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Oyo raises N300m cash for Security Trust Fund P7 Why Chelsea wants Eagles star Moses, by Di Matteo P16 Sultan seeks peaceful Ramadan as fasting begins P57 www.thenationonlineng.net

TR UTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM TRUTH

VOL. 7, NO. 2192 FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

N150.00

Govt scraps DPR, PPPRA •Reps return PIB to President From Yusuf Alli, Abuja

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HE Fedearal Government has scrapped the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) under its planned reform of the oil sector. They are to be replaced with the Petroleum Technical Bureau (PTB) and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Agency (DPRA), if the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) is passed by the National Assembly. The House of Representatives, yesterday, returned the PIB to President Goodluck Jonathan, claiming that it has no time to consider the bill because of its impending vacation. But the Senate has promised not to delay the bill’s passage. Under the bill, the government is offering 30 per cent equity to Nigerians in the unbundled Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Another major provision of the bill sent to the lawmakers on Wednesday is the government’s decision to ensure total deregulation of the downstream sector. According to a copy of the bill obtained last night by our correspondent, the new agencies that will emerge from NNPC, three months after the bill is signed into law, are National Oil Company, National Petroleum Assets Management Corporation, and National Gas Company. Nigerians and other investors will have the opportunity to own 30 per cent shares in the National Oil Company and 40 per cent in National Oil Gas Company. Continued on page 3

•Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi (second left), Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (third left), Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi (second right), Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Alhaji Azeez Arisekola (right) and Commissioner of PoliceTambari Muhammed (left), at the launch of the State Security Trust Fund in Ibadan…yesterday

Oteh unfit to be SEC DG, say lawmakers

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IRECTOR-GENERAL of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Ms Arunma Oteh is unfit to hold the position, the House of Representatives said yesterday. Ms Oteh was recalled from suspension by the Federal Government on Wednesday after being cleared of “fraud or criminal

Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

breach of any form by external auditors – Price Water Cooper Limited (PWC) - which audited SEC’s controversial Project 50. But workers protested her recall at the Abuja Central Business District (CBD) office of SEC.

Minister of Finance Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has stepped into the matter to smoothen Ms Oteh’s return to office. The SEC DG failed to resume in office yesterday as widely expected. Yesterday, the House accepted all the recommendations of the Ibrahim El Sudi-led ad hoc com-

mittee that investigated the nearcollapse of the Capital Market. During the consideration of the committee’s report, El Sudi said: “ I want to correct an impression that has been created in the media that tends to affect the image of the House. Continued on page 4

House issues Jonathan ultimatum on budget Wields impeachment axe

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•Dr. Jonathan

HINGS have come to a head between President Goodluck Jonathan and the House of Representatives. The lawmakers, yesterday, threatened him with impeachment over what they called “poor implementation” of the budget. But in its reaction, the Presidency said it is on the same page with the House on the matter. At a plenary full of suspense, the lawmakers hailed Minority Leader Femi Gbajabiamila (ACN, Lagos), when he raised the issue of impeachment during debate on a motion ac-

Presidency: we’re on same page

If by September when we resume from recess the executive has not implemented the budget to 100 per cent, we will begin drafting the article of impeachment From Dele Anofi, Abuja

cusing the executive of violating the 2012 Appropriation Act. The motion was brought by Chairman, Committee on Rules and Business Albert Sam-Tsokwa and 20 others. Contributing to the debate, Gbaja-

biamila, relying on Section 143 of the Constitution, said the President was culpable of gross misconduct going by the submissions of earlier speakers. His colleagues cheered him when he moved to amend the Sam-Tsokwa and others’ motion, saying: “If by Sep-

tember when we resume from recess the executive has not implemented the budget to 100 per cent, we will begin drafting the article of impeachment”. Nadu Karibo (PDP, Bayelsa), citing Order 7 (57), said impeachment should not be mentioned because it is not relevant to the debate, but his colleagues shouted him down. Speaker Aminu Tambuwal sustained the point of order but asked Gbajabiamila to conclude his argument. Acknowledging Karibo’s point of Continued on page 4

•NINE KILLED IN BORNO, KANO P57•ACN: PDP IS DEMOCRACY’S PROBLEM P6


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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NEWS PETROLEUM INDUSTRY BILL

Nigeria’s oil shifts to smaller players

A •Vice-President Namadi Sambo (second right) , Angola Minister of Transport, Mr. Augusio Da Silva Tomas (left) , Aviation Minister Stella Odua and President, International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), Mr. Robert Gonzalese (right) at the Africa Ministerial Conference on Safety in Africa in Abuja... yesterday. PHOTO: ISAAC AYODELE

•Benue State Governor Gabriel Suswam receiving his new driver’s licence from an official of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) at the commission’s headquatres in Abuja. Watching is FRSC boss Osita Chidoka

FTER five years of stalled negotiations, a bill overhauling Nigeria’s oil industry has finally won cabinet approval and if it makes it beyond the president’s office and through parliament, it would ideally lead to a rejuvenation of crude oil production in the country by releasing billions in investment. Nigeria’s oil officials say the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) will revolutionize the industry, partly privatizing the state oil company and tax levy 20% taxes on deep-water offshore oil profits and 50% taxes on shallow-water offshore and inland oil profits. Under the PIB, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) would be deconstructed and replaced with an independent National Oil Company, partly privatized, listed and handed control of key oil infrastructure currently (mis)managed by the government. However, the details of this aspect remain vague and we can expect a serious amount of jockeying over exactly what will be handed over to the new National Oil Company, whose NNPC-era management has already been replaced. The country’s oil minister, currently Alison-Madeuke, would be given a very powerful supervisory role over every aspect of the country’s oil production, hence the Ministry’s opinion that the bill is revolutionary. The latest draft of the PIB (and there have been many) is possibly more attractive to the multinational oil companies than its predecessors, and this time it appears to have the president’s support. But it should also be noted that President Goodluck Jonathan’s track record on fighting corruption is abysmal at best. According industry analysts, some $40 billion in exploration and production investments has been halted while the government debated the nature of the PIB for the past five years. Local industry players, however, say these five years have bought them enough time to latch on to lucrative oil deals and choice exploration blocks that would

otherwise have gone to the multinationals. The end result of the five years of stalling over the law is that crude production has declined and multinationals, like Royal Dutch Shell, are losing interest in Nigeria and setting their sights elsewhere. So we are seeing now a shift in the Nigerian oil industry away from larger international companies to smaller, local companies who partner with smaller multinationals. The smaller companies so far seem to be optimistic about the new PIB, should it actually gain passage, and because of a trend toward local bank consolidations over the past years, they also have greater access to capital to fund their projects. ConocoPhillips, for instance, is reportedly seeking to offload its Nigeria operations, and the trend for now seems to be for the larger companies to sell off their onshore operations in order to finance off-shore expansion. Off-shore is less risky only in terms of the Niger Delta militancy, and the regulations are easier to bend. It is possible that this shift will usher in a new security paradigm in the Niger Delta, for better or worse. With the off-shore push of larger international companies who have largely destroyed the country’s environment and fostered a large-scale oil insurgency while doing nothing to contribute to community’s who could benefit from Nigeria’s crude oil production, smaller oil companies with local elements stand a better chance of quelling the Niger Delta militancy. In the least, this situation stands to turn more Niger Delta enemies into stakeholders. Of course, in the immediate- near term, this will result in a transformation (rather than a cessation) of violence as local players fight for greater control of production and a greater share in the profits. Corruption is too deep, but will be spread out more thinly. As for the offshore ventures of the international companies, it will certainly provide greater impetus to piracy on the high seas. •Jen Alic, a geopolitical analyst, cofounder of ISA Intel in Sarajevo and Tel Aviv, wrote the piece for Oilprice.com

PIB’ll not suffer delay, says Senate

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•From left: Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda receiving a gift from the Chairman, Helios Energie, Mr. Richard Sellers PHOTO: NAN during launch of Bauchi State 30mw solar power project in Bauchi... on Wednesday.

•From left: President, Afrexim Bank, Mr. Jean-Louis Ekra,Vice-President,China Exim Bank, Mr. Zhu Xianqiang, President,South-East South-South Professionals of Nigeria, Mr. Emeka Ugwu-Oju, Director,Research and International Cooperation,Afrexim Bank, Dr.Francis Mbroh during an Investment Forum...yesterday PHOTO: DAYO ADEWUNMI

HE Senate yesterday promised that the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) would not suffer delay before it is passed into law. Chairman Senate Committee on Rules and Business, Ita Enang told reporters that the PIB would receive due attention. Enang said: “I want to urge Nigerians that we have just received this Bill and I know it is in the character that pressure will be mounted and press campaigns that the National Assembly has just taken the Bill and has gone on recess that they don’t take it as important. “We will be very reasonable in our consideration of the Bill knowing the importance that it has in investment in the petroleum sector. “We will be reasonable in the timing and consideration. But please let there be reasonable reactions and comments so that they will not say the Senate collected it and went to sleep. “But it is important to note that on the second week of June 2011 when the National Assembly was inaugurated, questions were raised on the PIB and we told you at that time that unless, it is reintroduced we could not do anything about the Bill. That is June 2011 as we speak it is July 2012, the Executive used the

We will be very reasonable in our consideration of the Bill knowing the importance that it has in investment in the petroleum sector

From Sanni Onogu, Abuja

whole period to work on it.” On the controversial circulation of several versions of the Bill, Enang assured that the Senate will pass the version sent by President Jonathan. He said: “The version of the Bill that is considered by the legislature is the same that is published in the journal or circulated in hard copy on the floor as it was done today. “So you have the hard copy and the journal version that we are going to publish in the next few days because we just want everybody to be on the same page to avoid mischief.”


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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NEWS PETROLEUM INDUSTRY BILL

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House returns PIB to Presidency

HE House of Representatives has returned the Petroleum Sector Reform Bill (PIB) to the Presidency, citing late submission and incomplete copies. The lawmakers said it was insensitive and wrong of the President to have sent in the Bill when he was aware that they were about to began a two month recess. Shortly after the Speaker, Aminu Tambuwal read the letter, the Minority

From Dele Anofi, Abuja

Leader Femi Gbajabiamila (ACN, Lagos) raised a point of order under matters of personal privilege. He wondered the justification for the request of the Presodent that the bill should be treated with expedited action. He said the President was not known to have treated Bills passed by the National Assembly with

dispatch. While objecting to the first reading of the bill, Gbajabiamila noted that Jonathan was not considerate in his request knowing that the lawmakers were set to proceed on a recess. The Speaker, who entertained no debate on the matter in accordance with House rules explained that the leadership of the National Assembly has brought the attention of the President to the effect that the recess

was to commence yesterday. He said the National Assembly should not be blamed for the antics of the President. Tambuwal said the President had earlier promised to present the Bill in June only to have it sent yesterday. He said: “Today is July 18th but the Nigerian public should know that we are very much alive to our responsibilities. So, this delay is not from us. Moreover, the Presidency

was informed that 500 copies of the Bill should be forwarded to the House while 200 should be forwarded to the Senate but just three copies was sent to the House for circulation to members. “This is because stories making the round is that there are fake PIBs in circulation but as at this morning only three copies were delivered to my office. We are still awaiting 497 copies.”

Petroleum downstream sector for total deregulation Continued from page 1 Equity will be allowed in the two companies any time within six years from the date of its incorporation. Such authorised shares of the National Oil Company meant for the public will be done in a transparent manner on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Sections 150-152 of the bill read: “The Minister shall, not later than three months after the effective date, take such steps as are necessary under the Companies and Allied Matters Act, to incorporate the National Oil Company as a public company limited by shares, which shall be vested with certain assets and liabilities of the NNPC. “The National Oil Company shall not be subject to the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007 and the Public Procurement Act 2007. “At the time of its incorporation, the initial shares of the National Oil Company shall be held by a nominee of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and Ministry of Finance Incorporated on behalf of the Government. “Notwithstanding the provisions of section 150 of this Act, the Government shall at any time within six years from the date of incorporation of the National Oil Company, divest up to 30 per cent of the authorised shares of the National Oil Company to the public in a transparent manner on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. “Following incorporation of the National Oil Company, the assets and liabilities held by the NNPC on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, except the interests in the unincorporated joint ventures and Nigerian Gas Company Limited shall be vested in the National Oil Company within twelve to twenty four months from the Effective Date. “The transfer of liability or obligation under this section releases the NNPC from the liability or obligation with respect to the transferred assets. “The National Oil Company shall without further assurance be entitled to enforce or defend all obligations for or against NNPC in respect of the portion of interests mentioned above as if the National Oil Company were the original party to such obligations in event of default or force majeure.” On the National Petroleum Assets Management Corporation, the bill says: “The Corporation shall be a holding company operating fully on commercial principles. “The Corporation shall have power to(a) enter into contracts and incur obligations; (b) acquire, hold, mortgage, purchase and deal howsoever with property, whether movable or immovable, real or personal; (c) establish and maintain subsidiaries for the discharge of its functions as the Corporation may determine; and (d) do all such things as are necessary for or incidental to the carrying out of its functions and duties under this Act. “Subject to the provisions of this Act, the functions of the Corporation are to (a) acquire and manage investments of the Government in the Nigerian upstream petroleum industry; and (b) undertake such other activities as are necessary or expedient for giving full effect to the performance of its functions under this Act.” Regarding the National Gas Company, the bill recommended that the agency shall not be subject to the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act

2007 and the Public Procurement Act 2007. “At the time of its incorporation, the initial shares of the National Gas Company shall be held by a nominee of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and Ministry of Finance Incorporated on behalf of the Government. “Divestment of shares of the National Gas Company Plc Notwithstanding the provisions of section 161 of this Act, the Government shall at any time within six years from the date of incorporation of the National Gas Company Plc, divest up to 49 per cent of the shares of the National Gas Company to the public in a transparent manner on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. To protect oil producing communities from despoliation, the bill has made a case for the establishment of the Petroleum Host Community Fund It says: “There is established a fund to be known as the Petroleum Host Communities Fund (in this Act referred to as ‘the PHC Fund’). “The PHC Fund shall be utilized for the development of the economic and social infrastructure of the communities within the petroleum producing area. “Every upstream petroleum producing company shall remit on a monthly basis 10 per cent of its net profit as follows -. (a) for profit derived from upstream petroleum operations in onshore areas and in the offshore and shallow water areas, all of such remittance shall be made directly into the PHC Fund; and (b) for profit derived from upstream petroleum operations in deepwater areas, all of the remittance directly in to the Fund for the benefit of the petroleum producing littoral States. “For the purpose of this section ‘net profit’ means the adjusted profit less royalty, allowable deductions and allowances, less Nigerian Hydrocarbon Tax , less Companies Income Tax. “At the end of each fiscal year, each upstream petroleum company shall reconcile its remittance pursuant to subsection (1) of this section with its actual filed tax return to the Service and settle any such difference.” On the fate of the downstream sector which attracted mass protest in January, the government opted for full-scale deregulation. But the bill is silent on when the full deregulation will take off. The bill added: “The pricing of petroleum products in the downstream product sector is deregulated to ensure – (a) a market related pricing; (b) adequate supply of petroleum product;(c) removal of economic distortions; and (d) the creation of fair market value for petroleum products in the Nigerian economy. But the bill empowers the Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Agency to oversee tariffs to prevent hijack of the deregulation by shylock marketer .It added: “The Agency shall oversee the tariffs for: (a) transportation by pipelines; (b) bulk storage of petroleum products in depots designated by the Agency as regulated open access facilities; and (c) any regulated open access facility. “ Tariffs for activities referred to in

Nigerians and other investors will have the opportunity to own 30 per cent shares in the National Oil Company and 40 per cent in National Oil Gas Company

•Petroleum Minister Deziani Alison-Madueke

subsection (1) of this section shall be set according to one or more tariff methodologies adopted by the Agency for regulating prices and such tariff methodologies shall: (a) allow an operator that operates efficiently to recover the full cost of its business activities including a reasonable return on the capital invested in such business; (b) provide incentives for continued improvement of the technical and economic efficiency of the business; (c) provide incentives for the continued improvement of quality of services; (d) avoid undue discrimination among categories of consumers; and (e) gradually reduce cross-subsidies among different categories of consumers. “In establishing tariff methodologies, the Agency shall take into account the existence of any subsidy given to the operators from which they directly benefit, any favourable financing terms, and any other matter that impacts directly or indirectly on tariff methodologies. “Notwithstanding the provision of subsection (2) of this section, the Agency shall have the power to establish tariff methodologies that reflect the terms and conditions of a contract between operators or between an operator and one or more eligible customers. (5) Prior to approving a tariff methodology the Agency shall give notice in at least two newspapers with nationwide circulation and its website of the proposed establishment of a tariff methodology and such notice shall: (a) indicate a period within which any aggrieved person may raise objections on the proposed methodology; and (b) indicate the date of

a public hearing the Agency shall conduct for discussion of that methodology. “Prior to the establishment of the tariff methodology, the Agency shall: (a) consider any representations made by applicants, operators, consumers, prospective customers, consumers associations, associations of prospective customers and such other persons reasonably interested; and (b) obtain evidence, information or advice from any person possessing relevant expert knowledge. “The Agency shall fix a date upon which the tariff methodology shall come into effect and it shall cause the notice of that day to be published in at least two national newspapers and its website. “If it appears to the Agency that a tariff methodology should be changed, it shall conduct a public hearing on the proposal to change the methodology and give notice of it in accordance with the terms of subsection (5) of this section, indicating the period within which any person may make representations to the Agency in connection with the proposal. “The Agency may confirm the proposed changes to tariff methodology after taking into account any objections or representations received in response to notices issued under subsection (8) of this section and shall comply with the provisions of subsection (7) of this section.” The bill, however, allows open access to creation or establishment of facilities by all marketers to ensure a level playing ground for all. It empowers oil marketing companies to own independent pipelines and depots.

It says: “(1) Any licensed company may be permitted access to the jetties, loading facilities and storage depots or pipelines currently owned by downstream operators, which are designated as ‘regulated open access facilities’ by the Agency —(a) in the manner prescribed by this Act the regulations and other guidelines and directives from the Agency; and(b) on commercially viable terms as may be determined by the Agency from time to time. (2) Access to any of the regulated open access facilities shall take into consideration the existing capacity in the said open access regulated facilities prior to the access permit being shared amongst licensed petroleum marketing or refining companies in proportion to their needs. “ Nothing in this Act shall preclude any licensed oil marketing company, bulk consumer of petroleum products or independent refineries from constructing and operating independent pipelines, depots or jetties for its exclusive use. (2) The pipelines and depots referred to in subsection (1) of this section shall be subject to the regulation of the Agency. For investors in oil mining, the bill has recommended an initial 20 years for mining lease. It says: “A petroleum mining lease shall be granted for a maximum term of twenty years, provided , that where a petroleum mining lease is derived from a petroleum prospecting licence where a commercial discovery has been declared pursuant to paragraph (a) of subsection (11) of section 178 of this Act, such license shall be allowed to use up its initial, renewal and appraisal period such that: (a) the overall period shall run for twenty-seven years from the date of the grant of the related petroleum prospecting licence for onshore and shallow water areas; or (b) the overall period shall run for thirty years from the date of the grant of the related petroleum prospecting licence for deep water areas and frontier acreages; and (c) where a petroleum mining lease is to be granted for a petroleum prospecting licence which is yet to expire, the term of the petroleum mining lease shall be the aggregate of the mandatory term of twenty years and the balance of term for the petroleum prospecting licence as contained in paragraph (a) and (b) of this subsection..” The bill has also made provision for gas flaring by oil companies. It reads: “In the course of upstream petroleum operations, no person shall injure or destroy any tree or object which is: (a) of commercial value; (b) the object of veneration to the people resident within the petroleum prospecting licence or petroleum mining lease area, as the case may be. A licensee or lessee who causes damage or injury to a tree or object of commercial value or which is the object of veneration shall pay fair and adequate compensation to the persons or communities directly affected by the damage or injury. “The lessee shall pay such gas flaring penalties as the Minister may determine from time to time. The lessee shall install all such measurement equipment as ordered by the Inspectorate to properly measure the amount of gas being flared.”


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS

Oteh unfit to be SEC Director-General, say lawmakers Continued from page 1

“The Executive and all Nigerians know that this House inaugurated a committee that led to the suspension of the SEC DG and that the report of the panel set up by the Executive has not even been adopted. And now the Federal Government has recalled the DG. “I want to state categorically that Arunma Oteh is not qualified to be the DG of SEC. Sections 3, 35 and 315 of the Investment and Securities Act are clear on this. “As at the time Oteh was appointed as the DG SEC, she was not registered with the SEC as required by the Investments and Securities Act. She

didn’t have 15 years cognate experience as a Capital Market operator and so, I want to say here today that Oteh is not qualified to be the DG of SEC. The lawmakers also called for the prosecution of some persons they considered being responsible for the near collapse of the capital market. The committee’s recommendations of all which were accepted include: •That the Regulatory Authorities in the Capital Market should take proactive and preventive measures to forestall the near collapse of the Capital Market in future as the following reasons were identified by the Committee as the reasons for the near collapse

of the market in the past and lack of public confidence in the market:The sum of N8Billion missing from Union Bank Pic public offer of 2005; Nationalisation of some Banks without due process; Banking sector consolidation of 2004/2005; unbecoming activities and market infractions of some capital market operators; poor regulation of foreign port folio investors thereby precipitating capital flight; high cost of doing business in the capital market; contradictory monetary policy of the CBN; absence of product variety and low level of new listing thereby hampering dept and liquidity of the capital

market; conflict of interest and misconduct of the current leadership of SEC, thereby fettering its regulatory capacity; loss ofjcredibility of the entire SEC management team, led by the DG, Arunma Oteh; Regulatory failure of SEC and CBN; incompetence and lack of statutory qualification by the current DG, SEC, Ms Arunma Oteh ; unguarded utterances by key financial system’s regulators; AMCON’s activities that constitute a time bomb and potential disaster in waiting in that there is doubtful process of Non Performing loans. (NPLS) valuation, inadequate liquidity and capital base, AMCON’s involvement of one of its regulators, SEC,

•Globacom’s Executive Director, Mr Adewale Sangowawa flanked by President of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Mr Segun Aina (left) and Chairperson of the 2012 Bankers Nite, Mrs Mojisola Bakare-Asieru, at a dinner organised by the CIBN, Lagos Branch, at the Federal Palace Hotel...on Wednesday

in its Board contrary to Section 10, AMCON Act, non-accountability of AMCON to any authority; layers of moral . hazards in SEC and diversion and.issue of bonds for debt re-financing; irregular acquisition of Intercontinental Bank flc by Access Bank Plc; irregular acquisition by AMCON of the performing loans of SEAWOLF and GEOMETRICS Company etc. •That consequently, with respect to the missing N8 Billion arising from the Union Bank Plc public offer, a case of fraudulent diversion having been established, the past board and management of Union Bank Pic, the CEO of the Issuing House/Financial Adviser to the Offer, the present members of the Board and Management, including the Managing Director of Union Bank Plc, Mrs. F. Osibodu, should be investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC with a view to establishing and recovering the missing amount. The management of AMCON and SEC, including their respective CEO’s (Mustafa Ch Ike-Obi and Ms Arunma Oteh), should be investigated by the EFCC considering their roles in attempting to conceal the fraudulent diversion and missing fund. •That the Nationalization of AfriBank Plc, Bank PHB, and Spring Bank, and their subsequent change of names to Mainstreet Bank, Keystone Bank, and Enterprise Bank respectively, is a Violation of the AMCON Act, NDIC Act and Section 44 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as the processes of transfer were fraught with potential forgery, unethical practices, abuse of office, and var-

•Oteh

ious unacceptable bad corporate governance precedents; the transaction should be reviewed and investigation be carried out on the following by the EFCC and other Security Agencies i. Umaru Ibrahim, Managing Director/CEOjof NDIC ii. Mustafa Chike-Obi, Managing Director, AMCON; iii. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria; iv. All those who were used or offered themselves to be used in the various misrepresentations leading to the corporate registration of the nationalized banks, v. Bello Mahmud, Registrar General, Corporate Affairs Commission; vi. All the faceless “lawyers”; Directors’ of Mainstreet Bank Ltd, Keystone Bank Ltd, Enterprise Bank Ltd should be unearthed and made to face the wrath of the law. •That the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, as the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the CBN Board is hereby cited for contempt of the House of Representatives having refused to produce afContinued on page 56

House wields impeachment axe against Jonathan on budget Presidency: we’re on same page

Continued from page 1

order, Gbajabiamila pointed out that in the House’ opinion, the President has violated the Constitution, “and that can earn him an impeachment” He was applauded, following which the House Leader, Mulikat Akande-Adeola (PDP, Oyo), pleaded with her colleagues to take things easy. “I plead that before we come back from recess, we will definitely witness changes,” she said, drawing huge applause from her colleagues. Adopting an amended motion by Ogbuefi Ozomgbachi (PDP, Enugu), the House mandated the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala, to stop forthwith, the violation of the 2012 Appropriation Act by releasing funds as when due for quarters one and two and subsequent quarters. Earlier, while moving the original motion, Sam-Tsokwa said the budget was passed last March 15, with an aggregate expenditure figure of N4.887 trillion including N180 billion for the Subsidy Reinvestment Programme (SURE). He said seven months into the fiscal year, the budget’s implementation leaves much to be desired. Sam-Tsokwa said reports from Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) were not pleasant, noting that while recurrent expenditure has kept pace with expectations, the capital budget implementation is suffering.

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RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan is on the same page with the House of Representatives over implementation of the budget, his spokesman, Dr. Reuben Abati, said yesterday. Abati, who spoke with State House Correspondents, said the President like members of the House, is worried about the budget’s performance. This, he said, made the President to call for records of performance of the ministries. He said the concerns raised by the House on the budget’s implementation were what the President also looked into yesterday. Abati described yesterday’s deliberations in the House as “a coincidence, ironic and also interesting”. As the House was deliberating on the issue, the President was also holding meetings with ministers over the same issue. He said the president presided over two meetings which looked at the budget’s performance.

He said: “When the bill was first presented before the National Assembly, Mr.President said gone are the days of beautiful budget speeches, selective and nonimplementation of budgets. “If passed, the budget would be implemented to the letter and the spirit but as we speak, five months to go in the year and less than three months to the presentation of 2013 budget proposal, except the capital expenditure is implemented minimally, there is no way that promise would come to pass”.

From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja

This was after he had directed the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, to come up with the performance records of all the MDAs which she fully complied with, Abati said. He said: “Two weeks ago at the Federal Executive Council (FEC), President Jonathan had earlier directed the Minister of Finance as part of the effort to ensure that budget 2012 was fully implemented to come to council with records of level of performance by each MDA and the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister duly complied and yesterday, the document was distributed. “This is a fact of commitment and indication that budget implementation is something he personally, by implication takes very seriously. “Now, what is the second implication of this? “Today, just today as I speak to you, the President, personally chaired two

The purpose of the motion, he said, is to engage the executive on the budget’s implementation, adding: “We need to know basically what the challenges are and it is then that the House can proffer a solution”. Noting that many MDAs have reached advanced stages in the implementation of the procurement process, he said they are unable to issue contract award letters because of insufficient funds. Sam-Tsokwa implored the House to constitute an ad hoc committee to interface with

meetings, because following the directives, the President further directed that each ministry should provide its Key Performance Indicator (KPI) in relation to budget 2012. “By this, the ministers are to indicate the level of performance, how much have been collected and how much spent and if there are challenges. “Today, as I speak, the President chaired two such meetings. Two ministries, Interior and Police Affairs, defended alongside the agencies under them. “It was after these meetings that this issue of the House came up. “What I am saying, therefore, is that President Jonathan and the House are on the same page in terms of ensuring budget performance. What I can tell you is that budgeting process in terms of implementation, is a continuous process. There is no problem at all”. He added that the level of implementation is on the high side as shown by all indicators.

the Ministry of Finance, Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), Budget Office and Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation (OAGF) to verify the claims and counterclaims of those in the budget implementation process and report back to the House within the first week of resumption from recess. He wanted the House to meet with the President on its concerns. Reacting, Tambuwal asked chairmen of committees that oversight revenue generating MDAs to enlighten the House

on the true position of the country’s financial standing. Chairman, Committee on Appropriation, John Enoh (PDP, Cross River) blamed the Ministry of Finance for the problem. He said the Ministry refused to adhere to the letters of the Appropriation Act, 2012 on the release of funds to MDAs. According to him, based on available documents, N304billion and N375billion were supposed to be released to the MDAs for the first and second quarters. He said: “As at the end of

the second quarter, that is June, 2012, out of about N1.5trillion for capital expenditure, what the executive is supposed to release for the first is at least, N375billion but in the first quarter, only about N104billion was released. “In the second quarter, only about N100billion was released, so there was a total release of capital expenditure of just about N204billion, this is a far cry from what we expected”. He said many reasons were adduced by the Ministry of Finance during interactions on the cause of the problem. Enoh added: “Not only that, another tragedy was accessing the released funds as the actual amount accessed so far is less than N200billion meaning that the actual budget performance is less than 35 percent”. Abdulmumin Jubrin (PDP Kano) said contrary to the claims of some officials that the economy is on the brink of collapse, the country has the resources to raise and finance its budget. From available evidence, Jubrin said several revenue generating agencies have not only been meeting their set targets but have surpassed them in most cases. The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), he said, as at May budgeted N747.4billion for Petroleum Profit Tax (PPT) but generated N1.3 trillion, leaving a surplus of N565b. Continued on page 56

ADVERT HOTLINES: 01-280668, 08070591302, 08052592524 NEWSROOM: LAGOS – 01-8962807, ABUJA – 07028105302 COMPLAINTS: 01-8930678


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

5

NEWS N32.8b pension scam: EFCC arrests director

PDP seeks closer ties with ruling parties in Canada, Iraq, Sudan

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HE leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) may seek closer ties with ruling parties in Canada, Iraq and Sudan. National chairman of the party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, spoke yesterday when he hosted envoys from the three countries in his office in Abuja. During the visit, Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Chris Cooter, said bilateral trade between his country and Nigeria has increased to over $ 3 billion (about N480 billion) while direct foreign investments tripled in the past year. According to Cooter, the relationship between the two countries has improved considerably with the establishment of a bilateral commission between in April this year. The envoy added that Canada has been responding positively to the Federal Government's quest for empowering the youths by developing skill acqusition programmes for in 27 states across the nation. The

From Yusuf Alli, Abuja

From Gbade Ogunwale, Assistant Editor, Abuja

scheme, he said, would take off very soon. He put the financial commitment of the Canadian government to Nigeria's efforts in the areas of maternal and child health at about $ 11 million. The PDP chair expressed optimism that the relationship between the two countries would get stronger with the establishment of a bilateral commission. He pleaded with the envoy to look into the possibility of reducing the difficulties experienced by Nigerians in obtaining Canadian visa. Tukur said: "I intend to knock at the doors of all the ruling parties for areas where we have mutual interest." Ambassador Ali Abas Bander of Iraq and Tagelsir Mahgoud Ali of Sudan were also received in audience by the PDP chair.

NBA election was manipulated, says Ngige

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PRESIDENTIAL candidate in the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) elections held on Tuesday, Chief Emeka Ngige (SAN), has alleged that there were “serious manipulations and grave anomalies” in the exercise. He said “the entire process” was marred by irregularities and gross abuse, of the electoral process, all aimed to achieve a desired outcome. He said given “the gross and programmed irregularities” at the election, the NBA has been placed in a most difficult and uncomfortable position in its mission to promote the rule of law. “What moral right has the NBA leadership now or in the future to criticise the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the event of electoral malpractices? “It is now apparent that NBA’s programmes aimed to effect electoral reforms are a mere charade aimed to hoodwink the unwary.” Ngige said he has decided not to challenge the process in court, as

By Joseph Jibueze and Bisi Onanuga

doing so may throw the NBA into serious crisis and distraction, reminiscent of the 1992 crises which started in Port Hacourt. “The NBA is bigger than all of us. I have decided to take the moral highground than descend into the arena of malfeasance with my traducers and persons bent on turning the NBA into their personal patrimony and oligarchy. “I have no grudges whatsoever with my brother silk, Mr. Okey Wali (SAN). My concerns are entirely against the way and manner the electoral process was mindlessly manipulated by the outgoing leadership,” Ngige said. He alleged that the displayed voters’ register contradicted the actual voters’ register used for the elections, adding that the National Executive Committee (NEC) list was manipulated to include non-NEC members and even those who were disqualified from being NEC members.

•Falcon

Man with world’s largest manhood sparks security scare MAN with the world’s largest penis sparked a security scare - after airport staff thought he might have been concealing a “weapon”. Jonah Falcon, 41, was subjected to a rigorous patdown at San Francisco International Airport after Transport Security Administration (TSA) officers spotted his “noticeable package” and thought he was trying to smuggle a weapon on board But it turned out the only thing he was “smuggling” was his enormous manhood. The New Yorker had powder sprinkled on his pants to check for explosives, was taken through an X-ray body scanner, and led passed a metal detector. John said: “I had my ‘stuff’ strapped to the left. I wasn’t erect at the time. ” Falcon’s appendage measures nine inches limp and 13.5 inches erect. He as been offered numerous porn roles, but has declined to go down that route. According to The Sun, Mr Falcon added: “Another guard stopped me and asked if I had some sort of growth. “I’m just going to wear bike shorts from now on. That way, they’ll know. “You’d think they would have had experience with hung guys before, but I guess not.”

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Nigeria not ripe for Diaspora voting, says Senate ‘ C Right now there are HAIRMAN of the Senate Committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Andy Uba, yesterday said the hope of Nigerians abroad participating in elections in Nigeria would have to wait due to consular problems. Uba told reporters after submitting the committee's sessional report to the Senate that there was the problem of data availability at the Nigerian embassies abroad. He said embassies do not have complete records of Nigerians living in some foreign countries, describing the development as a major obstacle in reaching a conclusion on the matter. Uba said: "Right now there are no records of Nigerians in the embassies. Most of them arrive there illegally and this is a problem. We are trying to ensure that we get all the records of Nigerians living abroad. It is then we can begin to consider it." He also noted that the committee was investigating an allegation of a breach of the Federal Character principle at INEC, saying that his

no records of Nigerians in the embassies. Most of them arrive there illegally and this is a problem. We are trying to ensure that we get all the records of Nigerians living abroad. It is then we can begin to consider it

She said it was the only way people who would ordinary fear stigmatisation would come forward to make their cases known. Esuene said: "A woman who was battered by her husband would naturally come out to complain that

Arik to repair Air Force’s aircraft From Gbade Ogunwale, Abuja

From Sanni Onogu, Abuja

committee would ensure that the problem was corrected if found to be true. On e-voting, the senator said that it was still under consideration and would be approved at the appropriate time. Uba said that the committee would ensure the amendment of the Electoral Act to make future elections free, fair and acceptable. He said the committee had informed INEC of the need to do continuous registration of voters and ensure that the lapses witnessed during the Edo election were corrected. The Chairman of the Senator Committee on Women Affairs and Youth Development, Mrs. Helen Esuene, said a Bill was under consideration to deal with issues of domestic violence and rape. Senator Esuene said the law when enacted, would provide that cases of domestic violence and rape be heard in a closed court, allowing the counsel, the victims, witnesses and family members.

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a director with the Federal Ministry of Communications, Mrs. C.U Attang in connection with alleged N32.8billion pension funds. Already, a Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Atiku Abubakar Kigo, and five others are presently on trial for allegedly mismanaging the pension cash. Besides the Permanent Secretary, other suspects are Esai Dangabar, Ahmed Inuwa Wada, John Yakubu Yusufu, Mrs. Veronica Ulonma Onyegbula, and Sani Habila Zira. Investigation however showed that as part of the ongoing search for alleged collaborators of the six suspects, the EFCC uncovered the involvement of Mrs. C.U. Attang. A reliable source in the antigraft agency, who spoke in confidence, said: “We have arrested a former deputy director with the Police Pensions Office, who is now director in the Ministry of Communications, Mrs. C.U. Attang, as part of the ongoing investigations in to the billion naira scam in the Police Pensions Office. “Attang, was arrested on Wednesday July19, 2012 after investigation revealed she had been involved in the illegal withdrawal of monies amounting to several billions of naira. She was still being interrogated at press time. “She was said to have issued and authorised the cashing of thousands of cheques running into several billion of naira between 2007 and 2008. “The latest discovery involving the former deputy director not only underscores the Herculean task facing the EFCC and its operatives, but also the enormous state resources being stolen by a few corrupt Nigerians. “If she has no case to answer, we will tell the public accordingly. But if anything is found against her, she will be arraigned in court like others. We will keep you posted.”

•David Mark she was beaten by her husband, but a man beaten up by his wife, may not find it easy to come forward to do that. "Victims of rape should also be protected. They will not like to speak out because of the stigma. So, a closed court will encourage them to come forward and the problems would be dealt with."

THE management of Arik Airlines has said it would repair the damaged Air Force C-130 Hercules. An Arik plane had a brush with the aircraft at the Jos airport at the weekend. A statement by the Air Force said the deal was struck when the management of Arik, led by its chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Chief Joseph Arumeni-Ikhide Johnson paid a sympathy visit to the Air Force over the incident. The statement by NAF’s Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Y Anas, quoted Ararume-Johnson to have said: “We are here to commiserate with the Air Force and to say we are extremely sorry over what happened in Jos.” Anas also quoted Johnson to have said that Arik Air and the Air Force have a close relationship. He said: “We are here to also seek for a technical report on the damaged aircraft and we will do everything possible to fast track the repairs of your aircraft.” The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Mohammed Dikko Umar was said to have thanked the chairman of Arik for the visit. Umar said: “We know how busy Arik Air is as a leading air carrier in Nigeria and we know your operations will also be affected by this incident.”


6

THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS

ACN: PDP is Nigeria’s problem

‘Aircraft over 15 years to go’

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HE Federal Government has said it would reduce the age of domestic aircraft to 15 years as. part of measures to prevent a recurrence of air disasters in the country. Speaking yesterday at the Ministerial Conference on Aviation Safety in Africa, organised by the Federal Ministry of Aviation in Abuja, President Goodluck Jonathan restated his commitment to restoring confidence and safety in the nation’s aviation sector His words: ‘The government is determined to restore confidence in air transportation in Nigeria and to protecti air travellers. “We will create every avenue to explore and grow the domestic airlines, by providing single digits special intervention fund...” He called for a minute silence to honour victims of plane crashes in the country, and said there is need to respond to the challenges and turn them into enormous opportunities. Jonathan, who was represented by his Vice-President Namadi Sambo, said: “This conference is coming at the most auspicious time when there is a clamour following unfortunate incidents of aviation mishap. The safety of air travel and security will give opportunity to grow our economy and contribute to

T •Mrs Oduah From Olugbenga Adanikin, Abuja

development. ‘’ Minister of Aviation, Mrs Stella Oduah decried the rating of Africa in terms of air safety, and hoped that the meeting would provide a platform to deliberate on aviation safety. She said through collaboration, a more secured air space could be achieved. President of International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Roberto González urged the government to address the challenges and identified lack of sufficient fund as a major factor affecting the sector. The Director-General of Airport Council International, Mrs. Angela Angela Gittens, said the council has provided 56.6 million jobs worldwide, amounting to $2.2 trillion. ‘’In Africa about one million jobs have been created leading to $21.1milion’’.

HE Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has accused the PDP of suffering from delusion of grandeur by saying it is the reason that Nigeria’s democracy has not collapsed. In a statement issued in Ibadan yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said if the truth must be told, the PDP is the main problem hindering the growth of democracy in Nigeria. CAN listed the party’s anti-democratic antics, election manipulation tendencies, lack of respect for the rule of law and total disregard of the Constitution as some of the few measures PDP has used to weaken governance in Nigeria . ‘’Mr. President, the reason Nigeria’s democracy has survived thus far is not the robustness of the PDP, as you have said, but the determination and courage of the good people of Nigeria, who have resolved to say ‘never again’ to anti-democratic

forces, as well as the robust opposition mounted by a few progressive forces.. ‘’Were it left for the PDP, this democracy as we know it would have become history. This is the party that has weakened all the institutions that are indispensable to building a virile democracy, from the judiciary to the legislature. This is the party that has sought to emasculate the opposition by infiltrating their ranks and coercing them into a fake unity government. This is the party that does not believe in one manone-vote, but will rather engage in do-or-die politics to win at all cost,. ‘’Above all, the PDP is the party that has frittered away the commonwealth since 1999 and failed to deliver the dividends of democracy, thus shaking the belief of an increasing number of our citizens in democracy as a system of governance,’’ it said. ACN said the reason the PDP has been subjected to intense criticism by Nigeri-

ans, not just the opposition, is that the party (PDP) has failed to meet the yearnings and aspirations of the people in all aspect of life ‘’Mr. President, it is not the opposition alone that is complaining. The people are fed up with the PDP governments at all levels, and what happened in Edo last weekend is the clearest indication yet that the PDP, with all its so-called spread, access to limitless funds and control of the state instrument of coercion, is fast receding into irrelevance,’’ the party said. It also described as an unnecessary the plan to make ministers and other top officials to brief the NEC of the PDP to tell the people what the party has done. ‘’The truth is that the PDP has done nothing to justify its strangle-hold on power at the centre since 1999. The problem is not with the message, but with the messenger. If a government that has a full-fledged Ministry of Infor-

mation, and television and radio stations in every state, says its message is not reaching the people, then something is wrong!’’ ACN said. The party also described as disingenuous the PDP-controlled Federal Government’s recourse to blaming Boko Haram for its failure. ‘’The Boko Haram crisis flared in 2009, 10 clear years after the PDP has been in charge of the country’s affairs. Is it Boko Haram that made the Obasanjo and Yar’Adua administration to under-perform, even at a time of unprecedented earnings from high oil prices? ‘’Mr. President, it is the other way round. The lack of purpose and direction of the PDP over the years helped to give birth to national insecurity. Therefore, seeking to hang the failure of the PDP Federal Government since 1999 on Boko Haram is another indication that the PDP lacks what it takes to make Nigeria a secured nation,’’ ACN said.

Okereke-Onyiuke: Court declines to stay proceedings in N3.3b theft case By Joseph Jibueze

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USTICE Christopher Balogun of the Lagos State High Court, Igbosere, yesterday refused to stay proceedings in Lagos State government’s case against a former Director-General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Dr Ndi OkerekeOnyuike. The government charged Dr Okereke-Onyuike with a N3.3 billion theft, which she denies. The judge held that Section 273 of the state’s Administration of Criminal Justice Law (ACJL), 2011 prohibits suspension of proceedings in a criminal trial. He said the court must treat a statute as it is without adding or subtracting, adding that he cannot remove or add anything to the law. Justice Balogun said the words used in the section are “clear and unambiguous”; therefore the court would not “derogate from the provisions of the law.” According to him, going by of the law, no criminal matter can be suspended both at the Magistrates’ Courts and at the High Court in Lagos. “This is the position of the law in Lagos State as regards criminal matters,” Justice Balogun said. He added: “The application for stay of proceedings brought by the defendant, dated May 11, 2012, is thereby refused and is dismissed.” The judge, however, said he is aware the defendants have filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal, Lagos, against his assumption of jurisdiction on March 23. He said he would defer to the Court of Appeal by continuing hearing when the defendants’ application for stay of proceedings before the appellate court, fixed for hearing on November 12, is determined. Justice Balogun adjourned further hearing till December 4.

•Wike, Ekere, Mohammed and Commissioner for Education Mrs. Eunice Thomas with the pupils of St. Michael’s African Primary School, Effiat Offot, Uyo, displaying their instructional aids... yesterday.

Fed Govt begins distribution of text books in Southsouth

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HE Federal Government yesterday began the distribution of textbooks and instructional materials to basic education institutions in the Southsouth. It released 3,429,388 copies of Primary 1 and 11textbooks and 672,000 copies of assorted library resource materials to pupils. Minister of State for Education Ezenwo Nyesom Wike said the Federal

From Vincent Ohonbamu, Gombe

Government’s commitment is to ensure that no child is denied access to books. The minister said: “As symbolic as it might be, the event is nevertheless relevant not only to the direct beneficiaries, but also telling stakeholders to partner the government to find ways to tackle the shortage and inability of learners to

access textbooks and study aids.” The minister said security features have been inscribed on the books, while security agencies and ministry officials are to ensure that the books are not sold in the market. Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio, represented by Deputy Governor, Nsima Ekere, said his administration premised its transformation on free and

qualitative education. The governor said the state invested heavily in basic education because it remains the only way to empower less-privileged indigenes of the state. The Executive Secretary of Universal Basic Education Commission, Dr Ahmed Modibbo Mohammed, said that the state was chosen for the Southsouth flag up due to its investments in the education sector.

Ballot boxes: Court asked to jail Jega, Patents Registrar

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FEDERAL High Court, Abuja, has been asked to jail the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and its Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega, for alleged disobedience of a court order. The applicant, Bedding Holdings Limited, also asked the court to jail the Registrar of Patents, Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry. In the motion brought pursuant to sections 6, 36 and 251 (1) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, and Orders 26 and 35 of the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules 2009 was filed by Messrs Karina Tunyan (SAN) and John Okoriko. The defendants are the Registrar of Patents, Federal Ministry of Com-

From Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja

merce and Industry, Emchai, Tambco United Ltd, Anowat Project and Resources Ltd., the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, INEC and Jega. The firm accused the Registrar, INEC and Jega of disobeying the June 5 judgment of Justice Adamu Bello, in a suit bordering on the right to collapsible transparent ballot boxes used in the last elections. The plaintiff had approached the court contending that it has subsisting exclusive and bona fide patent right to the collapsible transparent boxes used by INEC for the 2011 polls. Justice Bello had declared the contract awarded for the supply of collapsible transparent ballot boxes to

EMCHAI Limited by the INEC as illegal, null and void. He said EMCHAI does not have the patent right over the product as insinuated. He said the plaintiff has proved that it owns the original patent right issued to it by the Registrar of Patents in the Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry. The judge held that the affidavit evidence and facts adduced by the plaintiff are admissible since they were not controverted by the defendants. Justice Bello declared that “any action or actions whatsoever and howsoever taken or purported to have been taken by the defendants relating to the said products without the prior and express license, consent, author-

ity and or approval of the plaintiff is unconstitutional, illegal, unlawful and is therefore null and void.” He barred the defendants and any other persons from infringing on the exclusive rights of the plaintiff over the said Patent and Designs. Despite being aware of the valid and subsistent judgment, the plaintiff accused INEC and Jega of using the Transparent Ballot Boxes and Electronic Collapsible Ballot Boxes in the Kwara State House of Assembly rerun election on June 30 and the Edo Governorship Election last Saturday. It also accused the commission of scheming to use its patented ballot boxes in subsequent elections, including the October 20 governorship in

Ondo State. “Unless the defendants/serial contemnors are committed to prisons by an order of this court, the defendants/serial contemnors will continue to initiate, commence and engage in conducts deliberately aimed at contemptuously subverting, undermining, ridiculing or disobeying the orders of this court as contained in itsJudgment of June 5, 2012.” The Applicant said the alleged Contemnors also shunned its several correspondences imploring it to comply with the judgment by abstaining from using the ballot boxes or any obvious derivative and/or imitation of same for the conduct of elections except with its prior consent, authority and/or license.


7

THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS

Oyo raises N300m cash for Security Trust Fund

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YO State Governor Abiola Ajimobi y e s t e r d a y inaugurated the state Security Trust Fund in Ibadan, the state capital. About N300 million cash donations were raised at the launch. Ajimobi noted that Ibadan, being the intellectual capital of the country and the gateway to many other states and regions, would not be allowed to be taken over by criminals. The governor explained that though the state has witnessed minimal security breaches and threats since he assumed office, he said it is important to adopt a proactive approach to security challenges. He said: “It is a key component of government.” The governor noted that for security to be effective, it must be scientific, alle n c o m p a s s i n g , developmental and holistic. The governor promised

•Tinubu decries inadequate budget •ALGON, Coscharis chief, First Bank, others donate From Bisi Oladele, Ibadan

that the fund would be managed by trustworthy hands in the private sector. Ajimobi said his administration would set up a board comprising people of integrity, exposure, creativity and intelligence to manage the fund. The board, he stressed, would present quarterly statements of account on the management of the fund. He said: “We shall demonstrate probity in the management of the fund.” Former Lagos State governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, decried the inadequate budget for security at the three levels of government. He said the state of security in Nigeria needs the cooperation of all.

The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader spoke at the launch of the Oyo State Security Trust Fund in Ibadan, the state capital. Tinubu, who showered encomiums on Governor Abiola Ajimobi for the good job he is doing in the state and particularly his initiative on tackling security, said Ibadan and Oyo State are too central to the political and economic well-being of the nation to be left with security lapses. Emphasising that security must be rapid and proactive with instant responses to security threats, the former governor noted that good security can only be accomplished through serious planning and implementation. He urged Ajimobi to

ensure that fund is managed well enough to make the donors and prospective ones to have a sense of commitment to the project. The Oyo State branch of the Association of Local Governments (ALGON) led other donors with N420 million. The association, which comprises the 33 local governments in the state, donated 66 patrol vans valued at N6 million each and equipped them with security gadgets worth millions of naira. It added another N20 million cash, making N420 million at the event. First Bank of Nigeria Plc donated N50 million as a first installment to the fund. Enterprise Bank also donated the same amount to show its commitment to the fund. The chairman of Coscharis Group, Mr Cosmas Maduka, donated N40 million. He expressed confidence in Ajimobi’s ability to

manage the funds excellently, adding that security is an issue all responsible citizens should take seriously in the 21st century. Businessman, Oba Otudeko, who chaired the occasion, and Asiwaju Tinubu donated N25 million each. They promised to donate more to the funds. The Aare Musulumi of Yoruba land, Alhaji Azeez Arisekola-Alao, donated N10 million. At the launch were traditional leaders, including the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi; the Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Jimoh Oyewumi Ajagungbade; the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Samuel Odulana, who was represented by High Chief Eddy Oyewole. ACN leaders at the launch included its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, and state leaders.

Eulogies as Ajimobi buries mum

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aide, Dr. Reuben Abati, the President urged the governor and members of his family to be consoled by Alhaja Ajimobi’s fulfilled life of service as a prominent trader, community leader and devout Muslim. He prayed God Almighty to grant Alhaja Ajimobi’s soul eternal rest. Alao-Akala described Madam Ajimobi as a successful business woman, who specialised in textile business. The former governor noted that the deceased contributed to the socio-economic development of Ibadan and Oyo State. He said: “Mama was a devout Muslim, who had an unwavering belief and trust in her maker. She was also a community leader and impacted positively on the lives of those who came in contact with her. As a matter of fact, members of her community benefitted immensely from the fountain of her wisdom.” Akeredolu condoled with Ajimobi on the death of his mother. In a statement by the party’s state Director of Media, Publicity and Strategy, Mr Idowu Ajanaku, the frontline lawyer prayed Almighty God to grant Senator Ajimobi and Oyo State residents the fortitude to bear the loss. Mrs Sumonu described the late Alhaja Ajimobi as a devout Muslim, community leader and a caring mother, whose roles would be missed by his family and the people of the state. The Speaker prayed Almighty Allah to give the Ajimobi family the fortitude to bear the irreparable lost. She also prayed to Allah to grant the late Alhaja Ajimobi aljanah Fir’daous. Osun State ACN described her death as painful because of her contributions to making Ajimobi a governor.

From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

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KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi y e s t e r d a y inaugurated the board of the state’s Primary Health Care Development Agency in AdoEkiti, the state capital. He described the effort as a formidable step towards making health care delivery in the state a fait accompli. The agency, on which a law has been enacted by the parliament, would articulate the government’s policies on primary health care sector with a focus on “means and measures to harp on preventive rather than curative health management”. Fayemi said: “This inauguration of the board of the Primary Health Care Development Agency should, therefore, be seen as a step towards providing holistic health programme for the good people and residents of Ekiti State. “The ultimate aim is to make health care service delivery affordable through preventive interventions without compromising standard.”

Cholera kills two

•Jonathan, others condole with governor HE remains of Alhaja Sikirat Abeje Ajimobi, mother of Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi, were yesterday interred at her husband’s home in Apata, Ibadan, the state capital. Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, hailed the governor for attending a state function in the morning, despite his mother’s death. Ajimobi presided over the launch of the State Security Trust Fund at the Ibadan Civic Centre yesterday before his mother’s funeral. Muslim clerics and other dignitaries eulogised the late textile merchant. The Chief Imam of Ibadanland, Sheikh Haruna Suara, extolled the virtues of the deceased, describing her as a caring mother and a devout Muslim, whose character was worthy of emulation. He said: “Alhaja Ajimobi was a pride to the Ajimobi family.” According to him, Mama Ajimobi instilled discipline and good characters in her children. The remains of Alhaja Ajimobi were interred at exactly 3.05pm. The governor thanked God for making him witness the funeral. Dignitaries at the ceremony included Asiwaju Tinubu, Governors Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Babatunde Fasola (Lagos), former Governors Lam Adesina and Omololu Olunloyo, among others. President Goodluck Jonathan, former Oyo State Governor Adebayo AlaoAkala, Lagos State Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), its Osun State counterpart, the House of Assembly, Oyo State House of Assembly Speaker Monsurat Sunmonu and Ondo State ACN governorship candidate Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) have commiserated with the governor on the death of his mother, Alhaja Sikirat Abeje. In a statement by his medial

Fayemi inaugurates board

From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

T •From left: The Chairman, Bodija chapter of the Nigerian Institute Of Management (NIM), Mr Yinka Fasuyi; his vice, Mrs Adunni Alabi and former Minister Of Special Duties, Prof Taoheed Adedoja, at an event of the institue’s chapter in Ibadan, Oyo State.

Aregbesola okays N420m for gratuity, pension arrears

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SUN State Governor Rauf Aregbesola has approved N120 million for the payment of gratuities and another N300 million for pension arrears. The Commissioner for Finance, Economic Planning and Budget, Dr. Wale Bolorunduro, broke the news at the quarterly ministerial media briefing in Osogbo, the state capital. The commissioner said the money is for outstanding gratuities, which is expected to improve the welfare of retired public officers. Bolorunduro explained that the government would pay N33.8 million monthly as its 7.5per cent contribution to the pension fund and N25.9 million for pension redemption fund. According to him, the state has recorded 100 per cent increase in its internally generated revenue (IGR) from N300 million to N600 million monthly, adding: “This was achieved through financial discipline and blocking of leakages.”

From Adesoji Adeniyi, Osogbo

On vehicle identification number plates, the commissioner said some challenges vehicle owners were facing have been resolved. He said Aregbesola has provided N30 million as a revolving grant to the Internally Generated Revenue Service to buy number plates from the Lagos State Number Plates Production Authority (LSNPA). The commissioner said the government has raised N1.billion Commercial Agriculture Credit loan to boost agriculture. Bolorunduro said: “The fund is effectively being managed by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning.” He also explained that the government has released another N204 million for 100 tractors through the Federal Government machinery acquisition scheme.

WO persons have died in a cholera outbreak in Igbaraodo-Ekiti community of Ekiti South West Local Government Area of Ekiti State. A boy, an expectant mother and an elderly woman were said to have contacted the disease. The Commissioner for Health, Prof Olusola Fasubaa, reportedly visited the community to enlighten the residents on how to maintain clean environment and ensure improved healthy behaviours. The Commissioner for Information and Civic Orientation, Mr. Funminiyi Afuye, said the first report on the outbreak “was brought to the notice of the state government on July 14”. He said this had not been ascertained. The commissioner said: “There has been a confirmed diarrhoea and vomiting in Igbara-Odo community in Ekiti South West Local Government Area of the state, the cause of which has not been confirmed in the laboratory.” “We are, however, suspecting a cholera outbreak in this community. “The public is being informed to be alert and to obey simple hygienic measures of washing their hands before meals, to be cautious of what and where to eat and drink.”

Alleged witchcraft: Police quiz Ekiti monarch

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HE Ekiti State Police Command yesterday summoned the monarch of Omuo-Ekiti, Oba Noah Omonigbehin, on his alleged role in the killing of Mrs Rebecca Adewunmi for allegedly being a witch. Seventy-year old Mrs. Adewumi was killed by members of the Omuo community for allegedly afflicting her stepson, Ola Adewumi, with an incurable ailment. Police spokesman, Victor Babayemi, spoke with reporters on phone in AdoEkiti, the state capital.

•Family rejects autopsy report From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

He explained that the police did not arrest the monarch and that neither was he detained. Babayemi said: “He was invited yesterday (Wednesday). He came with some people. But mind you, we did not arrest him. We had discussions and we are working on the discussions.” The police spokesman said based on the police commissioner’s promise, an autopsy was conducted on Mrs Adewumi by experts at Ekiti

State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) on Wednesday. He said this would reveal the cause of her death. Babayemi said the report of the autopsy would be made public, adding that this would determine the next line of action. He said: “The autopsy has been carried out. It was carried out on Wednesday, but the report is yet to come out. The report will inform the next line of action.”

Members of the Adewunmi family of the deceased have expressed fears that the autopsy might not expose the actual cause of death. Speaking with The Nation yesterday, the late Madam Rebecca’s younger sibling, Mr. Omokanju Gabriel Abiodun, said the result of the postmortem might be doctored to favour her alleged killers. He noted that though the autopsy has not been officially made known, “it is most likely not going to serve the purpose of truth and justice when eventually it is out”.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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Police arraign suspected killer of LASTMA officer

Taxi driver, Okada rider arraigned By Tumininu Owolabi

TWO men, Oriyomi Samuel and Arikpo Otu, have been arraigned before an Ikeja Magistrate's Court for armed robbery and felony. Samuel, 32, a taxi driver, and Otu, 27, a commercial motorcyclist, were docked for a six-count charge of robbing two persons of various items valued N2.3million and an attempted robbery of Mariam Ejezube of an Honda Accord car with registration number BDG 131 AL. Prosecuting Inspector Samson Ejikere told the court that they had on June 12, snatched a Lexus Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) at gun point they also went away with a Samsung phone and N420,000 cash. They also allegedly attacked one Mr. Sunday Ifayemi with dangerous weapons and at gun point, robbed him of N75, 000 cash and a Blackberry phone. Ejikere said the accused attempted to rob Mariam Ejezube of a Honda Accord car. Ejikere said the offences are punishable under Section 1(2)(a)of the Robbery and Firearms (special provision)act cap 398,vol.XXII Laws of the Federation 1990 as amended. Samuel and Otu who claimed to be public transporters pleaded not guilty to the charges against them. The Magistrate, Mrs. Taiwo Akanni, ordered that the accused be remanded at the Kirikiri Prison without an option of bail pending the adjournment on September 24.

Adapt to global trends Stories by Nneka Nwaneri

SCHOOL administrators have been urged to contribute in raising the standard of education so that students can meet up with global academic standard. This will form part of issues that will be discussed during the second edition of the West African School Leadership conference today. The programme, which will hold at the Welcome Center, international Airport Road, Lagos will afford West African countries opportunity to strive to reform their education system and improve the academic performance of students. According to the spokesman of the organisers, Mr Uche Ojula, the event which is themed: ‘Developing leadership for quality school management in West Africa,’ will position participants to become major agents for policy change in the education sector in the sub region.

Ikeja Grams marks 50 OLD students of Ikeja Grammar School, Oshodi, are set to celebrate the school's 50th anniversary. The week-long programme, which starts on Sunday, July 22, with an inter-denominational thanksgiving at All Saints Anglican Church, Mabayoje, Oshodi, will end with a Cocktail/ Award party, at the school hall on Saturday, July 28. According to a statement by the event’s coordinators, Mr. J.A. Kadiri and Miss Titi Adebajo, the interdenominational service starts at 10 a.m. and the cocktail at 2p.m. There will also be an interschool debate at the school hall by 1p.m., on Tuesday, July 24, a Career Talk by 1p.m. on Wednesday, July 25, and a Jumat Service on Friday, July 27. Among the award recipients are past principals of the school.

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HE hit-and-run bus driver who allegedly killed an officer of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, (LASTMA), on Wednesday, was yesterday charged before an Isolo Magistrate's Court for manslaughter. Haruna Nuru, 27, was arraigned on a three-count charge of dangerous driving, killing and driving against traffic to which he pleaded not guilty. Prosecuting Inspector Francis Igbinosa told the court that the offences contravened Sections 28, 27 and 2 of the Road Traffic Act, Laws of Lagos State. A relative of the deceased, Mrs. Olowafunmi Fadoju who was present in court was weeping profusely throughout the entire procededings. Olowafunmi described the deceased as her brother and bread winner. "Leke (Mustapha) was my brother. He was an only son, how

•Adeleke By Precious Igbonwelundu

can he just die like that?", she cried. The defendant was admitted to N500,000 bail, with two responsible sureties in the like sum.

Boy, 18, bags three years in rehab for theft, assault

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MUSHIN Magistrate's Court has sentenced 18 year-old Adeniji Adeleke to three years at the Adigbe Rehabilitation Centre, Abeokuta, for stealing two Nokia phones. Adeniji was arraigned on ninecount charge of conspiracy, stealing and assault which were said to be contrary to and punishable under Sections 409, 285 and 168 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos, 2011. Adeniji who pleaded not guilty initially, later admitted to have committed the crime. He told the police that he was a generator repairer adding that his parents were in Ogun State, while he resides in Lagos with a relation. He told the court that he dropped out of school after his SS1 and admitted that he used to smoke Marijuana. Prosecuting Inspector Ezekiel Ayorinde told the court that Adeniji with another at large on July 13, at about 2:10pm, stole a Nokia X2

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Stories by Precious Igbonwelundu

worth N5,000, property of one Shola Fashina, as well as another classic Nokia 2700 valued at 17, 000 belonging to one Samuel Ibrahim. Ayorinde said the crime was committed at Bishop Aggey School, Mushin, adding that the convict also assaulted school children playing football in the premises. "Adeniji and one Peter went to Bishop Aggey School where they normally smoke and as they got to the school, children were playing football. "They asked the children to leave but they refused and Adeniji with his accomplice assaulted five of these children by beating them, after which they robbed them of two mobile phones," he said. Magistrate D.T. Olatokun observed that the defendant spoke fluent English and ruled that he can be rehabilitated. "Haven pleaded guilty to

Magistrate O.M. Ajayi, who held brief for Magistrate I.O. Akinkugbe, said one of the sureties must be a GL 10 civil servant and adjourned the matter to August 27. LASTMA has vowed to pursue the matter to a logical conclusion. A release signed by the agency's Public Relations Officer (PRO), Deacon Richard Omolase, stated that LASTMA will no longer tolerate barbaric assaults on its staff who are carrying out their duties. The released stated that General Manager, Engr. Tunde Edu decried the inhuman attitude of the driver who killed Mustapha, urging the court to court to take its course. It would be recalled that Haruna on July 17, at about 2:30pm at Pako junction, Isolo, killed Adeleke, 34, by hitting him from behind and crushing his head. An eye witness said that Haruna sped off on realising he has killed Adeleke, but was pursued by motorcyclists and other on lookers who witnessed the incident. committing the offence and the facts presented by the prosecution, the defendant is hereby found guilty of the charges. "Considering his age and the fact that the defendant speaks fluent English, I believe it is wise to send him to a rehab centre instead of sending him to prison," she said. Olatokun therefore ordered that the defendant be remanded at Adigbe rehabilitation centre and he should be enrolled in school. Ekikere also alleged that the accused person threatened Mrs. Eddo, telling her that her life will be terminated if she ever asked of the money for the goods. He therefore said that the accused person acted contrary to Section 56 of the Criminal Llaws No. 11 Vol. 44 laws of Lagos State 2011. When the charges were read, Nwakuma pleaded not guilty to the charges. The presiding Magistrate Mrs Taiwo Akanni granted him N500,000 bail with two sureties that are gainfully employed in the like sum. She adjourned further hearing till August 22.

Court sentenced two for theft

N Ebute-Meta Magistrate's Court yesterday sentenced a 32 year-old man to 42 months imprisonment with hard labour for stealing four bundles of brocade materials, even as another, Dennis Young, 28, was jailed 18 months for stealing a generator. While Emmanuel Williams was said to have stolen some brocade materials valued N40, 000, property of one Emeka Ogbo on July 8, about 9pm, Dennis a resident of 59, Oore Ofe Street, Ketu, stole a Yamaha generator set worth N14, 000, belonging to one Aaron Garba. Emmanuel who told the court that he has no source of permanent income, pleaded guilty to the four count-charge of stealing and unlawful damage, and Dennis also pleaded guilty on one count of stealing both before Chief Magistrate F.M. Kayode. Prosecuting Sergeant Paul Inedu, stated that Emmanuel escaped from police custody a day after he was arrested by breaking out. "He broke out from where he was detained at the police post in Iddo, Ebute Meta area of Lagos State. "His breaking out landed him into the premises of G. Cappa Plc in Iddo, at about 10 p.m., damaging the ceiling sheets of the building worth N39, 000," Inedu said. His offence according to Inedu, are contrary to and punishable under

Sections 106, 285, 308 and 348 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2011. Delivering judgment, Kayode sentenced Emmanuel to 42months in prison with hard labour and with no option of fine.

In Dennis' case, Inedu said that he went into the house of Garba at block 7, room 25, Iponri police barracks in Lagos to steal the generator which was valued at N14, 000.

•The suspects with their arms and ammunition

Police arrest

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HREE suspected robbers have been arrested by police in. Ladun Agemo; (20), a barber, Taofeek Bukola (27), a baker and Wale Adeniyi are being interrogated at the Special AntiRobbery squad for their involvement in various armed robbery operations in Lagos and Ogun states. The police also recovered five AK47 rifles and rounds of live ammunition from the suspected robbers, who allegedly belong to an eight-man gang. Commissioner of Police, Umar Manko, who paraded the suspects, said they were trailed to Ogun State where they were planning to come and carry out an operation in Lagos. He noted that their modus operandi was to rob in Lagos and go back to Ogun State where they have their homes and hideouts. He said: "What you see here are five AK-47 rifles and 29 magazines loaded with rounds of live ammunition. We've been trailing these suspects for quite some time. Our men were hiding in a bush and they (robbers) came in a Mazda 626 salon car when they were arrested. The robbers were preparing to come to Lagos from Ogun State but they were promptly arrested. Efforts are being made to locate

•Traffic jam along the Eko Bridge as a result of the stopppage of traffic on the Ojuelegba overhead bridge following the oil-spillage by a fallen tanker. Inset: Fire men flushing away the diesel fuel...yesterday PHOTO: OMOSEHIN MOSES


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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Halt Makoko demolition, ERA/FoEN urges govt T

robbers, recover arms By Jude Isiguzo and Ebele Boniface

other members of the gang while investigations are ongoing.” One of the suspects, Bukola, said he was not an active member of the gang but only drove the members to operations. Agemo said he also kept arms for the gang and that he never participated in robbery. He said: "I am not an active member of the gang. I own the Mazda and I only drive the robbers to where they rob and I help them escape.

Akin is our leader but he is still on the run. I am actually a baker by vocation but the robbers usually pay me between N60,000 and N100,000 per operation, which is more profitable. I don't know who supplies the robbers with guns and I've never killed or rob bed anyone before. I only drove them to three robbery operations before my arrest." Adeniyi, who said he wants to become a police informant if set free, claimed to be a smuggler but had followed the gang on three robbery operations.

HE Environmental Rights Action/Friend of the Earth, Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has described as insensitive, anti-poor and undemocratic, the ongoing demolition of Makoko, a waterfront settlement in Yaba Local Council Development Area of Lagos, and called for an immediate halt of the exercise by the Lagos State government. The Lagos State government had last week in a statement, not widely circulated, ordered the residents of the mostly fishing coastal community with a population of over 100,000 people adjacent the Third Mainland Bridge to quit the water front. In the notice dated July 12, and signed by Mr. Akin Tijani, Head of Operations, Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI), the state government said the shanties violated the designs of its megacity project and that the residents have continued to occupy and develop shanties and unwholesome structures on the waterfront without authority, thereby constituting environmental nuisance, security risks, impediments to economic and gainful utilisation of the waterfront such as navigation,

By Wale Ajetunmobi

entertainment, recreation among others. Continuing, it said: "Therefore, notice is hereby given to you to vacate and remove all illegal developments along the Makoko/Iwaya Waterfront within 72 hours of receipt of this notice." But in a statement criticising the exercise which began Monday July 16, ERA/FoEN said not only is the 72 hours notice and commencement of demolition of the Makoko waterfront a violation of the rights of the people to shelter as guaranteed by the Nigerian Constitution, plans to use the site for the megacity project indicated that the exercise is a "calculated attempt to seize the space for the convenience of the mega rich at the expense of the urban poor.” “It is sad and in bitter taste, that in a democracy the Lagos government would become a nemesis of the poor rather than alleviate their suffering. We totally oppose the forced eviction and demolition of the structures without an alternative accommodation provided or plans to replace

the loss of livelihoods that will follow. This is an unacceptable tradition," said ERA/FoEN Executive Director, Nnimmo Bassey. "This exercise is a reminder of the Maroko forced eviction exercise in 1990 under the Raji Rasaki administration which uprooted thousands of people who had lived all their lives and earned their living in the community. Many lost their lives in that illegal action which is about playing out again in Makoko. Then it was Maroko under the military, now it is Makoko in a democracy. We are opposed to this unnecessarily urban displacement and a further worsening of the delicate economic state of citizens." ERA/FoEN field monitors who visited the communities on July 18 noticed that approximately 400 wooden homes had been demolished. Many of the residents including women and children were observed to be stranded with some reporting that they now sleep in boats on the water. The fact-finding team confirmed that residents are made up of mostly Egun people of Badagry, Ilajes of Ondo State and a large number of Republic of Benin and Togolese settlers.

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military officers, namely Col. K. I. Yusuf and Staff Sergeant A. A. Adeomi, for driving on the dedicated BRT lane. "It is true that these personnel made use of the dedicated BRT lane thereby contravening the BRT laws. Lagos State Government forbids non - BRT buses from plying these dedicated lanes which are exclusive rights of way for BRT buses. "However, the General Officer Commanding 81 Division Nigerian Army, Maj. Gen. Kenneth Minimah, has directed that the incident be investigated and the personnel involved be sanctioned accordingly."

Life Seminary summit HE summit of the begins Alumni Association of

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the Life Theological Seminary, Ikorodu, a suburb of Lagos begins today. Its President, Revd. Albert Aina, said over 2,000 graduates who have graduated from the institution would attend the summit. "The lead speaker is Rev. Felix Meduoye, while Rev. Sam Adeyemi of Daystar Christian Centre, the Seminary Provost, Rev. C. C. Orgu, Dr. Odunayo, of Nigeria Baptist Convention, Bishop Reuben Oke of TREM and Pastor Yusuf Moses of

By Miriam Ndikanwu

C.A.C among others will also speak at the event," he said. Aina said the Alumni Association, a platform for all graduates of Life Theological Seminary, Ikorodu, was established in 1955 by Foursquare Gospel Church and have since spread across many denominations such as Christ Apostolic Church (CAC), the Redeem Christian Church of God (RCCG), Mountain of Fire and Miracles (MFM) and Baptist Church among others. The summi ends tomorrow.

By Yinka Aderibigbe

PROMASIDOR Nigeria Limited, makers of Cowbell Milk, has partnered BME Concern, a charity organisation that supports women in distress, vulnerable children and youth. BME Concern, also known as Ripples in Africa, is registered in England and Wales, works with partner organisations to support women in distress, promote inclusion and community cohesion, and work to raise levels of tolerance through education, art, sports and culture. Managing Director of Promasidor, Chief Keith Richards, said the partnership is a way of seeking genuine and innovative ways of adding value to all stakeholders. Richards said: "Our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy is built on sustainability through commitment to creating shared value. Our definition and commitment to sustainability does not involve a simple checklist of CSR activities or programmes, but an alignment of social, environmental and financial goals with a genuine concern for the quality of impact achieved."

Community appeals for road completion By Emmanuel Oladesu

Army to discipline soldiers accosted by Fashola HE Army has said it would investigate two soldiers who drove on Bus Rapid Transit lane in Lagos on Tuesday. The soldiers - Col. K. I. Yusuf and Staff Sergeant A.J. Adeomi -were accosted by Governor, Babatunde Fashola, on the BRT lane at Outer Marina, Lagos Island. The Army, in a statement by its Public Relations Officer, 81 Division, Lt. - Col. Kayode Ogunsanya, said the soldiers would be sanctioned because they were expected to obey the laws of the state. The statement reads: "It was alleged that the state governor on Tuesday, July 17, 2012 reprimanded two

Firm partners BME Concern

• From right: Sheikhs Shafi'i, Eleha, Ayinla, Ahmad, Shuaib and Suenu

Muslims pray for Gawat

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O fewer than 20 leaders of Islamic organisations yesterday led hundreds of faithful to pray for the missing broadcaster, Alhaji Rasak Gawat. The prayer was held yesterday at the Lagos State Secretariat Central Mosque, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos. It has been 11 days since the ace broadcaster got missing. The scholars expressed bitterness over the nature of his disappearance and lack of clue about his whereabouts. They were led by Chief Missioner, Ansar-ud-Deen Society of Nigeria Sheikh AbdurRahman Ahmad; Mufti, Conference of Islamic Organisations (CIO) Sheikh Dhikrullahi Shafi'I; National Missioner, Fatiu Quareeb Society of Nigeria Sheikh Sulayman Adangba; Ustadh Jamiu Trimidhi; Sheikh Imran Eleha; Nawair-Ud-Deen Society of Nigeria Sheikh AbdulMajeed Ayinla; Amir

By Tajudeen Adebanjo

Qamardeen Ajala; Sheikh Muhammed Olatunji; NASFAT Missioner Alhaji Abdullahi Akinbode; Sheikh Ismail Yusuf; Sheikh Ali Agan; Ustadh Jamiu Adegunwa; Shiekh Isiak Adediran; Sheikh Qamardeen Adeniyi; Alhaji Lookman Saheed (Loofemsah)and Amir (President), Muslim Students' Society of Nigeria (MSSN) Lagos State Area Unit Alhaji Qazim Badrudeen. After recitation of the whole Quran, the scholar took turn one after another to offer prayer for Gawat safety return. Coordinator, Conference of Islamic Organisations, Lagos State Imam Abdullah Shuaib read the scholars's statements. Shuaib said: "He does not need much introduction having endeared himself to both the Muslims and the Christians who annually benefit from the assorted

and unimaginable gifts he doled out. Apart from the lorry-load of gifts dished out to individuals, the manner of his presentation of the programme on television is equally unparallel. There is no way the history of Ramadan early morning programme will be written without the name of Alhaji Razaq Aremu Gawat who pioneered the initiative and grew it to an enviable state. “It is from this particular angle that the disappearance of Alhaji Gawat is more painful. “Who actually kidnapped Alhaji Gawat? Why was he kidnapped? And why have the kidnappers chosen this period and time? These and many more are the questions Nigerian security agencies must answer in order to un-ravel the mystery of this painful disappearance. The kidnappers of Alhaji Gawat has not done his immediate family alone untold evils.”

RESIDENTS of Oguntade Street in Iju-Ishaga, on the outskirts of Lagos have called on the Lagos State government to complete the construction of its abandoned road and others within its vicinity. According to the chairman of Oguntade North CDA, Mr. Solomon Olanrewaju, the poor network of roads in the area contributed to nonaccessibility of fire service vehicles to the area following the Dana plane crash in Iju-Ishaga over a month ago. He noted that several letters had been written to the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure, Ministry of Environment, present and past governors of the State over their plight. "We also met our House of Assembly member, Hon. Dayo Saka-Fafunmi" he added. "Our people are worried over the neglect of the road despite effort made by Tinubu's government in 2003 to revive the construction of Oguntade Street, which was first awarded by the then Lagos State Military Administrator, Colonel Raji Rasaki, 15 years ago," he said. Olanrewaju in a statement said the hope of the community was raised when the road was reawarded and the contractor commenced work in 2003, only for it to be abandoned.


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS ‘No defectors from Ondo ACN HE Oluwarotimi Akeredolu Campaign Organisation of the Action Congress of Nigeria (CAN) yesterday debunked a rumour that some politicians have defected from the party. In a statement in Akure, the state capital, the organisation explained that the membership of the party remains intact. The statement reads: “This is to debunk the unfounded rumour by some unknown people that Mr. Bunmi Tunji Ojo (BOT) and the entire G.23 group of Akoko North East/ Akoko North West Federal Constituency of Ondo State have dumped ACN for other parties. “The Rotimi Akeredolu Campaign Organisation uses this opportunity to state unequivocally that it is not true. We wish to state that it is our desire to work hard for the success of ACN to deliver the federal constituency. “It is surprising that some faceless people could resort to unholy propaganda that the group has abandoned ACN, which they spent years to build.”

Suspected LP hoodlums attack Ondo ACN elders

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Seminary’s alumni hold summit

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HE alumni association of the Life T h e o l o g i c a l Seminary, Ikorodu, Lagos, will hold its summit today and tomorrow. Its President, Rev. Albert Aina said the programme would enable the seminary’s over 2,000 graduates to refresh their skills and learn new approaches to lead believers to physical and spiritual fulfilment. He said: “The lead speaker is Rev. Felix Meduoye. But we are also expecting Rev. Sam Adeyemi of Daystar Christian Centre; Rev. C. C. Orgu, the Provost of the seminary; Dr. Odunayo of Nigeria Baptist Convention; Bishop Reuben Oke of TREM; and Pastor Yusuf Moses of Christ Apostolic Church (CAC), among others.”

In a statement by the seminary’s spokesman, Mr Samuel Ayetutu, the cleric said the programme accommodates Christians of various denominations.

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

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•From left: Mrs Iyabo Aikhomu; the Director of Outreach, Africanliberty.org, Mr Adedayo Thomas; Mrs Biola Obileye; Education Secretary of Oshodi-Isolo Local Government Area of Lagos State, Mr Adekoya Alausa and legislative aide to House of Representatives member, Fatai Akinderu, at the presentation of Voices From Africa published by African Liberty…yesterday.

Robbers steal N34m drugs from Ondo medical stores T WENTY armed robbers on Wednesday broke into the Ondo State Central Medical Stores (CMS) on Ondo Road in Akure, the state capital. They stole various drugs estimated at N34million. The hoodlums, according to police spokesman Aremu Adeniran, disarmed the seven security operatives. Adeniran said the

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

hoodlums came in a lorry to the stores and stole expensive drugs and hospital equipment. He said when the police were alerted, some detectives attached to the state Criminal Investigation Department

(CID) in Akure mounted a surveillance at some of the major markets across the country. The police spokesman said attention was given to two special drugs specially ordered from overseas by the state government. He added that the strategy

worked. Adeniran said: “The drugs were invariably sighted at the Onitsha Head Bridge drug market, popularly called Ogbogwu Market. “This led to the arrest of five of the armed robbers. Some of the stolen drugs were recovered.”

10 arrested over attack on Ekiti traffic officials

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HE police in Ekiti State have arrested 10 suspects following Wednesday’s attack on officials of the state Traffic management Agency (EKSTMA) in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, by GSM vendors. The suspects were arrested at the popular Ayo Fayose Market. Three weeks ago, the state government ordered the demolition of makeshift stalls and shanties, which the GSM vendors erected in the market. The government announced plans to offer the phone vendors an alternative location in the newly completed ultra-modern lockup shops at Agric-Olope in Ado-Ekiti. This, however, did not go down well with the vendors. They said a lack of sufficient space to ply their wares had taken a toll on their business and made life difficult for

•Market closed From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

them. They returned to the portion the government had cleared, in defiance of official orders. It was learnt that a free-forall ensued between the traffic officials and the phone vendors when the traders allegedly refused to relocate, causing a traffic buildup on the Ijigbo junction and environs. EKSTMA General Manager Soji Fasuba was reportedly assaulted and two of his officials were injured when the traders threw stones and other harmful objects at them. The suspects are being held at Okesa Police Station in the state capital. It was learnt that the phone vendors also vandalised a Toyota Camry belonging to the Special Adviser on Land

Matters, Mr Remi Olorunleke, and two Hilux vans. The government has closed the market. Addressing reporters yesterday in Ado-Ekiti, Olorunleke alleged that a man, simply identified as Onwa, was the mastermind of the fracas. He was said to have resisted efforts by EKSTMA officials to restore order to the market. Olorunleke explained that dismantling “illegal phone booths initially designed for parking space” where the phone vendors were operating was justifiable. He said the phone vendors were illegal occupants of the market and that their activities have reduced the market to a slum. The EKSTMA chief warned other shop owners, who have allegedly been re-allocating parts of their shops at

N30,000 “to illegal occupants in the market to desist or face the wrath of the law”. Olorunleke added: “The market will no longer be a haven for criminals and drug addicts.” According to him, suspected criminals have been using the market to unleash terror on unwary residents. He said Onwa, who is now at large, and his accomplices, would be prosecuted for the attack on government officials. Olorunleke said: “They (phone vendors) were asked to pay N5,000 so that they could get a space each within the premises of the market. But some of them paid and continued trading in illegal places. “But those who did not pay were still operating at the parking lot and we had to take EKSTMA there to enforce the law. That was the genesis of the violence.”

Ekiti PDP chieftains quarrel over zoning EADERS and members of the Ekiti State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are quarrelling over the zoning of the governorship, following the agitation by the party’s chieftains in the South Senatorial District to produce the candidate. PDP leaders from the South, including Prince Dayo Adeyeye and former Deputy Governor Adebisi Omoyeni, who are agitating for the zoning of the governorship, are backed by the Southwest leader of the party, Mr. Segun Oni. However, supporters of former Governor Ayo Fayose and Police Affairs Minister,

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By Emmanuel Oladesu, Deputy Political Editor

Navy Capt. Caleb Olubolade, who hail from the Central District, are opposing the clamour for zoning. They said it is a non-issue in Ekiti State. It was learnt that PDP chieftains from the North, including Otunba Ayo Arise, who is reportedly nursing a governorship ambition, are campaigning against the formula. A former commissioner in the state civil service commission, Chief Bola Oloyede, told reporters in Lagos that the zoning agitators are pursuing a wrong agenda out of fear.

According to him, the task before the party in Ekiti State is how to unite the party and solidify its structures. She said: “Zoning has a meaning in Ekiti, if we all agree. Is the ticket a gift that will lead to a failure? The agitators for zoning are weaklings and jokers who lack followership. If they have followers, they will not be looking for a short cut, especially at a time the PDP is on Ground Zero in Ekiti. “There should be no zoning in Ekiti PDP. The party is not looking for a dark horse who will only be the candidate and will never be the governor. I will only counsel PDP chieftains in the state to face the reality and

borrow a leaf from the recent Edo experience, where the party picked an unknown candidate to face a known candidate. As at now, there is no material from the South who can win a governorship election for the PDP.” Mrs Oloyede advised Ekiti PDP leaders to learn from the House of Representatives leadership election. She recalled that while PDP nominated Mrs. Mulikat Akande-Adeola from the Southwest for the position of the Speaker, Mallam Aminu Tambuwal from the Northwest defeated her because he had more followers.

She debunked the claim that Ekiti South had not produced any governor, saying Evang. Bamidele Olumilua is from the district. Mrs Oloyede said Ekiti PDP needs a credible and popular personality who can win votes, adding that nonperformers would compound the woes of the party in the state. She said: “We need people who are on ground. Agitators for zoning even lack supporters in their wards. Today, PDP is a party of former this and former that in Ekiti. To bounce back, we must be realistic and serious. Zoning is not valid.”

USPECTED Labour Party (LP) hoodlums yesterday disrupted the meeting of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) Elders’ Forum in Akure, the Ondo State capital. Thirty-six elders of the party were expected to attend the meeting yesterday at the office of a former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Chief Wumi Adegbonmire (aka Omo Ekun), at Sijuade Quarters in Akure. The hoodlums were said to have accused the elders, particularly Chief Adegbonmire, of hosting political meetings in the area without giving them money. Dangerous weapons were allegedly used by the thugs to chase away the ACN leaders from the meeting. A renowned academic, Prof. Olu Aderounmu, was allegedly stoned and splashed with pure water. Narrating his ordeal to reporters after the attack, Adegbonmire said he had been receiving threats from the suspected LP thugs. He alleged that the ruling LP government under Olusegun Mimiko had ordered them to stop any ACN chieftain from holding political meetings in Akure. He said: “Normally, every Thursday, we hold our meetings in the house, not outside the house. We have a secretariat, a stone’s throw from here, where over 36 elders of the party gather to discuss how the party would move forward and what would be beneficial to the people of the state. “But this morning (yesterday), our leaders had arrived at the secretariat for the meeting. Few minutes to the beginning of the programme, two young men entered the venue while his colleagues were outside the building. They warned us not to hold the meeting anymore in the area because we failed to pay their dues. “They also revealed to us that the LP government had ordered them to stop any opposition party chieftains, particularly in the ACN, from holding any political meeting in the state, most especially in Akure. “They asked us to leave the secretariat, but we resisted. It was then they (hoodlums) stormed the venue and attacked us. Prof. Aderohunmu and others were soaked with sachets of pure water while the office windows were destroyed. “I think Mimiko wants it rough and we are ready to give him rough also. I am the Asiwaju of Akureland and Mimiko is an Ondo man. He has no legal right to stop me from holding any political meeting in this state...” But LP State Secretary, Tayo Olujiyigbe, denied the allegation. He said the party’s members did not attack ACN elders.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

11

BUSINESS THE NATION

E-mail:- bussiness@thenationonlineng.net

A strong commodities exchange would be beneficial to the economy as it would create a lot of jobs and open up the market just as we have in Ethiopia where the income of average farmers has increased from 38 to 68 per cent. - Mr Olusegun Aganga, Minister of Trade & Investment

N154.9b Treasury Bill for sale IGERIA sold N75 billion worth of 5year, 7-year and 10year bonds maturing in 2017, 2019 and 2022 at a regular auction on Wednesday, the Debt Management Office (DMO) said yesterday. The debt office said it sold N25 billion of each paper. The yield on the 5year bond rose to 16.19 per cent from 15.85 per cent at last month's auction. It issued the 7-year paper at 16.59 per cent compared to 16 per cent previously, while the 10-year paper was issued at 16.30 per cent from 16.21 per cent at the last auction. The original coupon rates of 15.10 per cent and 16.39 per cent for the April 2017 and January 2022 respectively will be maintained, while the coupon rate for the June 2019 was set at 16.00 per cent, the DMO said in a statement. Total subscriptions stood at N121.60 billion compared with N129.70 billion at the June auction. The DMO issues sovereign bonds monthly to support the local bond market, create a benchmark for corporate issuance and fund its budget deficit. Nigeria plans to auction N154.9 billion ($962 m) in treasury bills with maturities ranging from three months to one year at a twice monthly debt auction on July 26, the Central Bank of Nigeria said in a public notice. The bank said it will sell 34.8 billion naira in 91-day paper and N60 billion each in 182-day and 364-day bills respectively in a Dutch, or reverse, auction.

‘Nigeria can become financial hub’

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DATA STREAM COMMODITY PRICES Oil - $123.6/barrel Cocoa - $2,686.35/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢95.17pound Gold - $1,800/troy ounce Rubber - ¢159.21pound MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE JSE NYSE LSE

-N6.503 trillion -Z5.112trillion -$10.84 trillion -£61.67 trillion RATES Inflation -12.6% Treasury Bills -7.08% Maximum lending-22.42% Prime lending -15.87% Savings rate -2% 91-day NTB -14.18% Time Deposit -5.49% MPR -12% Foreign Reserve $34.6b FOREX CFA 0.2958 EUR 206.9 £ 245 $ 156.4 ¥ 1.9179 SDR 241 RIYAL 40.472

By Simeon Ebulu, Deputy Business Editor

N

• Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola, flanked by Igbokwe (left), and Nally, during PwC’s visit to the governor at the State House, Marina.

Senate probes $1.092b Malabu oil deal

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HE Senate yesterday resolved to investigate the alleged sale of an oil block, OPL 245 to Malabu Oil and Gas Limited at $1.092billion (about N178.812billion) by the Federal Government. It’s resolution followed a motion moved by Senator Ahmed Abdul Ningi (Bauchi Central) and supported by 46 others. In his lead debate, Ningi noted that Nigeria signed up to the Global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in 2003 and began implementation in 2004. He said the country later supported the policy with the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI) Act, 2007. He said the objective of the Act, as encapsulated in Section 2(a and c), included ensuring due process and transparency in payments made by all extractive industry

From Sanni Onogu, Abuja

companies to the Federal Government and statutory recipients. He insisted that the Act also seeks to eliminate all forms of corrupt practices in the determination, payments, receipts and posting of revenue accruing to the Federal Government from the extractive industry firms. He expressed worries over recent clamour for a review of “circumstances surrounding a tripartite transaction involving the Federal Government, Shell/Agip, as well as Malabu Oil and Gas Limited in respect of Oil Bloc referred to as ‘OPL 245,’ to the effect that the Federal Government purported to sell OPL 245 to Shell/Agip Consortium in the sum of $1.092billion.” He said media reports have raised legal and ethi-

cal issues surrounding the transaction and pattern of distribution of proceeds to beneficiaries, arguing that if all these weighty allegations are ignored, “Nigeria may be sanctioned by Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI) for violating a global initiative to which it is a signatory and our image will further be eroded locally and internationally.” The motion attracted stiff opposition from Senator Heineken Lokpobri (Bayelsa West). Lokpobri argued that as the highest law making body in the land, the Senate should not be drawn into matters of discovery. He said the motion did not contain enough facts that would enable the Senate to consider it. He said: “I rise to oppose this motion in its root, stem and branches. The Senate as the highest law-making

body, should not be made to go on a voyage of discovery. “There must be sufficient facts to make the Senate decide whether there would be investigation or not. “The first issue is whether you can sell what you do not have, because the bloc does not belong to the Federal Government and it cannot sell what it does not have.” He noted that the controversial oil bloc was allotted to certain individuals by late General Sani Abacha during his administration and was later revoked by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. “When Chief Olusegun Obasanjo came into power, he purportedly revoked those licences and these companies went to court and the court declared the revocation null and void and as such, the oil blocs were restored to the companies including Malabu Oil and Gas.

Jonathan sends N250.8b NDDC budget to Senate

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RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday presented the 2012 budget proposal of N250.875billion of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to the Senate. Senate President, David Mark who read two separate letters from the President during plenary, also acknowledged the receipt of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB). In his letter, titled: “Pres-

From Sanni Onogu, Abuja

entation of the 2012 Budget Proposal for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), ” Jonathan, said: “Pursuant to section 18(1) of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Act of 2000, I wish to submit the 2012 estimate of the expenditure of the Commission for the kind consideration and approval of the National Assembly. “The Commission has sub-

mitted a budget proposal of N250,857,930,000 only for 2012, as against N261,037,690,536 only approved in 2011, representing a decrease of 3.9 per cent. “It is noted that the budget aims at consolidating the ongoing efforts to effectively impact on the region. “To achieve this, the 2012 budget will concentrate on the timely completion of ongoing projects, hence there are no new projects planned for the year.”

The breakdown of the budget showed that N17.78 billion is for personnel and overhead, N232.06billion, is for development interventions and N1.018billion, is devoted to internal capital requirement. Mark said the Senate would only consider the budget after resumption in September, since “we have consistently warned that budgets should be submitted on time,” he added.

‘20% cassava bread substitute to generate N60b’

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HE Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has said, 20 per cent inclusion of cassava flour as substitute to the conventional wheat flour for bread is capable of generating N60 billion. Adesina disclosed this yesterday during a stakeholders’ workshop on the Adoption of Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato (OFSP) in Abuja. He said: “The Agricultural Transformation Agenda aims to provide over N300

From Olugbenga Adanikin and Halima Sogbesan, Abuja

billion ($ 2 billion) of additional income to farmers. Over N60 billion ($ 380 million) is to be injected into the economy from the substitution of 20% of bread wheat flour with cassava flour.” “In total, the agricultural transformation agenda will add 20 million metric tons to domestic food supply by 2015, including rice (2 million metric tons), cassava (17 million metric tons) and Sorghum (1 million metric

tons).” Adesina identified the need to encourage the consumption of Vitamin A rich orange fleshed sweet potatoes due its nutritious benefits. “Orange-fleshed varieties are extremely rich in betacarotene, the precursor of vitamin A, an essential human nutrient,” he added The minister explained that only 125 grams of most orange-fleshed sweet potato varieties can supply the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A for children and non – lactating women.

According to him, “even at low yield levels, a family of five could generate an adequate annual supply of vitamin A.” The Director of Agriculture in the ministry, Engr. Michael Eneh said the country has the potential of cultivating 50 million metric tons of sweet potatoes annually. “Nigeria has been assessed to have the potential to cultivate and produce an estimated 50 million metric tons but with national output presently at about 4 million metric tons on annual basis,” he said.

IGERIA stands a chance of becoming one of the Regional Financial Centers of the world, the Chairman, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) International Limited, Dennis Nally, has said. Nally, who spoke in Lagos on Wednesday in the course of his visit to Nigeria, said, notwithstanding the existing challenges, significant opportunities exist in Nigeria to emerge a Regional Financial Hub, but noted that such an outcome would depend on the interplay in the global economic system, since the world economies are now largely interlinked. He said the sovereign debt crisis in Europe, the less-than robust growth of the US economy, the impending Presidential elections and other slow growth issues in China and Russia, are challenges that have become sources of concern to chief executives of companies. He stated that the volatility in the global market place would continue to exist for at least the next two-three years, adding that any expectation to the contrary, would be unrealistic. “We should expect to see the kind of volatility in the global economies right now, not only in Nigeria, but also in the global financial market, at least in the next two-three years,” he stated. Also speaking, the Senior Partner, Nigeria’s affiliate of PwC, Ken Igbokwe, said the consulting firm is partnering with Nigeria in several sectors, including agriculture and how to restructure it to drive the economy, since agric contributes substantially to the economy. Igbokwe, who spoke on a wide of issues, including the capital market, stressed the need for government to address corruption, stressing that the issue is not peculiar to Nigeria alone.

IMF to assess economic spillovers

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HE International Monetary Fund (IMF), has approved changes to its annual economic surveillance rules that now would make it mandatory for the Fund to assess whether the domestic policies of a country are affecting global financial stability. Until now, IMF assessments of economic spillovers were voluntary but the 2007-2009 global financial crisis showed how quickly and easily the economic and financial policies of one country can cascade across borders and destabilise the world.


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

13

AGRO-BUSINESS

Expert canvasses apprenticeship scheme T

HE Assistant Director, General Management Division, Agricultural and Rural Management Training Institute (ARMTI), Ilorin, Dr Ademola Adeyemo, has suggested the adoption of an apprenticeship scheme to grow the sector. He told The Nation that there are opportunities in the food indus-

Stories by Daniel Essiet, Agric Correspondent

try and that the scheme could attract skilled people into it. With the opportunities in the food industry growing, he said the scheme would ensure that young people in the rural areas are equipped with the skills and knowledge required to grow the industry.

The project, he explained, should teach land management skills to young people in their areas. He said the scheme would encourage closer working relationship between the public and private sector. Adeyemo said food producers would also benefit from the scheme, as it would help train and develop a new skilled workforce needed to compete in the national

market. Emphasising the need for food businesses to run more apprenticeship schemes and change the way young people think about working on the farm, he said the industry is important to growth and that there is a big skills gap right in the food chain. According to him, the industry must attract more qualified peo-

ple if it is to continue to develop. He said the industry should be able to raise the profile of food as a career of first choice and make sure that young people benefit from it. He said the scheme would help to to identify and develop new talents in the sector, and ensure that the workforce are well trained.

•From left: Director, Co-operatives Services, Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives,Lagos State, Mrs Ayo Awokulehin; Permanent Secretary,Dr Olajide Bashorun, Commissioner for Agric & Co-operatives Prince Gbolahan Lawal and Director-General, Public Service Staff Development Centre, Mrs Olubunmi Fabanwo, at a lecture to mark International Co-operative Day in Lagos.

‘Nigeria ripe for green food project’

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IGERIA can run a food system without destroying nature, a don, Martins Anetekhai, has said. Anetekhai, a Professor of Fisheries at the Lagos State University (LASU), said there was the need to reconcile the competing demands of producing more food and improving the environment. While there is an expected increase in the demand for food in the face of diminishing land, the don said there was no justification for creating higher yields by sacrificing the environment, adding that there are many arable land in the country that are wasting. He urged farmers and the government to co-operate to achieve the nation’s plan for more water, wildlife, healthy soil and food production. While the nation needs a competitive farming and food industry, which contributes to food security, he, however, maintained that the

sector must manage the impact on the environment. In the long-term, he noted that food security depends on tackling the environmental impacts of production. The don said the government needs to ensure a flourishing natural environment. According to him, a healthy, properly functioning environment and maintenance of essential ecosystem is a good for sustaining food production. He said the government has moral and legal obligations to protect biodiversity and the wider environment. This includes protecting resources, such as water and soil to secure a sustainable quality of life for future generations. A green food system, Anetekhai explained, looks at the potential to increase food production, ensuring that farmers operate within environmental limit. The government, he added, should co-ordinate research in agriculture

and food to enhance sustainable and competitive farming. Anetekhai said there must be a campaign to facilitate better awareness of the potential benefits and risks of adoption of new and novel technologies in the food chain, including genetic modification. He noted that it was in the best interest of the nation that the government encourages farming methods that ensure better use of natural resources and management. Through natural processes, Anetekhai said green spaces remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and replenish the air with life-sustaining oxygen, thus mitigating global warming, fundamental issues inherently linked to quality of life. He said the government should do more to improve access to agricultural input and services, increase productive capacity and address the basic food needs in the country.

A

SURVEY of soils and water resources will boost food production in the country, a soil specialist, Prof Ayo Ogunlela, has said. According to him, the survey will reveal the problems of soil and water and measures farmers should take to manage them. Ogunlela, who is of the Agricultural Engineering Department, University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), said declining soil fertility and mismanagement of plant nutrients have made the task of providing food for Nigerians difficult. He said challenges posed by extreme weather conditions,rising costs and the impact of the eenvironment on food production, make the management of soil and water resources a vital area to address in the future. Soil resources, Ogunlela explained, are subject to increased pressure from competing land uses and extensive degradation processes, adding that the im-

Survey soil, water levels, says don pact affects the amounts of soils and water available for food production. According to him, hectares of degraded farmland have lost their fertility and water-holding capacity and need to be regenerated to meet the demand of a growing population. He urged the government to help farmers improve the management of their soil and water resources to boost farm output and, ultimately, profitability. Unless soils are well managed, he noted that farming will be afercted. He called for a renewed effort to ensure sufficient fertile and healthy soils and for future generations.

How to protect farmers, by cassava group

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RESIDENT, National Cassava Alliance of Nigeria(NCAN),Mr Tola Faseru, has called for measures to protect farmers against foreign competition. Speaking with The Nation, Faseru said under pricing by foreign traders has caused many farmers and enterprises

losses. He noted that foreign traders penetrated the domestic market to seek and buy farming products. This, Faseru explained, sometimes throws the domestic market out of control as prices are reduced while farmers are lured to produce to meet a higher

demand, adding that farmers in many cases suffered losses because of declining demand. He said farmers with large stocks have been convinced to sell at lower prices on their farms. He said it was not in the interest of the economy that foreign traders participated in

the buying of farming products, adding that the activities take place in some rural areas. He said foreign traders should not buy products for export if they do not establish relations with agents who do the business.This,he explained, is necessary to protect the farmers

from exploitation. He said foreign commodities buyers need local enterprises to work with domestic farmers and producers. He said producers need to improve the quality of their products for export to reduce their reliance on these traders and better access other markets.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

14

AGRO-BUSINESS

‘Farmers have no succession plans’

A

N agricultural expert, Prof Abel

Ogunwale said many farmers do not have succession plans in their organisations. The former dean, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Oyo State said the importance of grooming a successor cannot be underestimated. He said those who do not involve their successors in the running of the farms until they are gone are en-

Stories by Daniel Essiet, Agric Correspondent

dangering the business. This problem, Ogunwale explained, could impact negatively on the firm. Attributing the problem to poor education, Ogunwale urged farmers to run their farms as modern organisations as it is done abroad. According to him, farming is a big business and as such requires responsibility and proper assets management, adding that they should be confident

about their future and that of their farms and encourage their children to be involved in the business. On the economy, he explained that the trend was so bad to investors and that it is creating risks and inflation. Ogunwale said many farmers could not draw enough profits out of the farm during their retirement and that this gives their children the feeling that they cannot make a living from the organisation. He said big time farms

could not attract more capital and skills to boost their businesses. As a result, Ogunwale urged the government to support business-oriented agriculture to encourage farmers’ family members to develop interest in agriculture, so they could be brought into the family business. He said succession should be a product of a healthy business,and not an individual decision based on the owner of tghe business.

• Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima, presenting a letter of engagement to an unemployed youth, during the launch of the entrepreneurship training in fish and poultry production in Maiduguri.

More slaughter plants needed for local meat

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NCREASED demand for meat requires the establishment of modern slaughter facilities in the country, Prof Abiodun Adeloye, of the Department of Animal Production, University of Ilorin(UNILORIN), has said. He said producers need to access standard slaughter

and processing facilities in every part of the country to boost the marketing of meat and poultry. He said the availability of slaughter and processing machines to livestock producers selling into local markets, could be help the growth of the local market for meat products.

The majority of livestock and poultry slaughter in the local government areas are done in small facilities. But Adeloye said slaughtering animals at smaller plants, should be done at the ones approved by the government. He emphasised the need for new methods for animal

slaughter and processing aimed at local markets. He urged the government to acquire mobile slaughter units (MSUs) that can help meet increase slaughter capacity in local areas and enable the growth of small livestock producers who sell the products to consumers in their communities.

Poor funding hampers IFAD-assisted programme, says co-ordinator

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ESPITE its large budget, the IFADassisted Community-Based Natural Resource Programme (CBNRMP) is suffering from poor funding. For example, it has received and disbursed N1.86 billion federal and state counterpart fundS out of the N4.74 billion budgeted from inception in November 2005. In the same period, the programme disbursed N567.88 million of the N4 billion counterpart fund to be provided by the participating local governments. The National Programme Co-ordinator of the programme, Mrs Irene JumboIbeakuzie, who disclosed this in Port Harcourt, said the figures represent a poor performance of 39.32 per cent

and 14.18 per cent. She said the programme disbursed $5.3 million of IFAD funds out of the $11.4 million budgeted from inception of the programme, which represents 47.7 per cent performance. The programme costs $84.8 million with IFAD providing $15 million as loans, and Niger Delta Development Commission(NDDC) $15 million grants. The federal, states and local governments are to contribute $10.2 million, $8.2 million and $32 million. The programme is being implemented in the nine Niger Delta states of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Cross River,

Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo and River. Targeted at the poor, especially women and youths, it is being implemented in 80 local government areas comprising 243 communities and estimated to benefit 400,000 rural households. But in spite the huge figures the programme has not performed as expected because of poor funds by partners, especially states and local governments, which failed to fulfil their counterpart fund obligations. Jumbo-Ibeakuzie identified Imo, Akwa Ibom, Rivers, Delta and Bayelsa states as not doing well in the remittance of their counter-part funds.

She praised Ondo, Cross River for realising the importance of the programme to their people and responding as expected. “The programme is doing well in these states because they are paying their counterpart funds. Delay in funds release by partners hinders implementation of timebound agricultural activities,” she said. According to her, the programme has done well for the rural dwellers and their service providers to intervene in their development. Reacting to the programme’s performance report, Prof. Joseph Yayock, an IFAD consultant, calls for an enhanced advocacy to the states that were not meeting up with their obligations.

STATE FOCUS

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GRICULTURE is plays a major role Kebbi State. Many of its people are farmers. Farming and livestock raising are the main sources of livelihood for about 70 per cent of its working population. The food crops include guinea corn, rice and millet while the cash crops include groundnut and cotton. About 200,000 hectares of fertile land is Fadama land, mainly situated on the flood plains of the Rima and Niger valleys. The land area is suitable for agricultural development and permits both agriculture and herding by nomadic tribes. The farmlands support large scale production of crops, such as millet, guinea corn, rice, wheat, beans, groundnut, cotton, tobacco, sugar cane, sweet potatoes, and vegetables, such as onion, pepper and tomatoes. Cash crops, such as sugarcane peanuts, citrus fruits, yams, tomatoes, mangoes and coffee can be grown. It is the same thing with subsistence crops, such as sorghum, wheat, cowpeas, beans, pulses, corn, and barley. Crop cultivation has been divided into a modern, market-oriented sector comprising mechanised, large-scale irrigated and rainfed farming and smallscale farming following traditional practices that were carried on in other parts of the state where rainfall or other water sources were sufficient for cultivation. Rainfall is seasonal, as such, farming is carried out during the wet season on the upland during which food and cash crops such as millet, sorghum, maize, rice, beans, cassava, cotton, and tobacco are cultivated. During the dry season, farming is carried out in the vast Fadama lands where crops, such as tomatoes, onions, pepper, sugar cane, vegetable and sweet potatoes and wheat are cultivated. Indigenous forms of cultivation are, however, gradually giving way, as more farmers now use improved seed varieties, chemical fertiliser, formal credit facilities and ploughs and tractors. Livestock farming is is done in the state. Camel farming is popular. It has provided employment for so many people. Modernisation proposals have been based on improving existing practices. Some farmers rear cattle, sheep and goats to augment their income. These animals are fed with the stalk of grains, and leaves of legumes. For the most part, animals are grazed in the open field around the village and in the Fadama farms. Animal wastes are in turn used for manure. The state has abundant livestock, which include cattle, sheep, goats, camels, horses, donkeys, pigs and poultry. It ranks among the five states with the highest number of livestock. The state exports quite a substantial number to other states. The state wants to create

How agro business thrives in Kebbi a diversified market-oriented economy based on an efficient agricultural sector capable of supporting manufacturing. This will mean supporting urban and rural farming programmes to encourage agro export and reduce food miles. The state is open for vegetarian restaurants, health food stores, garden supply stores and more farmers’ stalls to stimulate economic growth in the downtowns. Demand is increasing for fresh, high quality, locally grown vegetables. The government wants farmers to diversify, grow fresh vegetables and fruits and connect with grocery stores, restaurants and other buyers. The administration is posed to becoming a success story by building on agriculture. Given new investments, the state’s agriculture industry has the potential to become a major source of employment, especially for the thousands of women and youths. There is substantial amount of land suitable for future cropping. The state has natural resources and can be a major producer of many commodities.Largely untapped livestock and fertile land point to the potential of its people. However, constraints to agricultural production and marketing include: poor infrastructure, lack of access to capital and lowlevel technical efficiency and skills in production, marketing and business management.The state’s population is growing. As a result, there will be more mouths to feed. The way forward is to further improve the sector’s efficiency by using better methods. These developments create important opportunities for the sector, especially on new technologies. Opportunities for investors can be found in greenhouse technologies, irrigation, sustainable agriculture, food processing (valueadded)industry, floriculture and new (plant) varieties.

•Governor Usman-Dakingari


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NATIONSPORT FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NATION SPORT

NATION SPORT

KALU UCHE off to Kasimpasa

7 DAYS TO OLYMPICS:

DI MATTEO:

NOC unveilsWazobia Lounge at AfricanVillage

Chelsea wants

MOSES SEMENYA HANDED

•Victor Moses

FALCONETS’

•Kalu Uche

striker returns to action

Team SA’s highest honour

...On £10m we stand —Wigan

WE’RE HERE to qualify'—De Kruif From Florence Nkem Israel, Port Harcourt

NSA maiden edition slated for November •As organisers target all sports events By Stella Bamawo

AFRICAN RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP

Nigeria team jets out to Botswana •To play Cote d’ Ivore on Sunday •Captain assures of victory By Innocent Amomoh

LBHF BOXING

SHOW pauses for Ramadan

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N LINE with its usual tradition, the Lagos Boxing Hall of Fame (LBHF) is skipping the July Edition of the Saturday Monthly Boxing Show, in view of the fact that the date falls in the holy month of Ramadan. This move not only facilitates Muslim boxers’ participation in the mandatory fast; equally important it removes the potential dangers of boxers being tempted to try compete, while fasting. The show resumes on August 25th, 2012, ahead of the annual Lagos A.B.A vs Repton tournaments which comes up in September.

Ameobi ready to fight for Newcastle spot


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012

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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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EDITORIAL/OPINION Comments

EDITORIAL FROM OTHER LAND

Hope deferred again? •Coming on stream of three Green Field refineries shaky

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N the aftermath of the nationwide strikes and demonstrations attendant on the removal of the purported oil subsidy in January, Nigeria’s petroleum authorities eagerly informed a distraught nation of new initiatives to increase local production of refined petrol, significantly stem importation and thus subsequently achieve a less punishing pricing regime. One of such proposed projects that raised public hopes was the reported collaboration between the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) on the construction of three new Green Field refineries to be located in Lagos, Bayelsa and Kogi states. The two parties were said to have signed a joint agreement to raise $28.5 billion to actualise the projects. Nigerians surely had no cause for doubts when supposedly competent authorities confidently asserted that construction work on the three facilities, designed to add 750,000 barrels per day to the country’s current daily refining capacity of 445,000 barrels per day, would take off this year, and they would come on stream in 2015. However, it is, sadly, turning out to be a story of another hope deferred as there are indications that the projects can no longer commence this year, thus making the 2015 completion target date unrealistic. The implication is that unless the production capacity of the existing refineries in Warri, Kaduna and Port Harcourt improves substantially, Nigeria may still

continue expending at least $10 billion annually on the importation of refined products beyond 2015. One of the reasons cited for the stalling of the project is that the NNPC, which is to provide 20 percent equity of the budgeted amount, has been unable to do so because it is still working towards putting together a consortium to raise the funds. However, denying that raising NNPC’s share of the fund is a problem, the corporation’s general manager, group public affairs, Mr. Fidel Pepple, reportedly said “The issue of funding is not a problem. What we are waiting for is the Federal Government’s approval to commence construction; once that is done we will put together a consortium to raise the funds as the NNPC alone cannot do it”. Now, we consider this logic to be rather curious. If there was no prior Federal Government approval, on what basis did the NNPC enter into the initial fundraising agreement with CSCEC? If the NNPC is even yet to put together a consortium to source the fund, why did it publicly announce the project, complete with time lines? When she inaugurated the National Refineries Task Force in Abuja in March, the Minister of Petroleum, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, said that the proposed Green Field refineries would be functional by 2017. In the same vein, when he appeared before the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on the Fuel Subsidy Regime in January, the immediate past Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Austin Oniwon, had told the in-

quiry that the coming on stream of the refineries would make Nigeria self sufficient in petroleum products and indeed a net exporter of the commodities. It now appears that these statements were only spur-of-the moment responses to crises rather than being predicated on a meticulous and systematic plan. However, since one of the terms of reference of the National Refineries Task Force is to “design a blueprint for Public Private Partnerships to build small, medium, to large-scale Green Field refineries across Nigeria”, we hope its recommendation will facilitate a more serious and methodical approach to this urgent challenge.

‘It now appears that these statements were only spur-of-the moment responses to crises rather than being predicated on a meticulous and systematic plan. However, since one of the terms of reference of the National Refineries Task Force is to “design a blueprint for Public Private Partnerships to build small, medium, to large-scale Green Field refineries across Nigeria”, we hope its recommendation will facilitate a more serious and methodical approach to this urgent challenge’

Brain drain •Nigeria must do more to keep its doctors at home

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NE of the most perplexing paradoxes of the Nigerian condition is the fact that thousands of highlycapable and well-trained professionals of Nigerian origin can be found pursuing successful careers in almost every nation in the world. A significant proportion of the country’s professionals in Diaspora is its doctors. Covering almost every medical specialisation, they can be found in some of the world’s most prestigious hospitals in countries like the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and in several parts of Europe and the Middle East. Recently, the Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu, declared that about 5,000 Nigerian doctors were working outside the country. This figure may in fact be grossly underestimated: some estimates put the number as high as over

‘Nigeria needs to show that it is prepared to trust in the competence of its own doctors. The disturbing penchant for politicians, business leaders, industrialists and other prominent individuals to ostentatiously seek treatment abroad for non-serious ailments demonstrates a palpable disrespect for indigenous doctors, who respond in like manner by taking their services to countries where they will be better appreciated’

10,000 in the U.S. alone. Regardless of what the real figure is, there can be little doubt that the nation cannot afford to suffer what amounts to a virtual haemorrhaging of medical professionals. The formidable health challenges confronting it clearly reveal the fact that Nigeria needs all the help that it can muster. This is a country that has a dearth of properly-equipped and staffed healthcare facilities; ancillary facilities such as laboratories are also in very short supply. Even in medical establishments which can claim to be relatively wellequipped, there are increasing incidents of inadequate care, especially as it relates to the issue of accurate diagnosis. Indeed, such is the bad state of the country’s healthcare system that an increasing number of Nigerian patients have voted with their feet and are now seeking medical care outside the nation’s shores. Any solution to the medical exodus currently assailing the country must take into consideration the reasons that impel doctors to seek greener pastures abroad. The most important of these relates to the vexed issue of conditions of service. As highly-trained professionals, medical doctors do not come cheap; as they themselves are fond of pointing out, doctors are among the most highly-paid professionals in any society. Nigeria cannot expect to be different from this global norm. The federal and state governments must work with the relevant associations to ensure that the wages of doctors is attractive enough to keep them in the country. Experience has shown that strongarm tactics will not succeed in this re-

spect. Only open and thorough negotiations on wages and conditions of service will ensure that strikes, lockouts and other negative situations are avoided. Another pressing issue that must be attended to is that of adequate facilities and equipment. No true professional likes to be rendered inefficient by the lack of the proper tools needed to perform optimally. In the particular case of doctors, this anomaly is even more painful, given the fact that such helplessness is very likely to result in needless suffering and even loss of life. Hospitals, clinics and other medical facilities should be properly equipped and maintained so that doctors and other medical professionals can put their skills and training to adequate use. At a more fundamental level, Nigeria needs to show that it is prepared to trust in the competence of its own doctors. The disturbing penchant for politicians, business leaders, industrialists and other prominent individuals to ostentatiously seek treatment abroad for non-serious ailments demonstrates a palpable disrespect for indigenous doctors, who respond in like manner by taking their services to countries where they will be better appreciated. If the country is to return to the golden era of medicine when institutions like the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, was ranked among the foremost medical facilities in the world, it will have to start by ensuring that its doctors are not compelled to seek proper remuneration and adequate respect elsewhere.

Not so fast on blaming global warming

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AN YOU BLAME the scorching weather on climate change? Not really. Or at least not yet. In a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) report released last week, researchers attempted to determine how much they could attribute six extreme weather events last year to human-caused global warming. Even now, months on, some experts worry that drawing conclusions is precipitous. Figuring out what caused a flood in Thailand or a drought in Texas is hard. Doing it quickly is harder. Scientists involved in NOAA’s report reckoned that climate change did significantly increase the likelihood of last year’s warm winter in the United Kingdom and heat wave in Texas, though their calculations are admittedly imperfect. Experts also determined they could not show that global warming contributed to flooding in Thailand — the level of rainfall wasn’t historically unusual. The upshot? Anyone who, in the midst of a hurricane here or a heat wave there, simplistically blames greenhouse gas emissions is wrong. But it’s also wrong to blame all extreme events on forces beyond human control. Recurring climate patterns such as El Niño and La Niña can influence extreme weather. So can chance fluctuations in a massive, complicated Earth system. But natural variability doesn’t mean human activity hasn’t been playing an increasing role in the formation of extreme events, or in the scale of the resulting damage. Most obviously, more people are living in environmentally precarious zones. Stripping land or degrading wetlands can leave humans more vulnerable to floods, as in Thailand, or hurricanes, as in New Orleans. And the planet is certainly warming. Humans releasing heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere are almost certainly responsible for much, if not all, of that warming; the particular patterns of warming, comparison to the historical record, and the basic precepts of physics all indicate this. On average, more energy in the system probably increases the intensity or frequency of certain extreme weather events, such as very high temperatures, across the planet. Patterns emerge. In recent years, there have been more record-breaking heat events and fewer record-breaking cold ones. Scientists are also beginning — but only beginning — to assess how much particular incidents can be attributed to climate change in anything like real time. So, while the science of attribution improves, what can you say the next time you’re suffering through a sustained heat wave? That this is the sort of thing will get more common across a warming world. That should be more than enough to spur Americans to demand action from their leaders. – Washington Post TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief Victor Ifijeh • Editor Gbenga Omotoso •Chairman, Editorial Board Sam Omatseye •General Editor Kunle Fagbemi •Editor, Online Lekan Otufodunrin •Managing Editor Northern Operation Yusuf Alli •Managing Editor Waheed Odusile

• Executive Director (Finance & Administration) Ade Odunewu

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•Deputy Editor (News) Adeniyi Adesina •Group Political Editor Bolade Omonijo •Group Business Editor Ayodele Aminu •Abuja Bureau Chief Yomi Odunuga •Sport Editor Ade Ojeikere •Editorial Page Editor Sanya Oni

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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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EDITORIAL/OPINION

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IR: When on August 14, the CBN governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi sacked the management of five banks in Nigeria, I told those around me that he has shot himself in the foot. I said among other things that he will spend his tenure at CBN defending this abrupt and bizarre intervention. Today all his words, actions, body language and antics are tailored toward justifying that singular action on that fateful day. Or how else can one explain the risible presentation he made through the deputy governor of CBN Mr. Kingsley Moghalu before the National Assembly Ad-hoc Committee probing the collapse of the Nigerian stock market blaming the banks squarely for the failure of the stock market? If the failure of the market was due to the poor supervisory role of the CBN before him, it is expected that the stock market would have recovered now that the so-called effective supervisory framework is in place.

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Sanusi and the crash of the capital market The truth must be told: Sanusi’s actions and utterances contributed in no small measure to the problem of the stock market. Sanusi’s attitude which seems to criminalise lending and the consequent dangerous misinterpretation of the concept of Credit Risk Management did not just affect the stock market but the entire economy negatively. Just as it is said in Economics that production is incomplete unless the products reach the final consumer, financial intermediation process is not complete except the deposits are made available for investment. The sacking of the board of the

banks by Sanusi and the concomitant panic and tussle that came with it did not only hit the effected banks but the stock market also. Indeed, if Sanusi had adopted the second phase of Banking Consolidation by encouraging the banks to recapitalise, the banks would have been stronger and the stock market revived perhaps. For personal reasons Sanusi took an approach that seems to heat up the economy and make nonsense of the existing reform. This is clearly the attitude of a typical “Nigerian professional”. A Nigerian professional is in a hurry to estab-

lish himself believing he know it all thereby limiting his search and level of consultation when faced with challenges. We do not need to search too deep to ascertain the reason for the collapse of the Nigerian stock market. First was the global financial meltdown. Remember that Nigerian economy is not insulated from external shocks. So the meltdown made foreign investor who had invested in our stock to divest. Secondly, because the stock market has not been fully developed in Nigeria, it is possible that the regulators did not plan for the boom and bust

Jonathan and the opposition

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IR: Why is President Goodluck Jonathan blaming the opposition for plotting to overthrow him and his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)? What does he expect them to do; support politico-economic injustice and terrorism? Does he think most Nigerians enjoy bloodshed? Why is Jonathan blaming the opposition? Did the opposition ask him to truncate rotational presidency and refuse to implement electoral reform? Was it the opposition that asked Jonathan’s spokesman to say that the recommendation of the Justice Muhammed Uwais’ Electoral Reform Committee is “mere recommendation”? Does he expect them to like the idea of a partisan President and his party choosing the electoral umpires? Who advised Jonathan to use a

false concept, “fuel subsidy”, to sap ordinary Nigerians, rather than take bold steps to retrieve misappropriated funds? Did the opposition ask Jonathan to be protecting those who prey on Nigeria’s petroleum industry? Who is behind the damage and malfunction of Nigeria’s refineries – the opposition political parties? God will say to Jonathan: “I bless you much better than I have blessed most Nigerians. What have I not done for you? I made you Deputy Governor/Governor and Vice President/President of your country within 12 straight years. But, rather than help to stabilize the country, you upturned its water of peace, and the country is now a terrorist state, consuming Nigerians from north and south. That is why Boko Haram, a section of the Niger Delta militants, and the op-

position political parties are tugging at you?” Why will the opposition political parties not unite against Jonathan? Do most Nigerians love bombs? Do they love politico-economic injustice and electoral terrorism, as implied in the refusal to implement the recommendation of the electoral reform committee? Are most Nigerians happy about the many cases of corruption counted against the executive and many agents of the federal government? Was it the Opposition that asked Jonathan not to dialogue with Boko Haram? Can Jonathan be courageous enough to tell Nigerians how much he is expending on security? And, must Nigeria continue in its present state of politico-economic chaos, so that Jonathan can consider himself to be perpetually

Goodluck? What is the relationship between his good luck, and Nigeria’s illluck? What do Africans do in the face of ill-luck? Yes, they seek remedy or antidote. Oracular consultation has revealed that no force can conquer Boko Haram, armed robbery, kidnapping, and so on, without politico-economic order, to which Jonathan and PDP are indisposed. Therefore, a vote for the PDP and its allies is a vote for continuous misery and wanton destruction of lives and property. Consider also the case of infrastructural neglect, and relocation of businesses away from Nigeria’s shores. For what, then, should Jonathan be pampered? • Pius Oyeniran Abioje, Ph. D, University of Ilorin.

circles of the market. If there was adequate precaution the crash would not have been devastating. Furthermore, the stoppage of the margin lending and the intervention of Sanusi on the banks have a devastating impact on the stock market. It is clearly wrong to lay the whole blame of the collapse of stock market squarely on the threshold of the banks for it was actually the banks that moved the stock market. Clearly, the Nigeria financial sector is facing serious challenges. The capital market is in shambles. The banking sector is facing serious reputational risk. The banks have been intimidated and blackmailed so much so that they are having crisis of confidence. There is credit squeeze and financial exclusion yet everybody is singing reform. There is so much motion and backward movement. The reform refrain is like a symphony of distraction. We have seen inconsistencies and mismatch of policy. An issue that ordinarily will require moral suasion is enforced with drastic measures. It is clear that culture of impunity and military authoritarianism are not desirable in economic management. They have far-reaching negative multiplier effect. Clearly this apparent lack of tact by the current CBN regime has attracted the attention of our National Assembly. They are now considering amending the laws to curtail the power of the CBN governor. As an economist, I know the danger inherent is such amendment for it will impinge on the ability of the CBN governor to strategically plan and regulate the economy. I hereby use this medium to appeal to our distinguished legislators not to amend the CBN laws instead let them institute a probe panel to probe the activities of CBN in the last three years. • Gozie Irogboli (goziei@yahoo.com)


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012 16

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EDITORIAL/OPINION

Reality Bites I

We are very bad people (2)

Olatunji Ololade

HAVE seen the godly trade God by his verses. I have seen the delicate veins of the compassionate hand curl lovingly to pull a trigger. Let us leave religion out of humanity, the Nigerian heart confounds even evil. We have become that fugitive quirk we can find no word for. How curious a land this is? Like a veteran virgin with a history of abortions, our hearts and privates are full of scars – scars of tragedy, scars of laughter, scars of luxury, scars of want…every scar a luscious testament to our poverty of life. Nothing ever changes. Nothing ever gives. Beneath the parks and groves we lay out, within our mansions, shanties and worship houses, a lot we do is sordid, a lot we do is forced; a certain feverishness and

‘It’s a matter of choice; to which system of thought should we commit our lives to? Is there anything in our norms worth saving? Shall we define the Nigerian dream in the language of humanity? Shall we begin to officiate for posterity and humanity’s sake? Shall we begin to affect the honesty to which we pay lip service? Shall we begin to reject the same old intrigues…the same old analysis, every minute, every hour, everyday?’

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unrest varnishes our world. And all our show and tinsel, are built upon a groan. Lest you begin to think that I’m inclined to spurious generalizations, I have searched carefully and I find that there is nothing barbaric and savage about anyone in this nation except that everyone gives the title of barbarism to everyone else and every thought that are not in consonance with truth, as they would like to see it. Goaded by such erroneous belief, every Nigerian considers himself the quintessential patriot capable of the fairest truth and reason. And from this perception emerges the contemporary Nigerian with the perfect politics, perfect economics, perfect religion and the most exact and accomplished approaches to all things. Thus our nation abounds with perfect tyrants and looters, our homes with perfect batterers and paedophiles; our industries pulsate with perfect quacks and the slovenly, our schools with perfect dullards and numbnuts. Lest we forget the perfect rapists, kidnappers, hooligans and assassins prowling our streets, baiting the unforgiving second, when ruthless neurosis pulsates with will, for a price. Our much vaunted norms have begun to peer above our ego. The harder we flaunt, the more carelessly we reveal the swollen belly of our pride. Our talk is of the Golden Fleece; goaded by greed and spurred by desperate tendencies to stand out, we traverse our land and foreign

IGERIA naturally owing to its years of military rule has had its fair share of coup plots. A litany of these violent and unconstitutional seizures of power by a particular clique is embedded in the tapestry of our nation’s history. A run down from the Nzeogwu coup of January 15, 1966 to the misguided counter-coup of July the 29, 1966 and up to the Sani Abacha putsch of 1993 are all base points in our national history when issues such as this are discussed . But Nigerians have largely failed to acknowledge that in this same history of ours, coup plotting hasn’t been the exclusive preserve of the military boys as their civilian counterparts have at one point in time or the other dabbled into such an enterprise though unlike the military they have engaged in such acts sparingly. Examples abound. The first coup in our nation, that is the first, concentrated assault on a democratically elected government by the use violent means and unfair ends to edge out such a lawfully constituted government was indeed perpetuated in 1964 by the then Premier of the Western Region, Sir Ladoke Akintola and his army of supporters in collusion with the Sardauna of Sokoto and the then Prime Minister Sir Tafawa Balewa, where they usurped powers belonging to the Western Region to impose Akintola upon the people of that region. Ironically, at the same time the likes of Chief Obafemi Awolowo and his supporters were arrested and tried on trumped up charges of coup plotting for which they received heavy sentences. The rest is history as the crisis largely led to the fall and collapse of the First Republic . Another classical example takes an illustrative flight from Anambra State, where a Godfather and his horde of idolaters in connivance with certain powers at the centre did make an attempt at wresting power out of the hands of the Anambra people in the coup of July 10, 2003. Owing to the lacklustre performance of Dr. Chinwuko Mbadinuju, members of the Peoples Democratic Party, the PDP had expressed reservations about Dr. Mbadinuju returning for a second term. Even the jostle for Mbadinuju’s job amongst party faithful took a frightful turn as every Okoro, Ononiba and Okafor jockeyed for that position un-

lands spreading degeneracy, insolence and vile. In search of the Golden Fleece, crime has become our cotton field; it sprouts frightful stamens of violence and blood. Thus this minute, a gubernatorial hopeful pounds a day old child in a mortar for goodluck charm. Next minute; a European widow will lose her life-savings to a street-smart, internet-activated Nigerian kid. The widow will slit her wrists and her scammer would retire to the blessings of his parents and family pastor. Our factories die but crime remains a major industry in Nigeria. That is because it’s the surest path to the Nigerian dream. But what is the Nigerian dream? Swift, sudden reprieve from all that pathos, all that bathos ever gave? Comfort taken for granted because it comes too easy and cheap? For whom is the good life? The insane market women of the sidewalks? Child-thugs and teen-rejects dying to be park thugs? The veteran who becomes drunkard and jester in our court of random realities? Perhaps the faithless who keeps the empty store on the lonely road, by the crossroads where the best of hopes lay famished. Maybe the privileged for whom the paths turned rose-beds, ever before they startled to a second pat. What would you do for the good life? Everything and anything that gets you to sleep at night happily and fulfilled, perhaps. Now that everything and anything amounts to nothing, we do everything and anything to sustain the life that pleases. We who have become treasury looters, armed robbers, advance fee fraudsters, mediocre teachers, unconscionable journalists, doctors and law enforcers, have learnt to espouse morals birthed where deeds run afoul the mouth.

Every Nigerian is a moralist even as we sow sodden seeds of decadence at sunrise through sunset. And still we manage to misunderstand the true essence of our mystery; the tragedy of the picture, and all that treachery, all that folly ever gave. We who couldn’t handle the truth profess to seek it. Here is the shadow of truth: our dreams have murder in the eye and we fete murder in the heart claiming to be “only human;” as if being human requires that we are inhuman. And thus is the soul of our folly; that blind, savage, ghastly unreality that inspires our maddened souls to debris. Nothing works still, because we are incapable of making anything work. Politicians make hard calculations in the interest of the ruling class; multinationals depart our killing fields for lack of security, basic infrastructure, and desperately sought “excellent” returns. Capital and operating costs belie hope and prosperity as we have learnt to have it. But even doom has nuances. In our motherland, it has a thousand layers of meaning. Hence we cry for separation, true federalism and insurgencies contrived where the blood froths hottest. Forget our platitudes; many would die not to be part of the bloody revolutions they incite. I moot no bloodshed folks for it is hardly the path to the epoch of our dreams. For all our troubles, it is the tenor of our thoughts that sickens. We seem to be defective in reason. And the solutions we propound can neither loosen nor bind tragic knots we blow on the threads of history…our history, back when it used to be golden. Now we trust our hopes to prevail violence and malevolence we espouse even as you read. Truth has become a cliché, when it’s spoken, our ears hurt. Truth has become

what we wouldn’t say to get our hearts to lighten. And so do our hearts harden. Bet you are beginning to wonder: “Where are his solutions to our crises?” Let it be known at this point that, I seek to profess no mean truth neither do I portend some wild and infernal analysis; the solution we seek defies logic and grit as we have learnt to flaunt it. Education is the only thing that should wholly never fail but we have learnt too little and we have too little to pass on, save Ivy League mediocrity, insolence, and greed. For all the honours we flaunt, the knowledge we affect is shorn of insight. Until we mature in grace; until we learn to live the cliché and apply ourselves to passionate pursuits for the love of the good, our pains shall run amok where we seek ease and bliss, always. It’s a matter of choice; to which system of thought should we commit our lives to? Is there anything in our norms worth saving? Shall we define the Nigerian dream in the language of humanity? Shall we begin to officiate for posterity and humanity’s sake? Shall we begin to affect the honesty to which we pay lip service? Shall we begin to reject the same old intrigues…the same old analysis, every minute, every hour, everyday? Perhaps we would learn to refine the subtleties that would make the Nigerian dream something more than the dream of thieves, prostitutes and looters. The Nigerian dream: dream of assassins, arsonists, urchins, human parts dealers, child traffickers, religious fanatics, ethnic warlords, internet fraudsters…hypocrites.

SMS only 08038551123 (tunji_ololade@yahoo.co.uk)

Revisiting Anambra’s July 10 coup By Ayo Olukanni like the trend in other states where the incumbent governor was naturally given unalloyed support from party faithful. Mbadinuju naturally proved a hard sell, as Anambra State under his administration witnessed a massive collapse of its sociopolitical cum socio economic institutions; life in the state was simply what the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes had termed as nasty, shortish and brutish. Worried by the apparent lapse of our critical and moral faculties, the PDP then began to shop for an acceptable candidate, one who would change the face of Anambra’s politics and bring back the state its days of glory. One man met the bill; one man topped the pack. That man was Dr. Chris Ngige. In the aftermath of the elections, Ngige quickly moved to restore governance to the state and fashioned a roadmap for that. Integrity and service were the intended hallmarks of his philosophy and from the beginning he sought to get it right. But the evils of backstairs politics soon began to rear its head when a self-styled godfather, drunken with arrogance then began to conceive ideas of contrariety of interest against the agreement of all stakeholders in Anambra that it would not be business as usual nor would participants of the old order be allowed to partake in the business of the new government. The godfather would have none of this. Like a gangster, he sought certain debatable concessions and threatened to let all hell loose if his requests weren’t accepted. Governor Ngige, possessing a first class civil service background with the understanding of the dreadful consequences of failing the good people of Anambra stuck to his guns, yet with the meditative air of a politician hoped that the godfather would shift ground and perhaps sheathe his greed. The godfather chose otherwise, adhering to his maniacal course. The rest is history as the day July 10, 2003 forever lives in infamy. But what are the lessons drawn from this sad occurrence? Can it not be said that cer-

tain gains were also attained from this gory incident? Although the coup was defeated and Ngige, without any form of restraints, and unchained from the unholy alliance, did cut through the bramble thickets of failed leadership when he launched governance on an unknown pedestal never witnessed before in the history of Nigeria. Where roads were built, schools were built, social services on large scales were provided, pensioners were paid their pensions to the kobo; teachers who had been on strike for a year were paid their salaries and no civil servant was owed beyond the 26th of that month. Students of the state owned university will always recall how the bearded governor touched by compassion and the understanding that education was a right and not a privilege as it is wrongly deemed by this ungrateful generation of leaders, reduced their fees by 2/3rds the original amount and crime was fought to a standstill (vices like kidnapping and robbery which are prevalent today were unheard of). To many, Ngige simply reinvented the soul of Anambra. But the godfathers were not done yet as they tried every monkey trick they could lay their hands on. They engaged the courts with a violent mutation of the truth and managed to obtain some Oluwole” judgments which naturally shocked the bench and all who came across such pronouncements. When that failed to work, they then resorted to violence hoping that the then President Olusegun Obasanjo ( An accident of history) who was believed to have given the gangsters the tacit backing they needed, would then declare a state of emergency and appoint a sole administrator. To their dismay, Ngige skillfully evaded such traps, maneuvering through the Minoan labyrinth that Anambra is, with the sturdy thread of the nation’s goodwill until tragedy struck when on March 15, 2006 an Appeal Court judgment declared that Governor Ngige was unlawfully elected paving the way for Mr. Peter Obi ,who by and large, was never up to snuff. The game plan was 2007 but then

fate and some other factors played their own cards. Yet truth be told, had Ngige danced as a marionette, or, had the godfather had the his way in the July 10 coup, it would be plausible to argue that the biggest beneficiary and unfortunately the biggest squanderer of the gains of that hard won freedom in the person of Peter Obi would never have emerged as governor, to say that he never knew this is untrue and to deny it would be to accept the fact that square wheels are better than round ones. Nevertheless, it is my belief that history and posterity will forever pay tribute to Ngige. In Anambra’s pantheon, he will stand as a nelplus ultra of a statesman, a visionary and a man of immense dynamism. He will forever be to us the by-word for courage in governance, vision in leadership and dynamism in politics. • Arinze writes from Abuja

‘To their dismay, Ngige skillfully evaded such traps, maneuvering through the Minoan labyrinth that Anambra is, with the sturdy thread of the nation’s goodwill until tragedy struck when on March 15, 2006 an Appeal Court judgment declared that Governor Ngige was unlawfully elected paving the way for Mr. Peter Obi ,who by and large, was never up to snuff. The game plan was 2007 but then fate and some other factors played their own cards’


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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EDITORIAL/OPINION ‘In most communities it is illegal to cry “fire” in a crowded assembly. Should it not be considered serious international misconduct to manufacture a general war scare in an effort to achieve local political aims?’ ———Dwight D. Eisenhower

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AHATMA Gandhi, the globally revered Indian anti-war activist/elder statesman once observed: ‘An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.’ This statement in contemporary Nigeria appositely depicts the unconstitutional approach to managing local government council affairs by successive governors in states across the federation. Since 1999, when this democracy was born, virtually all states’ governors across party divide have handled the councils and their chairmen as an annex of their personal estates. The governors among several illegalities perpetrated against the councils determine how the councils are run, who becomes chairmen, how much should be monthly released to the councils despite the unconstitutionality of doing so; when election should hold in the council or sometimes, they just truncate the tenures of these council chairmen and put in place a caretaker committees to run affairs there. More disgusting is the fact that even when elections were held into the councils, the ruling parties in such states usually cleared all the seats, curiously leaving none to the opposition. The opposition even where they have won were compulsorily rigged out. All the 36 states in the country whether under PDP, ACN or ANPP, among others are all guilty of this undemocratic conduct. One can then ask: Where is democracy at the lowest level of government in the country? We are all guilty of entrenching a culture of warped democracy on the nation. While the state will continue to shout that the federal government is oppressing it, the same state at the slightest opportunity is oppressing the local government in all ramifications and in violent affront against the spirit of federalism. Some governors are not even thinking of conducting local government elections. Yet, the constitution says that that level must be ruled by democratically elected people. The problem at the local government level regarding tyranny of the executive arm of government, to parody Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, the inimitable Afro beat music legend, is like ‘soldier go, soldier come’- a vicious circle that was condoned by the people because of the helpless

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T was sweet victory; hard-fought sweet victory for Comrade Adams Oshiomhole who has just won a blistering electoral victory in Edo State against the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Let me hasten to note however, that this was the easy part. In a free and fair electoral environment, whacking these PDP renegades at the polls could actually be the easiest thing that could happen to anybody with a modicum of good sense and conscience. Adams’ victory is therefore resounding but rather cheap and the turnout was terrifyingly low. While celebrations and a gushing of Champagne are in order, he must be restrained because the battle is ahead. More on this later. Oshiomhole’s landslide victory last weekend is significant in so many ways but let’s consider just three. First, he beat his opponents in all the 18 local government areas of the State without exception. And how on earth could his main opponent, General Charles Airhiavbere (rtd) have lost even in his ward, his immediate community and among his own people? How did he hope to win an entire state if he is not at one with his kinsmen with whom he ought to break kolanuts and drink palmwine every morning. It is the ultimate electoral disgrace to suffer and it speaks the world about him. For a man who rose to be a general in the army; he ought to be able to command the followership of his kinsmen on account of that alone. It is the same disconnect suffered by such ‘leaders’ like Chief Tony Anenih, Mike ogiadomhe, Chief osawaru Igbinedion among other ‘heavy weights’ of Edo politics. Anenih who has achieved great infamy as a man who could fix anything (well except roads when he was Works Minister) has managed to agglutinate himself with any government at in power in the last few decades but could not manage to convince his kinsmen to vote his candidate. Alas, it has come out that he is an impostor viciously lording it over his people all these years; he is but a mere wooden deity and his people have pointed to him, the tree with which he was carved. He will be wise to keep his peace henceforth lest they proceed to chop down the tree in its entirety. It is the same story with the Esama of Benin who rules over the vast estate of Okadaland.

LGs, legality and political expediency

•Rochas Okorocha situation they found themselves over the despotism of governors across the country. The trampling on local government dignity by governments’ of states has virtually become a routine that seem to have shamefully become part of our daily life. However, the fact that most people are not seeing anything wrong in this criminality, according to Ghandi, does not robe the error with the garb of truth by reason of multiplied propagation in the 36 states. A confirmation of Ghandi’s position was affirmed by the Owerri, Imo state Division of the Court of Appeal on July 5. The appellate court ordered the reinstatement of 27 local government chairmen in Imo that were unilaterally sacked by Governor Rochas

Okorocha on assumption of office in June last year. In a unanimous decision, the presiding judge, Justice Uwani Musa Abba Aji, struck out the cross appeal by the government when he declared: “…..It is hereby declared that pursuant to section 7 (1) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Section 23 (1) of the Local Government Administration Law No. 15 of 2000 (as amended), the 2nd Respondent had no competence or power, either by himself or through any person acting on his behalf to dissolve democratically elected Local Government Councils in Imo State in which, the claimants are chairmen, through the 2nd Respondent’s maiden broadcast to the Imo people made on 6th June, 2011.” The court further stated: “It is hereby declared that pursuant to Section 7 (1) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Section 23 (1) of the Local Government Administration Law No. 15 of 2000 (as amended), the 2nd Respondent by himself or through any person has no competence or power to set up or constitute Transition Committees to replace the Appellants who were respectively the democratically elected chairmen of the 27 Local Government Councils in Imo State. It is hereby declared that by virtue of the provisions of Section 23 (1) of the Local Government Administration Law No. 15 of 2000 (as amended), the appellants have a guaranteed tenure of office as democratically elected chairmen commencing from the date of inauguration on 9th August, 2010. It is also hereby declared that the Appellants are still the democratically elected chairmen of their

EXPRESSO STEVE OSUJI

SMS O8181624757, email:steve_osuji@yahoo.com

Adams’ apple… He has not been true to his kinsmen and they simply squared up with him at the first opportunity. Ditto Mr. Mike Ogiadomhe, deputy governor for eight years and currently chief of staff to President Goodluck Jonathan. The message here is that charity must begin with your kinsmen if you have any claim to leadership. Second, Adams’ victory is again, significant because of the role played by one outstanding individual, the Oba of Benin. There are very few true Monarchs left on any thrown in Nigeria and he must rank number one among them. Omo n’Oba nedo uku akpolokpolo, Oba Erediauwa is perhaps the strongest moral force found in this part of the world today. Right from the era of the military, he has remained true to his conscience especially in times of national crisis. I have never known him to flag. In a clime populated by ratu ratu (long throat in local parlance ) monarchs coveting everything from contracts to appointments and Aso Rock photo ops, the Omo n’Oba has remained sturdy and original. If only we had two or three more like him. He stood his ground, he wanted the best man for the job not his kinsman. Back to the man of the moment, our Comrade Governor, here is what nobody else will tell him especially now: his first four years was not exactly spectacular by the assessment of this column. Well, unless he wishes to benchmark against former humpty dumpty Governor Lucky Igbinedion. By 2016, he would have had eight years. That is enough time to completely turnaround any State. Oshiomhole must eschew the messiah syn-

drome afflicting most of our governors and set up a proper executive council and local government system that can deliver the goods in all spheres and to every cranny of the State. No more this on-man superman jumping from place to place building roads and schools and hospitals and culverts and gutters; no. presumably, he will appoint people who are brighter than him, stronger and with more diverse experience and specializations. He must allow them to think and work. He only needs to supervise, oversight their activities and guide them. If only our governors can simply lead instead of trying to do everything.

…Fashola’s cash crunch Just as we awaited another opportunity to enjoy modern rail transit in Lagos as have been available for over half a century in other parts of the world, stories (my children would say Super Story) are creeping into the Lagos light rail project. We hear there is cash problem which has already derailed the 2011 completion deadline for the first phase. For a project started in 2008, we hear of 2015 and beyond. Urg! What a disappointment! Many Lagosians will remember Lateef Jakande’s ambitious modern train in the early 80s which was far gone but was jettisoned by succeeding governments. As has been said on this page several times, there is development capital flying around the globe for people who are serious, honest and willing to develop their place, funding should never be a problem for a light rail project in Lagos that can recover it in-

respective Local Government Councils until their tenure of office expires.’’ Charity according to a popular aphorism begins at home. If the governors want the President to accord them due respect that is in tandem with the laudable principle of federalism, they should start by according local government council leadership respects too. Afterall, he who comes to equity must come with clean hands. One has no iota of doubt that even upon appeal to the Supreme Court, Okorocha will still lose this case. The fact-in-issue is not about political expediency but about legality or illegality of removal of democratically elected chairmen and enthronement of an unlawful caretaker committee that is unknown to the constitution not only in Imo but in all other states in the country. Afterall, W. A. Robson, in the Encyclopaedia of the Social Services, defines Local Government to mean: “The conception of a territorial, nonsovereign community possessing the legal right and the necessary organ to regulate its own affairs. The 1999 Nigerian Constitution (as amended) in section 7 simply guarantees/ provides for the system of local government by democratically elected local councils. The same Constitution provides for the functions of a local government council under its Fourth Schedule which contains not less than 23 items. But are the governors across the states of the federation in all conscience allowing truly democratically elected councils to emerge and operate as stipulated by law? Are the representatives at the councils allowed to freely discharge their functions? As for me, l do not want to be swayed by the imputations or innuendoes being read in to the call by Mohammed Adoke (SAN), Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation that Rochas Okorocha should obey the appellate court’s judgement. What is of utmost concern to me is that today, the precedent has been set in the Court of Appeal’s declaration of the conduct of Okocha as a tyranny that is good only for the jungle. As a lawyer, l am unwavering in my resolve that this tea of justice against arbitrary use of power by governors over local government councils will soon be served round erring governors on this matter. Nigerians should collectively say no to political expediency meant to serve some selfish parochial interests over legality that is meant to protect the institution and sanctity of local councils in the country. The removed council chairmen must be re-instated if only to underscore the point that Okorocha has respect for the temple of justice and the rule of law.

vestment in 10 to 20 years. I want to wager that this rail project is a good as the first GSM licence in Nigeria. Lastly, how could such a mega project have been started without first taking care of the financial engineering? Well, we expect Governor Babatunde Fashola to deliver this project before the end of his tenure. If money is the issue let him float a bond, private placement or even public placement; whatever it takes, no stories please.

And Oyo govt joins the Baba Sala train As you read this stuff, a very historic (hilarious if you will) event is going on in Bayelsa State. A certain Dame Patience Faka Goodluck Jonathan is being sworn in as a permanent Secretary. She was once Deputy First Lady of Bayelsa state, First Lady of the State, Deputy First lady of Nigeria, Acting First Lady and now, full fledged number one woman in Nigeria. We felicitate with her on her humility and condescension to accept this sub position. Congrats Madame perm sec! Again, as you read this, the Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, the wives of all the members and their aides are in London on a two-week course. They are learning how to assist their spouses in the business of law making and in reaching out to their constituencies. Join me in wishing them a successful study on how to make your life better. And since we love comedy a lot, let me give you this last one: Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State announced this week that he is sacking his 4000 aides, yes, no mistake, 4000 appointed aides so that he can recruit new ones. Don’t ask me whether he hires an event centre to hold meetings with them or whether they use the Tafawa Balewa Stadium for Expanded Exco meetings. That is Yuguda’s wahala. My wahala is that running through these stories, from Aso Rock to Bayelsa, to Oyo to Bauchi and many other unreported places, you see a comic people engaged in wasting our time and resources in the name of leading. Why should people not carry bomb or gun or cudgel? If these people cannot see or feel, they can at least hear…welcome to Baba Sala country.


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012


HAZARD

MERCY

CARE

Asaba residents battle floods

Two prison inmates freed

Navy provides free health service

Delta

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Abia

FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

Bayelsa

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Email: news_extra@yahoo.com

Ogun to outlaw child hawking

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•Governor Amosun

FFECTIVE this November, child-hawking will become a punishable offence for parents in Ogun State. The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs Elizabeth Sonubi who revealed this, also spoke of plans by the Ibikunle Amosun administration to enact an equal opportunity law to assist women in the state. She said the state government wants to criminalise child hawking throughout the state to ensure that parents take full advantage of its

From Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta

free primary and secondary education policy. She said that a bill outlawing the social vice has already been passed by the state House of Assembly, adding that the government intends to embark on aggressive enlightenment campaign to tell parents of the evil in not allowing their wards to attend school. The commissioner insisted that

every child of school age must go to school, especially as the government has provided free education in the state. She warned parents not to toy with the future of their wards. Mrs Sonubi’s words: “Education is very important to this administration and children of school age must not be allowed to parade the streets under the guise of assisting their parents economically. Parents should know they are putting these children at grave disadvantage.

“Besides, they are exposing these innocent children to the dangers of social vices. We as a government won’t allow it because these children are the future of our nation. “After the three months of grace, by November, any child found on the street hawking would be picked up and tried in a juvenile court and the parent would then face the penalty.” Mrs Sonubi praised the state governor for his gender sensitivity, adding that out of the 236 wards in the state, women have 20 councilors with one chairmanship candidate.

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NE got N6m to build a new hostel block. Another got a 20-seater bus and 10 desktop computers. But there is more for Anambra State schools, said Governor Peter Obi, who made the donations as he toured several institutions in the state. Many schools have been rehabilitated in the state since the inception of his administration, but the governor said a more comprehensive upgrade will be carried out in schools in the state. He added that every school, whether missionary- or stateowned, will be given a new lease of life. Obi explained that pupils need all the comfort and support they can get. “Children attending these schools are citizens and residents of Anambra State and should not be discriminated against,” he said. The rehabilitation will start with Ado Girls Secondary School, Onitsha, the governor announced during inspection of facilities at the school. He disclosed that his visit was in response to a text message he received from the Senior Prefect of the school, Miss Cynthia Anayo Anim informing him of the level of dilapidation in the school. Obi requested detailed information on the school’s infrastructural needs to enable his administration make adequate provision for its upgrade. While inspecting Onitsha High School, the governor attributed the dilapidation in schools to their takeover by the government immediately after the civil war, explaining that the determination to restore high standards in schools informed his administration’s return of schools to their original owners. At Our Lady High School Nkpor, Obi donated a brand new 20-seater bus and 10 computers to the school. He said the gesture was in line with the government’s policy of supporting both public and private schools towards achieving quality education in the state. He stressed the need for strong moral values and discipline in teaching and learning, urging the

•Governor Obi with some of the pupils

Infrastructural upgrade in Anambra schools From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Nnewi

students to work hard to achieve their full potentials and live fulfilled lives. At Holy Child Secondary School, Isuofia, he presented a cheque of N6m to the school to commence a new hostel block project. His wife Margaret and daughter Amaka accompanied him on the visit. The governor said the gesture was in line with the policy of his admin-

Obi donates N6m, bus istration of providing a comfortable learning environment and logistics that would facilitate qualitative and functional education. He explained that the government’s huge investment in education is geared towards providing children with the right tools to excel and prepare for their future responsibilities. The Senior Prefect of the school,

Master Emmanuel Okafor who recalled the governor’s previous financial aids to the school, which included the donation of a brand new bus and computers, thanked him for all the love, care and conceren for education in the state. Governor Obi inaugurated a modern five-classroom block at Modebe Memorial Secondary School,

Onitsha built and donated to the school by the member representing Onitsha South, Mrs. Beverly Nkemdiche Ikpeazu as part of her constituency project. Governor Obi said his administration would continue to encourage individuals who contribute to rebuilding the state. He recalled that constituency projects were initiated by his administration for the first time in the state to encourage lawmakers to perform tasks that impact directly on the lives of the people of their constituencies. The governor urged residents of the commercial city to support the effort of the government to clean up Onitsha and environs. The donor, Mrs. Nkemdiche Ikpeazu said she embarked on the school project to contribute to the infrastructural upgrade of the state in line with Obi’s vision.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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Anambra votes N8b for MDGs

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•From left: Ini Onuk, Lead Consultant/Convener, Cross River State Governor Liyel Imoke,, Chief Host, Dr. Gro Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway and keynote speaker, Dr. Alex Otti, at the Africa Chief Executive Officers Round-table and Conference on Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility, at the Tinapa Business Resort, Calabar.

Lawmaker hails rector on infrastructure M EMBER representing Orumba North/ South Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives, Hon. Ben Nwankwo, has praised the Federal Polytechnic Oko, Anambra State, for the infrastructural development at the institution. Nwankwo, who was a student of the Polytechnic, came to inspect its facilities as part of his constituency responsibilities. The lawmaker who expressed satisfaction with the development said the visit was like a home-coming to his roots, adding that the rector of the polytechnic, Prof. Godwin Onu has shown a high sense of commitment in repositioning the institution. He called on other heads of institutions to emulate him. He recalled that the polytechnic’s auditorium where he was received used to be a hall without louvers. Nwankwo commended Onu for making his alma mater proud, adding that before the inception of Onu’s administration, a tour of the polytechnic would take less than 15 minutes. He noted that it took him hours to tour only the extension site.

He said: “Today, what we have is a polytechnic university development regime .What we have seen today is change in action. It is not easy. I implore all the polytechnic stakeholders to give this new change a chance. What the rector is doing is to move the polytechnic from analogue era to digital one. I am proud of him.” He, however, decried the menace of erosion at the extension site and promised to present the matter at the National Assembly for deliberation. Onu, on his part, disclosed that paucity of funds has hindered his vision for the polytechnic. He said that most of the ongoing projects were being executed through internally-generated revenue (IGR) of the institution. He enjoined the lawmaker to join the crusade for upgrading the polytechnic to a university of Science and Technology.

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Kano From Kolade Adeemi, Kano

He said: “After the training, each of them was given N140, 000 to purchase plough, which some of them bought, pointing out that after a period of time, the beneficiaries of the programme would pay 80 per cent of the total amount given to them. The SSG explained that the foresight of Governor Kwankwaso in re-introducing the programme, coupled with the high expectation in the ongoing rainy season, farmers should expect bumper harvest this year. He reminded members of the committee that the job before them is taxing and should therefore put in their best to accomplish the mission by going round the respective local government areas to monitor the youth farmers to ensure that they did not sell or misuse the plough. Bichi also reminded the youth that the benefits of the programme will expand their horizon in farming techniques.

From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Nnewi

to any community that has a government project to enable them to take ownership of such projects. Okunna, who doubles as Coordinating Commissioner for MDGs projects, announced that the Governor Obi’s administration has put aside N8bi for the MDG’s this year. She re-assured the people that the remaining one-and-half years left for the Obi’s administration would be full of activities. She announced that President Goodluck Jonathan is due for Anambra State on August 30, 2012 to inaugurate Orient Petroleum, SABMiller Brewery and other private companies aimed at facilitating massive employment of Anambr people. She added that the state’s style of governance and administration has been accepted by almost all the development partners, hence they are partnering with the state. She announced that more DFID four programmes have commenced in the state.

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HE Abia State Acting Chief Judge Justice Shedrack Nwanosike has ordered the release of an inmate Kelechi John Ugbor from Umuahia Prisons who has spent six years in jail without trial for assault. He also granted bail of N500, 000 to a minor. He effected this when he visited Umuahia Prisons Speaking at the prison premises while conducting the jail delivery, he said it was quite disgusting that the police and the office of the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) have not been doing their work, hence people are detained unnecessarily. In the case of Kelechi John Ugbor who has been in detention for about six years, the CJ

•Governor Obi

Gombe to train 110 youths on renewable energy

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•Mrs H.O.P. Dawuda, Director Finance and Administration reading Commissioner for the Environment’s speech during the Tree Planting Campaign at the Oriade Local Council Development Area Secretariat. With her are Secretary to Lagos State Government Mrs Olaranti Adebule who represented Governor Fashola and Chairman of the council Hon. Ibrahim Babatunde Sanusi.

Fayemi’s wife urges corps members on handicraft

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IFE of Ekiti State governor Erelu Bisi Fayemi has restated the need for corps members to acquire skills in handicraft and other blue-collar jobs to survive the current unfavourable economic situation. She spoke during her visit to the state’s National Youth Service Corps permanent orientation camp, Ise-Ekiti, in Ise/Emure Local Government Area. Mrs Fayemi also advised the females among the 2, 480 Batch ‘B’corps members at the camp to take advantage of their service year to get suitors among eligible bachelors in the state. She had visited the camp to boost the morale of the fresh graduates and to inspect the finished products by them during their orientation. Among items on display were beads, clothing, batik, hat, finger foods, barbing and hairdressing equipment, paints, solar energy-powered oven and foot wears. She said that the state government would continue to support corps members posted to the state to acquire vocational skills in order to become self-employed at the end of their service year.

Given the poor state of the country’s economy and the attendant high rate of unemployment, she said that smart graduates no longer hinged their hopes on white-collar jobs. She disclosed that the state government had put in place sustainable framework to support women and girls, in line with the Ekiti Development Foundation (EDF), which she founded. Mrs Fayemi advised the corps members to live in peace and harmony with their host communities wherever they might be deployed for primary assignments. The governor’s wife reminded the fresh graduates of the provisions of the gender-based violence prohibition law operating in the state which criminalises violence against women and girls, as well as men. She urged the corps members to protect the vulnerable among them against harassment or sexual violation. She said that such abuses should be reported to the appropriate authorities wherever and whenever the acts were committed. In his welcome remarks, the state Coordinator of the NYSC, Alhaji BabaAhmed Nurudeen expressed appreciation to the state government for providing an environment conducive to the visitors.

Value of tree planting stressed

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•Chairman Mushin Local Government Area Hon. Olatunde Adepitan, planting a tree, the representative of Governor Fashola Hon. Aliu Babatunde Kazeem, His Royal Majesty the Onitire of Itire land Oba Lateef Dauda at the Tree Planting Campaign at Badejo Kalejaiye Street, Mushin.

Two Abia prison inmates freed

Anambra

From Adimike George

Kano inaugurates committee on agric HE Kano State government has inaugurated a seven-man committee to monitor animal traction recently reintroduced by the governor, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso. The introduction of the animal traction is aimed at boosting agriculture in the state. While inaugurating the committee in his office, the Secretary to the State Government, (SSG) Dr Rabiu Suleiman Bichi implored members of the committee to take their assignment seriously, stressing that it was among Kwankwaso’s cardinal programmes aimed at empowering the youth. According to him, the Youth Empowerment Programme is aimed at training the youth in the use of plough in farming, as the state government placed absolute priority on agriculture. Bichi stated that Kwankwaso’s administration, in is first tenure, introduced the Youth Empowerment Programme, adding that it was abandoned. He said that 500 youths were being trained on the use of plough for farming.

HIEF of Staff to the Anambra State governor Prof Stella Okunna has admitted that over 100 boreholes drilled by the state government failed. In an interview with reporters in Nnewi, Okunna, who is also the state Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, however, said the boreholes failed basically on technical grounds as many of them were powered by solar energy which many of the contractors lacked the expertise on. She disclosed that half of the failed boreholes in some communities have been rehabilitated after the governor mandated that all the failed boreholes be resuscitated. She assured that no more boreholes drilled by the government would fail in future. She also disclosed that the projects failed mainly because they were not handed over to the communities, schools and churches for which the projects were meant for, even as she said that there were certificates available now that would be given

HE Chairman Mushin Local Government Area Hon. Olatunde Babatunde Adepitan has appealed to residents of the council to endeavour to plant more trees to mitigate climate change. According to him, tree planting campaign championed by Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) should be embraced by all Lagosians. Noting that trees prevent wild wind and thunderstorm, he urged Lagosians to cultivate the habit of planting trees. Hon. Adepitan also advised Mushin residents to plant trees to commemorate important events such as birthdays, burial ceremonies of elders, promotion, house warning, appointments, weddings and other memorable occasions.

Governor Fashola, who was represented at the event by Hon. Aliu Babatunde Kazeem representing Surulere Constituency II at the House of Representatives, urged residents of the state to begin to put measures that will mitigate the current climate change that is inimical to the wellbeing of mankind. He also advised them to desist from dumping refuse in the drainage channels. Adepitan called on the Community Development Associations to ensure that trees planted along Da-Silva, Adeoyo, Palm Avenue, Layi Oyekanmi, Omu and other streets are properly taken care of. He said: “Do not allow goats to eat up these trees. They must be nurtured to maturity and serve the purposes for which they were planted. Endeavour to plant more trees to save the atmosphere and the ozone layer.”

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OMBE State is to train no fewer than 110 youths on fabrication, operation and maintenance of solar energy devices as part of its youth development and poverty alleviation efforts. The state Commissioner for Youth Development and Poverty Alleviation, Alhaji Mijinyawa Labaran stated this during the opening ceremony of the renewable energy training workshop for youths in the state recently. The commissioner explained that 10 youths were carefully drawn from each of the 11 local government areas of the state for the 10-day training organised by National Energy Commission, in collaboration with Gombe State Ministry of Youth Development and Poverty Alleviation. He said that the training would be facilitated by a team of experts from Usman Danfodio University Sokoto under the auspices of National Energy Commission Abuja. In his key note address, Professor Abubakar Sambo Director-General National Energy Commission Abuja who was represented by Director, Renewable Energy Prof. Jidere Bala said northern Nigeria is blessed with solar and wind energies which are waiting to be exploited for use. He said access to modern energy is low, adding that it was time to rise, harness and generate solar power into sustainable energy for economic growth and integration of the country’s economy.

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Gombe From Ekhoragbon Ohonbamu, Gombe

The training, according to him, is not only aimed at preparing the youth to become self employed or employers of labour, but also as part of the answer to the country’s dire energy/power needs. In this regard, Alhaji Abdulkarim Mabudi of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) who is the Gombe State coordinator described the workshop as timely, adding that the development of cottage and small and medium-scale enterprises largely depends on constant power supply. Contributing, Dr Abbas Gimba, chairman of the occasion and Provost Federal College of Education Gombe, said Nigeria has the capacity to fight adverse effect of climate change. “Renewable energy, which is available in most of our rural communities, when exploited and utilized, will not result to significant greenhouse gas emission which is the major cause of global warming and its adverse effect,” he explained Declaring the workshop open, Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo said the youth would be trained in the area of solar lightning, solar crop dryer, improved fuel wood stove and biogas digester which he described as relevant to the economic activities in the rural areas.

Abia From Ugochukwu Eke, Umuahia

said: “This man has spent a lot of time in the prison without any trial. If he had been taken to court and convicted, he would have finished his term by now; therefore, his case has been dismissed and acquitted.” Ugbo was charged for assault and had never been taken to court to defend himself or be prosecuted. Responding, Ugbor thanked the Chief Judge for coming to his aide, even as he thanked the Abia State government for its magnanimity towards him. He assured that he would not go back to his old ways, stressing that he has learnt a lot of lessons while in detention. For 16-year-old Chinemerem Emenike who was charged for murder, he was granted bail as his lawyer, Chionye pleaded that he is a minor who just got admission into a university. The Chief Judge examined his case and decided to grant him bail for N500, 000, which his lawyer undertook to pay to ensure that he will

•Governor Orji go and continue his study. However, he would appear in court whenever he is needed.

‘Plant trees to save the environment’

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HAIRMAN, Ojodu Local Council Development Area, Hon. Olumuyiwa Oloro has said that planting trees would help in mitigating the adverse effects of climate change. He stated this at the just-concluded tree-planting exercise at Dipo Abbey Street, Ojodu. He disclosed that “the exercise was designed to reinforce green campaign, combat global warming, protect planetary properties for posterity, as well as regenerate the environment for healthy living.” Continuing, he said: “In relation to the campaign, it is our landscape and beautified sites which have afforded visitors, technocrats, expatriates, retired elders and young ones the opportunity to experience the beauty of nature. “To sustain life on earth, God made trees and thick forests as buffer zones for various atmospheric occurrences and balance of critical gases such as oxygen and carbon dioxide necessary for different forms of existence. “From creation, trees have been very useful to man as a provider of food and oxygen. The first man and woman ate from the tree. As much as development is desirable, a meaningful development must have the green content for

By Duro Babayemi

sustainability. “Trees are the longest living organism on the planet earth as well as the greatest natural form of resources. Trees also give us the opportunities for recreation as well as provide habitat for wildlife. Trees help us experience connections with our natural heritage and with our most deeply-held spiritual and cultural values. “He who plants tree gives life. The life we live is derived from the trees we plant. Just like the Chinese proverb reminded us that ‘when the last tree dies, the last man follows.’ He further said that the pride in Lagos State within the last few years lay in the fact that Lagos environment has witnessed tremendous transformation that has earned it local and international recognition. Since 2008, he said, the air around Lagos is now fresher and cleaner. “Tree planting is a reforestation exercise. The man who plants a tree plants hope, a future and a life. At both institutional and policy levels, we must combine efforts to adopt a more sustainable use of forest resources by replanting trees to recover the fading cultivatable lands.

Church empowers community

N order to encourage residents of Kosofe community in Lagos State to be self reliant, Anthony Village Foursquare Gospel Church ( aka City of Refuge) has embarked on empowerment programme tagged “Give to Take.” The event takes the form of skill acquisition and some tips on what to do to prosper.

Briefly

Poverty alleviation AHEAD of its Fifth anniversary and thanksgiving, All Power in Christ (aka Prayer House) has concluded arrangements for the official l a u n c h o f N 1 m i l l i o n p o v e r t y eradication fund. The event will start with a quarterly revival from Monday, July 23 to Saturday, July 28 at 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. daily. It will end on Sunday, July 29, 2012 from noon to 3:00 p.m. with thanksgiving service. The event will take place at Prayer House 7, Elegbeleye Street, Ketu in Ikosi/Isheri Local Council Development Area of Lagos State. Commenting on the programme, the General Overseer of the church, Pastor Eunice Bukola Elusope, said this year’s anniversary would bring great joy, blessings and lots of testimony, adding that the launch N1million poverty eradication fund is part of our corporate social responsibility of the church aimed at cushioning the effects of economic depression in the country. She said: “We have been involved in financial empowerment to residents for over four years in businesses, such as seamstress, drivers, and monetary assistance for small-scale business entrepreneurs.”

Declaring the event open, the host Pastor Rev. Dean Adegbenga Adekoya said the church is committed to meeting the needs and aspirations of the church community. Quoting from Gen. 1:26 he said: “God said be fruitful, increase, multiply and replenish the earth.” Mr Gabriel Adegboyega Adetiloye, the Principal, Lagos Skill Acquisition Centre explained that “to overcome unemployment in a situation of non-existing white collar jobs, everyone is expected to acquire skill to be self-reliant, even as he said that men and women are home-makers and therefore should complement one another’s efforts towards ensuring stable homes.” Contributing, Mr Olatide said God has given mankind power to create wealth. In a sermon, Pastor Bola Adeboye who spoke on the topic “what you need to prosper” explained that “you need strategic approach in solving life problems. You need power of vision, right mindset, knowledge and wisdom, diligence, positive change, and dealing rightly with setbacks.” He added that “we need to be cheerful givers and tap into covenant wealth transfer.” Pastor Akinlemiwon, who preached on “God and Civil Government,” noted that God placed all the government functionaries in places of authority, saying citizens are supposed to obey the laws of the land. She added that disregard to them will mean disregard to God. She admonished citizens to fulfill their civic obligations by paying their taxes because, she said, through the payment of taxes, social amenities that would better the lives of the people would be provided. Other special guests in attendance were Hon. Afolabi Babatunde Sofola, the chairman, Kosofe Local Government Area.

•Lagos State Commissioner for Special Duties, Dr Wale Ahmed (planting a tree) and Chairman Ejigbo Local Council Development Area, Mr Kehinde Bamgbetan at the Tree Planting Campaign at Ejigbo. PHOTO: ADEJO DAVID

Institute congratulates Oshiomhole

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HE Institute of Administrators and Researchers of Nigeria(IARN) has praised Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole for his victory at the polls last Saturday. In a statement, the institute’s Director-General, Prof Jacob Etinagbedia, said Oshiomhole’s defeat of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate shows that he made an impression on the people during his first tenure. He noted the governor’s physical transformation of the state, saying it made an impact on the people. “Never before since the regime of the military governor Osaigbovo Ogbemudia has the state witnessed such a massive development,” he said. By the election, he said: “The era of godfatherism and ethnicity is waning and vanishing from the polity. The citizens are getting more informed, sensitised and concerned about the actions and inactions of their political leaders. The people can never be taken for granted anymore.” He praised the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof

By Joseph Eshanokpe

Attahiru Jega, for doing a good job despite the pressure on him to return a particular party to power. He also praised President Goodluck Jonathan for his neutrality and spirit of sportsmanship, adding that for being the first to congratulate Oshiomhole meant he was able to prove wrong his critics who said he was biased before the election. For Oshiomhole he has some words of advice. “We sincerely hope that you will not disappoint the people of Edo State, by slowing down the pace of development in the state. This second term ticket given to you is a great opportunity to demonstrate to the people that you can do more in developing different parts of the state,” he said. He appealed to corrupt politicians who rig elections to learn a lesson from the Edo gubernatorial election. “Represent the people well and judiciously manage the available resources to the advantage of the people,” he advised.


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

Asaba residents battle floods

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ESIDENTS of Asaba, the Delta State capital, have been contending with floods this rainy season, with many forced from their homes. Despite drainage ongoing construction work to ease water flow, there may be no respite because of the slow pace of work. The plight of residents is further compounded by a network of silted drains, resulting in devastating flooding. Delta State Commissioner of Environment, Chief Frank Omare has assured that the drainage construction work which started in 2009 will be completed soon. He said there is hope for residents because government takes the welfare of residents seriously and appealed for patience from the populace. But such assurances will engender scant hope in 79-year-old Ngozi Nnabuife whose earthly possession was washed away recently by floods. Following her misfortune, Mrs. Nnabuife has had to move in with her grand-daughter living in another part of town. She has passionately pleaded to the state government to come to her aid and others on DLA Road, maintaining that the abandonment of DLA road construction work has made life unbearable. According to her, the problem of

From Okungbowa Aiwerie, Asaba

flooding in the neighbourhood became more severe from 2011 when the indigenous construction company sealed up the drains in its bid to reconstruct the road. Shortly afterwards, according to Madam Nnabuife, the DLA road construction work was halted, further compounding an already dire situation. The septuagenarian said the floor of her home is unbearably cold occasioned by the rain-soaked soil, stressing that this situation has worsened her rheumatic condition. Delta State government had in 2011 awarded the contract for rehabilitation and reconstruction of internal roads in Asaba metropolis totalling N5 billion but the work has been going on in fits and starts. But Mr. Kachukwu Chukwuwike, another resident, has had enough. He is ready to relocate to another part of town. According to him, a recent heavy downpour caught many residents unawares, resulting in destruction of their properties. His words:” In fact, it is a terrible thing. I have lost my properties to the rains. The last rains took all of us by surprise because nobody was at home. Everything in the house was damaged and we are planning now

it is a terrible thing. I have lost my properties to the rains. The last rains took all of us by surprise because nobody was at home. Everything in the house was damaged and we are planning now to pack out of this place

J

OURNALISTS and scientists have held a workshop on how to improve collaboration between them to effectively communicate their work to members of the public. The workshop, organised by the Nigerian Academy of Science (NAS), has as theme: Effective communication of researcher: Bridging the gap between researchers and the general public. Participants included doctors, professors and veteran journalists. Also in attendance were lecturers from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN); Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH); Landmark University; the University of Lagos; University of Benin;

•Participants at the workshop

•A flooded part of the abandoned DLA Road construction project to pack out of this place.” Mr. Chukwuike said in April 2011 they experienced this same problem and blames the abandoned road project for their plight. But Mr. Bassey Imoh, another resident, who cannot afford the cost of moving home mid-year. describes his condition as “terrible”. He showed this reporter the waterline just below his windows, adding that when it rains his home gets is flooded. “It is a terrible situation as you can see the water level is just under my windows,” he said. “There is no alternative other than when we get money we pack out from this house. You can see our soak-away pit and fence have collapsed. Take a good look at the mechanic workshop about 150 metres away; it is water-logged. I have lost all my properties to the rains” Mr. Imoh said his properties were destroyed by the floods. “On the day it rained,” he said, “we all had gone to church only to come back to find that my fence had col-

lapsed. What would I have done if the fence had fallen on my kids? So I am grateful to God for sparing the lives of my children because they often play around where the fence fell. Since the rainy season began we have never enjoyed our sleep for fear we might drown in our sleep.” Imoh appealed to government to hasten construction work on DLA road to mitigate their suffering. But Mr. Omare maintained that government is doing enough. “I am happy that if there is a downpour in Asaba, within 20 minutes the roads everywhere is free of flood waters in the area now that the drainage has been completed. When there is a major construction activity, people must complain, but I tell them there is no basis for complaining because when there was no hope we were living; now that there is hope, why are we complaining? People have to be patient we are going to get it done. We want a good drainage system in our major cities. The State government awarded these projects almost the same time as Asaba drainage. The

•Mr Imoh drainage project is to reduce the massive flooding”. He said government is satisfied with the quality and level of work done by the contracting firm handling the drainage project He said government is educating the populace on the dangers of blocking drains and building homes on natural watercourses in the state.

Journalists, scientists hold workshop By Nneka Nwaneri

Colleges of Technology and the Western Delta University. The President of the Academy, Prof Oye Ibidapo-Obe, chaired the event. He explained: “Research can make life more abundant and purposeful,” adding that “science and technology play a role in solving some of the inherent problems of insecurity and unemployment in the country.” Professor of Materials and Public

Affairs Secretary of NAS, Prof Segun Adewoye, in a keynote address entitled: Research for national development in Nigeria, spoke on the necessity of embracing basic science. He spoke of the importance of Nanotechnology, wondering why government has yet to embrace it. He asked: “Why should the labour of researchers and scientists die without being implemented and used to serve humanity? Editor-in-Chief of News Digest Magazine, Mr Declan Okpaleke, in explaining the topic: the Role of

Research Communication in Nigeria, faulted scientists for depending solely on journals and publications got from policy briefs. He emphasised that the only way their researches would be relevant is when the public learns new things, about new technologies, and provide

policymakers with information on how to make better policies and quicker legislation for the good of the country. “Marketing is the only way science can become developed,” he added.

Oyo council residents savour chair’s award

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ESIDENTS of Ido Local Government Area in Oyo State have rejoiced with the Caretaker Chairman of the council, Prof. Joseph Adeniyi Olowofela who has been selected as the best performing local government chairman in the country. Olowofela is not a stranger to history. As a professor of Geophysics at the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, he scored many first in the field of research. He made history, when, in 2011,

From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan

he became the first and only professor among the 33 local government chairmen in the history of Oyo State. Now, he has won the best council chairman award. Scores of people gathered at the local government secretariat to rejoice with him. •Continued on Page 15


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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T

HE traditional ruler of Ihim Autonomous community in Isiala Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State, Oliver Chinedu Ohanweh has introduced free medical treatment to his people and neighbouring communities. Over 400 people were given free medicare through a door-to-door treatment exercise in which various ailments were treated on the first day. It was also learnt that some people were operated of goiter and cataract. Speaking to reporters on the issue, the medical doctor in charge of the exercise, Dr Emmanuel Dimgba, said that he was contracted to give free medical treatment to the people of Ihim autonomous community and its environs by Eze Ohanweh. The medical expert confirmed treating several people, going from house to house. He said he was happy at the way the king and his people welcomed him and his team during the exercise. He praised Eze Ohanweh as a leader who has his people in mind. The doctor urged affluent citizens to help their people, wake up to the challenges and assist the poor and less privileged in the society. Eze Ohanweh disclosed that he was dedicating the free medical

•Eze Ohanwe (in red cap) and beneficiaries

Traditional ruler offers free medical services From Emma Mgbeahurike, Owerri

treatment to his late mother, Ezinne Esurudiya Ohanweh, adding that it was his mother’s brainchild before her demise.

The monarch said there are so many aged men and women in his community who suffer from one ailment or the other but do not get assistance from anyone, hence his decision to help, even though he has not received salary for the past 60 months as a

traditional ruler. He also challenged the United Nations and Commonwealth statistics which always proves that the lifespan of an African is always short because of lack of adequate medicare treatment. A member of the former United

States of America President, Bill Clinton Foundation, Eze Ohanweh is also looking forward to setting up a foundation of his own. He said the free medical services would be a contnuous one in his community and others.

‘National Assembly can’t legislate on local council administration’

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•Prof Olowofela (left) receiving the key of the bus from Awoyinka. With them is Olowofela’s wife •Continued from Page 15 They included market women, artisans, community leaders, politicians, students and royal fathers. His passion for development of his local government and desire to touch the lives of the people at the grass root, according to Professor Olowofela, was responsible for his involvement in grassroots politics. One of the community leaders, Mr Samson Adesokan, spoke glowingly of Olowofela’s achievements. “Almost all the communities in the local government have felt the impact of his administration within a very short period,” he said. “Not many of our past council chairmen have achieved this feat in four years. He is humble and ready to listen you no matter your status in society. Traditional drummers and singers, apart from entertaining the audience, showered praises on the chairman for providing roads, borehole, maternity centres, blocks of public toilets, books and

Oyo council residents savour chairman’s award drainages, amongst other peopleoriented projects across the local government. An Abuja-based non-governmental organisation, the Grassroots Leadership Centre recently visited the council secretariat to present the award to the council chairman for becoming the overall best performing local government chairman in Nigeria. The Director General of the Centre, Mr Yinka Awoyinka, a lawyer, who paid glowing tributes to Olowofela for his positive innovations and facilities provided for the people, explained that some eminent Nigerians participated in the selection process after a thorough assessment of all the 773 council chairmen in the country. He also saluted the intellectual dimension which Olowofela has brought to local government administration, urging the other 773 council chairmen in the country to

emulate him. Olowofela appealed to the retired military officers and other leaders in the North to intervene in the issue of Boko Haram, saying that development can only be achieved where there is peace. Professor Olowofela who expressed gratitude to the NGO for the recognition, advised President Goodluck Jonathan to adopt new security strategies and embrace contributions from various quarters on how to tackle the Boko Haram insurgency, so that Nigerians can live in peace. Also, the council chief thanked Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi for his inspiring support. Olowofela dedicated the award to the people of the council and members of staff of the local government for their unflinching support. One of the gifts presented to the professor was a 10-seater bus.

ECENT move by some members of the National Assembly to legislate on the regulation and administration of local councils has been described as a violation of the provisions of the constitution on matters relating to local government matters. A Lagos lawyer, Mr. Apeiye Beacon Clement said the National Assembly has no right to legislate on issues relating to corporate regulation and administration of local government. Such right, he said, resides with the state government, noting that in view of the provision of the Constitution expressly precludes the National Assembly from legislating on any matter relating to local government, cooperative society and corporations. Speaking in Lagos, Apeiye said that the move by the National Assembly for the abolition of caretaker committees in some states and whatsoever steps taken or purported to be taken are illegal and unconstitutional, null and void. He observed that the legislatures see the caretaker committee as a weapon by parties like the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), All Nigeria People’s Grand Alliance (APGA) to edge out the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in governorship election in the states. He said: “The states can say they do not have the fund to conduct local government election. However, the constitution is silent on the time frame within which local government election can be held. Also, the tenure of local government chairmen is not explicit in the constitution. It is the state

•Apeiye By Ozolua Uhakheme

laws that determine that. “Despite the caretaker nature, the councils still report to the state. Again, election is only suspended for some reasons, not completely ruled out. Some states that had their councils dissolved are preparing for governorship election and it will not be convenient for such states to fund local government election. That is why the constitution makes it clear that after general election, the state will settle down for local government elections.” Apeiye explained that the National Assembly’s call for a review of the constitution primarily because of the caretaker committee issue, is a calculated attempt to see if PDP can win some of the states starting with local governments. He noted that if PDP succeeds, it would be difficult for the sitting governors to get the support of the councils during governorship election. He however said that the situation would not have been this bad if “we had had a uniform general election in the beginning. The time loss would not have been more than three months.’


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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PEOPLE THE NATION

A SIX-PAGE SECTION ON SOCIETY

The Eagle Toastmasters’ Club held its President’s Nite at Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos. NNEKA NWANERI reports.

•Ambassador Okobi (right) congratulating Mr Semowo. With them is Ambassador Robin Sanders (second right) and Mr Okobi

I

T was a night full of fun. There were music, dance and games. It was all at the Eagle Toastmasters’Club dinner last Saturday. There was no dull moment as Remi Abere, the emcee, enlivened the atmosphere with her riddles. It was also the day Amaechi Okobi, the fifth president of the Eagle Toastmasters handed over to Mr Akindele Semowo. Okobi had for a year walked in the shoes his father, Ambassador Vincent Okobi wore years ago. The senior Okobi was the first charter president of the club. Everyone was well dressed, making a fashion statement. It was like a family gathering given the love among club members and guests. There were large banners advertising the sponsors, Globacom and Ecobank, at the corners of the hall. The event did not start with the usual rendition of anthems and prayers, but with a cup game. A cup was passed from table to table. Anyone who had the cup as at when the music stopped was made to answer whatever questions on folded pieces of paper in the cup. The club, which is all about good leadership and communication, has 14 branches in Nigeria. It came into the country seven years ago through Ambassador Okobi. Okobi, the Africa Union representative for the Diaspora Africa Forum in 2004 and an economist, during one of his sojourns met one woman on a plane, who told him about the Toastmasters’ Club. His quest to bring something good to his country led him to travel from Florida to Toronto for the Toastmasters’ convention in 2004. At the convention, he asked why Nigeria wasn’t among the 150 countries hosting Toastmasters. After fulfilling the requirements, Okobi set up Toastmasters’ Club in Nigeria in 2005.

From Toastmasters, a toast In his brief address at the event, he was excited at the growth of his ‘young plant’. “While Rotary Club is for humanitarian services, Toastmasters focus is on education; grooming people to be better and confident public speakers. So, Toastmasters is California’s gift to the world, and an organisation one will never ever regret belonging to,” he assured. The Tabletop discussion for the evening was entitled: Excellence. Members were randomly called upon to give speeches. The Tabletop competition was evaluated by Richmond Johnson. When it was time to hand over the baton and regalia of office, the young Okobi stepped out to address members for the last time. He stood tall in his imposing figure. Okobi urged past presidents to keep doing public relations for the club, appealing to organisations to keep driving the club with their full support. On his successor, Okobi said: “I have confidence that Akin (Semowo) is going to take this club forward.” Turning to Semowo, he said: “I’ll keep eyes on you so don’t mess up”, he warned jokingly as guests burst into laughter. Semowo, looking dashing in his suit and tie, sat beside his wife. He said it would not be easy presiding over a large number of people and teaching them the art of public speaking. He canvassed the support of other members of the club, stating that it was paramount. Okobi spoke to The Nation, saying his tenure was though a huge task, it was a fulfilled one, during which many were developed to become better leaders. “No one is too small to achieve greatness. If

•Representatives of Globacom, Olumide Adedeji (left) and Kamaldeen Shonibare

we come together, and put in something, we can have output. Just like the American President once said: “ ‘Don’t ask what your country

can do for you but what you can do for your country.’ Likewise, don’t hesitate to do something good for yourself,” he added.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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SOCIETY The Asiwaju of Ibefun, Prince Michael Babatunde Taiwo, turned 80 on July 8. A thanksgiving was held at the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Ibefun, Odogbolu Local Government Area of Ogun State to mark the octogenarian’s birthday. KOFOWOROLA BELO-OSAGIE reports.

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OR the people of Ibefun in Odogbolu Local Government Area of Ogun State, July 8 will remain etched in their mind. The day started like any other; but in no time, the whole setting began to witness a gradual transformation as large banners bearing the portrait of Prince Michael Babatunde Taiwo started to don visible buildings in prime locations within the sleepy town, indicating that an important event was in the offing. However, the massive influx of exquisite automobiles with dignitaries from within and outside the state, converging on the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Ibefun indicated that a big show was at hand.It was Taiwo’s thanksgiving on his 80th birthday. The ceremony, divided into three parts, begun with the thanksgiving service officiated by the Vicar, Venerable Ade Sojinrin, and the Diocesan Bishop, Revd B.F.R. Ogunbanwo; it lasted for about three hours. After benediction, the train moved to International College, Ibefun (ICI) for the blessing and sanctification of the school, its management, staff and students. While this lasted, Revd Ogunbanwo seized the opportunity to call for prayers for the founder of the two-year-old institution, Prince Taiwo, for bequeathing an enviable institution like the ICI to Ibefun. He also called on all indigenes of Ijebu to consider investing in the future of Ijebu, having done same successfully in Lagos. Prince Taiwo, he said, has contributed greatly to the physical and economic development of Ibefun land, by establishing and funding laudable projects such as Ibefun ultra-modern market, Ibefun cold room, hospital, event centre, among others. At this juncture, the train moved to the reception venue, the Moriamo Adeoti Memorial Centre where guests were treated to wonderful doses of entertainment by students of ICI and the band on stage. After rendition of ICI Anthem and reading of the celebrator’s citation by his daughter, Dr Patience Osinubi, there was unveiling of the Biography of Prince Taiwo entitled: The Man Prince Michael Babatunde Taiwo ... His vision, passion and experiences by Mr Tunji Awe, a lawyer. While reviewing the over 100-page book, Awe stated: ‘’I am greatly delighted to be

80 garlands for a philanthropist •The celebrator assisted by wife and guests to cut the cake

in this occasion and I say so with all sense of responsibility, because in my lifetime, I have seen many individuals celebrated whose achievements cannot match that of the man whom we are all gathered today. Judging by what Prince Taiwo has achieved as an individual who rose from nothing to become who he is today, I consider him one of the greatest Nigerians alive and he deserves all the honour bestowed on him if not more’’. On the book, Awe urged everyone to pick a copy as the story of Prince Taiwo in the book will greatly enrich the lives or its readers. The book was thereafter launched by Mr Seyi Banjoko, an engineer and other guests followed suit. In all, over N400,000 was realised. All money realised is to be channelled towards the education of brilliant indigent students of ICI who are on scholarship. Among those present at the occasion are the Liken of Ibefun, Oba Adetoye; Justice Oshodi; Ven Abolaji; Alhaji Oduntan; Chief Rogers and Mr S.O. Ladipo.

•Rev Ogunbanwo and a guest

60TH BIRTHDAY OF CHIEF ANTHONY ABIODUN AND IWUYE AS BABA IJO OF ST PETER’S ANGLICAN CHURCH, IMAGBON, IJEBU, OGUN STATE

•From right: The celebrator Chief Abiodun and his wives Margaret and Mosunmola

•Traditional rulers at the Church service


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SOCIETY

The holy matrimony between Comrade Akinyemi Taiwo, Personal Assistant to the Chairman, Action Congress of Nigeria, Lagos State chapter and his lovebird, former Miss Peace Esei, was held at the Assemblies of God Church, Kirikiri, Lagos. DAMILOLA BAMIDELE reports.

‘He’s caring, wonderful’ T

HEY were cynosure of all eyes as they stepped out of the limousine that brought them to the church. The groom, Comrade Akinyemi Taiwo, dazzled in an ash colour suit, white shirt, black bow tie and pair of shoes. He was led by the groom’s men, who also wore ash colour suits, white shirts, black bow ties and black shoes. The bride, former Miss Peace Esei, was resplendent in her white flowing gown. She was accompanied by the bridemaids who were dressed in blue short gowns with silver shoes. They radiated joy as they marched to the tune of the processional hymn - Victory Ahead – as sang by the church choir and ministers of God. The officiating minister, Evangelist Eniolabi Israel, quoted Proverbs 31: 10-11, saying:”who can find a virtuous woman for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil”. “Marriage,” he said, “is not a social event; it is a spiritual one that is rooted in covenant. There is nothing like peace in the home as the name of the bride implies. Do not lie to yourselves and let the word of God settle your marriage for you.” After the exchange of marital vows, he declared them husband and wife. After the declaration, the couple and their parents signed the marriage certificate. The cleric enjoined them not to keep the certificate carelessly but to guard it well like their lives. Guests without a special invitation card were not allowed into the hall at Golden Tulip Hotel in Festac. The hall was ornately decorated in blue, white and ash which complemented the colours of the day. Some turned out in Aso-Ebi with blue pattern, while others wore Ankara and lace. The reception began with an opening prayer led by Yoruba actor Segun Akinremi (a.k.a Chief Karan). Friends and family ushered the couple into the hall with Chop my money by Psquare played by the disk jockey. Chairman on the occasion Captain Lisk Carew (rtd) prayed the marriage will be blessed with children. Taiwo, a graduate of Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH) recounted how he met his wife. “I met her through my younger sister, who told me there is a young beautiful and intelligent woman in town that she would like me to meet. On meeting her, she was just exactly as described. We started a relationship which has now blossomed into marriage. I feel elated and happy because my dream has come true. “She is from Calabar but that does not stop me from loving her. I believe that we all are one; no tribe is a taboo for marriage, and we have the same complexion, attitudes, but just different languages.” Peace, a graduate of University of Calabar, described her husband as wonderful, caring, hardworking and kind hearted man. “I actually met him seven years ago. We were neighbours and friends too. There were no difficulties marrying from another tribe at all. My family members are not against my marrying him, because he is from another tribe. What they always told me was: once you are sure, the person loves you and can take good care of you, go ahead,” she said. The cutting of the cake was supervised by the Lagos State ACN Chairman, Otunba Henry Ajomale. The three-layer cake had each step decorated with little round balls and a flower on it. He said the cake was made of icing, sugar

•The couple flanked by Otunba Ajomale and his wife, Toun

•Former Lagos State Deputy Governor Prince Abiodun Ogunleye

•Captain Lisk Abiodun and his wife

•Chief Akinremi Segun (a.k.a. Chief Karan)

and cream. “Icing means something cool and your marriage will be cool; sugar means sweetness, your marriage will forever be sweet,” Otunba Ajomale prayed.

• Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation Comrade Kayode Opeifa and a guest

The couple did their first assignment which was to feed each other with cake and wine, and they sealed it up with a kiss. Popular musicians Baba nee and Easy Lizy performed songs and dances.

The mother of the bride, Madam Christiana Esei, expressed her joy, saying: “I feel so happy. She is the last born; she is so kind, loving and caring. S e takes care of me so much, I will really miss her.”


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SOCIETY The wedding of Tolani, daughter of Lagos businessman Mr Kole Jegede, CEO of BJEG Nigeria Ltd and Niyi Atanda, took place in Lagos on July 5. Here are some of the guests at the ceremony.

•The couple Niyi and Tolani flanked by the Jegedes (from left) Kolapo; Kunle; Dayo and Biola

•Mrs Lara Balogun (left) and Mrs Taiwo Ogunleye

•Lagos businessman Mr Larry Aruleba (left) amd Ojo Popoola

•Lagos banker Mr Wole Ogunleye

•Mr Ali Akodu

•Alhaja Lola Akinsola (left) and Mrs Adeyo Olukoga

Ekiti Chief presents pictorial book

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HE public presentation of MINDSET, a multidimensional pictorial book will hold tomorrow at Anchor Events Place behind Union Bank, Agindigbi, Ikeja, Lagos. The presentation is in commemoration of the 50th birthday of the Convener of Ekitipanupo, Chief Seye Adetunmbi. MINDSET is a compendium of structured thoughts on the capital market, banking and finance, integrated national issues and historical essays, written between 1986 and 2012 by Adetunmbi, the Okanlomo of Ikole-Ekiti and Eletolua of IfisinEkiti. Adetunmbi, the Chief Responsibility Officer of Value Investing Limited, the convener of Capital Market Roundtable in Nigeria and Ekitipanupo, an indigenous intellectual interactive forum.

Chairman, Office of International Relations, Partnerships and Prospects, University of Lagos (UNILAG) and the Leader of Ekitipanupo Prof Akin Oyebode wrote the book’s foreword while Chairman of Lead Capital and former Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer(CEO), UACN PLC Mr Ayo Ajayi, will chair the event. Managing Director/CEO, Magnartis Finance and Investment Limited Mr Bukola Oluwadiya and Deputy Managing Director, Stanbic IBTC PLC Mr Yinka Sanni are co-lead presenters. Mr Dare Babarinsa of Gaskiya of Media Limited, Lagos will review the book. The book presentation will be preceded by a thanksgiving service at Anglican Church of the Ascension, Omodara Street, Opebi, Ikeja, Lagos. Afterwards, guests will be entertained at the same venue.

•Mrs Sayo Jinadu

PHOTOS: NIYI ADENIRAN

CONVENTION

•Adetunmbi

From left: Former Vice-President Alex Ekwueme; wife of Nigeria’s first President, Prof Uche Azikiwe and Prof Felix Oragwu, during the 13th Annual Convention of the Igbo Youth Movement (IYM) at Nike Lake Hotel, Enugu PHOTO: OBI CLETUS


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

SOCIETY Last Saturday, Joan Agha Foundation held its first anniversary at The Four Points, Victoria Island, Lagos. AMIDU ARIJE was there. S early as 5pm choice cars streamed into the Four Points venue of the award and thank you dinner organised by the Joan Agha Foundation to commemorate its first anniversary. The guests all looked cute in beautiful attires. The gathering was to celebrate the success of Joan Agha Foundation founded on July 9, last year. It was also to say thank you to those who have been helping the foundation to grow . Guests from Delta State were beautifully dressed in native attires. They arrived earlier than some living in Lagos. Monsignor Bernard Okodua welcomed the guests. The opening prayer was said by Rev Nicholas Oshomah from the Anglican Communion, Uyo Diocese. Chairman, Board of Trustee of the foundation, Mr Andy Obaro, thanked all for gracing the occasion. He assured the donors not to panic that all things are in place to perform more than the ones they have done in the last one year. The foundation, according to him, was established to give hope to the hopeless and help the helpless. The founder, Mrs Joan Agha, was excited to see her dream of helping people come true. She was full of praises to God and the people who helped her organisation grow. The Obinomba Cultural dancers enlivened the occasion with a special performance. All danced to songs by the band. They sang in their native language; singing songs like ‘Mi ye rhukwe’ (thank you) in appreciation of the work of the foundation. Mrs. Agha presented the scorecard of thefoundation in the last one year. She expressed happines that the foundation has achieved much in one year of existence, saying it was God’s doing. “Our gathering today is not for fund raising, but to say thank you to all of you who have contributed to the success of the foundation. We don’t have anything to give you but we know that only God can reward you for the good work you are doing, we only say thank you and God Bless,” she said. To appreciate their contributions, some of the sponsors were given awards. The names of the awardees were called by the master of ceremony. To all of them, it was a surprise as there was no mention of it to them before they came to the dinner. “This award is just to say thank you, though it cannot complement what you have spent in the course of helping the indigent, but we know that it would go a long way in saying we appreciate you for your donations,” Mrs Agha said. Among the awardees were Managing Director, Amni International Ltd, Chief Tunde Afolabi; Chief Sarah Anthony; Sir Steve Omojafor; Mr Okunowo Ekundayo; Mr Bernard Obigho; Chief John Edozie; Mr Gbenga Muyiwa and Mr Paul Aheke.

Foundation fetes sponsors

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•Mr Agha

From left: Mrs. Ngozi Iwuoha; Mr Paul Ayeke; Mr Wilson Obigho; Monsignor Jerome Oduntan, Vice President Joan Agha Foundation, Mr Peter Ayeke and Mr Gabriel Mebaghanje

•An award recipient, Mr Adam Okoene flanked by Mrs Joan Agha, president and founder of JAF

•Hon Henry Baro (left) receiving award from Chief John Edozien

•Mr and Mrs Mathew Eguenum • From left: Chief Gilbert Grant; Mr Tunde Afolabi, MD/CEO Amni International Petroleum and Chairman, STB-MC CANN, Sir Steve Omojafor

•From left: Chief Okechukwu Chukwulozie; his wife Angela; Mr Anthony Esangbedo and his wife Magdalene

•Andy Otike-Obaro

•Mrs Bibian Onochei


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

SOCIETY INAUGURATION OF GBADAMOSI OLOWOPOROKU ADESINA MEMORIAL MOSQUE BUILT BY FORMER OYO STATE GOVERNOR ALHAJI LAM ADESINA IN MEMORY OF HIS LATE FATHER AT LAM ADESINA HOUSE, FELELE, IBADAN, OYO STATE

•Former Oyo State Governor Alhaji Lam Adesina flanked by Alhaji Isamotu Asiru (left) and Alhaji Rufai Olalekan

•Chief Lateef Oyelade (left) and Alhaji Lamidi Ajadi

•Alhaja Sarat Adesina (right) and Alhaja Mosuratu Oluwaworon

•Dr Isiaka Olayinka Kolawole (left) and Special Adviser to the Governor on Sports Alhaji Fatai Ibikunle PHOTOS: FEMI ILESANMI

The Fidau for the late Alhaji Surakat Shafar has been held at the Ibeju Lekki Local Government Area Secretariat in Lagos, reports MUSA ODOSHIMOKHE

Farewell to an ‘extraordinary man’

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HE event, which took place at the Ibeju Lekki Local Government Area Secretariat, attracted a huge crowd. Among them were grassroots dwellers. Their presence gave the event the local vibe which indicated that the late Alhaji Surakat Shafar, father of Ibeju Lekki Council Chairman was in touch with his people. Residents took advantage of the crowd to make brisk business: hawking items, such as recharge cards and edibles. The Aso Ebi worn by different groups indicated that he was a man with extended family background. The children of the deceased wore light blue Guinea brocade with native caps in various designs while the women among them don the stuff with Aso Ofi. Though a prayer session, it turned out to be a carnival of sorts for the Ibeju Lekki community. Islamic scholars recited portions of the Quran as they prayed for the repose of the soul of the late Shafar. Persuading the guests to learn from his life, the clerics urged them to emulate the

•Hon Surakat flanked by Alhaji Tunde Isiak (right) and Mr Olaitan Ogidan

deceased, who made good use of opportunities that came his way. They believed he had booked a place for himself in heaven because the people of his community spoke glowingly about him. According to Alhaji Jamiu Makinde, one of the clerics, the deceased was an exceptional person who could please others while hurting himself.

Jamiu said: “The late Alhaji Shafar was a pious Muslim who never joked with his Zakkat; he give alms to those in need and was always prepared to share whatever he had even if that was the last thing he had. He was such a nice person; and the entire community will miss him.” Beaming with smiles and satisfaction, the deceased’s son, Alhaji Surakat, cheerfully

attended to people. “This is one of the moments in life when you have to appreciate the people whom you serve. In this situation, there can be no boss because those who came here have really made me happy and proud,” he said. He stressed that his father had been a major pillar to him because they never lack during their childhood day. Maintaining that the father ensured that they were properly brought up to respect their elders and those they had to do obeisance to. “My father was my pillar; he gave his children his best, ensuring we live by Islamic injunction. Of course this has profound impact in our lives especially my own. I shall remain eternally grateful to him because he actually showed us the way to live a good and modest life,” he said. With plenty of food to eat, and gifts for the guests, there could not have been a more appropriate word to describe the event as a carnival of sort. Some of the dignitaries who include notable politicians such as the former House of Representatives member Alhaji Babatunde Isiaq; chairman of Lekki Local Government, Mr Olaitan Ogidan; the Sobaloju of Iwerepo land, Alhaji Jamiu Ajeawa among others. Alhaji Ajeawa said people trooped out to honour the late Shafar because there was nothing the community embarked on that he did not contribute to. “The man was extraordinary; he was ready to give anything for the wellbeing of the community. He did not bother whether it would affect him in the long run as far as it was to help the ordinary man, he was willing to make the sacrifice.”


SHOPPING

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THE NATION

FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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

e-mail: janicenkoli@yahoo.com 08033349992 sms only

email:- shopping@thenationonlineng.net

•Arts Centre, Ghana

Market for home-made goods The Arts Centre Accra, Ghana, is known for displaying home-made goods, such as, textile, woodcarvings, drums, leather, jewellery and accessories. Shoppers come from all over the world, but the dealers are mainly Ghanaians, some of who model their wares, with enticing gifts for buyers. JANICE NKOLI IFEME writes. •STORY ON PAGE 36 MY SHOPPING

Fruits for Ramadan - Page 36 •Saved in Mac 76 - Shaki Mac 27 Folder - Shopping pages - 20-07-12

Rechargeable fan to the rescue - Page 37

‘I have a simple taste’ - Page 38


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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SHOPPING

Market for home-made goods A

VISIT to Ghana may be incomplete without a visit to the Arts Centre, the country’s market for home-made stuffs. The flaunting of the best of locally made goods at the centre, makes it a reference point for Ghana’s rich heritage. For those who want to buy the best that Ghana can offer, a visit to the centre is a must. The centre, which is located in the heart of Accra, Ghana’s capital, close to Kwame Nkrumah Avenue, is the best place to find traditional handcraft. As a customer enters the expansive premises made of mostly open but well barricaded stalls, he may be easily attracted by the conspicuous display of items. These are textiles of various designs and colours, woodcarvings, drums, local leather bags, beads, ivory and imported items from surrounding countries. Radiant in their multicolours, kente, the country’s major traditional attire dominates the market. Others are batik, traditional smock, cotton, kente strips and other African wax prints. Interestingly, kente is used to design many of the products. It is made by the Asante and Ewe peoples of Ghana. It comes from the word kenten, which means basket. The Asante people also refer to it as nwentoma or woven cloth. Known around the world for its textual quality, kente is identified by its dazzling, multicoloured patterns of bright colours, geometric shapes and bold designs. It is characterised by weft

designs woven into every available block of plain weave called adweneasa. This means ‘my skill is exhausted’ or ‘my ideas have come to an end’. Be it bag, shoes, drums, sandals, slippers, arts and crafts; there is an element of the kente. Even the bags popularly called ‘Ghana must go’ are beautifully designed in the kente colours, which is also the country’s national colours. Leather is also a feature of the items sold in this market. Here, you can get pure leather goods such as slippers, drum set, shoes, hand band and necklaces. In many cases, they are combined with kente to mould beautiful designs. Another thing noteworthy is inclination of the natives to show favouritism towards their people, while they make huge gain on foreigners. Indeed, as a foreigner, you have to bargain really hard, as starting prices are inflated. However, the sellers, most of who produce the items do a lot to lure shoppers to patronise them. You will not see the clothes and jewelleries displayed on mannequins. They are rather worn by those selling them as they beckon on you to buy with promises of ‘get one free’, depending on what you are buying. Miss Pat Sissah is one of such dealers. She produces and sells clothes and jewellery made from different local designs. Looking beautiful in a colourful evening gown and beaded jewellery, she beckoned on The Nation Shopping, she said: “I am sure you would like what I’m wearing. I make them myself. Here are

•Designs from Ghana's local fabrics

precious things from Ghana. Buy and get one free”. Thus, she lured a lot of shoppers, especially ladies to her store. She noted how the centre developed from a family business to a huge commercial centre saying: “There were two persons hawking their goods and so many people loved what they were selling and patronised them so much. Later, they were given a place at the Kwameh Nkrumah high street. They finally came here during President Rawlings time. They were one fam-

ily. You know, the Europeans admire African goods a lot and they always come here to buy”. She also stated that many families made their living by trading at the centre. For instance, two of her siblings also had their various stores there. Miss Monica Amuzu makes and sells children’s designs. “We like to teach our children the value of our culture and we use these local attires to show them. They are gorgeous,” aren’t they? She asked. Mr Steeve Williams is from London. “I come to Ghana often and when-

ever I do, I must visit this place. There are great artifacts here for one to go back home with. I love Africa. They know how to make use of their rich heritage. I use some of these designs to decorate my house. I also buy for friends.” It is hard to find a foreigner selling but they form the crop of the shoppers. The inference is that you should drop your money in the hands of the Ghanaians and not take from them. It is part of the country’s measures to develop its economy and improve the living standard of its people.

Fruits and the Islamic month or Ramadan go together. Muslims fast in the month and many break with fruits before the main meal. As Ramadan begins this week, many stores are preparing fruit baskets for their Muslim customers to ensure a rewarding fast. TONIA ‘DIYAN and ABIKE ADEGBULEHI report.

Fruits for Ramadan

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HE month of Ramadan is a time of self-reflection, prayer, fasting, and sacrifice for Muslims. Fasting is compulsory for Muslims excluding pregnant women, nursing mothers, the aged, children and infants. Fasting can be tough, so it is important to get the right nutrition at night and in the morning. Fruits contain lots of water and can help sustain the person who is observing the fast. A bottle of yoghurt, which costs N100, can also be used to break the fast for those who do not want to loose too much weight. During this period,giving and reaching out to people is important. It is essential to take a few minutes to call them or invite them for Iftar (dinner to break the daily fast). Before buying a gift, you must know the purpose it will serve. Fruits contain vitamins which is essential for the body and which will also renew lost strength from the previous day’s fasting. Many stores are providing fruits basket for shoppers to enable them have a fulfilled fasting season. One of them is SMAS gifts. It calls its collection ‘Ramadan fruit bumper’. It comprises different fruits such as pineapple, coconut, apple, cucumber, orange, watermelon and fruit juice. This basket comes in different prizes and sizes such as mini, midi,

•A shopper, receiving Ramadan fruit basket after purchase from a store

maxi and jumbo, which also has varied numbers of fruits contained in each. You also have the ability to brand your own gifts with your personal/ company’s name with full address and phone numbers to be sent to your recipients or beneficiaries. Representative of SMAS gifts, Mrs Shakirat Adunola, stated that it is important to give gifts, especially fruits during this season because it goes a long way in speaking to the recipients. The Nation Shopping spoke with

some Muslims who are observing the fast. Mrs Rukayat Rahman, a secondary school teacher, said: “Eating fruits first before meal is our tradition in my home, especially during the holy month. And for the cooking,I enjoy it so much, though stressful, but I don’t mind and I am not complaining. What is most important is that my family certainly appreciates my effort”. For Mrs Aishat Usman, a house wife, “Ramadan is a special time and I see the meal preparation period as a gift, not a burden. Therefore, I

give my body and those of my family members the best nutrition which of course, includes assorted seasonal fruits, but most times, not fibre fruits that would not allow for proper consumption of the meal because when you take them you become full. I am happy to fast and enjoy the meal and fruits that I am blessed to put on my table. Most people like to make their family’s favourite meals during the month of Ramadan, perhaps because when one breaks the fast, the meal, which contains fruits is just so much more

appreciated than any other time of year”. A caterer, Mrs Habibat Ibrahim said: “I also think our Ramadan meals taste better with fruits and help those of us who are on the big side to loose weight naturally. By the time I eat fruits to break my fast in the evening,I become full and wouldn’t take much food.” “I am ready for a month of celebration with my family and community. Usually,I stock my fridge and store with unripe fruits, so they do not get spoilt before the fast begins. Fruits during Ramadan help me to have everyone under control while I am still preparing the food in the evenings.” Said Mrs Barakat Saliu. Ramadan is an important holy month for Muslims. For them, it is a time of reflection and a time to develop compassion for the hungry and thirsty and do something to help them. It is a time to practice self-control and willpower in the face of numerous temptations; and to purify one’s self by taking time to focus on character and purpose. Fruits have antioxidants in them which help to protect the body. They have disease-fighting properties that protect cells from getting damaged by substances called free radicals. They also help keep the immune system healthy and reduce the risk of sickness and disease. These antioxidants give fruits its colour; therefore, choose fruits by its colour. Avoid over riped and almost spoilt fruit; often times they are sold at cheaper prices. Buy the green fresh ones, they may be costly, but better and more nutri•Continued on page 33


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

37

SHOPPING

Rechargeable fan to the rescue Faced with irregular power supply, many are going for rechargeable fans because they are convenient and power efficient. Once charged, they can last for hours, cooling and keeping you refreshed, writes JANICE NKOLI IFEME.

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O cope with frequent and sudden power failure, many people have found a solution to the problem by buying rechargeable fans. Cashing in on the situation, electronics stores are stocking up these products to meet growing demand. Hundreds of rechargeable fans are sold daily at these stores. A brand that is dominated the market is Kingshan, with batteries that can last five to eight hours. It also has an overcharge protection, two speed oscillated and full charge indicator. With one year warranty and after sales service available, you can be asured of efficiency and constant performance. Besides, there are available parts and repairers . They are available in major electronics outlets such as Godman Estate, One to Three, Okota round about, Lagos. The Chief Executive Officer, Dexim Ventures, Pastor Charles Chukwuemezie, also the General Overseer of Rock City Church, Okota, Lagos said: “I have many of them in my house. We also use it to complement the air conditioners in our Church. It is energy efficient, cost effective and long lasting. The good thing about it is that, once charged, it can serve you for long hours”. Another user, Mrs Uju Okwuofu said: “I had to get it when I gave birth to my twins two years ago. It is still functioning perfectly. It is a good substitute for all this NEPA wahalla”, she laughed. Rechargeable fans are devices that are designed to cool off a person, object or area using replenishable battery power. These devices are often used for personal cooling and can even be installed in safety helmets. Most of them have built-in battery packs, although it is possible to turn a regular fan into a rechargeable one with the right type of batteries. It also is possible for a single rechargeable fan to operate from many sources of electricity, including a built-in battery pack, regular removable batteries or an alternating current (AC) adapter.

Some rechargeable fans also include photovoltaic (PV) solar cells, which can provide an alternate source of power to charge the batteries. There are many types of rechargeable fans that can be used in a variety of applications, although they all share a common source of power. Most of these devices have built-in power packs that might be removable or even recyclable, depending on the particular design. In some cases, a rechargeable fan will have no alternate power sources and will include a battery pack that is not serviceable by the user. Other devices include an option for the fan to operate using the same AC adapter that charges the battery pack or even have space for regular batteries to be inserted. Rechargeable fans that have multiple power sources sometimes include a feature that automatically selects the best one, depending on what is available. Many rechargeable fans are designed for personal use, either as semi-portable desk units or fully portable devices that can be easily carried in a pocket, briefcase or purse. These personal units sometimes include additional features, such as radios, flashlights and other electronic components. This type of device is sometimes solar powered or includes hand cranks, so a multi-function rechargeable fan will often be included in a well-stocked disaster kit. There are other areas in which they can be used. These devices are sometimes placed inside safety helmets to provide increased comfort to workers without reducing safety. Other applications that often make use of rechargeable fans are composting toilets and other devices that have vents that need to move a lot of air but do not have access to AC power. Consumers buying rechargeable fans should pay attention to the warranty of the fan’s battery and instructions on how to maintain it properly. Battery used for rechargeable fans have long life because it is not easily replaced.

•Rechargeable fan

Fruits for Ramadan •Continued from page 36

tional. There are so many seasonal fruits in the markets, namely: Red and green apples, cherries, red and green grapes, strawberries, golden melon, water melons, orange, garden eggs, wall nuts,bananas, avocados and kiwi, among others. Supermarkets such as the Baarzer, situated at illupeju, Shoprite and places like Adelabu Street in Surulere, Lagos, sell variety of fruits daily. The more variety one can add to fruit choices, the more nutrients one can consume. Aside Wuse market, Abuja residents can buy fruits from places like Suite A3 Tswanya

Ceadu Buhari Way, Garki II, Suite A17, Melita Plaza, Area 11, Garki, Suite 32, 2nd Floor, Mazfalah Plaza, Karu, Suite 32, 2nd Floor, Mazfalah Plaza, Karu, Suite 12 OGB Plaza, Plot 561 Obafemi Awolowo Way,, Utako, 1st Floor Alphacell Plaza, Obafemi Awolowo Way, Jabi, Shop C5 605, International Building Materials Market, Dei-Dei, Shop C8, No. 21/31, International Building Materials Market, Dei-Dei all in Abuja. Other places to buy fruits in Lagos are No. 26, Census, Aguda, Olatunde Onimole Street, Surulere, Lagos, 1601 Adeola Hopewell St, Victoria Island, Lagos, And do not forget the fruits market at Ketu, 42 Old Ikosi Road, Lagos where you find them at their lowest prices always.

Shopping Right with

‘What’s in your shopping bag?’ S I always say, the world is a shopping theatre-market place. Everyone comes in, buys and leaves. Some spend long hours, others spent little time; some may leave at dawn, some leave at noon, others at dusk. Indeed, everyone must leave. As the little boy asked the bird in J.P. Clark’s poem, River bird: “River bird, river bird, sitting all day long; on hook over grass; sing to me a song of all that JANICE NKOLI IFEME come and go and say, will mother come back today?” The bird’s reply, “Tide and market come and go and so shall your mother”, explains what will happen to everyone who shops in this ‘mar- about his death, people have been trouping to his residence at Surulere, Lagos. All those he ket’. But it is not the time of one’s departure that affected-artists, musicians, entrepreneurs, distruly counts. It is the content of one’s shopping. placed persons, groups, association, women, What counts at the end of the day is what one youths and people from different walks of life has bought and its value. Is it quality or sub- mourn him. As the wife of his son, Uncle Jimmy told me: standard? There are people who have left their footprints in the sands of time-some for good, “Everyone wished that Daddy would never some for bad. Many renowned scientists and leave. But he had to leave some day and he has philosophers have come and gone; the names left”. He was a father to all these. I am one of them. of great statesmen and rulers have come and He took me as a daughter and always cared gone. Everyone made their own mark. Another thing that counts is the manner of about my welfare and career. He would never miss reading The Naexpenditure. People buy tion every Friday beall sorts with their ‘So, sooner or later, cause he knew his money. Some even buy everyone must leave ‘daughter’ must have something in order to written something. He oppress people with it. this market place. was a great inspiration, What is in your shopping Another icon has just motivator and encourbag? That brings me to ager. And I can authoriour past leaders. Almost left-Ambassador Segun tatively tell you that every politician claims Olusola. This piece is a there are many people to be a protégé of the late he dealt with in like elder statesmen, tribute to the man who I manner. I have seen Obafemi Awolowo, call an exceptional many of them. A young Nnamdi Azikiwe or man had to come down Ahmadu Bello. These father. Many have from Ghana on hearing were great men who described him as a about Daddy’s death. In stood for patriotism. his case, just last year, he They fought for Nigeria’s culture icon, ace had registered his comindependence, many at broadcaster, diplomat pany and Daddy willthe expense of their comingly agreed to be the fort and security. They and humanist. He was a Chairman, Board of did it without any selfish colossus and a dear Trustees. He did same or ulterior motive. Apart for me as soon as he from their great names father to many’ knew about Global Winand good will, we did not ners Network hear of their stashing our (GLOWIN) the youth money in foreign accounts. We did not see them line up their family members development organisation, which I oversee. He to succeed them in government at the expence also sits at the board of trustees of many other of better qualified citizens. For them, the cap establishments, most of who are not even reshould only be won by whoever it fits. But what lated to him. Many other groups chose him as do we see in todays so called leaders? The Bible patron. He was a great Nigerian, who offered his best refers to them as ‘a brood of vipers’. It is being joked that the loot of late Head of to people, irrespective of tribe or background. I State, General Sanni Abacha, calculated in bil- have witnessed many ethnic groups rushing to lions of dollars, could even last for eternity. For pay tributes to him. He was a very contented this, he is condemned. Yet, we forget that many individual, who does not believe in getting it of his accomplices are still in government and ‘by hook or crook’. Greed and selfishness were never part of him. still looting. As his remains is laid to rest today in his home Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was also a great man-a selfless leader who employed town, Iperu-Remo, Ogun State, the federal govhis inheritance and resources just to fight the ernment, his home state, Ogun, and of course, cause of his people. He could not sit and watch Lagos State, where he lived, should not just comthem annihilated. Little wonder, he was mend him but immortalise him by naming great honoured in death and given a befitting burial monuments after him. They should also lend greater support to his African Refugees Foundaby the nation at large. So, sooner or later, everyone must leave this tion, a non-governmental organisation through market place. Another icon had just left-Am- which he served humanity. I commend them for bassador Segun Olusola mni, OFR. This piece supporting his funeral but they should go a step is a tribute to the man who I call an excep- further. It is also necessary as it will motivate tional father. Many have described him as a many and reduce the get rich by all means synculture icon, ace broadcaster, diplomat and drome. Also, it would give them assurance that humanist. He was a colossus and a dear father their lives would still be a reference point”. I and other well meaning Nigerians can vouch for him to many. Many agree that his death is a huge loss to not as not being among those evil, selfish and greedy just Nigeria but Africa and the world at large. leaders. His immense contribution to humanity He was a great inspiration to many. On hearing should not be discarded.

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Write to us, express your views, observations and experiences. Let’s have your comments about shopping. Your comments, questions and answers will be published first Friday of every month. With your full name and occupation, send e-mail to: janicenkoli@yahoo.com


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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

SHOPPING MY SHOPPING

‘I have a simple taste’ •Interview with Ghana’s Information Minister Fritz Baffour

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OUR attire is similar to what we have in Nigeria. I have a simple taste. I wear traditional outfits, such as the one I am wearing. It is called smock. There are others too, such as the wax, print and wooden. I like our local fabrics. Where do you shop? Sometimes I go to Kuala supermarket. It’s one of the supermarkets I go to get necessary things. Most of the time, we buy food from our local markets. Name some of them There is Makola market; then there is the market in constituency, Ablekuma South, Greater Accra. We buy fresh fish, plantain, garri - all the things you need. I am not particularly into eating at hotels. I like food beside the road. One piece of shopping advice Buy quality and not anything counterfeit. I wouldn’t buy any designer wear in Ghana. I would rather buy straight from the designer. However, I’m not interested in designer wears. I go for more of our local fabrics. What is your impression about the shopping malls? If there is something I have to get from the mall, I will go but I don’t think I have been to the mall recently. I eat basic food. I like my

By Janice Nkoli Ifeme

beer. I don’t drink champagne. I will tell you right now that I am a socialist but I can’t say that my background was that of extreme poverty, no. I wear this Ghanaian outfit. I am known for wearing it. It is comfortable and logical. The truth is that in Ghana, we are pretty relaxed. You know, when you go to Nigeria, I have some Nigerian friends. There are particular areas they want to go to. We do not have that hierarchy. I have visited some Nigerians. They walked into my office and said they were coming to visit me. They got to the reception and I called and said they could come up. I remember going to visit my friend who was your foreign minister. You know, I went there and it was crazy. I went with about four or five policemen following me and everything. It was a bit difficult. Is there anything the government is doing to develop shopping? Oh yes. We‘ve got a lot of shopping malls. It has become a big thing now. All the kids, including mine want to go and hang around the shopping mall. It is more of a European thing, but basically I am not interested in that. You know, you find a Ghanaian minister sitting by the roadside; we like to drink our

beer by the roadside. We like open bars. We sit down there, we drink and chart. There is no real stress. My body guard just enjoys going around with me because he knows that I will want to go to places where we can have our beer. No airs and graces. That’s not our style here. If you do that here our people will bring you down to earth real quick. How is your trading relationship with Nigeria? It should be reciprocal. There are certain goods that Ghana should supply that Nigerians do not allow Ghana to buy because they are banned goods. We are working at that. There is a bipartite trade commission working between Ghana and Nigeria. That is not within my ambit. I can give you this information. I can suggest. I am a very good friend of Nigeria. Certainly, anything that will improve the relationship, I will work at it. I will Having been to Nigeria do you see any similarity in shopping? Yes, we are basically the same. Nigeria’s link with Ghana is something you cannot divorce. We eat the same food but may be prepared differently. The naming of one of our markets, Makola was influenced by Nigeria. You know, the word Makola is a Yoruba word for

The kitchen is the heart of the home and should be cared for. Whether you want to renovate an existing one, or create a new one, there are different styles available, writes TONIA’DIYAN.

•Baffour

market. The first petty traders who brought in pepper were Nigerians. That is why we call Nigerians the Alata people.”

Row at Lagos market over delayed election By Joseph Eshanokpe

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•Kitchen

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OU can adopt any style once you recognise that cooking is much more than just putting a frozen meal inside the microwave. If you have always wanted an L-shaped kitchen style, a U shaped, R shaped, the open style, or the parallel kitchen style, then why struggle in a tiny kitchen when a few alterations could provide you with comfortable and spacious one? Its various designs make cooking pleasurable if plenty of neat workspace is available. A smart storage for pots and pans is not a bad idea, and equipping it with the latest gadgets will give specialised results. A kitchen company with experience of creating various kitchens styles will do the magic. A kitchen professional, Miss Joy Ochu, who works with Kelvin’s Aesthetics, spoke on the cost of fixing small or large kitchen. She said their areas of specialisation, such as the laminate and PVC kitchens and the ones that are fitted with granite. “A small kitchen costs only N150, 000 and a big one costs N250,000, depending on your kitchen space. And in case you do not have a kitchen at all, we can create

Spice up your kitchen in style one for you, using your choice space in your home. Don’t be discouraged because of the price, we allow negotiations depending on your kitchen size or space,” she said. “Laminate kitchen is plain flushed faced which allows our clients to choose the colour they want during renovation or fixing, while PVC kitchens come with impressions, but their colours are restricted” she explained. A man who just got his kitchen renovated said, “I just relocated to a new apartment and didn’t like the kitchen, so I sought the help of the professionals and I just got it fixed. I paid below N150,000 because my

kitchen is quite small, therefore I was given considerations.” Materials used for these kitchen styles come in many varieties and finishes to suit the décor in the home, appearance is only part of the appeal, they are also extremely durable and easy to maintain. Some are made of bamboo, wood, formica, aluminum. Today’s kitchens are all about great design: combining practical innovations with dazzling good looks. The trick is to mix and match essential labour-saving features that will make working in your kitchen a joy, combined with those optional extras that reflect your personality and enhance your lifestyle. There is the possibility of opening your kitchen into a dining room to make an open kitchen style that will become the heart of your home. Alternatively, you might be able to enlarge your kitchen by building an extension. Therefore, avoid closing the kitchen door when guests arrive, instead invite them into your new entertaining area.The design and condition of a kitchen can affect the character and atmosphere of a whole home - for better, or for worse.

OME aggrieved members of Odun-Ade Market Association in Lagos are demanding that the election fixed for July 31 should not be postponed. In a statement, its Youth Leader, Mr Stephen Umeobika, said the association's constitution stipulates that the executive council (Exco) is entitled to two-year tenure. However, its leaders have been in office since their election in 2005. He said: “Since 2005, the Mondestus Umenzekwe-led EXCO has deliberately refused to conduct election. The leadership was elected in 2003. Though the EXCO's tenure ended in 2005, it remained in office since then." He recalled that in 2005, when a senior member of the association died, the group sent a delegation led by its former vice-president, Mr Emeka Izuka to Anambra State for the funeral. "In line with the association's constitution, trading was suspended. That was when the Umenzekwe leadership claimed to have conducted an election wherein most traders had no opportunity to either vote or be voted for and the leadership was returned unopposed. This act of subterfuge violates the laid down electon procedure," he said. He alleged that some union members had suffered from police harassment and intimidation to break their resolve for a change in the group. Umeobika said the union leaders were not happy with the turn of events. At a meeting, they promised to hold election in 2007, but they did not. They, again, asked for a year, saying they wanted to complete the processing of the documents of their new site. Again, they did not keep to their words. Since then, he claimed, they have refused to go. But the angry members did not give up. They kept pressing and took their case to the Ifelodun Local Council Development Area. At a meeting with the council leaders, it was resolved that a new election should be held by the end of this month. But barely two weeks to that date, the aggrieved members are afraid that the promise to hold an election might go the way of others in the past. Umeobika said: "One of them told us that the election would hold in September, this year. We hereby reject the Mondestus Umenzekwe-led leadership as illegal, undemocratic and unconstitutional. We demand an immediate convocation of an electoral committee/panel made up of elected rank and file traders. Members from pro-people civil society organisations and Ifelodun (LCDA) should be invited to observe the election." Last week, the traders protested to the local government where they were assured of the council's support. A source at the council said that the local government was poised for peace in the market and would ensure that the matter was amicably settled. He added that the two parties were asked to return to the court and vacate the injunction they had earlier secured on the issue.


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FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

So many people could not go for check-up or treatment for lack of money but the free treatment has given many the opportunity to check their health status

•The Naval team with the principal, officials of the school and community residents

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VER 500 residents of Agudama Epie in Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa State have benefitted from free medical treament offered by the Nigeran Navy. Beneficiaries included pupils of Community Secondary School located in the community as well as other residents. The people were examined for various ailments; some got drugs and other medicaments while others were advised to see to seek further help. The free medical service was part

Navy provides free health services in Bayelsa From Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa

of the Navy’s 56th anniversary. Speaking at the event, the Fleet Officer Commanding Central Naval Command, Real Admiral John Olutoyin said the free medical treatment has always been part of the Nigerian Navy’s goodwill gesture to the local communities where they

are situated. Olutoyin noted that apart from ensuring the safety of lives in their various areas of responsibility, the Nigeria Navy also tries to cater for the medical needs of their host communities. Mrs. Caroline John Adume, Principal of the School, who commended the Navy for the service, said: “So many people could not go for check-up or treatment for lack of

money but the free treatment has given many people the opportunity to check their health status”. Other beneficiaries of the exercise who spoke, included Mr Simeon Otiomodiomo, who said the gesture of the Nigerian Navy has enabled them to get free drugs and tests including malaria, hypertension and blood test. They really tried”. Mrs. Pere Commander, a woman who could not hide her joy, appealed for more of

such free treatments. Mrs. Lucky Febai, a housewife, also hailed the Navy. “God bless the people who organised it,” she said. “They have done their best for the People oftheCommunityandstudentsoftheschool because no government has done this. The Committee and School have gained because wewereundermalariaattack,”saidMr.Walson Sample, Head of Department of the school.

Cleric urges better security at ordination

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CLERIC, Right Rev. Ezekiel Dahunsi, has urged the Goodluck Jonathan administration to tighten up security in the country, saying the Boko Haram insurgency continues to claim lives of Nigerians, especially those of Christians. Dahunsi, who is the Bishop of IdoAni Anglican Diocese of the Anglican Communion in Ondo State, He spoke at the Trinity Ordination held at the Cathedral Church of the Holy Trinity, Ido-Ani in Ose Local Government Area, lamenting the high level of corruption and other

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

social vices in the country. He urged leaders in the country to toe the line of righteousness and solve the problem of mass unemployment, which according to him, breeds various monsters in the country. At the event, two new deacons, Oluseye Adediji and Samuel Aina, and three priests, Kehinde Fatorisa, Akinlolu Agara and Sunday Adebayo, were ordained by the bishop.

Venerable R. O. Agboola from Owo Diocese of the church enjoined the newly ordained deacons and priests to be submissive to God and do everything to facilitate their success in their callings. Agboola urged the newly ordained ministers of God to inspire others with exemplary leadership. Among those who attended the service were Ogbolu of Ita-Ogbolu, Oba Idowu Faborode, the Iya Ijo of Cathedral Church, Chief (Mrs.) Bisi Ogunleye and the Deputy Chancellor of the Diocese, Barrister Fredrick Oye, a lawyer.

•The students during the clean-up exercise

Lagos poly partners waste managers

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•Bishop Ezekiel Dahunsi (midlle) with the ordained

TUDENTS of the Lagos State Polytechnics (LASPOTECH) have learnt how to make money from waste recycling, thanks to a twoday programme organised by the Students Union Government(SUG) tagged “waste to wealth management’’. Representative of the Lagos Waste Management Agency (LAWMA), Mrs. Jirinsola Olaleye, educated the students on how to generate income from disposable items like tires and bottles through recycling. These items and many more, she stated, can generate income for interested persons. She offered them practical tips on how to recycle the waste items, stating that there was stupendous wealth awaiting operators. The students cleaned up the institution’s campus on the second day. The Public Relations Officer of the

By Sunday Oguntola

institution, Mr. Kuye Olanrewaju, commended the students for the initiative, which he described as unprecedented. He said: “I am highly impressed and elated and I told the rector what you started and I want to tell you that the rector will reciprocate your good work in a positive manner. “It has always been ‘lock the gate, or, ‘all we are saying’. This is very commendable”. He thanked the students for repaying their alma mater, praying that they will be useful to themselves and the nation at large. The Students Union Government President, Raheem Damilare, said the clean-up exercise was to make the school’s surrounding healthy.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012

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THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012

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57TH KANO STATE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL MEETING

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n Wednesday 18th July, 2012 (29TH Sha’aban, 1433 AH) the Kano State Executive Council held its Fifty seventh (57th) sitting in continuation with sequence of previous sittings during which important policy issues and programs that positively impact on the quality of lives of our citizenry were deliberated upon. Available records indicated that tangible projects spanning all sectors have been initiated and are systematically being implemented putting emphasis on commitment on fulfilling campaign promises driven by the general resolve at providing good governance characterized by exemplary leadership in which utilization/deployment of resources, though conspicuous, is guided by prudence and transparency.

b)

It is delightful to witness the reawakening of the hopes and fulfillment of the aspirations of the people of Kano State as depicted in the glaring progress achieved in the improvement of the quality and quantity of services provided by Government across all sectors – especially water supply, agricultural production, education, healthcare delivery, environmental sanitation and refuse disposal, installation/repairs of street and traffic lights, beautification of urban Kano, provision of security, provision of skill acquisition and employment opportunities etc.

c)

Importantly, in fifty six (56) sittings the present administration approved a capital expenditure close to N170 billion of which N31,217,721,649.40 was approved for the execution of 21 projects by the Council during its most recent 56th sitting as follows; d) Main Highlights of the 56th Sitting are: 1. N23,776,298,443.40 funds to facilitate for the execution of the 4th batch of five (5) Kilometer road project in 14 LGCA’s. 2. N5,933,520,068.34 funds to facilitate for the construction of fly-over bridges ( State road – K/Nassarawa and Ibrahim Taiwo Road from Radio Kano). 3. N397,337,217.25 funds for the facilitation of the construction of Academic block, two (2) Hostel blocks and Kitchen Facilities at Informatics Institute Kura. 4. N394,443,261.12 funds for the construction of Academic block at Sports Institute Karfi. 5. N363,531,506.20 funds for the construction of Kano State Entrepreneurship Institute at Dawakin Tofa. 6. N54,667,723.68 funds for the facilitation of renovation of Audu Bako Secretariat Wall Fence and provision of Security Wire. 7. N51,475,000.00 funds for the procurement of operational vehicles for some MDA’s. 8. N41,651,857.44 funds to facilitate for the computerization of Kano State Pension Fund Trustees Activities. 9. N41,651,857,44 funds to facilitate for general renovation works of damaged Structures/Properties at Cabinet Office Kano. 10. N29,403,000.00 funds to facilitate for the procurement of vehicles for the newly appointed Trustees for Kano State Pension Fund Trustees. 11. N27,760,000.00 State Government’s share for the Public Private Partnership(PPP) collaboration with GLOBACOM. 12. N24,117,697.00 funds to enable participation of Kwankwasiyya Academicals in Challenge Cup International at France. 13. N20,585,059.06 funds for the construction Training Fish Ponds and a Hostel Block at Magama Dam Site. 14. N15,000,000.00 funds to facilitate for the Rehabilitation of some existing Shelter Belts. 15. N12,968m428.48 funds for the procurement of equipment/furniture for IDH Hospital Kano. 16. N10,000,000.00 funds to facilitate for the training and distribution of empowerment materials to 400 prospective trainees. 17. N8,161,600.00 funds to facilitate for sponsoring 5 students for a Debate Competition at Czech Republic. 18. N6,896,615.50 to facilitate for renovation works at the offices of World Bank Assisted Projects Offices. 19. N4,815,450.00 funds to facilitate for payment of tuition/living expenses in respect of one Mubarak Muhammad Abdullah. 20. N2,630,000.00 to facilitate for the distribution of Anti-Malarial Drugs. 21. N750,000.00 to be allocated as assistance to the Kano State Medical Students Association.

4. MINISTRY OF EDUCATION. Request for funds for the Rehabilitation of Tarauni Primary School Classroom Blocks (Nassarawa LGCA’S): Council approved for the release of the requested sum of N18,655,190.00 to the Ministry of Education to enable SUBEB execute the rehabilitation project at Tarauni Primary School in Nassarawa LGCA since it is in line with the present administration’s resolve to positively intervene in the Education sector at all levels and the fact that the school is strategically located. 5. MINISTRY OF HEALTH. Two (2) memoranda were submitted by the Ministry of Health for deliberation by the Council. Thus; a) Request for funds for the construction of Wall Fence and Gates at school of Nursing, Kano: Attention of the Council was politely drawn to a letter received from the Department of State Services requesting for redressing of the physical security at the School of Nursing Kano by the Ministry of Health. And, contents of this memorandum went further to acquaint the Council of findings that resulted from visitations to the school by the Ministry Officials which include; I. The main gate is dilapidated needing replacement. II. Construction of a wall fence is required. Council noted, considered and approved for the release of the requested sum of N12,208,684.25 to the Ministry of Health to effect the stated project based on its significance and relevance in fortifying the school’s premises and securing it against encroachment and trespass. b) I. II.

Today’s Council Sitting was presided over by Governor Engr. RABI’U MUSA KWANKWASO FNSE during which 16 memoranda were submitted by 10 MDA’s for deliberation by the Council. An expenditure of N5,976,004,483.30 covering 13 projects was approved for execution by the Council. Thus; 1. OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT. Implementation committee on North-West University to undertake some vital commitments toward implementation of North-West University: Contents of this memorandum politely intimated the Council of the fact that the implementation committee should be considered as the Council and Management of the University according to the law establishing the University committee under its transitional provision. As such, the committee found it imperative to submit request for the facilitation of some urgent requirements for the University for Government’s consideration. The aggregate sum of N26,318,050.00 is requested for release by the Council to enable the committee facilitate for the Under-listed; I. Advertisement in four (4) National Dailies for the post of Academic and senior Non-Academic positions. II. Construction of phase II, III and IV Website and Portal Development. III. Digital Scrolling Sign Board at take-off Site. IV. Advertisement for admission on radio, television and print media. V. Metal sign board for the University. VI. Cost for interviews of applicants for the post of vice chancellor (i.e one from Oman the other from USA). Both have to be refunded for their return tickets. Council noted, considered and approved for the release of the requested sum of money to the office of the secretary to the State Government for onward payment to the implementation committee on North-West University to facilitate for the stated vital commitments for the University to properly take-off. 2. MINISTRY OF WORKS, HOUSING AND TRANSPORT. Three (3) memoranda were submitted by the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport for deliberation by the Council as follows; a) Installation of Solar Powered Street Lights in Kwankwaso town and its surrounding environment: Contents of this memorandum coherently reminded the Council of the present Administrations policy and general effort in the area of installation and rehabilitation of street and traffic light in urban Kano with a view to providing adequate illumination for the enhancement of security of life and property. Such gesture is considered imperative for extension to Kwankwaso town by the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport with a request for the release of the sum of N87,486,210.90 to facilitate for the purpose. Council considered and approved for the release of the requested sum of money to the Ministry of Works to undertake the stated project. b) Submission of a proposal on the purchase of Sand Crete Block making machine for use at the Model Village Programme at Warawa, Kunchi and Makoda: Council noted, considered and directed the Honorable Commissioner for Works, Housing and Transport to represent the issue more Comprehensive (cost inclusive) by next Council sitting. c) Construction of new Office complex at Government House Kano: N274,272,481.09 was approved for release by the Council to the Ministry of Works, Housing and Transport to expedite action in the facilitation for the construction of the new office complex at the Government House Kano. This is with a view to clustering the present dispersed offices into blocks for effective service delivery as coherently suggested by contents of this memorandum. 3. MINISTRY OF INFORMATION, INTERNAL AFFAIRS, YOUTH, SPORTS AND CULTURE. Four (4) memoranda were submitted by this Ministry for deliberation by the Council as follows; a) participation of Government College Kano (KTC) in the Keele University International Football Cup Tournament in England (22nd – 29th July, 2012): Contents of this memorandum politely alerted the Council of an invitation received from West Africa Schools Sports Union (WASSU) for the participation of Government College Kano (KTC) in the Keele University International Football Cup Tournament in England (22nd – 29th July, 2012). The sum of N24,724,000.00 is requested for release by the Council in order to sponsor 25 delegates to the tournament – viz. I. The Honorable Commissioner for Education. II. The School’s Principal. III. State School Sport Officer. IV. Old Students Association Representative. V. Parent Teachers Association (P.T.A) Representative. VI. 18 Players. VII. 2 Coaches. TOTAL = 25 It is imperative for the Council to note that the invitation resulted from the startling performance of the College in Dubai and Manchester Championships (25th August – 3rd September, 2007 and 27th April – 3rd May, 2010) respectively. Again, participation at the tournament coincides with the 2012 London Olympics which makes the organizers to package some benefits derivable which include; I. Exposure to European Union Football Association (EUPA) and Federation of International Football Association (FIFA). II. Participation in a coaching clinic organized by Manchester City Coaches. III. Excursions. IV. Opportunity to participate alongside their peers from 25 countries across the globe. So, council noted, considered and approved release of the requested sum of money to the Ministry to enable facilitation of the stated purpose.

Request for funds as assistance to Kano Pillars and Dabo Babes Football Clubs billed to represent the State at National Challenge Cup Competitions 1st week of July, 2012 in Lagos: Council approved for the release of a trimmed down sum of N1,000,000.00 to the Ministry of Information for onward payment as assistance to the referred Football Clubs wishing them luck in the stated endeavor. Participation of Kano State Basketball team in the 2011/2012 DSTV Final-8 at National Stadium Surulere, Lagos (21st – 29th July, 2012): The aggregate sum of N3,000,000.00 was approved for release by the considerate Council to the Ministry of Information, Internal Affairs, Youth, Sports and Culture to enable the participation of the State’s Basketball team in the DSTV Premier and most prestigious Basketball Competition in the Rabi’u Musa Kwankawaso Country. Assistance to the National Orientation Agency Kano Office: Contents of this memorandum politely notified the Council of the inability of the Agency to publish the monthly Hausa Newsletter “KAKAKIN NOA” due to financial constraints. As such, the magnanimous Council noted, considered and approved for the release of N500,000.00 to the Ministry of Information for onward payment as assistance to the Kano State Office of the National Orientation Agency to enable continuation of the monthly publication.

Request for funds for the general renovation of Hasiya Bayero Pediatric Hospital, Kano. The requested sum of N54,685,203.45 by the Ministry of Health for the general renovation of Hasiya Bayero Pediatric Hospital was approved for release by the Council in consideration of the facts that; The Hospital is the only independent/specialized Pediatric Hospital in Northern Nigeria but suffered serious neglect from the past administration. The entire structure of the Hospital requires urgent attention to address leakages, completion of external interlock tiling and parking space, wall fencing, construction of gate and mechanized borehole, e.t.c.

6. MINISTRY OF PLANNING AND BUDGET. Request for funds to facilitate for the preparation of the new Development Plan/Policy Document: Council noted, considered and appreciated contents of this memorandum as stating the need for the stated purpose which composes series of activities with financial implications such as Logistics, Consultancy Support Services, Fueling, Provision of Stationary/Office Consumables, e.t.c. So, Council approved for the release of the requested but trimmed sum of N5,000,000.00 to the Ministry of Planning and Budget to expedite action on the preparation of the new Development Plan/ Policy document in view of its significance in the day to day running of Government. 7. MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY, CO-OPERATIVES AND TOURISM. Submission of Information Memorandum on need to revisit the issue of the Concept of Constructing an Indoor Pavilion at the Kano Trade Fair Complex: Contents of this memorandum adequately alerted the attentive Council of the Commitment of the past administration on the referred issue which was in response to the need for the State to conform to global practice. Nevertheless, the project was to be jointly funded by the Federal and State Governments. The former did not comply while the latter appropriated N140,000,000.00 in the 2010 approved budget. The contract for executing the project was awarded and the company mobilized to site where resources were committed. Council noted, considered and approved for the enacting of a committee to look into the issue and report findings for consideration. 8. OFFICE OF THE HEAD OF CIVIL SERVICE. Request for approval to release two (2) officers on Leave of Absence: Council noted, considered and approval for the release of the two officers as requested by contents of this memorandum which presented the concerned officers as; I. AbdulRahman AbdulHamid (Lecturer 1) at Kano State Polytechnic selected to participate in the Technical Aid Corps (TAC) Programme in Namibia for two (2) years. II. Rabi Manzo (Chief Matron) at Hospitals Management Board to participate in the TAC programme at Rwanda for two years. Both Officers are on permanent and pensionable appointment and Council wish them safe return to their respective duty posts and hope for their being good ambassadors of not only Kano State but the Nation at large. 9. MINISTRY OF WATER RESOURCES. Request for upward review of monthly remittance to the Ministry of Water Resources for Maintenance (Diesel and Services) at Gidan Murtala stand-by electricity generator: Council noted, considered and approved for the upward review of the monthly remittance from N1,000,000.00 to N1,839,000.00 as requested by contents of this memorandum due to cogent reasons forwarded by the Ministry. 10. MINISTRY OF LAND AND PHYSICAL PLANNING. Request for funds to facilitate for the execution of the 5th batch Local Government five (5) Kilometer Road Project: Contents of this memorandum reminded Council of its approval on the execution of similar projects at twenty nine (29) Local Governments. Now, the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning requests for the release of the sum of N5,467,415,962.71 for the execution of five (5) Kilometer Local Government road project in three (3) LGCAS which include Garko, Garun Malam and Rogo. This brings the total number of similar projects to 32. Council approved for the release of the requested sum of money to the Ministry of Land and Physical Planning to facilitate for the laudable project that has the potential of opening up the entire State for viable economic development. UPDATE ON ACTIVITIES. HONORABLE COMMISSIONER OF JUSTICE. 1) Council noted, with appreciation, the appointment of Justice Maryam Kaloma Mukhtar as chief justice of the federation. Council applauded the appointment as well deserved and wish her success in her endeavors. 2) Council witnessed the award of merits to the under listed ten (10) deserving civil servants. SENIOR OFFICERS i. Tijjani M. Abbas ii. Habibu Ya’u ii. Zainab Ibrahim Braji iv. Tijjani Saleh v. Magaji Dahiru Zarewa vi. Isa Muhammad

Kano State Fire Service REMASAB Sa’adatu Rimi College of Education Office of the Head of Civil Service Hospital Management Board KSSSMB

JUNIOR OFFICERS i. Garba Dan’ayya ii. Bashir Abubakar iii. Auwalu Yusuf Kawo iv. Hamisu Yusuf

SSG’s Office, Cabinet Office Tourism Board Library Board Ministry of Planning and Budget

Council calls for all Civil Servants to emulate the exemplary performance of the merit award beneficiaries.

SIGNED: HON. COMMISSIONER, INFORMATION, INTERNAL AFFAIRS, YOUTH & SPORTS


FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

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POLITICS THE NATION

E-mail:- politics@thenationonlineng.net

The greatest challenge confronting the country today is insecurity. It is taking its toll on households, churches, mosques, public and private institutions. The Federal Government appropriated huge sums in this year’s budget for the sector with little or nothing to show for it yet. Can President Goodluck Jonathan overcome the security challenges facing the country? Deputy Political Editor EMMANUEL OLADESU highlights stakeholders’ views on the protracted problem.

Can Jonathan restore security? A

S huge smoke billowed from the fire lit by a bomb blast, people ran helter-sketer in the ensuing general commotion. At war with innocent citizens are invisible hands who knew their terrain, mission and targets. In panic, people fled leaving their vehicles on the road. Those who were unlucky got trapped in the inferno, crying and agonising without redemption. Those who were lucky to be rushed to nearby hospital are pronounced as having slim chance of survival. This is the picture of the security situation in the country since January. It has been a vicious circle of disasters, confusion and pains in the northern part of the country. Blood has been literally, flowing in the streets of Abuja, Kano, Bauchi, Kaduna, Suleja and Maiduguri. Lives have been lost and property, worth millions, destroyed. Apparently, there is no end in sight for this ugly development. No Nigerian is insulated from bomb explosion. Churches, mosques and corporate offices are not spared. In Lagos, former Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Alani Akinrinade, urged the government to find a solution, warning that Nigeria was about being assailed by urban guerilla. Across the country, the fear of Boko Haram sect has become the beginning of wisdom. The violence unleashed by Boko Haram has been perfectly complemented by armed robbery and ritual killings across the six geo-political zones. Ethnic clashes and kidnapping are also rife. In Jos, capital of Plateau State, mass burial of victims of ethnic conflict led to more blood-letting on the spot. Now, members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) are rejecting postings to troubled spots with justification. On daily basis, there are cries of despondency and government appears to be helpless. Can the federal government restore security? What is responsible for all the sporadic bombings? Why has Jos remained a troubled spot? These are puzzles that seem to have no answers. Last week, governors were at a crossroads. Although it is the north that is primarily under siege, southern governors could not turn their eyes away from the plight of their kinsmen who reside in these troubled spots. The Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) proposed some measures. Taking a global look at the socio-economic and political realities that may underlie insecurity, it suggested a sort of ‘Marshall Plan’ to tackle the scourge of poverty and squalor ravaging the land. Some governors also reiterated their clamour for state police. Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, who spoke briefly with reporters in Abuja, said that state police was long overdue. He highlighted the numerous assistants given to state police commands by governors, including donation of vehicles, uniforms, housing, guns, and even, bullets. He said it is illogical that the state governors, who are chief security officers, have no control over the police. Many reasons have been adduced for the state of insecurity ravaging the country. Some of them paled into conjectures. But there is no evidence that government has got any lead as well. There is a monotony of assurances of normalcy from the Police Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubakar and Chief of Defence Staff Air Vice Marshall Olu Petinrin. To their consternation, the suicide bombers seem to have

• Dr Jonathan • IG Abubakar dwarfed security agents. him. There have been rumours that the north is ag“Military came and put up security system for grieved that the Presidency has stayed too long tenure survival. It was the climax of the ‘Glover in the south, contrary to agreement. Recently, Syndrome’ of using the people to keep the people former Security Adviser Gen. Patrick Aziza atunder bondage”, he stressed. tributed the security problem to the Peoples Ajayi could not properly dissect the dreadful Democratic Party’s (PDP) zoning arrangement, sect, Boko Haram. But he acknowledged that the which was jettisoned during the last presideninsurgency resembled a campaign of unidentitial election. His remark caused a stir. Few weeks fied people who cannot be properly traced; a after, he was shoved aside. people who treat everywhere as no man’s land. Others have argued that it was part of a clanThe retired soldier compared deaths resulting destine plan by the ‘butchers of Nigeria’ to wipe from Boko Haram activities to the ones attribout non-natives and adherents of other faiths. uted to the carnage on bad roads, resulting from Taking exception to this, foremost commentawhat he called siege on the people by governtor, Mallam Mohammed Haruna corrected the ment. erroneous impression that the Boko Haram sect Adefaye was of the view that conflicts have was waging a religious war against Christians multi-dimensional causes. He said since Nigerialone, adding that Muslims are more casualties. ans endorsed democracy in 1999, threats to popuHe said the violence unleashed by the group has lar rule should be averted. The media executive created strains on the economy of Northern Niurged government to tap from past experiences geria, emphasising that Boko Haram is a threat in dealing with insecurity. “What is the differto all Nigeria. ence between the crisis in Jos and Ife/Modakeke He lamented that the media has been subjeccrisis, Amulieri and Agulieri crisis, or Junkun tive in their reports of the conflict, complaining crisis? How were these resolved?”, he asked. that reports were laced with anti-northern sentiAdefaye believed that poverty, poor education ments. Haruna also pointed out that the fear of and bad leadership were precursors to any crisis. Boko Haram has made governments to violate The solution, he said, is good leadership. the rights of some Nigerians under the guise But Ajayi canvassed other solutions. One of that they are suspects. The affected citizens, he them is the marriage of native security and modsaid, are languishing in jail. ern security to meet the needs of contemporary The chairman of Nigerian Guild of Editors, Mr. times. “We need military operation to go with Gbenga Adefaye, urged reporters to avoid lapsychological operations, whereby, as we are beling and sentiments. If these are avoided, he employing force, we are also promoting the counselled, misinformation would be avoided welfare of people by providing roads, hospitals, and tension reduced to the bearest minimum. employment and other amenities”, he stressed. An expert, Col. Gabriel Ajayi, who reflected on In his reckoning, the liberalisation of the secuthe security challenges facing the country at a rity system is also long overdue. Ajayi frowned recent birthday lecture in honour of Prof. Wole at the rigidity of the current system, saying that it Soyinka in Lagos, berated the lip service being is counter-productive. “We need state police”, he paid to security right from colonial days. He said. argued that security projections were limited to The suggestion tallied with the advice given by securing those in power, while the citizens are a lawyer, Mr. Kola Awodein (SAN). At a previleft in the wilderness of hope and despair. ous lecture on true federalism and restructuring “We had that example in Governor Glover and of the polity in Lagos, he said Nigeria should his eight-man soldier. Since colonial masters copy the policing methods of federal countries came and destroyed the tribes, there has been a which are tailored towards community policing disconnect between native security and modern based on the police knowledge and understandsecurity. The security then was to sustain coloing of the peculiar security needs of the local arnial masters in power, using indigenes as soleas. diers”, he recalled. A journalist, Patrick Opoze, who aligned with He added that since then, Nigeria has failed to this view, urged the government to uplift the develop a security system to sustain its sociocurrent standard of policing. “Policemen lack economic and political development. manpower, training and equipment and this Ajayi, who covered the Agbekoya uprising as should not be so”. a reporter in 1969, lamented that, under the inAlso, the Ajayi, who called for a one year comdigenous rulers, security was also tackled with pulsory military training for graduates, supaloofness and treated as a no-go area. Even, Prime ported the clamour for a Sovereign National Minister Tafawa Balewa deliberately ignored Conference (SNG), arguing that, “unless we have warnings that a coup was about to depose or kill

‘Insurgency and militancy and other forms of uprisings or group protests against constituted authorities occur most of the time because peaceful and genuine aspirations of groups of people are disregarded over long periods. Armed rebellion does not occur over night anywhere in the world. Resort to violence is often times after peaceful protests and requests have been ignored for unjustifiably long periods’

• Gen. Ihejirika it, we cannot stand in brotherhood”. In fact, some security experts contend that the ethnic nationalities expected to send representatives to the conference can assist in stemming bombings. Former Director of Military Intelligence (DMI) Brig-General Ibrahim Sabo (rtd) urged the federal government to seek their support in the arduous task of restoring national security. The retired General declared that insecurity and all forms of insurgency have their roots in the neglect of the legitimate yearnings and expectations of the government of the day. “Insurgency and militancy and other forms of uprisings or group protests against constituted authorities occur most of the time because peaceful and genuine aspirations of groups of people are disregarded over long periods. Armed rebellion does not occur over night anywhere in the world. Resort to violence is often times after peaceful protests and requests have been ignored for unjustifiably long periods”, Sabo said.. Speaking at a lecture titled: “Roadmap to National Peace and Sustainable Democracy”, organised by the Coalition of Ethnic Nationalities of Nigeria (CENN), Sabo, who was represented by Col. Olu Majoyegbe (rtd), recalled that militancy in the Niger Delta was nipped in the bud, following the strategic intervention of the late President Umaru Yar’adua’s administration. He lamented that the culture of respecting the views of ethnic blocs and groups propagating legitimate causes, have not been sustained in the country.s He maintained that “the best groups to articulate such group demands are those today derisively referred to as ethnic nationalities”, adding that “government ought to as a matter of policy engage genuine ethnic national groups as effective partners in the arduous task of nation-building”. Sabo said, if this is done, “the emergence of militants, insurgents and separatists would become unlikely with the high level of equity and justice such a policy would engender”. “Government working in synergy with ethnic nationality groups will create such an atmosphere of fairness, equity and common destiny that would eliminate armed opposition to government, thus eliminating the security challenges, which may tear the nation apart in the future”, he added. Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) leader Dr Fredrick Fashehun, lamented that Boko Haram sect has unleashed terror on too many people. He urged the sect to thread the path of reason. “We must live together in peace and harmony. If one day, however, the different entities decide to go their separate ways, they must kiss and say goodbye peacefully. But a handful of angry people, even if their anger can be justified, cannot force that decision down the throat of 160 million Nigerian citizens. “I invite our brothers in Boko Haram to sheathe their swords. They have made their point. We understand Boko Haram’s anger. Not all conflict is evil. However, Boko Haram runs the danger of laying a precedent that, if replicated by other interests in the country, can easily reduce Nigeria to a banana republic, Rwanda and Somalia”, Fasehun added.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

44

POLITICS Need for quality legislative aides

A REPORTER DIARY

Edo : When voters had their way

By Oziegbe Okoeki

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HE Acting Clerk of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr. Ganiyu Abiru has said that the quality of laws made by legislators is dependent on the quality of the legislative aides at their disposal as they form a chain of critical link in the process of lawmaking. Abiru stated this during his welcome address at a 5-day capacitybuilding retreat for legislative aides of the Lagos State House of Assembly which started yesterday at Hermitage Hotel, Akodo, Ibeju Lekki. According to him, legislative aides must be “well tutored in the rudiments of legislative duties, memo and speechwriting, note taking, editing, drafting legislations, background research and the likes, all of which will make them highly productive and useful in their supportive roles to the legislators”. The workshop organized in collaboration with ‘This Evening Communications Ltd’, has as its theme, ‘Building the Cornerstone for a virile Legislature’. Abiru said the training “is particularly very timely in the light of various attempts at building legislative capacity at all levels of governance with a view to deepening the roots of democracy, not only in the state but the nation as a whole”. Abiru noted that the quality of legislation is largely dependent on the intellectual capacity of the legislative aides. This, he said, is why the Assembly is making efforts at exposing the legislative support staff and aides to legislative best practices. The present day challenges of the legislature, he stated, are enormous and can only be surmounted through the training and retraining which would help in sharpening the aides’ intellect and improve their skills. He added that “the intellectual development of the members of staff would assist the lawmakers in quality service delivery. “The Lagos State House of Assembly which has been widely acknowledged as a pathfinder and primus inter pares among other legislative Houses in the country is therefore not leaving any stone unturned in the cultivation of positive democratic ethos and values through well thoughtout friendly and people’s legislation”. He stressed that the leadership of the House is committed to building a virile legislature through various exposures to capacity building programmes not only within the country but outside. “The evolution of a dynamic legislative institution which is being championed by the Lagos State House of Assembly is borne out of the realization of the strategic role of the legislature in the growth, development and entrenchment of democracy”. “I therefore enjoin you to re-dedicate yourself to your duties and be conscious of your responsibilities that you are expected to play in our collective efforts at building a legislative institution which would be the pride of all and synonymous with the appellation ascribed to Lagos State as a state of excellence”, Abiru said. He urged the participants to take full advantage of the workshop to further develop themselves and sharpen their skills and dexterity in the art of legislative drafting and reportage.

Group vows to pursue vision, mission From Polycarp Orosevwotu, Warri

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HE Delta Central Political Movement (DCPM) has vowed to continue with the pursuit of its vision and mission despite sundry threats assassinate its leaders by faceless groups and individuals. National Chairman of the group Chief Olori Magege stated this while speaking with newsmen in his country home, Agbarho in Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta. He said several attempts has been made on the life of his deputy Chief Hope Erute at his Effurun residence and also on the life of the secretary while returning from the group’s meeting held in Sapele. His words: “I have also received several calls and text messages from unknown persons but that has not change anything about the vision of the group rather we are waxing stronger because l know nobody or group of persons have the monopoly of violence. The threat of assassination or other forms of intimidatoion cannot in anyway shake us as long as we know we are on a right track.” Magege expressed dismay over how some people or groups people choose to play their politics, saying politics should be for development and progress of the society rather than use it to feather individual”s nest. He declared that the group ‘Delta Central Political Movement’ is open to those that are willing to join, especially, those having the same ideology with it. He maintained that at no time did the group resolved to align or fussed with any other political group in the Urhobo nation stressing that what DCPM believes in is quite different from what others believe and there was never any attempt by the group to work with any other political association in the area.

• Gov Oshiomhole

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HE first thing I did on getting to Benin was to seek an exclusive interview with the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Mr Kassim Gaidam, a lawyer and former Yobe State Attorney-General. But the spokesman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Edo State, Mrs Priscilia Sule, said Gaidam was so busy and that he was planning to address a press conference. When I insisted on having an exclusive interview with him, she advised me to come to INEC headquarters the next day. Fortunately, the REC was in the office when I arrived, presenting assignment letters to returning officers. The REC spoke quickly and assuredly, saying The Nation was his favourite newspaper. My heart glowed. He said electoral materials were ready, and that all was being done to make the election free and fair. I later met and spoke with a few actors in the election such as party chairmen and their candidates. Those I met sounded so sure of victory. They all claimed to have the best candidate and the largest support base. They were sure of victory. On the day INEC chairman Prof Attahiru Jega arrived the state, I joined other reporters to wait for him at the Benin Airport. His flight was delayed; so we waited a bit longer. It was a hot afternoon. He denied allegations that some observers were deliberately shut out from being accredited, and re-iterated his commitment to conducting a free and fair election. A major event a few days to the election was a stakeholders meeting, which turned out to be very dramatic. Governorship candidates of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) Governor Adams Oshiomhole and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Major Gen. Charles Airhiavbere tendered ‘evidences’ to back their concerns ahead of the election. Oshiohole had first surprised many when he urged the police to make use of their arms in securing voters and materials, saying the guns were not

‘It rained in parts of Edo, and some polling stations were rowdy. However, soldiers always responded to maintain law and order whenever the need arose. In some units, voters complained bitterly that their names were missing from the register. They were generally enthusiastic and aware of their rights’ From Joseph Jibueze, Benin

for “decoration”. He drew applause when he produced a sample of a fake INEC official tag. He walked over and handed it to INEC Chairman, who inspected it and declared it fake. Oshiomhole also alleged that a political party was producing fake voter’s cards. He then displayed a sample of the voter’s cards, which was shown to Jega, who confirmed that they were not genuine. Airhiavbere’s grouse was that it was not fair that Oshiomhole’s posters were in most of the places to be used as polling units. The PDP candidate then produced a Compact Disc which he said was a video evidence of Oshiomhole’s posters adorning such places. “I want to tender it as Exhibit One,” he said, as a lawyer addressing a judge in court would. This drew laughter from the audience. Airhiavbare also alleged that voter’s cards had been cloned. He laid emphasis on the word “clone” repeating it more than once. After the meeting, I went to the Police Headquarters to witness the InspectorGeneral of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubakar address officers and men deployed for the election. He warned them against aiding rigging in any form, saying any officer found wanting would face severe sanction. The warning seemed to have paid off, as there were no serious negative

• From second right: Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Ogun State Governor Ibikunle Amosun (left), Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi, Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola (SAN) and former Oyo State Governor Omololu Olunloyo at the funeral of Alhaja Sikirat Abeje Ajimobi in Ibadan yesterday.

reports against any police officer during the election. Hours later, it was in the news that he had been confirmed as the substantive IGP. Reporting an election build-up requires speaking to as many stakeholders as possible. After several attempts, I eventually booked an interview appointment with the Benin Branch Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Mr Razak Isenalumhe, who said 300 members of the NBA was part of the Project Swiftcount, sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), and the National Democratic Institute, Washington, USA. The presence of armed soldiers caused panic and anxiety among some residents, but they soon learned that the uniformed men were there in their interest. Happily, there were no reports of harassment or intimidation by soldiers. Newsmen faced some difficulty in getting accreditation for the election. Several journalists from within and outside the state had to wait for hours to be accredited. INEC apparently was not prepared for the number of reporters who sought accreditation. One national newspaper sent no fewer that eight reporters. On the election day, I was assigned to cover Edo Central Senatorial Zone along with other reporters. Notable individuals from the zone include PDP strongman Chief Anthony Anenih and Senator Osareamen Osunbor, who was removed by the Appeal Court as governor. We waited at their polling units to interview them and get their photographs as they voted. Food vendors and other hawkers made good business in Ekpoma, Irrua and Uromi. Political parties in the area provided canopies for voters. A voter, Mr. Emmanuel Agbai, said the provision of the canopies was a good idea as it provided shelter for those who came to vote. It rained in parts of Edo, and some polling stations were rowdy. However, soldiers always responded to maintain law and order whenever the need arose. In some units, voters complained bitterly that their names were missing from the register. They were generally enthusiastic and aware of their rights. Less than an hour after voting ended, news started filtering in that the ACN was leading by a clear margin in several units. More surprising was the news that Anenih and Airhiavbere lost in their units and wards. Nothing could have been better evidence that the election was largely credible, just as it was without major incidents. Collation of results lasted till past midnight in various centres, and again, soldiers were on hand to ensure that order was maintained. For instance, at the Oredo Collation Centre, there was a huge disagreement over figures. A crowd soon gathered, and soldiers had to shoot into the air to disperse them. Some alleged there was a plan to rig the result. As early as 5am on Sunday morning, reporters had started converging at the INEC headquarters for the final announcement. The hall used for the occasion soon filled up, but a TV monitor was placed at the lobby to transmit the result as it was announced. As widely expected, Oshiomole was declared the winner by the State Returning Officer, University of Benin Vice Chancellor Prof Osayuki Oshodin. Almost instantly, jubilation erupted all around the city. Women, children, the elderly and youths took to the streets, clutching brooms and dancing.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20 2012

45

COMMENTARY

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T is rather ironic that today’s world takes Muslims for the mirror through which Islam is perceived when the opposite is actually the case. Just as it is wrong to measure knowledge in an institution of learning by the quantity or quality of structures available therein so it is wrong to use Muslims as the mirror through which to see Islam in its avowed and naked nature. On the contrary, Islam is the mirror through which Muslims are supposed to be seen. Not the other way round. No reasonable person will blame the Nigerian constitution for the gross misbehaviour of some maleficent Nigerians abroad. Nigerian constitution is one thing the misbehaviour of Nigerians is another. The one is not and cannot be a corollary of the other. When this sacred religion was revealed to mankind through Prophet Muhammad (SAW) almost 1,500 years ago, it was with certain fundamental norms meant to guide humanity towards all that is virtuous. One of the embodiments of the values of Islam is the month of Ramadan in which all genuine Muslims rein themselves against satanic tendencies. That sacred month called Ramadan in which the revelation of the Qur’an began is here again. It was in this divine month that the last divine constitution with which to liberate humanity from the shackles of Satan was revealed. The real spiritual essence of Ramadan is to show mankind the right path to Paradise by guiding them through the transit called the world. The symbolic month is like a school in which Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was both the pioneer student and the pioneer teacher. All other students who went through this school or are still going through it are heirs to the forerunners. The duty of those heirs is to serve as shepherd for the wondering flock of the universe. This duty confirms man as Allah’s vicegerent on earth. Anyone who is in a position to serve as a shepherd but does otherwise has surely kicked against the rules of his creator. Ironically, most of those we perceive as shepherd in our society are worse than the lost sheep they are supposed to guide. For those who know and appreciate it the opportunity of rebirth provided by this sacred month has no duplicate. It is like a once in a while train which everyone should endeavour not to miss. Missing it is like missing a lifelong destiny. But will the recalcitrant ones heed the warning? With the arrival of Ramadan this year a scene of jamboree will take over most radio and television stations as usual, especially in the Southwest. Many pseudo Alfas will dust their gowns and turbans for the purpose of sharing from the annual largess which the sacred month comes with. Such pseudo Alfas who might have taken advantage of some ignorant Muslim money bags in the society by asking them to sponsor Ramadan preaching will begin to swarm on the airwaves like bees on a hive. With little or no knowledge at all, those pretenders will pose as learned scholars and start dishing out rubbish by arrogating to themselves the knowledge they do not possess. One of the characteristics of such ‘Alfas’ is to spend the first 10 minutes or thereabout singing the praises of their sponsors and chanting some irrelevant slogans even as they tell primordial stories which have neither roots nor bearing with Islam. Their trade in stock is to seek relevance by showing their faces on television or by airing their voices on radio just to be recognised as Alfas. Such are people who have no knowledge and do not seek it. Rather than guiding ignorant Muslims, they further mislead them. With this category of Alfas, all that matters is the money they want to make through deception as well as the cheap fame they want to gain. And, year in and out, this is their deed in the month of Ramadan. The impression they give is that Ramadan is an annual religion celebrated with fanfare only in the sacred month. The most embarrassing aspect of their action is the faulty recitation of the Qur’an and the shameless misinterpretation they give it. This on its own is not just an abuse of Ramadan but also a flagrant abuse of the Qur’an. Thus, they turn the sacred month into one of gross abuse of Islamic religion. What they do not understand is that the Qur’an in its original form is not just any book which any charlatan can dust up once in a year in order to fetch money for self. For

FEMI ABBAS ON Femabbas@yahoo.com 08122697498

Abuse of Ramadan

•National Mosque, Abuja

the learned, reading any book at all has a purpose and a method. No good reader will ever read a book without taking note of its author, its publisher and its date of publication. And to read any new book, the very first point of call is its contents which tell you the topics and the subjects you will read about in it. Then, to have an idea of the entire book in its summary form, before reading it, a good reader goes straight not only to the introduction to such a book but also to the foreword written on it. The combination of both will surely give the reader a pretty idea of what the book is all about. This is the shortest means of familiarising oneself with a new book before going through its chapters. Most Muslims read the Qur’an in its original language (Arabic) without understanding what they are reading because they do not speak that language. Some read it as a means of solving their imaginary problems thus taking the Qur’an for a charm which must yield result if manipulated towards their whims. The Qur’an is not meant for that purpose. It is rather the manual of life for man by which he lives his daily life and conducts his daily affairs. The word Qur’an means continuous recitation and understanding. It is so called because of its inimitable origin which makes it a compelling daily reading throughout the world, across nations and ages. It is the unsurpassable word of Allah not only in the grandeur of its diction and splendour of its rendition but also in the depth of its meaning, substance and profundity. The revelation of this Book to mankind through an unlettered desert Arab, Muhammad son

of Abdullah and Aminah, began in the month of Ramadan in year 610 CE. It lasted 23 years (10 years in Makkah and 13 years in Madinah). The book contains 114 chapters and 6,236 verses (not 6666 verses often announced by most Imams and Alfas). Any individual can verify this by checking the number of verses in each chapter and adding them together. It does not take more than one hour to do this. Of the 114 chapters contained in the Qur’an, 86 were revealed in Makkah and 28 in Madinah. But the 28 chapters revealed in Madinah constitute two thirds of the Book. And this is because the Makkah chapters are short and rhythmic while those of Madinah are long and prose-like. Although the Qur’an was revealed orally, its writing began almost immediately the revelations started. The writing was, however, done on primitive materials like wood, animal hides, back of trees and others of the like which were then readily available. It was only much later, after the demise of Prophet Muhammad (SAW), that those writings were brought together and rendered into a book form. And one of the wonders of recording the Qur’an in writing is the classification of those revelations into chapters and verses by the Prophet himself despite his illiteracy. The manner of presenting the Qur’anic revelations is simple and direct. It employs neither artifice nor conventional poses. Its main appeal is to man’s intellect, feelings and imagination. It does not only touch the anecdotes of the past Prophets in different ages and nations as well as the accounts of earlier revelations, it also

‘The Qur’an is not meant for that purpose. It is rather the manual of life for man by which he lives his daily life and conducts his daily affairs. The word Qur’an means continuous recitation and understanding. It is so called because of its inimitable origin which makes it a compelling daily reading throughout the world, across nations and ages. It is the unsurpassable word of Allah not only in the grandeur of its diction and splendour of its rendition but also in the depth of its meaning, substance and profundity’

covers the period from the beginning of creation to the very last Day of Judgment and beyond. Not only that, Al-Qur’an also gives insight into some natural phenomena like sphericity and revolution of the earth (Q. 39:5) the formation of rain (Q. 30:48); the fertilisation of the wind (Q. 15:22); the revolution of the sun, the moon and the planets in their fixed orbit (Q. 36:29-38); the aquatic origin of all creatures (Q. 21:30); the duality of the sex of plants and other creatures (Q. 36:35); the collective life of animals (Q.6:38); the mode of life of the bees (Q. 16:69) and the successive phases of the child in the mother’s womb (Q. 22:5 & 23:14). Yet, the purpose of this Book is not to teach history, astronomy, philosophy or sciences. The details of these will be spelt out fully after Ramadan under a theme to be called ‘ANATOMY OF THE QUR’AN’ in sha’Allah. Meanwhile, there is a raging controversy among Muslim scholars over the first and last revelations in the Qur’an. Much as this controversy is unwarranted, it may be necessary to clear the coast here (without laying any claim to authority) if only for the purpose of authenticating history. It is almost a consensus that the first revealed chapter in the Qur’an is Suratul ‘Alaq (Chapter of the Clot). But the very first revelation reaching Prophet Muhammad (SAW) through Angel Jubril is ‘BASMALAH’ (In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful) which precedes every chapter in the Qur’an except one. As a Messenger of Allah to another Messenger of Allah, Angel Jubril couldn’t have commanded Prophet Muhammad (SAW) to read anything without doing so in the name of Allah who sent him with the message. Thus, Suratul ‘Alaq, as preceded by ‘BASMALAH’, could only have been the first revealed chapter but not the first revelation. And that is logical. As for the last revelation in the Qur’an, majority of Nigerian Muslim scholars believe that it is chapter 5, verse 3 of the Qur’an which says: ‘’Today, I have perfected your religion for you and completed my favour on you. And, I am pleased with Islam as your religion’’. That verse of the Qur’an that was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (SAW) at ‘Arafah while performing his farewell Hajj couldn’t have the last revelation. It came 81 days before the demise of the Prophet (SAW). And there was another revelation, thereafter, which came about nine days before the Prophet fell sick and died. This can be found in Qur’an 2: 281 which says: “And fear the day when you shall all return to Allah; the day when every soul shall be requited according to its desert and none shall be wronged”. The earlier verse was an accentuation of Hajj as the last pillar of Islam. And that was why it came on Arafah Day. The latter is a reminder of man’s final destiny and the account of his worldly activities. These and many more are what readers of the Qur’an should know inside out. But the big question is this: who will teach them when the supposed teachers have sold out to money? To Muslims who are conscious of their spiritual affinity and retain their conscience for the day they will meet their Creator and account for their deeds ‘The Message’ says RAMADAN KARIM!

Ramadan Guide

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HIS week, the great month of Ramadan will be here with its natural splendour and glamour in sha’ Allah. And as usual, ‘THE MESSAGE’ will serve you with most of what you should know about that blessed month and Islam generally on a DAILY basis. The 2 x 3 inch column will however require sponsorship. Readers are hereby invited to singularly or jointly sponsor it either as gratitude to Allah for sparing your life to witness another Ramadan month or as a way of seeking Allah’s forgiveness for the dear ones lost to death or even as a tacit contribution to human knowledge. Sponsorship may also be done in respect of this column during Ramadan as a form of advertisement for a legitimate business as the sponsor’s name or trademark will be published in the column. Trust ‘THE MESSAGE’. Justice will be done in sha’ Allah. Please contact this columnist with the usual telephone number if you are interested.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

46

NEWS SEGUN OLUSOLA (1935-2012)

‘Adieu Ambassador Segun Olusola, my mentor’ Elder Taiye Ayorinde JP, Baale Ekotedo of Ibadan and S a former staff of Nigeria Television Authority (NTA),

EGUN Olusola’s sudden demise hit me like a meteorite or maybe a thunder bolt. He played a big part at the book launch of my father’s biography Abokede written by Steve Ayorinde. I have not yet recovered thinking and dreaming about this ‘grand village headmaster’s’ travel to higher glory. We were born in the same year, the same month and the same week with a day in-between. We became friends since the fifties when I was the founder of the Nigerian Theatre Group with late Chief Wale Ogunyemi (writer of the Langbodo fame) as my secretary. He suggested that I should join the University of Ibadan Operatic Society and made Segun Sofowote and I to participate in the “Players Of The Dawn” theatre play entitled Dear Parent and Orger. Once again, thanks to Segun Olusola’s recommendation to Vincent Maduka being the Head of Drama Department. On the wall of my office, you will read: “It takes madness to work here.” How can you be working on drama programmes or writing all sorts of scripts for The Village Headmaster, which Segun Olusola created, or producing and directing the programmes without knowing how to be mad and be sane at the same time? It is also not possible for you to produce drama programmes, which can arrest the attention of the public without injecting a bit of qualified madness. The following people got injected with madness syndrome from Segun Olusola being the producer/director emeritus. Take for instance, Tunde Oloyede and his play entitled Me and Telephone; it was a beautiful and hilarious 30-minute TV programme by one man. A voice on the other hand and the actor/producer. In fact, it was madness personified; fighting with telephone just ringing. The other mad play was The Night Marauder. This particular programme showed Segun Olusola as someone who was very much alive with current affairs whilst still entertaining. At one of the weekly production programmes meetings, he sought for solution to the incessant armed robbery in the country. The result ended in research as to where the husbands of those Niger women beggars with children at petrol stations used to hide during the day. The result was a fantastic revelation since the research involving police personnel ended in the discovery of the midnight armed robbers. That episode of The Village Headmaster made the Police, the Immigration and members of the public to be alive to their responsibilities and the illegal immigrants had to leave Nigeria. This shows that it is wrong to as-

writes in memory of the late Chief Segun Olusola

AREF founder for burial today By Ozolua Uhakheme Assistant Editor (Arts)

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NE month after he died at the age of 77, the remains of the creator of the popular but rested television drama, The Village Headmaster, the late Ambassador Segun Olusola will be interred at his Iperu home in Ogun State today. A short memorial service will precede the interment. A wake-keep was held yesterday at his residence in Iperu. Earlier on Monday, series of cultural activities were held at the National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos in celebration of the culture icon. They include art and craft exhibition, open air musical jamboree and film show. Olusola, born in Iperu-Remo, Ogun State on March 18, 1935 was the Chairman of African Refugees Foundation. He attended St. John’s Catholic School and Wesley School, IperuRemo from 1941 to 1947. He did his secondary school education at Remo Secondary School, Sagamu between 1941 and 1947. He proceeded to the United States of America for his university education - between 1948 and 1961, where he attended Syracuse and Pittsburgh University.

sume that Segun Olusola was all drama, drama, drama, but also a good journalist and good leader. Leadership There were occasions he recommended that a rascally staff be reformed instead of being sacked. As a natural leader and not a boss, he was very accommodating. As a leader, he would listen not only to the first person to report a quarrel; he would listen to both sides. Listen to the subordinates and colleagues. He was a leader that led not by what he said but also by action and physical example. Is this what we have in the government today? Chief Segun Olusola was very close to my father who most people remembered as a cultural icon. I have not quite recovered from the rude shock that my childhood friend, my in-law, my boss, my leader and most of all my benefactor should just go like this without notice. He never used to go anywhere without invitation or a necessity to; it is not in his

•The late Olusola

character to leave without notice. It took me some time to know that dear Ambassador Segun Olusola was an in-law from the same clan as the late Chief Dapo Soyege (husband to my immediate junior twin sister). He was ever so diplomatic before becoming a diplomat. When Western Nigeria Television (WNTV) was commissioned in 1959, he did not mince words to suggest to Mr. Black and Uncle Steve Rhodes that the first group to be aired on the programme Teevee Teen Group was my Nigerian Theatre Group. He was a good talent spotter and producer. He had his own idea that death would come when it would; he would never show any outlandish emotion. He was never afraid about death but thoughful about those left behind. When General Muritala Mohammed was assassinated, he called four of us to a very serious and electrifying meeting; Mr. Tunde Oloyede, Mrs. Bimbo RobertsOloyede, Bayo Awala and myself, being the Head of Drama.

The output of the daily programme for seven days was an elegy. A programme where certain parts of special verses of bishopric Jerusalem Bible were recited with 21 professional mourners and criers sitting in black clothes around a bed brought into the studio. The general’s photograph was also well-displayed on the bed made for a king. For seven days, most of the audience that watched the highly emotional programme cried for Nigeria. That was Segun Olusola for you in action as a leader and producer emeritus. But Segun Olusola would not want anyone to cry at his funeral. He would rather wish for pure celebration of his life with music, dance, poetry etc. but please no crying. That was his conclusion when we were discussing my book titled At my funeral. To know Segun Olusola was to know someone who abhors illogical thinking and irrational behaviour. He could not be found to display any form of lassitude and attitude. He was an ever-ready charged battery; full of

ideas to help and to build but hated any form of lick spittle leadership and ‘yes sir’ people. To Olusola, to be weak and cowardly is a sign of underdeveloped mind. Hence, he had people like Oba Sanya Dosumu, the Olowu Amororo of Owu as producer/director per excellence, Oba Segun Akinbola – a creative vault, the late Oba Wole Amele – Councillor Balogun – rabble rouser, Dejumo Lewis – the Kabiyesi (but actually a producer/director), the late Oba Funso Adeolu – the cantankerous Second-In-Command to Kabiyesi. Femi Robinson – the village headmaster who will not stand any bully or footle; Jab Adu – father of them all whose madness in creativity was tremendously appreciated by all; Ted Mukuro – the first rigid village headmaster; ever Ibidun Allison – the Royal College of Arts-trained dramatist turned super gossiper; Amebo, the late Elsie Olusola – the genius wife of a genius, who represented the position of women in The Village Headmaster. She was like Mrs. Ransome Kuti in the programme yet a sewing mistress. Of course, he had me as the enigma head of drama and producer/director. There was need for someone to be recommended to the Ministry of External Affairs from NTA to be in the committee of the non-aligned countries. Engineer Vincent Maduka simply sent for me saying your manager of programmes has recommended that you and Adamu Augie attend the meetings of the non-aligned countries on Information and Broadcasting. “You should go to the admin department and make two booking for the two of you. Do not let the country down.” Ambassador Segun Olusola did not inform me of his recommendation until the Director-General did. He was my mentor in many ways. I might not have had the impetus to rise to the occasion by becoming the chairman of the group of experts (sub-committee) for the non-aligned countries on information and broadcasting. To my friend, my leader, my producer director, Emeritus Ambassador Segun Olusola, I say adieu. If you meet Senator Adamu Augie and other members of The Village Headmaster cast, please hug each other and pray for Nigeria. To my benefactor, arts connoisseur, good father of his children, friend to the honest and patriotic, a traditionalist and cultural icon, hater of thieves and vagabonds, man who abhors treasury looters –good night till we meet again.

Live on immortal Village Headmaster, a great Nationalist

N

EVER say, die! Say, never die! Never say, die! Say, live-on! Never say, die! Say, immortality! Ambassador Chief Segun Olusola, m.n.i., CFR, has immortalised himself in his life, times and works! He now lives-on like life itself! His physical structure might well have been less than that of a baby elephant, with his outstanding name, reputation, fame and a plethora of lasting accomplishments and enduring legacies, Oluseola has surely become a very big elephant! He lives-on, towering over and above his compatriots in anything and everything he has been involved in! From school, Segun Olusola had been a Literary Star, stepping-out thereafter to become the first Nigerian, indeed, African Television Producer, and putting on an indelible stamp on his television drama creation of The Village Headmaster. It is on record that he even went out of his way to organise a life-saving campaign to forestall High-Chief

By Dejumo Lewis

Dokpesi’s African Independent Television (AIT) from a vicious proscription. Olusola lives-on as Mr African Television! He may not have been a career diplomat, he definitely made a big difference in International Relations, and took Intercultural Diplomacy to its Highest Pedestal – like no one before him had ever done! African Refugee Foundation (AREF), testifies uniquely and vividly to his concern, care and sacrifices for the displaced, the denied and the impoverished, occasioned generally by corrupt leadership, greed, misgovernance and unwarranted belligerence of African politicians, in agbada and khaki. Olusola lives-on today as one of the very few exemplary African leaders. His philanthropic mentoring services straddle across humanity! Not known for partisan politics or as a businessman, his nationalistic spirit and endeavours clearly outshine

Is Segun Olusola allvirtues, no weakness? Habbah! He has quite a few. I know of one which, ironically, is in his most remarkable virtue: trust in people! Olusola would trust everybody and anybody! He would seem to have a penchant for trusting in more crooks, opportunists and sycophants than honest people

those of other Nigerian politicians and businessmen, all put together! Olusola lives-on as a Great Nationalist!

Above all, despite qualitative western education and imposed neocolonial cultural system of life, culture constitutes his life, and arts his passion. He has been an all-round Professional-Per-Excellence, yet he has lived a thorough indigenous traditional chieftain life, in all its ramifications! Olusola lives-on as Ogbeni Kulture! On a personal note, Olusola instrumentally made me! Directly, he was my major mentor in Television Broadcasting, and through his dramatic creation of The Village Headmaster, he remotely accorded me the needed opportunity in 1968 to distinguish myself in professional acting, in which I became an instant celebrity from age 25 years. Segun Olusola lives-on in all his legacies, products, mentees, clients, beneficiaries, admirers and, indeed, in most Nigerians, African and entire Humanity! Is Segun Olusola all-virtues, no weakness? Habbah! He has quite a few. I know of one which, ironically,

is in his most remarkable virtue: trust in people! Olusola would trust everybody and anybody! He would seem to have a penchant for trusting in more crooks, opportunists and sycophants than honest people! The honest ones share truly in his wholesome ideologies and projects, and genuinely contribute to his humanitarian services; the crooks and opportunists generously exploit his good and kind forebearance to their own advantage only, and would gladly let him down when it matters most to him to have their loyalty and support! I know of many loyalists who have consistently reciprocated his goodness to them, as well as the crooks and dupes who have persistently proven to be of the highest dis-service to him. Yet, Olusola lives-on as a Man of Truth, Peace, Trust, Honour and Integrity! Live on Ambassador Chief Segun Olusola, m.n.i., CFR. Like life itself, forever! •Lewis is a communicator, broadcaster, producer/director and actor.


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EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 19-7-12

Key indicators respond to profit taken T the close of busiN1.327 billion while pressure worth ness on Thursday, the the Conglomerates, Oil &

A

key indicators of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) closed southwards after a few days of consistent appreciation. They both reduced their value by 0.8 per cent each. The All-Share-Index dropped 179.09 points to close at 23,098.21 points while market capitalisation shed N57 billion to close at N7.374 trillion. Specifically, market operators speculated that the drop on the key indicators can only be attributed to fatigue trading which was informed by profit taken, by speculators in the market. The bullish rally in the banking sector started to wane yesterday; some profit taking trimmed off 2.6 per cent and 1.2 per cent from First Bank and Zenith Bank. Also heading south were UBA, Skye Bank and FCMB. On the flip side, Access Bank, Stanbic-IBTC and GTBank were divergent to the trend, rallying with gains of 2.3 per cent, 1.2 per cent and 0.6 per

By Taofik Salako and Tonia Osundolire

cent. In the building materials sector, Dangote Cement tumbled, shedding 2.2 per cent; In the same vein, CCNN shed full points. On the other hand, demand for Lafarge Wapco remained strong, though recording no change, as it traded less than 50,000 units. In other sectors, Conoil consolidated on previous gains with a 5.0 per cent mark-up; also on the up-tick were Eterna Oil, Dangote Sugar and Okomu Oil booking gains in excess of 4.0 per cent apiece. However, investors traded 411.974 million shares worth N3.175 billion across 4,694 deals. Financial Services sector as usual led the list of activities with 350.398 million shares worth N1.713 billion across 2,938 deals. The Consumer Goods sector followed at a distance with 27.826 million shares

Gas, Industrial Goods and Construction/Real Estate with 20.091 million shares, 4.339 million shares, 3.20 million shares and 2.194 million shares. A total of 47 equities recorded price change with 21 appreciating while the remaining 26 of them reduced in value. UAC-Property led the losers table with a price drop of N0.49 to close at N9.36 followed by Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN) with a drop of N0.22 to close at N4.25. Others on the table were Avon Crown, FCMB, Mobil, Longman, Japaul Oil, Skye Bank, Flourmills and UBA with price drop of N0.12, N0.16, N6.00, N0.10, N0.03, N0.14, N2.50 and N0.20 respectively. On the gainers side, Conoil led the gainers table with an increase of N1.13 to close at N23.76 followed by Dangote Sugar with a price gain of N0.21 to close at N4.53. Also on the table were Okomu Oil, Eterna Oil, May & Baker, AG Leventist, Air Services, Royal Exchange, Custodian and Allied Insurance and Access Bank with price gain of N1.38, N0.13, N0.08, N0.04, N0.06, N0.02, N0.05 and N0.18 respectively.

NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 19-7-12


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

55

MONEY LINK

Money in circulation down by N35b

C

URRENCY in circula tion has dropped by 2.5 per cent to N1.363 trillion in June this year, as against N1.398trillion it was in May, data obtained by The Nation has shown. The latest money and credit statistics obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), indicated that the money in circulation fell by N35.2billion. The same sce-

By Akinola Ajibade

nario played out earlier at the opening of the second quarter, when the currency in circulation fell from N1.398 trillion to N1.422 trillion in April, representing a decrease of 1.6 per cent. The CBN’s economic indicator also showed that broad money supply fell by 0.8 per cent to N13.483 trillion in

development to the decision of the apex bank to mop up funds in the financial market through the issuance of fixed-income securities like Treasury Bills (TBs). A stock market analyst, Dr Olusola Dada, said concurrent fall in the money in circulation and the broad money supply in the past few months, is a good development for the economy,

June, as against N13.6.603 trillion recorded in May. The data indicated that total money and close substitutes, such as cheques in circulation went down by N119.7 billion. Similarly, broad money went down by N298billion in May when its stood at N13.603trillion as against N13.304 trillion in April. Analysts have ascribed the

CBN to rate banks’ performance on agric funding

T

HE Central Bank of Ni geria (CBN) is consid ering an intensive performance rating for all commercial banks to determine their effectiveness of lending to agriculture. To achieve this, the apex bank has set aside, N1.5 billion, out of the N75 allocated for the full implementation of the Nigeria Incentive-based Risk Sharing System for Ag-

By Collins Nweze

ricultural Lending (NIRSAL) project. Speaking yesterday at the ongoing Annual Workshop for Finance Correspondents and Editors holding in Akure, Ondo State, CBN Director, Development Finance Department, Paul Eluhaiwe said rating of the banks is one of the strategic

measures being taken by the apex bank to stimulate lending to the sector. According to him, the NIRSAL objective is to derisk agriculture finance value chain, build long term capacity and instituionalise incentives for agricultural lending. He explained that potential lenders include traditional banks, microfinance institu-

tions, trade finance providers, asset managers, and private equity funds. Credit to the sector could also come as a loan portfolio, a loan, a bond or in some cases, a specific commitment letter. He said that NIRSAL Credit Risk Guarantee range from 30 per cent to 75 per cent and could be loan principal, or loan principal and interest payments.

Customers react to Fidelity Bank’s products’ mix

S

OME customers of Fi delity Bank Plc have expressed shock over the upward review of opening and closing balances in two of its products- FPSS Corporate Account, and FCA+ Corporate Account. The bank, had through an internal memo, said it has increased the opening fees of FPSS Corporate Account from N250,000 to N2.5 million as part of its growth strategies. Also, it limited withdrawals from the accounts, while providing

By Akinola Ajibade

sanctions where necessary for customers who violated the new rules. Affected customers who have been notified on the development, told The Nation that the measure is against the spirit that informed the creation of the product, saying the action is tantamount to asking them to close their accounts with the bank and move elsewhere. “As small scale businesses, we embraced the products as we felt

it would assist us manage our cash flow, considering the attendant benefits,” one electronics dealer, said. He said even if the bank reverses itself, “as we are being told by our Account Officers,” by reducing the opening fees of FCA+ Corporate Account from N2.5million to N1million and FCA+ Individual Account to N500,000, it would still not meet our expectation, he stated, adding that they would close their accounts and move to other banks where they hope to get improved benefits.

“We are not Bill Gates and therefore cannot leave such huge balances as reserves in our accounts.” Reacting to the development, an official of the bank who spoke under cover, said the bank has reduced the fees for the accounts in response to customers’ reactions. He said suggestions were made to the management based on the reactions from the customers, adding that the bank has responded appropriately by reducing the margins.

FGN BONDS 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

Price Loss 2754.67 447.80

INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%

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 19-7-12 SYMBOL

CONOIL DANGSUGAR OKOMUOIL ETERNA MAYBAKER AGLEVENT AIRSERVICE ROYALEX CUSTODYINS ACCESS

O/PRICE

22.63 4.32 28.52 2.76 1.72 0.88 1.59 0.54 1.45 7.70

C/PRICE

23.76 4.53 29.90 2.89 1.80 0.92 1.65 0.56 1.50 7.88

C/PRICE 9.36 4.25 2.42 3.32 125.00 2.09 0.63 3.05 54.50 4.40

K

ANO State is to col laborate with Jaiz Bank, an Islamic entity to reap the benefits of Non-Interest Banking (NIB), the Governor, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, has said. While speaking when the Board of Directors of the bank, led by its, Chairman, Dr Umaru Abdul Mutallab, visited him at Government House, he said the state is looking forward to partnering with the bank for the mutual benefit of all. Responding, Mutallab, noted that Kano, being a strategic and commercial nerve centre in the North, is important to the bank, hence its plan to open about five branches in the state, to harness the business and eco-

From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano

nomic fortunes therein. “Kano State is among the first states we are visiting due to its economic and strategic importance to establish regional branches, so as to disabuse the minds of those with negative thoughts about Islamic banking by sensitising them on what it is all about. Islamic Banking is not a religious bank but a bank that lends money without interest,” he stated. “Our vision is to be a dominant non-interest financial service provider in Sub-Saharan Africa, where we will create value for our shareholders, making a lasting positive contribution to the society,” he added.

CHANGE 0.49 0.22 0.12 0.16 6.00 0.10 0.03 0.14 2.50 0.20

Exchange Rate (N) 155.2 155.8 155.7

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

CAPITAL MARKET INDEX Year Start Offer

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

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 WINDOW Feb. ’11

July ’11

Dec ’11

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% 12.6%

NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days

NSE CAP Index

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

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%

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

% Change -1.44% -1.44%

MEMORANDUM QUOTATIONS Name

CHANGE

1.13 0.21 1.38 0.13 0.08 0.04 0.06 0.02 0.05 0.18

Amount Sold ($) 150m 138m 113m

EXHANGE RATE 6-03-12

LOSERS AS AT 19-7-12

SYMBOL O/PRICE UAC-PROP 9.85 CCNN 4.47 AVONCROWN 2.54 FCMB 3.48 MOBIL 131.00 LONGMAN 2.19 JAPAULOIL 0.66 SKYEBANK 3.19 FLOURMILL 57.00 UBA 4.60

Kano to partner Jaiz Bank

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

Currency OBB Rate Call Rate

money in circulation, would stimulate economic growth, adding that sectors that have become dormant due to the ever falling purchasing power of Nigerians would be revived.

WHOLESALE DUTCH AUCTION SYSTEM

MANAGED FUNDS

NIDF NESF

• Sanusi

DATA BANK

Tenor

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

stressing that the momentum must be sustained if the government is to achieve its goals of providing a stable and stronger macro-economic system. He said the high rate of inflation has spiral effects on economic operators, arguing that many Nigerians stand to benefit when the year-onyear inflationary rates come down. He said when the prices of goods and services decline steeply, the purchasing power of people would be enhanced. Also, the former President, Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), Dr Samuel Nzekwe, said the persistent fall in the

Offer Price

Bid Price

ARM AGGRESSIVE 9.17 KAKAWA GUARANTEED 1.00 STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE 122.68 AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND 105.51 LOTUS CAPITAL HALAL 0.74 BGL SAPPHIRE FUND 1.09 BGL NUBIAN FUND 0.95 NIGERIA INTERNATIONAL DEB. 1,713.35 PARAMOUNT EQUITY FUND 8.95 CONTINENTAL UNIT TRUST 1.39 CENTRE-POINT UNIT TRUST 1.87 STANBIC IBTC NIG EQUITY 8,031.97 THE DISCOVERY FUND 193.00 FIDELITY NIGFUND 1.67 • ARM AGGRESSIVE • KAKAWA GUARANTEED • STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE • AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND

9.08 1.00 122.54 105.46 0.72 1.09 0.93 1,712.68 8.51 1.33 1.80 7,818.56 191.08 1.62

Movement

OPEN BUY BACK

Bank P/Court

Previous 04 July, 2011

Current 07, Aug, 2011

8.5000 8.0833

8.5000 8.0833

Movement


56

THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS House wields impeachment axe Continued from page 2

He said: “Set revenue from non-oil sector was N767.4billion but N576billion has so far been generated, meaning that there is no shortfall. This information is from the FIRS. “The FIRS has 25 percent increment in its budgeted generated revenue and just from five items. As at this moment, from January, the agency has generated N2.43 trillion as against a target of N1.81 trillion which means that it has a surplus of N620b.” The Personal Income Tax yielded N1.59 or 65 percent above set target, Company Income Tax grossed N476billion amounting to 17 percent and Value Added Tax (VAT) grossed N349billion amounting to 14 per cent, he said The Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), he added, generated N313.9billion between January and May against its set target of N363billion leaving a shortfall of N49billion. “However, the Customs made up for that shortfall from levies as it grossed N127billion against its set target of N64.8billion. “In total, the Customs has been able to generate N426billion between January and May from a total of N820billion and I am optimistic that they will double that before the year ends”. According to Jubrin, against claims that the government has stopped granting waivers, documents showed that waivers have been granted consistently at the tune of about N2billion monthly, “but in the month of May alone, N139billion waiver was granted” He said records showed that the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has so far generated N468billion as against N307billion leaving a healthy surplus behind.

Jubrin knocked the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for non-disclosure of its accounts despite all entreaties. Saying that there was no reason to declare that the economy is on the brink of collapse, Jubrin said crude oil has never sold below the $72 benchmark while the country has not produced below its approved quota. He berated the NNPC and related agencies for not disclosing the actual number of barrels of crude oil stolen daily. Blaming the Ministry of Finance for not making funds available for revenue generating agencies, he cited the Customs which was supposed to retain seven percent of its earnings for its operations, but gets nothing. He said: “Once the Customs remits the money to the Ministry, it does not get anything back. The Service has not got anything for its operations this year.” He said N446billion had so far been borrowed from a total of N744billion, adding: “What is the use of borrowing when the budget has not been implemented , it seems some people are determined to put in our psyche that we don’t have money in this country? “It is just not fair, we have so many resources to raise and finance our budget and this is a statement of fact based on available facts. Even as NNPC refuses to present its papers, we found out from other documents that the economy has been improving. “I think we are only left with one option and that is to compel the executive to implement the budget in accordance with the Appropriation Act.” Kingsley Chinda (PDP, Rivers), Deputy Chairman, Committee on Customs and Excise, said Customs had generated

N90billion by June against its N68billion target, “but yet it is starved of funds by the government.” Chairman, Petroleum (Upstream) (PDP, Oyo) Muraina Ajibola said the country has never fallen below 2.48 million barrels per day production . Bassey Ewa (PDP, Cross River) said despite the Central Bank’s denial of existence of secret accounts, his committee is on the verge of exposing those involved. Adeyinka Ajayi (ACN, Osun) faulted the Debt Management Office (DMO) on how it manages the country’s debt. The DMO has mopped up so much money that many MDAs a left without funds, adding that against norms, DMO mops up fund monthly rather than wait till the when the deficit is required to be financed. According to him, N30billion has been borrowed from external sources, N350billion internally and N400billion for refinancing. “The way we borrow and the way the budget is being implemented is a disservice to the economy. Ozomgbachi said there was no road anywhere in the country where appreciable intervention has been made by the government. He said the government recently released funds for the first and second quarters contrary to Section 6 of the Appropriation Act which mandates the Minister of Finance to release funds to MDAs as when due. Accusing the Minister of violating the Constitution, he said there was no need for the second prayer of the motion that an ad hoc committee should be constituted to liaise with the Executive to ascertain the facts behind the negative budget implementation. “When we passed the law, it

Resident-settlers safe, Igbo traders assure Hausa, Yoruba communities

R

•Tambuwal

is to meet the aspirations of Nigerians,”he said. Ndudi Elumelu (PDP, Delta), Chairman, Health Committee regretted that the MDAs found it rather convenient to implement budgets according to proposals and not by the Appropriation Act. “In health, there is nothing to oversight because the agencies are not following the law, monies were released and spent according to the proposals they presented to us and not by what was passed into law”. Chairman, Defence Committee Bashir Adamu (PDP, Jigawa) said despite huge funds allocated to Defence, much cannot be achieved, adding that there is illegality in spending in the sector. He said extra-budgetary spending was rife in the sector, “but there appears to be a seeming attempt in that sector to disregard what the National Assembly is doing. We should not be lamenting, instead we should try and assert our constitutional powers.” Adamu lamented conditions in military barracks across the country. Chairman, Water Resources, Aliyu Pategi (PDP, Kwara) said three dam projects took about 80 percent of the ministry’s N6billion budget.

Oteh unfit to be SEC DG, say lawmakers Continued from page 2

ter demand the special Examination Report upon which the intervention in the 8 Banks in August 2009 was based. •That the CBN’s action in disbursing N620Billion bailout funds and other intervention funds afterwards did not follow due process of law and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as the source of funds and the appropriate authority did not approve. •It is further recommended “that in future any bailout plan for the Capital market or financial sector should receive appropriate authorization and should be done after a comprehensive and transparent determination and location of the beneficiaries, borrowers, lenders and relevant collateral provided. •That the CBN and SEC should produce clear guidelines on margin facilities and related transactions without further delay. •That to restore investor confidence, SEC should overhaul its regulatory framework, and build requisite technical capacity to enable it tighten regulation on malpractices by market operators. •That considering the high dependence of the Nigerian Capital Market on foreign investors, and in view of the fact that they were able to pull $15 Billion out of the Nigerian Capital Market, the CBN, SEC,

the Debt Management Office, Federal Ministry of Finance, the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investments are hereby requested to produce guidelines and a national policy that should govern the entry, operation and exit of foreign portfolio investments in Nigeria. •That in view of the need to reduce the cost of doing business in the Nigerian Capital Market to increase its competitiveness, it is hereby recommended that the SEC and the NSE should be directed to ensure that transaction Fees do not exceed 6% down from the current high level of 12% and that brokerage commissions should not be more than 35% of the Transaction Fees, currently at above 50per cent. •That CBN and the Federal Ministry, of Finance should henceforth, ensure the harmonization of Nigeria’s monetary and fiscal policy. An accountability framework to hold the CBN responsible for financial system’s instability should be put in place by relevant authorities. •That SEC is hereby requested to conclude disciplinary actions on all outstanding market infractions that has remained so for more than two months; and report back to the House within 30days of the adoption of this report. •That the Securities and Exchange Commission should take appropriate steps within its statutory relationship with

the NSE to increase product variety in other to boost liquidity, encourage’ listing incentives, and desist from delisting of companies without thorough scrutiny. •That engagement of Access Bank staff by SEC on Secondment to SEC which regulates the Bank is unethical and may erode investor confidence and they should immediately be disengaged. •That to further restore investor confidence, SEC should immediately disengage from its intervention in the Council of NSE, and remove its nominees on the NSE Council. •That Project 50 activities of SEC which appears to lack transparency and accountability be further investigated by EFCC and ICPC to determine whether infractions and possible fraud had taken place. •That in view of the breakdown of corporate governance in SEC, leading to total collapse of cooperation and coordination within its Board and top management and since the tenure of thefBoard has expired, top management of SEC should be relieved of theirs duties so as to give the capital market an opportunity of credible regulation through appointment of a neutral Board and top management that will regain the confidence of investors. •That the following persons be further investigated by the House on account of their role in the banking sector crisis that

led the CBN to intervene in 8 Banks in August, 2009: i. Charles Chukwuma Soludo; Fomer Governor, CBN; ii. Ignatius Imala; Former Director, Banking Supervision, CBN iii. Tunde” Lemo, Deputy Governor in charge bf Banking Supervision. •That the appointment of Ms Arunma Oteh be terminated forthwith as DG of SEC as her appointment is in violation of Section 3(2) a and Section 38 (1) (b), 2 and 3; Section 315 of the ISA 2007 in that she did not have 15 years experience in the Nigerian Capital Market as required; she has shown incompetence in the management of human and material resources at her disposal in SEC; lack of transparency in managing project 50, regulatory failure in some of the recent mergers, acquisitions and approvals of transactions by SEC and general inability to carry along her staff, Board, and Management in decision making in SEC, and questionable staff recruitment policies. •That the Governor of the CBN, the Deputy Governors of the CBN, Directors of the CBN, the DG, SEC, Commissioners, Board members of both CBN and SEC should be subject to a code of conduct which has appropriate penalties for regulatory failures, while officials should be rewarded for outstanding performance.

ESIDENT-SETTLERS, especially the Hausa and Yoruba in Onitsha, Anambra State, have nothing to fear their host –Igbo traders at the Bridgehead Market have assured. The traders noted that the state government was committed to the welfare of all Nigerians, particularly, those doing business in the state, irrespective of their religious or ethnic background. Given the assurance during a solidarity visit to the Moslem community in Onitsha, the leader of the traders, Sir Peter Okala, said that the ongoing road construction that affected some shops in the market was in the interest of the general public and should not be seen as tribally or religiously motivated. He noted that the Igbo traders have always considered the Yoruba and Hausa as their brothers and will continue to ensure that they are not discriminated against or thrown into panic. He said: “We want to assure you that the state government is committed to your welfare, the governor is a man that has listening ears and is aware of the challenges thrown up by the ongoing construction and he has taken steps to ease the pains but we urge you to co-

From Okodili Ndidi, Onitsha

operate with the government in achieving a safer and cleaner environment in Onitsha.” He also commended the government for resolving the near crisis situation that was building up in the market as a result of the ongoing rehabilitation. Okala stated that all stakeholders have some form of sacrifice to make to give the commercial city a facelift. Noting that development has its cost, he said: We cannot say because of the pains accompanying the construction that the road should be abandoned for temporary relief. “I think the long term benefit of the project will impact on the residents, especially the business community”, he said. Responding on behalf of the Moslem community, Alhaji Habib Farouk, maintained that the settlers have conducted their businesses legitimately in line with the directives of relevant agencies in the state. According to him, members of his group would not engage in muscle flexing with the government but will relocate to a suitable alternative is provided by the government.

Anambra gets ambulances, hospital equipment

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HE stage looked set yesterday for the expansion of healthcare delivery in Anambra State as the government took delivery of three ambulances and medical equipment worth several millions of naira. It was learnt that the facilities, brought in two trucks and received by Governor Peter Obi at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia, near Awka, were donated by the Emma-Bishop Okonkwo Foundation. The benefitting hospitals are St. Charles Borromeo Specialist Hospital in Onitsha, Nnamdi Azikiwe Teaching Hospital in Nnewi and IyiEnu Hospital in Ogidi, Idemili North Local Government Area. In addition to the equipment, the Okonkwo Foundation also promised to donate an ambulance and more medical tools to the state Teaching Hospital in Amaku. According to Okonkwo, the gesture was in response to the

From Nwanosike Onu, Awka

commendable achievements of Obi in transforming all sectors of the state economy. Besides, he said the gesture would support Obi’s sustained efforts in repositioning hospitals and schools for efficient service delivery motivated him and his foundation. It is a way of calling other wealthy citizens of the state to support Obi, Okonkwo said. Responding, Obi hailed the donor for his philanthropic disposition, noting that Okonkwo had remained consistent in his contributions to building a better society. Obi therefore, charged other privileged individuals to emulate Okonkwo by lifting the society with their resources. He explained that quality health and education were critical in the drive to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Group backs Attorney-General on council chiefs’ return

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democracy-inclined Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) – – Human Rights Writers’ Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has applauded the Federal-Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Mr. Bello Mohammed Adoke (SAN), for his timely and rightful intervention to give effect to the enforcement of a subsisting Appeal Court judgment, restoring the sacked chairmen and councillors of 27 local government in Imo State. The group also condemned the failure of the state government to comply with the judgment and faulted Governor Rochas Okorocha’s claim that his administration will only comply with a legal decision in the subject matter only if the Supreme Court

determines it to its finality. “Governor Okoroacha should go to equity with clean hands by first respecting a binding judgment of a competent court until it is otherwise decided by a higher court of competent jurisdiction in compliance with Section 6 of the 1999 constitution as amended”, HURIWA affirmed in a statement. The statement jointly endorsed by Emmanuel Onwubiko and Miss. Zainab Yusuf National Coordinator nd Media Officer respectively, the group said the directive by the minister for the immediate enforcement of the appellate court’s verdict was the best pragmatic way to preserve, promote and protect the respect of the legal principle of the rule of law and constitutionalism.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

NEWS Govt House driver shot

Nine killed in Borno, Kano N

•Police: we thought he is a terrorist

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DRIVER attached to the Protocol Department of the Yobe State Government House has been shot by a policeman on guard at the gate of the Government House. A source said the driver, Bala, who was shot three times in the chest, thigh and arm, was taken to the General Sani Abacha Specialist Hospital, Damaturu where he has undergone three successful surgeries. The source said the driver was shot when the policemen at the gate shot at a passing golf car whose occupants had earlier shot into the air. But one of the drivers who was on the scene of the incident refuted the claim. He said nobody shot into the air, adding that the policeman just shot the driver for no reason. His words: “Both of us ran towards the Government House after we heard gunshots at the roundabout(about 2km from the Government House). “I was behind Bala when one policeman opened fire on him. I would have been shot, but God saved me.” Police Commissioner Patrick Egbuniwe, who confirmed the incident, blamed the driver for the incident. He said he thanked God that he did not die. “I heard about the incident. I learnt that the driver was asked to stop, but he refused.

•Bala From Duku Joel, Damaturu

We thought he is a terrorist. We are in a crisis period. Suicide bombers and terrorists are on the prowl. It is advisable to stop at checkpoints and other places when you are asked to do so. If you refuse, the police will have no option but to open fire on you. “His case was even bad because I learnt that the car he was driving did not have an official registration number. I am happy because he did not die. I thank God for his life and wish him early recovery,” Egbuniwe added. Bala told our correspondent in the hospital that he thanked God for being alive. But he faulted the claim of the police. He said: “There was no other car around us, not even a Keke NAPEP. The police lied. I raised up my identity card, but the policeman shot the hand I raised. When I was shot, the driver behind me shouted my name, telling them that I am a driver with the Protocol Department. I thank God that I’m still alive.”

Plateau releases funeral plan for lawmakers From Marie-therese Nanlong, Jos

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LATEAU State Government has released the funeral programmes for the late lawmakers, Senator Gyang Dantong and Gyang Fulani, who died on July 8 at a mass burial site at Maseh village in Riyom Local Government. At a joint press conference by the committees in charge of the funeral programmes chaired by the Commissioner for Information and Communication, Yiljap Abraham, they said they had worked in consultation with the members of the two families and other relevant government agencies to ensure a befitting state burial for the lawmakers. Abraham said: “I address you this morning to formally unveil the details of the arrangements being made for the funeral of our two compatriots, the late Senator Gyang Dantong and Gyang Fulani who died on Sunday, July 8 where they had gone to participate in the mass burial of their constituents in Barkin Ladi and Riyom local governments. “After consultation with the families of the deceased, dates were agreed upon and fixed for the funeral and the leadership of the National Assembly was consulted on the plans which are as follows: “Friday, July 20, valedictory session in honour of the late Gyang Fulani at the Plateau State House of Assembly chambers at 9am. Saturday, July 21, service of songs in honour of the late Senator Gyang Dantong in his church, COCIN, Tya, Vom at 3pm.”

Cleric decries proliferation of churches, schools

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HE Bishop of Kubwa Diocese (Anglican Communion), Bishop Duke Akamisoko, yesterday decried the proliferation of churches and schools in the country. He said they have been turned to an avenue of making a lot of profits in an unfair way. Speaking in Abuja at the pre-Synod 2012 World Conference with the theme: “Behold to obey is better than sacrifice”, the cleric noted that education is one of the obligations a country owes its citizenry, “although our government is toying with it.” Akamisoko said the neglect

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INE people were killed yesterday in Borno and Kano states by gunmen. Gunmen, suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect, yesterday in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, killed four traders inside the popular Monday Market. This occurred barely 24 hours after the Federal Government announced the end of emergency rule in some local governments in the state. Eyewitnesses said the incident occurred about 1pm. Our reporter learnt that after killing the traders, the gunmen shot sporadically into the air to scare people and bolted. It was gathered that the traders, who were left in a pool of their blood, died before they could be rescued. After the incident, traders closed their shops and fled. The sources said the victims were Igbo traders. One of the victims, simply identified as Linus, was said to deal in leather bags and

briefcases. When the police spokesman Gideon Jibrin was contacted, he said he was yet to receive report on the killing. The Joint Task Force (JTF) spokesman, Lt-Col. Sagir Musa, did not answer the calls put to him. Also yesterday, men of the JTF clashed with gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect in Gamboru ward of Maiduguri. The incident, which occurred about 11am, resulted in the death of two civilians. An eyewitness said the clash occurred when the gunmen attacked one of the military patrol vehicles near Kofa Biyu on the Sir Kashim Ibrahim Way. He said: “We had to run for safety as the soldiers and the gunmen exchanged gunshots. I cannot tell you

whether people were killed in the battle, but some of us ran into houses for fear of being hit by stray bullets.” When our reporter called at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) yesterday, an attendant at the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Unit said two civilians were brought to the hospital in a JTF van. The attendant said: “Two men were brought here. They have already died. They were brought in a JTF van about 12 noon.” The JTF spokesman Lt-Col. Musa said: “I am not aware of any shootout between the JTF and suspected gunmen. But I will investigate the matter. I will let you know if there are casualties.” The Borno State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Jibrin said there was a clash between men of the JTF and suspected gunmen in Gombouru ward

of Maiduguri yesterday. He added that some civilians were injured by stray bullets. He said the police area commander at Gambouru was yet to send his report on the incident to the headquarters. Gunmen yesterday shot dead three men in Kano. Operating on a motorcycle, the gunmen, according to residents, stormed Sharada junction in the North’s commercial city around 7pm and shot dead their victims, after which they left. Residents confirmed that they heard gunshots. The police had not responded at press time. Spokesman for the police in Kano, Rilwan Dutse, confirmed the killings. He said: “About 6.30pm, the gunmen on a motorcycle in Sharada area where pokers do gather, instantly shot two dead. The other one died at the Murtala Mohammed Hospital. No arrest has been made.”

•Officers and men of the Fire Service trying to prevent a fire outbreak, following a loaded petroleum product truck that lost control in Abuja...yesterday. PHOTO: ABAYOMI FAYESE

Muslims begin fasting as Sultan seeks violence-free Ramadan

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USLIMS throughout the country will begin a 30-day fasting (Ramadan) today, following the sighting of the moon last night. The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, yesterday prayed for a violence-free Ramadan. The Sultan, represented at a press briefing in Abuja by the National Legal Adviser of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Murtala Amin, also prayed for a peaceful co-existence between Muslims and Christians during the period. He urged Muslims to be peaceful and fear Allah in the spirit of Ramadan. Abubakar used the occasion to confirm the appointment of Alhaji Musa Mohammed as the Chief Imam of the Abuja National Mosque.

From John Ofikhenua, Abuja

of education by different tiers of government has made the establishment of schools and churches the easiest investment for those who have failed in businesses and other endeavours. He said: “Those who have failed in businesses establish churches. Schools and churches should not be established with the sole aim of making profits. “We did not establish churches to make money, although the fastest way of making money in this country is through the establishment of churches and schools.”

From Joseph Abiodun, Maiduguri and Kolade Adeyemi, Kano

•Adegbite: I’m hale, hearty From Sanni Onogu, Abuja and Tajudeen Adebanjo

Mohammed has been on an acting capacity for about 19 years. Dr. Ahmad Ibrahim Makari, Sheik Ahmad Onilewura and Sheik Kabiru Adam were also appointed as Deputy Chief Imams of the Abuja National Mosque. Amin said: “Our council has taken an important step to make worship in the National Mosque more thorough and effective. “Henceforth, the conduct of Jumat prayers and sermons will be collegiate as is done in the Holy Mosque of Makkah and Medinah. The Chief Imam of the National Mosque will prepare a roaster accordingly. “One of the Deputy Chief Imams will fulfil Muazeem re-

sponsibilities and co-ordinate Dawah activities and supervise religious meetings and events in the mosque.” The Secretary-General of the NSCIA, Dr. Abdullateef Adegbite, has denied speculations that he slumped on Wednesday night and went into a coma, and that he is receiving treatment in a hospital. Adegbite, who spoke with The Nation yesterday, said he is “hale and hearty.” Reports by an online media said Dr. Adegbite, the Seriki of Egbaland, slumped and went into a coma on Wednesday night and was taken to a hospital. His wife, Alhaja Madinat Adegbite, said the report was false. She promised to call back after the end of a meeting she was attending.

When she called back, our reporter asked her to give the phone to Dr. Adegbite to corroborate her claim, and she did. The following conversations ensued: Adegbite: “Hello Tajudeen, Baba ikoko; salaafia ni omo re ati iyawo re wa? Meaning, Hello Tajudeen, the father of a newborn baby; how are your daughter and wife?” Reporter: Fine sir, they are doing well. I just want to confirm the report… Adegbite: (Cuts in) Oh! I’m fine Tajudeen. I’m hale and hearty. Thank you very much. Reporter: You are welcome sir. Alhaja Adegbite added: “Baba is fine. I have been receiving calls since morning about his health status. Thank God that you have confirmed it yourself. Baba is fine.”

Ramadan: Police tighten security in Kano

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HE Kano State Police Command in conjunction with major stakeholders in the state has adopted strategies that will guarantee the safety of lives and properties during and after the holy month of Ramadan. The police command has met with various Islamic leaders in collaboration with the civil defence, Hisbah guards, vigilante groups, traffic assistants, mosque committees and other stakeholders to map out a security arrangement.

•Kwankwaso relaxes curfew for motorcyclists From Kolade Adeyemi Kano

At the end of the meeting, they agreed that vehicles should be parked at a safe distance from the mosques to ensure free flow of traffic. A statement by the command’s Public Relations Officer Rilwanu M. Dutse, on behalf of the Kano State Commissioner of Police, Idris Ibrahim, explained that the measure was taken to decon-

gest places of worship. According to the statement, the security committees of the various mosques will liaise with the police, alongside other security agencies, to monitor and ensure the safety of lives and properties of the worshipers, as well as ensure free flow of traffic at rush hours. Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso has extended the operational period of motor-

cyclists by two hours, in the spirit of the holy month of Ramadan. In a Ramadan broadcast at the Government House, Kano, yesterday, Kwankwaso, who called on Muslim faithful to use the period to renew their communion with Allah, said the decision to relax the operational hours was to allow them enjoy free movement to observe their prayers at the mosques of their choice within the metropolitan city.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

58

NEWS OSHIOMHOLE’S VICTORY

VICTOR OVIE-WHISKEY (1924-2012)

Why I didn’t have a voter’s card in 1999, by Ihonvbere

Jonathan condoles with family

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RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has condoled

with the family of the late Justice Victor Ovie-Whiskey, who died on Wednesday. In a statement by his media aide, Reuben Abati, Jonathan urged the family to take solace in the knowledge that the late judge lived a fulfilled life and left a worthy legacy. He also recalled the deceased’s contributions to the

From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja

nation as a judge and Chairman of the Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO). The statement reads: “President Goodluck Jonathan conveys his condolence to the family of the late Justice Victor Ovie-Whiskey, who died on Wednesday. “President Jonathan urges his family to take solace in the knowledge that the late judge lived a very fulfilled

Tambuwal, Uduaghan, Atiku mourn From Okungbowa Aiwerie, Asaba and Gbade Ogunwale, Abuja

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PEAKER of the House of Representatives Aminu Tambuwal has described the death of the former Chairman of the defunct Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO), Justice Victor Ovie-Whiskey, as a great loss to the nation. In a statement, Tambuwal said the deceased served the country diligently as the Chief Justice of the former Bendel State and later as chairman of the Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO). The Speaker said what endeared him to Ovie-Whiskey was the unassuming manner with which he lived his retirement life, where he neither courted undue publicity nor unwarranted controversy. Tambuwal said:“He was an icon of the legal profession who served Nigeria selflessly. I remember him for his calm disposition and mature contributions, which helped the electoral process between 1980 and 1983. “His death is a great loss not only to his family but to Nigeria. By his death, our country has once again lost an elder statesman.” Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan has expressed sadness at the demise. In a statement yesterday in Asaba, the governor said there was every reason to thank God because the jurist lived a fulfilled life. “Pa Ovie-Whiskey was an upright and non-partisan man. We lost a patriot, an elder statesman, a quintessential jurist and above all, a pride of Delta State, whose exit would be felt.” He prayed that God will grant the family the fortitude to bear the loss. Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar also described the death as a loss to the legal profession. Atiku, in a condolence message in Abuja yesterday, said one of the greatest qualities of the late Ovie-Whiskey was his insistence on accuracy. He, particularly, recalled Ovie-Whiskey’s famous denial of allegedly collecting N1 million during the First Republic, allegedly to influence the outcome of the election, to which the late FEDECO chairman said he would faint at the sight of such huge amount. According to him, Ovie-Whiskey’s insistence that his accusers should be sure of their facts was a challenge to our society where people easily go to public with wild allegations. Atiku also praised Ovie-Whiskey’s unassuming nature, saying that throughout his post-retirement life, he never courted publicity or controversies. He prayed to God to grant his soul eternal rest and the family the fortitude to bear the great loss.

PUBLIC NOTICE THIS IS TO INFORM THE GENERAL PUBLIC THAT THE PROPERTY OF CHIEF PHILIP ADEKOYA MABUN THAT IS LOCATED AT NO. 11, SILVER STREET OLORUNSOGO MUSHIN IS NOT FOR SALE. SO MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC ARE HEREBY WARMED NOT TO TRANSACT ANY BUSINESS WITH ANYBODY IN RESPECT OF THE PROPERTY. ANYONE THAT DOES SO IS DOING IT AT HIS OWN RISK. SIGNED: MR. MABUN ADENIYI FOR CHIEF P.A. MABUN

life and left a worthy legacy of commendable service to the nation.” “The President believes that the record of Justice Ovie-Whiskey’s upright and conscientious management of Nigeria’s electoral process in very challenging times will stand to his eternal credit in the nation’s history. “He joins the late jurist’s family, friends and associates in praying for the peaceful repose of his soul.”

His death painful, say Oneya, others

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HE President-General, Agbarho Progressive Union, Dominic Oneya, yesterday described the death as sad and painful to the community. Oneya said though, OvieWhiskey died at 88, he was a great asset to the community till his death. He said: “Ovie-Whiskey was a pillar who supported the community on all development issues, including resolution of disputes, guiding and advising the people. “We looked up to him and he was always there for us, despite his age. His death is a great loss to our community,” he said A former Secretary to the Delta State Government (SSG), Jackson Ajogri, described the deceased as a man of impeccable character. “He comported himself well, even when he returned home to live with his people upon retirement,’’ he said. “Every Nigerian was aware of the ills in the 1983 election but Ovie-Whiskey was not involved in any shady deal during the exercise. “Instead, his role in the election was commended,’’ he said. The Warri branch of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) yesterday visited the family of the late former Chairman of the defunct FEDECO. The lawyers were led by their Chairman, Gweke Akudihor.

He was selfless, says Mark

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ENATE President David Mark yesterday described the death of the Chairman of the defunct Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO), Justice Victor Ovie-Whiskey, as a loss to the nation. In a statement, Mark said the deceased was a quintessential legal icon, who impacted positively on the political and economic life of Nigeria. He said the late jurist displayed “uncommon knowledge and courage in the conduct of an election that was adjudged peaceful, free and fair.” “As the then Chief Judge of the old Bendel State, Justice Ovie-Whiskey displayed uncommon quality and integrity which necessitated his appointment to midwife the electoral system of Nigeria as the then Chairman of FEDECO.”

From Osagie Otabor, Benin

•Ihonvbere

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ORMER governorship aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Prof. Julius Ihonvbere yesterday said he didn’t have a voter’s card in 1999 because he was in exile fighting military dictatorship. Ihonvbere, in a chat with reporters yesterday, said not having a voter’s card does not mean he was not part of the democratic process. He was reacting to statements by the PDP that he didn’t vote in the 1999 elections and that his comments on the party were from a frus-

trated man. His words: “In 1999, I didn’t have a voter’s card. This is true but they are so ignorant that they didn’t know that for 12 years, people like Bola Tinubu, Kayode Fayemi, Wole Soyinka, myself and Senator Sola Adeyeye were in exile fighting military dictatorship. “It was that struggle that produced the democracy that they are enjoying today. “Let the leadership of the PDP point to one person who contributed a tenth of what I did towards democracy. They can’t find that person.” “My appointment as Special Adviser to ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo had nothing to do with PDP because I was not a member of the PDP then. “It was purely on merit, no godfather, no governor nominated me and you can call Obasanjo to confirm how

I performed.” Ihonvbere said the frustrations that made him leave the PDP were corruption, indiscipline,arrogance, manipulation, imposition of candidates and the fleecing of aspirants. He said the fate of the PDP has been sealed in the state because according to him, “the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has demonstrated that it is able to mobilise Edo people. “The people have rejected that party as a party that does not believe in human progress. “It has no commitment, accountability, transparency, social justice, human rights, gender equality, environmental protection and the promotion of holistic people-driven sustainable development. “And a party that does not believe in that cannot be trusted to move a state like Edo forward.”

Edo battle not over yet, says PDP

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HE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State yesterday said the battle for the top seat in the state was not over, until it decides which position to take. Its candidate, Charles Airhiavbere, lost to Governor Adams Oshiomhole in last Saturday’s governorship election. A statement by its State Director of Publicity, Okharedia Ihimekpen, said Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor would have spent four years if the election that brought him to power had ended at

From Osagie Otabor, Benin

the ballot box. Ihimekpen said the PDP primary was not manipulated to favour Airhiavbere as alleged by Osunbor. He said Airhiavbere was the best candidate chosen by party delegates. “The party is surprised that Prof Osunbor could degenerate to this primordial level of begging excuses for his political failures and disappointments in a party that made him a senator and a governor.

“We are aware of his predicaments and frustrations, his anti-party activities, flirting with other parties and making statements that undermine the constitution of our great party.” “Was it not the same party delegates who nominated Osunbor as governorship candidate and former senator in 1999, 2003 and 2007? “Were they manipulated to nominate him? We expect Osunbor to learn from his failures and to refrain from those antics that led to his rejection.”

Traditional rulers celebrate with Benin Monarch

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RADITIONAL rulers from Edo North yesterday celebrated Governor Adams Oshiomhole’s electoral victory with the Benin monarch, Oba Erediauwa. They said the Benin monarch showed that the efficacy of ancestral prayers cannot be overemphasised. Led by the Otaru of Auchi, Alieru Momoh, the traditional rulers said they were at the Oba’s palace to thank him for praying for the governor’s victory.

Suspect taken to Abuja From Osemwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin

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MAN arrested on the eve of the election with a loaded gun has been transferred to Abuja for interrogation. The suspect was allegedly arrested in a hotel in Benin, following intelligence reports. Commissioner of Police in charge of the election Olufemi Adenaike said the sophistication of the weapon recovered prompted the suspect’s transfer. Sources said more people have been arrested. Among those arrested is a popular industrialist, who was alleged to have supplied the gun.

From Osagie Otabor, Benin

Momoh said: “You led the traditional rulers to appreciate what your son has done in the state. “We appreciate your leadership quality and prayers for your son to be victorous in an election that people are celebrating.” The Benin monarch said they should continue to pray

for the governor to succeed. His words: ”We all prayed for him. We should continue to pray for him. He has done well. “I read in the papers and watched the roads constructed, the schools built and water flowing in many communities.” A victory card was later presented to the monarch by the traditional rulers.

‘Our party needs restructuring’ From Osagie Otabor, Benin

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CHIEFTAIN of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State, Martins Sado, has said lack of internal democracy within the party was responsible for its defeat in last Saturday’s governorship election. Sadoh said the victory of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) was an indication that performance is important for those seeking elective offices. The PDP chieftain said only proper restructuring of the PDP would enable it win future elections. He said the victory of Governor Adams Oshiomhole was the people’s affirmation of his performance in the last three years, adding that “politics of divisive ethnicity has become history in the state.”

Edo Speaker greets Oshiomhole From Osemwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin

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HE Edo State House of Assembly has sent a congratulatory message to Governor Adams Oshiomhole and his Deputy, Pius Odubu, on their re-election victory. Speaker Uyi Igbe lauded the people for coming out to vote for their candidates. Igbe hailed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security operatives for the outcome of the election. He appealed to members of the opposition parties to accept the outcome of the election in good faith.


THE NATION FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

59

NEWS 19 wanted in Delta From Okungbowa Aiwerie, Asaba

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HE police in Delta State have declared 19 people wanted for breaching public peace. The police had earlier arrested 20 persons of which 19 have been arraigned. Commissioner of Police Ikechukwu Aduba waded into the kingship tussle in Abavo, Ika South Local Government, warning aggrieved parties to shun violence and follow due process in pursuing their interest. Police spokesman Charles Muka said despite the intervention of the police, some people have crowned a new monarch. He listed the suspects as Chukwuma Sunday Jegbefume, ,Melekwe Sunday ,Nwadozie Andrew Jegbefume ,Paul Igbodo Jegbefume ,Martin David Jegbefume ,Onyisi Ekhator. Also declared wanted are Chuka Okoh, Emeka Irabor, Monday Amadi and Linus Mobekeri. Others are Onuwa Andrew, Augustine Edosomah, Nosa Igiebor, Anthony Ajayi ,Douglas Okupe, Ojo Mac , Alex Onue, Roland Odin, Irabor Simon and Andrew Ajumebor.

Please reclaim Bakassi, govt told From Nicholas Kalu, Calabar

•Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole displays the congratulatory card presented to him by traditional rulers from Edo North. With him are the Otaru of Auchi, Haliru Momoh (middle) and the Okuokpellagbe of Okpella, Aye Dirisu, at the Government House... yesterday.

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Security operatives deployed in Delta community

HE Delta State Government has ordered the deployment of security operatives in Uzere, Isoko North Local Government, following incessant communal clashes. Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan said the government recognises only one traditional ruler in the community. He directed security operatives to arrest and prosecute anyone parading himself or herself as a traditional ruler in communities where traditional rulers recognised by the state were still alive. His words: “There is only one traditional ruler in Uzere and the government has not authorised the change of that traditional ruler. “If any other person is pa-

From Okungbowa Aiwerie, Asaba

rading himself as the traditional ruler of the kingdom, the commissioner of police has been ordered to arrest that person, because that person is an impostor and we will not allow that. “We have only one traditional ruler in Uzere and he is not on suspension.” Uduaghan spoke when he received the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the civil disturbances, which rocked the oil-rich community last year. He said: “We have also had challenges in the reopening

of Shell operations this is so because of the negative attitude of some persons in the community. “They need to go back to work and they have requested for security, the government has graciously approved reinforcement to the community. “We will have the police and soldiers and other security operatives so that Shell can resume and the workers, oil installations and property will be protected. “The security agencies are to provide security not only for Shell workers but also for indigenes of the community.

Uzere youths, in a protest against Shell’s activities, razed the monarch’s palace on November 29,last year, for allegedly colluding with the oil company. They barred the oil firm from operating its flow stations in the community. The government, on January 5, set up a panel headed by Justice S.A Ehiwario. Ehiwario said the commission sat for 21 days, adding that 25 witnesses testified while it admitted 71 testaments and exhibits. He said the commission asked for extension of time due to the number of witnesses and materials. The justice said the report is in five volumes of verbatim report, memoranda and exhibits.

Flood destroys Cross River communities

A

BOUT 80 houses and several farmlands in six villages in Boki Local Government of Cross River State have been destroyed. Thousands of residents were displaced, following a heavy down pour, which lasted about three days. Also two tourism sites, Buanchor Drill Ranch and Canopy Walkway, have been made inassessible by a mudslide, which swept off bridges and culverts on the road leading to the sites. Eight culverts and two bridges were destroyed.

•Thousands displaced From Nicholas Kalu, Calabar

Mudslide also rendered the only accessible road impassable. The Buanchor Canopy walkway, about 30 metres high located in the heart of the virgin forest of Boki, is the longest in Africa. The Drill Ranch is for the protection of Drill Monkeys, an endangered specie. Also affected was the Council Headquarters, which can no longer be accessed by road as one of the major

bridges was swept off. The stream which supplies drinking water to Katabang community was completely submerged. It was observed that substantial parts of the Afi Mountain collapsed into the valleys. Assessing the disaster, the Director-General, State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Vincent Aquah, described the devastation as unprecedented. Aquah said the magnitude of the disaster was beyond

the ability of the state and appealed to the Federal Government and donors to come to the state’s aid . The Director-General, who was with the Boki Council Chairman, Jonas Obi Odu, and security operatives, promised that the basic needs of the people would be provided. Odu said the situation was traumatic. He expressed fears that the Boki people, who are mostly agrarian, would face starvation and disease outbreak as their means of livelihood have been destroyed.

FOREIGN NEWS

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Bulgaria releases CCTV of bomber

ULGARIA has released CCTV footage of a man suspected of carrying out a deadly suicide bombing of a bus carrying Israeli tourists at Burgas airport. A white man with long hair and a backpack is seen walking around the terminal and leaving before the blast. The Bulgarian authorities say the man - believed to be 36 years old - had a fake US driving licence. Israel blames Lebanese Hezbollah and Iran for Wednesday’s blast which killed five Israelis and a Bulgarian driver. The suspected bomber also died in the explosion in

the eastern Bulgarian city by the Black Sea. At least 30 people were injured, some seriously. In response to Israel’s accusations, an Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said yesterday that Tehran

strongly condemned “all terrorist acts”. Hezbollah - a Shia militant group - has not publicly commented on the issue. The BBC’s Jon Donnison, in Jerusalem, says the attack could be part of a covert but

violent war between Israel and Iran, and there is a view among some analysts that this attack could be a response to a series of recent attacks on Iranian nuclear scientists.

China, Russia veto sanctions on Syria

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USSIA and China have vetoed a UN Security Council resolution proposing further sanctions on Syria, prompting an angry Western response. The UK, US and France said the UN had failed the people of Syria. Syrian troops have been mobilised to oust rebels from parts of Damascus, after a bomb killed three senior figures in the defence establishment. State TV has broadcast the first images of

President Assad since the attack, standing with the new defence minister. The footage appeared to show Gen Fahd Jassim al-Furayj, chief of staff of the armed forces, being sworn into his new post. It was not clear where the meeting had taken place. Syrian forces have deployed tanks, artillery and helicopters in parts of the capital and clashes have been reported south-west and north-east of the city.

S

TAFF of the University of Calabar (UNICAL) have called on the Federal Government to reclaim Bakassi, which was ceded to Cameroon in 2002 by a judgment of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). A statement by the Cross River State Community, University of Calabar, which consists of indigenous university workers, yesterday urged the Federal Government to appeal the judgment at the United Nations Security Council. The statement by the group’s chairman, Patrick Egaga, described the judgment as “colonial, biased and harmful” to the nation’s international image. It expressed displeasure at the recent Supreme Court judgment that ceded the 76 disputed oil wells to Akwa Ibom, saying the judgment was a “travesty of justice.” The group hailed the Senate for not ratifying the ICJ judgment on Bakassi and the Green Tree Agreement, which they alleged falsely ceded Bakassi to Cameroon.

Oshiomhole greets CJN, IG

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DO State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has congratulated the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloma Mukhtar and the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar on their appointments. In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Peter Okhiria, the governor said: “I rejoice with you on your elevation to the exalted position of Chief Justice of Nigeria. “Your historic appointment does not come to me as a surprise, as you have always displayed a high level of integrity which has earned you the respect of members of the Bench and Bar. “Beyond your historic elevation as the first woman to occupy the exalted seat, you have great cause to be proud and feel accomplished because of the iconic experience and legendary judicial finesse which you bring on board.” To the IG, Oshiomhole said: “I heartily rejoice with you on the confirmation of your appointment by President Goodluck Jonathan. You fully deserve the appointment given your pedigree and track record. “Having worked closely with you while you were AIG Zone 5 in Benin City, I know you have a deep passion for your work; you believe the security challenges facing the country are surmountable; take the welfare of men under you as top priority and, above all, earned the respect of your officers and men.”

Monarch: erosion destroying Auchi HE Otaru of Auchi, Alieru Momoh, has said his kingdom is going into extinction, following the gully erosion that is ravaging parts of Auchi and its environs. He said the erosion has damaged parts of the Auchi-OkeneAbuja Road. Momoh said he objected to what he termed “piecemeal approach” to dealing with the erosion. His words: “Some roads are being eroded away. Our leaders should have compassion on the people. The people of Auchi will be eroded away in no time. “Contracts are given to people who don’t have the skills to handle the Auchi erosion. There is nothing that can be done by the contractors. They don’t have the equipment. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should investigate the contracts awarded for the Auchi erosion.”

T

‘Peer review’ll enhance governance’ From Clarice Azuatalam, Port Harcourt

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HE Rivers State Government has said the State Peer Review Mechanism (SPRM) would enhance citizen participation in governance. The Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Gogo Levi Charles, said this during the two-day workshop on the SPRM in Port Harcourt yesterday. He said the initiative has the capacity of promoting good governance through cooperation and healthy competition. The commissioner, who is also the State Coordinator of the workshop, said the exercise would encourage exchange of experiences between states, in all sectors of the economy. Charles thanked the Nigeria Governor’s Forum (NGF) for embarking on the initiative that allows imputs from the people. The commissioner urged the people to thank Governor Rotimi Amaechi for opening the books for external scrutiny. “Today, Rivers state enjoys a competitive B+ rating from Fitch and other rating agencies and it is an indication of a better investment climate for the state,” he said.


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www.thenationonlineng.net

FRIDAY, JULY 20, 2012

TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM VOL. 7,

SEGUN GBADEGESIN gbadegesin@thenationonlineng.net

Public service and private greed

•Lawan

tend to be serving the public, majority of who are closet Lawanites. This was what was on my mind before your rude interruption of my thought.” On other occasions, I would give in to my friend’s tactic of cheap blackmail, but not this time. “Assume that I buy your definition of a jackpot. Still it is not all cases of money that fell on your lap with the exertion of energy that makes a corrupted character. Even you can understand the difference. If you play official government lottery and you are lucky and win, no sane person would accuse you of committing a crime. That is not what Lawan was alleged to have done: played and won lottery. Of course, he didn’t exert much energy before he allegedly walked out of a house in an upscale Abuja neighbourhood with $.6million. But there is a good reason he would be alleged to commit a crime but not the lottery winner. “If it is true that Lawan did what he was alleged to have done, he is guilty of betraying public trust and of failing in his public service responsibilities because he would have placed his private interest over and

RIPPLES LAGOS IS NO LONGER WORKING, says Bode George

...then you NEED another PAIR OF GLASSES sir

NO. 2,192

C OMMENT & D EB ATE EBA

“I

wa ibaje ko dara…” (A corrupted character is an abomination) With his booming baritone, my friend announced his intimidating presence. An old timer with a great deal of obsession with tradition, Opalaba relishes his collection of antique equipment including a gramophone record player from the early 50s and an assortment of ancient records to boot. I once teased him, pitying him for being behind in everything except for his medical education. Furthermore, to his disadvantage there is nothing much he can do with his cache of antique in the land of Niger. Elsewhere he would receive thousands of greenbacks in exchange for his grandmother’s orisa carvings. “Akotileta” was his usual indignant response. Knowing that I should expect verbal gymnastics if I was tardy in joining in, and being an unapologetic fan of the oldies myself, I responded in kind. “Iwa ibaje ko yomo eniyan” (Corruption and personhood are incompatible) And in unison, with nostalgia for our days in the Choir: “Ija ilara ko tan boro; oro ma re ara adugbo.” (There is longevity to a fight fueled by jealousy) Without waiting for the next scene of the Act, which normally involves a gyrating exercise of hands and feet, I asked how much of a lottery jackpot Opalaba has won so I can have my share. What was the excitement about? “Who do you think I am? House member Lawan?” He snapped. And it didn’t take a minute for me to infer what was brewing. “So he’s now just a House member, not Honourable Lawan? Aiye? Anyway, Lawan didn’t win a jackpot”, I responded. “He was alleged to have received money in return for keeping a company out of trouble with the House. So no matter what you had in mind, your response to my question is illogical.” “I see. That is why you refused to write on the story of abuse of public office since the story broke out. Your brain just went dry. Or your laptop suddenly crashed and you won’t touch a story that is of such a great public interest. Sometimes I wonder what to make of you. Now you will appeal to logic to defend the indefensible. A person who swore to an oath to serve the public with honesty and patriotic zeal was caught in an act of betrayal of his nation and God and you are hairsplitting about non issues. “In any case, what more is a jackpot than money that fell on your lap without the exertion of energy? The subsistence farmer labouring under the unforgiving tropical heat earns the money he gets selling his crops. It’s not a jackpot. But even you will not compare the farmer with a lot of those who pre-

TODAY IN THE NATION ‘My wahala is that running through these stories, from Aso Rock to Bayelsa, to Oyo to Bauchi and many other unreported places, you see a comic people engaged in wasting our time and resources in the name of leading. Why should people not carry bomb or gun or cudgel? If these people cannot see or feel, they can at least hear…welcome to Baba Sala country. .’ STEVE OSUJI

F you ever doubted that Nigeria was akin to no man’s land where anyone could get away with anything so long as he can settle the right people, then doubt no more. One cursory look at Nigeria’s telecommunications companies (telcos) would give you an inkling of what we mean. Since the inception of the Global System of Mobile Telecommunication (GSM) in Nigeria about 11 years ago, there has been a sort of chicken and egg argument about their modus operandi here vis - a- vis the generally poor quality of service they dish out to Nigerians on a platter of very high tariffs. Those who have been around say ours is the highest to be found anywhere. So why are we paying punitive rates in the world for poor and indeed actionable service, if you like? For over 10 years Nigerians have asked this question and for so many number of years they have got only a variation of the same response. Well in the early years, the rhetoric was that the licence fee charged by our government was extortionate and the telcos needed to recoup their heavy investment. So in the first two years, they literally ‘killed’ us off selling mobile phone activation packs which are handed out free to customers in other places for as much

I

‘What did I ask, what are you telling me? How many in public service go in with eyes open and plan to serve public interest? Don’t they all go with a common purpose of sharing the national cake rather than baking it?’ against public interest. And while this elevation of private interest is understandable for some, it is not so for others and certainly not right, especially those persons who voluntarily position themselves for public service.” “Public service is first and foremost service to the public. Because it is service, it is voluntarily assumed. Service is assistance. To serve is to provide help. It is to benefit others. But helping others cannot be forced. One voluntarily assumes that responsibility. That is why the concept of a National Youth Service which is compulsory for a young Nigerian graduate to undertake is a misnomer. Surely service presupposes preparedness to sacrifice one’s own interests. But again this is because it presupposes voluntariness. To be forced to sacrifice your interest is to be enslaved. And when prisoners are said to be serving time, you must understand that as mere jargon; they are undergoing punishment for crimes. “Public service is public benefit. That is its purpose; its reason of being. Once the public is no longer benefited by a public servant’s actions, he or she has abandoned

the honour of service for the malodorous stench of a human skunk. It is better not to go in there than to betray that sacred trust of the public.” Opalaba, visibly agitated, cut in. “This is what is wrong with you. Do you remember your Sunday School classes? Do you remember Festus’s remark about Paul? I won’t go so far but I think that you are getting close and I am afraid of what is becoming of you in your gray years. What did I ask, what are you telling me? How many in public service go in with eyes open and plan to serve public interest? Don’t they all go with a common purpose of sharing the national cake rather than baking it? “I am afraid, even going by your own reasoning, you are dead wrong,” I responded. For if that was the case, why would you single out Lawan? If what he allegedly did is what everyone would do, why should anyone condemn him? The truth of the matter is that quite a good number of people, dead and alive, have served the public creditably without betraying the trust placed in them. We should therefore avoid using the paint of corruption over all public servants. “At any rate, I will go further and you are free to take a flight from reason. It won’t be the first time or the last. But I will argue that in many cases, we have public servants pursuing private interests because there are private individuals outside of public service putting disproportionate pressure on public servants. Consider the pressure that elected officials face from various sources: party officials, constituencies, special interest groups, even family members. “We have a dependency syndrome, one that denigrates self-reliance and self-determination in the face of odds. On what is responsible for this recent Nigerian character, your guess is as good as mine. We may blame it on years of military cronyism; on the declining fortunes of the educational system, on general decimation of our fundamental value system which has always been a bulwark against the vices of body and mind. “Traditional leadership, the clergy, and the intellectual class, three important sources of support for the sustenance of individual, social, and communal values have seen their behinds whipped by the advancing army of insatiable greed. Lawan is only the latest manifestation of the dangerous capacity of the invader to wreck maximum havoc. But alas we haven’t seen the last! It might help to make public service less attractive in terms of the access it gives to wealth without exertion. But to rely on those who stand to lose to make such a determination is to live in a fool’s paradise.” •For comments, send SMS to 08057634061

HARDBALL

•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above

Feeding frenzy

basking in the El Dorado of ‘official’ charges, etcetera. In fact, recently, the telcos have come under heavy official shellacking – from the trillion naira fine to hacking down of masts and outright official extortion. And for all this, the consumer bears the brunt. It is bad enough that the Nigerian consumer pays what still remains an out-of-this world rate, the telcos seem bent on taking out their frustrations on the consumer by a sleight of hand. The current barrage of promos is one loathsome example. All the networks are currently on it feeding frenzy with fraudulent lotteries and cheap quiz. They are all in it, setting the atmosphere on fire with banalities and obvious tricks. One says recharge and stand the chance to win a phone every 5 minutes – lie. Another says win up to N3 million naira daily – gimmick, and yet another promises a SUV weekly – extortion. And in all this racket, the subscriber is required to respond with text messages at exorbitant rates. In this relentless consumer hounding, who does he turn to? The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC); the Consumer Protection Council (NCC); the law enforcement agencies or the courts? Who will speak for the consumer?

as N10,000 in some instances. GSM communication like say, South Africans, despite our large number, talkativeness and fairly strong purchasing power, is (you guessed it) poor infrastructure, insecurity, oppressive. It was a virgin land for the first entrant and they had teeming millions practically craving for a fix of the GSM opium. That was how in just five years, the early birds like MTN, ECONET (now Airtel) and GLO where making more money than even they could have ever imagined. Of course, the foreign firms were doing more business in Nigeria than they made in all other African countries put together. With over 80 million Nigerians now hooked on the little ‘juju’ box that the holder must make ‘sacrifices’ to, business must be quite stable now and Nigeria’s mass of subscribers ought to be reaping benefits too like their counterparts in other parts of the world. Not in their frazzled lives. It seems as if the more millions of subscriber sign up on the telcos’ list, the harder they drive. The new refrain now is why Nigerians are not

Published and printed by Vintage Press Limited. Corporate Office: 27B Fatai Atere Way, Matori, Lagos. P.M.B. 1025,Oshodi, Lagos. Telephone: Switch Board: 01-8168361. Editor Daily:01-8962807, Marketing: 01-8155547 . Abuja Office: Plot 5, Nanka Close AMAC Commercial Complex, Wuse Zone 3, Abuja. Tel: 07028105302. E-mail: info@thenationonlineng.net ISSN: 115-5302 Editor: GBENGA OMOTOSO


The Nation July 20, 2012