUBLICATION. SIGNED : SECRETARY.


BETTER DAYS DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVE THIS IS TO INFORM THE GENERAL PUBLIC THAT THE ABOVE NAMED HAS APPLIED TO THE CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION (CAC), ABUJA FOR REGISTRATION UNDER PART 'C' OF COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT, 1990, (CAP C20, LFN 2004). THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Adama Joseph Adama. 2. Rita Ikani Idu THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE : 1. To assist the less privilege to acquire skills that enable them to earn a reasonable living and fulfill their destinies. 2. To promote enterprise skill building and to stimulate economic activities and to embark on formal/informal educational promotions for children, youths and women so as to tackle illiteracy, poverty, hunger, discrimination, diseases and violence. 3. To engage on the activities for the promotion and protection of human rights, good leadership, civic responsibilities, rule of law and democracy. 4. To ensure an ideal democratic society where freedom of speech, right to fair trial is guaranteed for all. 5. To foster peace and unity within the community and to promote child and women rights and to kick against violence against women, children and all persons. . ANY OBJECTION TO THIS REGISTRATION SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO THE REGISTRAR_GENERAL, CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION, PLOT 420, TIGRIS CRESCENT , OFF AGUIYI IRONSI STREET , MAITAMA , ABUJA WITHIN 28DAYS OF THIS PUBLICATION. SIGNED : BARRISTER NAPOLEON OTACHE.




Mohammed brimah foundation












THIS IS TO INFORM THE GENERAL PUBLIC THAT THE ABOVE NAMED HAS APPLIED TO THE CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION (CAC), ABUJA FOR REGISTRATION UNDER PART 'C' OF COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT, 1990, (CAP C20, LFN 2004). THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. FAMOJURE ABIMBOLA ANNA 2. FAMOJURE ADEWORAN ERICA 3. BABAYEMI OLANREWAJU GBOLAHAN THE AIM AND OBJECTIVE : 1.To empower underprivileged children and teens from poor social and economic background by creating opportunities that will inspire them to achieve great heights white strengthening the community.

THIS IS TO INFORM THE GENERAL PUBLIC THAT THE ABOVE NAMED HAS APPLIED TO THE CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION (CAC), ABUJA FOR REGISTRATION UNDER PART 'C' OF COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT, 1990, (CAP C20, LFN 2004). THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Lauratu jummai Habib yakubu (chairman ) 2. Fatimah habib yakubu (secretary ) 3. Bilkisu Abdu 4. Amina faruk 5. Fatimah binta Yusuf 6. Sani Babayo . THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE : 1.To provide support for Comprehensive Medical Care to Indigent patients. 2.To provide psychological and economic empowerment services to improve the plights and facilitate their social inclusion in the mainstream society. 3.To undertake/Support Advocacy,Awareness Campaigns to stimulates the political will amongst policy makers and encourage citizens participation in developmental programmes. ANY OBJECTION TO THIS REGISTRATION SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO THE REGISTRAR_GENERAL, CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION, PLOT 420, TIGRIS CRESCENT , OFF AGUIYI IRONSI STREET , MAITAMA , ABUJA WITHIN 28DAYS OF THIS PUBLICATION. SIGNED : SECRETARY.



THIS IS TO INFORM THE GENERAL PUBLIC THAT THE ABOVE NAMED HAS APPLIED TO THE CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION (CAC), ABUJA FOR REGISTRATION UNDER PART 'C' OF COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT, 1990, (CAP C20, LFN 2004). THE TRUSTEES ARE : 1. Dr Uju Agomoh- Chairman 2. Mr Isaac Akanbi- Secretary 3. Ms. Abigail Edomaruse- Treasurer 4. Dr Bello Ibrahim- Member THE AIM AND OBJECTIVE : 1.To create a veritable platform to bring together all organizations , individuals, agencies , institutions that work on community Corrections.





PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

CLASSIFIED Akekebe I, formerly known as Abdulmajid ocheche Blessing now wishes to be known and addressed as Akekebe Blessing ocheche. All formal document remain valid. The general public should please take note.

Kiki I, formerly known as Kiki Mamman Bashir’deen Adila Habibat Aaliyah Onanelu now wishes to be known and addressed as Kiki Aaliyah Habiba. All formal document remain valid. The general public should please take note.





THE PEARL OF GREAT VALUE MINISTRY We, formerly known as THE WITNESS OF CHRIST MINISTRY, now wish to be known and addressed as THE PEARL OF GREAT VALUE MINISTRY. All former documents remain valid. Signed: Daniel Ogu Okeme. For the Board.

















This is to inform the general public that the above named ASSOCIATION has applied for Registration to the Corporate Affairs Commission under Part “C” of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Airhulebuefe Iziegbe Precious 2. David Osaigbovo Ikhu-Omoregbee 3. Godstime Osarobo Ikhu-Omoregbe 4. Matthias Schaller 5. Benedict Ibharedeyi Itua 6. Michael Truetzschler 7. Deborah Juwe Rukevwe 8. Peter Enabulele

Any objection to the Registration should be forwarded to the Registrar general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, Off Aguyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, Abuja within 28 days of this publication.









TRUSTEES 1). HRH Pastor Haniel Hinlewheni Banti. 2).Most Rev Dr Musa Panti Filibus. 3). Senator Binos Dauda Yaroe. 4). Mrs. Heleen Danjuma Barde. 5). Mrs Mary Y. Hamman. 6). Barr. Bulus Kaigama. 7). Mr. Cornelius Dedan Nyari.





AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 1. To carry undiluted teaching of the Word of Plain Truth to all Churches of the world. 2. For spiritual awakening of the Church and renewing by the Power of the Holy Spirit. 3. For the opening of the eyes of Christians to their spiritual position in Christ Jesus

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 1.To create a platform through which Israel and Nigeria can share ideas for the mutual development of their respective countries.



THE TRUSTEES ARE. 1. Pastor FALADE, Johnson Oluremi. Chairman 2.Pastor FALADE Victoria 'Funso 3. FALADE Lawrence Olufemi. 4. FALADE Godwin Oluwatimilehin. 5. DARAMOLA Samuel Abayomi. 6. Pastor FRANCIS Oluwasina Johnson. Secretary 7. Pastor ODAFE Daniel Omowumi

THE AIM AND OBJECTIVE : 1.To preach the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.





PUBLIC NOTICE PROJECT GOOD GOVERNANCE INITIATIVE AFRICA This is to inform the General Public that the above named Initiative has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja, for Registration under Part ‘C’ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No. 1, 1990. Trustees are: 1. AARON ALIYU - Chairman 2. UMARU SAMUEL MAIGORO 3. MARY J BADU 4. THEOPHILUS MAIMAKO - Secretary 5. ISAAC P. ALIYU Aims and Objectives: 1. To foster developmental opportunity for young people by encouraging and supporting them to contribute, steer initiative and lead their own youth led projects. 2. To generate in young people and the society at large a sense of responsibility and ownership for the actions they undertake and to develop their citizenship and involvement in their Communities. 3. To increase the integration of young people within the community through volunteering and youth led projects and services that will reflect the identified needs in their immediate community. 4. To build strong relationship with Organizations that share our aims, thereby further increasing the capacity of young people to build on their skills and aptitude for their own personal growth and their community long term success and development. Any objection to this Registration should be forwarded to the RegistrarGeneral, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, P.M.B. 198, Maitama, Abuja, within 28 days of this publication. Signed: Secretary

This is to inform the general public that the above named ASSOCIATION has applied for Registration to the Corporate Affairs Commission under Part “C” of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: (1) FRANK, BRIGHTLIGHT UDOENY. (2) BRADFORD SAMUEL SUNDAY (3) BRIGHTLIGHT, ABASIAMA FRA. AIMS/OBJective 1) To preach the gospel of jesus christ. SIGNED-




thursday January 16, 2020

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics: home-based athletes to camp in Europe, Kenya Stories By Amaechi Agbo


head of this year’s Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan, the home-based Nigerian athletes will camp in Europe and Kenya as the ministry of youth and sports development intensify preparations for the quadrennial global showpiece. Minister in charge of the ministry, Sunday Dare minister disclosed on Monday while speaking with the press on preparations for the Olympics Mr Dare state that the home-based athletes who will represent Nigeria in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be sent abroad to prepare for the world tournament.. The Minister said that the foreign based athletes will benefit from the advanced sporting facilities in their countries of residence, hence the need to provide same for the Nigerian based athletes. “We are going to send a few of the home based athletes outside the country for the necessary training. Some will go to Holland, other parts of Europe, some will even go to Kenya.” The Minister also assured that the Ministry was doing all within its means to secure funding to support the athletes to ensure they give the best for the country at the competition

later in the year in Tokyo. He added that the Adopt an Athlete was in full gear and would also serve to lift some burden off the Ministry. In the meantime, suspended President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), Engineer Ibrahim Gusau is in for stronger censure as a panel of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) indicted him saying his declaration of AFN’s autonomy from the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development was out of order and impossible because the Ministry will always supervise National Sport Federations. The committee also endorsed the removal of erstwhile AFN Technical Director, Sunday Adeleye saying that he stands removed stemming from the crisis surrounding the appointment of Mr. Sunday Adeleye and the report of the Ministerial Panel on Doha. The committee said it discovered that the leadership crisis in the AFN had been brewing since the last national federations’ elections in June 2017 and worsened before the 12th African Games in Morocco in August 2019 when some board members asked Gusau to step aside as president and be investigated. Most AFN board members have scores to settle with each other in addition ego, emotions and sentiments that now threaten the sport.

Team Nigeria at Rio 2016 Olympics The NOC Committee supports the fact idea that Ibrahim Gusau should appear the investigation panel set up by the December 3, 2019 AFN Board meeting even though it recommended to the ministry might consider the expansion of the investigative panel to include “representatives of NOC, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development

and the Federal Ministry of Justice” so that the suspended AFN president can defend the allegations levelled against him within two weeks. It also recommended the removal of former AFN Technical Director, “The position of the Technical Director of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria is by appointment.

Sports minister applauds TIG on discovering young gymnasts


Any objection to the Registration should be forwarded to the Registrar general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, Off Aguyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, Abuja within 28 days of this publication. Signed: CAN NWACHUKWU (SOLICITOR).




I MICHAEL EZEOGBULAFOR of No. 45, Mamman Nasir Street, Asokoro Abuja lost the Original Right of Occupancy (R of O) in respect of Plot No.1487, with File No. MISC 50280 Cadastral Zone A04, Asokoro District FCT Abuja, in favour of Basic Travels Services Nigeria Ltd. Lost sometimes while relocating his office to Gwarimpa in abuja. All efforts made to trace the missing documents prove abortive. If found, please contact the nearest police station or return it to AGIS.


Young gymnast displaying as Sports minister watches in admiration

he minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare has commended the Tony International Gymnastic, TIG, for its sustained efforts in discovering and nurturing young gymnasts for the country. Mr. Dare made the commendation when he received the Gymnasts of the TIG Gymnastic Club with their coach and parents Tuesday in Abuja, said the advantages of starting early for the young gymnasts who are between the ages of 3-12, are numerous. In his welcome address, the Minister said he was fascinated by the skills and discipline they displayed the first time he watched them. “When you see kids at this tender age do this, they flourish because they are disciplined from age

3, 4, 5 and when you see these kids, beyond sports, you know that there is hope for this country. “Sports brings discipline and confidence and it going to grow with them as they grow,” he added. The Minister thanked the parents for devoting their time and resources into the development of the young gymnasts as he said, “beyond what it would do for them at a personal in terms of their development both mental and physical, these ones are the future of this country because they will represent Nigeria not just at this level but up to the Olympic level. You are catching them young”. The Minister also commended the coach Tony Asuquo and said what was being done with the kids was in tandem with one of the major

focus of the Ministry in the area of Grassroot Sports Development. “For every sport be it football, table tennis, etc., unless you start at this level, working with these talents, developing them and taking them to trials and competitions, you cannot have what you need.” He also harped on the need for sports and education to go hand in hand and promised to ensure that some of the Gymnasts benefit from the Ministry’s scholarship program. The coach of the Gymnasts Tony Asuquo who spoke earlier, thanked the Minister for his audience while letting the Minister and his team in on the various medals the Gymnasts had won in the past. They also put up a little display to the admiration of the Minister and those present.

FIFA Club World Cup, weather force CAF to hold 2021 AFCON in January next year >>>PG30




PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020



FIFA Club World Cup, weather Saudi Arabia Prince hosts Ahmed Musa, Al force CAF to hold 2021 AFCON Nassr Teammates in January next year By Amaechi Agbo


uper Eagles captain, Ahmed Musa and his Al Narss teammates were guests to the Saudi Arabia Prince, Faisal bin Bandar Al Saud on Monday as he hosted them to appreciate them team and management for job well done in the Saudi League, can report As they continued to bask on the euphoria of the success of lifting the trophy for the first time, the team decided to visit the Prince who is a fan of the Club and show appreciation for his supports. It was Musa’s second trophy with the club since moving to the gulf region from Leicester City two years ago. The club took to their social media handle to share the photos with the caption, “HRH prince Faisal bin Bandar Al Saud governor of Riyadh received today the champions of the Saudi Super Cup.”

FC Liberty striker Samuel Timothy signs for Djibouti side Gendarmerie

he 2021 FIFA Club World Cup competition slated to hold in China as well as weather have forced the Confederation of Africa Football, CAF to revert to January-February hosting of the Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON holding in Cameroon next year. The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON in Cameroon will hold between January and February next year The Cameroon Football Federation (Fecafoot) revealed that the tournament will be played from January 9 to February 6, 2021, on their request due to concerns about the weather. The tournament was for the first time held during the summer in 2019, (June –July) moving away from the traditional January and February. According to multiple reports, an announcement

is expected to confirm the same, with the 2021 edition, set to be held in Cameroon, to be played in January. This will immensely affect some European clubs since most of the top leagues are in action during the period. The 2021 FIFA Club

World Cup will be held in China from 17 June – 4 July 2021 thereby disrupting the 21 June – 19 July AFCON hosting date. The 2019 32nd edition of the AFCON was held, for the first time, between 21 June – 19 July and CAF was expected to stick to this calendar going forward.

The tournament was moved to a June-July slot for last year’s first 24-team edition in Egypt, in large part to avoid clashing with the European club season. Fecafoot also noted that the timing of June-July is rainy period in the country noting that the tournament could be disrupted by rain

NFF Eager To Retain Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr

T Samuel with an official of the club after the signing By Amaechi Agbo


C Liberty International of Abuja striker, Samuel Timothy has signed for Djibouti Premier League side Gendarmerie National for one year season loan. The dangling striker who score 11 goals for Nigeria National League side, Sokoto United last season while on loan put pen to paper on the deal Monday understands that Timothy signed the deal on Monday after his International Transfer Certificate ITC was sorted out over the

weekend. The 1.72m striker is regarded as a pride asset for the Gendarmerie. Gendarmerie defeated Dikhil 1-0 in the 2019/2020 Djibouti Premier League match played on Saturday. And Timothy is expected to bring his wealth of experience to on the club as they continue to push of the trophy this season Samuel Timothy was loaned to NNL side Sokoto United during the 2018/19 season where he shone like a million star. He scored goals for the club both in the league and the Federation Cup (Aiteo Cup)

here are indications that the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) is eager to retain the services of Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr with negotiations for a new contract set to commence next week, according to a top source in the Glass House. Rohr is currently into the last six months of his current contract and the NFF will only give the Eagles coach a new deal provided he is ready to accept all the conditions that will be stipulated in the new contract. The 66-year old coach who can be approached by other interested parties between now and June is however, believed to also want to continue on the Eagles job that has seen him led Nigeria to a group stage outing at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and a bronze medal finish at the 2019 AFCON in Egypt. “The NFF is ready to renew the contract of the Super Eagles coach but it certainly won’t be a loose deal like the previous one,” begins the NFF top source who craves anonymity. “There are certain conditions coach Rohr must agree to if Nigeria must retain his services. The NFF want to ensure a better deal that will help the national team as well as the football



PEOPLES DAILY, thursday January 16, 2020

By Tobias Lengnan Dapam


orried by the challenges faced by illegal migrants in the desert, the Society for the Reconciliation of Nigerians in Diaspora (SORENID) said it would focus on family and religious leaders to enlighten Nigerians at the grassroots. Speaking during end of year dinner in Abuja, SORENID founder, Sir Uche B. Okafor said the target could help sensitize many youths across the country. “We will focus on family to take the campaign to where we believe is the root cost of this illegal migration. We are also going to engage religious leaders and individuals to research and write on the 26 A-Z keys to a blissful family. These books when published, will be shared to many young Nigerians to understand the values of their families. He said the NGO currently has three books to its credit; Europe by road, curbing the root causes of illegal migration and the latest one on Xenophobia. He said the books were shared to Nigerians free to enable them know the legal means of traveling abroad. “I wrote the book as a way of advising Nigerians and our advocacy to tell Nigerians how these things are done; who does them, the dangers and others so that they cannot fall victims. This is because I have seen a lot of people who have been deceived to go to Europe. We want students and youths to get these books so that they can know the dangers and also know how to travel the right way. We are giving the books free and we are looking for people who will help us print more copies to give out to people so that they will not be deceived by these trick stars. We are not stopping people from traveling. We are educating them on what they must do to travel the right way. We are against them traveling by road to Europe. It is always to have a skill so that you can be useful to yourself when you finally travel the right way to the country of your choice. I have staff who are training people on various skills to make them useful. It is important for people to know how to do something, instead of selling their organs for money.” While speaking about the challenges faced by emigrants, SORENID boss said Nigerians faced various challenges while traveling through the deserts. “There are stories we do hear of those who travelled through the desert. We learnt that many of them died as a result of the stress, lack of water and different unbearable things they encountered in the desert. The stories are not pleasant that is why we always adviced our young people to travel the right way. But for those Nigerians I met in the places I served, many of

By Tobias Lengnan Dapam

Emigration hazard: SORENID to target family, religious leaders

SORENID staff and some beneficiaries of items them had psychological illnesses, psycho somatic I called it. There are many parents who sent their children out when they still need parental care. These children when they get there, the society rejects them because of cultural differences; and when that rejection gets whole of them, they ended up becoming deviants, checking in to hotels and later become problem to the society. But as someone handling students, I was able to help some of them. There were some who would come requesting for identification card that showed they were above 18, so that they could attend clubs and other things which they thought were the necessary things of life. In this process, I would sit them and advice them on what to do, telling them that the time was not right for the life style they wanted to embark on. Some ended up graduating while some dropped out of school. They would deceive their parents that they were in school, but they were busy pursuing something else with their friends. Speaking on why he set up the NGO, the diplomatic said “By nature, I was called to help people. When I was serving, I used to help those people with challenges and victims of crisis that I came across. The NGO which I founded, Society for the Reconciliation of Nigerians in Diaspora (SORENID), was meant to assist some of these victims and help them to be better people in the society. When I came back, I started the NGO proper with skills acquisition Centre. I also have an institute where I teach them business ideas so that they can help themselves. I believe a lot

in giving out to those in need. Whenever I see young ones wasting, I try to create something to help them. I have seen a lot in the countries where I served and I want to help our people at home to get the best that life can offer. “We are working on an acronym known as ITEM: We identify these Nigerians and arrange various talent hunt programmes in various fields. We search to get the best comedian, best musician best artist and best in other fields. We also train, empower and mentor them. We follow closely their activities and improve in areas they need to work on. We also have skills acquisition programme for youths. Recently we spent over 500 thousand Naira to empower youths after training them. “The beneficiaries were people in dire need of help. We had over 20 beneficiaries who were trained by this NGO with different skills. We will continue to assist as many people as we can.The selected beneficiaries were in need of help. They have no one to cater for them. We took them in because of our desire to help the society and give people a sense of belonging, and make them feel important in the larger society. It has always been my passion to help other people and I am very happy doing it. “We know that if we hand over the money to them, they might not use it effectively; that is why we gave them these machines to enable them start their own various businesses and expand as time goes on. It is always important to have a skill especially now that there is no job.

We are also encouraging graduates to ensure that they have one or two skills that could assist them in life incase the job they are looking for is hard to come by. We believe in giving them a brighter future that is why we design these programmes for them. Speaking on the challenges facing the NGO, he said “It has not been easy because I have been using my personal money to run the programmes. I just retired and it is not easy working with people who believe they can get money immediately they start. Most Nigerians are not patient enough; they want quick money and you can’t get the best under this atmosphere. However, there are some who are helping me to make this a reality. I am happy with the few people on ground who believe in what we are doing. Also, once in a while when people come around and see what we are doing, they used to assist us.” He called on government to allow NGOs to go in to the villages because these are where the recruitments are being done; school, NYSC camps and other places must be targeted by NGO’s. Also speaking, the National Coordinator of SORENID, Oliver Nwodoh, who was also a victim of illegal migration, said, “We are not stopping people from traveling. We are educating them on what they must do to travel the right way. We are against them traveling by road to Europe. It is always to have a skill so that you can be useful to yourself when you finally travel the right way to the country of your choice. “I have staff who are training people on various skills to make them useful. It is important for people to know how to do something, instead of selling their organs for money.” He called on young Nigerians to be useful to themselves instead of traveling to be slaves in other countries. On her part, V.P Academics Government Secondary School Airport, Mrs. Onwuka S. Ngozi, harps on the need for education. She said education is important because young Nigerians are deceived on daily basis to travel abroad. “It is unfortunate that some of our youths are interested in quick money. It is this quest for quick money that usually forces them to embark on the perilous journey. Let’s be patient and pray to God for His Will to be done in our lives.

Why America stopped giving me visa development in Nigeria. “We are definitely set for negotiations next week but the NFF is not going to compromise on certain conditions.” Some of the conditions Rohr is expected to accept in the new contract stipulates he must be ready to reside in Nigeria to do his job as well as show more commitment to the Nigeria Professional Football League.

The coach will also be allowed to travel on vacation only three times in a year while all his selections for the national team must be approved by the NFF Technical Committee. Rohr who was appointed on a three-year contract in August 2016 has managed 39 games in charge of the Super Eagles with 22 wins, seven draws and 10 losses.

Continued from back page “America cannot make the world any safer than it already is with big bully Uncle Sam probating and reprobating the world according to the national interest of America; nor can it be any safer than it already is today with the U.S. researching and developing more and more sophisticated Weapons of Mass Destruction ostensibly as deterrence (but that others may not)”; nor –I said- is the world any safer with the one and only ‘God’s Own Country’ alone feeding on half the world’s resources and still meddling in the way and manner the other half is rationed”. The world cannot be any safer I said, than it already is with America persistently stocking the fire raging

between Israel and Palestine by egging the former to more and more land grab; nor will it ever be any safer with a war mongering America always restlessly rampaging the world creating artificial casus belli for war in order to test innovations in the avant-garde of high tech weapons” This was all I said, and then as I prepared to close that piece, I warned that Rome especially had passed this road before, but that it is now a living relic of its decadent past. That “the principal idea underlying the Roman Empire according to historians was once the conquest of power and the exploitation of other nations for the benefit of Rome”. And that in fact the Roman refrain was once the saying that “To promote better living for Romans, no violence was bad enough; no injustice

too base”; and that in fact “The famous Roman ‘justice’ was justice for the Romans alone”. And then I closed by saying that: Historians tell us that “It took the Roman Empire nearly 1,000 years to grow to its full geographical extent and its political maturity; but (that)its downfall was so through and through that (historians lamented) that “nothing of it remained but works of literature and architecture”. And then I did a small epilogue, saying: “The future of no nation (no matter how strong or how powerful) is sacrosanct to the cruel verdict of history”. That was all I said, and America stopped giving me visa.

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thursday January 16, 2020


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Ogenyi Onazi Joins Denizlispor From Trabzonspor


uper Eagles midfielder Ogenyi Onazi has joined Denizlispor on a one-andhalf-year deal from Trabzonspor, can report The 27-year-old recently returned to action after spending one year on the sidelines due to Achilles tendon injury. “We would like to thank our valuable player Onazi, who has adopted the values of our club in a short period, who has managed to integrate with the city of Trabzon, who has won the love of all our fans from seven to seventy with his character and sincerity and wish luck and success in his career after Trabzonspor. Get on the road, Ogenyi Onazi!,” reads a message on Trabzonspor’s official website. Onazi joined Trabzonspor from Italian outfit Lazio in August 2016. He made 79 league appearances for the club and scored seven goals.

NPFL matchday 15: Rangers, Heartland record away wins


igeria Professional Football League sides, Enugu Rangers and their neighbour, Heartland FC of Owerri all got away wins in the matchday 15 of the 2019/2020 league season played on Wednesday. While Rangers had a 2-1 win away to Warri Wolves, Heartland won 2-0 away to champions Enyimba in an Oriental derby. The full results are presented below.

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t was after the America-led invasion of Iraq (date) on the false charges of possessing weapons of mass destruction that I wrote the piece ‘America, Their America’, and which presumably thenceforth, shut the door to my ever getting an American visa again. Because twice thereafter I would be denied visa to go to the United States including even when President Olusegun Obasanjo authorized my appointment in 2004 as a diplomat in the office of Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations. By the way, the piece I wrote was a rejoinder to three beautiful articles on the subject of that unwarranted invasion and destruction of Iraq written by three eminent Daily Trust writers, namely: Mohammed Haruna who wrote ‘Now that Arafat is Gone’, Aisha Umar Yusus, who wrote ‘A Tokyo Rose Through And Through’ in which she eloquently captured America’s insatiable thirst for blood especially in the Middle East, even as she grimly etched the pathetic picture of a warmongering nation so compulsively consumed by that habit that America was not averse even to stage-managing acts that should justify her going to war; and lastly Kabiru Yusuf whose piece ‘Their Dream, Our Nightmare’ ended with the stern and resolute voice “America has made its choice; in the same spirit of God-given freedom, we (the rest of the world I presumed) too will make ours”. The popular acclaim then was that with the unjust invasion and destruction of Iraq, “a little silver of democracy (was) dying” -as an American Assayist Nancy Gibbs had said- and that with that waning silver also, it was feared, would commence the sowing, unwittingly, of the seed for the gradual decline of America. And what did I say in my own piece, ‘America, Their America’? I said no, the seed for the decline of America had long been sown when America “offered to play the proverbial tail that is now proudly wagged by the greedy dog of the Jewish (zionist) enterprise”. And I reminded America, that: “From Babylonia to almighty Rome, down to once Great Britain, the world had witnessed the rise and fall of empires”, and that “none of these endured because none was just and fair”. And I warned that America –like Louise Farrakhan had repeatedly warned- “was fast becoming our modern day Babylon” and that if she continued on that path “it will not require a soothsayer

0806 564 8620 0704 385 9705 0814 292 9046 08074420617

THURSDAY Column WITH Mohammed Adamu (08035892325 sms only) to discern that it too cannot long endure”. And I said that “The scriptures are explicit about these issues: no nation can long endure that prides itself upon the creation of mischief in the land”’ And I did fetch generously even from the writings of profoundly metaphorical American literati, such as from John Fitzgerald’s fictional novel, ‘The Great Gatsby’ in which the American writer narrates the ambivalent life of a character, Gatsby, who personifies what one critic said was “the irony of the irony of American history as well as the corruption of its dream”. The novel tells, in the character of Gatsby (an upwardly mobile socialite of his hedonistic days with an inherently contradictory sense of purpose), the story of “America’s sense of mission and early dream of a great and powerful commonwealth’; but which ends tragically with the death of Gatsby, typifying the decline of a national dream –or what another critic, R.W.B Lewis, said is a depiction of “what at a particular point in the history of the Americans began as a valuable corrective to the claims of innocence”, but which he said “declined into a cult of original sin”. And to warn America of the ‘uncertain future’, I remember quoting James Brice, in his ‘Modern Democracies’, in which the one time Governor of Maryland wrote about what Shakespeare would’ve termed ‘the mustard seeds of time’ or the ‘sneaky omens of the future’ when he warned: “Men stood on the edge of stupendous changes and had not a glimpse of even the outlines of those changes, no discerning the causes that were already in embryo, beneath their feet, like the seeds hidden under the snow of winter, which will shoot up under the April sunlight”. I said that “when Japan preemptively attacked America’s Pearl Harbor in on December, 7, 1941 to provoke America’s participation in the Second World War, President F.D. Roosevelt’s speech to Congress justifying the existence of a state of war between America and Japan, drew its moral

strength from the fact of Japan’s attack being unprovoked”, and that therefore America “had the duty to use what he (Roosevelt) described as her ‘righteous might’ to respond to Japan’s casus belli”. In fact, I reminded America about their President’s description of ‘Dec. 7, 1941’, as “a date which will live in infamy” –before he dropped the atomic bombs on the two Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But I had made sure to ask also: if America considered the date in which Japan attacked just one of its many naval bases in far, far away Honolulu, Hawaii, as “a date which will live in infamy”, -“how will innocent Iraqis”, describe that day that America led a coalition of Euro-American bloodthirsty warmongers to reduce the whole of their country to rubbles, killing millions of their innocent citizens on the strength of an ‘unprovoked’ and therefore unjustified war) And so when the only congress woman who voted against the bill authorizing the use of force in retaliation for Sept. 11 had numerous threats of death sent to her woman, and a disgusted Nancy Gibbs said something to the effect that “when dissent is made to seem unpatriotic, a little something of democracy is dying”, I remember that in my piece, ‘America, Their America’, I said: “No Gibbs! It is not just ‘a little silver of democracy’ that is dying, but that the whole damn ‘diamond’ is gone!” Because I said: “America cannot lay claim anymore to that “practical passion” of Woodrow Wilson’s description “for social justice and for altruistic equity in settling the genuine differences of men”. And just like Kabiru Yusuf had narrated his experience as a beneficiary of the State Department ‘International Visitors’ Program, IVP’ TO THE United States, I was also an IVP in 1998; and that “after going to over ten states of the United States, visiting The Capitol and Pentagon; in the period of Americas Midterm election, and after socializing with a cross section of Americans through two Halloween periods, I came away with the same impressions that Kabiru Yusuf so

eloquently captured in his piece, ‘Their Dream, Our Nightmare’ – that: “Here was the America, their America... a nation supposedly ‘Under God’ and a nation ‘faithfully trusting in God’, that brutallypartial ‘God’ of America’s selfserving perception who arm twists the little ‘gods’ of other divinely underprivileged nations solely for the benefit of America and the Americans”. And I said “Here was the America, absolutist in all moral claims, yet hypocritically debouched always in the act of it… (and )Here were the Americans too, to most of whom an act of aggression by their home government abroad is always merely a subject of comic relief at the dinner table; here was the America, their America, abroad an excellent sing-song bird of racial equality, but at home the worst practitioner of it; here were the Americans, in claim citizens of a globally-thinking nation, but in reality a locally-acting and grossly misinformed, under-informed or more often mal-informed people”. This was all I said, but adding “here was the America of the American author Naomi Klein’s rebuke with blood sucking multinationals who “far from leveling the global playing field with jobs and technology for all, are (always) in the process of mining the planet’s poorest back countries” of the world. Here was the America, I said “of the ‘permanence of interest’ fame, whose chosen friends are good no matter how evil they are in the eyes of the rest of the world; and whose designated enemies are evil no matter how good they are to the rest of the world”. And then I said, that:

Cont. on page 31

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