Page 1

Vol. 11 No. 21

Monday, June 17, 2013

. . . putting the people first

No advisory on Hajj postponement — Commission >>5

Sha’aban 9, 1434 AH


Fuel subsidy: FG pays N192bn to marketers >>5

2015: APC zones presidency to North lRawlings, Shonekan, Mark warn against dictatorship By Ikechukwu Okaforadi & Umar Muhammad Puma


here were strong indications yesterday that the opposition political parties, under the aegis of All Progressives Congress (APC), has ceded the presidential slot of the party in the 2015 elections to the north. Peoples Daily gathered from a reliable source in the APC that aside from Major-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, the party which is yet to be registered has made a shortlist of the likely presidential flagbearers to include Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano state, Governor Magatakarda Wammako of Sokoto state and Governor Sule Lamido of Jigawa state. Also being considered by the leadership of APC to fly the party’s flag in 2015 is the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who is acclaimed to have the backing of former heads of state from the north including, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, Alhaji Shehu Shagari and Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, among others. According to our source, this is Contd. on Page 2

L-R: Former Head of Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan, Senate President David Mark, and former Ghanaian President, Mr. Jerry Rawlings, during a two-day International Conference on Emerging Democracies in Africa, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

Jubilation in Sokoto as PDP recalls Wamakko

By Lawrence Olaoye, Abuja & Mahmoud Muhammad, Sokoto


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday lifted the suspension of the Sokoto state Governor, Dr. Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko, and recalled him

into the party. The decision heralded jubilation across Sokoto as Wamakko’s supporters trouped out in their numbers and later held a rally of sorts at the party’s secretariat. In Abuja, the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) also resolved to hold its

National Executive Council (NEC)’s meeting on Thursday, 20th of June. Briefing newsmen after a meeting with the Presidential committee on crises in the PDP, the National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, said the party leadership took the decision on Wamakko in difference to pleas

by the committee led by its Chairman, Anyim Pius Anyim, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF). According to him, the party resolved to suspend Wamakko in order to enforce discipline just as he warned that his Contd. on Page 2

NGF crisis: 20 governors shun Jang faction meeting




CONTENTS News 2-10 Editorial 12 Op.Ed 13 Letters 14 Opinion 15 Metro 16-18 Business 19-22 Stockwatch 23 Defence 26-27 Agric 28-29 Feature 30

Nigerians groan for affordable housing, Page 4

Int’l 31-34 Strange World 35 Digest 36 Politics 37-38 Newsxtra 39 Sports 41-45 Leisure 47 Columnist 48

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU The Peoples Daily wants to hear from you with any news and pictures you think we should publish. You can send your news and pictures to:

Phones for News: 08142929046 08024432099


NGF crisis: 20 govs shun Jang’s faction meeting By Lawrence Olaoye


wenty out of the 36 governors yesterday shunned a meeting convened by a factional Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau state. Jang had called the meeting to deliberate and take a common position on the crisis ignited by the shortfalls in the allocations to states and local governments of the federation. Although, the Rivers state

Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, had warned his colleagues not to attend the meeting, 16 governors were present. Finance Commissioners of the 36 states of the federation and representatives of the 774 local governments in the country had last week walked out on the Minister of State for Finance, Dr. Yerima Lawan, who chaired the Federal Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) for failing to settle the arrears of about N160 billion for February as agreed.

Based on the disagreement at the FAAC Conference, President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday summoned the 36 governors to a meeting with a view to resolving the logjam. Responding to questions from newsmen after the meeting, Jang said the governors discussed the impasse caused by the FAAC boycott and that the body would not disclose the outcome of the meeting until they meet with the President. Reacting to the statement issued by his rival NGF Chairman, urging

him to stop impersonating him, Jang said he was not an impostor and had never impersonated anyone. Asked why only 16 governors attended the meeting Jang said the NGF needed only 12 governors to form a quorum. The 16 governors who attended the meeting include those of Abia, Benue, Akwa-Ibom, Plateau, Ebonyi, Ondo, Kogi and Taraba states. The others were governors of Delta, Katsina, Enugu, Anambra, Gombe, Bayelsa, Bauchi and Cross Rivers states.

2015: APC zones presidency to North Contd. from Front Page the outcome of a series of meetings held between top leaders of the coalition last week, where it was decided to cede the slot to the north which has been clamouring for a return of presidential power. It was also gathered that the party leaders are however battling to assuage members of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) over their objection to the decision to cede the national chairmanship slot to the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). It was further gathered that ANPP leaders were earlier promised that the party would produce the chairman of the coalition but was later decided in favour of ACN following Senator Bola Tinubu’s intervention. A meeting between leaders of the Joint Committee on the Merger of the parties which was addressed by Tinubu last week, attempted to calm the ANPP as it was affirmed that the presidential slot had been zoned to the north. The ACN national leader was said to have advocated at the meeting that the ANPP should exercise patience till when presidential campaigns start so as to push for its candidate since the position had been ceded to the north. It was however confirmed that the merger parties have agreed to cede the national secretary position of APC to the Congress

for Progressive Change (CPC) with the former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, being tipped to occupy the seat. Meanwhile, when the National Publicity Secretary of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Rotimi Fashakin, and his colleague from the ACN, Lai Mohammed, were contacted yesterday, they denied knowledge of such agreement. According to Mohammed, “how can a party still seeking registration has not compiled its register of members, has not held any congress or convention, proceed to cede the presidential slot to a particular section of the country. Does it make sense?” Also reacting, Fashakin said, “that has not been discussed and I cannot comment on rumours.” Meanwhile, former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Earnest Shonekan, yesterday charged leaders of political parties to uphold internal democracy. Speaking at a two-day international conference on, “Emerging Democracies in Africa: Challenges and Opportunities,” organized by the National Institute for Legislative Studies in Abuja, Shonekan said, “a situation where people cannot voice their opinion within their political parties or where leaders of the political parties cannot be criticized by members of the same political parties is not good

for our democracy”. He added that democracy does not thrive on empty stomach, as “it must be noted democracy in Africa will succeed more if it improves the condition of living of the people. “If physical and social infrastructures are improved upon, particularly if there is improvement in the health care delivery and if there are job opportunities for the teeming unemployed youth across the country”. On his part, former Ghananian President, Jerry Rawlings, said in an emerging democracy, no true democratic arrangement could be successful if the institutions like Judiciary, security services, the electoral bodies, a well-oiled and independent media as well as a vibrant and non-partisan civil society that are meant to serve as checks and balances are not properly structured and equipped to operate at optimum. He said the measure required to get these institutions operational is to have a well framed constitution that is not lacking in definition and which protects adequately the independent of the institution from abuse. According to him, “we are saddled with civil society who instead of exposing ills in government and society and offering concrete options on the way forward rather metamorphose into partisans political entities

attacking or overprotecting government as if their survival depended on it.” Also speaking, Senate President, David Mark cautioned the opposition to desist from making unrealistic demands and undue criticisms on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led administration, saying such inflammatory criticisms can cause crisis. Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, on his part, said though democracy had come to stay in Nigeria, it may give birth to a world of oppression, segregation, widening inequality, disdain of power and disunity if the structures, institutions and processes of democracy are not strengthened in Africa. He said, “we have recently witnessed developments in the some parts of the World. “It has been clear that enthronement of democratic processes such as elections did not produce stability or development. Many countries in Africa have failed to institutionalize transparent and objective political processes that can provide good governance. “Consequently, conflict, poverty and social disarray continue to plague our countries in Africa, creating a vicious circle of instability that inhibits economic development.”

Commenting on the outcome of the meeting with the NWC, the PDP Governors’ Forum’s Chairman, Godswill Akpabio, who doubled as the spokesperson of the committee at the meeting said that, “we came as a select committee of the Peoples Democratic Party to discuss the state of affairs of our great party, particularly the relationship between the working committee and the PDP governors. “I want to say that we make a very strong appeal to the working committee on behalf of our colleague, the Governor of Sokoto state, Governor Wamakko. “And our appeal was very simple, that the working committee should consider the suspension, the decision suspending the governor

and we say as guarantors that we will be of good conduct and will do everything possible to continue to show respect to our party and to ensure that cordiality is maintained between the working committee and the PDP governors. “We took this decision based on the numerous media reports, some of which are misleading and which are not really the true reflection of the relationship existing between the PDP governors and the working committee of our great party. “We are mindful of the fact that we are governors today because the PDP gave us the opportunity to fly its flag and therefore, we will not do anything to undermine the party. “And, the other aspect of what the working committee has also

attended to is the request by the PDP governors and in fact both members of PDP across the nation, that there is need for us to have the National Executive Council (NEC).” Asked why the suspension slammed on the Governor of Rivers state, Rotimi Amaechi, was not lifted, Akpabio said the meeting did not discuss Amaechi because it would be subjudice as Amaechi had gone to seek redress. The PDP suspended Wamakko last week over alleged anti-party activities. The Governor’s suspension was announced while he was on a trip abroad and coming barely one week after the party had announced the suspension of Amaechi, also for alleged anti-party activities.

Jubilation in Sokoto as PDP recalls Wamakko Contd. from Front Page leadership would not sit down to allow indiscipline reign freely in the party. He stressed that the PDP under his leadership would be premised on unity, discipline and total commitment. He also disclosed that all the statutory members of the NEC would be invited to attend the Thursday meeting. Tukur said, “the NWC has rescinded the suspension of the Sokoto state Governor on the appeal of the PDP Governors’ Forum and secondly the National Chairman is inviting the PDP statutory members to the meeting of National Executive Committee holding on Thursday, at 12 noon.”




Nigeria signs agreement on study of French By Maryam Garba Hassan


igerian government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the French government on the study of French language in the nation’s schools. Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufai, signed the agreement on behalf of Nigeria at a ceremony in Abuja yesterday while

a French Consultant, Genevieve Causse, signed on behalf of his country. According to Mr. Jean-Philppe Roy, the French Project Manager, the team was in Nigeria for the evaluation of the first and second phase of the project called “Nigeria French language Project which started 10 years ago and ended last year. He said that the third phase of

the project would be launched soon. According to Cause, the French government appreciates the support the Nigerian government gives to learning of the language in schools. Causse further explained that 23, 900 teachers were trained in the last five years while there are 7500 French teachers teaching the language in the country. Dr. Irene Udousoro, Associate Professor of French at the University

of Uyo, who said the team is advocating for French language to become the second language in Nigerian schools. She noted that the team has been to Enugu, Lagos and Abuja to encourage and improve the study of French language. Responding, the Minster assured the envoy that government would encourage the study of French. However, according to her,

government cannot make the study of French compulsory. According to the Minister, “learning of the language is imperative to the Nigerian system of education considering the bordering countries. “Some of our schools in Nigeria value French and it is of benefit to our students though we cannot make it a compulsory subject but we will do our best to support it.”

L-R: Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, factional chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), Plateau state Governor, Mr. Jonah Jang, and Ebonyi state Governor, Mr. Martin Elechi, during the NGF meeting, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

Severe weather expected in Lagos, environs today - NEMA


he National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday, warned residents of the southern parts of the country against severe weather which may result in unprecedented heavy rainfall. The warning which was contained in a statement signed by the Agency’s Information Officer, Mr Ibrahim Farinloye, stated that the rain might cause unforeseen

stress to the populace. The statement said the warning was based on the alert received from Niger Republic. ‘’NEMA is issuing this early warning based on alerts received from the “African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development based in Niamey, Niger Republic. “The centre issued the warning about 4:35 p.m. (Monday) to other

related countries that may likely witness such severe weather in Central, East and West African sub-regions. “Lagos and its environs are expected to experience torrential rainfall which means that all stakeholders must be prepared to take all precautionary steps against leaving the warning unattended. ‘’On this premise, NEMA

Wife accuses husband of sodomy, seeks divorce


20-year-old house wife, Aisha Sani, of Nasarawa Kakuri in Kaduna, has dragged her husband to the Magajin Gari Sharia Court, accusing him of sodomy and battery. She told the court yesterday that her husband, Abubakar Usman, engages her in sodomy after allegedly charming her. Aisha also contended that Usman used to beat her whenever she complained, a situation which made her to vacate her matrimonial home six weeks ago.

Usman, 30, who resides at Hayin Rigasa area of the city, denied the allegation. He said the marriage was contracted only six months ago and was yet to understand why the wife was accusing him of sodomy. He told the court that he would accede to the wife’s request if she would pay back the dowry paid on her. The presiding officer, Khadi Usman Abubakar, summoned the parents of the couple to appear before the court on June 24, for continuation of hearing. (NAN)

is passionately imploring all segments of Nigerian society in the southern part of Nigeria to take steps against exposing themselves to the dangers at hand,” it stated. Parents and teachers were urged to keep watchful eyes on their wards, while motorists were advised to exercise restraints against driving in the rain. “If they wish to park, they

should ensure not to stay inside the vehicle. “Those living in the flood plains should relocate to higher places when they are experiencing heavy accumulation of flood water. “NEMA is also using this medium to warn parents sending their wards on any errand, while the rain is falling, as well as stop dumping of refuse in the drains,” it said. (NAN)

Libya rescues 165 drowning illegal African immigrants


ome 165 illegal immigrants from various African countries were rescued by Libyan coast guards, according to Libyan navy spokesman, Col. Ayoub Omar Kassim. He said the illegal immigrants were seen drifting in a boat 49 miles off the coast of Khoumus, 70 Km from the capital city of Tripoli. According to Kassim, the rescue operation was carried out by a naval patrol

boat, assisted by boats moored at the port of Khoumus. He said the illegal immigrants, who were almost drowning before they were rescued, were in poor health conditions. Libya is a favourite passage way for illegal African immigrants heading to Europe. The number of such immigrants has decreased significantly following the tough measures adopted by Libya. (PANA/NAN)


The Page 4 Report

Nigerians groan for affordable housing As slum settlements spring up in major cities of Nigeria, Associate Editor, Udenna Orji writes on government’s efforts to avoid a housing crisis of unmanageable proportion and concludes that the federal government must hasten to conclude its perennial review of the Land Use Act.


helter is the third most important need of man; after food and clothing. Housing is so important to human existence that it is declared as one of the fundamental human rights. Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and wellbeing of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, Housing, medical care and necessary social services and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control”. Every government therefore has a mandate to ensure that citizens it governs have access to and can afford the minimum standard of housing adequate for healthy living. Everywhere in Nigeria today, there is growing disenchantment among the majority, especially the medium and low income earners over the rising spate of homelessness and slums. As the world’s most populous black country, the population of Nigeria has kept increasing and the nation is touted by experts to be heading towards the 170 million mark. That ought to be an advantage considering that much of the population is made up of young people 45 years and under. Unfortunately, shortage of housing in Nigeria, estimated to be between 16 – 17 million units, is now biting not only the young population but the senior citizens as well. Home ownership in Nigeria is one of the lowest in the world. Even affordable rental housing is scarce. According to the United Nations Habitat, in Nigeria, over 80% of the population lives in informal settlements in both the major urban areas and traditional villages. Average level of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) invested in housing declined from 3.6% in the 70s to less than 1% in 2002. Currently, it is less than 0.5% compared with 25% - 30% average in Emerging Markets and 50% in matured markets. This is despite the fact that Nigeria has an annual population growth rate of 5.9%. Consequently, slums are springing up everywhere in the country. Many reasons have been adduced for the critical housing

President Goodluck Jonathan situation in Nigeria but the major culprit is unanimously said to be the Land Use Act of 1978 which vests land ownership on government with state governors deciding who gets what. The Act comes with a complex, expensive and blurred land administration process. Happily, the federal government now has in place a Presidential Technical Committee on Land Reforms (PTCLR) which has been mandated to provide the much needed solutions to Nigeria’s land titling problems. The Committee is successfully carrying out pilot schemes in some states which will be used as a model for Systematic Land Titling and Registration (SLTR) in Nigeria. The committee’s work when completed will enable banks accept portions of land anywhere in Nigeria as collateral for loans, especially mortgage loans. At the inauguration of the reconstituted PTCLR on November 29, 2011, President Goodluck Jonathan had reiterated the enormous wealth creation potential of land and its resources and expressed his desire to witness the day the ordinary Nigerian farmer and all other desiring

Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Ms Amal Pepple Nigerians will be enabled with considerable ease to access bank loans for their businesses, using the title documents to their landed properties. He therefore mandated the committee to work hard to achieve effective and efficient land governance system for Nigeria. Under the Chairmanship of Emeritus Professor, Peter O Adeniyi, the PTCLR is successfully carrying out pilot schemes in some states which will be used as a model for Systematic Land Titling and Registration (SLTR) in Nigeria. However, analysts say government should provide more funds to the committee to enable it complete its work on time. To ameliorate the housing shortage and boost affordable housing, the federal government is also increasing the capital base of mortgage banks. Mortgage banks that wish to operate in a state alone are to increase their capital base to N2.5 billion while those that want to operate nationwide are to increase their capital base to N5 billion. All these government measures are to enable access to mortgage loans for the low income earners. On how to boost affordable housing in Nigeria, Mass Housing

Developer and Managing Director of El-Salem Nigeria Ltd, Mr. Ben Gbade Ojo has called on t h e F e d e ra l G o ve rn me nt t o develop infrastructure in all areas designated for mass housing as a way of achieving government’s target of reducing the nation’s housing deficit. Mr. Ojo who made the call in a chat with Peoples Daily in Abuja recently stated that “without prejudice to the findings and recommendations of the various committees set up by the Housing Minister to identify problems and solutions to Nigeria’s housing sector, including efforts of professional associations and other stakeholders on the way forward for the sector, I wish to call on the Jonathan administration to please tackle Nigeria’s housing problems through concerted development of infrastructure like roads, electric power and pipe-

borne water in sites designated for mass housing. Our experience in developing mass housing has shown that the absence of urban infrastructure and escalating cost of building materials have been the bane of estate developers and have effectively stunted efforts at housing development especially on mortgages. While the country waits for the development of the bond market to finance urban infrastructure, we urge the government to create a temporary and targeted intervention fund that will provide infrastructure for serious private sector estate developers and come up with some other measures that will bring down the cost of building materials in the country”. He said “as the nation gets poised to provide adequate housing for her citizens, it has become necessary to carry out a comprehensive reform of Nigeria’s mortgage sector and mortgage institutions in Nigeria” Mr. Ojo appealed to the Honourable Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Ms. Ama Pepple “to pursue with her legendary commitment, the issues of reviewing the Land Use Act to make land more accessible and to tackle the delays and difficulties associated with acquisition and transfer of property rights” adding that “developers are committed to providing high quality and affordable housing for the generality of Nigerians if government can provide the enabling environment. Analysts say the federal government must tackle the housing crisis now to forestall an epidemic of unmanageable proportion. They say government can start from completing its perennial review of the Land Use Act which experts have acknowledged to be the major obstacle to housing development in Nigeria. They opine that the housing sector needs to be fully activated not only because of the adequate shelter it will provide Nigerians but the developmental effect it will have on industry, job creation and economic growth. A rise in housing construction has a positive effect in virtually all sectors of the economy and indices of development. The National Assembly should also expedite action on the various housing bills before it. Nigerians deserve better housing, including the good life associated with this fundamental human right.

According to the United Nations Habitat, in Nigeria, over 80% of the population lives in informal settlements in both the major urban areas and traditional villages.




Breach of agreement: Court awards N5bn compensation to Maevis against FAAN From Suleiman Idris, Lagos


President Goodluck Jonathan (left), in a handshake with former Senate President Ameh Ebute (right), during a visit by the South-South and Middle-Belt delegations to the president, yesterday at the State House, in Abuja. With them is Chief Edwin Clerk (middle). Photo: Joe Oroye

Fuel Subsidy: FG pays N192bn to marketers

By Abdulwahab Isa


he Federal Ministry of Finance yesterday said it has paid a whooping sum of N192.5 bn claims by marketers as at June 10, 2013. According to a press statement issued by the Ministry, signed by the Special Adviser to the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Paul C Nwabuikwu, 19 oil marketers,

who made 39 claims amounting to N56,806,010,752.45 emerged as the beneficiaries. These include Resources Ltd, Ascon Oil Co. Ltd, A-Z Petroleum Products Ltd., Bovas & company Ltd, Folawiyo Energy Ltd., Forte Oil Plc, Gulf Treasuries Ltd., Integrated Oil & Gas Ltd., Masters Energy Oil & Gas Ltd., Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc., NIPCO Plc. Others were Northwest Petroleum & Gas Ltd.,

Rahamaniyya Oil & Gas Ltd, Rain Oil Ltd., Sahara Energy Resources Ltd., Rainoil Ltd., Sahara Energy Resources Ltd., Shorelink Oil & Gas Services Ltd., Sift Oil Ltd.,Techno Oil Ltd and Total Nigeria Plc. “In addition, earlier in the year, a total of N135,696,269,214.05 was paid to Oil Marketers in respect of verified 2011 and 2012 arrears. Thus, the total amount paid to Oil Marketers so far in 2013 is N192,502,279,966.50”, it further

said. The Ministry said, “this was in line with the continued commitment to manage fuel subsidy payments in a transparent and efficient manner that protects and enhances the interests of the Nigerian people”. The Ministry further said it made payments based on batches of claims as submitted by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).

Destination Inspection Scheme: FG renews extension of contract for service providers

By Aminu Imam


he Federal Government has extended the contract of Cotecna, SGS and Globalscan as Destination inspection Agents (DIAs) as service providers for the inspection of imports at the nation’s seaports, airports and land borders for a period of six months with effect from June1, 2013 to November 30, 2013. Following the extension, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday notified all Authorised Dealer Banks that the three DIAs have been appointed by the Government as Inspection Agents to carry out the assignment during the period.

The CBN, in a circular TED/ FEM/FPC/011006 dated June 17,2013, stated that the entry points for imports to Nigeria have been grouped into three Lots, and allocated Apapa Sea Port, Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, Seme and ldiroko Land Borders and Warri Sea Port to Global Scan Systems Limited. Cotecna was allocated Tin Can Island Sea Port, Grimaldi Port (PTML), Abuja and Kano International Airports, Lagos Free Trade zone, Jibiya and Banki Border Posts, while SGS, was allotted Port Harcourt Main Sea Port, Onne Sea Port, Port Harcourt International Airport,Onne & P/Harcourt Free Trade Zones,

Calabar Sea Port and Ilorin Int’l Airport. The apex bank stated that the DIAs are expected to assume duty at their new allocated Lots with effect from Friday, June 14, 2013. The trio were first awarded the contract in 2006, but when the contract lapsed on December 31, last year, the Finance Ministry recommended an extension by six months, and it was approved by President Goodluck Jonathan on the excuse that the Nigeria Customs Service was not ready to take over the responsibility of destination inspection. Many stakeholders, government officials, including ministers, have allegedly disagreed

with the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala over the renewal of the contract. The Customs was expected to be in charge of DI from last January. It was also learnt that the Customs is also unhappy that all its investment on multi-billion Naira DI equipment and training of 300 Customs would be a waste. Also, it was learnt that the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is unhappy over the plan because it will leave more than 300 Customs officers already trained abroad idle. The renewal is said to be against a March 1, 2013 assessment of the World Bank, which has confirmed the Customs’ readiness to manage the DI.

Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos has ordered that the sum of N5 billion be paid as compensation to Maevis Nigeria Limited over the breach of a revenue collection deal it had with the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN). Justice Ibrahim Buba of Court 6 yesterday declared that Societe International Telecommunications Aeronautique is wrong to have entered into a contract with FAAN to replace Maevis in the collection of non-aeronautic revenue and therefore described the contract as invalid. Maevis hitherto collected the revenue for FAAN before both parties were locked in disagreement over the sharing formula in relation to the four Airports, Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja, Mallam Aminu Kano Airport, Kano and Port-Harcourt Airport. The Judge set aside all SITA agreement with FAAN and other agreements with any agency and directed SITA to pay N5 billon to MAEVIS. He said SITA was willful and reckless in its conduct having bided for the contract and lost, yet went ahead to induce FAAN. “SITA knew they were wrong, they were warned there was a court case and contempt proceeding. “Yet, they were reckless, they went ahead to sign an invalid contract which is null and void.” Ibrahim said the inducement by SITA was proven and upheld that their criminal act with FAAN must not hold affirming the issue is simple; SITA is guilty of all matters they were accused of by MAEVIS. Also, the court affirmed the declaration that the defendant’s actions in willfully and intentionally procuring and or inducing FAAN to breach its subsisting agreement with the plaintiff is impacting on the plaintiff’s ability to collect revenue due to the Federal Government of Nigeria pursuant to the facilities provided by the plaintiff under the agreement. “A Declaration that any purported agreement or understanding for the provision of any Common Use Terminal Equipment (“CUTE”) or similar equipment and or software application between the Defendants (or any of their subsidiaries affiliates, agents or representatives) or any other person apart from the Plaintiff and FAAN in respect of any or all of the four airports (already envisaged under the Plaintiff’s subsisting agreement with FAAN) is invalid, unlawful, ineffective, null and void.”

No advisory on Hajj postponement – Commission

By Maryam Garba Hassan


he National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) yesterday debunked a report that the Saudi authority had recommended the postponement of this year’s hajj and Umrah to the next three years to enable it complete the expansion work going on within and around

the Grand Mosque in Mecca. The Commission said the notice it received from the Saudi Arabian government was on the global reduction of the 2013 hajj slots by 20 per cent to avoid congestion and stampede during the hajj exercise. The Commission said it issued a statement to that effect adding

that the reduction has nothing to do with Umrah as stated in the report. It further explained that at the end of its emergency stakeholders’ meeting, it accepted the Saudi circular on reduction by 20 per cent of 2013 hajj seats from 95,000 to 75,000 and that the reduction cut across board including states

and tour operators. According to NAHCON, its only quarrel with the Saudi authority is for not notifying it of the new development during the signing of MOU between the two counties in February this year saying that the Commission had written to state governors to intimate them of the development and seek for

cooperation. HAHCON further stated that refund to affected intending pilgrims should be 100 per cent without any deduction and for those who still wish to embark on the journey, the state pilgrims’ welfare boards, agencies and commissions may decide to keep their payment against 2012 hajj.



NHRC decries violence against children, women By Sunday Ejike Benjamin


he Governing Council of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has condemned the increase in incidents of violence against women and rape of young children in Nigeria. The council called on the relevant authorities to take immediate steps at ensuring that victims of domestic and sexual violence enjoy prompt remedies including fast-tracking of trials of offenders and appropriate sentencing. Council specifically called on heads of competent courts to issue appropriate child protection orders in accordance with Child Rights Act/Law and other relevant laws. In a communiqué after its 3rd 2013 statutory meeting, the Council also approved for publication Standing Orders and Rules of Procedures to govern its proceedings, the management of cases and complaints and relations with partners, including civil society. According to the communiqué, “Council received an update on the situation in the North-East Nigeria and authorized the expedited completion and release of an interim assessment report on the situation before the end of June 2013.”Council received and considered reports on 336 cases and complaints in various stages of investigation alleging different violations of human rights. Council observed with concern, the alarming rate of incidents of domestic and sexual violence in the country, particularly rape of young person’s.” According to the communiqué, the Council expressed concern that victims of violence against women and children do not have access to remedies, adding that, “access to remedies is always constrained by breakdown in communications between agencies of the criminal justice system which sometimes results in delay in processing legal advice from Ministries of Justice and a cumbersome trial process by the judiciary, particularly lower courts.


Alleged $15m Ibori bribe: Court fixes July 10 to hear Delta state’s motion By Sunday Ejike Benjamin


Federal High Court, Abuja yesterday slated July 10, 2013 to hear an application brought before it by Delta State Government, seeking to claim the $15 million bribe allegedly offered former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nuhu Ribadu by the former governor of Delta State, James

Ibori. Ibori was alleged to have given the bribe to the former EFCC boss to stop the EFCC from investigating him for allegedly looting the state fund belonging to the state, while in office. The trial Judge, Justice Gabriel Kolawole, fixed the date after a recent ruling by the Court of Appeal, Abuja, which struck out an application by a Lagosbased refrigerator repairer,

Olalekan Bayode seeking to halt further hearing in a suit pending the hearing of his appeal. When the case was called yesterday, parties were set to argue the application by Delta state, but the court said it was inconvenient in view of its tight schedule and directed them to choose a fresh date The Federal Government had applied to the court for an order of forfeiture and to direct

L-R: Special Assistant to Enugu state Governor on Small and Medium Enterprises, Nneka Onuora, Enugu state Commissioner for Finance, Godwin Nnadi, Managing Director, Nexim Bank, Mr. Robert Orya, and Enugu state Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Dr. Jude Akabwilo, during the Enugu state officials meeting with the management of NEXIM Bank, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: justin Imo-Owo

Lagos abandoned aircraft towed to Badagry for research From Suleiman Idris, Lagos


n America registered jet with registration number N972TF rumoured to have crashed-landed in Igando area of Lagos last Thursday has finally

arrived its destination in Badagry where its owner Capt. Mathew Jolade Ekehinde, plans to use it for educational purpose. Residents of the area woke up June 13th to found the aircraft parked at Dapsey filling station

fueling rumour that it crash-landed before authorities dispelled the notion explaining that it was among the scrapped aircrafts released to interested individuals. The popular suburb became a Mecca of sorts as people trooped

11 killed as gunmen attack school, JTF in Yobe From Mustapha Isah Kwaru, Maiduguri &Uche Uche, Damaturu


uspected Boko Haram insurgents on Sunday launched multiple attacks in Damaturu, the Yobe state capital killing nine civilians, while two of the attackers were also killed in a gun- duel with security forces. Our correspondents report that the latest attacks mayhave dealt a blow on the peaceful atmosphere enjoyed by the residents in recent months.

the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) where Ribadu had lodged the bribe money he refused, to release it to the government should no one showed up to claim the money. Delta state government later intervened, claiming ownership of the money. It is part of its contention that Ibori, being its governor when the bribe money was offered, must have taken the money from the state’s coffers.

Following the seemingly improved security situation, the state government had further relaxed the curfew hours between the hours of 9 pm to 6 am, to 6 pm to 6 am. Spokesman of the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in the state Lt. Eli Lazarus, confirmed the incident in a statement issued to newsmen yesterday saying the suspected members of the Boko Haram sect attacked Government Secondary School, Damaturu, and a military check point. According to Lazarus, those

killed in the attacks comprised of two teachers, two insurgents and students of the school. The statement added that besides the dead victims, three soldiers were critically injured in a clash with the gunmen which lasted for over five hours. The JTF spokesman also added that three of the suspected invaders were apprehended and were in the custody of the task force. Medical Officer of the Damaturu Specialist Hospital, Dr. Salem M. Umar, told newsmen that 11 corpses of the victims were

deposited at the hospital. Umar also confirmed that six other students sustained various degrees of injuries and were receiving treatment. Some surviving victims who declined identification said the suspected insurgents stormed their hostels few minutes after 9 pm and started shooting sporadically, saying that some of them escaped through the windows. The witnesses noted that the insurgents had also held some of the students at gun-point, forcing them to lead them to the teachers’ quarters.

there to catch a glimpse of the machine, with some confessing to have seen and touched an aircraft for the first time in their lives. Capt. Jolade, husband of popular Nollywood star, Omotola, had sought the consent of the aviation authorities to collect the plane from the grave yard at the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos to teach school children in Badagry and develop their interest in aviation. According to the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), the aircraft had a burst tyre while being towed at the early hours of Thursday and later parked at the filling station. “The plane is actually a junk belonging to late Apostle Gabriel Oduyemi of Bethel Ministries and had long been parked at NAMA facility up till Wednesday night when it was eventually removed, a NAMA statement said.





Court dismisses case against Plateau CPC

Uyo varsity protest: Panel expresses shock

From Ado Abubakar Musa, Jos



fter assessing the wanton damage said to have been carried out by protesting students of the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, the Chairman of Inter-Ministerial Committee on Campus Safety, Prof. Adebisi Balogun, has expressed shock over the level of devastation on the campus. Balogun who led a sevenman committee appointed by the National University Commission (NUC) to access the extent of damage and make recommendations to avert further occurrence, said it was not enough for the N100 fare the student were kicking against to warrant such carnage. According to him, “this university has existed since 1991 and we have never seen this type of carnage unleashed. “We do not want to pre-empt any investigation but definitely it cannot be because of N100, the whole campus is burnt.” From Mike Etim, Uyo

Magistrate court 6 in Jos yesterday dismissed a case filed by the Plateau State Commissioner of Police against the executive members of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), accusing them of inciting crisis during the conduct of the Party’s congress in 2011. The court presided over by Justice Zenshak Daba, the charges made against state chairman of CPC, Alhaji Mubashiru Aliyu and seven others of his executives were not supported by evidenced before the court. He said, all the four prosecution witnesses had given contradictory evidences that failed to prove the alleged offence. However, on the charge that the defendants misled the Police in their letter that their congresses were billed for at the Jos Jossy Royal Hotel, the prosecution witnesses failed to prove that there was violence at the venue, emphasizing that the court did not find the defendants guilty. Justice Daba dismissed the case, discharged and acquitted the defendants.

Shema mourns Media Trust Editor


overnor Ibrahim Shehu Shema of Katsina state has described the death of the Managing Editor of Media Trust Limited, Malam Suleiman Ibn Muhammad, as shocking and a tragic loss to the media and the country at large. The Governor who said this in a statement signed by his Senior Special Assistant on Press Affairs, Malam Lawal Ahmad Matazu, noted that Suleiman died in his prime when his contributions to the media and Nigerian democracy are needed most. He prayed Allah to grant the deceased Aljanna Firdausi and to the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. From Lawal Sa’idu Funtua, Katsina

Kaduna approves N81m for civil servants retraining


aduna state Governor, Mukhtar Ramalan Yero, has approved N81 million for the implementation of the training roadmap for the year 2013. The Governor disclosed this at a lecture to mark the 2013 civil service week in the state yesterday. Yero said that professional development of staff was necessary to move the state forward. According to him, “this can only be achieved through formal manpower training and other programmes to raise the quality of service delivery, accountability and integrity of public officials.” From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna

L-R: Abia state Governor, Chief Theodore Orji walking in with Katsina State Governor Barrister Ibrahim Shema, before their meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday at the State House, in Abuja. Photo: Joe Oroye

Jonathan reaffirms commitment to transformation agenda


resident Goodluck Jonathan said yesterday that administration would never allow itself to be derailed from pursuing the Transformation Agenda to its logical conclusion. Receiving delegation of MiddleBelt and South-South Elders under the aegis of the Congress for Equality and Change led by elder statesman, Chief Edwin Clark, and former Senate President, Ameh Ebute, Jonathan pledged that his administration will continue working diligently to build on the achievements catalogued in its mid-term report to the nation. The President also reaffirmed the Federal Government’s unwa-

vering commitment to moving Nigeria progressively forward along the path of development articulated in the Transformation Agenda. He commended the elders for “working tirelessly to bring us to where we are today” and for their continued support, promising that, “as our leaders, we will continue to do our best to justify the confidence you have reposed in us.” He also thanked the Middle Belt and South-South regions for their contributions to national unity, stressing that the unity of the country, “depends on the cooperation of all.” Chief Clark had earlier told the

President that the Congress for Equality and Change, formed in 2010, is made up of 13 states in the North and six states in the South where there are minority ethnic groups. The co-leader of the delegation and Chairman of the Congress, Ebute, said that the group was committed to promoting the equality of all Nigerians. While commending the MidTerm Scorecard of the Jonathan administration, Ebute said that the scorecard had encouraged the Congress, “to go out and showcase the achievements and ask Nigerians to continue to support Jonathan to accomplish more for the nation.”

Corruption war not targeted at judges alone, says CJN By Sunday Ejike Benjamin


he Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Mariam Aloma Mukhtar, has said that the on-going war to rid the Judiciary of bad eggs was not only targeted at judges and other judicial officers alone but on staff of the Judiciary that indulge in acts capable of bringing disrepute to the legal profession. The CJN disclosed this yesterday in a keynote address she delivered at a three-day national workshop with the theme: “The challenges facing court libraries

in information and communication technology age”, organized by the National Judicial Institute (NJI) for judicial librarians across the country. Mukhtar said, “any judicial staff who works hard and conducts himself well will be rewarded but the deviant, fraudulent and indolent ones may become irrelevant in our drive for a virile judicial system.” The CJN, who was represented at the occasion by Justice Olu Ariola of the Supreme Court, said judicial staff were bound by the code of conduct and added

that there is the need for them not to go against the ethics of the judicial system. “If any of you compromises himself or contravenes the code of conduct, he or she will face the full consequences of his or her action” she added. Earlier in his welcome address, the NJI Administrator, Justice Umaru Eri, who highlighted the benefits of library in the life of any society, said its importance to the judicial profession cannot be overemphasized.

Hisbah board commences evacuation of Kano destitute


he Kano State Hisbah Board on Monday said it had evacuated 114 destitute persons from the streets of Kano metropolis. The Director-General of the board, Alhaji Abba Sufi, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kano that the exercise commenced on Sunday. According to him, the exercise is part of the state government’s resolve to ban begging on the streets of the state capital. ‘’We have so far evacuated 114 destitute persons out of whom 85 are women and children while the remaining 29 are men. “Out of the 29 men, 18 are non-indigenes and will soon be repatriated to their respective states of origin,’’ he said. According to him, all the evacuees are temporarily being accommodated at the board pending completion of the rehabilitation work at the Mariri Rehabilitation Centre in Kumbotso local government area of the state. Sufi said officials of the board had also held a meeting with leaders of various associations of the destitute persons with a view to suggesting possible ways of rehabilitating their members. ‘’We held a meeting this morning with the leaders of the Association of the Blind and other similar associations to discuss how the state government can assist them,’’ he said. He called on the destitute persons to support government’s effort toward rehabilitating them. NAN)



USEFUL PHONE NUMBERS ON ANY EMERGENCY Council endorsed the useful phone numbers submitted by the security agents for easy access in case of any emergency on the metropolitan Roads. Accordingly, the public may easily Contact KAROTA for: Breakdown of Vehicle(s), Traffic Congestion, Accidents, Illegal / Wrong Parking to kindly Call KAROTA through the following number – 08091626747. Similarly, the State Police Command could be contacted on – 08032419754, 08123821575. In addition, the State Fire Service can also be contacted on – 07051246833, 08191778888.

102nd Kano state executive council meeting


oday Wednesday 12th June, 2013 (3rd Sha’aban, 1434AH) the Kano State Executive Council held its one hundred and two (102nd) sitting under the Chairmanship of Governor Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, FNSE. Ten (10) MDAs submitted sixtyeight (68) memoranda for deliberation by Council of which forty-five (45) were approved for execution with an expenditure of Two Billion, Eight Hundred and Eighty Six Million, Seven Thousand One Hundred and Twenty Four Naira Fifty Four Kobo (N 2,886,007,124.54) covering thirty-five (35) projects. Thus: 1. MINISTRY OF LAND AND PHYSICAL PLANNING Four (4) memoranda were submitted for deliberation by Council from the Ministry of Land and Physical planning. Three (3) of them were approved for execution as follows: a. Request for Funds for the Construction of Katsina Road – Dan’ Dinshe (Layin Naira da Kobo) Road:Provision of required infrastructure for use by the citizenry in Kano State is a cardinal preoccupation of the present administration. Many vitally required, but abandoned road construction/ repairs projects were re-validated while the construction of completely new ones were embarked upon especially the 5Km Road construction projects approved for execution across the 44 LGCAs in the State. Flyovers are now being constructed in Kano courtesy of the incumbent administration. As such, the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning requested for the release of the sum of N88,658,888.06 to enable the construction/creation of a link road from Katsina Road in Kurna through to Dan’ Dinshe link road. This will relieve vehicular traffic congestion and create required convenience within the neighborhood. The project was considered significant as Council approved the release of the requested sum of N88,658,888.06 to the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning to enable the construction of the vitally required link road between Katsina Road and Dan’ Dinshe (Layin Naira da Kobo) in Kurna through to Dan’ Dinshe link road. b. Request for Funds for the Construction of Roads and Drainages at Kwankwaso Town:Contents of this memorandum applauded the general effort and particularly the giant strides taken by the present administration in the provision of developmental projects in all nooks and crannies of the State. This certainly aims at uplifting the living standards of the populace including those at Kwankwaso Town where roads and drainage were earmarked for provision in order to upgrade the status of the town to befitting urban standard. The Ministry of Land and Physical Planning requested for the release of the sum of N1,978,242,455.99 to enable the execution of the project according to the detailed specifications presented to Council for consideration. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the requested sum of N1,978,242,455.99 to the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning to enable construction of Roads and Drainages at Kwankwaso Town. c. Request for Funds for the Provision/Laying of Garden

Interlock Tiles on additional Eighteen (18) Roads selected in the Metropolitan Area of Kano State:To beautify and upgrade Urban/ Metropolitan Kano is among the cardinal resolutions of the present administration. Among the endeavors, provision and installation of garden interlock tiles along pedestrian walkways is earnestly embarked upon. Contents of this memorandum went ahead and presented to Council a detailed update on seven (7) approvals granted for release of funds to the tune of an aggregate sum of N460,056,090.71 to enable the laying of interlock tiles on sixty-three (63) roads in the metropolitan area of the State. Progressively, the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning requested for the release of the sum of N200,000,000.00 by Council to enable the laying of garden interlock tiles on the pedestrian walkways of eighteen (18) selected additional roads in the metropolis and the settlement of already executed contracts. Considering the significance of the request and details presented, Council approved the release of the requested sum of N200,000,000.00 to the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning to enable the continuation of the project on laying of garden interlock tiles along the pedestrian walkways of eighteen (18) additional roads in the metropolitan area of the State according to the details presented. 2. MINISTRY OF ENVIRONMENT Two (2) memoranda were submitted for deliberation by Council from the Ministry of Environment. Both were approved for execution. Thus: a. Request for Funds to Enable the Execution of Avenue/Road Sides Trees Planting Project in Kano Metropolis:The Honourable Commissioner, Ministry of Environment informed Council, through contents of this memorandum that, a road and avenue side tree planting project has been designed to be executed in three (3) phases by the Ministry of Environment. A distance of 117.7 Kilometers will be covered in 54 different selected locations within Kano metropolitan area. Five (5) weeks (35 Days) have been projected for the completion of the project to 100% level in three (3) phases. A total of 14,313 assorted seedlings of adaptable tree species will be used in the exercise. 49% (6955) of the tree seedlings will be provided by the Ministry of Environment while the remaining 51% (7358) will be procured from private nurseries because the Ministry of Environment does not raise all the required number of tree species. Details of the financial commitment for each of the three (3) phases were presented for Council’s consideration summarized as follows: i. Phase one (1) = N11,931,560.00 ii. Phase two (2) = N5,692,030.00 iii. Phase three (3) = N4,231,170.00 Total = N21,854,760.00 As such, the aggregate sum of N21,854,760.00 was requested for release to the Ministry of Environment by Council to enable the execution of the three (3) phases of the stated project. Approval was granted as requested by Council considering the significance of the project to environmental protection and beautification of the road and avenue sides of the 177.7 kilometers of the 54 selected metropolitan locations. b. Presentation of Progress Achievement by the Committee on

Gov Kwankwaso Control of Indiscriminate Discharge of Industrial Waste:Contents of this memorandum presented a comprehensive progress report on the successful discharge of the duties assigned to the Committee on control of indiscriminate discharge of Industrial Waste in Kano State. The current envisaged focus of the Committee presented to Council for consideration includes the following: i. Establishment of channel valve to control waste discharge at respective industries. ii. Posting of staff from the Ministry of Environment to respective industries for 24 hours to ensure/monitor compliance. iii. Establishment of mobile court for summary trial of defaulters. iv. Planting of trees along channel line to the river/natural drainage in order to absorb obnoxious odors from the waste discharged by industries. v. The Committee requested for the allocation of a vehicle by Government to the Committee to facilitate for regular and effective monitoring of compliance. Council appreciated the presentation and considerately approved the release of the sum of N7,500,000.00 to enable the procurement and allocation of one (1) unit of Toyota Hiace 18–seater bus to the Committee on Control of Indiscriminate Industrial Discharge in the State. 3. MINISTRY OF INFORMATION, INTERNAL AFFAIRS, YOUTHS, SPORTS AND CULTURE This Ministry submitted two (2) memoranda for deliberation by Council. Both were approved for execution as follows: a. Request for Funds to Enable the Procurement of Two (2) Fully Equipped Specialized Public Enlightenment Vans:The Honourable Commissioner, Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youths, Sports and Culture substantiated to Council, through contents of this memorandum that, public enlightenment is among the principal functions of his Ministry. This is more so under the incumbency of the present administration whose resolve is to operate transparently under the awareness of the general public. Activities of Government are open to the

public with the dissemination of vital information considered a priority. As such, making people aware is of vital importance through film shows and constant public announcements across the 44 LGCAs. As such, the Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youths, Sports and Culture requested for the release of the sum of N49,624,426.00 to enable the procurement of two (2) fully equipped specialized public enlightenment vans for use in the conduct of the Ministry. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the sum of N24,818,213.00 to the Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youths, Sports and Culture to enable the procurement of one (1) unit of fully equipped and specialized public enlightenment van for the smooth conduct of operations at the Ministry. b. Presentation of Request for the Release of Funds to Facilitate the Renovation of Racing Tracks at the Kano Race Course and Furnishing of the Main Offices at the Venue:Horse Racing is a popular sport internationally and provides entertainment to an appreciable cross section of the public here in Kano State, but the venue at the Kano Race Course needs general renovation which started with the granting of approval for the provision of a befitting perimeter wall fence around the entire venue. An inspection of the entire facility revealed that the main racing tracks require renovation while furnishing of the Offices at the premises is required urgently. So, the Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youths, Sports and Culture responsibly requested for the release of the aggregate sum of N5,461,337.00 by Council to enable the Ministry address the two (2) issues. Council considered the request relevant and approved the release of the requested sum of N5,461,337.00 to the Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youths, Sports and Culture to expedite action in the execution of the stated projects so as to revive horse racing activities for the recreation and benefit of the citizenry and the generation of revenue to the Government. 4. MINISTRY OF HEALTH The State Ministry of Health submitted three (3) memoranda directly for deliberation by Council. All were approved for execution as follows: a. Presentation of Request for Upward Review of Funds Released for the Execution of Three (3) vital programs Under the Kano State Hospitals Management Board:The present administration in Kano State under the capable leadership of the second incumbency of Governor Engr. Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, FNSE resolve to qualitatively provide for the transformation of the entire health sector especially the healthcare delivery system and available facilities. A lot has been achieved in the preceding two (2) years. Prominent healthcare delivery facilities have been renovated with many being provided with vital equipment and instruments across the State. Tangible examples can be cited everywhere in the State. As such, the Ministry of Health identified and pinpointed three (3) vital programs under the care of the State Hospitals Management Board that urgently need Government intervention. The programs include: • provision of free accident and emergency services

• provision of free in – patient feeding in the State owned Hospitals • provision of Integrated Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Care free Importantly, the State Government used to provide the three (3) services mentioned above which the Ministry of Health vehemently applauded, but calls for an upward review of the amount being released for the programs. Many important reasons for the upward review were presented for consideration by Council. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the upward reviewed sum of N11,481,903.50 to the Ministry of Health monthly to enable the State Hospitals Management Board continue with execution of the three (3) vital programs. b. Presentation of the Need and Request for Funds to Complete the Works Started on the Renovation of Kano Dental Center:The Honorable Commissioner for Health presented an update on the progress of works executed on the general renovation, provision of specialized equipment and furniture at the Kano Dental Center for which Council approved for the release of the sum of N78,374,877.30 and N52,743,154.34 respectively. Reportedly, the renovation works and procurement/installation of equipment/ instruments/furniture were successfully executed to 100% completion level; what remains presently is the official commissioning of the center for the commencement of service delivery. The aggregate cost of the proposed completion of the project is to the tune of N6,673,280.00, which was requested for release to the Ministry of Health to enable the execution of interlock tilling, provision of Kerbs, side clearance and provision of trees/landscaping. Approval was granted by Council as requested for the release of the sum of N6,673,280.00 to the Ministry of health to expedite action in the execution of the stated completion works at the newly renovated Kano Dental Center so as to actualize its immediate commissioning for the commencement of service delivery at the specialized Dental referral center. c. Presentation of the Need and Request for Funds for the Renovation of a Hospital at Sabon Sara (Sahara), Gwale LGCA, Kano State:Taking cognizance of the efforts of the incumbent administration towards the positive transformation of the entire healthcare delivery system in Kano State, the Ministry of Health notified Council of the need to renovate an existing Hospital at Sabon Sara (Sahara) in Gwale LGCA. The physical structure and state of other required facilities are inadequate for the delivery of the vitally required healthcare services for the community in the area, which prompted the State Ministry of Health to request for the release of the sum of N42,194,432.85 to enable the execution of the renovation works. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the requested sum of N42,194,432.85 to the Ministry of Health to enable the renovation of the Hospital at Sabon Sara (Sahara) in Gwale LGCA of the State. 5. OFFICE OF THE HEAD OF CIVIL SERVICE



PEOPLES DAILY, TUESDAY, JUNE 18, 2013 Two (2) memoranda were submitted for consideration by Council from the Office of the Head of Civil Service. Only one of them was approved for execution. Thus: Request for Approval to Proceed/ Undergo a 6 – Months Diploma Course in “Development Leadership” at the International Institute Canada on Salary Option:The Office of the Head of Civil Service presented the case referred to above on behalf of the State Ministry of Rural and Community Development in respect of their staff, Malam Abdur Rahman Lawan Abdullahi (Chief Inspector in the Department of Community Development). The Staff solicits for Government approval to undergo a six (6) – Months Diploma Course in “Development Leadership” at the International Institute Canada on Salary Option. The request was presented to Council as relevant and in order for the fact that the Officer being a Community Development Expert will be exposed to modern management skills and techniques on how best to execute his official responsibilities diligently. Noteworthy are the following facts: • That the Institute sponsors 75% of the cost implications for the Course. • That the Officer personally shoulders the balance of 25% for the cost implications. • That the Office of the Head of Civil Service recommended to Council to approve the release of the Officer to partake in the program on “Salary Option” for six (6) months only with effect from July, 2013 – December, 2013. Considering the relevance of the request, Council approved the release of Malam Abdur Rahman Lawan Abdullahi to partake in the referred Course on Salary Option for six (6) months (July – December, 2013). 6. MINISTRY OF EDUCATION Request for Funds to Enable the Drilling of Three (3) Motorized Water Boreholes at Three (3) Women Centers under the State Agency for Mass Education:The Honorable Commissioner, Ministry of Education applauded Council for granting a number of approvals for the execution of various important projects aimed at transforming the Education Sector generally. Of recent, Council approved the drilling of twelve (12) motorized water boreholes at twelve (12) Women Centers under the Agency for Mass Education, which were pin – pointed in Albasu, Bagwai, G/Dutse, Fagge, Garko, Gaya, Gwarzo, Kiru, Kwankwaso, Minjibir, Kano City and G/Albasa. The facility is in earnest use at the respective Centers and their host Communities. As such, the Ministry of Education requested for the release of the sum of N6,000,000.00 to enable the drilling of the three (3) motorized water boreholes at the following three (3) locations of Hotoro Women Center, Bichi Women Center and Rano Women Center. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the requested sum of N6,000,000.00 to the State Ministry of Education to enable execution of the specified project. 7. MINISTRY OF WORKS, HOUSING AND TRANSPORT The Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport submitted five (5) memoranda for deliberation by Council. All were approved for execution as follows: a. Presentation of the Deployment of the R1 – Max Vehicle Registration and Civil Security Electronic Enforcement Robot System and Request for Funds for the Purpose:Council recalled Government initiative to organize and regulate the operation of transport operators in the State with the establishment of an agency with the sole aim of controlling traffic, Kano Road Traffic Agency (KAROTA). Already, the agency has registered all operators of tri-cycles and the issuance of Identification Cards across the 44 Local Government Areas. However, despite the effort of the agency in containing and controlling abuse of the process, some unpatriotic individuals have been caught printing fake numbers, which has the tendency of compromising security. The contents of this memorandum adequately proposed solution to this challenge through computerized electronic encoding facility with database control and computer robots machines, coupled with reflective side number plates. This innovation will eliminate

the chances of duplication/imitation by unscrupulous individuals. The agency proposed the implementation of security encoded registration drive for all commercial vehicles for the meantime. The system is presently being operated in Abuja. Through this system vehicles could be identified easily for security and other purposes. Details were presented on the device and its applicability in the enhancement of Security for Council’s consideration along with a request for the release of the sum of N5,500,000.00 to enable deployment of R1 – Max vehicle registration and Civil Security Electronic Enhancement Robot System for use by personal of KAROTA. Again, a comprehensive update on the conduct of registration and issuance of ID Cards to Commercial motor cycles and tricycles operators was presented to Council for consideration. However, an outstanding requirement of N4,410,000.00 for printing of side numbering, procurement of equipment and materials for identification cards and logistics support was encountered. Council approved the request and also accepted the proposal in principle, but restricted the exercise to the operators of tri-cycles first. b. Presentation of Brief on Progress Report of Kano Light Rail Projects:The Honourable Commissioner, Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport politely reminded Council, through contents of this memorandum, of the commitment effort of the present administration towards Urban Transportation Reform by providing efficient, safe, affordable and sustainable transport system within metropolitan Kano. To this end, the State Government under the leadership of the second incumbency of Governor Engr. Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, FNSE signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) for the development and construction of Light Rail Transport System within the metropolitan Kano. Progressively, the CCECC conducted a reconnaissance survey of Kano Metropolitan area for a week as prelude to the development of the conceptual design of the Light Rail Transport System in Kano. Accordingly, a layout plan for the project was developed and presented to Council for perusal. Notably, Katsina Road (from Northern Terminus to Yan’ Kura “15 Kilometer”) was selected as the first (1st) phase of the project to be constructed and commissioned within one (1) year time frame. In any case, the final concept design of the 1st phase of the entire project will be presented to Kano State Government/ Council along with the estimated cost implication in due course for consideration and approval. Council appreciatively acknowledged presentation of the brief and awaits subsequent submissions on the worthwhile issue. c. Request for Funds to Enable the Continuation of Enforcement of Ban on Illegal Motor Parks/Street Decongestion in Metropolitan Kano:The contents of this memorandum presented a comprehensive progress report on the conduct of the exercise mentioned above for consideration by Council. Success achieved in conduct of the exercise previously prompted the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport to request for the release of the sum of N13,468,080.00 to enable the continuation of the exercise for three (3) months (July – September, 2013). The request was considered relevant as Council approved the release of the requested sum of N13,468,080.00 to the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport to enable the continuation of the enforcement of ban on illegal motor parks/street de-congestion in the State. d. Request for Funds to Enable the Provision of Road Signs and Markings in Metropolitan Kano:The Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport amply substantiated to Council, through contents of this memorandum that, Kano Road Traffic Agency (KAROTA) is saddled with the responsibilities of vehicular traffic control, enforcement of traffic rules and regulations and general management of traffic movements and a host of other required functions. These necessitated the need to provide traffic control and management devices ranging from improved communication system, road

signs, road markings, bus stopping point and appropriate shelters that guide and control traffic. Importantly, KAROTA requested, through the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport Council approval for the procurement of 250 Bus Stop Signs, 500 No Parking Signs, and 260 Stop Lines at the sum of N7,550,000.00. The request was considered credible as Council approved the release of the requested sum of N7,550,000.00 to the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport to enable the provision of road signs and markings in metropolitan Kano according to the details presented. e. Request for Funds to Procure Additional Number of Vehicles for the Conduct of Smooth Operation of Official Duties at Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport:Serviceable means of transportation constitutes a priority requirement for the smooth conduct of operations in the discharge of Official Duties at Kano Road Traffic Agency. Though available, the number of operational vehicles for use at the agency is inadequate. So, authorities at the agency deemed it necessary to alert Council on the issue presenting details which indicate a requirement for seventeen (17) additional vehicles for use at the six (6) zones of the agency. Council noted, considered and approved the release of the sum of N48,600,000.00 to the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport to procure and allocate six (6) Toyota Hilux DC and One ambulance operational vehicles for use by the six (6) zones. 8. MINISTRY OF WATER RESOURCES Two (2) memoranda were submitted from the Ministry of Water Resources for Deliberation by Council. Only one (1) of them was approved for execution. Thus: Request for Funds to Undertake various Maintenance Works at Challawa Complex and Installation of Four (4) Additional Raw Water Pumps:The Challawa Water Works/Complex stood the test of time and requires some renovation generally to avoid total collapse resulting from decay. Details on the scope of works along with their cost implications were presented for Council’s consideration. Council noted, considered the request and approved the release of the trimmed down sum of N50,000,000.00 to the Ministry of Water Resources to undertake the specified projects. 9. OFFICE OF THE DEPUTY G O V E R N O R / H O N . COMMISSIONER FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS Request for Funds to Enable the Conduct of Staff Training on Teaching Skills Program (TSP, 2013):Office of the Deputy Governor/Hon. Commissioner for Local Governments tacitly notified Council, through contents of this memorandum that: i. Most teachers practicing at Public Schools in the State are deficient in designing applicable Lesson plan, which is pillar on which successful lesson delivery is built. ii. A tripartite funding arrangement involving UBEC, Abuja (TPD Fund), the State Government and ESSPIN have been designed to finance execution of the TSP 2013. iii. A total of 5,068 Head – Teachers, 15,204 Teachers and 1000 School Supervisors will benefit from the program. iv. The State Government is required to provide N61,000,000.00 as its own contribution. The Council was required to approve the release of the required sum of N61,000,000.00 as its contribution for the successful conduct of the program. The request was approved. 10. OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT This office submitted Thirtynine (39) memoranda on behalf of some MDAs for deliberation by Council. Twenty-three (23) of them were approved for execution as follows:a. Presentation of progress report and proposals on next steps in the implementation of 2012 MDGs – Conditional Grants Scheme to Kano State:The Hon. Commissioner for Planning and Budget politely reminded Council, through contents of this memorandum that a letter of the Senior Special Assistant to the President – OSSAP – MDGs was

routed to his office for study and report to Council. Specifically, the letter conveyed OSSAP – MDGS “No objection” to the State’s request to refocus and change of location and purpose of 2012 approved CGS to State Track. Based on the approval and “No objection,” the targeted health facilities now are Bichi, Dambatta and Rano General Hospitals. However, Council was requested to consider and approve the following:i. Release of additional counterpart funding of N67,931,992.98 ii. Transfer of the already paid counterpart funding of N187,500,000.00 into Kano State CCT account with Ecobank. iii. Validation and enrolment of CCT beneficiaries in the five selected LGCAs which include Dawakin Tofa, Madobi, Doguwa and Tarauni. Council noted, considered and approved as requested in respect of each of (i-iii) the three (3) prayers presented above. In the same vein, Council approved the setting up of a Committee under the Deputy Governor comprising the Hon. Commissioners for Planning and Budget, Finance, Women Affairs and Commerce on the ‘Call for Memorandum on the Review of the Revenue Allocation Formula of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. b. Request for funds to enable payment of Accommodation, Constituency and Recess allowances to the Hon. Members of the State House of Assembly:Office of the Secretary to the State Government submitted a request on the subject matter mentioned above for Council’s consideration. The statutory provision on the issue as substantiated to Council as contained in a report from Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) which became effective from February, 2007. Specifically, four categories of legislatures are entitled to the quoted fringe benefits. They include The Hon. Speaker of the House, The Hon. Deputy Speaker, Principal Officers and the 34 other members. Details on the financial implications were presented for Council’s considerations which sum up to the aggregate sum of N64,631,148.00. This sum was requested for release by Council to enable payment of fringe benefits for the members of the State Assembly. The request was approved for disbursement to the legislatures as their legitimate entitlements. c. Appointment of a New Deputy Director for the Entrepreneurship Institute:Contents of this memorandum, submitted for deliberation by Council from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, Cooperatives and Tourism reminded Council of the demise of the defunct Deputy Director Entrepreneurship Institute, Late Malam Bala Muhammad Juji (RIP) who died earlier this year (2013). Council was responsibly notified of arrangements for the replacement of the late Deputy Director with the person of Malam Muhammad Bilyaminu Ado who has been serving on acting capacity. The recommended person has the required qualification and knowledge/experience to run the institute. His curriculum Vitae was presented to Council for consideration. Council approved the appointment. d. Request for Funds to Enable Payment for 189,815 Liters of Diesel (AGO) Consumed by the State Task Force Committee on Repairs and Maintenance of Street and Traffic Control Lights for the Month of February, 2013:Office of the Secretary to the State Government submitted a request, on behalf of the State Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport, for the release of the sum of N41,759,300.00 to enable payment for 189, 819 Liters of AGO consumed by the State Task Force on Repairs and Maintenance of Street and Traffic Control Lights for the month of February, 2013. Confirmation receipts/documents were presented for consideration by Council. Council approved the payment. e. Request for Funds to Enable the Provision of a Solar – Powered Borehole at Government Senior Secondary School Durbunde, Takai LGCA:Government Senior Secondary School Durbunde, Takai LGCA suffers acute shortage of potable water supply, a situation that warranted the request for the provision of a solar powered borehole to address the prevailing

pathetic situation. As such, the Ministry of Rural and Community Development requested for the release of the sum of N5,500,000.00 to enable the execution of the project. Council approved the project. f. Presentation of the Need to Place and Pay the Monthly Salary of the Deputy Director, Kano Informatics Institute a Little over what He was Earning at Bayero University (his former place of employment):Office of the Secretary to the State Government presented a report for consideration by Council on behalf of the Deputy Director, Kano Informatics Institute. The report substantiated that Bayero University used to pay the officer a monthly salary of N174,750.10 while the State Government pays him N149,072.78. As such, the Office of the Secretary to the State Government recommended the review upward of the monthly salary to at least be at par with the one being paid to him by his former employer with effect from the month of June, 2013. Council approved the request. g. Requests for Funds to Enable the Payment of Committees’ sitting allowances:During this sitting, Council appraised the requests submitted by different Committees for the settlement of their sitting allowances. The Committees are: i) The Northwest University Implementation Committee with a six months arrears amounting to the sum of N1,860,000.00 ii) The State Advisory Committee on the Development of Metropolitan Markets with 21 Months arrears amounting to the tune of N5,670,000.00, iii) The Standing Committee on Urban Beautification and Development are owed ten (10) months arrears amounting to the sum of N3,900,000.00 iv) The Steering, Publicity and Inspection Committees under the Office of the Senior Special Assistant on Islamiyya Schools with an arrears of the sum of N4,230,000.00 v) The State Committee on the Revival of Horse Racing with ten (10) months arrears to the tune of N2,000,000.00 Considering the fact that the Committees discharged their assignments to the best of their ability, Council approved the release of the requested sum and their (Committees) dissolution as most of their schedules were taken over by established Government agencies. h. Request for Funds to Enable Payments Arising from the Remaining Balance of Cost for the Supply of Equipment as well as Procurement of Accessories for its Installation at Muhammad Abdullahi Wase Specialist Hospital:Council was appraised on the contract awarded by the past administration for the supply and installation of one Ultra Modern X-Ray machine for the Abdullahi Wase Specialist Hospital. The sum of N19,600,000.00 was paid to the contractor leaving a balance of N10,000,000.00. The Ministry of Health recommended the payment of the balance and the procurement of other accessories to facilitate the installation and utilization of the machine at the sum of N18,485,724.35. Council approved the request. i. Presentation of the Proposal for Collaboration Between the State Government and the Local Estate Agents (Dillalan Gidaje da Filaye) in the State:The Office of the Senior Special Assistant on Local Estate Agents (Dillalan Gidaje da Filaye) presented a report containing a proposal for collaboration between Kano State Government and Local Estate Agents (Dillalan Gidaje da Filaye). The report provided information on the activities of the Local Estate Agents in facilitating transaction on Land/ Properties in the State. This was upheld as necessitating the need to formalize and sanitize the operations of the Agents and to create an avenue through which the sector could be incorporated to support the entrenchment/consolidation of Government Land Policy. In this regard, the Senior Special Assistant proposed for the creation of a Department at either KANGIS or KNUPDA to be assigned the responsibility of the Committee on the Registration of Estate Agents as Chaired by the Special Adviser Interior Matters. Much more was presented for Council’s consideration.




News Briefs

Kaduna NUJ condoles Umar Sani over wife’s death


he Kaduna state council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has expressed its condolence to the Senior Special Assistant to Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo, Alhaji Umar Sani, over the demise of his wife at the weekend. In a condolence statement issued by the council and jointly signed by Comrade Idris Yusuf and Comrade Dominic Uzu council Chairman and Secretary respectively, the union expressed shock over the death. According to the statement, “the news of the sudden death of your wife came to us as a shock but Allah knows why it has to happen that way. “We share in your moment of grief and pains, but we pray that Allah will comfort you at this trying moment, accept our heartfelt condolence on behalf of the entire council members of Kaduna NUJ.” From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna

Federal University Kashere matriculates 505 students


he Federal University Kashere in Gombe state has matriculated 505 students for the 2012/2013 academic session. Speaking at the programme yesterday, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Mohammed Kabir Farouk, noted that the administration of Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo has been helpful to the institution. He explained that the challenges of students accommodation will soon be over, stressing that President Goodluck Jonathan has approved for the construction of two hostels of 200 bed capacities. From David Hassan, Gombe

Minister fingers the devil in Nasarawa massacre


inister of Information Mr. Labaran Maku, has described the recent killing of some security personnel by the Ombatse militia group at Alakyo village of Nasarawa state as an evil plot by the devil. Maku urged church leaders to unite the people by preaching peace always. He spoke on Sunday during the dedication of the auditorium of Zion First Baptist Church and the launching of the book on the history of the church, in Lafia. He said the Federal Government had intensified its efforts in the enlightenment of the people on the need to live in peace with one another. From Maaji Dandaura, Lafia

L-R: Minister of Water Resources, Mrs. Sarah Ochekpe, Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, and Minister of Science and Technology, Professor Ita. Okon Bassey-Ewa, during the 2013 Ministerial Platform, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

KRPC enrolls 120 youth for skill acquisition programme From Mohammad Ibrahim, Kaduna


s part of measures to provide employment opportunities to youth, management of Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemicals. Company (KRPC) has enrolled a total of 120 youth for its Youth Empowerment Skills Acquisition Programme (YESAP) for training on various skills. According to the KRPC the programme was the fifth in the

series organized by the company. Speaking at the ceremony, the KRPC Managing Director, Bolanle Ayodele, described unemployment as the cause of insecurity in the country. He said at the end of the programme participants would be supported with grants to start their own businesses. “The whole essence of the programme is to empower the youth because KRPC recognizes

the fact that youth unemployment is a big problem to the society. “We have tried in our little way within the little funds available so that in every edition there is an improvement on the last one. “This time, we increased the number from 105 to 120 youth and the scope and areas where they are going to learn skills have increased because it used to be in 10 areas but now we have 16.” He said that the beneficiaries

would be trained in auto mechanic, wielding and panel beating as well as auto spray painting. Other areas include making of household products such as soap, detergent, air freshener, paint and screen printing. Earlier, KRPC Manager, Public Affairs, Malam Abdullahi Idris, said the participants were nominated by community leaders for the programme.

Shettima warns new LG chairmen against corruption From Mustapha Isah Kwaru, Maiduguri


overnor Kashim Shettima of Borno state yesterday warned the new appoint caretaker chairmen for the 27 local government areas of the state to shun corruption and misappropriation of public funds. Shettima said his administration would not condone any forms of corruption, warning that anyone found wanting would face the wrath of the law.

The Governor handed down the warning while swearing-in the chairmen at the Government House. He said that they should concentrate on how best to uplift the living condition of the people. He noted that their appointments were based on the power vested on him by section 3(2) of the Borno State Local Government Law 2005 (as amended) and commended the members of the state assembly

for quick approval of the names of those selected for posts, which were earlier presented to them. “Government will not tolerate any misuse of public resources and therefore, I appeal to you to justify the confidence reposed in you by the government. “I wish to call on all local government staff to give their chairmen all the necessary support and cooperation to enable them discharge their duties effectively. “I will personally monitor the

activities of the local governments to ensure that you operate within the confines of the law and establish good governance at the grassroots, as this tier of government is the closest to the people,” the Governor said. He said that the government had set up two committees to settle local government staff emoluments and pension entitlement and that government will soon implement the N18,000 minimum wage for local government workers.

Borno quits FG electronic fertilizer programme

From Mustapha Isah Kwaru, Maiduguri


orno state government said yesterday that it had withdrawn from the Gross Empowerment Scheme (GES), the Federal Government’s electronic fertilizer sales scheme. Speaking yesterday in an interview, the Commissioner

for Agriculture and Rural Development, Usman Zanna, explained that the development was due to lack of telecommunications as the current blackout of telecommunications, occasioned by the cutting off of the mobile networks in the state. Zanna also faulted the scheme which it said had not given the state full control over the

distribution of the products to farmers. He said the need to opt out from GES became necessary, as the state government did not fully benefit from the GES programme of last year. The Commissioner hinted that the measure would not hamper the provision adequate fertilizer

to the farmers as government had already approved over N1 billion for the procurement of 15,000 metric tones of Urea and NKP fertilizers for this year’s farming season. He noted that government attached more priority to the agricultural sector as farmers constitute about 70 per cent of the population.



Money Sense

Career choice can affect your financial health


t is not just about choosing career but choosing the one that fits well with your skills and values leading to your financial success in life, experts have said. A lot of people find choosing a career or changing one very confusing. You may think you are picking a good job today, at the end it turns out to be a bad one. Miriam Caldwell, personal finance specialist, said it is important to carefully choose your career, and the path you want it to take so that you can have financial success and enjoy your life. You need to work to find the right balance between working hard and enjoying your life. Finding a job your enjoy doing can make finding the balance easier. She said your job and the income it generates will have a huge impact on how successful you will be financially. When you do not make enough money to cover your basic needs, you can dig yourself into a financial hole.

Money Tip:

Ways to save money

• Get Out of Debt Do you know how much money you are paying in interest each month? How much of your monthly budget is being eaten up by student loans, car payments and credit card bills? If you could take all of that money and put it into retirement, it is amazing at how quickly you could save for your retirement and other things that you want. Debt often becomes a burden and limits the choices that you can make. One of the best things you can do with your money is to get out of debt and stay out of debt! •Save Your Money Once you have freed up all that extra money from paying off your debt you need to begin saving aggressively. There will be a point when the money you have will earn more than you do in a month. This takes quite a bit of money, and in order for this to happen you need put a large amount away each month. Once you have a six month emergency fund saved, you will need to begin investing your money. This is how you can grow your wealth most effectively.

Quote Success is full of promise till men get it; and then it is a last-year’s nest from which the birds have flown. - Henry Ward Beecher

For you to choose the right career, you need to write down some career goals. She said you can start with what you would like to be doing five years from now. These may be a specific goal in your career field, such as becoming a partner in your law firm, moving up to management position or it may be opening your own business or beginning to work as a freelancer. Do the same thing for ten years and fifteen years as well. “Break the goals into specific steps you need to reach in order to reach those goals. For example you may need to get your MBA in order to move up to a management position within your company. You may need to build a portfolio or make contacts in order to begin freelancing. If you want to open your own business, you should begin to save up money to get started, and you may begin working on it parttime while continuing with your current job”, she said. Another step is asking yourself how your current position is helping you to achieve that goal. If your current position is providing your training opportunities, or has the opportunities you need for advancement, you are in a great position. Be sure you are doing all you can to qualify for and take the training offered through your work. A good impression means more opportunities to move up as well as a good recommendation when you need one. You need to set up a specific plan that will allow you to reach your career goals. This includes making contacts and taking the extra classes you need to qualify for higher paid positions. Break the plan into one year increments. Do not be

discouraged if this plan takes several years to execute. Most people do not move into management positions overnight, it does take time. Follow your plan, while allowing flexibility for changing interests and job situations. Over the next few years check over your plan and make adjustments as necessary. People, who do not plan and prepare for the future, often, find themselves in the same situation they have been in the past. Your career takes up a big portion of your time and energy. You should find something that makes you happy and allows you to enjoy your life. If you are in a committed relationship you should

consider how that will affect your career choices and whether you are willing to move for your career or your partner’s career, Caldwell said. “Break the goals into specific steps you need to reach in order to reach those goals. For example you may need to get your MBA in order to move up to a management position within your company. You may need to build a portfolio or make contacts in order to begin freelancing. If you want to open your own business, you should begin to save up money to get started, and you may begin working on it parttime while continuing with your current job”, she said. You need to set up a specific

plan that will allow you to reach your career goals. This includes making contacts and taking the extra classes you need to qualify for higher paid positions. Break the plan into one year increments. Do not be discouraged if this plan takes several years to execute. Most people do not move into management positions overnight, it does take time. Follow your plan, while allowing flexibility for changing interests and job situations. Over the next few years check over your plan and make adjustments as necessary. People, who do not plan and prepare for the future, often, find themselves in the same situation they have been in the past.

Overdrafting: Kick this bad financial habit


hough we all know that overdrafting your bank account is bad, it’s also something that we’ve probably done with minimal — if any — consequences. For a few reasons, overdrafting has recently become an easier and more acceptable bad financial habit Why overdrafting has become more common Debit cards Debit cards are a popular way for people to feel more responsible about their spending. Unlike credit cards, they use only funds you have, and transactions are instantaneous, unlike checks that can take weeks to process. The danger with debit cards is their ease. They’re an easy way to spend money mindlessly; and, while you’re not going into debt knowingly, you can overdraft accidentally, which really isn’t that much better. Online banking The world of online banking, coupled with the explosion of personal smart phones, has made it increasingly easier to go paperless with your personal finances. Most banks now offer transaction processing, direct deposit, automatic bill pay, and monthly statements entirely online. While this is extremely convenient, handling your money less directly leaves room for neglect (out of sight, out of mind) and more potential for

overdrafting. Consequences of overdrafting Fees While overdrafting might not place you in serious financial danger, it’ll almost always cost you extra money. Take a moment to add up your overdraft fees within the last year or so, and think about what else you could have spent that money on. Unnecessary fees are just another form of wastefulness. How to avoid overdrafting

Being aware of your daily checking account balance and recording all your transactions, including scheduled automatic payments, is the surest way to avoid overdrawing your account. Some people are fine with utilizing smart phone apps in conjunction with online banking to keep track of their funds, while others may have to use a checkbook register to keep themselves accountable. Schedule your automatic payments so that they coordinate

with payroll deposits, and keep a mental record of when they come out. When you don’t have to write a check or mail out a pay stub, it can be easy to forget that those funds are already designated. Keep debit transactions to a minimum. I recommend using your debit card mostly as an ATM card and/or for specific types of purchases. This will eliminate clutter on your account summary and allow you to more easily spot deviations from your budget.




t has been about two weeks since the ban on green buses commuting into the Federal Capital Territory city centre came into effect , and from the look of things, the FCT administration did not do its home work well before effecting the ban. Evidence of this, of course, is seen in the hardships that commuters face daily. It is now a common sight around the federal capital to see large numbers of Abuja residents trekking to their destinations having clearly got the wrong end of the stick from officials who had earlier promised that the policy wouldn’t result in such agony. With the ban in full force, buses conveying people from Suleja axis are forced to halt at Zuba from where passengers are to board high capacity buses promised by the FCT administration. Those coming from Gwagwa-Karmo axis must alight at Life Camp and find their way into the city. As a consequence, taxi fares in some parts have moved up and workers have been clocking late at their workplaces. The negative impact on productivity is also high as these workers have to leave early to begin the arduous journey back home. When the ban on the green buses was muted by the FCT minister last year, he did pledge to provide high capacity buses which, according

to him, would be very efficient and reduce the high volume of traffic in the city centre. After strong protests by unions and residents, the minister was forced to review the initial date the ban was to come into effect to June 1. In doing so, he acknowledged that his ministry had not done its home work well in ensuring a smooth and painless transition from the green buses to the


Where are the high capacity buses in FCT?

It is now apparent that the ministry has still not got it right. The very few big buses available are not sufficient to cater for the teeming mass of commuters in the FCT high capacity buses for commuters. It is now apparent that the ministry has still not got it right. The very few big buses available are not sufficient to cater for the teeming mass of commuters in the FCT. The way the green buses ban is being handled is symptomatic of how government churns out policies that are not well thought through and which often leave the government looking inept and out of touch with the

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

people. As dire as the situation is, we are alarmed that a few of the so called high capacity buses, some of which were purchased as part of the federal government’s palliative measures to cushion the effect of the 2011 fuel price increase, have already broken down. Some of these broken down buses can be seen at Area 10, behind the parade ground, and along the Kubwa expressway. Three have also been parked on Ajose Adeogun street in Utako while commuters continue to suffer. What this means is that the buses were either not brand new or were misused by the operators to result in their breakdown so early. While the ban may be well intentioned considering the urgent need to sanitize the green buses’ operations due to their reckless and unruly behaviours, we urge the FCT administration to quickly produce the big capacity buses it promised in sufficient quantity and allocate same to all routes leading into the city to ease the hardships of residents. The administration should also see to the prompt completion of the Abuja light rail project which will help immensely in the implementation of an efficient transportation system for the federal capital. The current system is, without any doubt, unbefitting of a modern city like Abuja which prides itself on being one of Africa’s best cities.



Chairman Malam Wada Maida, Oon, Fnge Director/Editor-in-Chief Rufa’i Ibrahim Managing Editor Abdul-Azeez Abdullahi

Chief Operating Officer Ali M. Ali

Head, Advert/Marketing Hussaini Abdulrahman, Cna

Acting Editor, Daily Hameed M. Bello

Manager, administration Hassan Hammanyaji

Deputy Manager, Production Abdul-Rauf Musa

Acting Editor, Weekend Jamila Nuhu Musa

Head, Lagos Bureau Adesoji Oyinlola

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




Battle for public offices: Nigerians yearning to serve? By Al-Amin Abba Dabo


n just under two years, Nigerians will be called upon to exercise their constitutional right of voting for leaders of their constituencies, state governments and most importantly, their nation. This wonderful process of democracy allows Nigerians to give their mandate to whomever they so desire, being accountable to no one but themselves. Although the elections are not yet in our faces, the campaign and propaganda are. Depending on where your sentiments lie, you may find the ‘we-have-performed’ claims from those in power either laughable or laudable. On the other hand, you may find the ‘we-are-saintsand-messiahs’ insinuations from the opposition either nauseating or stimulating. Regardless of the political bandwagon you hop on, you can’t deny sensing the palpable tension leading up to 2015. The trash talk between political rivals alone is enough to give one nightmares. All this hullabaloo leads one to think 2015 is tomorrow. But it is not. Then why are we being bombarded with such hoopla and noisy clamor at this early stage? Well, for the novice, it may seem early. For the political office hustler, it is just right. The power struggle for those fat-chequepaying offices is well worth the fracas. Public offices shouldn’t be seen in that manner, however. They shouldn’t be seen as opportunities for personal wealth accumulation,

bully pulpits for intimidation, platforms for settling political/ personal vendettas or ways to lay dibs on a piece of the so-called ‘national cake’. Public offices should be seen as only avenues to be used to positively impact and better the lives of common Nigerians. Judging from the state of the nation, it is clear that these offices, along with their monetary allures, are regarded as routes to utopia and getting to them should be nothing short of a do-or-die affair. Aspirants of such offices entice us with their often overly optimistic and unrealistic promises, camouflaging under the name of patriotism and dismissing any allegations that pecuniary magnetisms are the primary reasons behind their contest. But how true is that? Well, let us look at a very popular example: The Nigerian lawmakers. According to PM NEWS, each Nigerian senator heads home with an annual allowance of N180 million ($1.2 million) and a member of the House of Representatives laughs to the bank with an annual allowance of N144 million. This is excluding their basic salary and the estacodes for in-house and foreign committee work. There are 109 serving senators and 360 house of representative members. In 2011, the CBN governor, Lamido Sanusi, infamously stated that “Twenty five per cent of the overhead of the Federal Government budget goes to National Assembly’’. He added that as of 2010, ‘’total government

overhead was N536, 268, 492, 080. Total overhead of the National Assembly was N136, 259,768,112 which was exactly 25.1 per cent of Federal Government overhead’’. To put this in context, a lawmaker in India earns N3.7 million ($23,988) per annum and so will need to work for at least 49 years to earn the annual allowance of a Nigerian senator and at least 39 years to earn the N144m annual allowance of a member of the House of Representatives. The Nigerian lawmakers are unsurprisingly, the highest paid in the world. In contrast, according to the Bureau of National Statistics (BNS), the unemployment rate in Nigeria is 23.9 percent. The labor force total in Nigeria was last reported at 51,669,297 in 2011. This

means at least 12 million people are unemployed. To put this in context, Chad has a population of 12 million people. In addition, over 70 percent of the Nigerian population ekes a living on less than N160 a day. So how is it morally acceptable or socially just for the House of Assembly (469 people) to pocket revenues worth 25 percent of the federal overheads? Are we waiting for the lawmakers to say ‘cut my allowances, we’ve had enough’ before we act? Many have expressed their disagreement with this social injustice, the prominent ones being the CBN governor, Mr. Femi Falana, Solomon Kehinde and the Adamu Fika-led committee. Personally, what worries me most is not the financial aspect of things,

Nigeria is not in need of more politicians; it is in dire need of good teachers, doctors, policemen and entrepreneurs. But would you convince your child to join the police force and earn N40, 000 – N50, 000 a month as a constable, while risking his life in service? Or would you rather see him at the air-conditioned national assembly gatherings in his flowing agbada?

but the psychological impact this unfairness has on the youths. It’s an undisputed fact that our education, health and security sectors need major reforms. But how do you convince the youth to follow career paths in these sectors? How would you convince them that, in the interest of the nation, it is better to be referred to as ‘Mr. lecturer’ rather than ‘Honourable’ or ‘His Excellency’? Nigeria is not in need of more politicians; it is in dire need of good teachers, doctors, policemen and entrepreneurs. But would you convince your child to join the police force and earn N40, 000 – N50, 000 a month as a constable, while risking his life in service? Or would you rather see him at the air-conditioned national assembly gatherings in his flowing agbada? The sooner we reduce the monetary appeals of public offices, the sooner we would know those who really want to serve the nation. The sooner we tackle this lopsided allowance and salary structure, the quicker we would reverse the unhealthy trend of spending 70 percent of the national budget on recurrent expenditure. In conclusion, the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) needs to revise their salary and allowances allocation formula to a more sustainable, fair and patriotic alignment. Al-Amin Abba Dabo wrote in from Preston, UK (

Are yields finally coming home to roost? By Ifeanyi Uddin


n Friday, June 7, the interbank foreign exchange market closed with 159 naira exchanging for 1 US dollar. Close watchers of the market gawked. By close of trading, Thursday, already slackened jaws dropped several ticks. The naira had slipped several ticks more! Despite the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) daily interventions in the interbank market over this 7-day period, the interbank foreign exchange rate closed at US$/ N161.20. What roiled the market? For a while now, all the talk around the economy have focused on the near-term outlook for the exchange rate. More than any other domestic index, consensus is that the exchange rate had (and still has) the largest potential for upsetting the economic apple cart. Thus, monetary policy has been deployed to its sustenance over the last 24 months. Dodgy, inflation numbers may be, but the Central Bank is persuaded that keeping the naira within the defined exchange corridor is the country’s best bet. Are these bets still on? Everything will depend on how the economy’s “exposures” and “vulnerabilities” play out. Once the apex bank agreed to keep rates

high in support of its exchange rate band, it was inevitable that we would attract capital flows in search of higher yields. Not just was exchange rate steady, official inflation numbers were trending down, oil prices were high (and expected to remain so), and developed markets were spotty. Add to this, the admission of Nigerian bonds into a couple of global indexes — giving fund managers extra incentive to graft a Nigerian component on to their portfolios. The funds duly came. There is still much debate over the size of the economy’s exposure to foreign portfolio inflows (we have heard anything from US$10bn to US$12bn mentioned), but several

“facts” are beyond dispute. A sizeable portion of these funds has driven the improved performance of equities in the last 18 months. Money market instruments have also gained much over the same period. And even the buildup in our external reserves may be due largely to these portfolio inflows. Expectedly, as this exposure grew, concern began to emerge over the vulnerability of the economy to a stop and/or sudden reversal in the flows. On the upside, the markets remain convinced that supported by strong external reserves, we can afford to spend upwards of US$12bn defending the naira’s exchange rate over any three month spell and still have an honest balance

in the reserves. Of course, there were worries over the monetary authority’s market nous. Beyond the vast arsenal with which it could take on the markets, issues around the CBN’s strategy have been aired. Still, the stalling of the domestic reform effort over the past four years further exacerbated these weaknesses. The fiscal buffers that we have bruited abroad in this period in evidence of the local economy’s continued resilience have happened in spite of our best efforts. We all looked to domestic shocks to trigger these vulnerabilities, including from fiscal loosening as the incumbent administration begins to spend its way back to office; a potentially

How deep are we in this new bog? A lot is riding on how the CBN addresses itself to the problem. My contact believes, however, that “the CBN has effectively failed to hold their defined line at the first time of asking. This is important as we may see a clear break much higher, if they do not act decisively, which they appear unable to do. There is significant demand out there and people are willing to buy at these levels”. In short, a number of feral birds might be on their way back to roost

disorderly succession at the CBN, etc. None of this has happened. Rather, according to a bank treasurer friend of mine, the significant volatility, which the markets witnessed over the last few days, has been the result of “expectation of the end of quantitative easing (QE) in the US”. According to him, as developed markets recover, and yields there improve, “‘real money funds’ (pension funds and insurance) will trim investments in fixed income and switch back into developed market equities. The net impact of this is that there has been a global withdrawal of funds from emerging market fixed income — Nigeria inclusive”. How deep are we in this new bog? A lot is riding on how the CBN addresses itself to the problem. My contact believes, however, that “the CBN has effectively failed to hold their defined line at the first time of asking. This is important as we may see a clear break much higher, if they do not act decisively, which they appear unable to do. There is significant demand out there and people are willing to buy at these levels”. In short, a number of feral birds might be on their way back to roost. IfeanyiUddin’s professional profile is on LinkedIn



Letters & Opinion How to communicate in times of crises By Elnathan John


ne thing you must be careful with is truth. Truth is like a sharp, doubled-edged knife. It can be an impressive tool for cutting things into precise shapes, or can be a mean tool of destruction or even a self destructive thing, hurting the bearer beyond expectation. So you must be careful. Not everyone deserves truth or can use it. Withhold it for as long as you can. Sometimes the flip side of the truth is not a lie, but useful, responsible silence. So when journalists come asking questions during a crisis, you must treat them with suspicion for you cannot be certain whose agents they are. Many a journalist is an unwitting agent of the enemy. You give them truth and they stab you with it. You must try as much as possible not to respond to official inquiries for information whether brought pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act or any similar law that is subject to abuse by journalists. You must never feel guilty about this. It is the same as refusing to give a toddler a knife to play with. The toddler will cry and stomp its feet. But you know you are doing right by that toddler. Especially when there is violent conflict, you must never, ever, provide accurate figures of those who have died. The reason is simple: You do not want anybody getting angry and threatening or carrying out reprisals. As much as you can control it, you must prevent journalists from taking pictures at the scene. It is important to claim that all is well. Some good books say that ‘death and life are in the power of the tongue’. I will add that peace and conflict are in the power of a press release. Unless you have had to impose a curfew, you must use phrases like, ‘normalcy is fast returning’, and ‘people are

By Ose Oyamendan


oday, in honor of Father’s Day, we’re doing something revolutionary, something that should have been done almost one hundred years ago, something we’ll probably regret tonight when it gets cold and we get a colder shoulder. We’re forming a men’s liberation movement. Yup, the men’s lib movement is here. It’s time to free all the men of the world. We’re starting an NGO with headquarters in Nigeria. That way, if we run into a hiccup, we can still make a boatload of taxfree money. Now, for all you kids who are worried about how this would go with the girlfriend, don’t worry. Send the wallet-drainers over to me or to some seasoned uncle who will make sure they get the message after a quick lunch. The idea for a men’s liberation movement came from a chat with a friend. Normally, this dude will drink his wine jeje, embellish some gists and cook up new ways to make enough money to buy another gas guzzling car. But,

going about even the failed their normal attempts. People activities’. need to know all Being a the activities of Peoples Daily welcomes your letters, opinion articles, reporter the terrorists. If during a time a bag was found text messages and ‘pictures of yesteryears.’ All written of crisis can be abandoned in a contributions should be concise. Word limits: Letters confusing. My public building - 150 words, Articles - 750 words. Please include your rule has always and there is a name and a valid location. Letters to the Editor should be been, when bomb threat addressed to: in doubt say which turns out the opposite to be innocuous, of what you are allowed The Editor, government to use bold Peoples Daily, 1st Floor Peace Plaza, says. It is headlines like 35 Ajose Adeogun Street, Utako, Abuja. sufficient to “Bomb Scare in Email: make a few Ikeja”. You are calls after reporting it as SMS: 08134607052 which you it is, and that can publish is what a good unverified information. There is messenger is not concerned about journalist should be- accurate. that phrase that cures all known the contents of the envelope, only There is no need to work alongside defects in a report and you must that the envelope reaches its intended government when there is an learn how to use it: “All attempts destination. A typical example of outbreak of violence. If you wanted to reach so-and-so for comment what you must avoid is how some to be involved in the politics of proved abortive.” journalists who covered the crises things, you would have contested When people make between the IRA and the British for office. inflammatory statements, you must government. Some of them decided Very importantly, however, never apply too much scrutiny to not to report every single bombing life is for the living. Leave realthem. You are a journalist, not their that took place especially when there time conflict reporting to foreign mother or a man of God. Your job was no casualty. And what excuse did journalists. It is wrong to want to is just to report. Sometimes you will they give for such irresponsibility? actually cover a violent crisis or hear of journalists in a crisis situation That terrorism is all about spreading war. That is what phones and texts being selective and choosing not to terror and that they would not report and emails are for, even though report certain things. That is playing every single attempt at creating such sometimes the government may cut God and God forbid that you play terror. How presumptuous! off phone lines in the area. Taking God. You are a messenger and a Report every case of bombings, the next flight or bus to Maiduguri


Very importantly, however, life is for the living. Leave real-time conflict reporting to foreign journalists. It is wrong to want to actually cover a violent crisis or war. That is what phones and texts and emails are for, even though sometimes the government may cut off phone lines in the area. Taking the next flight or bus to Maiduguri whether as an embedded journalist with soldiers or otherwise is not journalism. It is foolishness. People should be patient, they will hear about it after the fighting is over

whether as an embedded journalist with soldiers or otherwise is not journalism. It is foolishness. People should be patient, they will hear about it after the fighting is over. Where there is an explosion do not fail to suggest that it might be a bomb. The facts might be hazy but it is important for people to know that they might be dealing with a bomb there. Where there is an explosion you can help a militant group like Boko Haram take responsibility by writing it in such a way that suggests it had to be them. The rule is simple, report first, verify later. It is not your fault that government won’t respond quickly with the right information. To spice it all up, never forget to splash photos of the bodies of victims and wounded people in your paper because they say, a picture they say is worth more than a thousand reports. And you, the blessed NGO, whom God has elevated to the position of savior of your brothers- you have a special place in all of this. You must be on your toes, ready to publish a press release when there seems to be any case of human rights violation or whatever other type of violation you have told your funders you will monitor. It may not always be necessary to thoroughly examine the event that has just occurred. Nuance is a waste of energy. You don’t want your funders to think you are sloppy, being the last to condemn a thing. Edit one of your other press releases. Do not fail to use the words ‘condemn in the strongest terms’. Do not fail to make a demand. For someone’s resignation or unconditional release. Your funders will be happy. And you will make heaven. Elnathan John is one of the four shortlisted authors for the 2013 Caine Prize for African Writing for his short story “Bayan Layi,” published in Issue 25 of Per Contra.

Where have all the men gone? today he was in no mood for that. “It’s all God’s fault,” he lamented a few minutes after surrendering his credit card to his daughters so they can go shopping for a father’s day gift for him. “Women have taken over the world”. I was stunned. All my life I’ve heard it’s a man’s world! The man worships his wife. He adores his daughters and loves his sisters. His mother is a statue away from him declaring her a saint. His declaration hits me like it must have hit President Olusegun Obasanjo the moment he realized his Vice President was pulling the rug from under his feet. You gotta feel for the men. They talked themselves out of power. Remember Mother’s Day? Mothers walked on carpets of diamond, got the special treatment and ate like queens. And, the men paid for it. Guess who’s paying for Father’s Day? Yup, the men. Wanna know how much power women have? Get

a newspaper right now. If you can’t find one, trek down to the suya seller’s stand. Flip through the newspaper and tell me whose picture you see. Most likely it’s the picture of the First Lady surrounded by a bunch of fine women you would gladly spend a pension on in one day. The First Lady! Fifty years ago, you didn’t even see the First Lady. But, then came the men with their butt kissing for power crusade. They made the First lady an institution because they know if they get on her right side, they may just get on the expressway to Oga’s heart. How did it get this bad? Normally in a conflict, the enemy first comes for your land then they take your women. The land is sometimes negotiable. But, the women mean war. Women fight way dirtier though. First, they got God to yank some ribs off the man. What can a man do? You’re not gonna fight God. And, you sure

not gonna fight a breathing, fleshy being with a whole lot of curves. Man was doomed at “hey, baby”. Then, they wanted a bigger voice. It was great when, as a boy, they saved your behind from your father’s anger. But, then they took over music and poetry and the theater. And, just when you’re wondering, where are we gonna draw the line, they asked for education. Thinking that would be a great distraction, men said yes. Wrong! The girls went to school to learn, the boys went there to ogle at their female teachers bodies. The girls wished they had more time to learn. The boys wished they had x-ray eyes. Thank God for charitable male headmasters, women would have been declared a lot smarter than men on the second day of school rather than when the results came out. After school women claimed they were being discriminated against in the work place. So the

men thought, you want more work, fine – knock yourself out. You blink an eyelid and the company is running better, there is no more war in the country and who is the boss, “a madam! Thank God for coups. But, that was not enough. They decided to steal trousers from the men. Now, every woman I know has a trouser. It used to be you go to the club, sit in the booth and drink in the women’s bare legs. Now, if a woman’s leg is bare, she is most likely a transvestite. Thank God for the forward thinking men of Scotland who took the battle to women and started wearing skirts many years before women thought of trousers. I know they call it kilt but seriously, who’re they kidding. All these encroachments have to stop, men must be men again and it must start on this day, Fathers’ Day. Ose Oyamendan is a Los Angeles-based Nigerian film maker


Comment Ribadu, Jonathan and public ethics By Adeolu Ademoyo


s we all look back into the future, at no other time in the history of Nigeria is the question of public ethics in governance more crucial. Why? Because even when this is only visible to the ethically discerning eye, the collapse of most civilizations and societies starts with a moral decay. President Jonathan does not seem to conceptually and practically understand this. On public ethics, he simply does not grasp it nor does he get it because he has a history of always missing the moral point. He holds and wields state power, but despite this he sits comfortably on a cesspool of corruption, of unethical acts. These have been documented. We will re-do a public disclosure if asked to. While President Jonathan is able to use a personalized awesome state power to hound and ground state governors who stand on his way to the 2015 elections, and is behind the agenda of a Governor –Governor Jang-who lost an election in a peer group election (the NGF election) but who arbitrarily made himself the “winner”, President Jonathan has not been able to use the same awesome state power to hound, round up, and ground corruption

in our public lives. President Jonathan’s support for Governor Jang’s barefaced immorality raises serious ethical question because President Jonathan openly turns a “consensus” of a section of the NGF for Jang to an “election” of Jang! Even a high school student in a civics and government class will know the difference between consensus of a section of a larger body before an election and the actual election within the enlarged body. But when bad ethics trumps knowledge, basic common sense is endangered as it is with the Nigerian presidency. Yet, no society makes progress without an improved ethics. Hence the view that President Jonathan is not just one of the most ethically challenged presidents Nigeria ever had, Nigeria is ethically endangered under his presidency for Nigeria’s ship sinks ethically under his watch. In contrast, here is a Nuhu Ribadu, the ex-Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), whose call to serve is without armor and the awesome power of state. Ribadu’s last moral call to duty which Reuben Abati, in his response to Ribadu’s Zaria speech, ought not to forget was as Chairman of Presidential Petroleum Task Force on the petroleum Industry. For accepting to serve the public through this task – which

is basically dining with the devil in the Presidency - Ribadu got the angst of his moral and liberal social democratic and progressive constituency. The objection of Ribadu’s broad progressive, liberal and social democratic constituency is legitimate even when some of us split and supported Ribadu’s decision to serve on moral and public service grounds. I do not know how much of Tai Solarin. Ribadu is aware of, and he does not need to know before he acts and serves the public correctly as he does. But following Tai Solarin’s example, Ribadu was ready to

“dine” with the devil to serve the public. He finished his task and gave the result to President Jonathan. But what has President Jonathan, the man with the awesome power of state, done with a moral document that ought to serve as part of an ethical cleansing of the Nigerian petroleum industry? President Jonathan with “his own hands” tossed this moral document into the dustbin of history by ignoring it. A moral document designed to shame, root out corruption and cleanse an oil industry seething with corruption under the watch of President

But what has President Jonathan, the man with the awesome power of state, done with a moral document that ought to serve as part of an ethical cleansing of the Nigerian petroleum industry? President Jonathan with “his own hands” tossed this moral document into the dustbin of history by ignoring it. A moral document designed to shame, root out corruption and cleanse an oil industry seething with corruption under the watch of President Jonathan and his oil minister Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke

Jonathan and his oil minister Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, gathers mould and dust in the Presidency. So the question is: who is ethically challenged between President Goodluck Jonathan- who has awesome state powers behind him to squelch corruption in our public lives but refuses to do so and a private citizen-Nuhu Ribadu who made a sacrifice to dine with the devil against the moral intuitions of his own progressive moral and political constituency, who finished serving, gave the report-the Petroleum Task Force Report- to same president whose administration set up the Task Force, but who saw the report to the presidency’s dustbin? Fellow citizens, you own the republic, only you can answer this question. The moral question for all of us as genuine moral agentswhich Ribadu exemplifies- will always be to act or not to act to serve the public? But in failing to see the moral question and challenge to our nation in Ribadu’s Zaria speech, Mr. Reuben Abati is only doing his job as he always does defending bad ethics. Abati will do it again until he has no job to do in a presidency with lean, poor and impoverished ethics.

Adeolu Ademoyo is reachable on

Sanusi, monetary policy and economic development By Jamal Akinade


he Lagos Chamber of Commerce has continuously criticized Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi’s high MPR methodology in tackling inflation, saying that mopping up excess cash in the system results in business credit inaccessibility. Sanusi’s primary concern is price stability, which means low inflation and the only way to do this, in the view of the CBN, is tight monetary policy. He has surely done well in pushing inflation to single digit. But, is inflation really a devil in every economy? Economic research has shown that, in principle, inflation rate when below 40 per cent has no real bearing on economic growth of a country. This research was published in 1995 and interestingly by neo-liberal economists, Michael Bruno, a former World Bank chief economist and William Easterly, also of the World Bank. It was further argued by them that below 20 percent, higher inflation is often associated with higher growth. It is therefore not surprising to note that South Korea, during its miracle growth years of the 1960s and 1970s, had inflation rates of between 17.5 per cent and 20 per cent. This is not to say that inflation is good, no! But, moderate inflation CAN be good for the economy if it is induced by higher productive spending which spurs economic activities and growth. I believe it is from this perspective others have suggested that the current tight monetary policy should be eased and obsession with inflation should be given way for expansionary policies – increased government

spending – to stimulate development. This view appears to be correct in principle and also theoretically grounded in the context of Keynesian economics. However, development and economic theory have to be put into the local context when postulating policies - thinking globally, acting locally - let us look at this scenario. If monetary policy is eased, cheaper money should be available on the market, coupled with government spending and therefore enough liquidity in the system which should propel economic growth. The assumption here is that a relaxed monetary policy will enable producers borrow and enhance banks lend to the real sector of the economy. However, in the context of the local reality – import dependent economy- excess Naira would chase the dollar and also chase lesser goods which will consequently lead to inflation and a run on the value of the Naira as well as needless depletion of the foreign reserves. The problem of weaker Naira emerges. A contrary argument by a segment of the economy – manufacturers - might be that cheaper credit to them will enable growth of the sector and job creation to tackle pervasive unemployment in the economy, hence, the benefit outweighs the cost or harm. This is one side of the story; a closer look will be to compare the percentage of manufacturing in the nation’s GDP to the percentage of trade in foreign finished goods which dominate the informal economy outside tax bands and revenue collection. Manufacturing only represents 0.5 per cent of Nigeria’s GDP. If one takes out the 20 odd percent oil share of

the GDP, the remaining 70 odd percent which includes agriculture, services, plus the informal economy is wholly dependent on foreign produced inputs. Moreover, most manufacturers have to still import inputs for their industries. Thus, a weaker naira would translate into a higher cost of production which will ultimately be transferred to the Nigerian consumers. Another contrary argument could be that this is a sacrifice that will pay off in the long run as it will help develop Nigeria’s productive and industrial capability. I completely agree with this view, and this sacrifice is what propelled the East Asian economies to success. However, it is only correct in theory and not in the CURRENT Nigerian context. A sacrifice will only pay off if corresponding import restriction is used to ward off external competition and the idea of ‘free trade’ is rightly relegated

to the background in Nigeria’s economic planning. Again, this is also only one side of the story as I don’t believe the reason for banks’ low lending to the productive sectors of the economy is solely as a result of the high MPR and CBN’s monetary policy. Banks run a business with the sole drive being profit; as an economist, one knows that the easiest way to change economic behaviour is the use of incentives and sanctions. Currently as it stands, several businesses cannot compete with external manufacturers due to the power problem. What sense will it make to banks to grant loans to such companies? Banks find it easier to engage in speculative businesses with high returns as well simple low risk trading businesses importation. This is a market failure that requires government intervention through guided cheap credit to critical sectors of the economy,

Another contrary argument could be that this is a sacrifice that will pay off in the long run as it will help develop Nigeria’s productive and industrial capability. I completely agree with this view, and this sacrifice is what propelled the East Asian economies to success. However, it is only correct in theory and not in the CURRENT Nigerian context

I am aware this is being done by the CBN in relation to agriculture but accessibility and penetration is still low and national impact minimal. The Bank of industry has to be aggressively re-focused as a development bank offering cheap credit to the SMEs, and minimal concentration should be given to the bank’s sponsor of investment shows abroad, searching for elusive foreign investors. Furthermore, each state or region should have its own development bank , funded by government , with the sole aim of directing cheap credit of less than 3 percent to productive sectors of the state’s economy as it deems fit. This might require amendment of CBN’s laws with regards to bank establishment because without decentralization of credit allocation in a complex country like Nigeria, the impact of development banks will not be felt at the local level. By and large, lending to the productive sectors of the economy extends beyond monetary policies, it also transcends fiscal policies. There are systemic structural and infrastructural problems in Nigeria that have to be tackled. This problem has to be solved holistically as expansionary policies good as it are will only be fruitful in an economy with efficient and guided import restrictions. Import restrictions in turn can only be maximized in an environment with stable power and infrastructure because local industries which are beneficiaries of import restrictions, can only flourish with the availability of essential infrastructure. Jamal Akinade, a chartered chemical engineer, wrote in from the UK and can be reached at jayakinjay@gmail.



RTEAN Scribe wants minister to relocate Dei-Dei trailer park By Usman Shuaibu


hairman of Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), Dei – Dei chapel 1, in Bwari, Malam Mohammed Awwal, has called on the FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed, to as a matter of urgency consider relocating trailer park in the area, so as to avoid accident along Abuja – Suleja express road. He said if the park in Dei – Dei were repositioned, it would reduce the hazard that commercial drivers and other commuters are faced when parking their vehicles. The chairman, who made this point in an interview with Peoples Daily also appealed to the minister for provision of a permanent motor park, for the association in the area. Also, he stressed the need for the FCT administration to make available more of urban transit buses for the association, in order to arrest the problem of transportation facing the commuters in the territory. He however, called on the FCT Transport Secretariat to ensure that all operators of road-side motor parks are made to go into the main park, to help mitigate frequency of accidents on the road. The transporter advised members of the association to always obey traffic rules and regulations while on duty; urging them to give priority attention to the welfare of their commuters.

Church to raise N3.5 million for widowers


he Men’s Fellowship of the Cathedral Church of St. Bartholomew (Anglican Communion), Kubwa has said it the fellowship planned to raise N3.5 million this year, to support widowers through its widower empowerment project. Speaking at a service to mark the 2013 Fathers’ Day, the President of the fellowship, Mr. Innocent Ekeopara, said the group was spurred by the plight of many widowers in the society, who due to peculiar circumstances found it difficult to live up to their parental responsibilities. He said that the project, which was part of the fellowship’s contribution to encourage the sustenance of strong family values and moral development of children in the church; added that the beneficiaries of the fund would be widowers in the church. According to him, a committee of men in the church had been constituted to work out modalities for the disbursement of the fund to the beneficiaries. “Many people will ask, why widowers and not the widows but there are peculiar circumstances surrounding men that the society is not looking at; and this has to do with men who have lost both their wives and jobs. (NAN)

L-R: Minister of State for FCT, Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed, Vice-President Mohammed Namadi Sambo, Minister of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, Chief Edem Duke, Chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Senator Phillip Aduda, and FCT Transport Secretary, Mr. Jonathan Ivoke, during the launching of the FCT SURE-P taxi scheme, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

Sambo launches Abuja Taxi, women and youth initiatives By Stanley Onyekwere


n furtherance to the ongoing efforts by the FCT administration toward improving the transportation system in the Territory, the Vice President, Namadi Sambo yesterday launched the Abuja Taxi Scheme with initial fleet of 160 new taxis, and Abuja community service programme for women and youth employment. The new taxi scheme launched under the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) starting with an initial fleet of 160 brand new taxis to be managed by the Abuja Investments Company (AICL) under a revolving finance scheme, is tagged the “FCT SURE-P/AICL Abuja taxi,” Speaking at the twin-launching of the taxi scheme and the Women and Youth programme, Sambo who described it as a milestone in the developmental strides of the FCT administration, said it would go a long way in the quest to ensure an efficient and affordable

transport system, employment creation in the territory. According to the Vice President, the twin innovative schemes are tied to improving welfare of citizens, as part of the FCT administration’s foresight in evolving ways aimed at generating employment and creating wealth for the citizenry, especially women and youth in the FCT and beyond. He said the President Goodluck led-government was developing both the intra and inter-transport networks to connect Abuja City centre to the every section of the country, using all the means of transportation available. His words: “We have commenced the construction of the Abuja-Kaduna segment of the central corridor (KadunaWarri) standard gauge rail lines, which will link the capital city to other cities, satellite towns and villages therefore easing the problems of accommodation and transportation. “On completion, people

can leave outside Abuja and comfortably come to work daily; because we have identified that one of the major factors inhibiting our growth is the neglect of the transport sector; and therefore have developed a road-map that will address the issue with all the seriousness and the urgency it deserves. “Our administration has rolled out a National Transportation Plan that envisages a huge financial investment worth billions of naira; for which an enabling environment for PublicPrivate Partnership (PPP) has been created by designing policies, legislation and institutional framework that will support the successful transformation of the sector.” Also, Sambo lauded the FCT administration’s foresight and commitment to the realisation of the Federal Government’s Transformation Agenda. Earlier, in a remark, the Minister of the FCT, Bala Mohammed, said the taxi scheme would evolve into a self-sustaining

semi commercial transport venture that will provide residents of the FCT with a modern, secure and reliable taxi service. He disclosed that each of the vehicles was procured at the cost of N2.6 million, while the FCTA would offer a discount of N200, 000 to the would-be beneficiaries. In their separate remarks, both Chairman FCT chapter of the Self Employed Drivers Association (SEDA), Okore Uche, and Deputy President, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) said as the stakeholders in the transport sector, pledged to continue giving the necessary support to ensure the success of the scheme. Similarly, Chairman, Abuja Painted Taxi Association, Alh. Shehu Shigaba, who also expressed readiness to support the scheme, however appealed to the FCT administration to help them flush out operators of unpainted and unregistered taxis in the territory. Highpoint of the event was the handing over keys by the Vice president to some of the beneficiaries.

“FCT records 10 % drop in HIV/AIDS prevalence ratio in two years” By Stanley Onyekwere


he prevalence of HIV/ AIDS in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), in two years has dropped from 8.6% in 2010 to about 7.5 %, FCT HIV/ AIDS programme Coordinator, Dr. Yakubu Mohammed has disclosed. He said over the period, the program performance has not reached where it is expected to be, in terms of intervention on HIV/ AIDS in the territory, but has

made tremendous progress when compared to two years ago. FCT is one of the high risk HIV burden areas in the country as identified by the National HIV control program. According to the Coordinator, who made the disclosure while fielding questions from newsmen during a one-day FCT HIV/AIDS Stakeholders Consultative Meeting on Acceleration of Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT) Scale- Up, the reduction is

due to a paradigm shift at addressing the challenge of the scourge of HIV/ AIDS by the FCT health sector response strategies. “What this means is that the prevalence is reducing; and we are committed to sustaining the success recorded so far, as what we want is that by the end of 2015, the HIV/ AIDS prevalence in the FCT should be less than 5 per cent,” he said. Earlier in her remark, the Director, Public health and Human Services Secretariat (HHSS) of

the FCTA, Dr. Folashade Momoh, noted that given the peculiar HIV/ AIDS epidemic profile of the nation characterized by high prevalence rate, high MTCT burden, low PMTCT and ART coverage, low retention rate of persons living with HIV, what is required is strong commitment, efficiency and accountability by all stakeholders, in order to accelerate the attainment of various Universal Access (UA) targets for the elimination of various PMTCT by 2015.




PAGE 18 Appraising the presentation, Council approved that the Committee on the Registration of Estate Agents should liaise with relevant Agencies such as KNUPDA and KANGIS in facilitating the entrenchment and consolidation of Government Land policies. j. Presentation of Progress Report from the Senior Special Assistant on Animal Traction:The Animal Traction Empowerment program is among the laudable and successfully executed endeavours embarked upon by the incumbent administration. The contents of this memorandum notified Council of the findings as reported resulting from a familiarization tour conducted by the Senior Special Assistant on Animal Traction to the three (3) Farm Mechanization Institutes in the State namely, Kadawa, Rano and Gwarzo. Reportedly, the tour revealed the followings: • All the three (3) Animal Traction Institutes require the construction of perimeter wall fence to provide security and curtail/control wanton movements of Students. • There is the need for the students to be provided with uniforms for easy identification during the training. • The Credit Officers need to be provided with motorcycles to effectively monitor the beneficiaries due to relative distances among the beneficiaries in their respective wards. • That Alhaji Sulaiman A. Isa Rogo LGCA was identified and celebrated as the first to recover the highest deposit of N575,000.00 and concurrently have a trainee/beneficiary in the person of Magaji mai Suga Ruma who paid back 100% of the loan of N112,000.00 given to him. • Poor recovery of the loan was attributed to lack of engagement of the trainees due to the dry season. Haulage by use of Amalanke is not possible as the beneficiaries do not have the facility. In any case, much more was presented for Council’s consideration and approval, especially the followings: i. Convening a stakeholders’ meeting on Animal Traction Program to be organized by the Office of the Senior Special Assistant on Animal Traction soon. ii. Execution of monitoring and extensive enlightenment campaign by the Office of the Senior Special Assistant on the activities of Animal Traction Program in the State. Council appreciatively acknowledged the presentation and approved the execution of the two (2) prayers (i. and ii.) listed above. k. Request for Funds to Enable the Conduct of the 2012/2013 Annual Schools Census Covering Pre – Primary, Primary, Junior and Senior Secondary Schools (Public and Private Statewide):The State Ministry of Education requested for the release of the sum of N2,306,300.00 by Council to enable the execution of the exercise mentioned above. Approval was granted as requested by Council, but execution of the exercise should be in conjunction with Ministry of Science and Technology so as to solve the problem using ITC application. l. Presentation of the Roles of Supply Chain Managers Engaged by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for the 2013 Growth Enhancement Support Scheme (GESS):Contents of this memorandum presented a submission from the State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Council was intimated on the roles of Supply Chain Managers engaged by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for the year 2013 Growth Enhancement Support Scheme (GESS). Related to this, the Kano State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources decided to invite the Supply Chain Managers deployed to the State for a meeting to deliberate on how best to communicate and implement the 2013 GESS in the State based on the assigned roles. Council appreciated the efforts of the Ministry. m. Request for Funds to Support the Manufacturing of an Aircraft Locally by Malam Idris I. Hassan, an Indigenous Citizen of Nassarawa LGCA of Kano State:The State Ministry of Science and Technology communicated the discovery of special talent exhibited by one Malam Idris I. Hassan an indigenous citizen of Nassarawa LGCA of Kano State who is in the process of manufacturing an Aircraft locally. The Technical team from the Ministry assessed the project as being in advanced stages of completion and recommended an assistance of the sum N350,000.00 for the individual to support his ingenuity. Council approved the request. n. Request for Funds and Approval for Two (2) Officials from the Youth Directorate for Economic Empowerment to Embark on a Trip to India:Contents of this memorandum reminded Council on the twenty- five (25) Kano State Indigenous Candidates sponsored to study at AMET University, Chennei, India. So far, the Youth Directorate for Economic Empowerment intimated Council that the 25 Candidates/students are on the verge of completing the first (1st) segment of their program of study upon which they will proceed to the United Kingdom (UK) for the 2nd segment of the program as required by the curriculum of the training. As such, the Youth Directorate for Economic Empowerment requested for the release of the sum of N2,063,777.32 by Council to enable two (2) Officials embark on a trip to India to sign the necessary documents for the formalization of the transfer. The request was considered credible as Council approved the release of the sum of N2,063,777.32 to enable two (2) Officials undertake a trip to India for the stated purpose. o. Request for Funds to Sponsor Ahmadiyya College Girls’ Basketball Team to Participate in the National Finals of the 2013 Nestle Milo Basket ball Championships (1st – 6th July, 2013) at the National Stadium, Indoor Hall Surulere, Lagos:The sum of N922,000.00 was approved for release by Council as requested, to facilitate the sponsorship of Ahmadiyya College Girls’ Basketball Team to participate in the National Finals of the 2013 Nestle Milo Basketball Championships. Details of the aggregate financial commitments were presented for Council’s consideration. The gesture was typical in support of sports by the incumbent administration. p. Request for the Release of Funds to Support the Bereaved Families of Two (2) Deceased Police Officers Killed among the Polio Vaccination Team at Kofar Dawanau, Gwale LGCA (October, 2012):The Office of the Secretary to the State Government requested for the release of the sum of N500,000.00 by Council to support the bereaved families of two (2) deceased Police Officers killed among the polio vaccination team at Kofar Dawanau, Gwale LGCA (October,2012). Nevertheless, the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) has earlier made a donation of the sum of N250,000.00 to each of the respective families of the deceased police officers totaling the sum of N500,000.00, which is still with the Ministry of Health for safe keeping. To supplement this, the State Ministry of Health requested for the release of the aggregate sum of N500,000.00 for disbursement to the two (2) bereaved families at the rate of N250,000.00 each. Council approved the request. q. Request for Funds to Enable Renovation/reactivation of Kano State Asphalt and Quarry Company’s Stone Crusher and Mixing Plant Located at Panisau and Dawanau Respectively:Contents of this memorandum presented a correspondence from the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport for Council’s consideration on the issue mentioned above. Importantly, the request is anchored on the need to assist the newly established KARMA with timely supply of construction materials, in addition to providing opportunity for revenue generation to the Government. Details on the scope of works required for the stated purpose along with their costs were presented to Council for consideration. The aggregate sum of N65,505,443.00 is required for the project, which was approved by the Council. UPDATE ON ACTIVITIES OF THE 102ND KANO STATE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL SITTING GRADUATION AND TRAINING OF WOMEN FROM POULTRY INSTITUTE AND FISHERIES INSTITUTE Council acknowledged the successful graduation of 600 women from the Poultry Institute, Tukwui and the commencement of training of 400 women at the Fisheries Institute, Bagauda as well as training of batch ‘B’ of 132 youths at the Livestock Institute, Bagauda. Council also noted a meeting held between DFID and the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources for possible collaboration in Agriculture. DELEGATION FROM NATIONAL PLANNING COMMISSION, EUROPEAN UNION AND THE WORLD BANK Council witnessed the visit to Kano State by the National Planning Commission and Representatives of the European Union and World Bank on State and Local Governance. The objective of the visit was to promote the project being sponsored by the international agencies to better Public Sector Governance Reform, Budget Management as well as improve Credibility of Budget. Kano state will participate alongside Cross Rivers, Osun, Anambra, Jigawa and Yobe States. GRADUATION OF 220 SECURITY GUARDS FROM THE CORPORATE SECURITY INSTITUTE, GABASAWA Council acknowledged the Successful Training and Graduation of 220 youths as Security Guards from the Corporate Security Institute, Gabasawa. This institute, as the other 20 was established to provide skills and training for the teeming youths to be self-reliant. The graduates will be employed by the Public Service to man the security of government offices. Another 400 youths have been selected and are presently being trained at the institute. Signed: Hon. Commissioner, Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youth, Sports & Culture, Kano State



INVITATION FOR PRE-QUALIFICATION/TENDER FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF AN ACADEMIC BLOCK IN JOS CAMPUS OF THE POLYTECHNIC TO BE FINANCED BY TERTIARY EDUCATION TRUST FUND(TETFUND) IN THE 2012 SPECIAL INTERVENTION In line with Due Process requirements, interested reputable contractors are required to submit the following pre-qualification documents for assessment: . (i) Evidence of Registration with Corporate Affairs Commission (ii) Evidence of Registration as a contractor with Plateau State Polytechnic, B/Ladi (iii) Evidence of VAT Registration and Remittances (iv) Evidence of tax clearance certificate for the last three years (v) Evidence of financial capability and Bank Statement (vi) Verifiable evidence of similar jobs executed including letters of award, payment certificates and photographs. COLLECTION OF TENDER DOCUMENTS Tender documents are to be collected from the office of the Director, PLAPOLY Consult/TETfund Desk Officer at the Main campus of the Polytechnic on payment of a non-refundable fee of N20, 000.00 only paid into PLAPOLY Consult Account No. 2003957116 First Bank Bukuru Branch (bank teller to be presented). This must be done within (2) weeks from the date of this advertisement. SUBMISSION OF TENDER DOCUMENTS All Pre-qualification and Tender Documents are to be submitted in separate envelopes marked “Pre-qualification” and “Tender Documents” respectively and addressed To: The Director, PLAPOLY Consult/TETFund Desk Officer, Plateau State Polytechnic, Works Yards, Main campus, B/Ladi. OPENING OF PRE-QUALIFICATION DOCUMENTS All contractors have (2) weeks from the date of this advertisement to submit pre-qualification and tender documents which will be opened on the last day in the presence of TETFund Officers and contractors who choose to attend at 12:00noon in the Conference Hall of the Polytechnic. NOTE VERY WELL: This advertisement is only an invitation and shall not be misconstrued to mean a commitment on the part of the Polytechnic authorities, staff or agents whatsoever, nor shall it entitle any contractor/company to make any claim or otherwise seek indemnity by virtue of such contractors having responded to this advertisement. The Polytechnic reserves the right to reject ANY or ALL documents without explanation and shall NOT enter into correspondence with any contractor/company on the matter. (All contractors who apply are deemed to have accepted this) (Signed) BLDR. BULUS G. PAM, MNIOB Director, PLAPOLY Consult/TETFund Desk Officer Works Yard, Main Campus Plateau State Polytechnic, Barkin Ladi.

PRE-QUALIFICATION OF SUPPLIES: YEAR 2012 TERTIARY EDUCATION TRUST FUND (TETFUND) INTERVENTION IN LIBRARY DEVELOPMENT INVITATION FOR THE PRE-QUALIFICATION OF SUPPLIES Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic is seeking for reputable supplies to Pre-Qualify for the execution of its 2012 TETFUND Intervention in Library Development. (a) SUPPLIES Lot 1- Procurement of ICT Equipments and connectionsPOLY/KATSINA/LIB/TETFUND/12/09 and 12. Lot 2 - Procurement of Library Furniture Equipments and Bindery Equipments (Software’s and Hardware’s) POLYT/ KATSINA/LIB/TETFUND/12/02,03,04,05,06,07,08,10 AND 11. (b) Pre- Qualification Evaluation Criteria (i) Company profile and organizational structure including names and Technical qualification(s) and experience(s) of key personnel; (ii) Verifiable list of previous works successfully carried out within the last three (3) years with names of client, evidence of award and practical completion and detail of ongoing projects. (iii) Evidence of Registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission. (iv) Evidence of Current Tax Clearance certificate; (v) Vat registration certificate (vi) Evidence of registration with the Federal or state Tenders Board (vii) Evidence of Financial Capability to handle the job and bank reference (viii) Evidence of compliance with pension reform act 2004. (ix) Company audited account for the immediate past three (3) years (x) Evidence of compliance with the provisions of section 6(1)-(3) of the amended ITF act, 2011 (xi) The Original copies of items i-x listed above for sighting during the opening session. (xii) Any other information that will assist the Polytechnic in assessing the organization. (c) Pre-Qualification Fees Interested supplies are to pay a Non-refundable Prequalification fee of Thirty Thousand Naira (N30,000.00) only for Lots 1 and 2, Fifty Thousand Naira (N50,000.00) only for Lot 3,.

Payment should be made at the Bursary Department by certified Bank Draft made Payable to the Rector, Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic. (d) Return of Documents Pre—Qualification documents listed in (b) above should be returned along with the original copy of the receipt for the payment of the appropriate Nonrefundable Pre-qualification fees in a sealed envelope market ‘PRE-QUALIFICATION DOCUMENTS FOR 2012 TETFUND INTERVENTION IN LIBRARY DEVELOPMENT (indicate the Lots you are bidding for – each Lot to be done separately in bidding for more than one Lot)’ and addressed to:The Registrar Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, P.M.B 2052 Katsina. To reach him not later than two (2) weeks from the date of this advertisement. (e) Important Notice (i) ONLY short- listed companies shall be invited to progress with the main tender. (ii) This advertisement of ‘Invitation to prequalify’ shall not be constructed to be an invitation to tender nor a commitment on the part of Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Katsina to award any form of supply to any company, it shall not entitle any company submitting documents to claim indemnity from the Polytechnic. The Polytechnic reserves the right to take final decision on any of the documents received in the pre-qualification package. (iii) Tender opening will be on 18th July, 2013 by 12.00 Noon at Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Katsina Committee Room, Central Administration. Thank You. HASSAN MUHAMMAD B. AG. REGISTRAR




Lagos power projects receive boost with transformer plant - Pg 20

L-R: General Manager, Business Development (North), BusinessDay Newspaper, Bashir Ibrahim Hassan, Governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi and Editor, Business Intelligence and Research Dept., BusinessDay, Osae Brown at the recent Business Annual Banking Awards and Dinner, held in Lagos.

Inflation drops to 9.0% in May - National Bureau of Statistics

By Abdulwahab Isa with agency report


igeria’s inflation rate stood at 9.0 per cent in May against the 9.1 per cent recorded in April, Dr Yemi Kale, the StatisticianGeneral of the Federation said. Kale, in a statement issued yesterday in Abuja, said that this indicated that year-onyear rate still held below single digit as observed since the beginning of the year. The statement said that the Composite Price Index (CPI), which measures the inflation rate, showed that the Core Sub-index continued to show a muted rise due to base effects. ``The yearon-year muted changes for the rest of the year in the Core Index may be sustained until the end of the year due to substantially higher price levels this time last year. ``As stated in the April 2013 CPI Report, the yearon-year changes in the Core Index for the rest of the year are likely to be muted as a result of substantially higher price levels this time last year. ``The increase in food prices captured by the Food

Sub-index, while significant, are also lower year-on-year. ``Through the first five months of 2013, the Food Subindex averaged 10.0 per cent, 1.8 per cent lower than rates recorded during the same period last year,’’ it stated According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), relative to April, the rise in the Headline Index could be attributable to higher prices in all 12 COICOP divisions. It said that the Urban Composite CPI was

cent year-on-year change, lower than the 8.9 per cent posted in April by 0.3 percentage points. ``The Urban All-item Index increased in May by 0.6 per cent roughly the same rate as recorded in the preceding month on a month-on-month basis, while the Rural All Items Index increased from levels recorded in April by 0.5 per cent.’’ The NBS further said that the percentage change in the average Composite CPI for the 12-month period ending in May 2013 over the average of the CPI for the previous 12-month period was

It said that the Urban Composite CPI was recorded at 144.5 points in May, a 9.4 per cent year-on-year change which was lower than the 9.7 per cent recorded in April. recorded at 144.5 points in May, a 9.4 per cent year-on-year change which was lower than the 9.7 per cent recorded in April. ``Similarly, the Rural National CPI recorded an 8.6 per

recorded at 10.8 per cent. It said that the corresponding 12-month yearon-year average percentage change for the Urban Index was 12.6 per cent, while the corresponding Rural Index was 9.5 per cent.

It said that the Composite Food Index increased year-onyear by 9.3 per cent to 146.4 points in May, representing 0.7 percentage points lower than the 10.0 per cent recorded in April. The NBS said that food index increased by 0.5 per cent between April and May as food prices continued to exhibit increases across all classes in the Food Sub-index largely due to dwindling supplies in the face of a relatively stable demand. It attributed the increase to meats, oils and fats, potatoes, yams and other tuber classes whose prices rose the highest in the month under review.

Uniben student wins DigitalSENSE student essay contest 2013 - Pg 21 CBN

Exchange Rates

17th June, 2013 Buying Selling












Parallel Rates Buying














Make the most of webinars


ebinars can be a useful (and cheap!) personal training tool. But not if you let them play in the background while you catch up on other work. Here are three ways to maximize your learning experience. Watch with a group. This makes it more likely you’ll pay attention. It also gives you the opportunity to discuss and digest the content and how it relates to your organization. Take and distribute notes.

This will give you another reason to listen closely. By giving your notes to colleagues who couldn’t attend, you position yourself as a go-to person on the topic. Use the occasion to network. Don’t be shy about following up with presenters and other registrants to ask questions or share ideas. It’s perfectly acceptable to use the experience of the webinar to present queries on other topics, too. Source: Harvard Business Review




Company News

Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria


ederal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) is targeting an inflow of up to $2.5 billion diaspora money into the Nigerian housing sector, by introducing products that will encourage Nigerians living abroad own houses in the country. This is even as the federal government is targeting the development of 200,000 housing units in the next five years with the proposed Mortgage Refinance Company (MRC). Managing Director, FMBN, Mr. Gimba Ya’u Kumo, disclosed this at the 4th Nigeria Development Finance Forum held recently in Washington DC. He said in a statement, “The target of the inflow of diaspora money to Nigeria is about $10 billion.

Peacock Travels


eacock Travels has introduced a new summer travel package, ‘Easy-to-pay’ that enables prospective summer travellers pay for their summer trip in three installments, saving at least 30 percent on the cost. This is just as Jordanian carrier, Royal Air Jordanian Airlines has partnered the travel company to introduce affordable holy pilgrimage to Jordan. The partnership, signed recently between the airline and the travel management company, grants Peacock Travels the exclusive right to handle this year’s holy pilgrimage package to and fro Jordan.

Total Nigeria Plc


otal Nigeria Plc has posted a turnover of N217.84 billion for its 2012 operations, against N173.95 recorded in 2011, while profit after tax also increased from N3.81 billion in 2011 to N4.67 billion during the year under review. Reviewing the company’s performance at the 35th yearly general meeting of the company in Lagos at the weekend, the company’s Chairman, Mr. Momar Nguer explained that profit before tax stood at N7 billion, from N5.9 billion in 2011. He added that based on the improved performance, the company directors are proposing a dividend of N2.72 billion, translating to 800kobo per share to be distributed as final dividend for 2012 financial year.

Lagos power projects receive boost with transformer plant

Stories by Etuka Sunday


he quest of the Lagos State Government to ensure stable electricity for the residents through Independent Power projects (IPP) has been advanced with the commissioning of a transformer manufacturing plant in the state. This landmark achievement by the state government, would not only aid the supply of transformers to the state but to the entire nation and Africa, as

it was the first of its kind to be established in West Africa. The transformer manufacturing company, El Sewedy Electrical Nigerian Limited, which is a joint venture between the Lagos State Government and the EL Sewedy Group of Cairo, Egypt, is expected to complement the efforts of the state in becoming self reliant on electricity issues. Already, the state has embarked on some Independent Power Projects, which are currently

generating over 12 Mega Watts of electricity and it has not stopped at that. According to him, the present administration has followed on that first by delivering another Independent Power Project that has delivered 12megawatts to Adiyan and Akute waterworks, as at today. The Governor informed that the administration has not stopped there but has put another IPP on stream which

hopefully by the first quarter of 2011 would have delivered another 15 megawatts that would supply electricity to the whole of the Central Business District on the Lagos Island. Other benefiting areas according to the Governor would include the Lagos General Hospital, Island Maternity Hospital, State House, Lagos High Court and at least 30 streets which would be taken off diesel power supply by the first quarter of next year.

Heritage Oil production from OML 30 rebounds


eritage Oil Plc, an independent upstream exploration and production company with headquarters in London, says gross production from its Oil Mining Lease (OML 30) in Nigeria has returned to rates of over 35,000 barrels of oil per day (bopd). The company stated that all of the key fields are in production as the temporary factors which caused lower than expected production levels over the first quarter of the this year have been successfully addressed. Tony Buckingham, Chief Executive Officer, in a statement

… 395,000bpd capacity infrastructure in place

said: “We are delighted that production levels are back over 35,000 bopd gross for the licence and that the issues encountered earlier in the year have been resolved. The work schedule is progressing in line with our update last month and we are on track to meet our production target for the full year.” According to the statement, work is underway with the objective of optimising existing facilities, including gas lift, which

will enable production rates to increase in line with management forecasts during the remainder of the year. It is expected that, as previously announced, 2013 gross production from OML 30 will average 35,000 bopd. The company said the drilling of new wells, planned to commence in the second half of 2014, should provide a significant increase to production with the longer term potential estimated at approximately 300,000 bopd gross, adding that infrastructure

was in place with capacity of 395,000 bpd. It added that separately, engagement with the local communities and the establishment of a long term Global Memorandum of Understanding with them was continuing. The company, in its results for the twelve months ended 31 December 2012 released recently, had said a sum of $234.5 million had been generated from the recently acquired OML 30.

PHCN earmarks N167m for upgrade of power generation in Zuru Emirate - Official


L-R: Minister of State for Power, Zainab Ibrahim Kuchi and Minister of Labour and Productivity, Emeka Wogu, discussing during a stakeholders conference on Power sector, recently in Abuja.

RMAFC urges FG to look beyond oil and gas By Abdulwahab Isa


he Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) has urged all levels of Government in the country to look beyond oil and gas by embracing economic diversification to boost revenue generation and reduce the continued over dependence on revenue from the oil and gas sector. Chairman of the Commission, Engr. Elias Mbam made this call yesterday in Abakaliki, Ebonyi state, during a courtesy call on the Governor, Chief Martin Elechi before the kick-off of Zonal Advocacy Workshop on: ‘Economic Diversification and

Enhanced Revenue Generation for the South-East Zone’, which started yesterday in the state. Mbam explained that the purpose of the workshop was to sensitise Governments at all levels, and other critical stakeholders on the urgent need to broaden the economic base of the nation by diversifying the sources of revenue in order to meet the increasing expenditure requirements of governance and development. He also noted that the move has become imperative, in view of the fact that hydrocarbon resources are exhaustible, nonrenewable and subject to price volatility due to instability in the

international system. He further enthused: “Since USA and China are continously exploring alternative sources of energy, Governments at all levels must look beyond oil by developing all the necessary infrastructure that will support the growth of non-oil sector like agriculture, manufacturing, solid minerals and tourism. Responding, Governor Elechi enjoined all critical stakeholders to closely and carefully examine the factors that inhibit the development of the non-oil sector and contribute to the near total neglect of the sector, with a view to proffering long lasting solutions.

he Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) has earmarked N167 million for the upgrade of electricity supply to Zuru Emirate, in Kebbi state. The Senior Special Assistant on Power Sector Advocacy to the Minister of Power, Alhaji Mohammed Danjuma, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Zuru yesterday. Danjuma said the amount would be spent on the upgrade of electricity facilities in Zuru, Sakaba, Danko/Wasagu and Fakai local government areas of Kebbi. He said new transformers and electrical materials would be installed for improved power supply to the areas, noting that the measure was due to irregular supply of electricity to the areas over a long period. According to him, power supply will improve nationwide by the first quarter of 2014 when the National Independent Power Projects (NIPP) are expected to be completed. ``Electricity supply will improve nationwide by the quarter of 2014 as generation will increase from 400 megawatts to 10,000 megawatts.’’ He said that the increase in megawatts, generation, transmission and distribution would eliminate irregular electricity supply. He noted that other sources of power supply such as solar, hydro and coal would also be explored to end ``load shedding.’’ (NAN)



No SIM swap by proxy again - MTN

Stories by Chris Alu


he Corporate Services Executive of MTN Nigeria, Mr. Akinwale Goodluck has announced the decision of the company to discontinue SIM swaps by proxy, with effect from June 7. Mr. Akinwale Goodluck said this in a statement made available on Friday in Lagos. He said that after June 7, customers who wished to swap or replace their SIM cards as a result of their phones being stolen, destroyed or misplaced must do so in person.

Goodluck explained that in recent months, unscrupulous elements have started to exploit the proxy SIM swap process and that there have been incidents of unauthorized people fraudulently obtaining SIM cards belonging to others. According to him, the implication of this decision is that customers will now have to appear in person at the service outlets nearest to them to request and obtain new SIM cards. Such requests will be treated promptly after proper ID validation from the SIM registration database, and upon presentation of valid identification such as ID

card, international passport or driver’s licence. He added that the customer would also be required to answer security questions before a new SIM card is issued. After this date, customers who wish to ‘swap’ or replace their SIM cards as a result of their phones being stolen, destroyed or mislaid must do so in person. He explained that the decision was taken in order to protect customers’ data and preserve the overall integrity of the SIM swap process. Also Mr Akin Braithwaite, MTN Customer Relations Executive said that

the organization takes the issue of customer and data security very seriously. He said that a significant number of SIM swap-related fraud was committed by people who are very close to the victims and have access to their personal data. He added that the new requirement that customers effect SIM swaps in person would check the activities of fraudsters in this regard. Goodluck also called on mobile phone subscribers to urgently register their SIMs in view of the impending NCC deadline of June 30 or risk the suspension of their mobile lines.

L-R: General Secretary, Kings College Old Boys Association (KCOBA), Mr. Lucky Idike Jr, Chairman, Union Bank Nigeria Plc, Senator Udo Udoma, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, and Chairman, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr. Hakeem Belo Osagie, during the Kings College Old Boys Association Business Networking Luncheon, recently in Lagos. Photo: Olawale Rotimi

NDIC Boss enjoins financial institutions to imbibe sustainable banking principles By Aminu Imam


he Managing Director/Chief Executive of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC),Alh. Umaru Ibrahim has called on financial institutions in the country to imbibe sustainable banking practices in their operations. Alh. Ibrahim, who made the call in Abuja, while declaring open a lecture on: “The Implementation of The Nigerian Sustainable Banking Principles for Senior Bank Examiners”, noted that the importance of a sustainable banking culture required banks to uphold environmental and social standards by not granting credits or supporting business activities that would harm the environment. He also advised that financial institutions should promote gender equality and promote ethics, fairness


he abysmally law trading activities within West and Central Africa will soon receive a boost when a proposed regional sea link project becomes operational, a senior official of Nigerian Export Import Bank (NEXIM), Mr. Hope Yongo has said. In a project presentation during the just-concluded 3rd ECOWAS Investment Forum in Lagos at the weekend, Yongo said trading in West Africa was difficult because of the ab-

and anti-corruption activities, adding that the principles expected banks to gear their operations toward enhancing development that would not only be economically profitable but also environmentally and socially responsive. According to him, the Bankers Committee had signed a memorandum of understanding(MOU) on how to implement the guidelines on sustainable banking practices. He also saidthat the NDIC in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had put in place supervisory framework by setting up sustainable banking desks in their respective institutionsthat would facilitate the implementation of sustainable banking principles, adding that thesustainable banking lecture was organised to equip bank examiners with requisite skills in sustaina-

ble banking principles and to ensure that financial institutions imbibe the sustainable banking culture. Alh. Umaru lauded the efforts by the lecturer, Dr. A’isha Usman Mahmood, Special Adviser to the CBN Governor on Sustainable Banking and the Sustainability Committee for their commitment towards the effective implementation of the Nigerian Sustainable Banking Principles. The NDIC Director of Human Resource Department, Alh. M. A. Ahmed, while making remarks at the lecture, said that the Corporation was committed to the implementation of sustainable banking principles through its gender equality policies, responsive staff welfare scheme and information technology infrastructures that were geared toward reducing waste in the Corporation.

Short-Sea Trade along the West and Central Africa regions, was also affecting intra-Africa trade. Compared to other economic blocs, intra–regional trade in Africa is the lowest - it is less than 11% in Africa and 12% within the ECOWAS sub-region; intra-European trade accounts for 72%; in Asia it is 52%; intra-North American Trade is 48%

SpinletMusic collaborates with Etisalat on digital application


pinlet, a mobile digital music service provider has announced it partnership with Etisalat Nigeria in order to provide Spinlet music application to all network subscribers in the country. The application is to enable music fans to download and share a broad collection of old and new music directly to their mobile devices at a very affordable price in all the networks. The Chief Commercial Officer of Etisalat , Wael Ammar explained that the collaboration is to bring in remembrance of both local and international albums and tracks to network subscribers in order to enjoy hip hop, highlife, gospel, and afro beat, adding that the best part about the app is that music lovers can access thousands and thousands of songs at will. He further stated that Etisalat customers as well as other networks can now download and share in music at cheaper, easier, mobile and legal with access to an almost limitless library of musical content on the go, We have also made the application very easy to use and affordable,” said Wael Ammar, According to him the Etisalat Spinlet Music app is now available on all mobile devices and other Internetenabled platforms on the entire networks. Users can download the app from Google play, Blackberry and Nokia stores, and to stream and download music. Subscription plans for music downloads through the app are flexible.

Channel partners celebrates partnership with Airtel Nigeria


hannel Partners, a leading business partnership with Airtel Nigeria, has celebrated its business partners with Airtel Nigeria in Lagos over the weekend. MD/CEO of Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Segun Ogunsanya said Channel Partners celebrates the efforts of trade partners in advancing the business objectives of the company just as it also encourages more mutually productive collaboration. “Collectively, we dealt with several issues including the insecurity in the North, flood and other issues that impacted our operations adversely”, he stated We want to commend you all for the brave fight despite the enormous challenges. I dare say our channel partners rose to the occasion and went the extra mile to support all our initiatives,” Ogunsanya added. He added that as business partners, Airtel values its relationship with the busi-

‘Regional sea link will boost trade in Africa’

sence of a functional sea link. ”High transportation costs and excessive transit time are making intra-regional trade non-competitive and West African transport; logistics costs are some of the highest in the world,” he said. Yongo added that the lack of dedicated, safe and modern fleet to encourage and facilitate Atlantic


and 26% in South-Central America. Yongo called on foreign and local investors to invest in the proposed sea link project, which he said, had the potential to accelerate intra-regional trade, regional integration, movement of people, goods and wealth creation. “As a Trade Policy Bank and an Export Credit Agency, the regional

ness partners just as it strongly believes in the culture of recognizing, celebrating and rewarding excellence and exceptional performances. Ogunsanya explained that Channel Parners will continue to collaborate Airtel in other to invest in the expansion of its network and the enhancement of quality of service. He said, today, Airtel has the largest 3.75G coverage that spans the entire 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory to our customers, and we will continue to deepen our 3.75G coverage and the network quality so that we can maintain this flagship position,” he added. Speaking further, the MD said that Airtel as a player in the Nigeria’s telecom sector is happy with the opportunities that mobile number portability has presented and encouraged the partners to join it in leveraging the platform. sea link project essentially aligns with NEXIM’s development and strategic objectives of deepening intra-regional trade and enhancing total export credit, especially under the Bank’s ECOWAS Trade Support Facility (ETSF),” Yongo said. The ETSF is designed to, among things, facilitate formal and recorded trade within ECOWAS, broaden trade and market access for Nigerian products, deepen payment systems and use of trade instruments.


Business Feature


MDGs and the 2015 deadline: Matters arising


n the lead-up to the 2015 target date fixed for the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the World Health Assembly met recently in Geneva to draw up the post-2015 development agenda. The development agenda refers to a process established by the UN to help define the future global development framework that would succeed the MDGS. The World Health Assembly is the supreme decisionmaking body of the World Health Organisation (WHO). It normally meets in Geneva in May every year and the meeting is attended by delegations from the 194 member-states Dr Margaret Chan, the Director-General of WHO, who spoke at the 66th World Health Assembly, underscored the need to join forces to ensure that health issues were given priority attention across the world. “I ask member-states to do everything they can to ensure that health occupies a high place on the new development agenda. “Health contributes to and benefits from sustainable development and it is a measurable indicator of the success of all other development policies. “ Investing in the health of the people is a smart strategy for poverty alleviation. “This calls for the inclusion of non-communicable diseases and for continued efforts to reach the health-related MDGs after 2015,’’ she said. The Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu urged the WHO and member -states to continue to accord health high priority. “One way to do this is to insist on the saying that `health is wealth’ and that it should take priority over `wealth is health’. “Women’s and children’s health, HIV and AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, the Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), Human Resources for Health and Universal Health Coverage, must be on the agenda,’’ he said. The minister said the Federal Government had reviewed the strategy to specifically address issues relating to the health of women and children. He said the new strategy would enable Nigeria to meet the MDGs’ target of reducing by half, child and maternal mortality as well as HIV and AIDS. “The health of women and children has continued to be accorded priority in Nigeria. “The work of the UN Commission on Life Saving Commodities, which is cochaired by the President of Nigeria and the Prime Minister of Norway in identifying and

L-R: Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu with an official at the World Health Assembly recently in Geneva.

promoting the use of essential life-saving commodities, deserves commendation. “Nigeria has domesticated the recommendations of the commission, through the introduction of the `Save One million Lives Initiative’ with the massive procurement and distribution of essential commodities,’’ he said. Also speaking, Dr Bridget Okoeguale, the Director of Public Health, Federal Ministry of Health, underscored the need to continue with MDGs 4 and 5, which specifically dealt with the health of mothers and children. “We in the developing world, including Nigeria, feel that we have not been able to attain MDGs 4 and 5, which have to do with mothers and children that are more vulnerable to diseases. “We feel that in the postMDGs, this agenda should also be included and Nigeria is in support of that. “Most African countries are for MDGs 4, 5 and 6 to be included in the post-MDGs agenda,’’ she said. Dr. Kolaatamo Malefho, the Permanent Secretary of Botswana’s Ministry of Health, said that in his country, the health related-MDGs were not on track to meet up with some of the targets. He, however, said that Botswana had been able to cut down maternal mortality from

about 300 per 100,000 live births to the current 173 per 100,000 live births. “The target is supposed to be around 72; so, we are not on track to meet that target. However, we are doubling our efforts and putting everything in place, we are quite certain that our achievement in reducing maternal mortality must be continued beyond 2015. “We are pushing that the World Health Assembly and the UN General Assembly must consider continuing with the MDGs so that we can achieve the MDGs and surpass them,’’ he said. Malefho said that Botswana had also been able to reverse the growing trend of HIV infections, adding that the MDGs’ HIV and AIDS programme must also continue for sustainability. “For malaria and HIV we have actually reversed the trend which was the target, but we will like to consolidate the achievement because as you know, Botswana is one of the countries with the highest HIV prevalence rate of around 17.6 of the general population, which is very high. “We will like to reduce the prevalence significantly and stop new infections; so, we think that the MDGs must continue,’’ he said. Nevertheless, Chan underscored the need for

Universal Health Coverage, while expressing concern over the emergence of new diseases and the effects of poverty on access to quality health care. She stressed that everybody, irrespective of his or her socioeconomic status, had the right to good health care. “Universal health coverage reflects the need to maximise health outcome for everyone. Everyone, irrespective of their ability to pay, should have access to quality health care without risking financial ruin. “A focus on universal health coverage continues the strong emphasis on equity and social justice articulated in the Millennium Declaration and in the future we want. Public health looks more and more like a refuge; a safe harbour of hope that allows and inspires all countries to work together for the good of humanity. “This is what we are doing and we see the results; fear of new diseases can unite the world and so, can determination to relieve preventable human misery.This is what makes public health stand out from other areas of global engagement,’’ she said. Chan commended the growing commitment to universal health coverage and extolled member- states for caring so much about health issues nationally, regionally, and internationally.

However, Nigeria’s health minister said that the Federal Government was implementing policies that would boost the attainment of universal health coverage. Chukwu said that the health insurance coverage was being widened through the scale-up of the community-based Health Insurance Scheme. “The act establishing the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) is being reviewed with the intention of making health insurance mandatory and universal. The Midwives Service Scheme (MSS), which was introduced as a response to the shortage of skilled birth attendants, particularly in `hard-to-reach’ locations, has continued to grow. “Today, a total of 6,520 midwives, 6,600 community health workers and 2,100 village health workers have been deployed to 1,500 health facilities spread across all the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory,’’ the minister said. All the same, stakeholders urge the government to sustain the funding of the health sector so as to boost universal health coverage and up-scale the attainment of the MDGs’ targets. (NAN Features)



Stock Watch

Report as at Monday, June 17, 2013



Celebrating democracy day in Sokoto

The Governor Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko Example the point of completion. Other areas include the training of 1,000 youth on skill acquisition programmes, in order to make them gainfully-employed; other achievements recorded include free medical care for pregnant women and children, as well as free education for both Indigenes and non-indigenes residing in the state. Meanwhile, the Second very right thinking person Republic President, Alhaji Aliyu that visited Sokoto state Shehu Shagari, was at the a few years ago would forefront to commission the everhave noticed several changes busy road network, the Garba in developmental projects, Duba two-kilometer road that was even though, these are converted to a dual-carriage way evidence of part of the 6-year at the cost of N250 million by the positive performance of the administration and was among Magatakarda’s sterling work of the forty roads re- constructed Alhaji (Dr.) Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko (Sarkin Yamma Sokoto) propelling his administration to a and rehabilitated so far across the Executive Governor, Sokoto State greater height. state. The fact is that radical changes In his speech, elder statesman, have taken place for all to see. Alhaji Aliyu Shehu Shagari, For some time now, Wamakko determined and identified development as a necessary tool for focused in executing projects that have direct bearing transformation, while describing the leadership on the people, both at grassroots and rural level, and of Magatakarda Wamakko as most-focused. He in all part of the state. described the governor as someone who is willing to Since inception of Governor Wamakko’s impact positive changes on the life of the populace. administration, the nerve centre and seat of the The former, president used the medium to call Caliphate has witnessed tremendous changes. on other governors to emulate his good work, so Projects such as flyovers, Sokoto State University, as to move the country to a greater height. Independent Power Projects (IPPs) and 5,000 units In a related development, people from all facets of housing project are believed to be the top target of life stormed the new State University, established by Magatakarda’s developmental programmes such that the Governor. While inspecting the higher institution today has recorded 100 percent completion while of learning, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. some are at the verge of completion. Nuhu Yakubu, who spoke on behalf of the Governing Indeed, the recent celebration of Democracy Day Council of the University, told the crowd that the state provided Governor Wamakko another opportunity has from inception to date spent over N10.3 billion, to showcase the positive impact of his sterling which consists of the hostel, administrative block, achievements to his people, in line with the agenda classroom or lecture hall, Vice Chancellors residence, set by the ruling party. as well as staff quarters. People’s Daily correspondent in Sokoto visited He said that the level of completion of the project is some projects that were on-going, which consist of today 95 percent, adding that the academic activities the Eastern By-pass, the Western By-pass, dualised would soon commence as from October this year. by the Governor Wamakko administration, as well as Continued on next page the Murtala Mohammed Specialist Hospital that is at Recently, there was a lot of speculation from the people of Sokoto state as to how Governor Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko is working towards moving the state to greater heights. Mahmoud Muhammad, our correspondent in Sokoto, examines the true situation of things during this year’s Democracy Day celebrations in the state.




Celebrating democracy day in Sokoto Also, the governor was taken round the 500 units housing estate at Kalambaina, Wamakko Local Government Area, where he said before the end of his tenure, 5,000 units of housing would be constructed, as part of his set target to meet the yearning and aspiration of the people of the state. At Kalambaina, the Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence, Sa’ad Abubakar commended the state Governor. Sultan Abubakar later performed the foundationlaying ceremony for the construction of 500 houses to be built at N3.73 billion at Kalambaina, Wamakko Local Government Area of Sokoto state, also as part of the 2013 Democracy Day celebrations in the state. According to the Sultan, the houses would alleviate the accommodation problems of the civil servants of the state, saying “Housing is next to food in the hierarchy of needs and this is a very commendable gesture by the state government”. “The governor has transformed the entire state in the last six years, out of his eight years, and if I should grade him, he has scored 80 percent”, Sultan Abubakar further declared. While commending the governor for “leading by example”, the Sultan pledged his continued support for all the programmes and policies of the government. In his speech, the governor said the state government had so far constructed more than 4,000 houses for its workers. “Our target is to build over 5,000 new houses across the state before the expiration of my current term, to further alleviate the sufferings of the workers”, he said. Earlier, the Speaker of the House of Representative, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal challenged politicians in the country to re-direct their thinking towards the sustainability of the nation’s democracy. Tambuwal, who gave the challenge during the Democracy Day celebration, which was held at the Trade Fair complex in Sokoto. The House of Representatives Speaker, who is a seasoned politician, said they could do this by observing the freedom and liberty that is essential to entrenching democracy in the country. He described what is being experienced recently as a truly un-democratic trend. According to him, “It is only when democracy is put in place that people could elect who they want to occupy any political office or be elected into the office. Aminu Tambuwal, to this end, urged political leaders to be cautious in their political struggle towards the 2015 general elections. Governor Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko, who expressed his gratitude for the warm reception given to him, as if he deserved another term in office, says his administration would still do more towards the provision of dividends of democracy to the people.

Former President Shehu Shagari commissioning dualization of Garba Duba road constructed by Sokoto state government.

Sultan Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III laying foundation of 500 Housing units at Kalambaina under taken by Sokoto state government

Dualization of western byepass

Speaker House Of Representative Aminu Waziri Tambuwal commissioning skills acquisition center at Kware




Ezeoba urges graduating recruits to be disciplined, loyal Stories by Joy Baba


he Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) Vice Admiral Dele Ezeoba has urged graduating recruits of the Nigerian Army Depot Zaria to remain selfless, disciplined loyal and determined as they render service to their father land. Ezeoba gave the charge recently in Zaria at the first combined passing out parade of Depot Nigerian Army 69 regular recruit intakes and Nigerian Navy trainee batch 22. The CNS, who was the

reviewing officer for the day, said collaboration between the Nigerian Army and Navy to train their lower man power became necessary considering the security challenges the nation is currently facing. According to the Naval Chief “Remember that, the pillars of a military career in any service are hard work, dedication, commitment, patience and perseverance. “With these, you can be certain that the training you have received here, you can reach enviable

heights. “I am aware of the rigours and pains you had to undergo during your trainings, the processes and methods had to be stringent sometimes very excruciating. “The approach could not have been otherwise if you had to be toughened and re-oriented to be able to face the challenges ahead. “Most importantly, you had to be equipped with the requisite military training and education to prepare you for the realities of the field”.

Ezeoba also said the aim of training the new recruits in practical understanding of military skills, particularly in the areas of weapon handling, drill, regimentation and field craft in joint operations setting was the asymmetric nature of contemporary threats to national security. The CNS further said Nigerian Army and Navy in a bid to be on tip in the security challenge the nation is currently facing will engraft the new intakes in the on going military assistance to civil power operations

aimed at assisting the Nigerian Police Force to tackle challenges in the country. He noted that after this experience, the new recruits intakes and trainees will be exposed to the essentials of naval life and seaman traditions at the Nigerian Navy Basic Seamanship Training School in Port Harcourt. “I expect no less of the enthusiasm and dedication you have so far demonstrated when you commence the next phase of your training” Ezeoba added.

Japan builds $1m hostel for Defence College


apanese government, through the support of United Nation Development Progamme (UNDP) has built a hostel worth one million US dollars for the African Centre for Strategic Research and Studies of the National Defence College (NDC), Nigeria. Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Ryuichi Shoji stated this recently in Abuja at the commissioning of Japanese government funded participants hostels for Peace Support Operation (PSO). Shoji said his country aim is to build capacity of African countries and institutions that will bring about peace and stability within the region adding that they will also

address the underlying causes of conflict and stability. In her address, the Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olushola Obada said Nigeria and Japan have been strategic partners collaborating in different endeavors especially in the domain of peace and security in the world. Obada further said that Nigeria desires to deepen their relationship with Japan in Defence and security most especially in the areas of Defence technology. In his welcome address, the commandant of NDC, Rear Admiral Jonah Lokoson said this particular is designed to build Nigeria’s capacity to prevent and manage conflict.

Boko Haram operate secretly from Cameroon - Minister

L-R: Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olushola Obada, Chief of Defence Staff, Admiral Ola Ibrahim and Commandant, National Defence College, Rear Admiral Jonah Lokoson during the commissioning of the $1m Japanese government funded participants hostel for Peace Support Operation (PSO), recently in Abuja. Photo: Joy

L-R: Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Alex Badeh presenting sourvenir to Rector, Yaba College of Technology, Mrs Kudirat Oladipo after signing MoU with some Federal institutions and agencies recently in Abuja.


he Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olushola Obada has said members of the Boko Haram sect are conducting their activities freely in Cameroon despite the Government denial of their presence in the country. Reports of arrest of suspected members of the sect by Cameroon security agencies, suggest otherwise. The Minister stated this recently in Abuja when the United Nations Secretary General Special Representative to West Africa, Mr. Said Djinnit paid her a courtesy call to discuss issues of insecurity in the country and the region at large. Obada said Nigeria and Cameroon share an extensive land and maritime borders that are not only porous but inadequately manned by the security agencies of the two countries. She also said the activities of the sect in the northern part of Nigeria have serious consequences on the security of Cameroon adding that in view of the absence of close monitoring by the security services, individuals and groups take advantage of the situation to perpetrate criminal acts injurious to national security of the two countries.

According to the minister, “in February 2013, some gunmen suspected to be members of the sect abducted a French family of seven in Cameroon and the victims were presumably taken to Nigeria. “After two months of heightened tension, the host authorities were able to negotiate with the abductors the release of the family. That was a strong pointer that even if the sect does not have a cell in Cameroon, members do conduct their activities, in Cameroon unhindered. “Although the Government of Cameroon has continued to deny the presence of a Boko Haram cell in their territory, yet reports of arrest of suspected members of the sect by Cameroon security agencies suggest otherwise”. Speaking earlier, Mr. Djinnit said his visit was to sensitise all countries of the region to work together to address the threat of terrorism affecting all countries in West Africa. He urged all countries within the region to work together to address the root cause of the problem in a coordinated manner as according to him “a threat to one country is a threat to all”




Military leadership and national security By Joy Baba


he concept of military leadership and national security is deeply rooted in both historical and contemporary perspectives. Studies have shown that the concept remain an important element of intellectual and political discourse in the human society. This is because the cause of global peace and security is often shaped by the understanding and implementation of national security objectives which usually requires the application of the armed forces and its leadership as tools of national power. Many centuries ago, it was not uncommon to approximate national security to the well-being of the sovereign or the regime in power. Subsequently, “state security”, as defined by threats to territorial and socio-economic interests, emerged as other important indicators of national security. So also were threats to overseas colonial possessions. Within this spectrum, when diplomacy fails, contentions among nations were usually settled with battles and wars; the prosecution of which lies within the domain of military leadership. Lessons of military history also affirm that the quality of military leadership plays a prominent role in the outcome of wars and, indeed, the fate of nations. History also reveals that the several ethnic nationalities of present day Nigeria have had fairly significant experiences in the evolution of military leadership and national security. During the precolonial era, internecine wars of survival and expansion as well as the unquestionable authority of local rulers, though interspersed with some form of checks and balances, were critical factors of national security. Likewise, the quality of the political and military leadership was instrumental in the determination of the extent of security enjoyed by various nationalities. The notable successes of the Sokoto Caliphate under Shehu Uthman Dan Fodio as well as the territorial exploits of the Benin and Oyo empires were vivid testimonies of the positive intercourse of military leadership and national security during the period. From the colonial period till date, credible attempts have been made to define the concept of national security within the political, geographical and multiethnic configuration of Nigeria. The numerous constitutional reforms since 1922 attest to this assertion. Regrettably too, from the political crises of the 1960s to the civil war of 1967-70 as well as the current prevalence of terrorist activities, the state of national security in Nigeria has been continuously challenged. Along the line, the military leadership had either been called upon or found it necessary to resolve the political logjams, ethno-religious crises and other threats in order to enhance national security. Notwithstanding their credible efforts, the military and its leadership were also compromised in many ways, particularly in terms

of professionalism and vision. The several coups and counter-coups during the 29 years of military rule were some of the undesirable effects of incursion of military leadership into the political terrain. How the military fared in the wider context of national security which includes development and human rights is another contention. It is within this perspective that this discussion on Military Leadership and National Security is considered relevant as it provides an opportunity to broaden our scope and understanding on the two critical dynamics of our national life. In relation to the military as an organization, leadership exists at various levels ranging from the political (grand strategic) level, through the military strategic and operational levels to the tactical (unit) level. In line with assigned roles or missions, military leadership is usually exercised through operational and tactical command and control structures. An apparent inference from the foregoing discourse is that, depending on circumstances, the military leader is expected to be a boss, manager and transformer with inspiring personality. He is also required to flexibly manage situations in a group at different levels of the military chain of command. Another inherent feature of military leadership is the recognition of dispersed leadership concept through its characteristic stratified command and control structure. The evolution of national security as a concept has been influenced to a large extent by shifting focus, values and interests of nations and events in their environment. Prominently, self-preservation, self-rule, development and socio-economic well-being of the citizenry are some of the factors that have featured and survived the evolutionary trend. Notably, national security is a function of both internal and external dynamics around a nation with increasing focus on human and collective security. It is for this reason that national constitution along with foreign and domestic policies are formulated to provide guidance for the determination of national security objectives and application of relevant tools of national power, including the military. Among the widely accepted fundamentals for determining the constituents of national security are national values. National values express the legal, philosophical and

Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Azubuike Ihejirika

moral dictums for the existence of a nation and such values provide sense of national purpose and the foundation, upon which national interests are based. Likewise, national interests reflect perceived needs and aspirations of a nation, often in relation to both local and international environments. Generally, sovereignty and survival, along with conflict-free neighbourhood and economic wellbeing of the people constitute the elements of national interest of many states. At independence in 1960, Nigeria was largely an underdeveloped state woven from about 250 ethnic groups. At this time the Nigerianisation of the leadership of the military was at its infancy as this cadre was hitherto largely staffed by colonial officers. By the early1960s, the headship of the Nigerian Army (NA) and the Nigerian Navy (NN) along with the top offices had transferred to Nigerians while the Nigerian Air Force was established in 1964. Similarly, the political landscape was challenged by the necessity of building a nation and acceptable leadership out of

Military leaders must be innovative to find more effective ways to tackle new security challenges that are daily confronting the country and threatening its continued existence as one indivisible entity.

the multi-ethnic configuration as well as the imperative of national development to meet the aspirations of the populace. Backed by new constitutional provisions, the country operated a federal structure based on regionalism while she attained full republican status in 1963. National development programmes anchored on education, infrastructural development and industrialization based on import substitution policy were also initiated at federal and regional levels towards meeting the socio-economic objectives of national security. As events unfolded regrettably, the political crises between 1962 and 1965 ensued a period of violence, ethnic distrust and electoral malpractices which resulted in the military take-over of January 1966. In an attempt to weave national cohesion, the federal regional structure was abolished and replaced with a unitary and centralized political structure. However, subsequent coup of July 1966 and the civil war of 1967-70 almost put paid to the corporate existence of Nigeria. In essence, rather than building trust, infrastructure and the economy, the 1960s witnessed a reversed trend in the development of critical elements of national security. Nevertheless, the postwar development programmes on Re-integration, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction (3Rs) were initiated to reverse the trend and put the nation back on the path of nationhood and development. “When generals are weak and lack authority, instructions are not clear, officers and soldiers lack consistency and they form battle lines which way: this is riot.” Sun Tzu Inability to execute the transition to civil rule programme, among other reasons, led to the July

1975 coup and the termination of General Gowon’s 9-year rule. Although the headship of the new administration was punctured with the assassination of General Murtala Mohammed in February 1976, the regime steered by General Obasanjo successfully completed the transition programme in October 1979 with the birth of the Second Republic. Arising from the elections violence and political intolerance in 1983, the military again found it necessary to seize power with the coup of 31 December 1983 led by General Muhammadu Buhari. Between 1984 and 1999, 2 additional successful coups took place with at least 3 unsuccessful coups and a botched transition to civil rule between 1992 and 1993 under the Third Republic. In particular, between 1993 and 1999, the state of national security was significantly stressed with ethnic violence, threats of disintegration, international sanctions as well as mistrust and instability within the military. Gladly, following the hand over of political power by the military leadership in 1999, the Fourth Republic has recorded the longest continuous civil rule in the nation’s history with 3 successful civil-civil transitions through elections. The return to political governance in 1999 signifies a clean departure of military intervention in politics to its constitutional roles on national security. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, the National Defence Policy 2006, the Armed Forces Act Cap A20 LFN 2004 are statutes that provide the basis for the AFN primary force structure decisions needed to meet policy objectives. Section 217of the Constitution mandates the AFN to secure Nigeria against external aggression; maintain its territorial integrity and secure its borders from violation by land, sea or air. Other responsibilities include suppressing insurrection and acting in aid of civil authorities to restore order when called upon to do so by the President, but subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by an Act of the National Assembly; and performing such other functions that may be prescribed by an act of the National Assembly. Further to the overview, it is necessary to discuss how relevant contemporary developments affect the interplay of military leadership and national security in Nigeria. Primarily, based on identified national interests, a view of Nigeria’s security environment reveals that it is intertwined in global, regional, sub-regional and internal threat dimensions all of which will require a dynamic, military leadership to provide the necessary direction for their containment. Accordingly, the developments shall be discussed along the global, regional and domestic perspectives. Military leaders must be innovative to find more effective ways to tackle new security challenges that are daily confronting the country and threatening its continued existence as one indivisible entity. Additional material from NDC library



Agriculture Food import: Nigeria fritters over $11bn on basic food annually Stories by Mohammed Kandi he Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has said that Nigeria spends over $11 billion importing wheat, rice, sugar and fish which are basic food in the country. Adesina who disclosed this in Abuja at the ongoing Ministerial platform on the Mid-Term review, said that “Nigeria’s food imports are growing at an unsustainable rate of 11 per cent per annum. He added that import dependency is hurting Nigerian farmers, displacing local production and creating rising unemployment.” According to him, the Federal Government is making efforts towards the country’s excessive importation, as well as ensuring Nigeria become a net producer and exporter of food in the world. He said that the Federal Government was developing cassava value chains for new value adds products and expands production of high quality cassava flour to substitute imported wheat in the baking industry. The Minister further said that the government had secured financing of over $200 million for 18 private sector-owned large scale cassava flour processing plants with 1.3 million capacities. Adesina also said that the government had also secured 3.2 million MT contract


Farmers in need of more tractors to facilitate food security orders from china for export of dried cassava chips for ethanol production, and provided 30 million bundles of cassava cuttings free to farmers in the country. He highlighted that the government had distributed 420,000 of high yielding cocoa hybrid pods or over 14 million cocoa seedlings distributed free to farmer,

which 50,544 farmers benefited. Speaking on palm oil, the Minister said that 1.34 million sprouted seedlings was provided to 18 oil palm estates, and a total of 9 million sprouted seedlings had been distributed this year, including smallholders farmers. Dr. Adesina also said that

the Nigeria Incentive-based Risk Sharing for Agricultural Loan, NIRSAL, the Central Bank of Nigeria framework for agriculture, would unblock $3.5 billion of loans from banks at attractive interest rates. He also said that the United State Government provided $100 million of guarantees to complement

NIRSAL. He however called on Nigerians and stakeholders in the agricultural sector to support the Agricultural Transformation Agenda of the present administration to fast-track agricultural production in order to improve productions and reduce importation of food products.

lot more high yielding seeds would be produced. According to him, tissue culture does not need to be regulated and it is widely used to produce clones of plants through a method known as micro-propagation. While it offers certain advantages over traditional methods of propagation, it also enables the production of exact copies of plants and allows plants to mature early. It also facilitates the production of multiples of plants even in the absence of seeds. ARCN was designated to represent the National Agricultural Research

Institutes (NARI’s) in Nigeria while NAN would represent the media. The Chairman of the committee, Dr Adetula Adegorite, in her address, said the main objective of the committee was to ensure the safety and quality of Genetically Modified seeds. She said the committee would ensure that bio-diversity, environment, human health and food were not affected by biotechnology. “We must make sure that all genetically-modified products being researched are safe. We will also ensure that we safeguard any risk through risk assessment

and management, which will be done through laboratory testing. “We will also create awareness and train our staff through workshops and sensitise the society on what biotechnology and bio-safety are all about through the media, he explained”. Adetula posited that biotechnology would help the country meet its quest for food sufficiency and also reduce farm loss by farmers. According to her, Brazil, the second largest producer of agricultural commodities in the world, was able to attain its position through biotechnology, urging Nigeria to take a cue from

this. In his remarks, Mr Rufus Ebegba, the representative of the Minister of Environment, said that Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) and products were not hazardous to human health. “GMO is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques and genetic modification involves the insertion or deletion of genes. “When genes are inserted, they usually come from different species; which can be described as horizontal gene transfer,’’ Ebegba explained.

Expert recommends tissue culture for food security in Nigeria


s scientists all over the world intensify search for bumper agricultural produce, a Deputy Director with the National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), Mr Sunday Abimiku, has recommended the use of tissue culture for maximum farm yield in the country. Abimiku who made the call at the Inauguration of the council’s institutional Biosafety Committee recently, observed that if the use of tissue culture was included in methods of seeds production under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda, a




Integrating Nigeria into agricultural research revolution By Akinwunmi Kole-Dawodu


he Africa Union’s (AU) New Partnerships for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) has called for six per cent growth in agricultural Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of African countries to meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. It as well advised the countries to maintain three per cent annual agricultural total factor productivity growth to attain the same goals. Pursuant to this, the World Bank designed the African Action Plan (AAP) as a centerpiece of its strategy to help Africa and its regional groups such as ECOWAS to attain the MDGs.

ECOWAS has, in response to this World Bank’s initiative, formulated the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Programme (WAAPP), as the implementing instrument for the action plan. The objective of the WAAPP project is to generate and disseminate improved technologies in the sub-region that are aligned with the region’s priorities in agriculture. The first stage of the WAAPP was approved by the World Bank’s Board of Governors in 2007 and it gave funds to Senegal, Mali and Ghana for researches agriculture for five years. Inspired by this development in these three countries, the

World Bank’s team contacted the Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria (ARCN) in November 2009 to prepare for participation in the project. Nigeria was requested to provide all the required documents for participation which it did before the specified deadline of Dec. 15, 2009. However, the programme was delayed by two-years due to non-inclusion of WAAPP in the borrowing plan but it became effective in January 2012 to be fully implemented in April 2013. Apart from the three countries that have started WAAPP, Cote d’Ivore, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Gambia, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Benin, Togo, Niger and Guinea are now among

the 13 ECOWAS participating member countries for five years each. The priority of the programme include researches on cultivation of cassava, yam, sorghum, maize, rice, poultry and aquaculture as derived from a study by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and Central Africa Counsel for Agricultural Research (CORAF) Dakar, Senegal. Prof. Damian Chikwendu, the National Project Coordinator of WAAPP-Nigeria, said more than one million farmers, processors and marketers are expected to benefit directly from the programme. Speaking at a consultative

GES: AFAN warns FG against farmers apathy


he All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) has urged the Federal Government to address some of the challenges impacting negatively on the Growth Enhancement Support (GES) scheme implementation, to avoid farmers’ apathy. The National Financial Secretary of AFAN, Dr Tunde Arosanyin made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja recently. NAN reports that the GES scheme is a Federal Government initiative under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda aimed at subsidising the cost of major agricultural inputs such as fertiliser and seeds. Under the initiative, farmers access inputs through an electronic distribution channel known as the e-Wallet. The condition of the e-Wallet scheme stipulates that a farmer registered under the scheme pays 50 per cent of the cost of farm inputs while the federal and state governments pay 25 per cent each. One of the requirements for the scheme is the national farmers’ registration exercise, where farmers’ data are captured into the ministry’s central data bank. According to him, the Federal Government has not been able to address some of the challenges experienced in 2012. He recalled that the association met with the team from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in March with a view to identifying and addressing some of the challenges. ``We believed then we had enough time to sort out some of these challenges but I am surprised we are still experiencing it this year. ``Those that are involved in the value chain; whether at federal or state level should be more committed to the success of this scheme.’’ He observed that the 2013 distribution of farm inputs had been a little bit slow. He explained that the association received reports of inadequate fertlisers and seeds from some places within the FCT, Niger, Kogi and Kwara. He added that the association had also received complaints of farmers whose names were omitted from the farmers’ data list. Arosanyin added that the challenges could also have a cumulative negative effect on the scheme. He, however, appealed to farmers to exercise restraint while the association consults with governments at various levels to address the challenges.

How Nigerian farmers still suffer using manual methods due to lack of motorised irrigation systems.

Nigeria saves N254bn on cassava substitution for bread baking


he Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, said Nigeria saved N254 billion through the substitution cassava flour in bread baking. Adesina said made this known at the 2013 Ministerial Platform, a mid-term report on the progress and achievements of President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration, in Abuja on Friday. According to him, the country has also trained master bakers on the application of the cassava flour in bread baking. He said that government had encouraged market growth by instituting the 40 per cent high quality cassava flour requirements in wheat bread.

He said investment opportunity abound for investors to build new cassava processing plants to capture share in the growing market. ``Processing is a highly lucrative segment of the cassava value chain. An initial investment of approximately 30 million dollars is required to set up a plant with 75, 000 tonnes starch capacity or 50,000 tonnes sweetener capacity,’’ he said. Adesina said the Federal Government was working to ensure that sufficient cassava raw materials were available for intending processors. He pointed out that government would facilitate low interest rates for processors and also implement other financial

incentives such as tax holidays and capital allowances. The minister noted that a number of leading indigenous and global firms had indicated interest in the market for cassava starch in Nigeria. Adesina said that the Federal Government would establish `Staple Crops Processing Zones’ (SCPZ) across the country as incentive to these investors. ``Government has decided to provide the necessary infrastructure such as dedicated power lines and road networks and a one-stop-shop for business set up and registration. He said that the cassava subsector was expected to reach 8.5 billion dollars before the year 2020. (NAN)

meeting in Makurdi with representatives of some selected federal universities that would host WAAPP; he announced that the beneficiaries of the programme would be chosen from communities around agricultural research institutes federal colleges of agriculture. According to him, beneficiaries will also include rural dwellers from the area of adopted secondary schools, aquaculture and the family members of the employees of federal universities of agriculture and state colleges of agriculture. Chikwendu explained that the programme would involve the study of aquaculture value, survey of cultivable fish species, development of brood stock bank, breeding and nursing, among others. ``The idea is to make this project have impact all over the country; we are looking at possible collaboration based on the components of WAAPP. ``We are looking at how we can make improvements in the areas of genetic materials such as seeds and fingerlings and how to achieve the paradigm shift in agricultural research,’’ he explained further. Prof. Baba Abubakar, the Executive Secretary of the ARCN, also urged research institutions and universities to develop effective and sustainable research procedures. Abubakar, whose council supervises the activities of WAAPP-Nigeria, explained that the challenges included how to effectively involve end-users of the research system to evolve more responsive, demanddriven, impact oriented research agenda. According to him, application of the paradigm shift within the research system required re-orientation of the mindset of the researchers and changes in the way research is conducted. He urged the universities to focus more on technology to increase productivity for national development, announcing that the selected universities would form the pilot group of the project. In a remark, Prof. Ini Akpabio of the Department of Agric-Economics and Extensions, University of Uyo, commended the idea of the project. He said prior to the birth of WAAP-Nigeria, funding of research works had been a major challenge to most universities in the country. Akpabio observed that with a reasonable amount of money coming from WAAP-Nigeria, researchers could go extra mile in the laboratory to develop productive innovations. He, nonetheless, called on Federal Government to create platform for the domestication and commercialisation of the finished research works. (NANFeatures)



Feature Who takes care of the aged in Nigeria? By Kabiru Ibrahim


rs Maryam Muhammad, a 76-year-old woman, lives in an old people’s home in Kado Estate, Abuja. The old woman is suffering from two life-threatening diseases -diabetes and hypertension. Muhammad concedes that it is somewhat unusual for old folks like her to stay far away from their kindred, adding that she, however, has no other option than staying in the home. She says that she lives in the home, courtesy of Amazing Grace Foundation, which provides shelter, food and medication for aged people in the home. Muhammad recalls that the management of the home picked her from the street, saying that she has since been enjoying the basic things of life without any consideration for extraneous factors such as her religion and ethnicity. ``But then I often wonder if the government, its agencies and other corporate individuals have structured plans for the elderly; if they had, I would not be here in the first instance,’’ she says. Sharing similar sentiments, another woman in the home, Mrs Patience Musa, 80, calls for the integration of old persons into the society for better living. As part of efforts to draw global attention to the problem of physical, emotional, and financial abuse of elders, the United Nations (UN) has designated June 15 of every year as the World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. The day offers an opportunity to governments, people and all stakeholders to reflect on the challenges facing elderly persons in the society and the opportunities available for them. The day’s celebration is aimed at bringing together aged people, caregivers, governments, academics and the private sector to exchange ideas on how to assuage the plight of the aged. Unfortunately, the UN Working Group on the Rights of Older People is somewhat constrained by the absence of a general consensus among majority stakeholders to draft a new bill in that regard. Nevertheless, the Global Alliance for the Rights of Older People believes that although there is no general consensus on the matter, the case has not been closed. ``The working group will continue its process of discussion on how to advance the rights of older people, in spite of differences of opinion among the states,’’ it said at third session of the Open-Ended Working Group on the Rights of Older People in New York, the U.S., in 2012. In the light of this, concerned observers have been drawing the attention of various stakeholders to some UN statistics which indicated

Medical check-up organised for the elderly people,by Senator Jide Omoworare recently in Osogbo

that the global population of persons above the age of 60 would exceed the number of younger persons by 2050. They state that research has shown that elderly abuse, neglect, violence, and exploitation are one of the biggest issues affecting old people across the world nowadays. They note that since the existing commitments on older people’s rights are not enshrined in existing human rights treaties, governments have no legal compulsion to implement them. They argue that a new UN convention on the rights of older people is necessary to provide governments with a legal framework to guard and protect the rights of older people. ``Our rights do not change as we grow older; sadly, the perceptible change is that older women and men are considered to be inherently less valuable to society,’’ said Mrs Sarah Hong, a retired civil servant. She cited an ongoing campaign by the Age Demands Action (ADA) in support of a new UN convention on older people’s rights, saying that more than 32,000 people from over 130 countries had signed the petition. Hong said that she hoped more people would still the petition so as to propel governments across the world

to know the importance of the aged in the society. “I don’t know if Nigeria is one of countries where such signatures are being collated but what I am sure of is that all things being equal, the UN convention will be implemented here. ``As a retired civil servant, there are some things which the government and people are doing to us -- the aged -- and these somewhat constitute an abuse of the elderly,’’ she said. All the same, Hajia Ramatu Haruna, a civil servant, said she would never concede to any plans to take her elderly relations to the old people’s home under any guise whatsoever. Several people share Haruna’ sentiments; insisting that they prefer to live with their aged parents, irrespective of any consideration, since they are the ones who nurtured them from infancy to adulthood. They add that living with the aged will also enrich their wisdom since old people are the repertoire of knowledge. Reflecting the minds of aged persons like Hong, UN SecretaryGeneral Ban Ki-moon said in 2012 that research showed that abuse,

neglect and violence against older persons, both at home and in institutions, were still prevalent in the society. ``The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that between four and six per cent of older persons worldwide have suffered from a form of elder abuse including, physical, emotional and financial. ``Such abuse is an unacceptable attack on human dignity and human rights; making matters even worse, cases often remain unreported and unaddressed,’’ he said. Ban noted that respect for elders was an integral part of the ethos and mores of many societies; adding that in the developing world where people were living longer, the society must be able to accommodate them. ``As people live longer and strive for sustainable and inclusive development, it is time to revive and expand our appreciation for those who have advanced in years,’’ he said. The UN scribe stressed that modern civilisation could only live up to its name if it preserved the traditions of honouring, respecting and protecting elderly persons in the society. Source: NAN




By Paul Rosenberg


n June 8, Juan Cole, one of the few true Middle East experts in the US, posted a short entry on his Informed Comment blog. The title said it all: “We misunderstood Barack: He only wanted the domestic surveillance to be made legal, not to end it”. But domestic surveillance was far from the only Bush policy that Obama has wanted to continue, despite giving supporters the opposite impression. The continued - if reduced - use of indefinite detention is one example, the continued - vastly expanded - use of drones is another, and underlying them all is the continued self-defeating policy of fighting a global “war on terrorism” - but debranding it, because the term “war on terror” has become toxic, and renaming it makes it harder to oppose. Foreign policy is not the only area in which Obama has turned out to be far more conservative than his 2008 campaign supporters had reason to believe, and there’s surely a variety of different factors involved. But in the overlapping realms of foreign policy and national security highlighted by the revelations of Edward Snowden, one factor in particular deserves our attention: what the radical sociologist C. Wright Mills described over half a century ago as “crackpot realism”. In his 1956 book, The Power Elite, Mills wrote: “For the first time in American history, men in authority are talking about an ‘emergency’ without a foreseeable end... such men as these are crackpot realists: in the name of realism they have constructed a paranoid reality all their own.” Taking for granted that paranoid reality then, of course the calculus shifts entirely to preventing any successful attack, however small, because of where it might lead - and doing so, effectively, forever. Such is the framework within which the liberal John F Kennedy said we would “bear any burden, pay any price” - but certainly not ask about the burden and the price of the crackpot realist mindset itself. And that is the unaskable question that antiwar activists posed in the 1960s, that Daniel Ellsberg posed when he released the Pentagon Papers, and that Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden pose for us today. Mills was writing about Cold War America. But given how much actual military power the Soviet Union possessed, compared with how little al-Qaeda has, the crackpot realism Mills wrote about pales in comparison with that of today. Although it was madness to believe that the Soviet Union would actually launch a nuclear war, thus ensuring its own destruction, there was at least a real military capability involved. Al-Qaeda, in contrast, wasn’t even a military force when it pulled off the 9/11 attacks, touching off America’s “war on terror” response - which was exactly what al Qaeda wanted, since going to war was the only way they could possibly become the “holy warriors” they imagined themselves to be. It was, quite frankly, America’s military response to 9/11 that created al Qaeda as a military force and legitmised its bogus claim to the mantle of being called “holy warriors”. Thus, the decision to respond to 9/11 as an act of war rather than a crime was arguably Washington’s


Obama’s crackpot realism and the real crime of Edward Snowden

The NSA was targeted by an Anonymous ‘trolling’ operation in the days after Snowden’s revelations [Reuters] greatest foreign policy blunder ever. The straight-forward equivalent of trying to fight a fire with gasoline. And it need not have been. The whole world was horrified by the 9/11 attacks. Even Afghanistan’s Taliban ruler, Mullah Omar, was unwilling to defend them, and was willing to turn bin Laden over to an Islamic court if presented with evidence of al-Qaeda’s responsibility. Of course that was an “unthinkable” course of action for America’s militaryindustrial elite at the time. But, as I’ve discussed here before, the people of the United States - even in the face of tremendous one-sided propaganda (one study found that op-eds in the New York Times and the Washington Post ran 44-2 in favour of war during the first three weeks after September 11) - were remarkably more openminded. A week after 9/11, a Gallup poll found that, while 54 percent of US respondents favoured a military response, 30 percent favoured a criminal justice response and 16 percent were undecided. Gallup international asked the same question of people in 34 other countries, with landslide majorities 2-, 3- even 4-1 in favour of a criminal justice response in almost every one of them. But the exceptions, favouring a military reaction, proved just as instructive as the worldwide

supermajorities for a criminal justice response. There were just two exceptions: India and Israel. Both have decades of history trying in vain to use military force to crush “Muslim extremists,” who are almost entirely of their own making. Anyone with a lick of sense would ask India and Israel what to do about 9/11, and then pull a George Costanza, and do precisely the opposite. But the US did not have a lick of sense. Not in 2001, and not under George W Bush. As a result, and as one of Juan Cole’s guest bloggers, Chase Madar, recently pointed out: “The government endangered us with foreign quagmires; it’s the Bradley Mannings that might keep us safe,” US casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan are now double the number killed in 9/11, the number of seriously wounded US military personnel is at least 50,000. “And if you dare to add in as well the number of Iraqis, Afghans, and foreign coalition personnel killed in both wars, the death toll reaches at least a hundred 9/11s and probably more.” By 2008, things had changed. In fact, there was hope and change... or at least so people hoped. But as Juan Cole pointed out, Obama’s supporters were mostly mistaken about the largely cosmetic nature of the change he was offering. More broadly than just on

the matter of domestic spying, Obama took the position of opposing “dumb wars” - a stance that enabled him to win the Democratic nomination, since he hadn’t been in DC in 2002, when all the other Democratic hopefuls were giving Bush a blank cheque to invade Iraq. But when you really think about it, who isn’t opposed to dumb wars? The question really is: how, in general, do you go about telling dumb wars from wise ones... if, indeed there are any wise ones. Opposing dumb wars should be the starting point of an intelligent debate, not the end point. But that’s what it was in Obama’s election campaign, which is, according to Mills, just another symptom of a system infected with crackpot realism. Bush’s war making had been so spectacularly dumb that no-one really forced the issue and made Obama explain what he meant in terms of guiding principles which could let us understand what he intended to do in future situations. He did contrast Afghanistan with Iraq, and say that he would shift forces to fight there. But many observers felt that was simply electioneering, posturing to be safe. Once he got into office, and heard how hopeless the Afghanistan situation was, they assumed, he’d quietly change his tune and not expand the war there - as, indeed, Vice

Opposing dumb wars should be the starting point of an intelligent debate, not the end point. But that’s what it was in Obama’s election campaign, which is, according to Mills, just another symptom of a system infected with crackpot realism.

President Biden apparently advised him to do. After all, they don’t call Afghanistan the “graveyard of empires” for nothing. Perhaps if Obama had been pressed to explain himself beforehand, to explain the difference between dumb wars and smart ones, then people might have known what to expect. Perhaps, Obama might even have been forced to take a genuinely sane position, instead of a crackpot realist one. Let us recall the historical background for Obama’s argument, the historical background of America’s two prototypical “good wars”: the Civil War and World War II. Both were fought for good moral reasons - even, one could argue, out of profound moral necessity. And yet both were fought because the seeds of that moral necessity were sown long in advance, when more just policies could have prevented them both. And both resulted in such horrors that even the victors were shamed. How “good” could such wars be, even if the evils they were fought against were as monstrous as anything in human history? This is the sort of question that Americans have never, as a nation, grappled with in the post 9/11 era. And yet, it’s a question that defines us as a nation, not by the answer we give, but by the refusal to answer it, the refusal to even attempt an answer, the refusal to engage and struggle with it. And crackpot realism is our agreed-upon means of evasion, the foundation of our national consensus in the one area where conservatives are actually willing to let Obama have his consensus. That alone should tell us how rotten the consensus is. And that is the unquestioned foundation, the backdrop for everything that is being argued over in the realms of secret surveillance and secret war fighting today. As long as we do not confront the foundations of crackpot realism in our national thinking, all our discussions will veer off course, hitting the wrong targets, spreading the very chaos and confusion that we vainly hope to contain. I’d like to offer one more quote from C Wright Mills, which also seems completely contemporary almost 60 years later: “America - a conservative country without any conservative ideology - appears now before the world a naked and arbitrary power, as, in the name of realism, its men of decision enforce their often crackpot definitions upon world reality. The second-rate mind is in command of the ponderously spoken platitude. In the liberal rhetoric, vagueness, and in the conservative mood, irrationality, are raised to principle. Public relations and the official secret, the trivialising campaign and the terrible fact clumsily accomplished, are replacing the reasoned debate of political ideas in the privately incorporated economy, the military ascendancy, and the political vacuum of modern America.” Against this backdrop, Edward Snowden’s crime is not that he revealed too much, but too little. The rest is up to all of us.




Libyans cleared on Lockerbie pay-out


wo senior Libyan officials have been acquitted of “squandering public funds” by agreeing to pay $2.7bn (£1.7bn) in compensation to victims of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing. Former Foreign Minister Abdul Ati al-Obeidi and former General people’s Congress head Mohamed al-Zway have been on trial since September 2012. Col Muammar Gaddafi agreed to pay the compensation in 2003. These are the first verdicts against his officials since he was ousted. The judge did not explain the reasons for the acquittal, says the BBC’s RanaJawad in Tripoli. One of Mr al-Zway’s relatives told the BBC the verdict showed that Libya had a fair judiciary.

The judge did not explain his decision to clear Abdul Ati alObeidi (C)

“I’m happier with the judiciary than I am at the verdict,” he said. Defence lawyer Suleiman alAzabi told the BBC it could take

up to two weeks before the men are released - even if no further charges were brought. Two hundred and seventy

people were killed when a bomb exploded on Pan AM flight 103 over the Scottish town of Lockerbie. Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was jailed in 2001 for the attack - he has always denied any responsibility. Col Gaddafi accepted that Libya carried out the bombing but denied giving the orders himself. He agreed to pay the compensation in order to get international sanctions on Libya lifted. Megrahi was freed from a Scottish jail in 2009 on compassionate grounds after medical evidence showed he was dying of cancer. He returned to Libya, where he was given a hero’s welcome, and died in May 2012.

US committed to capacity building among Nigerian students says envoy By Abdulkadir Isa and Hassan Haruna Ginsau


he United States is committed to enhancing capacity building through elementary education, the deputy chief of mission, James P. McAnulty has said. Ambassador McAnulty made this remark at the commissioning ceremony of the renovated American corner at the Women Development Centre (WDC) in Abuja yesterday. He said the US is poised to all the promises it has made to since the centre came to be in 2005 as the commissioning was a confirmation of that stand. The centre is being renovated by the United States to suit increased number of people patronising the facility as it serves as a database for information sourcing online, houses a library for young minds and also serves as a platform for prospective students of American universities. The envoy said “children should use this space to expand their horizon” as the centre plays host to a summer vacation for children from

all parts of the country annually. Last summer about 350 students were said to have benefited from the vacation held at the centre.

Speaking on behalf of the director of the women development centre, the director planning, Princess Jummai Adonije expressed her

appreciation to the US government extending the importance of the facility to adults as well and committing it to the glory of God.

Director research and statistics, American corner, Sadiq Umar (2nd right), Deputy Chief of mission, US Embassy, James P. McAnulty (3rd right), Director Planning and research, WDC, JummaiAdonije (3rd left), with other participants at the event.

Mandela’s wife thanks global community on well wishes

Former president of South Africa Nelson Mandela (C) in a file photo casting his vote at a polling station during the election in Johannesburg, South Africa. Mandela is in “is getting better” after being taken to a hospital to be treated for a lung infection, the government prompting an outpouring of concern from admirers of a man who helped to end white racist rule. (Xinhua/XuSuhui)


raca Machel, wife of former South African President Nelson Mandela, on Monday thanked South Africans and the whole world

for their well wishes for Mandela who has been hospitalized for the 10th day. “So much love and generosity from South Africans, Africans across the

continent, and thousands more from across the world, have come our way to lighten the burden of anxiety; bringing us love, comfort and hope,” Graca said in a message posted on the website of Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. Mandela, 94, was rushed to a Pretoria hospital from his Johannesburg home on June 8 for a recurring lung problem. According to the latest update by President Jacob Zuma on Sunday, Mandela “continues to get better”. “Over the last two days, although he remains serious, his doctors have stated that his improvement has been sustained,” Zuma said at a rally to commemorate the country’s National Youth Day in Newcastle, KwaZuluNatal Province. Since Mandela was hospitalized, well wishers have come to his Johannesburg home or the hospital where he was receiving treatment to show their support for the antiapartheid icon. “The messages have come by letter, by SMS, by phone, by twitter,

by Facebook, by email, cards, flowers and the human voice, in particular the voices of children in schools or singing outside our home. We have felt the closeness of the world and the deepest meaning of strength and peace,” Graca said. “Our gratitude is difficult to express. But the love and peace we feel give yet more life to the simple Thank you!” she said. Graca quoted Mandela’s words as saying: “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made in the lives of others.” “I have thought of his words on each occasion the world stood with him, making a difference to him, in his healing,” Graca said. Mandela, who served as South Africa’s first black president from 1994 to 1999, has long suffered a lung infection which was the result of tuberculoisis developed when he served a 27-year term in prison under the apartheid rule.

G8 summit: Kofi Annan calls for hard-line on tax evasion By Abdulkadir Isa


ormer UN Secretary General and chairman of the Africa Progressive Panel, Kofi Annan has called on the G8 to make a difference by checking company ownership and revenue flows. Kofi Annan said “The G8 must establish registries on ownership of companies and trusts in all tax jurisdictions, as “the impact for G8 governments is a loss of revenue. But in Africa, it has direct impact on the lives of mothers and children.” In a statement by the Africa progressive panel, Kofi Annan made this call as he looks forward to the G8 saying ““Throughout the world, millions of citizens now need the G8 leaders to take action on tax avoidance. Not just because of the palpable injustice of enormous tax avoidance by major multinationals including many headquartered in G8 countries. But also because to do so could save many, many lives around the world”. He added that “Tax authorities in all regions struggle to prevent the erosion of their tax bases, but Africa struggles more than most. A G8 deal on the automatic exchange of tax information must include African authorities, giving them full access to relevant tax information.” Annan said “These demands may seem ambitious. But a shared agenda is emerging. This is critical, as mutually beneficial agreements are the only ones that will stand the test of time”. And it is not just governments who are moving ahead, but several companies too. The former UN head also said the “G8 must crack down” on the use of secret companies by putting in place public registries of who owns and controls companies and trusts. The Africa Progress Panel, an organisation Mr Annan is also part of, has added to the call on the G8 to tackle tax avoidance and anonymous company ownership. Secret companies - often incorporated in tax havens, or in the world’s key financial centres - are a key means by which corrupt leaders and irresponsible businesses.




Iran vote: Rouhani vows ‘Dozens dead’ in transparency on nuclear issue car bomb attack in Aleppo


car bomb has struck near the Syrian northern city of Aleppo, killing at least 60 members of President Bashar al-Assad’s troops, activists have told Al Jazeera. Monday’s blast, carried out by a jihadi group affiliated with alQaeda, hit near a military complex in the town of al-Douwairinah near Aleppo’s international airport, Mohammad al-Hadi, an activist in the city, said. “The car was filled with six tonnes of explosives,” he told Al Jazeera. The blast was one of the largest attacks targeting regime forces. Activists posted a video on social media that purports to show the moment of the explosion. However, the authenticity of the video could not be verified. It came hours after a car bomb attack targeting a checkpoint near a military airport in Damascus, the Syrian capital. The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said there were 20 casualties in the blast on Sunday night in the western Damascus district of Mazzeh, but did not state how many were killed or injuried in the attack. Syrian state media confirmed the blast that occurred late on Sunday, but have not released the number of those killed and injured. Mazzeh is an upscale neighbourhood of Damascus that houses several embassies and a military airport.

Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani The scene at one of the bomb sites In Iraq.


ran is ready to show more transparency on its nuclear programme, says President-elect Hassan Rouhani. In his first news conference since Friday’s vote, Mr Rouhani also described as unfair sanctions imposed on the country over the issue. He also said Tehran would not suspend its uranium enrichment activities.

The West suspects Iran of trying to build nuclear weapons. Tehran says its programme is solely for peaceful purposes. At the news conference, which covered a wide range of issues, Mr Rouhani also said his government would work towards “constructive interaction with the world”. He thanked Iranians for “choosing moderation”,

saying he would not forget his election promises. Mr Rouhani, a longstanding political figure in Iran, won just more than 50% of the vote in the election, avoiding a run-off vote. Iran’s president has limited powers, with key policy decisions being taken by the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. “Our nuclear programmes

Asia & Middle East

are completely transparent,” Mr Rouhani told a packed hall in the capital Tehran. “But we are ready to show greater transparency and make clear for the whole world that the steps of the Islamic Republic of Iran are completely within internationa l f r a m e w o r k s , ” he said. But he stressed that he would oppose halting Iran’s uranium enrichment - a key stumbling block in the continuing talks between Tehran and world powers. Last month, the UN nuclear watchdog said Iran had installed hundreds of new centrifuges at its Natanz plant. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) again expressed concern a b o u t t h e “ p o s s i b l e m i l i t a ry dimensions” of Iran’s nuclear programme. But it said there had not been much growth of the most sensitive nuclear material uranium enriched to 20%. Iran has been the target of four rounds of UN sanctions and numerous UN Security Council resolutions calling on it to cease enrichment work. Israel has threatened to carry out air strikes on its long-time foe if its enrichment activities do not stop.

Taliban ‘set to open office in Qatar’


aliban will open a political office in the Gulf state of Qatar on Tuesday. The office of the Afghan armed group in Doha will aim at facilitating peace talks. In March, Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president, met the emir of Qatar to discuss plans for the

Taliban to open an office in the Gulf state. He discussed “issues of mutual interest” with Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the state news agency QNA said, without elaborating on the substance of their talks. Karzai also met Afghan and

Arab officials and business people. The delegation travelling with the Afghan president included Zalmai Rassoul, the foreign minister; Salahuddin Rabbani, the head of the High Peace Council. Until earlier this year, Karzai

was strongly opposed to the Taliban having a meeting venue outside Afghanistan, but the US has pushed for the Taliban to be present at the negotiatiing table as Washington prepares to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan in the next two years.

zone to be imposed over Syria. This comes ahead of the G8 summit taking place in Ireland. The G8 comes days after the US said it was prepared to arm

opposition forces in Syria saying it had evidence that President Assad’s forces had used chemical weapons on a “small scale”. Mr Cameron, who backed

the recent lifting of EU arms sanctions against the rebels, said on Monday that no decision had yet been made on whether the UK would do the same. But he told reporters ahead of the summit that it was right the West should be “helping, assisting and advising” the opposition. “We shouldn’t accept what President Assad wants us to accept which is the only alternative to him is extremist terrorism. That isn’t the case. That is insulting to the millions of Syrians who want a peaceful democratic future for their country and it’s their side that we should be on,” he said. After meeting Mr Cameron on Sunday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said “blood is on the hands” of both the Syrian government and the rebels in the crisis and that Russia was not breaching any laws by supplying arms to the “legitimate

government of Syria”. And in an apparent reference to a video that emerged last month which appeared to show a Syrian rebel eating the heart of a dead soldier, he said the behaviour of some rebels, who “eat the organs” of their enemies, went against the “humanitarian and cultural values” of Europe. On Monday, Russian foreign ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said of the possibility of a no-fly zone over Syria: “I think we fundamentally would not allow this scenario.” Earlier, Mr Cameron said it was “no secret” that Russian President Putin disagreed with the US and the EU on Syria but said he hoped they would focus on their common aims at the G8 - to deal with the humanitarian crisis and to establish a peace conference. Two years of civil war in Syria has left an estimated 93,000 people dead

Russia issues warning on Syria as G8 gathers for summit


oscow, a key Syrian ally, opposes US plans to arm the rebels and on Monday its foreign ministry said Russia would not allow a no-fly

Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov




UK reportedly ‘spied’ on G20 delegates


ocuments leaked by US former spy Edward Snowden appear to show Britain spied on G20 delegates during meetings in London back in 2009, Britain’s Guardian newspaper has reported. Among the officials targeted were delegates from NATO ally Turkey and from South Africa. Britain used “groundbreaking intelligence capabilities” to monitor communications between officials at the two meetings in April and September of 2009, the paper reported on Monday. The revelations are likely to be an embarrassment to Britain, which is hosting the two-day G8 summit in Northern Ireland from Monday. The paper cited documents it had seen concerning the work of Britain’s Government C o m m u n i c a t i o n s Headquarters (GCHQ), which handles signals intelligence. According to the files, British spies tricked delegates into using specially prepared Internet cafés. Those cafés allowed the spies to intercept communications and monitor email messages

and phone calls through delegates’ BlackBerry devices. GCHQ was also able to track when delegates were contacting each other and the agency targeted certain officials, including the Turkish finance minister, according documents shown to the newspaper. They also singled out South African computers for special attention, according to one document. The paper also said that GCHQ received reports

from a US National Security Agency attempt to listen in as then Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, made a call via satellite to Moscow. The documents suggest that orders to gather intelligence on delegates came from a senior level within the government of then Prime Minister, Labour’s Gordon Brown, said the Guardian. Two documents explicitly mention information being passed on to ministers. Snowden is hiding in

Hong Kong and the United States has launched a criminal investigation after the former CIA technical assistant blew the lid on the NSA’s vast electronic surveillance operation. British Prime Minister David Cameron has denied to comment on these allegations. This comes as leaders from the G8 nations are meeting in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland for two days of talks on issues including the Syrian crisis, tax collection and free trade.

British foreign secretary William Hague

Turkish government says it may use army to end protests


he Turkish government has said it may use the armed forces to end nearly three weeks of unrest by protesters in Istanbul and other cities. The government would use “all its powers” and “the Turkish armed forces in cities” if necessary, Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said on

TV. It is the first time the Islamist-rooted ruling party has threatened to use the military against protesters. The issue is sensitive as the army is seen as a bastion of secularism. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told hundreds of thousands of supporters at a

rally in Istanbul on Sunday that the protesters were manipulated by “terrorists”. Trade unions have called a strike to protest against the police crackdown on demonstrators which has seen some 500 people arrested. Medical officials estimate that 5,000 people have been injured and at least four killed

in the unrest. The protests began on 28 May against a plan to redevelop Istanbul’s Gezi Park, on the city’s central Taksim Square, but it snowballed into nationwide anti-government protests after the perceived high-handed response of the authorities under their three-term prime minister.

sides in the war. Germany, France, Japan, Italy and Canada will be represented in the summit starting on Monday at the luxury lake - fringe d Lou gh Erne golf resort in County Fermanagh.

The British Prime Minister David Cameron, the host of the meeting of the top eight industrialised powers, insisted he could overcome his differences with Putin after they held pre-summit talks in London. Russia remains a staunch supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the twoyear-conflict that has left more than 94,000 people dead, amid growing Western efforts to arm the rebels. In London, Putin insisted that Moscow had abided by international law when supplying weapons to Assad’s regime and demanded that Western countries contemplating arming the opposition do the same. “We are not breaching any rules and norms and we call on all our partners to act in the same fashion,” Putin said. The Russian leader

referred to a video released last month purportedly showing a rebel Syrian fighter eating the heart of a dead soldier. He asked if the West really wanted to support rebels “who not only kill their enemies but open up their bodies and eat their internal organs in front of the public and the cameras”. But Cameron said: “What I take from our conversation today is that we can overcome these differences if we recognise that we share some fundamental aims: to end the conflict, to stop Syria breaking apart, to let the Syrian people decide who governs them and to take the fight to the extremists and defeat them.” Obama in his meeting with Putin will emphasise that Washington wants to keep alive a mooted Geneva peace

Syria crisis set to dominate G8 summit


ussian President Vladimir Putin will meet US President Barack Obama during the two-day annual summit for what could be prickly talks, as both leaders now offer military support to opposing

The Syrian conflict is expected to dominate talks among leaders of the G8 nations meeting in Northern Ireland on Monday.

Europe and Americas

US appoints lawyer to ‘close’ Guantanamo


he US State Department is expected to announce the appointment of Washington lawyer Cliff Sloan to oversee the closure of the controversial Guantanamo detention camp, sources familiar with the decision have said. Sloan is a partner with the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, who has served in all three branches of government and litigated cases in state and federal courts. In a statement on Sunday, Secretary of State John Kerry said Sloan possessed the “intellect and skill as a negotiator respected across party lines”. “I appreciate his willingness to take on this challenge,” Kerry said. “Cliff and I share the president’s conviction that Guantanamo’s continued operation isn’t in our security interests.” The Guantanamo tribunals were established by the Bush administration and revised by the Obama administration to try suspected al-Qaeda operatives and their associates on so-called “terrorism charges”. More than 100 of the 166 prisoners in the camp have joined a hunger strike to protest the failure to resolve their fate after more than a decade of detention. In January, the State Department reassigned the special envoy who had been in charge of trying to persuade countries to take Guantanamo inmates approved for release, Daniel Fried, and did not replace him. “Our fidelity to the rule of law likewise compels us also to end the long, uncertain detention of the detainees at Guantanamo,” Kerry said in the statement. “We can do it in a way that makes us more secure, not less. It will not be easy, but if anyone can effectively navigate the space between agencies and branches of government, it’s Cliff.” summit co-organised with Moscow. The summit is surrounded by the biggest security operation in Northern Ireland’s troubled history, with around 8,000 officers on duty. Heavily armed police in armoured Land Rovers are stationed at frequent intervals along the country roads leading to the summit venue near the town of Enniskillen. Police say the expected anti-globalisation demonstrations have be e n smaller than expected so far. They expect about 2,000 protesters to take part in an anti-G8 march in Enniskillen on Monday.



Strange World

Daniel Kish – the blind man who taught himself to see


7-year-old Daniel Kish has been completely blind ever since he was just a baby, but that hasn’t stopped him from living an incredibly active life which includes riding a bicycle or hiking alone in the mountains. To do this, he has perfected a form of echolocation, the same mechanism bats use to see in the dark. Daniel has been blind for as long as he can remember. He was born with an aggressive form of cancer called retinoblastoma, which attacks the retina, and at only 13 months, doctors had to

remove both his eyes, in order to save his life. He now has prosthetic eyes. He has never seen a tree, a car, or another human being, but he is perfectly able to navigate and even describe his surroundings in close detail, using echolocation, a technique he has been practicing from a very early age. Basically Daniel uses sound to see. Every environment and surface has its own acoustic signature and he produces brief, sharp clicks with his tongue to identify them. The sound waves he creates travel at a speed of over 1,000 feet

Photo: World Acces for the Blind

Janus, the two-headed turtle


amed after the Roman god with two heads, Janus is a 10 year old, two headed Greek

Janus the two-headed turtle

turtle. Here it is eating some salad leaves at the Geneva Natural History Museum.

per second, bounce off every object that surrounds him, and returns to his ears at the same rate, though vastly decreased in volume, telling him exactly what everything is, and where it’s located. “I was using echolocation from the age of two, or younger, but I really didn’t know that much about it,” Kish said in an interview. “I doubt very seriously that most sighted people give much thought or attention about how they see, so I really didn’t give that much thought or attention about how I see.” But he figured it

out pretty quickly, and since then he’s honed his echolocation skills almost to perfection. A team of Spanish scientists studied Kish and found the click he makes by snapping the tip of his tongue briefly and firmly against the roof of his mouth acoustically ideal for capturing echoes. A machine, they wrote, could not do it better. Daniel says there are two reasons echolocation, or FlashSonar, as he likes to call it, works so well for humans. The first is the positioning of our ears on each side of the head. It’s rare that we turn the wrong way when someone calls our name, because sound reaches the closer ear about a millisecond – a thousandth of a second – faster than the other, enough time for the auditory cortex to process the information. The second reason is our excellent hearing. We hear much better than we see, as proven by the fact that we can’t detect ultraviolet or infrared light, but in comparison we can hear up to 10 octaves. We can hear behind us, or around corners and even in a completely soundproof room, we are never in silence, as we can hear our own internal organs. Daniel says he uses the sound reflecting from the environment to form three-dimensional images of his surroundings, in his head. ”It’s not that I can really tell metal from wood, but I can tell the difference between the arrangement of structures,” he told the BBC.

”For example, a wooden fence is likely to have thicker structures than a metal fence and when the area is very quiet, wood tends to reflect a warmer, duller sound than metal.” But the sense of imagery can be really rich for an experienced user of echolocation, allowing him to detect fine details, like whether a building is featureless or ornamented. He does point out that environmental conditions really have to be right in order for the FlashSonar to be reliable. Ever since 2000, Daniel has set up a small non-profit called World Access for the Blind, which teaches echolocation for the visually impaired. Over 500 students from 25 countries around the world have taken classes from this real-life Batman, yet no major blind organization in America supports his mission. The National Federation of the Blind considers echolocation too complicated for most blind to grasp, and others even consider Daniel Kish ”disgraceful” for promoting behavior such as tongue clicking that could be seen as off-putting and abnormal. But he is tired of hearing that the blind are best off staying close to home, sticking to memorized routes and depending on sighted people’s benevolence to perform the most mundane tasks, so despite a total lack of support, he continues to run his organization, offering those wiling to learn echolocation a chance to see with their ears.

The amazing orchid that looks like a monkey’s face


t’s not very hard to guess how the Monkey Orchid got its name, but ever since photos of it started circulating on the internet about a year ago, people have had a hard time believing such a flower actually exists. As photoshopped as it may look, the Monkey Orchid actually exists, and yes, it really does match the grinning face of a very small monkey. The scientific name of this very rare flower is Dracula simia, with the first part hinting at the resemblance between its two long spurs to the fangs of Bram Stoker’s famous vampire count, and the second meaning “monkey” in Latin. It only grows in the mountainous regions of Ecuador, Colombia and Peru, at an elevation of between 1,000 and 2,000 meters above sea level, but there are a few lucky collectors who have managed to grow it in “captivity”. The Monkey

orchid is not season specific, and in its natural habitat it can flower at any time. As if its striking resemblance t o a monkey’s face wasn’t astounding enough, this flower actually smells a lot like a ripe orange, as well. Which is kind of ironic, because with a face like that you’d expect it to smell like bananas, right? Photo: Columbus GV Team


Digest How volunteering could save your life By Emma Innes


olunteering for the WI or helping out at a charity shop could save your l if e b y r e d u c i ng y o u r b l o o d pressure, according to new research. Older people who carry out at least 200 hours of voluntary work a year - which equates to 25 days of eight hours reduce their risk of high blood pressure by 40 per cent. The condition, known medically as hypertension, is one of the main causes of stroke and heart disease Britain’s biggest killer. A study last week found about a quarter of over 60s

in the UK regularly help the Women’s Institute, the Scouts and other such organisations, more than any other age group. The researchers believe the reason these activities improve blood pressure could be that people who devote their time to others enjoy more friendships and social connections than they would otherwise. Professor Sheldon Sneed, of Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, said: ‘As people get older, social transitions like retirement, bereavement and the departure of children from the home often leave older adults with fewer natural opportunities for social interaction.


Older people who carry out at least 200 hours of voluntary work a year reduce their risk of high blood pressure by 40 per cent

‘Participating in volunteer activities may provide older adults with social connections they might not have otherwise. There is strong evidence that having good social connections promotes healthy ageing and reduces risk for a number of negative health outcomes.’ The study, published by the American Psychological Association’s Psychology and Aging journal, says voluntary work may be an effective way of preventing high blood pressure without the use of drugs. Every year high blood pressure leads to more than seven million premature deaths across the globe through heart disease and stroke.

The condition, known medically as hypertension, is one of the main causes of stroke and heart disease - Britain’s biggest killer In the UK there are estimated to be about 62,000 unnecessary deaths a year from stroke and heart problems because of poor blood pressure control. For the study 1,164 participants aged 51 to 91 from across the US were recruited and asked about any voluntary work, as well as various social and psychological factors. At the first interview in 2006 all had normal blood pressure levels but when measured again in 2010, those who had been doing 200 hours or more a year for charity were 40 per cent less likely to have developed hypertension. The researchers said the specific type of activity was not

a factor the important thing was the amount of time spent. Psychologist Rodlescia Sneed, who led the research, said: ‘Everyday, we are learning more about how negative lifestyle factors like poor diet and lack of exercise increase hypertension risk. ‘Here, we wanted to determine if a positive lifestyle factor like volunteer work could actually reduce disease risk. ‘And, the results give older adults an example of something that they can actively do to remain healthy and age successfully.’ Source: Dailymail.

A cup of hot chocolate before bedtime could prevent diabetes By Nicola Rowe orget everything you’ve been told about hot chocolate being an indulgence: a cup before bedtime could fend off diabetes, a study has found. Mice fed a high fat diet that causes type 2 diabetes - the obesityrelated form of the condition suffered less inflammation when given cocoa powder as well. Researchers believe their findings, published by the European Journal of Nutrition, may apply to humans. Dark chocolate is rich in flavanols, plant chemicals that boost blood flow by widening vessels. They have previously been linked to a host of health benefits. In the study the mice ate the human equivalent of 10 tablespoons of cocoa powder, about four or five cups of hot cocoa, during a ten week period. Professor Joshua Lambert said: ‘What surprised me was the magnitude of the effect.


There was not as big of an effect on the body weight as we expected, but I was surprised at the dramatic reduction of inflammation and fatty liver disease.’ Several indicators of inflammation, which causes type

Dark chocolate is rich in flavanols, plant chemicals that boost blood flow by widening vessels

2 diabetes by prompting insulin resistance, were much lower in the mice fed the cocoa, and almost identical to a control group that just received low fat foods. For example, they had about 27 per cent less insulin in their plasma, high levels of which suggest a patient may have diabetes, than those on the high fat diet without the supplement. The cocoa powder also reduced amounts of harmful liver fats called triglycerides by about a third. Too much of these are a sign of fatty liver disease and are related to inflammation and diabetes. Prof Lambert, of Pennsylvania State University, said the mice also saw a slight but significant drop in their rate of body weight gain. Cocoa has been used in a medicinal capacity for more than two thousand years. The Mayans and Aztecs civilisations were convinced it relieved a host of ailments including fever, heart pain and bowel complaints. Although generally thought of in

Commonly consumed in chocolate, cocoa actually has low calorie and fat content and is high in fibre the modern world as an indulgent food, there is growing evidence to suggest these ancient civilisations were onto something. In recent years scientists have established regular consumption of flavonoid rich fruits and vegetables reduces the risk of cancer, stroke and heart disease. Now the biological activities of cocoa flavonoids are being associated with combating inflammation and

impaired immune function. Prof Lambert said he looked at cocoa because it contains a lot of flavonals, like green tea and wine whose health benefits have been studied for a long time. Cocoa, although commonly consumed in chocolate, actually has low calorie and fat content, and is high in fibre. Source: Dailymail.



Tukur’s ‘many sins’ and survival of PDP FEATURE By Lawrence Olaoye


lhaji Bamanga Tukur, a tested and trusted politician, emerged the National Chairman of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at a time the party was bedeviled with series of crises, threatening to implode. The PDP, as at March last year when a new set of officials came on board its leadership, was merely trudging in crisis as many members were disenchanted and were considering the possibility of leaving the party. But some of them could not leave the party because there was really no viable alternative to the self acclaimed biggest party in Africa. With the news of the merger and the coming together of the major opposition parties in the country, muffled voices in the ruling party have now found room to ventilate their anger against alleged injustice in the ruling party. Tukur inherited a lot of challenges in the party and these include those of party supremacy, indiscipline among members, dearth of internal democracy, paucity of funds to run the activities of the party and the need to checkmate the awesome powers of the governors and other political office holders. Observers are unanimous in their submissions that the Chairman’s attempt to address the identified ills in the party has pitched him against some powerful blocs, including the governors on the PDP’s platform. Worried by the rots inherited in running the PDP, members of the National Working Committee (NWC) went on a working tour to South Africa’s ruling party, African National Congress (ANC), to understudy how to run a party without necessarily relying on its political office holders. There the PDP’s leadership learnt that for the party to be truly financially independent, efforts must be made for it to generate sustainable funds outside government circles. To this extent, the party leadership began a fund raising drive by compelling its members to payup their dues. This move apparently did not go down well well with some stakeholders, especially the governors who felt that sourcing for alternative funds outside their donations was akin to stripping them of the control of the party. To some, Tukur’s independent mindedness amount to arrogance and disdain for constituted authorities. Therefore, some governors on the platform of the party resolved to stiffle it of funds by withholding their subventions

Alhaji Bamanga Tukur and refusing to donate generously for the running of the party. Apart from steering the course of financial autonomy for the party, Tukur incurred he wrath of some northern governors because he is seen as playing the script for President Goodluck Jonathan’s second term bid in 2015. His emergence as the party’s Chairman at the March,2012 convention was generally seen as imposition as he was clearly not the candidate of his zone, North East. In order to succeed at his mandate to return the President in 2015, closely linked with the need to feather his own political nest ahead of time, Tukur has begun moves to ensure the hijack of party machineries in states considered to be in the opposition to the project. Already, PDP platforms have been yanked off the control of the Rivers state governor, Rotimi Amaechi and his home state, Adamawa governor, Admiral Murtala Nyako. Tukur’s leadership has also perfected the skills of wielding the big stick against any stakeholder perceived to have taken the issue of party supremacy for granted. The big axe fell first on the Rivers state governor and lately, sokoto state governor, Magatakarda Wamakko. Amaechi was accused of insubordination having failed to heed the instruction of the party to reverse the suspension of Obio/Akpor Executive Council in Rivers state while Wamakko was axed for having the effrontery to ignore several calls by the party headquarters to answer

queries on perceived anti -party activities. These suspensions have however attracted opprobrium from the victims and the public in general. Amaechi described his suspension as a witch hunt just as he claimed that he was never afforded the luxury of fair hearing. Wamakko on his own was very blunt in his reaction. At a reception organized to welcome the Sokoto state governor from abroad, Wamakko canvassed for Tukur’s removal just as he urged President Jonathan to sack his Special Adviser on Political Affairs, Dr. Ahmed Gulak. Commenting on his contribution to the development of the ruling party, Wamakko “When we took over PDP in 2011, the party has no single elected person from Sokoto state. Today we have won all the 234 seats of the Councilors as well as all the 23 local government chairmen. We have won all the 30 members of the state House of Assembly,

all the 11 members of the National Chairman, all the 3 senators as well as the governor and his deputy, therefore the peoples of Sokoto state are ardent lovers and supporters of the PDP.” Although Tukur and his leadership would want people to believe otherwise, there are insinuations that those governors that voted against the candidature of the Plateau state governor, Jonah Jang, at the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) election, believed to have been won by the Rivers state governor, are the ones being targeted for punishment by the PDP. Amaechi is being allegedly suspended for refusing to step down for Jang as the consensus candidate for the NGF chairmanship while Wamakko, apart being punished for voting against Jang, the party’s candidate, is also being hounded for saying that he would not recognize the leadership of the Akwa-Ibom state governor, Godswill Akpabio, in thePDP Governors’ Forum (PDPGF). It is also being widely speculated that the Sokoto state governor entered into Tukur’s black book because of his insistence on anointing his successor independent of the party’s national leadership. It was reliably gathered that the party leadership is rooting for Senator Ibrahim Gada as Wamakko’s successor while the Sokoto governor is said to be uncomfortable with that choice. Gada is currently the Special Adviser to Tukur on Political Affairs. With the political reality and the antagonizing positions of the party at the national and state levels, the stage is set for a big political confrontation between the duo, analysts reason. Although the PDP leadership has taken time to explain that the suspension of the duo was not a witch hunt as being variously speculated, only a few are convinced by his explanations. Many of the governors on the platform of the party including the Jigawa state governor, Alhaji Sule Lamido, who is also a founding member of the party, have described the suspension as a great blunder. Similarly, the Sokoto faction of the PDP has disowned

Amaechi and Wamakko’s suspension has begun to generate condemnations across board. Recently, the Peoples Democratic Party Supporters and Stakeholders Forum (PSSF) alerted that their suspension would jeopardize the fortunes of the party

the party’s national secretariat on the decision and, to demonstrate its disapproval, organized a heroic reception for Wamakko on his return from a trip abroad after the suspension. Amaechi and Wamakko’s suspension has begun to generate condemnations across board. Recently, the Peoples Democratic Party Supporters and Stakeholders Forum (PSSF) alerted that their suspension would jeopardize the fortunes of the party. A statement by the leader of the group, Dr David Chukwumelugaba, also called for the lifting of the suspension and removal of the national party chairman to pave way for a proactive leader who would unify the party instead of destroying it. The group also threatened to stage a peaceful demonstration to the national secretariat of the party in Abuja on June 25 if their demand is not met urging other members of the party should rise against Tukur’s leadership style and save the party from destruction. They cited the instances of Wamakko and Amaechi’s suspension as signs of weak and uninspiring leadership from the PDP chairman. “How can a serving governor who built the party from the grassroots to its present state in Sokoto state be so shabbily treated? Can you compare the contributions of Governor Wamakko to the growth of PDP in Sokoto and Nigeria to that of Tukur’s,” the group asked. Apparently worried by the development in the polity with a view to salvaging the the PDP, President Goodluck Jonathan set up an interventionist committee chaired by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator Anyim Pius Anyim. Other members of the committee include the Akwa Ibom state governor, Dr. Godswill Akpabio, and his counterparts from Delta, Abia, Katsina and Bauchi states. Already, the committee had successfully broken the ice by making Tukur to rescind the PDP NWC’s decision to suspend Wamakko and made him to immediately convene the elusive National Executive Council (NEC) meeting. The intervention of the Presidential committee has succeeded in extricating the ruling party from the abyss it was hitherto sliding into. The recall notwithstanding, the PDP would require more than cosmetic measures to be repositioned ahead of the 2015 general elections. It is generally believed that political ambitions of some of the stakeholders in the party, including the President, is at the heart of the constant bickering in the PDP and for as long as this remains, any peace attained without real reconciliation would only be temporary.



Politics NGF crisis: Amaechi is desperate for power, Suswam INTERVIEW On the crisis rocking Nigeria Governor’s Forum, NGF. ell, let me inform you that NGF is a voluntary forum, no governor is under compulsion to be a member of the forum in fact the Governor of Osun State hardly attend meetings, the only meeting he attended was the one we held a the last election, and unfortunately he was the one who recorded proceedings from the meeting and sent on youtube, we have never had such level of irresponsibility of a colleague recording activities of fellow colleagues and sending it to youtube. And so what I am trying to say is that no governor is under compulsion to attend NGF meeting. Those who conceived the idea of governors having a forum was for us to peer review ourselves, when we sit down, we look at issues that affect our individual states and when we aggregate those issues, they become issues that affect the country. And if we share intelligence and share ideas, we will be able to govern better, that was the essence of that forum. And being chairman of governor’s forum is not a big deal. We have never had any election, there has never been any chairman of governor’s forum who has been elected. The Governor of Rivers State was never elected, he was selected. We sat down and said look, this is the person who will be our chairman and so the desperation which he exhibited in the election was the problem with most of us. And I insisted, and still insist that if people go into election no matter how small, there are consequences and I raised this in our previous attempt to have this election. But the basic problem was that, before Saraki left, we had an issue and we decided that no one governor should stay for four years as chairman of the forum, that it should be two years in the south, two years in the north. And we decided that since democracy itself is taking roots, let us have a forum that is governed by regulations and rules and we said let us have a constitution. I was a member of the constitution drafting committee with Governor Babatunde Fashola, (SAN) as chairman. And we were given terms of reference that the chairmanship position should stay two years in the south, two years in the north. And the deputy chairman must be from the opposition parties. Somewhere along the line, someone went and changed what we did in the constitution and went and registered it and said that we signed. Normally, when we go to meetings, all of us sign so they said we signed for the registration of the constitution and I said we will never accept this, and that has been one of our fundamental problems, somebody will go and change the constitution for selfish


Gabriel Suswam governor of Benue State is one of the key actors in the crisis rocking the Nigerian Governors’ Forum. In an interview with journalists at Government House, the governor insisted that the election was not only a sham but an act of irresponsibility and desperation by the Amaechi camp to remain as chairman of the Forum. He also lamented over the polarization of the Northern States Governor’s Forum describing some of the governors as ‘traitors’. Suswam talked on his alleged senatorial ambition in 2015, amongst other issues. Our Correspondent Uche Nnorom was there. Excerpts.

Governor Gabriel Suswam reasons. At the end of the day they said the tenure of the chairman we selected had ended based on what we agreed on and he was to go. And so since they said that there should be election let us do it. When we went there we saw that the person who wanted to recontest printed ballot papers and had a ballot box and we objected. Even in ordinary village meetings, once the leadership is to go, the house will first dissolve itself. He (Rotimi) said he will not dissolve himself, he will sit in as chairman and conduct election with the ballot papers and boxes he brought to the election venue, and we vehemently opposed it. I was the first governor that walked out because it was a sham, and it is unfortunate that such a thing happened. Majority of the governors had signed that Governor Jonah Jang is chairman of the forum, this is what happened. We first held a meeting of northern governors forum and in the meeting, we were 18, the governor of Yobe state did not come, neither did he send a representative. And we unanimously agreed and voted Jang as chairman of the NGF. We took him to the PDP governor’s forum where the chairman of the forum raised the resolution of the northern governors, it was adopted. So when they said there was an election, I am surprise. There was no election and that is why the so called election resulted into what is termed as crisis.

But Jang, as far as I am concerned is the legitimate chairman of Nigerian Governors’ Forum and that is what is going to remain because we never had any election. Jang was selected by consensus and that has been the tradition of the forum. So there is no crisis, Jang is the rightful chairman, if there is any other person parading himself as chairman, that is his business. Polarization of Northern States Governor’s Forum. Well, there is no pretence about it because, I will find it difficult to sit in a meeting where if we go we find it difficicult to take a decision and people will go out and do something else. It is difficult for people like me to sit in a meeting with people like that. And so it is true, the Northern Governor’s Forum is polarized. It is polarized because it is no longer honourable for people to sit in and take decision that directly affect their people. If people can’t do that, then I see no reason sitting with people in such a meeting. Because before we use to take collective decisions, but now you take decisions and some people will go out and be saying something different. Of course Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State said what happened and I fully associate myself with his views. Ans so we need to talk to ourselves otherwise it will be difficult to trust ourselves even among the northern governors. On his senatorial ambition

Well, as a politician who would want me to continue to be in politics and relevant in the political circle, it is good for people to speculate and urge you to contest, that means that your ambition is not inordinate. I am not somebody with inordinate ambition but let me say that at the end of this year, I should be able to tell you people exactly what I want to do. For now, there are a lot of distractions, if you go everywhere now there are banners, shouts and all of that and it creates a lot of distractions actually. And so I want to wait till next year to clear the air on the speculation about my senate ambition. But it is a thing of joy that the media is speculating that I should go forward, I like that. Zoning of Benue governorship ahead 2015. The issue of zoning of governorship is something that I as an individual cannot sit down here and tell you that governorship of Benue is zoned to this or that zone. But what we normally do is that people will contest. When I contested, people contested in all the zones, but when we sat down as a party, it was decided that the position should go this way. So anybody who wants to contest from zones A, B and C, is free to do so. I believed that when Senator George Akume contested, it was the samething and when I contested it was the same thing. It cannot be different now but when we sit down in PDP, we will decide where it position should go. And there should be no controversy, I know that there is anxiety in certain quarters. I don’t know about All Progressives Alliance (APC), but within PDP we have a system that is used in zoning the governorship position. The Supreme Court case against him by Prof. Steve Torkuma Ugba It is news to me and I am also told that the ACN are saying that they are still in court with me. The substance of the case has long been decided and so what they are doing is they are deceiving their supporters to woo more followers that they have a case against me in Supreme Court. When they said they have a case in court, they go asking their supporters to contribute, and they dont want that to stop so they are still telling them that the case is in the Supreme Court. The substance of the case has been decided. The case that I know that is still in court is Terver Kakih’s matter where he said I forged results. That one I have been served and is at the Supreme Court. The Appeal Court dismissed it and has been moved to the apex court. That I am aware because my lawyer has told me that we have been served, but for Ugbah to say that he is still in court with me, I don’t know. The

Supreme Court threw out the petition and I know that there is nothing remaining of the matter. Security challenges in Benue. All of you are aware that I have put in a lot of resources to address the security challenges in the state. the recent phenomenon of Fulani herdsmen attacking Tiv farmers is something that to a large extent, has defied all solutions put in place. I have done everything that is humanly possible but we are still experiencing a lot of challenges in that regard. I have written to the President to help the state address some of these problems, I have taken some measures to help solve this intractable problem. I will still be meeting with my Nassarawa State counterpart because these Fulani herdsmen use Nasarawa route to come into Benue and retreat to Nassarawa after the attack, and I need to seriously address that with my colleague so that jointly we can beef up security along our borders. We have also started patrolling the water ways constantly. And these are the measures we have taken to curb the incessant attack on the Benue people. I had sworn to protect the lives of my people and what I have seen really touch my bones, you see children of two years massacred by these mindless Fulani herdsmen, and I believe they are not human beings. If it means taking extreme measures, we will take them to address these ncessant attacks. On Aper Aku Stadium contract. The new commissioner has taken measures in that direction because I know we have given a contract the outstanding money is N25 million that is after it was reviewed. The issue is that the contractor is demanding that he must be paid the entire contract amount before he can execute it. There is no contract that you are expected to pay complete money before it is fully executed. So if you pay somebody N25 million and he leaves how can you explain it? So the commissioner for Youths and Sports has taken measures, the person who was managing there was arrested. And I said that if at the end of this month nothing happens, we will write to EFCC to step in, because N25 million is not a debt, if we are owing him money that is reasonable, we would have known. He reviewed the contract by N100 million that means we have even paid him from the review sum N75 million, we have N25 million remaining and he is insisting that we pay all, I have never heard that. I have been doing contract but never heard that kind of thing. So we are on top of the situation its either he finish that or we recover our money.



News Extra

Robbers attack filling stations in Kwara

From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


gang of armed robbers reportedly attacked two petrol stations in Ilorin last Sunday during which they injured an attendant and carted away N495,000. According to eyewitness accounts, the incident occurred at about 2:30 pm at Alkad Petroleum filling station, along Abubakar Saraki Way, and AlakeEruda Petrol Station. A guard at one of the stations, Mallam Isiaka Ibrahim, said that the robbers came with motor bikes popularly known as Okada.

Ibrahim said the robbers numbering about four stormed the filling station and compelled attendants to release all their day’s sales. While contacted, the Manager of Alake Eruda petrol station, Mallam Issa Alawuyan, said the robbers came with sophisticated weapons requesting for money. He said that during the operation, a staff of the station was injured, and the sum of N495,000 was snatched by the bandits adding that the case was reported at the ‘D’ Divisional Police Station, Adewole Estate, Ilorin.

ActionAid urges FG to cut down recurrent expenditure


ctionAid Nigeria on Monday advised the Federal Government to cut down its recurrent expenditure for any meaningful development to be achieved in the country. The Country Director of the organization, Hussaini Abdu, gave the advice in a paper entitled: `` Public Service in the Age of Open Information: Giving Voices to Citizens’’, presented as part of activities to mark the 2013 Civil Service Week in Kaduna. ``Everywhere you go, resources will always be a challenge, there is no government, whether in Nigeria or anywhere in the world that says, we have enough resources. `` The challenge will always be there, but how you manage that challenge is the most important thing, it does not make sense that the government at all level should invest 70 per cent of its

resources on recurrent, recurrent means serving its workforce and only 30 per cent actually goes to the people. ``This workforce is a very miniature body, it is small in relations to the public, the workforce I do not think it is fully one per cent of the population. “Why should it be taking 70 per cent of our resources? When the resources is supposed to go to these poor people in terms of service provision.’’ Abdu said the government should channel more resources on improving health, education and infrastructure. He also stressed the need for the government to listen to the voices of its citizens, be accountable and transparent in its dealings, as well as avail the public with all information particularly in budgetary process and implementation. (NAN)

Child battery: Kwara police issues warrant of arrest on immigration officer From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


he Kwara state Police Command has issued a warrant of arrest on an Immigration Officer, Mr. Yemi Sunday Afolayan, over using a pressing iron to inflict injuries on a 12 years old girl. The victim, identified as Favour Emmanuel, was said to have been withdrawn by her mother from Christian Missionary School (CMS) Lagos and handed over to a guardian, Mrs. Temitope Afolayan, as a house maid. It was gathered that the teenager was to work to be able to finance her education but was allegedly subjected to hard labour. While speaking on the incident, Director of Child Development at the Kwara State Ministry of Women Affairs, Mrs. Lucy Adeniyi, told journalists that the incident was reported to the Ministry by a neighbour of the couple. She confirmed that the victim sustained serious injuries on her neck and foot stressing that she

was in critical condition as her foot and some part of her neck were burnt and infected. Adeniyi said the victim would be taken to the State Civil Service Hospital, Ilorin for medical attention. The victim in a chat with journalists explained that her guardian’s husband told her to cook rice for him and when that was done, he put on the power generating set and plugged the iron. “He tied me up with a rope and placed the iron on my neck and foot after he had beaten me, she said.” Confirming the incident, the Police Public Relations Officer f DSP Fabode Olufemi, said the command had issued warrant of arrest on the suspect stressing that the police would do everything possible to bring the culprit to justice. In his reaction, the suspected Immigration Officer and father of five, Mr Afolayan denied that Favour was their house help stressing that they hail from Eastern part of the country.

Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Dr. Habiba Lawal (middle), in a group photograph with Directors of the Ministry and pupils from various schools, during the commemoration of the 2013 Day of the African Child, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

2015: North holds key to presidency, says elders’ forum From Uche Nnorom, Makurdi


lder statesman and former Minister of Steel, Wantaregh Paul Unongo, has vowed that the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) will live no stone unturned in ensuring that the North produces the next president of the country in

2015. Unongo who is the NEF deputy leader and spokesman told reports reporters at the weekend in Makurdi that whoever the group supports in 2015 will become the President. He noted that the north has all it takes to determine who occupies that position.

The erstwhile minister expressed disappointment over the recent election conducted by Nigerian Governors Forum regretting that as chief executives of their various states, the governors are supposed to be seen as instruments to drive, institutionalize and solidify the democratic process.

Two civil servants docked in Kogi From Sam Egwu, Lokoja


Director in Kogi Civil Service, Mr. Mathew Zakari, along with one Adamu Alidu have been arraigned before Lokoja Upper Area Court 1 for allegedly defrauding Kogi farmers of N70 million. On arraignment, Monday, in Lokoja, Zakari of the state Ministry of Commerce and Industry and Alidu, along with one Mrs. Hawa Alidu still at large were alleged to have defrauded the state chapter of All Farmers Association of

Nigeria (AFAN). According to police First Information Report (FIR), the accused were alleged to have conspired and fraudulently forged documents which enabled them to open an account with the United Bank of Africa (UBA) Plc in the name of AFAN. The FIR added that the accused diverted N67 million remitted into the account by Kogi state government through the state Agriculture Credit Scheme for disbursement to registered farmers. Charged with criminal

conspiracy, criminal misappropriation, criminal breach of trust, forgery, using as genuine, false documents contrary to various sections of the Penal Code, the accused pleaded not guilty. Prosecuting Police Officer, Mr. Ubani Obi, said investigation into the case was on-going but did not oppose their bail adding that the accused were on police bail prior to their arraignment. President of the court, Mr. Paul Olupeka, granted them bail in the sum of N100,000 and a surety each in the like sum and adjourned the case to July 2, for further mention.

Delta uncovers 16 illegal campuses, re-affirms ban From Prince Edward, Asaba


o fewer than 16 illegal satellite campuses were yesterday uncovered by the Delta state taskforce on education, across Kwale and Agbor. Operators of the campuses, reports said, escaped while the

taskforce members descended on their workers and arrested them for further investigation. The Ministry of Education through its Permanent Secretary, Dr. Mrs. Edoroh Odiase, had warned all operators of satellite campuses in the state to comply or face necessary sanctions. The satellite campus

operators hoodwink unsuspecting students to pay various sums of money. A statement by the Ministry of education warned that, “all such illegal operators are henceforth advised to close in their own interest or relocate out of the state as it will not be business as usual again for them.”

Photos Splash


L-R: Founder, Society for the Performing Arts in Nigeria (SPAN), Mrs. Sarah Boulos, Music Graduate, David Ikenna, receiving a certificate from Managing Director, ITB Nigeria Limited, Mr. Gabi Massoud, during the first graduation ceremony of SPAN, recently in Lagos. Photo: Olawale Rotimi

L-R: Former Minister of Health, Professor Eyitayo Lambo, chairperson, Primus Super Specialist Hospital, Achia Dewan, Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu, during the Nigerian Healthcare Summit, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN


L-R: Kano state Governor, Engineer Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, and Central Bank Governor, Malam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, during the CBN governor’s visit to Governor Kwankwaso, recently at Government House, in Kano.

Children during the commemoration of 2013 day of African Child, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN

Traders at Oshodi market waiting outside to re-open their shops after closing in Honour of Late Iya, Oloja, Alhaja Abibat Mogaji, yesterday in Lagos.

Photo: NAN



FIFA gives green light to turbans

F The Super Eagles trio of Nnamdi Oduamadi, Sunday Mba and Elderson Echiejile celebrating the opening goal scored by Echiejile

IFA has adjudicated that male head covers such as turbans are acceptable to wear during matches. There was uproar in the Canada last week when the provincial governing body of Quebec banned the wearing of religious headwear. However, FIFA clarified the rule, stating a male footballer can wear a head cover provided it is the same colour as the team jersey, has a “professional appearance,” is not connected to the jersye and doesn’t “pose any danger.’’ The ruling from world football’s governing body came four days after the Canadian Soccer Association suspended the Quebec Soccer Federation [QSA] over the issue. The QSA said they welcomed the clarification “with enthusiasm and relief” and will make a final statement on the issue in a press conference on Saturday.

Nigeria trounce Tahiti in Confed Cup opener By Patrick Andrew


he Super Eagles showed little signs of jet lag yesterday when they routed fledglings- the Iron Warriors of Tahiti 6-1 with Nnamdi Oduamadi hitting a hattrick and Elderson Echiejile also netting a brace. Fine-playing Jonathan Tehau also got a brace except that he got one against his own side. His goal for Tahiti in the second half came when he rose higher than both Elderson and Efe Ambrose to nod in from their only corner of the match. The Eagles’ first goal came through a deflection. Echiejile had driven a shot that was dramatically deflected by two past

helpless Xavier Samin. Albeit the Eagles dominated but there struck thrice. The second goal arrived just five min- were flashes of brilliance from the lively Brown Ideye came off the bench to set utes later Heimano Bourebare fluffed a Steevy Chong Hue, who tormented the Ni- up Oduamadi for his hat-trick goal, leaving pass that found Ahmed Musa deep inside gerian back four with his pace and quick the forward with the simplest of finishes his own half, the later fed Oduamadi, who feet every time he got on the ball and was with a low cross, before Echiejile got his cut inside Teheivarii Ludivon before slot- appropriately cheered on the crowd. name on the scoresheet for certain with a ting the ball past Samin. After Tahiti’s historic goal- the first at low strike from eight yards out. The inexperienced French Polynesian international fiesta- and which was celeThe Eagles next play Uruguay on Thursplayers committed another blunder in the brated as if they had won the game, Nigeria day. 27 minutes as Samin spilled a feeble shot allowing Oduamadi to tap in. After this, there were several glaring chances which were inexplicably fluffed by The host cities for next year’s African Nations Championship (CHAN) in South Africa have been Musa, Anthony Ujah who took turns to miss named. one-on-one opportunities with only the Cape Town, Polokwane and Bloemfontein will host matches in the competition that featured national goalkeeper, and sometimes the yawing net teams made up only players who ply their trade in their domestic league. Inspections began last week at the three venues, all of whom hosted matches at the 2010 FIFA World at their mercy.

Host cities for 2014 CHAN named

Nigeria’s women U-20 volleyball team departs to Czecks Republic today


16-man delegation of the Nigeria’s junior women volleyball team will today depart Nigeria for Brno, Czech Republic for the Women’s U-20 World Championship. Tony Oghuma-Eghiemai, the chairman of the Technical Committee, Nigeria Volleyball Federation (NVBF), confirmed this yesterday in Abuja. The team will be participating at the 7th edition of the championship, taking place between June 21 and June 30. He said the delegation, comprising 12 players and four officials, would leave Abuja to Czech Republic on Lufthansa Airline by 10 am. Oghuma-Eghiemai, who is also the Team Manager, would lead the delegation, while

Cup finals. The LOC have already been to Polokwane and Cape Town, and will visit Bloemfontein on Tuesday. Next month CAF officials will visit South Africa to check on the country’s preparedness for the competition. Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that host cities will get R120-million of the R156-million allocated to the tournament by Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula. This will be the third CHAN tournament to be played. The inaugural even in Cote d’Ivoire was played the team’s Coach, Ovachkin Sergey, Assistant in 2009 and won by DR Congo. Two years later the event moved to Sudan with Tunisia running out Coaches, Odumo Augustine and Yusuf Dor- victors.

cas, formed part of the delegation. The players are: Promise Mercy, Ukpabi Ijeoma, Nwosu Chinenye, Audu Hajara, Ikhiede Francisca, Aharanwa Chidinma and Atule Doosuur. Other players are: Nnebuo Amarachi, Daniel Patience, Oluwatosin Bukola, Umaru Aisha and Bitrus Jumai. Already, the team was drawn in Group D with Turkey, Italy, Egypt and Algeria and will open their campaign at the championship on June 21 against Turkey and play Egypt the following day. The team will also face Algeria on June 23 and play its last group match on June 25 with Italy.

Abuja Football College wins Croatia cup


buja Football College made history in Croatia on Sunday when they became the first African team to win the 61st edition of the Kvanerka Rivijera Championship. The soccer academy team defeated favourites Nk Osijek 1-0. The final played at the famous HNK Rijeka Stadium attended by a capacity crowd saw the African boys delight the spectators with a classic display of artistic brilliance. It was no surprise when the Abuja-based academy boys took a deserved lead in the 52 minutes courtesy a delectable finish by Aliyu Okechukwu Mohammed. It proved to be the only goal of the tension-soaked encounter in which the Abuja boys again demonstrated depth, confidence and grace. The Abuja had earlier beaten all the top graded teams from seven other participating countries.




Federation Cup:

Pillars won’t have no pity for Global Academy, says Afelokhai


igeria Professional Football League (NPFL) first half leaders and last year's Federation Cup semi-finalists, Kano Pillars have vowed that they will leave any stone unturned to trounce Global Academy in the round of 64 of the national cup fiesta. Goalkeeper Theophilus Afelokhai made this known yesterday while speaking ahead of tomorrow's at the Confluence Stadium, Lokoja, Kogi State Afelokhai said Pillars will approach the game doggedly against the relatively unknown side and ensure that they don't become victims of the usual challenge cup upsets. "Of course, we understand very well that there are no minnows in football anymore and we know quite well that it's tougher against the supposedly smaller teams. "Our opponents are carrying the ticket of their state as champions; first and foremost, we'll accord them their due respect and approach them just as we would face any side in the premier league. "They're the best coming from their state to the national final.

They'll want to enlarge their profile by going all out to achieve victory against us. "So we're not going to underrate nor show them mercies, we're going all out for victory. "We're not bordered about the goal margin but to see them off on our way. "We need the win and the Federation Cup title badly, we're not happy they way we ended the campaign as fourth placed side in the last edition. "We want to add the Federation Cup silverware to our collection of trophies and that dream will be determined by the outcome of the encounter against Global Academy," said the former Dream Team V goaltender to supersport. com. Afelokhai said his side deservedly finished top on the log in the first stanza of the 2012/2013 NPFL season. "Honestly, Pillars deserved the top spot they finished the first stanza of the league. It’s a plus give what the players passed through, we'll toughen ourselves to comeback for the second stanza to finish the work we've started," said the Pillars' magnet.

Radwanska dreams grass-court successes, consistency


ast year’s Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwarska hopes to improve her grassplay consistency as she starts her grand slam preparation as women’s top seed at the ATP-WTA Eastbourne International. The fourth-ranked Pole has had her ups and downs on the lawns, losing on the South coast in the first round a year ago but going on to make a surprise appearance in her first major final facing Serena Williams in the title match at the All England club a little more than a fortnight later. Radwanska will open play at windy Devonshire Park against the winner of the match between Briton Johanna Konta and Hsieh Su-wei of Taiwan. Radwanska hopes to get enough polish on her grass game this week to make another big impression when Wimbledon begins next Monday. Former world No 1 Ana Ivanovic, the No 7, became the first seed to fall as she lost to Russian Elena Vesnina 2-6. 6-4, 6-3. The crowd-pleasing Serb saved two match points in the final game after falling behind 3-5 in the third set. But Vesnina won her first match here in her third appearance to reach the second round. Ivanovic had won both her previous meetings with the 36th-

ranked Vesnina, who claimed her first WTA title in January in Hobart. Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli, the 2011 titleholder got off to a comfortable 6-3, 6-2 winning start over Italy’s Flavia Pennetta. Bartoli was playing for the first time since losing in the French Open third round and withdrawing from last week’s Birmingham grass tournament due to an ankle problem.

Theophilus Afelokhai

Sheshi urges coaches to collaboration for grassroots talents hunt


aba Sheshi, Director of Sports in Niger Sports Council, has called on coaches across the country to collaborate in the discovery of budding talents to foster a positive transformation of sports development. The coach said yesterday in Lagos that talents’ discovery was the primary responsibility of coaches and appealed to stakeholders to encourage them to do meet their responsibility. Sheshi added that the coaches should strive to ensure that this critical and transitional state of sports development was given due attention to ensure continuity. ``This is the only way we can develop sports in the country, whereby coaches of different sports help to scout for talents in their areas; they are at the centre

of sports development. The federation cannot be everywhere at once, coaches are their eyes and their noses in all localities,’’ he said. The director said that there would be minimal reliance on ageing athletes, if talents are regularly discovered at the grassroots. ``The ageing players are already known by their foreign counterparts, but with newly discovered ones, it would be difficult to predict them for a while. ``I appeal to these coaches to assist because as time elapses, most of the old players will not be able to withstand the rigours of the sport,’’ he said. However, Sheshi urged each federation to encourage and motivate their coaches in order to get the best out of them.

CNS U-14, U-17 soccer tourney faces severe hitches


he Chief of Naval Staff sponsored under 14 male and under 17 female national soccer competitions may have been rested following the elevation of the Vice Admiral Ola Sa'ad Ibrahim to the position of the Chief of Defence Staff. Vice Admiral Ibrahim was the immediate past Chief of Naval Staff, but since his elevati on, the tournament, which ought to have been held last May, was postponed indefinitely. However, yesterday, the organises of the tournament Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria (YSFON), through its president, Alhaji Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna, said he was still awaiting signals from the new Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Dele Joseph Ezeoba to kick-start preparations for the competitions. According to him, the competition, Calabar, the Cross Rivers State capital, was billed to host the tournament even as the sponsors were yet to meet the needed demands for the event to come to live. The tournament has been an annual event since 1999.

Peoples Daily Sports learnt that the fate of the CNS cadet fiesta, which is a major tournament in YSFON’s calendar, is hanging in the balance and could be even be rested- a development that could be a major blow to YSFON. The Naval Cup competition has in the past served as a pilot programme for the discovery of raw talents across the nation by YFSON for national team. Gawuma, who applauded the tournament for being a major avenue for discovering grassroots talents, hopes this year’s edition would be held. He pleaded with the new Chief of Naval Staff to sustain the programme as the Nigeria Navy's contribution to the development of the football in the country. Also, Gawuma said some selected talented aces were offer admitted into the YSFON’s academy team and thus further given the chance to horn their skills and be exposed to more competitions. “For us in YSFON, the chief of Naval staff Cup, is always a special one, as it has been in the past ,we are not expecting anything less.




I n t ern atio nal T r ans fe r

Liverpool chase Shakhtar hit man


iverpool is pushing ahead with plans to make Armenian midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan their major summer signing. The 24-year-old is understood to have a £20m release clause in his contract with Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk. Anfield officials are aware there may be competition for Mkhitaryan, who scored 25 league goals for Shakhtar last season, but are optimistic he can be persuaded to move to Liverpool. Manager Brendan Rodgers sees Mkhitaryan, who has also been linked with Juventus and Borussia Dortmund, as a key element of his plans to add extra firepower to his side next season. Mkhitaryan began his career at Pyunik in his home country and scored 30 goals in 70 league appearances. He moved to Ukraine to join Metalurh Donetsk in the summer of 2009 and, after 12 goals in 37 top-flight outings, was signed by Shakhtar in August 2010. He has scored 38 goals in 72 league games for the club, and was the Ukrainian top-flight's leading scorer with 25 goals in 29 league outings last season. Rodgers has signed Manchester City defender Kolo Toure and a deal in principle for Celta Vigo forward Iago Aspas has Henrikh been announced.

Ayew want Hull City sign Wigan Athletic defender EPL move H


ndre Ayew has said he has a soft spot for English football, but has told French television he is not looking to leave Marseille in the summer. Ayew, 23, has become a key figure at the Stade Velodrome in the last three seasons, during which time only France international midfielder Mathieu Valbuena has been more productive in terms of goals and assists. The Ghana international’s performances have brought attention from across Europe, including from clubs in the Premier League – a competition Ayew watched in his native country as a child. Inter Milan and Anzhi Makhachkala have been linked with Ayew, as have Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur and Everton, but the attacking midfielder said his heart lies on the opposite side of Liverpool’s Stanley Park.

ull City has signed Wigan defender Maynor Figueroa on a two-year

deal. The Honduras international, 30, who played under Tigers boss Steve Bruce for the Latics, was out of contract with the Championship-bound side. He joined Wigan on loan from Honduran side Deportivo Olimpia in January 2008 before joining permanently that December. Figueroa made 41 appearances for Wigan last season but missed the FA Cup final success over Manchester City with a groin injury. He is the second player to join the Tigers since they secured their return to the Premier League on the final day of the Championship season.


Nani admits Utd Tevez unsure over City future future uncertain


arlos Tevez has said his Manchester City future is unresolved but has insisted he will not be returning to Boca Juniors this anchester United winger Nani admitted his summer. future at the club was uncertain as speculation Tevez, 29, has a year remaining on his curcontinues to mount he could be heading for the rent contract at City and a decision over his fuexit door at Old Trafford. ture is likely to make know this weeks following The 26-year-old endured an inconsistent season as United reclaimed the Premier League title, falling down Manuel Pellegrini’s appointment as the side’s the pecking order as new boy Robin van Persie grabbed new manager. the limelight. Affluent Ligue 1 clubs Paris Saint-Germain And with only a year left on his contract, rumours and Monaco have both been linked with Tevez, are circling the club have slapped a £8.5 million price while Juventus are also said to be admirers of tag on the Portuguese international. the Argentina international. But Nani said he is remaining calm despite the Tevez was in attendance to watch his boyunclear nature surrounding his career. hood club Boca beat Arsenal de Sarandi 1-0 on However, Nani is confident he will not be returning to his native Portugal, believing he is playing at a differ- Sunday, leading to conjecture a return to the side he left for Corinthians in 2004 could be in ent level than the Primeira Liga. the offing.




Sports NPFL transfer window opens


he 20 clubs in the NPFL will have the opportunity to fortify their squads as the new transfer window opens till the start of the second round in two weeks The Nigeria Professional Football League transfer window will open today after the end of the first round of the season. All the clubs will have the opportunity of strengthening their squads for the second round of the season. The first transfer window opened after week nine games and every club in the elite division will make

sure they recruit the players that will either make them win the league trophy or finish well in the season. The coaches have identified the players they need and will be waiting for their various clubs to look for money to quickly sign the players so they can train with the main team before the second round begins on July 3rd. It was learnt that the coaches are however not sure if they can get the type of the players that they need because no club will

want to release their good players. A coach with one of the clubs who preferred anonymity told Goal that they will have to watch the Federation Cup matches to see if they can get the good players that they need for the second round. “I am sure no team will release their good players. And what is the essence of signing players that will not add anything to the players already in the club? “What I am going to do is to send my assistants to venues of the Federation Cup games and see if we can get National

League players to sign. “That is the only way we can find players because no good player will be allowed to go in any of the Premier League clubs. The good thing about getting players from the National League is that they will be cheap and will also be full of energy. “I am sure that a lot of coaches will throng Federation Cup venues to look at players and possibly get to sign them.” Defending champions Kano Pillars continue to lead after the first round with 35 points from 19 matches.

Amao thumbs up referees, says officiating remarkable


Rangers and Enyimba players scrambling for possession of the ball during the opening match of the season

Agwu confident Enyimba will win more matches


elix Anyansi-Agwu, the Chairman of Enyimba FC of Aba, has assured that the team would strive to win their home and away matches to improve their position in the professional league. Anyansi-Agwu, who gave the assurance yesterday in Aba following Enyimba’s victory over Heartland FC of Owerri on Sunday, is confident the squad has

enough arsenal to claim more spoils. Enyimba defeated Heartland 1-0 in a Week 19 encounter of the Nigeria Professional Football League to move to the sixth position with 28 points from 19 matches. ``I am very happy because the match lived up to its billing. It was a local derby against our sister state. Heartland came out

fighting but my boys were calm. ``It could have been better without the rain but we will see them in Owerri in two weeks time, and that is when they will know the kind of team that we have built. ``In spite of our run of poor results I think our worst period is over. I am looking at the reverse fixture which is against Heartland in a fortnight,” Anyansi-Agwu

said. He noted that the players had resolved to rededicate themselves to the team, adding that Enyimba was financially sound and not in any way indebted to the players. The NPFL is currently on a two-week break. The league will resume hostilities on July 2 with Enyimba taking on Heartland in the reverse fixture in Owerri.

Played Won Drawn Lost For Against +/- Points Kano Pillars 19 11 3 5 26 20 6 36 Warri Wolves 19 9 6 4 28 16 12 33 Kwara United 19 9 5 5 21 11 10 32 Bayelsa United 19 9 2 8 19 23 -4 29 Heartland FC 19 9 1 9 27 17 10 28 Enyimba 19 8 4 7 14 10 4 28 Dolphins FC 19 8 4 7 18 15 3 28 Nasarawa United 19 8 4 7 17 20 -3 28 Gombe United 19 9 1 9 20 24 -4 28 Sunshine Stars 19 8 3 8 21 15 6 27 Lobi Stars 19 7 5 7 16 19 -3 26 Nembe City 19 8 2 9 19 24 -5 26 Kaduna United 19 8 2 9 18 23 -5 26 Shooting Stars 18 8 1 9 22 21 1 25 El-Kanemi Warriors 19 7 4 8 20 21 -1 25 Enugu Rangers 16 7 3 6 23 17 6 24 ABS FC 19 6 4 9 16 21 -5 22 Akwa United 19 6 3 10 18 28 -10 21 Wikki Tourists 18 6 2 10 14 22 -8 20 Sharks 18 4 5 9 8 18 -10 17

atai Amao, the Technical Adviser of Sunshine Stars FC of Akure, has lauded the Nigerian Referees’ Association (NRA) for the improved performance of its members during the first half of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) 2012/2013 season. According to him, the standard of officiating was vastly improved, a development that saw to the some reasonable on the run road wins for teams. Though he said there was still room for improvement, he was of the view that the level of officiating during the past first half of the season far supassed that witnessed in the whole of last season. He said that his assessments were based on what he had encountered since taking over the helm of affairs at Sunshine Stars. If I’m to make my assessment of the level of officiating in the league, I would say it has improved tremendously, compared to the past. ``This doesn’t mean that there are no areas that need to be improved on. For example, sometimes the sort of calls teams get while playing away matches are unfair. ``For me, whether playing at home or away, officiating must be what the rules say and it’s important to always stick to the rules,” he said. He urged fans to embrace the spirit of sportsmanship, adding that he would not want to see the recent incident in Uyo, where the referee was assaulted rear its ugly head. ``Fans must understand that football is a unifying factor and avoid attacking referees. I would not want to see the ugly incident in Uyo happen again,” Amao said. The former 3SC coach added that his target at Sun shine was to work in line with the club’s objectives which, he noted, was securing a continental slot.

Fatai Amao








4 1. If you ever needed to know how far England has fallen behind in international football, you didn’t just need to watch their spectacular flop at the Under 21 Championship. In fact you don’t need to watch England at all (which can be a relief for some) as just a glimpse of a Spain warmup was enough to paint the whole picture 2. Mario Balotelli scored the winner for Italy after Andrea Pirlo had earned the lead through a stunning free-kick on his 100th cap for the national side in Group A of the Confederations Cup. 3. Fifteen years ago, a fresh-faced 17-year-old in a baggy red jumper introduced himself to the golfing world with a quite immaculate chip at Royal Birkdale. 4. Andy Murray consigned fears about his back and his form to history when he collected a third AEGON Championships title to put himself in the perfect place ahead of Wimbledon.


5. Victory over a good Waratahs side was one of the most impressive performances I have seen from any Lions team.





Coach urges FG to fund baseball, softball

ead Coach, Niger State Baseball and Softball Association (NBSA), Ahmed Sikiru, has urged the Federal Government to take over the funding of Baseball and Softball sport in the country . Also, he has appealed to the board of the association to work out modalities for the game to be supervised directly by the National Sports Commission (NSC). Speaking yesterday, the coach urged the management of the association to liaise with Government to reposition the sport.

According to him, the association has been experiencing difficulties generating funding to sustain its developmental programmes over the years. ``If baseball will survive we must liaise with government, we must get to government to get what ever they can to assist the sport like they are doing for all other sports. ``There is no sport that is well funded,

but somehow they are managing through whatever little they get from government but we are suffering here in Baseball and Softball, why because we are kind of told it is not a government thing it a private. ``The private sectors are not coming, apart from football. Even in the football thing is not all about private sectors, government is still doing more of the financ-

ing of football and then all others are going through the same and are still with the government. So why are we outside the government we must find a way to repair the rapport.’’ The association was founded in 1989 in Lagos by prominent Nigerians, including retired Maj.-Gen. Ishola Williams, Prof. Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke and Dr William Boyd, among others.

Jigawa Director of Sports lauds FG over policy


alam Gambo Labbo, the Sports Director, Jigawa Sports Council, has commended the Federal Government over its decision to make sporting activities compulsory among primary and secondary school students in the country. Labbo said yesterday in Dutse that the announcement made by President Goodluck Jonathan on June 6 at the launch of 'Rythm n Play' was laudable, even as he stressed that it would encourage youth participation in sporting activities at the grassroots. He lauded the Federal Government's decision, noting that it would also help in identifying talents that would be representing their respective schools in inter-state competitions and other tournaments. Labbo added that the decision would also foster unity and mutual co-existence among the students. He said the council, in collaboration with the state ministry of education, was currently engaged in end of term inter-house competition in schools, to encourage students’ participation in sporting activities.

Father, sons sentenced for lineman’s death


Dutch court has convicted six youth players including the father of one of manslaughter for their attack on a volunteer linesman who later died in the Netherlands. Richard Nieuwenhuizen, 41, a linesman affiliated to Dutch youth club Buitenboys, was rushed to hospital after being punched and kicked by players from opponents Nieuw-Sloten during a match in Almere on December 2, 2012, before passing away the following day. The 50-year-old father was sentenced by judges in Lelystad to six years in prison, while five of the teenagers were given two-year sentences in youth detention, and another was sentenced to a year. A seventh teenager was sentenced to 30 days of detention for assault. The minors have not been identified due to privacy laws.

A Nigerian player dunks during one of the DSTV Men's Basketball League

DSTV Men’s Basketball: Dodan Warriors whip Customs to maintain lead


oach Peter Ahmedu of Dodan Warriors Basketball Club of Lagos yesterday vowed to remain rooted on the top spot of the ongoing DSTV Men's Basketball League. The coach said its present form was because of mental and physical discipline instilled in the players, a development he was sure has contributed largely to their impressive results. Ahmedu, who said his team was initially underrated when the 2012/2013 season started, boasted that their opponents must have learnt bitter lessons and stressed that their approach had made them a force to reckon with. Dodan Warriors trounced Customs of Lagos 73-47 and 6360 in their two-legged encounter on Friday and Sunday respectively, in their Atlantic Conference matches in Lagos. Dodan Warriors are now the first of eight teams in the Atlantic Conference league table with

12 wins and 4 losses so far in the three month-old competition ``I thank God for how we have been turning out good results in our weekly matches. I am happy with my players’ level of commitment and professionalism. They make my work complete. ‘’My players take to instructions and play according to how we plan; their execution of every game plan on the court is a justification of how prepared they are. We hope to continue like this as we intend to make the final four of the Atlantic Conference,’’ Ahmedu said. However, Coach Scot Nnaji of Customs said that his players lost the last game due to lack of concentration. He said there were some matches that they would win and some they would lose, but that a team would go into every game hoping to win. “We lost to a better team; they

are disciplined and highly competitive. We came back stronger in the second leg hoping to pick one of the two-leg encounters. We will go into our coming matches with a lot of seriousness as the season is gradually dragging to the period where teams would strive hard for points,’’ Nnaji said. Customs are currently occupying the sixth position with six wins and 10 losses. In the other matches played at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos on Sunday, Police Baton defeated city rivals Lagos Islanders 67-61. Police Baton was able to turn around their initial loss to Islanders 76-80 on Friday in their first leg encounter. However, Police Baton is currently last in the conference, recording just four wins and 12 losses. Coach Mark Balogun of Police Baton said: “We play good basket-

ball, we have been unlucky, and most especially the officiating has been really unfair to us. There are some calls that should not stand and also some fowls that were committed by our opponents, especially in the game against Islanders. “The other sad aspect is that these wrong judgments by the referees always come up in the dying minutes of regulation time. This wrong judgments by the referees have often worked against us and it has to stop,’’ Balogun said. Union Bank of Lagos was also in a fantastic form as they defeated Comets of Lagos 61-52 and 62-46 on Friday and Sunday respectively to remain in contention for the title. They are currently second on the table with 11 wins and five losses, while Comets are seventh on the table with six wins and 10 losses. The ongoing competition continues this weekend.



Some Interesting Facts Each winter there are about 1 septillion (1, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000 or a trillion trillion) snow crystals that drop from the sky. Each Wonder (in 7 wonders) has its own intrigue. Historian agree that the Pyramids stood the test of time, the Lighthouse is the only Wonder that has a practical secular use, and the Temple of Artemis was the most beautiful of all Wonders. Groundwater comprises a 30 times greater volume than all freshwater lakes, and more than 3,000 times what’s in the world’s streams and rivers at any given time. The Angel Falls in Venezuela is the world’s highest waterfall (979 meters / 3212 ft.), three times the size of the Eiffel Tower. The industrial complex of Cubatao in Brazil is known as the Valley of Death because its pollution has destroyed the trees and rivers nearby. The hottest planet in the solar system is Venus, with an estimated surface temperature of 864 F (462 C). Only 11 percent of the earth’s surface is used to grow food. One-tenth of the Earth’s surface is always under the

Leisure cover of ice. And almost 90 per cent of that ice is to be found in the continent of Antarctica. The gravity on Mars is 38% of that found on Earth. So a 100 pounds person on Earth would weigh 38 pounds on Mars. The sunrays reached at the earth in 8 minutes & 3 seconds. The Arctic stays black and fiercely cold for months on end. In the High Arctic, the sun sets in October and does not rise again until late February. The greatest tide change on earth occurs in the Bay of Fundy. The difference between low tide and high tide can be as great as 54 ft.

6 in. (16.6 meters). The blue whale, Balaenoptera musculus, is the largest known animal ever to have lived on sea or land. Individuals can reach more than 110 feet and weigh nearly 200 tons, more than the weight of 50 adult elephants. The largest eggs in the world are laid by a shark. The largest recorded snowflake was 15in wide and 8in thick. It fell in Montana in 1887. Antarctica is the highest, driest, and coldest continent on Earth. The most dangerous animal in the world is the common housefly. Because of their habits of visiting

Say what?

animal waste, they transmit more diseases than any other animal. Monaco is the Highest Density Country of the world, 16,205 people per square k.m. live in Monaco. American Roy Sullivan has been struck by lighting a record seven times. Earth’s oceans are an average of 2 Miles deep Rain has never been recorded in some parts of the Atacama Desert in Chile. The Earth is the densest major body in the solar system. The water that falls on a single acre of land during one inch of rainfall, it would weigh 113 tons that is 226,000 pounds.



Proving there is no age limit these sprightly runners took part in the over 80 race won by Teja Singh. Source:

. . . putting the people first

TUESDAY, JUNE 18, 2013


Protests mars FIFA Confederation Cup in Brazil


olice fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowds as protests marred the Confederations Cup soccer tournament in Brazil yesterday. Police fringed tear gas and rubber bullets at the crowd estimated by local media at around 600 people. The protests are ostensibly against the costs of this tournament and the World Cup but people are also angry in Rio about a local issue surrounding the cost of public transport. There were demonstrations around the country last week against public transport costs. Protests marred the opening day of the tournament on Saturday when around 500 protesters were tear-gassed by police in Brasilia where the hosts were playing Japan. A number of arrests were made while there were reports of injuries after police used tear gas and rubber bullets, as protesters demonstrated against the cost of next year’s World Cup.

Mourinho backs UEFA law against transfer over spending


ew regulations governing European football clubs can spend in relation to their means are good for the game, forcing teams to think more carefully about who they sign, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said yesterday. Mourinho, who was reappointed coach at the west London club earlier this month, described UEFA’s financial fair play regulations as “very motivational” and helpful for greater cohesion within a club. “Every wrong move you make has an influence on the future. You need to work more closely with the board in the financial area; you have to have a different perspective and a different look at the players on loan and youth football. UEFA introduced financial fair play two years ago and is designed to prevent European clubs living beyond their means at a time of concern about sky-high transfer fees and wages.

ADVERT: 0803 BUSINESS: 0805 NEWS: 0814 LAGOS: 0805 0803

QUOTABLE QUOTE The work we are doing has a very sweet part and a very ugly part, and we must perform both. No matter how painful it is to sign death warrants, it is a part of our responsibility. — President Jonathan to governors reluctant to sign the death warrant on condemned prisoners.

Kenya: A case in point for Nigeria to echo T

here are certain points of convergence between Nigeria and Kenya. The latter is East Africa’s largest economy, ditto for us in West Africa. Only one in every four Kenyans has access to electricity just like here in Nigeria. Our poverty levels are almost on a par, with ours pegged at 46 percent while Kenya’s hovers between 44 and 46 percent. These statistics we share with Kenya notwithstanding, Kenyatta’s country seems to be more development-focused than we are. This can be seen from the fact of the 186 countries ranked in terms of the Human Development Index (HDI), Kenya was placed at the 143 spot while we were ranked 153. Another fact to consider is that while we as a nation are making headlines as the country with the highest number of out-of-school children across the globe, Kenya is well on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of basic education for all children by 2015. Given this more positive outlook Kenya has over Nigeria, one expects Nigeria to be more assertive in making moves that would, at least, improve its ratings. Unfortunately, this is not to be as the Kenyans are beating us to it! Kenya’s lawmakers used to be among the highest paid legislators in the world. This placed them in the same club as their Nigerian counterpart. But this now has changed with the slashing of their salaries by $45000. Why? Because of public outcry that culminated in over 100 demonstrators gathering outside the parliament building a fortnight ago, the lawmakers have agreed to lower their salaries. Some of the protesters had tossed fake money at the main gate of the building to symbolize the greed of the lawmakers. Each member of the Kenyan parliament had received $120 000 as remuneration last year, but after negotiations, members of parliament agreed to accept salaries of about $75000 per annum, said the country’s Salaries and Remuneration Commission. Interestingly, this was happening about the same time Nigeria’s upper legislative chamber is proposing that the Senate President and the Speaker

311 689 292 327 454

7458 1765 9046 1969 0344

GUEST COLUMNIST Ugochukwu Ogwuanyi

CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi of House of Representatives alongside their deputies should be entitled to life pensions. It is inconsequential to them that progressive countries are slashing their lawmakers salaries, their concern is in adding to their already over blotted entitlements. Now you see the extent of our serious-mindedness. I am left wondering why it wasn’t the main gate of our National Assembly complex that experienced the tossing of fake naira notes. For I doubt if there is anywhere else in the world one can find a better definition of greed. Towards the end of 2010, the CBN governor, Mallam Lamido Sanusi, confirmed what we had suspected - that 25 per cent of our annual budget was consumed by federal lawmakers. The lawmakers didn’t deny it and Sanusi didn’t recant. Yet in Kenya where the laudable initiative was taken, only 12 per cent of the nation’s gross domestic product was spent on government workers’ salaries including the parliamentarians’ pay. Still they thought it wise to free up $45000 from their recompense. Pray, when would our public officers begin to think it wise to do what is expedient considering the outrageous inequality in the land! Maybe it is when we peacefully pay a visit to the National

Assembly complex to demand their doing what lawmakers in Kenya have done. That is one of the highpoints of democracythe right to demonstrate, that is. Since the National Assembly prides itself on being the pillar of democracy, let’s serve them this essential recipe of civil rule. Of a truth, if the Kenyans hadn’t taken their grievance to the doorstep of the lawmakers, I am pretty sure that that country would continue to pay its lawmakers $120 000 per annum. The country’s Salary Commission had earlier this year ordered a cut in parliament’s pay only for the lawmakers to vote to restore their salaries. Given this scenario, I am afraid silence on our part will never suffice in making our lawmakers do what is expected. For the human nature is such that only an external impulse can make us give up that which we cherish. For our lawmakers who are proposing life pension for their most senior officers, let them be guided by Socrates’ enduring aphorism: “He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.” Our National Assembly members should, for a change, put country above their craving for personal enrichment since it does no country any good. In the eternal words of Franklin D. Roosevelt, “we have always known that heedless self interest was bad morals, we now know that it is bad economics.” There was a time in this country when lawmakers were engaged on a part time basis with nothing more than sitting allowance as their due. Pundits have continued to canvass that as the way to go. Already most of our lawmakers have made themselves part time legislators. Hence the vacant seats we see during plenary. This should not be just for the lawmakers, members of the executive arm should take a cue from the worthy example of the

Kenyan lawmakers. If they think it a different context, let them be moved by the example of the Malawian President- Joyce Banda who gave up 30 per cent of her salary, making her annual earning £26 000 instead of the £37 000 she was entitled to. We should grow past the primordial belief that it is only by stockpiling money by way of fat salaries and allowances that our future and those of our families can be guaranteed. At the moment, the federal government is set to scrap 220 parastatals, agencies and commissions. Its reason is to streamline its activities to make for greater efficiency in service delivery and to reduce the cost of governance. But why is this cost of governance not reduced from the very top where the funds are and are persistently siphoned away into private pockets by way of allowances, salaries, estacodes, security vote, constituency allowance and the likes? It is so perverse that our public officers cannot be good spirited enough to part with a part of their colossal salaries in order to prevent the scrapping of this high number of government bodies. This is in view of the unemployment that their shedding will generate. The truth remains that the Oliver Twist in us will always present itself no matter what we are earning at the moment. If this was not to be, there wouldn’t have been a proposal pushing for life pension for our most senior national legislators. The citizens must however be on hand to help these people whose sense of reason may have been overtaken by the bounty they get out of our commonwealth. That way we would be helping them not to be poor like the Uruguayan President Jose Mujica, reputed to be the world’s poorest president. However, since moral suasion means nothing to these people, a mild push from the electorate can make them do something akin to what their Kenyan counterparts have done. This is because the need Nigeria has for a slice of their earnings transcends that which Kenya has for their lawmakers’ $45000. Ugochukwu Ugwuanyi’s professional profile is on Viadeo

Published by Peoples Media Limited, 35, Ajose Adeogun Street, 1st Floor Peace Park Plaza, Utako, Abuja. Kano office: Plot 3, Zaria Road, Opposite Kano State House of Assembly. Lagos Office: No.8 Oliyide Street, off Unity Road, Ikeja, Lagos. Tel: +234 814 292 9046. Cell: +234 802 443 2099; 803 7007 759. e-mail:; ISSN: 2141– 6141

Peoples Daily Newspaper, Tuesday 18, June, 2013  

Peoples Daily Newspaper, Tuesday 18, June, 2013 Edition