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•Jonathan, Dangote at Davos

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Boko Haram: North’s, Igbo’s elders in row over Ihejirika

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•GET WELL SOON: Borno Governor, Kashim Shettima, sympathising with of one the victims of the January 14, Maiduguri bomb blast at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital ...yesterday. More than 30 victims have so far been treated and discharged in three hospitals. The Borno Government paid all the expenses.

From Onyedi Ojiabor and Sanni Onogu, Abuja

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LDERS of the North and the Southeast were locked yesterday in a brickbat over the military’s battle against the Boko Haram insurgency in Borno State. They both talked tough at separate fora in Abuja, the nation’s capital, over the plan by the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) to take former Chief of Army Staff Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged war crimes. NEF spokesman Prof. Ango Abdullahi said there was no going back on the decision to call in the ICC over the massacre of hundreds of people in Baga, Borno State. To Abdullahi, a former vice chancellor of the Ahmadu Bello University, it is “stupid to insinuate that we are dragging the former Chief of Army Staff to the ICC because he is an Igbo man.” Gen. Ihejirika, who was replaced last week

Governors in fresh battle over oil sales proceeds Continued on page 2

Six posers for Presidency VP shifts NEC meeting for sixth time

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OR the sixth time, the Presidency shifted yesterday the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting. Governors, who were already in Abuja, were dissappointed. Vice President Namadi Sambo is the chairman of NEC. The meeting was fixed for today. A new date was not announced. The postponement, it was

THE POSERS • How much oil does the country produce per day? mark price of $79 and the actual sale? • Clarification that the benchmark price for oil in • How much exactly did Nigeria earn from its the 2013 budget was $79? oil sales in 2013 and what percentage of the bud • Was crude oil sold at $110 per barrel all last year? get is funded by these receipts? • Where is the $30 differential between the bench • Why was NEC not consulted on 2014 budget ? From Yusuf Alli, Abuja

gathered, followed plans by the governors to raise issues on the controversial $49.8b oil money in dispute between the Central Bank of Nigeria and

the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Although the “missing” money was reduced to $10.8billion after a reconciliation meeting, the governors

Rivers crisis: Senate summons IG S

ENATORS had a noisy session yesterday. They were considering a motion titled “Recent shooting and disruption of political rally in Port Harcourt, Rivers State”, sponsored by Senator Wilson Ake (Rivers West) and 47 others when the rumpus broke out. Not withstanding, the Senate resolved to invite the Inspector General of Police, Abubakar Mohammed, to give a situation report of the events in Rivers State. On Tuesday, the House of Representatives was embroiled in uproar as All

From Onyedi Ojiabor and Sanni Onogu, Abuja

Progressives Congress (APC) members claimed majority. The Senate’s version of disorder was averted by the timely intervention of the Senate President, David Mark, after Senator Alkali Jajere (Yobe South) had sprung up from his seat to protest an alleged abusive comment directed at Senator Ahmed Lawan by Senator James Manager (Delta South). Continued on page 2

are demanding a probe of the $49.8billion. It was learnt that the postponement followed security reports that the governors had adopted six more posers, in-

cluding some that had been raised earlier by Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, for discussion at the meeting. The posers are:

•How much oil does the country produce daily?

•Clarification that the benchmark price for oil in the 2013 budget was $79? •Is it a fact that crude oil was sold at prices that hovered around $110 per day throughout the year? •Where is the $30 differential between the benchmark price of $79 and the actual sale price which averaged $110 per barrel during the period? •How much exactly has NiContinued on page 2 •Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola and Lord Cameron of Dillington who presided over the All Parliamentary Group on Agriculture and Food For Development & PCD meeting in London where the governor spoke on the Osun experience in the school feeding scheme, (O’MEALs) ...yesterday STORY ON PAGE 8

•EJIGBO ASSAULT VICTIMS RELIVE ORDEAL: WE WERE TRAUMATISED P22


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

NEWS 180,000 jobs coming in Agric, says Dangote

Senate summons IG Continued from page 1

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OT less than 180,000 jobs will be created by the Dangote group in the agriculture sector in the next four years, Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, said yesterday in Davos, Switzerland. He spoke at the on-going World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort town where experts across the world and leaders are discussing the future of the world’s economy. President Goodluck Jonathan, one of the leaders at the forum, also yesterday, said African governments must record the highest possible priority to promoting inclusive economic growth on the continent. Both of them spoke in a televised debate at the forum on “Africa next billion”. Dangote said: “In Nigeria, we have one of the most attractive investment policies through the framework that the government has put in place to help businesses succeed. If I dreamt five years ago that I would invest in agriculture, I will write it off as bad dream or nightmare. But today, we’re investing $2.3 billion in agriculture, $2 billion in sugar, and $300 million in rice. “In agriculture, we’re going to create 180,000 jobs in the next four years in Nigeria. African governments need to invest in infrastructure, education, economic stability.” Explaining that the situation in Africa was not as bad as being painted, the business mogul said corporate investors do not check

•Dangote...yesterday From Augustine Ehikioya, Abuja

what Africa is truly about, but base their judgement and perception on what they read in newspapers, which is not always positive. “For instance, foreign investors wait for election to be concluded, after then, they try to check the stability of government of the day for at least two years, but then, it’s more difficult to take any decision because the tenure of the government is coming to an end, and by so doing, foreign investors are scared of incoming or incumbent and the cycle keeps going on. “But then I don’t think there is anything to be afraid of because no government is against business; every government is probusiness. Most business risks are perceived not actual risk,” he

said. Dangote lamented that “Africa isn’t good at telling its own stories, people often rely on stories they heard from others to make their decision. Most times those stories are not true. People always underestimate Africa,” he said. He advised that Africa of 2050 should be a united Africa, one common market, with free movement of goods and people all across. “As at today, an American has more access to Africa than myself taking visa issues into consideration. I would require 38 visas to visit 38 African countries outside of ECOWAS. “The government needs to make a policy where we don’t supply/export raw materials out alone; we want to be involved. We want those factories to be set up and produce here, run it for us for about four-five

years, then we can take over production ourselves. “Majority of our raw materials have been exported, processed abroad and brought back with at least 10per cent higher than the original cost. “Entrepreneurship entails being able to take calculated risk, strong business stamina and a large appetite for work and success. We have what it takes in Africa for people to do business and succeed. I believe in Africa’s setting for entrepreneurship, if you take the risk, the market is there.” Jonathan said his administration was already doing a lot to enhance inclusive growth in Nigeria through policies and programmes that focus on wealth creation rather than poverty alleviation. Asked to rank the current im-

to the National Assembly? Another governor said: “They are afraid that most of us had prepared to take up issues with the Federal Government on the controversial $49.8billion which neither the NNPC nor the Minister of Finance has been able to clear. “We cannot be suppressed in any manner; we will certainly address all these issues whenev-

er they deem it fit to cause a NEC meeting.” A third governor said: “It is sad that for many months, the NEC session has not been convened by the presidency. This is a violation of the 1999 Constitution. “The Presidency has refused to invite us to either NEC or Council of State meeting because they are afraid that we will

Continued on page 68

Governors in fresh battle over oil sales proceeds Continued from page 1

geria earned from its oil sales in 2013 and what percentage of the budget is funded by these receipts? •Why was NEC not consulted on 2014 Budget before presentation? A governor, who spoke in confidence, said: “We have all arrived in Abuja for the meeting on the state of the economy,

but it has been shifted. No date has been communicated to us. “This is the sixth time they have postponed the NEC meeting, a constitutionally, recognised organ. Nigerians should ask: what are they hiding that they do not want NEC meeting to hold? “Do you know that governors were not consulted on the 2014 Budget before it was presented

Continued on page 68

Jajere was said to have been infuriated by alleged unprintable remarks Manager made against Lawan. He (Jajere) demanded an apology from Manager and insisted that proceedings at the chamber could only resume after Manager must have apologised to Lawan. For more than 10 minutes, plenary was disrupted as some senators battled to calm Jajere who charged furiously at Manager. Mark watched in disbelief as voices rose and some senators formed a ring around Manager apparently to ward off any possible attack on him. A group of senators prevailed on Manager to apologise to Lawan and also reminded him (Manager) that the proceedings were being televised live. The Delta South lawmaker left his seat, shook hands with and embraced Lawan. “Can I appeal that we cannot be telling people dialogue, dialogue and then we want to fight,” Mark told his colleagues. He added: “Tempers rose just now; I hope it does not rise again. We have to be careful about the situation in Rivers State.” Before the consideration of the motion, Manager had, through a Point of Order, attempted to abort its consideration by in-

forming his colleagues that the Rivers State House of Assembly was still under the retainership of the National Assembly. He noted that he was surprised to learn that late in 2013, the Assembly sat and approved the state’s budget. Manager also said that Mark informed the Senate that he sent the Committee on Police Affairs on a fact-finding mission to Rivers State after the alleged disruption of a pro- Governor Chibuike Amaechi rally on January 12. He wondered the import of a motion on Rivers when the Senate had not been properly briefed. Before Mark gave Ake the floor to move his motion, he warned that contributions should be devoid of sentiments. “I appeal that we face facts and concentrate on what is in the motion,” Mark said. Ake urged the Senate to note with dismay that the nation had witnessed, once again, a new dimension in disruption and d obstruction of political gathering and meetings of people in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital. The lawmaker said he was deeply disturbed that on January 12, the relative peace the people of Rivers State were enjoying was interrupted by an attack on the people of Obio/AkContinued on page 68

Security agencies oppose being under Defence minister

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ECURITY agencies are opposed to President Goodluck Jonathan’s proposal to make the incoming Minister of Defence a Coordinating Minister of the military and security agencies. They said it was against the National Security Agencies Act 1986(as amended) to ask them to report to a minister, who might be a politician. The attention of the President

From Yusuf Alli, Abuja

was being drawn to the implications of having a Coordinating Minister of Defence who might be too powerful. The President has submitted a list of 12 would-be ministers to the Senate to replace those dropped last year. The nominees are: former National Security Adviser General Aliyu Gusau Mohammed Continued on page 68

CORRECTION Our attention has been drawn to an error in our story, entitled ‘Police promote two DIG’s, three AIGs’, which appeared on page 6 of our Tuesday, January 21, 2014 edition. In the said story, our correspondent had erroneously stated in paragraph 3 that the newly promoted DIGs replaced DIG Philemon Leha and DIG Peter Gana who retired from service last week. While it is a fact that DIG Leha was one of the retired officers, DIG Gana is still in service. As a matter of fact, DIG Gana is not retired. He remains the DIG in charge of Force CID. The error is regretted.

Boko Haram: North’s, Igbo’s elders exchange attacks over Ihejirika Why ex-Army chief must face ICC, by NEF by Major Gen. Kenneth Miniimah, was the first officer from Continued from page 1

the Southeast extraction to head the army since the civil war ended in 1970. But Senator Uche Chukwumerije, who spoke on behalf of Igbo elders, criticised the “blatant selective search for who is responsible in Baga and Why so personal?” “Every citizen (including Prof. Ango Abdullahi) knows that the anti-terrorism campaign in the North is a joint military operation under the command of the Chief oF Defence Staff. “In singling out Lt.-General Ihejirika, the then Army boss, the likes of Prof. Ango Abdullahi are merely betraying old prejudices and embarking on new hazardous search for bad names to hang hated dogs. “Besides, the fact that Prof. Ango Abdullahi and co sprung into action immediately Lt.General Ihejirika and ‘six others’ left their commands has revealed the depth of long-smoldering resentment of the campaign against Boko Haram by the self-proclaimed leaders of the North. The position of the Northern Elders Forum, he said, “raises a question about where their sym-

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HE Northern Elders Forum yesterday (NEF) vowed to go ahead with its planned prosecution of Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika at the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged human rights violation by security agencies in the Northeast. The spokesman of the Forum, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, told reporters after a meeting of a committee of the NEF in Abuja that the Igbo could decide to approach the ICC if they so wished on whatever issues of rights violations they want to raise concerning the Nigerian Civil War. Abdullahi said the Northern Elders decided to approach the ICC for justice because of the failure of the Nigerian judicial system to mete out justice in glaring cases of human rights violations in the past. He faulted comments credited to Gen. Ihejirika that the North should have been grateful for his services to rescue the region

pathy lies in this battle” against Boko Haram. Chukwumerije asked: “Why single out Bama (Baga) incident for Hague’s adjudication?” He said: “We have seen, in the past, cases of wholesale massacres which were not only more gruesome than Bama’s (Baga) but proven as true, unlike Bama (Baga). Ango Abdullahi and co kept silent.

From Sanni Onogu, Abuja

from the stranglehold of the Boko Haram, saying the ex-army chief could not have been expecting a thank you for carrying out his statutory duties. Abdullahi said: “How many people have got justice through the Nigerian legal system? Up till now the Apo six, the Igbomen that were shot there in broad daylight through the careless action of the police, their families have not got justice. “Recently, some people who are squatting to find means everyday through all manner of petty jobs and so on were carelessly slaughtered and nobody is talking about what justice should be meted to them or their families and so on. “So the issue of people being abused with impunity has been going on for a very long time in this country. And leaders who really carry out these acts of impunity are simply getting away with

“There was the case of Odi in which a whole community was decimated. There was the case of Zaki-Biam. There was the case of Katsina Ala. “If Odi did not arouse the conscience of Ango Abdullahi because the people do not belong to his hallowed Northern enclave, how about Zaki-Biam and Katsina Ala? “In the magisterial judgement

them. “In fact, there is no doubt in my mind that there have been many cases that should have deserved to go to ICC before this one. For example, Obasanjo could have been taken to the ICC for his action in Odi and Zaki Biam where it was clear that instructions were given for the army to go and destroy these villages. “Again, the police shot Mohammed Yusuf (the Boko Haram leader) with beggars and cripples like rats. Having been arrested and handed over to the police, but they were put down on ground and shot like rats. “People were not even willing to bring those police officers before courts of either their own system of police or military justice or even the civilian courts for them to really face the criminal acts they carried out in respect of these extra-judicial slaughter of people.

and imperial political wisdom of the Ango Abdullahis, when is a Nigerian, their type of Nigerian, worthy of national attention and respect of the law, and when is a Northerner, their type of Northerner, worthy of attention and protection of the law? Why only Bama (Baga)? According to him, “if Ango’s criterion for selection of cases for Hague is a gruesome use of

Continued on page 66

force against unarmed civilians’, ‘extra-judicial killings’ and ‘acts of strangulating civilians’ (unproven or exaggerated as the allegation may be), then our learned professor ought to know that the prime candidate is genocidal atrocities of the civil war against the people of former Eastern Region, especially Ndigbo”. Chukwumerije added: “As

•Chukwumerije

Ango Abdullahi’s team opens the doors and walks into the hall of the World Court, let them realise that they have at last Continued on page 66

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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How to make a •From left: President Goodluck Jonathan, Chairman, Heirs Holdings, Mr. Tony Elumelu; and GMD/CEO, UBA Plc, Mr. Phillips Oduoza at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland...yesterday.

A forum of aviation experts under the umbrella of Aviation Round Table (ART), dissected the industry in Lagos. KELVIN OSA OKUNBOR reports that one key suggestion on how to grow the industry is the need for the government to designate three domestic airlines as flag carriers.

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•From left: Executive Director, Lagos, Sterling Bank Plc, Puri DAvendra; Coordinator, Irede Foundation, Keji Ajakaiye; Project Manager, Emerald Havila Orphanage, Chima Chukwuma and Executive Director, South, Sterling Bank, Mr Lanre Adesanya, at the presentation of cheques to charities which benefited from the Sterling Bank's "Raise a child project," in Lagos...yesterday.

•From left: General Manager, Mass Market, Mr. Wole Abu; Head, Marketing, Seven Up Bottling Company Plc, Mr. Norden Thurston; General Manager, Value Added Services, Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Victor Bannerman-Chedid; Senior Marketing Manager, Pepsico, Mr. Shakeel Akran and Head, Public Relations, Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Adefemi Adeniran at the Airtel/Pepsi joint promo news conference in Lagos...yesterday. PHOTO: ADEOLA SOLOMON

•From left: Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic IBTC Bank, Mr. Yinka Sanni, Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic IBTC Holding, Mrs. Sola David-Borha and Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic Stockbrokers Limited, Mr. Dele Sofubo at a news conference on Standard Bank West Africa’s 2014 Investors Conference in Lagos...yesterday. PHOTO: BOLA OMILABU

T is a troubled industry. Anyone who argues against this is only being economical with the truth. As at the last count, domestic airlines owe N190 billion. Debt has caused Aero Contractors its ownership. It lost its controlling shares to the Assets Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON). Air Nigeria has gone under. And the few that are still operating are not free of debts. This and many of the travails of airlines were the points of discussion at a forum organised by the Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative in Lagos to seek lasting solutions to the intractable problems of the industry. Experts, such as Captain Dele Ore, who is president of the Aviation Roundtable , Babatunde Obadofin, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Aeroconsult, Group Captain John Ojikutu ( rtd), who is the Chief Executive Officer of Centurion Securities , Captain Roland Iyayi, the Chief Executive Officer of Topbrass Aviation and Mr Gbenga Olowo, the president of Sabre Travel Network, ‘tore’ the industry into pieces and showed the right way to mend it. The experts examined the successes and challenges in aviation last year and the way forward. They also examined multiple destinations and its effects on domestic airlines . In his presentation titled “ Travails of Nigerian Airlines “, Olowo canvassed the designation of three domestic airlines as flag carriers. Olowo said the three airlines should have a combined fleet size of at least 30 aircraft, which should be expanded to 50 within three years. This means 10 aircraft should be added annually. He said the proposal by the Federal Government to establish a national carrier by designating Aero Contractors, in which AMCON has 60 per cent equity, is fundamentally flawed. He said such an airline with limited capacity and weak structure could not compete with mega foreign carriers, which remit over $5.556 billion annually to their countries. According to Olowo, the structure of local airlines would not enable them compete favourably in the increasingly competitive global industry . He said Nigerian airlines were performing abysmally when compared to the contributions of the aviation sector to other global economies. Olowo said in 2012, aviation contributed over N119 billion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Of the N119 billion contribution of the sector to the GDP, the airline subsector contributed over N59 billion. According to Olowo, aviation contributed a mere 0.4 per cent to the GDP, as opposed to the contribution

of aviation to the economies of other developed countries . He cited statistics from the World Bank, which indicates that in 2012, other economies garnered more money in foreign exchange into the GDP than Nigeria. Spain, in 2012, he said, earned over $74.8 billion from the aviation sector, contributing over 5.2 per cent into its GDP. The United Kingdom same year earned over $115.3 billion from the aviation sector, contributing 5 per cent to the GDP. The United Arab Emirates, in 2012, earned over $9.6 billion from its aviation sector, contributing 3.5 per cent to its GDP, whereas Canada in same year earned over $42.2 billion from the aviation sector, contributing 2.8 per cent to its GDP. Germany earned over $86.9 billion from aviation, contributing 2.6 per cent to the GDP. Nigeria earned $0.7 billion from the sector, contributing a meagre 0.4 per cent to its GDP. Olowo said local airlines maintained low capacity, weak operational structures. The debtor-airlines, according to Olowo, include the defunct Air Nigeria, Aero, IRS Airlines, Chanchangi Airlines Limited and Arik. Olowo said the industry continued to bleed under the yoke of suffocating Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) and other multi-lateral agreements it signed with many countries of the world. He said the government signed an Open Skies agreement with nine countrie, granting them traffic rights into Nigeria to the detriment of indigenous operators. Olowo explained that Nigeria signed over 78 BASA, with only five reciprocated. 21 of the BASA are utilised shabbily. He said the objective of achieving balance of trade had not been at-


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS

ke aviation fly high, by experts

•Olowo (left) and Iyayi at the forum.

tained. Olowo said of the 48,433 seats available on international weekly flights out of Lagos, Abuja , Port Harcourt and Kano airports, Arik Air controls a mere 3889. Olowo said the influence of the 27 foreign airlines flying into Nigeria should be checkmated as they remit over $ 5.556 billion annually from ticket sales. He said: “Nigeria has not been able to reciprocate traffic rights to most of the partnering countries. This has resulted in huge negative balance of trade against Nigeria. This has also brought about capital flight. It has also put strong pressure on the Naira by further weakening the exchange rate. This aids unemployment as Nigerian airlines growth remains stunted. “Should the foreign airlines strictly operate frequencies as stipulated on the BASA? The answer is negative because Nigerian airlines have no capacity to reciprocate. Should the extra frequencies be removed through seasonal schedule changes? The answer is negative due to demand and political factors. Should government continue to earn the so called royalties on bilateral agreements? The answer is negative. One might be tempted looking at some previous earnings, which I will like to describe as pot of porridge in exchange for the birthright. “Commercial agreement negotiation is airlines call and not that of government.” Olowo said all hope was not lost, if the government would do what is right. Said he:” Government should immediately establish at least three scheduled flag carriers with capacity to reciprocate all BASA routes. “The three airlines to be designated must be given national carrier status.” They must participate in BASA negotiations and Commercial agreements. This will give birth to quality service

delivery and healthy collaboration and competition. Each of the three flag carriers operating an Air Operators ‘ Certificate (AOC). The airlines should build its aircraft fleet within three years to 50 starting with a minimum of 30 and increased by 10 annually. All the present three to five aircraft scheduled airlines should be encouraged to join the pool either as leasors. This will bring about harmonisation of resources , minimise competition, boost ample down time for maintenance without disrupting schedule and improved safety. “Single point entry of choice in Nigeria will be mandatory with immediate effect. This will stimulate domestic traffic and hub creation. The Fly the Flag act must be established, where all travels on government funds must be made on a flag carrier. This will be an indirect way of market protection for Nigerian flag carriers and subsequently retain the wealth at home. Rather than royalty earnings, Nigerian Flag Carrier(s) must conclude “Blocked Seat Agreement” BSA and “Code Share Agreement” CSA with reciprocal airlines to whose destination they cannot fly immediately. “This will give better earnings than royalty and grow the airline. Deliberate effort by government on airline cost is a task that must be done for their competitive advantage. The way out is for government to give guarantees on insurance and or aircraft lease, reduce landing and parking fees, remove multiple taxes, delete value added tax on domestic travel. “There should be single digit cost of funds and cut on fuel price. Direct Sales from foreign Airlines Offices should be outlawed. All Sales must be routed through IATA licensed Travel Agents who are the downstream sector of Aviation Industry.” In his presentation titled “ Suc-

cesses and challenges in aviation in 2013, the way forward in 2014”, Iyayi said until there is effective implementation of the deregulation and liberalisation policy , the industry will continue to struggle for survival . Iyayi said the structure of the industry where airlines are burdened by multiple charges and low capacity, the path to growth and development may be elusive. He canvassed a three-tier licensing structure for airlines, which should be upgraded according to operational capacity. He said the basics of the industry should be seriously addressed as airlines were using money sourced under suffocating repayment terms to finance aircraft, which often lead to the collapse of many airlines. Iyayi said until Nigerian carriers utilise the best business plan, they would not enjoy cheap access to funding. He advised the government to create a friendlier business environment through reduction in taxes and reduction in the cost of aviation fuel to assist domestic operators. He called for the setting up of an Aviation Development Fund (ADF) to replace the existing 5 per cent ticket sales charge collected by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA). He also canvassed the convocation of a consultative stakeholder’s forum where issues concerning the sector would be examined and a roadmap drawn for the government’s implementation. Iyayi said:” Deregulation policy ought to provide the consumer a better choice. It was fashionable at the time of Nigeria Airways Limited, but it brought about fragmentation of the market, which did not have sufficient capacity , but merely market presence. “After the 1984 liberalisation policy, aviation is still in crisis, the major issues have not been resolved . The load factor went down due to

lack of subsidy. “If the distortions occasioned by the effects of deregulation and liberalisation is not addressed, the industry will still be in crisis. “In Nigeria, our airlines should look towards consolidation , this way, they will have cheap source of funding .” Iyayi also raised concerns over the oversight duties of the NCAA, affirming that the authority is unable to meet its responsibility and sufficiently train its technical personnel. He said: “Airlines are not making profit because the fabric of infrastructure in the industry is not yet what it ought to be. “Even aviation fuel is taxed by FAAN. Even the NCAA cannot pay its bills to carry out a thorough oversight of airlines. Imagine airlines paying the travel bills of NCAA aircraft inspectors, who travel abroad to inspect aircraft. “It appears to me that the NCAA is completely docile. The NCAA has to fight to get its autonomy, because the law provides for that.” He canvassed an institutional policy framework for the industry. He spoke of the need for the reexamination of the deregulation policy. An aviation security expert, Group Captain John Ojikutu, said the threats to civil aviation at Nigerian airports may force the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) to carry out a fresh survey of the airports. He said Nigerian airports remained unsafe because of lack of security fence around the airports. He said most of the airports do not have a contingency plan as well as airport security programme to take care of threats to civil aviation. Group Capt. Ojikutu said:” There is a lot of corruption in the system. It should be mandatory for every airport and airline to have their own security programme.

“What is the programme put in place by the airport authority for access control for passengers , staff and others . What is the programme put in place for aircraft security , cabin baggage , cargo, mail , catering and other goods as well as the security arrangement for special category of passengers including physically challenged passengers who are obliged to travel .” Group Capt. Ojikutu raised concerns over the porous security situation at the Benin Airport, which resulted in the stowaway of a young boy, affirming that something went wrong with the quality of access control at the airport. He said:” There must have been a breach or error of judgement by the airline in their security programme . What about the state of airports that are jointly used for military and civil aviation purposes. This played out very well during the recent bombings of the Maiduguri Airport by Boko Haram. “What is the state of our airport perimeter fences, security fence and airport perimeter roads? Can Boko Haram, an offshoot of Al Qaeda, not be seen to be playing similar cards? Because experts believe that Civil Aviation is always targets for attack by terrorists, could Boko Haram not be seen to be playing similar cards, or can they at any point and with some opportunities not attack civil aviation infrastructure facilities? “What should the Aviation community be doing in the light of what happened at the Maiduguri Airport? Are there programmes for armed enforcement in the event of armed resolution of cases of hijacking and who has the authority to deploy, direct, or control armed enforcement for such event.” For now, the problems persist. Time will tell if the outcome of the forum will help end the woes of the industry.


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS FEC okays N28b for FCT district From Augustine Ehikioya, Abuja

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•Human Resources expert/guest speaker, Mrs Titilayo Akisanya, addressing participants at the 20th annual trainers’ clinic of Tom Associates Training in Lagos.

APC decries Jonathan’s indifference to Rivers crisis

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HE All Progressives Congress (APC) has warned of the impending anarchy in Rivers State. The party noted that events unfolding in the state could have “far-reaching consequences beyond the state”, unless President Goodluck Jonathan reins in his supporters. It alleged that with the connivance of “gross partisan police”, the President’s supporters have resorted to bringing in ex-militants from neighbouring states to attack innocent people in Rivers. In a statement in Abuja by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the APC said: “Having lost confidence in the ability of the police to protect them and keenly aware of the President’s deliberate refusal to allow peace to reign in their state, the patience of the people of Rivers is wearing thin, and there is a possibility that they may resort to self-help. “Because we abhor anarchy, which is the antithesis of democracy, we call on President Jonathan to stop the looming anarchy in Rivers.” APC also warned that the decision of the desperate pro-Jonathan politicians and their supporters in Rivers to resort to ferrying in ex-militants from Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom states to cause mayhem in Rivers and make it ungovernable will have far-reaching consequences. The party noted that the most serious of these is that it would “revive militancy, not only in Rivers but also in the entire Southsouth.” “The ex-militants, who are being hired daily by the anarchists in Rivers today, will turn against them and the people tomorrow when, one way or the other, the situation is resolved. The outcome will be a resurgence of insecurity, including hostage taking and attacks on oil and other infrastructure. This is why we are warning those who believe they are having a free rein today to retrace their steps,” it said. APC expressed shock that

•Anarchy looms as President sits idly by’ limited to the Speaker •‘No interim exco yet in Kwara’ not of the House of Assembly,

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HE All Progressives Congress (APC) has disowned Rev Bunmi Olusona, who is claiming to be the party leader in Kwara State. A statement yesterday by Tijani Tumsah, the party’s Interim national secretary, said: “Our attention has been drawn to Rev. Bunmi Olusona, who is parading himself as the interim chairman of the APC in Kwara State. “We state that our party has not inaugurated the interim executive committee in Kwara State, and that the APC stakeholders in the state are working to find a convenient date for the inauguration. “When that happens, the governor of Kwara State will nominate the interim chairman. “Anyone parading himself as the interim chairman of the APC in Kwara State is nothing but an impostor, who should be ignored. “The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies should take note.” By Olamilekan Andu

a President, who has been widely quoted as saying his political ambition is not worth the blood of any citizen, is now standing by, pretending to be oblivious of the happenings around him, as the same citizens’ blood is being used to water his ambition to have a second term in office. It said: “This President has refused to listen to the calls by individuals and organisations, including the opposition parties, labour unions and the National Assembly, to allow peace to reign in Rivers. He has egged on the police to champion the worsening impunity in the state and thumbed his nose at the Constitution, while the Police Service Commission (PSC) has suddenly lost its steam and is defending the arrowhead of the anarchy in Rivers. “It is instructive that while the police have stood by and allowed hired exmilitants to attack innocent citizens, whose only offence is that they are exercising their rights of freedom of association, movement and speech, the same police have been protecting proJonathan and anti-Amaechi elements, who have turned the state into a battle ground. “Twice in eight days, peaceful rallies, organised by the Save Rivers Movement,

have been brutally broken up by police-backed hoodlums, who shot at innocent citizens, including women and children; a serving senator has been shot and is now being treated in a foreign hospital and, as we write this statement, hoodlums from Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom have gathered in Port Harcourt to protest any attempt to remove Police Commissioner Mbu Joseph Mbu, the man using the police against the same people they are paid to protect.” The party also chronicled the series of impunity that has prepared the ground for the looming anarchy in Rivers. •Mbu provided the needed backing for a group of hired thugs and ex-militants with dangerous weapons to unlawfully and forcefully invade the House of Assembly to terrorise its members, sack them and other management staff from the complex and prevent the exercise of legislative functions. •A caretaker committee set up for Obi/Akpor Local Government Area was prevented from delivering governance to the people due to the sealing of the local government’s secretariat by police operatives acting under Mr. Mbu’s directive. •Security detail were withdrawn from the principal members of the state government, including but

the attorney-general and principal judicial officers of the state. •Mbu provided cover for a sponsored protest by over 5,000 ex-militants and other criminal elements brandishing dangerous weapons to take over and parade the streets of Port Harcourt, thereby creating fear and an atmosphere reminiscent of pre-amnesty siege in the minds of right-thinking residents. •Mbu almost engineered an unnecessary but deadly riot by directing his men to restrain over 500 people - including traditional rulers from the Orashi communities of Rivers State, from paying a courtesy visit to the governor at the Government House in Port Harcourt. •A potential bloodbath at Bonny was averted only by the maturity exhibited by the young members of the Rivers Leadership Advancement Foundation in the face of provocation by the Rivers State Police Command •When five colleagues of Governor Chibuike Amaechi - who felt they were exercising their rights of free movement and association - had the temerity to pay him a visit in Port Harcourt, they were molested and humiliated at the Port Harcourt Airport by hired thugs under the protection of Mr Mbu. •Police operatives used tear gas to cause a potentially deadly stampede through the dispersal of 13,201 new teachers, who had gathered at the Liberation Stadium in Port Harcourt for the final round of their training, orientation, mobilisation and deployment to primary and secondary schools. •The Rivers State Command, acting on the orders of Mbu, blockaded a road leading to the Government House in Port Harcourt, forcing the governor’s convoy to turn back and take another route to his official residence. * The police prevented a plane chartered by the governor from taking off, osten-

sibly because it was carrying a lawmaker said to be wanted by the police. When the lawmaker was not found on the plane, no apology was issued to the governor. “We have decided to remind Nigerians how the situation in Rivers State got to the present level, even as calls by the nation’s lawmakers, labour unions and other well-meaning Nigerians for the redeployment of Mbu have fallen on deaf ears. “Our party has also intervened many times to warn the nation that President Jonathan is using Rivers as a testing ground for fascism, especially ahead of the 2015 elections, seemingly to no avail as the crisis has worsened, instead of abating. “It is in this light that we reiterate our fears of a looming anarchy, which is the outcome of months of impunity, as the man who swore to an oath to ensure the welfare and security of citizens - the raison d’etre for any government - has now become the quiet sponsor of violence against the same citizens. It is time to stop the madness in Rivers!” APC said.

HE Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday approved N28.11 billion contract for engineering infrastructure in the new Wasa District of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). Information Minister Labaran Maku and FCT’s Minister of State Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide addressed State House correspondents at the end of the FEC meeting, presided over by Vice President Namadi Sambo. Maku said the creation of the new district and provision of infrastructure was in line with the government’s policy to decongest the city. He said: “The minister presented a memorandum to seek the council’s approval for the contract to provide engineering infrastructure to Wasa Affordable Housing Site.” Ms Akinjide explained that the contract, which was awarded to Gilmor Engineering, would include site clearance, sewage, water supply, electrical supply and street lighting. The idea, she said, was to make available affordable housing sites to Nigerians. The minister said cooperatives and registered associations in the private and public service would be considered. Ms Akinjide said: “The project is in line with the establishment of FCT Satellite Development Agency, whose mandate is to provide infrastructure and social amenities to satellite towns and rural areas. ‘’Besides, the project will generate jobs for at least 30 professionals, 50 technicians and 100 unskilled labourers. “After deliberations, the council approved the contract for engineering infrastructure to Wasa Affordable Housing Site in favour of Messrs Gilmor Engineering Nigeria Limited for N28,117,904,027 for a period of 48 months.”

‘Fed Govt caused ASUP strike’

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GROUP, the Forum of Nigeria Polytechnic Alumni Association (FONPAA), yesterday criticised the Federal Government’s attitude toward polytechnic education and its inability to resolve the seven-month strike of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP). FONPAA accused the government of paying less attention to polytechnic education, saying it resolved the Academic Staff Union of Universities’ (ASUU) strike, although ASUP started its before ASUU. In a statement in Akure, Ondo State, by its Chairman Emmanuel Ojo and Secretary Olayode Omorayewa, FONPAA said the Federal Government’s failure to end the ASUP strike showed its discrimination between

From Leke Akeredolu, Akure

university and polytechnic education. The statement reads: “It is disheartening and worrisome that the Federal Government does not pay attention to polytechnic education. ASUP went on strike before ASUU but the government acceded to the demands of ASUU while ASUP’s is yet to be addressed. “What the government should note is that university and polytechnic education plays complementary roles in enhancing the national economy. While university education is theoreticallyoriented, polytechnic education is technologicallybased. Therefore, the discrimination between the two institutions is unwarranted...”


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS Funsho Williams: Confusion as defendant slumps in court

PDP senators to support Mu’azu

•Court to rule on blood samples Feb 20

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HERE was confusion at a Lagos High Court, Igbosere, as a defendant in the trial of suspected killers of promin e nt L a g o s p o l i t i c i a n , Funsho Williams, slumped in court. Musa Maina (second defendant) slumped during an argument on whether or not the prosecution should be allowed to collect fresh blood samples from the defendants for forensic investigation. Maina, who is said to be asthmatic, has been in prison custody since 2006, with the first defendant, Bulama Kolo. Barely 45 minutes after the defendants - Kolo, Maina, David Cassidy, Tunani Sonani, Mustapha Kayode and Okponwasa Imariabie - were put in the dock, Maina slumped. As his co-defendants tried to prop him up, Justice Adeniyi Adebajo, noticed the confusion. The accused asked for permission to be allowed to sit down. As the trial continued, Maina slumped for the second time from his seat. This created unease in the courtroom. Apparently worried by the incident, Justice Adebajo ordered his support staff as well as prison authorities to call for an ambulance from a clinic. Maina, who was seen struggling with an inhaler, with tears and catarrh running down his eyes and nostrils, was supported by security operatives to lie down. The court became rowdy for about 10 minutes. Lawyers and litigants ran about to assist the defendant. While some asthmatic patients brought their inhalers, others were fanning Maina to regain consciousness. About 25 minutes after

From Tony Akowe, Kaduna

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By Precious Igbonwelundu

the incident and five minutes after the court resumed sitting, a nurse came into the court and was assisted by two prison wardens to carry the defendant into a Lagos State ambulance, with registration number JJJ704AP. Justice Adebajo has fixed February 20 for ruling on whether or not the prosecution can collect fresh blood samples from the accused. The state government, last April, told the court that the exhibits for forensic evidence collected from the defendants, including Funsho Williams’ eyes, had been damaged because of epileptic power supply. At the resumed hearing yesterday, counsel to the state, Mrs E. I. Alakija, reminded the court of the pending application seeking approval for the collection of fresh blood samples. She also reminded the court of a motion on notice dated October 28, 2013, seeking an order to take such samples. Mrs Alakija said the prosecution relied on the nine paragraphs of its written affidavit, citing authorities that allow samples to be collected during a criminal trial. Objecting to the prosecution’s prayer, counsel to the defendants, Okezie Agbara, in a nine-paragraph counter-affidavit, told the court that the prosecution could not open investigation at this stage of the trial. He said: “Since the prosecution said the initial samples have been destroyed by lack of electricity, which samples will they match it with?” Justice Adebajo interrupted Agbara, asking the defence lawyer if he ever watched Crime Investigation (CI) channel on DSTV. “Have you ever watched

•Maina after he slumped in court...yesterday.

Crime Investigation on DSTV? Evidence obtained from a crime scene can be kept for 12 years and will still be valid. Such evidence obtained from wood and clothes do not need electricity for preservation,” Justice Adebajo said. The defence counsel also argued that an accused should be prosecuted within reasonable time, noting

that since the matter has dragged since 2007, allowing the prosecution collect fresh samples will further delay the matter. He said that allowing the prosecution would delay justice. Agbara also submitted that the prosecution’s prayer should be disregarded on the grounds that an attached exhibit, marked

Reps seek extension of litigation period

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HE House of Representatives is set to extend limitation period for litigation and arbitration from six to 12 years. The decision of the lawmakers followed the second reading of a bill to amend the Limitation Act, sponsored by Femi Williams (APC, Ogun). Williams, who noted that the people would benefit from the amendment, said there was need for disputing parties to be given time to explore other avenues of settlement before going to court. “The extension would also assure fair hearing for unsuspecting defendants,” he said. Supporting, Ali Ahmad (APC, Kwara) noted that Nigerians are not litigious and as such, the extension sought by the bill is commendable. “It is wrong to assume that it is only the right of the litigant that is protected by

‘It is wrong to assume that it is only the right of the litigant that is protected by the extension, that of the defendant is also protected’ From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

the extension, that of the defendant is also protected. “This is because, more often, the defendant sitting on a property might not be aware, thinking that he is right and continue to sit on the property. “With the extension, he is given an opportunity to explore other avenues of settlement. “On the other hand, he might lose just because of the limited and inadequate time and out of ignorance,” he

said. Friday Itulah (PDP, Edo), Peter Ede (APC, Ebonyi), Simon Arabo (PDP, Kaduna) and Frank Enekorogha (PDP, Delta) spoke against the bill. According to them, no number of years would be adequate if a litigant fails or refuses to institute a legal action within six years. The lawmakers opined that litigants could also manipulate the limitation period to surprise the defendant at the expiration of the period. The bill scaled second reading after it was supported and was referred to the Committee on Justice. The lawmakers also commenced work on ensuring that graduating students from the nation’s tertiary institutions are issued their certificates immediately. The bill to amend the National Universities Commission Act sponsored by Eddie Mbadiwe (APC, Imo) scaled second reading.

A, which is a ruling from a Magistrates’ Court was not signed by the magistrate. He said the ruling only contained the stamp and endorsement of the registrar, as such cannot be relied on. After listening to the submissions of the parties, Justice Adebajo fixed ruling on the application for February 20.

OME senators of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have promised to assist the new National Chairman of the party, Alhaji Adam Mu’azu, to reposition the party for better efficiency. In a statement by its Secretary-General, Abubakar Gerei, the forum said the new chairman was a man of integrity and an achiever, as he demonstrated when he was Bauchi State governor. The statement reads: “I, on behalf of myself and the Senators’ Forum, congratulate you on your election as the national chairman of PDP. “We promise our support, loyalty and cooperation to your leadership and wish you God’s guidance and protection as you strive to reposition the party for greater achievements.” The forum noted that if the party’s new chairman used his political wealth of experience, the PDP would not only be strengthened but be saved from the challenges confronting it. It said: “We are optimistic that with the new leadership of the party under Alhaji Mua’zu, he will bring into practice his wealth of experience and transform the party, reposition it and sustain its present enviable position in the polity of the country. “We also implore him to leave up to his words of doing everything possible to see to it that aggrieved party members are reconciled back into the party while internal democracy and discipline are not compromised.”

‘Oil marketer collected N963.7m subsidy without importing fuel’

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LAGOS High Court, Ikeja, heard yesterday how an oil marketer, Rowaye Jubril, allegedly collected N963.7 million subsidy payment without importing product. An investigative officer with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Abdullahi Mohammed, told the court, presided over by Justice Lateefat Okunnu, that Jubril collected the subsidy payment from the Federal Government without importing petroleum product. The accused was said to have got the product from various sources within Nigeria, making it illegal for him to collect subsidy from the government. Jubril is being tried with his company - Brila Energy Limited - for allegedly obtaining the money for the purported importation

By Adebisi Onanuga

of 13,500 metric tonnes of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS). Mohammed, who was led in evidence by counsel to the EFCC, Mr Seidu Atteh, also told the court that he was part of the special team, which investigated the alleged importation fraud in the Petroleum Support Fund (PSF) scheme. The prosecution witness explained that the investigative team discovered that the defendant did not import any product, as Jubril claimed to the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA). He said: “The defendant claimed that there was a ship-to-ship transfer of the product between the mother vessel, MT Overseas Lima, and the first daughter vessel, MT Delphina. “According to him, the transfer took place between

January 26 and 27, 2011, on offshore, Cotonou, in Benin Republic. “However, our investigation showed that MT Overseas Lima was not in the West African coast during that period; hence, it was impossible for the transfer to have taken place.” He said the team’s findings made the EFCC to write to Daddo Maritime, the owners of the second daughter vessel, MT Danni 1, which brought the 13,000 metric tonnes of PMS to Obat Jetty in Lagos. He said the investigations showed that the defendant obtained the products from various ships. Under cross-examination by Jubril’s counsel, Mr. Kola Kolade, the witness insisted that the subsidy payment was fraudulently obtained. Justice Okunnu adjourned the matter till today.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS

Experts laud Osun’s O’Meal in UK Parliament

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t was a historic moment for Nigeria and Africa yesterday as the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) in the British House of Commons, London, commended Osun State’s the Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF) programme, tagged O’Meals, as a successful model to be copied worldwide. Governor Rauf Aregbesola received a loud applause as he made an eloquent and statistical presentation to the British parliament at Committee Room 9. He suggested the biometric registration of beneficiaries of the programme wherever it is replicated to guarantee transparency. To guarantee a sustainable future for Nigeria, the governor called for the replication of the programme in all states, with appropriate legislative backing extending it to the first nine years

Stakeholders laud Lagos bill on land grabbers

•Aregbesola wants model replicated nationwide From Bisi Oladele, Ibadan

of schooling. At the meeting presided over by Lord Cameron of Dillington, Aregbesola said technology was the best way to address the concern of development partners and international donors on. Regretting that project funds were lost to corruption in the past, the governor said once beneficiaries are registered biometrically, banks linked with the programme funding would rely on the data to process payment. He said: “Technology remains the only effective way to remove corruption from the implementation of the HGSF programme. Once biometric registration is introduced to beneficiaries, the data will be linked to banks and vendors would be paid. Beneficiaries are then able to register their biometric features through the Point of Sales (PoS) terminals to guarantee a transparent,

corruption-free and efficient HGSF system worldwide.” The Lead Health and Education Specialist of the World Bank, Prof. Donald Bundy; the Chief of School Feeding and Chronic Hunger Unit of the World Food Programme (WFP), Peter Rodrigues; Ms. Boitshepo Bibi Giyose of the New Economic Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and the Senior Technical Adviser of the Partnership for Child Development, Imperial College, London, Prof. Josephine Kiamba, praised Aregbesola for successfully implementing the O’Meals despite the state’s limited finances. Describing the programme as worthy of emulation by all African countries, Bundy said the scheme would be a safety net for feeding the poorest children in many countries, if Aregbesola’s community-based implementation strategies are adopted. Rodrigues said Osun had

shown practical ways to achieve the best result as the cost per child, per day and per annum demonstrated by Aregbesola clearly showed that the HGSF programme saves money and guarantees food security. Promising that WFP would, in six months, provide evidence to back this assertion, Rodrigues said: “The programme is very complex. We need to get the local governments to buy into it and change the mindset of the host government.” Aregbesola said from April 30, 2012, when the programme was rebranded as O’Meals, to December 31, 2013 (330 school days), enrolment in elementary schools increased from 203,858 to 252,793 representing 24 per cent increase. He said his administration had spent N3,813,700,000 on the programme, which covers pupils from primary one to four. Aregbesola said: “The cost per

child per year is N15,100 (£57.60) and the cost per child per day is N45.70 (£0.17). In the same breath, 3,100 women were appointed and re-trained as community-based food vendors, while 462 out-growers of fish were successfully empowered for massive fish production to cater for the programme. “In line with our promise two years ago to introduce the highly nutritious cocoyam to the food timetable, our administration mobilised a professor from the state university to train 1,000 farmers, including 90 women, in the Pink Cocoyam Rebirth Scheme.” Aregbesola expressed hope that other states in Nigeria and the Federal Government would adopt the Osun model of the programme. He said: “We require more support from our technical partners in capacity building to achieve biometric registration and digitisation of O’Meals to guarantee transparency and efficient resource management.”

By Oziegbe Okoeki

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TAKEHOLDERS have praised the Lagos State House of Assembly on the proposed law to curb the activities of land grabbers, popularly called Ajagungbales or Omooniles. The stakeholders, comprising lawyers, traditional rulers, community leaders and the police, spoke yesterday at a public hearing on the proposed law. The bill, tagged: “A bill for a law to prohibit forceful entry and occupation of landed properties, violent and fraudulent conducts in relation to landed properties in Lagos State and for connected purposes”, prescribes various penalties, ranging from six months to 21 years prison term and fines of up to N300,000, for offenders. The Speaker, Adeyemi Ikuforiji, said the House’s concern over increasing violence in land disputes necessitated the bill. He said: “The dimension the fight is taking is scaring. We have seen so many heinous crimes committed by the Omooniles or Ajagungbales and are seeking a lasting solution to this through this bill. With this law, the menace will stop.” The Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Prof. Wole Smith, said: “The law is about security. It is a bill we all need. It is timely.”

NHRC wants Lagos assault culprits punished From Eric Ikhilae, Abuja

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HE National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has said it will ensure that the torturers of three women, who were accused of stealing pepper in Ejigbo, Lagos, are punished. NHRC’s Executive Secretary Prof. Bem Angwe said the commission has wadded into the matter and is expecting a report on the investigation going on to ensure enforcement of the victims’ rights. NHRC’s Chief Press Officer Fatimah Agwai Muhammad quoted Angwe in a statement yesterday as the commission’s Lagos Office has been directed to work with the police and other stakeholders to ensure that the matter is properly investigated and the culprits prosecuted. He hailed the Lagos State House of Assembly and Inspector-General of Police Mohammed Abubakar for uncover the identities of the culprits.

Man remanded in prison for ‘killing’ friend From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

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29-year-old man, Jamiu Yinusa, was yesterday remanded in prison custody by a Magistrate’s Court in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, for allegedly killing his friend, Olawale Sunday Aina. Yinusa allegedly hit the deceased, his co-worker at a construction site, in the head with an iron rod during an argument on January 9. The late Aina was rushed to the State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) and transferred to the University Teaching Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, where he died on January 10. The Magistrate, P.T. Ajibade, ruled that the accused be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the case to March 24. Police spokesman Victor Olu-Babayemi said: “All evidence, including the autopsy report, revealed that the suspect is complicit in the death of the victim.”

Reps raise panel on Borno bombing From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

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•From left: Ogun State Chief Judge (CJ), Justice Tokunbo Olopade (middle); Magistrate Anthony Araba (left) and a prison official during the CJ’s inspection of the Oba Prison in Obafemi Owode Local Government Area recently.

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Omuo killing: Family buries victim amid tight security

HE remains of Madam Adewumi, who died

after she was allegedly tortured by youths in OmuoEkiti, were interred yesterday at Ilisa Quarters. The late Madam Adewumi was accused of witchcraft and allegedly tortured by youths in Omuo-Ekiti on June 30, 2012. The case is in court. The funeral ceremony was done amid tight security provided by the police, following reported threats by some chiefs to prevent the family from burying the deceased in the town. At the funeral were the late Madam Adewumi’s child, Mrs. Grace Smith, and her (the deceased’s) siblings - Mrs. Anike Orojo and Mr. Omokanju Abiodun. The interment followed a brief sermon by Pastor Jegede Ajayi, which centered on the certainty of death for human beings. Pastor Ajayi said while it is certain that all human beings will die, the nature, time and place of their death is unknown. He said: “Knowing this, people should spend their life time in a way that pleases God.” Also, the prosecution team

•Court warns prosecution on adjournment From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

in the murder case has been given the final warning on adjournment. Justice Toyin Bodunde of a High Court in Ado-Ekiti said adjournment remained at the discretion of the court, noting that the prosecution was not serious about presenting its witnesses in court. Olatunbosun Orojo, Adesola Adeyemo and Feranmi Abe were arrested and are on trial for their alleged roles in the incident. The prosecution team led by Mr. P.O. Alabi of the Ministry of Justice told the court

that the two witnesses remaining out of 10 could not be in court for various reasons. Justice Bodunde said the prosecution had done well, having called eight of its 10 witnesses. He said: “If it is an examination, eight out of 10 is 80 per cent, which is an excellent result.” The judge frowned at Alabi’s failure to show proof of his claims regarding the witnesses’ absence, as well as his appeal for adjournment, saying: “Adjournment is not just for the asking. It is meant to be given when it is merited. In criminal justice adminis-

tration, there has to be credible, cogent and compelling reasons for granting adjournments, especially for rape and murder cases, which are expected to be given expeditious hearing. “You have not shown enough seriousness in this case, as you should have come to the court today with proofs regarding the claims of the two remaining witnesses. “In an establishment like the police, someone could not have been granted leave without applying for it. You should have come to court with proof. On my honour, I shall be granting you an adjournment on this case for the last time.” The case was adjourned till February 24 and 27.

Carwash attendants arraigned for ‘stealing’ WO carwash attendants, Zechariah IgN3.3m vehicle bangi (25) and Sampson John (26), were

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arraigned yesterday before an Apapa Senior Magistrate’s Court in Lagos for allegedly stealing a car worth N3.3 million. According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the suspects, who live in Amuwo-Odofin, are facing a two-count charge of conspiracy and stealing. The prosecutor, Uche Simon, alleged that the suspects committed the crimes around

8am on January 15 at a carwash opposite ABC Transport Company, Amuwo-Odofin. Simon said the accused conspired and stole a car numbered LSR 857 BD, property of Manola Pharmaceutical Ltd. The accused pleaded ‘not guilty’. The Senior Magistrate, M. K. Fadeyi, granted the suspects N250,000 bail each with two sureties each in like sum. The case was adjourned to March 7.

HE House of Representatives has raised a panel to probe a bomb blast in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, which killed 50 people. An ad hoc Committee on Security, Army and Police was mandated to investigate the matter, following the adoption of a motion raised under matter of urgent national importance by Kyari Gujuba (PDP, Borno). Gujuba noted that the House intervention was necessary. The lawmaker said besides the deaths from the explosion, two offices belonging to a political party were also destroyed. He said: “The inevitable question being raised by the people of Maiduguri, with the palpable political undertone to this dastardly act, is: could this savage mass murder be a harbinger to 2015? “One is concerned that this sad event, if not properly investigated, could result into a serious danger to the successful execution of the 2015 elections. “We should also be mindful of the fact that a negative outcome of lack of investigative action could lead to lawlessness where the youth could recourse to taking the law into their hands.” In their resolution, the lawmakers urged the National Security Adviser (NSA); the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS); the Chief of Army Staff (CAS) and the Inspector-General of the Police (IGP) to set up a committee to beam its search light beyond the insurgency. They called for an investigation on the causes of the killings and destruction of property in the region. The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) was mandated to deploy men and materials to alleviate the suffering of the victims of the attacks.


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

NEWS Bullion van driver arraigned for N17m ‘theft’

Assembly seeks compensation for estate residents

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By Oziegbe Okoeki

HE police yesterday arraigned a 35-year-old bullion van driver, Temidayo Koyoro, at an Abeokuta Magistrate’s Court in Ogun State, for allegedly stealing N17 million belonging to Stanbic IBTC Bank. The prosecutor, Augustine Ozimini, said Koyoro committed the crime on December 25. He said Koyoro and another, at large, stole N17 million from the money they transported from Ibadan to Abeokuta. Ozimini said: “After verification, the bank personnel observed that one of the bags had been opened and N17 million was missing.” Koyoro pleaded ‘not guilty’. His counsel, Mr. Wale Ogunsanwo, prayed the court to grant him bail. The Magistrate, Mr. Emmanuel Adekunte, granted Koyoro N100,000 bail with two sureties in like sum. The case was adjourned till Feb. 11

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Rights’group sues Fashola

By Joseph Jibueze

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CIVIL society group, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sued Governor Babatunde Fashola for allegedly failing to provide information on education spending in the last five years. The case is before the Federal High Court, sitting in Lagos. The plaintiff is seeking an order compelling the state to release information on the World Bank’s $90 million loan to improve education in 639 public secondary schools. It also seek details of projects carried out to improve infrastructure and facilities in primary and secondary schools, including Ewutuntun Grammar School in Mafoluku, Oshodi; Ikeja Grammar School; Iloro Grammar School, Agege, and Fagba Junior Grammar School, Iju Road. SERAP said: “The disclosure of the information requested will inform the public about government spending to improve education in the 639 schools.” The plaintiff sought a declaration that by virtue of the provisions of Section 4 (a) of the FoI Act, 2011, the state is under obligation to provide the information. It also asked for an order compelling Lagos to rescind the suspension of anyone, including teachers, for blowing the whistle or allowing reporters to cover alleged decadent infrastructure in Lagos schools.

Ekiti SUBEB contractors get ultimatum From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

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KITI State Deputy Governor Prof. Modupe Adelabu has given contractors handling State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) projects two weeks to complete them. Mrs. Adelabu gave the ultimatum in Ado–Ekiti at a meeting with Education secretaries and management of the board. She said it was unfortunate that contracts awarded over a year ago had not been completed. The deputy governor said although over 80 per cent of contracts awarded by the present administration under SUBEB/ Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) had been completed, the others should not be left to linger. She said the board would not condone laziness from any contractor.

•Wife of the Osun State governor, Mrs. Sherifat Aregbesola (second left), and the Iyaloja-General of Osun, Chief Awawu Asindemade (third left), dancing with market women at a sensitisation programme on voter registration at the Aregbesola Campaign Office in Ibokun...on Tuesday.

Primary education vital, says Aregbesola

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SUN State Governor Rauf Aregbesola has urged his colleagues to be committed to implementation of the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) programmes. He said this would improve the quality of primary education and give children access to basic education. Aregbesola was represented by his deputy, Mrs. Titi Laoye-Tomori, at the 11th quarterly meeting of the UBEC management with chairmen of the State Universal Basic Education Boards (SUBEB) in Osogbo. He urged governors to

From Adesoji Adeniyi, Osogbo

embrace UBEC’s Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF) programme, which has been rebranded as OMeals in Osun. Aregbesola said the programme improved enrolment in primary schools from 155,318 in May, 2012, to over 380,000 this year. He urged the Federal Government to assist states through UBEC by increasing funds for the meal from N98 million, saying it costs his administration N3.6 billion annually. Aregbesola, in his speech, titled: “Assuring

and sustaining quality basic education delivery in Nigeria”, said UBEC programmes should be reviewed and implemented religiously. He said basic education should not be handled with levity, going by its role as the first exposure children get. Suggesting ways to improve primary education, Aregbesola called for the recruitment of professional teachers. Minister of Education Ezenwo Nyesom Wike urged SUBEB to work with UBEC to improve education.

He urged governors to pay their counterpart funds and use funds provided by UBEC for primary school development. UBEC Executive Secretary Dr. Dikko Suleiman said the meeting would enable UBEC to improve primary education. SUBEB Executive Chairman in Osun State Prince Felix Awofisayo listed some gains of the administration in Education as the recruitment of teachers, increase and prompt payment of running grants, prompt payment of teachers’ salary and building of fully equipped schools.

‘How to tackle unemployment’

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KITI State Deputy Governor Prof. Modupe Adelabu has called for the introduction of entrepreneurship, vocational and technical education in schools, saying this will solve unemployment problem. Prof. Adelabu spoke yesterday during a lecture on “Globalisation, transformation and imperative for changes through entrepreneurship education in Nigeria” at the Third Distinguished Lecture of the Joseph Ayo Babalola University (JABU) in Ikeji-Arakeji in Osun State. The guest lecturer attributed the failure of the education system to the government’s lack of will-power to address human capital development. Picking holes in the nation’s academic curriculum, she said it was regrettable that tertiary institutions produce graduates without equipping them to make them self-reliant.

Prof. Adelabu said: “The curriculum provides recipients with little or no jobrelated content, while entrepreneurship education includes a wide-range of subjects with work-based content. Unemployment is rampant because of the mismatch between the need of employers and the stock of job-specific human capital produced by educational institutions. While graduates complain of unemployment, employers complain that graduates are unemployable.” She said the incorporation of entrepreneurship education into the curricula will transform youths from being job-seekers to employers of labour. Urging the government to provide basic amenities in varsities, the deputy governor advocated a review of courses. She said: “For a meaningful educa-

•Prof. Adelabu

tion that will make our graduates employable and self-sufficient, it is high time universities looked at entrepreneurship education.”

Ogun APC condemns LP’s call for Amosun’s impeachment

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HE All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun State has condemned the Labour Party’s (LP’s) call for Governor Ibikunle Amosun’s impeachment. The LP made the call following the disagreement between the governor and Ogun APC members in the National Assembly. In a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Sola Lawal, the APC said the disagreement was “a mere expression of differences in opinion among members

of a vibrant political family.” It said: “The development is a testimonial to the vibrancy and democratic credentials of a party, in which enlightened dissent is encouraged. Unlike the LP and others that are on a permanent life support, the APC has attained enviable heights in placing our state in the topmost echelon in civilised conduct.” The party said the state has experienced peace and economic growth under its watch, which it said had been attested to by national and internation-

al financial authorities. APC said: “The effects of the transformation agenda of the Amosun enigma in governance are so real and ubiquitous that even the blind can see them. Great roads have been built as never before; modern bridges have sprung up in a way never experienced; schools and hospitals now litter our domain and folks now sleep with both eyes closed. “As is the case with all achievements, it is expected that Amosun’s would attract the envy of retrogressive characters .”

BOUT five years after the Lagos State House of Assembly directed the State Development and Property Corporation (LSDPC) to compensate occupants of Ogba Housing Estate, Sogunro, Phase I, whose buildings were demolished, the agency is yet to do so. The Assembly has mandated its Committee on Physical Planning and Urban Development to investigate the matter and report in two weeks. On January 6, 2013, the House passed a resolution directing the agency to compensate the occupants of blocks 17 and 18, who still have leasing rights of 60-70 years. Chairman of the House Committee on Human Rights and Public Petitions in the Sixth Assembly, Kabir Lawal, responding to a petition by the occupants, had directed the agency to compensate them with N5 million. Yesterday, the House directed the agency to allocate new flats with perfected papers to the victims upon completion of the new buildings. The resolution reads: “In view of the fact that the allotees still have leasing rights of 60-70 years, LSDPC should allocate new flats free-of-charge with perfected papers to the displaced allotees of blocks 17 and 18, totalling 15 units, in the new buildings upon completion.”

‘Re-introduce HSC in schools’

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NDO State Commissioner for Information Kayode Akinmade has called for the reintroduction of the Higher National School Certificate (HSC). Akinmade spoke in Akure at the reunion of old students of the Federal School of Arts and Science, Ondo, where he was honoured with his Natural Resources counterpart, Mr. Tunde Atere, and the Chief Protocol Officer to the Governor, Mr. Fasonranti Ifeoluwa. The event witnessed the launch of a book: Footprints of an outstanding educationist and administrator, by the school’s former headteacher, Dr. Samuel Atolagbe. The commissioner traced the success of the old students to the discipline and hard work impacted in them at the school. He said the HSC programme should be re-introduced to tackle educational challenges. Akinmade thanked the organisers of the event for the honour. Backing the call for the reintroduction of the HSC programme, Atolagbe said this would bring back the lost glory of the education system. Chief of Staff to the Governor, Ademujimi, described Atolagbe as an epitome of discipline, honesty, hard work and commitment. He said the former headteacher should be happy to be alive “to see the work of his hands blossom.”


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS

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Return to PDP, Muazu begs Amaechi, Wamakko, Kwankwaso, others

HE National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Adamu Muazu, has pleaded with the five governors and party chieftains who defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) to return to the ruling party. The governors are: Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers); Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto); Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano); Murtala Nyako (Adamawa) and Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara). Muazu made the plea at the party’s secretariat in Abuja yesterday when Jigawa State Governor Sule Lamido visited him. The party chairman said, indeed, the immediate past leadership offended many of the defectors through its actions and inactions, promising that their grievances would be addressed by the new leadership. Muazu hinted that his first task would be to set up a genuine reconciliation committee to address members’ grievances across the nation, observing that those who defected could not have done so just for the fond of it. He said: “We are going to look at the various events and actions that were taken in the recent past. Whatever injustice done to members would be corrected. We will apologise to those the party offended”. He pleaded with Lamido to help reach out to the five governors before the envisaged reconciliation committee comes on stream, saying that being a member of the “rebel” G-7 Governors, Lamido should be able to in-

•Your job is a difficult one, Lamido tells party chair PDP urges court to dismiss case by 79 lawmakers

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•Court fixes Jan 29 for hearing

HE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to decline jurisdiction over the suit filed by some members of the National Assembly, seeking to restrain it from declaring vacant the seats of some of the former members that defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC). The party’s prayer is contained in the preliminary objection it jointly filed with its former Chairman, Bamanga Tukur, against the suit instituted by 22 PDP Senators and 57 members of the House of Representatives, including those who have defected to APC. They claimed that the substance of the case “is an intra-party matter for which the fourth defendant (PDP) has various administrative and legal mechanisms which are yet to be exhausted by the plaintiffs.” The party and its ex-Chairman urged the court to dismiss the suit on the grounds that the plaintiffs “lacked that requisite legal standing to institute and sustain this suit,” that the suit amounts to an abuse of court process, that it was wrongly commenced and that there is no reasonable cause of action that lies against the defendants. Yesterday, Joe-Kyari Gadzama (SAN), who represented Tukur and PDP urged the court to grant his request to argue orally, the preliminary objection. Mahmoud Magaji (SAN), who led the plainFrom Gbade Ogunwale, Assistant Editor, Abuja

fluence the five governors. Muazu pleaded with the five governors and others to reflect on what they had benefitted on the platform, assuring them that the PDP

From Eric Ikhilae, Abuja

tiffs’ legal team, urged the court to discountenance Gadzama’s submission. He said the second defendant (the Senate President) and third defendant (Speaker of House of Representatives) should take steps to regularise their processes before the court. Magaji insisted that the objection was not ripe for hearing and urged the court to reject Gadzama’s application. Justice Ahmed Mohammed held that the originating summons was not ripe for hearing. And as such, the preliminary objection would also not be heard yet. “Considering the circumstances of this matter, I am of the view that the originating summon is not ripe for hearing. “The preliminary objection draws strength from the originating summons, and since it is not ripe for hearing, the court will not be competent to hear the preliminary objection. “In this wise, the consideration of taking the preliminary objection and the originating summon together does not arise. Therefore the court is unable to accede to the application of the first and fourth defendants for court to hear their preliminary objection.” The judge noted that the Senate President and the Speaker of House of Representatives have not responded to the originating summons. He adjourned to January 29 for hearing.

would not foist a culture of impunity under his watch. Lamido was unflattering in his comments on the leadership of the PDP under Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, saying Tukur’s era was divisive and vindictive.

Said he: “I hold nothing against Alhaji Tukur because I respect him as my elder. But one cannot be happy seeing party members being suspended and chased away by the leadership. “The PDP failed under the

last leadership. If Governors and National Assembly members were leaving and you said you were not worried, then you should know that something is wrong with you. “Many of our members were unjustly insulted, humiliated and abandoned by the immediate past leadership of the party. The G-7 Governors were made to feel unwanted, pained and traumatised”. To the party chair, Lamido said: “I don’t know whether to congratulate or commiserate with you on this appointment because your job is a very difficult one. “You have to be courageous enough to say it when things are going wrong. No matter what anybody does, I will not leave the PDP because the party made me minister and a governor. “We will stand by you and support you. When the issues are about peace and stability of the party, then we are with you. But if you try to do otherwise, then you may count us out”. To demonstrate his commitment to peace and reconciliation in the party, Muazu, reversed a pending expulsion order on the party’s National Vice Chairman (Northwest), Senator Ibrahim Kazaure. The Umaru Dikko committee on reconciliation set up by Tukur had, late last year, recommended Kazaure’s expulsion alongside the party’s estranged National Secretary, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola. Also affected by the expulsion order were a former national chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Abubakar Baraje; and former Deputy National chairman, Dr. Sam Sam Jaja.

45 corps members for ambulance services From FrancaOchigbo, Abuja

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HE National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has begun the training of 45 members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) serving in the agency to join in the emergency response team that operate the ambulance services. The development followed the deployment of Mobile Intensive Care Unit (MICU) to strategic locations for emergency response. NEMA’s Director-General Alhaji Muhammad Sani Sidi, spoke at the opening of the training in Abuja said it was aimed at mobilising the corps members to complement the staff in providing immediate basic life support under emergency situations. Alhaji Sidi, who was represented by NEMA’s Director of Search and Rescue, Air Commodore Charles Otegbade, said the agency’s emergency response capability was being repositioned to be more proactive in responding to emergencies. He said participants would receive training on casualty handling, pre-hospital trauma and moving equipment to scene of incidence. “Participants would also be trained on how to administer basic life support, first aid materials, dressing and cold compresses. The others are bandage and bandaging as well as how to remove clothing and head gears of casualties.”

NBA advises Reps against flouting order on leadership change

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HE Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) yesterday urged the House of Representatives not to flout the order of the Federal High Court, Abuja, restraining it from changing its leadership. Justice Adeniyi Ademola, on Monday, restrained parties in a suit filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against the House from taking steps that could affect the res in the case. He ordered them to maintain status quo pending the determination of the suit. The NBA, in a statement yesterday, said the order remained valid and must be obeyed by all until it is set aside. It hailed the leadership of both chambers of the National Assembly for exhibiting a good sense of purpose and responsibility in their welcome addresses to their members. The association urged the legislators to focus on their core responsibility of lawmaking and dwell less on politicking. It hailed the House leadership on the manner it dealt with the crisis. The NBA said: “We are concerned about the language of some honourable members of the House of Representatives at a press conference that followed later in the day, with a member of the Bar threatening that the order of court would be obeyed up and until the next court date in February when, according to him, the court must determine the whole matter. We have found this rather very impudent. “We are alarmed at such a

From Eric Ikhilae, Abuja

statement from a member of the Bar to a court. We want to believe that that was a slip that would never be repeated, because the NBA will not hesitate to take disciplinary actions against its members, in or out of government, whose actions or utterances are considered disrespectful to a court of law. “The Bar must, at all times, protect the integrity and dignity of the courts. Whoever is dissatisfied with a court order, has a responsible option of bringing another application to have the order under reference set aside by the same court or go to the Court of Appeal. “Politics must give way to the serious business of law making in the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly, which is a matter of responsibility, the legislature being the hallmark of any democracy. “We particularly commend the maturity and dexterity exhibited by our professional colleague, the honourable speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Waziri Aminu Tambuwal, in dousing the unnecessary disorder caused by what the Rt. Honourable speaker stainly referred to, as an expensive New Year joke, and an attempt in surreptitiously disregarding a valid and subsisting order of court, that status quo be maintained with regards to the leadership positions of the House of Representatives, pending the hearing and determination of the pending motion on notice.”


BUSINESS

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

THE NATION

E-mail:- bussiness@thenationonlineng.net

Govt places 35% duty on cars By Collins Nweze

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HE Federal Government has approved new fiscal policies measures for the automotive industry, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Director, Trade and Exchange, Batari Musa has said. According to a circular to authorised dealers, Fully Built Unit (FBU) Commercial Vehicles attract a 35 per cent duty and another 35 levy. Also, FBU Commercial vehicles attracts 35 per cent duty without levy while local assembly plants shall import Completely Knocked Down (CKD) at zero per cent duty and semi knocked down one at five per cent duty. The circular said local assembly plants shall import FBU cars at 35 per cent duty and 20 per cent duty for commercial vehicles without levy, in numbers equal to twice their imported CKD/ SKD kits. According the circular, duty payment on tyres is now harmonised with car tyres attracting a duty of 20 per cent and five per cent Value Added Tax (VAT); lorry/bus tyres 20 per cent duty and five per cent VAT while importation of machinery and equipment for tyre production is free and pioneer status given to all tyre plants. It said local tyre manufacturing plants are to import tyres at five per cent duty in numbers equal to twice their production for two years. Also, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) shall publish the price of new vehicles annually, and provide transparent benchamark to determine the value of used vehicles. “The NCS shall use the value of new vehicle depreciation by 10 per cent per annum implying a 10-year p e riod f o r c a rs a n d by seven per cent per annum implying 15 year period for commercial vehicles,” it said.

11 “Until recently, the Nigerian banking industry had not given much attention to sustainability beyond ticking off environmental impact assessment on checklist for credit risk assessment for evaluation of loan applications, other jurisdictions have for decades been engraving sustainability ethos in their financial system,” –CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi

Local content law for power sector coming

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HE Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commis sion (NERC) has said the power sector local content regulation will transform to law next month. Its Chairman, Sam Amadi, disclosed this while making a presentation at a session in Chatham House, London. The session was chaired by Peter Callaghan of Commonwealth Business Council. Amadi, who was lead speaker at the event organised by Chatham House, pointed out that the power sector local content law is intended to avoid the mistakes made in the oil and gas sector where it is still dominated by expatriates 50 years after. He said: “We have a local content regulation that by

From John Ofikhenua, Abuja

February should become law; we don’t want what happened in the oil and gas sector where after 50 years Nigeria is still importing technology. We have come up with a local content regulation that provides a framework for every company to begin to localise both technology and services. “For example, a meter provider should within the next five years set up a factory in Nigeria. This is to ensure that the spill off from electricity reform goes to enhance the economy of the nation.” Amadi also told the gathering that power supply is expected to hit 7,000megawtts (Mw) by the end of this year as in-

creased capacities are expected from the National Independent Power Projects (NIPPs) coming on stream, while generation benchmark is set at 20,000mw by 2017. He however, noted that early passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) was critical to achieving the set targets. He disclosed that the 7,000mw target set for 2013 could not be realised because of inadequate supply of gas to power the plants , which the PIB can help reverse. “PIB is critical to move forward on gas to power the plants, the law should be passed as soon as possible, although the debate over it is huge but we want the matter to be resolved in a way that makes gas to power commercially viable and

bankable. At the end of 2013, we had expected to hit 7,000mw and that would have been possible if there were enough gas to fire the plants and the NIPPS that will come on board. “By end of 2014 we will definitely cross 7,000mw because of the NIPPs; if you put all the capacity together, you will get over 4,000mw, and the existing 4000Mw. The benchmark is that by 2017 we expect that Nigeria electricity market will have over 20,000mw trading then. “The PIB is critical to us because the constraint of the sector now is gas to power and except you have a very intelligible, practical and commercial framework over gas in Nigeria you might not have sustainable solution to the crisis,” Amadi said.

• From left: Zonal Head, Southwest Two, First City Monument Bank Limited, Mr. Adelaja Adeleye presenting a prize to the traditional ruler of Ososa in Ogun State, Oba Adetoye Alatishe, who emerged as one of the winners at the second edition of the Bank’s 30th Anniversary Promo at the Lagos & Southwest Regional/Zonal draws at Ijebu-Ode... yesterday. With them is FCMB’s Branch Manager, Sagamu, Mr. Babatunde Onadeko.

‘Bureau De Change operators get over $4.2b weekly’

DATA STREAM

By Simeon Ebulu

COMMODITY PRICES Oil -$117.4/barrel Cocoa -$2,686.35/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢95.17pound Gold -$1,396.9/troy Sugar -$163/lb MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE -N11.4 trillion JSE -Z5.112trillion NYSE -$10.84 trillion LSE -£61.67 trillion RATES Inflation -8% Treasury Bills -10.58%(91d) Maximum lending -30% Prime lending -15.87% Savings rate -1% 91-day NTB -15% Time Deposit -5.49% MPR -12% Foreign Reserve $45b FOREX CFA -0.2958 EUR -206.9 £ -242.1 $ -156 ¥ -1.9179 SDR -238 RIYAL -40.472

eign exchange market, they remain a small segment of the forex market, adding however that the BDC sector is one of the major monetary tools of the CBN to achieve the convergence of the exchange rate of the naira. Gwadabe, who spoke yesterday in Lagos, said the issue of suspension, or revocation of 236 BDCs’ licenses was as a result of a breach of the Prudential guidelines. He explained that there was a requirement for every BDC to maintain a minimum of $20,000 deposit with the CBN, saying “unfortunately, some of our members were unable to fulfill that requirement, that was why they had their licenses revoked.” He said about November last year, the licenses of yet another 20 BDC operators were withdrawn for failure to make returns on the utilization of funds they got. “Some of them did not send reports to account for the

• Gwadabe

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UREAU de Change op erators consume on the average, over $1billion in foreign exchange transactions per week and close to $4.2billion per month, The Nation has learnt. The President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) Mohammed Aminu Gwadabe, said each registered BDC receives $50,000 from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) every week, and in addition, procures $250,000 from the Money Deposit Banks for their regular transactions. He said there are about 3500 CBN registered BDC operators. He said although the BDcs play a vital role in the for-

purchases of currencies they have utilised, and based on the Prudential guidelines, their licenses were withdrawn.” He said their offences had to do with none return rendition. Gwadabe said, the CBN went round and by “the time they got to them, they found out they were not making returns. WE agree with the CBN that they can punish, because there are penalties and sanctions for any erring members. Whoever is given a privilege must carry responsibility. The window access of the CBN is a privilege, it’s not every Nigerian that has that privilege and once yon are given, you must be responsible by complying with the prevailing guidelines and regulations,” he said. He explained that when the association received the news of the revocation of the licenses, it wrote a letter to the Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido

Sanusi, saying that the body’s intervention led to the reinstatement of the licenses of 35 members, having proved that they did not breach the prudential guidelines.

NLNG delivers landmark 3000th cargo to Turkey

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IGERIA Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG) has delivered its 3000th cargo of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to Botas Petroleum Pipeline Corporation at Marmara LNG Terminal in Turkey. The event was marked with a brief ceremony on board the NLNG Lokoja, at the Marmara LNG Terminal, attended by senior NLNG officials including MD/CEO, Mr Babs Omotowa, Deputy MD, Mr Basheer Koko, and Commercial Director, Mr Patrick Olinma. Also in attendance were Mr Folusho Adeshida, Deputy Head of Mission at the Nigeria Embassy in Turkey, representing the Nigerian Ambassador, and Botas Petroleum Chief Executive, Mr Mehmet Konuk and other members of the company’s management team. Omotowa said during his remarks at the ceremony; “Today, we deliver our 3000th cargo of LNG to Botas Petroleum Pipeline Corporation. We take pride in the fact that this delivery demonstrates the consistency and reliability of NLNG as a world class energy supplier. It also underscores the excellent relationship we have with our customers. I also wish to recognise the diligence and dedication of our staff, the kind support of the government, our shareholders and our loyal customers. We remain fully committed to our aspiration to help harness the nation’s gas resources, and our vision to help build a better Nigeria.” LNG Lokoja, one of the 23 vessels in NLNG’s fleet, with a 148,471 cubic metre capacity, sailed from Bonny Island Terminal in Rivers State on January 7, 2014, carrying 47,778,900 Million British Thermal Units (MMbtus) of LNG. NLNG’s first cargo to Botas Petroleum Pipeline Corporation was delivered on board LNG Lagos at Marmara in November, 1999.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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BUSINESS NEWS Reps summon Minister, Shell, others over Bonga oil spill

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HE House of Repre sentatives has sum moned the Minister of Environment, the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) and Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) over compensation issues following the December 20, 2011 Bonga oil spill. The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) were also invited. The Minister and others were expected to explain their roles on the effects of chemical dispersants used by Shell to disperse the said oil spillage at the sea on the said communities. What is due to the communities as compensation, when ascertained, would also be dis-

• As Reps’ intervention averts shutdown of IOCs operations From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

cussed. The affected communities alleged that the dispersant led to disruption of their fishing activities and other sources of livelihood but that the oil company has not been forthcoming. The communities are spread between Warri North, Warri South West and Burutu Local Government Councils of Delta State, as well as Ekeremor, Southern Ijaw and Brass Local Government Councils of Bayelsa State. The move by the Uche

Ekwenufe-led House Committee has however, succeeded in averting planned shut down of operations of major international oil companies (IOCs) operating in the Niger Delta area, facts to this emerged yesterday. Coordinator of the communities, Amona Monday, said though youth leaders in the affected communities have concluded plans to picket major oil companies in the Niger Delta area and disrupt their services having failed to peacefully resolve the issue with Shell. He said: “Fortunately, the affected communities got a letter from the House of Representatives Committee on Environment inviting us and Shell as well as other regulatory and administrative bodies to a meeting on Tuesday next week.”

• From left: Mr. Vasudevan; Chairman, Scientific Committee, Nutrition Society of Nigeria (NSN), Dr. B.I.C. Brai; Marketing Director, Nutricima, Mr. Kalyan Bandyopadyay; Mrs. Oluwasegunfunmi and Mr. Agbaje, at the launch in Lagos.

Ogun recapitalises Gateway Savings and Loans with N2.5b

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OMMITTED to finding solution to the hous ing challenge, the Ogun State Government has recapitalised the state-owned mortgage bank, Gateway Savings and Loans, with the mandatory minimum N2.5 billion. The state, according to Governor Ibikunle Amosun, has also re-energised the Ogun Property Investment Corporation (OPIC) and the Housing Corporation with fresh funds and new management teams to provide mass housing schemes. Amosun, in a speech delivered on his behalf by the state Commissioner of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun during

the launch of the Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC) at the Presidential Villa, Aso Rock, Abuja, acknowledged mortgages as solution to housing problems in the country. He said the government is partnering with private sector across the state to ensure quality housing that will be supported by mortgages. “The most important initiative that relates to the mortgage market is our recently launched Homeowner’s Charter. We discovered that the vast majority of property in Ogun State has no valid title documentation in the form of Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) and no building plan approval.

“As you are all aware, a property that has no documentation can not be readily sold and cannot be used as security in any transaction, including mortgage transactions. To encourage owners of such property to regularise their status, our Homeowners’ Charter programme introduced a 78 per cent discount on the usual costs of obtaining C of O and building plan a pproval. “We have waived all the onerous requirements that have hitherto deterred property owners from regularising the ownership documents for their property. We also cancelled all fines and penalties that are usually imposed for building illegally,” he added.

Jonathan seeks inclusive economic growth RESIDENT Goodluck our agricultural sector is for Africa ing one way in which we are doJonathan yesterday in

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Davos, Switzerland, said African governments must accord the highest possible priority to promoting inclusive economic growth on the continent. Jonathan, who spoke in a televised debate at the World Economic Forum, also said according the continent’s economic growth, such priority is important to avoid problems associated with poverty and financial equality in the continent. According to him, his administration is doing a lot to enhance inclusive growth in Nigeria through policies and programmes that focus on wealth creation, rather than poverty

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From Augustine Ehikioya,

alleviation. Asked to rank the importance of inclusive growth in Africa on a scale of one to 1o, Jonathan and the other participants in the debate, which had “Africa’s Next Billion” as its theme, agreed that it deserved a ranking of 10. In the statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, Jonathan, said: “Economic inclusion is very important and we are already taking necessary steps to improve financial inclusion in our country. Transform-

ing so. “We are doing all that we can to transform agriculture in Nigeria into a much more productive and job creating sector. We are also working to create more inclusive wealth through better education, skills acquisition programmes and policies that encourage the addition of value to our primary products before exportation,” he said. Since Africa’s population is projected to exceed two billion by 2050, he said wealth creation and job creation must remain at the top of the continent’s developmental agenda.

power refill, which has the promo label under the cover. He said consumers could find a six digit code number, which is to be sent with the product serial number to 08093377802.The sender then gets an interactive voice response which informs him/her about what has been won. The instant win range from N50 airtime e-top-up to N10, 000 wins.Aside, consumers can also qualify for a monthy raffle draw where they can win between N50,000and N1Million. To redeem their cash prizes, he said customers are expected to go to any branch of Zenith Bank with the product label and valid ID card. Cash prizes of between N500 and N10,000 will be

paid over the counter,while N50,000 and N1million raffle draw will hold monthly. The Head of Marketing Mrs. Wande Oluwasegunfunmi, added: “Nutricima, in line with its vision to democratise the consumption of milk came up with the Mega Cash Promo as a way of expressing our appreciation to millions of our loyal consumers across Nigeria, as well as reward and its new and existing consumers; including kids, youth and adults who deserve nutritious milk and food which Nutricima provides. ‘’We all know that the festive period has just ended and many Nigerians have expended so much during the season. But, they need to have some money to replenish their pockets.“

Abuja

Nutricima launches promo

HE yearly promo by Nutricima Limited, makers of Coast, Nunu Olympic milk and other nutritious food drinks, has been launched in Lagos. It is tagged ’Nutricima Mega cash Promo’. According to the Managing Director, Nutricima Limited, Mr. Suneel Vasudevan, Nutricima values its consumers, adding the quality of the products testifies to its commitment to its consumers. The promo, which started on Tuesday, will end on April 22. Speaking at a briefing in Lagos, the milk Category Manager, Mr Ralph Agbaje, said consumers stand the chance of winning cash and gifts after purchasing any of its products. They include Coast evaporated milk, Olympic evaporated Milk or Nunu


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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Our fears for real sector, by LCCI, MAN chiefs

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HAT will the real sector look like in 2014? This puzzle ap pears a hard nut to crack, even among members of the organised private sector (OPS) Some believe that despite the challenges, the sector is high this year, others insist that the challenges facing the sector are multiple and would be difficult to overcome. The optimists are encouraged by the forecast of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that the Gross Domestic Product growth will experience a 7.4 per cent growth this year up from the 6.2 per cent recorded last year because of increased domestic consumption. The Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mr. Muda Yusuf, said the cost of doing business may not be lower this year as there are no indicators to that effect. He said at 30 per cent interest rate, companies cannot be expected to make good profit, especially with the influx of fake and sub standard goods into the country from the Asian countries.

Stories by Okwy Iroegbu-Chikezie and Oluwakemi Dauda

Yusuf said: “Public sector-related transaction is high risk in a political year because it is contract driven. It is not easy to get redress in our courts so the advice to investors this year is to determine the risk of every business by going to great length to know its impacts and probability.” He called on the government to encourage local entrepreneurs by fixing the power sector and roads and make funds accessible to Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs). LCCI President, Alhaji Remi Bello, said if the government continues with its reforms and initiative in cassava, sugar and rice sub-sectors, the economy will do better than last year. He said:“The fundamental challenges of weak competitiveness and low productivity would likely persist, especially with a federal budget structure that is heavily tilted towards recurrent spending. “From our studies and analysis as an advocacy group, we discovered

that manufacturers will probably have the challenge of high energy cost, high interest rates, which is about 20 per cent and above in addition to the myriad of regulatory agencies that make different demands on them. “Smuggling and under-invoicing of imports and many more are daily challenges to manufacturers, nationals and other conglomerates in the sector may have the resilience to cope, but for most manufacturing SMEs, it is a nightmare. “The business environment is generally not conducive for manufacturing enterprise, which is why the risk of industrial investment is high and continues to get higher. The various policy interventions have not had the desired impact on the sector. Unless there is an effective and sustained protection and support for the sector, it is difficult for any significant progress to be achieved in this regard.” The National Vice-President of the Nigerian Association of Small Scale Industrialists, Chief Duro

Kuteyi, said the sector can only grow if the practice of charging fixed electricity charges to small scale industrialist is discontinued. He decried the impact of the high electricity charge of N186,000 compared to actual usage of about N50,000 and called for a proper billing system where industrialists are made to pay for what they use. He asked the government to do more for the agricultural sector by injecting the process of preservation of crops and adding quality value to agricultural produce to assist farmers to meet the international quality needed to encourage export. Acting Director-General, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria Mr. Rasheed Adegbenro said the fact that 2013 was ending on a positive note for manufacturers and other stakeholders in the real sector was a pointer to an upward growth in the coming year. According to him, those in the sector are not expecting too many challenges, especially with the reduction

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Govt seeks partnership to revitalise Ajaokuta

HE Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Musa Sada, has called for collaboration between investors and the Federal Government to develop the Ajaokuta Steel Mill. A statement from the ministry in Abuja said the collaboration would boost the country’s economic development.The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr John Jegede, made the appeal when he visited the company.It said the government planned alternative ways to fund the completion of the company so that it could begin operation. It said the plant was crucial to the realisation of the transformation agenda of the government as it would contribute to industrial growth and job creation. “The Federal Government and the ministry are looking for alternative ways of funding the completion of the steel plant as it is the bedrock of •Burning toxic waste close to a gas pipe line in Ogun State

PHOTO: OLUWAKEMI DAUDA

Workers, residents raise the alarm over toxic waste dumping

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ORKERS and residents of OPIC Estate in Agbara Industrial Complex of Ogun State have raised the alarm over the indiscriminate dumping of industrial toxic waste and refuse in the area. They are calling on the government to come to their rescue. When The Nation visited the place, it was full of stench. The waste burning is worrisome because of the closeness to a gas pipeline. The site is just three or four metres away from the gas pipeline, raising fear about its danger to lives and properties. The Nation observed that from Igbesa to Badagry Expressway, there are several makeshift toxic waste dump sites for factories around the area. The dump sites have also become a den for social miscreants, who attack passersby and residents at night.

Investigation by The Nation revealed that there is no fire fighting station in Agbara and environ. Although some factories and wealthy individual have rudimentary fire-fighting equipment, the residents believe they may not be adequate if there is fire outbreak. Industry sources said investments in the area should be secured because they run into billions of naira. Some experts told The Nation that given the right incentives the complex may become one of the biggest industrial hubs in West Africa. One of the senior managers of a company in the area said there were some issues that Governor Ibikunle Amosun should attend to so as to avert industrial waste hazard. The governor, the manager said, must tackle the hardships faced by those who live and work in the area to facilitate trade and make the com-

plex more attractive for business. “Residents and workers are slowly and quietly being exposed to danger because of the indiscriminate dumping and burning of industrial waste. Most of our workers have been treated for heart, lung and skin diseases because of the indiscriminatelyburning of the dumps, which they inhale,” he said. The community near the Agbara sewage treatment plant also complained about “unhealthy odour” from the plant. The odour, the spokes man of the community, Mr Gabriel Ayoola, said is dangerous to them. The governor, Ayoola said, needs to direct the Ministry of Environment to liaise with the estate management to ensure compliance with rules and regulations to ensure the villagers’ safety.

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in the figure of unplanned inventory, which he said was a major problem to manufacturers. “In the first half of 2013, unplanned inventory was N21.75billion, while the figure we had in the same period in 2012 was N32.83billion; so, you could see an improvement,” he said. He stressed the fact that manufacturers were optimistic about the sector in the current year due to noticeable improvements in specific areas. A chartered tax practitioner Mr. Chukwuemeka Eze said from the previous outlook in 2013 where doing business was tough due to infrastructure deficit, epileptic energy sector and high interest rate, there is no indication that these elements have changed and if that be the case the position may not be too different from last years. The manufacturing sub-sector currently contributes less than five per cent to the GDP, a situation which has remained consistent in the last 10 years and is reflected in the inability of the sector to create adequate jobs.

the nation’s industrialisation.“We have signed a memorandum of understanding to complete some segments of the project and those that were not working before are now functioning,’’ the statement quoted the minister as saying. It said he commended the company’s workers for their efforts in making the plant viable in spite of its long abandonment.It said the minister also urged the management of the company to come up with concepts that could encourage the signing of more memoranda to revitalise the plant.The statement said Sada also visited the National Iron Ore Mining Company, Itakpe, one of the corporations under the ministry where he said the government was determined to utilise the company to its full capacity. It quoted the Sole Administrator of the Ajaokuta Steel Mill, Mr Joseph Onobere, as saying that the plant would put the country on the path of industrialisation if completed.

Manufacturer demands single digit interest rate

HE Federal Government has been urged to mandate the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to put in place strategic framework that will enable banks resume normal lending to the real sector at single digit interest rate to avert further strangulation and total collapse of business activities in the economy. Speaking with The Nation in Lagos, the Group Executive Director Golding Hamed Holdings, Chief Adebayo Hamed also urged the government to restructure all export-related agencies to take further stimulus measures and support industries to expand export in the country. He urged the government to introduce new incentives and faithfully implement existing concessionary duty rates on raw materials not available in the country. On energy supply to industries, he bemoaned what he called the recurring debacle of unavailable and un-sustainable power (energy), which has prevented the manufacturing sector to attain its

full capacity and operate optimally. He said the cost of sourcing for alternate power, swells operational cost, leaving an insignificant profit margin for the manufacturers. He said: “The government should also ensure the immediate crafting of a national policy on gas pricing that will eliminate monopoly and reduce the number of beneficiaries on the value chain as quick wins that will improve the lot of manufacturing concerns and cushion the effect of the seemingly intractable business environment.” He affirmed that what qualifies a nation for the tag ‘developed economy’ is the presence of a virile manufacturing sector, adding that Nigeria would remain in the community of developing countries except the enabling environment required for manufacturing to thrive is created. He urged the government to urgently consider some of the issues militating against manufacturing and put in place a mechanism that will bring down the cost of doing business and enhance trade facilitation.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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COMMENTARY FROM OTHER LANDS

EDITORIALS

Adamu Mu’azu’s baggage

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•The new PDP chairman assumes office under heavy cloud of corruption charges

EOPLES Democratic Party (PDP) partisans will confess some relief: the divisive Bamanga Tukur storm is over with the exit of the troubled former national chairman, under whose charge the federal ruling party lost five governors, is not any way cocksure of the support of two aggrieved others, has lost its majority in the House of Representatives, and could yet face some defection crisis in the Senate. Even with Tukur’s exit, it is not clear that the crisis of 2015 presidential nomination is over. That, to start with, was the driver of the crisis; with a segment of the party insisting President Goodluck Jonathan cede his constitutional right to run for a second term and Tukur, staking his all for the right of his principal. By the Tukur sacrifice, therefore, his opponents — and Jonathan’s presidential 2015 nomination opponents — may have won a battle. But it does not amount to the President and his supporters losing the war. All it means is that the battle is deferred. Still, it is only natural that the two camps welcome the immediate, postTukur cool-off period. Whether it signals lasting peace or just another brief interregnum before guns start booming again is another matter. For now, however, the PDP ‘selectorate’ has made their choice in Adamu Mu’azu, a former two-term governor of Bauchi State. That Isa Yuguda, incumbent Bauchi governor and hitherto no political friend of Mu’azu, actually nominated his predecessor, might just excite PDP peaceniks that the party has turned the bend. Hope, after all, springs eternal!

Still, beyond intra-party peace and war, Mu’azu selection is less than reassuring. To start with, of all previous seven chairmen before Mu’azu, only one, Ahmadu Ali, served out his full term, as turbulent as it was. All others got sacked midway, by acts of impunity by sitting presidents, which riled party members, and precipitated the chairmen’s premature ouster. From Tukur’s tragic tenure, that penchant for impunity and willful party subversion has not changed under President Jonathan. So, though Mu’azu is new, the operational dynamics are not. Therefore, lasting peace in the party will depend on how President Jonathan moderates his expectations (read 2015 presidential nomination); and how, fairly and lawfully, party members perceive Mu’azu to manage the situation. By PDP’s quaint convention, the President as party leader is all but untouchable; and the party chairman only reigns in peace if he is able to accommodate the President’s demands, without provoking a backlash. From the point of governance, and if corruption is the most lethal governmental headache today, Mu’azu’s selection is even less reassuring. As at the time he came on board, former Governor Mu’azu is, in court, facing charges of corruption, from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). It is trite every accused is presumed innocent; and we by no means suggest Mu’azu is guilty of the allegations against him. In Bauchi State, a seven-man panel reported that he misappropriated N20.4 billion while he was governor. But it is not illegitimate to question the

judgment that catapulted a citizen facing corruption charges to chairman of the federal ruling party, when people with less baggage were available. Would it be fair to assume there would be some nuanced pressure, any time Mu’azu is docked? What of President Jonathan’s commitment to fighting corruption? Somehow, the chairman’s selection would appear to reinforce Jonathan’s low priority in the war against corruption. That is not good for his government. But whatever the case is, the PDP must realise it is Nigeria’s ruling party and its conduct redounds, positively or negatively, on the polity. That is why it should go the extra mile to rededicate itself to democratic principles. That is the only way it can run its affairs with little or no crisis.

‘From the point of governance, and if corruption is the most lethal governmental headache today, Mu’azu’s selection is even less reassuring. As at the time he came on board, former Governor Mu’azu is, in court, facing charges of corruption, from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). It is trite every accused is presumed innocent ... But it is not illegitimate to question the judgment that catapulted a citizen facing corruption charges to chairman of the federal ruling party’

Burden-some privatisation •Govt should have sorted out PHCN workers’ entitlements before handing over to the new investors

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E were made to believe that privatisation of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) was not meant to inflict spite on employees of the company but to bring about stable power supply in the country. But it is bad that the country is yet to see any improvement in power supply and even worse is the fact that thousands of former employees of the erstwhile PHCN have not been paid their entitlements months after the Federal Government publicly declared the process closed, by formally handing over to successor companies. Yet, most of these employees have been relieved of their posts, with nothing to show for their years of toil at the public utility company.

‘The commonsensical thing to do would have been for the government to create a time-lag for the payments of entitlements and hearing of complaints there-from before handing over to those that bought the different components of the company. Those investors have now compounded the problems by sacking these employees before final payment of their severance entitlements’

As a measure of last resort, these aggrieved employees, under the aegis of the National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, have embarked on spontaneous protests across the federation. The employees have justifiably embraced the best option of bringing their debilitating plight to the public domain. In Ibadan, about 150 ex-workers and some of those retained by the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company reportedly marched from the NUEE secretariat on Ring Road to the company’s office on the same road. In Bauchi, over 50 per cent of the PHCN workers that were sacked by the new owners of the successor companies trooped to the streets. At the Jebba Power Station, no less than 250 members of the union staged a peaceful protest. Quite surprisingly too, most of the more than 60 per cent of the workers that have not been paid their entitlements in Lagos were at the headquarters of the Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company and other district offices of the power station across the state, to express their disenchantment. We consider as sad the fact that about 25,000 workers reportedly could not access the pension component of their entitlements while families of about 1,000 deceased employees of the defunct power firm that died in active service are yet to receive their entitlements. Equally more dumbfounding is the revelation that over 5,000 workers who retired statutorily are yet to be paid their gratuities. Yet, it was reported with fanfare last year that the Accountant-General of the Federation had sent money to the various banks to pay those entitlements; but allegations

in public domain show that some of the banks are withholding the money for inexplicable reasons. Mr. Wisdom Nwachukwu, Chairman, NUEE, Abuja chapter, captures the alleged notoriety of the banks: “We had learnt of what they (banks) were doing…We have cases of people that have been paid with wrong account numbers. We gave them the real account details, they paid with the wrong account details of which the money will not go and the money goes back to them.” When all these problems have not been sorted out, why the haste by the Federal Government to hand over PHCN to the investors? The commonsensical thing to do would have been for the government to create a time-lag for the payments of entitlements and hearing of complaints there-from before handing over to those that bought the different components of the company. Those investors have now compounded the problems by sacking these employees before final payment of their severance entitlements. The investors too, not only the government, should be highly bothered because they could not just be collecting money from consumers without providing service for which the company was sold to them. At a period when the electricity situation in the country is worsening, the investors/government cannot afford to further incur the wrath of these denied employees that know the nittygritty of operations of ex-PHCN. Further delay of their entitlements is nothing but indirect invitation to avoidable sabotage. To us, this electricity privatisation transition is becoming a burden.

China and Japan scramble for Africa

– Competition is inevitable but better not shout about it

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HINA and Japan have sparred over disputed islands in the East China Sea. They have clashed over visits to a shrine in Tokyo and they have locked rhetorical horns in the editorial pages of a British newspaper, in which their respective ambassadors compared each other’s country to the dark forces of Harry Potter’s Voldemort. Now their travelling dispute has journeyed yet further afield: to Africa. Last week, Shinzo Abe, Japan’s prime minister, visited three African countries in an effort to drum up business and goodwill. The first Japanese prime minister to spend time on the continent in eight years, he visited Côte d’Ivoire, Mozambique and Ethiopia in what he said was a “new frontier of Japanese diplomacy”. Japan has been a long-time aid donor to Africa, though it cannot match the huge amounts China is pouring into the continent. Still, in June, Tokyo hosted nearly 40 African leaders, pledging to step up commercial engagement as well as offering $14bn in assistance over five years. There was a subtext to Mr Abe’s visit. One of his spokesmen could not resist comparing Japan’s modus operandi in Africa with that of China, which he characterised as extractive, exploitative and conducive to corruption. Japan, he said smilingly, “cannot provide African leaders with beautiful houses or beautiful ministerial buildings”. Instead Tokyo’s policy was to “aid the human capital of Africa”. Not surprisingly, Chinese diplomats rose to the bait. One sought to expose the “real Japan” – by holding up photographs depicting Japanese atrocities during the second world war. None of this is very edifying. The truth is that China’s interest in African resources – while not being devoid of the characteristics described by Tokyo’s spokesman – has been a net positive for Africa. Chinese engagement has coincided with much better economic prospects for several countries, particularly those endowed with energy or commodities whose prices have risen as a consequence of Chinese demand. True, Chinese companies rely too heavily on Chinese workers. True too, Beijing has been willing to do deals with African leaders without obvious qualms about who benefits from the largesse. Yet Chinese engagement has done much good. Though Beijing has sometimes built white elephants, it has also greatly improved Africa’s infrastructure, indispensable for development. Western engagement with Africa before China came on the scene was hardly a role model: colonialism followed by postcolonial hand-ringing and scant economic progress. Neither has Japan’s record been unblemished. Too often, Japanese aid was tied to the benefit of Japanese companies. If the rhetoric could be cooled, however, much good could come of Japan’s renewed push, which matches the diplomatic and commercial effort Mr Abe is making closer to home in the likes of India, Indonesia and Vietnam. Africa can help Tokyo’s quest for friends and commercial opportunity. Japan needs to diversify its sources of energy, particularly after the Fukushima disaster left most of its nuclear power stations idle. Japan also needs a fresh source of rare earths. Africa too could provide a market for Japanese goods – both industrial and consumer. For the latter, Japanese companies will have to get better at tailoring products to less affluent markets. Africa can even be “useful” in Mr Abe’s quest to prove that Japan is a constructive member of the international community, not the military threat China implies. Japan already has 400 troops in South Sudan as part of a UN peacekeeping force. Tokyo should continue to engage with Africa on all fronts and to prove that it offers an attractive alternative. Competition with China is inevitable, both ideological and commercial. But it would be better not to shout about it. – Financial Times

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CARTOON & LETTERS

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IR: This is not a funeral dirge for Festus Iyayi – distinguished former President of Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities, (ASUU) and eminent professor of University of Benin. “To live in the hearts of those we love is not to die’’ and Festus was eloquently eulogised at his burial by his family, peers and friends. He was a victim of this siren madness. So also was Captain Wada – Governor of Kogi State whose convoy led to Iyayi’s death. Wada of course lived to tell his story. One can never stop wondering why sane people would willingly hand over their most prized possession they have – THEIR LIVES - to the whims and caprices of ill-trained, semi-literate convoy drivers. Most of these convoy operators have minimum education which is primary standard six. Their level of self-discipline and control is even lower.

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This problem of siren abuse has undergone a long period of gestation in my thoughts. At some stage, I contemplated introducing legislation in the National Assembly but with the backlog of un-assented bills one had a rethink. State legislation looked a better option. Governor Fashola of Lagos State is a trail blazer in this respect and their landmark legislation known as Road Traffic Law 2012 is worthy of emulation by other states. Governor Fashola does

not move with siren. Sirens gained prominence during the Second World War to warn people against impending air strikes. There is also a new dimension and that is the executive siren which is used not only in Nigeria but in many parts of the world. Sometimes irresponsible and excessive speeding are associated with this class of siren use and has an occasions caused accidents and death. For certain classes of government

overzealousness, songs were chanted where Mbu’s name was described as an emancipator; to crown it up, all the speakers called for his retention as the Commissioner of Police in the state. Is it morally or ethically right for a serving police officer to be deeply involved or prominently featured in a political rally? Is it professionally correct for a political group to determine which commissioner of police to be posted in a state? President Goodluck with his vast educational background should have realized the implications of such practices but regrettably, he seem to be helpless as the events unfolds; he has never done anything to call the situation to order. This is why I have come

to the conclusion that illiteracy and ignorance are not the major problems of Nigeria as we were made to believe in the past. Nigerians, under the most educated president have been made to believe that 16 is above 19, we are now being made to believe that the Police Commissioner and not the Governor is the Chief Security Officer in a state.This is our new version of democracy from a leader that has a doctorate degree! Nigerians are so unreal that they believe God can also be tricked. I watched the closing part of the rally where one evangelist was called to pray and I almost shed tears as the supposed man of God went on saying things that were far from the truth one of which was that President

Jonathan raised Amaechi from grass to grace! The rally of course went successfully – uninterrupted, a sharp contrast to what the police did when some APC members gathered a fortnight ago. If a commissioner of police who is supposed to be apolitical chooses to pitch tent with a political party is celebrated as a hero, it is a measure of how Nigerian laws have been perversely interpreted under the reign of the most educated president has ever produced. History will be the final judge. • Comrade Richard Tersoo Mnenga Pfeffingerstrasse 12 4053 – Basel, Switzerland.

Regulation (1989) and that of siren by Road Vehicles Construction and Use Act (1986). Occasions when vehicles permitted to use these gadgets can break speed limits are well spelt out and obeyed. Former British Prime Ministers used to have two blue light flashing outriders and a few back-up vehicles in their convoy. The current British Prime Minister David Cameron has done away with the motorcycle outriders and now travels with a minimum of traffic disruption. In the U.K, convoy movement with sirens is unknown for private citizens no matter how rich. On one occasion when we had to clear for our lives, I counted 35 vehicles in a governor’s convoy. How ridiculously insensitive can we get? The debate on siren use has become urgent because 2014 and 2015 are important election years. It is time to address this madness which drives ordinary Nigerians off the road. What makes the situation more annoying is that the stern gun swinging personnel who accompany these convoys have no respect for anybody. They are prepared to destroy anyone who stands in their way. As the elections draw nearer, virtually anybody who can pay for Hilux van will soon be mounting a siren and start this mini terrorism. The use of sirens is authorised by the President through the Inspector General of Police. There are approved lists of persons entitled to use them but this list is completely flouted and ignored. Legislation does not seem to be working either. One therefore would appeal to the President to re-table this topic at the Council of States. A consensus at this forum may have a trickledown effect which may yet restore sanity to our roads. • Dr. Eddie Mbadiwe Lagos

clinical and noiseless manner he recently effected changes in the top hierarchy of the military has put all that to rest. In a sweeping change, Jonathan had removed the former Chief of Defence Staff, Ola Sa’ad Ibrahim, the former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Azubuike Ihejirika, and his counterpart in the Navy, Vice Admiral Joseph Ezeoba. The only survivor is the former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Alex Badeh, now Chief of Defence Staff. Major General Kenneth Tobiah Jacob Minimah was named new Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral Usman

Jibrin takes over from Ezeoba as Chief of Naval Staff; while Air Vice Marshal Adesola Amosu now steps in as the Chief of Air Staff. From the geopolitical perspective, the list of the new service chiefs shows exemplary balance between the North and the South. It is safe to argue that Jonathan, in reshuffling the top military positions, paid serious attention to the most important fault lines of our political architecture, which are religion and the North-South divide. But beyond the issue of ethno-re-

ligious balance is the emphasis on operational effectiveness and professionalism. The former service chiefs have done a marvellous job in containing the threats to national security especially against the terrorist insurgency of the Boko Haram sect. Given the deft manner and tactical manoeuvring with which he has handled the changes in the top brass of the military, who would argue again that President Jonathan is not a General or even a Field Marshal? • John Ainofenokhai Jonny4deals@yahoo.com

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Siren tyranny on Nigerian roads officials such as Presidents, Prime Ministers who are identified targets of terrorists attack, use of the siren for fast movement is justified. The use of course must be regulated which does not seem to be the case in Nigeria. In the United Kingdom, use of sirens and flashing cars known as ‘BLUES N’ TWOS’ by emergency services, fire ambulance, law enforcement is controlled by law. Blue flashing lights is regulated by Blue Flashing Lights Road Vehicle Lighting

Mbu: Policeman or politician?

IR: On Saturday, January 18, I watched the rally organized by a group of some Rivers State citizens with the theme “Voice of Orashi Region Solidarity Rally” in Omoku. The purported rally which according to the organizers, was meant to garner and publicly display support for one of their own, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan was attended by politicians, youth activists, clergymen and traditional rulers that constitute the Orashi region. As expected, the speakers at the event never hid their disgust and condemnation over the decision of the Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi to defect to APC, which according to them was a grave sin to the people of Southsouth. I took particular interest in one of the speakers at the rally even though his English sounded like that of Nigeria’s popular comedian, Chief Zebrudaya. I managed to hear some of his comments when he alleged that Amaechi was being used by some northerners to fight Goodluck. One of the most surprising actions at the rally was the prominence of Mbu Joseph Mbu, the Commissioner of Police in Rivers State. All those who addressed the rally spoke glowingly of him. Aside the heap of insults meted on Amaechi, eulogies to Mbu dominated the event. Those who eulogized him attributed their outburst to his professional skills and competence in confronting the security issues in the state. To show their

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Is Jonathan now a General?

IR: Sometime ago, President Goodluck Jonathan, while attending a military function, had remarked that he was not a military general. Many analysts wondered if the president really understood the enormity of the power of the office he occupies. How on earth can a man who is Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria claim that he is not a general? How come he is commanding other generals? If there is any doubt that Jonathan is perfectly on top of things, the


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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COMMENTS

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International relations in historical perspective – 2

N ancient world of the Middle East, between 1500 and 500 years before the birth of Christ, a common great civilization occurred and dominated the area from the Tigris – Euphrates (Babylon) to the Nile (Egypt) and beyond. The choice then was between empire and chaos – just as in nature one empire fell giving rise to another. The empires of Alexander, the Romans, Chinese and the Mogul empire in India operated not on the basis of international relations but on conquest. There could be no relation between civilization and barbarism. Even up to the 17th century in Europe the accepted concepts was that of a universal empire and not the coexistence of sovereign states. It was not until the consolidation of the French, English and Spanish national states in opposition to the universal Holy Roman Empire that the idea of the proper mode of relations between sovereign states began to evolve. Two philosophers, Jean Bodin (C1530-1596) and Hugo Grotius (Huig Van Gruit) (1538-1645) were the first two people to properly articulate the underlying philosophy that should guide the relations among states. This is not to forget that before them Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) had something profound to say about interstate relations even though tangentially. This Italian diplomat and writer, the son of a prosperous Florentine lawyer, had in one of his books 11 Principe written in 1513 but published in 1532 said that the prince even in his foreign relations need not be bound by covenants entered to solemnly by him. He was also not bound by promises made as long as he concentrated on the end in view since the end would justify whatever means he adopted for political and territorial aggrandisement of his state. Machiavelli is not usually known for his contribution to the evolution of politics among nations but his amoral ideas have no doubt influenced politicians since the 15th century. Jean Bodin was a lawyer and an attorney to King Henry 111 of France. Writing against the background of Machiavellian philosophy, he insisted that the sovereign has an obligation to keep faith in treaties and alliances and should not for political expediency repudiate treaties solemnly entered into if the international system were not to dissolve into anarchy. This identified need for restraining absolute sovereign in their international dealings influenced Hugo Grotius, 50 years later, to carry forward the philosophy of Jean Bodin. Hugo

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HINGS have been wrong in Rivers State for almost a year now, all for the wrong reasons. I say wrong reasons because a party to the Rivers crisis knows that it has no reason to be waging a war of attrition against Governor Rotimi Amaechi. Since February, last year, the state has known no peace. It has been one day, one crisis in the Garden City all because some people in Abuja are no longer comfortable with Amaechi being in the saddle. But must Rivers and the people be made to suffer because of the perceived 'sins' of one man? That is assuming if he has done anything wrong. At the risk of being accused of bias, I say that the governor has done nothing wrong, except if it is a sin to stand up for what one believes in. Amaechi may have offended them without knowing when he complained that the East West Road is a death trap because of the delay in completing it! For his boldness in calling a spade a spade and not a farming implement he incurred the ire of Niger Delta Minister Godsday Orubebe, who started the campaign that Amaechi was criticising the project because he was interested in the 2015 presidential election. When Amaechi moved to the Port Harcourt Waterfront in his bid to beautify the place, all hell broke loose. They accused him of demolishing houses without sparing a thought for the owners. Most of the house owners are Okrika, who have a powerful kinswoman in the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan. When she visited Port Harcourt sometime last year, she took on Amaechi over the issue. Her Excellency accused Amaechi of demolishing houses without compensating the owners. The governor, she said, knew no other word than ''demolish, demolish'', adding : ''If you demolish everywhere, where will the people go''.

Grotius was an international jurist, born in the Netherlands and practised law in The Hague and held at various times diplomatic positions on behalf of the French and Dutch governments. He was finally appointed ambassador to France by the Swedish government. In his book De Jure belli et Pacis (1625), he advocated that sovereign states should coexist in amity and peace with one another through the restraints of international law and existing norms that govern relations among states. His importance in the history of jurisprudence rests not on constitutional law but upon his conception of a law regulating the relations between sovereign states. The practical urgency of the problem in the 17th century laid in the chaos associated with the rejection of the universalism of the Roman Empire and the Catholic Church and the wars of religion which followed the Counter Reformation. The wars of religion brought to international relations, the intrinsic bitterness of religious hatred and afforded the colour of good conscience to the most barefaced schemes of dynastic aggrandisement. Coupled with this was the economic imperative which led the western European nations along the road of expansion, colonisation, commercial aggrandisement and the exploitation of newly discovered territories. Hugo Grotius claimed there was an immutable law of nature which governed relations between sovereign and subject and one government and the other. This law of nature was the fundamental basis of the civil law of every nation and this civil law was reflected in the laws binding every nation. The originality of this classical idea of natural law which had been discussed by Plato (C427-347BC), Aristotle (384-322BC), the stoics and Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43BC), was that Grotius believed that the same intrinsic principles are fundamental to the behaviour of states in their relations with one and the other. One of the most significant contributions of Hugo Grotius was his elucidation of the concept of extra territoriality, otherwise known as diplomatic immunity which was originated by the French jurist Pierre Ayraut (1536-1601). This concept was further developed by Samuel von Pufendorf (1632-1694), and by the 18th century the idea of diplomatic immunity had taken firm root and this concept of immunity was formally consolidated by the Vienna Convention of 1961. The idea that what binds human beings together on an individual ba-

sis can be transposed to relations between nations can be seen also in David Hume’s (17111776) A Treatise of Human Nature when he wrote, describing the basis of human relations and collaboration in founding civilized societies. “I observe that it will be for my interest to leave another in the possession of his goods provided he will act in the same manner with Jide regard to me. He is sen- Osuntokun sible of a like interest in the regulation of his conduct. When this common sense of interest is mutually expressed, and is known to both, it produces a suitable resolution and behaviour. And this may properly enough be called a convention or agreement betwixt us, though without the interposition of a promise since the actions of each of us have a reference to those of the other, and are performed upon the supposition that something is to be performed by the other party … assures us still more that the sense of interest has become common to all our fellows, and gives us a confidence of the future regularity of their conduct: and it is only on the expectation of this that our moderation and abstinence are founded”. It is this logic of rule governing not only an individual behaviour but state behaviour that underpins the working of international relations.

‘Hugo Grotius claimed there was an immutable law of nature which governed relations between sovereign and subject and one government and the other. This law of nature was the fundamental basis of the civil law of every nation and this civil law was reflected in the laws binding every nation’

The face of a fiend That was the start of Amaechi's problem with the first family as Dame Patience rebuffed every move by the governor to explain things. She denied him every right of reply. Since then, there has been no love lost between them. Dame Patience is being fussy over nothing. As the mother of the nation and the most prominent Rivers woman in high office today, there are better ways of handling issues, especially those pertaining to her state. And that is not by being hostile to the governor. As we have said here in the last two editions, there are better ways of relating with the governor of your state, whether you are wife of the president or not, Respect, they say, begets respect. If the first lady does not throw her weight around, she and Amaechi will hit it off. But if she chooses to be bossy as she is now doing, things will not work at all and Rivers will be the worse off for it. We are already experiencing that with the kind of Commissioner of Police she got posted to the state. Since his coming, Mbu Joseph Mbu has not left people in doubt about his mission. From all indications, Mbu is executing someone’s agenda and since he was deployed in Rivers on the instrumentality of the first lady, it is obvious on whose side he is. This Joseph is unlike his namesake in the

Bible, who won Pharaoh’s heart by his fortrightness and candour. The biblical Joseph was a great dreamer and an interpreter of dreams, but the Jonathans’ Joseph is a killer of dreams and a perpetrator of havoc. He should, however, not forget that there may come a Pharaoh (even though Jonathan once said he is neither Pharaoh nor a General) who does not know his Joseph. If it could happen in the Bible, it can also happen here. May we remind Mbu that he is a law officer, who should be impartial where there is a dispute between two parties. It is sad that Mbu has not lived up to the expectations of his office. He seems to have forgotten that he owes his commission to the Nigerian people and not to any public officer, who will leave office one day. bu too will eventually leave office, but what will be his legacy, if he continues to run the Rivers State Police Command the way he is presently doing? I don’t know how long he still has left in service, but if he wishes to go further in his career, he has to change his ways, except if he is saying that he is satisfied being a commissioner until he retires. It is high time Mbu stopped seeing himself as a major-domo of the first family and act truly as an officer of the law, who will uphold what is

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‘Mbu has not lived up to the expectations of his office. He seems to have forgotten that he owes his commission to the people. The police pride themselves in being friends of the people. Unfortunately, we cannot say that of Mbu; we will rather remove the r in that word and see him more as a fiend’

right and just. If the truth must be told, Mbu has not been fair to the Save Rivers Movement (SRM) and Amaechi so far. While he is treating the Nyesom Wike – backed Grassroots Development Initiative (GDI) with kid glove, he is applying iron hand on the SRM because the group enjoys the support of Amaechi, who does not see eye to eye with the first family. Is that how to be a police officer? Mbu knows the answer to this poser. The police pride themselves in being the people’s friend. Unfortunately, we cannot say that of Mbu going by what we have seen of him; we will rather remove the r in that word and see him more as a fiend. Isn’t that what he really is? If a police chief like him can stand idly by and allow hoodlums to attack law abiding citizens as it happened in Port Harcourt last Sunday during the SRM planned rally can he be said to worth his uniform? If a police chief like him can sanction the use of force, whether minimum or maximum, to disperse a proposed peaceful rally can he be said to be fit for that post? The world once had a butcher of Baghdad – the late Saddam Hussein of Iraq - who ran his country with an iron fist, but we all know how he ended. At the height of the late Hussein’s madness, life meant nothing to him; he killed people at will, including his son-in-law because he was power drunk. The Arab world surely has them. Today, Bashar Assad of Syria is following in the late Hussein’s footstep. Are these Mbu’s role models? I am sorry to say that he is treading the path of perfidy if he does not retrace his step. What I don’t understand is why the police chose to look the other way when hoodlums de-

Lawal Ogienagbon

lawal.ogienagbon@thenationonlineng.net SMS ONLY: 08099400204

scended on SRM members on Sunday? Is it no longer their job to protect life and property? p till now, the Inspector – General of Police (IG) has not queried Mbu on what happened? Is that how to run an institution? We can only hazard a guess here that the IG’s hands are tied because Mbu is well connected. But what do we say of President Goodluck Jonathan, the apostle of peace, who has deafeningly kept silent in the face of the mayhem in Port Harcourt last Sunday? Yet, the president says he does not want people to shed blood over his political ambition. How do we reconcile his statement with what is happening in Rivers? Now, Amaechi has served notice that he would be at the rescheduled SRM rally in Port Harcourt on Saturday. As the chief law officer of his state, the goverrnor’s movement cannot be curtailed by anybody. He is expected to be protected by virtue of his office. Will Mbu provide Amaechi that protection on Saturday or will he let loose his men again on defencelsss citizens? Those who love Mbu should advise him to retrace his step now because the end of yes - men is not always something to cheer about.

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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EMOCRACY, the world reigning god, makes only two major demands on its worshippers- respect for the will of the people and an abiding faith in the rule of law. Leaders who after swearing by its name betray these democratic ideals lose credibility. Tragically one thing that has been in short supply in successive PDP administrations since 1999 is credibility. And of all the challenges facing the current Jonathan administration, credibility appears to be the most daunting. When President Jonathan therefore says we should be ready to auction our generating sets, or that ‘Nigeria will export cars soon’, or that ‘the presidency is not behind the unfolding anarchy in Rivers’ or even when his chief of Defence Staff says ‘We will end Boko Haram insurgency by April’, they are received by Nigerians with scepticism. To be fair to the president, this credibility gap, as indicated above was inherited from 12 years of PDP periodic rigging of elections, disdain for the rule of law, and self-serving policy initiatives such as privatization, fuel subsidy, identity card projects and many others designed not for spreading dividends of democracy as claimed by the party, but for sharing the nation’s resources among members of the ruling elite. It was perhaps on account of these baleful legacies, coupled with what some considered as Jonathan’s below average performance as acting president and noticeable flaws in his character that accounted for the call for caution by perceptive journalists and analysts of our national affairs such as Sonola Olumhense and Haruna Mohammed. The former had warned that going by President Jonathan’s antecedents, he would certainly sell what is left of Nigeria to PDP if voted in while the later advanced seven reasons why we should not trust Jonathan. But instead of the president proving his detractors wrong, he has not only gone ahead to confirm their fears, he has through his continued assault on the will of the people and rule of law undermined the credibility of his own administration. For instance, those who in spite of PDP gave the president a landslide victory had expected an injection of young blood with fresh ideas as different from PDP buccaneers that had held the nation down for 12 years. But even where we had inspiring young people, they were recruited as square pegs in round holes to serve Jonathan and not Nigeria. For instance Dr. Reuben Abati who can at best be described as an adversarial cerebral journalist with popular following arising from his relentless attack

Jonathan and crisis of credibility on PDP and Obasanjo presidency for about 10 years would have been an asset to a government run by a Dr Olatunji Dare, his former boss at The Guardian or an administration headed by a Professor Pat Utomi his soul mate. He has been busy selling the president transformation agenda which to the opposition and a sceptical public has remained a mere agenda. Even when he is saying the truth about President Jonathan ‘he knows’, his past haunts him. Doyin Okupe who felt insulted to be called an attack dog (the role he played under Obasanjo presidency) has continued to make more enemies for the president as analysts had predicted. Most of pronouncements of Okupe, who is viewed as part of contract-chasing PDP crowd, is not only received with a dose of scepticism by the public, but chips away a portion of whatever credibility Jonathan administration has left. Not even the president’s commitment to free election sounds convincing anymore. The cynical public now believes the president’s concern is about his own election and those of his friends. We now know all the talk of providing level playing ground through the deployment of a large contingent of police and a battalion of soldiers to ensure the victory of opposition party candidates in Ondo, Edo and Anambra was not informed by a desire to deepen democracy. As the president’s godfather who should know better recently revealed, the president traded off the support for his own party candidates for future personal gains from those opposition but friendly governors. Of course, the ongoing assault on the governor of Rivers State only calls the credibility of

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HE reappointment of Dr. Paul Orhii as Director General of NAFDAC on December 31, 2013 by President Goodluck Jonathan is God’s imprimatur, His endorsement of five years of hard work and uncommon innovative leadership by a man ready to give his all to Nigeria and humanity. This perhaps explains the futility of the orchestrated efforts by some individuals and groups to stop his second term. And the timing of the announcement, the last day of the year, a year of frenetic sentimentalism and untrammelled attempt by a powerful anti-Orhii coalition to pull him down, was a wonderful way by an administration to appreciate the helmsman of one of the nation’s most impactful institutions. It was one sure way by President Jonathan to put paid to the activities of the growing and unrelenting coalition. What a way to end a vicious campaign, and what a way to endorse an innovative leadership and a change agent in the all important health sector of the country. Leadership is a very challenging endeavour, but leading a very complex country like Nigeria has additional challenges. However, President Goodluck Jonathan has demonstrated in words and deeds that he has no time for frivolities, but rather committed to taking Nigeria to the next level. There is no doubt that Nigeria is a prosperous nation maximally endowed with distinct human and natural resources, and positioned by God to set the pace for other African countries to follow. This Divine commission has not been sure-footedly approached since independence in October 1, 1960 due to multifaceted of which leadership is key. However, indications are strong that we have in the incumbent President those sterling qualities that make a good leader. He has demonstrated his commitment to engraving undeletable landmark imprints on the nation’s sand of time. Through uncommon clear-headedness, sagacity and calculative mind, he has confronted the daunting challenges facing his administration and has remained on top of them. For a leader convinced of the genuineness of his actions and

‘The production, distribution, display, sale and application chain of the nation’s drug business was lifted by the introduction of ultra-modern regional drug markets tagged, Mega Drug Distribution Centres (MDDCs) and State Drug Distribution Centres (SDDCs). Their existence will effectively eliminate the unwieldiness in the nation’s supply and demand mix’

the presidency to question. The police watched as five thugs attempted to impeach a speaker in an assembly of 32 members. The police give protection to supervising minister of education who is in Rivers State capital nearly every week end to mobilize ex-militants, thugs and his local council supporters who swear by the president’s wife name while disrupting pro state government organized rallies. And in the midst of unfolding anarchy in the state, the presidency has ignored the National Assembly resolution that police commissioner Mbu Mathew Mbu who acts as de facto governor of Rivers be transferred out of the state. The president’s war against corruption is received with cynicism not only by the Speaker of the Lower House who complained about the president body language or by ex-president Obasanjo who agonized over Jonathan’s lack of political will to fight corruption, but also by many Nigerians. Besides the president’s lack of discomfiture in the midst of alleged corrupt individuals, there is also the impunity with which those close to government engage in corrupt practices. It is unimaginable how officials of the pension unit in the office of Head of Service of the Federation (HOSF) would subject those who had served the nation meritoriously, some in their 90s to such hardship as asking them to queue up for verification every month just because the exercise provided an avenue to steal N400 million monthly. Apart from Sani Teidi Shuaibu, former director in the pension office who has since received a slap in the wrist from the courts, little has been heard of his former deputy Ukamaka

Chidi, and 30 others charged with a 134-count charge of conspiracy, fraud and corruption, stealing about N60 billion, an act the Senate President, David Mark, described as a “monumental fraud” and a national disgrace and embarrassment,” Similarly the presidency has been silent on Abdulrasheed Maina, the chairman of Pension Task Force Team, (PTFT), and his committee members who were indicted by the Senate report for ‘fraud, embezzlement, misappropriation, misapplication, outright stealing of pension funds. etc. While Maina, according to Audu Ogbe, former PDP chairman, was cruising around protected by a contingent of police, the IG claimed Maina could not be found to face prosecution. The public scepticism about the president’s management of the economy was not helped by the controversy surrounding the$10.8 billion that was not accounted for initially but which Bernard Otti, the NNPC’s Group executive director of finance and accounts, now said was spent on ‘pipeline repairs, fuel subsidies and reserve fuel’. But as Sanusi the outgoing CBN governor has said, “No one has the right to retain money that should have gone to the federation account” and as echoed by Obiageli Ezekwesili, the former “Due Process Minister”, NNPC and Ministry of Petroleum have no FISCAL MANAGEMENT mandate: They MUST end OFF-TREASURY spending of PUBLIC FUNDS” If it appears President Jonathan only pays a lip service to fighting corruption, if his commitment to free and fair election is seen as selfserving, if his war against insurgency appears unwinnable, and if the national dialogue project like other government policy initiatives are received with cynicism, it is precisely because his government is haunted by crisis of credibility often associated with disrespect for the will of the people and disregard for the rule of law.

‘If it appears President Jonathan only pays lip service to fighting corruption, if his commitment to free and fair election is seen as selfserving...it is precisely because his government is haunted by crisis of credibility often associated with disrespect for the will of the people and disregard for the rule of law’

NAFDAC and Orhii’s second term By Martins F.O. Ikhilae policies, he is able to assess those he has entrusted with positions of leadership in the various sub-systems of the nation. This is why his reappointment of the NAFDAC henchman, Orhii, has not come as a surprise to Nigerians and discerning members of the international community alike. Considering the time and resources put in by the anti-Orhii coalition, his second term endorsement marks the President out as a forthright leader. The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), the arrowhead of the undisguised coalition, advanced the most jejune argument using Section 9(2) of the NAFDAC Establishment Act, to attack the eligibility of Orhii, a medical doctor, pharmacologist and lawyer, for the position of NAFDAC director general. They claimed he is not a pharmacist! The truth of the matter is that for anybody to be appointed the DG of NAFDAC, he/she must possess a good knowledge of pharmacy, foods and drugs. With his reappointment, the anti-Orhii campaign died a natural death. And so, since January 14, the day of commencement of his second term, both the consolidation phase and a new one of fresh experimentation for enhanced performance has begun. Orhii posted unassailable records in his first term so much that he made waves outside the shores of Nigeria. The achievements of the agency were a reflection of the bigger transformation picture of the Jonathan presidency. The battle against influx of substandard regulated products into the country was reinvigorated and the local production of pharmaceutical products monitored and coordinated. In collaboration with Federal Ministry of Agriculture, NAFDAC established the new Food Safety and Applied Nutrition Directorate for effective regulation of food production activities in line with the President’s agriculture transformation and food security programme. This directorate is assisting the country to promote production and export of value-added agricultural products like cocoa, cashew and cassava. The Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point plan for food safety, leading to examination, monitoring, registration and certification of numerous food products as well as ensuring that caterers and bakers comply with the stipulated good hygienic practices of the agency, are worth mentioning. The agency gave the pure and bottled water production revolution in the country the necessary fillip through training, laboratory analysis, advisory inspections and consultative meetings with sector players. About 20, 000 water products were registered between 2009 and 2013.

A must mention are the multi-million naira ultra modern state-of-the-art Regional Laboratory Complex in Agulu, Anambra State commissioned in 2010; the rehabilitation of the Kaduna Area Laboratory torched in 2004; the acquisition of a new multi-million naira building for Lagos administrative office; the refurbished and upgraded headquarters of the agency in Abuja and laboratories in Yaba, Oshodi and Maiduguri. Others include the design of a corporate portal that allows for in-house sharing of information; an internet enabled web-based portal, Automated Product Administration and Monitoring Solution (NAPAMS), which provides electronic platform for the management of the registration process/E-Registration; a Laboratory Information Management System to support quality laboratory procedure and data processes, and an E-Clearance Portal, which allows for online electronic clearance of goods at the ports. Above all, there is database to capture information on all NAFDAC-regulated products. All these happened under Orhii’s charge. Perhaps, using the law to fight drug fakers and adulterators remains one of the most impressive achievements of Dr. Paul Orhii. The most salutary judgment till date remains the conviction of two staff of Barewa Pharmaceutical Company Ltd, Lagos, Adeyemo Abiodun and Ebele Eromosele and the winding up order on the company given in May 2013 by a Lagos High Court. The production, distribution, display, sale and application chain of the nation’s drug business was lifted by the introduction of ultra-modern regional drug markets tagged, Mega Drug Distribution Centres (MDDCs) and State Drug Distribution Centres (SDDCs). Their existence will effectively eliminate the unwieldiness in the nation’s supply and demand mix. So also is the soft loan package for local drug manufacturers championed by the agency. Orhii’s stewardship in NAFDAC has accorded Nigeria a distinct global reputation and status. Nigeria today is conferred with a pioneering status of deployment of cuttingedge technologies in combating NAFDAC regulated products counterfeiting. Now that he has won his reappointment battle as NAFDAC boss, there is no doubt that he will justify the confidence reposed in him by the President and Nigerians in this second phase of his stewardship. Nigerians expect the same level of dedication and commitment to healthcare of citizens. After all, it is said that to whom much is given, much is indeed expected. • Ikhilae, is a Lagos-based public affairs analyst


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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INCE about the 10th century AD, we Yoruba have been enjoying a high level of civilization in our towns, cities and kingdoms. By 1750, one of our kingdoms, the Oyo-Ile kingdom, had conquered a large empire comprising most of western Yorubaland and many non-Yoruba neighbours – the largest empire ever in West Africa’s forestlands. In eastern and southern Yorubaland, our other kingdoms were also thriving strongly. But, about 1750, according to available records, we began to have a recurrence of selfserving (and therefore disruptive) leaders in our political history. It started in our great city of Oyo-Ile, specifically with a high chief named Gaha. As soon as Gaha was sworn in as Basorun in 1754, he started a headstrong war against Oyo-Ile’s monarchical system. He seized powers that did not belong to his position, and forced Alafin after Alafin to bow to his will or to commit suicide – until, at last, one intelligent Alafin managed to get him destroyed. Gaha was probably insane. Nevertheless, he had started a plague that we have never managed to remove from our land – a tradition whereby some leaders emerge now and again who are dedicated only to their own purposes and interests. Soon after Gaha came one Alafin named Awole, whose self-centred crookedness produced a whole era of instability. Soon after him came Afonja, the Are Ona Kakanfo of the empire. Afonja had some blood relationship with the Oyo-Ile royal family and wanted the Alafin’s throne. But since the OyoIle Council of Kingmakers did not select him, he embarked on a wholesale rebellion against

‘Yoruba leaders are demonstrating today a particularly dangerous kind of incapability to unite. It looks like a version of the old family disease – the type that has shown up from time to time since the era of Gaha, Awole and Afonja. We need to suppress it – urgently’

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N Nigeria today, one of the daunting challenges facing the country is insecurity, the problem affects socio-economic and political progress because an environment of uncertainty which insecurity creates retards or at best stagnates all developmental efforts of the state. The current wave of security challenge in the country has taken such a dimension that citizens have concluded that government has not taken adequate measures to protect their lives and property. Some public affairs analyst and scholars have accused the police of gross inefficiency and even collaborating with criminals in the society. These frustrating situations have made the citizens to resort to taking alternative measures to ensuring security and safety, these measures include, vigilante groups and neighbourhood watches in urban centres and rural communities. The use of vigilante groups was given momentous impetus with the restoration of democracy in 1999 by constitutional incongruities which, while making the governor the Chief Security Officer of the state, assign the maintenance of law and order in the state to the Inspector General of Police who is not answerable to him. The return of democratic rule also witnessed an upsurge in violent crimes because of the withdrawal of military personnel from security duties within the states. This upsurge in crimes created a sense of insecurity especially in Lagos State where the governor sought the right to have control of the means of maintaining law and order in the state. Since the situation of insecurity was wide spread, many other governors also joined in the demand. Emboldened by the constitutional provision that they were responsible for law and order in their various states, the governors officially recognized vigilante groups such as Bakassi Boys and the Odua Peoples’ Congress (OPC). The avalanche of the reported exploits and successes of these groups caused the citizens to believe that they could do a better job of providing their own security. Furthermore, the successes of these groups were seen as proof that criminals could be subdued and that the inability to check them in the past

HistorylessonforYorubaleaders his kingdom, and ended up setting up the town of Ilorin as a centre of rebellion, with forces capable of destroying his country. Afonja perished disgracefully in his rebellion, but his Ilorin continued to be a powerful centre of rebellion. Attempts by the Alafins to destroy this centre of rebellion steadily sapped the energies of the kingdom and ultimately ended in one of the worst disasters in Yoruba history – namely, the decision of the citizens of the great and proud city of Oyo-Ile to abandon their city in 1835. Yoruba people often say today that Fulani jihadists destroyed Oyo-Ile, but that is not true. Ilorin and its powerful leaders after Afonja were over 95% Yoruba (mostly Oyo). The disintegration of the Oyo Empire spilled wars into the rest of Yorubaland, wars that continued until the Europeans seized control of Yorubaland in the 1890s. Throughout the century, some leading Yoruba men tried again and again to generate agreement to stop wars – something that might have launched the collective energies of the Yoruba nation into truly revolutionary dimensions – and perhaps produced a modern Yoruba nationstate. At every crucial juncture, some leaders just would not give up their personal ambitions and interests for the national good. As things stood in the 1890s, the Yoruba, if united, could have preserved the independent existence of the Yoruba nation in Africa – in a way similar to Ethiopia in north-eastern Africa, or Japan in Asia. The most important European attack on Yorubaland was the British invasion of Ijebu in 1892. As at that date, because we Yoruba had been fighting wars for nearly a century, Ibadan had well trained, well-armed, and seasoned forces numbering about 85,000 at Ikirun, about 30,000 at Oru in Remo, and about 40,000 near Abeokuta. The Ekitiparapo had more than 50, 000 at ImesiIle. Ilorin had probably 40,000; Abeokuta probably 50,000. Each of the powerful kingdoms of Owo, Ondo and Ketu had armies that numbered 30,000 or more. An Ijebu army of probably 15,000 camped near Ife; and an Ife army of probably 20,000 camped in Ifetedo and Okeigbo. The main Ijebu army itself numbered about 50,000 and was armed with sophisticated breech-loading rifles. (Unfortunately the most advanced machine gun of the

time, the Maxim gun which the invading British army had a few of, was not yet widely available in West African trade)). In short, if all these forces had been re-orientated to defend their Yoruba homeland, there would have been about 400,000 troops poised to defend Yorubaland – a magnitude of forces never encountered by European invaders anywhere in Africa, and that would have discouraged any European attack on any part of Yorubaland. Moreover, the large class of Yoruba merchants based in Lagos, consisting of many of the most informed and richest merchants in tropical Africa, easily commanded the expertise and commercial connections to keep Yoruba forces well supplied with latest weapons. And the already strong Yoruba literate elite of lawyers, doctors, engineers, pastors, teachers, writers, accountants, journalists (and newspapers), mostly in Lagos, were already good at whipping up propaganda campaigns, and could have discouraged European invasions of Yorubaland. Unhappily, such Yoruba unity did not happen. The leaders of each Yoruba group, while expressing great sentiments about their Yoruba ancestry, were too focused on their own goals. The Ijebu army single-handedly fought a gallant battle against the British invaders. They narrowly lost – only because the invaders had a few Maxim machine guns. Ultimately, most of Yorubaland became British possession and part of Nigeria. France and Germany seized the rest. However, in 1952, most of the Yoruba again had some control over their own affairs – in the Western Region of Nigeria. Demonstrating great unity, Yoruba leaders immediately gave their people the most progressive and most productive government in Africa. But then, the old disease showed up again in 1962, allowing a hostile federal government to launch a war of destruction against the Western Region. The Yoruba people have not come out of that cloud till now. Today, in the great confusion, conflicts and poverty buffeting Nigeria, we Yoruba face again very serious challenges to virtually everything important to our lives and our future. Admittedly, the state governments of the Yoruba South-west, controlled by differ-

Gbogun gboro ent political parties, still manage to perform above the Nigerian average. But that is insufficient today. The Yoruba nation needs to have a Yoruba leadership structure above the leaderships of civic groups and political parties, uniting the various segments of Yoruba leadership, and able to speak confidently for the Yoruba nation in the increasingly uncertain and troubling situation of Nigeria. Yoruba leaders, and groups of them in their civic organizations or political parties, are, without doubt, committed to the well-being of their Yoruba nation, but experience is showing that none is, by itself, capable of fully addressing this moment’s desperate needs of their nation – or fully effectively promoting the Yoruba kind of enlightened solutions to Nigeria’s problems. Those Yoruba leaders who have been urging the controllers of the Nigerian Federal Government to treat the Yoruba nation more fairly in the affairs of Nigeria forget the old truism that, in politics, only power really works – and that a strongly united and well-led Yoruba nation would easily earn respect in the affairs of Nigeria. Apparently inadvertently, Yoruba leaders are demonstrating today a particularly dangerous kind of incapability to unite. It looks like a version of the old family disease – the type that has shown up from time to time since the era of Gaha, Awole and Afonja. We need to suppress it – urgently. Saving our nation and our proud civilization, and properly sorting out Nigeria’s problems, are worth our best effort and sacrifice.

State police and internal security By Major General Ihekire (rtd) was due to the ineffectiveness and inefficiency of the police. Having condemned and lost confidence in the police, the call for State Police Forces (SPF) became more strident. The agitation for state police is predicated on two issues, namely the ineffectiveness of the police and the constitutional requirement for state governors to maintain law and order in their various states. Section 214 Sub section (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 states that: “There shall be a police for Nigeria, which shall be known as the Nigeria Police Force and subject to the provisions of this section no other police force shall be established for the federation or any part thereof”. The constitution also provides that the Nigeria Police Force shall be under the Command of the Inspector-General of Police and any contingents of the Nigeria Police Force stationed in a state shall, subject to the authority of the Inspector-General of Police be under the command of the Commissioner of Police of that state. The constitution further provides that the governor of a state may give the Commissioner of Police of that state, such lawful directions with respect to the maintenance and securing of public safety and public order within the state as he may consider necessary, and the commissioner of Police shall comply with those directions or cause them to be carried out. However, before carrying out such directives, the Commissioner of Police may request that the matter be referred to the President for his directions. From Section 176 (2) of the constitution which states that the governor of a state shall be the Chief Executive of that state, it follows that the governor is the Chief Security Officer of that state with the responsibility of maintaining public safety and order. From these four constitutional provisions, it can be seen that the governor of a state has a responsibility for maintaining law and order in the state

for which he has no means. The principles of federalism provide for the maintenance of the political integrity of federating units through non-centralization. Since the state governors are the Chief Security Officers of their states, they need to be able to have control of the apparatus for maintaining security. There is a need for the National Assembly to take immediate action to review the constitution to allow for the establishment of state police forces. The type of interest shown by the state governments in the control of police forces gave rise to different interpretations of the controversy which made some groups apprehensive and they therefore openly oppose it, ranging from political misuse of the police by the states, a situation that is not a sufficient ground to condemn state police nor uphold a centrally controlled police force. What is required is to evolve a policing strategy which will suit the Nigerian environment as other countries such as Japan and the United States of America have done. To avoid abusing the use of state police forces (SPF), the constitutive document for state police needs to provide for the establishment of Police/People Committees at state and local government levels. The committee would be made up of eminent citizens such as retired judges, religious leaders, respected opinion leaders, journalists and representatives of labour unions. Their duties will include appointment and termination of police appointment and monitoring the activities of the SPF. While states police have cultural affinity with their environments they are likely to have problems of standardization of training and equipment and will also need external support in cases of extreme emergencies. These problems can be checked by maintaining a modified federal police which will have the following organs and duties. a. Federal Criminal Investigation Branch (FCIB) which should be established at fed-

eral, zonal, state and local government levels. They should be responsible for criminal investigations nationwide and should be attached to all police stations nationwide where their presence will ensure that ethnic sentiment does not come to play in the dispensation of justice. b. Federal Highway Patrol (FHP) which should be responsible for patrolling all federal highways nationwide. They should have zonal and state headquarters. c. Police Regulation and Manpower Branch (RMDB) which should regulate and standardize police training so that minimum national standard is maintained throughout the state police forces. RMDB should be established at federal and zonal levels to control all training schools. d. Police Mobile Squads (PMS) which should be able to play a paramilitary role during social crises. They should be established at federal and zonal levels to assist states in crises on invitation by the police/people committee of the state in crisis. By this arrangement, federal and SPF can operate side by side with various responsibilities while at the same time allowing the state governors to control maintenance of law and order in their states.

‘The principles of federalism provide for the maintenance of the political integrity of federating units through noncentralization. Since the state governors are the Chief Security Officers of their states, they need to be able to have control of the apparatus for maintaining security’


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

22

NEWS

P

RIOR to February last year, the Agoma family was unknown to many Nigerians, except their neighbours at Ejigbo in Ejigbo Local Council Development Area (LCDA) in Lagos State. The father, Filman Agoma, an indigene of Topa in Badagry, was a palm wine tapper. Six days a week, he went into the marshland at 6am to tap his palm trees and returned at 8pm. His second wife, Ajoke, was a housewife. She brought her daughter, 12-yearold Nike Salami, into her new marriage with Agoma. In February last year, she was nursing another child, the youngest in the family. Filman also had some children from his first marriage; the eldest of them was Juliana (mother of four children) and her twin siblings. The family lived out their lives in mysery poverty in an uncompleted building. The Agoma family was poor, very poor. In December last year, an eight-minute video clips circulated on the Internet.It showed a group of men brutalising two naked women, who kept pleading to be spared. In the video, the women accepted they stole some quantities of pepper because they were hungry and pleaded for mercy. The men beat them, using all manners of instruments and poured red pepper into their genitals. The video ended with the women crying and wailing. On Tuesday, Joe Odumakin, a women’s rights activist, who has been leading the campaign for justice for what was then known as the “Ejigbo 2”, presented the victims (the women) and members of their family to reporters in Lagos. They travelled from Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, where they have been forced to relocate to appear before the Lagos State House of Assembly, which had taken over investigations in the case. To ascertain if they were the real victims, the video was played again, projected on a screen. It was like the opening of an old wound. Nike, the youngest victim, wriggled in agony on her seat, looked away quickly from the screen and covered her eyes with her hands. Her step-father bluntly refused to watch. He buried his head in his palms. The scene where his daughter was sodomized, beaten and abused was too much for him. Ajoke did not flinch and Kehinde had agony written all over his face. Nike looked exactly like she was in the video, except she has adopted a sad countenance, mostly looking forlorn and her mind seemed constantly out of the present. With the death of her sister Juliana – the prominent victim in the video- she was the only living witness, who can tell the world what actually happened. As she spoke, it was apparent her innocence had been violated and overnight, she had become an adult. “My sister woke me up and said we should go to the market where we took pepper of N50. But the next day, some people came to our home and started to scatter everything. They asked me to take them to where my sister was working. They took us back to the market and accused us of stealing baby clothes, which we denied. We told them we took the pepper and begged for mercy.” ‘THEY HELD A CUTLASS TO OUR HEADS AND THREATENED TO KILL US’ Nike also said many members of the gang were known to the family and they were members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), who were responsible for the security of the market. She identified the man in jeans as Tirin, the one in Ankara fabrics as Ajibola and the one who beat up Juliana as Abolore. But Tirin may have had other motives in partaking in this despicable act against the women. According to Nike, he had been pressurising her for a affair. Sometimes, he would lay-in-wait for her on the way to the market to propose his amorous feelings to her. “I always cursed him and the last time he did that he said one day I would fall into his hands,” Nike said. Providence seemed to have played into Tirin’s hand. The men went to fetch Juliana and bundled the two women back to a suspected OPC tarmac in the market popularly called Oju Ogun, which according to the family, had acquired the reputation of being a torture chamber. The men also returned to the house to fetch Ajoke. She said the gang was led by the Baba Oloja of the market. “Baba Oloja came to the house and I knelt down to greet him. Immediately, he slapped me and I began to urinate. He said I am the mother

•From left: Ajoke Agoma, Nike Salami and Filma Agoma father fo the victim

Ejigbo assault victims: we were traumatised

Finally, the victims of the Ejigbo market assault have been found, courtesy of the Women Arise Initiative Network, an organisation led by Dr. Joe Okey-Odumakin. While they await justice, the victims recount their ordeal and torture, which led to the death of a member of their family. SEUN AKIOYE reports of thieves and that I should follow them. I told him to let me take my other children in school, but he insisted I should follow them to the market.” The men wasted no time, even seemed eager to undress the women. When they were naked, the interrogation, which lasted from around 11am till 7pm began. Tirin chose to torture Nike himself. According to her, he rubbed pepper all over her body, fondling her as he performed his horrifying duty. Nike yelled and screamed and in response to that theyallegedly threatened to kill her. Then she was asked to spread her legs and hot pepper was poured into her genitals. A stick was used to push the horrifying liquid down her womb. “So this is all that you are hiding all this time, is this not you, is this not your nakedness?” Tirin teased the agonising teenager. Ajoke was subjected to the same fate in the presence of her daughter and daughter-inlaw. “They kept slapping me and saying they would kill us. They removed my clothes and underwear. They poured pepper into my eyes and then beat me mercilessly. Baba Oloja slapped me several times,” Ajoke said. Nike continued: “Somebody pushed

my mother and they were stepping on her head as she was crying, they brought a cutlass and said they would cut my mummy’s head and if I talked too much they would kill me. Then, they held one of my legs and forcefully pushed them apart, then they poured the pepper into my private parts.” Ajoke spoke in a voice, which conveyed no emotions. It was evident she had suffered greatly and she no longer had any feelings left. Her voice was flat, almost merciless. As the torture went on, a member was recording the show on his mobile phone. Baba Oloja was said to have cleverly kept out of the offensive video, but invented some of the most devious tortures. The greatest punishment was reserved for Juliana, whom the men saw as leader of the ‘thieves’. For several hours she was beaten and interrogated. They prodded her to confess her crime. Juliana stuck to her story: she took N50 pepper because she needed to eat, she had not stolen in the market before and she begged for forgiveness. Instead, the men brutalised her and for a long time sodomised her. Then a special torture, designed to bring out the required information from her, was invented. “ One of them brought dry pepper and

a bottle of Chelsea (dry gin), which he used to mix the pepper. Then they inserted the pepper into her private part, after they brought a stick and began to push it inside her,” Nike said. Juliana had a gripping tale of poverty and ill-fate. According to Kehinde, her brother, she r elocated to Lagos a few months before the incident because she had a problem with her husband and needed to make some money to feed her children. “I got a job for her in a restaurant; she was helping them to serve food and got N100 everyday, making N3, 000 a month,” Kehinde said. But Nike did not know her sister was dead until her encounter with reporters. After the family was released, Juliana could not walk or talk. “When my sister got home, she could not walk or talk. One of her eyes was very bad and she had cuts all over her. The next day, we took her to the hospital and then to the village, but her conditions did not improve and one month after that she died,” Kehinde said. This was unknown to Nike, who had been separated from her family since the incident. “ Your sister is dead,” someone told her. If a thunderbolt had fallen by her

side, it could not have produced a greater reaction of shock when she received this news. “What do you want the government to do to those men?” Silence! “Your sister is dead, what do you want the government to do to them?” More silence. Nike bowed her head and for some time remained in that position. Then she covered her face. “The people that kill somebody, they usually kill them,” Nike said, it was not a question, it was a statement. But the mode of the torture and demand of the gang suggested there may be more sinister motives behind it all. Before the family could be released, N150,000 was allegedly demanded from them. Again that night, they reportedly chased the family out of the community. Ajoke said her infant child died before dawn. Kehinde, who works at a car wash close to the market, took over the narration. “ I was at work when they came to call me that they are beating my sister because she stole pepper. I didn’t believe until I went to the place, because she was earning N100 per day. I saw Baba Oja slapping my sister; they said they would kill her. Then he said we have to bring N150,000 or they would kill her. One man called Askari followed me –he is a panel beater- he negotiated the money down to N80, 000. I began to beg for money everywhere. “That day I was able to raise N20, 000, but they refused it. They said I have to pay N50,000 before they would release her. I signed an undertaking to pay the balance. Baba Oja usually come to my shop to disturb me to pay the balance. “One day, he threatened to arrest me. People begged him and I found a way to pay the remaining N30,000. My sister was not able to tell me what happened that night. Her eyes were bad and she couldn’t even move. We took her to the village, she died about a month later.” Nike’s step father was seeing her for the first time since the family was driven out of their home on the night of the incident. He was also arrested by the gang and taken to the chamber. When Juliana saw him, he pleaded that he should save her. “I could not do anything; they wanted to kill me too. I have never seen anything like this before. When I watched the video, I was shocked. I’m sad right now, I am depressed. Government should intervene. Those men should be punished because they oppressed me and destroyed my life. Yes, they have destroyed my life,” he said. A FAMILY IN DISARRAY The Agoma family has been in disarray since the night they were forcefully evicted from their home. Nike and her mother are now living in Kwara State and Nike has resumed school. Her father has no home. The twins have been living on their own, depending on their friends for assistance. Kehinde has to repay the money she borrowed to pay Baba Oja. His life has turned upside down. Since that night, Filma has been angry, always short on temper and his eyes has a permanent sadness in them.

Lagos Assembly rewards informants with N2.25m

L

AGOS State House of Assembly has fulfilled its promise to reward anyone who supplies information that will lead to the arrest of those who assaulted two women at Ejigbo for allegedly stealing pepper. At a meeting with the informants and other interested parties at the Assembly complex, Speaker Adeyemi Ikuforiji handed over the promised N1, 250,000 to the five informants including the one who facilitated the arrest of the culprits. The culprits have been arrested and handed over to the police for prosecution. Speaking at the event, leader of Women Arise For Change,

•Hands over case, victims to OPD By Oziegbe Okoeki

Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, who led her group to protest the matter to the Assembly few weeks ago advised the Police to restore the confidence of the people in the system by prosecuting the culprits. Dr Odumakin thanked members of the Lagos State House of Assembly who ensured that the perpetrators of the act were arrested. She said: “We were well received by the House when we staged a protest on the matter. With the way the House handled the matter, I know that Nigeria will rise again. The blood of the late victim cries for justice,” she said. Dr Odumakin said that she couldn’t overcome t h e

•Ikuforiji

horrible scenes after watching the video on December 11, adding that she had to forward it to people like Hon. Funmi Tejuosho, Pastor Tunde Bakare and Prof Wole Soyinka. The video of two women, who were dehumanised by some men for allegedly stealing pepper in Ejigbo area of Lagos, went viral on the internet last December. Dr Odumakin and her group staged a protest on the issue to the Assembly late last year and the House subsequently set up an adhoc committee, headed by the Majority Leader of the House, Dr. Ajibayo Adeyeye, to investigate the incident. The House promised to reward whoever could give the police a clue about the perpetrators with one million two hundred and fifty thousand naira. Speaking at the presentation of monetary reward, Ikuforiji said that he couldn’t believe the incident happened in Lagos, when he initially

heard about it. “It is a story we don’t want to remember, we pray it never repeats itself, it is ungodly and inhuman. I couldn’t believe it could happen in Lagos. When Dr. Odumakin came up with the issue, I didn’t believe it, but I had to set-up a committee on the matter and I have been proved wrong,” he said. Ikuforiji thanked the Committee for doing a good job, adding that their efforts show that all hope is not lost about Nigeria and that ‘we will soon get there as a nation.’ The Speaker also thanked Dr. Odumakin for her efforts in ensuring that the perpetrators of the act were apprehended. The identities of the victims, parents of the deceased victim and that of the first informant, who were all present, were concealed for security purposes. The case as well as the victims and their relatives were later handed over to the Office of the Public Defenders (OPD). They were led to the presentation by their Director, Mrs. Omotola Rotimi.


25

THE NATION

EDUCATION

THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

More universities are embracing e-voting. The Lagos State University (LASU) joined the league on Monday, conducting elections electronically on its four campuses simultaneously. Is that a sign of good things to come for Nigeria? KOFOWOROLA BELO-OSAGIE and MEDINAT KANABE report.

• From left: Ikuforiji and LASU Vice Chancellor, Prof John Obafunwa, watching as students cast their votes at the S.L. Adu Hall.

Varsities lead the way in e-voting ‘ M ’

ORE universities are adopting electronic voting. On Monday, the Lagos State University (LASU) joined the league. It conducted elections electronically on its four campuses simultaneously, beating the record of other institutions, which only did so on one campus. The institutions are the University of Calabar (UNICAL), University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) and the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), which have designed and

The e-voting has a zero tolerance for manipulation. LASU has utilised all process of election. It will be unbiased. We have also taken care of power supply. All campuses are networked. We use only one central server to collate all the results from all the campuses

deployed software applications in the conduct of school-wide elections. At the UNILORIN, the e-voting platform used for the Students’ Union (SU) elections of 2012 and last year was developed by two Computer Science students. Its success in

2012 resulted in its adoption for the election last year after some modifications. The situation was similar at the UNICAL, where lecturers and students from the Physics Department developed the application used for

INSIDE

‘Tiny’ teen outshines others at quiz contest -Page 28

Life sentence convict graduates -Page 45

the SU elections in the past two years. Emmanuel Ahahonu, who just graduated from the Political Science Department monitored both elections and told of how shortcomings were corrected to improve the process.

CAMPUS LIFE

Students were required to register online. Emmanuel said when they complained of the stress, the application was modified in such a way they could register with their phones. "I give them a pass mark because testing such a project for the first time was commendable. When they talked about it initially, people thought it was not possible. Almost all the complaints (registered in 2012) were corrected (in 2013) - though there was still an alternative for • Continued on Page 26

•A 10-page section on campus news, people etc

Hatman terrorises students off-campus -Page 29


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

26

EDUCATION

•Isa (left) and Majid

•LASU students casting their votes at the Faculty of Law.

Varsities lead the way in e-voting • Continued from Page 25

manual voting," he said. This year, Ahahonu said there are plans to introduce biometrics to cross check the identity of the student voters. At LASU SU elections on Monday, the institution deployed biometrics in the voters’ registration and verification for the exercise. LASU ICT Centre Systems Analyst, Mr Adewale Adepoju said the process involved two steps: verification and voting. He said: "The students have to identify themselves with a school identification card, matriculation number or course form. After providing it, the student's information would be logged in and sent to the LASU database where the bearer's picture will come out and he or she will be identified. "If verified authentic, the student will give his finger print and be enrolled for a token. The token can only be used for voting once. The student will also provide an email address and phone number where an email and message will be sent to inform them that they have cast their votes." The system used in LASU, which was deployed simultaneously in the main campus at Ojo, and three other campuses in Epe (Faculty of Engineering), Surulere (School of Communication) and Ikeja (College of Medicine), was developed by two 500-Level students of Electronics Computer Engineering, Jubril Isa and Kolawole Majid as their finalyear project. Their Project Supervisor, Mr Ajasa Abiodun, advised them to partner on the project (electronic inter networked voting system, called Ivote) to enhance its application. Isa had developed a similar voting application earlier, which he first tested during the engineering faculty students' elections. He said his role as chairman, electoral committee of the faculty gave him the platform to use the application. Twenty-two-year-old Isa, who is from Kogi State, said: "I was the Chairman, Electoral Committee for my faculty election in 400-Level. I decided to do something different from the conventional voting system so I created an e-voting application which we used for the election and it was a success. I thought if it could work for the faculty, then it could be extended to the Students Union election, so I decided to do it again for my final project," he said. With the success of the faculty elections, the LASU management soon bought into the idea and involved the instruction's ICT team. The Dean, Students Affairs of the university, Prof Kabiru Olusegun Akinyemi, said the university spent N1 million on the project. He said: "When the students

brought up the idea, they encouraged them to go ahead with it. We used the Faculty of Engineering to test what they brought and then assisted in modifying and suggesting some things. They went to the vice chancellor and a meeting was called where it was demonstrated and criticised. "The university decided to support the project, so the ICT Centre headed by Prof Olatunde Oni, was consulted and asked to help the students. The university gave them over a N1 million to do this." Explaining further, Oni said the university deployed a total 140 computers for the exercise. He said: "What we have deployed can be used for national election. We have deployed all voting applications in all four campuses and we have deployed 80 computers in Ojo and 20 each in other campuses. "We registered 8, 000 students successfully. The results will be known two minutes after the final person votes. The e-voting has a zero tolerance for manipulation. LASU has utilised all process of election. It will be unbiased. We have also taken care of power supply. All campuses are networked. We use only one central server to collate all the results from all the campuses and only a few trusted people have access to the centre to prevent manipulation. The application will use bio-metric feature to curb multiple voting. The voting application has been developed online," he said. Isa's partner, Majid, would love if the process is adopted by INEC. "It will give the people an opportunity for a free and fair election. It will take great expertise for this process to be manipulated. Our web server is the only place where it can be manipulated and the system has a device that will show every activity carried on the server," he said. The Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Ikuforiji Adeyemi, who witnessed the election at the S.L. Adu Hall, said he would recommend that the Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Attahiru Jega invest in the school and the software developers instead of wasting billions outside the country. He said: "If LASU can do it, why can't INEC come and invest in here, instead of taking billions out of the

FUNAAB FILE

VC counsels Pre-degree students

country. If we cannot learn from our children, shame on us. We will let Jega know that it is working here.”

Biometric machine Beyond developing e-voting applications, researchers at the UNILORIN have come up with a prototype biometric machine, which functions far better than the foreign ones in use in the country. The machine, which was developed from the World Bank-assisted Science and Technology Education Post-Basic (Step-B) project funds, is designed to capture physical features of blacks and Nigerians, which the foreign versions have difficulties doing. The machine was developed by Prof. Tunji Samuel Ibiyemi of the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department, and three others (Prof. J. Sadiku of Computer Science Department, Dr. S. A. Aliu and Dr. I. O. Avazi of Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department) to study 'Biometric Signal Processing for Personal Application and Forensic Application'. Ibiyemi told The Nation that the machine can checkmate impersonation, economic fraud, multiple voting, examination malpractices, election rigging, and security. Besides taking finger prints, the Professor of Electrical and Electronics Engineering said their own biometric machine can record facial and signature features as well. Compared to what INEC is using, which only checks multiple voting in an area, Ibiyemi said the UNILORIN version can check multiple voting on a national scale. "It can eliminate multiple registration/voting. If properly implemented, you do not need to vote where you registered; you can vote anywhere. What INEC is using only documents biometrics and you have to vote where you register. There was a time one or two of their machines was missing and they were jittery. But if our own gets missing, they do not need to worry because we electronically mapped them; so anywhere they are used, we can identify them," he said. If mass produced, Ibiyemi said, the

‘The developed world have their own biometric machines to their specifications. They don't contract it out. Anything security is better done in-house. It is the same technology, but we look at our own specifications to design it’

• Prof. Ibiyemi

UNILORIN biometric machine will cost about N25,000, which is far cheaper than the foreign versions. "The cost at prototype level is more expensive than the imported ones. But if it is mass produced, one machine will come to about N25,000," he said. Ibiyemi also made a case for local content, arguing that sensitive data regarding security should be localised. "The developed world have their own biometric machines to their specifications. They don't contract it out. Anything security is better done in-house. It is the same technology, but we look at our own specifications to design it," he said. Ibiyemi has, however, not been too successful getting relevant national authorities to reckon with his invention. "I approached Prof Maurice Iwu (former INEC Chairman) about the invention. He invited me and was excited about it. He promised to convene a workshop and involve the National Population Commission (NPC) and the National IndentityCard Commission because he said it is relevant to them in three months. However, he was removed before the time came. Since Jega came into the saddle, he said he has not succeeded in meeting with him. "I have tried to get across to Prof Attahiru Jega ( INEC chairman), but I have not been successful. So, I left it; after all, I do not need it. I only want to help. Ilorin is far from Abuja. It is not easy going the distance," he said. When asked to comment on the innovations in e-voting being used in the universities, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Mr Kayode Idowu, said with a ban on e-voting in the constitution, the commission cannot attend to them because it would be illegal. "There is still a legal prohibition in place against e-voting. It is even premature to discuss the possibilities. But when the ban is lifted, then of course we can consider local solutions," he told The Nation on phone. Section 52 (2) of the Electoral Law outlaws e-voting in Nigeria.

THE Vice Chancellor, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), Prof Olusola Oyewole, has advised pre-degree students of the university to be focused so they can scale through the programme. Oyewole gave this advice during the 2013/2014 orientation programmes for Pre-Degree and Cambridge 'A' level students of the university's Institute for Human Resources Development (INHURD). The Vice Chancellor called on the students to be conscious of why they enrolled for the programmes, have a clear vision and get prepared to face future challenges. Speaking on Entry Qualifications and Admission into FUNAAB, the Chairperson of the University's Admissions Committee and Director, Agricultural Media Resources and Extension Centre, Prof Carolyn Afolami, took the students through the admission guidelines and admonished them to work hard because securing admission into the university was highly competitive. She advised them to make wise choices of their preferred universities, while filling the University Tertiary Matriculation Examination forms.

Student shines AANU Damola Morenikeji, a 400Level student of Plant Physiology and Crop Production has been selected for the 2013 Fellowship of the Social Leadership Academic, United States of America, having emerged as the youngest fellow from Africa. During the six-month fellowship, which featured virtual leadership sessions, team building opportunities, strengths development with leadership and social entrepreneurship experts, Aanu, alongside other fellows on his team started the "Man of Impact" Project, which was designed to celebrate ordinary men, but whose works inspired others positively. The 19-year-old was also a semifinalist at the 2013 selection process of the yearly Thiel Fellowship, initiated by Peter Thiel, which brings together the world's most creative and motivated young people under 20 to showcase their talents. During this period, he was able to directly influence about 100 emerging leaders across the globe, to commit themselves to intentional living, value-based leadership and contributing to making the world a better place. He is presently partnering with the United Nations Youth Advocacy Group on the 'A World-at-School Advocacy Project, aimed at achieving universal education by 2015 for 57 million out-of-school children around the world.


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

The Lagos State Commissioner for Education, Mrs Olayinka Oladunjoye, has been relentless in driving policies that will enhance performance in the Education sector. In this interview, she tells KOFOWOROLA BELOOSAGIE about plans to grade private schools, improve learning outcomes in public schools, as well as performance in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

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HAT are your plans to improve the education sector this year? The Plans are many folds. First of all we have harmonised our curriculum and calendar; we have fortified our examination board which is actually one of the agencies that will give us our examination and grade us and tell us how we really stand. We have put in place all our tutor general/permanent secretaries in all the respective districts. This is with the view to ensuring that we do not have anybody acting capacity. Those who are there now, they are coming around with new ideas, new initiatives, new passion, new vision and new objectives. And I am sure with this and then the objective of the ministry itself, we have great plans for 2014. Tell us about your plans to grade schools. The initial thing was that the Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (ESSPIN) did a scoping mission in the state and they discovered that some private schools are so poor that they decided that some needed assistance. And if they can assist them it would be good because we need to meet our MDG goals. We want every child to be out of the street and be in school and since we as a government do not have the facilities and the capacity to put every child in school all we can do is support private education. That is why ESSPIN went ahead to bring up DEPIN, another concept, as a fall out of the scoping mission and the census that they did. What does DEPIN mean? Developing Private Education in Nigeria. They are using Lagos state as a start off. What they intend to do is to grade our schools. We want to ensure if this is a Grade A school what facilities do you have? It is like putting stars in the hotels - five star, four star, three, and two star hotels. We are using stars as well. If you know that you want to go to Sheraton, you will know that is a five star hotel for instance. In the same way, there are some schools that will have five stars, four stars, three stars, two stars and those that do not even have any star at all and cannot acquire any star. I can assure you that those schools will be closed because those ones cannot meet the minimum standard required of them. We will tell the whole world that

Ranking for Lagos schools soon if you want to put your child in a five star school, XYZ school, these are the facilities they have. As a parent, when they charge you money, you know that you are enjoying this facility 'so why can't I pay?' But there are some, they can only be two stars, yet they will charge a lot of money. It is a way to draw the society's attention to the fact that these schools have these facilities. What DEPIN wants to do is to give them technical assistance; they are not going to give then money. They will give them assistance in such a way that they can even go to the banks and get loans. We must assist as many schools as we can, not necessarily because they are going to be in competition with us, but because they must be in existence. They must take the children off the street for us; they must meet our MDG goals as a state or as a country; and Lagos is an integral part of Nigeria that is driving the MDG goals. Are you planning to grade public schools as well? Our schools are already graded. You know we have model colleges; we have upgraded schools, so in effect we have already graded our schools without necessarily saying so. And then there are schools that win the governor's award. We can only improve on the model colleges to make them five star schools; we can only improve on an upgraded school to make them a first class school, so in effect upgrading system is already in place as public schools. What are your plans to improve on facilities? We have never stopped improving on facilities, as I speak with you we have 14 schools that are yet to be inaugurated. Some of

these schools are being used as we speak. It is a continuous process; you cannot say I am done; this administration cannot even say it is done; the next one cannot say it. We have a 32-year-plan. The 2025 year plan is in existence. But, like you know, people come to Lagos all the time. They bring their children and family members. They all want to be in Lagos and we cannot turn them back. Lagos is a melting point; we have to just accommodate them. So they always stretch our facilities to elastic limits. As the challenges rear their heads, we will continue to meet them because as government we have never stopped; and a lot of money been deployed, EKO Project money is there being deployed to education, budgetary provisions are being made to education. That is why we are doing the residency registration. We want to know exactly who resides in Lagos so that we can plan. If we know that two million people reside in Alimosho, for instance, we want to know how many children are there; how many classrooms should we build consciously? So at least at the back of our minds we know Alimosho still needs these numbers of classroom. I want to use this opportunity to appeal to people to go and register, not for tax purposes, but to at least know the number of people that reside in a particular area, and how many children that are there; how many primary schools should we put in place, how many crèche must we build, how many teachers must we train, even for tertiary education. This is because we know that after x number of years, these five-year-old children would be in the university and this one-year

old child will be in the primary school; this 10-year old child will come into secondary school, so we need them to register; we need to have data to work with. Is that why you have restricted admission into public schools? Let me correct you. It is open but we cannot have a situation where there will not be element of accountability. Every child should be able to at least read and write. We do not ask too much from them. If they are going into private schools, they still do interviews. What we are doing for them is to train them to know that as children they must write examination. If you inculcate that in them early, they will be used to writing exam. I went round when they were writing the screening test; they were serious minded about it. They must write exam; and they must score 50 percent in Mathematics and English. They would need the foundation. If they have 50 per cent in maths, 50 per cent in English and cumulatively, they pass. Even if they fail the exam, they have the opportunity of writing it again. It is like the common entrance. Now you insist on 50 per cent pass in public schools. I must commend your boldness in implementing the policy. They (pupils) will not be eligible for promotion. Apart from that you must come to school 90 per cent of time and remain in school, otherwise, you are not eligible for promotion; and then parents must attend Parents Forum meeting 50 percent of time otherwise we won't promote you. I am going to ensure that the reform is adhered to very strictly. If they don't pass the exam let them repeat. That is why ultimately you can see the evidence

‘We want to ensure if this is a Grade A school what facilities do you have? It is like putting stars in the hotels - five star, four star, three, and two star hotels. If you know that you want to go to Sheraton, you will know that is a five star hotel for instance. In the same way, there are some schools that will have five stars, four stars, three stars, two stars and those that do not even have any star at all and cannot acquire any star’

•Mrs Oladunjoye

in our results because it a means to an end and the end is WAEC result. So if they are not serious minded, they don't come to school and they miss their lessons, there is no short cut about it. You cannot go and start reading short cut to mathematics and say you are going to pass; there must be consistency. And then we as regulators must ensure that our teachers do the right thing and our principals take charge of our schools. What benefits are you seeing implementing this policy? Consistently, results have been heading up. Between 2011 and 2012, we wend up from 17 to 34 per cent; and that is 100 per cent increase. We know we are not there yet. Last year, we had 41 per cent and we have a mandate from the Governor to go to 60 per cent but that move is more than 60, it is 80. We are targeting 80 per cent because it is something we can do. We have the facilities, the teachers are being trained. They are been trained by ESSPIN; they are being trained with EKO Project money; so government has deployed so much resources and the result must be worth investment their putting into it.

Edumark holds schools exhibition

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•From left: Regional Operation Manager, South, MultiChoice Nigeria, Mr. Saliu Aliu; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Bayelsa State, Mr. Durban Whyte, and CEO, Innovative Technology Literacy Services Ltd, Mrs. Ronke Bello, during the launch of 10 MultiChoice Resource Centres in Bayelsa State at Saint Jude Secondry School, Bayelsa State. There are now 284 MultiChoice resource centres across the country.

EXT month, parents will have an opportunity to check out what many schools have to offer at this year's edition of the International Schools and Colleges exhibition organised by Edumark, a firm that helps schools manage their branding, training and other school support services. During the event, which holds at the Oriental Hotel, Victoria Island, on February 6, and the Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja on the follwing day, parents will get to meet school representatives and purchase relevant educational materials. Project Co-ordinator for the event, Mrs Fisayo Balogun, said that the programme has been designed to provide a forum for parents not only to meet good schools but also to listen to experienced counsellors advice them on the ideal educational path for their wards. One of the main speakers for the event is Prof. Mopelola Omoegun,

Dean of the Faculty of Education, University of Lagos. She will address parents on Creating the Right Academic Plan for your Child. Mrs Balogun also said that parents would get one-on-one sessions with unbiased counsellors to guide their decision making process. Leading international schools in Nigeria, Benin Republic, sixth form colleges, foreign university consultants, private universities in Nigeria and various other institutions are expected to attend the event. “The main objective of the programme is to assist parents so that they would be able to make informed decisions about the academic future of their children. It would also provide institutions an ideal opportunity to listen to parents and exchange ideas with them to enable the schools create a better environment within their institutions,” Mrs Balogun said in a statement by the company.


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

EDUCATION AAUA FILE

Two profs appointed THE Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko (AAUA) has elevated two of its academic staff to Professors. The two academics, Olugbenga Ige, a Professor of Palynology and Palaeoecology, and Victor Olumekun, a Professor of Plant Science, were promoted with effect from December 24, last year. Ige, a 1984 First Degree holder in Botany graduated from the University of Benin. He had his M.Sc. (Botany) in 1993 and Ph. D. (Botany) in 2004 at the University of Ibadan. He joined the then Ondo State University, Ado-Ekiti, as a Graduate Assistant in the Department of Botany in 1990 and rose to the position of Lecturer II before the university was renamed Adekunle Ajasin University and relocated to Akungba-Akoko in 1999. He was promoted to Lecturer I in 2000, Senior Lecuturer in 2004 and Reader in 2007. He has published over 30 articles both in local and international journals. Ige, a former Chair of the AAUA Academic Staff Union of Universities, is the Chairman of Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission.

Don elected to NIPR Council A LECTURER in the Department of Mass Communication, Mr. Olugbenga Abimbola, was on January 10, this year in Abuja inaugurated as a member of the Governing Council of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR). He had been elected on December 18, last year. He, with other officers of the Council, was sworn in by the Minister of Information and Supervising Minister of Defence, Mr. Labaran Maku. NIPR Governing Council is the highest decision-making organ of the Institute, which sets standard for qualification and regulates public relations practice in Nigeria. Abimbola, a former News Editor with Owena Press Limited, Publishers of The Hope newspaper, joined AAUA as an Assistant Lecturer in 2007. He holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s in Communication and Language Arts from the University of Ibadan where he is pursuing his Ph.D. He was until his election, the Chairman of NIPR, Ondo State Chapter, and the first to be so elected into Council from state Chapter of the institute since the chapter was established 31 years ago.

‘Tiny’ teen outshines others at quiz contest •Wins full JABU scholarship

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ITH his size and age, Afariogun Precious Opeyemi, an SS3 pupil of Iganmode Grammar School, Ota in Ogun State, did not seem to stand a chance to win the national quiz competition for secondary school pupils organised by Joseph Ayo Babalola University (JABU), IkejiArakej in Osun State, last week. However, the 'small but mighty' Opeyemi won with style - after giving Agwamba Chibuikem Maxwell of straitway College, Ogun State a hard time. The 14-year-old won the heart of the audience from the first round of the last stage of the competition and was crowned, amidst cheers, after spelling correctly the winning word 'Abacus'. The contestants were drilled in English Language, Mathematics and Current Affairs during the

•Fajana, (Second left) and Aderibigbe (second right) with Opeyemi (middle), Agwamba (left), and Olajumoke By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

two-day competition held last Monday and Tuesday. Opeyemi won N200,000 worth of books, cash, desktop computer and a full scholarship to study any fouryear course of his choice in JABU. Second and third placed winners, Agwamba Chibuikem and Alaani Olajumoke got half and quarter scholarships with cash and books worth hundreds of thousands of naira. The top 10 contestants also got

How we spent our N2b budget, by VC

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HE Solomon Lar University (formerly called Plateau State University), Bokkos, used most of its N2billion subvention for last year from the Plateau State Government to upgrade its infrastructure ahead of accreditation of its programmes. Its Vice Chancellor, Prof Doknan Danjuma Sheni, said the money went various building projects that dot the campus. "The fund was spent basically on infrastructural development of the new university in preparation for accreditation of our courses by the national university commission (NUC)," Sheni said while inspecting project at the university campus in Bokkos. The projects include perimeter fencing of the university, multipurpose auditorium as well as the administrative block. Sheni urged the contractors at the various sites to speed up work as the timely completion of the projects was expected to boost the accreditation of programmes later this year. He said any delay in completion of the projects will adversely affect the

From Yusufu Aminu Idegu, Jos

academic activities of the school. "Apart from the state government projects being carried out with the 2013 budget, there are other project going on simultaneously in the school and sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education through the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund). Such projects are lecture halls and offices for the faculty of Management Sciences, the entrepreneurial center etc,” he said. The VC applauded the state government for allocating over N4 billion to the university in the 2014 budget proposal, saying whatever kobo allocated to the university will be spent judiciously to enable the school realise set objectives. He said: "The state government of Governor Jonah Jang is determined to nurse this young university to maturity through the provision of necessary funds for the running of the school.” He called on staff and students to reciprocate the gesture through absolute dedication to work and academic activities.

prizes while all the 50 contestants were awarded certificates of participation and consolation prizes. Declaring the competition open, the Vice Chancellor, Prof Sola Fajana, said JABU places premium children and education because of the important roles they play in a society. Fajana praised the organising committee of the competition for a job well-done. On his part the Registrar, Mr Wale Aderibigbe, thanked

HE Board of Trustees (BOT) and Council of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD) has appointed Prof. Michael Ajisafe as the Acting Vice-Chancellor of the four-year old university. A statement by the university PRO, Tunde Olofintula, noted that Ajisafe's appointment took effect from January 5 following the expiration of the four-year tenure of the pioneer Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Sidi Osho, on January 4. Ajisafe, the first professor of Sports Science in Africa, has worked in many universities in the country. Until his appointment, he was ABUAD's Deputy Vice-Chancellor and the Provost, College of Sciences. After his PhD in Sports Science from Temple University in Philadelphia, United States, Ajisafe returned to Nigeria and joined the then University of IIe-Ife where he pioneered the establishment of the Department of Sports Science (1973-1975). With two others, he also pioneered the department at the University of Ibadan (19751977) and later, the University of Benin.

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Friesland Foods Limited and the Book Company for sponsoring the programme. The Acting Chairman of the Organising Committee, Mr. Sam Awoniyi and the Secretary, Mr. Wale Olaosebikan assured participants that the next edition of the quiz competition would be grander. The judges, Dr. K.I.T. Eniola, Dr. Fatusin, Mrs. Otemuyiwa and Mimi Oka ensured that a high standard was set for the competition.

ABUAD appoints Ag. VC By Adegunle Olugbamila

For five years, he was Director for the National Institute of Sports Lagos. Ajisafe was inducted a member of Donald D. Anthony Achievement Hall of fame (1993) by his alma mater, Central State University, Ohio, U.S. He was elected Regional Director of Africa, International Council of Sports Science and Physical Education, (ICSSPE). He was for 12 years a Consultant in Youth and Sports Affairs in the State of Qatar. Ajisafe is a member of very distinguished academic and professional associations in Sports Science across the globe. He will remain in office until a substantive vice-chancellor is appointed.

Rivers to unify academic calendar

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HE Rivers State Government says it will unify the academic calendar and the curriculum for its public and private schools. The Lagos State government has started implementing the same policy. The Commissioner for Education, Dame Alice Lawrence-Nemi stated this at a meeting with the Rivers State chapter of the National Association of Private School Proprietors (NAPPS), All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPSS) and Association of Primary Schools Head Teachers of Nigeria (AOPSHON) in Port Harcourt. She said the plan would make for effective management and implementation of education programmes. “We have entered another year and we must work together to take the education sector in Rivers State to a greater height. Education cannot be left in the hands of the government alone and the need to have a synergy

By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

with the private sector and principals of schools is most welcomed. “As we discussed in our draft policy, we are looking at having a uniform academic calendar for both private and public schools in the state. The government will also adopt a uniform curriculum for both public and private schools in the state. The reason for this uniformity is for effective management and implementation of educational development plans,” she said. The Commissioner set up a committee, headed by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mr Michael West, to look into the modalities of the policy. The committee, which has three weeks to submit its report, has the following members: Executive Director, Rivers State Education Quality Assurance Agency, Prof Okorosaye Orubite; Chairman, Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Sir Alli

Oruitemeka; Chairman, Senior Secondary School Board (SSSB), Chief Allwell Oyesoh; Chairman, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) Rivers State, Chief Godfrey Nwogu; and representatives from NAPPS, ANCOPSS and AOPSHON. The Commissioner for Education said the Permanent Secretary, Michael West has worked in the Ministry of Power. She also called on the •Mrs Lawrence-Nemi welcoming West to the ministry as the new Permanent Secretary. different associations to give the opment of education in the state praised the idea. Orubite and Dr new Permanent Secretary the last year, urging them to con- Fubura, said harmonisation of the necessary assistance while in of- tinue to partner with the minis- academic calendar would assist the fice. try to achieve the Millennium Ministry plan better for programmes The C o m m i s s i o n e r Development Goals (MDGs) on such as the holiday trainings for teachcommended the associations for education. ers; while Chief Victor Green said the their contributions to the develSome members of the committee idea was good.


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Is hugging a big deal?

A clash of interests Page 31

*CAMPUSES *NEWS *PEOPLE *KUDOS& KNOCKS *GRANTS

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THE NATION

CAMPUS LIFE 0805-450-3104 email: campusbeat@yahoo.com THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

Website:- http://www.thenationonlineng.net

email:- campuslife@thenationonlineng.net

Mystery Hatman terrorises students Students of the Ekiti State University (EKSU) in Ado-Ekiti are uncomfortable with the presence of a mysterious hoodlum, known as Hatman, who is terrorising the Satellite Phase II area of the institution’s host community, where many off-campus students reside. OLATUNJI AWE (300-Level Political Science) reports.

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HO is the Hatman invading students hostels at the Ekiti State University (EKSU) at night? Students can no longer sleep with their two eyes closed for the fear of Hatman. For days, the masked hoodlum, who students claim adorns a black hat and clothes, and is armed with a shotgun, has been terrorising offcampus hostels in Satellite Phase II area. Those, who claimed to have seen him, said he is six feet tall, huge and with a deep voice. They said he speaks English fluently. He is said to invade hostels, with locally-made shotgun and machetes. Last Sunday, the hoodlum invaded El Shaddai Hall at 4am, trying to rob the occupants. But a drama ensued between him and the Hall Chairman, Adeleke Adaramola, who is a 400Level student of Economics. CAMPUSLIFE gathered that the thief ordered Adeleke’s roommate, simply identified as Babajide, to gather all the gadgets in the room and hand over to him. But Babajide pretended to be sleeping as the masked hoodlum pointed a gun at him through the window. It was gathered that Adeleke, who slept close to the window, got up quietly to dispossess the hatman of his gun. In the ensuing struggle, the gun-powder exploded and injured Adeleke. The hatman took to his heels. Recounting the incident, Adeleke, who sustained an injury on the last finger of his right hand, said: “I was sleeping close to the window, which is opaque to anyone viewing from the outside. I heard my roommate Babajide being ordered by the hatman to deliver all the gadgets and money in the room to him. But he pretended as if he was fast asleep. Then, Babajide saw his weapons. While the thief was shouting, I quietly got up from the bed and held the gun. As we struggled, my roommate was looking around for a club we could use against him. This was when the gun

exploded and hurt my last finger.” Adeleke sounded the hostel’s alarm to alert other occupants, who ran after the hatman. But they could not trace him. The gunpowder explosion alerted the university cadets, who joined the students to search for the assailant. Earlier, the hatman had visited Great God Hall, where he robbed all the female occupants in the hostel of their properties. A victim, who pleaded for anonymity, said: “It happened around 3am on Sunday. My roommate was in the toilet while I was asleep on the bed and my cousin on the floor. We started to hear funny sound on the window net. Before we knew what was happening, hatman had drawn up the window blind and pointed a gun at us. He ordered that we should bring everything in the room or he would waste our lives. We had no option than to start giving up everything we had. He made away with N20,000, two Tecno Phantom phones and one laptop.” Another victim, Oluwatosin Ojo, a 400-Level Microbiology student, who lives in Great God Hall, said: “Hatman broke my window with a heavy stone around 3:30am. My brother suddenly screamed after the impact. He thought my younger brother was my boyfriend who came to pass the night in my house. He told us to stay together in one place and asked me to bring all the money and the gadget I have in the house. I gave him N5,000 I had with me and our mobile phones.” In the last three days, several students have fallen victims to the hatman, prompting students to cry out to the management and the government to unravel the figure behind the mask. A 300-Level English student, who simply gave her name as Jumoke, said she had a conversation with the masked hoodlum, who spoke “good English”. Some occupants of Great Mind Hall, who were not around, met their rooms plundered when they re-

•The EKSU gate

turned from night reading. The hatman took away N30,000 belonging to Tomilola Sijuade, a 300Level Accounting student, who re-

sides in Jum Kay Hostel. “This is not the first time this is happening. Each time students return from their houses, some robbers would invade the hostels to collect

everything we bring back to school,” Daniel Asugbo, a resident of the Satellite Phase II area, said. •Continued on page 30

•Student dies in road accident•Muslim students hail Jonathan on anti-gay bill -P32


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CAMPUS LIFE

ASUP: The forgotten strike

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Pushing Out with

N January 5, 2006, while in office as President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo approved a policy which reversed the discriminatory restriction of the Higher National Diploma (HND) holders from rising above Level 14 in the civil service. Instructively, it would appear that eight years after, things still remain the way they were in 2014. The former Minister of Education, Mrs Chinwe Obaji, and members of the House of Representatives’Committee on Education were present at the meeting where the decision was reached. Prior to the policy, there has been this longdrawn battle about which is superior: university degrees or polytechnic diplomas. In the public and private sectors, both are put to the test as employers – wittingly or unwittingly – discriminate against polytechnic graduates. This was what informed the decision - a couple of years ago - of turning some prominent polytechnics in the country into universities. In essence, if given the choice, more than 90 per cent of polytechnic students would prefer to be in a university; they only choose polytechnics as an after-thought to escape being home doing nothing. This dichotomy is also played on the national scene, and even in the media. The better part of last year was dedicated to the trench warfare between the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government (FG). Interestingly, too, the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) was on strike before ASUU, but theirs was not given the requisite attention. ASUP had gone on strike on April 17, 2013, more than two months before the ASUU began its own strike on July 1, last year. At a point, ASUP suspended its strike - on July 17, 2013 - to prepare grounds for negotiation with the government, only for it to be resumed again. The action entered its seventh month this month. And what were the reasons for the strike? It

Agbo Agbo 08116759750 (SMS only)

•aagboa@gmail.com was undertaken to drive home a 12-point demand; this was, however, scaled down to four critical demands after negotiations with the government. The four major demands include: constituting a needs assessment committee for polytechnic education, just like was done for the varsities; the government should inject N20.8billion – as an initial stop gap - into polytechnic education; the government should make concerted efforts at bridging the gap between university graduates and those from the polytechnics; and to address the poor state of state-owned polytechnics. While we were all shouting ourselves hoarse over the ASUU strike, we totally “forgot” about the polytechnics, even when ASUP suspended their action to give room for negotiation, the government barely acknowledged the olive branch extended with its nonchalant attitude reflected in its graveyard silence. ASUP National President, Chibuzo Asomuhga, in an interview with Vanguard said: “Their (government) thinking that it is only the children of the poor that attend the polytechnics is wrong.” He also pointed out during a press conference that “while the government intervened in other sectors that went on strike or threatened to go on strike, it had ignored the nation’s call for an end to the ongoing strike.” This is the dilemma that polytechnics face in the country. Beyond this however, it is quite clear that our polytechnics, just like the universities as well as other levels of education are in crisis. ASUU, which ended a six-month-old strike last December, fought the government on all fronts to meet its demands. It took a lot of pressuring from the public also to get the government to agree to

give the universities some money. It is for this reason that calls from certain quarters have hammered on the need to bring the action forcefully to the public domain again. After the suspension of its first strike last year, the government agreed to inject N20.8billion to improve the state of polytechnics only to renege, months after the agreement. Yet, we are striving to be counted among developed economies by 2020. To put a finger in the dilemma polytechnics and colleges of education face is to understand the psyche of those in government, and Nigerians generally. For instance, in a 2012 interview with Vanguard, Prof Onu Godwin, the Rector, Federal Polytechnic, Oko in Anambra State, said experience in the sector had taught him that more youths prefer gaining admission into universities than polytechnics or colleges of education. “Only very few choose polytechnics as their first choice because of some particular courses and this can be attributed to societal values on varsity/polytechnic education. I’m not saying that the university is better than polytechnics or colleges of education, but I think if polytechnics are converted to polytechnic universities, it would solve most of these problems,” he said. Provost, Michael Otedola College of Primary Education (MOCPED), Epe, Lagos State, Prof. Olu Akeusola, also echoed this line recently when he said, “Nigerians will put education institutes in crisis if the discrimination against polytechnics and colleges of education continues. “We know how to copy curriculum without implementing same. The theory and concept of the 6-3-3-4 system of education is that after a child has gone through compulsory six years of primary education and three years of junior secondary school, those who are educationally inclined would proceed to senior secondary while those who are not would opt for technical schools. From there, the technical students would proceed to polytechnics while those that went to senior secondary schools would go to universities to further their education.” According to Akeusola, the “Post-Unified Matriculation Examination (Post-UME) into institutions of higher learning has compounded the problems because very few candidates would want to put a polytechnic or college of education as their first choice, and the universi-

ties don’t have the capacity to admit them all.” So, how do we begin to resolve these anomalies? I agree with The Nation editorial of July 16 that we need to revisit “why lecturers in polytechnics and colleges of education cannot go beyond senior lecturers while only in the universities can senior lecturers move to Readers/Associate Professors and finally to Professors. On this important issue, some questions need to be raised and answered. Do the differences in qualities and standards, the mode of appointments and promotion suggest the difference in the qualities of academic staff in the universities and polytechnics and the award of university degrees and polytechnic diplomas?” We also need to erase the stereotype and assumption that polytechnics only cater for mechanics and the hospitality industry. In reality, media, arts, design, business, fine arts, film, engineering, and journalism are all available at polytechnics. Many parents, teachers, career advisors, and even students do not really understand what polytechnics and independent training do and what they offer. It is almost considered general knowledge that the university is on “a higher level” than polytechnics. But universities are not as “appropriate” for creative fields as society has led everyone to believe. Universities focus primarily upon research; but creative subjects are fundamentally practical. For instance, if you want to learn how to watch a movie go to university, but if you want to make a movie, polytechnics are better suited to your needs. To help bridge this stereotype, the government should not be seen to be partial in the drafting and implementation of educational policies. The way things stand, it appears most polytechnics would prefer the transformation of all polytechnics in Nigeria into universities and university campuses. This development, according to this line of reasoning, is considered necessary to correct many of the anomalies that have been bedeviling the successful implementation of Technical Education. The reasoning also is that by the time we cease to have polytechnics in Nigeria, most of the problems of non-parity between polytechnic and university lecturers and that between polytechnic students and their university counterparts in terms of difference in rank, certification, status, designation and recognition would be over. Would it really?

Mystery Hatman terrorises students

Simiat Arikawe is a student-activist par excellence. She is the first woman Students’ Union Government (SUG) Speaker of the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH). During her tenure, she convened the maiden Lagos State Tertiary Speakers’ Forum (LSTSF), which hosted politicians, including House of Representatives Speaker Aminu Tambuwal and Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker Adeyemi Ikuforiji. TOLULOPE OGUNLEYE (Computer Science, Lagos State Polytechnic) profiles Simiat, who has just returned from the United States where she attended a leadership training.

•Continued from page 29

‘Politics not a man’s show’

Adejumoke Adebanjo, a 300-Level Medicine student, who resides at Jum Kay Hostel, narrated her encounter with Hatman. “I was sleeping when I perceived smoke from the window area; it almost got me choked. Then a voice came from behind the window, asking me to get up. It was then it dawned on me that a robber was around. He ordered that I bring out all the money I had in the house and my laptop. I brought out N7,000 but he threatened to shoot me if I did not co-operate. After I gave him the money, he asked for my laptop and I told him I had lent a friend, who wanted to use it for project work. While all this was happening, he held a big torch light which he flashed on my eyes for me not to see him.” The commander of the university’s Cadet Corps, Segun Adekunle, a 500Level student, said the outfit was doing its best to arrest the masked hoodlum. “We understand there are security challenges and we are doing our best to stop the attacks. But we need patrol vehicles and security gadgets to adequately secure the en-

C

•Adeleke showing his injured finger

vironment. We are also students and we have only volunteered to save our fellow students.” When contacted, the institution’s Deputy Registrar (Information), Mr Olubunmi Ajibade, said the management would react to the development in “due time”, because, according to him, the incident happened outside the campus.

CAMPUSLIFE ALUMNI DATABASE Have you ever reported for CAMPUSLIFE since its debut in 2007? Have you been part of the numerous student-writers that have been mentored through CAMPUSLIFE’s bi-annual workshop sponsored by Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited (CCNL) and Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) in the last seven years? The Nation is creating database for a reunion programme later in the year. Please, let us have your information: full name, institution attended, employment history, current location, phone number(s), email and any community-based activity you may have or currently engaged in. Send your details to CAMPUSLIFE Editor, Wale Ajetunmobi, via campusbeat@yahoo.com or SMS to 08054503104.

ALL her iron lady, you may be right. Call her a gentle reformer and progressive student-activist, you may not be wrong. Simiat Arikawe, the immediate past speaker of the Students’ Union Government of the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH), brought these attributes to bear during her reign as the head of students’ union legislature in the college. She recently led a group of youths to Virginia in the United States on leadership training sponsored by the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adeyemi Ikuforiji. Following her return, she took the gospel of responsive leadership to youths. The training, she said, gave her “more drive and energy” to pursue a value-driven platform to empower youths to invest their energy in promoting good governance through participation in governance. The leadership training, she said, enhanced her leadership trait and gave her basic knowledge of political dynamics and how to build capacity for good governance. She urged other political office holders to imitate Ikuforiji’s gesture in giving back to the society, saying “building human is building the nation.” Simiat, who initiated Lagos State Tertiary Speakers’ Forum (LSTSF), said she believes student unionism could be used to drive good gover-

•Simiat

nance, noting that engaging the youths to execute violent causes could be reduced if they are mentored and given a role to play in the society. Listing her achievements as students’ union speaker, Simiat said she recommended the use of legislative gown and wig by 65 members of the legislative arm of the union. On what influenced her interest in campus politics, Simiat, a graduating student of Accounting, said she was motivated to offer selfless service to his colleagues. Initially, she did not want to get involve in campus politics because she felt her chance to be elected was slim. But students in her department pressured her to represent them. Banking on popular support, Simiat took up the gauntlet and ran for a seat in the legislature.

She led members to the Ogun State House of Assembly to observe plenary session, an outing that opened the eyes of first-time members to the business of lawmaking. Their encounter with Rt. Hon. Suraj Adekunbi, the Speaker, was an unforgettable experience for members. Simiat also led her colleagues to the Lagos State House of Assembly and National Assembly to observe legislative procedure. The students met with Speaker Tambuwal and discussed various issues. She also organised the maiden parliamentary summit, which brought all leaders of the legislative arm of the Students’ Union Governments in the Southwest to converge on YABATECH to discuss leadership challenges. How does she feel leading people? Simiat replied: “It is challenging when you lead people of different characters because you just have to be calm and be a good listener. As a leader, you have to render yourself as a servant and imbibe the habit of team work.” Simiat’s vision is for the youths to assume leadership position in the country. “My goal is to see the youths taking charge of the country’s leadership. We have the potential to take Nigeria to the next level but many youths have sold their rights to politicians, who gave them arms in return. We want to change this notion. In my own capacity, I want to engage them in a way they will see themselves as partners in leadership and development.” What is her advice for women, Simiat said: “Ladies must participate in politics and stop seeing it as a man’s show.”


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CAMPUS LIFE The first sitting of the legislative arm of the Students’ Union Government (SUG) of the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto (UDUS) to debate the union’s budget a year after inauguration has ended in chaos. The sitting was cancelled, following accusations and counter-accusations by members, report IBRAHIM JATTO (400-Level Zoology), HALIMAH AKANBI (200-Level Law) and IBRAHIM MUBARAK (500-Level Agricultural Science).

A clash of interests T

HEY exchanged banters as they walked into the chamber to debate their union’s budget. A few minutes later, the meeting of the Students’ Representative Assembly (SRA), the legislative arm of the Students’ Union Government (SUG) of the Usmanu Danfodiyo University in Sokoto (UDUS), became rowdy as members disagreed on key items in the budget sent by the executive. But for the quick intervention of the Deputy Dean of Students’ Affairs, Dr Suleiman Kura, the disagreement would have degenerated to a fracas as members traded wards. It was supposed to be a sitting where the students would approve the 2012/2013 union’s budget. But the session turned raucous when members of the executive accused their legislature counterparts of tampering with key items in the document. President of the union Usman Maizare said it was illegal for the SRA members to cancel some capital projects in the budget and replace them with what the legislature wanted, accusing the SRA members of using their power unconstitutionally. He said: “The problem started when the SRA members tampered with the budget which the executive sent to them and removed most of the important projects we intend to carry out. They replaced the items with other projects of their choice in the amended budget and returned it to us. This is not done anywhere. They are going beyond their limitation.” The Speaker of the SRA, Mustapha Umar, said the executive lacked an understanding of “amendment”, denying that the legislature replaced items in the budget. Reacting to the cancellation of the

sitting by the Dean, Mustapha said: “As peace-loving students, we are bound to respect any decision which will maintain peace on the campus, especially when it is being taken by the authority. Also, we regret the disruption of the sitting and we hope students would forgive us because everything that happened was to serve the interest of the students, who entrusted us with this responsibility.” Dr Kura arrived at the scene at 9:30pm and announced the cancellation of the sitting. In his brief speech, he said: “I am going to disappoint you all. It is sad that you students’ leaders do not know your responsibility as enshrined in your union constitution. Until you know the limitation of your powers, the sitting is hereby cancelled.” The announcement did not go down well with students, who roared continuously. The presence of the security personnel prevented students from exchanging blows. Students, who witnessed the incident, expressed displeasure over the development. Umar Kaura, a 300Level student, said: “This is anarchy. It is quite unfortunate that we are witnessing this development. The Deputy Dean is wrong to cancel the sitting because there is a constitution in place. We can’t accept this interference from the school.” Another student Bello Kirfi, it is wrong for the authorities to stop students’ union proceedings. It is a students’ affair, he said. Criticising the conduct of the union leaders, Abu Tafida, a final year student in the Faculty of Social Sciences, said: “We have lost confidence in our representatives; they are not being sincere. Thirteen months after they were elected, they are yet to have ratified budget not to talk of implementing any project.

•Dr Kura announcing the cancellation of the sitting

•SRA Speaker Mustapha and the union president Usman trading words

It is better the union is dissolved.” In a telephone interview with the Dean of Students’ Affairs, Dr Ibrahim Magawatta, he said he was not aware of the cancellation, noting

that he had not been briefed by his deputy. The SRA later reconvened for a meeting at the chamber at night and issued a statement on the resolu-

tion of the meeting. Members said they would stand by the amended budget and would not allow pressure from the executives to sabotage their effort.

More than 24 undergradiates and 42 secondary school pupils from Enugwu-Ukwu Community in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State have benefited from the scholarship of former Senator I.G. Abana. MMADUKA ODOGWU (UNIZIK) reports.

M

ORE than 60 indigent students from EnugwuUkwu Community in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State benefited from the scholarship scheme of former Senator I.G. Abana in a ceremony witnessed by the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Peter Afuba, Deputy Governorelect Dr Nkem Okeke and residents of the community. The scholarship was awarded to 25 undergraduates and 42 secondary school pupils. Each undergraduate got N75,000. Governor Peter Obi, who was represented by Afuba, described Abana as a grassroots politician, who could do anything that is beneficial to his people, stressing that his gesture was worthy of emulation. Abana also renovated a dilapidated classroom in Uru-Ekwo Primary School and donated modern education materials to the school. With the gesture, the immediate past President-General of the community, Mr. Jude Ekwunife, said Abana had left indelible marks in the residents heart, saying the scholarship would put smiles on faces of the indigent. He said: “We need not to enu-

A Senator with large heart • Indigent students get scholarship merate what Senator Abana has done for the people of EnugwuUkwu community. Today, over 60 students in the community received scholarship from him through his foundation. He also provides free healthcare to people irrespective of where they come from. This is an act of kindness. Abana has made an unimaginable impact on the life the community.” Abana said his passion for education motivated the gesture, adding it was through education that the best human could be felt. He said: “There is no known better way to develop human beings other than giving them qualitative education. Looking at the society,

•Abana (middle front row) with beneficiaries after the event

there are brilliant students who cannot afford to acquire university education. The responsibility is on us to assist such students and their parents. I so much believe in education because it breeds development.” Abana said his foundation had awarded scholarships to the students in the last four years, adding that traders and small scale business operators have also benefited from the foundation’s finance scheme. Chinedu Okoyeatu, a student of African and Asian Studies at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University

(UNIZIK) in Awka, who benefitted from the scheme, said: “I am grateful to Senator Abana and his foundation. I feel overjoyed to benefit from this kind gesture. The scholarship will go a long way to boost my academic performance.” A parent, who gave her name as Mrs Okoye, said the former Senator had relieved her of “heavy load”: “I don’t have to struggle to get my son’s school fee. I thank God for this unexpected New Year’s gift.” She added: “I am grateful to God for this because the cost of education in Nigeria is on the increase.

It is not just the school fees that you pay for. Other expenses, such as feeding and hostel fee are a big task for low-income earners like me. Senator Abana has just taken a heavy load off my shoulder. I am grateful to him for the surprise.” Another parent praised the exlawmaker for the renovated classroom, saying pupils of the school would have a reason again to stay at home during the rainy season. During the event, which lasted for two days, more than 100 residents received free medical treatment from 34 medical personnel for various ailments.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CAMPUS LIFE UNILORIN fetes student-writers

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HE University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) has celebrated members of the Union of Campus Journalists (UCJ), who have been making the institution proud through their writing. The event was attended by the Vice Chancellor (VC), Prof AbdulGaniu Ambali; Prof Bayo Lawal, Deputy VC (Academics); Prof Y.M. Fakunle; Mr Emmanuel Obafemi, Registrar and Mr Kunle Akogun, Deputy Director, Directorate of Corporate Affairs. Mr Akogun said: “I am pleased to present these students, who have projected the positive image of the university through their writing in national dallies, essay competitions and their active participation in local and international conferences.” The student-writers included Bakare Wale, 400-Level Zoology, a student journalist and Google Student Ambassador; Muhammed Abdullahi, 500-Level Law, cel-

•Exterior view of Hall Five after painting

Varsity renovates hostels

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ESIDENTS of Hall Five, a student hostel at the University of Benin (UNIBEN) were excited when they resumed last week after the protracted Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike. They returned to see that the hostel has been given a facelift by the management. When CAMPUSLIFE visited the hall, the building had been refurbished and painted. The toilets, which used to be nightmares, had been overhauled and the roads leading to the hall, which were dotted with potholes, had been tarred.

From Eddy Uwoghiren and Ezekiel Efeoghokhan

UNIBEN A 500-Level Petroleum Engineering student, who simply identified herself as Mariam, was full of praises for the Vice Chancellor, Prof Osayuki Oshodi. “With this renovated hostel, our studies would receive a boost, as we do not have to jostle for space to read in lecture theatres at night. I can comfortably read in my room without hassles,” she stated. Investigations revealed that Hall 1 was properly lit at night, a development that had excited

many occupants. “I noticed that water now flows constantly at Hall 3, unlike before when we had to go to the taps outside the hall and queue up for hours to get water,” said a final year student of Optometry. He commended the management for the changes praying for sustainability. At the time of filing this report, construction was ongoing on the roads leading to the Clinical Students Hostel, which was notorious for flooding and potholes. Meanwhile, it was not rosy for many occupants as their rooms were burgled during the strike.

From Hameed Muritala

UNILORIN ebrated essay writer and CEO of Naija Writers Coach (NWC); Idris Alao, 300-Level Law, president of Union of Campus Journalists (UCJ), UNILORIN Chapter and Ibrahim Jimoh, 500-Level Electrical and Electronic Engineering, essay winner and author. “UNILORIN is a good training ground to be a great person. Before you gained admission into this university, you were not like this. But with time you were able to discover yourselves. I congratulate you on making UNILORIN proud in your various endeavours. I urge you to continue,” Prof Ambali said. He added: “We want to see more of your types. UNILORIN is producing role models that others would emulate. That is why we are always ahead of other tertiary institutions in the country.

‘UNILORIN is a good training ground to be a great person. Before you gain admission into this university, you were not like this. But with time, you were able to discover yourselves. I congratulate you on making UNILORIN proud in your various endeavours. I urge you to continue,”

•Prof Ambali (third right) and Akogun with the students in the VC’s office

Student dies in road crash

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•Leaders of the writers’ union taking the oath

Campus journalists get leaders

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HE Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba-Akoko (AAUA) chapter of the National Union of Campus Journalists NUCJ) has elected new officers. The election, which was held at the university’s Relaxation Centre, was attended by media representatives in the institution. Abdulahi Abdulazeez is the President, Joseph Akinkuotu, Editorial

From Damilola Olisa

AAUA Vice President and Lebimoyo Adeoluwa, Administrative Vice President. Others are Olorunfemi Catherine, General Secretary; Olamiposi Olayinka, Assistant Secretary-General; Ajayi Divine, Director of Finance; Olawunmi Temitope,

Assitant Director of Finance; Oluwaniyi Michael, Planning Committee Chairman; Oluwatemilorun Aladeojebi, Assistant Planning Committe Chairman; Olisa Damilola, Director of Publicity; Oyedeyi Imoleayo, Assistant Director of Pubilicity; Adesawe Ezekiel, Protocol Officer and Adebayo Enoch, Welfare Director.

Muslim students hail Jonathan on anti-gay bill

T

HE Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria, (MSSN), Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH) chapter, has praised President Goodluck Jonathan for signing the anti-same sex marriage bill into law. Its President, Kaamil Kalejaye, expressed joy at the President’s stance despite pressure from some foreign countries and organisations. “The act of same sex partnership is not just morally wrong but barbaric and inimical to the African

From Mubarak Salaudenn

LASPOTECH culture. None of the two dominant religions of the world supports this terrible act. Marriage is a sacred contract between a man and a woman that must be respected. We believe that marriage should be between a man and a woman because it is a cornerstone of family life and the only institution for raising morally healthy children.” Another member of the associa-

tion told CAMPUSLIFE that: “in my view, homosexuality is one of the most disgusting sins and greatest crimes in the world. It is a vile perversion that goes against sound nature, and is one of the most corrupting and hideous sins, the punishment for it in Islam is death.” The group urged President Jonathan to use the same drive for signing the bill into law to tackle other problems affecting the country, saying he should promote development in all sectors of the economy.

TUDENTS of Nnamdi Azikiwe University (UNIZIK) in Anambra State resumed on a sad note after the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike. They got the news that Chisom Johnson Nwanaso, a student in the Department of Botany, died. CAMPUSLIFE gathered that he died in a car crash on January 2 at the institution’s temporary site. His remains have been buried at his hometown, Abagana, amid tears from relatives and students. Meanwhile, academic activities have started in earnest, with some departments conducting exams for their students on the day of resumption. A tour showed that students were resuming en masse for the academic session. Ifite, a students’ community, has gained its liveliness. The popular Garba Square, where students read, is also back in full swing. Business activities have resumed on the campus. The Administrative Building continues to receive a large number of students, mostly freshers doing their clearance. Posters of students contesting for elective posts in the Students’ Union Government (SUG) are everywhere on campus.

•The late Chisom From Franklin Onwubiko

UNIZIK Some departments, such as Mass Communication, English and others in the Faculty of Engineering, Education and Arts, have started their outstanding 2012/2013 second semesters exams as scheduled by the university. At the Department of Mass Communication, students clad in their blue and orange uniform, were seen taking examination.

CORRECTION In a story titled “Africans’ identity rooted in culture, says VC” published on January 16 edition, Mrs Biola Fasoranti was erroneously referred to as a 200-Level student. She is a lecturer in the School of Visual and Performing Arts.


Newspaper of the Year

AN 8-PAGE PULLOUT ON SOUTHEAST STATES

Ebonyi to spend $500m on varsity

•PAGE 38

THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

Mammoth crowd welcomes Okorocha •PAGE 39

PAGE 33

Independence Layout, heart of Enugu govt business •PAGE 36

•A fabricating workshop at Port Harcourt Rroad, Aba

‘Aba ingenuity has come to stay’ T

HEY have a way with gadgets. They see through the most complicated machines, and their magic fingers move in to fashion out stunning pieces. Aba, a city of 1.5m people in Abia State, teems with a rare breed of fabricators and technologists. They bring failed industrial machines back to life. Badly damaged car parts are easily replaced in Aba. All manner of old and broken-down cooling items such as

From Sunny Nwankwo, Aba

refrigerators and air conditioners are taken apart and made to work again as if nothing went wrong in the first place. Yet, the ingenuity of Aba technologists is not limited to gadgets. In fact, they are unlimited. Various home appliances come to life in the city, as do clothing like jeans. Though the origin of one of the most populous commercial towns, east of the Niger, could be traced as far back as 1901, Aba became

Aba became famous for the women’s riot of 1929 when women resisted attempts by the colonial masters to impose taxes on them especially in the then Eastern Province. famous for the women’s riot of 1929 when women resisted at-

tempts by the colonial masters to impose taxes on them especially

in the then Eastern Province. Apart from the women’s riot, the city also became popular because of its importance to the state and the volume of economic activities in the city. No wonder the journey of any serious investor in Nigeria would not be complete if he or she failed to visit Aba. Aba is ranked among Nigeria’s economically buoyant cities because of its volume of trading ac•Continued on page 36


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE SOUTHEAST REPORT

Chime signs industrial park E MoU with Chinese firm

NUGU State Governor Sullivan Chime has said that his government has put in place adequate measures and infrastructure that has made the state more than ready to host investors from around the world. The governor stated this during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the State Government and a Chinese Company, Goalmark Group for the establishment of a mega industrial park in Enugu. He noted that the measures which, according to him, have already triggered an influx of both local and foreign investment into the state were to be sustained and strengthened. He stated that due to the importance the government attached to the project, it has already provided a large expanse of land for the establishment of the Industrial Park and would also ensure that all necessary facilities were provided to ensure its successful take off. “This project is dear to our hearts, we are full of expectations and we want to see GoalMark Group developing the place immediately. The land in question is immediately available and we are making sure that all necessary infrastructure including proper access road to the estate will be put in place”, he said. Chime also noted that the Industrial Park will complement the massive infrastructural development of Enugu City that his administration had embarked on to give it a brand new and modern outlook. The leader of the delegation from Goalmark Group which has its headquarters in Beijing, China, Mr Lin Feng said the company decided to go ahead with the project after a careful study that confirmed Enugu as a conducive place for it.

T

•Governor Sullivan Chime of Enugu State (third from right) and other officials of government inspect a map of the proposed Enugu Industrial Park, shortly after signing an MOU for its establishment with a Chinese company, Goalmark Group…yesterday From Chris Oji, Enugu

He disclosed that the project which, according to him, will cost billions of dollars to complete, will bring massive investments to Enugu

from all over the world and ensure the tremendous improvement the economy of the state and environs. He said that the park will comprise investments in such major areas as cement, coal, power and water treatment plants as well as cas-

sava and rice processing concerns. Feng added that the project will also entail the establishment of a specialised school for training of manpower to handle the various investments that the park will be attracting and called for continued

Abia CAN hails Jonathan on anti-gay bill

HE President of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Abia State Chapter Bishop Goddy Okafor has lauded the courage of President Goodluck Jonathan to sign into law the bill that prohibits same sex marriage in the country. Bishop Okafor in an interview with our correspondent in Aba, said that gay practice was never supported by the major religions (Christianity, traditional and Islamic) practiced in Nigeria, describing people who are into the practice as being under a strong demonic influence. He said: “To us Christians, it is an abomination. That was the main reason the city of Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed by God. For us to begin practicing what we know that the creator of all the earth abhors is a rebellion against God’s word and going contrary to nature. If we must populate this earth, gay marriage should not be encouraged. ”If you are a man, go and look for a woman to marry. Make and raise children to give Nigeria a better future. If you are a woman, get ready, a man will come and marry you and not for you to begin to mess up with your fellow woman believing that it is just your way of life. “If all of us had maintained that, some of our children wouldn’t have been born. I want to thank God for the president for taking a courageous stand on what our people are not used to. The issue of gay marriage is completely strange to us here in Nigeria and must be stamped out from our dear country Nigeria.” Reacting on the recent cancellation of President Jonathan’s intended visit to Canada by Canadian authority and the effect it might have on Nigeria’s bi-lateral relationship with other European countries who have already expressed their displeasure over the

If you are a man, go and look for a woman to marry. Make and raise children to give Nigeria a better future. If you are a woman, get ready, a man will come and marry you and not for you to begin to mess up with your fellow woman believing that it is just your way of life Sunny Nwankwo, Aba

president’s action, the CAN President said: “They are not God. Nigeria belongs to God and God will provide for Nigeria. We have always existed and the One who gave us life, the air we breathe has always been behind us. He is the sustainer of every human being on earth. So, if they feel that without them that Nigeria will be no more because they have withdrawn their support Nigerian people will die, they should go ahead and do that. That will not make us, Nigerians to accept what is not normal or strange to us as a nation.” Continuing, Okafor who is also, the Bishop of Peculiar People’s Church Int’l added, “For those who see that as an infringement, they need to know that this is Nigeria. They are not supposed to put their own con-

victions on the whole Nigerians. They need to know that yes, America, Canada, maybe UK might have adopted that, but it is not our way of life. If they want to practice that, they might as well, leave this country and go places where they would be accommodated for such. To accommodate them in Nigeria is totally unacceptable. “ Abia CAN president while calling on Law Enforcement Agencies and the Judiciary to ensure that culprits were apprehended and punished accordingly vetoed the stipulated jail terms for the accused and people that abet gay practice in the country as was signed into law by the president, advising people addicted to gay practice to go to God in prayers in order to pray out themselves and be free from demonic possession. ”The 10 and 14 year jail terms for now are ok. The judiciary should be strengthened. When one or two persons are brought to justice based on this new law, others will learn their lessons. Our law enforcement agencies have a greater role to play here. So, they should stand up and do what they are supposed to do. Get people apprehended. Let the nation know that this law is in effect. ”People who are practicing it secretly should also secretly disengage from it. If they cry out to God in prayers for forgiveness, He will forgive them. If they meet a man of God to counsel and pray for them, they will be free from it. The problem with most people is that when they are suffering, they wouldn’t want any other person to know what they are passing through and thereby dying in silence. Let them speak out. Somebody will help them out.” Okafor advised

support of the government to ensure that all of its objectives are met. He expressed delight that the project has become a reality and commended the government for its commitment towards ensuring its successful take off.

Philantropist builds quarters for police chief From Chris Oji, Enugu

P

ISSED by the poor accommodation provided area commanders in Nsukka zone of the Enugu state police command, a philanthropist from the area built a modern quarters for the police zonal commanders posted to Nsukka

zone. Chief William Agbo also an industrialist after witnessing the way zonal police officers stay briefly and work their way out of Nsukka due to poor accommodation decided to arrest the trend by building a befitting staff quarter for the police zonal commanders posted to Nsukka. Agbo the Chief Executive Officer of Willson Nigeria Limited while explaining the rationale behind the multi million naira house he built for the Nsukka Area Command Headquarter said that the building would serve as an encouragement to Area Commanders to stay and work for the good of his people He said, “Before now some Area Commanders quickly work out their transfer out when they discover that the place is not conducive for them while those who stay sleeps in hotels “This is why I embarked on building a place of residence for Area Commanders posted to Nsukka. The Area Commanders posted here are our own Commissioners of Police and so they should have a befitting place of abode while carrying their task of safeguarding lives and properties of people of Nsukka”. Agbo stressed further that police officers are human beings who deserved to be comfortable in the discharge of their duties , adding, “Police is our friend, we believe that the peace and tranquillity we enjoy in the society is as a result of their tireless efforts “We believe that if we are comfortable, we should also encourage them by making them comfortable believing that if we do, they will help us, protect us and save our lives and properties. Not just me but the entire people in the society’. According to him, the society will be fulfilling the dreams of a crime free society if people always assist the police at their own time of distress “I believe that for us to enjoy a crime free society, we must encourage the police by making them comfortable. So I enjoin all well meaning individuals not to leave the task of the welfare of police officers into the hands of governments alone’, he said. Agbo attributed the reduction of criminal activities in Nsukka and its environs to measures put in place by the area command. “Since the arrival of Ros Haladu Assistant Commissioner of Police as the Area Commander to Nsukka the people have been sleeping with their two eyes closed and even during the last Christmas celebration there was no criminal activity recorded Agbo had in July 2009 rebuilt the Nsukka Police Division after the infamous invasion of Banks and the Police stations burnt down by armed robbers. A police officer who spoke to our correspondent on condition of anonymity, expressed delight at the generosity of Chief Agbo to the police adding that they were not surprised as he has always been the one that spur their spirit each time “We will continue to be grateful to Chief William Agbo and pray that God will keep him for us’, adding that, ‘What is left is the official commissioning of the building by the Commissioner of Police before the area commander can move in as everything is already in place”, he said.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

35

THE SOUTHEAST REPORT The Ngwa Day festival attracted eminent indigenous Ngwa people from home and the Diaspora. Our Aba correspondent SUNNY NWANKWO who witnessed the event, reports

Cultural revival in Ngwa Ananaba, who described 2015 as a defining moment in the history of Ngwa land, used the opportunity to call on the people of the area to support the course of Ngwa governor in the state, come 2015

•Abia traditional rulers at the event

W

HILE many have embraced western culture to the detriment of their own, a group of Ngwa people under the aegis of Ngwa Patriot Forum (NPF) is determined to ensure that their traditional values are revived and bequeathed to succeeding generations. The Ngwa Festival Day celebration in Aba, the commercial nerve of Abia State, unlike the maiden edition though was low-key. But one thing that stood out in the event was that like one of the vision statements of its organisers, Ngwa Patriots Forum (NPF), the event attracted Ngwa sons and daughters from the economic, social and religious strata, putting their political, religious and economic leanings aside. Some of the Ngwa sons and daughters who where present at the event included the National Vice Chairman of All Progressives Congress party (APC) Southeast, Chief Nyerere Chinenye Anyim, Senators Nkechi Nwaogu and Enyinnaya Abaribe. Hon. Eziuche Ubani, member representing Obingwa/Osisioma/ Ugwunagbo Federal Constituency, Honourable Minister for Labour and productivity Emeka Wogu, Mr. Friday Nwanozie Nwosu, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, Chukwu Wachuku were among other Ngwa crème de la crèmes that graced the occasion The event, according to the organisers, was not only to promote the culture of the Ngwa nation, but also a time for the group to reason together, unwind and dine together and also honour people of Ngwa extraction who have distinguished themselves in their different profes-

One thing that stood out in the event was that it attracted Ngwa sons and daughters from the economic, social and religious strata, putting their political, religious and economic leanings aside sions and field of endeavours. According to the president of the NPF, Chief Okey Ahiwe, in a keynote address, the forum is an umbrella body of well-meaning and committed Ngwa sons and daughters that come together to interact and show a sense of oneness on account of a common ethnic generational and natural identity. Ahiwe also said that the idea of NPF was to create a forum where the developmental aspirations of Ngwa people can be raised, discussed, analysed and be pursued ir-

•Hon. Eziuche Ubani with Mr. F. N. Nwosu at the event

respective of their political leanings, adding that the event was coming at a time when most Nigerian and Igbo cultures are being threatened by westernisation He said: “This festival is dear to our hearts for many reasons but most importantly is that it presents an opportunity for the high and mighty in our tribe to shed all toga of status and embrace the fact of our common heritage as well as reflect on how to utilize our God-given advantage for the betterment of Ngwa land and people. The center of our

mission statement is to provide a veritable platform for harnessing positive ideals and resources toward the socio-cultural, economic and political development of Ngwa nation.“ Calling for unity among Ngwa people, the group’s leader said “beyond the pomp and fanfare that this festival promises to offer today is an avid desire to imagine how great we can be as a people if only we regularly come together, mutually understand challenges, pull efforts together and speak with one voice

Foundation remembers the needy E

VERY year, the needy, including children and youths, benefit from the benevolence of Sir Emeka Okwuosa Foundation. That was why thousands gathered at Irefi Civic Centre, Oraifite, Ekwusigo council Area of Anmabra State. The women were already seated at the venue of the event as early as 8 am, waiting for the distribution of gifts including cash, bags of rice and vehicles by the foundation as part of its annual Christmas and New Year bonanza to the women and other less-privileged persons in the society. The chairman of the occasion, Chief Azuka Okwuosa said this year’s gift distribution was unique in the sense that the beneficiaries cut across other neigbouring communities unlike the previous years when the foundation concentrated on

From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Onitsha

Oraifite. He commended the founder of the Foundation, Sir Emeka Okwuosa for his love for the people of the community and entire thes society, adding that since the birth of the foundation, many people have benefited from it either by way of sponsorship or scholarship to indigent students. Chief Okwuosa further disclosed that the foundation has also been at the vanguard towards uniting all Oraifite sons and daughters in all works of life, noting that this year’s ceremony was to help the women to be able to take care of their families. He said that the Foundation as part of its mission statements had adopted a strong will to help the youths in the society in order to make them better people in the society, adding that the youths

as the engine room of the society need to be supported. “The Foundation was conceived by my brother many years ago and it was initiated to address the problem of the society. We award scholarship to indigent students and brilliant ones because we encourage excellence and brilliance. The Foundation also believes in the saying that it is better to teach people how to fish instead of giving them fish. We are building a cortege industry in this community for the procession gari. This Foundation also has engaged in road construction across the community and today, we are giving out a brand new vehicle to the women corporative to help them transport their goods to the market” •Continued on page 36

on matters of common interest; key among which is development. It is that imagination that our Forum has committed time and money to make a reality since inception.” He further listed some of the group’s achievement in the last one year to include sponsoring of civic awareness campaigns, payment of bursary to many indigent Ngwa students in various higher and tertiary institutions, granting of an Microcredit (non-refundable) to trained artisans in different fields, organizing town hall meetings/summits in major cities across the country which allows Ngwa people to brainstorm on issues as it affects the Ngwa nation among other developmental programmes initiated by the socio-political group. The chairman of the occasion, Elder Paul Ananaba, thanking the Ngwa group for their laudable initiative called for the support of all Ngwa nation in sustaining the cultural event, which he said would foster unity among them. Ananaba, who described 2015 as a defining moment in the history of Ngwa land used the opportunity to call on the people of the area to support the course of Ngwa governor in the state come 2015 Prominent among the people honoured in the event is the Chairman of Abia State Council of Traditional Rulers, His Royal Majesty Eze Eberechi Nwanneyadi Dick. HRM Eze Eberechi Dick who spoke on behalf of the awardees thanked the group for deeming them fit for the award and therefore called on all Ngwa sons and daughters to rally round the group. Eze Dick while thanking Governor Theodore Orji and President Goodluck Ebere Jonathan for appointing Ngwa sons and daughters into positions of trust in the state and federal level, urged the people of the area to continue to support the governor and the president’s administrations. Traditional rulers from Ngwa land in their neatly and well suited regalia were also in attendance to add life to the occasion and to also perform all the traditional rituals required of in the event. The event would not have been completed without various Ngwa cultural troupes who were on hand to thrill the audience with their wonderful performance.


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE SOUTHEAST REPORT

‘Aba ingenuity has come to stay’ •Continued from page 33

tivities. Experts in the economic sector have often claimed that the amount of revenue generated in Aba, if well managed and properly utilised, can sustain the state economy. The city’s major economic activities range from textiles, pharmaceuticals, plastics, cement, lubricants, cosmetics and its high technological creativity. There are breweries and distilleries within the commercial city. This city popularly called ‘Enyimba’ is also known for its industrial profile, perhaps recognised as a global market. It is the home handcrafts. The ingenuity and the industry of the people in crafts such as handbags, belts and shoes, tailoring, steel works (machines, tools and equipment) and fabrication of both domestic and industrial engines spare parts justifies the ‘Japan of Africa’ slogan. The unskilled engineers in the commercial nerve centre of Abia State have become the most wanted by most dredging companies who rely on them to replicate or reproduce some of their machine parts that are either scarce or must have been phased out of the market. The ingenuity of the people in using locally sourced materials to produce things that can compete favourably with their counterparts in the global market has earned its goods the popular nickname ‘Made in Aba’ just like we have ‘Made in China, UK, U.S.A,’ among others. Many have argued that what people regarded as ‘fake’ because it was produced in Aba, would outshine their contemporaries both in quality and durability. This has attracted high patronage on goods produced and manufactured in Aba by consumers beyond the shores of the country. Aba products traverse the West, East and North African countries, making the commercial city a sort of Mecca for traders within Nigeria and other African sub-regions. Aba has long been touted as the Japan of Africa given the many innovative and entrepreneurial activities going on among the inhabitants of the city. Speaking on the ingenuity of Aba Mr. Fortunate Dike, the President, Aba Small Scale Industrialist Initiative (ASSII) and a fruit drink manufacturer, in a chat with this reporter in his office boasted that, locally fabricated industrial machine spare parts lasts longer than the imported ones. Dike said that for Aba engineers to compete favourably with their foreign counterparts, “all they need is to be exposed to the modern technologies in order to help them meet with the modern trends of technology”. Professor Charles Chinekezi, a media consultant, added “anybody who tells you that Aba is an ingenuity city is only stating the obvious. From the beginning, Aba as a city has been known and exemplified for the gospel of copy technology which remains the scoring points of the Japanese technology and development. Today, the People’s Republic of China has repeated exactly what the Japanese did in the early 70s. If we talk

•A cement and concrete mixer refurbished in Aba

about Nigeria, and possibly when you talk about Africa, Aba remains the bastion of the gospel of copy technology. “The multi-nationals have survived doing business, making profits, keeping their owners and investors in all corners of the world in the last 25 to 30 years from the ingenuity of the mere illiterate artisans who parade the streets of Aba. So, if anybody tells you that Aba has played a greater role in the development of Nigeria and Africa due to its commitment to the gospel of copy technology, that person is merely stating the obvious. “One of the problems Aba would face is lack of interest of the government to help these people to grow.” The government has refused to build technological villages, clusters and a mere encouragement of individuals, organizations, companies, associations and unions that promote this gospel of copy technology and that’s what have

•Tricycles made in Aba used to convey meat from the abattoir to other parts of the commercial town

Today, the People’s Republic of China has repeated exactly what the Japanese did in the early 70s. If we talk about Nigeria, and possibly when you talk about Africa, Aba remains the bastion of the gospel of copy technology been crying about in the last 25 years, because of irregularity and inconsistency of people in government or because of the poor quality and judgmental pattern of government in choosing who

runs the technocratic departments of the government in the last 25 to 30yeras. That is the only challenge we suffer from the promotion of this gospel of copy technology for which Aba as a com-

mercial city is known in Nigeria, West Africa and Africa specifically. So, I am afraid. But I think if with the help of the press, civil society organisations, intellectual discusses and public campaigns and lectures, I think we can overcome this weakness or threat to our development as regards to the promotion and development of our indigenous technology. “How can anybody say that things produced anywhere is fake? They are just being mischievous to say that anything produced in Aba is fake. If you say that something that is produced in Aba is fake, that means, something produced in London, Italy, France, New York, Tokoyo (Japan), Hong Kong is also fake. That’s just the meaning. We are only interested in quality control which is a standard issue worldwide and specifications. The standardisation of quality control is the same from here (Aba) to where the world ends. We can only be talking about fake when

people in our territory refuse to adhere to certain acceptable global standards. Anyone who is talking about fake and fakeness when it concerns quality control, when we are willing to collaborate with other people is being unreasonable. Technology is never transferred, it is acquired worldwide.” However, the pride of the commercial town of Abia State is at risk as most respondents said that they were contemplating leaving the state due to what they described as ‘harsh and unfriendly’ condition of doing business, excessive taxes and levies by government agencies is threatening their continued existence in the business. According to a machine fabricating engineer, “the challenges of epileptic power supply and over-estimation of PHCN bills has been a problem that we have long tried to address without any positive result. You know how much diesel is being sold at fill-

•Locally made grinding machines

ing stations today and then imagine the amount of money we spend every day or would have spent running on generator throughout the year. “All we need is for the federal and state government to provide us with the enabling environment to do our businesses. Aba is known for its ingenuity. We are proud of it and will always make sure that, that which Aba is known for will be protected. We hope that the state of power supply will improve when Geometric Power Station and the EEDC (Enugu Electricity Distribution Company) finally resolve whatever that has been hindering effective power generation and distribution in Aba.” One thing that is certain is that the ingenuity of Aba people has come to stay and will only require the partnership of the artisans with Abia State, Federal government to sharpen their skills in order to help them grow their businesses beyond its present state.

•A damaged part of an engine just before refilling in an Aba workshop

Independence Layout, heart of Enugu govt business I

•The Government House is located there

NDEPENDENCE Layout, Enugu, the highbrow section of Enugu, the coal city, was carved out by the post-independence administration of the legendary late Dr. Michael Okpara, the then premier of Eastern Region. Okpara, after Nigeria’s Independence, expanded Enugu with further acquisitions for physical development. Apart from the present Independence Layout which was primarily carved out to mark Nigeria’s Independence, Okpara acquired and developed more areas such as Uwani North, Uwani South and Uwani Central, Bridge Head Layout, Emene Industrial Layout, Housing Estate, Abakpa and the Trans Ekulu Layout. The Independence Layout was planned to accommodate the headquarters of the three arms of government viz the Executive, the Legislator, and the Judiciary. The official quarters of officers of these arms of government are also located there. The Govern-

By Chris Oji, Enugu

ment House, Enugu, popularly known as the Lion Building is synonymous with the name Independence Layout. With the exception of Chief Chukwuemeka Ojukwu, all governors, administrators (military and civilian) after Dr. Okpara occupied the Lion Building during their time. Ojukwu as military governor of Eastern Nigeria preferred to operate from the Governor’s lodge, now turned to National Orthopaedic Hospital. Although Okpara was able to complete the headquarters of the Executive and the Legislative arm of the government before his ouster in 1966, it was not until 2006 that the Judiciary headquarters was built by the administration of Chimaroke Nnamani. Also located at the Independence Layout are the imposing Court of Appeal, the Federal High Court, the Industrial Arbitration Court and other courts concerning the

Federal Government. Also located at the Independence Layout are the state radio and television station, Enugu State Radio and Television Broadcasting Service (ESBS), the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Enugu and the foremost Hotel Presidential which is now dilapidated. Highly placed Nigerians, top brass military officers, all have houses in the highbrow carve out. It is no secret that former President Olusegun Obasanjo has his house along Independence Avenue within the layout. The house has been there since early seventies. Late M.K.O. Abiola also owns a building there. Suffice it to say that no South Easterner worth his salt, that does not own a building in Independence Layout, except the founder, Dr. Michael Okpara. All the ministers that served under Okpara during the First Republic owned houses there. Also, those that served under the Ukpabi Asika re-

gime as well as the regimes of Jim Nwobodo and Chimaroke Nnamani owned buildings there. The only thing to be associated Independence Layout with the late premier is the popular Okpara Square named after him. Almost all important public and private ceremonies are held in Okpara square. One addition to the Independence Layout is the unofficial “Fourth Arm” of the government. The Enugu State headquarters of the Nigeria Union of Journalist (NUJ) is firmly located there. The Press Centre which has been there since 1971 was allocated to the NUJ by the then Administrator of East Central State, late Ajie Ukpabi Asika. Asika reasoned that since the other three arms of the government are located in the highbrow area, the “Fourth Arm” must be there too. Today, Independence Layout is expanding. Parts of the Owo River Layout and the Republic Layout have been acquired by

government and renamed Independence Layout Phase II. Under the present Sullivan Chime administration, some areas which had distorted the beauty of the layout have been reclaimed and given a new look. These include the present Independence Avenue and Pocket Layout.In addition to being the centre of government business, it is also being inundated recently by 5-star hospitality businesses and bush bars rearing up here and there. At least, built newly within the layout are five 5-star hotels. One of the best hospitals East of the Niger, The Niger Foundation Hospital owned by the Opus Dei is also located at Independence Layout. Also located at the Independence Layout are the Eastern headquarters of the anti-graft outfit, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), the State Security Service (SSS), the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) and the Federal Secretariat. Ends


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE SOUTHEAST REPORT Anambra oil communities commit to peace

Ebonyi to spend $500m on varsity E

BONYI State government has announced that a total of 500 million dollars would be spent on the development of the state university (EBSU), Abakaliki. The state governor, Chief Martin Elechi made this known during the flag-off ceremony of the distribution of 2013 instructional materials, assessment report booklets and commissioning of State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) warehouse at the SUBEB headquarters Abakaliki. Elechi, who was represented by the Commissioner for Education, Mr. Ndubuisi Chibueze-Agbo stated that since the decision of government to run a single campus system as against the four-campus structure for the state university, the government has already commenced massive infrastructural development of the permanent site at Ishieke, in collaboration with an American firm. The governor announced that the administrative block and the office of the Vice Chancellor would be commissioned by the first quarter of the year while work on two hostel blocks and another faculty block was progressing rapidly. He stated that the state govern-

The governor announced that the administrative block and the office of the Vice Chancellor would be commissioned by the first quarter of the year while work on two hostel blocks and another faculty block was progressing

From Ogochukwu Anioke, Abakaliki

ment at inception of his administration in 2007 assured Ebonyi residents of qualitative education of the children, and stressed that a lot had been done in the realisation of that

objective. The state, he said, built 31 boarding schools and established three new technical colleges in the state. Governor Elechi promised that the issue of accessing of funds from the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) Abuja would be addressed very soon by the payment of the state’s counterpart funds, saying that the state will not leave any fund un-accessed from UBEC. In her opening remarks, the Acting Chairman of SUBEB, Mrs. Perpetua Elom stated that through the state government’s funding, in collaboration with UBEC and Education Trust Fund (ETF), Ebonyi SUBEB was able to construct 345 classroom blocks, renovation of 69 school blocks, procurement of 29,302 sets of school furniture, provision of 140,902 textbooks, procurement of library, computers and intro-tech equipment and training of 40,209 teachers, in addition to employment of 2000 tutorial and 200 non-tutorial staff. Southeast Coordinator of UBEC, Mrs. Ngozi Ojukwu stated that Ebonyi was the first state in the country even ahead of the federal government to sign the UBEC Law, and to now flag-off distribution of

Nwanosike Onu, Awka

H

•Governor Elechi

instructional materials, but urged the state to sit up in terms of payment of her counterpart funds to UBEC in order to draw down her trapped funds. Chairman of the State House of Assembly Committee on Education, Hon Chris Usulor while commending the state government and SUBEC in doing wonderful job in the education sector, promised to hold a meeting with the State Ministry of Education and SUBEB officials towards finding a way to resolve the payment of counterpart funds to UBEC.

OST communities of Nigeria oil and gas producing areas have inugurated a 20man executive committee for the Anambra State Chapter chaired by Sir Kingsley Nnalue. Inaugurating the committte at White View Hotels in Awka, the National President of the host communities, Chief A. M. Bubor from Bayelsa State said host communities are not violent as being speculated, adding that what they demand are their rights from government. Their agitations were three things, according to him: namely, cancer penalty, DRPP levy and gas flaring money. He said that those who brand host communities as problematic people do so in bad faith, adding that the commuinties are peace-loving people who are always calm. Bubor further said that the 10 per cent equity signed with the host communities by the late president Musa Yar’Adua has been maintained by President Goodluck Jonathan, adding: “we are not a political party but we are more than a political party.” In his inuagural address, the state chairman of the communities, Sir Kingsley Nnalue said he believed in the Barrack Obama slogan; “Yes, we can”, adding that they would make sure that there would not be any violence in the oil communities in the state. Already, he said that they had initiated some youth and women empowerment programmes in the oil and gas communities. According to him, “we have seven acres of land for agricultural purposes and also hiring out tractors for mechanised farming at cheaper rates, more empowerment programme will follow soonest,” Nnalue said.

Tthose who brand host communities as problematic people do so in bad faith; the commuinties are peace-loving people who are always calm

•Commercial tricycle operators protest in Uyo

We saved for the rainy day, says Obi

A

NAMBRA State Governor Peter Obi has said his administration was able to execute many projects without borrowing because the team planned well in addition to a sound saving culture. The governor said such painstaking prudence and saving for the rainy day helped to keep his administration afloat and not having to borrow or go to the bond market. He also said he liked laying the foundation of only projects which are never abandoned. He said this during the laying of the foundation for the second arm of the Onitsha Hotel Resort at the GRA, Onitsha. Both the first and the second arms of the hotel have reached 70% completion. Speaking further, the governor said that what gladdened his heart was the fact that he made planning the cornerstone of his administration and that through prudent and painstaking planning, he was able to do

much in the state without borrowing a dime or raising a bond. He said that upon that, his government has been able to meet its financial obligations, ranging from paying debts that preceded his administration, liquidating arrears of pension owed workers since 1999 to the tune of N33billion, among others. Speaking on the so many projects he flagged off, the governor said that his government set aside the money for the completion of those projects and called on the people not to worry. “Even the recent recruitment exercise was adequately planned for. We are recruiting over 3,500 civil servants and teachers. In other not to encumber the incoming government, we have equally set aside their salaries for two years,” Obi said. The governor who described what will happen in the remaining two months of his government as a “tsunami”, said: ”We shall do something unprecedented in the next two

weeks. I do not want to let the cat out of the bag; watch out and see what will happen, including presentation of over 25,000 computers and generators to schools in the State all of which we had taken delivery of.” In his earlier remarks, the Commissioner for Housing, Engr. Patrick Obi said that his Ministry had literary been kept awake trying to move as fast as the Governor. He said that the first arm of the Hotel project would have been completed but for delays occasioned by the need to expand the hotel to 150 rooms to meet the specifications of foreigners already in agreement with the Government to manage the Hotel and the one also being built at Agulu Lake. In her own remarks, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Project monitoring, Mrs Chinelo Ofoche said that while her counterparts in other States were idle for want of projects to monitor, that covering the entire gamut of Governor Obi’s projects was quite

herculean. The governor also inspected the on-going Shoprite Shopping Mall within the same expansive compound and expressed satisfaction with the speed and quality of work. He also thanked the contractor that dualised the road to the complex for a job well done Asabe Ahmed has been a Special Adviser on Investment and Housing to Niger State Governor Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu. A graduate of the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria where she read Public Administration, she hails from Bida in Bida Local Government Area of Niger State. She is a daughter of Professor Jonathan Ndagi, the first Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Minna. She worked with KPPC-NNPC as Administration and Strategic Planning Officer after a stint with the Niger State Ministry of Education


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE SOUTHEAST REPORT

•Governor Okorocha

•The crowd which received the governor

Mammoth crowd welcomes Okorocha T

HE return of Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha from a three-week vacation in the United States of America drew a mammoth crowd. He got a hero’s welcome from the people of the state who turned out in their large numbers. The crowd was unprecedented as the people, both young and old turned out in great numbers to catch a glimpse of their governor. The governor, who travelled to the USA to felicitate with his daughter who was delivered of a set of twins, could not restrain his emotion when he saw the mammoth crowd that came to welcome him home and to rejoice with him for joining the league of grand fathers. As early as 7:00 a.m. on that fateful Friday, vehicular and human movements along the road leading to the Sam Mbakwe International Airport were already grounded as large number of people, including gaily-dressed women, businessmen, religious and pressure groups, traditional rulers, student bodies, clergymen, artisans and politicians headed for the Airport to await the arrival of the governor. At the Airport, several dance troupes took turns to entertain the crowd that defied the scorching heat of the sun, dancing to the rhythms of music that were mainly songs of praise for the governor and the All Progressives Congress (APC). The atmosphere was also charged in the VIP Lounge of the Airport where senior officials of the state

We will continue to emphasise the free education as the biggest investment in our state. Our children will have access to quality education irrespective of their background. No Imo child will ever be allowed to waste away because of poverty From Okodili Ndidi, Owerri

government and other dignitaries waited anxiously for the flight scheduled for 12 noon. They chatted away time over political developments in the state and the country. At about 1:30 p.m., the jet marked LearJet45X conveying the governor touched the tarmac. The impatient crowd broke loose and officials of the Federal Aviation Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and efforts of security agents to prevent the crowd from rushing into the tarmac were somewhat taxing. On hand to receive the governor were his deputy, Prince Eze Madumere, the Chairman of Imo State Traditional Rulers’ Council, Eze Agunwa Ohiri, members of the state Executive Council and chieftains of the APC, among others. Speaking with newsmen shortly

after his arrival, the visibly elated governor restated his administration’s determination to continue to provide the dividends of democracy for the people. He assured his teeming supporters who were eagerly waiting to know his next political line of action that he would run for an election, even though he said his position would be communicated to them at the appropriate time. Away from the Airport, the various groups who were distinguished by their colourful attires, walked the over 16km distance to the venue of the grand reception, disrupting the governor’s convoy as he had to stop at several points to acknowledge cheers from the surging crowd who waved at him relentlessly. Travellers along the Owerri/Aba Road were stranded as a result of the heavy gridlock resulting from cars that struggled to keep pace with

the convoy. At various villages along the route, cannons were fired by ecstatic villagers in salute to the governor. The event, which was meant to be a mild reception for the governor who was away during the Yuletide, turned out to be a massive political rally where the ideals and prospects of the APC were exhaustively discussed to the admiration of party supporters. Arriving at Emmanuel College Roundabout, venue of the grand reception, Okorocha, who was obviously stunned by the large crowd of party supporters started singing and dancing to songs of praise to God for leading the state thus far. He told the crowd that he has been re-energised to do more. “I want to tell you that we are ready to do more. When we came on board, I assured Imo people that we are no longer under bondage. Imo today is free and better. The Egyptians we see today we shall see no more. “Let me assure you that the free education will continue. This year will be better for our people; we are going to chase away poverty from the land. The 27 brand new government hospitals will be completed this year and no Imo man will die as a result of treatable diseases,” he said. Half way into his speech, the governor, apparently moved by the women’s show of solidarity, announced thus: “henceforth in all the government-owned hospitals,

Ubah provides aid for the physically-challenged

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HE Chairman of Capital Oil and Gas, Mr. Ifeanyi Ubah has presented no fewer than 800 mobility aids to physically challenged persons in Anambra State . The aids were presented at the Finotel Hotels in Awka under the aegis of the Association for Comprehensive Empowerment of Nigerians with Disability (ASCEND). The aids that included 50 American-built customised tricycles, wheelchairs, guide chains, Braille wristwatches, computers for the blind, telephones for the deaf and other assorted aids.

From Nwanosike Onu, Awka

The candidate of the Labour Party during the November 16, governorship election in Anambra promised them the items a few weeks ago. Making the presentation to the the physically challenged with his campaign team, Ubah said he shared their challenges and pains. He said the gesture would be a continuous project in order to improve their lives, those of their families and to strive to enthrone peopleoriented government with human feelings in the state whenever opportunity presents itself.

Ubah maintained that the materials were just the phase two of the programme, adding that he had passion for the less- privileged, the physically-challenged inclusive, especially any time he saw them happy. The national president of the group, Dr Cosmos Okoli described Ubah as the friend of the down-trodden, real masses in the society, needy and the neglected. He lamented other challenges facing them including employment discrimination even for qualified members, inaccessibility of the society, lack of accessibility to public

•Ubah

and private buildings, mobility restrictions, and societal discriminations.

pregnant women will be given free maternal care.” The announcement sent the crowd into frenzy as the women temporarily took over. They danced and sang the governor’s praise. Continuing, Governor Okorocha urged the women to continue to support his administration’s effort to rebuild the state. “We will continue to emphasise on the free education as the biggest investment in our state. Our children will have access to quality education irrespective of their background. No Imo child will ever be allowed to waste away because of poverty,” he said. However the import of the historic gathering was not lost to political analysts who described it as a test of the Governor’s control of the political machinery of the state. The overwhelming turn out of people who were neither coerced nor induced to attend, proved beyond doubts that the APC-led administration in the state, had come to stay. Chants of ‘up APC, up Okorocha, down PDP, down corrupt leaders, rented the air as the governor, who inaugurated two strategic roads close to the venue of the event, reeled off the endless list of what his administration had achieved in the last two-and-a-half years. An octogenarian, Nze Chibuike Onyeukwu who leaned heavily on his walking stick, apparently out of exhaustion, said: “I came out to see the man that has followed the footsteps of one of our great sons, Dee Sam Mbakwe. Okorocha has truly rescued the state from a clique of misguided young men who looted the state.” The retired civil servant further added: “What I have seen and heard is a testimony of the fact that our governor is sent by God to wipe away our tears. The projects, completed and ongoing, are there for all to see unlike before where projects only existed on the pages of newspapers and internet.” Before the curtain was drawn for the day, the governor dispelled the rumoured rift between him and his deputy, urging the people to ignore the falsehood. He described Madumere as his ”political son in whom he is well pleased”.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

40

THE SOUTHEAST REPORT

Age grade system drives communal growth T

HE age-grade system in any typical Igbo contemporary set-up has always helped to fast-track communal growth. The case of Amokwo Item in Bende Local Government Area of Abia State is not different. Over the years, the people of Amokwo Item have benefited from the benevolence of the age grade system which is believed to have come into existence in the community form more than 100 years ago, including individual persons who have seen the need to plough back to the community where they were born. The normal thing is that the agegrade starts with a few youths coming together to form a social club, but they must have been born within the same period with a five-year difference. Within this period they scout for members who are of their age bracket and have the same mindset. When they increase in number, they approach the town union for registration, after which the town union gives them responsibilities, even financial targets to meet in the interest of the community. While they are still a social club in the community, they are regarded as boys even if they have married and produced children, so long as they have not graduated to become an agegrade and the already graduated age grades have the right to send them on errands and they must also have an age grade that will be their patron. When they are ready to come out as an age grade, they must approach the town union executives to assign them a project they must finish before they are allowed to come out and be regarded as men and a fully-fledged age grade in the community and will serve the community as the vanguards and local errand men and in most cases as the local vigilante people in Amokwo Item community. When they are tired and aged within the age bracket of a minimum of 70 years, they are expected to retire from

•Some age-grade members of the community Ugochukwu Ugoji-Eke, Umuahia

active community service including paying levies as may be directed by the community union leaders. This is called Ikptonma “dropping of knives for the men and holes for the women” and they must also complete a retiring project before they are allowed to retire. They will serve the community in that capacity until a new age grade comes out to replace them as the vanguard of the community, even if it will take the new age grade five years to come out, they must remain the main errand boys of the community. On December 31, 2013, the Amokwo Item community under the executive leadership of Chief Kingsley Ogba Nwokoro, the community led a social club then known a Lovers Social Club to graduation into an age grade now known as Ochonma Age Grade of Amokwo Item. The new age grade had earlier been assigned a project at the village main market to build one of the stalls in, as the union had made the local market which normally opens every eight day into a daily market. The new age grade had built and

They will serve the community in that capacity until a new age grade comes out to replace them as the vanguard of the community, even if it will take the new age grade five years to come out, they must remain the main errand boys of the community painted the stall and handed same over to the town union as part of the criteria for their age grade outing. On New Year’s Eve, the new age grade with their men dressed in pink Igbo top with a black hat and a wrapper to march and their women wearing a pink top with a pink head gear and a wrapper to march danced from the village hall led by Chief Nwokoro and his executive council to the mini stadium built and donated to the community by Ms Arunma Oteh, the director general of SEC. The chairman of the day was Dr Davy Ukegbu Osoka, whose duty it was as the chairman of the occasion to charge the new age grade members to

live up to the standard set by the founding fathers of the community and to be ready to serve the community at any level and at all times. Dr Osoka witnessed the handing over the baton of service from the outgoing age grade that served as the vanguard of the community for a over four years, the Chinemere age grade and it was handed over to the president general of the new age grade, Sebastian Odu Onwuchekwa who pledged on behalf of the new age grade to serve the community wit diligence until another age grade comes out. The ceremony which took place during the Okwo Day ceremony was witnessed many sons o the commu-

nity which include the insurance guru, Chief Joe Irukwu, Prof Herbert Orji, chairman, BON, Chief Emmanuel Akwari Ukpabi, Emelike Igwe Kalu, Commissioner for Public Utilities and James Kwubiri Okpara commissioner for special duties, Legal and Due Process office of the governor both of them who are from the community and among others saw the President-General of Amokwo Item Welfare Union [AIWU], Chief Nwokoro, thanking everyone for finding time to grace the occasion for that year. Kwubiri Okpara used the occasion to tell the people of Amokwo Item that the governor, Chie Theodore Orji has promised to build the road from the Umuahia/Ohafia/Arochukwu road down to Amokwo Item and that it has been budgeted for, while Kalu said that the water schemes in Apuanu and Okoko Item will be revived within the shortest period and urged the people of Item to give their support to the governor. The highlight of the occasion was the giving out the certificate of age grade outing to the new age grade, Ochonma age grade and the assigning of a stand during Okwo Day to the new age grade, after which the masquerades took the centre stage.

Foundation relieves the needy •Continued from page 34 Earlier, Rev Canon Chamberlin Igwenazo prayed for Okwuosa family for rendering help to the society and less privilege which he said had been major interest the church had on wealthy people in the society to use their wealth to help others. Rev Igwenazo challenged other rich men in the society to emulate the Okwuosa family in helping the less privilege persons which he said would help to eliminate crime in the society by engaging the youths in meaningful business. The Chairman of Ekwusigo council area, Mr. John Elomba, represented by Obinna Nwachukwu commended the Emeka Okwuosa Foundation and the entire Okwuosa family for initiating the projects which is targeted at lifting the women and less privilege persons in the society. He described Okwuosa family as strong pillar in the entire Oraifite community that had rendered help to others without any feelings attached and said that the council shall continue to support any individual that has soft heart to help others especially during the yuletide seasons. In his address, the Coordinator of Sir Emeka Okwuosa Foundation, Dr. John Anene said Sir Emeka Okwuosa Foundation as a registered non-profit making and non-

governmental organization formed by Okwuosa to help render services to the society. He said that the Foundation last year distributed gift items worth millions of naira to married women from the community, adding that this year; the situation still remains the same in the sense that some other communities are beneficiaries of the Sir Emeka Okwuosa Foundation. “Last year, we were here and all married women from our community went home each with full bags of rice. It is still so this year. Thereafter, workers of the Foundation went to other communities and various public establishments in Oraifite, Ozubulu and Nnewi” “All Irefi married women will benefit from this year’s Christmas gift distribution. The idea is linked to the philosophy that if you feed a woman, you feed not only herself but entire household. With the mindset of the proprietor which is geared towards ameliorating the lots of the rural community, providing infrastructural development and general wellbeing of the people” he said. The President General of Oraifite Improvement Union, Dr. Jap Okolo said the aim of the Foundation to radiate joy in the minds of the less privilege in the society is commendable and enjoined other wealthy men in the community to emulate the Okwuosa family in rendering help to the less privilege.

•Rice handed over to beneficiaries at the event

He said that for the community to grow, all hands must be on deck in the sense that everybody must get involved in the entire

work of rebuilding the community and making it economically viable for the rural dwellers to make living.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

41

CAMPUS LIFE How to secure campuses, by experts

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•Prof Eyong congratulating the Command Officer on the vehicle gift

Man O’ War gets vehicle

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HE Vice-Chancellor (VC), University of Calabar, Prof James Epoke, has donated a brand new Sienna Land Jet car to institution’s Man O’War. The vehicle was presented to the corps by the VC at the Administrative Quarters of the university. Prof Epoke, who was represented by the Director of Works, Mr Alderton Ewe Ewa, lauded the role of Man O’War in the university. He urged the members to make good use of the vehicle. He said: “The management is happy about the activities of Man O’War in this university and that in-

From Emmanuel Shebbs

UNICAL formed the presentation of this vehicle. We are giving you the encouragement to perform your duties more effectively with the use of this vehicle.” The Chief Command Officer (CCO) of Man O’War, Chief Emeka Onu, thanked management for the offer, saying: “We are privileged to be the first students’ group to receive a New Year gift from the VC. We lack words to thank him for this gesture but one thing we assure him is that we will try our best to serve the

students community, the management and the society and to be good ambassadors of this great institution.” Cross River State Coordinator of Man O’War Dr Bassey Oben, thanked Prof Epoke for recognising the contributions of the corps in the university, promising to partner with the institution to ensure peace on campus. The Dean of Students Affairs (DSA), Prof Eyong Eyong, commended the activities of the corps. He said management would continue to support the organisation.

•Partcipants at the leadership seminar

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LOVISA Secondary School in Aba, Abia State hosted no fewer than 500 leaders of the Federation of Colleges Ex-Students’ Christian Association (FECA) at the National Leaders Retreat of the association. The four-day event, which was hosted by the Abia State Zone, had the theme: “That I may know him.” President of the association, Abodunde Ajibola, said the conference was organised to renew the zeal of the leaders and promote the affairs of members. He encouraged them to imbibe the virtues of love, discipline, integrity, obedience and prayer in their lives, saying it would make

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TUDENTS of Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU) have resumed for the new academic session. When CAMPUSLIFE visited some faculties last week, lectures were on, even though many students were yet to resume. The registration of freshers had also started. A lecturer, who did not want his

HE Association of Heads of Security of Tertiary Institutions (AHSOTI) has concluded its three-day National Campus Security workshop at the University of Calabar (UNICAL), which started in December. The theme of the programme was: Synergising to harmonise strategies for safe and secured campus. The workshop was attended by heads of security units in all tertiary institutions. Also, there were Vice Chancellor, Prof James Epoke, who was represented by Deputy VC (Administration), Prof Igiri Okon; Dr Boniface Adie, Chief Security Officer, UNICAL; Col. Umaru Tilde, (FUT Minna) President; Akibu Oyeyemi, (Caleb University), Imarah Okpako, Loss Prevention Coordinator, among others. The event kicked off at the New Senate Building and guests were welcomed by Dr Boniface. President of the association, Umaru Tilda, praised the mass turnout of delegates for the conference. He said the aim of the conference was to provide a plat-

From Charles Udenze

LAGOS form for security personnel in Nigerian tertiary institutions to brainstorm on how to make schools safe and conducive for learning and research. The highlight of the workshop was the presentation of award to UNICAL’s Chief Security Officer (CSO) Dr Boniface for promoting safety on campuses. Other lectures were delivered by the Director, State Security Services (SSS) Cross River State, represented by Assistant Director of Security, Mr Carie B. S. and other security agencies. The second phase of the workshop centred on a discussion by participants on exchange of experiences and how to make tertiary institutions safer for academics. The participants embarked on an excursion to various tourist centres in the state, including Marian Resort, Slave Museum, Tinapa Export Processing zone, Nigeria-Cameroon Boarder Bridge, Agbokin Waterfall in Ikon and Obudu Ranch, where the delegates spent the night. The Coordinator of National Command of Man O’ War on Campuses (NACOMOC), Emeka Onu, praised security chiefs in Nigerian tertiary institutions for their efforts at promoting peace, saying it was good for the educational sector.

•Students on the field for the novelty match

Ex-students hold leadership retreat From Eddy Uwoghiren

UNIBEN them to be effective in the discharge of their responsibilities. Pastor Yahaya Dingamaji said the happenings around the world called for concern, urging them to draw close to God. He encouraged the leaders to be serious with their academics. “As a leader, you ought to be an example to your followers. You must learn to delegate tasks and be genuinely concerned about your members’ welfare. It is also necessary that you

•Visit hospital

set priorities and manage your time very well,” he said. The retreat featured a seven-hour prayer tagged “FECA PRAYS”, where members interceded for Nigeria. A participant from the University of Ibadan (UI), Omolola Adeyemi, called on the leaders to put to practice all they had learned during the programme. Also, members of the Edo State zone of the association held a picnic last weekend at the Baptist High

Abia varsity resumes From Uchechukwu Amanze

ABSU name in print, said he was not excited with the resumption. ’’Why should I be excited that school has resumed after six months of no payment? There is nothing to cheer about,” he said.

Agu Ebuka, a student of Plant Science and Biotechnology said he was happy to return to campus. He said: ‘’I am so happy that our school has reopened, but I am happier to see my course mates and lecturers again after months of staying idle at home.”

School Field in Benin City. The ex-students participated in over 15 games. Edo State Coordinator of the group, Aimua Ogbeide, 300-Level Mechanical Engineering student of the University of Benin (UNIBEN), said the picnic aimed at fostering love, unity and friendship among the students. A girl, who emerged winner in the chess game, said: “I have always considered chess to be a complex game not until I gave it a try today and ended up becoming the winner. I am going to develop the skill and hope

to represent Nigeria in the international scene someday.” The event featured a novelty match between postgraduate and undergraduate students, which ended 5-2 in favour of the undergraduates. Prizes were presented to winners in the various games. Meanwhile, the members visited ward A1 and A2 of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) in Ugbowo to distribute gift items to inpatients. Prayer sessions were also held for them. A patient who pleaded anonymity thanked the association for the visit and encouraged them not to relent in showing concern to the sick.

A 300-Level student of Accounting, Stella Nwosu, said the resumption was the best thing that had happened to her, saying: ‘’I was bored staying at home for six months. On several occasions, I almost fell into various temptations occasioned by my boredom. But I am happy it is all over now.” Traders, who spoke to CAMPUSLIFE, said they were happy

to resume their commercial activities. A trader, who identified himself as Mr Chima, said: ‘‘My joy knows no bound to see this school resume after six months of strike. Things were hard for me and my family during the strike because of low sales, but I am happy that the strike has been suspended and my customers are back. My business would take a new shape.”


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CAMPUS LIFE

Want to look younger? Donate blood Students of Optometry in Imo State University (IMSU), Owerri, visited the National Blood Transfusion Service (NABTS) to donate blood toward saving lives. EKENE AHANEKU (200Level Optometry) reports.

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URING their anatomy class, they were told pathetic stories of the emergency wards and how blood could save a life.After the lecture, about 70 students of Optometry in Imo State University (IMSU), Owerri, went to the National Blood Transfusion Service (NABTS). They also visited orphanages to donate materials to the less privileged. An Anatomy lecturer, Dr A.N. Obialor, who told the gripping stories, led the volunteers to the NABTS. On getting to the centre, which shares premises with the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, the students were taken on a tour of the facilities to learn the benefits of blood donation. They were surprised to learn that donating blood regularly can make the donor to look younger. Exicted by the revelation, some of them stepped forward to donate. In 120 days, they were told, red blood cells die to regenerate new ones in the body. The students learnt that blood donation reduces skin wrinkles. Before the donation, forms were shared among the students to ascertain their fitness. Their body weight, Haemoglobin (Hb) level, HIV status, blood pressure and pulse rate were checked before the donation. Some of them whose weights were less than 50kg were barred. Also, students whose Haemoglobin (Hb)

•The students in group photograph after the exercise

•A student being checked before the donation

level was below 11g/dl and who had high blood pressure and low pulse rate were disqualified.

After the donation, many students shared their experience. Success Onyema, 200-Level

Optometry, said: “My Haemoglobin level was discovered to be 17.4g/dl, which means I have

more than enough blood to donate. During the session, I noticed that the blood was not flowing, at first. The needle was later adjusted to pump out the blood. I felt the pain but it was my determination to save a life that made made to proceed with the exercise.” Chidera Odionyenma, another student, said: “The experience was something I cannot explain. First, I thought it will be painful but when it got to my turn, I noticed it was just a normal thing to do. I will tell my friends to try to donate blood because it is an exercise that is rewarding to save life”. “I felt like I gave life to someone that needed it most,” Nosiri Amauche said. Emmanuella Ogazi, who donates frequently, said: “I enjoy free medical attention whenever I need it; all I need to do is to present my red card, which indicates that I am a frequent donor. Today, I am happy it would be the fourth time I would be donating blood. My aim is to save life.” According to the students, the exercise was fun not because they donated a vital fluid in their body, but because they donated to save lives of people they would not meet.

Is any emotion attached to hugging? Some students believe it is a manner of showing affection towards loved ones, but others believe it is inappropriate. KEMI BUSARI (400-Level Political Science, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife) writes.

Is hugging a big deal?

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UGGING is a way of showing affection towards friends and relations. In primeval era, it was taken as a special way of greeting special people on special occasions. To lovers, hugging is a passionate way of showing affection to each other. For students of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) in Ile-Ife, Osun State, hugging is a way of showing solidarity in their struggle. After the 169-day Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike, the students returned, hugging one another to express joy over the development. A 15-minute walk from the Awolowo Hall to the academic area gives a clear picture of what hugging means to students. •Continued on page 44

•Classmates greeting each other

•Students of OAU hugging each other after resumption


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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CAMPUS LIFE

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HAT I will maintain this sacred trust holding myself afar, aloof from wrong, from corrupting, from tempting others to crime.” The foregoing is an excerpt from an oath attributed to Hippocrates (460BC - 370BC), a philosopher, who is regarded as the father of medicine. Though the oath was not penned down until about a century after his demise; the statement has, however, undergone several modifications, with the emergence of different versions. Page Seven of the Code of Conduct of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) is coined from the Hippocrates’ oath, which medical professionals refer to as the “Physician’s Oath”. It reads: “I will maintain, by all means in my power, the honour and noble traditions of the Medical (dental) profession.” Being a doctor comes with honour because the society sees medical practitioners as role models. Those who do not listen to the scripture are ever willing to wait patiently to hear a doctor’s advice to maintain a healthy life. What a noble profession! However, the behaviour of some doctors nowadays leaves much to be desired. By aiding and abetting several medical blunders, many doctors have violated the oath they took while leaving medical college. Late last year, security agencies

The evil baby factories do uncovered two baby factories in eastern Nigeria, where pregnant ladies delivered babies for sale in the market. These baby factories hid under the umbrella of maternity, motherless babies home and nongovernmental organisations (NGO) with a pledge to rendering humanitarian services. Ezuma Women and Children Right Protection Initiative, and Ahamefule Maternity and Motherless Babies Home were baby factories operated by 65-year-old medical doctor, James Ezuma, and a woman referred to as “Madam One thousand”. The business of these criminals boomed because they were assisted by doctors, nurses, social workers and civil servants. A 17-year-old Adaobi Akabueze said she was referred to the centre by a medical doctor when her pregnancy was seven-month old. People could be so heartless to run such shameful business. As a medical doctor Ezuma is supposed to know the pains ladies undergo during childbirth. What could have made Ezuma to thread this inglorious path? Who approved “Madam One Thousand” a licence to operate a maternity home? When the health officers assisted the victims to de-

liver their babies, did they not the kind of business they were aiding? Could it be the love of money against the service to humanity for which the medical profession is known? Worse, these criminals move about in exotic cars, an indication that their satanic business was booming. What is the morality behind selling babies and use the proceeds from it for philanthropy. I could not imagine how unbearable life would have been for the victims to be camped in a poorly ventilated room and robbed of their priceless gift from God by agents of devil. What those operators of the baby factory have done can best be termed “modern day slavery”. Section 34 (1) b of the Constitution says: “Every individual is entitled to respect for the dignity of his person and accordingly, no person shall be held in slavery or servitude.” But the victims were held and brainwashed against their wishes to sell their babies. The perpetrators should not be allowed to go free. They should be treated in accordance with the laws to serve as deterrent to those already nursing the ambition to promote the nefarious business. Could it be unemployment that

led the criminals to engage in the bad business? Come on, some Nigerians are surviving despite the widespread poverty in the land. Yet, some religious leaders may say the existence of baby factory business is a sign of the end time. This is a ‘Nigerian mentality’. We are quick to attribute anything negativity to end time - unemployment, high mortality rate, political instability, Boko Haram insurgency and corruption. Whereas, these are vices that can be tackled if we are ready to change our ways as a people. The stigmatisation of pregnant ladies out of wedlock is one of the reasons why baby factories thrive. This should be discouraged. The fact that a lady ‘mistakenly’ got pregnant does not make her a failure. The MDCN, body overseeing medical practice in Nigeria, should not relent in sanitising the system. Proper monitoring should be ensured to purge quacks and criminals from the system and prevent miscreants from invading the revered profession. We must also collaborate with the professional body to rid the country of this ill. Section 24 (E) of the Constitution states: “It shall be the duty of every citizen to render as-

A vote for vocational education

By Damilola Olisa

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O fewer than 40 million Nigerians have no jobs. Yet, yearly higher institutions across the nation churn out thousands of graduates into labour market to join thousands of unemployed youths. It is disheartening to see endowed Nigeria, battling mass unemploy-

ment, to be importing products such as toothpicks, combs, and even matches from neighbouring countries. However, this may continue for sometimes because most of the unemployed graduates lack necessary skills to be self-employed. Based on the economic report on Nigeria released by the World Bank last May, the country was ranked 153 out of 186 countries in the 2013 United Nations development index. In similar vein, the National Bureau of Statistics revealed that Nigeria’s unemployment rate averaged 14.60 per cent from 2006 until 2011, reaching an all time high of 23.90 per cent in December. Amidst of all these ever-increasing records of unemployment, the government has not deemed it fit to invest adequately in Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) that could engage millions of job seekers and engender national development. This aspect of education is a major factor contributing to the growth of economy and manpower of developed nations. Because of the neglect of TVE, Nigeria is lacking in skilled technicians who can provide effective

practical solution to industrial challenges. The best way to achieve industrialisation is equipping able youths with technical and technological knowledge to contribute to the economy. A nation that fails to do this may be on a journey to perdition. An author defines technical education as “that aspect of education that involves the acquisition of techniques and application of the knowledge of the science for the improvement of man’s surrounding.” In view of this, it should be stressed that acquisition of techniques and skills and the application of them are what make technical education a core factor in human development. It is as well fashioned to develop occupational skills, to increase innovative ideas, and to develop the nation’s economy. With the world economy becoming more globalised and competitive more prominent than before, the application of technical and vocational knowledge becomes important especially in a developing country such as Nigeria. Furthermore, based on research,

the application of TVE has worked in many advanced countries. Asian Tigers have directed solid attention to the acquisition of skills and teaching of TVE to students. As a result, the majority of their citizens are equipped with adequate skills to sustain their economic growth. These countries are now major players in the world economy. It is, however, sad and painful that Nigerian graduates are described as “half-baked” and “unemployable”; and this is the bitter truth. We have numerous undergraduates studying Physics and Electronics, for instance, who do not know how to connect a circuit, let alone wiring an entire building. How can this set of students contribute to the economic growth when they cannot do such a simple task? Nigeria has come to the point where acquisition of just certificate or theoretical knowledge in any discipline should be given less attention; it must have to espouse acquisition of practical knowledge. Most of the courses in our tertiary institutions are not taught to impact practical knowledge on the stu-

By Eddy Uwoghiren sistance to appropriate regulatory agencies in the maintenance of law and order.” This is a call for attitudinal change as we cannot keep waiting on government to effect the change we need. If we fail to arrest the scourge of baby factory putting our nation into disrepute, our efforts to rebrand the nation will forever remain a mirage. •Eddy, 100-Level Medicine, UNIBEN

dents. Courses should be amended to accommodate vocational and skill acquisition training as a means to produce graduates that can contribute to the economy, not those who will join the league of job seekers. Another worrying situation is the preference of academic degrees over technical degrees. This is obvious in the labour market as many graduates with HND certificates are given lesser consideration. All graduates should be given level playing ground irrespective of their certificates. To worsen the situation, a lot of admission seekers are now hurled into polytechnics and technical education institutions because they could not secure admission into universities. This is where the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) should come in to address the discrimination. Financial resources should be made available and accessible to youths to develop their vocational skills. Private firms must give out loans to young entrepreneurs. Making funds available is a very crucial issue that should be holistically looked at. •Damilola 200-Level Mass Comm., AAUA

Beyond the ‘good people, great nation’ mantra

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EFORE the amalgamation of 1914, there was no country called Nigeria. The geographical space was only being habited by different ethnic nationalities. Then came along a white man, Lord Lugard, who for the purpose of easy administration, brought together these independent societies. Several decades after, the country experienced upheavals in its politics and social life. To tackle the challenges, the country leadership deemed it fit to rebrand. The “Good People, Great Nation” phrase was chosen to be the slogan. In March 2009 after the launch of the slogan and logo for the rebranding project, the Vice-President, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, as he then was, challenged Nigerians not to perceive the campaign as another exercise in sloganeering. He said that it should be perceived as a genuine attempt at making every Nigerian has a renewed commitment to the recreation of the country. This means that our leaders knew

something is wrong with our nation. The problems have a huge impact on the psyches of Nigerians. These four-worded slogan “good people, great nation” conveys a deep message. For a nation to be great, the people must first be good. For, one cannot market a bad product. Some people have lost hope in Nigeria. Some have come to the conclusion that a nation that is beset with bad governance, insecurity, corruption, unemployment and kidnapping can never prosper. They believe so much in the dictum of John Maxwell that “everything rises and falls on leadership”. This poses a lot of challenge on the mentality of most Nigerians. Yes, in all honesty, we have not had the best of our leaders. But then, according to an author, leadership flows out of followership; leadership and followership flow from a single river, woven from the same fabric especially in a democracy. The greatness of a nation is largely dependent on the behaviour of its

people. The leaders we blame for the wrongs in our society are not distinct personalities from the nation. They are not foreigners; they are part of us. When aliens ruled us, we knew quite well we had to fight for our freedom. Nigeria is called the Giant of Africa; sadly, the giant is battling with lots of deformities and disabilities being caused by its people. We pollute our own environment ourselves. We dump all sorts of materials in drainage constructed for water passage. When we experience flood, we call on government to come to our individual homes to teach us how to take care of our own environment. Fraud is another major problem in Nigeria is facing and it is being perpetrated by the old and young. The nation is not made up of just the landmass but also the people. So if Nigeria has a bad image, so does the people; the government and the governed. The people seem to have forgotten the age long assertion that we need not wait for what the nation can

do for us but we should also ponder on what we can do for our nation. Nigeria is our collective responsibility. The people carrying arms and taking to violence are not programmed to be criminals; circumstance turned them to beast. Today, many graduates roam the streets unemployed; it is not because they are lazy or have not tried their best to search for jobs, but for lack of experience. Many employers have seven to 10 years experience or more as a prerequisite for employment but how can fresh graduates have such years of experience if they are given an opportunity? And by the way, these organisations are not manned by angels, but people. Yes, the rebranding slogan may have been abandoned for the more fascinating cliché, but the spirit of “good people, great nation” must not be abandoned. Nigeria is our collective responsibility. Whether we are leaders or commoners, we are all people of the same destiny. If we remain in the

By Peace Adeoye state we have been in time past, there is no way we can achieve the status of a good people and a great nation. Of course this does not go to say there are no good people in Nigeria. The problem is, there are not enough good people. •Continued on page 44


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

44

CAMPUS LIFE Mass Comm. students visit media house

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OME Mass Communication students of the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) have visited the corporate headquarters of the Nigerian Tribune in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on excursion. The students, who are in 300Level and 400-Level, said they embarked on the tour to learn practical aspects of newspaper production. Led by their lecturers, Mrs Yusuf Tajudeen and AbdulGafar Arikewuyo, the students, who intend to specialise in print journalism, were received by a reporter on the Features desk of the newspaper, Mrs Taiwo Olarenwaju. She took them round all the desks in the newsroom and the administrative department. The editor of each desk, explained to the students the activities and mode of operation of the beat. The Tourism Editor, Mr Wale Ojo-Lanre, told the students how he discovered the site of the first plane crash in Africa, which oc-

From Hameed Muritala

UNILORIN curred on April 12, 1942 in Ekiti State. At the computer room, the students were received by Mr Oke Olatunde, a graphic artist, who taught them the dynamics of impressive page planning and design. ‘’The computer room is under the editorial department and it is the engine room because all the raw works from the editorial department are designed and planned into pages here, which are now sent to the machine server at the prepress,’’ he explained. The students observed the editorial board meeting, which began about 1:00 pm. They were welcome by Mr Edward Dickson, the Managing Director and Editor-inChief. While the meeting was on, some market women, under the aegis of Oyo Fish Sellers Association, arrived to express their dissatis-

•Abdullai with the students and their lecturers in Nigerian Tribune premises

faction with the ban on importation of fish by the Federal Government, saying the policy had resulted in increase in fish prices nationwide. The highpoint of the visit was the presentation of a copy of the first edition of the newspaper, which

On and Off Campus By Solomon Izekor 08061522600

was published on November 16, 1949, to the students. The presentation was made by Editor of the newspaper, Mr Debo Abdullai. Abdullai said the problem of brown envelope in the media could only be eliminated when journalists adhere strictly to pro-

fessional ethics, adding that media houses should pay their staff well. He noted that social media was affecting the practice of journalism today, noting that any editor or reporter that was not in tune with the new media was doomed to fail.

Is hugging a big deal? •Continued from page 42

From the Moremi Car Park to the basement of faculties, students stood in groups holding themselves firmly, an indication that they “missed” one another. The picture got clearer when CAMPUSLIFE visited the Anglo-moz Car Park. The open space where lovers meet at night was packed with students, exchanging pleasantries and bear hugs. Why are they doing this? Why is it rampant at the begninning of semester? Olawale Oluseye, a 300-Level Linguistics student of the University of Ibadan (UI) described hugging as “an emotional way of greeting a beloved friend whom you have seen over a long time.” Some students were dazed when asked why they hug. When asked about how many people she had hugged since the semester started, Tundun Abiola, who resides in Akintola Hall in OAU, said it was “countless”. She said: “For me, hugging a friend delivers a message in the best way. Whenever I hug, it shows that I am happy seeing the person after a period time of not seeing each other. The absence for a moment itself calls for something more emotional than a handshake.” For Alice Adewumi, a 300-Level student of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) in Ogbomoso, hugging is a sign of warmth and love to communicate “how much you have missed your friend.” She believed nothing intimate is attached to it. When asked about whether she selects who and when to hug, Alice replied: “I am not used to hugging boys because of the nature of my course of study. We don’t really have male students in my department. But it doesn’t mean I can’t hug a guy if I have to.” For Tundun, she is free to hug anybody that effuses similar emotional expression towards her. “If I feel happy to see anyone, I do hug but I can’t offer to hug somebody that frowns at me. The emotion has to

me mutual.” Ajibade Oluwabunmi, a 400-Level Chemistry student of OAU, said she is selective when it comes to hugging. “I don’t hug people anyhow. I only hug my friends irrespective of gender. Then, the hug simply means ‘I miss you’,” she said. However, for students who are religiously-inclined, hugging the opposite sex is a sin. Adebayo Akande, a born-again student at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) said hugging is only meant for legally married couple. “Anything away from this may develop lust and sinful romantic feelings,” he said. Justin Oyetola, a student-fellowship pastor in OAU, gave a Christian perspective to it. He said: “In the western culture, hugging is allowed but because it has to do with emotion, it is not allowed towards the opposite sex. Even our culture abhors it. Hugging can lead to lust feeling, which can affect the spiritual life of a Christian.” He added: “The Bible says in Romans 16:16: Salute one another with a holy kiss. For them, that is their own culture, not everybody can withstand the emotional inclination.” A Muslim student, who did not say his name, said: “In Islam, hugging is forbidden between unmarried couples. To shake the opposite gender is not allowed no matter how close you are to him or her. It is only people of the same gender that are allowed to exchange such greetings. But married couples can hug and shake hands.” Contrary to the religious perspective, Oluwabusayo Oni, a Science student at OAU, believes there is nothing wrong in hugging the opposite sex: “The people who are religious only gave their own angle while people like me don’t mind any type of hug. So far, I don’t have any lust feeling towards the opposite sex I hug; it’s just a way of greeting,” he said.

Beyond ‘good people, great nation’ mantra •Continued from page 43

So, of what use is a voice if it cannot be heard? Of what use is the strength if it cannot shake anything? Of what use is our height and colour if we cannot be noticed in the crowd? And of what use is being good if we cannot make our country great? Being good is not all; positive steps

have to be taken in making our country great. It is a New Year; it is another opportunity to make a difference, to be the change we want to see. For there to be a truly fascinating Nigeria, we must move from this stage of mediocrity to being a truly good people and assuredly a great nation.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

45

CAMPUS LIFE UNILORIN FILE

Humour at NOUN convocation

ASUU to vote Jan. 30

•4, 308 graduate

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OR the three hours that the convocation lasted, the audience had something to laugh, whistle, cheer, clap, and wave about, most of which were caused by the National Open University (NOUN) Vice Chancellor, Prof Vincent Tenebe. It was the third convocation of NOUN, held at the Main Exhibition Hall 1 and 2, National Theatre, Iganmu where 4, 308 students from the Schools of Arts and Social Sciences, Education, Law, Management Sciences, and Science and Technology graduated last Saturday. The VC had been called to deliver his speech, but while urging the government to give opportunities to NOUN graduates, he told a story that left the audience reeling with laughter. He said a graduate found himself in the United Kingdom (UK), where he saw a placement for a job interview in an organisation that sells Bibles. The organisation needed eloquent speakers to help market their products. The young man went to the organisation, stammered while telling them that he was there for the interview. The VC said that the interviewers said: “’No this man cannot work here,’ but the chairman of the interview panel, who is just like our Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) Executive Secretary, Prof Julius Okojie, who has given NOUN a chance, told them to give the young man a chance. "All those who were present for the interview spoke eloquently, just like the Joint Special Representative African Union-United Nations Mission in Dafur (UNAMID), Prof Ibrahim Gambari (NOUN convocation lecturer), except the NOUN graduate." "They were all given 50 copies of the Bible each to sell but the NOUN graduate came back after 10 minutes with all books sold while others were still outside, preaching to convince people to buy." He said surprised, they gave him another 50 copies and again he came back with the money. "He sold 250 copies of the books within one hour while others had not sold any. So, Okojie told someone to follow him and see if he hid the books somewhere and presented them with his own cash. "The person that followed him found out that he would walk up to someone that is in a hurry and say, 'would you pay for the copy of a Bible or should I read it to you?' as he stammers, and the person would say, ‘please just give me a copy’ and pay the $10. "The person went back to report that the young man had prospects. He was not just given the job; but was made Head of the sales department."

•From right: Okojie, Tenebe, Wike and Pro Chancellor/Chairman Governing Council NOUN, Senator Ameh Ebute

Life sentence convict graduates

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HOUGH many wonder why at over 50 years and serving a life imprisonment sentence, Mr Tuwanse Kabiru would be wasting his time studying for his postgraduate degree in Human Resources Management, he does not see it that way. It might just be the ticket for his release from jail after 11 years. Last Saturday, Kabiru graduated as the best student from the Nigerian Maximum Security Prisons, Kirikiri, Apapa Study Centre of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) and has high hopes that he would put his certificate to good use. The father of one was sentenced to life imprisonment 11 years ago, but he decided to go back to school because he has hope in God. "It is for man to plan and for God to crown our efforts," the Lagos State born man said. He told journalists that he was encouraged by the prison officials to take part in the programme. "We live like a family in prison with the officials," he added. Speaking at the convocation, Supervising Minister of Education, Chief Nyesom Wike, promised that Kabiru’s case would be brought to the Federal Government and if possible, he would be granted pardon.

He said: "The prisoner has showed that the mere fact that he is in prison does not mean that he would not improve his life. If it is a crime that is not capital, we will recommend that the Federal Government give him amnesty." The Director of the Kirikiri Prison Study Centre, Mr Ladan Babakodong, said there are over 2, 000 •Kabiru prisoners who are qualified to run programmes but have no sponsors. "We need people to sponsor them. Those who have been discharged are doing well outside. NOUN also gives them a 50 per cent discount. In the prisons everyone has some work to do but the prisoners who are in the study centre are allowed to study. For us, their job there is just to study," he said. He hinted that they always pass and even pass very well because they have enough time to read. Assistant Comptroller-General, Kirikiri Maximum Prison, Chucks Raymond Afujue, said they want to debunk the saying that prison is a

Almost immediately the audience recovered from the amusement, the VC announced that the university had added two new centres to the institution - one for members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), and the other for the Nigeria Police - which made everyone resume the laughter, referring to the study centre for NURTW as school for agberos (touts). He called on the Federal Government to support the university by allowing its products to participate in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme. "The present practice of issuing letters of exemption to our graduands, even though appreciated, is not good enough. The National Open University of Nigeria is a full-fledged federal university, offering degree programmes as approved and accred-

ited by the NUC, just like all other universities in Nigeria. It is therefore fair justice to allow all young Nigerians of NYSC specified age to participate in the scheme, while those above 30 years old should be given exemption letters as it is practised for all graduates from other universities in Nigeria and abroad," he said. Tenebe said among the graduands were the university's first sets of Law and Mass Communication students. He added that the institution recently established the School of Agricultural Science and School of Health Sciences. The VC also sought improved funding from the government as well as help for infrastructural development in the various study centres to ensure conducive learning environment for students. Three Nigerians, Prof Grace Alele

Stories by Medinat Kanabe

American potter visits

(left) with Afujue

place to dehumanise people. "We want people to see that we reform and rehabilitate in the Maximum Security Prison. Three of them wrote the final exam, but he is the only one here today because the other two did not meet the credit point to graduate. "There are 48 of them undergoing the programmes in the prison and, right now, we have study centres in Enugu, port Harcourt, Lagos, Awka, while the Kuje ccentre is still being developed," he added. Afujue, who represented the Comptroller-General, Mr Zakari Ibrahim, said the prisoners need the cooperation and support of Nigerians. Williams, Alhaji Muhammed Ali Kwara, and the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar were conferred with honorary degrees. However, the IG’'s award was deferred until next year because he is still in service. Mrs Williams, a former Vice Chancellor, University of Benin (UNIBEN), thanked Nigerians for recognising that the young are doing good things and not forgetting the old. She was excited to see many young people and as well as older women graduating. The Minister of Education, Chief Nyesom Wike said if everyone in Nigeria is educated, the fight against corruption will be easier. "Open and Distance Learning is a veritable tool to achieve this. We believe that with this, we can strive to be like other countries," he said.

Nigeria needs more open varsities, says Gambari

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HE Joint Special Representative, African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID), Prof Ibrahim Gambari has said for Nigeria to witness national development and transformation, there is a need for the acceptance of open universities. Gambari spoke on the topic: Open and distance education for development, unity and democratic transformation of Nigeria at Third Convocation Lecture of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN). He said with technology, Open and Distance Learning (ODL)

By Sampson Unamka

education can help improve Nigeria in many areas, urging NOUN to plug into the role. He said: "The technologies and emergent platforms, Open University concept, Open Educational Resources (OERs) hold tremendous potentials to build capacity and enhance skills, improve knowledge acquisition, management, sharing, and deployment, all of which ultimately develop deepened democracy and enthrone security and stability to the nation. In this regard, NOUN has a clear role to help steer the

nation towards transformation, unity and democratic transformation.” Ambassador Gambari added that apart from offering degree programmes, NOUN can plug into the vocational education market and help equip unemployed youth with skills they can use to generate jobs. “I would like to suggest that NOUN should explore the possibility of Free Open Learning of Mathematics, Computer Studies, including coding and basic sciences. If we could partner with major ICT and

THE University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has concluded arrangements to elect new leaders next Thursday. Secretary of the Electoral Committee, Dr N. M. Abdulraheem, noted in a statement that nomination which opened 12 noon last Monday will close 3p.m. next Monday. The positions to be contested for are: Chairman, Vice Chairman, Secretary General, Treasurer, Auditor, Financial Secretary and Assistant Secretary. The statement also noted that the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Union has been notified of the impending election. A letter sent to the National President of the Union and signed by the Chairman, UNILORIN ASUU Electoral Committee, Prof. O. O. Obiyemi, invited the representatives of the NEC to witness the conduct of the election.

mobile telephone companies and National Association of Computer Science and ICT in a public-private partnership, NOUN may help students across the country that have no trained teachers in these areas. Indeed, we could also use the same open learning approach to re-train many unemployed youths on skills directly useful in small and medium enterprises, trade, and selfemployment. “In so doing, open learning could help reduce youth unemployment. Employing Open Learning to train our youths is a wise investment in the future of the nation," he said.

AN American potter and Art lecturer at the Massachusetts University, US, Ms. Susan Bernstein has visited UNILORIN to explore areas of possible collaboration with the university. Ms. Bernstein, who is also the resident artist of Studio 13 at the Mudflat Pottery in Somerville, Massachusetts, told the UNILORIN Vice-Chancellor, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali, that she was in Nigeria to study the process of traditional pottery at Dada Compound, Okelele, Ilorin. The artist, who was led to the Vice-Chancellor's Office by the Director, UNILORIN Archives and Documentation Centre, Prof. R.A. Olaoye, disclosed that she had collaboration agreements with universities and artistic centres in the United States of America and Africa. Following discussions with the Vice- Chancellor, the two parties agreed to collaborate and sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on areas of mutual interest.

Supervisors get N4.5m grant THE UNILORIN Vice Chancellor, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali, has announced a research grant of N1.5 million each for the three outstanding supervisors whose students recently excelled at the Nigeria Universities Doctoral Thesis Awards Scheme (NUDTAS). Ambali, who made the announcement last Wednesday while formally receiving the NUDTAS award winners in his office, told their supervisors - Prof. K. L. Ayorinde of the Faculty of Agriculture, Prof. V. A. Alabi of the Faculty of Arts and Prof. T. S. Ibiyemi of the Faculty of Engineering and Technology - that the university recognised the fact that without their expertise and thoroughness, the students' theses would not have won the awards. The three UNILORIN doctoral graduates - Sola-Ojo Foluke Eunice of the Faculty of Agriculture, Ojeniyi Sola Adetunji of the Faculty of Arts, and Gbenga-Ilori Abiodun Omowunmi of the Faculty of Engineering and Technology - were among the 17 winners rewarded during the 2010, 2011 and 2012 joint editions of the Awards organised by the National Universities Commission (NUC) to reward academic excellence. Congratulating the supervisors for jobs well done, Ambali likened them to the proverbial hen that lays the golden egg.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

46

CAMPUS LIFE SCHOLARSHIPS

EKSU FILE

Dons for LCDA committee TWO professors from the Ekiti State University (EKSU), AdoEkiti are among the 10-man committee set up by Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, to look into the creation of Local Council Development Areas (LCDA) in the state. They are: Kunle Ajayi, a renowned Professor of Political Science, and Ishola Olomola, an internationallyrecognised historian. Inaugurating the committee, Fayemi said Ajayi was chosen for his erudite scholarship on governance and accountability while Olomola was described as an expert in Local Government as a former Commissioner for Local government in the Old Ondo State. The committee, headed by Justice Akinjide Ajakaiye, has prominent personalities such as a veteran politician, Chief Ibidapo Awojolu, Mrs. Bola Ajayi. Inaugurating the committee, the governor said when he toured Ekiti towns and villages recently, there were many requests for new councils.

Students elect leaders Fed. 12 WITH the EKSU Vice-Chancellor, Prof Patrick Oladipo Aina lifting the ban on students unionism, an election has been scheduled to hold February 12 and 14. Before then, the Students’ Union Electoral Committee, filling of nomination forms and campaigns, screening of candidates for the election and the manifesto day. According to the time-table, the new Students' Union Executives would be sworn-in on Monday, March 31, 2014. The Vice-Chancellor urged students and the contestants to be peaceful during and after the exercise.

UNILAG Deputy Registrar bags award PROSPECT High School, Abanla Ibadan, Oyo State, has nominated the Deputy Registrar (Information), University of Lagos (UNILAG) Mr. Oluwatoyin Adebule, for a Distinguished Service Award to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the school. According to the National Executive Council of the Prospect High School Old Students' Association, the award was bestowed on Adebule in recognition of his quality service to the 1972 set of the association at the Lagos State branch. The presentation of the award will take place in the school's hall in Abanla Ibadan tomorrow during a luncheon to mark the Grand Finale of the school's founder's day.

APPROACHING DEADLINES Leiden Excellence 2014

University Scholarships

•Non-EU/EEA students enrolling in a Leiden University master's degree programme • In his or her prior academic education abroad, the applicant must have achieved excellent study results which are relevant for the programme for which the student wishes to enrol. As an indication, the student will be among the top 10% for the relevant programme followed abroad •The applicant will hold a nonEU/EEA passport and will not be eligible for support under the Dutch system of study grants and loans ("Studiefinanciering"; for more information please refer to: www.ib-groep.nl • Scholarships will not be awarded to applicants who have already obtained a Leiden University master's degree

• Students who are granted a Leiden Excellence Scholarship must comply with and confirm in writing their agreement with the terms and conditions (pdf) attached to the scholarship prior to the granting of the scholarship. Application instructions: When applying for admissions, indicate clearly that you would like to apply for the LExS scholarship on the scholarship section of the online application form. You should attach a letter of motivation (in Word) of a maximum of 500 words, in which you indicate why you believe you should be considered for this scholarship. For programmes starting in September 2014, the deadline is 1 February 2014. For programmes starting in February 2015, the deadline is 1 October 2014. It is important to visit the official website to access the online application form and for detailed

information on how to apply for this scholarship.

2014 MSP Scholarships for Middle East and North Africa MSP Scholarships in the Netherlands are open to applicants from Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Syria and Tunisia. Ideally, half of the scholarships are allocated to female applicants. The Mena Scholarship Programme aims to contribute to the democratic transition in the participating countries. It is also aimed at contributing to capacity building within a wide range of governmental, non-governmental and private organisations and institutions in the selected countries. Worth of Award The scholarship covers: subsistence allowance international travel costs

State of varsities worries Amina Sambo

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IFE of the Vice President, Mrs Amina Namadi Sambo, has expressed concern over the deplorable state of universities, lamenting that the best university in the country is placed ninth in Africa. Represented by the Wife of the Kaduna State Governor, Hajia Fatima Mukthar Yero, at the inauguration of the Centre of Excellence for Development Communication sponsored by the McAuthur Foundation at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Hajia Sambo said such a situation does not speak well of the standard of tertiary education in the country. While challenging lecturers to strive to improve through research and development, she said ABU has set a very high standard in ter-

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UNILORIN Arabic Dept HE University of Ilorin seeks students (UNILORIN) Arabic and Is-

lamic Studies Department is seeking qualified candidates for its Diploma Programme for the 2013/ 2014 academic session. It will admit candidates for the two-year programme who possess the required WASC/GCE O' Level/ Grade II Teachers' Certificate credits in, at least, three subjects (including Arabic and Islamic Studies), or their equivalents - the Higher Islamic Studies Certificate/Senior Islamic School Certificate (SISC) or Senior Arabic Certificate (Ashahadat al-thanawiyyat/Attawjihiyyah) with, at least, Jayyid (Merit) with evidence of competence to speak and write good English.

In a statement the Registrar, Mr E.D. Obafemi, noted that there would be an interview to select suitable candidates for the course. After the Diploma, students would be accepted through Direct Entry for the Bachelor of Arts Degree in Arabic, Islamic Studies, Education/Arabic and Education/Islamic Studies if they possess five credits in SSCE/GCE O-Level/ SISCE including the English Language, Arabic and Islamic Studies.

P •Mrs Amina Sambo

versity to establish projects that would advance academic in ABU, promising that such donations would be put to good use. He said the new centre has been engaged in teaching post-graduate courses, interacting with communities around Zaria and beyond. He added that the centre is an evidence of the collaboration of the university with international organisations for the advancement of education in the country. Hajia Sambo was honoured with an award of excellence. The guest speaker, Prof. Mohammed Kuta Yahaya, urged political leaders to be guided by a commitment to a democratic, participatory and responsive public information programme where people are vital. He said government mechanism and machinery must be driven by the needs of people to ensure their participation in the creation and use of information, which encourages public scrutiny, thus promoting efficiency.

Crescent Varsity admits 700

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RESCENT University, Abeokuta has welcomed 700 new students into its fold for the 2013/2014 academic session. The students, the ninth set, were admitted to study various degree courses in the Bola Ajibola College of Law, Information and Communication Technology, Environmental Sciences, Social and Management Sciences and Natural and Applied Sciences. Proprietor of the university, Prince Bola Ajibola, referred to the new students as "our pride, our vision, our mission", at their matriculation. He noted: "the creation of this university is faithmotivated to bring about balance in the field of education rather than financial benefits."

The Vice Chancellor, Prof Kehinde Okeleye told the students they were fortunate charging them to adhere to good behaviour. "You are lucky to be admitted and be able to take up the admission offer because 1.2 million candidates sat for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) that qualified you, in the first instance, for the post-UTME Screening exercise," he said. Okeleye said the enrolment has been enhanced by "benefactors, especially the governments of Kano, Zamfara, Sokoto and Lagos, who have sponsored substantial number of students on scholarship to this university." He said the university had students from virtually all the states.

•Continued on next edition

FUTA re-appoints DVC

From Tony Akowe, Kaduna

tiary education, which has made it the pride of not only Nigeria, but also Africa. She said this was evident in the impact products of the institution were making in the country and beyond. Speaking on the Centre of Excellence initiative, Hajia Sambo said that improving development communication would further equip graduates with skills and expand the pool of experts needed in Nigeria. She added that this would fast-track the achievements of new paradigm of bottom/top approach to development conception, which will encourage ownership. The ABU Vice Chancellor, Prof Abdullahi Mustapha, appealed to old students and friends of the uni-

visa costs course fee medical insurance allowance for study materials All courses have a duration of between two and twelve weeks and will start between June 2014 and February 2015. The target group is professionals (with a maximum age of 45) who are nationals of and working in one of the selected countries. While scholarships are awarded to individuals, the need for training must be demonstrated in the context of the organisation for which the applicant works. The training must help the organisation develop its capacity. This means that employers must nominate an applicant and motivate his or her application in a supporting letter.

•Cross section of matriculating students.

ROFESSOR Emmanuel Adedayo Fasakin has been re-elected as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic, by the Senate of the Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA). The re-appointment, which is for a term of two years, took effect from December 23, last year. It has been confirmed on behalf of the Council of the University by the Acting Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council , Chief Joel Madaki. Fasakin is a Professor of Fish Nutrition and Utilisation. He was Head of Department, Dean, Students Affairs, Acting Vice-Chancellor, Member, university Senate, Chairman and Member of several statutory and ad hoc committees of the University. Fasakin, 57, studied at the University of Ibadan, the Federal University of Technology, Akure and University of Plymouth, England. He is widely travelled, married and has children. The Secretary to the Council of the University, Dr Modupe Ajayi, in a letter, described the reappointment as a recognition of Fasakin’s hard work, dedication to duty and outstanding contributions to the development of FUTA.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

47

EDUCATION

New Year wish fulfilled for Lagos teachers •Car gift enthralls teachers

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HEY are teachers. Their wish for 2014 is to own cars. But they were not working towards buying one; their bank accounts did not boast of enough funds either. They just prayed at the beginning of the year that they would get a car before the year runs out. What they did not expect was that their prayers would be answered so soon. Last Thursday, Mr Johnson Alawiye of Our Lady of Fatima Primary School, Mushin and Mrs Wunmi Tolu-Alalade of Community Senior High School, Surulere were presented with brand new and fully registered cars. The keys to the KIA RIO 2013 model were handed over to the new owners at the yearly Lagos State Education Merit Award for emerging the best teachers in the primary and secondary school categories. Biology teacher, Mrs ToluAlalade said she was on top of the world. "I put in all my best, but God did it," she said. For someone who left her job at Neimeth Pharmaceutical in 2009 to teach, Mrs Tolu-Alalade is not in it for the money but for love. "Teaching is a ministry and I love it. It also gives me joy to see the children win when they go for competitions," she said. Her husband, Mr Tolulope Alalade, a Medical Doctor with the

By Medinat Kanabe

Lagos State General Hospital, Lagos Island, said he was privileged to be married to a teacher. Alalade, who is the Head of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Centre of the hospital, said he supported her from the day she started work as a teacher. "I sold the idea to her to join the teaching profession. The pay may not be much, but there is a lot of benefit," he said. Mrs Tolu-Alalade's mother, Mrs Helen Akitiloye believes that it was the hard work and commitment of her late husband, who was also a teacher, that has brought her daughter all the opportunities she has. "Her father was formerly a teacher, a dedicated, hard working and committed teacher, but he did not win anything. I believe it is the good work of her father that is opening doors for her, she said. Best Teacher, Primary School Category, Alawiye told The Nation that hard work crowned by God’s blessing made him win. He praised the Executive Secretary of the Mushin Local Government Education Authority (LGEA), Mr Yusuf Olokodana for his unbiased and supervision of schools under his care. He said: "He makes sure our work is monitored. He made sure that the award was given on merit through thorough supervision. He is a very hardworking and unbiased man,

•From right: Mrs Oladunjoye, Secretary to the Lagos State Government, Dr. Oluranti Adebule, Mrs Tolu-Alalade with her children and friends at the presentation

who does not compromise and does not tolerate laziness." Alawiye, who was overjoyed about the prize, said giving teachers award will motivate them and make the lazy ones more focused. However, he advised the government to help teachers improve their content and pedagogical skills by sending on for trainings, seminars, and workshop regularly. For Mushin Local Government Education Authority, where Mr Alawiye's school is, theirs was double joy as they were the only school that produced two winners in the award ceremony.

They also got best Non-Teaching Staff Award for JSS, which went to Miss Abiola Akerele of Igbo Owu Junior Secondary School, Mushin. The Commissioner for Education, Mrs Olayinka Oladunjoye, charged the teachers to strive hard and make sure Lagos State records a 100 per cent pass in the next West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE). She also counselled other teachers to emulate those who were rewarded. "Teach them well because you have a commitment to them. Continue to work hard. Everybody cannot win; work harder so that

you can win next year. Those who won last year are not the same people who won this year and those who won this year may also not be the same people that will win next year,” she added. Other recipients included Mr Abiodun Aiyerin of Vetland Senior Grammar School, Ifako Ijaiye (Best Principal, Senior Secondary School category), Mr. Emmanuel Adebiyi of Iju Junior Grammar School, Iju (Best Principal, Junior Secondary School category), and Mr. A. O. Ambali of St Georges Nursery and Primary School, Falomo (Best Head Teacher).

Senator Tinubu hosts One-Day governors By Sampson Unamka

•Mrs Tinubu

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ENATOR Oluremi Tinubu, has urged youths to channel their energy towards causes that can help Nigeria’s development. She spoke in Lagos during at the

fifth annual Council of One Day Governors (CODG) reunion luncheon tagged "Today's model, Tomorrow's future," which held at the Best Western Hotel, Victoria Island. It was a forum meant to reunite past winners of the Spelling Bee Competition started by New Era Foundation, her pet project, in 2001. The forum offered them a platform to interact with and learn from successful personalities, business captains and political leaders. At the event, Senator Tinubu, who is President of the Foundation, expressed joy with the Foundation’s efforts to impact young people positively through programmes, including overseas trips, competitions and camp activities.

"The foundation is helping a great deal to expose the youth to different areas of life and other cultures to help broaden their knowledge, widen their horizon and impact them positively. I commend the team, our sponsors, our partners including the Lagos State Ministry of Education and Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base (LADOL), board and candidates for a great and fulfilling year," she said. Mrs Tinubu said the New Era Youth Camp (NEYOCA) has been making positive impact on young people. "I am particularly excited over the joy, inspiration and equipping that the opening of the New Era Youth Camp (NEYOCA) is providing to young people. Seeing the evident excitement of these kids as they

share great, heart moving testimonies about their NEYOCA experience truly reinforces my conviction to forge ahead with the dream of delivering world class youth development centres in Nigeria, " she added. Executive Director of the foundation, Mr Yemi Osilaja was happy about its achievements in its 11 years, particularly last year when it witnessed encouraging growth. "Our commitment to the vision for New Era Foundation to be a formidable and sustainable enterprise for social transformation in youth development, environmental health and women empowerment remains solid. A lot of resources have already gone into developing the camp and much

more is still needed towards reaching our goal of functional resource centres that are ideal for all youth. We want to be at the forefront of a campaign that helps the youth take command of their future," he said. The event was well attended by notable personalities, including the wife of the Lagos State governor, Mrs Abimbola Fashola; twotime commissioner, Dr Leke Pitan; Chief Molade Okoya-Thomas; Mrs Oprah Benson, Education Commissioner, Mrs Olayinka Oladunjoye; former Lagos Deputy Governor, Mrs Sarah Sosan; Dr Amy Jadesimi, Managing Director, LADOL; Senator Babafemi Ojodu, Hon Wahab Alawiye-King and Hon Tunde Ibrahim.

"I want all citizens of Lagos to pay taxes regularly so the government can improve social amenities," she said. For Chidinma, tax income has played an important role in improv-

ing her school. She said her school used to be called Tambolo High School because it was infested by an ant locally called Tambolo. This is no longer the case.

Essayists share stage with governor

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HE seventh Annual Lagos State Taxation Stakeholders’ Conference of last Thursday did not just serve as a forum to discuss tax issues alone, it gave the opportunity for secondary school winners of the Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) Tax Essay Competition to learn more about the taxes they wrote about in their essays and be rewarded by Governor, Babatunde Fashola. The event, held at the Haven Events Centre, Ikeja, GRA, attracted representatives of corporate organisations, institutes, market women and other taxpaying institutions and individuals who heard various government agencies give account of their stewardship. The pupils heard from the governor how Lagos has been able to increase its Internally-Generated Revenue (IGR) through taxes. As a result, he said the government was able to budget N486 billion this year compared to N14 billion in 1999. With income generated from taxes, he said the state would be able to match the kind of infrastructure and

By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

social/welfare services found in the developed world. The six winners from the junior and senior categories were presented with plaques, cash prizes and computers for writing on various topics on how taxes can be utilised to better the society. In the Junior category, Queen Rita Edvbir of Western College, Yaba, lifted the trophy and went home with a scholarship grant of N250,000 and a computer for her school. David Iwoera of Muslim Junior College came second and got N200,000 and a computer while 10-year old JSS2 pupil, Adesuwa Inegbenebo of Ogba Junior Grammar School came third and was rewarded with N150,000. Chidinma Ilo of Eletu-Odibu Senior High School, Yaba won the Senior Category. She beat Blessing Okeke of Aquinas Private College, Surulere, and Olayemi Bola Shalom of State Seniro High School, Ibereko to the second and third positions. In an interview with The Nation, Rita said from her research on the topic: "The Impact of Tax Payment

• From left: Queen, David and Adesuwa, the junior category winners with their trophies.

on the Lagos of our Dreams,” she was able to learn how taxes have help the government provide infrastructural facilities and urged all taxable adults to pay their taxes.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

48

EDUCATION

Lagos inspectors to use new methods

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O longer will inspectors visit public schools in Lagos and instill fear in teachers and pupils. They are now called Quality Assurance Evaluators and are being reorientated on how to monitor schools to help them achieve quality. The Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LSUBEB) organised eight days of training for the evaluators to learn skills that would enable them assess schools appropriately in partnership with the Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (ESSPIN), a DFID initiative. The training opened last Wednesday at the SUBEB Hall, Maryland, with the first three days dedicated to report writing for 20 evaluators from the Local Government Education Authorities (LGEA) and three from SUBEB headquarters to brush up their report writing skills. The remaining five days, which ends tomorrow, would focus on assessment skills for 35 evaluators from the LGEAS and SUBEB. At the opening, SUBEB

EDUTALK

Greener seaweed

By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

Chairman, Mrs Gbolahan Daodu, represented by the Board Secretary, Mr Tunji Adefuye, said the new system is a shift to make pupils in public schools achieve learning outcomes. She said: "The concept of Quality Assurance Education was adopted by the state government in 2009. This is a paradigm shift from the old system of inspection which laid more emphasis on the efficiency of the school system rather than emphasising effectiveness and improved learning outcomes. "Whole school evaluation is the bedrock of quality assurance evaluation in education. The strengths and weakness of the schools are identified and suggestions made for improvement. “The objective of the workshop is primarily to equip the evaluators with the knowledge and skills that will enable them carry out the assignment of quality assuring schools and grading them appropriately." Director, Quality Assurance,

‘We will send pre-assessment forms to the head teacher to assess herself before the evaluator’s visit. After the visit, we compare the two’

M •Mrs Daodu

SUBEB, Mrs Habibat Daramosu told The Nation in an interview that unlike the old system where reports on schools were solely based on what inspectors noted, in the new dispensation, head teachers, parents and the host community contribute to the assessment to provide a clearer picture. "In the past, we were like police officers going to catch thieves; but now it is going to be all encompassing - involving the community, head teacher, pupils and the evaluators. The report is not based on the evaluator's judgment alone. We will send pre-assessment forms to the head teacher to assess herself before the evaluator’s visit. After the visit, we compare the two," she said. In case of lapses, Mrs Daramosu said corrections would be recommended and follow-up visits made to ensure they are effected. "Where we visit a school and find some lapses, the school will be informed and then there will be a follow-up visit to see whether the lapses have been addressed," she said.

• Mrs Odey (middle) inaugurating the borehole with the support of (from left) Mrs. Victoria Osung Bassey, Director of Inspectorate, Ministry of Education; Ntufam Ebam, Chairman, Cross River State SUBEB; Ikezu, and Adefemi Adeniran, PR Head, Airtel.

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Airtel donates borehole, materials to school

ELECOMS firm, Airtel Nigeria, has donated a borehole and learning materials to one of its adopted schools, Presbyterian Primary School 2, Ediba in Abi Local Government Area of Cross Rivers State. This is coming about six months after the telecoms operator donated a block of classrooms to the school under its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative tagged 'Adopt-a-School.' The learning materials distributed to pupils at the event included exercise books, note books, school bags and uniforms. Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Segun Ogunsanya, who was represented by the company's Zonal Business Manager, South East Region, Onyekwucha Ikezu, presented the items to the workers and pupils of the school in the presence of the Permanent Secretary, Cross River State Ministry of

By Jane Chijioke

Education, Mrs Anna Odey, who represented the Commissioner of Education, Prof Effiong E. Effiong. The traditional ruler of Ediba HRH, Ovai George Egbe, OvaiOsai 1 of Ediba and senior officials from the ministry also witnessed the hand over. Ogunsanya said Airtel is committed to its strategic partnerships with governments and organisations to improve teaching and learning in primary schools across the country. "A great environment is also critical to the development of a sound mind. It is, therefore, in recognition of the importance of education and as part our Corporate Social Responsibility initiative that we have committed to the adoption of public primary schools across Nigeria," he said. On his part, Prof Offiong ex-

with

pressed great appreciation for the support the state has been receiving from Airtel Nigeria and urged other corporate organisations to take a cue from the company and join in the development of their operating environment. The Head Teacher of the school, whose address was read by Master Flavour Johnson, a primary four pupil, told of how Airtel made the school the first of its kind in Abi Local Government with modern facilities which have stimulated effective learning. She said one of the pupils came second position in the 2012 Read and Write competition in the state. Master Johnson’s excellent delivery of the speech earned him a resounding applause. Ogunsanya presented him N100,000 scholarship from the Staff Philanthropic initiative of the company. The Airtel’s initiative is part of its contribution to the development of education in Nigeria.

ANY in my generation should remember reading the Little Mermaid. I read the Enid Blyton version of the book in primary school. I loved the story and pitied the mermaid who fell in love with a handsome prince and swapped Kofoworola her fish tail for human legs so she could visit him. Her dream ended in a tragedy. However, Walt Disney creKofosagie@yahoo.com ated a happy-ending cartoon 08054503077 (SMS only) version of the story which many of us watched - even up to secondary school. The cartoon was a hit - complete with beautiful songs - one of which I loved so much. It was titled Under the Sea. In the song, the singer, Sebastine the Crab, warned Ariel, the Little Mermaid, to stay put in the water kingdom and not go in search of the Prince. It told her that the world out there may be more attractive but was full of perils she would not be protected from. The first stanza reads: The seaweed is always greener In somebody else's lake You dream about going up there But that is a big mistake Just look at the world around you Right here on the ocean floor Such wonderful things surround you What more are you lookin' for? Why have I gone this length to tell about a story from my childhood? Because when I read about Nigerian students being killed abroad, it reminds me of the song and the story. Sebastine was right. The Little Mermaid soon found out that life on the shores was not as easy going as her watery home. Last year, I read a sad story of a Nigerian teenager who was enrolled in a secondary school in Ghana dying in suspicious circumstances. The school claimed that the boy drowned but the parents believe he was killed because of the marks they found on his body. They petitioned the House of Representatives in Abuja to help them seek redress. Just last week, the House Committee on The Diaspora warned Nigerian students to be wary of enrolling at Cyprus International University, Nicosia, where a Nigerian died last July. The student, Gabriel Soriwe, was knocked down by a drunk driver, whose identity was shielded by both the institution and the police. They sent the young man's body home unaccompanied, and without his possessions - leaving his parents without answers to their questions. I sympathise with both parents on their losses. But we must also look inward. Must we send our wards to study abroad just because we can afford it? There are some countries that clearly boast of the best schools and facilities for quality education. However, there are some others that, in my own opinion, are simply not worth the trouble. For instance, I have never understood why Nigerians would go to countries like Ghana, Benin Republic and Togo to attend private universities when we have good private universities in Nigeria that cannot fill their quota of students. It is true that there is a problem gaining admission into the public universities in Nigeria because of space constraints; and that some parents would want to spare their wards the trouble of incessant academic disruption. However, our schools are not so hopeless we must run away from them. I strongly believe many of our private universities beat those of the West African countries we send our wards to. The one that is more absurd to me is sending a child to a secondary school abroad. Besides the fact that at that age, children are still too young to be far from their homes, there are enough primary and secondary schools in Nigeria. We do not face the crisis of access at the secondary school level that we face at the tertiary level. Parents have so many primary and secondary schools of the right quality to choose from if they will just search. We may have challenges of water, bad roads, electricity, security, and poor economy but in Nigeria, we are still at home where we do not feel inferior going about our daily businesses; where we are not afraid to speak or act in certain ways for fear of offending people; where we can rise to any level if we make the effort. Nigeria is far from perfect, but the seaweed is not as green as we think in the other lake. Also, these countries we want to go to did not become attractive overnight. They laid the right foundation for their schools. If we do the same, we may as well enjoy our own schools, just like we are increasingly beginning to accept our own musical stars.

Belo-Osagie

‘We may have challenges of water, bad roads, electricity, security, and poor economy but in Nigeria, we are still at home - where we do not feel inferior going about our daily businesses; where we are not afraid to speak or act in certain ways for fear of offending people; where we can rise to any level if we make the effort. Nigeria is far from perfect, but the seaweed is not as green as we think in the other lake’


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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POLITICS ‘APC’ll provide better leadership’

All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) chieftain Chief Martin Agbaso is the elder brother of the impeached deputy governor of Imo State, Sir Jude Agbaso. He spoke with reporters in Lagos on the Okorocha Administration, the allegations of bribery against the former deputy governor, the investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other issues. EMMANUEL OLADESU was there.

The Chairman of the Public Account Committee in the House of Representatives, Hon. Solomon Olamilekan Adeola, represents Alimoso Constituency, Lagos. He spoke with MUSA ODOSHIMOKHE on national issues.

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‘Agbaso was not impeached because of corruption’

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HAT is the latest on the investigation of the bribery allegation against former Imo State Deputy Governor Jude Agbaso by the EFCC? In the third week of March, last year, my brother, Mr. Jude Ikechukwu Agbaso, the former deputy governor of Imo State, was accused of receiving N458 million bribe from a Lebanese contractor. Then, I, in very clear terms, said that my brother had nothing to do with the bribery. It was Rochas Okorocha who approved the contract, awarded it, paid the said contractor N1.3 billion of Imo State money without due process, without even an award letter or any form of advance payment guarantee. So, the curious thing at the point was, why would a man who did all this, who got all the benefits that were unprecedented from the governor, go to the deputy governor who was away in India on official assignment, and give him a bribe of almost 40 per cent of the money collected? That didn’t make sense to me. And, I said that, we, as a family, would do every thing humanly possible to get to the crux of the matter; we would do everything to find out who took this money, where the money is domiciled and who the beneficiaries were. Then, the news broke. The EFCC, after putting us through grueling, painful, eight months of investigation, finally cleared my brother or any Agbaso for that matter, of any wrong doing, of any involvement whatsoever in the alleged bribe scandal. Again, this man went to the Imo State House of Assembly and said to them: “I am a Lebanese contractor. I have taken N458 million of Imo State money and given to the deputy Governor.” They kissed this man and told him to walk away and began hunting a deputy governor who knew nothing. Okorocha said that, as long as Jude Agbaso remained the deputy governor, his life was at risk; that Agbaso could kill him. This is someone whose deputy governor was impeached, someone who got into office on the same ticket as you, was impeached in the most brazen manner, malicious and mischevious manner, in a show of shame that this country has never seen before. Are you saying that the impeachment did not follow the due process? Before the impeachment panel could even sit to look at the papers, a report had been sent to the House of Assembly. Before the House of Assembly could finish the process, a deputy governor nominee had been selected. Before the man could say Jack Robinson, a new deputy governor was sworn in and yet, the governor said he didn’t know anything about it. Was there an agreement on one term between you and the governor? There has been a catalogue of

anomalies committed by the administration of Rochas Okorocha. You are just determined to destroy my name in the eyes of the Imo people and Nigerians. You had an agreement with me that you were going to be governor for four years and we both signed this agreement, which was witnessed by the National Chairman of the APGA. And you made this pronouncement in churches, in halls, in stadia; everywhere you said to people that you had an agreement with Martin Agbaso that you would be governor for one term, and after that, the governorship would go to Owerri Zone, which rightfully should produce the next governor. Instead of doing that, you are looking for a way to tarnish my image. But, it’s not going to work because there is a God out there, who rules in the affairs of men and women. You can’t continue to mislead the people, and lie your way through life as if it’s business as usual. Could you shed more light on the so-called EFCC’s clearance of Jude Agbaso For the first time in this country, somebody was accused of something and the person wrote to the EFCC, the ICPC to come and investigate him. He said: “If you find me guilty, jail me. But, if you find me innocent, say it so I can clear myself. Now, the job of the EFCC is to investigate the matter. When they are through with investigation, if they find you wanting on any of the allegations, then, they take you to the the court for prosecution. The `EFCC has concluded this investigation and found nothing. The money, which was said to have been given to you as bribe, was lodged in two accounts; one in Dubai and one in Lebanon. We know where these monies are. The EFCC has confirmed that Jude Agbaso did not commit the crime. Joseph Dina himself has said in a written statement that he did not give him bribe. If Jude Agbaso committed any crime, the EFCC would be prosecuting him in court. What is your next step now on the matter? First of all, I owe the people of Imo State a big apology. I was misled by Governor Rochas Okorocha. I did not know his antecedents before I went into an agreement with him. By everything he has done in Imo State, he has shown that he is a person who does not honour agreement. What I saw was a philanthropist, who trains other people’s children. And I believed that, if he could do that, when he gets into a position of authority, our people would be better off. Everything I did was to propel Imo State forward. Because I was already in court for three and half years, fighting a legal battle over elections I won in 2007, I was not prepared to go into an election in 2011. This guy came and, with his

‘Before the impeachment panel could even sit to look at the papers, a report had been sent to the House of Assembly. Before the House of Assembly could finish the process, a deputy governor nominee had been selected. Before the man could say Jack Robinson, a new deputy governor was sworn in and yet, the governor said he didn’t know anything about it’

•Agbaso

normal talk-talk, I thought we had a good candidate. Please, Ndi-Imo, I am sorry for bringing this man. He brought himself and I helped him. I thought it was the best thing to do at the time. But that is the limit of a human being. I could not see tomorrow. Now, he is saying that Jude Agbaso was incompetent. How can you say that a man is incompetent when his boss, the governor, was the one who brought the contractor, paid him, awarded the contract without any advance payment guarantee or letter of award. This payment did not go through the ministry at all. By the time the commissioner who was the deputy governor knew what was happening, the money had been paid. In fact, the first N200 million that was given to that man was paid in cash. So, how do you say that such a man is incompetent? Is it true that the governor paid you for the APGA ticket in 2011? I expected an apology from Rochas Okorocha. Yet, instead of apologising to someone who invested heavily in his campaign, and to the young man who has worked with you, you try to destroy him. Instead of apologising, you’re even undermining the letter which exonerated him. The most shameful thing that has come out of Rochas Okorocha’s mouth is that he paid Martin Agbaso for the APGA ticket. I gave Rochas Okorocha my word that I would help him become the governor. I funded his campaign. I brought people to give money. I don’t want to mention their names so I do not embarrass them. How can someone who he is now owing money for funding the campaign be the same person he gave money for ticket? Everybody saw me canvassing for votes in every village. My house was the command headquarters for the elections; everything was done in my house. What thank you do I get? You try to destroy my family name. And you see him singing church choruses and quoting the bible. When it’s convenient, he quotes the Qu’ran. Who is he to keep trying to mislead Nigerians and assume that we are foolish?

S the Chairman of the Public Account Committee in the House of Representatives, do you think the President has run a transparent government? I want to score the government very low. This is because the Federal Government has not allowed true representation and independence in the areas of the presentation of its account books. I can tell you, the Auditor-General is still being guarded by the Federal Government. The constitution is clear about the role of the Auditor-General, which makes the office to be truly independent. How do I mean? This is because the office has been poorly funded by the government. By that act, it cannot perform its duty to the fullest. As such, it is still the Federal Government that is dictating the pace for the Auditor-General. It is in this regard that we are looking at the under-performance of the office of the Auditor-General. Until that office is truly independent, until it is fully funded and until the office is returned to the legislature, the socalled rendering of accounts by the Federal Government will still continue to remain poor. It will hardly meet up with the standard of the best practice, in terms of rendering accounts. Is the Auditor-General supposed to report to the National Assembly? We are supposed to confirm the appointment of the Auditor- General. The Auditor-General is supposed to report to the legislature, but as it is, the funding of that office still resides within the purview of the executive. And as such, we cannot guarantee authenticity of the report, guard against corruption and accountability. Some senators are preparing to defect from to the All Progressives Congress (APC)... What you have witnessed in the House of Representatives is a tip of the iceberg and a step in the right direction. It is a pointer to the fact that Nigerians are ready to take the bull by the horns. What is happening currently is just a true reflection of Nigerians’ expectation. As it is now, we are currently controlling the House of Representatives and we are in charge. We have succeeded in becoming the majority in the House. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila will become the Majority Leader of the House. By the defection of 37 members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the total number of members of the APC is now more than the PDP. The constitution is

•Adeola

very clear; that with the simple majority the leadership of the party should be established with the controlling party. So, ordinarily, the APC will take over the leadership of the House in January. What happens to the Speaker, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal? Well, as it is, the Speaker was elected by us. He is not a Speaker that was imposed by the PDP. This is the Speaker of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who was truly elected by the representatives of this country. And since he is still doing his job very well, that is, putting in the forefront the paramount interest of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, he will continue to enjoy our support. He will continue to enjoy our support in numerous ways. What the Speaker is currently doing is highly commendable. People within and outside the country are commending his efforts. Will this boost the APC’s electoral fortunes in 2015? In numerous places, where the federal system is being practiced, you will never witness and you will never see where the domineering party controls both the executive and the legislature. In the past, at least, in the last 10 years or so, the PDP, because they had succeeded in rigging continuously, nobody has challenged them. That has allowed the party to dominate both the executive and the legislature. But as it is now, given what we have succeeded in doing in the House of Representatives, the Senate will equally be taken over by the APC. And once that is done, I can assure you that it is just a matter of time. In 2015, the APC will be controlling the executive.

•From left: Members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Merger Working Committee, United Kingdom: Women Leader Mrs Pauline Bakare-Taiwo; Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Mallam Aminu Ahmadu; Chairman, Alhaji Garba Sani and General Secretary, Dr. Ibrahim Emokpaire, at a meeting in the UK.


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

52

NEWS

Drug kingpin who ‘Fight against cannot be deported

poverty cannot be won overnight’

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Millennium Development Goals (MDG), Dr Precious Gbeneol, spoke with Editors in Lagos on the activities of the MDG Office. OLUKOREDE YISHAU was there.

A

S we count-down towards 2015, what are the investments you look forward to in the area of reducing extreme poverty, especially bearing in mind it is the first MDG’s target? Like you may well know, the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on MDGs was established in 2005 as part of the robust mechanism for coordinating the efforts and executing the initiatives targeted at attaining the MDGs in Nigeria. The funding, which is drawn from the Debt Relief Grant is appropriated in the annual budget to scale-up existing high-impact MDG-related interventions. It is meant to supplement capital expenditure, not to pay debts, salaries or other recurrent expenditure. Since my appointment, I have brought my passion to innovate and execute high impact projects on the vulnerable to bear and as we count down to 2015, we are scaling up investments in a bid to reducing extreme poverty. The fight against poverty in Nigeria is an on-going task and I can however confirm to you that a good percentage of the MDGs fund has gone into the fight against extreme poverty and we are still making more investments towards eradicating poverty in the country. These are evident in the projects executed and spread across the country. Also in addition to the direct intervention from the MDGs office, we have been supporting other sister agencies with funds aimed at reducing poverty. Agriculture has not had its dues for some time now. What is your office doing on this? We are also taking steps to accelerate the growth of the economy through a stable macroeconomic environment. As well as address infrastructural gaps and create an enabling environment necessary for a market-based, private sectordriven economy with policies that ensure pro-poor economic activities. Growth recorded in Nigeria economy in the past 10 years, particularly in the agricultural sector has led to a remarkable reduction in proportion of underweight children, from 35.7 per cent in 1990 to 27.4 per cent in 2012. Government at federal, state and local government levels have continued in their efforts to develop agriculture and create jobs. This include creating an enabling environment for agro-business, including building critical infrastructure, making regulatory services transparent and providing sustainable access to enterprise finance. In bid to improve food security, OSSAP-MDGs has increased support to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. In 2011, N541 million was provided for agricultural investment targeted at improving food security. In 2012, the sum of N5.1 billion was allocated while in 2013, the sum of N4.73 billion was appropriated in the Federal Budget to foster food security. The increased allocation in 2012 and

2013 was done to support Government’s Agricultural Transformation Agenda. What initiatives has the MDG’s office designed towards curbing poverty? MDG 1 is the responsibility of government at all levels, ranging from the federal to the local government. A large chunk of our national budget is aimed at tackling goal one either directly or indirectly. Construction of roads, investment in healthcare, trade, agriculture, power are all geared towards reducing poverty. My office exist to fill the gaps and advise policy makers on the areas where more attention is needed at any given time. To tackle poverty effectively, there is a need for a robust approach. Increasing economic participation by majority of the populace in a diversified economy (for instance in an agriculture-based economy that provides employment for most Nigerians that live in the rural areas) is a sine-qua-non to bring people out of poverty. The place of quality basic education followed by some sort of skill acquisition to reduce employment poverty is well known. Other factors such as access to quality health care, good infrastructure, security, access to capital by the disadvantaged in the form of Social Safety Nets like Conditional Cash Transfers and micro-credit to boost Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SME) are imperatives that must be in place to win the fight against poverty. What is the role of your Special Projects Unit? The MDGs Special Projects Unit in my office recorded remarkable success within its short period of existence. The Project deals with the execution of particular interventions in Constituencies with the interventions aimed at addressing development gaps. The span includes education, health, water supply, small scale power supply, and skills acquisition centers. Completion rates for the 2012 budget year approach 98%. Take us through some of the responses or reactions of Nigeria’s rural poor, particularly with regards the initiatives set up towards the achievement of the goal… The responses have been encouraging. Though we are not where we intend to be, it is however evident that lives of the rural poor are been impacted daily. A good number of them are taking advantage of the various schemes implemented by the office to move out of poverty. There are numerous reports of some of these people who got little grants from the office and have successfully turned it into big investment in the areas of fisheries and others. Also most of the enrolees in the conditional cash transfer scheme are also saying good bye to poverty already. Recently, I was in Ekiti State to flag off the scheme in the state and you could see the jubilant crowd of beneficiaries. Our intention is to take many lives as possible out of poverty before the deadline. Poverty reduction (MDG 1) is the

•Dr Gbeneol

The fight against poverty cannot be won overnight. It requires concerted effort from all stakeholders including federal, state, local governments, private sector and individuals. Everyone must display commitment if the battle must be won. Already, things are looking up and the hunger target has already been met

foundation for the other MDGs. Success with this Goal enhances the likelihood of attaining the other Goals. If you look at it critically, if a community is empowered, the community will construct hospitals and will have access to good nutrition, quality healthcare services as well as quality educational facilities. I can say that the sum total of the MDGs is embedded in Goal 1. Everything revolves around poverty. It is pertinent to point out clearly that the eradication of poverty is not the sole preserve of OSSAP-MDGs. Poverty has multiple causality, which should be addressed. All hands must therefore be on deck to effectively deal with this problem. What have been some of the challenges in trying to scale-up initiatives that will support the achievement of the goal? First of all, we must accept that funding is never enough to do all that we would have loved to do, so we prioritise. Nigeria is a massive country. For you to make impact across the country, you need mega sum, but our budget is limited. In the same vein, counterpart fund has also been a major challenge. Since development is the shared primary responsibility of government at all levels, most of our projects or programs are counterpart funded by the sub national governments. This synergy between the federal and sub national governments have helped

the country to move faster on the MDGs track, however, we sometimes experience delays in release of counterpart funds and this could reduce our speed. Although funding can never be enough in the course of development, the political will demonstrated by the President and judicious use of the available resources is however making up for this gap. Another issue is trust. Because of previous failed promises, citizens tend to be skeptical about the genuine intention of government interventions, hence ownership and buyin is hampered. However, over time, people have come out of their shells to support our programmes and projects. We are calling for more support for the MDGs because all hands must be on deck for us to attain the goals. The is also the problem of vandalism, lack of ownership, security and maintenance of projects by the communities, acceptance and usage of the projects already executed due largely to cultural considerations as well as challenges of executing projects in some difficult and ‘hostile’ terrains. Will Nigeria achieve the number one MDG’s target by the year 2015? The fight against poverty cannot be won overnight. It requires concerted effort from all stakeholders including federal, state, local governments, private sector and individuals. Everyone must display com-

mitment if the battle must be won. Already, things are looking up and the hunger target has already been met. The progress recorded by Nigeria in goal has received international recognition with the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) honouring Nigeria for meeting the hunger target well ahead the 2015 deadline. Government efforts have led to the reduction of the number of Nigerians suffering from hunger from 19.31 million in 1990 and 1992 to 13.38 in 2010 and 2012. There has also been a decline in the prevalence of under-nourishment in the country from 19.3 per cent in 1990/ 1991 to 8.5 per cent by 2010/2012. This is below the MDG target of 9.7 per cent that was set for 2015. The implementation of the CCT Scheme has helped Nigeria attain Goal 1 of MDGs by preventing over 100,000 basic school aged children from dropping out of school. It has also helped indigent beneficiaries especially widows and the aged realise the dreams of sending their children back to school and access to primary health care. The scheme has also encouraged utilisation of basic health service infrastructure in the rural areas because of addition of health component to the conditionalities for under-five children to access basic health services of immunisation, vaccination before households receive cash transfers. Overall, the CCT programme have helped increased school enrolment and retention while at the same time increasing household food consumption with improved living conditions of those concerned. Conditional Cash Transfer has also helped in the improvements of gender parity since they provide funds to girls incentivising them to stay in school. Nigeria investment in CCT is expected to lead to significant changes in women empowerment and increased socio-economic inclusion for vulnerable groups. OSSAP- MDGs projected that all the 36 states of the federal including FCT would soon be benefitting from the CCT under the Conditional Grants Scheme. This milestone will immensely go-along- way to further reducing poverty and social exclusion currently evident in many parts of the country.


53

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

NATURAL HEALTH THE NATION

E-mail:- health@thenationonlineng.net

How to treat prostate diseases Prostate problems are on the rise among middle age men. WALE ADEPOJU writes on the causes and solution.

A

RE you a 40-year-old man? Do you urinate often or have pains while urinating? Check your prostate. A naturopath, Dr Godwin Ihesie, said men were likely to develop prostate problems as they advance in age. According to him, inflammation, enlargement and cancer affect the prostate. Ihesie, the proprietor of Natural Health Services in Ajuwon, Iju Hills in Ogun State, said the major symptoms of prostate vary. “Some of the major symptoms are painful and difficult urination, difficulty in stopping urination and frequent urination because of incomplete emptying of the bladder. “There could be presence of blood or pus in the urine. Some men may experience waist or lower abdominal pain while urinating. There can also be fever or general malaise, which can be depression,” he added. Ihesie said diagnosis was important in treating prostate, adding that men should check their prostate regularly. “They should have urine microscopy culture sensitivity (UMCS) to know if the problem is caused by infections. Some physicians may ask them to do a digital rectum examination (DRE), prostate scan and prostate specific antigen (PSA),” he added. The condition, he said, is better treated with herbs instead of orthodox medicine, adding that with the latter, there can be complications.

123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 Stories by Wale Adepoju 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 123456789012345678901234567890121234567 •Corn silk

“Urine retention if not addressed can lead to kidney damage and inhibit other parts of the body. This is why physicians will insert catheter into the penis to remove the urine so that it doesn’t damage the kidneys,” he said. Treatment, he said, differs in the treatment of prostate, because there are different diseases that can affect the prostate. “If it is inflammation of the prostate known as prostatitis, herbs with anti-inflammatory or anti-microbial effect, such as corn silk, or a combination of phylantus and corn silk, golden seal, turmeric (yellow ginger) and other herbal plants are

Nature’s remedy for fibroid

T

HERE is hope for women suffering from uterine fibroid. A naturopath, Dr Solomon Abutoh, said though the diease is difficult to treat, “nature has a remedy for it”. He said herbs made from bitter leaf known as ewuro in Yoruba, onugbu in Igbo, eyinbisowo known botanically as phylantus amarus, mistletoe known botanically as viscum album and afomo onishana in Yoruba and other herbs and roots, can shrink the fibroid. He said only in very rare cases that women with fibroid conceive, adding that at times people give the impression that sufferers are pregnant because of the protrusion of the stomach. He described uterine fibroid as an exclusive reproductive abnormality in w o me n . “ Th e wo m b o r uterus is an abode for the formation of foetus, which translates to pregnancy,” he added.

The traditional healer said due to complications in growths, fibroid do occur. The condition, he said, is very painful as it causes abnormal bleeding during menstruation. He advised against the use of orthodox methods in treating the ailment, saying surgery does not tackle it as it “usually results in re-growth”. “In traditional medicine, herbal concoctions are prepared to shrink the fibroid, thereby preparing the way for conception,” Abutoh said. He said fibroid can be prevented if young women marry early. Fibroid, he said, can be prevented if young women marry and conceive before they turn 31. “The incidence of fibroid is common in women from 30 years and above, but younger women can also have it,” he added. Abutoh urged young women to avoid multiple sex partners. “By being promis-

used to prepare a concoction which the sufferer should drink daily. “On prostate enlargement, onion is used. Even when the urinary bladder is blocked, the juice of onions can be drunk every three hours to open it. A combination of phylantus and corn silk is also effective in shrinking an enlarged prostate. Sam-paper leaf known in Yoruba as ewe epin, small flower willow herb, saw palmento berry, among others, are used to prepare concoctions,” Ihesie said. He said prostate cancer should be handled by a qualified traditional medicine practitioner. Ihesie said prevention was bet-

12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 12345678901234567890123456789012123456 •Golden seal 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 12345678901234567891234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 •Ginger 1234567890123456789 ter than cure. “Men should live 1234567890123456789 healthy lives. They should avoid 1234567890123456789 smoking and drinking, eat plenty 1234567890123456789 of vegetables and fruits. Fruits 1234567890123456789 1234567890123456789 such as water melon, carrot, and 1234567890123456789 red guava, are rich in zinc, bitter 1234567890123456789 carotene and lycophine, among others “They should eat tomatoes, red pepper known in Hausa as tatashe, onions, garlic and dark green vegetables. “They should also avoid stress and excessive consumption of aphrodisiac.” He said the causes of inflammation of the prostate were infections, such as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and other kind of infections. The prostatitis can occur at any age but it is common among young men, he added. “Prostate enlargement of benign prostate hypertrophy (BPH) is

•Ihesie

seen among men who are 45 and above. It is caused by hormonal changes, which occur in that age range. There are so many factors responsible for this. They are stress, eating habits and unwholesome lifestyles, and alcohol consumption and smoking. “Prostate cancer, which is usually a malignant degeneration of the prostate, occurs in middle ages but very common in people who are 60 and above. We have witnessed high incidence of this ailment among men of that age range.”

12345678901234567 1234567890123456 12345678901234567890123456789012 12345678901234567 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 1234567890123456 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 12345678901234567 1234567890123456712345678901234567890123456789012 123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 1234567890123456 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 12345678901234567 12345678901234567890123456789012 1234567890123456 12345678901234567 12345678901234567890123456789012 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 1234567890123456 12345678901234567123456789012345678901234567890121234567890123456 12345678901234567 12345678901234567890123456789012 1234567890123456 12345678901234567 12345678901234567890123456789012 1234567890123456 12345678901234567 •Bitter leaf •Abutoh 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 12345678901234567 •Mistletoe

cuous, they are likely to contract infections, veneral diseases, and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs),“ he said. He urged women who have fibroid to change their lifestyles, adding that they should reduce their eating of red meat and fatty foods because the disease thrives on them.


H

54

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

NATURAL HEALTH

Herbal Product of Year 2013…Jobelyn (3)

C

'within-subject' analysis using the paired two-tailed t-test, as well as 'between-groups' analysis, using the unpaired two-tailed t-test.

LINICAL Efficacy of a West African Sorghum bicolor-Based Traditional Herbal Preparation Jobelyn Shows Increase Hemoglobin and CD4 +T-Lymphocyte Counts in HIV + Patients This column concludes the three-part series of HERBAL PRODUCT OF YEAR 2013... JOBELYN. It answers a major question asked by many readers who were surprised to read in the first two parts that a cure for HIV may, indeed, exist, let alone in a herbal formula. This column is a feature of the publication, in a peer reviewed respectable journal, of the research of Jobelyn in HIV therapy.

Results

Abstract Objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate a traditional herbal preparation Jobelyn® for its effects on anemia and CD4+ T cell counts in HIV+ patients in Nigeria. Design: An open-label pilot study involving 10 confirmed HIV+ patients who were not receiving antiretroviral therapy (ARVT) was performed, where the patients consumed Jobelyn® for eight weeks, at a dose of 500mg twice daily. The pilot study was followed by a controlled trial involving 51 patients, all confirmed HIV+, where the patients with CD4+ T cell counts below 350 cells/ uL were receiving ARVT. The eight patients with baseline CD4+ T cell counts above 350 cells/uL received Jobelyn®. The remaining patients who all received ARVT were randomised to ARVT alone versus ARVT + Jobelyn® for 12 weeks.

Introduction There is a worldwide recognition of the vital roles of the need for integrated interventions, including herbal medicines, as a necessary tool in global health-care, particularly in third world countries with poor access to pharmaceutical therapeutic strategies that are widely used in industrialised countries. With a focus on the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the World Health Organisation encourages the use of available resources for primary health care (PHC). It further recommends that governments give high priority to the use and incorporation of proven traditional remedies into a comprehensive health care. Despite the well-developed pharmaceutical industry in industrialised countries, the standard-of-care in most third-world countries place emphasis on the use of local resources such as traditionally used medicinal plants. Jobelyn® is a natural product developed from tropical plants found within the Nigerian flora. Toxicological evaluation in laboratory animals has shown a satisfactory safety and side effects profile. It has been found to induce rapid and marked improvement in anemia. The suggested mechanism of action was an immune-boosting effect, which is interesting in light of the presence of anti-viral peptides in some parts of the Sorghum plant, as well as unique polyphenol compounds identified in Jobelyn®. Evidence for in-vitro for many biological properties of Jobelyn® was recently published. The data includes immune modulation, activation of Natural Killer cells involved in antiviral immune defense actions, and up-regulating of the production of anti-viral chemokines. Jobelyn®'s effects on anaemia lead to the speculation whether the effect on red blood cell production as well as production of other cell types may be positively affected. Limited use in uncontrolled trials in antiretroviral-naive HIV-infected subjects as well as patients on Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Therapy (HAART) has suggested some improvement in several haematological parameters and quality of life. HAART uses a combination of reverse transcriptase inhibitors and protease inhibitors and is the current standard drug treatment of HIV/AIDS. Appropriate and consistent use of HAART can help reduce viral load and allow for some immune system reconstitution, including an increase in CD4+ T cell counts. However, even with heavy subsidy, HAART is neither accessible nor affordable to a majority of people living with HIV/AIDS in third-world countries. Use of HAART is also limited by potential toxicity and side effects, as well as development of resistant strains of HIV. Only patients whose biological profiles fit the eligibility criteria are typically treated with HAART. These limitations underline the need for continued search for viable alternatives or adjuncts to HAART. Increasing use of Jobelyn® by many HIV+ patients and people with anaemia justify further evaluation of its efficacy for support of production of lymphocytes and red blood cells in people with bone marrow suppression. This study was, therefore, designed to address these questions. Two clinical pilot studies were performed on patients with HIV in Lagos, Nigeria. An initial pilot study involved 10 HIV+ patients who also suffered from anemic conditions. A subsequent controlled study continued to evaluate the effects of CD4+ T cell counts in HIV+ patients, of which some also received anti-retroviral treatment. The controlled study aimed at evaluating the role (if any) of Jobelyn® in the management of HIV in the presence or absence of HAART.

Methods Nutritional supplement: The consumable nutritional supplement Jobelyn™ was grown, harvested, and manufactured by Health Forever Products, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria, using seed stock from a recently domesticated variant of West African Sorghum bicolor. One lot was used for the open-label pilot study, and a second lot was used for the controlled trial. Both lots had similar chemistry profiles showing a very high content of polyphenols, particularly apigeninidin, which was present at approximately 4 per cent of the dry weight of the botanical material (Table 1). This level is consistent with other lots tested for immune modulating activities.

Trial 1: Ten patients (four men and six women, age range 23-49 years)

with confirmed HIV+, a reduced number of CD4+ T lymphocytes, who did not qualify for anti-retroviral therapy (ARVT), and who consumed Jobelyn®, were followed through the Police Hospital in Lagos, Nigeria for eight weeks. Potential study participants were regular patients of Dr. N. U. Eguae, and invited to participate by use of written informed consent. The number of CD4+ T lymphocytes and the haemoglobin level was evaluated at baseline, four and eight weeks.

Trial 2: Based on this pilot data, a controlled trial was performed at the Clinical Research Division of the Military Hospital, Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria. 51 patients (28 men and 23 women, age range 18-67 years) were enrolled in the study upon written informed consent, as approved by the Ikoyi Military Hospital Institutional Review Board. Potential study participants were regular patients of Dr. Ayuba, and invited to participate, by use of written informed consent. All study participants who at the time of screening had CD4+ T cell counts below 350 cells/microlitre were treated with anti-retroviral treatment (ARVT), which consisted of Nevirapine (200 mg), Lamivudine (150 mg) and Stavudine (40 mg) twice daily. All 51 patients who participated in this clinical trial were monitored for CD4+ T cell counts at baseline, six, and 12 weeks. Eight patients who at the time of screening had a CD4+ T cell count at 350 or higher were ineligible for ARVT, and received Jobelyn® for the same duration of 12 weeks. The remaining 43 patients were randomised into two groups, where one group of 16 people were only treated with ARVT, and the other group of 27 people were treated with ARVT and also consumed Jobelyn® daily for 12 weeks. There was no significant difference in the baseline CD4+ T cell counts between these two groups. Data were analysed using

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Trial 1: A statistically significant increase in CD4+ T lymphocytes (p<0.01) and hemoglobin (p<0.001) was observed within four weeks, using the paired 2-tailed t-test. Among the 10 participants, everyone showed an improvement in both CD4+ T cell count and in hemoglobin levels (Table 2). All 10 patients had haemoglobin levels below normal for their gender at baseline. All of them showed an improvement in hemoglobin levels. After eight weeks of consuming Jobelyn®, all 10 patients had haemoglobin levels near the lower normal range. Trial 2: Among the 51 patients participating in this controlled trial, 43 patients had baseline CD4+ T cell counts at or below 350 cells/uL, and received ARVT. As expected, people on ARVT showed a statistically significant improvement in their CD4+ T cell counts across the 12-week study period (n=16, p<0.01) (Figure 1). However, patients receiving ARVT + Jobelyn® showed a more robust improvement, which reached a high level of statistical significance compared to baseline already at six weeks (n=27, p<0.001), and remained highly significant at 12 weeks (p<0.001). (Figure 1). Analysis comparing the two groups showed that the CD4+ T cell counts in the group receiving ARVT+Jobelyn® was significantly higher than the group receiving ARVT alone, both at six and 12 weeks (p<0.001). Within the study population of 51 people, only three patients had lower CD4+ T cell counts after the 12 weeks study than at study baseline; all three patients received ARVT, and two of them also consumed Jobelyn®. These three people experienced concurrent infections (tuberculosis, pneumonia) during the time. Patients' appetite and weight increased and there was improvement in their general well-being. The maculopapular skin rash of three of the patients who had Herpes zoster remitted. The third group of patients, namely those eight people who received Jobelyn® only, since they were not eligible for ARVT due to a higher CD4+ T cell count at baseline, also showed an improvement during the weeks of Jobelyn® consumption (Figure 1). This improvement was statistically significant from baseline after 12 weeks (p<0.01).

Discussion The core result presented here is the improvement in CD4+ T cell numbers over time in the two groups that consumed Jobelyn® when compared to the group treated with conventional antiretroviral treatment only. An additional observation from the initial pilot study is the improved haemoglobin levels seen in HIV+ patients consuming Jobelyn for eight weeks. The parallel increase in haemoglobin and CD4+ T cell counts seen in the pilot study suggest that consumption of Jobelyn® may support several aspects of bone marrow function. The data from the controlled study involving 51 people suggests support of T cell production. The primary mechanism likely includes support of bone marrow function since anemic conditions were also reduced, possibly combined with secondary mechanisms of enhanced immune defense against viral infection. In addition, an anti-viral effect may be suggested, based on the observations that Jobelyn® provides several aspects of anti-viral immune support in vitro, which includes activation of Natural Killer cells and production of chemokines MIP-1a, MIP-1b, and RANTES.11 Future clinical studies need to address whether Jobelyn® has similar effects in populations with different demographics, diet, and lifestyle, as well as different prevalence of concomitant infectious diseases. Also, the suggested mechanisms of action may be further evaluated through testing of serum cytokine/chemokine profiles, including growth factors with known effects on bone marrow function, and anti-viral chemokines. These effects by Jobelyn® may suggest a role for its use in broader health management, and not limited to HIV or HIV-associated anemia alone. Clinical trials are currently ongoing to examine the effects of Jobelyn® on anaemia in non-HIV+ study populations. Given the significant effects seen over a relatively short study period in a West African population, consideration should be given to expand its use in other countries with different health challenges, to help augment health improvements in acute and chronic viral illnesses.

Acknowledgements The two studies presented here were conducted at the Police Hospital and the Military Hospital, both in Lagos, Nigeria. The data analysis was performed at NIS Labs, Oregon, USA. The studies were sponsored by Health Forever International, Inc.

Disclosure statement GS Jensen, KF Benson, and R Blake are associated with NIS Labs, and Colonel GI Ayuba was employed as staff physician at the Military Hospital at the time this study was conducted. None of these people have any commercial interest in this subject matter. A and O. Okubena are directors at Health Forever International, Inc., the sponsor of this work. •CD4+ T cell counts are shown as cells per microliter whole blood. •Haemoglobin levels are shown as gram/dL. •ARVT: Anti-retroviral therapy. • JOB: Jobelyn®, which was consumed at a dose of 500mg twice daily. • Data analysis utilised the within-subject two-tailed paired ttest to compare each person's changes for Week six and Week 12 to baseline values.

e-mail: femi.kusa@yahoo.com or olufemikusa@yahoo.com Tel: 08116759749, 08034004247, 07025077303


55

THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

THE NATION

BUSINESS e-Business

e-mail: e-business@thenationonlineng.net

As big data continues to grow, the most successful, competitive organisations will be the ones with the ability to turn that data into new revenue opportunities and operational effectiveness, LUCAS AJANAKU reports.

Here comes Big Data I

NCREASINGLY, technology scholars and analysts the world over are in agreement on the most important technology trends that are shaping the world today. The four mega-trends in leaderahip today are Cloud, Social, Mobility and Big Data. According to the Chief Technology Officer (CT), Microsoft Nigeria, Olayinka Oni, there has been a lot of discussion around three of these trends in the country. These are cloud, social and mobility. What has not yet gained prominence, or entered into main-stream conversation and dialogue, is Big-data. Some may argue that it is not near, or that it is still far from us, but some recent developments in the country seem to challenge this notion and point to the fact that the time of Big Data is here.

What is Big Data? Oni explained that big data was coined by the sciences like astronomy and genomics, which first experienced data explosion. According to Mayer-Schonberger & Kenneth Cukier, authors of Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think, in the real sense of the word, there is no rigorous definition of big data; one simplistic way to think of it is: big data refers to things one can do at a large scale that cannot be done at a smaller one, to extract new insights or create new forms of value, in ways that change markets, organizations, the relationship between citizens and governments and more. In 2012, leading global IT research and advisory firm, Gartner, wrote: “Big data is high volume, high velocity, and/or high variety information assets that require new forms of processing to enable enhanced decision making, insight discovery and process optimisation.” To address the challenge of data that is so large that it no longer fits into the memory that computers use for processing, engineers came up with new processing technologies that allows people manage large volume of data than before, and more importantly, the data needs not be structured, such as in tidy rows or classic database tables.

Big Data in aviation sector With the spate of air mishaps in the country for example, could big data be of any help?, yes, Oni admitted: “What if our aviation industry and its regulators had capabilities that are able to use predictive tools (basically using mathematical models and historic data) to determine before a flight takes off to a near perfect prediction that a flight may most likely go wrong mid-air, then many air mishaps would’ve been averted. A model that match data that includes weather conditions (like wind and storm, others), data created by jet engines in real time sensors collecting data on the surrounding environment (temperature, humidity, air pressure, others), air-craft maintenance data, number of hours clocked, are needful. Regulators are, therefore, able to ensure compliance and safety in real-time by setting up all the compliance rules and safety criteria and validating them against a streaming data set comprised of data from flight sensors, flight management system and vertical navigation system. The system is built to trigger alerts, in real-time, if there is a potential compliance breach, or a safety concern.”

Banking industry Oni said another occurrence that comes to mind is the banking crisis that the nation recently came out of. According to him, may be if the regulators of the banking sector had capabilities to simulate in a near to real time, the sensitivity of each bank’s Capital Adequacy Ratio to moving data feeds like (both external and internal); Sectoral Risk tied loan-book ex-

preferences, sentiments, others). Other relevant telecommunication opportunity leveraging big data and Internet of things include;

Criminal investigations Oni said another good use of Big Data is in criminal investigation. According to him, Microsoft recently published a case study on Thailand’s Department of Special Investigations (DSI), and its use of big data to dramatically accelerate and improve the accuracy of its investigations into criminal cases. Leveraging better BI and data-mining tools, the DSI was able to reduce complex and manual processes and establish a system that could automatically notify personnel of suspicious persons or activities related to criminal cases. For instance, when many foreign criminals pour into the country and all travel to the same location, or when there is a noticeably large sum of money being transferred into the country. The most impressive thing about DSI’s new big data implementation is the dramatic impact that it had on investigations overall. Before, conducting a traditional investigation could take as many as two years to search for tips, gather, and analyse data. Today, with the Microsoft big data solution, the DSI is able to conduct investigations in as few as 15 days, due to the automated processes, reduced complexity and more accurate insights afforded by the new system.

•Data Centre

posure, Cash Reserve Ratio, Foreign Exchange Rate movement, Consumer Price Index, Loan Account Velocity, Asset/Collateral Cover & Quality, Quality & Sophistication of Loan Management Process & Organisation, Frequency of Approach to Re-discount Window and others. Maybe, just maybe they could have saved the day by knowing the best time to stop the systemic hemorrhage possibly with the right ‘policy-dosage.’ He said beyond these situational scenarios, increasingly, enterprises are finding new use for big data that was hitherto not possible, adding that before now, when people think of big data, they think of social media and internet sites but this is changing very quickly due to advances in technologies which is bringing to mainstream and within affordable reach the discuss and relevance of big data in enterprise and government. Advances in technologies, like in-memory technologies that allow for processing of millions of rows of data in seconds, increased sophistication of analytics software and tools allowing for deeper/greater data visualisation and self-service business intelligence technology (BITechnology). These are coupled with the connected trend powered by cloud & mobility fueled by proliferation of mobile devices “Would it be interesting to a CEO of a bank when the banking relationship starts to wane with a particular customer segment; say after a number of complaint and complaint type, in a particular branch, category/location running a particular product based on their social profile (tribe, creed, current status in life, network, others.)? Assuming he gets to have an earlywarning signal just as that threshold was about to be reached. This is powerful and business value in that it ensures that organisations get to know something is happening and needs immediate attention before it truly happens and we are left with situational analysis as to causes. Would it also be interesting to be able to generate liquidity risk of millions of customers on the fly from their millions of cash flows whilst doing real-time sensitivity analysis using data like exchange rate movement, interest rate and others? A practical example and common scenario that bankers would easily relate to in this locale is the concept of “Follow the Money” consider a situation where all inflow across channels and across locations can be consolidated for the source of the fund to bubble up a new customer to capture just purely be able to leverage big data technology and analytics tools. A similar scenario is where a large and unusual deposit into a customer’s account triggers real time alert to the relationship team and contact centre of the moment of truth opportunity to make a new product offer real time. Increasing the opportunity to trap and lock the funds in the bank and deepen the bank’s share of the customers’ business. And you can extrapolate the value of this to other relevant banking scenarios like real time and granular transactional risk-based pricing, real time inter-

Judiciary

•Oni

action of data across multiple channels to detect fraud threat as it happens real time in order to provide live responses/action, enhancement of data quality/data cleansing, and others. With the increasing IT consumerisation trend, customers are being preconditioned and stereotyped to expect high level of personalisation in the channel interaction with their bank. Reality is that most of the banks are non-starters when it comes to leveraging big data for personalisation of customer experience.

Business automation, integration The Microsoft CTO said another scenario that would largely benefit from Big Data is the increasing need for business automation and integration as a result of the increasing complex status most of businesses have started to attain, most especially in the financial services and telecoms sector. Whilst there is nothing new about business automation and integration, leveraging cloud computing has greatly enhanced the extensibility of what is possible. For the technology savvy, it simply means that he could now expose or call Application Programing Interface (API) securely (whilst selectively gating access to more sensitive data) at scale combining hundreds millions of search terms/data to produce answer in near real time system automation. In lay terms, it means the traditional system automated processes now have the ability to be more intuitive and more granular in deciding and hinging closer to age long desire of business to unlock value from its already sunk huge investment in technology. Imagine for a moment a real life scenario when you have been on a trip for a while and wanted to place a call to loved ones and suddenly discovered we have been cut-off by our mobile operator? Would it not have been nice if the system before it went ahead to cut off your line that you are above your contract level, was able to pull several data and churn same to arrive at a decision, data like the average monthly spend of the customer, credit record of the customer, frequency of roaming, previous customer contact with the service/call centre, customer profile (status,

The key to achieving greater judicial efficiency is unlocking data so that it can be easily shared, analysed, and acted upon. Today’s case management solutions break down jurisdictional and organisational barriers to ensure that every stakeholder has an up-to-date view of case information from any location, and can update and distribute that data as needed. It’s about getting attorneys, judges, and law enforcement personnel on the same page, through one integrated solution that not only facilitates efficient collaboration, but enables high-level business intelligence analysis through powerful analytics. Oni said decision-makers need access to historical justice data to identify hidden trends and make better and more informed decisions. “We have seen the power of case management at work within organisations such as the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania (CCAP). CCAP was facing resource-constraints while operating several disparate case management solutions across its various courts, jails, and corrections offices, which severely limited information sharing and required redundant data entry at each location. To address these challenges and become more efficient, he said CCAP partnered with Microsoft to build a Unified Case Management system on Microsoft Dynamics CRM that brought stakeholder data together within one system, empowering users to easily search, share, and act upon all of the information at the organisation’s disposal. CCAP leaders are now able to extract better insights due to more accurate dashboards and reporting tools, and with manual data entry kept to a minimum, personnel are free to focus more of their time on pursuing justice and keeping citizens safe.

Others Other big challenges that can be tackled by big data include; using sensors to better understand phenomena such as weather, pollution, or traffic patterns to analysing massive sets of “nanodata” to model the societal effects of policy, to the fast and lowcost mapping of the human genome to deliver better health outcomes. Some persons may say all these is, but another hype from the tech world, agreed some of it may end being, particularly when approached from just a technology purchase/nice to do IT Project standpoint (hmmm, nice to do IT Project is actually something I like to write about soon).


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

e-Business Firm offers businesses free assessment

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By Oluwaseyi Ala

N Information Communication Technology (ICT) firm, Venema Advies Nigeria Limited, has announced its readiness to offer free assessment services to companies to enable them optimise resources and save substantial operating cost (Opex). Speaking in Lagos, its Chief Operating Officer (COO), Wuraola Jinadu, said the firm delivers a bouquet of IT solutions and projects related to connectivity. She said: “What we see in this country is that most companies spend a lot of money on IT and still it is not working. What we would like to offer the companies is a free cloud assessment of the environment and see how we can upgrade to a private or public cloud without any or minimal capital cost. No public data centre or rack space is needed. Your own private cloud in your company without high costs upfront. We deliver complete private clouds with subscription models for VMWare, Microsoft, Symantec, RES and Trend Micro.” According to Jinadu, the firm delivers a broad range of services from satellite to fibre connections for connecting to the cloud, complete private cloud infrastructure, and other related IT services on subscription based models, where software licenses are paid per usage and of course service level agreements are signed while all other IT solutions that can be outsourced in a contract for a fixed price per month. She said the company delivers IT solutions together with our partners, with current services and products that deliver turnkey projects that are related to connectivity, to computing environments and to communication.

Cyber Nigeria forum holds May 23

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YBER Nigeria Forum (CNF), Tribe Media Company, will hold on May 23, this year. In a statement, the organisers said the event will attract big players in the nation’s ICT industry. President/Chief Executive Officer Tribe Media Company, Dr. Bayero Agabi, noted that though internet’s impact on global growth is rising rapidly and is a haven of economic activity, ranging from millions of daily online transactions to advertising, communications and smartphone downloads, little is known about how the web in its entirety contributes to economic growth, productivity, and job creation. He added that the forum was conceived to ensure that Nigerians fully gain the economic benefits of the internet. He said: “CNF has become the pre-eminent Nigerian internet event where entrepreneurs, CEOs of internet solution companies, investors, government and the youth gain deep insights into the economics of the cyberspace, network, analyses, policies and regulations and new business relationships.” The forum will offer a quantitative and qualitative assessment of the impact of internet related businesses and innovations on Nigeria’s GDP and growth, drawing inference from global statistics, while also considering the most relevant tools governments and businesses can deploy to get the most benefit from the digital transformation. CNF 2014 will provide a platform for service providers to share their innovative edge; how they are able to follow global technological trends in offering services that boost enterprises and improve government services in areas such as e-commerce, e-health, e-banking, cloud service, and big data the internet of things.

NBC decries monopoly in pay TV sector T HE Director-General, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Emeka Mba has decried the high mortality rate of cable television stations in the country, a situation that has given rise to a Multichoice, owners of DsTv. Mba, who spoke when he hosted ICT editors in Abuja, said though there were structural deficiencies, players in the sector were also not getting their business models right. While FSTV and HiTv came attempting to have a slice of the market direct to home (DTH) or pay Tv services market, they all fizzled out no sooner they came. As a way of extending reach to all the nook and cranny of the country, the NBC chief has promised to license community radio

Stories by Lucas Ajanaku

stations in the country, arguing that when community radio comes onboard, the security situation in the country would also be addressed. According to him, a platform such as community radio will not only allow members of the community to ventilate their anger, it will also help them to bring to the fore, issues that affect them for proper attention. Mba said the NBC is not happy about the absence of local players in the sector, adding, however, that the NBC could not go beyond providing a level playing field to every operator as a regulator. He said: “NBC is not happy about (the absence of competition) in the pay Tv sector. There are structural

deficiencies which NBC will look at. Players in the industry are however not applying the appropriate business model. NBC cannot spoonfeed businesses, ours is to regulate.” For most Nigerians multi-channel TV is a big dream. Apart from Nigerians living in Lagos, Abuja, and may be Port Harcourt, most Nigerians have access to less than five free terrestrial TV channels. This implies that most people rely on terrestrial, satellite, or cable Direct-to-Home DTH TV for multichannel TV. The major players in this segment are Multichoice with DSTV Access on their satellite TV service, GOtv also from Multichoice, and Star TV network with StarTimes. Although there are others like MyTV, Daarsat, they do not have much impact as they ought to be.

Ericsson, Volvo showcase connected car

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RICSSON and Volvo, at this year’s International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), have showcased the world premiere of Volvo cars, Sensus Connect, built on Ericsson’s Connected Vehicle Cloud. According to the technology firm, Sensus Connect is Volvo’s onboard experience combining connected services, infotainment, navigation and audio, adding that Sensus Connect also offers the world’s first car to infrastructure communication feature “Park & Pay” and the United States’ (US) launch of ‘Volvo on Call’ one of the most comprehensive and global telematics solutions allowing the car to be connected. Other highlights of the Ericsson booth at CES include the Connected Paper, which determines a unique identity from printed electronics and uses the human body as the “wire” to transfer it into services in a smartphone attached to the network; toll free data, powered by Ericsson’s multi service proxy (MSP) solution that allows cost to be off-set by content suppliers This will allow a broader reach for mobile and, ultimately, provide richer experience for more users. The firm also displayed in-suite ordering functionality enabled by a joint Ziosk and Ericsson solution, which allows food, beverages, and merchandise to be purchased from and delivered to luxury arena suites.

MultiChoice builds resource centre in Bayelsa

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AY TV service provider, MultiChoice Nigeria has extended the MultiChoice Resource Centre (MRC) initiative, which it started in 2004 to 10 additional public secondary schools in Bayelsa State. According to a statement, it is part of the firm’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative, which kicked off in Abuja and Lagos State. It saidthe initiative will avail students of 10 public schools in Bayelsa State access to world-class learning facilities. The intervention comprises a TV set, a HD PVR decoder, satellite dish, a power generator, uninterrupted power system (UPS), a set of chairs and desks for the laboratory, in additional to training for teachers. The MRC facilitates teaching and learning enhancement by enabling school children access educational TV channels that include: Education TV, Discovery Channel, National Geographic, BBC Knowledge, BBC World, History Channel, Animal Planet and Mindset Learn, at no cost. The novel intervention which has been introduced to 274 schools in 27 states and proved to make critical impact on the knowledge levels and understanding, especially of technical subject areas by students, is now within the reach of students of the public secondary schools in Bayelsa State, bringing the total to 284 in 28 states, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). A commemorative inauguration of the 10 new MRC in Bayelsa State held at Saint Jude’s Secondary School, Yenagoa, on Thursday, January 16. It is in furtherance of the Ninth Phase of the project, which include scheduled launches in other beneficiary schools in some select states to be announced by the company.

• From left: President, Association of Licensed Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ALTON), Gbenga Adebayo; Director, Customer Care, GLO, Maria Svensson; Managing Director, Teledon Group, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem; and President, Association of Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Lanre Ajayi at a forum organised by ATCON in Lagos.

Broadband to grow GDP by N190b

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IRELESS broadband will grow the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by N190 billion next year, Director, Regulatory Affairs and Special Projects, Airtel Nigeria, Osondu Nwokoro has said. He, however lamented that the absence of fixed infrastructure and the punitive cost and burden to put same in place are daunting challenges. He added that wireless remains the only option. According to him, the National

Broadband Policy (NBP) acknowledges the need for spectrum for mobile broadband and proposes to publish plan for freeing up spectrum for long term evolution (LTE) rollout; conduct licensing of 2.5/2.6 Gigahertz (GHz) spectrum this year; and facilitate accelerated wireless infrastructure expansion and upgrade with operators. He warned that the 700/800 megahertz (MHz) Digital dividend and 2.5/2.6GHz spectrum availability could be delayed till 2016

‘Research vital to knowledge’

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NDIGENOUS undersea cable operator, MainOne, has identified National Research and Education Networks (NREN) services as a factor for the increment of knowledge development in the country. The firm’s Chief Executive Officer, Ms Funke Opeke, listed transformation vehicle, innovation incubator, economic development engine and essential global platform for national and educational development as major features of NREN. Opeke was represented by Head, Public Sector Sales, Gbenga Osinoiki, at a forum held at the ICT Centre of Software Engineering, Ile-Ife, Osun State. She made the presentation titled “Sustainable national development through research and education networks: The MainOne advantage” at the forum with the theme,

“Sustainable National Development through Research and Education Networks.” She commended efforts of the UbuntuNet Alliance for Research and Education Networking schemes across Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Mozambique, South Africa and eight other NRENs, noting that though they were successful, there is still need for the provision of high speed internet connectivity to universities at even lower costs. She also acknowledged the efforts of the National Universities Commission (NUC) and the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (CVC) towards the development of Nigerian Research and Education Network (NREN), noting that the network service would be beneficial for the development of e-education and social networking.

or beyond. Right of Way (RoW) permits and other planning approval processes and associated charges between different ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) at federal, state and local government levels remain a strong disincentive for infrastructure development. He said though the NBP proposes to secure RoW waivers with states and also pursues expedited RoWs, achieving these goals between the three tiers of government remains a daunting challenge. As a way out, he called on the Federal Government to mandate the National Frequency Management Council (NFMC) to articulate a spectrum roadmap to address timely availability, costeffective pricing and licensing of the 700/800 MHz Digital Dividend spectrum band to support mobile broadband penetration. He also called for the resuscitation of the NFMC and expansion of its membership to incorporate private sector representation. “Consider 900 MHz and 2.5/2.6 GHz spectrum re-farming to support mobile broadband on LTE, design spectrum policy and regulation to support flexibility while supporting regional integration,” he said, adding that transition to a converged regulatory and spectrum environment by the merger of Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) and the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) is consistent with international best practice.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION MONDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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BUSINESS INTERNATIONAL

Bank of Japan sticks to record easing as inflation picks up E

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HE Bank of Japan refrained from boosting unprecedented easing as accelerating inflation marks progress in its bid to stamp out 15 years of falling prices in Asia’s second-biggest economy. Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s board stuck to its pledge to expand the monetary base by an annual 60 trillion to 70 trillion yen ($671 billion) today after a two-day meeting in Tokyo, in line with the forecasts of all 36 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. The BOJ maintained its projection that core consumer prices will rise 1.9 percent in the year starting April 2015, excluding the effect of sales-tax increases, and scrapped a reference to the economy facing “uncertainty.” With the BOJ’s preferred inflation gauge at more than half of its target 2 percent pace, analysts from HSBC Holdings Plc. to Daiwa Securities Co. have pushed back forecasts for when the central bank may add to easing. Kuroda may wait to assess trends in wages and the effects of a sales-tax increase in April before deciding on any extra stimulus. “Prices have been moving in line with our forecast,” Kuroda told reporters after the meeting. “If upside or downside risks don’t materialize, we’ll continue with current policy.” More Confident The yen was little changed against the dollar at 4:49 p.m. in Tokyo after strengthening following the policy

decision earlier in the day. The Japanese currency was at 104.32 per dollar. The Topix closed up 0.3 percent. nearly three times economists’ 0.4 percent forecast in a survey in April last year. The rate of increase in core consumer prices is likely to be around 1.25 percent “for some time,” the BOJ said in a statement. Nippon Paper Industries Co. said this week it will boost the price of milk cartons as much as 15 percent from April because of higher prices of imported paper and a weak yen. In an update to its October outlook, the BOJ said the lowest board member inflation estimates increased for all three fiscal years through fiscal 2015. The BOJ’s inflation forecasts are median estimates of the nine board members. Sales Tax Today’s statement said that Japan’s economy has continued to recover moderately, and noted front-loaded demand ahead of the April sales-tax bump. Overseas economies, mainly advanced ones, are starting to recover, the BOJ said. “The Bank of Japan is saying it’s gaining confidence that it will achieve its target,” said Hideo Kumano, executive chief economist at Dai-ichi Life Research Institute in Tokyo and former central bank official. “The question now is whether they will act to support the recovery as the sales tax is raised.”

In a statement following its Dec. 20 meeting, the BOJ said “there remains a high degree of uncertainty concerning Japan’s economy” — a reference that didn’t appear in today’s statement. The BOJ today cited risks including developments in emerging and commodity-exporting economies, the European debt problem and the pace of U.S. recovery. Income Risk Board Member Sayuri Shirai dissented from the description of risks to the bank’s outlook. She suggested that the pace of improvement in employment and income should be added as risks, which didn’t include the April sales-tax increase. “A reference to tax-hike related risks in the policy statement will be a dovish signal that the board is considering additional easing, and Shirai’s proposal is the opening for such a move,” Izumi Devalier, a Japan economist at HSBC Holdings Plc in Hong Kong, wrote in a note. The percentage of economists predicting an expansion of stimulus between April and June fell to 33 percent from 56 percent three months ago in the latest Bloomberg survey, which was conducted Jan. 10-15. The number of analysts forecasting the central bank will add to its easing in July or later doubled to 48 percent from three months ago, the survey showed. The rest of the economists see additional loosening this quarter.

Emerging stocks gain on China rates as natural gas rises

MERGING-market stocks rose for the first time in five days after China’s money-market rates extended declines. U.S. equities fluctuated amid corporate earnings, while the pound and natural gas advanced. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index gained 0.5 percent at 10:13 a.m. in New York, with shares in Shanghai rising 2.2 percent. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index dropped less than 0.1 percent and the Stoxx Europe 600 Index added 0.1 percent. The pound jumped 0.6 percent against the dollar and the Aussie appreciated 0.6 percent. U.S. natural gas jumped 3.9 percent as New York and Boston commuters faced 10 inches of snow. West Texas Intermediate oil increased for a third day. Ukrainian bonds tumbled after a third night of street violence. Benchmark money-market rates fell for a second day as the People’s Bank of China made more funding available for smaller lenders. The U.K.’s unemployment rate fell to 7.1 percent, the lowest in almost five years, approaching the 7 percent threshold at which the Bank of England says it will review borrowing costs. Twenty-five companies in the S&P 500 including Netflix Inc. and EBay Inc. report earnings today. “The PBoC’s actions yesterday stabilized interbank rates and caused Chinese equities to rally,” Michael Wang, an emerging-markets strategist at Amiya Capital LLP in London, said by e-mail. The International Monetary Fund upgraded its outlook for global growth yesterday and that “is helping sentiment,” he said. Raising Forecast The IMF forecast the global economy will expand 3.7 percent this year, compared with an October estimate of 3.6 percent. Growth for China was revised to 7.5 percent from a previous projection of 7.3 percent. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland companies listed in Hong Kong increased 1.1 percent. Money-market rates slid for a second day after China’s central bank added more than $42 billion to the financial system to meet Lunar New Year money demand. The nation’s markets are closed from Jan. 31 to Feb. 6.

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U.S Stocks Little changed as coach, IBM fall on earnings

NITED States stocks were little changed as investors assessed earnings from companies including Coach Inc., International Business Machines Corp. and Norfolk Southern Corp. Coach, the largest U.S. luxury handbag maker, slumped 6.9 percent after sales missed analysts’ estimates. IBM (IBM) slid 3.3 percent as revenue declined for a seventh consecutive quarter amid weaker demand for servers. Norfolk Southern, the second-largest U.S. eastern railroad, climbed 6.1 percent after posting a fourth-quarter profit that exceeded analysts’ estimates. BlackBerry Ltd. rose 5.3 percent as the struggling smartphone maker said it plans to sell most of its Canadian real estate to raise cash for its turnaround plan. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) rose 0.1 percent to 1,844.36 at 10:05 a.m. in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 21.12 points, or 0.1 percent, to 16,393.32. Trading in S&P 500 stocks was 10 percent above the 30-day average during this time of the day. “Earnings are all that matters,” Dan Morris, who helps oversee about $564 billion as global investment strategist at TIAA-CREF Asset Management in New York, said in a phone interview. “To see the justification for meaningful higher prices, we just need to wait for earnings to catch up and accelerate a bit and that may take a quarter or two.”

Bull Market

The S&P 500 gained 0.3 percent yesterday as the International Monetary Fund increased its forecast for global economic growth. A fiveyear rally that lifted the S&P 500 up more than 170 percent from a bearmarket low has boosted equity valuations to near the highest level since 2009. The S&P 500 trades at 15.6 times the estimated earnings of its members, more than the five-year average multiple of 14.1, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Twenty-five companies in the S&P 500 including Northern Trust Corp., Netflix Inc. and EBay Inc. report earnings today. Of the 80 index members that have posted results so far this season, 69 percent have beaten estimates for profit and 64 percent have exceeded sales projections, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. • Mohamed El-Erian, chief executive officer of Pacific Investment Management Co., speaks during a Bloomberg Television interview recently

Worst of Europe crisis ended in Poll with 75 per cent optimistic

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HE worst of Europe’s debt crisis is over in the eyes of most international investors, a shift in sentiment reflected by increased demand for the region’s financial assets. Fifty-seven percent of the investors, analysts and traders who are Bloomberg subscribers said in a poll conducted last week that Europe’s bond markets have ceased deteriorating. That is the first time in two years of being asked that a majority declared an end to the selloff that roiled the euro area and raised doubts over the currency’s existence. “Investors are more constructive toward the euro zone,” said Peter Kinsella, a currency strategist at Commerzbank AG in London who participated in the poll. “But the fundamentals are still very weak.” The improved mood is visible in markets where the average

yield to hold bonds from Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain fell this month to a euro-era record, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch bond indexes. Ireland sold bonds this month for the first time since exiting its bailout and the Stoxx Europe 600 Index is at the highest in six years. The trend toward greater optimism among investors helps remove Europe as a subject of elevated concern with executives, bankers and policy makers meeting today in the Swiss retreat of Davos for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting. Previous meetings saw debates over whether the euro would break up. Even a year ago the region was still in its longest ever recession. Photographer: Simon Dawson/ Bloomberg On the program for the Davos

conference today is a panel titled “Is Europe Back?”... Read More ‘Hardly Dynamism’ The situation in Europe is “hardly dynamism, but it’s a big improvement from blowing up,” Havard University economist Kenneth Rogoff told Bloomberg Television in Davos today. “I still see it as — not fragile, in the sense of falling apart — but definitely severely growth-challenged and a region that is really not taking care of its future,” he said earlier, during a panel discussion at the conference. At the center of concerns about the outlook is unemployment, a legacy of the region’s recession. With the jobless rate at a record 12.1 percent and many of the region’s youth without work, 40 percent of those polled identified unemployment as the biggest threat to European expansion.

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Spain said to sell 10 billion Euros of bonds as yields fall

PAIN is selling 10 billion euros ($13.6 billion) of a new benchmark 10-year bond through banks, according to a person familiar with the transaction, as the nation’s borrowing costs approach sevenyear lows. The April 2024 security will be priced to yield 178 basis points over the mid-swap rate, according to the person, who isn’t authorized to speak about the deal and asked not to be identified. At a similar sale on May. 14, Spain sold 7 billion euros of bonds maturing in October 2023 at a yield of 278 basis points over the mid-swap rate. Spain is fast-tracking bond sales amid a rally in the securities of European peripheral countries as their economies recover from the debt crisis that pushed borrowing costs up to euro-era records. The nation’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is counting on a recovery in the region’s fourthlargest economy to tackle a debt load that will generate a record level of redemptions this year. Barclays Plc, BBVA SA, Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Santander GBM and Societe Generale SA were mandated for the syndicated sale, people familiar with the arrangements said. “Spain looks to be on a recovery process and the consolidation of its fiscal conditions seem to have worked its way on the real economy,” Annalisa Piazza, a senior fixed-income strategist at Newedge Group in London, wrote in an e-mailed note. “Demand was very solid” at the sale, she wrote. Falling Yields The yield on Spain’s bond due in October 2023, the current benchmark, fell three basis points, or 0.03 percentage point, to 3.71 percent at 3:20 p.m. in London. Ten-year yields dropped to 3.64 percent on Jan. 20, the least since 2006. They reached a euro-era high of 7.75 percent in July 2012, when Spain risked losing access to financial markets. The yield difference versus similar-maturity German bunds narrowed four basis points to 195 basis points today after contracting to 175 basis


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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

IN THE HIGH COURT OF LAGOS STATE OF NIGERIA PROBATE REGISTRY, LAGOS DIVISION WHEREAS the person whose names are set-out in the first Column under died intestate on the date and place stated in the said Column. AND WHEREAS the person or persons whose names and addresses and relationship (if any) to the deceased are set out in the second Column here have applied to the High Court of Lagos State for a Grant of Letter of Administration of the Real and Personal Properties of the deceased. NOTICE IS HEREBY given that Letters of Administration will be granted to such persons unless a NOTICE TO PROHIBIT THE GRANT is filed in the registry within (14) days from the date hereof. S/N NAMES OF THE DECEASED PERSON: 1. Isreal Sunday Ajayi.Late of 16, Olatunde Ayoola Street, Anthony, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 16th day of April, 1982. 2. Beatrice Adelabu Odubiro. Late of 9, Bola Adewunmi Street, Obanikoro, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 19th day of February, 2009. 3. Olupeka Babafemi Emmanuel. Late of Block 8, NNPC Housing Complex, Warri Delta State. Who died intestate on the 7thday of May, 2009. 4. Ezenwelu Ebele Virginia. Late of 401, Road G Close, Block F, Flat 9, Festac, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 10th day of July, 2012. 5. Opeyemi Ogunmodede. Late of 2, Olayemi Adegoke Street, Magboro, Ogun State. Who died intestate on the 9th day of August, 2012. 6. Olunaike Taiwo otherwise known as Olunaike Taiwo Subusola. Late of 175, Isawo Road, Ikorodu,Lagos. Who died intestate on 31st day of August, 2013. 7. Mr. Vincent Oteru. Late of Block 2, Rm 8, Kayode Police Barracks. Who died intestate on the 13th day of July, 2012. 8. Alhaji Saka Ganiyu. Late of 22, Road Close, Block Flat, Festac Town, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 23rd day of February, 2012. 9. Samuel Okeke Chuba. Late of 37, Magbesa Street, kirikiri Town, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 7th day of November, 2011. 10. Mr. Benjamen Anthony Unanka. Late of 30/80 Uzoh Street, Olodi Apapa, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 13th day of September, 2013. 11. Obi Grace Onyebuchi. Late of 45, Alhaji Yusuf Street, Olodi Apapa, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 7th day of January, 2010 at Lagos. 12. Adeleye Oladapo Babatunde otherwise known as Topline Consulting, Tadel Consultants. Late of No.17, Martins Street, Akute, Ogun State. Who died intestate on 13th day of April,2011. 13. Rev. Dr. J. A. Adegbite otherwise known as Joseph Adejumobi. Late of Shepherd Hill Baptist Church, Obanikoro, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 10th day of July, 1994, at Lagos. 14. Deaconess Mrs. Adeola Adejunmobi Adegbite. Late of Adegbite Layout Shepherd Hill, Obanikoro, Lagos.Who died intestate on the 30th day of October, 1998 at Lagos. 15. Adelakun Esther Foluke. Late of No. 6, Ayo Idowu Close, Surulere, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 17th day of July, 2013. 16. Okon Ekpo. Late of Old Block 5, Room 23, Queens Barracks, Apapa, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 23rd day of March, 2011, at Lagos. 17. Mr. Muritala Omodayo Amusa.Late of 108, Gaskiya Road, Ijora, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 20th day of September, 2012 at Oyo State. 18. Mr. Lawson IdahosaIgbinobaotherwise known as Mr. Lawson IdahosaIgbonoba.Late of No. 6, Kasi Ayinde Street, Agbado, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 2nd day of April, 2009 at Lagos. 19. Harry .B. Phillips. Late of No. 35A Ita- Balogun, West, Lagos. Who died intestate sometime in 1940 at Lagos. 20. Mr. Augustine Eniekeye Arigbe. Lateof No. 26, Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 11th day of June, 2012. 21. CusmosAnsah. Late of No. 23, Aiyetoro Street, Ajah, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 20th day of April, 2013 at Lagos. 22. Mrs. Bola Michelle Shoneye otherwise known as Bolanle Michelle Erunkulu and Mrs. Bolanle Michelle Shoneye. Late of No. 8 Stephen Osibote Close, Ire Akari Estate, Isolo, Lagos. Who died on the 26th day of February, 2013. 23. Mrs. Nwodo Victoria otherwise known as Victoria Nwodu. Late of No. 7, Godwin Omonuwa Street, Ire Akari Estate, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 30th day of March, 2013. 24. Mrs. Joy ObiageliMoneke. Late of No. 1, Prince Akinbiyi Street, Ikotun, Lagos.Who died intestate on the 21st day of July, 2012. 25. Mr. Idowu Oniyide Isaac. Late of 2nd Avenue, 22 Road, Block 5, Flat 4, Festac Town, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 29th day of January, 2012 at Lagos. 26. Chief Micheal Adegboyega Ade john otherwise known as Micheal Adegboyega Ade John. Late of No.71, Freeman Street, Lagos Island. Who died intestate on the 19th day of March, 2012 at Lagos. 27. Gabriel Sunday Agboh otherwise known as Chief Gabriel Sunday Agboh. Late of 512 Road, E Clos, Block 4, Flat 2, Festac Town, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 26th day of April, 2013 at Lagos. 28. Ola Lateef otherwise known as Ola Lateef Industrial Works. Late of No. 5, Ola Street, Itire, Surulere, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 30th day of June, 2010 at Lagos. 29. Ibiam Nnachi Uche. Late of No. 49A, Oyibo Adjarho Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 14th day of December, 2012 at Enugu. 30. Madam Abiodun Ajetunmobi. Late of No. 13,Isheri Holiday Inn Ojudu, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 28th day of November, 2012 at Lagos. 31. Mr. Edward Ejuvwhe kpokpo. Late of No. 15, Bamgboye Street, Ilaje, Apapa Road, Ebute-metta, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 2nd day of February, 2011 at Lagos. 32. Doris Karten. Late of 16D,Opolo Old, Commissioner Estate, Yenagoa. Who died intestate on the 13th day of November, 2012 at Lagos. 33. Kazeem .I. Ibrahim. Late of No. 25, Macarthy Street, Lagos Island, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 30th day of May, 2013. 34. Iroko Hunye. Late of Iwesere Village Ajapame Compound, Badagry, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 17th day of August, 2006. 35. Oba Musa Adisa Akintomide. Late of 43/44, Wamon Taofeek Avenue, Abule-Egba, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 2nd day of June, 2011 at Lagos. 36. Mr. Peter Ossai Uti otherwise known as UTI. Late of No. 2, Uti Street, Umusan Road, Umusan Quarters, Delta State. Who died intestate on the 10th day of August, 2009 at Lagos. 37. Azounye Angela otherwise known as Mrs. Azounye Angela Uloma. Late of No. 133, Abubakar Road, Ebute-Metta, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 4th day of December, 2012 at Lagos. 38. Okeke Rita Chinelo. Late of No. 293A, Agege Motor Road, Mushin, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 27th day of June, 2013 at Lagos. 39. Mr. Asowata Moses Ekomwenrere. Late of No. 23, Pike Street, Okesuna, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 1st day of January, 2013 at Lagos. 40. Mr. Edward Adenowo otherwise known as Edward Taiwo Adenowo. Late of 3A, Alh. Ijaiye Street Lawanson, Surulere, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 28th day of April, 1979. 41. Abdul Rasheed Busari Olayiwola. Late 41, Road, B Close, Block 2, Flat 13, Festac Town, Lagos. Who died on the 9th day of March, 2013 at Lagos. 42. Engineer Dahiru Dawaki. Late of No. 5, Korau Nasarawa, Kano State. Who died intestate on the 26th day of October, 2004 at Lagos. 43. Mr. Samusideen Adewale Osho. Late of No. 15, Oshofisan Close, Ojodu, Berger, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 16th day of November, 2012. 44. Pa Sulaimon Folorunso also known as Akanji Sule. Late of No. 16, Oki Road, Abule Oki Iyana Ipaja, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 30th day of December, 2008. 45. Mr. Christopher Ekanem Ikono. Late ofNo. 35, Seriki Street, Off Casidy, Bus-stop Okokomaiko, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 24th day of April, 2010 at Lagos. 46. Jacob Akorede. Late of No. 2, Laguda Street, Shangotedo, Lekki, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 3rd day of September, 2010 at Lagos. 47. Mrs. Ayodele Abiodun Adeshile. Late of No. 8, Igbehinadun Street, Better life, Bus-stop, Abaranje, Ikotun. Who died intestate on the 8th day of January, 2012 at Lagos. 48. Mr. Saidu Pindar Mshelia. Late of Adekunle Police Station, Yaba, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 8th day of October, 2010 at Lagos. 49. Alhaji Surakat Akanbi Oshodi. Late of 18, Ricca Street, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 13th day of February, 1988 at Lagos. 50. Mr. Festus Suekan Ezomo. Late of No.25, Ogunlana Drive Surulere, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 23rd day of November, 1992 at Lagos. 51. Iheanacho Paulinus Uzodimma. Late of Block 1, Flat 3, Ojo Barrack, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 27th day of June, 2013 at Lagos. 52. Mrs. Pamela Evelyn Savage otherwise known as Mrs. Pamela Savage. Late of No. 1/3, Akibo Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 6th day of August, 2013 at Lagos. 53. Mr. Peter Fasipe. Late of Oke-Ira ,Oke-Afo, Lagos State. Who died intestate on the 7th day of November, 2013 at Lagos. 54. Mr. Arinze Mark Okonkwo. Late of No.16, FataiKadiri Street, Shomolu, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 26th day of October, 2007 at Milan. 55. Abbe Oladipupo Omoreige. Late of Block 397, Flat 2, Jakande Estate, Isolo, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 16th day of January, 2011. 56. Akeem Alade Baruwa. Late of No. 31, Oju-Olokun Street,Lagos. Who died intestate on the 25th day of July, 2012. 57. Mrs. Esther Victor- Anele. Late of No. 47, Oshola Street, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 16th day of April, 2012. 58. AnthoniaNmorka. Late of No. 68, Allegun Road, Ejigbo,Lagos. Who died intestate on the 21st day of September, 2012 at Lagos. 59. Mrs. Elizabeth EminueLizzy otherwise known as Elizabeth N. Eminue (Nee Jibunoh). Late of No. Obalabi Street, Ikotun, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 17th day of April, 2013. 60. Akpan Friday Monday (Mr.).Late of Lagoon Secondary School, Lekki, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 18th day of May, 2012. 61. Alhaja Khadijat Alli-Balogun otherwise known as Kuburat Kadijat Alli-Balogun. Late of 50, Brickfield Road, Ebute-Metta (West) Lagos. Who died intestate on the 9th day of September, 2012. 62. Sule Egbeselobho Danian. Late of 58, Oaikhena Street, Eguere Ewu, Esan Central L.G.A, Edo State. Who died intestate on the 27th day of November, 2012. 63. Alhaji Kayode Idowu. Late of 1, Oro Leye Crescent Opeki, Ikeja, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 3rd day of April, 2013. 64. Audu Onum Godfrey otherwise known as Godfrey Onum Audu and Onum Audu Godfrey. Late of Block 170, Jakande Estate, Lekki Phase 11. Who died intestate on the 5th day of October,2011. 65. Mrs. Evelyn Nwadinma Obi. Late of 2nd Avenue 24, Road E Close, Block 1, Flat 7, Festac Town, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 23rd day of December,2012. 66. Mr. Aigbokhan Monday. Late of Block 38, Flat 1, Mile 12, Housing Estate. Who died intestate on the 2nd day of March, 2010. 67. Ifenade Adedoyin Patrick otherwise known as Ifenade Adedoyin. Late of 18, Olorunfunmi Street, Iyana Oworo, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 6th day of January, 2013. 68. Adebowale Rufus otherwise known as Adebowale Rufus Adetoye. Late of 26, Makanjuola Street, Ijora, Badiya, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 14th day of July, 2006. 69. Mr. Bassey Philips. Late of 9, Reeves Road, Ikoyi, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 16th day of August, 2011. 70. Udensi Onyemachi. Late of 17, Superior Avenue, Akesan Lasu Ojo Road, Egan, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 31stOctober, 2012. 71. Mrs. Iroko Oluwatoyin otherwise known as Iroko Olasunmbo Oluwatoyin. Late of 40, Oladapo Street, Ogijo, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 15th day of September, 2011. 72. Olatunji Olawale Joseph. Late of 10, Akan Bisi Street,Magbon Badagry, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 24th day of October, 2011. 73. Mrs. Adetola Maria Lawal. Late of Block 253, Oke-Afa, Isolo, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 19th day of July, 2010. 74. Ajala Taofeek Atanda Olatunde. Late of 18, Mustapha Hassan Street, Egan-Igando, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 13th day of July, 2013. 75. John Oladipo Caulcrick. Late of52, Bola Street, Ebute-Metta, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 18th day of February, 1989. 76. Ige Anthony Francis otherwise known as Anthony Francis Igeh. Late of 1, Agric Road, Ketu, Epe, Lagos State. Who died intestate on 23rd day of April, 2010. 77. Mrs. Mary Samson Peters. Late of 20/22Efebeh Street, Okoko, Lagos. Who died intestate on the 30th day of March, 2013.

S/N

NAMES OF APPLICANT APPLYING FOR THE GRANT

1. Tokunbo Ajayi & AkinAjayi. Both of Olatunde Ajoola Street, Anthony , Lagos. Children to the deceased. 2. Mr. Yomi Odubiro& Miss Oluwatoyin Odubiro. Both of 9, Bola Adewunmi Street, Obanikoro. Widower and one of the children of the deceased. 3. Abejuliana Omonale and Mrs. Abiodun Grace Bosede of 23, Onifade Street, Mushin and No. 9, Bashorun Street, Off OdoNla, Ikorodu, Lagos. Senior sisters to the deceased. 4. Arc. Ezenwelu Greg Chigbo and Ezenwelu Cynthia Chinelo. Both of 401 Road, G-Close, Block 5, Flat 9, Festac Town, Lagos State. Widower and daughter to the deeased. 5. Mrs. Priscilla Oluseyi Ogunmodede and Mr. Isreal Ayodeji Ogunmodede of No. 2, Olayemi Adegoke Street, Magboro, Ogun State. Widow and children to the deceased. 6. Olunaike Samuel Olumuyiwa and Olunaike Jacob Abayomi. Both of 175, Isawo Road, Ikorodu, Lagos. Widower and son to the deeased. 7. Blessing Otera and Glory Otera. Both of Block 2, Rm 8, Kayode Police Barracks, Marine Beach, Apapa, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 8. Muyideen AbayomiSaka, Rotimi Olatunji Saka and Ganiyat Abolore Saka. All of 22, Rd - Close, Block Flat, Festac Town, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 9. Mrs. Beatrice Okeke and Anthony I. Okeke. Both of 37, Magbesa Street, Kirikiri Town, Lagos. Widow and son to the deceased. 10. Mrs. Rose Unanka, Mrs. Amarachi .M. Unanka and Miss Chika Unanka. All of 30/80 Uzoh Street, Olodi, Apapa, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 11. Mr Willy Obi, Mr. Ogechukwu Obi and Mr. James Obi. All of No. 45, Alhaji Yusuf Street, Olodi Apapa, Lagos. Administrator to the deceased. 12. Adedunni Adeleye and Oluwadamilola Adeleye. Both of 17, Martins Street, Akute, Ogun State. Widow and daughter to the deceased. 13. Prof. (Mrs.) Adetayo Folusho Fagbenro Beyioke (Nee Adegbite) and MsOyinade Adegbite of College of Medicine Unilag, Lagos, Adegbite Layout Baptist Academy Compound Obanikoro, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 14. Prof. Mrs. Adetayo Folusho Fagbenro Beyioku (Nee Adegbite) and Ms Oyinade Adegbite. College of Medicine University of Lagos, Adegbite Layout, Baptist Academy Compound Obanikoro, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 15. Adelakun Timothy Adeniyi and Adelakun Omolara Benedicta. Both of No. 6, Ayo Idowu Close, Surulere, Lagos. Widow and son to the deceased. 16. Ekpo-Okon and Ekpo Ndodeye Maria. Both of No. 22B, Uzor Street, Ajegunle, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 17. Mr. Morufu Muritala and Mr. Mutiu Muritala of 7, Ogunlade Street, Alaba, Oro, Lagos, and No. 47, Muri Ojora Street, Amukoko, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 18. Mr. John Igbinoba and Sunday Igbinoba. Both of No. 6, KasiAyinde Street, Agbado, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 19. Madam EmilyAdenike Phillips and Mr. Agboola Fisher of No. 31, Akinremi Stree, Ikeja, Lagos and No. 59, Olusoga Street, Mushin, Lagos. Daughter and grandson to the deceased. 20. Clara A daeze A rigbe and Tamaramieye Arigbe. Both of House 2, Road 1, Mint Estate Oke-Ira Nla, Ajah, Lagos. Widow and daughter to the deceased. 21. Mrs Mariam Ansah and Mr. Bambi Oshunbanjo. Both of No. 23, Aiyetoro Street, Ajah, Lagos. Widow and brother to the deceased. 22. David Olajide Shoneye and Mrs. Titilola Abeni Erunkulu. Both of No. 8, Stephen Osibote Close, Ire-Akari Estate, Isolo, Lagos. Widower and mother to the deceased. 23. Miss NwodoNgozi Juliana, Nwodo Ugochukwu Anthony and Miss NwodoOnyinyechi Rosemary. All of No. 7, Godwin Omonuwa Street, Ire-Akari Estate, Lagos. Son and daughters to the deceased. 24. Mr. Udoka Moneke and Mrs. Nkirukamoneke- Akpo of No. 1, prince Akinbiyi Street, Ikotun, Lagos and No. 12, SeliuOje Street, Ikotun, Lagos. Son and daughter to the deceased. 25. Oniyide Alice Opemipo, Oniyide Elizabeth Itunuoluwa and Oniyide Lydia Mosimileoluwa. All of 2nd Avenue, 22 road, Block 5, Flat 4, Festac Town, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 26. Mr. Adediran Kehinde John and Mr. Adetokunbo Ademola Ade-John. Both of No. 71, Freeman Street, Lagos Island. Brother and son to the deceased. 27. Mrs. Grace Agboh and Gabriel Agboh. Both of 512 Road, E Close, Block 4, Flat 2, Festac Town, Lagos. Widow and 1st son to the deceased. 28. Ola Bola, Ola opeyemi and Ola Wasiu. All of No. 5, Ola Street, Itire, Surulere, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 29. Mrs. Ogbonne OgeriNnachiIbiam and Mr. EzeIbiam of No. 49A Oyibo Adjarho Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos and Flat 1, Block 59, Ijaiye Medium Housing Estate, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos. Widow and brother to the deceased. 30. Oluwatosin Ajetunmobi, Ayodeji Ajetunmobi, Oluwaseun Ajetunmobi and Busola Ajetunmobi. All of No. 13, Isheri Holiday, Inn Ojudu, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 31. Mrs. Florence Ejuvwhekpokpo and Augustine Ejuvwhekpokpo. Both of No. 15, Bamgboye Street, Ilaje, Apapa Road, Ebute-Metta, Lagos. Widow and one of the children to the deceased. 32. Asher karten and Gil karten. Both of 16D, Opolo Old Commissioner Estate, YenagoaIsreal. Widower and stepson to the deceased. 33. Kadiri Kazeem and Fatimoh Kazeem. Both of No. 25, Macarthy Street, Lagos Island, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 34. Mrs.OlufemiIroko and Mr. Samuel Iroko. Both of Ajapame Compound Iwesere Via Badagry, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 35. Mrs. Eunice Olaide Akintomide, Mr. Abdulsalam Akintomide and Mr. Idris Akintomide. All of No. 43/45, Wamon Taofeek Avenue, Abule- Egba, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 36. Mr. Friday Uti and Mr. Sunday Uti. Both of No. 2, Uti Street, Off Umusan Road, Umusan Quarter,Utagba-Ogbe, Delta State. Son and brother to the deceased. 37. Anthony Chinenye Azounye and Ndidi Azounye. Both of No. 133, Abubakar Road, Ebute-Metta, Lagos. Two children to the deceased. 38. Okeke Ifeanyi Emmanuel and Sir Arinze Okeke of House 12, I Close, 7th Avenue, Festac Town, Lagos and No. 14, Father Joseph Street, Tegge, Onitsha. Father and brother to the deceased. 39. Emmanuel Asowata and Bright Asowata. Both of No. 23, Pike Street, Okesuna, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 40. Mr. Adekunle Kayode Adenowo and Mr. David Oluseyi Okubadejo. Both of No. 24, Nuru Oniwo Street, Aguda, Surulere, Lagos. Administrators to the deceased. 41. Olayiwola Ayisat Rotimi and Mrs. Rianot Olayide Abdulsalam. Both of 41 Road, B Close, Block 2, Flat 13, Festac Town, Lagos. Widow and one of the children to the deceased. 42. Hajiya Fatimo Dahiru Dawaki, Hajiya Salwa Dahiru Dawaki. Both of No. 5, Korau Nasarawa, kano State. 43. Mrs. Joy Oyemachi Osho, Miss Khadijat Yewande Osho, Mr. Rilwan Babajide Osho and Mr. Jamiu Afolabi Osho. All of No. 15, Oshofisan Close, Ojodu Berger, Lagos. Sister and brother to the deceased. 44. Mr. Wasiu Sulaimon Folorunso and Mr. Yusuf Sulaimon Folorunso. Both of No. 16, Oki Road, Abule Oki, Iyana Ipaja, Lagos. Two of the children to the deceased. 45. Mrs. Mary Christopher Ikono and Miss Edidiong Christopher Ikono. Both of No. 35, Sekiri Street, Off Casidy Bust-stop, Okokomaiko, Lagos. Widow and daughter to the deceased. 46. Akorede Busayo Abraham and Margret Akorede. Both of No. 2, Laguda Street, Shanotedo Lekki, Lagos. Widow and one of the children to the deceased. 47. Mr. Akinlolu Adeshile, Mr. Adetokunbo Seun Adeshile and Mr. Adedeji Richard Adeshile. All of No. 8, Igbehinadun Street, Better life, Bus-stop, Abaranje, Ikotun, Lagos. Widower and children to the deceased. 48. Mrs. Rebecca Pindar and Mr. Jalokaule. Both of MTD Police Barrack, Ijora Olopa, Lagos. Widow and brother to the deceased. 49. Alhaja Kudirat Aduke Oshodi, Mrs. Risikat Abeni Adelekan and Alhaja Monsurat Kadiku. All of No. 18,Ricca Street, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 50. MRS. Elizabeth Ezomo, Mr. Benson Ezomo and Mr. Charles Ezomo. All of No. 25, Ogunlana Drive, Surulere, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 51. Iheanacho Ifeyinwa and Iheanacho Kelvin. Both of Block 1, Flat 3, Ojo Barrack, Lagos. Widow and brother to the deceased. 52. Dr. (Mr.) Yewande Savage Olusola and Mrs. Omolara Ayinde Abayomi. Both of No. 13 Akibo Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 53. Dele Fasipe and Gbenga Fasipe. Both of 27B, 4th Avenue Oke-Ira, Oko-Afo, Badagry, Lagos State. Children to the deceased. 54. Mr. Patrick Ikechukwu Okonkwo and Miss Vivian Ogochukwu Okonkwo. Both of No. 16, Fatai Kadiri Street, Shomolu, Lagos. Brother and sister to the deceased. 55. Mrs. Bernice Abbe, Mr. Oluwagbenga Abbe, Miss Oluwafunmilayo Abbe, and Miss Damilola Abbe. All of Block 397, Flat 2, Jakande Estate, Isolo, Lagos. Widow and son to the deceased. 56. Alhaja Basirat Baruwa and Ganiyu Baruwa Mujidat Lawal (Nee Baruwa) of No. 43, Idushagbe Street, Isale-Eko, Lagos and No. 12, Odofin Street, Idumota, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 57. Mr. Victor Chigozirim Anele and Mrs. Doris Akanwa. Both of 47, Oshola Street, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos. Widower and sister to the deceased. 58. Major Andrew Nmorka and Andrew NkemNmorka. Both of No. 68, Allegun Road, Ejigbo, Lagos. Widower and son to the deceased. 59. Apostles Dr. Etim Eminue, Princess Nnete Eminue, Preious Eminue and Prince Eminue. All of 2, Obalabi Street, Ikotun, Lagos. Widower and children to the deceased. 60. Udeme Friday Akpan and Edidiong Akpan of 17, Sanusi Ewewa Street, Orile- Iganmu, Lagos. Widow and child to the deceased. 61. Mrs. Olatokunbo Johnson, Mr. Oladisun Alli-balogun, Mrs. Olasumbo Goodluck and Mrs Bola Adesida. All of 50, brickfield Road, Ebute-Metta, West, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 62. SuleMahawiatt Danian and Sule Nasir Danian. Both of Blk N 38, Flat 8, Abesan L.C.H. Alimosho. Children to the deceased. 63. Idowu Abiodun Abayomi, Idowu Olukayode, Idowu Ahmed and Idowu Ibrahim. All of No 1, Oroleye Crescent, Opebi, Ikeja. Children to the deceased. 64. Audu Evelyn Godfrey, Audu Maxwell Gofrey and Audu Armstrong Godfrey, all of Blk 170, Jakande Estate, Lekki Phase II. Children to the deceased. 65. Mr. Daniel Duribe Obi and Mr. Okechukwu Daniel Obi. Both of 2nd Avenue, 24 Road, E Close, Block 1, Flat 7, Festac Town. Widower and one of the children of the deceased. 66. Mrs. Cordillia Aigbokhan and Mr. Mandy J. Aigbokhan of Block 38, Flat 1, Mile 2, Housing Estate. Widow and son to the deceased. 67. Abike Ifenade, Mrs.Adeshola Mosumola Ajayi and Adewale Ifenade. All of 66, Bola Street, Ebute-Metta, East, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 68. Adebowale Kunle and Adebowale Oluwakemi. Both of 12A Alafia Street, Amukoko, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 69. Martina Bassey Philips and Bassey Philips. Both of 9, Reeves Road, Ikoyi. Widow and one of the children of the deceased. 70. Mrs. Elizabeth Onyemachi, Miss Peace Ester Onyemachi and Dr. Emeka David Onyemachi. All of 17, Superior Avenue, Akesan, Lasu Ojo, Egan, Lagos. Widow and children to the deceased. 71. Okanlawon Martins, Olaniyi Iroko, Olawunmi Iroko and Oladapo Iroko. All of 40, Oladapo Street, Ogijo, Lagos. Children and brother to the deceased. 72. Olatunji Ibimina Titilayo and Olusegun Atobatele. Both of 10, Akan Bisi Street, Magbon, Badagry. Widow and brother to the deceased. 73. Mr. Olubodun Adisa Lawal, Miss Oluwakemi Omolara Lawal, Mr. OluwasheunLawal and Mr. Oluwatobi Olubodun Lawal. All of Blk 253, Oke-Afa, Isolo, Lagos. Widower and children to the deceased. 74. Fatimat .O. Ajala, Kafayat Ajala and Abdul-Azeez .O. Ajala. Both of 18, Mustapha Hassan Street, Egan, Igando, Lagos. Widow and Children to the deceased. 75. Omotunde Carlcrick, Akinwale Carlcrick, Olanrewaju Carlcrik and Adeyinka Carlcrik. All of 17B, Akinsola Lane, Abule, Ijesha. Children to the deceased. 76. Samson Sunday Igeh, Samuel EmamuzoIgeh and Mrs. Juliana Felix. All of 20, Akodu Street, Epe, Lagos. Children to the deceased. 77. Ocheja Peters and Master King Solomon Peters. Both of 20/22Efebeh Street, Okomaiko, Lagos. Widower and one of the children of the deceased.

I. O. AKINKUGBE (MRS) PROBATE REGISTRAR


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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LOSS OF DOCUMENTS This is to inform the general public of the loss of the title documents covering the landed property located at PLOT 162, Raymond Njoku Street, South West, Ikoyi, Lagos State registered as Lagos Title No. LO 4640 with plan no LEDB/795B/SD/19 dated 30th August, 1962 belonging to Mr. Alfred Tennyson Nnoli. Signed: ALFRED O. NNOLI for the family

EKITIPARAPO, LAGOS NOTICE OF GENERAL MEETING This is to inform all Ekiti sons and daughters in Lagos and its environs that our General Meetingcomes up on Sunday 26 th January, 2014 at Osun Hall of Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja by 3pm. Top on our Agenda for the day is the presentation of our Annual Accounts and Elections to usher in New Exco. You are cordially invited. Please be punctual. Ekiti Agbe a o. Signed Chief Kola Akomolede President Olabode Ajayi Publicity Secretary Comrade Niyi Oyeniyi General Secretary

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

PUBLIC NOTICE CHANGE OF NAME GBOLADE

SPACE FOR SALE

I, formerly known as Oluwaseun Adebisi Temowo, now wish to be known and addressed as Oluwaseun Adebisi Gbolade. All former documents remain vaild. General public take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE CHANGE OF NAME DOUGLAS

I, formerly known as Mrs Douglas Florence Iweh , now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Oladapo Florence Iweh. All former

1x1 fagbenro abiodun

documents remain vaild. General public take note.

LOSS OF TITLE DOCUMENT

A Certificate of Occupancy(NO: AB/SD/2010/ 12398) belonging to Chief Mutalubi Ayinde Quadri of 35, Adeniyi Street,Itire,Lagos State has been declared missing.The C of O was issued by Ogun State government on February 25,2011 in respect of his house at No 1, Olowolagba Avenue, Oja Bus Stop,Atan-Ota,Ogun State .The document got missing on December 22,2013 while all efforts made to trace it has proved abortive.If found,please contact Chief Quadri on 08050659330.

CONFIRMATION OF NAME I, known and addressed as Mrs. Aladejare, Sherifat Adeshola now wish to be known and addressed as Miss Bello, Sherifat Adeshola. The reversal to my maiden name is for official reasons and purposes. All documents remain valid. Lagos State Ministry of Education and the general public should please take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE ERROR ON THE FACE MY WASSCE JUNE 2011 CERTIFICATE This is to notify the general public that an error occurred on my WASSCE JUNE 2011 CERTIFICATE NO: NGWASSCS 15718676 wherein I was wrongly addressed as CHIWUIKE EMMANUEL .C. whereas my true and correct name is CHIWUIKE CHIGOZIRIM E. For the avoidance of doubt all other information contained therein including My passport photograph is correct and true.

VERONICAL

Signed CHIWUIKE CHIGOZIRIM E.

LOSS OF DOCUMENT

This is to inform the general public that the original Customary Certificate of Occupancy No. KAC/ FCDA/LP &S/MISC-9310, Letter of offer and AGIS acknowledgement in respect of Plot No. CD 11A Kuchiyako 111 layout, of about 1.937Ha, belonging to Dr. Oladimeji Michael ‘M’ is missing. All efforts to trace same document proved abortive. If found please return to the nearest police station.

Your Sexual Health & You: Novelty Tips, Questions & Answers

M

y husband just married a second wife who is quite young. I have not been myself since he married that girl.He tells me that I am boring in bed and brags about the kind of sex he has with his new wife. This is very painful and sometimes I fantasise about killing both of them but I don’t want these bad thoughts. I need help. I am losing my mind. I want my husband back – Bolanle Dear Bolanle, polygamy always comes with its own problems and while monogamy is not perfect, the envy that exists in polygamous relationships never goes away. I know how you feel. It feels exactly like your husband is cheating on you but in a legal manner. Unfortunately, this feeling will never go away because there is a new woman in your family now. You don’t seem like the kind of person that can handle polygamy so it may be best for you to ask for a divorce before you hurt somebody. Already these thoughts are in your head and it is only a matter of time before you do something dangerous. If it is just your sex life that you want to improve, I can recommend books, films and other novelties that can help you. But I am afraid that you have much bigger issues. Polygamy is just not for you. There are women who know how to bear the pain that such situations bring but you don’t seem like the type – Uche I want to order a supplement that can give me stronger erections but I need guidance. Should I take Rock Hard Weekend or Exploding Thunder? - Nyemike Exploding Thunder is a better product and people who have used it have had very nice things to say about it. It works for up to three days and also helps men with second round and performance energy – Uche I like your penis sleeves. I am using Stud Extender now and it really does make me look bigger and my woman likes it. But it is covered at the mouth. We are trying to have a baby. I need one that is open at the mouth – Bulus Hello Bulus. You can use the Bigger and Better Sleeve

or the Invisi Rider Sleeve. They are both open ended and will also help you maintain your erection for longer – Uche Do you still have Shane Diesel Prolong cream for preventing premature ejaculation? The one I bought is finished– Dike Yes we do and there are many others too. Call the numbers below to speak with a customer service representative – Uche I have a very low libido and a rather lose vagina after years of child bearing - Nonyelum For a start, you need a libido booster to raise your arousal level and make you want to be intimate again. For this I recommend the Max Desire supplement. To tighten your pelvic muscles, you will need to combine vaginal exercises with a tightening ointment. Get the First Timer’s Orgasm Balls for pelvic exercises along with Like a Virgin Tightening Ointment. These two will help you in the short term and in the long term – Uche I travel a lot and I will need a vibrator that can give my wife quality pleasure in my absence. But it shouldn’t be too big before the woman starts comparing it to the size of my penis. I also want your best penis enlargement pump. Thanks – George George women generally prefer average sized vibrators anyway. Don’t to worry. Get herthe Dual Rotation Rabbit Vibrator and for you, I recommend the Jack Pump – Uche Power Zen is mild and didn’t work well for me but Red Lips Premium is the baba of them all. Powerful stuff. I took Red Lips on Wednesday night last week and it is still working. I feel like having sex ever single minute – John That’s good to hear. Red Lips Premium is the best– Uche That’s it for today. Adults in need of these treatments/ novelties can call 08191978308 or 08027901621for help or visit www.zeevirtualmedia.com. Zee Virtual Media delivers all over Nigeria. For enquiries email us at custserv@zeevirtualmedia.com.Uche Edochie, MD, Zee Virtual Media.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 22-1-14

SEC approves investors protection fund’s rules S ECURITIES and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday approved the rules of the Investors Protection Fund (IPF) of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), paving the way for the investor compensation scheme to begin effective operations. The NSE confirmed that it has received approval of SEC for the IPF rules, describing it as a welcome development that will enable the board of trustees of the IPF to carry out the duties for which the Fund was established. “The Exchange looks forward to continuing to work closely with the Fund’s board of trustees to sustain and promote investor confidence in the Nigerian capital market,” NSE stated in a short confirmation of the approval.

•Equities lose N148b By Taofik Salako

The Nation had exclusively reported the finalisation of the rules and imminent commencement of operations. Part XIV of the Investment and Securities Act (ISA) 2007 requires the Exchange to establish and maintain an investors protection fund to compensate investors with genuine claims of pecuniary loss against dealing member firms resulting from insolvency, bankruptcy or negligence of a dealing member firm of a securities exchange or capital trade points; and defalcation committed by a dealing member firm or any of its directors, officers, employees or repre-

sentatives in relation to securities, money or any property entrusted to, or received by the dealing member firm in its course of business as a capital market operator. The NSE had in 2012 inaugurated a nine-man board of trustees under the chairmanship of Mr Gamaliel Onosode. Other members of the board included managing director of Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Oscar Onyema; Misan Kofi-Senaya, managing director of Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS), Mr. Kyari Bukar, Chairman, Ibadan Zonal Shareholders Association (IBZA), Chief Sola Abodurin; Fubara Anga, Edosa Kennedy Aigbekaen, Sam Onukwe and Umaru Modibo. The IPF rules empower the board of IPF to have at anytime a written policy on the maximum compensation payable to an investor who has suffered a loss. The board can review this maximum compensation limit from time to time according to prevailing circumstances at the market.

DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 22-1-14


62

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 22-1-14

SEC approves investors protection fund’s rules S ECURITIES and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday approved the rules of the Investors Protection Fund (IPF) of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), paving the way for the investor compensation scheme to begin effective operations. The NSE confirmed that it has received approval of SEC for the IPF rules, describing it as a welcome development that will enable the board of trustees of the IPF to carry out the duties for which the Fund was established. “The Exchange looks forward to continuing to work closely with the Fund’s board of trustees to sustain and promote investor confidence in the Nigerian capital market,” NSE stated in a short confirmation of the approval.

•Equities lose N148b By Taofik Salako

The Nation had exclusively reported the finalisation of the rules and imminent commencement of operations. Part XIV of the Investment and Securities Act (ISA) 2007 requires the Exchange to establish and maintain an investors protection fund to compensate investors with genuine claims of pecuniary loss against dealing member firms resulting from insolvency, bankruptcy or negligence of a dealing member firm of a securities exchange or capital trade points; and defalcation committed by a dealing member firm or any of its directors, officers, employees or repre-

sentatives in relation to securities, money or any property entrusted to, or received by the dealing member firm in its course of business as a capital market operator. The NSE had in 2012 inaugurated a nine-man board of trustees under the chairmanship of Mr Gamaliel Onosode. Other members of the board included managing director of Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Oscar Onyema; Misan Kofi-Senaya, managing director of Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS), Mr. Kyari Bukar, Chairman, Ibadan Zonal Shareholders Association (IBZA), Chief Sola Abodurin; Fubara Anga, Edosa Kennedy Aigbekaen, Sam Onukwe and Umaru Modibo. The IPF rules empower the board of IPF to have at anytime a written policy on the maximum compensation payable to an investor who has suffered a loss. The board can review this maximum compensation limit from time to time according to prevailing circumstances at the market.

DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 22-1-14


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

63

MONEYLINK

CRR hike depletes banks’ balance sheets by N750b

B

ANKS’ balance sheets will drop by N750 billion effective February. This followed Tuesday’s decision by the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) to raise the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) on public sector deposits from 50 to 75 per cent, Managing Director, Financial Derivatives Company Limited, Bismarck Rewane has said. CRR is a portion of bank’s deposits kept with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The MPC left all other parameters, including the Monetary Policy Rate un-changed at 12 per cent, with an asymmetrical corridor of plus or minus 200 basis points. The CRR on pri-

F

• Policy takes effect Feb. 4

Stories by Collins Nweze

vate sector deposit was retained at 12 per cent and the liquidity ratio was unchanged at 30 per cent. Rewane said the global economic recovery and likely impact of tapering in the United States on investment flows, shows some limited amount of vulnerability on the external sector of the economy. He said impact of this decision on money markets would be a shock effect in the short run and a re-turn to equilibrium rates within six weeks. “The first time the MPC increased the

Power sector needs $6b, says Stanbic CEO

IXING the power sector will cost investors $6 billion, about N957 billion, Managing Director, Stanbic IBTC Bank, Yinka Sanni has said. Speaking yesterday at a briefing ahead of the 2014 Standard Bank West Africa Investors’ Conference holding in Lagos from February 3 to 6, he said there are lots of opportunities in the power sector that investors will be discussing with distribution and generation companies during the conference. He said: “We expect both the distribution and generation companies to rob minds on what next for the power sector.” According to the bank chief, the understanding of the economy is very important for investors, adding that the 2015 election fears will not deter investors from coming to Nigeria. Group Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic IBTC Bank Holdings, Mrs. Sola David-Borha, said the conference,

which is the fifth, has become flagship investors’conference in Africa. She said the theme of this year’s conference is: ‘Nigeria, time to deliver’, adding it will focus mainly on the power sector. She said the sector reforms have reached critical milestone and key stakeholders need to support the reform process. David-Borha said: “The power sector is capital intensive. Our effort at Standard Bank Group will facilitate investment in the sector. We believe the conference will be attended by between 150 and 200 participants.” According to her, the bank does things that are enabling and creates right economic environment for investment to thrive. She said the conference will be attended by Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi; Minister of Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga; and Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, among others.

this decision remains the protection of the value of the naira in the foreign exchange markets. “The CBN Governor expressed some concerns about the declining trend in foreign portfolio flows. This in addition to the leakages and falling fiscal buffers made the CBN take a more aggressive position to defend the naira,” he said. According to Rewane, the divergence between the official and parallel markets had widened to N20 or 12 per cent of the official exchange rate, adding that the economy is more exchange rate than interest rate sensitive. This, he said, means that a depreciating currency will have a direct impact on inflation and could be counterproductive. Razia Khan, said in view of increased market liquidity following the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) bond maturity

CRR on public sector deposits in August, last year, an estimate of N1 trillion or 6.84 per cent of money supply was debited. At that time, the impact was a spike in interbank rates of approximately 800bps to an average of 21 per cent. Also, it coincided with the failure of two discount houses which exacerbated the situation,” he added. He said about N750 billion that would be debited on February 4 is equivalent to 5.09 per cent of money supply. “Therefore, we expect an initial spike of approximately 400bps before settling to a 1.5 per cent increase in the effective cost of funds for the banking system. Banking net interest margins and profitability will be affected whilst their liquidity will remain unimpaired,” he said. He said the key variable that drove

Sterling Bank boosts CSR

S

are passionate about supporting genuine charitable causes, are provided the necessary platform and channels to contribute with the sole objective of putting smiles on the faces of millions of children through different charities across Nigeria,” he said. Responding on behalf of the benefiting charity homes, Mrs. Sola Fatola, the Chief Executive of 234 Give Limited, commended the bank for coming-up with the initiative that will bring smiles on the faces of less privileged children in the society. She further stated that ‘with this gesture, Sterling Bank has revalidated its position as a responsible corporate citizen of the country with a heart of gold to enrich the lives of these children who live with one challenge or the other.

TERLING Bank Plc has presented cheques to beneficiaries from the bank’s ‘Raise a Child’ initiative. Speaking at the presentation of the cheques to the beneficiaries, the bank’s Executive Director, Mr Lanre Adesanya said the lender came up with the initiative to put smiles on the faces of the Nigerian child and give him or her hope for a better tomorrow as a responsible corporate citizen. “Specifically, the project was designed to support the society, particularly the children; especially the less privileged children in the society in continuation of the Bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) philosophy. It is a fundraising drive structured in a way that the bank, the staff and members of the general public, who

Amount N

Rate %

M/Date

3-Year 5-Year 5-Year

35m 35m 35m

11.039 12.23 13.19

19-05-2014 18-05-2016 19-05-2016

NIDF NESF

OBB Rate Call Rate

Amount Amount Offered ($) Demanded ($) 350m 150m 350m 138m 350m 113m

Price Loss 2754.67 447.80

PRIMARY MARKET AUCTION (T-BILLS) Tenor 91-Day 182-Day 1-Year

Amount 30m 46.7m 50m

Rate % 10.96 9.62 12.34

Date 28-04-2012 “ 14-04-2012

GAINERS AS AT 22-1-14

SYMBOL IHS COSTAIN TRANSEXPR FO COURTVILLE JBERGER REDSTAREX CILEASING PRESCO BETAGLAS

O/PRICE 3.30 1.26 1.47 82.43 0.75 65.10 4.65 0.55 41.06 16.83

C/PRICE 3.63 1.38 1.61 90.24 0.81 70.00 5.00 0.59 43.11 17.67

EXHANGE RATE 6-03-12 Currency

INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%

CHANGE 0.33 0.12 0.14 7.81 0.06 4.90 0.35 0.04 2.05 0.84

NGN USD NGN GBP NGN EUR NIGERIA INTER BANK (S/N) (S/N) Bureau de Change (S/N) Parallel Market

Year Start Offer

Current Before

C u r r e n t CUV Start After %

147.6000 239.4810 212.4997

149.7100 244.0123 207.9023

150.7100 245.6422 209.2910

-2.11 -2.57 -1.51

149.7450

154.0000

154.3000

-3.04

152.0000

153.0000

155.5000

-2.30

153.0000

154.0000

156.0000

-1.96

DISCOUNT WINDOWx Feb. ’11

July ’11

July ’12

MPR

6.50%

6.50%

12%

Standing Lending Rate ,, Deposit Rate ,, Liquidity Ratio Cash Return Rate Inflation Rate

8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 1.00% 12.10%

8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 2.00% 12.10%

9.50% 5.50% 30.00% 2.00% 11.8%

O/PRICE 9.90 2.48 25.11 12.11 17.36 2.44 2.58 4.10 4.11 9.75

C/PRICE 9.50 2.40 24.35 11.90 16.84 2.37 2.51 3.99 4.00 9.50

CHANGE -0.40 -0.08 -0.76 -0.37 -0.52 -0.07 -0.07 -0.11 -0.11 -0.25

NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days

Rate (Previous) 4 Mar, 2012 9.0417 9.6667 11.2917 12.1250

Rate (Currency) 6, Mar, 2012 10.17% 11.46% 11.96% 12.54%

Movement

Amount Sold ($) 150m 138m 113m

Exchange Rate (N) 155.2 155.8 155.7

Date 2-7-12 27-6-12 22-6-12

CAPITAL MARKET INDEX

NSE CAP Index

27-10-11 N6.5236tr 20,607.37

28-10-11 N6.617tr 20,903.16

% Change -1.44% -1.44%

MEMORANDUM QUOTATIONS Name

LOSERS AS AT 22-1-14

SYMBOL ACCESS MANSARD ZENITHBANK DANGSUGAR ETI STERLNBANK FIDELITYBK TRANSCORP FCMB DANGFLOUR

THE Minister for Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga, has called for new strategies to support the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) sector as the government looks to positively impact the economic value chain. According to a statement from the bank, the minister spoke while receiving top executives of Diamond Bank Plc. The bank’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Alex Otti while presenting the bank’s blueprint on Improving Access to Finance to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), recommended that a fund should be set up to take care of identified equity finance gaps. He called for a risk-sharing guarantee to support the unsecured lending portfolio of banks that have established methodologies for assessing, disbursing, monitoring and collecting such loans.

WHOLESALE DUTCH AUCTION SYSTEM

MANAGED FUNDS Initial Current Quotation Price Market N8250.00 5495.33 N1000.00 N552.20

Aganga praises Diamond Bank

DATA BANK

FGN BONDS Tenor

•CBN Governor Sanusi Lamido

in December, as well as an increased spread between the interbank foreign exchange rate and bureau de change rates, the move is not surprising.

Offer Price

Bid Price

AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND 167.44 ARM AGGRESSIVE GROWTH 9.17 BGL NUBIAN FUND 1.09 BGL SAPPHIRE FUND 1.17 CANARY GROWTH FUND 0.71 CONTINENTAL UNIT TRUST 1.39 CORAL INCOME FUND 1,611.15 FBN FIXED INCOME FUND 1,000.00 FBN HERITAGE FUND 115.83 FBN MONEY MARKET FUND 100.00 FIDELITY NIGFUND 1.67 INTERCONTINENTAL INTEGRITY FUND 1.05 KAKAWA GUARANTEED INCOME FUND 143.11 LEGACY FUND 0.78 NIGERIA INTER DEBIT FUND 1,892.63

165.99 9.08 1.07 1.16 0.72 1.33 1,607.37 1,000.00 115.13 100.00 1.62 1.03 142.62 0.76 1,894.44

• ARM AGGRESSIVE • KAKAWA GUARANTEED • STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE • AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUNDARM AGGRESSIVE • OPEN BUY BACK

Bank P/Court

Previous 04 July, 2012

Current 07, Aug, 2012

8.5000 8.0833

8.5000 8.0833

Movement


64

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

65

NEWS

Ikwerre elders disown pro-Mbu protesters

T

HE Gbakor Ikwerre Consultative Assembly, the highest decision-making body in Ikwerre ethnic nationality in Rives State, has disowned some Grassroots Development Initiative (GDI) protesters. The protesters claimed to be acting on behalf of Ikwerre ethnic nationality to demonstrate against calls for the removal of Rivers State Police Commissioner Mbu Joseph Mbu. GDI protesters on Tuesday

From Precious Dikewoha, Port Harcourt

in Port Harcourt blocked Aba Road from Rumuomasi to Water-lines, condemning calls for Mbu’s removal. The protesters, who claimed to be of Ikwerre origin, said they had the backing of Ikwerre chiefs and elders. Ikwerre ethnic nationality comprises Emuhua Local Government, Port Harcourt Local Government and Obio/ Akpor and Ikwerre Local

Government. The President-General of Ogbakor Ikwerre ethnic nationality, Prof. Austin Onyeozu, denied knowledge of anybody protesting on behalf of Ikwerre. He said the protesters were on their own. “We don’t know them. If anybody is protesting on behalf of Ogbakor Ikwerre on this issue that person is not only joking, he is also a liar. They should be careful. Nobody should play politics with the name of Ogbakor Ikwerre.”

An Ikwerre elder, Chief Worlu Amadi, said he was aware that some Ikwerre people sold their conscience, which he believes cannot be enough reason for the protesters to disrespect their elders by playing politics of deceit. He said Ikwerre Council of Chiefs was aware of those using the name of Ikwerre to gain prominence in the crisis. Worlu said: “We don’t know them. They are supporters of GDI and nobody is against this. All we are saying is that they

should not play politics, which will undermine the integrity of the Ikwerre ethnic nationality.” The Chairman of Emohua Local Government, Mr. Allen Nma, where most of the protesters hail from, said Ikwerre ethnic nationality, comprising four local governments, did not send anybody to protest on its behalf. He said those protesting were paid youths, who are supporters of Nyesom Wike and Mbu.

APC to Delta members: be firm

Ogoni people picket bank over N80.3b compensation

From John Ofikhenua, Abuja

T

M

EMBERS of the Ogoni community in Rivers State yesterday picketed the First Bank Area Office in Port Harcourt. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 1,000 protesters converged on the bank. Chief Simeon Monokpo, the leader of the group, told NAN that “our protest is in respect of N80.3 billion judgment against Shell and its guarantor - First Bank. “The money was supposed to be paid by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), in connection with the oil spill in the area. The oil spill occurred 20 years ago at Ebubu in Eleme Local Government. Monokpo said the money was expected to be deposited with the bank by SPDC while its appeal went on, but the appeal failed. “So, we are demanding that the guarantor should pay us the money. A Federal High Court in Port Harcourt ordered SPDC to pay N80.3 billion to the Ogoni community as compensation for damages caused by the oil spill. “We are saying that First Bank should wire that money into Henry Nwaosu, our client’s bank account number. “The court order we got directed First Bank to pay us forthwith,” Monokpo said. He said the picketing would not only continue, but would also be extended to all the branches of the bank in Rivers if the money was not paid immediately. “We shall extend this protest to all First Bank branches in the state if we are not paid; they will not operate until they pay us,” he said. The protesters deposited a white coffin bearing a live chick and a bottle of a soft drink on top, signifying burial. The locked gates were sealed with fresh palm fronds. Monokpo said the gods in the community were annoyed with SPDC’s conduct in Ogoni land. First Bank’s Head of Media, Babatunde Lasaki, said the picketers were just taking the law into their hands. He said they were reckless because First Bank was not directly involved in the case. “First Bank cannot act because the case is in court. Shell said the judgment is bogus and has appealed,” Lasaki added. According to him, the picketers needed to wait for the outcome of the appealed judgment.

•Mbu

•Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubakar (right), decorating Mr. Christopher Katso with his new rank of Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG) in Abuja... yesterday. With him is Dig Abdurahman Akano.

Health workers’ strike unnecessary, says minister

H

EALTH Minister, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu, has said the ongoing warning strike of health workers is unnecessary. A statement by the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Health quoted the minister as saying the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) should heed the appeal of concerned Nigerians that it should not go ahead with its planned national action. He said the union’s allegation that the Federal Ministry of Health “has virtually not succeeded in implementing any of the issues in contention” was untrue. Chukwu said the Federal Government implemented the skipping of Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) 10 on November 15, last year, adding: “The FMOH, in a memo, conveyed to all Chief Medical Directors (CMDs) and (Medical Directors) MDs for their compliance. The circular was dated November 4, 2013, from the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation. The circular dealt fully with this aspect of the judgment of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria pending the outcome of the appeal filed by the Federal Ministry of Health.” The minister said the issuance of the circular on consultants, in line with the ruling of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria, had been dealt with by the ministry’s circular of January 9. The affected officers, he said, were to be paid “specialist allowance and the arrears accruing, as

T

•Job boycott paralyses hospitals By Wale Adepoju

applicable, until the final outcome of the matter pending before the Court of Appeal”. The ministry, Chukwu said, had written a circular on promotion from CONHESS 14-15 issued on January 9 to all CMDs and MDs instructing them to promote eligible officers, where vacancies are available, in line with the various schemes of service and other extant rules and regulations. Other issues, the minister said, had been addressed in the MoU. Hospitals in the three tiers of government were paralysed yesterday as the striking health workers, under the aegis of Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN), stayed away from their duty posts. The workers alleged nonimplementation of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) they reached with the government at the end of a meeting between the Federal Ministry of Health and JOHESU on January 7 and 8. The workers complied with the directive of their union to down tool as the strike enters the second day today. Many hospital wards our reporters visited were deserted. Several patients sought treatment in private hospitals. Majority of the in-patients also left the hospitals while some were waiting in the wards until the strike is over or even called off.

At the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi Araba, the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, Federal Medical Centre, Ebute Metta, the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi and Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Yaba, among others, the clinics were deserted by staff and patients. Except for some wards where few in-patients who could not seek care in private hospitals due to high cost of treatment. Also, doctors and consultants seen in their offices did not attend to the outpatients, but were only seen attending to the patients on admission. Mr Ebenezer Akande, the Chairman of the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN), FMC chapter, said the workers complied with the national directive on the strike. At LUTH, the Outpatient Department (OPD) and Accident and Emergency (A and E) Units, which were usually busy, were deserted as only doctors were seen performing skeletal services in the wards. A resident doctor, who spoke in confidence, said: “The importance of the health workers in providing care and support services for the smooth running of a hospital cannot be undermined. “As you can see, this place looks deserted and a doctor cannot add a nurse’s role or someone in the records department to his already heavy workload. “I am appealing to the strik-

ing workers to see reason in the interest of the patients.” A patient, Mr Gilbert Ebenato, urged the Federal Government and the health workers to resolve the dispute as soon as possible so that treatment can commence. He said: “They should resolve the dispute in the interest of people. I don’t have money to transfer myself to the private hospital. My prayer is for them to come back to work.” Another patient, Miss Gbemisola Shomorin urged the health workers to shun strike, adding that other alternatives should be employed to address their grievances. She said: “I don’t know why strike should always be a means of resolving industrial disputes. Let us find some other ways of settling industrial disputes. “Only few weeks ago, it was the doctors who went on strike, now it is the health workers. This is not good for our health system.” Mr Saliu Razaq who is patient, said nobody has attended to him since he arrived at the hospital. He said that there were neither nurses nor records officers to sort out his case file. Razaq said he was supposed to carry out a test at the laboratory unit but nobody was available to attend to him. At the Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Yaba, doctors and consultants were seen rendering skeletal services to the patients on admission while outpatients were asked to come back when the strike is over.

Edo Assembly passes N160 billion budget

HE Edo House of Assembly in Benin yesterday passed the 2014 budget estimates of N160.06 billion. Governor Adams Oshiomhole in December pre-

sented a budget proposal of N159.213 billion to the House for consideration. The budget estimate of N160.06 billion passed by the Assembly is about N848 million higher than the original estimates of N159.213 billion

presented to it by the governor. The House adjusted the original capital expenditure of N85.595 billion to N84.474 billion, while the original recurrent expenditure of N73. 617 billion was also adjusted

to N75.587 billion. The Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation and Project Monitoring, Mr. Peter Aliu, said the adjustments were made after consultation with heads of ministries and parastatals.

HE All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday urged its Delta State members not to allow Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan infiltrate ranks. The Interim National Secretary, Alhaji Tijani Tumsah, who received a protest letter in Abuja from “The Concerned Members of the Legacy Parties of APC in Delta State”, told the Delta supporters to “mobilise people to register and make sure that Uduaghan does not infiltrate your ranks.” He said the hiccups the members experience are typical of a “new marriage.” Tumsah promised the aggrieved members that the national secretariat would investigate their letter. He assured members that “we will not want to lose Delta State or play with it.” The APC interim national secretary explained that the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) and the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) were accepted into the merger, although they did not merge to form the party. Tumsah, who said members’ complaints were centred on the strength of the DPP for it to have a leadership slot in the harmonisation, assured them that “we will balance the equation.” He advised the Delta State members to suggest the way forward for the party, stressing that the registration exercise would involve the legacy parties. The group, which the immediate past Deputy Chairman of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Delta State branch, Chief Ngozi Emeni, led to the APC national secretariat, comprised members of the defunct ACN, Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and ANPP. Their basic demand was that “we state in unequivocal terms that the chairman of the defunct ACN in Delta State, Chief Adolo Okotie-Eboh, remains our leader and has the mandate to speak and act on our behalf on all matters relating to the APC until such a time that the party has been harmonised in accordance with justice and fairness.” The letter reads: “We salute the zeal, selflessness, patriotism and dedication of our national leaders in the drive to strengthen our party nationwide. “We condemn the illogical and lopsided nature in which slots of merging parties were allocated in the composition of the Delta State Harmonisation Committee.”


THE NATION THURSDAY JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS

LASU students protest

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By Adegunle Olugbamila

TUDENTS of the main campus of Lagos State University (LASU) in Ojo yesterday protested the management’s refusal to reopen the portal for them to register ahead of their second semester examinations, which begin today. The protesters set bonfires on both ends of the Lagos/Badagry Expressway, beginning from Iyana Oba to Alaba Rago. There was a heavy traffic gridlock in the area. The students accused the management of insensitivity to their plight. The protesters said their parents were not having it easy to raise money for the university’s prohibitive tuition fees. They said the university management was also not fair for preventing them from registering online. Many of the students said the Vice-Chancellor, Prof John Oladapo Obafunwa, must go because of his refusal to listen to them.

Church gives free medical treatment •Ekiti State Deputy Governor Prof. Modupe Adelabu (right), teaching JSS I pupils at Ado Grammar School, Ado-Ekiti, during a visit to the school... yesterday.

Health workers’ strike paralyses services in Ibadan HEALTH care services in Oyo State were temporarily shut down yesterday as members of all the five unions under the Joint Health Workers Sector began a three-day nationwide warning strike. The five unions are the Medical and Health Workers’ Union, the Nurses and Midwife Association, the Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals, the Senior Staff of All Teaching Hospitals and Allied

From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan

Health Institution and NonAcademic Staff Union (NASU). The aggrieved workers are protesting, among other issues, Federal Government’s nonimplementation of last July court ruling; the non-payment of the Consolidation Salary Scale Level 10; the government’s refusal to implement a court judgment on consultan-

cy status to other health care professionals besides medical practitioners; the non-payment of special allowances, which was agreed upon in January 2010. The National President of the Nigerian Union of Allied Health Professionals Dr Felix Faniran said it was disturbing that the Federal Government was insensitive to the welfare of health workers.

He described the warning strike as inevitable. In most hospitals our correspondent visited yesterday, especially the University College Hospital (UCH) on Queen Elizabeth Road in Ibadan as well as Adeoyo Hospitals on Ring Road and Yemetu, medical activities were grounded. The health workers, except doctors, shunned their duty posts.

Two dead as ‘kidnappers’, police battle

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USPECTED kidnappers yesterday engaged in a shootout with men of the Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at Obosi, near Onitsha inAnambra State. Two suspects were shot and one policeman was injured. It was learnt 13 suspects ran away. Addressing reporters at the SARS headquarters at Awkuzu in Oyi Local Government Area, Police spokesman Eme-

•Policeman, one other injured From Nwanosike Onu, Awka

ka Chukwuemeka said SARS stormed the suspects’ hideout at Obosi in Idemili North Local Government and killed two. He said the kidnappers, led by one of the deceased suspects called Small, were responsible for kidnapping and

robbery in the state. One of the kidnap kingpins, Chukwuemeka said was arrested by SARS operatives, led by the Commander, James Nwafor. Over 15 suspects, on sighting the police, opened fire. ‘’We responded and killed the gang’s leader, Small, and an-

other member, Alanta. Others escaped with bullet wounds.’’ The incident, he said occurred at 4 am. Chukwuemeka said the new Police Commissioner Usman Gwari was determined to rid the state of kidnappers and robbers. Some items recovered included two AK47 rifles, six magazines with live cartridges, charms and mobile phones.

APC may produce first Igbo president, MO State Governor Rochas Okorocha has said the All says Okorocha Progressives Congress

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(APC) is committed to the Igbo Presidency and may produce the first president of Igbo extraction next year. He said the least Ndigbo could get in 2015 under the APC would be the vice president, if they could not produce the president. Addressing Southeast leaders of the party at the Ahajioku Convention Centre in Owerr, Okorocha said APC would give opportunity to members, irrespec-

From Okodili Ndidi, Owerri

tive of religion or ethnicity. He said: “Ndigbo should support APC. I can assure you that next year, the least Ndigbo can get is vice president. But to achieve this, we should support the party. “We have made sacrifices to get to where we are today. I am not regretting anything. Today, I’m the most sought-after per-

son in the country. But no sacrifice is too much to redeem our people from political backwardness. We should support APC to produce the next generation of Igbo leaders.” The Imo governor, who also addressed party supporters after the inauguration of the interim executive members, urged the people to participate in the membership registration, which would begin on January 28.

•Okorocha

Tecno’s Talk & Clean campaign begins today

Let’s avoid military comeback, says Gani Adams

By Precious Igbonwelundu

By Dada Aladelokun

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OBILE phone manufacturer, Tecno Limited, will today launch the maiden edition of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) campaign, tagged: Tecno Talk & Clean. The company’s Deputy General Manager Chidi Okonkwo said the event will start at the Computer Village, Ikeja, by 7am. He said the campaign would be carried across the state. On the essence of the campaign, Okonkwo said: “Tecno wishes to pass the message, through this programme, that it is important to maintain a clean and healthy environment while doing the business of talking. “Achieving a clean environment should not be left only to the government; the private sector should also assist in this task. “We have decided to complement the efforts of the government at achieving a clean Lagos by encouraging people to desist from littering the streets and gutters with used recharge cards, empty phone packs, discarded phone accessories and similar items. “Rather, there should be a culture of proper disposal of these and other litter through disposal bins. We intend to position these bins at strategic locations in and out of the Computer Village.”

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IGERIANS have been warned against any action, inaction or comment that could incite the military to again take over the governance in the country. National Coordinator, Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), Otunba Gani Adams, who gave the advice in Lagos, said everyone must support the national conference recently sought by President Goodluck Jonathan. “We in OPC warn against any attempt by any group or group of people to incite rogue elements in the military to rebel. We also declare that never again will our dear fatherland fall into the darkness of military adventurism, such that is being desired by some unpatriotic Nigerians. “Our stand, as earlier stated in our memoranda to the Okunrounmu-led committee on the national dialogue, remains that the National Dialogue Conference will go a long way to solve most of the problems that are besetting our nation. We are also aware that the president has publicly declared that there would be no-go areas for the NDC in its attempt to make sure that all the problems that have stood in the way of the country’s development would be discussed,” Adams said.

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HE Full Gospel Church of God Incorporated has given free medical treatment to the residents of Mowe community in Obafemi/Owode Local Government Area of Ogun State. Addressing reporters after a crusade, tagged: “Mowe Crusade 2014”, with the theme: “He cares for you” (1Peter 5:7), the church spokesman said: “We and our partners, Fountain Healthcare Ltd, a Lagos pharmaceutical outfit, embark on this exercise to help the community. “We want to contribute to the well-being of the residents.” The partnering medical representative, Mr. Seun Adeboga, a pharmacist, described the exercise as a way to create awareness. He urged people to go for medical check up regularly to know their state of health.

Abiola’s wife, others object to criminal charge •Arraignment on Feb. 10

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By Joseph Jibueze

R Doyin Abiola, a widow of the late business mogul and politician, Chief Moshood Abiola, has filed a preliminary objection against a criminal charge brought against her and others by the Federal Government. Her lawyer, Mr Jacob Ladipo, told Mr Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court in Lagos that the charge was baseless. The judge yesterday threatened to strike out the fraud charge, if the police failed to produce the accused in court on the next hearing date. He said the failure of the police to arrest the accused showed that the prosecution was not prepared to go on with the case. Dr Abiola, Oladapo Bello, former Managing Director of defunct Integrated Microfinance Bank, Akinteye Ademola and Jerry Orimovuohoma were charged with misappropriation of over N500 million belonging to the bank. Dr Abiola, Bello and Orimovuohoma were said to be directors of the bank between 2006 and 2008. Orimovuohoma was absent and was not represented by a lawyer yesterday, while Ademola’s counsel Mrs. Toun Ashiri said her client was hospitalised. This stalled their arraignment for the third time. The defence lawyers said they had filed separate notices of preliminary objection challenging the validity of the charges instituted against their clients. Ashiri urged the court to strike out the charges because her client had not been served with them and other relevant documents, which she said breached Section 36(6)(b) of the Constitution; Sections 347, 348 and 349 of the Criminal Procedure Act as well as Sections 3(a) and 4 of the Federal High Court Criminal Procedure Practice Direction 2013. The judge said the law stipulates that the accused must be present in court before their objection can be taken. Justice Abang said: “I am not aware of any law and the counsel for the accused have not cited any authority that the accused can stay in the comfort of their room and file an objection expecting the court to make a pronouncement on it.” The prosecuting counsel from the Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr. David Kaswe, urged the court to issue a warrant of arrest on the absentee accused persons, but the judge rejected the application. The judge “reluctantly” adjourned till February 10 “for arraignment without fail”.

Old students seek return of school •School marks 50th anniversary

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From Tayo Johnson, Ibadan

LOCKING the golden mark of 50 years of existence as an institution calls for pomp and celebration, but for the old students of Prospect High School, in Abanla community, Oluyole Local Government area of Oyo State, the golden jubilee must not go without reflection and assessment. At an event to mark the opening of the week-long celebration activities, the school’s Old Students Association reflected on the pace of development in the school saying more progress would have been made if the school was run by the old students. After juxtaposing it with government funding, it stated that the school would be better run by them if government decided to hand it over. Speaking at the event, the national president of the association, Mr. Abiodun Balogun, stated that if government was tired of running schools and have decided to hand them over, the old students association was more than capable of running the school. His words: “The truth is that we cannot leave everything to government because government can not do everything. So, if they wish to hand it over, they can hand it over to us. We can run it and bring it up to standard.”


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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NEWS

Seven tried for sodomy in Bauchi T T

Kwara Speaker, 19 lawmakers join APC

HERE was pandemonium at the Upper Shariah Court 4 in Anguwar Jaki, Bauchi State, yesterday, as angry youths almost lynched seven suspected homosexuals but for security officials. They fired shots into the air and used tear-gas to disperse the mob. The suspects are Ibrahim Marafa, Shehu Adamu, Yusuf Adamu, Aliyu Dalhatu, Abdulmalik Tanko, Usman Sabo and Hazif Sabo

From Austine Tsenzughul, Bauchi

Abubakar. But the youths hurled stones and sachets of water at the van conveying them, as it sped back to the prison. The atmosphere was tense when the suspects came out of the court. Reporters and others in the court lost their cameras, tape recorders and phones; some people were injured.

The suspects were charged with allegedly engaging in homosexuality in Bauchi State, an action which contravenes the Islamic laws in the state. Police spokesman Haruna Mohammed said the suspects were arrested by the state Shariah Commission. The commission’s counsel, Danlami Ayuba, said one of the suspects, Ibrahim Marafa, is the head teacher of the Government Secondary School, Mainamaji.

Marafa's counsel Abdul Musa said he was not prepared for trial and sought bail for his client. The judge, El-Yaqub Aliyu, refused and adjourned the matter till January 27. The prosecution also paraded six other suspects. When their case was mentioned, Aliyu askedAyuba if he had enough evidence. Ayuba presented two witnesses, who testified that they did not see the suspects commit the offences.

WENTY members of the Kwara State House of Assembly, led by the Speaker, defected yesterday to the All Progressives Congress (APC) from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The 24-member House had only two APC lawmakers from Offa Local Government Area. In a letter to the Speaker, Razak Atunwa, the former PDP members hinged their defection on the division in the PDP. They backed their action with constitutional provisions as contained in Section 109 (1) (g). The Speaker said PDP had suffered fragmentation, leading to the emergence of two factions. He said the resignation of former PDP National Chairman Bamanga Tukur had nothing to do with their stand and would not change their positions. Atunwa added that efforts aimed at resolving the differences between the factions were frustrated. Said he: "It is clear that from August 30, last year, when some delegates walked out of the Eagles Square Convention to hold a parallel PDP convention at the Yar' Adua Centre, factions were established. “All reports have been awashed with reference to either the Baraje faction (com-

T •Sokoto State Governor Aliyu Wamakko distributing drugs and medical facilities to state hospitals in Sokoto...yesterday.

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Two killed in Tiv/Fulani clash

WO persons were killed yesterday in Adaka, a suburb of Makurdi in Benue State. A body was recovered from the well. Eyewitnesses said the victims, who were on a motorcycle and heading towards Makurdi, were shot by suspected Fulani herdsmen. Both natives and the Fulani fled the area when The Nation visited. Although armed policemen were patrolling the Makurdi-Naka Road, the locals said they had become helpless because attacks in the area were continuing. A community leader, Tsekar Tar, said the Fulani carried arms but the locals were harassed when sighted with a cutlass. The lawmaker representing Makurdi South, Benjamin Tilley Adanyi, said he and his people had become helpless. Police spokesman Daniel

•Lawmakers urge Jonathan to intervene From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi, Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

Ezeala said over 100 cows were allegedly killed by gunmen but denied knowledge of human casualties. The House of Representatives yesterday urged President Goodluck Jonathan to intervene. The House also urged the President to convene a stakeholders' meeting of leaders of ethnic groups. Members resolved that affected states should submit the reports of their panels of inquiry on the matter to the House for harmonisation. The resolution followed a motion moved by Sunday Karimi (APC-Kogi), which was unanimously adopted. According to Karimi, the continued attacks across the country by herdsmen and

the counter-attacks had become a daily occurrence. "Within the last 30 days, over 100 innocent lives have been lost on account of these needless attacks and counter-attacks. “One of such conflicts occurred on January 3 during which the Emir of Jere in Kaduna State, Dr Usman Sa'had, who is the husband of Senator Nenadi Usman, almost lost his life. "On January 6, more than 30 people were killed and many more injured in an attack in Riyom Local Government Area of Plateau state. Karimi added that on January 8, a similar crisis broke out in Ketu community of Yewa Local Government Area of Ogun State, which led to loss of lives and property

Emir of Ilorin, cleric preach peace

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HE Emir of Ilorin in Kwara State, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari and the Catholic Bishop of Ilorin Diocese, Rev AyoMaria Atoyebi, said yesterday that the peaceful co-existence among religious groups is responsible for the state's development. They spoke in Ilorin when the bishop visited the emir in his palace.

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

Alhaji Sulu-Gambari spoke of his preparedness to accommodate all groups. “I thank God for the relative peace in Kwara State, since my ascension to the throne. "I appeal to the bishop to let us draw from his wealth of experience. You people hold the society together.

‘’You have been doing well and commendably too," the emir added. Rev Atoyebi said: "The state is conducive for trade and commerce, religious expression, education and development and for family life. “We, as a church, are really happy about all these possibilities.’’

The lawmaker explained that the National Assembly initiated the National Grazing Routes and Reserve Bill, which he said, had passed the second reading. He said the bill was aimed at checking the conflicts between herdsmen and local farmers. According to him, the House must not "watch our people being maimed or killed needlessly." Abubakar Momoh, ( APCEdo), agreed that a stakeholders meeting would address the problem. Forte Dike (APGAAnambra) said with the continuous clashes, there was a need to pass the bill into law. Benue State Acting Governor Steven Lawani condemned the outbreak of hostilities in Agatu Local Government Area. Lawani said the needless crisis had caused the loss of lives and property. In a statement, the acting governor said government would pursue initiatives to forge unity and peace among warring communities and protect the citizens. He said: "Government has mobilised security agencies to these flash points to ensure a return of peace to these areas. "I appeal to residents of Adaka/Adeke and Agatu to return to their homes, as adequate measures have been put in place for their safety. Residents are advised to remain calm and law abiding."

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

monly referred to as 'new PDP' or 'nPDP') or the Bamanga Tukur faction. "I, and the rest of the members who have today changed party to the APC, belonged to the 'new PDP' faction. "The decision to leave the PDP was not made without thorough evaluation and extensive consultations. However, it was clear that PDP was fast becoming a sinking ship inhabited by self-serving egomaniacs. "Governance at the national level has been transformed into 'elective dictatorship'. Parliament has been the focus of attack, both physically and figuratively. Laws and resolutions passed by the House of Representatives have been disregarded. “The Rivers State House of Assembly has been under siege and remains closed. “Speaker and principal officers of the Kano State House of Assembly were arrested simply for passing a Supplementary Budget into Law," he said. "I am proud of those of us in this House, who have taken a stand against the slide of this country into the abyss. “Assuredly, our principled stand will be recorded in history as pivotal in saving this country from the precipice of failure. There must be change."

Boko Haram kills teacher

HE extremist group, Boko Haram, has killed a teacher in Wulgo, Borno State. Commissioner of Police Lawan Tanko said Boko Haram suspects tracked a man to his house on Monday, killed him and injured another man,

who is in hospital. A source said both men were secondary school teachers. Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is forbidden", has killed scores of pupils and burned down schools.

NSCDC arrests five 'cable thieves'

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HE Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in Sokoto State arrested yesterday five persons for allegedly stealing a 200-metre cable belonging to the defunct Nigeria Telecommunications Company (NITEL). The Commandant, Yusha'a Aliyu, said the suspects were part of a syndicate specialising in vandalising and stealing public infrastructure. Aliyu said the suspects were arrested on December 16 on Bello Way, Sokoto, around 2.30 a.m. "Three of the suspects were arrested by an undercover officer, who posed as a commercial driver. "The two other suspects were arrested through the revelations of the three earlier arrested by our officers," he explained. Aliyu said the suspects were remanded at the Sokoto Central Prison and would be charged to the Federal High Court.

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Church programme

RAISE and Fire Apostolic Church a.k.a Oke Agbara will hold a power-packed programme, tagged Nissiniyi (Right now), today at 5pm. The event will hold at Plot 3, Prophet Taiwo Olaseinde

Street, Mogaji Bus-Stop behind Redemption Camp, Ogun State. The theme of the programme is Emi Mimo Isreal (Holy one of Israel) The host, Prophet Francis Olaseinde, said anyone who attends the programme would receive a miracle.

'Jang didn't ban Sallah homage'

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From Yusufu Aminu Idegu, Jos

HE Plateau State government has denied banning Muslims from paying a Sallah homage to Governor Jonah Jang. A Muslim group, Muslim Forum for Respect to Elders (FRE), accused Jang of banning the practice of paying the traditional Sallah homage, since he assumed office in 2007. In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Pam Ayuba, the governor said he never made such obnoxious policy. The statement reads: "The attention of the Plateau State government has been drawn to a publication credited to a group, known as Forum for Respect for Elders, calling on Governor Jang to lift the ban on the Muslims from paying him a Sallah homage. "The government wishes to state that the governor never banned Muslims from paying Sallah homage to him. "The Jang administration has never contemplated such obnoxious policy of segregation since its inception ."


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NEWS Governors in fresh battle over oil sales proceeds Continued from page 2

ask questions on the economy on behalf of Nigerians. “We learnt that they are afraid that we might cause upset at the meeting. This is based on false reports that governors were already agitated.” A fourth governor said: “My brother, it is painful that we have to take the risk of coming to Abuja only to be turned back. If you know the cost of logistics of a governor moving out of his state with security aides and officials, you will appreciate our anger. “I think we can be tidier than we are now on NEC meeting.”

The Special Adviser to the Vice-President on Media and Publicity, Alhaji Umar Sani, said: “The postponement, I think, was due to an administrative problem. Those at the secretariat in the National Planning Commission have not been able to send invitation to everybody. It has nothing to do with the Vice President Namadi Sambo. “We will hold the meeting, I think by next week. You cannot avoid something that you must do. It is the National Planning Commission that calls for the meeting. And so many meetings have been cancelled because of some circumstances.” Asked if the NEC session was

postponed because of the controversy over $49.8billio, Sani added: “Are we not the people who called for the meeting? Why would we be afraid of anything to be discussed? “Is there any issue of $49.8billion when even the CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, came back to say that the money in question was $10.8billion? “Even if the governors raise the issue at NEC meeting, we will call on NNPC to give account. Sections 18 and 19 of the Third Schedule, Part 1 to the 1999 Constitution say: “ The National Economic Council shall comprise the following members -

civil meetings by any of our security agencies will further create more anxiety, panic and eventual loss of confidence in the security system, which is meant to protect and defend all and sundry”. But Senator George Sekibo (Rivers East) noted that though he does not support the disruption of properly organised functions or the harassment of anybody, “no man fights alone”. He asked: “Does it take one man to create violence? Does it take one man to cause trouble? We are all aware that public rallies and gathering, need police permit. The law that protects everybody has its rules. Save Rivers Movement is not a political party. Save Rivers Movement is an NGO.” There was a resounding “No, no, no. Police permit is not required to hold rallies.” Senator Babafemi Ojudu (Ekiti Central) said there was Supreme Court ruling that police permit was not required to hold rallies. Ake urged the Senate to “condemn the unjustifiable disruption and interruption of the pro-

posed peaceful rally and gathering of Save Rivers Movement (SRM) by men of the Rivers State Police Command, occasioned by sporadic gun shots and tear gas on January 12. He also prayed the Senate to “invite the Inspector General of Police, Abubakar Mohammed, to come and brief the Senate and give a situation report of the Rivers State crisis.” The two prayers were adopted. The lawmakers rejected the prayer to call the Senate to immediately implement an earlier resolution calling for Mbu’s redeployment. They also rejected the prayer to condemn the Rivers State Police Command under Mbu for shooting Abe and others with rubber bullets. Mark turned down another prayer by Senator Attai Ali Aidoko (Kogi East) that the Senate should mandate him (Mark) to mediate in the Rivers crisis. Mark said that his previous efforts to solve the problem did not yield any fruit. The Senate President was cat-

a. The Vice President who shall be the Chairman b. The Governor of each state of the Federation; and c. The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria established under the Central Bank of Nigeria Decree 1991 or any enactment replacing that Decree. “The National Economic Council shall have power to advise the President concerning the economic affairs of the Federation, and in particular on measures necessary for the co-ordination of the economic planning efforts or economic programmes of the various governments of the Federation.”

Senate summons IG over Rivers crisis Continued from page 2

por Local Government Area and its environs by policemen who stormed a Save Rivers Movement (SRM) programme. He said the police dispersed the peaceful crowd that gathered at Rivers State College of Arts and Science, with tear gas, guns and other weapons. Ake noted that he was disturbed that a senator representing Rivers South East Senatorial District, Magnus Ngei Abe, was shot at and hit with rubber bullets by the police who stormed the venue of the rally with unprecedented concentration of Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) and heavy presence of men and officers. According to Ake, the state under the present police leadership has witnessed “too many simultaneous attacks professionally unleashed on the ordinary citizens”. In his view, “the increasing and continuous attack, disruption and arbitrary obstruction of any peaceful gathering in Rivers State, be it political, religious or

•Abubakar

egorical that “the Rivers problem is beyond me”. Mark said: “I already have enough problems in my hands. You recall that the Senate mandated me to mediate in the Rivers State crisis. I even involved the distinguished female senators of this chamber, but we could not make any headway. “The Rivers problem is beyond me. I did not report back to the Senate because we did not make any headway.”

Why ex-Army chief must face ICC, by NEF Continued from page 2

“There are court processes but the police did not think those were important enough. Therefore, at some point, something like this will happen.” He said Gen. Ihejirika was not being dragged before the ICC because he is an Igbo man. “It is stupid to insinuate that we are dragging the former Chief of Army Staff to the ICC because he is an Igbo man. It could have been anybody. It is the usual Nigerian politics that you can only take certain decisions based on your tribe, your religion or where you come from. “This is what Nigeria has been reduced to. People cannot be accused of criminal offences because they are from particular sections of the country. It is a

very sad state of affairs. We are taking this action not minding where Gen. Ihejirika comes from.” Abdullahi said the Abuja meeting of the committee was meant to harmonise its position to ensure that the suit to be filed at The Hague is amply buttressed with facts and figures. He said: “The legal committee gave us a brief in terms of the goings on in terms of constitutional amendment, and we are now also looking at the various ways and means of ensuring that the issues we are going to raise at the International Criminal Court are issues of facts and figures. This is what we considered today. “For us to be sure of our facts

and figures, we have decided that another group would make its way to Maiduguri to see the Borno Elders Forum, who also have been discussing this matter for many months so we can compare notes with them and see in what way we can work together to ensure that the issues we are gong to raise are issues of national concern; are issues that are going to be presented on the basis of facts and figures.” On whether the NEF would not indirectly drag President Goodluck Jonathan to the ICC seeing that Gen. Ihejirika is going to face trial for carrying out orders he may have received from the President as the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, he said it was left for the

judges at the ICC to determine that. Abdullahi added: “It is the ICC based on its procedures and rules that would determine at what point it would stop. Obviously, the man who pulled the trigger may not necessarily be the man with the liability. “If you notice in terms of past experiences, we have been seeing Heads of State appearing or being issued with warrants of arrest to appear before the ICC but they were not at the front line in terms of where these human rights violations have taken place but the court was able to establish that all of these human rights violations were carried out with their knowledge or with their instruction. “

THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

180,000 jobs coming in Agric Continued from page 2

portance of inclusive growth in Africa on a scale of one to 10, Jonathan and all the other participants in the debate agreed that it deserved a ranking of 10. Jonathan said: “Economic inclusion is very important and we are already taking necessary steps to improve financial inclusion in our country. Transforming our agricultural sector is one way in which we are doing so. “We are doing all that we can to transform agriculture in Nigeria into a much more productive and job creating sector. We are also working to create more inclusive wealth through better education, skills acquisition programmes and policies that encourage the addition of value to our primary products before exportation.” Since Africa’s population is projected to exceed two billion persons by the year 2050, he said that wealth creation and job creation must remain at the top of the continent’s developmental agenda. President Jonathan, President John Mahama of Ghana, Alhaji Aliko Dangote and other participants in the debate agreed that the objective of achieving more inclusive economic growth will

be better served if African leaders take more positive action towards boosting intra-African trade. They said that the current situation in which only 11 per cent of Africa’s total trade takes place within the continent is unacceptable. Jonathan said that African leaders must do everything possible to remove all impediments to trade amongst African countries, including inadequate air and ground transportation links among their countries. Jonathan added: “Security and political stability are key to development. Investors will not come to any country that is insecure or politically unstable. Happily, many African countries now enjoy political stability. It is a major reason for the positive economic growth rates which we are now witnessing on the continent and we must continue do our best to maintain and expand the frontiers of political stability on our continent.” Jonathan told reporters that the World Economic Forum on Africa, which will take place in Abuja in May, will provide a great platform for further exhibiting the immense economic potentials of Nigeria and the West African sub-region to the world’s leading investors and companies.

Boko Haram: North’s, Igbo’s elders exchange attacks over Ihejirika Continued from page 2

opened the Pandora’ Box”. “The indigenes of Odi, ZakiBiam and Katsina-Ala will, in quick succession, file into the hall. At the same pace, Ndigbo of Southeast and Anioma will dust their files and head for The Hague.” He said Nigerians must cling to the hope that Abdullahi and co “wish long-lasting peace and stability to our troubled federation”. According to Chukwumerije, the only path to long-lasting stability of the federation is the path of equity-”an understanding by all of us that the irreducible necessity in a multi-national state like our federation is a secular state soundly based on rule of all, on equality of rights and obligations of all citizens”. He said the Igbo-speaking citizens observed with disquiet that the present constellation of security chiefs has none from the Igbo ethnic nationality. Ndigbo, he said, views the omission with concern “because it means that at the highest level of consideration of the security challenges of the country, the voice of Ndigbo will be missing”. He said: “A society that has no respect for human life is nearer the status of a community of animals. But the situation in the uni-

versally acknowledged difficult terrain of a borderless war, such as terrorism, counter terrorism and guerilla-like conflicts offers a unique challenge.” Chukwumerije, who spoke at the National Assembly, added: “The motives of Prof. Ango Abdullahi and co are obviously beyond concerns about violations of human rights. This is so because the incident of Bama (Baga) has been investigated and put to rest long ago. “For instance, the Senate sent a strong team to the area in June 2013 after the incident. After a thorough on-the-spot investigation, which extended to interviews with all concerned officials (Director of SSS, State Governor, Commander of the Multi-National Joint Task Force, and stakeholders of the community) and visit to the graveyard, the Senate Committee concluded as follows: ‘The death toll of 185 was exaggerated but there may be more than 37 deaths…. Chukwumerije, who said that the Senate endorsed the report, noted that “definitely, there were no massacres to the scale that demanded the judicial sanctions of The Hague”. He said: “Why the blatantly selective search for responsibility in Bama (Baga) and why so personal?

Security agencies oppose being under Defence minister

Continued from page 2

(Zamfara State), Nigeria former Ambassador to Ghana Musiliu Obanikoro (Lagos), Hon. Mohammed Wakil (Borno), Abduljelili Oyewale Adesiyan (Osun), Ambassador Aminu Wali (Kano), Mrs. Hadjia Jemila Salik (Kano) and Mrs. Akon Etim Eyakenyi (Akwa Ibom). Others are: Laurencia Labaran Mallam (Kaduna), Dr. Tamuno W. Danagogo (Rivers), Asabe Asmau Ahmed (Niger), Mr. Boni Haruna (Adamawa) and Dr. Khaliru Alhassan (Sokoto). Senators have observed that nominees are greenhorns in public service. A few of them were also alleged to be old, implicated in some corruption deals. It was learnt that these dimensions have made Senators to resolve to put them to task on their antecedents and plans for the country because they have less than 17 months to spend in office.

It was gathered that the concerns of the Senators border on “what changes the ministers are ready to effect” within a short time in office. Some senators were said to have been disappointed that ministers with issues had been in the cabinet. A high-ranking Senator said: “We will subject these nominees to serious screening because they are going to serve in a transition cabinet having been nominated in an election year. “We are no longer in the era of anything goes; we want to know what they want to do differently. If someone is already 70 or 75 years old and he wants to be a minister, we need to find out what value he intends to add to national development and how he missed the opportunity in his vibrant years. “We have received information about some people facing corruption charges and those

mentioned by Wikileaks in the past. We need to clear these grey areas.” Another Senator said: “We are awaiting the circulation of the resume of the nominees most of whom are unknown to us. This has given us a challenge to conduct a thorough screening. “Some of us were disappointed that those, who should really be out of the cabinet have been retained. “On the surface, we saw the list as weak but since the nominees are unknown to most of us, they are Nigerians who might have achieved silently in their careers. We need to know them; Nigerians ought to have understanding of those who will lead them.” An opposition Senator said: “After a long wait, the President came with a suspicious list. It appears some of them are coming into the cabinet to run political errands. “It is not good to base cabinet

selection on political sentiments because ministers serve the nation and not parties.” Meanwhile, security agencies are opposed to plans by the President to make them and the military to report to the in-coming Minister of Defence. A source, who spoke in confidence, said: “The National Security Agencies Act does not mandate these agencies to report to a Minister of Defence, who most often is a politician. “To realise the new proposal, the government would have to amend the Act or else we will be doing so illegally. “We should also avoid the danger of a Minister of Defence becoming powerful to assume the powers of the Commanderin-Chief.” Replying to a question, the source said: “I think the attention of the President has been drawn to the illegality of such a proposal.

“In fact, the appointment of a Coordinating Minister for the Economy is unknown to law not to talk of the Coordinating Minister of Defence. Enough of illegality.” A copy of the National Security Agencies Act, obtained yesterday by our correspondent, reads in part: “For the purpose of co-ordinating the intelligence activities of the National Security Agencies set up under Section I of this Act, there shall be appointed by the President a Co-ordinator on National Security. “The Co-ordinator on National Security shall be a principal staff officer in the office of the President. “The Co-ordinator on National Security shall be charged with the duty of(a) advising the President on matters concerning the intelligence activities of the agencies; (b) making recommendations

in relation to the activities of the agencies to the President, as contigencies may warrant; (c) correlating and evaluating intelligence reports relating to the national security and providing the appropriate dissemination of such intelligence within Government, using existing facilities as the President may direct; (d) determining the number and level of staff to be employed by each agency established pursuant to section I of this Act and organising the transfer and posting of staff, especially the transfer and posting of existing staff of the Nigerian Security Organisation established pursuant to the Nigerian Security Organisation Act 1976, repealed by section 7 (1) of this Act; (e) doing such other things in connection with the foregoing provisions of this section as the President may, from time to time, determine.”


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

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THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

71

SPORT EXTRA

F

Dominic Iorfa in secret traditional marriage

ORMER Super Eagles’ forward Dominic Iorfa recently took time off his busy schedule in the Globacom Premier league and engaged his heartthrob , Member Adteze in a secret traditional marriage . The planning and execution of the traditional marriage ceremony of the former Queens Park Rang-

From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi

ers’ player was shrouded in secret, but did prevent many people from attending the colorful ceremony ,which attracted a lot of dignitaries,especially his closest family members and friends. As former Super Eagles’

• Dominic Iorfa and his wife during the traditional wedding

star, many expected that his wedding would attract a wide publicity but it was not to be as invitations was deliveredthrough text messages. The traditional marriage ceremony which took place at Tse Adteze ,in Ikyurav-Tiev, Katsina Ala local government area in Benue state, was preceded by payment of bride price (kem kwase), after negotiations was concluded . After the conclusion of the bride price, the couple Dominic Iorfa and his bride were formally decorated with Tiv traditional attire of Anger, and introduced to the guests, among them, politicians, Benue state exco members and Lobi Stars management ,players and supporters. Member Adteze ,wife of Dominic Iorfa hails from Katsina Ala,the present home of Lobi Stars football club of Makurdi ,while he is from Ushongo local government area all in Benue north east senatorial district .

Ambassador promises good reception for Eagles in Brazil T

HE newly-appointed Ambassador to Brazil, His Excellency Adamu Azimeyeh Emozozo has promised the Super Eagles a friendly and conducive atmosphere throughout the duration of the Nigerian team’s stay in Brazil for this year’s World Cup. Emozozo who came to the Zone 7 Abuja Secretariat of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) expressed satisfaction with the preparations of the Football House in respect of the World Cup and added that he and the President of the NFF, Aminu Maigari had fruitful discussions as regards Nigeria’s preparations for the competition holding as from June 12 this year in Brazil. “The expectations of Nigerians as far as (Nigerian) Embassy in Brazil is concerned are that they would be coming from home to home. We hope to give them the best of environment that will enable the players to do well in the competition and also play good football. But the general expectation back home, I think all Nigerians like football and we will expect the Super Eagles to make us all proud in the

•Visas ‘will be easy for genuine competition and every applicants’ country wants to come and From Segun Ogunjimi, Abuja World Cup. He also gave assurance on procurement of visas for the competition, warning that only those who have legitimate business to do in Brazil will get the visas. “Visa procurement is at the discretion of every government. We are already discussing with the Brazilian authority via the Embassy and the modalities for ensuring that those who have legitimate businesses to do during the (2014) World Cup do not have to be deprived of visas to go to Brazil. That is being assured and the Presidency is on top of that. “Brazil is a top football playing nation and they are also competitive. You can see how Brazil has transformed from a third world country to one of the top economies of the world. Brazil like

compete but they are also doing everything that is humanly possible to make every player comfortable and to deliver on what they set to do. The Ambassador also assured on spectatorship, promising large turnout of Nigerians at Eagles’ match venues. “We have a lot of Nigerians in Brazil who will give the team support we need for the Eagles to triumph. I am sure that the Brazilians will be there to support us (the Super Eagles). Because they are sporting people the Brazilians will support the Eagles to the last whistle even if we (Nigeria) have to beat Brazil in the competition. “We will surely do our best to ensure Nigerians living in Brazil troop out in large numbers to support the Super Eagles in all the matches the team would play in Brazil”, Emozozo told NationSport in Abuja yesterday.

TUG of War: International body waives HE Tug of War off Nigeria’s five-year debt International

T

Federation (TWIF) has waived off the outstanding annual membership affiliation dues owed by Nigeria.For five years out of the seven years owed, the Federation was asked to pay the two years owed, in order to remain in good financial standing. According to TWIF, this is to enable Nigeria participate in future TWIF organised and sanctioned events. Meanwhile, there has been a leadership change in the Tug of War Nigeria Federation with Temitope Oliyide emerging as the President. Oliyide, an engineer with one of the leading communication firm defeated Anthony Oyetayo in yesterday’s election held at the Board Room of the Nigeria Olympic Committee

•As Oliyide is new Tug of War Federation President By Oderinde Kudirat, Odebiyi Isreal, Sodipo Isreal

in Lagos. Oliyide polled 10 out of the delegates 21 votes, while Oyetayo, who until yesterday had been occupying the top seat for more than a decade, got six votes with one of the votes voided. Samuel Babatoba polled 10 votes at the expense of Adeyeye Ayodeji for the South West membership seat of the 19-member board. Oliyide after his swearing in, commended Oyetayo for leading the board successfully, while he pledged to give the sport a face-lift. He stressed the need for total rededication by the board members and stakeholders

with the pledge to popularise the sport. The new board also has Isaac O Isaac(Snr. Vice President), Cecilia Arinye (1st Vice President), Emmanuel Nwerri (2nd Vice President). Other members are, Abdulkareem Macaulay (Sec Gen) Mrs Gloria Obajimi, Henry Amike, Linda Eseimokumo, CP Olatunji Caulcrick,Elizabeth Imonitie, Lt. Afeez Sadiku, Wing Commander Chiroma Wandeo, Olushola Ogundele. In the same vein, the former President, Anthony Oyetayo has commended his General Secretary, Abdul Kareem Macaulay, all member states, institutions and other stakeholders, including the Press for supporting him.


THE NATION THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014

71

CITYBEATS

•The suspects ... yesterday

Suspected robbers invade church

T

HE Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Lagos State Police Command, has arrested six members of a suspected eightman armed robbery gang that allegedly attacked a church at Vespa, Ijanikin on the Lagos-Badagry Expressway. Two locally made pistols, 50 live cartridges and military camouflage were recovered from them. In police net are: Adewale Osaja, 21; Bala Yahaya, 28; Hassan Ado, 19; Armed Boladale, 20; Abiodun Olarewaju, 27, and Abbey Edward, 45. Parading them yesterday at the Lagos Command Headquarters in Ikeja, its spokesperson Ngozi Braide, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said: "On December 31, 2013 at about 10.45pm, a new-generation

By Ebele Boniface

church, Christ Authority and Power Evangelical Ministry (CAPEM), situated at Ijanikin, a suburb of Lagos, along Lagos-Badagry Expressway, was invaded by a group of armed robbers during a crossover night. They robbed worshippers of their valuables which included Ipads, Ipods, phones, jewelry, money and church offering." Braide said they struck when the worshippers were exchanging New Year pleasantries in the church, adding that the same gang struck on Morantola Street, Vespa, Ijanikin on January 1. She said residents showed bravery by engaging them, but that the robbers fled, abandoning one of their weapons. On January 2, she added, Hassan Ado, a member of the gang "foolishly" went back to

the street to ask some boys if they saw any gun because theirs fell down there the previous day. Braide said the community was alerted and he was arrested. His arrest and subsequent transfer to the SARS enabled the Officer-in-Charge Abba Kyari, a Superintendent of Police (SP) to lead his team to arrest other members of the gang including their leader, Osoja, leaving two, now at large. Kyari's Special Squad later arrested their alleged arms' supplier, Abbey Edward, who had allegedly given them five locally made pistols. Braide said Edward sold each gun for N7, 000 to Abiodun Olarewaju who, in turn, sold same for N20, 000 each to the suspects. She said besides confessing to armed robbery around Ajangbadi,

SPORT EXTRA Dominic Iorfa in secret marriage

F

ORMER Super Eagles’ forward Dominic Iorfa recently took time off his busy schedule in the Globacom Premier league and engaged his heartthrob , Member Adteze in a secret traditional marriage . The planning and execution of the traditional marriage ceremony of the former Queens Park Rang-

From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi ers’ player was shrouded in secret, but did prevent many people from attending the colorful ceremony ,which attracted a lot of dignitaries,especially his closest family members and friends. As former Super Eagles’

• Dominic Iorfa and his wife during the traditional wedding

star, many expected that his wedding would attract a wide publicity but it was not to be as invitations was deliveredthrough text messages. The traditional marriage ceremony which took place at Tse Adteze ,in Ikyurav-Tiev, Katsina Ala local government area in Benue state, was preceded by payment of bride price (kem kwase), after negotiations was concluded . After the conclusion of the bride price, the couple Dominic Iorfa and his bride were formally decorated with Tiv traditional attire of Anger, and introduced to the guests, among them, politicians, Benue state exco members and Lobi Stars management ,players and supporters. Member Adteze ,wife of Dominic Iorfa hails from Katsina Ala, the present home of Lobi Stars football club of Makurdi ,while he is from Ushongo local government area all in Benue north east senatorial district .

TUG of War: Body waives off Nigeria’s five-year debt

T

HE Tug of War International Federation (TWIF) has waived off the outstanding membership affiliation dues owed by Nigeria. For five of the seven years owed, the Federation was asked to pay the two years owed, in order to remain in good financial standing. According to TWIF, this is to enable Ni-

•Oliyide is new Federation President By Oderinde Kudirat, Odebiyi Israel, Sodipo Israel

geria participate in future TWIF organised and sanctioned events. Temitope Oliyide has emerged as the president Tug of War Federation Nigeria. He defeated Anthony Oyetayo in yesterday’s elec-

tion at the Nigeria Olympic Committee in Lagos. Oliyide polled 10 of the 21 votes, while Oyetayo got six votes, with one vote voided. The new board also has Isaac O Isaac(Snr. Vice President), Cecilia Arinye (1st Vice President), Emmanuel Nwerri (2nd Vice President).


THURSDAY, JANUARY 23, 2014 TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM

TODAY IN THE NATION ‘The police pride themselves in being friends of the people. Unfortunately, we cannot say that of Mbu; we will rather remove the r in that word and see him more as a fiend’ ’ VOL. 8, NO. 2,737

COMMENT & DEB ATE EBA

W

E all dream. We love those long trips of fantasy, powered by images of a beautiful world, full of leisure and pleasure; all gains, no pains. Those colourful thoughts we nurse in our sleep. An ambition should not be confused with a dream. Many sleep without dreaming. Some dream but lack the will to power their dreams to reality. Others dream deceitful dreams. For instance, what kind of dream will a man have after hitting the bottle so hard before going to bed? Some dreams could also be telltale signs of a serious fever. Hallucinations. A momentary loss of memory could force out such questions as: “Where am I?” “What happened?” “Am I seeing double?” The Yoruba say a man who dreams of hitting the jackpot had better roll up his sleeves. It may well mean that, if he took no care, he would land in poverty. Our man may be riding a beautiful car in his sleep only to wake up and recall that it was the mere image of the sleek car he once saw cruising past him as he pounded the dusty street that would not just go away. Imagination. He wakes up and the reality hits him right in the face. No car. But dreams are not all about material acquisition in which an unknown village boy strikes it rich in the city, living like a king and partying like a Hollywood star. Just like Jordan Belfort in the “Wolf of Wall Street”. No. We dream of occupying big offices, holding the reins of leadership and calling the shots from the top. It is, in other words, in the nature of human beings to be ambitious. Ambition is such a powerful phenomenon that is difficult to understand, even when it is as clear as day. Politicians are driven by ambition. There are those who dream of getting political power, not as an end in itself, but as a means to an end – a good life for the generality of the people through the provision of those basic needs that enhance the quality of living. Others desperately pursue a life-long dream of getting power to amass wealth to oil a life of opulence. In other words, there is the fantasy of politics, even as we have the politics of fantasy. Dreams. The other day in Ekiti, the wife of the former governor, Ayo Fayose, announced to Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) women on her 50th birthday that her husband was returning to the Government House in June. Said Mrs Fayose in simple biblical language: “I am not a politician. I am a woman that believes in God. As the Lord liveth, I have simply come to announce to you and any other doubting Thomases of the inevitable return of my husband, Mr Peter Ayodele Fayose, to his seat as the next governor of Ekiti State.” Then, many started asking: Could this be a mere outpouring of emotion by a woman displaying her love for her man after dreaming about their days in power, those days when everyday was like Christmas? Is

RIPPLES PDP HAS EXPIRED–Dino Melaye

...NAFDAC, take note

GBENGA OMOTOSO

EDITORIAL NOTEBOOK

gbenga.omotoso@thenationonlineng.net

•Editor of the Year (NMMA)

The power of dreams

• Ladoja

• Suntai

Feyisetan also among the prophets? Did she see a vision? Where are all those giants of necromancy; are they back? The Okunzuas. The Akpabots. Are they back? “By the special grace of God, his return is certain, and so destined. I am telling you that nothing can stop him,” the woman said with prophetic relish. That is the power of dreams; ambition flying on the wings of dreams. Well, June is just around the corner. “I went through hell as PDP chairman, says Tukur,” a newspaper headline screamed last week. Former PDP Chair Bamanga Tukur was recalling his travails while in the saddle. His dream was to unite the party and help it fulfil its ambition of ruling Nigeria for 60 years – in the first instance. He went about it in a strange manner, smashing some heads here and knocking others there – all in the name of discipline. In no time, the tide turned against him; the hunter became the hunted. Tukur’s presidential bulwark against the governors’ fury collapsed. He threw in the towel. The dream died. Gone with it, obviously, was his son’s ambition of becoming governor of Adamawa State. But Tukur tried. The dam had burst and the

river had torn through its banks, with five governors leaving “the biggest party in Africa”. Under a less aggressive fellow, the governors would have quit the ship in droves as the turbulence got worse. With off-track Tukur off to the railway tracks, the Jonathan administration has lost the greatest apostle of its transformation agenda –the compendium of Dr Goodluck Jonathan’s dream for Nigeria as an eldorado. Now, who will remind us that there was ever a dream– sorry, an error there– who will remind us that there was ever an agenda, transformation or otherwise? Ever since he left power, first as a weakling elbowed out by the Adedibu forces, and after losing an election to his former deputy, Adebayo Alao-Akala, Alhaji Rashidi Ladoja has never hidden his dream of returning to the big stage. The Isiaka Ajimobi administration struck a deal with him, a kind of power- sharing arrangement. But the Accord chief kept maligning the government, showing no love but disdain for the party in power, his party’s ally. All efforts to pacify Ladoja failed. In a desperate bid to regain power, he once cobbled together a deal with Alao-Akala, who supplanted him as governor before the court stepped in to stop the charade of Ladoja’s impeachment. He received in his Ibadan home high profile visitors, including former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who came to woo him back to the PDP. Apparently unsure of being handed the PDP’s ticket, Ladoja held back. Now, he is pursuing his dream of returning to power with Accord, the party he has been nursing. Accord, dear reader, is not to be confused with the sleek Japanese saloon car that is so common on Nigerian roads. But his opponents – and friends – tell Ladoja that things have changed. A nonperforming administration is easy to muscle out; not so the Ajimobi administration, which has shown some sparkling efforts in redeeming Oyo State’s glory. To Ladoja, this sounds like some awful music. Such is the

HARDBALL

T

HE tone is decidedly triumphant: foreign concerns are coming here to mine gold, iron ore and allied minerals. And the golden tale bearer, Mohammed Amate, director-general of Nigerian Cadastre Office, Abuja, conveyed it with a flush of excitement: New Year, new hope, and new jobs, courtesy of mining! Mr. Amate told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that foreign firms, Mines Geotechnique Nigeria Ltd, Northern Numero Resources Ltd, Segilola Nigeria Ltd and KCM Mining Ltd, from Australia and United Kingdom, have landed mining rights for gold and iron ore in Nigeria: Kebbi, Kogi and Osun states, to be precise. Though Segilola Nigeria, from name recognition, seems a distinctly Nigerian firm, the report claims it is an Australian firm. Segilola is the proud gold digger (no negative pun intended), which operating licence is in Osun State; and it’s a done deal, for the firm’s exploration activities have confirmed more than one million ounces of gold buried in Osun’s rich chest, at least in its area of operation. The other firms, mining iron ore, are no less lucky, for exploration

Hooray! Time to mine gold! activities have also proved no less than 500 million tonnes of iron ore. Still on the good news: the quad is only a fifth of the 20 foreign firms the Federal Government has granted mining exploration licences. Shortly the gold - and iron ore - rush would start; and jobs, jobs, and jobs would come, to employ millions of Nigeria’s jobless and disoriented youth! It is a happy, happy New Year indeed! But the avoidable depression: why is granting mining licences the monopoly of the Federal Government in a federation of 36 states? Look at the bureaucracy of it: the host states lose wealth, while the central government makes a fetish of its licensing monopoly. Look at the ecology of it: the host states and communities - suffer environmental degradation, while the God-playing central government grabs the cash, and gives the

LAWAL OGIENAGBON

power of dreams. Ambition. Rivers State is slipping into anarchy. Governor Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi dumped the PDP for the All Progressives Congress (APC). His former Chief of Staff, Education Minister Nyesom Wike, backed by the Presidency, has vowed to ensure that the governor knows no peace. In Wike’s corner are the First Lady, Patience Jonathan, police and their pugnacious commissioner, Mbu Joseph Mbu. When Amaechi’s supporters organise a rally, the police are quick to smash it up. Wike’s men are as free as birds of the air at their rallies. At one of those rallies, Senator Magnus Abe was shot. He is hospitalised. Last Sunday, many government officials had their vehicles smashed in Ogoni where a planned rally was aborted as hoodlums fired shots. Many were injured. The police looked the other way. What is the problem? Wike wants to be governor, but Amaechi says since he (the incumbent) is an Ikwerre, like Wike, it is only fair that his successor should come from another ethnic group. The minister, apparently seized by ambition, rejected the suggestion and elected to fight. A former chief of staff knows what it means to be a governor and will somehow dream to occupy the exalted seat. Ambition has no room for moderation. It often abhors modesty. This is the root of the coming anarchy in Rivers. President Jonathan has resisted calls for him to put Wike, Mbu and their armies on a tight leash. Many don’t seem to understand why Jonathan won’t listen. He dreams of running again in 2015 and Rivers is critical in his calculations. Why then should some squabbles affect his ambition? Since Taraba State Governor Danbaba Suntai returned from a medical trip, there has been little peace. Deputy Governor Garba Umar has refused to step aside and allow Suntai run the show. Besides the fact that Suntai’s health remains an issue, it has always been Umar’s dream to be the governor. Here is his brightest chance ever. Will he just surrender it? In Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore is getting set to run for governor. The popular view is that, considering Rauf Aregbesola’s sterling performance, Omisore seems to be building a castle in the air. But, who can dismiss a man who won an election while in detention? Should dreams have limits? Should ambition continue to thrive when it becomes a clear danger to its purveyors and the very people that are the reason for such dreams? It is neither here nor there. The right to dream is not just fundamental; it is natural. But then, dreams remain what they are, essentially – dreams. Let’s all keep dreaming. After all, it is legal. •For comments, send SMS to 08111813080

•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above Biblical hewers of stone and drawers of water a mere “change”. Look at the economics of it: wealth lying untapped in the bowels of states, while mass poverty bordering on penury gallops all over the land because of some pre-historic law by which these natural resources are exclusively vested in the Federal Government. It is good the Federal Government is taking mining more seriously as foreign exchange earner, outside its near-mono commodity of crude oil. But it is even better, the earlier it realises the present federal monopoly in that sector does nothing but impoverishes everybody, when a liberal and federalismcompliant law of states mining their land, and paying the centre some agreed tax, will enrich everyone. Besides, that realisation would drive inter-state/inter-region competition that would add value, and embed heavy local industries. That would be smarter economics than the present practice of exporting crude oil and buying it back at a refined premium, therefore posting a net loss. It is then, and only then, that we would have hit gold!

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Jan 23, 2014