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Vol. 8 No. 90

Friday, July 27, 2012

. . . putting the people first

FG moves to avert fuel Subsidy scam: scarcity, orders payment PDP disowns to marketers Tukur, Ali’s sons >> PAGE 3

Ramadan 8, 1433 AH

Aggrieved youths hold Nasarawa CPC exco hostage >> PAGE 6

>> PAGE 6


Ramadan Timing for Abuja Magrib 6.54

Alfijr 5.06

See other towns on Page 3

Impeachment threat

PDP moves to save Jonathan By Lawrence Olaoye


n an intriguing turn of events, the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday admitted that members of the House of Representatives, including its

majority PDP members, have a genuine case for threatening to impeach President Goodluck Jonathan. However, the party pledged to engage the House on the matter, with a view to saving the President’s job.

Deputy National Chairman, PDP, Dr. Sam-Sam Jaja, stated this yesterday in Abuja at a media briefing on the activities of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC). Jaja said: “It is not true that

they (Representatives) are not making any sense. It is not also (true) that the President is making error that requires impeachment. At times we gloat over these things, but the party has set up machineries to look into all the grievances

of the members of the National Assembly and the position of the President. There must be an area for the two parties to meet and this thing should be resolved in the interest of Contd on Page 2

First Ladies’ Summit: Nigeria sends Jet to Malawi President ACN faults ‘land grab’ By Our Reporters, with agency report


igerians must just stop moaning about the hard times. It only exists in the figment of their imagination and the government would have none of it. In fact, it appears to officialdom that the country’s barn is bursting at the seams, hence the real task at hand right now is to create appreciable Contd on Page 2

The Nigerian plane that picked President Banda

President Goodluck Jonathan (middle), President of the Republic of Malawi, Madam Joyce Banda (right), First Lady, Patience Jonathan (2nd left), with other African first ladies, during the opening ceremony of the 7th summit of the African First Ladies Peace Mission, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Joe Oroye



















Army donates anti-bombing devices to churches, mosques


he Nigerian Army yester day in Abuja donated ve hicle-stoppers to churches and mosques as part of measures to protect places of worship against terrorist attacks. Maj. Gen. Bitus Kwaji, Army Chief of Civil Military Affairs, while handing over the devices to some leaders of churches and mosques, said that the gesture was part of army’s corporate social responsibility. Kwaji explained that the vehicle-stopper was a unique device that could stop vehicles that come in contact with it from any direction or angle, saying, ``the innovation is simple and effective’’. “It has been discovered that most attacks by suicide bombers are carried out with vehicles loaded with Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDS). This mode of operation is simple as a suicide bomber drives his vehicle straight into his target and explosion occurs. “In order to disallow bombers

from reaching their targets, this invention comes in handy as it forcefully stops any vehicle that comes in contact with it at whatever speed, '' he said. Kwaji said that the device was simple to understand, adding that churches and mosques could decide to produce more. Speaking on terrorist attack, Kwaji said that terrorists over the years had continued to attack places of worship in order to destabilise the nation. He said that the unfolding security challenges ``which is the Boko Haram terrorist menace’’ had continued to hinder the progress of the transformation agenda of the President as well as the development of the nation at large. According to him, this has necessitated the Chief of Army Staff to charge all corps and services of the army to provide ways and means of curtailing the menace. Kwaji said that the personnel took the charge by the army

chief to heart by looking at various ways and means of curtailing insecurity in the country. “I am reminding all that security is everybody’s business and the entire citizenry should join hands with the army in making the country safe for all to live, '' he added. Maj-Gen. Richard Chioba, Army Director of Policy, said that the equipment had been tested in other countries and it worked. Chioba said that the donation of the device by the army was in line with effort to ensure that lives and property of the citizens were protected. Alhaji Ibrahim Jega, the Executive Secretary of the Abuja National Mosque Management, expressed joy at the development. “We are happy with what the military authorities are doing to beef up security in places of worship”, he said. He added that it was an excellent and commendable effort to ensure the protection of lives and property in view of the current

Ramadan: US envoy joins Muslims in fast-breaking By Mohammed Kandi


Daily Sun Editor to be discharged from hospital today, Page 5

International 32-34 Religion








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: 070-37756364 09-8734478

he American ambassador to Nigeria, Terrence McCulley, yesterday led a delegation of members of the US mission in the country to participate in fast-breaking (Iftar) at the mosque of Alhabibiyyah Muslim Society of Nigeria. Briefing the press yesterday in Abuja, the ambassador, who was represented by his deputy, James McAnulty, said the effort

was to promote dialogue and understanding among Nigerians. “This month, President Obama will continue a long tradition by hosting an inter-faith Iftar at the White House. “This Iftar is special because it brings individuals from many groups, not just Muslims, to our President's home to celebrate one of the five pillars of Islamic faith," he stressed. “The opportunity for us to join our Muslim brothers and sisters in the celebration of their faith

reminds us that we are all part of a larger community dedicated to making Nigeria a better place," he said. Mcculley said his country was pleased to support AlHabibiyyah's food bank programme and hoped that such effort was sustained for a long time. Responding, the Imam of AlHabibiyyah, Fu'ad Adeyemi, thanked the US envoy and assured them of sustaining the relationship.

security challenges in all places of worship and gatherings. Also, Rev. Chukwuemeka Okonkwo of the Methodist Diocese of Nyanya said that the gesture had indicated that the Federal Government and the Army were bothered by the situation. Okonkwo said that from recent events, the situation had been given the military sleepless nights, adding that they were happy for the gesture shown by the army. (NAN)

PDP moves to save Jonathan Contd from Page 1

democracy in this country.’ “Many of them (in the House) are PDP people, I agreed, but they have their grievances. We will not also say that just because they are PDP people, we will lord it over them. This thing must be attended diplomatically, so that wherever anybody has gone wrong it will be sorted out and eventually this storm will definitely die down.” However, Jaja noted that impeachment threat was part of democracy the world over and as such should not be blown out of proportion. He said: “There is no threat actually as it were. It is the usual thing that happens in any democratic process. It is not the first time a President will be threatened with impeachment.’’

Nigeria sends Jet to Malawi President Contd from Page 1 dent in the national treasury. And so, concerned that Malawi has recently fallen into economic difficulties, President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday lent a helping hand by dispatching a Nigerian Air Force plane to fetch President Joyce Banda for the on-going African First Ladies Peace Mission Summit in Abuja where she delivered a keynote address yesterday. President Banda left Chileka Airport in Blantyre at 10.30am in the Nigerian jet and was seen off by Vice-President Khumbo Kachali, several cabinet ministers and People’s Party (PP) senior members, among others. Banda, who is expected to return home next Thursday, will pass through South Africa where she is scheduled to meet President Jacob Zuma. On why she flew on the Nigerian Air Force plane, Banda said Nigeria’s President,

Jonathan, extended the goodwill after noting concerns about the economic hardship Malawi has gone through in the recent past. Banda will attend the fourday event as a “special guest,” with the Nigerian government picking up her bills all the way. The Malawi leader said she accepted the invitation to attend the summit to encourage the First Ladies on the continent of Africa to be proactive for peace and tranquillity. Nigeria’s First Lady, Patience Jonathan, who is the convener of the event, invited Banda to share notes with the summit on the Concept Paper, which has four sub-themes, include “Advocating the Role of the African Woman in Leadership.” Meanwhile, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has described the legal tussle between Mrs. Jonathan and her predecessor, Hajiya Turai

Yar’adua over a plot of land in the Federal Capital territory as “a study in despicable sycophancy, insider abuse, arbitrariness and manifestation of the culture of impunity all of which have become the hallmarks of the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan.” In a statement yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the party said “in more decent climes this scandal would have seen the immediate exit of the Federal Capital Territory Minister, Bala Mohammed from the cabinet and severely affected the political fortunes” of President Jonathan. Mohammed wrote: “While the party is not holding brief for Hajiya Turai Yar’adua, it is clear from the court records that the disputed land was first duly allocated to her nongovernmental organization Women and Youth Empowerment Foundation - by the Minister for the Federal

Capital Territory and a statutory right of occupancy duly issued under the hand of the same minister. “From the same court records, the organisation paid all levies and dues running into several hundreds of millions of naira. However shortly after, the minister for the Federal Capital Territory without reasons issued a notice of revocation of the said property ostensibly on grounds of overriding public interest only to swiftly re-allocate the same land to another nongovernmental organisation the African First Ladies Peace Centre believed to belong to the current First Lady Dame Jonathan,” it said. According to the party, “any close observer of the FCT Administration under the watch of Senator Bala Mohammed will know that this is vintage Bala Mohammed, a man who will do anything to remain in the good books of President Goodluck Jonathan.”




L-R: Wife of Oyo state deputy governor, Mrs. Janet Adeyemo, Deputy Governor, Chief Moses Adeyemo, Governor Abiola Ajimobi, and his wife, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi, during the eight-day Fida’u prayer for the governor’s mother, yesterday in Ibadan. Photo: NAN

Subsidy scam: PDP disowns Tukur, Ali’s sons By Lawrence Olaoye


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday distanced itself from the alleged financial malfeasance committed by the children of two of its prominent leaders, National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur and his predecessor, Dr. Ahmadu Ali, in the subsidy scam. Fielding questions from newsmen yesterday on the position of the party on the arraignment of the leaders’ children, Mahmud Tukur and Mamman Nasir Ali, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Deputy National Chairman of the ruling party, Dr, Sam-Sam Jaja, said the PDP has no role in the

Jonathan charges Africa's First Ladies on regional peace, stability By Abdulrahman Abdulraheem


resident Goodluck Jonathan yesterday challenged African First Ladies to give more support to their husbands in efforts to tackle political instability, hunger, terrorism and other challenges that disturb the progress of the continent. The President at the opening session of the African First Ladies Peace Mission (AFLPM) summit in Abuja, said all stakeholders should promote the cause of peace, love and harmony. “I therefore consider the theme of your summit: “The Africa Woman: A voice for Peace” pertinent to the main contemporary challenge in our land. As wives, mothers and leaders, Africa’s First Ladies, have important roles to play in the promotion of peace and security on the continent…” he said.

matter. Jaja said “On the issue of some PDP members being involved in oil subsidy, these are individuals; everybody bears his own cross. There were governors who are now facing prosecution as a result of their actions and inactions; so it’s not a party thing. PDP did not send anybody to go and misbehave. “Even if you mention my Chairman’s son, he is up to age. Assuming he is to go to jail, they will not come and jail the National Chairman because he did not send him. He is a man of age and he has household; he has his family; everybody accounts for his own position. And, of course it has to be mentioned, until they are proven guilty, they still remain innocent. “The party cannot just get out and breathe down on them and begin to condemn them. They will be given equal opportunity to defend themselves in competent court of law. Until they are found guilty, then the party will come out and take a position. But for now for the party now to begin to

condemn them is absolutely premature and prejudice,” he declared. Tukur and Ali alongside others were yesterday arraigned in a Lagos court by the EFCC for a ninecount charge of conspiracy, obtaining money by false pretence, forgery and use of false documents. EFCC prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, alleged that they had between January and April 2011 in Lagos, fraudulently obtained the sum of N1.8 billion from the Federal Government. He alleged that the accused persons obtained the money from the Petroleum Support Fund (PSF) for a purported importation of 80.3 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit. The accused persons were also alleged to have forged a Bill of Lading dated April 28, 2011, which they used in facilitating the fraud. Jacobs said their alleged offences contravened Sections 1(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act of 2006.

17 policemen detained in Kano over alleged extortion From Edwin Olofu, Kano


he Kano state Police Command has arrested 17 of its personnel allegedly involved in extorting money from the public at checkpoints across the state capital, Kano. The Command Public Relations Officer, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Rilwan Muhammad Dutse, dropped the hint while speaking with our correspondent yesterday in Kano. Dutse said following growing complaints from the public about the conduct of some policemen, especially those manning police check points because of the insurgency in the state, the commissioner of police

directed that the X Squad saddled with the responsibility of checking the policemen excesses was boosted. He stated that this had yielded results with the arrest of the 17 policemen. Dutse said an orderly room trial has been set up to try the 17 and that five of them have been found guilty. “We want to warn any policeman that is involved in this practice to desist from it before such a person is apprehended because the commissioner of police is very serious about this matter,” he stated. Dutse urged the public to continue to support the Police in Kano.




Aba Abakaliki Abeokuta Abuja Akure Argungu Ankpa Auchi Azare Bama Bauchi Benin Bichi Bida Birnin Gwari Birnin Kebbi Biu Calabar Damaturu Daura Dutse Enugu Funtua Gombe Gwoza Gumi Gusau Gwadabawa Hadejia Ibadan Ife Ilorin Jalingo Jere Jos Kabba Kafanchan Keffi/Nasarawa Kaduna Kano Katsina Kontagora Lafia Lagos Lokoja Maiduguri Makurdi Malumfashi Minna Port Harcourt Ringim Shagamu Sokoto Warri Yola Zaria Cotonou-Benin Ndjamena-Chad Niamey – Niger Younde – Cameroun

6.50 6.48 7.07 6.54 6.58 7.09 6.50 6.55 5.46 6.32 6.45 6.57 6.54 6.59 6.57 7.11 6.34 6.45 6.39 6.54 6.50 6.50 6.58 6.41 6.32 7.06 6.59 7.07 6.48 7.05 7.04 7.05 6.37 6.53 5.48 6.58 6.51 6.48 6.55 6.53 6.58 7.02 6.48 7.06 6.55 6.34 6.48 6.58 6.58 6.50 6.53 7.05 7.07 6.56 6.33 6.55 7.09 6.37 7.20 6.31

5.08 5.08 5.25 5.06 5.17 5.09 5.07 5.13 4.49 4.36 4.55 5.18 4.57 5.11 5.07 5.12 4.37 5.09 4.42 4.54 4.54 5.09 5.02 4.49 4.38 5.09 5.02 5.07 4.49 5.22 5.19 5.18 4.59 5.03 4.58 5.13 5.01 5.01 5.03 4.56 4.58 5.12 5.01 5.25 5.10 4.37 5.03 4.58 5.08 5.14 4.56 5.23 5.07 5.18 5.21 5.01 5.30 4.40 5.18 4.57

RECOMMENDED DU’A FOR DAY 08 Pray 2 Raka’at Nawafil. Recite in every Raka’ah after Alfatihah, Sura Ihklas 10 times, then recite: Allahumma swalli ‘alaa Muhammadin wa aali Muhammad – 100 times and say SUBHANALLAH 1000 times: The say the following DU’A: “Allahummar-zuqnee feehi rahmatal-aytaami wa tha’aamat tha’aami wa ifshaa-as-salaam wa suhbatal-kiraam bi-thawlika yaa malja’al-aamileen.” Meaning: O Allah keep me alive, in this month, wrapped in the compassion (Thou feels) for the orphans; provide me wholesome meals; and let me show forth myself as a true Muslim to spread Islam, let me move in the company of the nobleminded persons, through Thy power, O the Ultimate restingplace of those who long for safety. Source: Mafatihul Jinan



L-R: DIG ‘E’ Department, Mr. Marvel Akpoyibo, DIG Administration, Mr. Dauda Fakai, handing over criminal law books presented by the head of panel on the implementation of Justice Sector Reforms to Inspector-General of Police, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar, during the Nigeria Police Force meeting with government and non-government justice institutions, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN

Daily Sun editor to be discharged from hospital today By Udenna Orji


teve Nwosu, Editor of the Daily Sun, who survived a gun attack by suspected armed robbers on Wednesday afternoon, is expected to be discharged from hospital today. Speaking with our reporter last night, the Deputy Managing Director/Deputy Editor-in-Chief of The Sun, Mr. Femi Adesina, said Mr. Nwosu had undergone series of medical tests and was found to be very healthy and fit to return to work. He said the medical team that attended to the youthful and lively editor said Mr. Nwosu would be discharged from the hospital early this morning. On police investigation into the editor’s shooting, Mr. Adesina said there was no clue yet and no arrest has been made “but we thank God that he survived the incident. We are happy that he is well”. Mr. Nwosu was attacked and shot on the right side of his head by suspected armed robbers who also robbed him of the sum of N250, 000 he had withdrawn from a bank. One of the occupants of Nwosu’s car who witnessed the attack said unknown to them, the editor was trailed by two armed young men on a motorbike as soon as he left the bank with the money. He said as Nwosu’s car got to Agboju, a densely populated residential suburb of Amuwo, Lagos, the gunmen pulled up beside the editor’s car and one of them jumped down and opened fire on Mr. Nwosu, shattering the window of the car and shouting “where is the money; where is the money”. The bullets hit the right side of the editor’s head while the gun man collected the money from the editor and fled. Dr. Kayode Mabogunje who

attended to the editor in the hospital said “He is okay… the amount of bleeding I saw did not suggest he required medical emergency. He was only affected by the shock. He is well oriented but then the shock is there. I think that was basically what happened. We have stitched him up and arrested the bleeding and given him the appropriate medical attention to avoid infection and inflammation in that region. We have also done an x-ray on him to see if there is any pellet lodged in that place since we don’t want to take any risk … I am happy that The Sun team was here to see and talk with him. I think that should be enough to calm down every nerve”. Dr. Mabogunje however described Mr. Nwosu’s encounter with the gunmen as “a close shave with death”.

Nigeria police still poorly equipped – IGP By Lambert Tyem


he Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, yesterday decried the poor funding and lack of equipment bedeviling the force. Specifically, Abubakar linked the poor performance of the Police with their condition of service and the Nigerian environment, stressing that the government and the citizenry were culpable in the matter, hence deserving of the Police as they are today. However, the IG said the police management team under him was working hard to effect the necessary changes and give the nation a police it could be proud of in terms of law enforcement, respect for human rights and others. Speaking at a meeting with some non-governmental organisations including the National Human Rights Commission and the Nigerian Bar Association in Abuja, Abubakar lamented that the police were hampered by a lot of factors. To illustrate, the IG said the police stations and cells as designed

by the government were usually small, dirty and degrading to the policemen who work there. He also lamented that the police do not get fund to furnish holding cells with mattresses or even lighting for the comfort of detainees. The IG expressed misgiving over negative media reports on the police by the NGOs, citing a statement by the CLEEN Foundation which claimed that armed robbery had risen in the country by 6 percent. He differed with the report, arguing that such an issue should have been discussed with him by the foundation before taking it to the media. His words: “I think you people (NGOs) should be fighting alongside the police, but the reverse is the case. You know the conditions of service under which the police work. “I read in some newspapers a statement by CLEEN Foundation that armed robbery has increased by 6 per cent in the country, but I don’t believe it. “Even if it was true, as the IG,

don’t I have the right to be given such data before its published in the media?” the IGP queried. Abubakar disclosed that the police have about 800 lawyers some of whom had been deployed to state commands to facilitate criminal prosecution. He tasked the Legal Aid Council to step up its enlightenment campaigns, stressing that detainees needed to know that they have the right to see a lawyer and access to their family members. Representatives of the NGOs who spoke at the meeting called for the establishment of structures to investigate cases of abuse of power by the police, capacity building for the policeman to prosecute criminal cases, improvement in conditions of service of the police and information sharing on state of policing, including deaths of police officers on Vice chairman of the panel on the implementation of the justice sector reforms, Mr. Olawale Fapohunda, stated that the meeting was meant to engage the police to ensure improvement in their service delivery to the country.

Suspect indicted in subsidy report fled to US, says EFCC By Our Reporter


ne of the defendants to be arraigned over the oil subsidy fraud, Mr. Walter Wagbatsoma, may have “escaped to the United States”, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), said yesterday. Mr. Wagbatsoma’s absence in court stalled proceedings for the second day running and forced the judge to adjourn the case till August 1. “We served him (court papers)

…Grants bail to Tukur, Ali’s sons and went to his house severally. We believe he escaped and left the country,” Rotimi Jacobs, counsel to EFCC, told journalists after the court had risen. Mr. Abiru, the presiding judge, denied the bail applications for Adaoha UgoNgadi, Fakuade Babafemi Ebenezer, and Ezekiel Olaleye Ejidele - the three defendants who were docked.

“We cannot take the pleas separately,” Abiru said, adding that Wagbatsoma must attend on the next adjourned date. Meanwhile, Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo of the High Court of Lagos state, yesterday, granted bail to Mahmud Tukur, Mamman Nasir Ali, and two others. While Abdullahi Alao, scion of business tycoon Arisekola

Alao, also got bail from the High Court, Justice Habeeb Abiru, in whose court he was arraigned on a seven-count charge of allegedly obtaining N2.6 billion, ruled that he be remanded in EFCC custody till August 1 when his bail application would be heard. Onigbanjo granted the accused bail of N20 million with two sureties each in like sum.



FG moves to avert fuel scarcity, orders payment to marketers By Abdulwahab Isa


o avert impending strike by the oil marketers, the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala has directed the Debt Management Office (DMO) to

pay marketers with verified claims as soon as supporting Sovereign Debt Notes are provided by the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA). A statement issued yesterday by Paul C Nwabuikwu, Senior Special

Assistant to the Minister of Finance, stated that the minister's directive has been communicated to the DMO. It would be recalled that payments based on verified claims resumed after the June meeting of the Federation Accounts

Allocations Committee (FAAC) when payments totaling N17 billion were made. To prevent overpayments, verification of claims is a cornerstone of the procedures adopted by the Federal Ministry of Finance.

The minister noted that following the report of the Presidential Committee headed by Mr. Aigboje AigImoukhuede, it was clear that some marketers also owe government significant sums of money and that government expects these to be paid.

Crises has brought military close to people - GOC From Nankpah Bwakan, Jos


L-R: Gombe state Governor, Alhaji Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo, Korean Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Jong-Huum Choi, and Minister of State for Education, Barrister Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, during the flagoff of the distribution of instructional materials to basic education institutions in North-East, yesterday in Gombe. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

he General Officer Commanding 3 Armoured Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Jack Okechukwu Nwaogbo yesterday disclosed that the current security challenges in the country have brought the force closer to the civil population than ever in history. Speaking at the auditorium of the 3 Armoured Headquarters during the second training session for finance and account staff of the Nigerian Army, Gen Nwaogbo said: "Our actions on the streets across Nigeria in relation to civilians are what gives the first impression of who we are. "What we do on the streets could earn us negative or positive image. If our conduct is giving us negative image, then we need to look inward and finetune our conduct outside so that we can only do what is right and

Verification: FHA gives reason for engaging consultants By Sunday Ejike Benjamin


he management of the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) has given reasons for its decision to engage the services of consultants in the verification of the Authority's houses/plots, collection of grand rents and mortgages throughout the country. The FHA Head of Corporate Communications, Tunde Ipinmisho told Peoples Daily that the management has already put up an advert in that respect. According to Ipinmisho, the department responsible for the exercise in FHA is grossly under staffed at the moment, as the Authority have close to 40, 000 Housing units nationwide, and a total staff of about 400. He said: "It is obvious that the manning level is so poor and cannot meet up with what is needed for accelerated revenue collection. "The issue was brought before the management and it was decided that consultants be brought in it for two reasons, one is that we have started titling our houses in Abuja. Titling is that, if you want, for instance to borrow money in the bank, the letter of allocation that we give our allotees is not sufficient to serve as collateral. "In other words, that document is not bankable, many of our allotees have been asking for a bankable document which is a legal title and before we do titling, we ought to determine

who exactly is where, who owns what house, that is exactly what gave rise partly to the verification", he added. Ipinmisho noted that enough resources was required to do a thorough job in the verification exercise in order to serve people better, adding that if a committee, comprising staff of the Authority is used for the exercise, the official work of those staff on the committee would suffer, and cripple the Authority which needs

to generate funds to meet its needs. On stagnation of staff promotion, the FHA spokesman said, the Authority promotes only when there is vacancy for the post pointing out that FHA has not employed anybody since the last ten years, because there was no resources. It would be recalled that the staff of the FHA, through their various unions, SSACTAC and AUPCTRE kicked against management's decision to

contract the verification of FHA houses out to consultancy firms, more so that similar exercise was once carried out successfully by a committee, made up of staff of the Authority. Peoples Daily reliably gathered that the FHA committee that verified the 100 Housing Estates of the Authority discovered that 40 of the Housing Estates were illegally occupied and that the sum of N525 million was generated.

Aggrieved youths hold Nasarawa CPC exco hostage From Ali Abare Abubakar, Lafia


ggrieved youths belonging to the ruling Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), in Nasarawa state, who felt abandoned by the leadership of the party after allegedly assisting the party to win elections, stormed the premises of the office of the deputy governor, where the party exco were holding a meeting, threatening to whip the officials. Our reporter gathered that the timely intervention of the Special Adviser to Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura on political matters, Mr. Zakari Idde, who allegedly locked the premises, saved the party executives from facing the wrath of the visibly angry youths. Investigations by our reporter revealed that the youths lamented that the immediate past administration of Governor Aliyu Akwe Doma, catered for them when he gave each youth the sum

of N5000 in the form of poverty alleviation but which the CPC government has jettisoned. Speaking on behalf of the youths, Dagaji Ibrahim, narrated that besides the seeming insensitivity of the CPC government to the plight of the youths, the recent move by the executives to suspend the state party chairman, Alhaji Hamidu Haruna, infuriated them. "We cannot stand and watch while they ridicule our

chairman and the party. If they are doing the right thing, why are they holding their meetings secretly?" he asked. When contacted over the issue, Alhaji Musa Ilu Mohammed, director general TAAL campaign organisation, who was alleged to have directed the aggrieved youths to a parley with the SA to the governor on political matters, Zakari Idde, denied knowledge of the incident.

professional". Nwaogbo said there were obvious attitudinal problem in the way the military relates with the civilians urging the military not to look at the civilians as enemies but partners who should collaborate for easy achievement of peace. He said "No one is born a soldier, we were born civilians and at the end of our service, we will retire to become civilians again. If this is true, cases of soldier brutalising civilians should not arise". While presenting a lecture entitled, "Enhancing CivilMilitary Relations Towards Meeting Contemporary Security challenges" Col. Sani Usman, Assistant Director Army Public Relations, 1 Division said, "Military must extend loyalty not only to the president and commander-inchief of the Nigerian armed forces and those occupying public offices". He said "It is in accordance to the current improve civilmilitary relations that men and officers are courtmarshaled as at when due, we also offer relief materials and free medical services to civil population".

Islamic Forum sends relief material to disaster victims By Joy Baba


he Nigerian Muslim Forum, UK (NMFUK) has donated foodstuff worth N680, 400 for distribution to victims of disaster in five states in Nigeria. NMFUK said this was one of its obligations as a charity group especially in this sacred month of Ramadan. A press release signed by the group publicity secretary, Dr. Aliyu Musa said the foodstuff were distributed among victims in Borno, Yobe, Kano, Plateau and Kaduna states.

Taraba relieves permsec of appointment By Etuka Sunday


araba state government yesterday confirmed the termination of the appointment of the permanent secretary, Ministry of Environment and Urban Development, Mr. Bobboi Bala Kaigama from its services with effect from July 6, 2012. In a statement issued from the

office of the head of the state's civil service and signed by Ibrahim Mohammed on behalf of the Head of Service, stated that Mr. Kaigama's appointment was terminated on the basis of gross misconduct. The statement claimed that Kaigama was found wanting on the allegations leveled against him based on a report of a committee set up by the civil

service and therefore his dismissal from service was in line with Taraba State Civil Service Rule Number 030407. According to the statement, the termination was published in an advertorial in three national newspapers, namely The Nation of Friday July 20, 2010, Leadership of Tuesday July 24, 2004, 2012 and Peoples Daily of Wednesday, July 25, 2012.



DANA crash: DNA results will be out next week, medical examiner tells coroner From Francis Iwuchukwu, Lagos


hief Medical Examiner of Lagos state and consultant forensic pathologist, Prof. John Oladapo Obafunwa, on Wednessday, told the Coroner’s Court investigating the June 3 DANA crash, that the DNA tests on the bodies of some of the crash victims will be ready next week. Obafunwa, who doubles as the Vice- Chancellor, Lagos State University (LASU), told the Court now sitting within the premises of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja, the gory sight of some of the bodies when the body bags were brought to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH). Obafunwa who was led in evidence by Akingbolahan Adeniran, a counsel from the state Ministry of Justice, said when the body bags of the victims were opened at the morgue, some of them contained bone fragments while some had body parts. He informed the coroner, Alexander Oyetade Komolafe that the Pathology Department was able to identify about 152 bodies. He informed the court that 60 percent of the crash victims had multiple injuries while about 20 percent had multiple injuries and smoke inhalation. “50 bodies were fairly complete; about 100 victims were burnt while there were also charred bodies. “There are bodies with recognisable heads and some their limbs chopped off. ‘’I am expecting that the DNA results will be finalised next week,” Obafunwa added. Magistrate Komolafe thereafter adjourned the next sitting of the coroner till Monday, July 30, 2012.

Scores of unemployed besiege Chams City office for aptitude test for jobs in the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), yesterday in Central Area, Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-owo

NAFN inaugurates 2012 national agricshow c’ttees By Mohammed Kandi


ational Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria, (NAFN), has inaugurated the committees for the 2012 National Agricultural Show (NAS). The foundation is holding the Show, which draws attendance from all states of the federation, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), and private From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


rof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali has been appointed as the successor to the outgoing Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede whose term expires in October, 2012. Our reporter gathered that the chairman of the screening panel, Alhaki Saka Saadu, would be forwarding his name to President Goodluck Jonathan for approval. Ambali’s competitors for the

Consumers to spend N336tr on technological products, services in 2012 By Muhammad Sada with agency report onsumers will spend $2.1 trillion (N336 trillion) worldwide on digital information and entertainment products and services in 2012, according to research analysts. This amounts to a $114 billion global increase compared with 2011, and spending will continue to grow at a faster rate than in the past, at around $130 billion a year, to reach $2.7 trillion by the end of 2016. The $2.1 trillion consists of what the consumers will spend on mobile phones, computing and entertainment, media and other smart devices, the services


that are required to make these devices connected to the appropriate network, and software and media content that are consumed via these devices. “The three largest segments of the consumer technology market are, and will continue to be, mobile services, mobile phones and entertainment services,” said Amanda Sabia, principal research analyst at Gartner, adding: “There are two product classes, which in terms of absolute dollars are significantly smaller, but offer tremendous growth by 2016. These are mobile apps stores and e-text content. We fully expect consumers to more than triple their spending in these latter two categories by 2016.”

agricultural players in the country, for the 6th time in a series. As a flagship of agricultural events in the country, it is organised in collaboration with the federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Inaugurating the committee in Abuja, the chairman of the foundation, Senator Abdullahi Adamu,

charged the members to see their nomination as a “clarion call for them to serve the nation.” He said their choice as members of the various committees was informed by their antecedents as people who had contributed to the growth of agriculture in the past, urging them to show that they deserved the honour. Announcing this year’s date

Unilorin gets new VC post included Prof. Jimi Adesanya, Prof. Timothy Opoola, Prof. Luke Ayorinde and Prof. Hassan Salihu. In a reaction, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara state in a statement has felicitated with the Governing Council and management staff of the university for embarking on a true democratic process which led to the emergence of Prof. Hambali as the new Vice Chancellor for the institution.

which is scheduled for October 13 to 16, Sen. Adamu informed that the choice of the date was made to coincide with this year’s World Food Day, (WFD), celebrated annually all over the world. Also speaking, the National Coordinator, NAFN, Dr. Samuel Negedu assured the members that the Secretariat was ready for any suggestions that would move the foundation forward.

The governor in his goodwill message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Alhaji Abdulwahaab Oba, said “there is no doubt that if democratic process can thrive in the appointment of leaders in a micro environment such as the university, I’m confident that the macro political environment in the country will soon become an epitome of political tolerance and democratic ethos, setting the pace for other nations of the world. Congratulating the new VC,

Governor Ahmed described him as a competent hand and mature mind who will not only sustain the good legacy of the institution, but improve on the qualities which have made the institution a citadel of learning. He also congratulated the outgoing VC, Prof. Ishaq Oloyedefor an eventful and successful tenure. “Oloyede”, the governor said, “would be remembered for his resourcefulness, astute leadership quality, unprecedented infrastructural development of the school, discipline, humility and above all, academic excellence”.

respectively, adding that the investigation will last for six weeks and afterward make appropriate recommendations that will enable the university achieve its mandate effectively. According to her, the teams will also examine the leadership quality of the university, it financial management since inception; investigate the application of funds, particularly the special grants and loans meant for special propjets to determine relevance for further funding. Other aspects to be examined by the teams include conduct of detailed staff and students audit, welfare policies and the general conduct of academic and nonacademic staff in the delivery of the mandate of the school, she

said. She however said that the inauguration of the teams became mandatory as the institution recently witnessed the anger of the students caused by unprecedented challenges in the quality of academic programmes, financial and project management and leadership style. In his response, the chairman of the teams, Dr. Theo Osanakpo, who spoke on behalf of the members, thanked the Federal Government for the confidence reposed in them and promised to do a thorough investigation and complete it within the stipulated as well as make recommendations that will put the university back to its pride place.

UniAbuja visitation teams to investigate financial, admission procedures By Maryam Garba Hassan


he Special Visitation Teams to the University of Abuja, set up by President Good Luck Jonathan to address the various problems the institution is facing will also investigate the financial management, admission procedures, general administration of examinations among others in the last 24 years of its existence. This was disclosed in Abuja by the Minister of Education Prof. Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i, at the inauguration of Team. The minister said the seven teams comprising of six members each will also examine various issues and will be chaired and cochaired by Dr. Theo Osanakpo and Prof. Aliyu Mohammed



ECOWAS sues for regional peace, security By Etuka Sunday


he Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), has called on regional defence chiefs to redouble efforts at ensuring enduring peace and security in the region even as it expressed sympathy to the government and people of Cote d’Ivoire for the recent attack on the refugee camp where several lives were lost. Speaking on behalf of the President of the ECOWAS Commission at the opening of an emergency meeting of the Committee of Chiefs of Defence Staff (CCDS) on Mali in Abidjan, the ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, Mrs. Salamatu Suleiman, called on regional defence chiefs to ensure lasting peace in the region, adding that while there were relative calm in Mali and Guinea Bissau, security challenges remain in the region. Commissioner Suleiman also updated the gathering on the situation in Guinea Bissau, where police units from Nigeria and Burkina Faso have been deployed following the departure of Angolan forces, preparatory to the implementation of the

Security Sector Reform (SSR) after the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Guinea Bissau authorities and the ECOWAS Commission. In considering the report of the Technical Assessment Team (TAM) that visited Mali from 7th to 18th July 2012, she urged the defence chiefs to come out with concrete recommendations that would “move the region forward in our collective quest for enduring peace and security”. Also speaking, the Chairman of the Committee of Chiefs of Defence Staff (CCDS) and Cote d’Ivoire’s Chief of Defence Staff, General Soumaila Bakayoko, expressed satisfaction with the quality of work and professionalism of the Technical Assessment Team led by Brigadier-General Mohammed Lai, Chief of Staff of the ECOWAS Standby Force (ESF). Declaring the meeting open, Cote d’Ivoire’s Minister of Defence, Paul Koffi Koffi, represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mr. Alexis Ahonzo, said Africa and the whole world was watching and waiting for ECOWAS to do what is necessary for the restoration of peace in Mali.

Oyo govt, Canada to partner in energy, agric, vocational training – Ajimobi From Inumidun Ojelade, Ibadan


overnor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo state has expressed his administration’s willingness to partner the Canadian government in vocational training, agriculture and renewable energy. The governor stated this while receiving the Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Chris Cooter, who paid him a courtesy call in his office in Ibadan. According to him, Oyo state is about the 5th largest producer of waste in Nigeria, adding that this had made the state a desirable place for energy renewal plant, to turn waste into wealth. Governor Ajimobi said the state was equally interested in vocational training to prepare youths in the state for employment opportunities and make them self-reliant. While speaking on agricultural opportunities in the state, the governor described the state as a

haven for agricultural investors, being the largest producer of cassava. Governor Ajimobi, who lauded Canada for its support for developing countries of the world, said the country had always supported Nigeria at the point of need.

L-R: Chief of Civil Military Affairs, Nigerian Army, Major-General Bitrus Kwaji, presenting the new vehicle Stopper, donated by the Nigerian Army to Executive Secretary, Abuja National Mosque, Alhaji Ibrahim Abubakar, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN

Gombe to spend N3.6bn on primary, secondary schools From Auwal Ahmad, Gombe


ombe state government has awarded contracts to the tune of N3.6 billion for the renovation and construction of classrooms, hostels and staff quarters in five secondary and five primary schools in the state. Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo disclosed this while speaking at the flag off of the distribution of instructional materials for the North-east zone and handover of two schools built by the International Cooperation

Agency of South Korea at Barunde in Akko local government area of the state. He added that "the work is at various stages of completion, these projects are being funded entirely by the state government and our government has accessed UBE intervention matching grant up to 2011". Dankwambo said already, contracts have been awarded for the construction of prototype primary schools in Bajoga, Deba and Kaltungo towns reflecting the three senatorial zones in the

state, adding that the state government would continue to meet the obligation in terms of counterpart funding and other responsibilities. The governor said plans have been concluded to establish College of Education at Billiri local government area in effort to produce the needed teachers for primary and junior secondary schools, adding that more technical colleges to fast track the acquisition of functional and vocational and technical skills to the teeming youths.

Ramadan: Prices of eggs, potatoes escalate in Katsina P

rices of eggs and Irish potatoes have increased in Katsina state, as the Ramadan fast wears on, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports. A market survey conducted by NAN in Katsina, Daura, Dutsinma, Malumfashi and Funtua towns of

the state on Wednesday, showed that a crate of eggs, which hitherto costs N700, now costs between N850 and N900. Similarly, 100 eggs now cost N2,500 as against the N1,800 it was sold for before the fasting period. NAN also observed that the

price of Irish potatoes had risen in all the towns visited as a measure of it is now being sold for N350 as against its former price of N200. Malam Sani Maikwai, an egg seller in Dutsinma town, said the increase in the price of eggs was occasioned by increasing demand

for the commodity. Dealers in Irish potatoes in the state also attributed the increase in the price of the commodity to the cost of transportation. NAN reports that the prices of orange, water melon and other fruit remain stable. (NAN)

NPC, stakeholders brainstorm on 2013 demographic survey By Tobias Lengnan Dapam


n its determination to achieve the Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) in 2013, the National Population Commission (NPC), yesterday hosted stakeholders and partners, to brainstorm and proffer suggestions on a possible roadmap. The programme which held at the headquarters of the

commission in Abuja, was attended by representatives from major partners like USAID, DFID, UNFPA, UNICEF and other ministries. Speaking at the occasion, the chairman of the commission, Eze F.Odimegwu, represented by the Director-General of the commission, Jamin Zubema, said the meeting was necessitated by certain factors that might hamper

the actualisation of the Millennium Development Goal (MDGs) if not properly tackled. "Policy makers are concerned about the social, economic and health consequences and other challenges faced by the people that are not adequately addressed by the existing health infrastructures and policies. We in NPC are resolved to face these challenges", Odimegwu said.

He added that the collaboration of foreign agencies and other ministries would provide useful information on NDHS which is centered on reproductive health especially the level and trends of fertility, family planning, maternal and child-health, HIV/ AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections. The chairman also said that the commission would conduct

credible and accurate census and surveys, to provide useful data on socio-economic characteristics of the population. On his part, the project director, Sani Gar, said the team would be divided into groups to review the questionnaires and make amendments in areas where necessary and to also balance certain disparities observed in the questionnaire.




19th AU Summit: Still a crisis of expectations


fter an initial hiccup, leaders of all member countries, with the exception of Guinea Bissau, Madagascar and Mali that have been on suspension, converged on Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital, on July 15-16, 2012, for the 19th Summit of the African Union (AU). The meeting, initially billed to hold in Lilongwe, Malawi, had to be shifted to the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, partly due to Malawi's reservations over the attendance of Sudan's President, Omar Al-Bashir. In spite of that initial glitch over the venue, the African leaders had what could pass for a successful summit. First, the 19th summit saw to the resolution of the January deadlock over the election of a chairperson for the AU Commission, with the choice of Ms. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, South Africa's Home Affairs Minister. The process leading to her election undoubtedly jolted the continent what with the unprecedented aggression and "vote buying" allegations that preceded it. This was even worsened by South Africa's violation of a longstanding unwritten rule which bars the continent's Big 5 - Algeria, Egypt, Nigeria, South Africa and Tunisia from vying for that seat in order to give weaker countries a sense of belonging. Warts and all, Dlamini-Zuma's election was a victory for Africa in the sense that it is the first time in the history of the AU that a woman has been elected to head its administrative

organ. Indeed, the import of the resolution of the January election stalemate should be seen in the context of the damage it did to the credibility of the AU and how it very nearly left the organization rudderless. Besides, the 19th summit provided a platform for the president of Sudan, Al-

the 19th AU summit left much to be desired in terms of tackling the multifarious crises across the continent and setting the stage for more robust efforts to strengthen Africa's position and interests in international arena. For instance, there was no concrete step taken to set up the proposed African Standby Force (ASF) Bashir and his South Sudan counterpart, Salva Kiir, to meet one on one for the first time since April this year when their border dispute brought them close to war. That meeting, held on the sidelines of the summit, was a significant step towards finding a lasting solution to their differences. And the two leaders did seize the day, as it were, to commit to dialogue rather than armed confrontation.

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”

Furthermore, the African leaders used the summit to push further for the promotion intra-African trade and the establishment of a continental free trade zone by 2017, in line with the vision of the Union. Indeed, the theme of the summit was "Promoting intra-African Trade". It also mulled a roadmap to sustainable peace, security and stability in a continent ravaged by conflicts such as that between Sudan and South Sudan, the military coups in Mali and Guinea Bissau earlier in the year, etc. In spite of these feats, the 19th AU summit left much to be desired in terms of tackling the multifarious crises across the continent and setting the stage for more robust efforts to strengthen Africa's position and interests in international arena. For instance, there was no concrete step taken to set up the proposed African Standby Force (ASF), which will reinforce the peace and security architecture of the continent. Equally important is the issue of funding of the AU’s activities. Finding a lasting solution to this is imperative for enhancing the sustainability of the Union's actions and programmes, asserting the credibility of its leadership and ensuring African ownership of the AU initiative. Yet, the issue of funding was merely broached at the meeting. These and many other shortcomings rendered the 19th AU summit a mixed-grill of short term successes and a longer term crisis of expectations.










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


By M. L. Ismail


arlier in the life of his administration, Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo indicated that his government would pay greater attention to the provision of infrastructure. He said all that was needed for the government to deliver the goods was “a well focused, coordinated, balanced, goal-driven and mutually inclusive approach to questions of leadership and societal development.” It was a declaration of intent to open up all sectors as a development strategy that would facilitate the transformation of the lives of the people of Gombe state. For quite some time now, the need to gear development efforts towards stemming rural urban migration has the entire nation. Thus, development policies, centred on the providing more infrastructure in rural areas as a way of contending with the ever growing population of the cities, have become a major challenge in Gombe state. This is not forgetting that the state, being relatively new still, needs a lot more to be dome to raise the status of the metropolis to that of a modern state capital city. Accordingly, infrastructure like electricity, roads and pipe borne water which stimulate industrialisation and commercial activities that provide job opportunities are the


Dankwambo’s holistic devt approach in Gombe things that attract people to urban centres. They also have the capacity to create the satisfaction that sustains interest in rural life and invariably agriculture which has, from time immemorial, been the highest employer of labour in this country It is on this premise that a focused and shrewd governor like Dankwambo of Gombe state is now articulating policies for the holistic development of the state, given the need to make rural life worth living and the bulk of work yet to be done in the state capital. In this regard, the governor has initiated greater intercourse between communities in rural areas and the state capital through massive road construction. With these roads, he has accelerated the social and economic development of rural communities via easy evacuation of agricultural produce to markets where it will be sold at a profit. Small-scale industries and overall commercial activities are also on the increase to sustain

the socio-economic wellbeing of the rural populace. It remains incomprehensible to the people what the Talban Gombe has done for them in the very short time he has spent in office. Things, especially roads, happen so fast that someone once observed that you pass by a place today and the next day it is wearing a completely new look because road work is springing up. Just recently, the Minister of Works was treated to the flagoff the Kanawa – Deba – Jagali – Jauro Gotel road which has been neglected for years both the Federal and state government failed to recognize it as theirs. Designed to be completed in two years the 54-kilometre road which branches off to Kuri village with a view to opening up Kuri International Grain Market. So far, Governor Dankwambo has tilted massively towards lighting up the rural communities. Justifying this is the distribution of 50 unit of transformers while still waiting to take delivery of 55 more. A good number of

communities have benefitted from rural electrification projects and so many others have been pencilled down. A gigantic project, the Balanga dam Electrification Project is capable of powering the entire Gombe South Regional Water Supply Scheme and all the unlit rural communities within Balanga local government and beyond. This milestone three-in-one hit project, Balanga Dam is also housing a gigantic water work which when completed will supply water to Akko, Balanga, Billiri, Kaltungo and Shongom local government areas in Gombe-south and central senatorial districts respectively. The Dam on the other hand supplies water through a well over 30-kilometre stretch of irrigation canal thereby making possible an all-year-round farming within the belt. Talk about boosting food production, the government has articulated a programme that will train 1,100 youths in various agricultural practices. The programme would take off

fully by the time government is able to source 1,100 hectares of land. “Graduates will be given implements and a soft loan to enable them set themselves up in business and there will be a strong monitoring team to ensure that the purpose is not defeated,” said the Commissioner of Youth Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Mijinyawa Sani Labaran. While he is supplying drugs and equipment in health facilities, Governor Dankwambo is taking a comprehensive stock of all existing health facilities in the state with a view to undertaking detailed renovation, reconstruction and reequipping of the facilities as well as constructing new ones where necessary. This is driven by the noble intention of bridging the geographical distance between health facilities and the populace, particularly at the rural areas. The technocrat turned politician, in one of his public utterances, observed that posterity would not forgive him if he failed to better the lives of

Cooperation (FOCAC) in 2009. At the meeting, which was held amidst the rampaging financial crisis, the Chinese government announced eight new measures to advance its practical cooperation with Africa, including development assistance, credit and financing, training and trade promotion. This speaks volume of the determination of China and Africa to weather the challenging times hand in hand. Steered by FOCAC and stimulated by these promotion measures, the two sides have withstood the test of the financial crisis. As a result, the trade and economic cooperation has witnessed faster growth across wider areas in more diversified forms, bringing more tangible benefits to the Chinese and African people. In terms of trade, the total trade volume between China and Africa hit a record high of USD 166.3 billion in 2011, growing by 83% from the year 2009. China stands as the unchallenged largest trading partner of Africa. On the back of robust trade, Chinese goods, in greater quantity and with better quality, are welcomed by African people; more and more African specialty goods have been made available to Chinese consumers. Resource

commodities from Africa have secured a stable market and higher prices. With respect to investment, China’s direct investment in Africa had reached USD 14.7 billion by the end of 2011, up 60% from 2009. While the number of investment projects in energy, mining, construction and manufacturing keeps growing, collaboration on finance, aviation, agriculture and tourism has also boomed. More than 2000 Chinese firms have invested in Africa. In the process, they have not only helped diversify the African economy, and contributed to local tax revenue and job creation, but also found a promising land for their overseas expansion. In the area of project contracting, Africa has become China’s second largest overseas market. In 2011, the business turnover of Chinese contractors in Africa grew by 28% in 2009 to USD 36.1 billion, accounting for 30% of China’s total turnover in overseas markets. The inflow of capital, equipment and technology from China has helped cut cost and steadily improve infrastructure in African countries. In terms of development assistance, China increased its aid to Africa by over 60% from

2009 to 2011. China built a large number of welfare projects, including schools, water supply and clean energy projects, and trained more than 20,000 personnel in various fields for Africa over the three year period. These programs, tailor-made to meet the needs of African countries, focus on enhancing the welfare of the local people. They are promptly implemented without any political strings attached, contributing to the realization of the Millennium Development Goals in Africa. They are testimony to the friendship between the Chinese and African people. In the second decade of the 21st century, trade and economic cooperation between China and Africa, while keeping a momentum of robust growth, finds itself standing at a new starting point. Against the backdrop of sluggish world economic recovery and difficulties in reshaping the global economic governance regime, China and Africa face unprecedented challenges in their next step of development. Due to structural imbalances, the complementarity in ChinaAfrica economic cooperation and trade has yet to be realized and much potential left to be further tapped into. Nevertheless, as developing

countries, China and African countries have all managed to keep relatively fast economic growth and enjoyed good prospects. Adequate capital, a strong industrial basis, and sophisticated technologies and equipment of China can be seamlessly matched with Africa’s advantages in resources, markets and labor costs. As China and Africa both need to restructure our economies and transform our growth patterns, there is a pressing need and great potential for the two sides to collaborate on industrial relocation. Africa’s economic integration initiative creates even more opportunities for cooperation with China on a larger scale and at a higher level. In the reform of the global economic governance system, both sides are committed to the principle of active engagement, cooperation and solidarity. China and Africa are spotting new and greater opportunities in our economic cooperation. The upcoming Fifth Ministerial Conference of the FOCAC will surely usher in a new era of China-Africa trade and economic cooperation. China will adhere to the philosophy and principle of “equality and mutual benefit, cooperation and win-win, and common

Continued on page 14

China, Africa poised for brighter economic, trade future By Chen Deming


n Malawi, a landlocked African country, rows of cotton cultivated by local farmers instructed by Chinese experts are budding; in Ethiopia, a shoe factory, which was built with investment from the ChinaAfrica Development Fund, is teeming with local workers; in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a hydropower station, financed by credit from China, has just been inaugurated. In the meantime, in China, a country tens of thousands of miles away, African officials and technicians have been invited to Beijing to share China’s development experience and advanced technology; in Yiwu, a city in Southern China, Chinese customers are selecting South African wine at the Exhibition Center for African Products; at the New Port of Tianjin, a cargo ship loaded with fruit and textile products from Benin is preparing for tariff exemption procedures to enter the Chinese market. These are the encouraging scenes unfolding before us as China fulfills its commitments on economic cooperation and trade announced at the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa

Contd. on page 15



Enough is enough in Plateau state By Halilu Dan Madamin Chinade


he concepts Hausa and Fulani do not signify any religious or geographical identity for the people who are grouped under them but rather they connote a unified sociopolitical and cultural ideology meant to enhance their human dignity and respect for one another. It is worth mentioning that since independence, the northern part of Nigeria has remained united and focused on the attainment of national unity. However, in recent times, events keep changing the destiny and progress of this region, particularly happenings in Jos, the capital of Plateau where Berom people are giving a one sided picture of the reality on the ground in the state in order to gain the sympathy of the outside world. The origin of the Hausa could be traced to renowned legend of Bayajidda who migrated from the East and settled in the ancient town called Daura in present day Katsina state. He married the queen of Daura known as Daurama, who bore him seven children that later became the founders of the Hausa states. The Hausas were known to be merchants

that travelled to different their cattle in the bush and they was principally waged for the communities to buy and sell, can be found in all the states of purification of the religion of Islam, not for the cleansing of that is why they are scattered the federation. all over Nigeria and other parts The Berom, on their part, any minority tribe in the of West Africa. believe their forefathers North. Islam in itself means On the other hand, the originated from the Congo area peace for believers and nonFulani trace their ancestry to the in Central Africa and today they believers alike. To the believers, Berbers of North Africa, around are found in Plateau state of the religion sets out the roles and duties of a 8-11 century Muslim and the AD. As the rights of B e r b e r s unbelievers. migrated Islam came to down they Peoples Daily welcomes your letters, opinion articles, text West Africa/ mixed with messages and ‘pictures of yesteryears.’ All written Nigeria through the people of contributions should be concise. Word limits: Letters - 150 the old Trans Senegal in words, Articles - 750 words. Please include your name and Sahara Trade West Africa. a valid location. Letters to the Editor should be addressed Route. The The Fulani to: Berbers of North came into Africa who were existence over The Editor, a c t i v e l y a thousand involved in the years, AD Peoples Daily, 1st Floor Peace Plaza, Trans Sahara 900-1900. 35 Ajose Adeogun Street, Utako, Abuja. Trade, with the They were Email: let Arabs from the scattered over SMS: 07037756364 far East, most of West accepted Islam Africa and even some areas in Central Nigeria. Similar claims were and propagated it to the natives Africa while some were on the made by those who mmade up of Africa; gradually it was extended to all parts of Africa. eastern border of Ethiopia. Today the Fulanis are found all over old to Kwararafa Kingdom, After the disappearance of the traders at the Nigeria. Their occupation is prominent among them are; the Arabian mainly to graze cattle; only a Jukuns now in Taraba state, hinterland, puritanical Islamic segment of them have settled in Idoma in Benue, the Alagos/Egon practice started decaying; this a particular place and they are in Nasarawa, Angas/Ankwai in gave rise to Usman Danfodio known as the ‘Fulanin Gida’. Plateau. All these have a Jihad of 1804. The motives of Mostly they are found in common socio-cultural heritage. the Jihad were primarily for the Adamawa, Gombe and Bauchi. The 19th century Jihad led purification of Islam and not Those who are pastoralist graze by a Fulani, Uthman dan Fodio, getting rid of any minority


group. This is evident in the sense that even today one can find a trace of Hausa traditional belief in some northern states, notably Sokoto, Zamfara and Kano. Those who still hold onto their old belief system are called the Maguzawas. They practice their traditional religion without any threat, intimidation and persecution at the hands of the majority Musllim population. Current happenings in Jos are politically engineered and the goal is to disrupt the social, economic, religious and political institutions in the state. In the centre of it all is deceit because part of lower Plateau, particularly Shendam, accommodates some ethnic nationalities with their socio-cultural institutions, including the Beroms, who have their separate area known as Anguwan Berom, Anguwan Taruk, Anguwan Burmawa and Anguwan Angas. I, therefore, call on the Berom to accept all other ethnic nationalities on the plateau along with their belief systems and socio-cultural institutions in the interest of peace and development in Plateau state. Halilu Dan Madamin Chinade wrote in from Jos, Plateau state

Atta Mills and Ghana politics after him P By Demola Thomas Olarewaju

resident Atta Mills of Ghana passed on in what may best be described as shocking circumstances from the infamous ‘cardiac arrest’. If anyone had thought his throat cancer would get him, they were proved wrong as he passed on two days after his 68th birthday in a military hospital. His death though is certain to change the political permutations in Ghana. John Evans Atta Mills, a law professor, was one of the two vicepresidents to former President Jerry Rawlings in the National Democratic Congress government

before he was presented as a candidate in 2000 where he was defeated by the opposition NPP candidate John Kufour. He recontested again four years after and again, he lost. In 2008 however, he picked his party ticket and he won his third elections...with a slim margin. The election spilled into January of 2009 with re-runs in some parts of Ghana. Mills claims Prophet T.B. Joshua of Nigeria had told him that he would win the elections. When Mills became president, Former President Rawlings came out publicly against the President when he spoke to a group of women

and claimed several members of Atta Mills government are ‘traitors’ and that there is a lack of integrity in the government which may affect the chances of the party in the 2012 elections. Rawlings’ wife, Nana, contested the primaries with him but was soundly defeated. Further cracks resulted in a call by the presidency responded asking him and his wife to leave the party and see if it made any difference in the next elections. Indeed, a new party (National Democratic Party) was formed and its top members claim the Rawlings family are a part of them. A twist was introduced

when Rawlings and Atta Mills held a meeting with a top king in Ghana and both were at each others throats. While the presidency was silent about the meeting, Rawlings told a group of NDC members that Atta Mills accused him of publicly insulting him. Rawlings further claimed that Atta Mills failed to act against former government officers who were corrupt. Again, Rawlings met with Atta Mills at the Osu Castle presidential house and reportedly told him point-blank that he would not support the latter’s re-election bid. The new president, John Mahama is a preferable candidate

to some of the party members but Nana Rawlings still commands huge following. Since Mahama did not contest for the party ticket, it may be handed instead to Nana Rawlings despite having won only 3.1% of the votes at the primaries. Either way though, from sources in Ghana, it is highly unlikely that the opposition NPP candidate Nana Akufo Addo will be defeated this time around as the former Attorney-General whose father is among those referred to as the ‘big 6’ who fought for Ghanian independence is still hugely popular. Demola Thomas Olarewaju wrote in from Lagos.

Dankwambo’s holistic devt approach in Gombe Continued from page 13

the people with their resources committed to his hands, just as it would be pointless building infrastructures while those they are meant for are not attended to. Side-by-side with balancing the table comes with a scheme through which the issue of the state’s peculiar security challenge is being addressed. This agenda is being executed through the Talba Youth Rehabilitation Scheme under which 1,200 youths have been trained as Ward, Environmental and Traffic Marshals and put on salary from the state government. Similarly, 320 youths have been trained on seven trades and resettled with N200,000 soft loan. That

programme has been scaled up to accommodate 520 youths and 13 trades. The rehabilitation programme on the other hand is a continuous exercise and as such, camp would soon reopen for another set of trainees. Still in the areas of training, 110 tertiary institution graduate youths at the time of filing in this piece are undergoing training in renewable energy. The intension is to resettle them with tools of the trade after training while there is a proposal for N200,000 take-off grant as loan. Education has been found to be another veritable front for reconditioning the mindsets and future of Gombe youths as well as address the problems

associated with idleness. Accordingly, primary, secondary, remedial and tertiary institutions are being built across the state by the government while opening a window of opportunity for the employment for qualified but jobless persons to fill the thousands of begging teaching vacancies in the state government. Time and space may not be adequate to mention it all but it very appropriate to say that Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo’s footprint is in the labyrinth of every sector and sphere of human endeavour in Gombe state and “it is still like we have not started,” said the Governor while performing a

public function. Yet some watchers of event on the other hand are saying that what Dankwambo has done in a spate of 14 months far outweigh what many of his counterparts have achieved in 48 months. All the aforementioned and innumerable unmentioned physical projects as well as visible and invisible projects were possible due to mindful, accountable and meticulous attitude towards public fund. And the fact that Gombe state is practically the least on the statutory allocation chart makes the feat simply superlative splendid. Little wonder the Governor said while receiving Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, the Executive Secretary of

Nigeria Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative that “it is not the amount accruing to a state that matters, but how well it is managed and used for the betterment of the people and state”. It is also no surprise that he wished more fund was available to the state in view of the immensity of work yet to be done. But for the much already done, the people of Gombe state are proud to be associated with the effective and efficient development approach and good governance while praying for greater impact and more strength to deliver the goods for the betterment of Gombe state. M. L. Ismail writes from Bolari Quarters in Gombe state



Keeping up with the Jonathans By Adepoju Paul Olusegun


arling, are we sure we made the right decision by accepting the permanent secretary appointment?’’ “What are you talking about? You’ve been looking for an opportunity to get rid of me from Aso Rock. Now that you got your chance you are changing your mind.’’ “It’s not like that, I just want to ensure all parties are happy with the decision.” “And since when did you start caring about what everyone wants? Looks like BH is getting to you.” “What is BH? Boko Ha.....” (Interjects) “shhhhhhh, don’t mention that name abeg. Don’t you know they have eyes and ears everywhere?” “I just appointed new security chiefs; they are on top of the situation.” “You didn’t just say that. It’s okay to be deceived inasmuch as you are not deceiving yourself. But you are carrying that stereotypical message to our matrimonial bed. Kai, Reuben don enter your head o!” “Are they false?” “Yes they are. Or do you think they are true?” “Yes. Cos newspapers rarely publish news of BH these days.” “What do you expect? ThisDay office was bombed right under our nose here in Abuja. Thank God the bomb didn’t extend to Jabi Motor Park on the other side of the road. Since then, papers had lowered their coverage since they are not sure which outlet is next. My dear, stop listening and reading wrong

reports they doctor here in this rocky heavens.” “So how will I know what is truly happening in Nigeria?” “Two options. Me and Facebook.” “But you are a permsec now, and my Facebook page is filled with curses that outlive our tenth generation. So I’m still stuck with my special advisers and various presidential committees.” “Give me an official appointment and I’ll advise you accordingly.” “Lol, I can’t stop laughing.” “Which one is ‘lol’? Is it not a popular chatting abbreviation? Why are you using it for me?” “Sorry dear, I’m just at a crossroads and shocked by the strong odds stacked against my government. There is nothing I do that people won’t complain about. Just imagine how kids that were not born when I got my PhD were insulting me when I honored MKO by renaming UNILAG. One of the posters read ‘GEJ is confused as usual’. I don’t know how to please these people.” “You don’t have to please anybody. You should learn from me. They say I can’t speak correct English language and advise I stick to the written speeches. But do I care? I don’t mind them. I know a lot of journalists are now in Bayelsa waiting for me to start making silly grammartical mistakes but I don’t go around worrying myself.” “I think you should be concerned. I was a lil scared when you said ‘we all have AIDS’ but not as scared as when you said “fellow widows”. Those are serious words with potentially fatal consequences, especially in

a superstitious nation and presidential habitation like ours.” “You won’t die young my dear. You didn’t die as a lecturer despite the numerous ASUU strikes, you didn’t die as deputy governor, as governor and as vice president.” “But there is power in the tongue, or didn’t you hear the vicar’s message at the Fathers’ Day celebration service?” “Ooooh! The service at which you refused to say amen to the preachers’ prayers.” “Yea, that one. But what is the problem of Nigerians, must I say amen to every prayer said by Pastor Adeboye, Cardinal Okogie, and Pastor Chris?” “Which of the ‘Chrises’, the one with hair issue or the one with marital issues?” “Don’t judge the man of God” “People shouldn’t judge me either” “You are their leader, they elected you.” “Pastors are leaders too, double standards could destroy this nation.” “How?” “My wife makes linguistic mistakes, she becomes a laughing stock; the GO makes grammartical errors, they call it a word of knowledge” “A man beats his child, they charge him for assault; a pastor slaps a member, they call it deliverance.” “Oh, this is my favorite.” “Tell me” “Okay here it is. Fela marries many wives in a day, they call him a fornicator; a pastor divorces his third wife going for fourth, they say he’s being persecuted.”

“Someone once said the best way to get away with a crime in Nigeria is to say the phrase ‘Thus saith the Lord’ before commiting the crime.” “Just like the various killings in the north that are giving me sleepless nights. As you can bear me witness, I barely sleep these days” “I agree with you, and it is affecting your performance, I can tell.” “Which performance are you talking about?” “No it’s nothing, keep talking” “Just imagine the headaches I have to cure: insecurity, power, refineries, roads, godfathers, ACN which by the way is getting stronger these days, and the economy which Ngozi said needs urgent actions” “What of the pastor that keeps attacking you from the pulpit, Dele who keeps swinging the pedulum, El-Rufai that can’t stay off Twitter, Omojuwa, and the ‘enemies’ cursing you on Facebook? Obviously Reuben cannot handle all of them alone. Maybe you should set up a committee to handle that area for you.” “LWKMD” “Stop using those chat abbreviations for me” “Sorry dear, your suggestion made me laugh. If I heard you right, you want me to set up a Presidential Committee on the handling of the President’s enemies. Right?” “Something like that” “That is not a committee, it’s a killer squad, members will include professionals like Sergeant Rogers. Abeg, I no get that kain mind”

“Those people are not being fair with their clamour for your resignation, the latest being the legislators” “Seriously, I’m not afraid of the plot, because how can a house whose members couldn’t obey the first rule of corruption which is “Thou shall not get caught” successfully impeach me?” “Are you saying it is not possible? Cos if you are thinking that then you might be wrong.” “How do you mean?” “Remember Etteh Must Go?” “Yes” “They painted her before the whole world as corrupt only for you to give her a national award when she was found innocent. I see them deploying the same strategy here, that’s why we need my Perm Second job which has a guaranteed retirement package.” “I can’t imagine that happening because I’ve not concluded my Transformation Agenda” “Just keep exposing them, I know that’s why they are angry but don’t dull yourself like Etteh and reduce the number of literary warriors by attracting them with juicy appointments. I love what you did with Ribadu, poor boy” “You are so intelligent and helpful tonight, what is responsible?” “The weather is cold, my husband is here and we are all by ourselves. What do you expect? Stop asking questions and let’s get it over with before breaking news take you away from my side.” “Now you understand why I like to be on top, of the situation of course.” “Hehehe, oya now”

China, Africa poised for brighter economic, trade future Continued from page 13

development”, restructure and upgrade bilateral trade and economic cooperation, strengthen the bond and broaden the basis of shared interests with Africa to solve the “growing pains”. The two sides will work together to tackle external challenges and inject new vitality to the intensified SouthSouth cooperation. —Reinvent ways of cooperation to enhance the role of Chinese and African economies in the global value and industrial chain. We will continue to expand investment cooperation with Africa, and migrate to Africa industrial chains with which China enjoys a comparative edge, so as to extend the value-added chain for “Made in Africa” products and create more job opportunities for African people. We will deepen cooperation with Africa on infrastructure development to cover pre- and post-construction stages from planning and design to operation and management. With these efforts, we seek to upgrade our bilateral cooperation in quality and efficiency, turn Africa’s potential into

development strengths, and share the benefits of the relocation of the global industrial chain. —Expand scope of cooperation to locate new areas of growth for all-round China-Africa cooperation. We support the two sides to strengthen cooperation on deep resource processing, agricultural development and manufacturing, and explore opportunities for cooperation in finance, commerce, logistics and aviation to create synergy in a wide range of industries. We will actively engage with Africa in its integration initiative by encouraging competent Chinese companies and financial institutions to participate in cross boarder and inter-regional infrastructure projects in Africa, enhance exchange and cooperation between the two sides on regional trade facilitation in Africa, and gradually establish a comprehensive, diversified and multi-layered China-Africa trade and economic cooperation system. —Focus on improving people’s welfare, and support African countries’ efforts in achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

China will remain committed to deepening South-South cooperation, and continue to provide aid to African countries to the best of our capabilities, with a focus on areas that most affect people’s welfare such as the introduction and use of agricultural technologies, healthcare and drinking water. We will also provide more support in such fields as human resources development, vocational training and environmental protection. These efforts are aimed at helping African countries improve their development capabilities and enable African people to benefit more from China’s development assistance to Africa. — Foster a sound environment and facilitate cooperation between more Chinese and African businesses. We will work to see more investment protection agreements and double taxation avoidance agreements signed and have the existing ones well implemented, and enhance cooperation on consular protection. We will promote more experience and knowledge sharing with our African

counterparts in areas including development concept, policies, laws and regulations, and industrial park development. We will encourage companies to fulfill their social responsibilities and pay greater attention to environmental protection and project sustainability. The function of the China-Africa Business Conference and the chambers of commerce of both China and African countries will be fully utilized to provide trade and investment promotion services. We will create a fair, transparent, safe and convenient business and investment environment for Chinese and African companies. — Support African countries’ positions and safeguard the common interests of developing countries. We will further strengthen coordination with African countries in promoting the establishment of an open and free global trading system. We support African countries’ positions in the Doha Round of negotiations to protect their own interests. We will work together with African countries so that the Doha Round can achieve substantive results in areas of the

greatest concern to developing countries, especially least developed countries, and realize early harvest. Twelve years ago, China and African countries launched together the Forum on ChinaAfrica Cooperation, which unveiled a brand new page in China-Africa trade and economic cooperation. Today, twelve years later, China will continue working with African countries to consolidate the Forum’s achievements, seize development opportunities, identify breakthrough points for mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation, promote the comprehensive, coordinated and sustainable development of China-Africa trade and economic cooperation, further substantiate the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership, and contribute to the economic development of both China and African countries as well as global economic recovery. Chen Deming is the Minister of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China and honorary Co-Chair of the Chinese Follow-up Committee of FOCAC)



FCTA extends commencement of mini-bus feeder routes operation By Josephine Ella


he Transportation Secretariat of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), has extended the commencement date for implementation of its policy on mini-bus feeder route, slated earlier for August 1 to October 1, 2012. This was contained in a press release issued by the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the secretariat, Mrs Stella Ojeme. According to the statement, the Secretary of Transportation, Engr. Jonathan Achara Ivoke ,

in the meeting he held with licensed operators in his office has agreed to extend the date for the compliance with the policy to the above mentioned date. He was quoted to have said that it became necessary to extend the date following appeals from the operators especially the mini- bus operators under the aegis of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) that they needed more time to sensitise their drivers on the new policy. The Secretary, who expressed his displeasure at the behaviour of members of NURTW at the

Mombassa motor park, according to the release said that though the present FCT administration is a listening one, any licensed operator that attacks any FCTA official who is assigned the responsibilities to sensitise the drivers and the public would have their parks closed down. It said Engr Ivoke, however, advised members of the mini-bus union to join together to migrate to high capacity buses for their operations as the FCT intends to reduce drastically the number of mini buses operating within the city. He added that the FCTA would

facilitate their access to soft loans from the Urban Development Bank (UDB ) and private financiers. According to the press release, he therefore, enjoined the operators to be law abiding as the FCTA is not out to pursue anybody earning their legitimate livelihood from FCT but the secretariat was just out to sanitise the transportation sector according to its mandate. It further stated that when the Bus Mass Transit is fully implemented, the congestion in the city would be drastically reduced.

Three accused of stealing 200 bags of cement


hree men, Sunday Ijou of Oakline Securities,Musa Pamun of No. 12 Danji Street, Maitama and Ernest Benchep of China Cable Corporation have been accused of stealing 200 bags of cement from a Chinese company. Facing charges of joint act and theft before an Abuja Magistrate’s Court, the Police Prosecutor, Inspector Sani Yakubu said the trio conspired between May 12 and June 3, 2012 and stole 200 bags of cement valued at N360, 000, which belonged to China Cable Corporation. Yakubu told the court that the matter was reported to Wuye police station on June 5, 2012 by one Mr Alex Onovweruo of No. 12 Dutsy Street, Gwarimpa. He said that the first accused, Benchep, a security man with the company, conspired with the other two accused to steal the bags of cement which was kept in the store room of the company. The prosecutor said the offence contravenes Sections 79 and 287 of the Penal Code. The Magistrate, Musa Jobbo, granted the accused persons bail in the sum of N100, 000 each with one surety who must be resident in a fixed address and within the jurisdiction of the court. Jobbo adjourned the case to July 31, 2012 for hearing. (NAN)

Cleric charges Muslims to A middle aged man preparing to take his breakfast by the road side, yesterday in Nyanya. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo Primary health board sensitises rural women on child health care build worship Development Board (PHCDB) in where they can carry out and take care of their health at centres By Josephine Ella


sentisation workshop, aimed at educating women on best health practices towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on reduction of infant mortality within the 2015 target, was yesterday, organised for women in rural communities of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). The workshop which had female and male representatives from communities in AMAC, Kuje and Bwari area councils in attendance, was organised by the FCT Primary Health Care

collaboration with the United Nations Education Children Fund (UNCEF). Participants were given lectures on the need to imbibe good health practices for themselves and their newborn babies. Addressing journalists, the Executive Secretary, FCT PHCDB, Dr. Rilwanu Mohammed explained that the training of communities on maternal newborn health is a new concept. He said: “The World Health Organisation (WHO), UNICEF and the United Nations are looking at communities as areas

interventions. Since these interventions are in the communities, we want to train the communities on how to take care of their own babies especially from birth to 28 days which is the highest and risky period of a child’s life”. He revealed that 70 per cent of pregnant women are delivered by traditional birth attendants, resulting to most of them dying due to birth complications while only 30 per cent women deliver in the hospitals. The secretary therefore, advised that: “Communities should value their own health

home. From the beginning when a women is pregnant she should attend ante natal care properly and them after this, she delivers in the hospital”. Continuing, he added that, “after delivery we want them to start breast feeding immediately because breast milk has a lot of anti-bacteria property to prevent a child from getting infection”. Dr. Mohammed hinted that after the training, participants who are representatives of various communities in the three councils would now be engaged to train other members of the communities.

Teenager gets two months sentence for stealing motorcycle


teenager, Hassan Zakari has been sentenced to two months imprisonment by an Abuja Chief Magistrate’s Court for stealing a motorcycle. One Inspector Tonga Ibrahim of the Alfa Patrol Team in Asokoro on July 21, was said to have

arrested and took the accused to the Asokoro police station. The Police Prosecutor, Inspector Philip Akogwu, told the court that the inspector alleged that Zakari, 17-year-old, stole a motorcycle which was parked by the fence of a house at

Asokoro, adding that the act contravenes Section 319a of the Penal Code. He said that the accused was arrested with the motorcycle around the AYA Roundabout in the FCT during a police patrol. The accused pleaded guilty to

the offence saying, “I came into town for about a week now and I have nothing to eat that is why I stole the motorcycle ’’. The Magistrate, Mrs Vera Tom Tukura sentenced him to two months in prison with a fine of N1,000.

By Adeola Tukuru


n Islamic scholar, Sheik Usman Ali Jos has advised Muslims to contribute towards building of mosque in any environment they find themselves. The Islamic scholar, who made the call yesterday, during the inauguration of New Zango Central Mosque in Gwagwalada also enjoined Muslims to unite as a single entity as encouraged by Prophet Muhammad. He warned them against doing things contrary to the will of Allah, saying an act is a sin in the sight of God, as he charged them to give priority to assisting the less-privilege members of the society. Sheik Ali Jos however, advised them to be good ambassadors of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) in whatever condition they might find themselves. He further urged scholars to spread Allah's good works with a view to educating Muslims.



My ex-husband lives in my house almost two years after divorce The forceful eviction of the head, legal unit of the National Nuclear Regulatory Agency, Barrister Abdulhadi Attah Abdullahi last Friday by his former wife, drew media attention to No. 4 Birao Street, Wuse 2, Abuja over the rightful ownership of the property. In this interview with Abubakar Ibrahim, Amina, a child protection officer with the National Human Rights Commission reacts to our story ‘They want to kill me’ published in our Wednesday’s edition.

Amina Saleh Abdullahi


ell us about your marriage, the divorce and the current crisis over the house you share with your former husband? We got married in 1999. Then, Abdulhadi was not gainfully employed but doing what we call CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission) runs in his car. At the point of marriage, he said he could not, since he was not gainfully employed, afford to pay accommodation here in Abuja. He said, ‘why don’t we see how we could get a government accommodation on him to live in after the marriage?’ At that point, I was working as a civil servant and he wasn’t. He said because of his contact, Solomon Ewuga, then minister of state (Federal capital Territory) gave us the allocation. If I wasn’t entitled as a civil servant, I couldn’t have got it. We stayed in that house until the letter of execution came in. Hadi was not employed until 2006 as a government worker. I’ve been working in government for the past 17 years. Based on this, I was given a letter of allocation which I paid 20 percent for. Eventually, I obtained mortgage loan from the Aso Savings and Loan to settle the balance which was deducted from my salary as a civil servant. After the divorce on 6th December, 2010, I asked Abdulhadi through a friend to move out of my house. Suddenly, I got two alerts on my phone of N500,000 each. He

Certificate of occupancy of the house at No 4 Birao Str, Wuse 2, Abuja fraudulently put N1million in my account in order to lay claim that he has paid part of the house. He called his friend that he has renovated the house and wouldn’t move from it. The next day, I withdrew the money and paid it back into his account. I still insisted that he should move out of the house but because he said he renovated the house, he kept increasing the cost from N4 million to N7million to N15 million. Since 2010 when we got divorced, we have been staying under the same roof. I have been harassed, insulted, beaten by Abdulhadi and his servants. His driver, Aminu in particular is one who I even have an allegation of threat to my life because he threatened to kill me in front of my children. With the protection of Hadi, he insults my parents and threatens me. Hadi also told the former maigadi(gateman) never to open the gate for me. Before we got to divorce, there was a cousin of his(Hauwa) in the house. He would pay her school fees without paying my children’s school fees. It got to a point that when the girl saw crisis between us, she will take his underwear and wash them. When I got too many slaps and beatings from him, I told his father that I’m going to send the girl back to his senior brother (Musa Elayo) in Asokoro which I did. One of his elder brothers who stayed in London for over thirty

something years told Abdulhadi to get me arrested under charges of abduction and kidnap. I had a baby of 1year and 10 months old when police came and arrested me by 2am. I made a statement at the police station and at 5am, we went for investigation only for Hadi to come back and write that I had withdrawn the allegation. Hadi told me that if his cousin is not returned back to the house, there will be no marriage. He stopped providing for his family since March 2010 when crisis started up till date. Even with the subsisting court order from June, he has failed to provide for the children. Infact, he was even summoned on Monday to the court to explain why he has not provided upkeep for his children. I have been single-handedly taking care of these children by paying the lesson teachers, the house-

Abdulhadi Attah Abdullahi

helps, washmen, light, water, all the bills. When I put on the generator, he will be the person to put on the light on end. We have continued to live in this unholy situation. There is no way a couple, in Islam or any other religion will stay together for one year and seven months being divorced without having crisis. No family member of his has ever come to me after the divorce on how to resolve this illegal stay. I tried to go to court twice. First one, he said in court that I bribed the judge…I tried the second one and he said I should move to the high court. I moved there and he sent messages telling me that he knows the CJ and would ensure I won’t get justice. Based on that, I withdrew the matter and he is aware. I have done all I can to end our stay

I changed the lock to the house but there is a second entrance into the sitting room which I knew he has a key through which he should have gained access to the house. I came back home with my five children, only for me to be denied access at the gate

together but he refused. On Tuesday last week, I noticed a problem with the locks. So, I changed the lock to the house but there is a second entrance into the sitting room which I knew he has a key through which he should have gained access to the house. I came back home with my five children, only for me to be denied access at the gate. He told me again that my stay in that house is over and that I will never set my foot in it again. He sent my lesson teacher, maiguard and washman away. On Friday, I went to the house and the whole of it was locked. He left strict instruction not to be allowed to enter my own house. I pleaded with the maiguard to please allow me access to the house let everybody know that Abdulhadi has a house upstairs which I assisted him in getting. He bought the house from a former civil servant occupying it and has had a tenant occupying it for the past six years. This is a tenant whose wife boils water for Abdulhadi to bath, to the extent that she was accompanying Abdulhadi to court to testify that I should be denied custody of my children. I brought those tenants to the place and they hardly pay their rents. I have never had a Kobo from the rent for the fact that Hadi is staying in my premises. Continued on page 40






- Pg 18

Guid principles for stakeholders

Mob: 08033644990

BoI showcases Nigerian products at London Olympics

From Ngozi Onyeakusi, Lagos


CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi

IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde

Fuel subsidy to cost economy N863bn – IMF . . . says growth while strong, not fully inclusive

By Aminu Imam


he International Monetary Fund (IMF), has predicted the Federal Government that the partial retention of subsidies on fuel will cost the economy N862.7 billion in 2012. The international financial surveillance body made the observation in its staff report for 2011 Article IV Consultation with Nigeria, predicting that, “The partial retention of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government will cost the country some N862.7 billion this year, translating to two per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). According to the IMF report released yesterday, “The Federal Government had projected a GDP of N43.135 trillion for the 2012 fiscal year and as at the end of the first quarter of this year, the GDP was N9.142 trillion, which translated to a growth rate of 6.17 per cent. In the report, the IMF advised the Federal Government to find

ways to counterbalance at least half of the cost so as not to further deplete the reserves. “Staff recommends that the authorities come up with additional measures to offset at least half of this cost in order not to jeopardise the build-up of reserves in the Sovereign Wealth Fund (the likely source of funding for the subsidy),” the body further stated. Also, the IMF warned that Nigeria’s growth while strong, has not been fully inclusive, warning that, “although Nigeria’s growth rate over the last decade has been among the highest in sub-Saharan Africa and there is some evidence of income gains for the rural poor, the official unemployment rate has risen in recent years, reaching 24 percent in 2011, and the achievement of many of the Millennium Development Goals is still a long way away.


25th July, 2012 BUYING 0.2664 187.8674 239.9246 41.2863 154.84

SELLING 0.2864 189.0807 241.4741 41.5529 155.84


BUYING 207 258 40 165

SELLING 209 260 42 169

in substantially lower world oil prices, thereby limiting the possibilities for fiscal consolidation and the build up of international reserves . “Based on the limited data available to staff, spillovers from potential eurozone banking problems appear small as domestic banks rely relatively little on external funding. Failure to implement the authorities’ planned fiscal adjustment measures would result in faster accumulation of domestic debt, and put an undue burden on monetary policy to contain inflation and prevent pressures on the naira and international reserves. “Finally, the ongoing violence in the northern Nigeria could adversely impact growth prospects, particularly if it spread to other parts of the country”, stated the BrettonWoods institution.

Management Tip of the Day



According to the IMF the baseline economic growth outlook remains positive. Non-oil GDP growth is projected to moderate to 7.8 percent in 2012, reflecting the tighter monetary and fiscal policies and a softer global economy, while overall GDP growth would rise slightly to 6.9 percent on the basis of a moderate rebound in oil output. Over the medium term, non-oil growth is projected to moderate further, reflecting continued fiscal adjustment, and then level off at about 7 percent. Oil production would grow gradually, rising from 2.4 million barrels per day in 2011 to 2.6 million barrels per day in 2015. “Risks to the short-term outlook are skewed to the downside. A larger than envisaged deterioration in the global environment could result


Set ground rules for your global team

anagers of global teams need to make special considerations to ensure everyone is able to contribute, regardless of their culture or location. Here’s how: • Make the team norms explicit. People can bring different and potentially conflicting communication approaches to the table. It’s

critical to discuss how those will influence the standards and expectations of your team. • Create an inclusive team environment. Some individuals can feel intense social pressure around people from other cultures, especially when other non-natives seem to be doing “just fine.” Work hard to create a “safe” atmosphere so members

are able to express their concerns. • Give everyone the right skills. If your team’s culture is essentially Western and you speak English, dedicate time and resources to making sure everyone has the skills in these areas necessary to contribute to their fullest. Source: Harvard Business Review

he Bank of Industry (BoI) is to showcase Nigeria’s apparels and products at the London 2012 Olympics to over 300 participants. The exposition of the products is a collection of some of the highly talented small business owners, who operate in the cotton, textile and garment industry sector of the economy. The items that are on display at the Nigeria house, according to a statement from Bol, are basically ethnic fabrics, which include the adire range and aso oke, as well as, Nigerian prints. Besides apparels, there are also on display ladies hand bags, shoes, IPad cases, conference folders and other accessories produced from Nigerian fabrics and prints. “In the course of this exposition, contacts are expected to be made with potential buyers and market opportunities explored while literatures on their production through the entire value chain are also in circulation.” The statement explained that many of the exhibitors are beneficiaries of the Federal Government’s N100 billion Cotton, Textile and Garment Revival Scheme that is being managed by the BoI.

US EXIM Bank provides N240bn for Nigeria-bound investors By Abdulwahab Isa


he Export-Import (EXIM) Bank of the United States has provided the sum of $1.5 billion (N240bn) as loans for American businesses interested in investing in Nigeria. The Project Director of the Tricontinental Group (USA), Mr. Funsho Abiri stated this in Abuja on Wednesday while briefing newsmen on the August 2012 Nigeria-America Business and Investment Summit in Atlanta, Georgia. However, only about $300m has been utilised from the beginning of 2012. Abiri added that there was a deliberate policy by the American government to provide a soft landing for its firms which are interested in Nigeria as the business environments in Europe and North America are already saturated. He called on state governors to send delegates to the summit to interact with American businessmen who are interested in investing in Nigeria especially in the transportation sector which the summit would focus on.



ocal government councils shall co-operate amongst themselves to ensure the elimination of multiple taxation at the local government level. In addition, all local governments, departments and agencies are required to provide and share all information that would assist in the accurate assessment and collection of the relevant taxes. This would include amongst others: a. Having a revenue generation as distinct from an expenditure mindset. b. Strict implementation of tax laws including overt and explicit support through referrals of major cases to tax authorities (federal and state) on a continuous basis and integration of psyche in the day to day business of government. c. Ensuring proper assessment, collection and prompt remittance of taxes to designated government accounts. d. Ensuring fiscal compliance of every person that they deal with e. Ensuring that every database maintained in government has a compulsory field for the inclusion of the unique taxpayer identification number for every company, individual and other registered organization. f. Use of e-payment systems in all transactions inclusive of direct remittance to the accounts of the tax authorities. g. Use of technology and related systems in the way business is done example, electronic cash registers, etc and linkage of database and such systems in the maintained in government to the federal and State tax authority database. h. Ensuring tax is a major consideration in the evaluation process of individuals and organizations such that the lack of payment of taxes is seen as an affront on government and a crime. i. Ensuring that all Tax Clearance Certificates and other tax documents used in government transactions are referred back to the relevant revenue authority for authentification. Legislative Arm The legislative arm of government encompasses the organs of Government at the Federal and state level which are empowered to make laws. We have set out below their roles and responsibilities. National Assembly


he Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria vests the powers or amends laws on the taxation of income or profits in the National Assembly. Some state governments and indeed the Federal Government have used the omnibus clauses in section 4 of the Constitution to address gaps to enact laws in the interest of peace and good governance, but also the federal Government through the national assembly


Guiding principles for stakeholders: Roles, responsibilities and relationship between the stakeholders (4) State House of Assembly


he Nigerian Constitution also provides the powers of the State Houses of Assembly in relation to imposition of Federal, State and Local Government taxes. With regards to Federal Taxes specifically covered in section D, Part II of the Nigerian Constitution, the powers of the State Houses of Assembly are restricted to collection and administration of certain taxes subject to authorisation by the National Assembly.


Acting Executive Chairman, FIRS, Alhaji Kabiru Mashi the same powers to enact laws in the interest of peace and good governance with the provision that were there is a conflict, the laws enacted by the Federal Government prevail. It is therefore the Constitutional responsibility of the National Assembly to make tax laws or amend existing laws as provided in the second Schedule to the Constitution, and as may be required under section 4 of the Constitution, after obtaining recommendations from the Federal Ministry of Finance and other relevant government agencies or from the citizenry. The National Assembly shall work closely with the federal Executive Council on tax and revenue matters, as any legislation passed in this respect would be enforced by the FEC or it organs. The National Assembly would be required to translate policy recommendations into laws, where required and also identify lacunae in our laws, which should be addresses for effective administration of taxes and revenue generation in the country.


t shall also be responsible for the obtaining input from the general public and providing feedback to the Nigerian people on relevant legislation in their roles as the elected representatives of the Nigerian



n the exercise of its power, the National Assembly shall ensure compliance with the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution, which provides the powers of the National Assembly in relation to tax legislation.

n the exercise of any such powers granted by National Assembly, the states' Houses of Assembly shall work closely with the state Executive Council and its organs that would be responsible for the collection and administration of the taxes. The state Houses of Assembly shall also liaise with the National Assembly, where required to facilitate changes in relevant legislation that will assist the State Houses of Assembly effectively discharge its duties. The various states' Houses of Assembly shall also be responsible for legislation that will enable the local governments in the state effectively discharge their duties with respect to the collection of rates, fees and levies which are within their jurisdiction. in this regard, and in order to harmonise rates, fees levies, fines, tolls and charges collectible by the Local Government Authorities, the Joint Tax Board shall advise on the proposed charges for enactment by the states' Houses of Assembly.

Judiciary The Judiciary is the body empowered to interpret tax laws and adjudicate on tax matters. It is therefore expected that all tax disputes which cannot be resolved in any other legal manner shall be referred to the judiciary for adjudication. In this regard, it is expected that the judiciary would play a central role in the resolution of fiscal disputes between the different arms and tiers of Government. The Judiciary would be expected to maintain an independent and neutral role in the discharge of its functions. However, when necessary, it shall seek the co-operation and assistance of the other arms of Government or their organs for the purpose of the effective discharge of its duties. In this regard, the judiciary may partner with the tax authorities in the training of its personnel on tax issues and other technical matters. In addition, it shall be the responsibility of the judiciary to ensure that its personnel are up to date with developments in the Nigerian tax system so they can adjudicate on technical matters for their consideration. All other arms and levels of government, tax/revenue authorities, the tax-paying public and other stakeholders shall ensure strict compliance with the decisions of the judiciary in order to guarantee the integrity of the judicial system and aid the development of tax jurisprudence in Nigeria, thereby creating a stable tax system in which all stakeholders have confidence.



An open letter to the President: Your Excellency, one more favour for late General Hassan Usman Katsina

Late General Hassan Usman Katsina By Badamasi S. Burji


uesday this week was exactly seventeen years ago, the North lost a leader and patriot. General Hassan Usman Katsina died on 24th July, 1995. Last week I wrote north without general Hassan which I received several msg and calls but today is for my President. General Hassan Usman, Katsina was a modest, nonaggressive, non-arrogant individual, approachable, simple and punctual. He related with the old and young, all over Nigeria. He was one of such elders who made themselves reachable by all and sundry. He never rated himself beyond and above his seemingly self-defined human limits, for which he cut the image of a serious-minded individual. General Hassan Usman Katsina was a human factory of wisdom and tact. Your Excellency, Mr. President its clear and well known to entire north and some other Southerners that at the 1992 Radio Nigeria Kaduna seminar, Hassan expressed in a very painful voice, his objection to the old culture of begging by the Hausa-Fulanis. Once as an army officer in the 70’s, he visited Brigadier Abba Kyari in the Former North-Eastern State. In Maiduguri the capital, as he and his host drove along the street, they kept stopping, at his request, so that he could ask the beggars lounging at street corners and on the cobblewalk, where they came from. “Sokoto, answered one beggar”. What of you? Hassan asked another””Katsina,” came the reply. “What of that one”? “Kano, Sir!” None of the beggars came from any of the Southern States. Hassan was outraged. It is only Hausa-Fulanis that beg. “It is

scandalous of northern leadership”, he said, pointing out that though begins was premised on religious precepts by the beggars,, culture was more instrumental in supporting the antiquated, shameful habit. He called for concerted to rid the society of it. Begging, however, thrives on. With increasing economic difficulties, it can only be said to have worsened. The effects today are obvious. According to a Hausa proverb “Allah wadan naka ya lalace” General Hassan may your soul rest in perfect peace, today the minority from the southsouth became a president of Nigeria his name is Chief Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, today he is the one building future for Almajiri that you have been talking about the northern leaders find solution for them. Even though some northerners call this project TROJAN HORSE PROJECT. However whether it’s a Trojan horse project or not to me he deserved our commendation for that, therefore is left the governors to made it now UnTrojan horse project as he laid foundation. Even though like you have started paying him in return when you compared what he did to South South when he was a military governor of northern region. According to Chief (Dr.) I. I. Morphy.Former Chairman NNN Board of Directors. said in his tribute describe General Hassan as a Great Unifier, General Hassan Usman Katsina, a gallant soldier and a nationalist grade one, has passed away! We the leaders of the minority communities of Nigeria fist met General Hassan Usman Katsina during the 1996 Nigeria crisis when he was

governor of Northern Nigeria. We the minorities of Eastern Nigeria who opposed secession, namely Late Chief E. O. Eyo, Chief Sebastian Emoren and Late Chief Andrew Basseyall of Calabar, Late Chief Winike Briggs Chief Dapa Briaiye, etc of Rivers, Chief Okoiop Arikpo, Chief (Dr.) I. I. Morphy, Late Chief Michael Ogon, Late Chief Puis Ojua all of Ogoja were in Lagos. We all agreed to tour the then three regions-Mid-Wester Nigeria. Western Nigeria, and Northern Nigeria. For midwestern Nigeria we were advised by the security organization not to visit even though governor Ejoor had agreed to meet with us. In the mid-west we had strong support led by Chief Anthony Enahoro and the agitation for state creation was intensified even at the Gowon, Constitutional Conference in Lagos. As for western Nigeria, Governor Adebayo refused to meet us, saying that we should go back to the East and fight our issues there and gave us not support for the agitation for state creation. In Northern Nigeria, General Hassan, the Military Governor of the biggest region, accepted to meet us. He met us and encouraged us. He gave us the biggest support in the struggle for creation of states in Nigeria. He called the Northern leaders and spoke to then on the need to keep the country as one united group and urged them to support the breaking up of the country into states. He kept his words until twelve states were created by General Gowon, the then Head of State. This country owes General Hassan Usman, a nationalist grade one and a gallant soldier, a lot of gratitude for helping to keep Nigeria one. This is so because here was a military governor in change of one half of the country and most of the military fighters were from his region. He could have easily asked them to fight to keep the North one country, forgetting about the rest of other Nigerians. That this country is one indivisible country today is because of General Hassan’s contribution. I call on all Nigerians whom I find not giving due honours to their past heroes to stop and think and begin from General Hassan to give honour to those who have contributed to built Nigeria as one united country in Africa”. Sir, But to my greatest surprised despite of all his tract record I don’t think there is any road in Abuja federal capital that was named after this great man. Burji is the author of late General Hassan Usman Katsina Biography, Publishisher of Concern magazine also a columnist for Blueprint Newspaper



Mombasa secessionist group unbanned by Kenyan court A

Somalia set to vote on new constitution


Kenyan court has lifted a ban on a group demanding an independent state around the coastal city of Mombasa - a popular tourist destination. The government outlawed the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) in 2010, describing it as a "criminal group". The government has said it will appeal the High Court's ruling that

the ban was unconstitutional. The ruling raises concern that Kenya's stability could be threatened by louder calls for secession, analysts say. The MRC accuses the government of marginalising the indigenous ethnic groups living along the coast, which is also the centre of the country's tourism sector.

Dozens of MRC members have been arrested this year as the security forces try to enforce the ban. The court said there was no evidence that the MRC had engaged in criminal activity. "The court has been able to deduce that MRC is a political movement. Secession is a political agenda," Justice Francis Tuiyot said. "The court therefore grants the

omalia is on the brink of creating its first legitimate government in more than 20 years. The National Constituent Assembly is meeting in Mogadishu and is due to vote on a new Constitution, and it will also pick members of parliament - who, in turn, will choose Somalia's next president.

UN lifts sanctions against Taylor’s Liberian allies


he UN Security Council has lifted sanctions against 17 Liberians linked to former Liberian president and convicted war criminal Charles Taylor. The asset freezes and travel bans were imposed more than a decade ago in a bid to weaken Taylor while he was in power. Taylor was sentenced to 50 years in jail by a UN-backed court in May for fuelling Sierra Leone's civil war. Liberia's government welcomed the lifting of sanctions against the 17, who include two of Taylor's ex-wives. "The lifting of the travel ban is welcome news for the government of Liberia," AFP news agency quotes the Foreign Minister Augustine Naguafan as saying. More than 25 people remain on the sanctions list, including Taylor's son and arms trader Viktor Bout, the agency says. The BBC's Jonathan PayeLayleh in the capital, Monrovia, says nearly all the people on the sanctions list were pleased with the decision, but the former chairman of Taylor's National Patriotic Party, Cyril Allen, struck a defiant and angry tone. He said the sanctions should have never been imposed and he never "begged" for them to be lifted, even though he could never travel abroad to see his children.

Charles Taylor was jailed for 50 years by the Special Court for Sierra Leone in May

Dozens of MRC members have been arrested this year

MRC a chance to enjoy their political right. They should organise and register as a political party." The court, however, stressed that the MRC must campaign for independence in a democratic way, without inciting war or promoting hate speech. The MRC applauded the decision and the possibility of holding talks with the government. Attorney General Githu Muigai said the government would appeal against the decision. "Any group or organisation challenging the constitutional authority and territorial integrity of the Republic of Kenya cannot enjoy protection by the constitution," he said. The acting head of Kenya's Civil Service, Francis Kimemia, said security chiefs would hold an emergency meeting on Thursday to discuss the "grave implications" of the ruling. "The rule of law will continue to be enforced without fear or favour," Mr Kimemia said. "The government assures Kenyans of their security and that of their property countrywide." In the past the government has rejected talks with the MRC, saying it must first drop its demands for independence.

UK troops in Somalia ‘aiding Africa Union force’


he UK has established a small military presence in Somalia, the British Ministry of Defence has confirmed. A team of 10 military advisers is based at the headquarters of the African Union force in the capital, Mogadishu. They do not have a combat role; their job is to help the AU with planning, communications and medical support. The al-Shabab group, which joined al-Qaeda earlier this year, still controls many rural areas in southern and central Somalia but is under pressure on several fronts. The country has been without a functioning central authority since 1991 and has been wracked by fighting ever since - a situation that has allowed piracy and lawlessness to flourish.

"We have sent a small team of advisers to assist the AU peacekeeping mission. They do not have a combat role," an MoD spokesman said in a statement. BBC world affairs correspondent Peter Biles says the confirmation of a British military presence in Somalia comes at a key moment in the efforts towards a political transition. The UN-backed interim government is supposed to hand over to a new administration by 20 August when a new president and parliament will be elected. Our correspondent says it is hoped that this will end the corruption and misappropriation of funds that have tarnished the reputation of the current

Somali authorities. Ethiopian troops, pro-government militias and the African Union force which has US and European funding

and was boosted earlier this year to nearly 18,000 - have helped the transitional government recently expand its control outside Mogadishu.

The African Union forces in Somalia have been boosted to nearly 18,000 this year

DR Congo’s M23 rebels ‘attacked’ by UN forces


N helicopter gunships have attacked suspected rebel positions in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, reports say. The two sides have been involved in fierce fighting about 50 km (31 miles) north of the provincial capital, Goma. The latest unrest began in April, with the UN and DR Congo government accusing neighbouring Rwanda of backing the rebels - a charge it denies. More than 200,000 people in the region have been displaced by the conflict. The gunships were despatched in support of government forces battling the M23 rebel group, in fighting centred around the Rutshuru area, about 50 km north of Goma. Thousands of people are

streaming out of villages, amidst heavy shelling. They told the BBC that government soldiers were also fleeing the battle. This is a conflict without traditional front lines, and fighting is taking place on multiple fronts,

The UN has its biggest peace-keeping operation in DR Congo Continue reading the main story

says the BBC's Gabriel Gatehouse in Goma. Military sources believe the rebels intend to march on Goma. However, a spokesman for the rebels denied this. The UN has its biggest peacekeeping operation in the

world in DR Congo. It has vowed to defend Goma. It first sent helicopter gunships to attack rebel positions on 12 July. The rebellion is led by renegade general Bosco Ntaganda, who is accused by the UN of receiving military backing from Rwanda. He belongs to the Tutsi ethnic group like the top leadership in Rwanda, which fears the presence of rival Hutu militias in eastern DR Congo. Eastern DR Congo has been plagued by fighting since 1994, when more than a million ethnic Hutus crossed the border into DR Congo following the Rwandan genocide. Rwanda has since twice invaded its much larger neighbour, saying it was trying to take action against Hutu rebels based in DR Congo.



Bo Xilai’s wife charged with murder T

he wife of disgraced Chinese politician Bo Xilai and a family aide have been charged with the murder of a British businessman, state news agency Xinhua has reported. Xinhua said yesterday that the prosecutor's indictment said Bo's wife, Gu Kailai, had a falling out with Briton Neil Heywood over money and worried that it would

threaten her and their son's safety. Gu and the aide, Zhang Xiaojun, are alleged to have poisoned Heywood together, the report said. "The facts of the two defendants' crime are clear, and the evidence is irrefutable and substantial. Therefore, the two defendants should be charged with intentional homicide," Xinhua said.

It did not give a date for the trial, but a family lawyer told the Reuters news agency it was likely to take place on August 7-8. The announcement comes months before the ruling Communist Party unveils a new top leadership. Heywood was found dead in a hotel in Chongqing in November last.

Local officials initially said he died of excessive drinking, but the government announced in April it was investigating Bo's wife in connection with the case. They were charged in the eastern city of Hefei, Xinhua said. It did not say when exactly the indictment was issued or when the crime occurred and why the case is being prosecuted in Hefei and not in Chongqing, the metropolis Bo ran as Communist party secretary and where the couple lived. Prosecutors have interrogated Bo and Zhang and have "heard the opinions" of their defence lawyers, Xinhua said. Bo, the former leader of the

south-western Chinese province of Chongqing, was sacked in March and is now under investigation for a string of accusations ranging from an abuse of power to flouting rules against the Communist party. Bo, 62, was widely seen as pushing for a spot in that new leadership until felled by the scandal brought to light by his former police chief, Wang Lijun. The removal of Bo has triggered rifts and uncertainty, disrupting the Communist Party's usually secretive and carefully choreographed process of settling on a new central leadership in the run up to its 18th congress.

Army patrols streets following deadly riots in India’s restiveAssam


ndian security forces patrolled deserted streets yesterday after days of ethnic riots in Assam state killed at least 36 people, forced tens of thousands to flee their razed homes and shut down road and rail transport. The government deployed about 1,000 soldiers to restore calm after police struggled to quell waves of violence between Bodo tribespeople and Muslim settlers in the remote northeast

Neil Heywood was found dead in a hotel in Chongqing in November last year

Iran offers ‘unchangeable’ support for Syria


Damaged buildings are seen at Al Qussoor area in the Syrian city of Homs on Wednesday.

Army on patrol

ran said yesterday it would stand by its ally Syria, despite mounting international pressure on President Bashar Assad to step down to end a 16-month uprising against his rule. Iran's Press TV quoted first Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi as saying Tehran's support for Syria was "unchangeable," countering suggestions that Iran could soften its backing for Assad, the Shiite Muslim republic's closest Arab ally. "The Iranian people have an unchangeable stance on Syrians and will always stand by them," Rahimi was quoted as saying, accusing major powers of uniting to damage the Syrian nation. Despite lauding popular uprisings in other Arab countries as an "Islamic awakening," Iran has dismissed opposition to Assad's rule as a foreign conspiracy. A statement earlier this month by Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi that Tehran was ready to host talks between the Syrian government and opposition groups suggested a possible policy shift. In a concrete sign of support for the Syrian authorities, a delegation of Syrian ministers visited Tehran on Thursday, agreeing a deal on importing Iranian electricity via Iraq. "We agreed with Iran that in one month agreements be made with Iraq so that, putting problems to one side, electricity imports from Iran begin," the Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) quoted Imad Khamis, Syria's electricity minister, as saying.

of the country. The clashes first erupted at the weekend. Gun battles between police and roving mobs of rioters armed with guns, machetes and sticks had continued overnight, despite police warnings that violators would be shot on sight if they broke a curfew. Police said at least one rioter was killed. The violence appeared to have ebbed on Wednesday. "Thankfully, things have calmed down quite a bit in the past 24-28 hours," an army spokesman said. But safety fears left at least 30 passenger trains and 20 goods trains carrying grains and medicines stranded along a narrow corridor that connects the state to the rest of India on Wednesday. Three trains were able to move later in the day.

Pakistan refuses to reopen graft case against president


akistan's government told the Supreme Court yesterday that it will not reopen an old corruption case against the president, defying a judicial order that has brought down one prime minister and threatens his replacement. The crisis has roiled Pakistan's political system for months, distracting attention from what many Pakistanis believe are more pressing problems, such as the country's ailing economy and fight against the Taleban. The dispute centers on a graft case against President Asif Ali Zardari dating back to the late 1990s in Swiss court, a time when he became known as "Mr. 10 percent" for his reputation of demanding kickbacks on government contracts. The Pakistani Supreme Court has demanded the government write a letter to Swiss authorities asking them to reopen the case. The government has refused, saying Zardari enjoys immunity from prosecution while in office.



Ex-Milosevic ally to become Serbia’s PM T

he wartime spokesperson of late strongman Slobodan Milosevic, Ivica Dacic of the Serbian Socialist Party, is set to become Serbia's new prime minister, triggering unease at home and abroad despite his proclaimed pro-EU policies. If elected, the new cabinet will mark the first time that Milosevic's allies have fully returned to power in Serbia since the former autocrat was ousted in a popular revolt in 2000. Dacic took over the Socialists after Milosevic died in 2006 and has worked to transform the party. He has pledged he would not revive Milosevic's nationalist policies and would press on with Serbia's integration into the European Union, but there are fears his election could undermine postwar reconciliation in the Balkans. His rise comes in the context of deep economic uncertainty in the Balkans state. The Serbian dinar hit a new low versus the euro at 119.05 on Wednesday, reflecting deep uncertainty over the future economic policy of a government about to take power and the fate of the central bank governor.

The dinar has lost some 9.5 per cent in value against the euro this year, battered by concern over Serbia's rising debt of some 55 per cent and a frozen

loan deal with the IMF. The incoming government has said it will rack up more debt and spend to revive the stagnant economy, putting it at

odds with Central Bank Governor Dejan Soskic, who has steered a restrictive policy and called for a reduction in debt. The return of Milosevic's

Socialist Party comes on the heels of the election of another former ultra-nationalist, Tomislav Nikolic, who won the presidential vote in May.

Colorado shooter ‘posted attack plans’


NYPD ‘violated rights’ of Occupy protesters

he man accused in the Colorado movie theatre killings mailed a notebook detailing his plans to a psychiatrist at his university before the attack, as the first funeral was held for one of the 12 people killed. The university said on Wednesday that it had received a suspicious package and that the package was immediately investigated and turned over to authorities within hours of its delivery on Monday. Fox News' website, however, citing unnamed law enforcement sources, reported that shooting suspect 24-year-old James Holmes sent a notebook to the school that sat in a university mailroom unopened since at least July 12 and wasn't found until Monday. In the statement, the university disputed that it received the package on July 12 but did not elaborate. "The anonymous Fox News source that the package was received on July 12 and sat on a loading dock is inaccurate," Jacque Montgomery, a university spokesperson, said in the statement. Fox said the notebook contained drawings of stick figures being shot and a written description of an upcoming attack. A spokespersonn for the FBI's Denver office said the bureau could not speak about any aspect of the investigation because the judge in the case had issued a protective order on Tuesday that strictly limits what attorneys, law enforcement and court staff can say publicly about the case. Wednesday's Fox News report said police and FBI agents were called to the University of Colorado Anschutz medical campus in Aurora on Monday morning after a psychiatrist who is a professor at the school reported receiving a package believed to be from the suspect.

ew York police officers employed excessive force which escalated tensions, unjustified arrests and pervasive surveillance in violation of the rights of Occupy Wall Street protesters, a report from a group of human rights lawyers said on Wednesday. The report by the Global Justice Clinic at New York University's School of Law and the Walter Leitner International Human Rights Clinic at Fordham Law School, cited numerous incidents in which it said police officers employed excessive force without sufficient provocation. Constant police surveillance of Occupy events in some cases appears to violate legal restrictions on police monitoring of protests,

Barack Obama has pledged to tackle gun violence in the wake of the Colorado killing

Ivica Dacic took over the Socialists after Milosevic died in 2006 and has worked to transform the party

Romney to meet with UK leaders during tour


epublican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is visiting Britain's leaders, with the Olympics Games as a backdrop, as he seeks to send a

message that he recognises the close bonds between the US and its top ally. "We have a very special relationship between the United

Romney will spend part of his time in London raising money and highlighting the US Olympics he managed


known as the "Handschu Guidelines" after the landmark case that led to their creation, the report said. The intimidation and use of The report says that police intimidation and use of force escalated tensions with protesters in New York

States and Great Britain,'' Romney told NBC News in an interview in London yesterday. "It goes back to our very beginnings - cultural and historical." His overseas trip will also take him to Israel and Poland. Romney's first official appearances during a campaign swing intended to highlight longtime US alliances were to be David Cameron, the British prime minister, and Tony Blair, the former prime minister. The Republican is also set to meet with Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister, and Ed Miliband, the leader of the opposition Labour Party. Romney, a former private equity executive, also requested a meeting with George Osborne, Britain's finance minister. Romney, whose decades in private business gave him ample

exposure to international affairs, is a former one-term governor of the state of Massachusetts untested on the world's political stage. To that end, he hopes to persuade voters back home that he is no novice on foreign affairs and that they should elect him as president in a complex, dangerous world. Romney will spend part of his time in London raising money and highlighting a key part of his resume - the successful Salt Lake City Olympics he managed - with an appearance on Friday at the opening ceremonies of the London Games. The meetings come a day after the Daily Telegraph newspaper published a story quoting an unidentified Romney campaign adviser saying the Republican believes the US relationship with Britain is special because of shared "Anglo-Saxon heritage" and that the White House does not appreciate that shared history.

force served to escalate tensions while having a chilling effect on the right to free speech and assembly, the authors concluded. It also said journalists covering

the movement were subjected to a pattern of harassment, including the use of force, restrictions on access and arrests. In particular, it said credentialed journalists were barred from covering the overnight raid that cleared the main Occupy encampment at Manhattan's Zuccotti Park in November last year. In addition to calling for an inspector general to monitor the NYPD, the report said there should be an investigation into the police response to Occupy Wall Street. "Protesters, journalists, legal observers and lawyers interviewed for this report often voiced a lack of confidence in the mechanisms available for holding police accountable for misconduct," the report said.



‘I can use my belly as a table’: Meet the man with the world’s stretchiest skin has weakened his skin. Scroll down for video In most cases the disorder weakens people's joints and blo od vessels and affects around one in 10,000 people. Mr Turner's strain is very rare. He told ABC News: If you 'look at your own skin cells under a microscope, they'd be nice and round and lock in many places. But my skin cells tend to be more jagged, and don't fit together quite so well. 'The best way to describe it is I'm built rather like a badly woven basket, if you can imagine that, which will pull apart.' He added his skin was 'actually twice as thin as regular skin. Although you wouldn't believe it to look at it. it is actually quite paper

It doesn't hurt, honest: Garry 'Stretch' Turner claims to have the world's stretchiest skin


is skin is so loose and stretchy he can turn his belly into a table capable of holding three pints of beer. aura Castro, 14, was born normal but developed pure white eyes at the age of 10. The Miami, Fla., child has been studied by eye doctors and other experts, but none can explain what causes her rare condition. "The doctors say they're never seen anything like this," said the child's mother, divorcee Anabel Castro. "My daughter can see anywhere in daylight or in darkness, and she can easily see through solid objects. The doctors say she may have been hit on the head or exposed to chemicals or something.

thin.' Mr Turner said he first noticed his stretchy skin when he was around three or four years old. He told AOL: 'I had an uncle who was about 10 years old. He used to pull my skin and show his friends. I knew by their reactions I had something strange.' He uses heavy duty bulldog clips to pull his sagging skin down and does a truly terrifying impression of Batman. Mr Turner is a former star of Circus of Horrors, the group which auditioned for Britain's Got Talent last year. He is now a performer for the Royal Family of Strange People, a unique collective of fascinating individuals currently performing in London.

States’ budgets: Wrong priorities, Girls with X Rays eyes pathetic outcomes

Whether anyone wants to be served a beverage from a skin shelf is unclear, but just in case they don't, Mr Tu r n e r has plenty more tricks up

his sagging sleeve. The 41-year-old suffers from an extreme case of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that

A pretty teenager has stunned experts with her bizarre white eyes which let her see through solid stone and metal!

A baby born with four eyes, two mouths and two faces

Contd. from Back Page The paltry amounts allocated to agriculture exemplified the misplaced priorities of most of the states’ budgets. Rural Anambra budgeted less than 2% for agriculture, Bauchi with 80% of its population engaged in farming allocated only 5.5% of its budget to agriculture, Edo allocated only 1%, and Gombe with its arable land and 80% of its population engaged in agriculture allocated only 5% to agriculture. These poor allocations are in the contexts of high levels of poverty and unemployment. In Kaduna and Gombe, the rate of unemployment is respectively 25.7% and 29%, which are above the national average of 21.1%. For states like these, attracting businesses and encouraging SMEs should be the front-burning issue. Increasing the budgets of agriculture, mining and tourism to address constraints in the value chains should be the governors’ priorities. The budgets’ analysis, therefore, showed that most states in the country are not viable economic entities, and the so-called ‘rich, oil-producing states are far more dependent on the federation account than the rest in proportionate terms! Standing alone, virtually all states will be unable to perform their basic functions like providing education and healthcare to citizens. Most states will be illiquid in few months without federal allocations, which in turn are largely derived from oil and gas revenues. The six Northern states in our sample are engaged in significant borrowing to sustain their operations. An example of this is Bauchi where

40% of its 2012 budget is funded by loans. In conclusion, the budgets’ analysis has exposed the administrative and political incompetence of many state governments. We, therefore, need to rethink the role and size of states as constituted, as units of governance and economic development. There is an urgent need for a constitutional review that will, among others, restructure the federating units to give way to a smaller number of states, regions and regional governments as political and economic management units. This calls to question the current and senseless clamour for the creation of more states which would be even more unviable! To develop their states and meet the needs of the people, governors will have to change their strategic focus in a manner that will enable them to increase their IGR and reduce dependence on federal allocation. Among others, these will require increased capital investment in social and physical infrastructure and to create conditions to diversify their economies, including promoting manufacturing-based industrialization. Each state needs to develop a blueprint for a post-oil economy and identify and promote investments in sectors that will generate jobs. Finally, as we can see from states like Lagos, developmentally-oriented leaders are required to pilot the affairs of the regional governments that will emerge from such political rearrangement. With these steps, may be our children will have a nation that has truly attained its potential.



My name is Ramadan... I am here again! (II) Allah says: “O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you As it was prescribed to those before you, that ye may (learn) selfrestraint,- . (Fasting) for a fixed number of days; but if any of you is ill, or on a journey, the prescribed number (Should be made up) from days later. for those who can do it (with hardship), is a ransom, the feeding of one that is indigent. but He that will give more, of His own free will,- it is better for Him. and it is better for you that ye fast, if ye only knew.” [al-Baqarah: 183184] In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. All Praise is due to Allah! We praise Him and we seek help from Him. We ask forgiveness from Him. We repent to Him; and we seek refuge in Him from our evils and bad deeds. Anyone who is guided by Allah, is indeed guided; and anyone who has been left astray, will find no one to guide him. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship but Allah, the Only One without any partner; and I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and final messenger to mankind. May the peace and blessing of Allah be upon His last and final Apostle, his Household, his companions and all his followers until the end of time. Assalamu alaikum my brothers and sisters in Islam! I will continue to be grateful to Allah for allowing us to meet again for the second time in this holy me; Ramadan! Last week we started discussing about my singular significance which our lord has bestowed in me for you to win more rewards and recompense in your journey to the endless bliss. I can remember vividly that I intentionally reminded you of your sojourn in this passing on life, last week. My aim actually was to wake you up to live to your expectation as servants of Allah; the Most high! Let me tell you an incident that happened during the life time of our beloved Apostle, may Allah be please with him. The event took place just I was about to debut for the first time as the chosen month in which fasting in me was made obligatory upon all Muslims who are healthy enough to undertake me, who are not in the state of journeying away from their abode, who have posses their mental balance and finally who have attain the age of maturity. You should know that it was only this Ummah of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) that was blessed with me in particular to become their exclusive fasting month! Wallahi I must be frank with you in this regard; I am really fascinated and elated for this singular honour and reverence done on me. I am really humbled for this unprecedented admiration! The incident was captured thus: The Messenger of

Allah (saw) addressed his of people from time immemorial; companions on the last day of and so will they remain Sha`ban, saying, “Oh people! A unmatched in every sphere of honesty, great month has come over you; dedication, a blessed month; a month in humbleness and spirituality. which is a night better than a t h o u s a n d months; month in which Allah has made it compulsory By Husain Zakariyya upon you to fast by day, and Yawale voluntary to pray by night. +234-8052952900 (sms only) Whoever draws nearer (to Allah) In Islam, every act of ibadat by performing any of the (optional) good deeds in (this month) shall has its matching rewards or receive the same reward as incentive. But fasting in me most performing an obligatory deed at especially, has remained a any other time, and whoever secret! Listen to this to this Qudsy discharges an obligatory deed in hadith! The Messenger of Allah (this month) shall receive the (SAW) said: “Allah said: 'Every reward of performing seventy deed of the son of Adam is for him

and they may be polluted with some element of showing off, except fasting. That what is meant by the words, "I shall reward for it" means: I am the only One Who knows the extent of his reward and how much his hasanaat (good deeds) will be multiplied. AlQurtubi said: What this means is that the amount of reward for good deeds may become known to people, and they will be rewarded between ten and up to seven hundred fold, or as much as Allah wants, except for fasting, for Allah will reward it without measure. This is supported by a report narrated

except fasting; it is for Me and I shall reward for it…’” [AlBukhaari (1761) and Muslim (1946)] On this matter of uniqueness, many Ulamas in the period of Islam, tried to explain the wisdom inherent. For example, Imam Al-Haafiz ibn Hajar (RA) quoted the views of about ten other Ulamas who sought to explain the meaning of this Hadith and why fasting was singled out in this manner. The most important of these views are as follows: That is because there is no showing-off in fasting as may happen in other acts of worship. Al-Qurtubi said: Because showing-off may enter into all other good deeds, but no one can stand a witness when a person is fasting except Allah, so Allah connected it to Himself. Hence He said in the Hadith, “He gives up his desire for My sake.” Ibn al-Jawzi said: All acts of worship can be seen when done,

by Imam Muslim which was narrated by Abu Hurairah (RD) who said: The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: “Every deed of the son of Adam will be rewarded between ten and seven hundred fold. Allah said: ‘Except fasting, for it is for Me and I shall reward for it’” - That means I shall reward it greatly, without specifying how much. This is like the verse in which Allah says: “Say: ‘O ye My servants who believe! fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good In This world. spacious is Allah's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!’” [azZumar: 10] That what is meant by "fasting is for Me" is that it is the dearest of acts of worship to Me. Ibn 'Abd al-Barr said: The words "Fasting is for Me" are sufficient to indicate the superiority of fasting over all other acts of worship. Imam Al-Nasa'i narrated that Abu Umamah


obligations at any other time. It is the month of patience, and the reward of patience is Heaven. It is the month of charity, and a month in which a believer's sustenance is increased. Whoever gives food to a fasting person to break his fast, shall have his sins forgiven, and he will be saved from the Fire of Hell, and he shall have the same reward as the fasting person, without his reward being diminished at all.” [Narrated by Ibn Khuzaymah] Since then the Companions of the great messenger of Allah became interested and zealous in both waiting for my return annually, and my disappearance, as well. They will longed for me six month before my arrival, and six month after my departure in a serious state of nostalgia! Can you imagine that? No wonder that was why Allah bestowed on them unattainable esteem by any subsequent generation! They were the best, the very best set

said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: "You should fast, for there is nothing like it." That fasting is mentioned in conjunction with Allah by way of honouring it, as we say, "the House of Allah," although all houses belong to Allah. Al-Zayn ibn al-Munir said: giving a specific meaning to something general in a context such as this can only be understood as being by way of honouring. That was that aspect about my role in advancing your cause so that you can easily attain the endless and unquantifiable recompense when you sincerely and earnestly observe fasting in me. In fact there are many other bonanzas and bonuses that are offered to all of you, for my sake. I will enumerate to you just a few of them for reason of time and space. Here are some of them for a start: The Messenger of Allah (saw) said, “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” (Imam Bukhari) ... Narrated Abu Huraira(r.a): The Messenger of Allah (saw) said:"... whoever fasts during Ramadan out of sincere faith and hoping to attain Allah's rewards, then all his past sins will be forgiven." (Imam Bukhari). Abu Said al-Khudri reported that the Messenger of Allah (saw), said: “No servant fasts on a day in the path of Allah except that Allah removes the hellfire seventy years further away from his face.” This is related by "the group," except for Imam Abu Dawud. Abdullah ibn ‘Amr reported that the Messenger of Allah (saw), said: "The fast and the Qur'an are two intercessors for the servant of Allah on the Day of Resurrection. The fast will say: 'O Lord, I prevented him from his food and desires during the day. Let me intercede for him.' The Qur'an will say: 'I prevented him from sleeping at night. Let me intercede for him.' And their intercession will be accepted." [Imam Ahmad] Abu Umamah reported: "I came to the Messenger of Allah (saw) and said: 'Order me to do a deed that will allow me to enter Paradise.' He said: 'Stick to fasting, as there is no equivalent to it.' Then I came to him again and he said: 'Stick to fasting.'' [Imam Ahmad, Imam Nasa'i, and Imam Hakim]. Sahl ibn Sa'd reported that the Messenger of Allah (saw): "There is a gate to Paradise that is called ar-Rayyan. On the Day of Resurrection it will say: 'Where are those who fasted?' When the last [one] has passed through the gate, it will be locked." [Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim]. I can go on and on narrating to you my estimable tenure. But in sha Allah, when next Friday comes, I will continue from here!



Empowered PAP will integrate Africa economically, says Amadi INTERVIEW On making the Pan African Parliament more effective? he Pan African Parliament as presently constituted under the protocol establishment, has advisory and qualitative powers. We had started a process three years ago to transform the parliament from an advisory body to a legislative body in clearly defined areas. The proposal has gone through a process, through the government experts. It has passed a validation and we have been able to have that amendment passed by the Ministers of Justice and Attorney Generals of the various member states and it has gone through the PRC last week and the Executive Council considered it two days ago. While in the Executive Council, there were issues actually. There are many member states who feel that giving legislative powers to the parliament this time would probably affect the national sovereignty of some member states. We have tried to explain that the issue of legislative powers is not in the sense of legislative powers of the national government in the hands of the Pan African Parliament. It is in the sense that the Pan African Parliament will make model laws as proposed to them by the General Assembly in the areas the Assembly thinks that we need a universal legislation. And these model laws will still be sent back to the Assemblies for approval and they will be sent to the parliaments of member states to consider and adopt. So it is not giving the legislative powers of the states to the parliament. And the need for such model laws are here, we are talking about the Intra African Trade, there is no legislative framework for it and we believe that the Pan African Parliament is well positioned to ensure that we provide the proper framework within which we can enhance Intra African Trade. We need to look at the issues of free movement of people, goods and services, even labour across the continent. We are planning to build a rail line that goes from one country to another. If the Lagos-Algiers highway is under construction, what will be the legal framework to manage the movement along this corridor? Will it be an international highway in real sense or is it each time you get to any national boundary, the laws of that country will apply? We believe that in areas of manufacturing pharmaceutical products, drugs for the control of


Bethel Amadi is the newly elected President of the Pan African Parliament. In this interview with some journalists, including our Editor, Daily, Ahmed Shekarau, he talks on how the Parliament can improve the economy of the continent if empowered. Excerpts: HIV and AIDS, drugs for the control of many communicable diseases, we need to standardise the manufacturing process and the Pan African Parliament can provide model laws to standardise what we manufacture. The areas are endless; telecommunication standard, infrastructures standard. We believe that there is need to build institutions around the continents, and we need laws to empower these institutions to function. The change has to come; the problems of our continents are enormous. Until we stop holding on to our closed national borders, the much desired integration will take longer to come. We are not talking about political integration; we are talking about economic integration of our people. We also raised the issue in the amendment that the Pan African Parliament should be given oversight powers over the African Union Commission. If you are saying that we want a continent that is built on transparency and accountability, somebody else has to oversee what you are doing. Those are the issues we requested for in the amendment. Reliance on donor agencies for driving projects and solving Africa’s problems What I can say about that is that it is not how much money you have, but how you apply the money that matters and that is where I come back to the issue of oversight powers. We are convinced that whatever resources we have, if not properly managed, no amount of additional resources would be enough. This applies to not just individuals and nations but it applies also to the continent. So, we are insisting that whatever resources that is available to us on this continent, let us manage it well first by ensuring that we are making best use of it and that we apply it to the important areas

President of the Pan African Parliament, Hon. Bethel Amadi that we need to apply it, and that will help us to determine where our partners can come in to help us. We should be looking inwards for African based solution. It is only when we have exhausted the internal solutions that we can look at where external support can come and most of the times; these helps come with commitments and concession on your part. Even most times the support you get, at the end of the day, are not really support for you. They are sometimes tied to consultancy that comes from overseas; manufacturers must come from donor countries and that is why we have said that it is important that we know how we manage the resources available to us in solving our problems.

The issue is that in today’s world, both in politics and in economy, there is need for Africa to find a common ground to pursue integration. We have resources on this continent that if they are well harnessed and managed, we will begin to move our people out of poverty to a higher standard of living

Preference by member states in solving their problems individually and internally I just have to say to you that this is borne out of fear of the unknown and the tendency to hold on to our colonially defined borders and interest. The truth of the matter is that there are issues that you cannot deal with on a national level. There are lots of issues that cut across national borders in dealing with and if we are actually serious about integration, you will find out that there is need to come together on many fronts; including the parliamentary front. If you look at Africa today, we have fifty four countries; a lot of burden. And if you look at other continents, a lot of them are moving rapidly towards integration. They have integrated so many parts of their national life. You now have a European citizen who can move from one part of Europe to another, live and work from one part to another. What does that do for them, it enhances their ability to have intra European trade, which today among the EU 27, is over 60%. They are creating jobs for themselves within their continent; the opportunities are there for them to work within their continent. While in Africa, we have unemployment, we are having a

lot of migration by many people and yet, you need a visa to go from one part of Africa to another. Even where job opportunities exist in one part of Africa, Africans are not able to work and live there. That is why we now have illegal immigrants in Africa. So we can see that today’s economy requires nations to come together since our problems are the same, ranging from poverty, hunger, illiteracy, unemployment, social instability, governance issues. Our intension is to step up the legislative framework within which integration can have meaning, within which we can move the issues of trade, issues of fighting diseases on our continent, issues of building infrastructures that will allow us to trade. Now, all the trade treaties going on in the continent are between one African country and the European Union. If we don’t put together, we stand the risk of being further polarised and marginalised. Engaging member states to dissuade their fears over job takeover by citizens of other country due to disparity in fortunes In terms of the interaction, the Pan African Parliament has maintained a close working relationship with all the national parliaments of member states. Every country is represented. We are not outsiders talking about something we do not know; we are members of parliament of our various states. We have five members representing each country. We have even opened up platforms of interaction with the leadership of the various parliaments of member states. We have conference of Speakers and Presidents of various parliaments of member states where we table issues for discussion, to dispel the fears of many of them that the Pan African Parliament that is empowered will erode their national sovereignty. The issue is that in today’s world, both in politics and in economy, there is need for Africa to find a common ground to pursue integration. We have resources on this continent that if they are well harnessed and managed, we will begin to move our people out of poverty to a higher standard of living. Are you saying that it is better for employees from other continents to come and take jobs that Africans can do to earn a living?



Imo Govt has no plan to sack workers - Commissioner


L-R: Vice-Chairman, House Committee on Marine Transport, Hon. Ka'amuna Khadi, Committee Chairman, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, and General Manager, Eastern Ports, Mr Empire Ugochukwu, during the committee's visit to Eastern Ports, on Wednesday in Port Harcourt. Photo: NAN

Bye-election: Katsina police warn politicians From Lawal Sa'idu Funtua, Katsina he Katsina state police command has warned the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the two parties contesting tomorrow's state assembly bye-election to fill the Dutsi Constituency to shun acts capable of causing crisis in the area.


The State Police Commissioner, Alhaji Abdullahi Magaji, issued the warning yesterday at a meeting with the leadership of the two parties. The commissioner, who advised them to adhere strictly to the provision of the electoral act during the conduct of the election, stressed that the police would not take it lightly with

trouble makers. Magaji stated that the leaders of both parties should convey the message to their members while assuring that the police would put in place adequate security measures during and after the election. In their separate response, the state chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Rabi'u Gambo Bakori and his CPC counterpart, Alhaji Faruq

Adamu Aliyu, promised to urge their supporters to be peaceful during the election. They both said that they have conducted vigorous campaigns in the area and were confident of winning the election. It would be recalled that the seat became vacant following the death of its occupant, Tasi'u Suleiman Yamel of the PDP.

RSHA commiserates with victims of fire incidents


he Rivers House of Assembly has commiserated with victims of the multiple fire incidents in the state. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that in the past few weeks, there had been a series of fatal fire incidents in Rivers which had claimed several lives and property worth millions of Naira. The Chairman of House Committee on Information, Mr Onari Brown who briefed journalists on the incident on

Thursday in Port Harcourt said the House was saddened by the development. He recalled that the incident that occurred at Igwuruta near Port Harcourt left seven dead many injured while property worth millions of Naira destroyed. The Chairman said that the fire in Okogbe Community, Ahoada West Local Government Area claimed more than 100 lives and many people were also injured and destroyed property worth millions of naira.

Brown said that the latest incidents that took place also in Port Harcourt, July 20 involved some media houses including the Rivers State News Paper Corporation and Sylverbird 93. 7 Rhythm FM Radio Station. The lawmaker added that the inferno also touched the Silverbird Television Station with serious damage to its engineering department. The Chairman also recalled that an oil vessel at Abuloma jetty, near Port Harcourt went up

in flames, leaving the occupants seriously injured and property worth millions of Naira damaged. “At this juncture, may I on behalf of the Rivers State House of Assembly commiserate with families that lost their loved ones and property in the inferno,’’ he added. He, however, commended Gov. Chibuike Amaechi, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and others for their roles in the management of the inferno.

ActionAid canvasses devolution of powers to states, local govts


Policy and Campaign Officer of ActionAid Nigeria, an NGO, Mr Kenneth Okoineme, has emphasised the need for devolution of powers by the Federal Government to states and local governments. He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday in Abuja that the measure became necessary to ensure true federalism

in the country. Okoineme said there was a need for a change in the political and economic structures of the present federalism in Nigeria to fast- tract development at state and local government levels. “The resources are concentrated at the centre, we need to decentralise our federalism in such a way that state and local governments will have additional responsibilities

backed up by the constitution. “We need to change the nature and character of our federal structure; we cannot continue to be running a sharing economy. “ State governors only wait for the end of every month to collect allocation from the federation account. “ The kind of federalism we run now is undermining productive capacity of the states, the centre is

too powerful at the expense of the states.’’ Okoineme said the system was encouraging corruption due to excessive power at the centre, “every body seems to be interested in power at the centre “He said that with decentralisation of power, governors would rise to their responsibility to generate revenue within their states to carry out meaningful projects effectively.

he Commissioner for Information and Strategy in Imo, says the state government has no plan to sack workers in the state. Offor was reacting to speculations that the state government had finalised plans to sack 500 workers of two stateowned tertiary institutions to save cost. He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Owerri on Thursday that government had no plan to sack any worker. According to him, the state government has no plans to sack 300 workers of Imo State University (IMSU), Owerri and 200 workers of Imo Polytechnic, Umuagwo. Offor also told NAN that 892 other civil servants in the state had not been pencilled down for sack as being speculated. He described the unsubstantiated report by a newspaper as false. NAN recalled that the administration of Rochas Okorocha had embarked on various verification exercises to ascertain the actual number of staff in the civil service. Similar verification exercises had also been carried out in the tertiary institutions.

Lawmaker urges Muslims to pray for peace at Ramadan


member of the Kwara House of Assembly, Mrs Habia Jimoh, has urged Muslims to pray for peaceful coexistence among Nigerians during the Ramadan. The lawmaker gave the advice in Ilorin on Thursday when she distributed foodstuffs to some residents of Ilorin Central constituency for the Ramadan. She said the foodstuffs were meant to complement the efforts of Gov. Abdulfatah Ahmed and Sen. Bukola Saraki for the welfare of the faithful during the Ramadan. Jimoh said no meaningful development could take place in an atmosphere of rancour and appealed to Muslims to pray for peace to return to parts of the country facing security challenges. “Pray for the sustenance of indivisible unity of Nigeria for more development to be attained, “ she said. Jimoh promised to give electorate quality representation at all time. In his remark, Alhaji Funsho Yellow, the Chairman of PDP in Ilorin Central Constituency, commended the lawmaker for the kind gesture.



Jonathan has no reason not to implement budget, says Rep Dawaki By Lawrence Olaoye


member of the House of Representatives, Mustapha Dawaki, has said President Goodluck Jonathan has no reason whatsoever not to implement the 2012 budget because all economic indices are favourable to the government. Dawaki who disagreed with the Minister of Finance, Prof. Ngozi Okonjo-Iwaela, who maintained that the nation can not achieve 100 percent budget implementation, said Jonathan has all the resources at his disposal to do so. According to him, price of crude at the international market has never fallen below the budgetary benchmark and resources estimated to come from other non-oil sources are equally in surplus. He insisted that the failure of the President to implement the budget would adversely affect his much touted transformation agenda which would translate into serious hardship to the people whom the members of the House are mandated to represent. Asked whether the House would continue with the threat of impeachment against the President if he eventually refuses to implement the budget, Dawaki said the House is serious with the threat and would follow it through even if the Senate refuses to cooperate. He said “We are the majority in the National Assembly and with voting

members of the House, it would defeat the Senate.” Commenting on Jonathan’s declaration that insecurity has diverted his attention from fulfilling his campaign promises, Dawaki said inasmuch as he would agree that security is very important, that should not vitiate the President’s programme of creating jobs and building infrastructure as passed in the budget.

He said “We are aware that insecurity presents a major challenge to us in this country and that was why we budgeted close to N1 trillion for security in the budget. In spite of te security challenge, capital budget should be funded and money released to the ministries, department and agencies (MDAs).” On the effect of bribery allegations against Rep Farouk Lawan on the image of the

House, Dawaki said the image of the House was intact because the sin of one should not be seen as the sin of all. According to him, the House has extricated itself by suspending Lawan as the Chairman of the adhoc committee and that of Education in addition to making him face the House committee on Ethisc and Privileges as well as Financial Crimes on the matter.

L-R: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Women Leader, Ambassador Kema Chikwe, Chairman, House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Hon. Nnenna Elendu-Ukeje, and former PDP Deputy Governorship aspirant in Kogi state, Mr. Zubairu Atta, during PDP e-women conference, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

Fresh twist as APGA crisis goes criminal By Ikechukwu Okaforadi


he crisis rocking the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) has taken a dangerous dimension as the embattled Chairman, Victor Umeh, accuses the Sadiqe Massalla led faction of forging the signatures of eleven members of the National Working Committee of the party which they presented to the INEC. It would be recalled that Masalla’s faction had earlier written to the INEC inviting the commission to come and observe

its National Executive Committee meeting which was held last Monday. Umeh had written to the INEC and the Inspector General of Police alleging that the signatures were forged. In reaction to this, some police officers had visited the Headquarters of the party in Abuja to get the statement of the members whose signature was alleged to have been forged. Addressing journalists in the party’s national secretariat, the embattled Chairman, Victor Umeh, expressed chock over the recent move by the group led by

Massala, saying that the rebels had forged the signature to convince INEC to attend its meeting. Umeh, in company of the members who alleged that their signatures were forged, presented a copy of the affidavit deposed in the Abuja High Court, claiming that the case has produced criminal evidence against the faction. He therefore urged the police to take up the case and investigate the accused, so as to prosecute them if found guilty. Speaking further, Umeh said

that if there are members of the party that were dissatisfied with one thing or the other, there are procedures to follow in making their grievances known to the leadership of the party rather than fomenting trouble. Reacting to the accusation, the leader of the faction, Sadiqe Massala, said the allegation was part of Umeh’s antics. He expressed bewilderment over how Umeh got what he was giving to the public, saying that he will not be deterred by his campaign of calumny in his struggle to revive and strengthen APGA.

Opposition drags OGSIEC to court over LG polls From Dimeji Kayode-Adedeji, Abeokuta


wo opposition parties in the Ogun State House of Assembly, Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) and Peoples Party of Nigeria(PPN) said they have resolved to drag the Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC) over alleged irregularities in the recently conducted local government elections in the state. The two parties made this known in a press statement in Abeokuta yesterday even as they added that the state governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, would also be joined in the suit. Jointly signed by the Minority Leader, Job Akintan of PDP and the PPN Whip, John Obafemi, parties in the statement condemned the council poll as lacking credibility. Other opposition lawmakers who signed the statement include; Olusola Sonuga, who is the PDP Whip, Babatunde Edunjobi (Yewa South), Abiodun Akovoyon (Ipokia Idiroko), Salmon Adeleke (Imeko/ Afon), BowaleSolaja (ijebu NorthI), Joseph Adegbesan (Ijebu North II) and Adeyemi Harrison (Ogun Waterside) The group declared that it has been discovered that most of the officials of the OGSIEC who conducted the Saturday council election were card-carrying members of the ruling Action Congress of Nigeria. In the same vein, they accused Governor Ibikunle Amosun of appointing OGSIEC officials who unknown to the people of the state were members of the ruling party as part of the strategy to install ACN members in the 20 councils in the state. “Records available to us showed that almost all the officials used by OGSIEC for the polls are card-carrying members of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), including Polling Clerks, Presiding Officers and Electoral Officers, who ensured that the election favoured the ACN candidates,” the PDP and PPN lawmakers alleged. “This mere charade is not only marred by manipulations and fraught with massive irregularities, the whole process flagrantly violated electoral guidelines as stipulated by the Electoral Law,” the aggrieved opposition lawmakers stated.

Lawyer identifies late budget presentation as cause of Executive, Legislature friction


hief Chris Uche has identified delay in presenting the Federal Government’s budget to the parliament as the major cause of friction between the executive and legislature over budget implementation. Uche, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), made the remark during an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Thursday. According to him, timing is very

important in terms of preparation, deliberation and implementation of a budget for the growth and development of any society and government should adhere to early presentation of its budget. He advised that the nation would be spared “unnecessary embarrassment’’ if sufficient time was given to the lawmakers to deliberate on the budget and pass it for proper implementation by the Federal Government.

Uche said that timely release of budgetary allocations to the ministries, departments and agencies had become imperative for the growth and development of the nation. He commended the efforts of the House of Representative for gingering the Federal Government up to the need to release fund “as at when due’’. “For me, I must commend members of the lower house for the courage of taking the government

up on behalf of the masses they represent, because we are in a country where we don’t achieve up to 30 per cent budget implementation. “How do you explain this, it is not too healthy for the Nation’s development and National security, if you cannot properly implement budget, of what use is it to the Nation?’’ Uche said that the 100 per cent budget implementation in September was not feasible “but then it is good to ginger government up to leave up to its responsibilities to the people.’’

“Insisting on attaining 100 per cent by September is like aiming at making a mockery of the whole essence of budgeting because it is not viable. “It is good to wake them up from slumber and get them on their feet to begin to do something. “At least, rather than the 30 per cent implementation of the previous budgets, we should be looking forward to 70 per cent implementation of the 2012 budget which by Nigeria’s standard should be a big leap.”



LP candidate seeks cancellation of Ogun LG poll


L-R: Chairman, House Committee on Diaspora, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman Board of Trustees, Nigerian Diaspora Alumni Network, Mr Manny Aniebonam, and member of the Committee, Hon. Jerry Alagbaoso, during the Diaspora Day celebration and dinner, on Wednesday night in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

Kebbi PDP conducts chairmanship primaries T

From Ahmed Idris, Birnin Kebbi

he People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Kebbi state chapter yesterday conducted primary elections for chairmanship position in the 21 local governments areas in preparation towards forthcoming councils polls in September this year. The election monitored in some local government’s area showed that it was conducted under peaceful atmosphere devoid of rancor while defeated aspirants accepted the results in good faith. In Argungu Local Government Area, the election was held at the famous Fishing Village where thousands of party members converged to witness the occasion while those eligible to vote were screened and allowed to exercise their civic right in an orderly manner. However, the result of the primaries election across the state showed that some of the aspirants were disqualified having not fulfilled the party’s guidelines while some voluntarily step down in the interest of peace and

harmony in the party. Speaking to newsmen shortly after the exercise, the nominated chairman and one time Birnin Local Government Chairman and state ALGON leader, Alhaji Musa Dan Illela, thanked all the party members that came out en mass to select the candidates that would pilot the affairs of the councils in the next three years across the state. He further assured the

electorates that the crop of people they nominated will not fail them and shall work tirelessly toward delivering the dividend of democracy to them regardless of party inclination. Speaking after the primaries, Kebbi state PDP Chairman, Alhaji Mansiru Sheahu, expressed satisfaction over the conduct of the election just as he assured the people that the general election will be equally peaceful.

he Labour Party chairmanship candidate for Ijebu-Ode Local Government, Mr Adeleke Akinpelu, has called for the cancellation of Saturday’s election conducted by the Ogun Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC). Addressing a news conference in Ijebu-Ode on Thursday, Akinpelu said the election was characterised by massive rigging and other irregularities. The ACN won 19 chairmanship seats out of the 20 local governments and 217 councillorship seats out of the 236 wards in the election. He explained that there were several reports of ballot box snatching by miscreants, adding that the crude method deployed in the conduct of the election was unacceptable. “I want to say in an unequivocal language that we, the labour party, has rejected the election results announced by OGSIEC due to massive rigging of the elections. “In almost all the polling booths, ballot papers were not counted, where counted, Form E8 was not issued or given to the party agents. “Policemen in uniform also carried ballot boxes to the local government secretariat for counting without allowing the party agents or official to be present. This is totally unacceptable. “OGSIEC may not be totally

blamed for this irregularities, because he who pays the piper dictates the tune, but we must always remember that there is retributive justice,” Akinpelu said. Akinpelu also faulted the way and manner the elected chairmen were quickly sworn-in by Gov. Ibikunle Amosun. He said the governor ought to have waited for run-off or re-run election if any before the swearingin. Meanwhile, the newly elected Chairman of Ijebu-Ode Local Government, Mr Abdul Rasak Daddah, has promised to create jobs for youths and improve the welfare of the people. Daddah, who stated this during the inauguration of the legislative council of the local government, promised to fulfill all his electioneering campaign promises. “We pledge that this administration shall fulfill all promises made and we shall put in our best to make Ijebu-Ode an outstanding local government,’’ he said. In his remarks, the Leader of the House, Mr Bello Wasiu, said the legislative arm would be committed to implementing its campaign manifestoes to bring dividends of democracy to the people. Bello, however, solicited for the support of the executive arm to move the local government to an enviable position.

Constitutional amendment: Don advocates value changes


political scientist, Dr. Buba Misawa, has called for the inclusion of elements that will promote value change in the ongoing efforts to amend the Nigerian Constitution. Misawa, an Associate Professor of Political Science at Washington and Jefferson College in the U.S., gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Gombe yesterday. He said promoting value change through constitutional amendment would be more beneficial to Nigerians than

focusing on structural changes. “There is always this impulse in Nigerian politics for changes, structural changes. But structural changes must be accompanied by value changes. “It’s not enough to change the constitution at any given time without certain value changes to how we want to operate the constitution. “I am not particularly impressed with the notion that every debate has to result in a constitutional change. “Unless that, of course, is

accompanied by value changes; what we need at this point in the constitutional framework is a process that will allow our people to benefit from the notion of democracyparticipatory democracy. “We need to get to a point where our elections are legitimate; where the people see that the process is very representative of them and where people accept the legitimacy of their leaders without question. “If we get to that point, I think constitutional changes will come naturally.

“If they do make that desire to change the structure of the constitution and at the same time implement the value and the spirit of the constitution, then I think everyone will be very successful,” Masawa said He said what Nigerians needed at the moment was to be able to participate in a responsible and representative democratic process. Misawa said credible elections would give Nigerians a better sense of participating in the democratic process.


My ex-husband lives in my house almost two years after divorce Continued from page 17 Before the divorce, Hadi said he wanted us to merge the two houses and to pay the balance of my loan and I told him that I wasn’t interested. Hadi told my aunt during last Ramadan fasting that he is willing to pay me off so that I leave my children and move out to enable him remarry and move his wife in. He should move into his house upstairs because there is no way we can continue staying under one roof. At a point (last Friday) when I asked the maiguard to open the gate for me, he said his hands were tied. I needed part of my things and he said nothing will make me enter the house. I

was mad about it and I thought I had enough and flung his things out. Before then, I had written a petition to the Zone 7 police who were trying to investigate. I now went to the house and was denied access. My five children and I are squatting in different places. It got to a point I petitioned the SSS because he followed me to my room after divorce and threatened to beat me up…I have not been able to sleep for the past two years. What is the role of your elder sister, Fatima in this matter? The main person behind the break up of our marriage is his elder brother, Shehu Usman who stays in Britain. He told

him to get me arrested. I don’t see any family that will sit down and watch their child get arrested and humiliated by the police, still remain in that marriage… His uncle, the father of this girl, up till today has never said anything even though he knew that his daughter was the cause of the breakup. So, he should leave my sister out because she was not around when it all happened. Instead, it is his back benchers, the likes of Kande Fatima of CAC, Sani Abdullahi, Shehu Usman Abdullahi(in London) that keep instigating him. You can imagine Hadi sending a petition to my office alleging that I sleep with my uncle. Hadi should

stay away from my life and leave me in peace. What is the solution to this problem? A meeting was supposed to be held between Tuesday and Thursday. With these allegations here( referring to our Wednesday story), I do not think if anything can happen but you cannot be seeking for help and bringing the other hand to spoil anything that would have been done. Hadi is so irresponsible to hug his girlfriend in front of my children. He also brings the girlfriend in his car to the compound near the window, put on the car light and talk for hours. I’ve had enough of

the humiliation from Hadi and his irresponsibility, assault and battery. Supposing there is move to reconcile and unite your family, will you accept it? I don’t what other move can do because he dropped the phone on my uncle who lives in Maiduguri. He said I’m sleeping with the one here in Abuja. So, who will come in. So, which meeting did you intend to hold? He said he was ready for negotiation on the house. His things are outside and I say we can no longer stay together since his family cannot do what is right. So, we want both family to discuss the next step.



he Super Eagles bunch that failed to qualify for the 2012 Nations Cup jointly hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea were lackadaisical and barely determined to seal their spot in the fiesta. That mistake will not be repeated by the present Eagles being rebuilt by Coach Stephen Keshi, instead the new Eagles are determined to correct past mistake and impose themselves on the rest of Africa, according to left back, Juwon Oshaniwa. “The mistake we made that exit us from the last Nations Cup won’t repeat itself because we are seriously working not only to feature at the next edition, but to be the champions of Africa again come next year,” he said. Accordingly, the Sharks left back

Chelsea table £9m for Victor Moses


helsea are set to renew their interest in Wigan Althetics and Super Eagles forward Victor Moses as they are to lodge a new bid that could be worth up to £9million,according to reports. Wigan have thus far rejected three lower offers, which have also included taking Josh McEachran or Romelu Lukaku on loan from Chelsea. Moses, 21, has a year left on his contract and he is valued at £10m by chairman Dave Whelan, who is interested only in a cash deal. It is now understood the two clubs are close to reaching an agreement, with Chelsea prepared to pay£6m up front and another £3m in performance-related addons, according to the London Evening Standard. Chelsea have chased several attacking players over the summer, including Hulk, Willian, Andre Schurrle and Robert Lewandowski, but Moses appeals to them because of his potential and the fact he will also qualify as a home-grown player for the Champions League. Chelsea must pay cash to land Moses, who Wigan’s second goal in a 3-1 win over Mitchendof in a preseason game in Austria. Wigan chairman Dave Whelan has declared he will not let Moses go on the cheap, telling the Champions League and FA Cup holders to put up or shut up. Whelan said: “They need to pay the brass up front. We don’t want any part-exchange deals they have offered. “Victor is one of the most exciting young talents around, so little wonder Chelsea want him, but if they want him they are going to have to pay the price. We are not interested in picking up one of their players on loan or in part exchange. They know the price for Moses.”


We won’t repeat 2012 Nations Cup mistake, says Oshaniwa assured that the present bunch of players seriously wants a departure from the past in mental attitude and display on the pitch, adding that the new Eagles determined to secure their place in South Africa without subjecting Nigerians to permutations. Oshaniwa may have had in mind the previous qualifications where Nigeria had to wait till the last moment to know her fate. Meanwhile, Oshaniwa also said having worked had to secure the Eagles left back position he is not about to surrender the position to other other Eagles left back for now. Peoples Daily Sports recalls that the position was hitherto the exclusive preserve of Taye Taiwo until Elderson Echiejile graduated

from the Fltung Eagles to the senior and sometimes played in place of Taiwo. But under coach keshi, Oshaniwa has been considered ahead of Europe-based stars Taiwo

and Echiejile for the June qualifiers and the player is delighted with the development. “It was my dream to feature for the national team and this has now come to pass but I now don’t wish to

Juwon Oshaniwa, Elderson Echiejile, Eagles left back defenders

stop here, I want to make sure we make it to South Africa next year January and even claim the trophy with me playing a big role. “I hope to keep my place in the team because sky will not be my limit, but a standing point. Yes, I had some hard times in Malawi but since then I have doubled my efforts to meet both the expectation of the coaches and Nigerians as a whole,” he said. “It is hard work that gave me this opportunity and I’m not ready to lose it because there are other players who want to play this my position. I won’t let it go easily just like the previous players stayed glued to the position,” he said. The player, who won the WAFU Cup two years ago with Sharks, was sad that the Blues Angels lost to Lobi Stars in the quarterfinals of this year’s Federation Cup.


he management of Enyimba Football Club has reacted angrily to the team’s failure to go beyond the Federation quarter-finals of this Federation Cup and subsequently placed coach Austin Eguavoen, his assistants and the players on half salary. Chairman of the club and member of the NFF executive committee, Chief Anyansi Agwu, had before Cup blues: the federation Cup said that their target was to win the trophy and return to the continent. Agwu, who longed for a return to the CAF Champions League winning era, had assured that the team Enyimba would stop at nothing to meet its target but the six-time league champions surprisingly lost 2-0 to lower side Prime FC in Monday’s quarterfinal in Ibadan. “This is totally unacceptable for a club of our management league standard to crash out in the quarterfinals” lamented a top club official. And the sanction for the team’s failure to reach the final of the Federation Cup is to slash the salaries of the team by half if they fail to win places their next four league games.” Penultimate day, Eguavoen had attributed their defeat to Prime FC to complacency on the part of the players. “We underrated prime FC and it a serious mistake from us because it cost us a place in semiEguavoen, finals.” Enyimba lost last year’s cup final to regional rivals Heartland, and could again miss out on playing players on international football for the second straight year if they do not finish in the top three of the Nigeria Premier League this season. They are currently third on 52 points, six points behind leaders Enugu half pay Rangers with four rounds of matches to be played.

London Olympics formally begins today

Wembley Stadium

By Patrick Andrew


our years ago, billions of viewers across the world and several thousand other spectators watching live the opening ceremony were overwhelmed by a spectacular

manipulation of lights to effect at the Bird Net Stadium, Beijing, the venue of the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympics Games. Sundry displays were constructed in definite segments and an awed world watched with pious attention as the Chinese blended culture and technology

artfully. Forget the blushes regarding the little girl “magically” lifted to light up the Olympic flame: Beijing, hold fast your stadium wall-walking gymnasts. The cables that span the rooftop and were included as parts of the stadium build for celebration

ceremonies were used to great effect. It was simply magnificent. Then, over 200 nations participated in the march past, a non-negotiable event in an Olympic opening ceremony. This year, 204 nations, including the newest independent nation on earth- South Sudan, will file past as the crowd cheers to herald the formal commencement of the global sports fiesta. Each marching nation will follow their national flag. A small number of athletes will march in under the IOC’s Olympic rings flag. It will take 1 hour 29 minutes. Nearly 4.5 billion humans will watch the event. Today’s opening ceremony should take up the same tempo as did Beijing though not necessarily in terms of manipulation of lights and technology to awe-inspiring effects. Nonetheless, the London Olympics opening ceremony at the £27m venue should command same attention as four years ago. Its theme will be different as it will focus more on “green and pleasant land” that encapsulates the land of the Pantomime Tradition. Whatever nature the ceremony will take, its presentation should seek to surpass Beijing in aesthetics, modernity, and essence, and thus set the stage for delectable games of the 30th Summer Olympiad.



Eagles, Menas to clash August 15


igeria's Super Eagles will have their resumption to camp date fast-tracked from its earlier August 19 date as the secretariat of the Nigeria Football has confirmed that the team will play and international friendly against the Menas of Niger on August 15. The game will be played in the Niger capital, Niamey and is expected to feature mainly home-based Super Eagles players, as part of preparation for the September 8, Nations Cup qualifier against the Lone Star of Liberia in Monrovia. NFF officials, who spoke for the General Secretary, Musa Amadu, said players listed for the game will be released soon adding that they will report to camp in Abuja next weekend. The NFF leadership has repeatedly say it would not take preparations for the tie against Liberia for granted, hence the latest change in the date of resumption of the team to camp. Eagles media officer says the list of players will be made public soon by Head Coach, Stephen Keshi. Plans are also afoot for a second friendly for the team before the Liberian clash.

Federation Cup

Heartland manager, Kruiff, focuses on retention of trophy after league letdown


ertain of missing out on the NPL trophy, Heartland Football Club of Owerri have set sight on retention of the Federation Cup as compensation to the fans and sponsors for failing to clinch the league trophy as they had initially intended. Ludwikj Kruiff, the club’s Technical Adviser said this following the team’s qualification for the semi-finals of the Federation Cup scheduled for August 15. The manager said the team would work hard to win the Federation Cup to compensate its fans for lagging behind in the race for league title. Heartland beat Crown FC of Ogbomoso 2-0 to qualify for the semi-finals of this year’s Federation Cup. Kruiff said after the team’s 2 – 0 win over Crown Football Club of Ogbomosho in the quarter-final, the squad was concentrating on its semi-final match to be able to win and play in the final. “It’s not impossible but, you know, it’s still two games to go.

First, you have to play your semi-finals; it will be a tough one I think; but, this is our only chance to make something of this league season because we are not in the league anymore; but, for going to the final (Federation Cup), we are on track; we have to go for semi-final now. “That is our most important game. I don’t want to talk about the final. Of course, it is our goal but first, the semi-final is the most important game for these boys, for this club, for Imo state, for Owerri, for everybody.” Kruiff said his team lacked tactical discipline in the first half of its quarter-final match against Crown. He explained that the team’s pattern changed in the second half, a development which he said, made the boys create more chances and consolidate on the goal they had scored. He praised Crown for playing a good game even though the encounter was lost.

…Kwara Utd to correct mistakes, Zubair promises


lli Zubair, the Coach of Kwara United FC of Ilorin, has said the club would learn from their mistakes at the 2012 Federation Cup and avoid a repeat in the Nigeria Premier League (NPL). With four matches remaining and lying 15th on the 2011/2012 NPL log after 34 games, Kwara United had hoped to win the Federation Cup The Flying Eagles of Nigeria have had torrid time shaping up to defend their African Youth Championship trophy. They failed to retain the 8-Nation Championship in Johannesburg, South Africa some two months ago. Ever since, Coach John Obuh has reshuffled the team by drafting in fresh legs, all to inspire the bunch into a formidable squad. Nonetheless, the works have yet to yield the desired result leading to public angst against them and the coach in particular has come under fire for alleged poor work. Obuh speaks on his team’s warm-up game against Rwanda as well as his thoughts going into the allimportant 2013 African Youth Championship qualifier in Tanzania on Sunday.

and thus hit the continent. But it was not to be and Zubair believes observed inadequacies are soon to be corrected. In the league, Kwara United has won 14, drew four and lost 16 games so far, but had fared far less after losing their Federation Cup first game to El-Kanemi Warriors of Maiduguri 0-1, then 1-2 to Kano Pillars in their second match and 2-3 to

because other teams in the premier league are also in the tournament. Actually, whenever, we scored our boys got carried away. “And definitely, we are going to work on it ahead of the remaining matches in the premier league,” he said, noting that the club would lock horns with the Rising Stars of Akure on Saturday.

Anthony Okemiri, a Kwara United player, added that their focus now was on preparing for a better performance at the remaining matches of the NPL. “It was a bad outing for us in the Federation Cup, no doubt but we’re focused on doing better at the remaining games at the NPL. “Since we need to move to a better position on the

saved, while others narrowly missed target. I am equally encouraged by the determination of the boys. I am even more confident of this team now and had we taken the chances we created, we would have won. We have to work on the mentality of the boys as I expected them to be a lot more concentrated especially in the closing moments of the game because if you let in a goal at that time, it is often very difficult to draw level as there will not be enough time to do so.

Championship qualifier in Tanzania on Sunday. What are your thoughts? We need to score goals and win the match. If we had taken our chances against Rwanda, we would have easily won 1-0, 2-0 or at worst drawn the game. But again if we had won, it could also have worked against us because the players may now think they have arrived before our important qualifier. I believe the pain of the loss in Rwanda will propel the team to go all out and win in Tanzania.

the fact that any team facing a Nigerian team always redoubles their efforts means that we are in for a big battle. We therefore need to be determined, focused and work hard to ensure we win this game.

The real test will be the 2013 African Youth

What information do you have about the Ngorogoro Stars of Tanzania? Rwanda have given us a little glimpse of what to expect from Tanzania because they are both from the same Central and East African sub-region. I also spoke to the Rwanda coach Richard Tardy after our game and he gave me a few tips as well because his team beat Tanzania twice in Tanzania recently. I believe we are up against a tough team and

I see a better Flying Eagles in this squad, says Obuh C

oach Obuh, what are your impressions from the warm-up game against Rwanda? Honestly, it was a good game because the team performed better than we did in our final tune-up games against ABS and Kaduna United before we left Nigeria. I saw a better and much more confident team against Rwanda despite the fact we eventually lost the game. I was impressed with the way we took the game to our opponents as our runs on and off the ball got us to create many chances. We took shots on target with one or two of them being

Let them (public) have the confidence in this team because we will not disappoint them. I believe we have done a good work leading up this match and with prayers and some element of luck, we will be victorious.

Crown FC in their last game, their Federation Cup dream was all over. The coach, who blamed the players’ laxity for the exit lamented their plight but added that the team have learnt useful lessons. ”If you look at it critically, our team underplayed right from the first match to the last one in the competition. “And I do not want to attribute it to fatigue

log for us not to be relegated because where we are currently is not comfortable for us,” he said. The player expressed surprise at the suspension of their coach, Tunde Sanni, by the club administrators after their loss to Kano Pillars FC in the Federation Cup. “We’re psychologically down, we’re confused and we do not know what really happened because it was a management decision,” Okemiri said.

Coach John Obuh

You often say you give yourself pressure. After the loss to Rwanda, has that selfpressure increased? No, it hasn’t. I trust what I do. The pressure now is for my players to deliver, go out there and come out with a good result. I am dedicated to this job so much so that I put myself under pressure

even when I’m sleeping. So, finally what should Nigerians expect on Sunday in Dar es Salam? Let them (public) have the confidence in this team because we will not disappoint them. I believe we have done a good work leading up this match and with prayers and some element of luck, we will be victorious. This team will continue to improve and so we must all put in everything to ensure we continue to win so as to qualify for the African Youth Championship and thereafter the World Cup.

Alhaji Gero of the Flying Eagles




The season is over. Clubs are counting their blessing as well as losses and would like to make amends and even beef up their squads where noticeable lapses exist. And the transfer market is agog barely 24 hours after major European leagues dropped the curtain. And so to keep abreast with latest rumours, we begin daily doses of movements within the market both for players and coaches like.

Alberto Aquilani

Russia sign Capello on two-year deal


abio Capello has been appointed as Russia’s new coach yesterday. There had been much speculation the former England boss was among the favourites for the vacant job and a

Alberto wants to prove West Ham make himself at Liverpool record bid for Carroll iverpool midfielder Alberto Aquilani says he is


puzzled by his past treatment at Anfield but is hopeful of proving himself to Brendan Rodgers. Aquilani played the first half of Liverpool’s friendly defeat by his former club Roma in Boston on Wednesday, and new manager Rodgers said afterwards that he is still considering whether he has a future at the club. But the Italian international playmaker, who has two years left on his contract and is keen to commit his future to the club, says his initial meetings with Rodgers have been encouraging. Aquilani was signed by Rafa Benitez but has not played a competitive game for the club since Benitez’s departure in the summer of 2010. Under Roy Hodgson and Kenny Dalglish, he was sent on season-long loans to Juventus and AC Milan, and says it has been frustrating not to be able to prove to Liverpool fans he can make an impact in England.

Ramirez set for Prem Lge switch


ologna winger Gaston Ramirez is currently holding talks with an unnamed Premier League club, his agent has confirmed after arriving in London. Ramirez, 21, is in England in order to represent Uruguay at the Olympics and is s i m u l t a n e o u s l y attempting to broker a transfer that would see him stay and play in the Premier League next season. The midfielder has also been tracked by Manchester United and Manchester City, but Liverpool held initial talks over a deal with Bologna last month and could be at the head of the queue, although the presence of his agent in the capital suggests that Tottenham


est Ham has stepped up their interest in Liverpool striker Andy Carroll by making a bid that could potentially break the club’s transfer record. The fresh offer would see Carroll initially move on loan with a commitment to buy the 23-year-old next summer in a deal worth more than £15m. Owner Mike Ashley saw an initial bid for Carroll dismissed out of hand by Liverpool, who remains determined to secure the permanent sale of a player they bought for £35m in January 2011. The Anfield club insist they are not prepared to countenance offers below £20m for the 23-year-old. West Ham are understood to be prepared to build their team around Carroll, but with the player indicating an uncertaintly to move to there, despite a strong friendship with former Newcastle team-mate Kevin Nolan, it does little to clarify his future. The £7.5m West Ham paid Liverpool for Craig Bellamy in 2007 remains the club’s transfer record, although Brescia striker Savio Nsereko agreed a deal that could potentially have been worth £9m, but he failed to trigger a number of performance-based clauses.

Gunners won’t sell RVP cheap

A Gaston Ramirez and Arsenal could also be keen. The winger scored eight goals for Bologna in Serie A last season to help them to a ninth-placed finish and has a price tag that has already scared off Inter Milan. Betancourt said: “Inter like the player but we are very far off from what Bologna are asking for him - nearly •25 million.

rsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood admits he is mystified by Robin van Persie’s determination to leave the club. The Gunners have already rejected a bid from Manchester United as speculation regarding the striker’s future continues to circulate after he turned down the offer of a new contract at Emirates Stadium. But while Hill-Wood appeared resigned to losing the Gunners captain, whose future is set to be decided by August 18, he warned potential suitors that

Kaka in Milan talks – agent


C Milan is in talks with Kaka over a possible return to the San Siro, the player’s representative in Italy has confirmed. Kaka, 30, left Milan to join Real Madrid in 2009 for a fee of • 68.5 million, which was briefly a new world record transfer fee before the addition of Cristiano Ronaldo. Negotiations, though, threaten to be long and drawn-out, with AC Milan aiming to pay well short of Real Madrid’s •20 million valuation, or negotiate

a one-year loan contract which would see no fee paid and just a 50% wage contribution from the Rossoneri. Rumours of the Brazilian’s arrival stepped up a notch on Thursday morning, with the announcement that AC Milan had not named a No.22 for the coming season, meaning that the Brazilian’s former shirt number has been kept available. The potential arrival of Kaka was greeted positively by Milan

fans, who have suffered the loss of Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic in recent weeks. Former striker Filippo Inzaghi, who this week returned to the club as a youth coach, summed up feelings in among supporters, saying: “As a Milanista, his possible return gives me goosebumps.” The arrival of Kaka at the San Siro could see the departure of Antonio Cassano, who has spoken of a possible exit from the club this summer.

Robin van Persie Arsenal would not let last season’s PFA footballer of the year leave on the cheap. “He is a world-class player and we don’t want to give him away,” HillWood was quoted as saying in the Daily Star. “If he is determined to leave that is up to him, but giving him away is not on our agenda.


anchester City captain Vincent Kompany has signed a new six-year contract with the Premier League champions. It is the longest deal handed out in the club’s recent history and shows their faith in Kompany, who last season led City to

Vincent Kompany

Russian Football Union spokesman confirmed toPress Association Sport that he has signed a two-year deal. The Italian succeeds Dick Advocaat, who took charge of Eredivisie outfit PSV E i n d h o v e n after Russia was eliminated in the group stages of UEFA EURO 2012. Capello, who resigned as England manager in February, was earlier this month on a shortlist of 13 candidates for the job, with Harry Redknapp and former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola also mentioned by the RFU. But speculation has grown since that the 66-year-old was their man and he is now set to complete the formalities, with a press conference scheduled for this afternoon. Similarly, Capello will

be looking to rebuild his reputation after a less than impressive four years with England. After taking charge in 2008, he was initially a great success after England comfortably qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ but matters soon went awry after a disappointing tournament that ended with a crushing 4-1 defeat by rivals Germany in the second round. The former AC Milan, Roma and Real Madrid boss guided England into this year’s tournament in Poland and Ukraine but quit his post in a c r i m o n i o u s circumstances after the Football Association stripped John Terry of the captaincy due to the Chelsea defender being charged with making a racist remark to Anton Ferdinand. Terry was subsequently cleared in a magistrate’s court trial.

Mancini frustrated by lack of signings


oberto Mancini has vented his frustration at Manchester City’s lack of activity in the transfer market, claiming the Premier League champions must strengthen their squad if they are to retain their crown. Mancini is growing impatient that there have been no new signings, hinting that they are in danger of missing out on Arsenal striker Robin van Persie, who has said he will not pen a new contract at Emirates Stadium. The City manager is conscious of the need to add to his squad in order to combat the expected challenges posed by the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea, but he says he is not in control of the club’s signings. Speaking ahead of Friday’s friendly against Arsenal in

Beijing, Mancini pointed the finger at Brian Marwood, who has remained in Manchester rather than travel with the squad to China. “For this question, speak to the man in charge. I am not in charge of this,” he said. “It is important [to bring players in] because, after what we did last year, it is important we continue to win. “This year will not be easy. It will be harder than last year and for this reason, we need to improve our team. But I am not the man in charge of this. We have a man who works for this and we hope that they can do a good job.” City faces a battle to land Van Persie - rivals United have publicly declared their interest in the Dutchman prompting Mancini to remain coy when discussing the star striker.

Kompany signs new sixyear extension for City their first top-flight crown since 1968. Kompany, 26, was delighted to sign the new contract and said it was his intent to deliver more trophies to Eastlands as the ‘Man City project’ continues. “Hopefully in the future I will have a bigger impact than I already have,” the 26-year-old Belgium international said. “There are so many more trophies to win at this club that is why it makes it so special. He told City’s official website: “For me if you are

good somewhere then there is no reason to look elsewhere. Man City as a project is not just a project of the owners or the people employed by the club; it is also my project. Kompany was signed by Mark Hughes from Hamburg in August 2008 and has helped transform City into one of the most high-profile clubs in Europe. And the City skipper believes the FA Cup and Premier League triumphs of the last two years are just the beginning of success at City.



London 2012: Moroccan athlete fails drugs test


oroccan 1500m runner Mariem Alaoui Selsouli has failed a drugs test and will miss the London Olympics. Selsouli, who won silver at this year’s World Indoor Championships, tested positive for a banned diuretic in a sample taken in Paris on July 6. Meanwhile, the World Anti Doping Agency (Wada) has revealed a new test for Human Growth Hormone.

And the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) revealed nine other athletes have failed tests. Selsouli, 28, has been banned for doping once before and now faces a lifetime ban. “The prohibited substance furosemide was found. Alaoui Selsouli has waived her right to the B analysis, and as a result has now been provisionally suspended from all competition in

athletics,” read an IAAF statement. The IAAF also announced they had stepped up their “biological passport” testing, which involves measuring and monitoring an athlete’s blood variables over time to indicate the use of prohibited substances or prohibited methods, resulting in six more athletes failing tests. A further three competitors, including Ukrainian Nataliya Tobias,

This will be the moment...this is my time, Bolt warns others


et footage at last year’s world championship captured Bolt’s angry devastation at being disqualified. Asked if those emotions defined the worst moments of his career Bolt is emphatic: “Yeah, definitely. Without a doubt because I worked so hard in coming back from injury last season. Everything came together at the right time and for me to squander it explains why I was so upset with myself. At that very moment it felt so bad because I knew I could’ve won the race.” Surely the one false-start rule seems crazy to Bolt? If it happened in London, and Bolt or Blake was disqualified, it would kill a much-anticipated race not just for the affected athlete but for billions of viewers. “Listen,” Bolt says, “rules were made. For me to make a mistake does not now allow me to say we should change that rule. My coach (Glen Mills) always explains that it’s not about anticipation. It’s about being professional and getting it done and when you’re out there you should listen because the starter is the judge and jury. You should just focus on getting the start right.” Bolt has often struggled with his start, for it is the weakest area of his otherwise imperious sprinting pedigree, but does his disqualification in Daegu haunt him? Did it affect his slow starts in Ostrava and at the Jamaican trials? “No, I don’t think so,” he says in a measured tone. “Every season, for me, it’s like starting from scratch again. Me and my coach sat down and evaluated and talked a lot about this. We’ve figured out where I have gone wrong and what I need to do to make sure I get a consistent start.” Has he found a method to produce that more consistent start? “Yeah, yeah, definitely. I’ve actually bought some blocks that we’re going to be using at the Olympics and I’ve been training with them. I will be much more comfortable and much more consistent starting with those blocks at the Olympics.” And yet, right next to him, or just a few lanes away, Blake will hunker down into his own blocks. Was Bolt shocked to suffer successive defeats to Blake? “You can’t say it’s a shock. For me, it’s good to have your eyes opened wide. “To have ups and downs so you can really evaluate what you did wrong or what you need to do to get back where you need to be. It was extremely good it happened at the trials so I could refocus.” Was he shaken by his sluggish run in Ostrava where, briefly, he appeared bewildered by his performance? “No. It wasn’t really a concern for long. I just knew (Bolt laughs) I wasn’t getting enough sleep. All I needed was some sleep

who won bronze in the women’s 1500m in Beijing four years ago, were caught as a result of the re-testing of samples from last year’s World Championships in South Korea. A total of 71,649 tests have been carried out worldwide in the six months leading up to 19 July, with 107 athletes sanctioned. There are currently 183 athletes banned by the IAAF after failing drugs tests

and then I felt better. The next day I was back to my normal self.” Some critics suggested Bolt was partying too much, but did defeat rekindle his hunger for success? “My hunger is always there,” Bolt says coolly. “Things happen throughout the season that threw you off sometimes but you have to learn from your mistakes. I just need to put things in place to make sure it doesn’t happen at the Olympics. I just try and get over it and get my confidence up to a level where I’m comfortable at the Games.” Bolt was not physically at his best, and struggling with a tight hamstring, but he refuses to excuse his successive losses in Jamaica. Great sprinters, after all, require great rivals to lend gravitas to their legacy. Has Blake emerged, just in time, to push Bolt to even more extraordinary heights? “Well, for me, Yohan is going to be a great athlete and, so far, he has shown the potential to be that great. But I think, definitely. Tyson Gay is one of the fiercest athletes out there.” Bolt has beaten Gay decisively over the years and it seems striking he should name-check the American alongside Blake. Gay himself has stressed that no one can match Bolt’s “bigevent mentality”. This will be Bolt’s third Olympics while Blake remains untested in the most brutal sprinting arena. “I wouldn’t say it’s a big factor,” Bolt says of Blake’s inexperience, “but it will play a role because to show up in the Olympics is not easy. “It’s not going to be him alone. It’s going to be me, Asafa Powell (also from Jamaica], Tyson, Justin Gatlin (the US’s 2004 Olympic 100m champion who returned last year from a doping suspension) and all these guys. “It’s a packed race with top-class athletes so it will be a different level of competition for Yohan. It’s going to take a lot of focus. And it’s going to cause a lot of stress. It will really test him as an athlete and as a person overall. We’ll see how good he is.” There is no biting cynicism in Bolt’s calm statement. Rather, he makes it sound as if he is as intrigued as we are to discover the depth of an opponent known as The Beast. Was Bolt really the first man to give Blake his nickname? “I said it once and people just took it and called him The Beast. I said he’s a beast at training so people have now started calling him The Beast.” Does Bolt regret stamping such a fierce alias on his most serious adversary? “No!” he exclaims. “It’s a good nickname and he likes it so it Well, for me, Yohan is doesn’t bother me going to be a great in any way. It athlete and, so far, he doesn’t matter.” In a similarly jokey has shown the vein, Blake claims to be potential to be that a better fast bowler than great. But I think, Bolt, who still carries a definitely. Tyson Gay high self-regard on the is one of the fiercest cricket pitch. “He Usain Bolt plays lots of cricket,” athletes out there.

Organisers of London 2012 say more than 6,000 tests will be carried out during the games, including the new “bio-marker” test which will monitor the levels of HGH and be able to determine what occurs naturally in the body and what is added synthetically. “It’s a very significant step and it’s a very helpful one,” said Wada director general David Howman. “Every step is significant

if it ends up catching someone who has been cheating with impunity.” Wada president John Fahey added: “We’re helping to provide an Olympic games that is as free from doping as is possible. “These efforts in the leadup to the Games are bearing fruit. They (doping offenders) should know that avoiding detection is the smallest (possibility) it has ever been.”

Bolt says of Blake, “so he might be in better shape than me. But I was great. I haven’t played cricket in a while but I know what I can do. He also knows what Blake is capable of on the track. Even more than defeat in the trials, or being forced to surrender his world title, another image links Bolt to Blake. It comes from a Diamond League meeting in Brussels last September on a night when Bolt won the 100m in a carefree 9.76. Yet, later, the cameras homed in on a visibly startled Bolt as he watched Blake cross the 200m finish line in 19.26 the second fastest time in history. Bolt’s world record of 19.19 had not been dented but the taller, older and much more illustrious sprinter could not help himself. His hand covered his mouth as if he needed to muffle his astonishment. It seemed a graphic insight into his true feelings about the rising threat of Blake. The rivalry between the two men is now such that, sharing the same coach in Mills at the Racers Club in Kingston, they train apart. Yet their friendship off the track continues in seemingly untarnished fashion. At the world championships last year, Bolt shared an apartment with Blake and Powell. Will that happen again at the Olympic village? “Of course,” Bolt says. “We’re always going to be friends and team-mates. It’s being part of a team. You need to be around people so you can laugh and relax. All the seriousness of the track happens when you line up and the starter takes over. For me the important thing is to be relaxed and not worry about anything.” The rest of us can simply savour a 100m final which is being described as, potentially, the race of all races. Bolt himself hardly resists the giddy anticipation of a sprinting showdown on Sunday 5 August. All eight finalists could conceivably run under 10 seconds. “If the weather is great I definitely think it could be the greatest race. We have six guys who, for sure, can run under 9.9 and they should all make the final. So there is no doubt this could go down as the greatest final ever. If the weather is great and things work out then everything is possible that’s my motto.” Such expectation engenders searing tension. Bolt likes to claim his most jubilant moment on the track came when he was just 15 and he won the 100m junior world championships in Kingston. Yet before that race he was so nervous he initially put his shoes on the wrong feet. He chortles at the suggestion that, considering his commitment to Puma, his long-time sponsors, he won’t make the same mistake in London. Yet surely even Bolt will struggle to contain his nerves? How will he compose himself the night before and, then, in the last hour and the final moments before he settles in his starting blocks? “It’s always good to have a little bit of nerves. You’ve just got to deal with it. And I think I’m past being extra-nervous especially when I feel myself. When I’m myself there is never any worry and, right now, I’m starting to feel better and better in training. The nerves get less and less the better I feel.” Bolt can relish, instead, the prospect of winning three Olympic finals in London which, for him, “couldn’t be a better place. It couldn’t get bigger than this. There couldn’t be nowhere else because London is really like a second Jamaica.” Is it possible that Bolt, Blake and Powell could complete a Jamaican hat-trick of

Tyson Gay

Continued on page 45



Team Nigeria: Your feat, our hope


n 60 years of Nigeria’s participation in the Olympic Games, the country has won 23 medals. Three gold medals- a gold won by Chioma Ajunwa in long jump at the Atlanta ’96 Games, a gold won same Games in football by the real Dream Team and the just awarded gold won at the Sydney Games in the 4x400m comprising late Sunday Bada, Clement Chukwu, Jude Monye and Enefiok Udo Obong. The country has won eight silver medals. Peter Konyegwachie in boxing at the Los Angeles Games in 19984, and the Barcelona Games in 1992 when the 4x100m relay team that included Olapade Adenike, Ezinwa brothers (Davidson and Osmold ) and Chidi Imo

had the silver, then came David Izonritei and Richard Igbinegbu narrowly missed gold in boxing at the Barcelona Games. Olabisi Afolabi, Fatima Yusuf, Charity Opara and Falilat Ogunkoya clinched another silver in women’s 4x400m in Atlanta ’96 which till date remains Nigeria’s most fruitful Games. Nigeria returned home with two gold one silver and three bronze medals. In the Sydney Games Gloria Alozie and Ruth Ogbeifo won silver each in women 200m and 75kg weightlifting. Sadly, Glory was to change nationality afterward following alleged poor national attention to her plight. In Athens, Team Nigeria returned with two bronze medals in men’s 4x100m and 4x400m relay races. In Beijing taekwondo fetched Nigeria

bronze through Chika Chukwumerije and Blessing Okagbare in women’s long jump. Of course, we cannot forget Samson Siasia’s U23 team that again narrowly missed the soccer gold by losing to Argentina. In all, athletics, football, weightlifting, boxing, taekwondo have given Nigeria medal. The London Games though, Nigeria did not only reduced its usual jamboree contingent but limited participation to eight events: athletics, boxing, weightlifting, taekwondo, canoeing, basketball, wrestling and table tennis. Unlike previous Games expectation is high not for any extra-ordinary reason but that preparation though not adequate had vastly improved and Nigeria tend to have confined participation to areas where she could reasonably boast of comparative advantage.

Again, unlike the others, the usual retinue of government delegation, which seldom adds value to the athletes but great distract and constitute real nuisance, was eliminated or officially speaking in terms of team performances so far, D’ Tigers minimized. In essence therefore as Nigeria’s potentials which we incredible qualification and Team Nigeria begins its hunt surely have but not having the teams that the for Olympics medals, the large planned and properly conquered to secure the population here at home harnessed these capabilities ticket, all ginger hope, Chika would genuflect in prayer for and potentials have been the C h u k w u m e r i j e ’ s an appreciable performance. bane of Nigeria at games such improvement, the hope for No, it would be a disservice as we are attending in London. a medal in canoeing, and Be it as it may, Nigerians calm and calculative to expect feats beyond what the nation had judiciously expect nothing but some oversight of the new men at prepared for because that results. The desire common the helms, all creates some would encourage to all and in fact the dominant level of confidence that lackadaisical attitude from expectation is for Team Team Nigeria’s presence in the managers of sports who Nigeria to equal at the least London may not be a mirage. Nigerians are eager to should be working round the the Atlanta ’96 feat or better surpass that compose new songs of clock to keep the athletes on still praise to fresh sets of names. the boil for every competition accomplishment. And the indices are there Team Nigeria’s feat/s is the nation has opted to to inspire such hope: Blessing therefore the hope of the participate in. glowing majority. Note that we are not Okagbare’s

WATCH DOG By Patrick Andrew

‘We’ll break the Games 1, 500m record’

W Asbel Kiprop

orld and Olympic 1 500m champion Asbel Kiprop has expressed confidence the Kenyans will break the Olympic record established 12 years ago by compatriot Noah Ngeny during the London Games. Kiprop, along with countrymen Silas Kiplagat and Nixon Chepseba will form a formidable team at the games, as all of them

have run the fastest times in the world this year. “It’s hard to pick who between the three of us will win the gold medal. But I am sure that the Olympic record of 3min 29.77sec set by Noah Ngeny 12 years ago will be broken,” said Kiprop. Ngeny set the mark when he outsprinted world record holder Hicham El Guerrouj of Morocco in one of the biggest upsets at the Sydney

Games in 2000, breaking the previous record held by Britain’s Sebastian Coe, who is now the chairman of the London Olympics organising committee. Kiprop tuned up for the Olympics by winning the 1 500m in a world leading time of 3:28.88 seconds in Monaco last week, where Chepseba, who finished second, also returned a personal best 3:29.77

...this is my time, Bolt warns others Continued from page 44 medals in the 100m? “It’s going to be interesting,” he says with a throaty chuckle. “But I can’t call that because I can’t say if everybody will be relaxed on the day. But I’m going

Justin Gatlin


he surgically repaired hip that kept Tyson Gay off the track for nearly a year showed no signs of slowing the world’s second fastest man at a closely watched pre-Olympic practice on Wednesday. There is no hip pain, he said, just the normal groin soreness that the American sprinter has experienced for years from the hard pounding his body takes on track.

Yohan Blake

out there to win. I can’t speak for anyone else.” Gatlin and Gay will be intent on ruining that Jamaican rivalry. The former Olympic champion, Gatlin, has regained some of his old speed and ferocious commitment. At a meeting in Zagreb he even seemed to spit into Bolt’s lane a gesture which elicited amusement in the smiling Jamaican. “I just think that’s what he’s used to,” Bolt says of Gatlin. “He’s pretty much an old-school athlete and, back in the day, it was all about intimidation. But for me it wasn’t anything. I was really focused.” Does Gatlin actually believe he can intimidate a man who has run the 100m in 9.58sec? Bolt laughs wryly. “I’m not intimidated by Justin Gatlin. I think he has used it on a couple of other athletes but I’m a different person. It won’t work with me.” Bolt, instead, can rely on both his staggering reputation and a renewed appetite for hard work to send a shiver down his rivals. Even The Beast has acknowledged that Bolt has put in the long hours to reach near perfect shape for London. “I’ve definitely worked hard for these Olympics,” Bolt says. “Really hard. You have to put a lot behind you and it’s all about sacrifice. You must sacrifice a lot.” His wait for the London Olympics to finally open on Friday

seconds. “We are all ready to compete in the London Olympics. It is going to be a competitive race, but it is our hope that we will bring all the three medals to Kenya,” Kiprop said. But Kiprop ruled out an attack on El Guerrouj’s world record of 3:26.00, saying it would be difficult without the assistance of pace-setters.

is not quite over. The quick man considers the slow drag of an English summer and, for a moment, Bolt sounds almost philosophical. “I think the days are getting even longer, surprisingly,” he says with a light laugh as the deceptive nature of time amuses him. “They seem to be moving real slow now. I guess when you want something to start, now, it takes longer. And, definitely, the evenings are even slower.” Bolt, however, seems set on running so fast he will enshrine his legacy in London. “I’ve been saying this for years,” he murmurs as he reiterates his ambition to dominate. On a cool English evening in Birmingham, as the sun fades and Bolt slips away to face down the hours, his words echo again. “This will be the moment It’s going to be …this will be the year… this interesting. But I can’t is my time.” Those words conjure up an call that because I image of Bolt bending time can’t say if everybody again as he flies across the will be relaxed on the Olympic track with fresh day. But I’m going out resolve. He carries the there to win. I can’t conviction of a man ready to run into the stunned speak for anyone else. embrace of history.

Gay is nervous as 100m approaches “Surgery is good,” he said. “Health is good. So whatever happens happens.” What the soon-to-be 30year-old hopes happens is for him to climb on the podium for the first time at an Olympic Games and accept a 100 metres medal in London next month. Despite his many accomplishments in a sport he dearly enjoys, the former

double world sprint champion has never won an Olympic medal. Injuries had the American at less than full strength in the 2008 Olympics and he bowed out in the semifinal round of what became the Usain Bolt speed show. “I am feeling nervous because this is it,” Gay said of the upcoming renewed

rivalry with Bolt and new man on the block, world champion Yohan Blake. “It is the big show. Every race I run I am nervous, small or big, that is just me,” he said. “(But) I know it is going to be big.” For Gay to medal in athletics’ biggest race he knows his start must be good or better, so on Wednesday for much of his workout, he

Silas Kiplagat

repeatedly rushed out of the starting block in short bursts to test his preparedness. “I’m just trying to execute the first part of my race, which I have been lacking,” he said. While Bolt and Blake have worked in privacy, Gay’s session was open to media and a small gathering of onlookers. “We are only 10 days

away from the (athletics at the) Games so there is not too much you can really hide,” he said promising to march in today’s opening ceremony. “You never know when it is going to be your last one,” said Gay, who has no plans to retire after these Games. It’s about the medal,” he said of the Olympics. “But it is about the experience as well. So I definitely want to be able to go out there with some of my teammates.”

. . . putting the people first

FRIDAY, JULY 27, 2012


London 2012: Japan shock Spain with Yuki winner


apan pulled off the first shock of the Olympic football competition by beating 10-man Spain 1-0 at Hampden Park. Spain was second favourites for gold having won the last three major tournaments, as well as last year's European Under-21 Championship. But Yuki Otsu's 34thminute strike was enough for Japan's first win over Spain at any level after Inigo Martinez was sent off in the 41st minute. Spain now go into Sunday's match with Honduras bottom of the group, despite starting with Euro 2012 winners Jordi Alba, Javi Martinez and Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata.

Mexico plays goalless draw with South Korea


aul Jimenez went within inches of a lastgasp winner as Mexico had to settle for a 0-0 draw with South Korea. The Mexican striker hit the outside of a post after being put through by fellow substitute Giovani dos Santos in the Group B opener. South Korea's Jacheol Koo had earlier clipped the bar with an angled shot early in the second half. Marco Fabian then passed up a glorious opportunity to put Mexico in front, firing over in the 69th minute. South Korea enjoyed the better of the first half, with Nam Taehee and Park Jongwoo going close, while Mexico's Hector Herrera tested South Korea keeper Jung Sungryong. Ki Sungyueng then forced a fine save from Mexico keeper Jose Corona from Koo's lay-off before Koo headed Kim Changsoo's cross wide with 10 minutes left.


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QUO TABLE Q UO TE UOT QUO UOTE My experience worldwide is that there is har dl y an y countr yw her ey ou w ould hardl dly any country wher here you would implement (a budget) 100 percent even by the end of the year and this is based on ver y br oad e xperience ery broad experience — Dr ozi Ok onjo-Iw eala, Finance Minister Dr.. Ng Ngo Okonjo-Iw onjo-Iweala,

States’ budgets: Wrong priorities, pathetic outcomes O

ur aim today is to draw some stylized conclusions from our analysis of the budgets of ten state governments. The states covered are representative of the six geopolitical zones: Bauchi and Gombe in the North East, Lagos (South West), Benue and Nasarawa (North Central), Edo and AkwaIbom (South-South), Kaduna and Zamfara (North West) and Anambra (South East). These states are governed by five political parties - PDP (AkwaIbom, Bauchi, Benue, Gombe, and Kaduna), ANPP (Zamfara), ACN (Edo and Lagos), APGA (Anambra) and CPC (Nasarawa). Thus, to a degree, not only are the ten states representative of the six geo-political zones, but also their budgets present the ideological outlook of the leading political parties in the country. Our analysis, therefore, provides a basis to make some generalizations about the budgets of the 36 states of the federation. The objective of analyzing the states’ budgets is because a considerable proportion of our national revenue is allocated to the states and the local governments they control. Based on the existing revenue allocation formula, nearly half of federation’s revenues go to 36 states and the FCT, and the 774 local governments and 6 area councils. When the derivation, other federal transfers and related revenues are added, this proportion is well in excess of 65% of total revenues that accrue to the federation, being spent directly or indirectly by the state governors. It is, therefore, important to focus on this tier of government which controls and spends nearly two-thirds of the nation’s resources to assess their performance. The 1999 Constitution assigns important roles to the state governments for promoting social and economic development of the country and improving the welfare of our people. It is important not only to focus on how the states are spending their accrued revenues, but also to ask to what extent, through their respective budgets, they are fulfilling their constitutional obligations. We hoped that the analyses will not only generate national debate on quality of spending and accountability but will also lead to better state budgets in the future. Consequently, rather than

311 689 606 327 454

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Kaduna state Governor, Patrick Yakowa offer opinions, we adopted a factsbased approach to the analysis of the ten states budgets. We relied on publicly available and official data. For ease of Doing Business in Nigeria, we relied on the most recent World Bank survey, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) for the Poverty Profiles and Unemployment, and Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) for school enrolments, and JAMB for tertiary admissions. A major challenge that we faced in the exercise was the difficulty in accessing the budgets. Most of the states do not have websites with uploaded budgets. Even states that have functional websites have very little information on their annual budgets. Only Lagos and Gombe have detailed budgets online. Nasarawa has nicely-printed copies of the budget distributed widely and easily accessible in the state. This unusual scarcity and secrecy around state budgets creates conditions of poor accountability and lack of transparency in governance. Invariably, our governance is weakened by the refusal and inability of state governors and houses of assembly to make their budgets readily available to ordinary Nigerians. How can citizens hold governors accountable if they do not know what is planned, budgeted and implemented?

One noticeable trend in the budgets is the inability of state governments to collect taxes and thereby generate internal revenue. Lagos was the exception with IGR constituting 73% of total revenue in 2012. Only Kaduna state raises enough IGR to pay the salaries of its three arms of government without monthly FAAC handouts. Most states have high personnel costs, attributable to unreasonably large numbers of political appointees. As an example, until recently the governor of Bauchi states had over 900 assistants. This is in contrast to Gauteng Province in South Africa which includes in its boundaries the cities of Johannesburg and Pretoria, with a GDP that is more than twenty times that of Bauchi state, whose premier has a maximum of five special assistants. What makes the case tragic in our context is that most of the ‘assistants’ make no meaningful contribution to the development of the states. We can illustrate the above point further by the fact that the civil servants and political appointees do not generate enough revenue to even cover their salaries. Of the state budgets analyzed, only Lagos and Kaduna have IGRs that could cover their personnel costs. The others like most states in the federation have been unable to device strategies to raise enough for their personnel costs. Edo’s IGR will fund 83% of its personnel cost, Anambra’s would fund 74%, Akwa Ibom 65%, Nasarawa 53%, Gombe 30%, Bauchi 26% and the worst case scenario is Zamfara whose IGR would fund only 19% of its personnel cost – less than one out of its five employees. Virtually all the 36 states of the federation are dependent on federal allocations for their overhead and capital project requirements. In 2012, even the best state Lagos has a recurrent budget which is 80% of its IGR. The IGR of the nine other states, like most other states in the federation, will not even cover

their recurrent budgets. Akwa Ibom’s IGR covers only 6.3% of its recurrent budget; Zamfara’s can only cover 7%, Bauchi 11%, Gombe 11.9%, and Anambra 18%. The better performing states are Benue whose IGR will pay 26% of its recurrent budget, Nasarawa’s which covers 31%, Edo’s 37% and Kaduna that internally-generates 52% of its recurrent expenditure. One other trend emerging from the foregoing is that most of the states are also spending more on running their governments than on improving the welfare of their people and investments that will enhance their productive capacity. These are governments of the people but not for the people – but to serve the political elite. With the exception of Akwa Ibom state that earmarked 83% of its 2012 budget for capital expenditure, which is more than the 70% required for developing countries to ensure sustainable development, most state governments spend nearly half of their revenues on recurrent expenditure, with Nasarawa (60% on capital) and Zamfara (63%) being the notable exceptions.. The states are, therefore, not allocating sufficient amounts to the development of social and economic infrastructure, neither are they saving for the future. Given the infrastructural deficits in the country, one expected that state governments would expend the bulk of their resources not only building physical infrastructure but improving the living standards of citizens through provision of better schools, hospitals and ensuring security of life and property. Sadly, not enough of this is being done. If this pattern continues, it will perpetuate not only the underdevelopment of the federating units in particular but the country in general. States develop and prosper when those in charge of governance recognize both the challenges they face and the endowments available and take advantage of them. Generally speaking, the endowments in most states range from agricultural resources to minerals, tourism and human capital. Lagos has no minerals or agricultural land but has leveraged on its locational and commercial advantages. For many of the other states, it is either these natural resources or human capital. Contd. on Page 35

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Peoples Daily Newspaper, Friday, July 27, 2012