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VOL. 6, NO. 1762 TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
IMF chief denied bail as rape case opens
D •Strauss-Kahn ... yesterday
OMINIQUE StraussKahn’s future was in the balance yesterday, with a New York court denying him bail for attempted rape and other criminal charges. Prosecutors said they were investigating whether the International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief had once engaged in a similar conduct. Strauss-Kahn’s bail denial came just as the Fund turned to its first deputy managing director, John
Lipsky, who was named acting year. managing director last Sunday, One of the defence attorneys, Ben when it was ordered to develop an Brafman, said it was “quite likely early- warning system to prevent a he will be exonerated”. repeat of the 2008 Strauss-Kahn made his first apfinancial meltdown. pearance in court to Defence lawyers, SEE ALSO PAGES 2&60 face charges of trywho sought unsucing to rape a Mancessfully for Strauss-Kahn to be re- hattan hotel maid in a case that has leased on $1 million bail, denied the altered France’s political landscape charges against their client, once and left the IMF in turmoil. seen as a strong contender for Prosecutors asked that StraussFrench presidential elections next Kahn be remanded in custody due
to concerns he might flee to France, if released. The judge set May 20 as the next date for the case. A defence lawyer said StraussKahn did not flee the hotel and the person he was having lunch with on Saturday, the day of the incident, will testify on his behalf. Looking tired and grim-faced, Strauss-Kahn met with his lawyers Continued on page 2
20 on trial for alleged murder of ‘NYSC 7’ 800 dead in polls violence, says rights group From Austine Tsenzughul, Bauchi
HE trial began yesterday of 20 suspects arrested in Giade, Bauchi State, for the murder of 10 Youth Corps members on election duties. Prosecuting Police Sergeant Mohammed Kafin Madaki told the Bauchi Magistrate’s Court that the suspects, with others at large, conspired, attacked and matcheted seven corps members, one policewoman and two businessmen to death. The prosecutor said the suspects burnt down the Divisional Police Headquarters in Giade, shops and places of worship. Besides, he said, they also burnt down six vehicles parked inside the Giade Police Station. All the actions, Madaki said, are contrary to the Penal Code laws. Chief Magistrate Mohammed Mukhtar Abubakar ordered the suspects to be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the case till May 31 for further mentioning. The 20 suspects were part of the 41 arraigned for the post-election violence in the state. Human Rights Watch, a worldwide rights group, yesterday said 800 people died and 65,000 others were displaced in 12 states in the North when the violence, erupted at the conclusion of the presidential election on April 16. The report, which was released yesterday, said: “The victims were killed in three days of rioting in 12 northern states. Nigeria’s state and federal authorities should promptly investigate and prosecute those who orchestrated and carried out these Continued on page 2
•President Goodluck Jonathan after a meeting with members of the Presidential Advisory Council on International Relations at the Presidential Villa in Abuja ... yesterday. With him are From left: Prof. Jide Osuntokun; Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr Idi Hong; former Secretary PHOTO: STATE HOUSE General of Commonwealth Chief Emeka Anyaoku (behind the President) and others.
JTF rejects militant’s surrender plan W ANTED militant leader and suspected sea pirate kingpin, ‘General’ John Togo, wishes to surrender, it was learnt yesterday. He gave a condition that the Joint Task Force (JTF) would give him a soft landing.
From Shola O’Neil, Warri
The militant group, in a statement by its spokesperson ‘Captain’ Mark Anthony, said the decision to surrender was taken at its Israel Camp last Saturday, adding that it had directed its
‘soldiers ‘ to return to their home towns and cities to await further directives. But JTF Media Coordinator Lt.Colonel Timothy Antigha told our correspondent that the task force was not aware of plans by the militant group to surrender.
Antigha, who spoke on the telephone, said neither Togo nor any criminal in the region was in a position to negotiate a peace deal with the Federal Government, having failed to take advantage Continued on page 2
•MARITIME P17 •SPORTS P23 •PROPERTY P25 •ENERGY P37 •AVIATION P43
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
20 on trial for alleged murder of ‘NYSC 7’ Continued from page 1
•From left: Ondo State Deputy Governor, Ali Olanusi, leader of the team, Senator-elect Dahiru Awaisu Kuta (Niger East), Ondo State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, Senator-elect Joshua Dariye and Senator Amina Khadi (Borno) during a visit to the governor by members-elect of the National Assembly from Niger, Bauchi, Borno, Kogi, Kwara and Plateau states, in the state for a five-day induction workshop in Akure ... yesterday
crimes and address the root causes of the recurring intercommunal violence.” President Goodluck Jonathan has repeatedly vowed to bring to book the killers of the Youth Corps members. He made his latest comment last week during a meeting with parents and relatives of the slain Corps members. Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda - who incurred the wrath of Nigerians when he declared that the youths died because it was their destiny to die - said the suspected killers of the youths had confessed to the action. The Youth Corps members are: Paul Adewunmi (from Ekiti State), Okeoma Okechukwu Chibudon (Imo) Ukazeone Amsalem
JTF rejects Togo’s condition to surrender Continued from page 1
of the window provided by the amnesty programme in 2009. The JTF spokesperson said Togo sold the same dummy last year after his attack on the government troops led to a manhunt for him and his members. “He (Togo) is not in position to negotiate any ceasefire with the JTF; all militant youths were given the opportunity but he and a few others refused to toe the path of peace. Instead, he chose to carry arms and continue to
terrorise innocent people in the creeks.” Besides, Antigha said last year, the scar-faced Togo called the then Commander of the task force, Major General Charles Omeregie with the story, adding that the JTF would not be moved by such claims again. The militant group’s spokesperson claimed that the decision to surrender was taken in the overall interest of the people in the area, stressing that NDLF is determined to ensure that residents lived their normal lives.
“This decision is not out of cowardice, but it was reached basically on humanitarian reasons as many Ijaw and Urhobo communities have had untold suffering with over hundreds of people lost their lives in Ayakoromor December 1, 2010, in the hands of Nigerian soldiers who killed innocent community as reprisal for their lost soldiers in battle with NDLF soldiers. “While we have abandoned our barracks in the creeks, the government should know that these boys are no longer in the NDLF control which if,
urgent step is not taken to integrate them into the federal government amnesty programme, the resultant effect could be imagined than said. We therefore, appeal to the federal government to make a quick decision so as to withdraw the weapons from NDLF. Don’t forget JTF did not destroy and capture any NDLF weapons. NDLF armoury is still intact and shall be surrendered unconditionally at federal government’s demand for permanent peace in the creeks,” he said.
(Imo), Anyanwu Agnes (Imo), Okpokiri Obina (Imo), Tosin Olawale (Kogi), Akonye Ibrahim Sule (Kogi), Gbenjo Ebenezer Ayotunde (Osun), Adeniyi Kehinde Jelili (Osun) and Adohe Elliot (Bayelsa). The suspects were accused of carrying out the dastardly acts in Jama’are and Giade local government areas of Bauchi State. The remaining 20 suspects were arrested in Jama’are Local Government Area. All the 41 suspects were charged separately with criminal conspiracy, culpable homicide and mischief by fire, contrary to Sections 96, 221 and 337 of the penal code laws. Arraigning the 21 suspects from Jama’are Local Government Area, Prosecutor Sergeant Iliya Kaura told the court that they conspired among themselves, invaded Jama’are Police station and hacked with machete ASP Saleh Dahiru, after they set the station ablaze. He said they also destroyed shops and places of worship contrary to the penal code laws. After reading the charges, the suspects also said they understood the charges. Chief Magistrate Abubakar ordered that they should be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the case till June 2, for mentioning.
Nigeria’s economy and the International Monetary Fund
HE International Monetary Fund (IMF) is no stranger to Nigeria, which joined the fund after independence in order to participate and benefit from the purposes of the Fund. The IMF focuses mainly on Nigeria’s macroeconomic policies in its relationship with the country. These are policies that have to do with public sector budgets, the management of interest rates, money, and credit and exchange rate; and financial sector policies, particularly, the regulation of banks and other financial institutions (as agreed by the BIS-Bassels Agreements). The Fund also pays attention to structural policies that affect macroeconomic performance of Nigeria. It was the IMF that advised Nigeria to undertake the “Structural Adjustment Programme” (SAP) in 1985. Last February, when public spending shot up to 37 per cent in 2010 from 10 per cent in the previous year, the Fund suggested that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) further increase the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) to curb rising inflation and weaken the naira. IMF, which concluded its Article IV Consultation with Nigeria on February 11, released a statement, bemoaning the apex bank’s decision to sell the reserves rather than raise interest rate or allow the exchange rate to depreciate
Strauss-Kahn denied bail as rape case opens Continued from page 1
in a back room of the Manhattan Criminal Court before he entered the courtroom. His hair was disheveled and he appeared to be wearing the same clothes he wore on Sunday. Strauss-Kahn was not handcuffed when he was escorted to the booking station at the court. His lawyers said he would plead not guilty to charges of a criminal sexual act, attempted rape and unlawful imprisonment that could bring a humiliating end to his public career and political ambitions. Any restriction the judge places on Strauss-Kahn’s freedom of movement after Monday’s arraignment hearing may determine whether he is able to continue in his globe-trotting role as IMF managing director. His arrest on Saturday plunged the By Ayodele Aminu, Group Business Editor
in response to the pressure on the naira. Under Article IV of the IMF’s Articles of Agreement, the Fund holds bilateral discussions with members, usually every year. A staff team visits the country, collects economic and financial information, and discusses with officials the country’s economic developments and policies. On return to headquarters, the staff prepares a report, which forms the basis for discussion by the Executive Board. At the conclusion of the discussion, the Manag-
Washington-based global lender into disarray in the midst of the euro zone’s debt crisis and threw France’s presidential race wide open. The IMF board postponed an informal meeting, pending further information from New York. The IMF, according to Bloomberg news, is calling on Lipsky to guide it through its own crisis. Lipsky, 64, was named acting managing director after Strauss-Kahn was charged with attempted rape and a criminal sex act on a New York hotel maid. Lipsky, who has been first deputy managing director since 2006, takes temporary leadership of the Washington-based IMF as it tries to stem the European sovereign-debt crisis and deal with Greece’s request for a bigger financial lifeline. Lipsky, who once served as chief economist at JP Morgan Chase and co.
ing Director, as Chairman of the Board, summarises the views of Executive Directors, and this summary is transmitted to the country’s authorities. But the Fund later refuted suggestions that it had in its recent report advised Nigeria to devalue the naira. Country Chief and Senior Resident Representative, IMF Nigeria, Mr. Scott Rogers, said in Abuja that the “Nigeria - Staff Report for the 2010 Article IV Consultation” did not at any point allude to the alleged recommendation for the devaluation of the naira and was void of the word
and Salomon Brothers Inc. in New York and represented the IMF in Chile, is described by colleagues as a steady hand who can give the fund some stability in the aftermath of Strauss-Kahn’s arrest. His promotion came three days after the IMF said he would be leaving when his term as the number two official ends on August 31. That could result in an “awkward period,” said Eswar Prasad, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington. “He can carry the ball effectively for the next few months, but I wouldn’t count on anything more from him,” said Prasad, who worked with Lipsky as division chief of the IMF’s financial studies division. Given Lipsky’s plans to leave, he’s unlikely to push any “major initiatives,” Prasad said. IMF spokesman William Murray said Lipsky wouldn’t comment on his new appointment.
“devaluation” in its entire content. He said the reference in its report to the need for greater exchange rate flexibility to prevent speculations in the foreign exchange market and mitigate external shocks does not in any way suggest a call for devaluation. While standing by the content of the entire report, he foreclosed any kind of retraction. CBN Governor Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi had in his response said there was no “fundamental reason” to devalue the naira “given that the current position of the re-
serves could defend the national currency”. Commenting on IMF chief’s sex scandal and the likelihood of affecting the Fund’s relationship with Nigeria, Managing Director, Financial Derivatives Limited, Bismark Rewane, said the development would not change the policies of the IMF. “This is not a personality
issue. This (IMF) is a strong institution, which is not driven by persons. All the guys in the IMF are Economists. So there is no cause for concern by Nigeria and other member countries,” he said. Following the worldwide economic depression from the 1930s and shortages of consumer goods throughout the period of the Second World War, 1939-1945, many trading nations in Western Europe and North America were compelled to introduce trade restrictions. Some restricted imports and controlled use of foreign exchange, while others devalued their currencies. In the aggregate, the restrictions on trade caused further economic decline in terms of world trade, output and employment. In 1944 at a place called Bretton Woods, in New Hampshire, United States of America, of 44 governments agreed on a framework of economic cooperation, designed in part, to prevent the mutually destructive policies that prevailed in the 1930s. Out of the agreement came the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in December 1945, with 29 members at inception.
CORRECTION In the story ‘Delta judicial workers on indefinite strike’ published on May 10, secretary, Delta Election Petition Tribunal Mrs Deborah Musa, said intigents have 21 days from the day results of elections are released to file petitions and not 20 day to file petition as she was quoted. The mix-up is regretted. – Editor
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THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
From left: Chairman Dangote Groups Alhaji Aliko Dangote, chairman BAU International Limited Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu, Minister of State, Commerce Josephine Tapgun and chairman of Cement PHOTO: AKIN OLADOKUN Manufacturers Association of Nigeria at the association’s meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan over the pricing of cement at the Presidential Villa... yesterday.
Amnesty carpets Jonathan over Jos crises probe reports
LOBAL rights watchdog, Amnesty International (AI) has criticised President Goodluck Jonathan for not keeping his promise to punish those behind the Jos crises. The human rights group, in its 2011 report, said the government also failed to address unlawful killings, forced evictions, slow judicial system and congested prisons. The report released at the weekend noted: “The police continued to commit human rights violations, including unlawful killings, torture and other ill-treatment and enforced disappearances. The justice system was under-resourced and riddled with delays. Prisons were overcrowded; the majority of inmates were pre-trial detainees, some held for many years. Approximately, 920 people were on the death row, many of them sentenced after unfair trials. No executions were reported. “The security situation in the Niger Delta deteriorated during the year. Human rights defenders and journalists continued to face intimidation and harassment. Violence against women remained widespread and the government failed to protect the rights of children. Forced evictions continued across the country.” On the Jos crises, the report said: “Between 17 and 20 January, more than 300 people were killed in religious and ethnic violence in and around the city of Jos, the Plateau State capital; over 10,000 people were dis-
Human Rights Watch: post-election violence killed 800
HE post-election andcommunal violence in Northern Nigeria left more than 800 people dead, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has said. The human rights group, in a report, released yesterday in Dakar, Senegal, said the victims were killed in three days of rioting in 12 Northern states. Nigeria’s state and federal authorities should promptly investigate and prosecute those who orchestrated and carried out these crimes, as well as address the root causes of recurring inter-communal clashes. The report reads: “The violence began with widespread protests by supporters of one of the political parties, following the declaration of the candidate for the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), as winner of the April 16 election. The protests degenerated By Tajudeen Adebanjo
placed and thousands of shops and homes were destroyed. On March 7, more than 200 men, women and children were killed by armed men when the villages of Dogo Nahawa, Zot, and Ratsat were attacked. Homes and property were burned, and thousands of people were displaced. “At least, three bombs exploded in and around Jos on December 24, killing 80 and injuring many more. The bombings triggered further violence in and around the city, leaving dozens dead and many more injured. Several buildings were also burned down.” The group lamented Jonathan’s inability to pub-
into violent riots and sectarian killings in the Northern states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Niger, Sokoto, Yobe, and Zamfara. Relief officials estimated that more than 65,000 people have been displaced. The HRW report reads: “The presidential election divided the country along ethnic and religious lines. As election results trickled in on April 17, and it became clear that Buhari had lost, his supporters took to the streets of northern towns and cities to protest what they alleged to be the rigging of the results. “The protesters started burning tyres, and the protests soon turned into riots. The rioting quickly degenerated into sectarian and ethnic bloodletting across the Northern states. Muslim rioters targeted and killed Christians and members of ethnic
lish and implemment the report of the panel of enquiry. “A Presidential Advisory Committee established in February to investigate the violence reported to President Jonathan in August. He pledged to implement the committee’s recommendations, but the report was not made public. The findings of earlier investigations into violence in 2008 had not been published by the end of 2010,” the report said. It accused the police of unlawful killings, saying: “Widespread disregard for human rights and due process within the police force continued. Hundreds of people were killed by the police in 2010. Many were unlawful-
groups from Southern Nigeria, who were perceived to have supported the ruling party, burning their churches, shops, and homes. The rioters also attacked police stations and offices of the ruling party and those belonging to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). In predominately Christian communities in Kaduna state, mobs of Christians retaliated by killing Muslims and burning their mosques and properties. “Human Rights Watch estimates that in Northern Kaduna State, at least 180 people and possibly more, were killed in the cities of Kaduna and Zaria and their surrounding suburbs. According to media reports and journalists interviewed by Human Rights Watch, dozens of people were also killed during riots in the other Northern states.”
ly killed before, or during arrest in the street or at roadblocks, or subsequently in police detention. Many other people disappeared after arrest. A large proportion of these unlawful killings appeared to be extra-judicial executions.” On the Niger Delta, the group said: “The improved security situation brought about by the presidential amnesty granted to members of armed groups in 2009 had deteriorated by the end of 2010. Armed groups and gangs kidnapped dozens of oil workers and their relatives, including children, and attacked several oil installations. The security forces, including the military, continued to commit human rights viola-
tions in the Niger Delta, including extra-judicial executions, torture and other illtreatment, and destruction of homes. “On December 1, following fighting between the JTF (Joint Task Force) and an armed group in Delta State, the JTF razed the nearby community of Ayokoromo. At least 120 homes were burned down. The JTF claimed nine villagers were killed, but community leaders and NGOs put the death toll at 51, including women and children. “In January, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) called off its ceasefire, which had been in place since October 2009. In March, two bombs exploded in Warri,
Delta State, killing at least one person. In October, three car bombs exploded in Abuja, disrupting Nigeria’s independence anniversary celebrations and killing 12 people. MEND claimed responsibility. “In January, two workers at Chevron’s gas plant, Escravos, in Delta state, were shot dead. Members of the JTF, who had been guarding the facility, allegedly drove past and opened fire as the workers were leaving the plant. Chevron paid the families of the two men compensation, but did not accept any responsibility for the killings.” AI lamented the inability of government to address the environmental challenges in the Niger Delta. It said: “Pollution and environmental damage caused by the oil industry continued to have a serious impact on the people living in the Niger Delta region. Laws and regulations to protect the environment were poorly enforced. Government agencies responsible for enforcement were ineffective and, in some cases, compromised by conflicts of interest. Communities in the Niger Delta frequently has no access to vital information about the impact of the oil industry on their lives. “On May 1, crude oil from a leaking pipe from an offshore platform of ExxonMobil’s Qua Iboe Oilfield reached the shores of the Ibeno community, Akwa Ibom State.“
Mark: no discrimination against fresh senators
ENATE President David Mark yesterday promised that there would be a level playing ground for all senators if returned to his present position next month. According to a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Paul Mumeh, the Mark promised that he would not discriminate against fresh senators. Speaking at the induction
From Augustine Ehikioya, Abuja
retreat organised for new senators and House of Represnetatives memberselect held in Makurdi, the Benue State capital and five other zones, Mark said fresh senators have nothing to fear, because they can attain any position of responsibility in the upper legislative chamber in due course.
He said: “I shall be equitable, fair and just in my relationship with every senator if I have the opportunity of leading the 7th Senate as President.” On the proposed amendment of Senate Standing Rule, he said: “The senate rules 2007 has already provided for ranking. We are not importing anything new and we are also not making new rules. The
senate is a family. Many senators are committees’ chairmen even as fresh senators. I urge you all not to give mischief makers any space.” Order 97(f) of the Senate Standing Rules 2007 as amended, provides that “nomination of senators to serve as principal officers and chairmen of committees shall be in accordance with the ranking of senators in which
members previously elected into the senate are granted precedence”. Mark said: “We must work together as a team and manage the affairs of the senate with the fear of God.” Stressing that there the senate has recognition for political affiliations, he said: “All senators are stakeholders of the project Nigeria and all we do is for the benefit of all citi-
zens. We are senators of the Federal Republic of Nigeria committed to the pursuit of national interest.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
•From left: Ekiti National Assembly members-elect, Oyetunde Ojo; Olubunmi Adetumbi; Opeyemi Bamidele; Robinson Ajiboye; Bimbo Daramola; Babafemi Ojudu; Dele Faparusi and Tony Adeniyi at a retreat in Makudi...yesterday
Hoodlums attack Ondo PDP secretariat From Damisi Ojo, Akure
HE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Secretariat in Akure, the Ondo State capital, was yesterday invaded by suspected political thugs. It was gathered that the hoodlums, numbering over 20, invaded the party secretariat on Oyemekun Road around 10am, armed with various weapons. Sources said they beat-up party members and workers at the secretariat, while many others scampered for safety. Mobile policemen were later deployed to contain the breakdown of law and order. It was gathered that the attack might not be unconnected with the list of party members sent to the national secretariat for federal appointments. The state party executive sent a 10-man list to the PDP national secretariat last Thursday. Those on the list include former Governor Olusegun Agagu; Senator Bode Olajumoke; Publisher of the National Mirror and business magnate Jimoh Ibrahim; Mrs. Febi Adeyemi and former Deputy Governor Omolade Oluwateru. Others are: PDP National Legal Adviser Chief Olusola Oke; Special Adviser to the Presidency on Niger Delta Affairs Hon. Kindsley Kuku; Woman Leader Lady Folake Akinjoko; State Party Chairman Omotayo Dairo and Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye, who currently represents Akoko North East/ North West Federal Constituency.” Sources said some groups within the party are not happy with the list. They said the list did not reflect the true representation of the three senatorial districts and urged the national executive to reject the list. When our correspondent visited the secretariat, policemen were stationed at the entrance to prevent protesters from fomenting further trouble.
Politics is too lucrative, says Fasuan
RETIRED permanent secretary in the old Ondo State Chief Deji Fasuan has said politics is too lucrative in Nigeria to facilitate meaningful development. He said the level of corruption in political offices could not allow for the desired development. Fasuan, who was the chairman of the committee for the creation of Ekiti State, said the looting of the collective wealth of the people by public office holders is worrisome. He said: “Those in the National Assembly, the upper and lower houses, including their staff, are not more than 2000. Imagine 2000 Nigerians cornering 25 per cent of our commonwealth. How can there be any meaningful growth when the figure replicates across other arms of government? Fasuan urged President Goodluck Jonathan to restore peace and stability in the country. He advised the President
From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
to pay special attention to security and power supply. Fasuan said: “In a situation where almost 90 per cent of youths are unemployed, if there is constant power supply, many of them would engage in small trades that will earn them a decent living and keep them away from unproductive engagements. “Government cannot provide jobs for everybody and bloating the civil/public service is not the answer. Government must create an enabling atmosphere for productive ventures to flourish. “Many businesses have been terminated prematurely, owing to power problems. Businessmen are fleeing Nigeria to Ghana and other neighbouring countries. It is scandalous for factories to close down in Ikeja, Ilupeju, Apapa and reappear in Accra, Takoradi and all those places.”
Bankole to open up on N10b loan
RESH facts emerged yesterday that the outgoing members of the House of Representatives may get their unpaid allowances after their tenure. Also, Speaker Dimeji Bankole is expected to open up today on the cash book of the lower chamber to prove that he is not leaving any debt for the incoming leadership. It was gathered that outgoing members of the House cannot get their allowances until the 2011 Budget is signed into law by President Goodluck Jonathan. Some of the outstanding allowances are running cost (tagged quarterly allocation) of N42 million per head; claims for trips and other sundry expenses; and severance packages. It was learnt that the
From Yusuf Alli, Managing Editor, Northern Operation
House leadership could not secure facility to offset the allowances of the members, which would have been paid today or tomorrow. A principal officer in the National Assembly, who spoke in confidence, said: “It may be difficult for the House to borrow at the last leg of its tenure. I think the banks are unwilling to give the House any loan. “But the fact is that the money needed for the payment of these running cost and allowances is already in the 2011 Budget. House members must wait till the President signs the budget before they can collect it. “The running cost and other allowances are their legitimate rights; they are entitled to them. The new
leadership will inherit these claims and pay accordingly since it is in the budget for this year. “Members may need to sacrifice because it is not the fault of the leadership that the budget has not been signed into law by the President. “We will secure this commitment from the incoming leadership. The good thing is that we still have some members returning to the House. Out of 360 members, about 260 are not returning. “We do not think there is any cause for alarm. This development will be made known to members on Wednesday (tomorrow).” As at press time, there were indications that Bankole may open up on the financial status of the House. Another official of the Na-
tional Assembly said: “Bankole will present the cash book of the House to members to demonstrate that he has not tampered with their funds or mismanaged the accounts. “The Speaker is upset by the misinformation going round and he wants to lay the financial records on the table for scrutiny by members. “Bankole has told everyone that he has nothing to hide as far as the accounts of the House are concerned. You should expect a more business-minded sitting on the financial health of the House today. “The House does not owe any bank a kobo. Also, contrary to some reports, no member of the House (outside some of those suspended and recalled) is being owed salaries.”
List of appointees polarises Ekiti, Osun PDP HE lists of nominees for federal appointments have polarised the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti and Osun states. In Ekiti State, Chairman of the National Assembly PDP caucus Duro Faseyi accused the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister of State, Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade (rtd), and exGovernor Segun Oni of sidetracking some prominent members of the party. Speaking with reporters in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, at the weekend, the Chairman of the House Committee on Millennium Development Goals (MDG) urged the
From Soji Adeniyi, Osogbo, and Toyin Anisulowo, Ado-Ekiti
Presidency to ignore the purported list, stressing that no federal legislator from the state was consulted. Mrs. Titilayo Akindaunsi representing Ekiti South I Federal Constituency and her counterpart in Ekiti Central II, Kehinde Odebunmi, said the list was not a true representation of the people’s wish. A PDP chief, Mr. Dapo Agbede, said the legislators were protesting because their names were not on the list. In Osun State, it was learnt that the list contained only
names of elderly members. On Sunday, a faction of the party largely populated by the young, known as Zero to Hero Group, after an emergency meeting resolved to stand up against the elders. In a communiqué by the group’s Interim Secretary, Mr Banji Adeyemo, the faction advised President Goodluck Jonathan to shun the list. The group, comprising PDP aspirants and candidates for the House of Representatives and other stakeholders, alleged that the party had been hijacked by leaders who had no regard for internal democracy. It said: “The list forwarded
by the state executive did not contain names of young and upwardly mobile PDP members with proven competence and integrity. “It is alarming that the names of those who failed to deliver Osun at last month’s elections were forwarded to the Presidency for appointments.
Ondo Election Tribunal adjourns till May 31 HE Ondo State Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Akure, the state capital, began hearing yesterday. The panel, headed by Hon. Justice Aisha Bwari, has Goddy Arunihu and Ineite Thelma as members. The Tribunal, which has four petitions before it, said some respondents were yet to reply to petitions filed against them. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its Ondo South senatorial candidate, former Governor Olusegun Agagu, are challenging the victory of
From Damisi Ojo, Akure
Mr. Boluwaji Kunlere of the Labour Party (LP). PDP House of Representatives candidate in Ilaje/Ese-Odo Agboola Ajayi is challenging the victory of Raphel Nomiye of LP. PDP House of Representatives candidate in Idanre/Ifedore Jones Akinyugha is also questioning the victory of LP’s Bakare Moshood. LP respondents prayed the court to strike out PDP’s petition against Kunlere, saying the title of the petition was not applicable to the petition
filed at the tribunal. LP’s lead counsel, Mrs. Abimbola George, said: “Instead of the petition title to reflect that the tribunal is sitting on National Assembly elections, the PDP wrote election tribunal sitting on Governorship and National Assembly elections. “And since there was no governorship election in the state, this election tribunal has no constitutional right to seat on the petition filed by the PDP.” PDP’s lead counsel, Chief Supo Ijabadeniyi, said it was a typographical error and urged the court to amend it. Mrs. Bwari adjourned till May 31.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS Developer loses N200m to encroachment
ASUU threatens fresh strike •Faults establishment of new varsities
From Bukola Amusan, Abuja
PROPERTIES worth over N200 million were yesterday demolished at the Lokogoma Mass Housing District of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) for encroaching on a plot of land reserved for the construction of a Neighborhood Centre. About 20 units of threebedroom flats, each occupying about 4.5 hectares of land were demolished by the Federal Capital Terriotry (FCT) Department of Development Control in an exercise that lasted for about two hours. Over 200 stern-looking policemen were deployed to monitor the demolition exercise. The director of the FCT Development Control unit, Yahaya Yusuf, who led the demolition team, said the land was meant for the construction of shopping malls, recreational centres, schools and parks. He said: “We are not here to witchhunt any developer, but we out to do the right thing, residence have embarked on various types of illegalities, we will ensure that all constructions that fall short of the approved building plan are not allowed to stand. “We will continue to fight all illegality, residents must ensure that they secure all necessary documents before they embark on any construction in the city.”
HE relative academic peace in the universities may soon be over as the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has warned of the dire consequences of the failure of the National Assembly to enact relevant laws, required for the smooth administrations of the the citadels of learning in line with the 2009 ASUU/Federal Government agreement. ASUU had in the past accused the Federal Government and the National Assembly of reneging on their agreement. But yesterday, it urged the nation to accept whatever decision it arrives at in the coming days. Its National President, Prof. Ukachukwu Awuzie, who spoke after the union’s National Executive Council (NEC) meeting at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, said that ASUU members have waited for over two years for the government to
From Tony Akowe, Kaduna
fulfil its own part of the agreement without success, pointing out that the National Assembly and the Federal Government should be held responsible for any crisis that may follow. According to him, the major cause of the crisis in the nation’s universities has always been the failure of government to implement valid agreements. He said two years after the signing of the 2009 ASUU/ FGN agreement, “government has failed, refused and neglected to enact laws that will give effect to certain major areas of the agreement that need legislation for their implementation and enforcement. “Of particular concern is the 70 years retirement age for lecturers in the professorial cadre. The expectation was that this item in the agree-
ment would be passed into law within a few months of the agreement. “After close to two years of waiting in vain and seeing the consequences in the form of continued brain drain in the university system, ASUU members have become restive across the country… “ASUU wishes to warn the country that it should not be held responsible for the consequences if, at the end of this current legislative year, the National Assembly fails to enact the required law. The National Assembly and in effect, government should be held responsible.” The ASUU president directed all branches of the union to immediately call their various congresses within the next three days to take necessary resolutions that their members have been calling for in the last months, but which the NEC had refused to consider, believing that the National Assembly would act
with integrity on the matter. Admitting that the current National Assembly will soon wind up, he said: “We learnt that the House of Representatives has passed the bill into law, while the senate has not considered it. But we are aware that bills have been passed within a day in this country. “What is required is very simple. Just for them to amend the law on retirement for academic staff in the professorial cadre. But they have refused to take a look at the bill because they are not interested in solving the problem in the sector”. Awuzie also criticised government’s decision to establish new varsities across the country, pointing out that the reason given by the government for the establishment of the new varsities were not tenable since the existing federal universities have not been adequately funded by the government.
Ekweremadu: NASS to pass law on peaceful co-existence From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
DEPUTY Senate President Senator Ike Ekweremadu has said the National Assembly will pass a law that would enable Nigerians reside in any part of the country without fear of victimisation. Ekweremadu, who led some incoming National Assembly members on a courtesy visit to the governor of Kano State, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau yesterday, said the proposed legislative framework became imperative, following the post-election violence that erupted in some North states, follwing the announcement of the presidential election results. Ekweremadu, who is the head of the delegation of federal lawmakers from Imo, Rivers, Oyo, Lagos and Anambra states on an induction course in Kano, said: “In this new National Assembly, we are going to provide necessary legislative and legal framework that would enable Nigerians reside anywhere in the country without fear of victimisation and be accepted as well as enjoy the privileges in the area they choose to live.” Shekarau urged the lawmakers-elect to strengthen the unity of the nation.
Violence: CAN wants youths’ movement monitored From Jide Orintunsin and Justina Asishana, Minna
HE Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has appealed to Northern governors to put a check to the indiscriminate movement of youths from one part of the country to another in a bid to avoid a repeat of the post-election violence that erupted in the Northern part of the country. It stated that the youths, who mostly disguised as Almajaris often serve as tools by religious fanatics to cause trouble and has called on the the governors to monitor their movement of the youths from state to state. The position of CAN was made known yesterday, when the Niger State chapter of the body led by its chairman, Reverend Musa Dada, paid a congratulatory visit to the Chairman of Northern Governors Forum (NGF) and the stategovernor, Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu in Minna. Dada said: “One of the greatest challenges facing Niger state is that of security, which despite past efforts by the administration to avoid the state from being used as breeding ground for some ignorant and fanatical religious bodies, they have continued to breed in the state. These elements have not been fully flushed out of the state. “Recent post-election violence was a clear indication that these elements have not been completely flushed out of the state.” Expressing concern over the rampant security lapses in the country, Dada stated that the greatest challenges facing the present administration was that of security.
‘HIV/AIDS Nigerian soldiers’ second largest killer’ From Kunle Johnson, Calabar
•Akingbola (left), with his lawyer, Fagbohungbe...yesterday
Akingbola urges court to halt trial
ORMER Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank Plc, Dr Erastus Akingbola has urged a Lagos State High Court, Ikeja, to stay further proceedings in the bid by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arraign him for allegedly stealing the bank’s money. Akingbola was recently rearrested by the EFCC over fresh N47.15 billlion money laundering charges. His arraignment, billed for yesterday was stalled by because of a pending application in which he asked the court to suspend further action in the case and to order the anti-graft agency to release him from its custody. His lawyer, Chief Felix Fagbohungbe (SAN), who led Mr. Rickey Tarfa and Deji Sasegbon, both senior advocates, informed the court that had just been served with the EFCC’s written address in response to the pending application.
•Accuses EFCC of intimidation By Joseph Jibueze
Fagbohungbe said they needed time to respond to the address. “I have just been served with a written address. We feel it is important for us to respond to it, but not orally. We want to put our arguments in writing,” he said. Justice Charles Achibong of the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos had on May 9 ordered the EFCC to release Akingbola, but the agency has not complied with the other, saying that keeping Akingbola in its custody is in order. There was a slight drama as to whether Akingbola and his co-accused, General Manager of Tropics Securities Limited, Bayo Dada, should stand in open court or in the dock during the court proceeding. The EFCC counsel, Chief Kola Awodein (SAN), who
led Dr Kayinsola Ajayi, Mr Kemi Pinhero and Mr Dele Adesina all senior advocates, said the accused persons ought to stand in the dock since the “information” on their alleged crime is already before the court. But Fagbohungbe said they could not be ordered into the dock, when a motion challenging the information had not been decided. He said: “Procedurally, the application before your lordship is that the prosecution cannot arraign the accused persons now until our pending motion is considered. It is erroneous and a misconception for them to think that the moment any suspect is brought to court, he should be put in the dock. The law does not support it said. However, Justice Abiru ordered Akingbola and Dada into the dock, saying the application did not challenge
court’s jurisdiction. Fagbohungbe drew the court’s attention to a sponsored publication in a natioanl newspaper (not The Nation) on May 15, which he said was capable of prejudicing his client’s case. “The matter is being put in the court of public opinion. EFCC is issuing a press release on a matter that is before the court. They want to intimidate the court, the judge, the judiciary and prejudice the case. “We’re complaining about the EFCC, not the press. The press release was signed by Femi Babafemi. It contains false information that could mislead the public. EFCC is not the Court of Appeal. They are acting above the law,” Fagbohungbe alleged. Adjourning till May 23, Justice Abiru told Fagbohungbe jokingly: “Fortunately for you, I don’t read newspapers.” He refused EFCC’s application that the defendants be kept in prison custody.
EXUALLY transmitted diseases, especially HIV/AIDS have been described as the second largest killer of Nigerian soldiers, especially during peace-keeping operations outside the country, Colonel Adewale Adeniyi Taiwo, Commanding Officer of 245 Battalion said yesterday. Taiwo, who spoke in Calabar, noted that members of Nigerian Armed Forces, especially the soldiers, have been reckless when it comes to sexual behavior during foreign assignments and this accounts for the reason many suffer from sexually-transmittedrelated diseases and infections. Speaking as a guest lecturer on the topic entitled: “Nigeria in peace support operations: An appraisal” during the 82 Division officers and Senior Non Commissioned officers Study Period hosted by the 13 Brigade of the Nigerian army in Calabar, Taiwo stressed that soldiers should curtail this habit. “During the ECOMOG operation in Sierra Leone, HIV/ AIDS became the second largest killer to deployed Nigerian troops next to gunshot wounds”, Taiwo said.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS JAMB to tackle fraud with 3,300 machines THE Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) is to deploy 3,300 biometric machines to 2,872 centres, to tackle examination malpractices during the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME), slated for June. The Registrar and Chief Executive of the board, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, stated this on Monday at a training workshop for coordinators of the 2011 UTME in Dutse. Ojerinde said the biometric machine was introduced for proper identification and to check examination malpractices, adding that a pilot scheme had been successfully carried out. “The machine will capture the fingerprints of each of the candidates and as soon as they do that, their pictures will come out, it means that that particular person has registered and will be allowed to sit for the exam, if it is otherwise, the candidate will be pushed aside. “This system will also tackle impersonation, cheating and late coming to exam hall which will not be tolerated by JAMB,” he said. He stated that the board would do its best by ensuring that things were done right for a hitch-free examination. The Registrar urged the UTME coordinators to adhere strictly to the rules for the conduct of a credible examination.
Nigerian girl makes history as first beneficiary of bloodless kidney transplant T WENTY-three-year old Nigerian girl Akani Chimenem Paul has become the world’s first beneficiary of a bloodless kidney transplant surgery. The operation, performed on May 3 by a team of three surgeons at Moolchand Hospital, New Delhi, India, set a new benchmark in organ transplantation. The team, led by Dr. Ramesh Kumar, a senior consultant and adviser in Nephroplogy and Transplantation, has as members, Dr. H. S. Bhatyal and Dr. Vijay Langer, who are senior transplants surgeon and senior consultant Anesthesiologist. Before the Kumar-led team took up the challenge to perperformed the surgery, Miss
By Tajudeen Adebanjo
Akani was suffering from kidney tumour (Renal Cell Carcinona). A four-kilogramme tumour with minimal blood loss was removed from the patient by the surgeons with no blood stain. Prior to the feat, all major surgeries as open-heart surgery, kidney transplantation and brain operations require blood transfusion during operative procedures. But the team took up the challenge and performed the bloodless kidney transplant surgery successfully for the first time-ever in India — with no blood loss and transfusion. Speaking on the feat, Kumar said: “Both the kidney
‘This bloodless surgery does not require special equipment, eliminates adverse effects, lowers infection rates and minimises immunosuppressant and can turn to be a miracle for the patients seeking kidney transplant’
donor and recipient are fine and stable and can now live a normal life and will be discharged in two to three days”.
He went on: “This bloodless surgery does not require special equipment, eliminates adversr effects, lowers infection rates and minimises immunosuppressant and can turn to be a miracle for the patients seeking kidney transplant. “At Moolchand, we provide world-class quality standards and respect everyone’s beliefs as well. Jehovah’s Witnesses, a Christian sect seek out quality healthcare and accept the vast majority of medical treatments. However, for Biblebased religious reasons, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not accept blood transfusion, they request non-blood alternatives. With haemoglobin as low as 30 per cent of the normal, that is 4.2 Hb in this case,
ICAO begins mission to Nigeria By Kelvin Osa- Okunbor
NDLEA intercepts N25m heroine at Lagos airport By Kelvin Osa- Okunbor
AN attempt by a suspected drug cartel in India to import 2.300kg of highgrade heroin into the country has been foiled by officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA). The agency yesterday said arrangements are in top gear with the Indian authorities for a joint investigation of the drug, valued at about N25 million naira . The seizure took place at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos at the weekend during the inward screening of passengers aborad an Emirate Airline from Bombay. Six female hand bags were found to contain parcels of brown powdery substances that tested positive for heroin weighing about 2.300kg. The Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Giade said the seizure will send a warning signal to drug syndicates that Nigeria is prepared to halt their sinister activities. He said: “We are going to resist all attempts by drug barons to import narcotics into the country. The rising profile of our great country is important to us and we are prepared to resist any attempt to smear our reputation.” The Airport Commander of the NDLEA, Alhaji Hamza Umar, said that an arrest had been made in connection with the seizure.”
was an increased danger for a major surgical procedure like transplantation. A planned surgery where the lives of two people; one - a recipient of a live organ and the other - a normal healthy person donating an essential organ; the task was double-edged for any failure of the outcome.” Moolchand is one of India’s foremost names in healthcare. It has been setting standards for excellence in healthcare for the past half century. It is a multi-specialty healthcare services provider, with over 50 specialty centres and over 500 doctors, who were trained and accredited in the United States (US) and the United Kindgom (UK).
• (From left) Mrs. Bimpe Bamgbose-Martins, Mrs. Fashola, Munroe and Prof. Bello...at the weekend
PHOTO: BUNMI OGUNMODEDE
HE Tactical Action Group of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) yesterday began the inspection of the facilities of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) at the Lagos Airport. The Tactical Action Group is made up of IATA, ICAO and Afi RVSM Monitoring Agency (ARMA). The two-man team include: Ms Tanja Grobotek, Assistant Director, Africa Safety, Operations Infrastructure, IATA, South Africa and Sadou Marafa, the Air Traffic Officer at ICAO office in Dakar, Senegal. The team were joined by inspectors from Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority(NCAA) and officials of NAMA led by the Managing Director,Alhaji Ibrahim Auyo. The team is expected to visit Kano Airport today.
Munroe blames Nigeria’s woes on poor mentoring
ENOWNED author and motivational speaker, Dr Myles Munroe, has identified the failure of leaders to groom suceesoors as the major reason for the persistence of socio-economic problems in Nigeria and other developing nations. Besides, he attributed leadership problems in Nigeria to lack of mentoring, saying the fear of retirement, lack of confidence in their successors, poor self-worth and resistance to change on the part of leaders should be addressed for the country to move forward. Munroe spoke at the weekend in Lagos during the inauguration and of Strategy for Mentoring Initiative and Leadership Empowerment (SMILE), a faith- based NonGovernmental Organisation (NGO), committed to empowering and mentoring future leaders in Nigeria. The inauguration attracted dignitaries and top government functionaries including the wife of the Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, Abimbola the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Roti-
•Fashola’s wife, others urge support for NGO By Sunday Ogundugba
mi Agunsoye. Others were; Senator Olorunnibe, Acting Vice-Chancellor, Lagos State University (LASU) Prof Ibiyemi Olatunji-Bello, Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on Health, Toyin Hamzat, Permanent Secretary in the Lagos Ministry of Works and Infrastructure, Paul Bamgbose-Martins. Munroe, who delivered a speech entitled, Mentoring and Leadership, described SMILE as the greatest gift to Nigeria because of its objective to mentor leaders. He called on the government and corporate bodies to support the gesture. Acoording to him, most developing countries suffer from leadership problem because colonialism created a bad platform for the creation of servants, rather than leaders. His words: “The first act of a true leader is to identify your successor when you assume office and begin to train them. Mentoring is a non-ne-
gotiable function of successful leadership. It is unfortunate that most leaders I have met have no mentees. “The ultimate goal of true leaders is not to maintain followers but to produce other leaders. This is because you can lose in a day what you spent your lifetime achieving. “The greatest obligation of true leaders is to transfer their virtues to the next generation. Good leaders are not selfish; they don’t build buildings around themselves, but build people. It is unfortunate that politicians don’t consider the next generation but the next elections. Leadership is not measured by how many people serve you, but how many people you have served.” Munroe also advised leaders to strive to become persons of value rather than craving power for ulterior motives. He said any leader that fights to become a leader is a wrong choice, noting that leaders who want to occupy positions for life must learn to let go for others to put in their contribution.
He urged them to emulate great leaders such as Jesus Christ, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King (Jnr), Mother Theresa, saying their followers were attracted to them because of their willingness to die for a cause they believed in. Mrs, Fashola, who was the special guest, lauded SMILE’s president, Mrs. Bamgbose Martins for creating the initiative. She appealed to Nigerians to embrace and support the organisation to achieve its goals. She said: “I am delighted to associate with SMILE not only because of the great impact it promises to make in unleashing leadership potentials to the youths but because this initiative is a pride for all members of the Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO). Mentoring and leadership empowerment remains the most powerful tools to positively impact the next generation of leaders. For me, it is very gratifying that this is the focus of SMILE. I appeal to all of us to
embrace this idea and support the organisation to realize its objectives.” President of SMILES, Mrs Tosin Bamgbose-Martins, said the organisation would primarily focus on inspiring people to discover, release and maximise their potentials. She recounted that the initiative was conceived when her bossom friend died in her prime. According to her, “what counts are the values and legacies people leave behind irrespective of life spent”. She listed the staging of seminars, mentoring, networking, consultancy and training, humanitarian outreach and an annual barbecue party as the major focus of the serviec organisation. “The unique feature of SMILE is that leadership trainee nominees to be empowered would be strictly based on credible referrals. This means the individuals must have shown positive leadership traits which need to be groomed and harnessed.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS States get N800m for FADAMA III From Osagie Otabor, Benin
OUTHSOUTH states have received over N800million from the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development under its FADAMA III project. FADAMA’s Zonal Project Coordinator Dr. Isaiah Foby made this known yesterday in Benin, the Edo State capital, at the fourth Joint Supervision Mission on FADAMA III project of the Southsouth. Edo State Project Coordinator Richard Aviomoh said FADAMA funds for farmers risked being allocated to other states as counterpart funds have not been paid by the government. But Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Mineral Resources Matthew Ogedengbe said there was no embargo on disbursement of FADAMA funds in the state.
Fed Govt warns governors-elect, T others over counter-steps
HE Federal Government has cautioned newly elected political office holders, especially governors-elect, over giving orders seeking to countermand the directives of incumbents whose tenures are yet to elapse. The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke (SAN), who spoke on behalf of the government, was reacting to statements credited to some governors-elect who had ordered banks to freeze their states’ accounts. A statement by the ministry’s Chief Press Secretary, Ambrose Momoh, said government views such action as illegal and capable of heating up the polity. It reads: “Government’s
•’Incumbents are still in charge’ From Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja
attention has been drawn to recent pronouncement and declarations by some newly elected officials that are not only contrary to the letters of the 1999 Constitution but also capable of impacting negatively on the smooth running of government business in the affected states. “Most worrisome are statements credited to some governors-elect to the effect that the accounts of their states should be frozen until they are sworn into office. “In some instances, some governors-elect have sought
to countermand the directives of incumbent whose respective tenures are yet to elapse. “We wish to state that such actions are clearly illegal and capable of engendering the breakdown of law and order and political instability in the affectted states, a situation that would no doubt impact negatively on governance and smooth conduct of government business. “We, therefore, condemn such actions and respectfully advise all concerned to exercise restraint and allow the tenure of incumbent of-
fice holders to come to an end in accordance with the dictates of the constitution. “This is more so as the incumbent officials (governors) are the only persons constitutionally recognised to govern and/or administer their respective states. “It should be appreciated that the mandate given to new governors-elect at the last general elections will not take effect until their inauguration on May 29. “Until the inauguration, no person or authority can lawfully impede the administration of incumbent governors and this should be respected by all and sundry in order to protect our democracy.”
Reprieve for HIV patients From Dele Anofi, Abuja
EOPLE Living With HIV/AIDS (PLWH) will soon be provided with second line drugs for treatment of the disease, the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) has said. The second line drugs, according to the agency’s Director-General, Prof. John Idoko, would give patients a new lease of life. The disclosure was made in Abuja when Director, Global HIV Initiative, Emcure Pharmaceuticals, Unaradhi Dar Balaji, donated antiretroviral drugs to the agency. Idoko, who confirmed the drugs to be safe and easy to administer, said the progress of the therapy would be monitored and evaluated before it can be integrated into the national programme. Balaji said because of the cost of the drugs, the company would support 50 PLWH free for six months. The retail unit price of the drug is N8, 200.
Laptops for students From Shola O’Neil, Warri
HE Minister of State for Education, Olorogun Kenneth Gbagi, yesterday in Effurun, Delta State, presented 360 laptops to female JSS1 students of selected schools. The minister said the Federal Government was committed to the revamping of the education sector. Gbagi spoke at the launching of the MDG-Assisted Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Initiative for Girls in JSS1 in selected schools and training of teachers at Woodridge Hotel, Effurun. His words: “A total of 360 laptops have been set aside for Delta State for distribution to Federal Government Girls College, Ibusa; Oginibo Grammar School, Oginibo; Onicha Ugbo Girls Grammar School, Onicha Ugbo; Our Lady’s High School, Effurun and Nana College, Warri.”
Tribunal begins sitting From Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa
THE Election Petitions Tribunal in Bayelsa State yesterday began sitting in Yenagoa, the state capital. Tribunal Chairman Justice C. Auta warned petitioners and respondents that the tribunal will not extend the 180 days required to hear the petitions before it. At yesterday’s sitting, only one motion was adopted and petitioners were allowed to inspect Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) materials. The tribunal has received nine petitions and they include: Labour Party’s Peremobowei Ebebi vs Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP’s) Heineken Lokpobori for Bayelsa West Senatorial District; Udengs Eradiri(LP) vs Warman Ogoriba (PDP) for Kolokuma Opokuma Federal Constituency; Helen Bob of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) vs Foingha Jephter (PDP) for Brass Federal Constituency. Others are: Dein Benadoumene (LP) vs Victor Prezi of the Progressive Peoples Assembly (PPA) for Ekeremo Constituency 3; Sunday Omiloli (ACN) vs Azibola Omekwe (PDP) for Ogbia Constituency 1; Aaron Alokpa (LP) vs Agatha Goma (PDP) for Ekeremo 1; Angus Dide (LP) vs Omonibeke (PDP) for Ekeremo II; Chief Okosikeme Daniel (ACN) vs Nestor Binabo (PDP) for Sagbama II and Daniel Igurubia (LP) vs Samuel Igurubia (PDP) for Ogbia II.
Uduaghan advises lawmakers-elect
•Some National Assembly members-elect with Senate President David Mark (middle) at an induction workshop of the National Assembly at Nike Lake Hotel, Enugu…..yesterday
Abia Police parade suspected criminals
HE police in Abia State yesterday paraded some suspected criminals for various offences. Pastor Sampson Ugwo of the Peace Sisters Outreach Ministries, Aba, and six others were paraded for alleged child-trafficking. Also paraded were 13 suspected cultists from Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU) who were arrested during an initiation. The police also paraded two suspected kidnappers, who allegedly kidnapped a 16-year-old boy in Aba. Three persons who allegedly fake and re-bag Dangote Cement in Omuma village, Aba, were also paraded. Commissioner of Police Bala Hassan said the command was committed to ridding the state of criminals. In an interview, Ugwo, who hails from Abam in Arochukwu Local Government, said the children he gave out were given to him by their parents.
Pastor detained in Benin From Osagie Otabor, Benin
HE pastor of the Chapel of Glory Bible Church, where a woman was allegedly killed by her 29-yearold son, is being detained by men of the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID), police headquarters, Benin. Police sources said Rev. Daniel Ohen is being questioned on how the murdered woman, now identified as Grace Oguneme, and her son, Ovie, gained entrance into the church. Ovie is being held at the maximum cell of the SCID and is said to be giving the police and other suspects a difficult time. Reporters were barred from the Sunday service. Few members were seen inside the church even as the ushers said nobody would be allowed to join them in the service. Words of comfort were heard from the person described as the assistant pastor. He told the congregation: “Many of you are still afraid. Do not be afraid over what happened. The enemy is trying the power of the Almighty.” Police spokesman Peter Ogboi said the police would unravel the circumstances that led to the murder. Last Thursday, a boy allegedly murdered his mother inside a church in Benin. From Ugochukwu Eke, Umuahia
The cleric said he was paid N380,000 for the three
children he gave out. Ugwo said the children were not sold as they were instructions to their custo-
dians to bring them back to him after two years . He said he ran out of luck when the kids’ parents started demanding for their children and went to report to the police and after which he was arrested. Emmanuel Ekeleme, one of the suspected cultists and a third year student of History and International Relations, said he was forcefully led into the act by his friend. He said the friend tricked him to the back of a hostel where they was a dancing festival, without knowing that they were cultists who were about to initiate their new members. Ekeleme said: “I met a group I have never seen before in the company of one of my friends and they were later identified as members of Vikings Confraternity. I don’t know them; I swear to God.” Another suspected cultist, David Chiedoziem, a student of Nursing Science, said he was not a cultist.
DELTA State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan yesterday urged the incoming National Assembly to enact laws that would address new minimum wage and gas flaring. Uduaghan, who was represented by his deputy, Prof Amos Utuama (SAN), said this at the opening of the induction workshop for lawmakers-elect at the Government House, Asaba. He said: “Please look into revenue allocation and come up with a more equitable formula. The present formula is no longer sustainable owing to the increase in workers’ minimum wage. “If something is not done urgently, most states and local governments might go bankrupt under the burden of salaries and wages. “I urge you to introduce laws that will impact positively on all Nigerians. “There is the need to also address ecological matters, which poses serious threats to various communities both here in Delta and other parts of the country. “The incoming National Assembly should critically examine the issue of continued gas flaring across the Niger Delta. “Apart from its environmental hazards, useful resources are being wasted when it can be harnessed for our energy needs and exports.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS Shekarau urges Kano residents to defend Shariah From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
THE Kano State Governor Ibrahim Shekarau yesterday urged the residents to defend the Hisbah Board for the peace and progress of the state. The board is in charge of the enforcement of Shariah, the Islamic law. Speaking at the launch of a book entitled: Hisbah: Origin, Philosophy and Practice in Kano State, Nigeria, written by a journalist, Malam Ujudud Shariff at the Murtala Muhammad Library Complex, Kano, yesterday, Shekarau said the board face so many challenges before it reached its present position. He recalled the huddles the board encountered during the Olusegun Obasanjo regime, saying the board contributed towards sanitising the society, ensuring peaceful and mutual coexistence among the residents. Shekarau said Hisbah complemented the duties of community policing, which the Police were yet to implement, adding that its mode of operations was more of peace-keeping mission. The governor said his administration had provided a legal backing for the board and its activities, noting that the board can only be repealed through a legislative.
Southwest CPC dissociates self from withdrawn case
EADERS of the Southwest zone of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) yesterday disassociated themselves from the position of its Southsouth/Southeast counterparts on the petition filed by the party before the Presidential Election Tribunal challenging the election of President Goodluck Jonathan in last month’s presidential election. Southwest National Vice-Chairman of the party, Rasaq Muse told reporters that the CPC would contest the results of the elections to the end. Muse said CPC had enough evidence to back its claim that the elections were rigged in favour of Dr
By Miriam Ndikanwu
Jonathan. The 17 Southsouth/ Southeast chairmen of the party had last Saturday told reporters in Ogba, Lagos, that the suit was unnecessary, adding that Dr Jonathan won the elections. But their Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti and Lagos states’ counterparts, who were at the press briefing, debunked the claim that the Southwest zone was not part of the meeting where the decision was taken. Muse said the stance of the 17 chairmen did not reflect the decision of the national body, adding that their position was sponsored by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He said the Southwest zone was not part of the pronouncement as circulated in the media. Muse said: “We are not part of the so-called Southsouth/Southeast caucus that repudiated the stand of our party to go to court. The Southwest zone is a party to the decision of our great party to challenge the results of the elections and therefore we stand by that decision 100 per cent. No shaking or budging until the fraud committed by the PDP is exposed.” He lamented that the position of local and international observers who described the polls as free and fair, saying their position represented the picture at the polling units.
heed our advice to look into the collated results from other states before announcing, INEC went ahead. Consequently, we rejected the results declared and that was the genesis of going to court. “We have evidence to confirm that INEC printed ballot papers locally through companies owned by PDP leaders.” He assured party supporters that the CPC would challenge the case “to show to the whole world the massive manipulation of figures, harassment and inducement perpetrated by the PDP at the collation centres”.
‘Competence will determine our choice of Speaker’ From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
N Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) member of the House of Representatives representing Ikorodu Federal Constituency of Lagos State, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, yesterday said the House would elect the next Speaker on the basis of his competence and not on his regional or ethnic background. Dabiri-Erewa, who addressed reporters in Kano, said the House would not be carried away by the agitation over the zoning of the office of the Speaker, which has generated controversies since the end of last month’s elections. She said members were interested in electing a credible Speaker who would lead the House well and not interested in his geo-political zone. She said: “We are looking for a diligent person; a committed person; somebody with dignity; somebody with integrity, who can pilot the affairs of the House. I mean somebody who can take us from the dungeon that we are today to the pent house. “I think what we in the House of Representatives are interested in is to elect an individual with proven integrity and who possesses the needed capacity to move the House forward. “The image of the House today is very bad; so, we are looking for a person - and it is not about zoning or where the person comes from - because we are looking for somebody with character.”
Police parade suspected criminals in Plateau
I won’t dictate to incoming Assembly, says Aliyu
From Marie-Therese Peter, Jos
THE Plateau State Police Command yesterday paraded suspected members of seven criminal groups at its Headquarters in Jos. The suspects were alleged to have committed sundry offences, including conspiracy, armed robbery, theft and damage to government property. They were reportedly arrested at different locations in Jos and Mangu Local Governments. Addressing reporters in Jos, Police Commissioner Abdulrahman Akano said though the Jos crises were over, some individuals were still hiding under them to organise crimes and terrorise the residents. Akano said: “On May 8, detectives from the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) on patrol intercepted a gold Vento wagon with registration number BF 796 JNN, driven by one Yusuf Muazu, male, of Bukuru and was conveying some cut Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) cables on Hwolshe, Jos, and was in company of three other occupants who escaped on sighting the Police. “The following exhibits were recovered from them: one gold Vento station wagon with registration number BF 796 JJN; 30 pieces of cut NITEL cables; two jacks; two crow bars; two tins of grease; and N29,500.
Muse alleged that PDP perfected its rigging plot at the collation centres, adding: “In fact, in the rural areas, it was rigging as usual at all levels of the election. As a matter of fact, the British Ambassador in one of the press releases confirmed massive fraud at the collation centres.” He said the party had reported to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the reduction of CPC’s votes in Kano and Katsina states by 40 and 26 per cent, criticizing the commission for allegedly turning deaf ears to its plea. Muse said: “Rather than
N Primate of All Nigeria Anglican Communion, Most Rev. Nicholas Okoh (left) with the General Overseer, Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye, during Adeboye’s PHOTO: NAN visit to the Primate in Abuja…yesterday.
Ekiti lawmakers avoid visit to Suswam
KITI State National Assembly memberselect, who were in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, for a week’s retreat, yesterday boycotted a visit to Governor Gabriel Suswam at the Government House. The lawmakers were among other National Assembly members-elect who were in the state for the retreat. One of the lawmakers, Oyetunde Ojo, representing Ekiti Central (Efon, Ijero and Ekiti West), said the action was to show solidarity with Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) members in Benue who suffered alleged terror in the hands of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), led by Suswam, during and after last month’s elections. After the retreat was declared open by Senate President David Mark, who is the chairman of the National Assembly Service Commission, the members-elect
From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi
drove to the Government House to visit Suswam. But the Ekiti memberselect, comprising three senators and six House of Representative members, stayed back in their hotel rooms. Addressing reporters on behalf of his colleagues, Ojo said the action was to show ACN’s anger over the recent attack on the convoy of its governorship candidate, Prof Torkuma Ugba, and the killing of one of his aides. He said the lawmakers had heard about the intimidation of its members in Benue before the elections, adding that General Lawrence Onoja, Alhaji Usman Abubarka, ACN chairman Abba Yaro, among others, had been victimised by the Suswam government. Ojo said: “After all that ACN went through during and after the elections, the acts of terror should now be reduced, since the election
matters are in the tribunal. We believe the law will take its course.” Also, Kenneth Archibong, a member elect representing Itu-Ibiono Federal Constituency in Akwa-Ibom State, has expressed dismay with some of the National Assembly members-elect for allegedly jostling for leadership positions when the Assembly was yet to convene. Archibong, who is the Special Adviser on Public Utilities to Governor Godswill Akpabio, noted that with the poverty level in the rural areas, National Assembly lawmakers should have channelled their energy towards improving the lots of the rural dwellers.He said: “How can they be holding meetings day and night, scheming for leadership positions in a yet-to-be convened House of Representatives, when poverty has ravaged our people? I think they want to show Nigerians that they are just there for their personal interests.”
IGER State Governor Babangida Aliyu has said he would not meddle in the affairs of the legislature. Aliyu’s promise followed an allegation that he was planning to impose his stooges as principal officers of the House of Assembly. He was accused of using the non-return of more than half of the 27-member assembly to influence and dictate who should get what position in the House. But Aliyu denied the allegation, saying he would not dictate to the incoming Assembly’s Speaker and other principal officer as being speculated in some quarters because of his belief in the sanctity of separation of powers. In a statement by the Director-General, Publicity and Public Affairs, Mallam Bala Abdulkadir, the governor said he would not intrude into the affairs of the legislature, maintaining that democracy thrives on separation of power. The statement reads in part: “The Niger State House of Assembly is a separate arm from the executive arm. The Assembly is also made up of personalities who have dignity, who are responsible and are passionate about the development and progress of Niger State.” Aliyu noted that it was an
•Aliyu From jide Orintunsin, Minna
insult on the House for anybody outside it to try and influence its decisions, adding that the lawmakers were knowledgeable enough to take independent decisions on the affairs of the state without the executive’s influence. The statement added: “It is not true that Aliyu is favourably disposed or otherwise to some specific legislators, who may be aspiring for leadership positions. Clearly, the selection of the leadership of the Assembly is not within the purview of his functions. The governor has no plan to impose anybody or officers on the incoming House.” Aliyu said he had enjoyed a robust relationship with the lawmakers since 2007, adding that he would not do anything to jeopardise the relationship.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS North Korea promises to support Nasarawa From Johnny Danjuma, Lafia
NORTH Korean Ambassador John Hakse has promised the consolidation of existing ties between his country and Nasarawa State. Hakse spoke at the home of the governor-elect, Alhaji Tanko Almakura, during a congratulatory visit. He said there was an existing technical and economic relation with North Korea and Nasarawa State Government. The envoy described Almakura’s election as momentous, recalling that North Korea and Nasarawa had agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on economic and technical cooperation. He said the Almakura’s administration would usher in a new vista for the consolidation of existing cordial relationship. Almakura said Nasarawa “is one of the backward states in the country, with more rural than urban areas”. He said: “These rural areas require infrastructure; they require healthcare, education, poverty alleviation. We are of the belief that because of the unlimited needs of the people of this state, whatever we are likely to get from the federal revenue and even internally generated revenue, may not be sufficient.”
Jonathan in Kwara to inaugurate aviation college, others A LL is set for President Goodluck Jonathan’s visit to Kwara State today. During the visit, the President is expected to commission the International College of Aviation and the state university (KWASU) at Malete; the newly completed judges’ quarters; and the cargo terminal, all constructed by the Bukola Saraki administration. Other projects for commissioning are the intra-state rail mass transit and the Asa Dam water reticulation. Addressing reporters after inspecting some of the project sites in Ilorin, the state capital, Dr Saraki said the commissioning “would have been done before now but for the just concluded elections.
•5,000 policemen for President’s visit From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
The President could not give us a date because of the elections”. He said: “One feels fulfilled that the Aviation College comes to reality. Therefore, to ensure its sustainability, the college will soon be solely private sector-dependent. The government must look at projects that will create opportunities for our people as that will create jobs for youths looking for employment.” Saraki urged the residents to come out en masse to wel-
come the President. Chairman of the Aviation College, Capt. Edward Boyo (rtd) said the college would begin academic programmes in August with 20 students. He said the number would later increase to 30, adding that each student would pay N7million tuition fee. Boyo said the proposed fee was nothing comparable to what was paid in other aviation colleges around the world. He said: “The programme for the pilot scheme will be for 18 months and pilots will be produced with commer-
cial pilot licences and multiengine type rating. This means from here they can graduate and move into the airlines. “In addition, we will have private pilot training for people who do not want to be professional pilots but want to understand flying. We will also have executive private pilot licences so that the managerial and executive cadres in Nigeria can have first-hand experience of pilot training. Eventually, a general aviation community will arise from there.” The Kwara State Police Command yesterday announced the deployment of about 5,000 policemen to ensure security of lives and property during President Jonathan’s visit.
Patrol teams and intelligence officers would be placed at strategic places to monitor suspicious movements that might jeopardise the visit. The command’s spokesperson Dabo Ezekiel, an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), said: “We have deployed our men to places the president will visit and the routEs he is going to take. “We have also put in place everything that would ensure that his visit is hitch-free. With effect from toady (yesterday), our patrol and intelligence men will be out there to ensure that the President has hitch-free stay. “I appeal to Kwarans to cooperate with the Police by reporting suspicious movements promptly.”
Police parade suspected robber in Kwara From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
THE Kwara State Police Command has paraded a suspected armed robber, Fadh Kamaldeen, for alleged possession of a bag containing lethal items. The items reportedly recovered from him were one automatic pump action gun with No 4438; 96 live AA cartridges; one AK/47 magazine with 62 AK/47 live ammunition. Its spokesman Dabo Ezekiel said the command’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) was investigating the case. He said a-four man robbery squad on May 5 allegedly invaded Peculiar Supermarket, Olorunsogo, Ilorin, the state capital, and held the workers and customers hostage. Ezekiel said: “The robbers, armed with rifles, drove to the supermarket in a Nissan Sunny car with registration number (Abuja) CX63ABC, and one of them remained inside the car in a get-away position. Three others went inside the supermarket and initially pretended to be customers. But suddenly one
•Cross section of commissioners in Bauchi State during the submission of Tafawa Balewa and Bogoro reconciliation report to Governor Isa Yuguda…yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
Jonathan issues ultimatum to cement manufacturers to crash price
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday issued a 30-day ultimatum to the top five manufacturers cement to slash its price. The President gave the order after a meeting with the cement manufacturers to register his displeasure over the sky-rocketting price of the product. The President’s action was made known by his spokesman Ima Niboro yesterday. Jonathan urged them to make cement accessible to Nigerians. Niboro told reporters at the Presidential Villa that the manufacturers agreed to work within the time frame to meet up with the presidential directive. Also addressing State
From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja.
House correspondents after the meeting with the President of the Cement Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (CMAN), Chief Joseph Makoju; Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Chairman of BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu and Country Manager of Lafarge Cement, JeanChristophe Barbant assured that the prices would come down before the deadline. Dangote said the major problems facing the industry was lack of Low Pour Fuel Oil (LPFO) consumed by the industry and the loss of 6, 000 trucks by his group recently. He also blamed the recent
post election crisis in the North which caused a short down of production for weeks for the hike in price. Dangote also said the arrangement by his companies to sell cement directly to retailers buying as little as one truck was part of moves to bring down prices. He observed that marketers were also capitalising on the increase in the pump price of diesel to transfer additional cost to the final consumers. According to him, “The other issue is that of transportation. You know once there is an increase of N1 in diesel. Transporters will take that opportunity to increase their charges. When you look at when we started producing cement at Obaja-
na, cement for the first time became cheaper, it is still cheaper than the price of in Lagos while this was not the case before now. “So you can see that we are doing quite a lot and I can assure you that in the next few weeks, these prices will definitely come down,” he said. Dangote also said his organisation had ordered for 5, 000 additional trucks to ameliorate the problem of haulage of cement to all parts of the country saying “We are doing all that to try and bring down the cost of transportation but we will do it in such a way that it will not affect other transporters because we also need them in the business to survive.
AC N won Benue governorship poll, says Unongo
E was a key supporter of Benue State Governor Gabriel Suswam. Indeed, his wife was the immediate past Commissioner for Women Affairs. But yesterday, Second Republic Minister Paul Unongo sang a different tune. In a shocking move, he declared that Action Congress of Nigeria ( A CN)candidate Prof Steven Torkuma Ugba won the Benue governorship election. Unongo, a Peoples Demo-
From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi
cratic Party (PDP) alleged that the election was rigged for Suswam. The former Minister of Power and Steel Development spoke at a news conference in Makurdi. He said peace would not reign in the state until Ugba’s mandate is restored. The AC N candidate has already filed a petition before the Election Petition Tribu-
nal challenging Suswam’s victory. Unongo, 75, said the restoration of Ugba’s mandate would “wipe away the tears of Benue people.” He said former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s daughter lost at the polls in Ogun State while the former President failed to retain the governorship seat for the PDP, “yet there was no attempt to overturn the result.” He wondered why the mandate of the A C N was stolen in Benue.
Unongo lamented the killing of Charles Ayede last Friday in the convoy of Ugba. He wept during the news conference at the sight of the gory picture of the late Ayede, saying:” God will surely punish those who killed this A C N chieftain.” Unongo said he warned the PDP government in Benue state that given the way the A C N penetrated the nooks and crannies of the during the campaigns, it would be difficult for the PDP to retain its
hold on the state but his fears were dismissed. “During the campaigns in Benue state every village you went to, children between five and 10 years said game had changed. But the Independent national Electoral Commission (INEC) connived with the PDP and stole the mandate but I can assure you that very soon, there will be peace in Benue because the mandate will be returned to the rightful owner.”
Niger denies cholera outbreak From Jide Orintunsin, Minna
ESPITE the reported death of two people from water contamination and the hospitalisation of 10 others in Dikko, Gurara Local Government, the Niger State Government yesterday denied the outbreak of cholera in the state. Addressing reporters in Minna, the state capital, Commissioner for Health and Hospital Management Services, Alhaji Adamu Abdullahi, said the death of the two people should not be taken as the result of cholera outbreak. He said a medical analysis on the deceased indicated that their death was the result of gastro-intestinal problem, caused by the contamination from the drinking water. Abdullahi said: “An immediate medical analysis indicates that the two victims died from acute dysentery as a result of contamination from the water. We have equally carried out a test of the water and found it to be contaminated.” He said the other 10 were on close observation at the hospital to enable the government give them adequate medical attention and carry out further examinations on them. He maintained that no further test had been carried out to know if there was cholera outbreak.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS Experts demand true fiscal federalism
Anambra North senator-elect demands Certificate of Return
By Joseph Jibueze
EXPERTS yesterday decried the nation’s lopsided revenue sharing formula, urging the incoming administration to enthrone true fiscal federalism. They said the present formula kills motivation and competition among states in the country. They spoke at a Public Lecture organised by the Chartered Accountants in Lagos State Public Service. It was entitled: “Harnessing the Full Potentials of Nigeria through Innovative Development and Fiscal Federalism.” Speakers included Lagos Commissioner for the Environment, Mr Muiz Banire, who represented Governor Fashola; ;Lagos Commissioner for Finance, Mr Rotimi Oyekan; Professor of Law, Itse Sagay (SAN); renowned accountant Mr Emmanuel Ijewere; The Guardian Editorial Board Chairman, Dr Reuben Abati; Prof. Joseph Fabayo; Dr Moshood Fashola and Dr Saheed Timehin. Fashola said the recent increase in wages and the process that led to it has brought to the fore the need to examine and review the revenue sharing formula among the various tiers of government. “This is in order for the states and the local governments to be sufficiently capable of accommodating and sustaining the payment of the increased wages consequent upon review of salaries,” he said. He urged the public accountants to ensure that the public derive maximum value for the money expended on their behalf by those holding public office in trust. Sagay said political will is needed to have true fiscal federalism. He said the Constitution need further review to among others, give states power to control their resources and pay a percentage to the centre.
Three die as ‘area boys’ clash By Titilayo Banjoko
THREE persons were allegedly killed yesterday as two warring factions of ‘area boys’ from Alakara, Mushin Local Government,Lagos State fought for supremacy. It was gathered that the two factions have been engaged in supremacy battle for the past four weeks. According to an eye witness, the fight started at about 12pm when some members of one of the faction from Alakare in Mushin confronted the other faction at FadeyiOnipan, along Ikorodu road. Dangerous weapons like guns and cutlasses were used. The timely intervention of policemen from the Onipan police station saved the situation from degenerating into a free-for-all fight. Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Onipan, CSP Joe Ibekwe confirmed the incident.
HE Senator-elect for Anambra North, John Emeka, has expressed optimism that the controversy surrounding the candidacy of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the National Assembly election will be resolved in his favour. He condemned media reports speculating that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had given the certificate to Senator Alphonsus Igbeke;
From Yomi Odunuga, Abuja Bureau Chief
following a court judgment. He said the certificate would be retrieved and returned to him as the elected candidate for Anambra North. Emeka spoke in Abuja at the weekend. He called on the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jega, to intervene in the matter to save the electoral body from ridicule. He said the order purportedly procured by Igbeke
was defective and unacceptable, noting that INEC cannot give the certificate to a candidate who never contested an election. He said: “I am waiting for the chairman of INEC to come back. I was told he was out of the country. INEC invited me to Awka to collect my Certificate of Return on May 10. “Anambra people were in Awka, I was told that Igbeke was seen on Television, brandishing a paper that has his certificate. Who could
have issued him a certificate in Abuja? That is why I want to believe that Jega is not aware of it. That is why I am still waiting for Jega to come back and issue to me my certificate.” Emeka said some of the documents were forged. “I think there is a mix- up somewhere. I don’t think that INEC, in its wildest imagination, can give a certificate to someone who did not participate in an election; who was never a candidate; whose name was never pub-
lished for the electorate to vote for. So I think the INEC Chairman, whenever he comes back from holidays, will clear this mess”, he said. On his next line of action, Emeka said: “How can somebody who never participated in an election, whose name was not displayed by INEC, whose name was not displayed in the senatorial zone, who was never returned by INEC Returning Officer, be issued a Certificate of Return?.
Army chief hails Obi From Nwanosike Onu, Awka
HE Leader of Course 80, Nigerian Army College of Logistics, Lagos, Maj Gen. Thomas Oliomegbe ,has said Anambra was chosen for their tour because of its remarkable contributions to national development. He extolled the leadership virtues of Governor Peter Obi. He spoke at the Government House in Awka when his team visited Obi. He said they were in the state for an industrial study after which the students would articulate their findings in a detailed report. Oliomegbe assured the governor that the report of the study would be made available to the State and expressed the hope that the findings would be useful to the State’s strategic planning process. He added that the theme of the visit was designed to help students understand the place of States in the cultural, socioeconomic and industrial development of the nation. Governor Obi said the Nigerian Army had done the country proud.
•The Deputy Governor of Osun State, Otunba Titilayo Laoye-Tomori and an Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) chieftaain, Alhaji Fatai Diekola, at the Fidau prayer for his late sister, Alhaja Omoriyeba Agbelekale in Osogbo... Monday.
Okorocha inaugurates transition committee •Promises to hit the ground running •Urged to build good governance
MO State Governorelect Owelle Rochas Okorocha yesterday inaugurated a transition committee. The inauguration was used as an opportunity to educate members of the committee on how to discharge their duties in accordance with the rescue mission slogan. They were sensitised to the expectations of the masses from Okorocha’s administration and how to achieve all the electioneering promises made to Imo people. Senator Chris Anyanwu said Okorocha was unanimously elected by the masses, as such he is working out modalities to ensure that he serves Imo people well. She said the whole arrangement is a brain storming process to prepare their minds for the challenges ahead. Chief Patrick Nbanusi Igweboni, a member of Okorocha’s Culture and Tourism Committee, said they serve as a think-tank to enable Okorocha carry out his Constitutional responsibilities. He said the committee is a rescue mission. Igweboni assured that Okorocha’s administration would provide the dividends of democracy to the grassroots. Okorocha has reiterated his determination to tackle the challenges of governance by hitting the ground running.
From Emma Mgbeahurike, Owerri and Franca Ochigbo, Abuja
The governor- elect promised to pay attention to issues as they present emerges, so as to satisfy the yearnings and aspirations of the electorate. He spoke during a visit to Orient FM and Television in Owerri,yesterday. He assured on the transformation of the state. The governor-elect said education and security would form the bedrock of his administration. He promised free primary and secondary schools, warn-
ing that parents would be held accountable for any child that refuses to go to school. “Some people think it is impossible, but we must make the necessary sacrifices to achieve our aim”, he said. The former Minister of State, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Chief Chuka Odom has charged Okorocha to embark on good governance. In a congratulatory letter to the Governor-elect, Odom said: “Your victory is the wish of Imo people and advancement in march to full democracy. Do not embark on political structure building, the best you would build is good governance and
the rest will fall in place. “Avoid witch-hunting and shadow boxing. It is a waste of time and adds nothing to the welfare of the people. Do not allow your administration to be distracted. “You can afford to run a transparent government. I do not think you are in dire need of money. You can always find a way to settle those who helped you without compromising performance. “This is the time to roll your sleeves and go to work. You must redeem your campaign promises especially free education and creation of jobs for the youths.”
Gunmen kill two policemen in Ebonyi bank robbery
WO policemen attached to a first generation bank in Abakaliki,the Ebonyi State capital, were yesterday shot dead by gunmen. The policemen were reportedly killed in a gun duel with the armed robbers who invaded the bank on Ezza road on Monday. Some Abakiliki residents urged the government to be alive to its responsibility of protecting the lives and property of the citizenry. Police spokesperson John Eluu confirmed the incident, saying the Commissioner of Police Emmanuel Ayeni has given men of the
•Four feared dead in Anambra communal crisis From Ogbonnaya Obinna and Adimike George
command 24 hours to fish out the criminals. FOUR persons were yesterday feared dead in Obosi community in Idemili North local government of Anambra State following an eruption of violence at a swearing-in ceremony. The home town of former Common Wealth scribe Emeka Anyaoku and Chief Executive of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) Osita Chidoka,has been in cri-
sis. The lingering crisis last year led to the withdrawal of the Certificate of Recognition of its monarch, Chief Josiah Nwokoby, by the government. It also led to the proscription of the Adike Peace Foundation, a group allegedly behind the crises. According to an eyewitness, a youth group stormed the venue of the swearing-in of the new exco of the Obosi Land Management Committee. Four persons were feared dead and property torched.
Following the mayhem, a rival group retaliated by burning their opponents houses, it was learnt. According to sources, the ceremony held at Obosi town hall. Suspected thugs loyal to the past exco stormed the venue and unleashed mayhem on the people. The traditional ruler of the town, Nwakaoby, blamed the crisis on the Police. Nwakaoby said only two persons were killed. Police spokesperson ASP Emeka Chukwuemeka confirmed the incident.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS 371 to graduate at Osun varsity From Soji Adeniyi, Osogbo
NO fewer than 371 students will graduate on Saturday at the five-year-old Osun State University. The Vice Chancellor of the varsity, founded in 2006 with 571 students, Prof. Sola Akinrinade, spoke with reporters yesterday at a press conference marking the maiden pre-convocation ceremony. He said the programme will be held at the Osogbo main campus of the institution. Giving a break down of graduands, Akinriande disclosed that nine students bagged first class honours, 168 with second class upper, 183 with second class lower while the remaing 11 had third class. Represented by Prof. Olayiwola Oladele, the Provost of the College of Law, the vice chancellorsaid that the varsity would have graduated more than 90 per cent of its pioneer students, but for the fact that some of the programmes are run for five years while other have six years duration. He disclosed that the Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade Olubuse II, who is also, the Chancellor of the university, will be conferred with Doctors of Letter honourary causus of the institution. He noted that the university’ academic calender was not interrupted throughout its existence.
Beware! Oral sex causes mouth cancer, Fed Govt warns T HOSE engaging in oral sex got a warning from the Federal Ministry of Health yesterday. They run the risk of cancers of the mouth. According to the ministry, 64 per cent of cancers of the mouth are contracted through the practice of oral sex. It also informed that the Human Papilloma Virus that causes cervical cancer in women is now found in the mouth. The Chief Dental Officer in the ministry, Dr. Adebimpe Adebiyi, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that some viruses could be introduced to the mouth through oral sex. Oral sex is sexual activity involving the stimulation of the genitalia of a sex partner by the use of the mouth, tongue, teeth or throat. Oral cancer is any cancerous tissue growth located in the oral
cavity. Adebiyi said that the ability of an individual to use the mouth and its supportive structures efficiently and effectively shows that the cavity is active and alive. “Efficient use includes speaking, eating, kissing and every other thing that the mouth can do,’’ she said. Dr Adebiyi said that the distance between oral sex and the natural sex was far and that when a natural person decides to go to unnatural places during sexual intercourse, some mishaps were inevitable. She said that some organisms that were particularly not harmful when they were in their natural habitat would become harmful when exposed to the sex organ. Her words: “The distance
between natural sex and oral sex, l will say is very far. But if and when a natural person decides to go beyond the natural into the unnatural then some mishaps are inevitable. “To the extent that there are some organism that are particularly unharmful when they are in there natural habitat, but when they get to their unnatural habitat, they become opportunistic, they become harmful. “Not just the organism, the sex organs, if you now expose them to an unnatural habitat, then there are some secretions in the mouth, the saliva and then the mucosa, the soft tissue in the mouth, tongue, lining of the chick, the salivary glands in the mouth, there are some secretions in those sex organs that may become
harmful to the mouth.’’ She said that cancer of the mouth was only found in people who indulged in pipe smoking in the past, stressing that the disease was no longer restricted to such group of people as it had been found in people who engaged in oral sex. She said: “When you now find a young woman of say, 38 years who is not known to consume alcohol or smoke pipe having cancer of the mouth, then one must begin to wonder. “What we have found out is that most of them had multiple sex partners and had been practicing oral sex. “That is why we say that there is a connection between oral sex and oral cancer.’’ She stated that it was not advisable for any person to indulge in such acts, stressing that Nigeria and the African culture did not approve of oral sex.
Electricity distribution law for review soon, says VP
OING by the words of Vice PresidentNamadi Sambo, the country is set to witness a drastic change in power distribution policy. He asked stakeholders in power generation to also have a stake in the power distribution chain. The vice president in-
From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja
formed that a committee has been put in place to ascertain the involvement of state governments and other stakeholders in power generation. He spoke yesterday at a special meeting convened to discuss the proposal by the Rivers State government with
the Bureau of Public Enterprises, the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Presidential Action Committee on Power and notable stakeholders in the power sector, at the State House, Abuja. The essence, he argued, was to hasten the process of providing electricity to Nigerians. Sambo, who was responding to a request by the Rivers state government to takeover the distribution network in its domain, also said it makes no sense fending off those who generate power from the distribution chain. The essence of the Rivers state proposal was to create an embedded generation zone in the state to feed off power generated at Omoku, Trans-Amadi, Eleme and Afam/Ban Ogoi power stations. He noted that state governments including Local Government Areas have invested in the generation and transmission of power and therefore, should be considered for a certain percentage which should be technically arrived at to distribute power in order to recoup their investments on the project. He, however, cautioned that the extent and nature of the participation should be carefully looked into in line with due process in order not to constitute illegality and the level of investment by the states should also be ascertained to avoid recurring problems in the future. In a bid to hasten the process and ensure proper evaluation of the investment by the
governments, Sambo inaugurated a sub-committee under the NERC. Other members of the committee include; the Ministry of Power, the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Power, the managing director of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) Pls, the chief executive officer of the Rivers State Power Project and Special Adviser (Legal) to the Vice President. The sub-committee has a mandate to come up with a position to be considered tomorrow by the main body. Earlier in her presentation, the Director-General of the BPE, Ms Bolanle Onogorwa, argued that the electric sector reform programme which has been in the offering since 2001 has clear and phased process towards the reform of the sector with steps to unbundling state-owned power utility, incorporate successor companies, create a regulatory body to govern the sector and privatise the successor companies as well as nurture the gradual development of a competitive and privately managed sector. She said no federal or state involvement, outside of the policy formulation and implementation is expected.
Jonathan promises more cash for education From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has restated his administration’s determination to improve the education sector through vigorous budgetary allocation to the sector. The move is to make the secotr more responsive to the need and challenges of the nation. Jonathan, who spoke yesterady at the public presentation of the nation’s education data survey and the inauguration of the Digest of Education Statistics from 2006 to 2010, in Abuja , assured Nigerians of increase budgetary allocation to the sector. Represented by his deputy Namadi Sambo, Jonathan frowned that while the federal budget has continued to increase, that of education has remained static, adding; “this will not continue. However, this lacuna has been addressed in the 2011 budget.” Expressing his concern about the trend, he said: “That it is only through improved, spread and quality education system that his administration would achieve its plan to transform Nigeria .” He went further that education would play a vital role in the administration’s efforts towards tackling the challenges of inadequate and irregular power supply, quality health provision, enhanced transport system as well as overall development. “For instance, the issue of ensuring that we have adequate power supply, we need to get the plant, develop expansion and operate and mange the facilities. We need Nigerians to do all these and they must be educated Nigerians. It is only educated Nigerians that can run efficient seaports, rail system, health and other sectors of the economy. “The mirage of our problems as a society can be achieved through a responsive education system. None of our developmental goals would be achieved if the education system cannot produce men and women to provide solutions to the problems.” The President also told the gathering that he has already directed the Minister of Education, Prof Ruqqayatu Ahmed Rufa’I, and the Chairman, National Population Commission (NPC), Chief Samu’ila Danko Makama to make a formal presentation of the report to the National Economic Council (NEC), where all 36 state governors will be present.
NEMA sues for peace
IRECTOR-GENERAL of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) Muhammadu Sani Sidi has charged traditional and religious leaders in the Bogoro and Tafawa Balewa council areas of Bauchi State to embrace peace. He spoke during a visit to the areas at the weekend. Sidi said: “You have to
From Austine Tsenzughul Bauchi
sheath your swords in order to live in peace and unity; while the community and religious leaders also have roles to play by exhibiting religious tolerance among the various ethnic and religious groups in the state.” He warned that no one can enforce peace amongst the
communities, except their traditional and religious leaders. According to him, the Federal Government is disturbed by the deplorable living conditions in the affected communities. He said the federal and state governments would soon reconstruct houses and property damaged during the crises.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
POLITICS THE NATION
Just six months in the saddle, Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi has succeeded in injecting a more pragmatic approach into governance. He spoke with SALAWUDEEN SULAIMAN on his exemplary style which, he said, would make the state a model at the end of his tenure. Excerpts:
Fayemi: we’ve brought sanity into governance T
HE elections are over now. How do you mend supposed broken walls of fraternity in the larger populace both at the level of parties and that of the public? I don’t know if there were any broken walls of the fraternity as you put it. I think it is appropriate to say that naturally, every creation has tendencies and trends and within the Action Congress of Nigeria we do have personal and ideological tendencies. When I came into office on October 16, 2010 and I resolved after discussing extensively with the party leadership here that we had to create a level-playing field for those who wanted to run for political offices. We had to deal with those who didn’t win at the primaries. We had to take measures to ensure that those who had legitimate claims of one type or another were brought into the picture as legitimate stakeholders within the party. The most contentious of that was the need to resolve Ekiti Central Senatorial District primaries. We succeeded in resolving it and eventually got two excellent Ekiti sons into the Senate and House of Representatives who are bound to do a good job in the positions. They are both going to represent us and I know they are going to be fantastic representatives to Ekiti people. As for the supposed disaffection, it’s non-existent. It has been alleged that your administration is slow. What’s the issue here? I believe that Ekiti people appreciate my deliberate, rather than fire-brigade, approach to governance. I have a unit in government that provides me with regular feedback and mood reports from different sections of the populace. There is no doubt that there are people who feel I must shout about every little thing government does; what Professor Soyinka once referred to appropriately as billboard governance on one occasion. But I have a plan with the overall goal of ‘Making Poverty History in Ekiti State’ which is also known as the eight-point agenda upon which the tripod of the whole governance equation revolves in Ekiti and this was based on our assessment of the most serious problems education, be it agriculture, be it in infrastructure, in industrial development, or even governance we encounter as a people. We have been in office for only six months. In those six months, we have had to review the entire contract awarded by previous governments. We have had to review the finances of the state and opened the books to the people. We had to embark on accessing a bond to finance the capital projects in the state. Besides all these, what else has your administration done to puncture the allegation and justify people’s mandate? We have also had to deal with politics because without good politics, there can’t be good governance. We have also taken care of specific initiatives – on free health, free education, agricultural development, civil service reforms; improving workers’ conditions; public transportation and changing the public perception of Ekiti as a cantankerous and quarrelsome group of people. I don’t want to embark on governance by trial and error. In fact, planning is important to me; I am from the plan-
ning school. I’m from a development background. In this period that I have talked to you about, I know the amount of work I have done with development agencies: the World Bank has spent a whole month here; the Department for International Department (DFID) has been here; several investors have been here. All I can say to people is there are huge expectations and I understand that. People have ideas as to how I am going to transform the state. I cannot afford to dash those expectations. By the time I have spent two years in office, let people come and do an objective assessment of who we are and how far we have taken the agenda we promised the Ekiti people. I think it will be premature for somebody to say that I am slow six months after getting into office. Essentially, governance is interplay of politics, philosophy and ideology, particularly relating to the immediate source of the executive power. Assess this interplay in the goal of governance at the levels of federal, state and local governments in Nigeria? If someone is determined and focused, you can make a difference at any level in spite of the interplay and the challenges; and there are huge challenges because this is a federal state that provides mechanism for inter-operability among the various sections of the government. And if you have such an intergovernmental structure, clearly you are going to confront impediments because there are things that you cannot constitutionally do on your own, put simply. I want to do revenue generation, but the powers for generating revenue primarily reside in the hands largely of the Federal Inland Revenue Service. To a large extent, even the value added tax generated here goes into a central pool and then gets redistributed. But you cannot say because the federal government has such overwhelming influence on the structure of the state, then you are not going to do anything. That is where creativity and innovation come in. That is where you have to find a leeway, some kind of room to co-habit with the federal authority and still achieve
‘Our vision is that where possible, we will dualise all these roads for easy access into the capital city. Governance cannot be impeded by limited resources, but by lack of ideas and dearth of will. If you have the will and you have ideas, then there’s going to be a way’
your objective for your people. For the people, all they want is result: they want water to run, they want their roads to be fixed, they want the hospitals to be more than mere consulting clinics, and they want education to be qualitative. How I do that, the resources I use for it, is not really the primary concern of our people, even though it should be. Can you expatiate more on that, especially as it relates to your electoral pledge to your people? My responsibility as governor is to fulfill the promises I made to the people and I will have to device means, call it bond to raise long-term loan, call it development support to use my international connections to bring resources to the state, call it increasing our internally generated revenue; whatever it is that I have to do to deliver on the promises regardless of that interplay of forces which will be there. On a larger plane, what we are doing is even going to come into a much stronger fruition now with the victories of my colleagues in Oyo and Ogun. I am sure you know about the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) that we have been talking about since we came into office – particularly the Governors of Lagos, Ondo, Osun and Ekiti. Now we have Oyo and Ogun in the fold which brings about this new dawn with immense possibilities for recreating the LOOBO states agenda, once again. That fundamentally helps us philosophically, ideologically and practically to deliver the goods to our people. We are even desirous of pulling Edo and Delta into the fold because we share a lot together in terms of our social welfare as well as historical antecedents. So we have those two platforms. It appears that you are among of those Nigerians who believe in the gains of true federalism as a solution to Nigeria’s problems… Indeed, beyond what I have said, within Nigeria, we do have a duty to our people to push an agenda that ensures a fundamental restructuring of the Nigerian State in the direction of competitive federalism and in a manner that brings the State closer to the citizens because the bulk of the citizens in this country have no connection to Abuja. In this wise, I think the direction that is sensible is to reduce the powers of the centre and increase the powers of the constituent parts; because inevitably, you cannot, for example, ask me to pay a minimum wage without backing it up with a commensurate share of the national revenue. Of course, the success of your administration has a bearing with the ongoing clamour for true federalism especially as it relates to revenue allocation. How do you view this? For me, every nation is an imagined community, but in reaching the reality of that imagination, we must pay attention to the ideological and cultural predilections of the constituent parts so as not to allow the extremists to hijack the state. I think the direction that is sensible is to reduce the powers of the centre and increase the powers of the constituent parts because inevitably, •Continued on page 14
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
POLITICS Up till now, not a few are still dismayed that President Goodluck Jonathan had an impressive outing in Edo State in the last presidential poll despite the well-lauded performance of Governor Adams Oshiomhole of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in the state. AUSTINE AVWODE, Assistant Editor, writes on the factors that gave him the edge
How Jonathan proved bookmakers wrong in Edo
EFORE the April 16, presiden tial election, bookmakers be lieved that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, President Goodluck Jonathan, would need more than luck to secure the constitutionally required 25 per cent in Edo State. The reasons were simple. Edo State is in the firm grip of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) which, through the charismatic and populist approach of the Comrade Governor Adams Oshiomhole to governance, had almost reduced the PDP which had ruled the state for 10 years to nothingness. Second, the vice presidential candidate of the All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP), Chief Odigie Oyegun is not just from the state but happened to be a former governor of the state. Besides, top shots in the president’s party in the state had being at war with themselves for some time now. Their differences had not allowed them to pull their strength together to assert themselves in the politics of the state, especially, in the various areas where they hail from. And lastly, in the National Assembly election of April 9, the ACN had rubbished the PDP in a fantastic way leaving only one senator to the PDP in Edo Central, the birth place of Chief Tony Anenih, former BoT chairman of the party reputed for having the capacity to ‘fix’ whatever electoral problem facing the party. So it was expected that the ACN would deal another major blow on the PDP and other parties in the presidential election. But when the results were released, it confounded everybody. It did not happen in Edo alone, even in Lagos, a state regarded as the major stronghold of the ACN, President Goodluck Jonathan surprisingly left all others far behind. But what is perhaps unknown to members of the public is how the
‘One person that put everything on line to ensure the success of the of the party ( PDP) in the presidential election in the state is the Chief of Staff to the President, Chief Mike Oghiadomhe. This is a man widely respected by all persons across the state irrespective of party affiliation. Many people shifted position to join the Goodluck project because of the zeal with which Chief Oghiadomhe took the project. He was on ground and he networked all persons into the project’
presidential battle was fought and won behind the scene in Edo state. At the beginning of the campaigns, not a few had thought that the division within the state PDP would militate against the fortunes of the party in the state. The Nation learnt that chieftains of the party in the Heart Beat of the Nation were already bracing for the shame of being the only SouthSouth state where the President Jonathan would possibly lose the presidential election. Chief Emmanuel Odia, a PDP chieftain in Edo Central senatorial zone, told The Nation on phone that himself and host of others had feared that the crisis in the state PDP would have an adverse effect on the performance of the party especially in the presidential election. And he admitted that it was same for most of the party stalwarts when the Chief of Staff to the President, Chief Mike Oghiadomhe, a former deputy governor in the state for eight
years, came into the picture. It was learnt that the Chief of Staff to the President called a meeting of all stakeholders in Edo PDP and pleaded with them on the need to close rank and work together for the success of the party in the April polls particularly in the presidential election. According to Odia, “at the beginning of the electioneering activities I thought that due to the internal crisis rocking our party, that we would be totally defeated. But few weeks before the election, Chief Oghiadomhe came to Benin and summoned a meeting which I attended. He passionately pleaded with us to sink our differences and re-doubled our efforts to ensure that we come out with success.” Sources said as Oghiadomhe was brokering a truce between feuding members in the Edo PDP, he was also reaching out to former members of the party, who had left the party for the rival ACN and other
stakeholders in the politics of the state, selling the Jonathan project to them. His efforts paid off resulting in the return of former Senate Whip, Senator Roland Owie and Captain Hosa Okunbor to the PDP. Owie and Okunbor were among those who worked for the emergence of the ACN government in the state. When eventually the presidential election was held and result declared, Jonathan won the state with a landslide. He defeated Nuhu Ribadu who is the candidate of the ruling ACN in the state. While many may want to gloss over the victory of President Goodluck Jonathan in Edo State, PDP stalwarts said it should not be taken for granted that the President won simply because the state is part of the South-South. A PDP chieftain in Edo South Senatorial zone, Mr Clifford Ogbeide said while thanking God for the PDP victory in the state, there are leaders of the party in the state without whom, the victory would not have been possible. He admitted that: “we had some challenges before the election” which would have made the ruling party had a dismal outing in the presidential poll. However, because of the tireless efforts of some our party leaders in the state, we would have been out rightly disgraced by the ruling party in the state”. Ogbeide said beside the former chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT), Chief Anthony Anenih, “one person that put everything on line to ensure the success of the of the party( PDP) in the presidential election in the state is the Chief of Staff to the President, Chief Mike Oghiadomhe. This is a man widely respected by all persons across the state irrespective of party affiliation. Many people shifted position to join the Goodluck project because of the zeal with which Chief
Oghiadomhe took the project. He was on ground and he networked all persons into the project.” Odia agreed. He said the Chief of Staff contributed immensely to the party victory in the presidential election. “He joined hands with other leaders of the party in the state and delivered Edo votes to President Jonathan. We are not surprised. He was a deputy governor here for eight years and we all know his impressive attributes. He said that President Goodluck is a divine product packaged by God, so he is a marketable product. He often called some of the members of the party personally to encourage us. ”Chief Oghiadomhe preaches Goodluck project, he dreams it, he drinks it and even in a dream at time, I think he will be campaigning for Jonathan. That is his nature. He does not pretend or do eye service,” the party chieftain added. Also, while paying glowing tribute to the former Edo State deputy governor for the manner he galvanized the members of the party and those outside the party to support the Jonathan presidency project, an excited PDP leader in Edo North leader, Alhaji Sule Osheke described him as “the pot that cooked the project and the steward that delivered it”. He said in spite of his status in the presidency, the Chief of Staff made himself accessible to all throughout the electioneering period. “Chief Oghiadomhe was the rally point for the Goodluck Jonathan project and because of the great respect the people of the state have for him, we believed him and we tilted towards the project”, he added. Osheke said with the way and manner the PDP swept the presidency poll in the state it is now evident that party will bounce back in Edo as the ruling party and soon, too.
Fayemi: we’ve brought sanity into governance
•Continued from page 13
you cannot, for example, ask me to pay a minimum wage without backing it up with a commensurate share of the national revenue. At the same time, you cannot ask me to take whatever is referred to as the commensurate share without allowing me to depend more on what I can produce in my own constituent part. What I’m saying in essence is that we need a revenue allocation formula that is based largely on derivation. What you make should be what you earn. Let those who have oil take their oil away; if they want to buy my teachers in Ekiti, they should pay an equivalent sum of oil in order to have the teachers that I produce or my yam tubers. So, it is competitive federalism that can pay a multi-ethnic nation that we have because when we do that, you can then have a central pool to which we all contribute. There is no part of this country where you cannot generate your own resources. The major challenge facing the state now is infrastructure, especially roads, potable water and employment for the teeming graduate indigenes. How will you ensure the needed changes within the limited resources? Water is essential but we do not see any reason for water to be a problem in Ekiti. In my eight-point agenda, under infrastructure, one of the things I’ve promised the Ekiti people is increase in the availability of potable water by at least to 30 per cent by the time I’ve spent four years in office. Now, we have started. In places where water was not available when we
came in six months ago, you can find water there now because Ero and Egbe dam are back in full operation, Ureje dam in Ado-Ekiti much better improved, and all the water treatment plants we’re almost completing work on them. So, what we now see as a major challenge is an improvement in the pipeline so that the water can get to all those areas it should flow into. We already awarded contracts on these pipelines. We have awarded new water pumps in the state. We are already working on boosting the distribution capacity of the water dams. We have four dams in Ekiti which will serve the people conveniently. It’s just this infrastructural bottle-neck that has made it impossible to do that. We are committed to improving the road network here but we are not interested in roads to nowhere. You must have inherited some challenges in this regard... One of them is that the Segun Oni’s administration engaged in a lot of roads to nowhere. I don’t know whether it’s an ego thing or an attempt to win votes from particular communities including crossboundary roads into neighbouring states – which are more prosperous than Ekiti. The roads that we need are roads that really can work, ensure that our inter-state linkages enable us to bring goods from the farms to the city. Six roads that enter into Ado Ekiti: We are currently working on at least five of them: Ado-Ifaki road; Ita ore/
Ado road; Ilawe/Ifaki road; Ijan/ Ilomoba/Ado road and then Ikere/ Ado road. Our vision is that where possible we will dualise all these roads for easy access into the capital city. You talk about money and the limited resources we have in the state. Governance itself cannot be impeded by limited resources. Governance as far as I am aware, can only limited by your lack of ideas and your lack of will. If you have will and you have ideas, then there’s going to be a way. I have never been bothered by the fact of the lim-
ited resources in the state. What incentives do you have for the civil servants in the state? I strongly believe that even the N18,000 minimum wage workers are clamouring for is not a living wage for anyone by the inflation that we experience in the market. We need to do things that will enable us create wealth so that we can attend to people’s needs in a commensurate manner because that for me is the major challenge. The N18,000 minimum wage or 120 dollars a month is less than four dollars a day. I have always argued that we should not lay emphasis on the cash side of remuneration. What is it that we can do for workers that can reduce the burden on them and their families. In this regard, we have taken a couple of steps. Then, what is the unique initiative you resorted to? The bulk of the students who are at the University of Ado-Ekiti are children of civil servants. The civil servants have children in the public schools. When we decided to have free education policy and also reduce the fees being paid in the university, we knew we were hitting the right target because the bulk of those children are children of the indigenes: farmers, market women and civil servants. So, for us it is about supporting remuneration for them in terms of social welfare, in terms of various loan packages at almost zero per cent interest rate. In February, we revived the car and housing loan which was stopped by the last gov-
ernment. Then, in terms of preparing for them in their old age which was why we had to pay N700 million naira on just gratuity and pension in the six months that we have been in the office. What’s your administration’s plan for electricity as it holds the lifeline for the growth of industries? Electricity is a major national challenge. We are trying to address it in two ways: by getting involved with the distribution companies that are being set up through recent privatisation efforts but also by short-term engagement in communities where there is electricity but the supply is bad because of the inadequacy of transformers, or because the electricity network is not from a source that is more constant. That’s one of the reasons the new substation that we have in Ado-Ekiti is being worked on so that we can distribute electricity to more communities. It is the transmission that is currently posing a challenge to us in that regard. There is a talk about some regional plans. Isn’t that true? Yes, ultimately, what we are working towards is a regional electricity plan that would enable us to join our sister states in developing an independent power project that can then service the entire states in this area: Ondo, Ekiti, Osun, Oyo, possibly Edo as well because we know we can do that, particularly because there is gas in Ondo and that plant can be in Ondo with servicing potentials for all of us in this vicinity. It’s a long-term initiative.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
BUSINESS THE NATION
‘vigorously’ protect Nigeria oil leases
X X O N M O B I L Corporation’s Nigerian unit said it will work with the country’s government to resolve “confusion” about the status of three oil leases following a media report, which said they have been cancelled. Oil leases 67, 68 and 70, which together produce 580,000 barrels of crude a day, were nullified by Nigerian Petroleum Minister Diezani AlisonMadueke in a March 4 letter to Exxon Mobil, Lagos-based ThisDay newspaper reported yesterday. ExxonMobil “will vigorously protect the rights it acquired in 2009,” a company spokeswoman, was quoted by Bloomberg news in e-mail yesterday. “We will work with the Minister of Petroleum Resources and other relevant government officials to resolve any confusion that may exist on this matter.” Negotiations for 16 oil blocks operated by companies including ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Chevron Corp. have been under way for two years. Exxon Mobil was the only energy company to have its licenses renewed when it signed a deal in November 2009 covering oil leases 67, 68 and 70. Shell and Chevron remain in talks with Nigeria on renewing their expired oil licenses. China National Offshore Oil Corp. had expressed an interest in taking over some of the permits, raising concern they wouldn’t be renewed. Nigeria is the fifth-biggest source of United States oil imports. Shell, Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Total SA and Eni SpA run joint ventures with the stateowned Nigerian National Petroleum Corp., which pumps about 90 per cent of the country’s crude.
Information technology and business are becoming inextricably interwoven. I don’t think anybody can talk meaningfully about one without the talking about the other. - Bill Gates
CIBN reviews Code of Conduct for bankers T
HE Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) has reviewed professional code of conduct for bankers practicing in the country. Already, the draft Code of Conduct has been sent to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) and the 24 deposit money banks for their input before final copy is endorsed by all the relevant bodies. The disciplinary organs of the Institute, the Investigating Panel and Tribunal have also been activated to ensure enforcement of the subsisting Code. The CIBN President, Laoye Jaiyeola said action is part of the blueprint set by the body to restore bankers’ professional reputation in the country. The CIBN boss promised to increase and spread sound banking knowledge and practice to bankers, which he said can be achieved through improved
By Collins Nweze, Senior Finance Correspondent
corporate governance structures. The Nation’s findings show that in 2010, 144 cases of breach of professional conducts were submitted to the Sub-Committee on Ethics and Professionalism of the Bankers’ Committee. However, only 60 of such cases were resolved while 84 were in various stages of resolution. Since inception of the Sub Committee in 2002, 1087 petitions had been received with 754 amicably resolved. The review of the Code of Conduct for bankers became exigent after series of corporate governance breaches and outright mismanagement of public funds that led to near collapse of some 10 banks rescued by the CBN with N620
billion tax payers’ funds. Speaking during the CIBN 2010 Annual General Meeting, Jaiyeola said the learning points were derived from each of the cases, and passed over to the banks through the Bankers’ Committee to enable them improve their operations and services. He disclosed that the Governing Council of the Institute received a copy of the Nigerian Ombudsman Service Scheme Bill, 2009 from the apex bank for input, which has been returned after suggestion from the bankers. Similar inputs were also made by the bankers to the Nigerian International Financial Centre Establishments Bill, 2009; Banks & Other Financial Institutions Bill 2009; National Consumer Credit Regulatory Commission Bill 2009 and Investments
and Securities Act, 2007, which are currently under review. Inputs were sent to the Federal Ministry of Finance and the House of Representatives’ Committee on Banking & Currency. The Institute also approved the establishment of the Faculty System to provide technical, comprehensive, timely and substantive guidelines on current professional issues that would enable its members keep abreast with the evolving developments within the banking profession. The membership base of the institute grew from 88,799 in 2009 to 93,319 in 2010, representing 5.1 per cent increase. The Fellows of the Institute also increased from 521 to 621, which is 19.2 per cent increase; Honorary Fellows moved from 47 to 49, which is 4.2 per cent increase while Honorary Senior Members rose from 503 to 641- representing 27.4 per cent growth.
MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE JSE NYSE LSE
-N8.1 trillion -Z5.112trillion -$10.84 trillion -£61.67 trillion
RATES Inflation -12.8% Treasury Bills -2.64% Normal lending -24% Prime lending -18% Savings rate -3% 91-day NTB -6.99% Time Deposit - 6% MPR -7.50% Foreign Reserve -$34.5bn FOREX CFA 0.281 • 222.92 £ 252.9 $ 153.39 ¥ 1.5652 SDR 245.85 RIYAL 39.3
By Collins Nweze
HE naira strengthened against the dollar on the interbank market yesterday, after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) increased dollar supply from its bi-weekly auction, traders said. The naira firmed to 155.60 to the dollar from 155.85 on Friday after the apex bank met all demand at the auction. The CBN sold the $499.89 million demanded at 153.05 per dollar compared to $300 million sold at 153.39 to the dollar at previous auction on Wednesday. Dealers said the sudden increase in dollar supply at the official window prompted the appreciation of the local currency at the interbank market as it signified the determination of the central bank to defend the naira. CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi said last week that he wants naira stability but would rather use the country’s foreign reserves to support the local currency than build up reserves at the risk of inflation.
US dips into pensions, hits debt limit
DATA STREAM COMMODITY PRICES Oil -$125.2/barrel Cocoa - $2,856/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢78.07.pound Gold -$1,161/troy ounce Rubber - ¢146.37/pound
Naira appreciates on CBN dollar support
•From left: Resources person Queens’s University Canada, Mr Bahman Kashi, Excecutive Director Operations, Bank of Industry (BOI), Alhaji Mohammed Alkali, Mr. Berkan Tokar and Principal Manager, BOI, Alhaji Umar Shekarau, at the closing ceremony of a two week training workshop on programme on investment appraisal, project Finance and Risk Analysis for staff of BOI in PHOTO AKIN OLADOKUN collaboration with Queens University at Howthorn Suites Abuja.
400 NBC staff protest poor work condition
BOUT 400 casual staff of Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC), took to the streets yesterday in protest over alleged inhuman treatment by the management of the company. All entrance gates to the company were shut. Although, police personnel were not on ground, the atmosphere was tense. The protest started around 8am, with staff carrying placards and singing. The protesters said the management has over the years refused to see to their welfare. Some of the things they complained about include: poor remuneration, harsh working condition and lack of medicare, amongst others.
By Toba Agboola
One of the staff, who spoke with The Nation on condition of anonymity, said: “ Some of us have been temporary staff for the past six to seven years. This is contrary to our agreement. We have OND, degree holders, NCE amongst us. “Also, up till today, we collect N400 per day and N50 per day for feeding. No medicals despite the harsh conditions under which we are working. We are fed up with all these and we want the government and Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to please come to our aid.” He said they have complained to the management
at different occasion, but nothing was done. “We have met with them at different occasions on these issues, but they did not do anything. Even, this morning, they have called the police to intervene, but the police refused, saying that we should resolve it amicably. All our colleagues from other plants are still coming to join. So, as at now everything is at a standstill. Nobody is working,” the staff, who works in the quality control department said. However, few staff were seen entering the company. It was confirmed that these are the staff of the company. A statement signed by the Communication Manager,
Mrs. Oluyomi Onakoya, said: “We are aware that there was a demonstration today (yesterday), by a number of persons at the Ikeja Plant of the Nigerian Bottling Company Plc. These are people who have been engaged through service providers for the plant. “The Company is currently having internal discussions about the situation. It is our desire to resolve this matter swiftly, amicably and equitably.It is not appropriate to go into details while these discussions are continuing. However, further information will be provided at the earliest opportunity,” she stated. The strike was still on as at the time of going to press.
REASURY Secretary Timothy Geithner told Congress he would start tapping into federal pension funds to free up borrowing capacity as the nation hits the $14.294 trillion legal limit on its debt. The Treasury was expected to issue $72 billion in bonds and notes yesterday, pushing the nation right up against its borrowing cap at some point during the day, according to a Treasury official. Geithner said he would suspend investments in two government retirement funds, which will give the US Treasury $147 billion in additional borrowing capacity. “I will be unable to invest fully” in the civil service retirement and disability fund and the government securities investment fund, he said in a letter to congressional leaders. The Treasury has said the suspension of the investments and other measures it could take would give the government until about August 2 before it will start defaulting on obligations, such as paying bond investors. Congress is in charge of increasing the debt ceiling, but Republicans are demanding deep cuts to federal spending for the price of their support in raising it. Geithner reiterated previous pleas for action. “I again urge Congress to act to increase the statutory debt limit as soon as possible,” he said.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
BUSINESS NEWS Flight Schedule MONDAY - FRIDAY LAGOS – ABUJA Departure Arrival 1. Aero 06.50 08.10 2. Associated 07.00 09.30 3. Air Nigeria 07.00 08.20 4. IRS 07.00 08.20 5. Dana 07.02 08.22 6. Arik 07.15 08.15 7. Chanchangi 07.15 8. Air Nigeria 08.15 09.35 9. Dana 08.10 09.20 10. Aero 08.45 10.05 11. Arik 09.15 10.15 12. Chanchangi 10.00 11.00 13. IRS 11.15 12.35 14. Dana 12.06 12.26 15. Aero 12.20 13.30 16. Air Nigeria 13.25 14.45 17. Chanchangi 13.30 14.30 18. Arik 13.45 14.45 19. IRS 14.00 15.20 20. Aero 14.10 15.30 21. Air Nigeria 14.50 16.10 22. Dana 15.30 16.50 23. Chanchangi 15.30 16.30 24. Arik 15.50 16.50 25. Aero 16.00 17.20 26. IRS 16.30 17.50 27. Arik 16.50 17.50 28. Dana 17.10 18.30 29. Chanchangi 17.30 18.30 30. Air Nigeria 17.35 18.55 31. Air Nigeria (T/TH) 18.30 19.50 32. Arik 18.45 19.45 33. Aero 19.20 20.40 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
LAGOS – BENIN Arik 07.30 Associated 08.30 Aero 10.50 Arik 11.45 Associated 13.00 Aero 14.25 Arik 15.30 Associated 16.00
1. 2. 3. 4.
Arik Aero Arik Aero
1. Arik 2. Aero 1. 2. 3. 4.
LAGOS – CALABAR 07.30 11.20 12.50 16.00 LAGOS – JOS 10.55 11.15
LAGOS – KADUNA Aero 08.00 Chanchangi 10.00 Arik 10.00 Arik 15.10
09.10 11.00 11.10 16.20
08.40 08.40 14.55 15.10 17.40
1. 2. 3. 4.
Arik Aero Arik Aero
LAGOS – WARRI 08.15 11.50 11.55 14.55
09.15 12.50 12.55 15.55
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
LAGOS – KANO Air Nigeria 07.10 IRS 08.00 Dana 08.10 Arik 12.20 IRS 14.00 IRS 18.15
08.50 09.45 09.40 14.00 15.45 19.55
LAGOS – OWERRI 07.20 14.00 16.30
08.30 15.10 17.40 11.35
LAGOS – MAIDUGURI 1. IRS 11.15 13.15 2. Arik 15.50 18.00 LAGOS – ILORIN 1. Overland 07.15 2. Arik (M/T/TH/F) 17.30
the economy away from oil by investing heavily in Human Capital Development and Education in order that we increase our pool of knowledge workers. Now there is noteworthy progress that we should celebrate. “In July last year at the sixth National Cocoa Day Celebration in Ilorin, I revealed to the nation that we had put together an Inter Ministerial Committee on Cocoa production as well as disbursed loans to Cocoa farmers to improve on that sector’s capacity to contribute to the nations.” The Federal Government last year he also recalled, intervened in the Textile Sector by providing a generous bailout package for the in-
dustry, which enabled several defunct textile mills to spring back to life including the United Nigeria Textile Limited based in Kaduna. .“This administration he said, also intervened in the Entertainment Industry by providing a $200 million credit facility to drive growth in that sector. “Why do I remind you of these? It is because available statistics have shown that the growth in our non oil sector has come largely from these sectors in which government intervened proving that when Government and the Private Sector work together as part of a complimentary team the nation benefits. This is my philosophy and this is how we will continue to grow the non oil sector,” he said.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
08.50 12.40 14.10 17.20
LAGOS – OWERRI Aero 07.30 Arik 07.30 Air Nigeria 13.40 Arik 14.00 Arik 16.30
LAGOS – UYO 10.35
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday vowed that his administration will continue to grow the non-oil sector having noticed what he described as the ‘noteworthy progress in the sector.’ Jonathan, in a statement posted on his facebook page on the progress in the non-oil sector, noted: “Non-oil exports have grown from $200 million in the year 2000 to $2.3 billion in 2010, an over 1000 per cent increase. He said 2011 looks good to surpass the previous year’s figure.” The statement reads in part: “Still touching on keeping commitments, Nigerians may recall that I promised during the campaign trail that this administration is committed to diversifying
08.30 09.10 11.50 12.45 13.40 15.20 16.30 16.40
LAGOS – PORT HARCOURT (CIVIL) 1. Aero 07.15 08.35 2. Arik 07.15 08.35 3. Arik 09.00 10.20 4. Dana 09.27 10.40 5. Aero 10.50 12.30 6. Arik 11.40 13.00 7. Air Nigeria 12.00 13.10 8. IRS 13.30 15.00 9. Arik 14.00 15.20 10. Dana 15.03 16.20 11. Air Nigeria 16.00 17.10 12. Arik 16.10 17.30 13. Aero 16.15 17.30 14. Arik 17.10 18.30
1. Arik 2. Arik 3. Arik
Jonathan vows to grow non-oil sector
LAGOS – ABUJA SAT/SUN Arik 7.15; 10.20; 2.20; 5.20pm – 7.30; 9.15; 10.20; 2.20; 4.50; 6.45 Aero 07.30; 09.35; 13.10; 14.50; 20.20 – 07.30; 09.35; 13.10; 14.50; 20.20 Air Nigeria 08.15; 14.30; 17.15; 18.30 – 08.15; 13.30; 14.30; 17.15; 18.30
•Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Enviroment, Mrs Titi Anibaba (left) and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mrs Oluseyi Williams, during the Chartered Accountants in Lagos State Public Service Maiden Public PHOTO: OMOSEHIN MOSES Lecture held at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos.
$300b wasted on imports, says NCDMB
HE Nigerian oil and gas industry spent over $300 billion on importation of goods and services between 1980 and 2010 with little or no patronage of the local industry, it was learnt yesterday. The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Ernest Nwapa, disclosed this during the Oil & Gas Trainers Workshop organised by the board in conjunction with the Oil and Gas Trainers Association (OGTAN) in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. In a statement, the board’s Public Affairs Officer, Mr. Obinna Ezeobi, quoted the Executive Secretary as
From John Ofikhenua, Abuja
saying: “Without changing this pattern, we will still get oil revenue but we would not be able to build support facilities, yards and factories to employ our youth. “This will eventually lead to issues of the past, such as the industry being denied access to oil and gas installations. This may be okay for some jurisdictions with small populations, but it is equivalent to suicide if we continue to import majority of our goods and services.” The Executive Secretary also announced that the Board would soon commence the training of in-
digenes of oil bearing communities on the remediation of oil impacted areas. He said inhabitants of oil impacted areas should demand for the remediation of their environments rather than just seek monetary compensation. The statement noted that the key stakeholders in the oil and gas Industry in Nigeria agreed to work towards adopting standard training models that will ensure that Nigerians are better equipped to work in the oil and gas industry and optimise the training budgets and programmes in the oil and gas industry.
Experts advise Fed Govt on external borrowing
OME financial experts have urged the Federal Govern ment to source for funds internally to reduce the nation’s rising external debt stock. They argued that persistent good debt management strategies and prudential borrowing would bail the country out of the debt burden in no distant time. Dr Mashudd Fashola, a Senior Lecturer in Economics at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), suggested that government should pay due attention to debt servicing and if possible, liquidate all outstanding external debts. Fashola told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that although external
borrowing has contributed positively to the growth of the economy up to a point, external loans have begun to have diminishing impact on the economy. He advised the government to seek external loans only for very high priority projects which must have been well-appraised. He said those projects must be able to re-pay the loans and should have direct positive impact on the economy. He said the country must develop the culture of transparency and efficient debt management. Fashola advised the Federal Government to cut its expenditure and reduce
the level of deficit budget financing, which he said, had always exerted pressure on the exchange rate. “A sound macroeconomic environment is an important ingredient of growth,” he said. A financial consultant, Mr Chris Namedia, urged the government to take pro-active steps to ensure that the external debt stock did not rise beyond the current level. Namedia said that government could reduce the external debt stock by encouraging private-public partnerships in financing projects or outright privatisation of some government agencies.
Electricity workers blame power challenges on politicians From John Ofikhenua, Abuja
HE General Secretary of the Nigeria Union of Electricity Em ployees (NUEE), Comrade Joe Ajoero yesterday laid the blame the in the country’s power sector on the contractors, who handled the projects. He said many of them have now turned prominent politicians. Speaking at the commencement of the “Negotiations on Privatisation of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) between the Federal Government and the Labour Union of PHCN” in Abuja, he insisted that the workers must not suffer for the sins of the contractors. Ajoero, urged the Federal Government to stop the lip service it has been offering in the industry . He wondered why the outcome of the Hon. Tony Elumelu’s probe panel was never taken serious. The NUEE representative doubted whether the Federal Government is sincere in its search for uninterrupted power supply as nobody has been jailed or held responsible for the confessions that emanated from the probe panel. Ajoero however noted that because of his respect for the chief negotiator, Comrade Hassan Summonu, NUEE has accepted to come for sincere negotiation. His words: “On a day like this one wonders what to say. But iota of doubt still lingers on one’s mind as to whether we are consciously seeking for solution to power. At a ,moment when the Elumelu committee had unraveled various corruption tendencies in the system and nobody has been caught, nobody has been jailed, uncompleted contracts are yet to be completed, nothing has been done after the Elumelu committee report, one stands to wonder, there is any genuine intention towards the realisation of the uninterrupted power supply in the sector.”
‘Nigeria needs Secure Property Rights’
IGERIA has a lot to do to im prove its property rights situ ation. according to an international report. The Initiative for Public Policy Analysis (IPPA) which released its 2011 International Property Rights Index (IRPI) yesterday noted that Insecureproperty rights has increased the transaction costs and consequentlyundermined the nation’s potentials. The IRPI measures the intellectual and physical property rights of 129 nations from around the world. The connection between secure propertyright and economic development is widely acknowledged. The import of thisreport is that Nigeria and Nigerians continue to miss out of the benefitsof secure property right,” says Thompson Ayodele the Executive Director of IPPA.Nigeria witnesses a marginal improvement in two of the three components, exception being the Legal and Political Environment (LP) which decreasedfrom 3.1 to 2.9. The Physical Property Rights (PPR) and the Intellectual. Property Rights (IPR) components rose from 4.5 and 3.8 in 2010 to 4.6 and4.1 in 2011 respectively. The IRPI measures the intellectual and physical property rights of 129 nations from around the world.Nigeria has scored 3.9 out of a possible 10 to occupy the 120th position outof the 129 nations studied.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NPA spends over N3b to fix Lagos ports • Installs solar light to boost security
HE Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has reacted positively to the outcry of port users over the bad state of the access roads within the Lagos ports. The authority said it would fix all the access roads to attract massive investment and promote ports operations. The management also said it would be happy if the Federal Government can appoint a commercial regulator to oversee the activities at the ports. NPA as a landlord under the port reform agenda has a statutory obligation to secure and maintain infrastructure and most especially the access roads within the ports. Speaking with reporters at the Lagos ports last week, NPA Managing Director, Omar Suleiman, said the authority has awarded over N3 billion contracts for the rehabilitation of the access roads within the Lagos ports, adding that N44 million has also been spent on the installation of solar street lights from the Apapa port exit gate to a reasonable distance on Creek Road to stem the cycle of crime within and around the port. Investigation conducted by The Nation showed that the award of the contract and the installation of solar street lights by NPA were a big sigh of relief to port users. Addressing reporters, Suleiman assured all stakeholders that the water log in the port would disappear while the failed sections which have worsened the agonies of container carriers and other port users would be a thing of the past. Suleiman said the authority has received a letter of approval from the Federal Ministry of Works for the rehabilitation of the access road from Apapa to Lilypond Inland Container terminal for easy movement of trucks and cargo.
Stories by Oluwakemi Dauda, Maritime Correspondent
PW Construction Company, he said, won the contract for N140 million. He said the work would commence in the next three weeks and would be completed in six weeks. Suleiman admitted that the access road from Bull Nose Apapa port to the port main gate has become an embarrassment to the NPA management hence, the decision to repair it. The situation of the road, Suleiman said, would improve as soon as the contractors move to site in a couple of days. The NPA boss said the rehabilitation of the 3.1 kilometre dual service lane linking Tin-Can Island port with Ports and Terminal Multi-Services Ltd would cost N526.7 million and it would be completed within five months. He said the work would be done in phases to prevent congestion and accident. Suleiman said the rehabilitation of the Kirikiri Lighter Terminal access roads has been awarded at a cost of N209 million and would take four and half weeks to be completed. He said the Honeywell access road, which also served a lot of industries around the Tin-Can Island port, was completed at a cost of N609 million. The Federal Government, he said, has also approved the general access road at the rate of N1.6 billion. The NPA boss told reporters that the government has also approved the contract for new deep seaports in Akwa Ibom and Lagos states to promote the maritime industry and facilitate trade. He showed appreciation over the
• The Apapa Port access road to be rehabilitated by NPA.
port concession programme of the Federal Government, saying the initiative has reduced the ship waiting time from over one month to five days, adding that also the cargo dwell time is now within 20 days. This development, Suleiman said, would make the nation’s sea ports more attractive for business; reduce the cost of shipment and boost the nation’s economic activities. He explained that freight and port charges were high because shipping companies increased their charges arising from fear of piracy and high insurance fees. It was based on increase in charges that the authority, he said, became an interested party in the commercial regulation of activities in the ports. The authority, he said, would send a delegation to other West African countries to check crosscharges in their ports. Sulieman said the management of the authority is out to give port users the best. “We want to carry out our own obligation as far as the ports are concerned. So, we have now made concerted efforts to see that our access roads, quay walls, aprons and above all our channels which include the break waters and other facilities are rehabilitated for us to attract business. “We have concessioned the ports and some of these projects are part of our obligations to the concessionaires which we must meet and that is why you see all these projects coming up. The rehabilitation of the access roads is the fulfillment of the obligations of the landlord. Speaking with The Nation after
• L-R: General Manager, Public Affairs, NPA, Chief Michael Ajayi, Suleiman and the Executive Director, Engineering and Technical, NPA, Mr Yusuf Haruna, inspecting the solar lights in front of the Apapa Port. PHOTOS: OLUWAKEMI DAUDA
the tour of the roads, a senior Customs officer who does not want his name in print said he was happy that the new management team of the NPA is planning to give the best to port users and urged the authority to concentrate on port maintenance and development. The officer said: “As you know, our maintenance culture in this country is very low and that is why we must appreciate the current efforts of NPA which has resulted in the rehabilitation of our access roads. The number of vehicles coming and going out of the ports have increased and that is why the current efforts of the authority must be supported by all port users. ‘‘We are saying this because as the roads are being rehabilitated, it will slow down movement of ve-
hicles within and around the ports and that is why we are appealing to all port users and other Nigerians to understand the situation on ground. We are also appealing to you journalists and mostly the maritime reporters before you will start reporting that there is congestion at the port and start holding Customs responsible,” he said. A senior official of the NPA, who craved anonymity, also told The Nation that since the reform started, the authority has adopted a number of strategies to improve the ports. He explained that the ongoing rehabilitation of all the access roads was part of it. “Now, the management is devoting all its time to ensure that the country has befitting seaports that are similar to what is obtainable in other advanced maritime countries.“
Clearing agents challenge importers on 100% declaration
LEARING agents in the freight forwarding business have said they are not happy over the recent activities of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), as they urged importers to make correct declaration of all goods imported to avoid seizure. The recent activities of the JACOFF, the clearing agents said, are threatening their legitimate business at the port since the Comptroller General of Customs, Alhaji Abdullahi Dikko, has directed every command to institute monthly stakeholders meeting where every issue affecting members can be discussed. Speaking on behalf of his group in Apapa last Friday, Mr Samson Raphael, urged clearing agents to start doing the right things at the port by advising their client properly. The era of under declaration and under invoicing, he said, has gone. All clearing agents, he said, should embrace the new change by impressing it on importers to make 100 per cent declaration of all goods imported to make their jobs easier for them. Raphael alleged that some frus-
trated senior Customs officers who are eyeing the position of the Comptroller-General of Customs, are those sponsoring JACOFF unguided activities to discredit the current leadership of the service. ‘‘We are also aware that some of these officers want their children to be employed during the current recruitment exercise going on in the service and they don’t want to follow due process. Contributing, another clearing agent, Mr Sunday Solomon, said the activities of JACOFF have heat up the system and is affecting the
robust relationship between the registered clearing agents and the leadership of Customs. Solomon insisted that JACOFF is not a registered body and would not be allowed to dent the good image of genuine clearing agents hence, the reason they have accepted the reform programme of Customs. Solomon alleged that JACOFF is an association of three men, therefore they were not interested in the committee. The master minders of the plot to cause disaffection between Customs and clearing agents, he said,
were not happy because the move by the committee to introduce payment of practising fees through the terminal operators was rejected by their members. “These people are at war with Customs because they don’t have access to bill of laden and they don’t give the auction papers. Therefore, we appeal to the Comptroller General of Customs not to listen to these noise makers. We so much appreciate the good role he is performing in the industry and that is why we impress it on all importers to make 100 per cent declaration of goods they are import-
ing. It is for the security of our country and for our own good. The National President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Alhaji Olayiwola Shittu, while speaking with The Nation few weeks ago, threatened that it would no longer be business as usual between Customs and agents, vowing that the remaining three years of his leadership will be used to fight all manner of oppression from the Customs and other security agents, who he said are usually the first to label agents as corrupt elements at the ports.
Customs begins licence renewal
HE Nigeria Customs Service has commenced the renewal of Customs agents’ licences. According to a notice issued by Customs, licences are to be issued in Form C.163 Customs Agents Licence or Form 187 Excise Agents. License is to be issued from the Customs headquarters in Abuja but based on the recommendations of Customs Area Controllers in each command. A Customs agent, whose license is to be recommended for renewal,
must have paid and attended the two weeks Customs agent Continuing Education Seminar (CACES), which is to be organised regularly by the service at the end of which a certificate of attendance would be issued. Any agent who wishes to renew his licence, must be a competent and acceptable licensed agent and must be duly certified by the Area Controller. Also, the signature of the agent on the existing Form C 163 must
also be identical with that of the individual or persons for whom renewal facilities are requested. The area controller must also keep detailed records of all transactions ensuring that no dormant Customs agent licence is to be recommended to the headquarters for renewal. Meanwhile, the service said where the licence of a business or company was previously held on a personal basis, on application, the licence is not to be treated as a renewal but as a first application.
The notice warned that any agent who fails to renew his licence within the stipulated period would be removed from the list. “Every application for renewal of a licence made after March 31 of the proceeding year is to be rejected. Where the application is, however, made after the due date, the proper officer may grant the application if he is satisfied that the delay in the submission of application was due to unavoidable circumstances,” the service said.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
HE Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Patrick Akpobolokemi, has given assurance that the agency will suppport Public-Private Partnership model to facilitate effective management of ship generated waste within the nation’s marine and coastal sector. He said the roadmap on marine waste management would soon be made public. The NIMASA boss said investment in waste management would not only improve the country’s rating in the global maritime sector, but also have a multiplier effect on employment generation. He said the regulations of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and the nation’s laws were taken into consideration in arriving at the road map structured to provide the ideal platform to grow the business of managing waste generated in the maritime industry. Akpobolokemi made the statement when he led the agency’s management on a facility tour of the operations of the African Circle Pollution Management Limited, located at the Free Zone Enterprise on Snake Island, Lagos. NIMASA, he said, is determined to implement the provisions of the International Maritime Organisa-tion’s (IMO) Marine Pollution (MARPLO) 73/78 Convention, as it relates to the management of the nation’s marine environment. The ship generated waste covered by this convention include oily waste as stated in Annex I, Noxious liquids substances carried in Bulk are grouped under Annex II, Annex III has Harmful substances carried in Packaged Form while IV and V have sewage and garbage. His tour of the facility was part of efforts to ensure that the provisions of the IMO MARPOL 1973/78 Conventions as it relates to adequacy of port reception facilities in the country are complied with. His words: “It is to the benefit of Nigerians that this PPP model of managing waste in our marine industry is sustained and encouraged to grow rapidly. “We are committed to the growth of this industry, because if you look at the manpower development, employment generation, eco-
NIMASA canvasses road map for the sector
• A cargo ship
• Akpobolokemi Stories by Oluwakemi Dauda, Maritime Correspondent
nomic activities, besides the fact that they help us meet IMO requirements in managing waste in our marine environment, you will agree with me that it is worth government support to ensure growth,” he said. He also assured that the agency would look at issues based on IMO regulations and the nation’s laws in working out the guidelines that will provide the ideal environment to grow the business of managing waste generated in the maritime industry. While commending the management of African Circle for the Lagos operations, which he described as the best in West Africa, he advised them to work at im-
proving operations in Port Hacourt, Calabar, Warri and Onne ports. Akpobolokemi promised an annual audit of the facility so as to maintain IMO standard, adding that their level of compliance with the nation’s local content Act is encouraging. The consultant to the company, Captain Baiyee Suleman, commended Akpobolokemi for being the first NIMASA boss to visit the facility. He said over 100,000 tonnes of solid and oily wastes are processed daily at the facility. Suleman also said only port and habour operations are covered at the moment adding that work is in progress to provide effective coverage for other areas. He said the company is working at improving the local content of the project as they are working at importing a sewage plant to create more jobs for Nigerians. On disposal of sewage waste recieved from Vessels in Lagos, he said the company hands it over to Lagos State Government for onward disposal in an environmentally friendly manner. African Circle Pollution Management Limited is the operator of MARPOL Waste Reception facilities in the country. It operates port reception facility for the collection, storage, processing and recycling of ship generated waste on behalf of the Nige-
rian Ports Authority (NPA) in line with international standards as covered by MARPOL and enforced by NIMASA. NIMASA has also met with members of the Indigenous Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (ISAN) and set up a Joint Technical Committee to review and provide a road map to improve indigenous participation in the maritime sector. A decision has also been taken to constitute and inaugurate a Maritime Advisory Group for the maritime industry, before the end of this month. Akpobolokemi noted that the Maritime Advisory Group has become a nescesity to ensure that all stakeholders are carried along in the process of policy formulation and implementation in the maritime sector. He noted that NIMASA Management under his leadership is committed to a collective process of decision making in harnessing the potentials of the country’s maritime sector. In his words “The time for rethorics is over. The Maritime Advisory Group will have people of high integrity who will add value to our vision of developing the industry. Even as we desire collective efforts, constructive criticisms are welcome. We are ready to move with the speed of light in harnessing the country’s maritime potentials,” he said.
Govt urged to enforce Shippers Council Act
HE Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Adamu Audu Biu has urged the Federal Government to enforce the provisions of the Act that established the council. The Act stipulates that for the running of the council, it is expected to charge one per cent of freight, in and out of the country. Briefing reporters on the activities of the council, Biu lamented that nobody is paying the council one per cent of freight as stipulated by the Act. But the council, he said, has recovered N1 billion through operations of its Cargo Defence Fund. Over 400 financial claims by aggrieved shippers, he said, have also been settled by the council in the last 18 months.
The executive scribe therefore, lamented that inadequate funding was seriously affecting the operations of the council. The council, Biu told reporters, has paid between 7 and N8 million as compensation to importers whose cases were completely hopeless. “The Act establishing the Nigeria Shippers Council (NSC) specifies that for the running of the council, the council is expected to charge one per cent of freight, in and out of the country. But as we speak now, no one is paying us one per cent of freight,’’ he said. The council, he said, is receiving only one per cent of the seven per cent port development surcharge established in the early 80s which, according to him, lacks legal
backing. “We don’t offer any businesses to anybody; all we do is free of charge. It is gratis to the Nigerian importer and exporter. “We have a problem with funding because the one out of the seven per cent port development surcharge that we get is not steady and is bad for our planning purposes. We have been coping with it like that, and we want the provisions of the Act that established us to be respected,’’ Biu said. Speaking at the general meeting of the Maritime Arbitrators Association of Nigeria, the secretary, Cargo Defence Fund, Azuka Ogor, said some shippers do not take appropriate insurance cover for their consignments and do not even have required information.
A special cover, he said, is being worked out between the CDF and the Nigerian Insurers’ Association which would be participatory between Nigeria and London insurance markets. He explained that CDF is a cargo protection and indemnity club for protection of the financial interest of Nigerian shippers, adding that the fund is also committed to the encouragement of the industry to extend cover to those extraneous risks not covered by the insurance industry. The fund is being managed and administered by a board of trustees made up of representatives of major interest groups which, he said, has been consistently and conscientiously addressing problems causing Nigerian importers and exporters nightmares.
Maritime Watch Investment in boat building Stories by Oluwakemi Dauda, Maritime Correspondent
Nigerians have been urged to invest in boat building as there is a huge market for boat operation in the country. The Executive Vice Chairman, Topha Zhang Vocational Maritime Centre, Mr. Chris Ajayi, made the call during the Ships & Ports Career Guide. He said opportunities in boat operation exist in areas such as passenger ferry services, leisure, haulage operations and boat ambulance service. Ajayi said entrants into the boat building and boat design industry stand to enjoy huge financial benefits in the not-too-distant future. He, however, said there are only five licenced boat operators in Lagos at present and there is room for hundreds more. “The government is opening up the water ways and that’s the truth particularly with the Lagos State Government. They are building massive jetties. Massive jetties, massive investment. It is not just the jetty, the terminal, you have the car park; they want people to have fun. You park your car go on the boat, your car is safe, you come back and while waiting for the boat, you can sit in the terminal and even watch television. “Then you now have pockets of ferries all over. Another good thing is that it is not just happening in Lagos. You also have the Niger Delta. They are also building jetties all over the Niger Delta. My question is after building those jetties, are you going to paddle canoe on them? The best that can happen is for local competences to be developed for us to be building boats locally. So, there is the waterways for ferry services. In Lagos today, if you start that business, its not a business that waits. It’s a business that immediately you start, you start making money. And in two years you have your capital back and you can then start making profit. And because it’s a huge market if there are boats people will jump into them immediately,” Ajayi said.
Cabotage vessel fund The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency(NIMASA), Mr Ziakede Patrick Akpobolokemi, has revealed that a lot of progress has been made on the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund (CVFF). The appointed Primary Lending Institutions, he said, have recommended six organisations to NIMASA for issuance of Certificates of Disbursement (COD). This, he said, would only be done after the Minister of Transport, Alhaji Yusuf Suleiman and the board have granted the agency the necessary approval. The Director-General said the capability audit exercise embarked upon by the agency last year has started yielding fruits as most companies now find it difficult to terminate contracts of indigenous operators unjustly, as they now have NIMASA to contend with. The Chairman of the Indigenous Ship owners Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Chief Isaac Jolapamo, praised the Management of NIMASA for making the Maritime Advisory Group a reality, assuring that ISAN would support programmes of the agency. While praising the Management of NIMASA for effective enforcement of Cabotage regime in Lagos, Chief Jolapamo urged the agency to extend same to other ports in Port Hacourt, Calabar, Onne and Warri.
Abuse of ETLS IMPORTERS and clearing agents working along the nation’s land borders have been urged to stop abusing the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme (ETLS) to boost revenue and facilitate trade along the borders. Speaking with The Nation at Seme border during the week, Managing Director, World Cargo Investment, Mr Adesope Aderoju, said ETLS was instituted by governments of the West African sub-region under the auspices of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to facilitate the integration of trade and commerce among the citizens of the member states. Aderoju said the scheme was set up to eliminate barriers and promote free trade in the sub-region. ETLS, he said, exempts goods manufactured in member states of ECOWAS to move freely, and without the payment of import/export duties, within the region. The scheme, Aderoju said, has been subjected to unbridled abuse especially by some unscrupulous Nigerian importers and Asian businessmen. These unscrupulous people bring in goods from China and other Asian countries, ship them into the sub-region and land such goods in ports of neighbouring countries such as Benin Republic, Ivory Coast, Ghana and even lately Liberia. They subsequently change the labels on these goods and smuggle them through the land borders into the country. The implications of this act are grave. Apart from the loss of huge government revenue, goods that find their way into the Nigerian market in this manner gain unfair competitive price advantage over locally made products. Apart from the abuse of the ETLS, which is mostly perpetrated through the land borders, many Nigerian importers also flagrantly abuse the country’s import policy. They bring in all manner of goods including those that are banned by the government through the seaports.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
EDITORIAL FROM OTHER LAND
The threat posed by religious violence in Egypt
Kiss of life •Planned $1bn bonds for small businesses is good, but there are other issues to tackle
WO recent initiatives would seem to lend credence to the suggestion that the problem of access to credit by small and medium-scale industries is finally receiving deserved attention. President Goodluck Jonathan has announced Federal Government’s plan to float a $500 million bond to assist the growth of small-scale enterprises in the country. The African Development Bank (ADB) just about the same time, also announced plans to put another $500 million on the table for small businesses in the country. The packages – totalling $1 billion - is significant by any standard. Apart from giving concrete expression to the need to address the challenges of the sector, particularly the issue of credit considered a major constraining factor to small businesses, what is noteworthy is that government is also considering a reduction in interest rates to single digits, to make the funds truly cheap and accessible.
‘But cash, we must say, is only one-half of the problems facing small and medium-scale business ... The bane of the Nigerian business has been described as lack of competitiveness. The assertion remains undeniable. How can Nigerian businesses compete when basic infrastructure, taken for granted in other climes are virtually non-existent?’
Given similar initiatives in the past that raised expectations only to disappoint in the end, Nigerians would be right to be cynical about such seemingly wellintentioned initiatives. Experience informs that mere existence of such pools of fund is never truly a guarantee of accessibility by those who need them – no thanks to factors of bureaucracy, red tape and corruption which ensure that those who do not qualify or even need the funds are those who get them, while those truly hungry for them are the ones denied access. Its chance of success would therefore depend on the structure put in place by the government to ensure that only those deserving benefit. However, much as the place of credit in the small-scale business matrix cannot be overstated, the point also needs to be made that lack of funds is by no means the only probem facing the sector. Doubtless, access to funds will help; after all credit is the lifeblood on which businesses run and this is even more true of the small business. The plus about the planned low interest regime is that it takes the rug off the feet of the steep interest rate regimes of the present time, which not only stifle but is known to be responsible for squelching growing businesses. But cash, we must say, is only one-half of the problem facing small and mediumscale business. Much has been wriiten about the numerous challenges facing businesses generally, the consequences of which have been the reduction of the environment to a graveyard for fledgling
businesses. The bane of the Nigerian business has been described as lack of competitiveness. The assertion remains undeniable. How can Nigerian businesses compete when basic infrastructure, taken for granted in other climes are virtually nonexistent? From electricity power infrastructure to transportation, the story is one of multiples of headaches for business. Even policies are sometimes deliberately skewed in favour of trading and speculation, as against production and wealth creation. Overall, the environment continues to present daunting nightmares even to the most determined entrepreneur. These factors not only shoot up costs, they ensure that Nigerian products and services stand no chance against products from countries where these factors are taken for granted. The situation, unfortunately, is further compounded by the moral hazards in the environment: the poor book-keeping skills of entrepreneurs which oftentimes ends in mismanagement of credit; and the well-known tendency to treat loans as freebies. The way to go is for government to work harder to improve the business environment; that would at least help to ensure that available credits would not be sucked up in non-production-related costs. It seems for now the surest guarantee to the funds’ sustainability. To ensure accessibility, government must find ways to cut bureaucracy and unnecessary red tapes; it should ensure that only those deserving benefit.
Follow-follow •NAFDAC should be more proactive and less imitative
N the face of it, the recent directive by the Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu, instructing the National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to ban the import of food and water from Japan is unassailable. After the devastating earthquake and subsequent damage to the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan last March, it was discovered that many food products from the area had undergone radioactive contamination. As a result, several countries across the world have restricted the importation of food and water products from the Asian nation. To that extent, NAFDAC is merely carrying out its statutory function of ensuring that the Nigerian populace is not exposed to foods unfit for human consumption. At a deeper level, however, NAFDAC’s action raises several issues. The first has to do with the way in which the agency sets its agenda. While it should be alert to global challenges and respond to them appropriately when they arise, NAFDAC should focus more energy on those problems that are of greater relevance to Nigeria itself. The scourge of fake, adulterated and expired drugs is almost certainly a far greater challenge to the health of Nigerians than radioactive foodstuff from Japan. So is the rise in the phenomenon of food poisoning which has become a major threat to the wellbeing of the citizenry. The proper identification of the food
and drug challenges that pose the greatest danger to the country is the first step in evolving successful strategies to confront them. The danger of following global concerns to the detriment of local ones is that it may cause the agency to lose the initiative in tackling concerns which have less global resonance but greater local relevance. Another issue raised by the NAFDAC ban is the country’s tendency to import virtually anything from anywhere in the world. It would be truly surprising if Nigeria actually imports water from Japan. Given the distance between the two countries, there can be little doubt that the importation of such items would be prohibitive. The recent lifting of the ban on a number of imports by the Federal Government has only aggravated the situation by legitimising such frivolity. Clearly, government needs to take the opinions of regulatory agencies like NAFDAC into consideration when it is designing policies: it makes no sense for the country to be so open to all manner of imports, only for NAFDAC to have to take counter-measures when problems arise. In the light of the Japanese import prohibition, the agency should draw up a list of those products which should not be imported in ordinary circumstances, either because viable local substitutes are available or because the potential for counterfeiting and adulteration is too great.
The NAFDAC prohibition of food imports from Japan also raises questions about the ability of the agency to enforce such bans. In a country where arms have been known to come in by the containerload, how capable are NAFDAC and other agencies of ensuring that unscrupulous importers do not bring in such items, regardless of the danger they pose? The effective monitoring of radioactive foodstuff would involve the widespread use of Geiger counters, protective clothing and secure storage facilities. It is doubtful whether NAFDAC has these and other equipment in sufficient numbers, if it has them at all. An agency which makes pronouncements it lacks the capacity to enforce will not be taken seriously by others, and would ultimately undermine its own long-term effectiveness.
‘It would be truly surprising if Nigeria actually imports water from Japan. Given the distance between the two countries, there can be little doubt that the importation of such items would be prohibitive. The recent lifting of the ban on a number of imports by the Federal Government has only aggravated the situation by legitimising such frivolity’
MONG THE MORE heartening aspects of the peaceful revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak was the way it brought together people from across Egypt’s social and religious spectrum. Muslims joined hands, literally and figuratively, with members of the country’s large Coptic Christian minority and stood together for democracy. So one of the most disheartening events since Mr. Mubarak’s downfall was the sectarian violence in Cairo over the weekend, in which 13 people, six Muslims and seven Coptic Christians, died. Security personnel apparently did little to stop the mayhem, which began when Muslim men advanced on a Coptic church and armed Christians gathered to defend it. It was an episode disturbingly similar to many others over the past decades in which Egyptian Christians came under attack and the Mubarak regime did little or nothing to prevent or punish the perpetrators. That was the sort of behavior one could expect from an authoritarian regime that probably preferred having public anger directed at the Copts than at more appropriate targets, such as the government itself. Even in the final days of the Mubarak regime, the Copts came under attack: On New Year’s Eve 2010, a suicide bomb attack on the Coptic Orthodox Church in Alexandria left 21 dead; a month later, Muslims in southern Egypt killed 11 Copts in home invasions. The latest attacks on Copts appear to be the work of extremist Muslims known as Salafists, who are taking advantage of the newfound freedom in Egypt to act out. They do not represent the majority of the country’s Muslims. To their credit, leaders of Egypt’s transitional government swiftly denounced the violence and floated measures to discourage it, but that’s not enough. Authorities must prevent religiously motivated attacks and punish the perpetrators consistently in civilian courts — not through the discredited state security forces, as the government has suggested so far. Otherwise, the situation on the streets could polarize, forcing more members of the Muslim majority and the Coptic minority (roughly 10 percent of Egypt’s 83 million people) to take sides. Pressure on Christian minorities, violent and otherwise, has been a chronic feature of the Arab and Muslim political landscape in recent years. In Pakistan, gunmen murdered two high-profile opponents of laws that impose the death penalty for insulting Islam; one victim was a Christian, the other the son of a Muslim father and a Christian mother. Iraq was home to more than 1 million Christians before the 2003 U.S. invasion; roughly half have fled, largely because of radical Islamist attacks. But the stakes are especially high in Egypt, the largest and most influential Arab state — and, as the homeland of the ancient Coptic community, the Arab state with the largest non-Muslim population. If democracy is to work in Egypt, it must rest on a foundation of fair and equal treatment of all citizens, regardless of faith. As the U.S. government nurtures a new political order there, it should encourage Egypt’s transitional government and the moderate majority of its people to defend the revolution against those who would tear it apart along sectarian lines. – Washington Post
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THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
IR: The state of the Nigerian youth is an ulcerous sore in our bodies. Until this sore is treated to heal permanently the stench will send all of us packing. The young people constitute up to 40% of the Nigerian (150million) people. For every 100 Nigerian persons 40 persons are youths and for 150 million persons, 60 million persons are the youths. Serious and committed planning for this number of volatile persons is very essential to guarantee and sustain our future and nascent democracy. The state of our young people needs serious mention and attention in the early morning of your tenure. The youths inhabit secondary schools, colleges and universities, some stay in hotels, motor packs, music studios and most stay at hideouts where their curiosities have apparent satisfaction without “stress”. Some of them are graduates of various professions and disciplines with excellent results. They have served their country in the national service programme. Most are dropouts, employables and unemployables. Some could not complete secondary or tertiary institution programme because of financial or intellectual poverty, but they are human persons with some latent gifts and talents. They are human volcanoes ready to erupt. My humble suggestions are as follows: That the President-Elect consider putting in the list the problem of
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Plea to the president-elect for youths the Nigerian youth in his speech and his plans to assuage their feelings and fears. This plan may include the following: Immediate engagement of all youths at the grassroots ... let there be operating Youth Activity Centres at all local government areas to operate in three levels, viz; Moral re-armament programme for all the youths, vocational skills training for the unemployables (graduates and non-graduates). Government sponsored salaried employment (minimum wage) for all youths in the local government area for both skilled and unskilled, like what was done after the world
wars in America, when sweeping the streets as a job was honourable and scarce. Rehabilitation centres for the youths that are already disorientated because of the socioeconomic state of Nigeria. Aggressive empowerment of young persons at the grassroots such as schools, colleges and universities. As an example, a gift of only =N=5000.00 can prevent a young female student from prostituting, a young widow from committing suicide, a young male student from joining armed robbery gang. Bursary or even loan for students
in the tertiary institutions however small will be helpful. Wellpublicised overt governmentsponsored soft loan programmes with very low interest rates at the grass-roots for young people especially the skilled, the graduates, young widows, increasing young spinsters and bachelors to replace the highfalutin never-fully -realized multi-billion poverty-alleviation schemes should be put in place. The poor youths of this country do not need the billions mentioned in the dailies to survive. they need initial seed mite to pull them out of the hideous poverty and frustration.
Governor Obi didn’t dash workers’ hope
IR: Since President Goodluck Jonathan assented to the minimum wage, there is a gale threatening to blow away any state that stands in the way of its implementation. All the states will not commence payment at the same time for obvious reasons. With some states already indicating readiness to start as soon as possible, others have hedged, looking
into their purse to determine capability. This is where a state like Anambra comes in. It will then be wrong to say that the state governor, Mr. Obi dashed workers’ hope for being silent on the implementation of the bill as reported in The Nation newspaper of May 2, 2011. If anything, Mr. Obi had earlier made a statement on the matter
while addressing workers at the Jerome Udoji secretariat when he told them that since the bill has become law, he must abide. It is therefore wrong to impute that not harping on the matter on May Day was tantamount to dashing workers’ hope. Repeated discussions on the issue will only make it trite. The seeming May Day silence on the payment of the new minimum
Still on Yewa’s governorship quest IR: I read the piece tilted ‘’Revisiting Yewas governorship debacle” in your newspaper a few days ago with profound appreciation. Sure, series of efforts and attempts had been made by Yewa people to occupy the exalted seat of the governor but all had ended in stillbirth. A time like this calls for reflection on the time past to forge ahead in the right direction. Those who are good in history will recall the exploit of Chief Odunjo, Dr Tunji Otegbeye and the rest in the quest to govern the state in 1979. That attempt eventually culminated in Chief Olabisi Onabanjo being
Those programmes to alleviate poverty and suffering do not capture or get at these endangered youth species. Aggressive mentorship outfits should be established for old people-youths interaction. The current over-crowding of the action stage in Nigeria by insatiable old persons should be reversed to avoid social tsunami. Head count of these youths should be done in families/ communities in all local government areas. Selection of youths for these training programmes at state and national levels is fouled by corruptive practices and poor communication, as a result the well-thought out programmes were of no effect. Youths in this country need help, and any amount of money spent to keep them stable to pursue their ambitions is not a waste. It is not safe to take the youths for granted. They are people too. Professor D.O.N. Obikwelu FNSE University of Nigeria. Nsukka.
elected as the first civilian governor of the state. That electoral failure marked the beginning of the woes or jinx which has refused to go till today. In the build up to the just concluded 2011 general election, the Yewas yet again committed political blunder that cost them dearly the converted governorship seat. They allowed their ranks to be infiltrated by both Obasanjo and Daniel who sponsored them against one another. Beyond that, they also failed woefully to read the political handwriting on the wall clearly. Whether or not all these alto-
gether can now be equated to a curse, jinx, myth or what have you is another different ball game entirely. But the debacle of the past can be averted in the future by concerted, rigorous effort and planning. The people of Yewa must put on their thinking cap and not allow the failed attempt of the past to weight them down. The Obas and the entire elders need to provide the rallying point to chart a common goal for the people of the area thereby averting the myth associated with the superstition brought about by the serial failure. Having said that, the people of
Yewaland must form a good and cordial working partnership with the in-coming government of Senator Ibikunle Amosun. While the governor on his part must strive hard to understand the psyche, predicament and put into retrospect where they are coming from. All effort must be made to give them a sense of belonging in the new schemes of things. With all the necessary attention given to them, all the cries of marginalization and that of the governorship will automatically evaporate into thin air. • Dr. Temidayo Adedotun, Moshood Abiola Polytechnics (MAPOLY), Abeokuta.
wage was not a rejection of the bill neither was it a lack of interest in the welfare of workers. In line with the governor’s approach to proper planning as can be seen in the ANIDS concept, the administration is only making adequate preparations so that once it commences payment it would continue. Apart from the secretariat, the administration through careful planning has touched a lot of sectors without borrowing a dime. Anambra has no burden laid upon its future as a result of the massive development going on in the health, education, environment, security, road, transport, water supply sectors among others. Today the state has the best network of road within the zone. The water sector is witnessing a form of revolution with the construction of medium water schemes in these towns Amawbia, Nimo, Obizi, Agulu, Dunukofia, Awkuzu etc. The minimum wage issue is already a law and the governor being law abiding is unprepared to transgress it. Once the state commences payment, it runs steady. The May Day silence on the bill is not a sign of unwillingness to pay. • Ike Ume-Atuana, Awka
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
N post-2011 election Kwara, it is a tale of patricide and regicide – and that is without prejudice to the local Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN’s legal challenge that much of the election results that gave the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) victory in the state were cooked. Olakunle Patricide – because in a Abimbola sensational conquest, Saraki the firstname.lastname@example.org, 08054504169 (Sms only, please) Son vanquished Saraki the Father. If one were to parody the Christian Trinity of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit; and somewhat turn it into a grim ironic pun, with all due sensitivity to the hallowed faith of Christians, what evil political spirit could have come between father and son, so much so that both were doomed to a political turf war, in which the son was to mercilessly trounce a once-upon-a-time formidable father; and quintessential But if Greek myth and Greek philosophy had such a riveting godfather of godfathers? view of the inevitability of change – and on this score, the And regicide – because in Kwara’s democratic feudalism, Greeks are not the only culture that holds that view – why in which Saraki the Father, Dr. Olusola Saraki, the inimitable didn’t father and son pause, before launching into a bruising Oloye, had been undisputed king over the years, his electoral war bound to damage both in the final analysis? slaying by Saraki the Son, Dr. Bukola Saraki, fellow medic Why didn’t Saraki the Father know he could not sit on his like his father, out-going governor and senator-elect for “democratic” fiefdom forever? And why did Saraki the Son, Kwara Central, was nothing less than democratic regicide; the new kingpin, not know that his triumph, no matter how never mind the inherent contradiction in terms. sweet, would only be a first and decisive step to defeat? The Kwara father-and-son rumble-in-the-feudalist-jungle Indeed, at the beginning of this doom foretold, when it was was so reminiscent of the uncompleted long poem, clear father and son would stake their all on the political “Hyperion”, by John Keats (1795-1821), that troubled English fortune of another Saraki sibling, Gbemisola, outgoing senator Romantic poet, who though died young and was plagued all of the Federal Republic for Kwara Central, Republican Ripples his life by health worries, left a lasting impression in his (January 11), declared that should the elder Saraki triumph in poetry. this ultimate battle, then he would have earned the ultimate “Hyperion” was the lament of the Titans, the famously giant mandate to turn Kwara into his permanent democratic Greek gods, just at the point of their overthrow by a younger serfdom. The three concluding paragraphs of that piece: generation of gods, the Olympians. In a way, it was the first “If Dr. Saraki pulls this off, he would have earned his epaulets as recorded celestial coup, at least in the Greek cosmogony; and worthy generalissimo of Kwara’s democratic feudalism. If Kwarans it conformed to the rather extreme view of change by go with that, it would be their democratic choice and the Oloye Heraclitus, another Greek physical philosopher, who insisted would be their happy and eternal champion. that change was so frequent and so inevitable that life itself “But if he falters? That would be a fresh beginning for Kwara. But is in a state of flux. his hubris would not be his democratic conquerors, but his overbearing power persona that, over time, tends to have developed the proverbial tortoise complex: swearing never to return from a trip until he is disgraced. “That would explain his perennial falling out with his power protégés, climaxed by his own son; and his eventual falling out with his political fortune.” Well said and spot on! The elder Saraki indeed fulfilled his tortoise complex: never to quit the power dominance game until he was disgraced. After trouncing the likes of Adamu Attah, Shaaba Lafiagi and Mohammed Lawal (of blessed memory), why would he not feel that he could conjure up the
candidacy of Gbemisola, a beloved daughter just as Bukola was a beloved power son, but a woman nevertheless, and virtually order his democratic serfs to “vote” for her? And that in a religiously conservative, if not outright chauvinistic state, where Islam is rather strong? And to show the hands of hubris! Whereas Baby Doc Bukola came galloping into power on the stud called the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the federal ruling party, with Papa Doc Olusola at the helms, after a furious, dust-raising gallop from the camp of the All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP), then the local Kwara ruling party; the Beloved Daughter must snatch gubernatorial power from the once-upon-a-time Beloved Son, riding an unknown quantity, called Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), just because the unconquerable Oloye was leading the charge? At the height of this delusion, Oloye declared on the hustings with democratic diktat: “You shall vote for the rabbit! [the ACPN symbol]” The havoc that hubris would wreak – and the Oloye is parted from his political fortune! That, however, is where Republican Ripples was not so spoton: the supposition that because the elder Saraki lost his fiefdom, Kwara would automatically gain its democracy. That has not happened: for son has only snatched feudal power from father; and it is no fresh start for Kwara. Well, Kwarans would, with time, sort out their democratic freedom, with the Saraki dynasty. But before then, even outgoing governor and Senator-elect Saraki, though flush with victory, would not fail to notice the joke history is playing on him. Among his fellow Kwara senators-elect is a certain Shaaba Lafiagi, once caught in the Saraki dynastic power vortex. Once, the Oloye anointed him governor. Once too, the Oloye, who took no prisoners with political reprobates who went beyond their feudal brief, was set to dump him, except that the military dumped that abortive Third Republic. But now, His Excellency turned not-so-excellent in the eyes of the no-nonsense Oloye, has powered back as a senatorelect of the Federal Republic, just as the Oloye was witnessing his own dynastic nunc dimitis! Heraclitus, indeed, is right: change is the only permanent thing in life! That cannot be too cheerful for the latest Saraki off the block. If the ACN with their formidable after-vote legal track record do not get him in the short run, the Shaaba Lafiagis of Kwara could only lay in wait, in the not-so-long run, to take their own pound of flesh, now that Saraki the Father has landed himself with wilful overthrow. Will the younger Saraki win the peace as he has gloriously won the war? That is in the belly of time. But one thing is sure: there will seldom be any quiet on the Kwara front!
the leadership style of the northern elite, it has also been argued – and this is not without some merits – that their lifestyle is also partly responsible for breeding the swelter of resentment against western education. The major responsibility for bringing about change of course lies with the governments in the 19 northern states. At the moment, there is very little the states can do to revive the once sprawling industries in the region as a strategy to create immediate jobs for the army of the unemployed. In any case, there is even no guarantee that the skills, sorely needed, are within the competence of the youths. Be that as it may, there is nothing, as far as the current poverty in the north is concerned, that is decreed. It must be acknowledged for what they are: bye-products of poor life choices, indifference, ignorance and poor policies of government combined. What is required is the collective will by the governors to tame the monster. Education is obviously key to any strategy to get the youths out of the vicious cycle. So also is skill acquisition to equip beneficiaries to take advantage of opportunities in the labour market. But then, attitudes need to change. One such is for government to encourage the family institution through creative policies to assume greater responsibility for the training of youths. Given the enormity of the problem, partnership between the federal government and the northern states offers the best chance of success. The success would certainly be worth any measure in gold.
Kwara: tale of patricide and regicide
‘Will the younger Saraki win the peace as he has gloriously won the war? That is in the belly of time. But one thing is sure: there will be seldom any quiet on the Kwara front!’
MONTH and one day since the rage of angry mob protesting the outcome of the April 16 Presidential election despatched 10 youth corpers to the world beyond, the nation has, not surprisingly, followed the familiar, predictable course. After the wave of emotions, angry and bitter recriminations, we got the dead interred; only that this time we copied the ritual of draping the coffins of those brave young men in national colours to show how much we care. A nation which prefers to act after the deed is done later handed to the grieving families N5 million cash to assuage their pains. Case closed. Not quite. To complete the ritual of catharsis, President Goodluck Jonathan cobbled together a 42-man panel to look into what went wrong. Time to relearn what has always been known about the evil genie – the now fearsome mob now routinely unleashed at the slightest trigger at the cost of much sorrows tears and blood. The products of the same uncaring, and indifferent society – as the innocent 10 they summarily despatched to their early graves. Call them the Boko Haram or the Almajiris; they are clearly different species of the same kind –united by the common denominator of poverty and hopelessness. Their strident opposition to perceived iniquities laden in the structure of the Nigerian State is well known enough; but then, their choice of violence and carnage to get their views across is only matched by their thirst for blood. With the creek militants in retreat, they are the new army we must fear. As sociologists are wont to say – they are now the reality sui generis. One sure lesson from their last outing of rage must be in the shifting boundaries of what was considered sacrosanct. It is said that when the fearsome dog begins to turn on the owner, it is time to do something drastic about the canine fellow. Before now, it was southerners – tagged as infidels – that were considered fair targets. Now traditional institutions in the northern enclave, hitherto revered, are increasingly presenting as soft targets. We are all in deep trouble. Let’s look at the frightening demographics of the large army of maladjusted youths before whom Nigerians must perennially bow and tremble. They are said to number 10 million spread across the 19 northern states – with 1.2 million of the youths living in Kano alone. With ages ranging from six to mid teens, they are neither in school, nor are they in the process of being equipped with any skills necessary to survive in an industrialising society. That obviously is a far too huge a population to keep idle and frustrated. But then, who says that the throng chanced on us overnight? In every successive cycle of sectarian disturbances, the Almajiris have always been there as canon fodders. Although, the political leadership claims to be in dilemma over the nuisance created by them, that itself extends the frontiers of denial; the culture of playing the ostrich. They
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The ticking time bomb may not have created them, their indifference certainly fostered them. For their neglect and fatalism, the nation now has a huge price to pay. Question now is what do we do with the vast throng? How does one address the basic needs of the vast army the unskilled and a population so utterly unsuited the demands of a modern society, nay economy? How does one go about reintegrating them into the larger society? As President Goodluck Jonathan settles to his mandate May 29, the issue ought to agitate his mind. Foremost is the challenge of dealing with the pervasive poverty which effectively excludes the sizeable chunk of the population. Only four years ago, the nation’s poverty index stood at 59 percent. Now it has shot up to 70 percent. More Nigerians are presently out of job now than was the case five years ago. With opportunities closing in nearly all the sectors, unemployment has continued to increase so also have the prospects of structural violence headed northwards. The case of north is even more so. With the huge population of idle youths, courtesy of the dysfunctional culture of the Almajiri – a system in which education of the child is outsourced to an Quranic scholar without parental supervision –the number of youths, without basic family values or even respect for secular authority has grown in years. Add the practice to the culture of early marriages, multiple marriages and high birth rates prevalent in the north, all of which also deny parental responsibilities in child upbringing, the end product cannot be anything but destitution currently ravaging the vast region. The poverty and the inbred inequalities in society may help explain the rise of groups like the Boko Haram with its brutal rejection of any forms of secular authority. While I do not want to join the horde taking opportunistic pot shots at
‘What is required is the collective will by the governors to tame the monster of the Almajiris. Education is obviously key to any strategy to get the youths out of the vicious cycle. So also is skill acquisition to equip beneficiaries to take advantage of opportunities in the labour market. But then, attitudes need to change. One such is for government to encourage the family institution through creative policies to assume greater responsibility for the training of youths’
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NCE in a while a columnist has to yield space to his/her readers to publish their responses, not just to give them the opportunity to air their views but to also allow members of the public to read in between the lines and make up their minds. In recent past I’ve had cause to write about the person and politics of former Information and Communication Minister Prof. Dorothy Nkem Akunyili of APGA and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari of the CPC. Most of their supporters, in response behaved true to type by either leaving the issues and attacking the person of the columnist or veering into irrelevances. And in one or two instances, turning facts and logic up side down. While I leave the readers to draw their conclusions on the responses to the topic of this column last week: “Why CPC failed”, published below, I would like to advise that respondents don’t have to abuse or falsify facts to make their points. You end up losing the argument in the process. Though the media is a market place of ideas, they must be used responsibly. This is to the supporters of Buhari/CPC, Dora Akunyili in particular and their likes. You are not helping your principals if you are intolerant of other peoples’ views of them. We all want a better society with good leaders. Your write up on the 4th Republic (Why CPC failed). I disagree with your views. When the 1st Republic was rigged against Chief Obafemi Awolowo and the Action Group didn’t the Yoruba burn houses and kill people? What of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) rigging of Oyo and Ondo States in 1983? Didn’t your people riot? When Dr. Nnamdi Azikwe and the National Council for Nigerian Citizens (NCNC) won the West, didn’t Awolowo, based on tribal sentiments ordered cross carpeting? What happened between Congress of Progressive Change (CPC) and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) is the same thing that happened between Ojukwu and Awolowo/Banjo FG prisoners at Calabar prison, under Ojukwu’s watch/Eastern region. The West are masters in betrayal, ask Atiku they used him to win
HIS is a historical fact: never in the history of Kwara State has its governorship election been as competitive and interesting as it was in April 2011. The people, especially in Ilorin metropolis, came out in droves to cast their ballots. Kwarans had always wanted a change, a clean break from the wicked status quo dictated by the Saraki dynasty, whether father, son or daughter. But like the Israelites at some point in their history, the oppressed people just didn’t see an individual capable and brave enough to lead them out of the political wilderness. The last person who almost caught that figure, although belatedly, was the late Governor Muhammed Lawal. Then came a Mohammed Dele Belgore, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), now better known among the youths as MDB, among the oldies as Omo Alfa Agba (grandson of the great Islamic scholar), and among the middle class and the elite as Barrister Dele Belgore. The name Belgore emboldened hundreds of thousands of our people to express their pent up anger against the Sarakis with a firm belief that a person capable of looking them in the face has come. Bolstering this confidence is the cheery feats of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in states where the party governs. And to cap it all, Belgore made it clear he was going to offer free education, cut down
‘Belgore must not let the people down. He must reject the entreaties for him to drop his case. This will be suicidal because the masses of our people, old and young, poor and rich, staked everything to vote for him and his party. The civil servants may not forgive him if he leaves then to suffer humiliations for the next four years’
To Buhari and Akunyili’s supporters Ekiti and Osun, now they have used Nuhu (Ribadu) to win Oyo and Ogun. The north allowed two sons of Yoruba to contest in 1999 presidential election. The then All Peoples Party (APP) with nine states stepped down to become Vice Presidential (candidate) to Alliance for Democracy (AD) with six states. The North/Southeast bankrolled Olusegun Obasanjo’s campaign. Now even Nuhu that you chose, did you people really supported him? ACN sold the west for their selfish interest that is Oyo and Ogun states. That (Ernest) Ikoli’s victory (during the colonial era) was possible because the colonial masters that midwife that election were truthful. If INEC were truly independent and truthful an Iboman can win Lagos Governor’s seat. Ibos and other tribes are bigger than your people. They can win Ojo, Amuwo Odofin and other local government areas. Your Obasanjo selfishly went for third term. That’s what we have now. Remember the Awolowo 20 Pounds to the Igbos. That is what they have used to buy half of Lagos and most Yoruba lands. Soon you people will become tenants. Who is the right person to lead Nigeria out of the woods of corruption and indiscipline that Obasanjo, a Yoruba man/PDP have led us in? A corrupt Jonathan that used (Bayelsa) state cash to sponsor Obasanjo’s evil third term, that’s what he is reaping now at the expense of the
northern mandate that lost their son. The riots in the north after a winner was declared is a feeling of injustice just as your people did in 1993 Abiola saga. Nigeria will be better without the tribal west and selfish South/south. You got it wrong. Read Mathew 9 v 17 As I said, they, the North lost their son; the greedy Southwest/South jumped up to dance at the man’s grave (and) took their mandate. But you lost Abiola, formed your own army (OPC) and they lost Abacha, yet they gave it to you. You wasted that good eight years. When their son (Yar ‘Adua) came on OBJ and South/south leaders armed the Niger Delta militants against him. I pity you people, you don’t want this nation to build in peace. That was how Awo pushed Gowon/Nigeria into civil war. Remember Aburi accord? The Yoruba are too lazy and jealous. All you are doing now is rubbish zoning to deny Iboman. It must fail. You can’t eat your cake and have it. You must wait for 28 years to smell it. Pastor Chuks. 08033284276 Questions for CPC Dear Waheed, thanks for your write up “Why CPC failed”. To add to your reasons, please let CPC give answer to these questions; • How many states in the south-south did
Why Belgore must challenge Kwara guber result By Olanrewaju Azeez the wicked tuition fees in Kwara State University (KWASU), give free medical care to the dependent (young and old), and attend to pension issues, among other things. He also promised them water! This message gave Belgore a superlative rating among overriding numbers of Kwarans before, and, curiously, even after the elections. The truth of the matter is that while Belgore is a fresh name in Kwara politics, his liberation message and mission are over 30 years’ old. This explains why hundreds of thousands of voters defied all the threats and the lures of the Sarakis, especially Governor Bukola Saraki whose PDP administration engaged in open bribery, coercion, outright illegalities and intimidation of everybody to manipulate the ballot in the favour of his surrogate candidate AbdulFatahi Ahmed. I have heard many students and market women boast that they collected PDP money and still voted against them, after all the money was meant to develop the state but had been stolen to keep the Sarakis in power in whatever form possible. However reproachable that tactics seemed, the people may be right after all! Or how else can one judge a government that has ruled for eight years and the only way it could guarantee people’s support in the coming poll is by arm-twisting everybody to toe its line or be damned. At some point, traditional rulers were begging their youths and community dwellers to please vote the PDP because failure to deliver their villages could be grave. In fact, some of the helpless traditional rulers went as far as invoking causes on any youths who dared to vote any other party. But that still did not stop thousands of people from exercising their rights to vote their choice, including the civil servants who were being intimidated at every given opportunity. To show how unpopular the PDP and the Sarakis are in Kwara, especially
among the youths, the party lost woefully in the two polling units on the Unilorin main campus and the adjoining villages where the students voted. Even Okada riders and artisans. The government practically resorted to violence and threats of using local charms on KWASU students and the villages at Molete before they recorded slight victory over the ACN, and that was in some of the poling units there. To be sure Silverbird got clear images of these violent attacks on the students. They were roundly rejected in the Ilorin metropolis and all the known urban areas across Kwara, including Offa, Omu Aran, Oro, Igbaja (the three in Kwara South where Ahmed comes from) and in several other places. The results declared at the polling units, except in negligibly few places, showed serious “shellacking” of the PDP – apologies to the Americans. At a polling station in Adeta in Adewole Ward in Ilorin, I heard the lamentation of PDP supporters and PDP agents who openly confessed that, if results from Ilorin and many other places were anything to go by, serious damage has been done to their party. A woman confessed that Belgore’s free education policy has really got the multitude of our people behind him. April 26 was that bad for the PDP. Yet in areas where people were not enlightened especially in Kwara North, especially in Moro and Baruten, and some parts of Kwara Central in Asa and much of the villages of Alapa and elsewhere, the security operatives and some INEC staff connived with the PDP to perpetrate fraud. In some instances, especially in Baruten and Moro, people were denied their right to vote. Citizens narrated how soldiers forced ACN agents to sign results in most parts of Moro. There were cases where only the PDP agents were allowed to stay at polling units until after the end of accreditation exercise. This happened in most parts of Ifelodun (where
CPC visit for the campaign (only Edo and Rivers) • How many in the Southeast (only Enugu and Anambra) • How many in the Southwest (only Lagos) • How many LGAs in all the three regions mentioned above (none) So, how does CPC expect votes from the people except by force or order Gen. Buhari as a retired General? Please the CPC should show remorse over the post election violence caused by Gen. Buhari’s comments on BBC Hausa service which incited the mob of Almajiris Pastor Etowa 08051520193 You are right Waheed your write up on why CPC failed is the truth and nothing but the truth. Does Buhari expect me from AKWA IBOM state to VOTE for him? Does he expect me to lose this once in a life time opportunity? Let elections be conducted a million times Jonathan will win 2 million times in AKWA IBOM. 08036736941 Ok Your article was okay but it is not true that Yoruba voted the best. Yoruba Christians voted for religion while most Muslims voted against Hausa ‘in’ Buhari. 07042387226 Blame government Why are you people always myopic and biased in your analysis? Blame the government for the violence in the north for failing to address the issue of ALMAJIRIS in the North and not Buhari. 08058978217 In the name of religion (If at all you are a Muslim). It is amazing you do not even care to know the position of Islam on the qualities required of a candidate to be voted for? Surprisingly, you equated the same lack of knowledge to all Muslims in the Southwest (Yoruba only). ISLAM is very clear and emphatic in casting your vote. Please our Muslims brothers and sisters (Yoruba) did not comply with such Islamic dictum. Can we call that lack of knowledge (Islamic) or Islamic arrogance? 08034706451
Ahmed comes from), especially in the villages. A friend who had come from Lagos to his village, Ora, complained about this horrible development. He said the same had occurred in many villages nearby. We heard of this same development in Share, hometown of Ahmed. In spite of this wide rejection of the PDP at the polls Ahmed was declared winner of the governorship poll, to the chagrin of many Kwarans. Many of us sobbed. The people feel let down by the security operatives and indeed some INEC staff, because not all of them compromised. This is where the job is for Belgore who Kwarans look up to at this trying moment. Belgore must not let the people down. He must reject the entreaties for him to drop his case. This will be suicidal because the masses of our people, old and young, poor and rich, staked everything to vote for him and his party. The civil servants may not forgive him if he leaves then to suffer humiliations for the next four years. That is because the government did everything to coerce them to vote the PDP, but they insisted they wanted a change. So we want him to deplore everything legal within his means to retrieve this mandate for the suffering people of Kwara State in the interest of fairness and justice, because people had warned him that voting for him was not the problem, what bothered them is if he would protect their votes. Belgore must use his legal team to discover bogus votes because in Ilorin, for instance, the results we saw at some polling units were at variance with what was recorded at collation centres. The lawyers must also ask to know what happened to unused ballot papers in most parts of the state, call for the list of accredited voters, and compare with the signed results ACN agents had because there is every probability that they would have tampered with it. The Kwara PDP mouthpieces are free, and are indeed expected in their characteristics manner, to issue millions of statements refuting this article, but I will also expect them to explain to the world why their victory is celebrated only within their circles while hundreds of thousands of our people continue mourn the stealing of their mandate. This is not about Belgore but the collective destiny of the people of Kwara State. • Azeez writes from Ilorin
AUGUST 9 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY
Siasia appeals Black Stars, Super Eagles to clash in London to Nigerians Pg. 41
Nation Tuesday, May 17, 2011
•Osaze Odemwingie (m) picked up the top goal scorer award
WEST BROM PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Osaze is second best Mulumbu emerges winner
UPER EAGLES forward, Osaze Odemwingie was on Sunday night named the second best player for West Brom in the just concluded season behind Congolese star, Youssouf Mulumbu, who emerged as club's best. Mulumbu, who featured in the Baggies’ midfielder was rewarded for his hard work all season and was crowned, Player-of-theSeason, at the Gala Awards Dinner, while Nigeria's Osaze was first runners up with the highest goal scorer's award. Chris Brunt was
second runners up The Players' Player of the Season award also went to Mulumbu. More than 900 people turned out for the event at the ICC, and I think you'd be hard pushed to find anybody who didn't enjoy themselves. The best performance of the Season was chosen with the Arsenal versus West Brom match, which ended 2-3 in favour of the Baggies, runners up were Everton versus West Brom match, which was 1- 4 for Baggies, and
the West Brom versus Liverpool clash, which ended 2-1 respectively. Goal of the Season went to Simon Cox for Spurs away. West Brom manager, Roy Hodgson praised his side for their fine run of form and now wants to ensure the bragging rights stay at the Hawthorns, as the end of the season fast approaches. "I've got to say it has been a wonderful season and we've got a very good chance now of finishing as top dogs in the Birmingham
area. "I think it's a while since that happened and it is an achievement because Birmingham and Aston Villa are big clubs." But as Albion prepares to reward top scorer Odemwingie with an improved deal, Peace told the guests at the night’s end of season gala dinner that, he was not interested in cashing in on any of Hodgson’s key figures. And, having dealt with the Albion owner from the other side of the fence, Hodgson has no doubts he will stick to that policy.
TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
FIFA's Worawi to sue NFF meets to discuss over bribery claims future of Falcons coach FIFA EXECUTIVE committee member Worawi Makudi had engaged lawyers to file charges against former English Football Association chief David Triesman for making bribery accusations. Worawi, who is also head of the Football Association of Thailand, denied Triesman's accusations that he demanded the television rights to a proposed Thailand-England friendly in exchange for supporting England's bid to host the 2018 World Cup. Worawi was one of four FIFA executives accused by Triesman of seeking forms of payment in return for supporting England's bid. "The accusations are not true and groundless" Worawi said at a press conference Monday. "I have to speak out because my reputation has been tarnished and it defames my family. "I have to take legal action to rescue my name and the honor of my family." The Thai administrator said he intended to file charges against Triesman in a British court, and had engaged the legal firm of Watson, Farley and Williams, which has offices in London and Bangkok. "I cannot say much, to be prudent with the legal case," Worawi said. "I have a legal team to handle this case and they are gathering evidence. I believe I have key evidence to prove my case." Among the evidence he cited was a statement from the English FA setting out conditions for the proposed Thailand-England friendly, a further
•Worawi statement from the FA expressing regret for having to cancel that friendly and a letter of thanks after the bidding process finished. Worawi's legal team had estimated it would take about a month to prepare for trial, and had not detailed what redress would be sought. He is also under challenge as chief of the Football Associaton of Thailand. Postponed elections were expected to be called some time this month, though a Thai government sports body had said the elections had come too late in the year and Worawi's position was now void.
Maradona seals as Al-Wasl deal in Dubai ARGENTINA LEGEND Diego Maradona is to take over as coach next season at Dubai's Al-Wasl, the club announced on Monday "Al-Wasl Sports Club is proud to announce the appointment of Diego Armando Maradona as head coach of AlWasl Football Club, in a momentous development that will see the football legend lead the team for the next two seasons," the club said in a statement. The 50-year-old Maradona was manager of the Argentina national side at last year's World Cup in South Africa, but was sacked after they lost 4-0 to Germany in the quarterfinals. His name had been mentioned in connection with several coaching jobs since then, notably in the English Premier League and in Iran, but nothing came of these speculations. The Dubai job was first mentioned on
Saturday when Maradona paid a visit to the Al-Wasl training facility and headquarters and club officials said an announcement could be made shortly. Commenting on the agreement, club chairman Marwan Bin Bayat said: "Al-Wasl Sports Club has become synonymous with achievements of this calibre, and we are very pleased to be welcoming Maradona to a long line of accolades in the club's history."This partnership embodies the vision of the club as it embraces forward thinking developments in the region to establish unprecedented standards for the sport." Al Wasl are currently fourth in the domestic league of the United Arab Emirates, 16 points behind leaders Al-Jazira and have been looking for a coach since firing Brazilian Sergio Farias in March.
HE Technical Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is expected to meet this week to discuss the future of the Super Falcons Chief Coach, Uche Eucharia in the team. This follows the team’s 2-1 loss in Accra, Ghana on Sunday which means for the first time since women football was introduced in the All African Games in 2003, Nigeria will not be part of the most glamorous single fiesta in Africa. Nigeria was bundled out of the football event of the games by the Black Queens of Ghana on a 3-2 goal aggregate on Sunday. According to our source in the NFF Secretariat in Abuja, the Committee is expected to deliberate on whether Uche Eucharia will continue to be Head Coach of the team, or if someone else would be appointed as Technical Adviser while she remain as the Chief Coach. In the words of the source, "the decision to stay or not would be purely hers. If she decides not to work under someone, then she would be at liberty to quit.” The source further alleged that, “it is quite obvious that she does not have the grip of the team. There were reported cases of indiscipline in the team, which she could not manage effectively. There were reported cases of sex scandals in the team, and some of the high profile players in team hardly take instructions from her, that an influential member of the team was no longer training and only decides when to train and when not. “The committee is also expected to assess the impact of the foreign assistant in the team, to see if he is really doing what is expected of him, and if the Chief Coach is
of French Open
VENUS WILLIAMS has joined Sister Serena in withdrawing from the French Open because of injury, the WTA said on Saturday. The world number 19 has not played since retiring from the Australian Open in January with an abdominal injury and she has failed to recover sufficiently, the WTA added. With Serena also absent, this year's French Open from May 22 to June 5 will be the first grand slam event without a Williams sister since the 2003 U.S. Open. Serena is recovering from a pulmonary embolism and foot injury. A number of high profile names have recently pulled out of the claycourt grand slam as former world number one Dinara Safina is taking an indefinite break while Kim Clijsters is also a doubt after injuring herself at her cousin's wedding. Venus, 30, pulled out of the Brussels Open warmup event earlier this week. She has played at the French Open every year since 1998, reaching one final in 2002, when she lost to Serena.
in London if the deal to face the Super Eagles falls through. The contract for the epic clash between the Super Eagles and the Black Stars has been tabled before the Ghana Football Association (GFA) and the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
Nsofor dumps West Ham
IGERIAN international, Victor Nsofor will not go down with relegated West Ham and hopes to stay up in the English top flight with either Fulham or Aston Villa. The 24-year-old striker has already told MTNFootball.com exclusively that he will be a free agent at the end of the season after Italian club Inter Milan failed to evoke a clause in his contract that would have kept him at the San Siro. Italian club Napoli may also have revived their interest in Nsofor, but the player has told close associates he will rather stay back in the English Premier League. “Obi wants to stay in the English Premier League and what is very certain is that he will not go down to the Championship with West Ham, who were relegated on Sunday,” a source close to Nsofor informed MTNFootball.com. “He has two offers to consider, either Fulham or Aston Villa. He is seen as a direct replacement for Ashley Young, who is most likely to quit Villa soon. “He also has an option of heading back to Italy to star for Napoli. He was very close to joining them before he eventually came on loan to West Ham.”
one spot if he reaches the final of the French Open which gets underway at Roland Garros on Sunday. ATP world rankings 1. (1) Rafael Nadal, Spain, 12,070 points 2. (2) Novak Djokovic, Serbia, 11,665 3. (3) Roger Federer, Switzerland, 8,390 4. (4) Andy Murray, Britain, 6,085 5. (5) Robin Soderling, Sweden, 5,435 6. (7) Tomas Berdych, Czech Republic, 4,215 7. (6) David Ferrer, Spain, 4,060 8. (8) Juergen Melzer, Austria, 2,850 9. (9) Gael Monfils, France, 2,465 10. (11) Mardy Fish, United States, 2,395 Sapa-dpa
HANA are completing a deal to play arch-rivals Nigeria in an international friendly in London in August, sources close to the deal have told Ghanasoccernet.com. The Black Stars could play Turkey
After failing to find the back of the net on his arrival in England, Obinna soon hit a rich vein of form during which he banged in a hat-trick against Nottingham Forest in the fourth round of the FA Cup. Three days later, he cracked a brace at Blackpool in a 3-2 win in the league. However, a combination of injury and his red card against Birmingham in the League Cup semi-final froze
NJURED striker Emmanuel Emenike and Chibuzor Okonkwo, who is nursing an ankle injury, are in the Eagles squad for next month’s top games. MTNFootball.com has again scooped that despite their injury problems both Emenike and Heartland defender Okonkwo remain very much a big part of coach Samson Siasia’s plans for the double-header against Argentina and Ethiopia in early June. “Both players will be fit and ready for the matches next month,” simply disclosed a top team official. Karabukspor of Turkey star Emenike has had a running battle with injuries since he made his Eagles debut against Sierra Leone in February. He first suffered a shin injury against
him out of the starting XI of the London Hammers. On Sunday, he was not even on the bench as West Ham threw away a 2-0 first half lead at Wigan Athletic to lose 3-2 and seal their return to the English lower tier. In total, Nsofor played 24 matches and scored eight goals for the London outfit since his move in August. West Ham had regained their place in the EPL in 2005.
HE Nigeria Premier League has decided to go hard on several clubs and officials over the way they conducted themselves in the second stanza of the league. The league body has therefore warned that they will not hesitate to sanction any team or official that brings the game into disrepute Ocean Boys FC Vs Enyimba Int’l FC (Assault on Enyimba Int’l FC Supporters) The Nigeria Premier League (NPL) has issued a warning letter to Ocean
the Leone Stars in Lagos, and back in Turkey, he suffered a rib injury which has seen him out of action for the last couple of weeks. Okonkwo led the Eagles ‘B’ team who fell short at the recent subregional WAFU nations Cup in Abeokuta. The right back copped an ankle injury against Niger and this kept him out of both the semi-finals and final of the annual tournament. Doctors have said he will be sidelined for at least two weeks. In the main, Siasia is also keeping faith with most of the top stars who have featured for the country since he took over the team in December.
Boys while investigation the incident is still ongoing. For the game between Sunshine Stars and 3SC, Coach Fatai Amao of 3SC, held up the game for almost 2 minutes while giving out instruction to his players thereby causing unnecessary stoppage and bringing the game into disrepute and have has been warned to desist from such act in subsequent matches. In the same vein, Sunshine Stars FC is to ensure that the use of Substitution Board is part of the game, therefore, the club is charged to have adequate and appropriate substitution board in place on or before its next home match, failure to adhere may attract sanction. Enyimba has been charge to provide appropriate seat cover at the reserved benches of Enyimba Int’l Stadium, Aba. The NPL attention was been drawn to the lack or damaged seat cover at the players and officials reserved bench. The club has been told in clear terms that they must rectify the damage seat cover to ensure conformity and expectation of standards of the Nigeria Premier League. The NPL has also commended the Match officials for brilliant performances in the first two matches in the second stanza. While urging the Referees to ensure that this standard is maintained, the league organizing body has said that any report on poor officiating shall be communicated to the Referees Appointment Committee for appropriate sanctions. Therefore, the NPL encourages all Match Officials to be fair, firm and committed throughout the second stanza. In its effort to encourage fair, free and firm officiating, the Nigeria Premier League has set necessary machinery in motion for recognizing outstanding Referees monthly.
Kenya Olympic marathon star Sammy dies in fall THE Kenyan Olympic marathon champion, Samuel "Sammy" Wanjiru, has died after falling from a first-floor balcony at his home in the town of Nyahururu. Police say they are investigating whether it was suicide or an accident. The 24-year-old won in Beijing in 2008 in an Olympic record time, becoming Kenya's first marathon champion. Last December, he was charged with threatening to kill his wife, Triza Njeri, assault and the illegal possession of an AK-47 assault rifle. Mrs Njeri subsequently withdrew her accusations, saying they had reconciled. The BBC's Will Ross in Nairobi says the Olympic champion had a stormy relationship with his wife. National police spokesman Eric Kiraithe said Wanjiru killed himself but Nyahururu police chief Jasper Ombati
The match has been tentatively fixed for 9 August, a date set aside by FIFA for international friendly matches. The match is likely to be played at the Queens Park Rangers’ Loftus Road stadium or Selhurst Park, the stadium for Crystal Palace. Nigeria are desperate for another opportunity to avenge the 4-1 thrashing they suffered at the hands of the Black Stars in London in 2007. The Super Eagles will be hoping to appease their fans in the UK through the game but with the Black Stars on a high, an interesting match will be on display if the two sides agree to play. Ghana will use the match to prepare for their Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Swaziland in September.
ARGENTINA VS NIGERIA
Okonkwo eager to impress Dutch scouts T HE captain of the home-based Super Eagles, Chibuzor Okonkwo has stated that he looks forward to playing in the friendly against Argentina slated for June 1 at the Abuja National Stadium, just as the technical crew led by Coach Samson Siasia is expected to release the team list for players that will execute the match on Thursday. Okonkwo's readiness is sequel to his desire to impress the Dutch scouts which he hopes will sign him on, all things being equal. The Heartland ace added that he also wants to impress Coach Samson Siasia because the coach has always given him the opportunity to showcase his talents in the Eagles squad. " I think, the future will be bright. I can't say anything for now. I went for trials in Holland and everything went out very good, so the game against Argentina will be a very good and interesting one for me because the scouts will be coming to watch the game. So that will be a very good trial for me and I will put in my best," Okonkwo said. Okonkwo added that the team is ready to put in their best as they meet the Argentines in the friendly: "Football is all about consistency. The most important thing is to concentrate and win
NPL goes hard on clubs, officials
Eagles pick injury-hit Emenike, Okonkwo
Nadal clinging to No.1 spot, Djokovic sisters pulls out RAFAEL NADAL barely hung onto first closes in place in the men's tennis rankings after losing another final against in-form rival Novak Djokovic. Nadal leads the ATP list issued on Monday with 12,070 points, but Djokovic has all but reached him on 11,665 points after beating the Spaniard for the Rome clay title on Sunday. Djokovic has a perfect 37-0 record in 2011 for seven titles. The Serb has defeated Nadal in four finals this year, the others being in Indian Wells, Miami and Madrid. He can claim the top spot for the first time at the French Open which starts on Sunday. Former number one Roger Federer remains third on 8,390 points while Mardy Fish put the United States back into the top 10, from 11th to 10th. Last week had marked the first time in ranking history that the US had no men's and women's player in the top 10. Meanwhile, Novak Djokovic has closed the gap on Rafael Nadal atop the ATP world rankings after defeating the Spaniard in straight sets in the Rome Masters final on Sunday. After chalking up his 37th straight win in 2011, the Serb is now just 405 points behind Nadal and will take the number
Black Stars, Super Eagles to clash in London
ARGENTINA, ETHIOPIA CLASH
Other Sports...Other Sports...Other Sports...Other Sports...Other Sports...Other...Sports
ATP TOP 10 RANKING
From Patrick Ngwaogu, Abuja giving him all the needed support." Meanwhile, NationSport further scooped that some of the players are still not happy with the role the Chief Coach played in the dropping of her two assistants early in the year, and are still holding grudges against her. It would be recalled that the NFF technical committe informed the Coach on the dropping of her two assistants Ann Chiejine and Gidado Usman before they resumed camping in March, only for her to deny knowledge of it, even accusing them of absconding from duties.
AUGUST 9 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY
said it may have been an accident during a confrontation with his wife. Mr Ombati said the dispute began when Mrs Njeri found Wanjiru with a female friend in their home in the Rift Valley town 150km (93 miles) north-west of Nairobi. Police are currently questioning both women about the incident. Wanjiru suffered internal injuries as a result of the fall and was pronounced dead in hospital after attempts to revive him failed. Our correspondent says some Kenyans believe his domestic problems were linked to his recently acquired wealth from prize money. His agent, Federico Rosa, told the BBC he was "100% sure" it was not suicide. Wanjiru was at Mr Rosa's house
on Sunday afternoon and was "very focused", he said. "He asked to borrow my car and he was supposed to be back early this morning with my car, so for sure there was nothing to do with suicide. It was just a terrible accident that happened." Wanjiru's fellow Kenyan marathon star Paul Tergat said the death was "shocking" and "very sad". "We have lost a very young and talented athlete," he told the BBC. As well as becoming the youngest Olympic champion since 1932, Wanjiru also set marathon course records in London and Chicago. Prime Minister Raila Odinga said Wanjiru's death was a big blow to Kenya's dreams of Olympic gold in London 2012. Athletes including Ethiopian great Haile Gebrselassie have expressed their shock and condolences.
By Stella Bamawo your game. This is a do-or-die game, we have to play according to rules and instructions." In the same vein, coach Siasia has expressed a desire to give more homebased players opportunity to play. He said: "We will look at the ones, we feel we can mix with the foreign-based players."
Siasia appeals to Nigerians From Patrick Ngwaogu and Andrew Abah, Abuja
UPER EAGLES head coach, Samson Siasia has appealed to Nigerians not to judge him by the performance of the home-based Super Eagles’ in the just concluded WAFU Cup competition. Speaking in the Abuja on Monday, the former international who won his third silver medal in a stretch, last weekend said the performance of the boys should be applauded as they really put in everything into the competition, only that they were unlucky in the final. “These players are really very good. They really played out their heart, and surprised many of us. Only that they very unlucky at the end. I wish to commend them, and plead to all Nigerians to appreciate them, instead of condemning them. They are great players of the future”. Siaone said that his emphasis is on building a very formidable team that would be able to withstand the test of time, and that the performance of the home -based team should not be used as the basis of judging him as the chief coach of the Super Eagles, instead that the performance of his team in both the African Nations Cup qualifiers and the World Cup should be rallying point of judging his performance with the team. He promised to release the list of players that would battle both the June 1st friendly match against Argentina and the Africa Nations cup qualifier against Ethiopia today. Samson Siasia at various times had played second fiddle in major international competitions he led the country’s national team to. He won silver at 2005 U-20 Competition in Holland, he repeated same in the 2008 Olympic games in China, and another silver with the home based Super Eagles team in Abeokuta last weekend, where they lost to the Hawks of Togo by three goals to two. Thereby, relinquishing the trophy won by Daniel Amokachie with the same team last year. Siaone major golden laurel has been the Africa U-20 Youth Championship trophy won in 2005.
Tevez: Future depends on my family MANCHESTER CITY captain Carlos Tevez has revealed he is tempted to stay and help make the Eastlands club genuine Premier League title challengers in the wake of their FA Cup triumph, but that the decision will be made in the best interests of his family. Roberto Mancini’s side overcame Stoke City 1-0 at Wembley on Saturday to end the club’s 35-year wait for silverware, thanks to Ivorian midfielder Yaya Toure’s emphatic finish 16 minutes from time. The triumph provides the perfect end to a highly successful week for City, who had already secured Champions League football next season by beating Tottenham Hotspur at Eastlands on Tuesday evening. City are expected to spend lavishly this summer as they look to build on the success of this campaign with a title challenge next term, and Tevez admitted that despite handing in a transfer request back in December, he could yet be persuaded to remain at the club by the possibility of further glories to come. "Winning the title is a great motivation for me to stay, it would make me so happy,” the 27-year-old Argentine told reporters. "It is what we all want and need although now it's time to celebrate winning the cup. "Here we are trying to build a team to win trophies including the Premier League and we are focusing on that.
Ronaldo equals record 38 goals Barca to move Unicef to back of jersey PORTUGUESE goal machine Cristiano Ronaldo equalled the all-time league record of 38 goals with a brace in Real Madrid's 3-1 victory at Villarreal on Sunday.
Ronaldo made it nine goals in his last three games with a 22nd minute free-kick and a last minute strike to stay on course to pick up the Pichichi trophy for the league's top-scorer. Barcelona's Lionel Messi, his nearest rival, has 31 La Liga goals. Ronaldo's 38-goal tally equals the alltime best record set by Athletic Bilbao's Telmo Zarra in 1951 and matched by Real's iconic Mexican striker Hugo Sanchez in 1990. And he has the final game of the season to set a new record. Newly-crowned champions Barcelona had their eye on the Champions League final against Manchester United on May 28 as they rested stars in a dull 0-0 draw against Deportivo La Coruna at Camp Nou. The visitors performed the traditional guard of honour to salute the league champions, who secured the title on Wednesday with a 1-1 draw against Levante, although most of the Barcelona stars were on the bench. Deportivo were fighting relegation and undoubtedly happy to see Messi and company watching from the sidelines and they claimed a valuable point in their bid to beat the drop.
BARCELONA said on Monday they will put the Unicef logo on the back of the team jersey next season after agreeing to extend their support for the UN Children's Fund. Barcelona's global five-year agreement with Unicef, whose logo is now emblazoned on the front of the Spanish league champions'jersey, had been due to expire next month. Under the new deal, the Unicef logo is switched to the back of the FC Barcelona official jersey for the 20112012 season, below the player's number, the club said in a statement. The Unicef logo was bumped off the front of the jersey by the Qatar Foundation, which signed a record shirt sponsorship deal with Barcelona last December for 30 million euros a season, or 165 million euros until 2016. The deal with the Qatar Foundation, which promotes education and research in the Middle East, was criticised at the time by former Dutch superstar Johan Cruyff who said it was "sullying the jersey" of a team that boasts to be "mes que un club" (more than a club). Barcelona said they would provide more details of the agreement with
Unicef in June. "The next phase of the partnership that is still under discussion aims at utilising the social assets of the club in support of a global movement for education and sport that will deliver tangible results for children," the club said.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
* The Environment * Mortgage * Apartments * Security * Homes *Real Estate
How to redress ‘faulty’ urban development plan, by architects •Experts advocate ‘Live, work and recreate concept’
•From left:Femi Shodunke, Jemi Ogisi and Abimbola Ajayi.
PHOTO: OKWY IROEGBU
Architects are not happy with the extant town planning and urban development laws. Why? They said the laws do not afford people the opportunity to ‘live, work and recreate’ close to their homes. The laws, they claim, have led to disjointed development, forcing people to travel long distances to and from because of what they call a ‘faulty’ plan. OKWY IROEGBU reports. •STORY ON PAGE 26 •Fed Govt to enforce National Building Code - PAGE 26
•Estate surveyors to partner govt on housing - PAGE 27
•Nigerite unveils growth
strategy - PAGE 28
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
PROPERTY/ENVIRONMENT •Continued from page 25
HE Nigeria Institute of Architects (NIA), Lagos State Chapter, has tasked the state government on the need to review some building/planning laws and policies to allow people to work close to their homes. They argue that it is only then that people can actually ‘live, work and recreate’ in their chosen environment while putting in their best in their career. At a forum last week, the institute’s Assistant Secretary, Fitzgerald Umah, cited Ikoyi which, though originally planned as a low density area, has been reversed by the government due to the cost of land and associated reasons to accommodate high-rise building, which affords people the opportunity to live, work and recreate in their environment. He called for the same policy reviews in a place lsuch as Surulere, which was planned as a low density abode, but due to urbanisation and population growth has become an informal high density area with landlords building adjoining houses and shops to up their income, albeit illegally.
How to redress ‘faulty’ urban development plan, by architects He urged the government to review the policy regarding this so that people will be allowed to build multi-storey buildings. He said: ”If this is allowed, it will check sprawling development and slumisation as house owners will make more money from their buildings from increased tenancy. Not only will the tenants be able to pay their utility bills but the government will make more money in revenue generation.” Its Vice-Chairman, Femi Shodunke, lending his voice to the need to review the policy, observed that long commutals by people daily, from their homes to their places of work due to faulty urban development policy and plans, has put a lot of stress on our roads. He said: “Why don’t we review development plans and build vertically, especially where otherwise approved as low density in order to afford people the opportunity to
live near their offices? “The whole idea is that architects in Lagos are asking for a policy that supports: Live, work and recreate concept”. The NIA Financial Secretary, Adebayo Ogunmefun, said the concept propagated by his colleagues could only work if affordability of the houses is ensured for the majority of the people. He called for the provision of a virile mortgage, which will afford the majority of
the people the opportunity to depart from the slum environment and move up to a regenerated environment. He said: “ The current situation ion now is that everybody is struggling to build a house for himself as the government is not making any move towards that, especially for the low income group, and, in the process, a lot of substandard houses are built, creating more challenges in the building sector.”
‘The current situation now is that everybody is struggling to build a house for himself as government is not making any move towards that, especially for the low income group, and, in the process, a lot of substandard houses are built, creating more challenges in the building sector’
The Chairman of the institute, Mrs Ambimbola Ajayi, urged the state government to endeavour to build mini-urban centres to form a homogenous unit that is livable. She observed that access to land remains a major issue in the state and asked the government to work hard on liberalising land ownership as only then would people be able to augment government efforts by building for themselves. Mrs. Ajayi said: “The Lagos State Government needs to be more committed to infrastructure development on land, water, power and urban transportation because these have the possibility of lifting the state in the comity of nations in terms development index.” She invited stakeholders to attend their annual forum, which will kick off next Wednesday with the theme: Lagos 2.0 - A liveable city in Lagos. She said the forum would attract speakers from local and international arenas. The event will feature conferences and workshops that dwell on contemporary urban development issues, real estate development, design technology and software, she added.
‘10-lane Lagos/ Badagry expressway expansion on course’ •No going back on Lekki/ Etiosa expressway concession
HE Lagos State Government has reiterated its resolve to complete the ongoing 10-lane expansion project on the Lagos/ Badagry expressway. The road, a dual carriage way, originally billed to be constructed in 1974, has served as the sub-regional link to most West African countries. Special Adviser to the Governor, Mr Ganiyu Johnson, an engineer, told The Nation that the lot one of the project, which commenced from Eric Moore to Mazamaza Bridge, has reached up to 42 per cent completion. Johnson said: “Upon completion, the new expressway is expected to become a 10-lane carriage way, with a light rail and BRT corridor, which will further enhance tourism and economic activities on the axis.” Other expected impact, he said, are improved safety on the road, reduction on travel time, sustainable environment for economic, financial and social activities. This is, in addition, to opening up further of the corridor for further developmental growth. On the Lekki/Etiosa Expressway, he responded that the state government cannot go back on the contract as it is legally binding on her with the concessionaire. Speaking on the Admiralty/Alexander link Bridge that is expected to connect Ikoyi and Victoria Island and relieve Lekki and Ajah of traffic bottlenecks, he revealed that the project has achieved a 45 per cent completion target and that the approach from Lekki is almost done while the pile innovation from Ikoyi is ongoing. Answering a question on the state of road in Ikotun-Egbeda-IsheriCapital road and Ayobo, he promised that the state government would complete ongoing projects and embark on new ones to have even development in the state. He said their implementation strategy and methodology in providing durable infrastructure are centred on time-tested principles of management and improved service delivery.
•Residential houses in Asokoro, Abuja.
Fed Govt to enforce National Building Code
HE Federal Government is to enforce the National Building Code to check incessant building collapse, the Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Nduese Essien, has said. Essien, who spoke at a forum in Abuja, said the building code had been in existence for some time but could not be accessed due to its cost. He lamented incessant incidence of collapsed buildings across the country, saying this informed the Federal Government’s move to revisit the policy. Essien said the government was not satisfied with the level of housing delivery, adding that the administration would boost infrastructural development. He stated that the ministry would soon identify government’s parcels of land awaiting development all over the country. “Some parcels of land acquired by the government in 1980 have not been paid for and most indigenes of such areas are not willing to lease such land unless they have been compensated. We have plans to settle all these problems,’’ he said. He said his ministry would ensure the recovery of money remitted to the National Housing Fund through the assistance of the
Stories by Okwy Iroegbu Asst. Editor
EFCC. The minister disclosed that the government has acquired parcels of land across the country to build affordable houses for the masses. He stated that though private developers would participate in the initiative, the government would be largely involved in direct construction of the houses. He said housing delivery was not satisfactory to all stakeholders because of the level of involvement of private developers who build and sell or rent to the highest bid-
ders. Essien also said many houses were not occupied because of their cost, saying that this had resulted in such houses being abandoned across the country. The minister said the ministry was planning to impose a levy on houses abandoned for a specific period to discourage speculators from charging exorbitant prices. He noted that the number of abandoned completed buildings had become a security threat across the country, adding that the government was determined to address the issue. Essien said the ministry had be-
gun a 250-housing unit in Bayelsa, Osun, Kaduna and Akwa Ibom to provide affordable houses to Nigerians, noting that other parts of the country would be involved in the initiative. The minister, however, regretted that several communities had protested the quality of job executed on some of the 820 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) projects across the country. He said the development informed the decision of the ministry to inaugurate a taskforce on the projects in addition to on-the-spot supervision by the minister. Essien further said the government had mapped out strategies to address the challenges of providing affordable housing.
REDAN builds 85,000 houses
RESIDENT, Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Mr Olabode Afolayan, said its members built over 85,000 houses last year. Afolayan, who stated this in Lagos, said the houses, which are of various categories, were built in all the 36 states including Abuja. ``Last year we were able to build about 85,000 houses nationwide. ``There are some other developments, which we did not capture and that is why we have decided to liaise with the Ministry of Lands in vari-
ous states to get accurate statistics. “We are putting this together to help the Office of Statistics and I know that in 2011 we will build more,’’ he said. Afolayan said its members were continuously working as the demand for houses were high. He added that people were ready to invest in Real Estate with the problems in the capital market. The estate developer said arrangements were being finalised for the association’s venture, REDAN Capital, to raise funds from the capital
market for estate development. According to him, by September, REDAN Capital, which is the association’s profit-oriented venture, will advertise for private placement. He said the association was also working with the Nigerian Building and Roads Research Institute (NBRRI) to exploit alternative materials to bring down the cost of developing houses. The REDAN president said it was also working with the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) to raise bond in the capital market.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Estate surveyors to partner govt on housing
HE Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) has expressed its readiness to work with the Federal Government to provide affordable houses for the masses and Nigerians. President of the Institution, Mr. Bode Adediji, disclosed this during a briefing in Abuja. He said the institute is studying contemporary issues in Nigeria, the profession of estate surveying and their impact on housing and real estate sectors. He said: “We have sent through the relevant agencies the agenda that we have, which
From Franca Ochigbo, Abuja
would assist the government in accomplishing the task he has set for himself and the nation. “We have reviewed some other contemporary issues such as what is happening to the housing crisis in Nigeria where we have about 16million housing deficit and the slum dwellings are springing up in virtually all corners of the metropolis. “We are using this meeting to brainstorm on what we can do as an institution; what we can do as private sector operational
and what we expect the government to do for us based on this. “We have resolved that we are going to host an international housing conference sometimes in July 2011, where we will beaming the searchlight regarding what we ought to do as a professional body and what Nigeria should do as a country to actually ameliorate this frightening dimension of housing crisis in our country,” he stressed. Adediji emphasised President
Goodluck Jonathan’s commitment to the vision 20:2020, which he intends to work with. He said an important aspect of this is meeting, the Millennium Development Goals, (MDGs) which section contains a provision of adequate housing for large majority of our members. “Where we are more concerned is that you cannot revamp the economy without concentrating on the real sector itself and on the real estate subsector of that sector and more particularly on the housing delivery system. As of today, millions of brick layers, carpenters electricians are out of
‘We have sent through the relevant agencies the agenda that we have, which would assist the government in accomplishing the task he has set for himself and the nation’
work. You cannot campaign on poverty alleviation without looking at employment generation.”
‘Construction industry on steady rise’
RESIDENT, Nigeria Institute of Architects (NIA), Mr. Olatunji Bolu, said the nation’s construction industry has grown tremendously over the years translating into a multibillion naira business. It is an industry that is rich enough to drive the economy of the country. The last couple of years witnessed increasing patronage and a lot of activities in this sector leading to more consultancy outfits, he said. To underscore the growth in the s ector, he recalled many projects being executed by the government and the private sector which are creating opportunities for growth in the industry with huge budgetary allocations from states towards capital projects and infrastructure provision. He said: “I am confident that the industry will keep growing because the government cannot shy away from the continuous development of the country because of our population, land mass and quest to be one of the leading economies in the world. ‘’We must realise that in order for
By Okwy Iroegbu, Asst Editor
this sector to cope with the growth and volume of work to be done, we must be able to overcome some challenges that would seriously affect our performance. ‘’Some of these are methods of award of projects to contractors, involvement of competent and registered consultants with their different regulatory body and institute, difficulty in sourcing finance and inadequate training resources for skilled artisans and craftsmen.” He called for the rejuvenation of the power sector which he said has affected the economic production of basic building materials locally.
Bolu, who is also a Principal Partner with ab.dt Partnership however, regretted that the construction industry with all its potential have remained a relatively small player in terms of contribution to the GDP On the challenges of architects in the sector, he said they are making a case to have enough room to practice without any hindrances such as incursion and preference of foreign architects, appropriate remuneration and strict compliance with the conditions of engagement of consultants and proper placement of architects in the public sector. In addition, the NIA boss said they are advocating that the National Building Code should be
‘I am confident that the industry will keep growing because government cannot shy away from the continuous development of the country because of our population, land mass and quest to be one of the leading economies in the world’
Commissioner chides contractors over slow pace of work
S part of his oversight functions aimed at ensuring adherence to specifications and effective service delivery, the Ondo State Commissioner for Youth Development and Sports, Alhaji Yekini Olanipekun, has visited the on-going reconstruction at some stadia across the state. Olanipekun, who led principal officers of his ministry duting the tour, charged contractors handling various projects at the stadia to maintain high degree of professionalism, stressing that government will not tolerate shoddy jobs that could undermine the essence of the projects. The Commissioner, who expressed disappointment at the slow pace of work, particularly at Ile-Oluji and Ore stadia, charged the contractors to brace up and be more pro-active to ensure their completion within stipulated time and in accordance with specifications. Olanipekun threatened that the government would not entertain any undue delay of its projects particularly when they are time bound, adding that he will be vis-
backed up by law at all levels and enforced to the letter. He commended indigenous architects for what he called landmark buildings in the country. On NIA relationship with Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON), he responded that the common goal of both bodies is to protect and promote the profession of architecture in the country. Nigeria market has become a dumping ground for all manners of building materials. What do you think the government can do to check this and which of the roofing sheets and building materials companies are producing quality product? he was asked.
From Damisi Ojo, Akure
iting the project sites routinely to ensure speedy job and early completion. He said thorough supervision of both construction and renovation works at the stadia became imperative to avoid wastage of the state resources as well as ensure standard facilities that will cope with the challenges in the sporting world. The commissioner lamented that the level of work done at both IleOluji and Ore stadia did not commensurate with the money collected from government. He attributed the success story about the new stadia and those being renovated to the prompt release of funds by the state Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko and expressed the resolve of the current administration to develop sporting activities in the State to enhance its glory. Olanipekun, who charged stakeholders in the projects to be above board to ensure early completion, expressed satisfaction with the level of work done by the contractor handling the Ondo Township Stadium.
•Freedom Park,Broad Street,Lagos
He regretted the presence of too many substandard building materials, which are not environmentally good and unusable but said that they have tried to bridge the gap by organising a yearly fair where quality and standard construction materials are showcased. He also made a case for standard roofing materials manufactured locally as against the inferior and substandard materials imported into the country.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
PROPERTY/ENVIRONMENT Building Issues
Essential home repairs, remodeling before sale
•Grand Towers Shopping Mall, Abuja.
Grand Towers incorporates Green Principles in its shopping mall
O strengthen its commitment to environmental conservation and sustainable building, the Management of Grand Towers has put in place structures and facilities to foster environmentallyfriendly practices. Grand Towers Abuja Mall located on the Murtala Mohammed Express Way, Gudu District has been designed to incorporate green building principles, which is a first for Nigeria. The mall, according to a statement, has been designed to reduce
By Nduka Chiejina (Assistant Editor)
energy consumption, improve indoor air quality and limit environmental impacts. The use of sustainable materials would be embedded in the Roofing, windows and doors, insulation, framing, plumbing and interior finishes. The Chief Executive Officer of Grand Towers, Mr Stanley Duru, said the mall has embraced the “green concept,” saying the initia-
tive is a significant effort from Grand Towers to contribute to sustainable development in the country. The Grand Towers Abuja Mall, first would offer a vibrant, convenient and unique shopping experience, which would attract shoppers from all over the country. It is currently under construction and would be ready by December 2011. The project is developed and financed by Grand Towers and Grand Towers Africa Fund and Novare, South Africa.
Nigerite unveils growth strategy
IGERITE Limited, manufacturers of NT fibre cement roofing, among other products, has unveiled a new vision and mission as a roadmap for further growth and profitability in the market. Unveiling the new roadmap in Lagos at a well, attended gathering of employees, the Managing Director, Mr Jean-Luc Viatour, said the initiative is a strategic alignment aimed at boosting Nigerite’s competitive edge as a market leader. He said the new mission statements are necessary so that the company can move forward and chart a strategic course towards what it intends to achieve as a corporate entity and also a market leader. “It is necessary at this point to agree and come out with a vision that will reaffirm where we are go-
By Okwy Iroegbu, Asst Editor
ing and what we are expected to do in the next few years,” Viatour said. Specifically, he said, “the new vision is to be the number one, innovative, customer-driven and socially responsible one-stop building components solutions providers in our market.” He also revealed that the mission is to meet expectations of stakeholders by achieving a real turn-over growth of 10 per cent per year for the next five years. Other components of the new strategic alignment plan to achieve profitability by the company are leadership philosophy, stakeholders, values and strategic objectives. On leadership, the company intends to create an inspiring envi-
ronment where its people can achieve excellence. Speaking about its strategic objective, he said the new vision is aimed at increased profitability, motivated workforce, good corporate citizenship, profitable growth and operational environment. He canvassed teamwork, trust, reward, shared understanding, motivation, safety and open communication among the entire workforce. The new idea was said to have been kick-started last year, but became fully matured this year following a retreat organised for senior management staff of the company. At the end of the presentation, executive directors, departmental heads appended their signatures on the document to endorse the project.
Clos assures Ethiopia of support in urban planning E XECUTIVE Director of UNHabitat, Dr. Joan Clos, has ex pressed the organisation’s willingness to co-operate with the Government of Ethiopia to establish a proactive urban policy and urban planning in the country. Clos praised Ethiopia for its emphasis on the development of secondary cities in the country, which is part of its decentralisation policy. The Executive Director spoke while receiving the credentials from the new Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia to UNHabitat, Mr Shemsudin Ahmed Roble. He noted that UN-Habitat and Ethiopia have had many years of good relationship and called for further strengthening of ties between them. Ambassador Roble thanked Dr.
Clos for his offer of continued co-operation with his country and also for the support provided to his country in the area of land registration, which has made it possible for many Ethiopians including women to have certificates of their land. He stated that the country’s emphasis is on agriculture, health care, transport, communication and infrastructural development with special emphasis on the development of the rural areas where most of the population live. Ambassador Roble also said the country was working towards the reduction of slums through the Integrated Housing Development Programme and other measures. He noted that the construction in-
dustry provided a lot of jobs for the citizenry. The envoy also informed the Executive Director that the country has a national urban policy, which is in line with its decentralisation policy, and noted that “the urban situation in Ethiopia is improving.” Ambassador Roble noted that Ethiopia is a very stable country and invited Dr. Clos to visit the country to explore how co-operation between UN-Habitat and the country can be further strengthened – an invitation Dr. Clos accepted. The two also discussed the possibility of engaging a Habitat Programme Manager (HPM) for Ethiopia to ensure better coordination of the organisation’s activities in the country.
HERE are several reasons why By Okwy Iroegbu, a landlord would repair his Asst Editor home. One is because he Most importantly, present your wants it to continue to be functional. property beautifully. Remove the Another is that he wants to imclutter and arrange everything in prove its quality and make it more your house. You also need to have a comfortable close to what it was at plan of how to stage your property. inception or above it in terms of aesHow will you showcase the best feathetics and functionality. tures of your home and how are you However, it is more often that a going to deal with its flaws. It is very house owner repairs his house beimportant that you present it well cause he is going to put it up for sale. so that buyers will be interested to Repair is an essential step in precheck your home. No one will check paring the property, never mind that your property out if you cannot draw in this part of the world we scarcely attention. believe in maintenance as individuQuick tips to improve your house als or as a nation, little wonder we value. have many rundown buildings. Paint your house. This will give If you really want to sell your your house a brand new look. Paint house at a premium it is advisable has the least expensive, largest and that it has to be in its top notch conquickest impact on your house. dition to ensure that potential buyClean and organise your home ers will like it. properly. Everything should have a Before you enlist your property or specific place. A clean and organised get the services of an Estate Surhouse leaves a good impression. veyor& Valuer (professionals Make sure all the trained in the act), dishes are washed, as you need to be ‘This is where dirty dishes leave a mindful of the necbad impression essary repairs to be they will spend very ( this is applicable in done. Really, one situation where you their time after aare does not have to be living in the an expert to figure a tiring day. house) and prospecthis out as you can buyers are comeasily anaylise it if They will want tive ing in to inspect. The you were a buyer. it to be comfort- kitchen should be What would you clean check when you look able and cozy. thoroughly since it is the most for a home to purSince this is the important room for chase? You will buyers. Bathmost likely check the case, make sure many room is the secondbedroom, bathroom that bedrooms most important room and kitchen. Since should look neat this is the case, repair look great with and and clean. these rooms first besome paintgood finishings, ings Buy fore you put up the to hang in the for sale sign. don’t forget the rooms. This will add Bedrooms are very to the attractiveness. important as this is roof’ A visitor’s first very personal for the buyers. This is where they will spend impression would be of the front their time after a tiring day. They part of the house. You can have an will want it to be comfortable and attractive lawn and plants there if cozy. Since this is the case, make sure non exist ,ensure that your surthat bedrooms look great with good roundings’ is well kept, no over flowfinishings, don’t forget the roof. ing trash can and weed that could There are many room friendly dehave been cut before now. signs from reputable companies on Rearrange the furniture to make display. the house look spacious. The doors should be up as well. Pull the curtains so that natural Remember that even family memlight comes in. bers want to have some privacy from You can fix or paint fences. other people in the house. Replacing locks and knobs is The bathroom is also very imporalso an inexpensive home improvetant. See to it that they are clean. ment method. Have it inspected as well. Molds can Mirrors will help make the most ruin your chances of a sale. Aside of the light in a room. You can from that, the tiles and toilet bowl brighten up dark rooms and areas should be tidy too. There should not with floor-to-ceiling mirrors, lightbe any cracks. Cracks can be major ing will make your house appear turn offs for the buyers. So make sure bigger, fresher and decidedly more that you replace them. If it is master chic, as well as add more value. It bedroom with bathroom consider will also not be a bad idea if you what will appeal to a couple in terms resurface your asphalt driveways of colour and design and install it. and ensure the doors and windows You should also repair your open smoothly. kitchen as this is one of the rooms Update yourself with home valthat buyers consider. In fact, many ues in your neighborhood. The best buyers buy a house because they way to assess the value of your love the kitchen, remember if the home is to look at the home sales of woman of the house is convinced properties that are similar to yours about the offer, the deal will be as in your area. good as done. I want to reiterate the fact that There are various features in the kitchens are very important in valukitchen that you have to repair. First, ing the worth of a house. Most times check the faucets. Make sure that buyers react to their current chalthey are working. See to it that the lenges and in more cases than one it appliances are in good working conis always a woman complaining that dition as well. You also have to ‘ my current kitchen is too small , check the counter tops, the cabinets not spacious and does not give me and the floor. They have to be clean. room to express my culinary abiliIf you have to refinish or repaint ties’. them, do so. Indeed, buyers are looking for spaBesides these, attention needs to cious kitchens that are clean, in good be paid to other key systems in the repair and have the necessary furhouse. Among them are your nishings for working. To make the plumbing and electrical system. kitchen look more spacious, try inThey have to be working well as stalling lights, which will make it these are major concerns for buyers. look brighter. •Contributions, questions? e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
The Sheikh Lemu panel on post-election violence has its job cut out for it. But it seems it is not going to be an easy task because opinions differ on its assignment. Some say it is legal, others say it is illegal. JOHN AUSTIN UNACHUKWU and JOSEPH JIBUEZE report.
Is panel to probe post-poll violence legal? E
LECTION monitors and observers from different parts of the world believe that last month’s elections were the country’s most transparent in years. With their verdict, many thought there was something Nigerians could cheer about because the country had achieved free and fair polls which seemed elusive for decades. But, the joy was short-lived. Soon after President Goodluck Jonathan was declared the winner of the April 16 election, riots erupted in some parts of the North. Homes, shops, churches and mosques were torched. Ten National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members were killed by rioters in Bauchi State. The Presidency described the unrest as “obviously orchestrated”. “This unfortunate development was meant to mar what would have been a celebration of the progressive march of our democratic process,”President Jonathan said at the inauguration of a 22-member panel, led by renowned Islamic cleric Sheikh Ahmed Lemu, set up by the government to probe the violence. The panel will also look into the various crises that occurred before and after the elections. Specifically, it will examine the preelection violence in Akwa Ibom as well as the violence that greeted the President’s reelection in some states in the North. It will recommend how to stop the flow of weapons into the country. It has six weeks to complete its assignment. Justice Samson Uwaifo is the committee’s Vice Chairman. Mr. F. F. Ogunshakin is the secretary. Other members include former Deputy Governor of Lagos State Mrs. Lateefat Okunnu; immediate past Chairman of Punch Newspapers Chief Ajibola Ogunshola; Rev. Father Idowu Feron; Alhaji Muhammadu Danmadami; M. B. Wali, and Mrs. Timiebi Koripamo-Agary. The others are Comrade Peter Esele; Alhaji Muhammed Ibrahim; Prof. Femi Odekunle; Amb. Ralph Uwuche; Alhaji Bukar Usman; Sheikh Adam Idoko; Maj Gen. Mohammed Said; Mr. P.C. Okorie; Mr. Shamsuna Ahmed, an architect; Maj General L. P. Ngubane; Alhaji Sani Maikudi; Rear Admiral I. Hotonu, and a serving member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC). Analysts said it was an irony that the 2011 elections, widely acknowledged as the freeest, fairest and most credible to be conducted since the return to civilian rule in this dispensation, have turned out to be the source of irrecoverable losses and unbearable sorrow for some Nigerians.
• President Jonathan Although the President means well in setting up this panel, while there can be no doubt about the experience, competence and integrity of most of the members, sceptics may be justified in wondering if anything useful will come out of this initiative. There is also the question of its legality. For one, several panels were set up in the past to investigate violence in different parts of the country with nothing done till date about their findings. Again, there already exists several security and other agencies that have the statutory responsibility of carrying out the responsibilities assigned to the committee. If they have the professional expertise and are being funded to undertake such mandate, why saddle an ad-hoc committee with the same task at public cost? Analysts said if the Federal Government had established an Electoral Offences Tribunal as recommended by the Justice Muhammadu Uwais panel on electoral reforms, there would be no need for this panel that lacks legal authority. Perhaps a judicial panel of inquiry with the power to summon witnesses and take evidence under oath would have been more effective, experts insist. Some, therefore, perceive the panel as a wrong vehicle for the task at hand.
‘Divergent international trade laws unhealthy’ – P.30
The Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) has declared the panel illegal. Citing a Supreme Court ruling, the CPC said the Federal Government lacked the power to set up a panel to probe any crisis outside the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). It also accused President Jonathan of playing politics with the crisis, adding that the N5 million compensation for each of the 10 NYSC members killed during the violence was a peanut. In a statement, the CPC said the Federal Government by law has no power to investigate any disturbances outside the FCT as pronounced by the Supreme Court in Fawehinmi vs Babangida. “The 22-man panel set up by the President is, therefore, a hollow ritual meant to just play politics with a serious national tragedy.” The CPC noted that Justice Uwaifo, the panel’s deputy chairman, was on the Supreme Court panel that gave that decision. Uwaifo now chairs the Osun State Truth Commission, which the party said is a legal body because only states have the constitutional rights to handle such matters. The CPC also claims that most of the terms of reference of the panel are criminal issues that cannot be handled by a tribunal. “The burning of houses is arson while the killing
NBA goes tough on fake lawyers
of people is culpable homicide; a competent government, it stated, should be filing charges against the suspects arrested rather than embarking on a wild goose chase.” Eminent lawyers spoke on the legality or otherwise of the panel; their expectations and how to prevent similar crisis in the future.
Joseph Daudu (SAN) The NBA President said it was imperative to find a means to prevent a recurrence of what he called “a callous display of barbarism and savagery inflicted on fellow human beings and supposedly fellow Nigerians by people who do not place premium on human lives.” “I think that the committee has a very serious task ahead of them. The President has allayed our fears firstly by setting up the panel. These are events that are too prevalent in this country. Every time there is a small disagreement between two people in some parts of this country, people attack other people, burn churches, burn their properties and treat them as if they are not fellow Nigerians. •Continued on page 31
Justice Auta and the challenges ahead
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
LAW PERSONALITY Mr Hassan Bello is board secretary and legal adviser, Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC). The NSC was established on July 4, 1978 by Decree 13 to provide a forum for the protection of the interest of shippers on matters affecting the shipment of imports and exports to and from Nigeria. In this interview with JOHN AUSTIN UNACCHUKWU, Bello speaks on the advantages of the domestication of the Rotterdam Rules, the maritime seminar for judges and other crucial maritime issues.
‘Divergent international trade laws unhealthy’ Y OU have always canvassed for the domestication of the Rotterdam Rules, how far have you gone with the domestication process? As we canvassed during the last maritime seminar for judges, it is necessary for Nigeria to domesticate the Rotterdam Rules, but the Rules as at now are about to receive sufficient signatures for it to become a convention. As soon as that is done, we are going to move for it’s domestication. Even now, we have written to the Attorney-General of the Federation alerting him of the possibility of domiciling the Rules into our municipal laws. We have also written to our overseeing ministry, the Ministry of Transport to the same effect. In the same vein, we organised a seminar for the National Assembly to refresh their minds and at the same time remind them of the necessity of hastening actions towards the domestication of the Rules. Apart from these, have you made previous efforts for the domestication of the Rules? Well, the Nigerian Shippers Council in collaboration with the Ministry of Transport, organised a stakeholders forum where we had ship owners, cargo owners, oil companies, insurance companies, and members of the National Assembly in attendance. The issue of the Rotterdam Rules were thoroughly discussed and it was advocated that the Rules should be domesticated. So, what is the next step towards the domestication of the Rules? Even before we take it for domestication, we are taking the advocacy campaign to all the zones of the federation so that other stakeholders in the transport industry will know the importance of domesticating the Rules. What are the advantages of domesticating those Rules?
Well, for you to understand the benefits of domesticating them, you have to do a comparative analysis of what obtained in the country before it. Principally, what is we had was the Hague Rules. The Hague Rules are the laws of carriage of goods by sea which were formulated by the shipping companies and were tailored to favour ship owners. They do not favour cargo owning countries or developing countries. Consequently, Nigeria and other Cargo owning countries developed the Hamburg Rules which also favours the cargo owning na-
tions of the world but does not favour the ship owners. So, we have two divergent rules and it was thought that in the interest of symmetry in international trade, we cannot have divergent Rules. For instance, if you import cargo from Liverpool which is a Hague Rule country, you drive it through Ghana which is a Hamburg Rule country and coming to Nigeria which is a Hamburg Rule country, there will be different legal frameworks governing the transaction in case of any disputes arising. What are the functions of the Nigerian Shippers Council? Nigerian Shippers Council has latent regulatory roles and advisory roles. Shippers Councils across the world represent the demand side of the trade and transport equations. We represent the users of the shipping services. As it has often been said, without cargo there would not be any ship, without cargo, of what use is the port. So the whole thing revolves around cargo and the Nigerian Shippers Council represent the interest of cargo and other ancillary services. What of freight forwarders, how do you relate with them? The freight forwarders are wearing two caps. Firstly, they are the agents of shippers, that is the cargo owners. They also have something to do with the supply side of the chain. That is why the NSC tried its best to organise them which culminated in the formation of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarders which the Nigerian Shippers Council has sponsored and seen through. This is one of the biggest achievements of the NSC even though that goal of making freight forwarders strong , big and active in the logistics chain has not been fully achieved, but I think it is on course. The NSC in the course of performing it’s statutory functions, has made so much con-
Celebrating our sisters in law
UR sisters in law” here refers to the female members of the legal profession in Nigeria. The phrase “sisters in law” is used to distinguish them from the male lawyers who were the pioneers and dominated the profession for a long time. Today, the situation has changed positively hence the need to celebrate our mothers, sisters and daughters who are in the legal profession. There is the International Federation of Female Lawyers (FIDA), which is a worldwide umbrella body of all female lawyers. Mrs. Stella Ugboma (Nee Obianwu) is the president of the body for the whole world. There are chapters in most countries of the world including Nigeria where the members meet regularly in state chapters. There is also the Women Forum of the Nigeria Bar Association with Mrs. Fatima Kwaku as the chairman. In its short history, the Forum has done much to project the group interests of women lawyers and take up legal issues affecting the fairer sex in particular. Within the bench, they have the National Association of Women Judges. The women have come a long way in the legal profession and one may want to know how they got this far. The first lawyer enrolled to practice law in Nigeria was in the year 1886 and the first Nigerian native lawyer was enrolled in 1888 with the name Christopher Alexander Sapara Williams, who hailed from Ilesha Osun State. However, it was not until November 16, 1935 that the first female lawyer was enrolled. She is Stella Jane Thomas. She was the only female lawyer until November 25, 1952 when Gloria Rhodes joined and rose to become the first female Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court as Mrs.Gloria Jackman. Most of these female lawyers were of Yoruba extraction possibly because of their nearness to Lagos, the entry point of western civilisation to Nigeria. The North had its first female lawyer in Mariam Aloma Muktar from Kano State. She was enrolled in 1967.
By Ike Uko
Victoria Ayodele Uzoamaka Onejeme called to Bar in 1965 became the first female Attorney-General in the history of Nigeria and Commissioner for Justice of old Anambra State in 1976. She later became a judge of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja and has since retired. She hails from Awka town of Anambra State. Justice Modupe Omo- Eboh (Nee Akingbehin) became the first female High Court Judge in Nigeria on November 10, 1969. She was called on March 14, 1953. She was from Lagos State but married OmoEboh, former Justice of the Court of Appeal from Edo State. On September 24, 1987, Justice Mariam Aloma Muktar emerged as the first female to grace the Court of Appeal. It is instructive that she became the first female Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. In 1982, Mrs. Aderinsola Hairat Balogun, enrolled in 1964, became the first female General Secretary Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and held office till 1983. She is still lonely in that corner for no second woman has attained the rank. She later served as Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice of Lagos State. She is a life bencher and past chairman of the Body of Benchers. In the same line, Mrs. Priscilla Kuye served out the tenure of Chief Clement Akpamgbo (SAN) as President of Nigerian Bar Association from 1991. She became a life bencher in 2011. In the era of Queens Counsel (1958 to 1964), no female lawyer made the rank, possibly due to the paucity of female lawyers then. When Senior Advocate of Nigeria was invented in 1975, it took less than five years for a sister in law to join the rank. She is Chief Mrs. Folake Solanke called in 1963 but got to the Inner Bar in 1981. Before she came into law, she taught mathematics in secondary school which is not a mean feat. After her, other women lawyers joined the Inner Bar: Chief Mrs. Chiadika Ajai–Obe (Nee
Erinne) from Ihiala Local Government of Anambra State was called in 1969 but got the rank in 1989. There was also Chief Mrs. Christiana AjaiOkunuga, a former Magistrate, who got the rank in1995. Mrs. Abimbola Williams got it in 1998. Next we had Mrs. Funke Adekoya called in 1975, who got it in 2001. Mrs. Justina Anayo Offiah (Nee Iloeje called in 1978) got the rank in 2003. She was a former Atoorney-General of Enugu State. Next is Mrs. Miannaya Aja Essien (Nee Nwandu) called in 1985; got into the Inner Bar in 2007. She is of the Port Harcourt branch. The climax came in 2010 when three women got into the Inner Bar. They are: Mrs. Nella Andem Ewa, former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice in Cross Rivers State under Donald Duke’s first term. She was called in 1986. Alongside her is the late Sylvia Shinaba, the daughter of late Justice Amadi-Obi of Owerri, who was called in 1986. The next in the trio is Mrs. Dorothy Udeme Ufot called in 1989 and a consummate Arbi-
tributions to negotiations on local shipping charges, negotiations on international freights and many other roles as far as the shipping and transport industry is concerned. The Maritime Seminar for Judges has become a major event in maritime and shipping industry calendar, what is your appraisal of it’s impact in the industry? Cases in admiralty are on the front burner of national discourse. The Federal High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court, which deals with admiralty matters,6+ have delivered judgments which draw international acclaim. What we actually intended was for speedy settlement of admiralty cases. Gone are the days when case concerning admiralty or maritime claims were turned down because the lawyers in the matters did not have clues or because the judges did not have clues because they were not properly informed on the guiding laws, treaties, conventions or protocols. The maritime seminar for judges, since its inception, has been institutionalised so many judges have been trained through it. So, we are now able to adjudicate on maritime claims faster and based on a richer and more robust legal jurisprudence than it was done before now. When are we having the next edition of the seminar? You know that it is not only the NSC that is involved in the organisation of the seminar. We have the Supreme Court, The Federal High Court and the National Judicial Institute. We have been meeting and we will continue to meet, to find out whether it is appropriate to hold it this year. The demand is actually that it should be held annually but because there are some budgetary implications and so on, but as soon as take a decision on it, we shall definitely come out with information about that. trator. At the Appeal Court, we have some women as presiding justices of some divisions of the Court of Appeal. We have Justice Clara Bata Ogunbuji, head of the Lagos Divisions while Justice Amena Adamu Augie heads the Enugu Divisions. Justice Zainah Adamu Bulkachuwa is the presiding Justice of the Yola Division and the Ekiti Division has Justice Uwani Abba-Aji. The Jos Division is under Monica Dongban-Mem. There are 21 female Justices of the Court of Appeal. Recently, a Nigerian Woman Lawyer, Mrs. Boma Ozobia was elected the first woman and the first African President of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association, an umbrella body of lawyers in all English speaking countries of the world. Of the 13 Justices of the Supreme Court, two are women in the persons of Justices Mariam Aloma Muktar and Olufunlola Oyelola Adekeye. A third, Justice Mary Peter-Odili of the Court of Appeal has been nominated to go to the Supreme Court of Nigeria. In Lagos State judiciary, 39 of the 56 judges are women including the Chief Judge. In Delta State, Justice Roseline Bozimo was the Chief Judge up till December, 2010 when she retired. Ekiti State had Justice Oyebisi Folatemi Omoleye of the Court of Appeal Benin Division as a former Chief Judge. Edo State had Justices Oni Opaku and Constance Momoh as former Chief Judges. In Kwara Stat, Habib Elelu was a former Chief Judge. Justice Olateru-Olagbegi was former Chief Judge of Ondo State. Currently a good number of our sisters in law head courts in various states. Justice D. EyambaIdem is the Chief Judge of Cross River State. In Kaduna State, Justice R.H. Cudjoe is the Chief Judge while in Sokoto State it is another woman Justice Aisha Aliyu who is the head. In Bayelsa State, it is Justice Kate Abiri. In Oyo State, Justice Bolajoko Olateju Adeniji heads the state judiciary. I salute our women lawyers for the stride they have made. I hope more female lawyers will add more. •UKO, Notary Public for Nigeria, was former National Assistant Publicity Secretary of the Nigeria Bar Association (email@example.com)
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
LAW COVER CONT’D
Is panel to probe post-poll violence legal? stituted by middle class or other rising professionals as opposed to retired public officers who had been associated with past panels without favourable outcomes in terms of moving the country forward. “Apart from this, I hope that the panel will be able to unravel the cause of pre and post presidential election violence in Akwa Ibom State, and other states in the Northern parts of the country and those connected with the immediate and remote causes be identified with appropriate punishment meted out to them. “I believe that the panel will be able to recommend a lasting panacea to this and other similar violence so as to prevent a reoccurrence in the nearest future. I believe that God will give the president the necessary wisdom and courage to implement these and similar recommendations. “I feel that some people just believe that in Nigeria you cannot get justice if you are not in power. So, I think that the panel should try to rebuiold the confidence of people in our judicial system.”
•Continued from page 29
“Therefore one of the first things for this committee to do is to identify those who had suffered losses, those who have lost their lives, those who have been victims in one way or the other of this senseless and brutal attack. “When that has been done, then the people who were responsible for this must be brought to justice. There is no way Nigeria will continue like this, when we feel insecure and we are strangers in our own county. And we travel to England and we behave as if we are part and parcel of the whole citizenry. “So, if people are brought to justice, criminal trials conducted and appropriate punishment is meted, then there will not be a repeat performance of this. If not, then the alternative will be for everybody to arm himself and if everybody will arm himself we will have difficulty in maintaining law and order. Again, the government must make sure that its security apparatus is up and doing. “This panel must investigate why there was security failure. When it was a known secret that there would be upheaval and crises on that Monday the 18th and why were steps not taken to forestall what happened? The panel must take this work seriously because the unity of this country hinges on how they resolve this matter.” He added: “The post presidential election events question the unity and continued togetherness of Nigeria. It is particularly disheartening that members of the NYSC were targeted and singled out for elimination. This is aside from the numerous souls of non-indigenes, Christians and Muslims that were targeted for elimination. “The time has come for us to seriously negotiate the basis of our corporate existence. This crucial issue cannot be left in the hands of politicians who were recently successful at the polls. Every Nigerian must rise up and deal with this incidence as a primary issue. To continue as if nothing has happened, as if the conduct of elections is the only item on the agenda, is to expose the selfish flank of Nigerian politicians. “It is imperative to postpone election in any state that participated in the orchestrated pogrom of non-indigenes and a few non-indigenes that were of a different political persuasion from the majority. The extent of loss of lives, which is estimated to run into thousands, must be ascertained.”
Femi Falana Falana said the panel’s legal competence is questionable. He said it should be dissolved immediately because it lacks powers to probe the violence. His words: “When the Federal Government recently announced its plan to institute a commission of inquiry to investigate the post election violence, which occurred in some states in the northern part of the country, I challenged the legal competence of the proposed panel. “In the circumstance, I urged President Jonathan to ensure the diligent prosecution of all the suspects who had been arrested by the Police and other security agencies for their alleged involvement in the civil disturbances. “My position was anchored on the case of Chief Gani Fawehinmi V. General Ibrahim Babaginda (Rtd) (2003) 12 WRN 1 where the Supreme Court set aside the summons issued and served on General Babaginda and two ex-security Chiefs by the Oputa Panel of inquiry on the ground that the tribunal of Inquiry Act could not operate outside the Federal Capital Territory. The apex court held ex abundant cautela that: “‘It worthy of note that the 1999 constitution has made no provision for tribunals of inquiry as was very clear in item 39 of the exclusive legislative list and item 25 of the concurrent list in the 1963 Constitution…. the power to make a law under the Constitution for the establishment of a tribunal of inquiry is now a residual power which only the states can exercise.’ “Having realised that witnesses cannot be summoned to give evidence before the panel, the Federal Government has directed commissioners of police and other security personnel to comply with the summons issued by the panel. “Since the President lacks the vires to set up a panel of inquiry to investigate civil disturbances which occur outside the Federal Capi-
• Dakas tal Territory, the Sheikh Ahmed Lemu Panel should be dissolved forthwith as it is incompetent to probe the post election violence which occurred in Bauchi, Borno, Kaduna, Niger, Taraba etc. “However the Panel may be given a fresh mandate to assist the Federal Government to determine the quantum of compensation payable to those who lost their assets and the bereaved families of those whom were brutally murdered. “The President may also wish to direct the Attorney General of the Federation to liaise with the respective state attorneys –general with a view to ensuring that all suspects are prosecuted without any further delay.”
Joseph Otteh Otteh, Executive Director of a human right organisation, Access to Justice (AJ), said the setting up of the committee is a welcome development. “I think that those terms of reference represent fairly some of the problem. We welcome the setting up of that committee. For once, it is refreshing to note that the Federal Government is beginning to show that it cares for human lives. “There have been many more killings that have gone un-redressed. Many people have lost their lives due to the impunity of security agencies and no one is investigating these. May be we shall use this as a point of departure to say that we are hopeful that this administration is going to take seriously the values of human life. “But having said this, let me note that this is just one of the many committees that have been set up. Many other ones had been set up and the Federal Government had invested resources in these committees but at the end of the day, there is little in terms of outcomes from those commissions. “I remember that not too long ago, there was a panel that was set up to investigate the Boko Haram crises. That panel simply went under, no one said whether they had a report or nott. So, I hope that the recommendations of this panel will be made public and implemented accordingly.”
Prof. Clement Dakas
Nurudeen Ogbara For the Former Chairman, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Ikorodu Branch, setting up the panel is commendable. “Infact, it shows the care and concern of those in government. It also shows that they are sensitive, responsive and responsible at least by doing something that will benefit the masses of this country. “However, I am worried about the composition of the panel, because it does not show a new consciousness or attempt to depart from the old order. It is like assembling old wine into a new bottle. We had expected a panel that would indeed include some young people apart from the former government people that compose this panel. “Apart from the chairman and the vice chairman, the panel should have been con-
The professor of law said it is reprehensible that the outcome of Nigeria’s presidential election that is widely acclaimed as a landmark in Nigeria’s political odyssey has been trailed by violent reactions in some Northern states. “This is due, in part, to the toxic environment created by the zoning imbroglio - and the sense of entitlement it encapsulates which was orchestrated by some political gladiators. This was, in turn, exacerbated by illiteracy, poverty, unemployment and the manipulation of religious and other sectional faultlines of the Nigerian polity. “It is incumbent on all political actors to subordinate their personal ambitions to the overriding cause of Project Nigeria. This is the time for statesmanship and not political jockeying. Neither is this the time for brinkmanship or strategic positioning. Those who profess to be democrats must act in a manner consistent with democratic ethos. They must walk the talk and come to terms with the imperative need to pursue their grievances through lawful means. “The NYSC scheme was established to, among other things, develop common ties among Nigerian youths, promote national unity and integration and develop a sense of corporate existence and common destiny of the Nigerian people. It is appalling that some youth corpers who served as ad hoc staff during the elections were caught in the crossfire of the orgy of violent reactions to the outcome of the presidential election. “None the less, I do not subscribe to the view that the NYSC scheme should be abolished. In spite of the fact that the NYSC scheme grapples with some challenges, it is, properly deployed, a veritable tool for engendering a mutually reinforcing relationship among Nigerians and constructing a credible framework for national integration. “The INEC, in collaboration with the security agencies, should take proactive measures to secure the lives and properties of the youth corps members. This should be complemented by a robust and credible insurance scheme.”
NBA, Ngige commiserate with Katsina-Alu over wife’s death THE Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has expressed its condolences to the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu over the death of his wife, Mimidoo. In a letter to the CJN dated May 12, signed by NBA President Joseph Daudu (SAN) and General Secretary, Olumuyiwa Akinboro, the association said: “We write to console you and the members of your beloved family on the death of your wife, Mimidoo Katsina-Alu, which sad event occurred on May 8. “While submitting to the Will of God the Almighty, it is our prayer that He will grant you and your entire family the fortitude to bear the loss, and may her soul and those of the faithful departed rest in perfect peace. “Once again, accept the deep condolence of the Nigerian Bar Association for this irreparable loss.” Chief Emeka Ngige (SAN) in a May 10 letter to the CJN, wrote: “I received with rude shock the sad news of the death of your dear
By Joseph Jibueze
wife, Sister Mimi following a freak accident at your country home in Benue State. “I appreciate the pains your lordship may be going through following the loss of a dear one and the circumstances under which she died. Her death will certainly create a big vacuum in your life. As Christians we cannot question the Will of God the Almighty. He gives and takes life any time it pleases Him. “The circumstance of one’s death is beyond any body’s control. Our duty as Christians is to pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased so that she will find mercy in the bosom of our Lord. “On behalf of my family, we pray that God grant her eternal rest and grant you and the entire Katsina-Alu family who have been thrown into sorrow and mourning the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. May the soul of Sister Mimi and the souls of other departed rest in perfect peace. Amen!”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NATIONAL BAR LAW AND PUBLIC POWER
with gabriel AMALU email:firstname.lastname@example.org
• Akeredolu (SAN)
Ohakim and the burden of governance
NBA goes tough on fake lawyers G
FFORTS by the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to get rid of fake lawyers and improve the welfare of Nigerian lawyers received a boost recently following the ‘Lawyers Data Verification Update’ programme of NBA President Joseph Bodunrin Daudu’s administration. This effort, Daudu said, is to complement the Digital Bar Initiative of the Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) led administration. In a chat with The Nation, Daudu said: ““But the fault in those two processes is that they did not contain the identifying factor of every lawyer, which is their enrolment member. For the past 12 years lawyers have not been allocated enrolment members by the Supreme Court. If a lawyer does not have an enrolment number, anybody can masquerade his or her name. He does not have a complete data.” Serious efforts to combat the problem of fake lawyers electronically was started by the Olisa Agbakoba (SAN) led administration which introduced the ‘Electronic Communications Platform.’ This platform had three components which include digital lawyers platform, creating a lawyers database platform and ascertaining lawyers rapidly through the website platform. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN)’s regime came and vigorouslsy pursued the digital bar initiative with courage.” A statement by the NBA said: “Over the years, perennial problems arising out of the imperfections in the Roll of legal practitioners has continued to limit the ability of the NBA, and indeed the supreme Court of Nigeria to regulate the practice of the profession with a reliable database of members. “Bearing in mind the tight schedule of lawyers and particularly some of our colleagues in corporate establishments, the verification exercise has been designed to provide group verification for Ministries, departments of Government, agencies and organisation. Some of the
By John Austin Unachukwu
problems include wrong spelling of names, non existent enrolment numbers, change of names through marriage effected by deed not reflected in the Roll and some other noticeable defects.” The Statement said the NBA in demonstration of the awareness of this quagmire, through a resolution passed by its National Executive Committee (NEC) directed that a comprehensive database of Nigerian lawyers be compiled. Consequently, the NBA President set up and inaugurated the Database and Documentation of Nigerian Lawyers Committee. The Committee and the Supreme Court of Nigeria have compiled the names and enrolment number of all lawyers called to the Bar. In view of the foregoing, the data compiled is now available for verification and updating of information contained therein to ensure that no lawyer enrolled in Nigeria is left out of the database which will serve as reference database of lawyers duly called to the Nigerian Bar. The NBA has made provisions for group verification, which can be achieved either by specific request from the ministry, agencies and organizations for an onsite verification or by filling the verification/ data update form, complying with the requirements and forwarding same to the National Secretariat. The requirements are: call to Bar certificate (original or photocopy), Means of identification ( International Passport, drivers licence or National Identity Card); Proof of payment of Bar practicing fee for 2011; Proof of payment of branch dues; Evidence of change of name (if any). Former Assistant National Publicity Secretary of NBA, Mr. Gbolahan Gbadamosi has given 20 reasons why a lawyer must verify his database. He said: “The update and verification will perfect our DBI project,
perfect personalised Stamp and Seal. It will correct errors on the roll and reflect subsequent change of name. Mandatory Continuing Legal Education contacts for upcoming events and programmes and only verified lawyers will be eligible to practice legitimately in Nigeria. Payment of practicing fees will require your enrolment number on the teller for it to be valid; it will also help the association move to the next level of online interaction with members. “Your Roll number will serve as your username to access the website and without this update, you will not be able to register with all our co-operating partners and International Bar Associations such as the International Bar Association (IBA), the American Bar Association (ABA) West African Bar Association (WABA), and the CommonWealth Lawyers Association (CLA) etc. “It will also be used as a basis of reference by the Bar for recommendations and letters of good standing. The verified list will be uploaded on the website of the NBA to be used by other bodies as a basis for verification of your status as a lawyer in Nigeria. It will be the basis for the recommendation of the Bar for appointment into boards, judiciary etc. “You cannot access the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), land registries e.t.c. without being verified. For your access to NBA welfare packages the Bar must know your enrollment number. It will eradicate fake lawyers and provide broad based data of members and access to e-newsletters. It will provide concise and comprehensive contact directory of all lawyers in Nigeria. This verification will enhance professional interaction within the Bar and the outside world. “Finally, only verified lawyers are eligible to vote and be voted for in all Bar elections (Branch and National).”
Shareholders lose bid to stop sale of sick banks
MOVE by a group of bank shareholders, under the name “Registered Trustees of Proactive Shareholders Association of Nigeria,” to stop the proposed sale of sick and distressed banks by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to private investors last Tuesday suffered a setback when an Abuja Federal High Court struck out their suit for incompetence. In the suit filed on behalf of the shareholders by their lawyer, Nnodu Okeke, the plaintiffs had sought among other reliefs, a declaration that the CBN has no powers to sell any bank in Nigeria or invite any investor to buy any bank in Nigeria without reference to the shareholders of the banks. The
By John Austin Unachukwu
group also sought an order stopping the proposed sale of Oceanic Bank PLC, Intercontinental Bank PLC, Afribank PLC and Union Bank PLC to private investors. The CBN and its Governor, Lamido Sanusi through their counsel comprising Dr. Konyin Ajayi ( SAN) Kola Awodein ( SAN) and Chief Emeka Ngige ( SAN) brought a preliminary objection challenging the competence of the action. It was contended that the plaintiffs, who brought the action, lack juristic personality to initiate the suit as the name on the writ differed from the name in their certificate of incorporation. It was also
contended that the suit was statute barred and disclosed no reasonable cause of action. In his ruling the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, upheld the objection of the defendants and held that the plaintiff’s suit was grossly incompetent having been filed by a non juristic person. The judge lambasted the counsel for the plaintiff for not taking time to cross check that the name used in the incorporation of the plaintiffs is the same name used in the commencement of the action particularly writ of summons. The court accordingly struck out the suit and ordered the plaintiff to pay to each set of defendants N10,000
OVERNANCE ordinarily is a salutary refinement of the animal instinct in man. To make up for the sacrifice, Jean Jacques Rousseau, a French philosopher, propounded the social contract theory, which talks of responsibilities between the governors and the governed. The general elections, therefore, provide the people an opportunity to punish the governors who fail to keep their own part of the contract. While the voters succeeded in many instances, they failed in others. One such success, according to commentators is the defeat of Governor Ikedi Ohakim of Imo State at the polls. The outgoing governor was seen by many Imolites as substantially incompetent; though he regaled in unprecedented media campaign. Until I visited Imo State on three occasions last year, I had seen him from the prism of his media campaign as an emerging star. Ohakim’s media handlers artfully sold the impression that Imo State was witnessing massive infrastructural development. Unfortunately, the reality on ground depicted a different story. But even as Imo citizens bid Ohakim goodbye, they will not easily forget his colorful advertisement feats. Who will hurriedly forget the colourful splash of Imo state ‘going green’ usually on the centre spread of major Newspapers, and broadcasted on national and international television network services? With beautiful photo shots, and scintillating information nuanced artistically, the marketing (or is it de marketing) of Imo state turned many green. With envy in their hearts, many indigenes of other states would on the strength of the advertisements, ask for the legislation of General Obasanjo’s military model; that performing governors should be posted to other states, where service delivery is mere illusory. Ohakim’s publicity pundits, won several other hearts in their advertisement successes. One clearly outstanding dummy was the advert selling 10,000 jobs to the hapless unemployed graduates of the state. While his detractors may call it a scam, nobody would deny the disingenuous mind that conjured that number of jobs for the teeming unemployed graduates of the state. The fact that the job creation was a mere media event, and was initiated towards the re-election project of His Excellency would not have affected the envy of his colleagues and competitors for the coveted Governorship seat; as they scratch their brain for a match to that media mileage. One clear gain from the Ohakim era is the boom in the construction industry, particularly the bill board sub sector. By this, I am referring to several hundreds of bill boards announcing his Excellency’s multiple achievements, which will take many years of research to completely discover. No doubt many thousands of jobs were created for carpenters, graphic artists, ladder makers and the rest of the crew. That at least his supporters should show off as job creation. Again an impending reconstruction boom has been handed over to the incoming administration. Here I mean the immediate award of contracts for the removal of those giant billboards announcing the completion of several programmes and roads, when few metres down the road, his opponents would argue; you are confronted with not even a sign that the government has any such interest? Ohakim practiced what many lettered men would call governance by advertised intent. Nobody, except obviously the Imo electorate, would ever doubt the ability of the Governor’s media men. With a chubby handsome face, and a red cap to match well tailored traditional safaris, the governor should take a bow as the most advertised commodity of this era. The tragedy for some is that regrettably the adverts were promoting what they regard as the falsehood that Imo state was working. Well, I thought the advertisement had worked. Take the recent excitement and subtle threats of Her Excellency, the first Lady, Dr. Iyom Patience Goodluck Jonathan. She had ordered Imo voters to reelect the Governor at the now obviously ill fated final campaign rally during the Easter period. Her Excellency reportedly told the crowd to vote for Ohakim, if they want her to use her conjugal prerogatives to get federal might into Imo State. While Ohakim lost for allegedly being incompetent, despite his competent mileage in media and advertisement; Governor Yuguda, wobbled and fumbled back to the Governor’s seat in Bauchi. Instead of asking his brother Governor Ikedia Ohakim to loan him some of his media handlers to polish his own competency challenges, he handled his media voyage himself. The result is a clear advertisement of what many would call classical incompetency. Take Governor Yuguda’s well advertised gaffe that the gruesome murder of serving corps members in his state, was because the INEC failed to secure them after they left his employ and protection. For the Governo,r his constitutional responsibility to protect the corps members ended once they accepted the patriotic national assignment to help conduct the general elections. When he was taken to the cleaners by Nigerians for his statement, he turned around to dedicate his bloody victory to the murdered Corps, apparently trying to employ conceit and deceit, as allegedly practiced by Governor Ohakim. Now that Governor Ohakim has been relieved of the burden of governance, he should go ahead and concentrate on consolidating his other interests. If the yet to be verified claims of his opponents are to be believed, the young man whom they claimed had no known means of livelihood before his foray into politics, is said to have done well for himself. The tales about the management of Imo state local government allocations and the bazaar like administration of the state resources surely benefited many of his followers. It will be sheer envy not to give the governor his due; being an intellectual, he wrote two well advertised books, launched in Lagos, while in office.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
FROM THE COURT
Justice Auta and the challenges ahead P
RIOR to the 1995 killing of the rights activist and writer, Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others upon a verdict handed out by the tribunal he headed, little was known of Justice Ibrahim Auta of the Federal High Court. Since that incident, the personality behind that name has often been regarded, outside the judicial circles and particularly within the human rights community as a controversial being. He again, hugged controversy prior to the last general elections by virtue of his decisions in two cases. The first was that involving a company, Bedding Holding Limited vs. Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and six others in suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/816/ 2010. The company had claimed among others, that INEC purportedly infringed on its patent right in the award of contracts for the Direct Data Capture (DDC) machines used for the voters’ registration. Justice Auta, on December 3 last year, granted an interim exparte order restraining INEC and other parties in the case from proceeding with the process of awarding the said contract and other related activities pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction. His decision attracted criticism from those who thought such order, in the build up to a general election in an unstable political environment, could threaten the entire electoral process. The second case was that relating to the case by the Labour Party (LP) against the election timetable released by INEC before the election. Justice Auta gave a ruling in the case on March 3. The next day, the judge, through a statement by a Registrar of the court, Emmanuel Garko said the judge was misrepresented in the media. He denied nullifying the timetable as reported. This image of controversy resurfaced last Wednesday on the floor of the Senate when Senator Lee Maeba from Rivers East objected to Justice Auta’s confirmation as the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court (FHC). The Senator reminded the Senate about the role the judge allegedly played in the killing of the Ogoni nine.
‘Justice Auta should be concerned with how to improve the fortune of the court, particularly as it relates to ensuring prompt case management’ •Justice Auta Stories by Eric Ikhilae
The Senator’s position was a culmination of the strong opposition to Justice Auta’s ascension to the headship of the FHC expressed prior to Wednesday May 11 by some rights groups, including Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) and some rights activists. Despite the opposition, Justice Auta’s nomination for the headship of the FHC was confirmed last Wednesday by the Senate, making him the eighth Chief Judge of the court created in 1973 as the Federal Revenue Court. Incidentally, while Justice Auta now heads the FHC, the lawyer who acted as the prosecuting counsel in the Ogoni-nine tribunal, Joseph Daudu (SAN) also heads the nation’s lawyers’ body, the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA). Lawyers, who spoke on this development,
said having been fully placed in charge now, Justice Auta should be concerned with how to improve the fortune of the court, particularly as it relates to ensuring prompt case management. They also suggested that he study the policies of his predecessors, identify their shortcomings and factor same into his plans to avoid repeating such identified errors. He is required to build on all efforts of his predecessors aimed at preventing undue delay in case management, unnecessary waste of time and dispensation of pure justice. One of such was the idea introduced under the Justice Abdullahi Mustapha’s administration where lawyers were required to include in every process filed, electronic mail (e-mail) address and telephone numbers for easy contact. This was intended to allow the court pre-
inform parties about any change in the court’s schedule about a case and to prevent instances where litigants and their lawyers attend court only to be informed that the court is not sitting. The idea was never implemented even when lawyers were directed to include all their contact details in their processes, a directive they still comply with till date. Observers are of the view that the new Chief Judge (CJ) should seek ways of ensuring that this idea is made operational. They also identified the shortage of court rooms and judges, particularly in the Lagos division where more commercial cases are entertained. The idea of a website for the court, where litigants, lawyers and other members of the public could obtain information about the court appeared to have been abandoned. Although a website exists for the court no meaningful information is supplied. The idea of electronic cause list introduced in the days of Justice Rose Ukeje was not retained by her successors, thus causing the court to lose huge funds expended on the procurement of LCD TVs and other gadgets that were procurde and installed in some airconditioned cubicles within the Lagos division. Most of the court rooms in the Lagos division, which until recently served as the court’s headquarters are so small that they can hardly sit 20 lawyers and litigants at the same time. They also want the new CJ to address the issue of alleged corrupt practices among its personnel. There have also been instances where lawyers are required by officials in the Appeal Section to part with huge sums for prompt compilation of records. In most cases, official receipts are not issued for such money. There is also the practice among security personnel attached to the court’s gates in Lagos who beg passers-by for financial assistance, a development that negatively affects the image of the institution. Beside these, the CJ is required to address several other challenges confronting the court to allow it effectively perform the role for which it exists.
Hearing begins in bank, ex-ED legal tussle
HY would a man ask a court to close a bank on allegation that he is owed N57.5 million? This forms one of the issues to be determined by a Federal High Court in Lagos when hearing opens in a petition brought against Unity Bank Plc by a businessman, Peter Onuminya. Onuminya, a former Executive Director with Centre Point Bank, one of the banks that merged to form Unity Bank, accused the bank of being unable to pay the N57.5m debt allegedly owed to him and ,therefore, asked that it be wound up. The bank has denied being indebted to the petitioner. It also denied that it is insolvent and unable to meet its financial obligations as alleged by Onuminya. The petitioner, who urged the court to supervise the bank’s winding-up after appointing a receiver, asked the court to ensure that the debt owed him was immediately repaid after the bank is wound-up, before other creditors of the banks were attended to. The debt, he said, arose from the purported failure of his former employer, Centre Point, to pay him the said amount, which formed his entitlement, after his exit from the bank in 2003. He said he joined Centre Point in 1998 while its fortunes were dwindling and helped to nurture it to profitability, a feat the bank’s management pledged to reward at his exit in 2003 by allocating to him, 100 million units of shares. The petitioner averred that on his request, the shares were reduced to money, which was later estimated at N57.5 million. He stated that after he resigned from the bank to pursue other endeavours, Centre Point allegedly failed to make good its pledge to pay his entitlement despite repeated demands, a development he said, persisted until it merged with others to form Unity Bank. Onuminya averred in a supporting affidavit, that Unity Bank, by virtue of the merger, inherited Centre Point’s assets and liabilities, also neglected to pay the said debt.
He alleged that Unity Bank has insisted in not liquidating the debt despite an order of court directing it to pay the said amount into an interest yielding account with First Bank, pending the determination of an appeal it filed against an earlier judgment by the court. Unity Bank is appealing an earlier judgment in the case by Justice Jonathan Shakarho (formerly of the Federal High Court, Lagos). Justice Shakarho had on December 12, 2007 in a suit marked FHC/L/CS/315/2007 entered a judgment in the sum of N57.5m against the bank, which sum the court said should attract 21 per cent interest pending when the judgment sum is paid. Rather than honour the judgment, the bank went on appeal and applied to the trial court for stay of execution of the judgment pending the determination of its appeal. Justice Shakarho, in a ruling on March 23 last year, refused the bank’s request for an unconditional stay of execution of the judgment. Instead, he ordered Unity Bank to pay the judgment sum into an interest yielding account in the name of the court’s Chief Registrar. The petitioner stated that the bank’s alleged refusal to obey the court’s order of March 23 showed that it was unable to liquidate the debt, a development, he added, informed his request that Unity Bank be
wound-up as provided for in sections 408 (b), 409 (a) and 410 (b) of CAMA 2004. In its counter affidavit, the bank contended that aside that the alleged debt arose from a default judgment; it was unable to prove to the court that employee liabilities were not part of the inherited liability of Centre Point. “Also set out in the respondent’s defence to the petitioner’s claim included the fact that merger scheme and other documents through which the respondent acquired Centre Point Merchant Bank completely excluded employee liabilities like the petitioner’s claim,” it said. Unity Bank challenged the petitioner’s locus standi to file the petition, arguing that he is not the court’s Chief Registrar in whose name Justice Shakarho ordered that an account be opened for the payment of the judgment sum pending appeal. The bank, which denied ever breaching any condition set by Justice Shakarho in granting the conditioner stay, noted that the Chief Registrar has not complained that it was yet to comply with the court’s directive or that it was unable to pay the said sum. As against the petitioner’s claim that it was insolvent, the bank countered that it was a strong and vibrant bank with liquidity base. It said it is and has been meeting all its fi-
•Falalu Bello, Managing Director, Unity Bank nancial obligations without default. The bank assured that it would pay the said judgment sum if its appeal fails and the Court of Appeal orders it to pay.
Lagos NBA holds law week ACTIVITIES resume today in the week-long Annual Law Summit of the Lagos branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), with a lecture to be chaired by Justice Adesola Oguntade (formerly of the Supreme Court). The summit which began yesterday with a visit to the Ikoyi prison by members, who also organized legal clinic for members of the public, is scheduled to end on Friday. The Chairman, Summit Organising Committee, Mrs. Doyin Rhodes-Vivour said the event’s theme: Governance and accountability: The role of lawyers, was apt because Nigerians were no longer ready to condone indolent and underperforming leaders. She attributed the sorry state of the nation’s infrastructures and its retarded growth to lack of good governance and accountability. She said the summit would feature experts who will address issues affecting the nation’s critical sectors. Those expected at the event include the National Security Adviser, General Owoeye Azazi (rtd); Special Adviser to the President on Power, Prof Barth Nnaji; Chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission NERC), Dr. Sam Amadi and former Attorney-General and Justice Commissioner in Lagos, Prof Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) and his successor, Olasupo Shasore (SAN).
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
LAW & SOCIETY POLICY DIALOGUE ON CITIZENSHIP, INDIGENEITY AND NATIONALITY ORGANISED BY NIGERIAN INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED LEGAL STUDIES (NIALS) AKOKA, UNILAG CAMPUS, LAGOS
•Lawal Rabana (SAN) (left) and Prof Deji Adekunle
•From left: Prof. Alaba Ogunsanwo; Zonal Controller of Immigration, Lagos, Mr C.J. Adike representing Comptroller-General, Nigerian Immigration Service, Mr Rose Chinyere Uzoma, and Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye representing NIALS Director-General, Prof Epiphany Azinge (SAN)
•From left: Prof. Animi Awah, Mrs Sena Jerry-Imahiagbe and Mrs Nella Andem Rabana (SAN)
•From left: Mr Elvis Obaseki, Ebiere Samson Ogege and Juliet Abari King
•Prof. Lanre Fagbohun and Prof. Clement Dakas
•Prof. Nnamdi Aduba and Prof. Michael Ikhariale
•From left: Former Institute Librarian, Chief Olakunle Dada, Prof. Etanibi Alemika and Mr Dennis Arghagba
•Akingbodere Alfred (left) and Adilikwu Godwin Atsu
•Mr Mike Longe (left) and Obua Chukwuemeka
•Cross section of Immigration officers at the event
PHOTOS: JOHN AUSTIN UNACHUKWU
TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
ENERGY THE NATION
•From left: Head, Operations Support, Charles Akhigbe; Consultant to the company, Kalu Nwosu; Executive Chairman, Dr. Bryant Orjiako; General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Dr. Chioma Nwachukwu, Head of Production, Fausta Alakwe and General Manager, Corporate Services, Moses Onuwe all of SEPLAT Petroleum at the Offshore Technology Conference held in Houston, Texas, United States.
Oil production by indigenous E&P firms to hit 500,000 bpd G OING by the current trend and support being received by the indigenous oil and gas players in the exploration and production (E&P) arm of the petroleum industry from the government and some of the international oil companies (IOCs) particularly Shell, oil production from indigenous producers will hit 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) by the year 2020. The Executive Chairman of SEPLAT Petroleum Development
renewed onshore exploration, appraisal and development campaigns as well as accelerated gas development, production and reserve growth. Orjiako noted that with development, six Nigerian Independents, each capable of operated production between 20,000 bpd and 150,000 bpd will emerge. He said production from the assets is projected to rise from the 45,000 bpd in 2009 to about 300,000 bpd by December 2013 and 500,000 bpd by 2020. Investments in these assets according him, would reach $1.5 billion per annum by 2013. “These activities will precipitate a full-blown exploration/appraisal development campaign focusing on: deeper plays, by-passed plays and small fields’ development, which will result in substantial reserves addition, production increase and quantum leap in local capacity development,” he added. He also said some 60 per cent of domestic gas supply in the West will
Stories by Emeka Ugwuanyi, Assistant Editor (Energy)
Company Limited, Dr. Bryant C Orjiako, disclosed this while presenting a paper entitled “Developments in the oil and gas upstream in Nigeria: A new vista for local independents” at the just concluded Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, United States. Orjiako said the acquisition by SEPLAT of upstream assets from the multinational oil companies led by Shell - the operators of NNPC/Shell joint venture ushered a new industry frontier in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry. He said the Shell joint venture and SEPLAT deal brought about a transformative change in the industry and has redefined the indigenous participation going forward. The SEPLAT boss said the emerging footprint established by Shell JV has had far-reaching implications leading to accelerated growth of Nigerian Independent producers and
INSIDE • Nigerians in Diaspora demand stable power supply •••Page 38
• Siemens’ Q2
revenue climbs by 7%
Customers owe PHCN N1.2b at Shomolu
• NIPCO to
power 500 vehi cles with gas
lion through arrears of unpaid electricity bills. The Business Manager of Somolu, Chris Okonkwo dis-
USTOMERS owe the Somolu Business Unit of the Power Holding Company Nigeria (PHCN) N1.2 bil-
OIL PRICES APRIL 21 - 29
come from these new locals that acquired Shell assets and the Western franchise of the Gas Master Plan would be hinged on them. He urged other multinational oil companies to take a cue from Shell, adding that if the trend continues, by 2020, indigenous operators will account for over 50 per cent of national domestic gas supply The multinationals in the country include Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Total and Agip, which dominate the deepwater frontiers while in the onshore/shallow water terrain, Shell, ExxonMobil, Chevron, Total and Agip account for about 88 per cent of the reserves and production On the background of SEPLAT, he said the company on January 29, 2010, pioneered a commercial asset acquisition deal with the Shell Joint Venture. In the business, SEPLAT Petroleum comprising Platform Petroleum and Shebah Petroleum and later Maurel and Prom acquired three onshore oil blocks in oil mining li-
cences (OMLs) 4, 38 and 41 from Shell. Two more blocks have been sold to indigenous firms and another three blocks are being planned for sale. According to Orjiako, SEPLAT as at April 30, this year, has recorded a total of 900,000 man-hours without Loss Time Injuries (LTI), which is close to the industry benchmark of 1,000,000 man-hours. He said the company operates a behaviour based safety programme called SEPLAT Hazard Identification and Control Scheme(SHICS) used to identify and correct unsafe acts and unsafe conditions. The company, he also said, is building a water treatment facility to re-inject produced water into the oil well to prevent environmental pollution to the community. He said the company signed Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) with producing communities within five months of operation and achieved seamless infusion of Shebah Petroleum, Platform and Maurel and Prom. The company also operates the Integrated Production System Surveillance (IPSS) scheme, which he said, is a host community based security surveillance contract scheme.
closed this in Lagos. He said the huge debt constitutes part of the constraints to delivering the expected service to its esteemed customers within the district. He said as a measure of engaging the customers with a view to recovering the debt, the management of the business unit has written personal letters to the customers that owe N50,000 and above and expect to receive positive responses from them very soon. Okonkwo lamented the torments from vandals in the business unit. He said vandalisation of PHCN facilities has become rampant and often result in blackout in the areas affected. He expressed delight on the
arrest of two vandals by the police. The vandals were prosecuted and jailed for nine years. He said the vandals cart away the cables, which they melt to make ornaments and jewelries but luck ran against them. According to him, four vandals were previously arrested at Ilupeju and one of them – Taye Adebuje - admitted commission of the offence and has been sentenced to one year jail, adding that between July and December last year, the district recorded 21 vandalisation cases. He said between January and May this year, 10 cases have been recorded and market value of replacing each of the vandalised cables is •Continued on page 39
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Nigerians in Diaspora demand stable power supply As May 29 draws nearer, Nigerians at home and Diaspora have continued to hold President Goodluck Jonathan by his promise to fix the power sector and ensure stable electricity supply. Nigerians see the power project far more than mere political manifesto and the President cannot afford to fail in this promise. EMEKA UGWUANYI Assistant Editor (Energy) takes a critical look at the reforms and challenges.
AY 29 – the democracy day, is only 12 days away and President Goodluck Jonathan will be sworn in as the fourth elected civilian president of this country. This day will also mark 12 years of uninterrupted civilian rule, but what has the country to show in this? That is multi-million dollar question on the lips of most Nigerians. In these 12 years, among the gamut of problems confronting the populace, which requires immediate solution, is lack of power supply. However, despite the huge amount of money pumped into the sector, the result is yet to be seen. The damage poor power supply has caused the country over these years is unquantifiable. Many companies have closed shops, the textile industry in Nigeria is dead, many companies have relocated to nearby countries, a substantial number of Nigerians have lost their lives as a result of inhaling generator fumes (carbon monoxide), others through kerosine explosions and candle lights, and high cost of products and services, among others, all because of lack of electricity supply. Many stakeholders in the economy including the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), the oil and gas industry operators, the financial and service sectors, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and civil society groups, among others, have repeatedly pointed out fixing of the power sector as a way out of the country’s current underdevelopment.
The Nigerian delegation to the recently held Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, Texas, United States, organised an investment opportunities’ forum to attract foreigners and Nigerians to come and invest in Nigeria. The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, delivered a keynote address at the forum and eloquently highlighted the opportunities and what the government is doing but Nigerians in Diaspora at the event gave a condition, the government should fix the power sector. They said once the power sector problem is solved, other issues would gradually fall into place. They said the Federal Government as a matter of priority should give all the necessary support and demonstrate the political will in addressing the power sector problem. The ongoing power sector reform was one policy action that endeared the President to many Nigerians and boosted his victory at the polls. Power supply improved substantially since January but has abysmally dropped since the elections were concluded - creating the understanding that the improvement witnessed in the past months was mere window dressing to score political points. Nothing has been heard from the presidential taskforces on power sector reform since the elections were over. However, many Nigerian and international business organisations are hopeful that the new government would take some major policy decision that would positively impact the socio-economic landscape
of the country. This optimism is, however, based on electioneering promises made to Nigerians and the international community during the just concluded elections. They also noted that the reform of the power sector initiated by the President Jonathan in 2010 be pursued to its logical conclusion, especially with involvement of private sector operators in generation and distribution of electricity. This, according to them, will kick-start the socio-economic and industrial activities of the country. Vice-President Namadi Sambo, while on a working visit to Sapele National Independent Power Project (NIPP) power station being constructed by the International Conglomerate-Marubeni Corporation of Japan through its subsidiary Marubeni Engineering West Africa Limited (MEWAL), expressed satisfaction with the level of work at the site. He added that with the inauguration of the power station before the last quarter of this year, more electricity would be available on the grid for Nigerians. He said: “With the level of work I have seen here, I have to congratulate the Delta State Governor for being lucky to have such brand new power station located in his state because, the Sapele power station is ready to give power to Nigerians and the host state will benefit immensely from this, as quality of supply will improve and this will boost economic activities as well as job creation in the host state.” The Minister of State for Power, Nuhu Somo Wya, also during the
inspection of some power stations in the country as well as the NIPP, said the government is poised to encourage the private sector operators under the Private-Public-Partnership (PPP) arrangement in moving the power sector forward. He added that this policy direction are all embedded in the Power Sector Road Map launched by President Jonathan last year. According to him, the power sector reform act of 2005 is now being implemented holistically as directed by President Jonathan and to that extent, more private sector players both foreign and local are expected to be active members of this reform process aimed at pulling the sector from the current doldrums. Already, the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE), has commenced the process of privatisation of the 18 successor companies existing under the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN). Companies such as Essar, Global Utilities Management Company (GUMCO), a subsidiary of Vigeo Group and Marubeni, among others, are jostling to grab the successor companies in generation and distribution. While many stakeholders believe that the only way forward is complete reform of the sector, indications are that most of the existing electricity companies both in generation and distribution operate far below optimum level due mainly to obsolete equipment. They also believe that public sector approach to management of infrastructure in Nigeria doesn’t allow for efficiency and excellent
service delivery. For example, PHCN’s statistics of daily power supply and status revealed that existing power stations have combined installed generation capacity of about 6,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity but actual electricity generated hovers around 3,200 to 3,800MW for a country of over 150 million people with a desire to be one of the 20 most industrialised countries of the world by the year 2020. In fact, if President Jonathan should retain the respect he has from Nigerians, he has to push the sector to its rightful position. Essentially, the inability of the public sector operators to effectively maintain and manage power sector infrastructure in line with international engineering practice perhaps explained why the facilities continually decay at the expense of ever growing population, economic activities and industrial sector. Reports from the ongoing privatisation in the power sector show that bids for the infrastructure are not competitive as a result of the poor state of the facilities. According to the reports, due diligence so far conducted by those companies interested in taking over the plants indicate that the results are not en•Continued on page 40
Firm advocates cooking gas usage in rural communities
ASOLINE & Automotive Products Marketing (GAPM) is campaigning for the wider use of cooking gas in local communities. The company which has already signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Ayobo-Ipaja Local Community Development Area in Lagos State to enable it set up a Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) dispensing unit for users. The project is expected to be inaugurated within
By Collins Nweze
third quarter of the year. GAPM management has set aside a land, which has been approved by Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) for the purpose of the project. There has also been approval from the Federal Fire Service while the firm is still waiting for the ‘authority to construct’. Chief Executive Officer, GAPM, Taiwo Fagbemi, was optimistic
that the delay of government and other key players in the gas industry in promoting the use of the product in the country is not denial. For him, the promotion of LGP transcends the economic benefits but bothers more on health, social, youth employment, environmental and climate change benefits. He said gas usage is not elitist as usually misconstrued by many rural dwellers, but a product that
•From left: Mr Barabos Ikbal, Chief Executive Officer, EKOL Tenknic Services; Mr. Taiwo Fagbemi, Chief Executive Officer, Gasoline & Automotive Products Marketing (GAPM) and Mr Ayhan Sonmez, Chief Executive Officer, Sonmez Makina Otomotive, Istanbul, Turkey, during the Clean and Green seminar, organised by GAPM in Lagos.
should be embraced by every one. “The use of cooking gas is a minimum standard expected in a mega city like Lagos and people need to be enlightened about the immense benefits in the usage of the product,” he said. Fagbemi, who during a business presentation on Clean & Green organised by GAPM in collaboration with Sonmez Makina Otomotive of Istanbul, Turkey last week, explained that as infrastructure is being improved, it is also important that the culture of the people within the city has to improve at least based on minimum requirement. Both firms partnered to promote the latest LPG equipment to enhance the use of the product in the rural and local communities in Nigeria. He explained that LPG operation has migrated from the traditional method of citing at remote areas, the latest technology like the LPGs Skid equipment he said has made it possible to site plants closer to where users can have access to the product. The company is targeting rural areas, followed by semi-urban and urban towns in the product distribution plan. The product is widely used in urban areas and its success in rural communities means it has been widely accepted. Fagbemi wants regulators to review their LPG standard operations to be operator-friendly with all safety standards that allow for easy access by consumers or approved
constitutional retail operations. The deregulation of the energy sector, he said, was long overdue to stop importers who have been benefiting from the system. Nigeria is the fourth largest exporter of LPG in the world, yet it is the least consumer of the product despite its numerous benefits. According to him, the price of LPG should be domesticated to encourage wider usage, which will also help to promote youth employment and discourage deforestation. He said the current price changes within the energy sector put the price of diesel at about N170 per litre while kerosine sells for about N140 per litre. LPG sells at about N90 per litre making it the cheapest among the three products. He said there was no need for the government to subsidise the use of kerosine at the expense of promoting the use of cooking gas in the country. “The Government has to review its policy that places more priority on subsidising kerosene against cooking gas,” he said. He wants all LPG operators to sharpen their skills, update their LPG Plant equipments and get set for new era of enhanced business activity in the country. “This is the time to promote not just the domestic aspect of cooking gas, but others such as auto gas, auto converters, LPG generators and LPG Skill equipment marketing,” he said.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Siemens’ Q2 revenue climbs by 7% I
N the second quarter of 2011 fiscal year, Siemens said it achieved broad-based growth and increased new orders 28 per cent year-over-year. Revenue climbed seven per cent. The company said all sectors and regions contributed to growth in both orders and revenue. Income from continuing operations more than doubled due to a strong improvement in operating profit and proceeds from the sale of Siemens’ 34 per cent stake in Areva NP. “We’ve achieved outstanding, broad-based orders growth. We’re raising our earnings forecast for fiscal 2011 to at least 7.5 billion euro,” said Siemens President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
•Expects EUR7.5b income from continuing operations Peter Löscher. The Head, Corporate Communications, Siemens Nigeria office, Mr Olusegun Akinlabi, in a statement said: “Siemens expects for fiscal 2011 organic order intake to show a significant increase compared to order intake of 74.1 billion euro from continuing operations in fiscal 2010. Supported by an already strong order backlog, the company expects revenue, which was 69 billion euro for continuing operations in fiscal 2010, to return to mid-single-digit organic growth. Siemens further anticipates income from continuing operations to be at least 7.5
billion euro.” Akinlabi said income from continuing operations in fiscal 2010 was 4.3 billion euro. For fiscal 2010, orders, revenue and income from continuing operations exclude results from Osram and Siemens IT Solutions and Services which are reported as discontinued operations in fiscal 2011. “This outlook excludes effects that may arise from legal and regulatory matters – among others, possible effects from an ongoing arbitration proceeding between Siemens and Areva S.A. The arbitral tribunal will decide, among
other things, on the possibility of increasing or reducing Areva’s payment by as much as 40 per cent. In the second quarter of fiscal 2011, new orders surged 28 percent to 20.7 billion euro. Revenue climbed seven percent to •17.7 billion. Both results also profited from above-average growth in the emerging countries. The book-tobill ratio in the second quarter was 1.17. At 92 billion euro, the combined backlog for the Sectors was at the record level of the prior quarter, despite negative currency translation effects. The above-stated figures for new orders, revenue and profit do not
include Siemens IT Solutions and Services, the Osram Division or the related effects on profit. Since the second quarter, both businesses have been assigned to discontinued operations. As a result, the corresponding figures for the second quarter of fiscal 2010 and the first quarter of fiscal 2011 have been calculated on a comparable basis. In the middle of December 2010, Siemens announced that it was selling Siemens IT Solutions and Services to Atos Origin. At the end of March, Siemens announced its intention to publicly list the Osram Division in the fall of 2011. The company intends to hold a minority stake in the future Osram and remain a long-term anchor shareholder.
Customers owe PHCN N1.2b at Shomolu •Continued from page 37
•From left: Mr. Shawley Coker, Chairman of Petroleum Association of Nigeria; Diezani Alison-Madueke, Minister, Petroleum Resources; Mrs. Olufunmilayo Goka, Deputy Managing Director, Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited; Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, Group General Manager, Public Affairs, NNPC and Mr Gabidon Meheux, Senior Technical Assistant to the Minister, at the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, USA.
‘Govt should apply telecoms privatisation strategy to power’ T
HE Federal Government has been advised to take a cue from the strategy applied in privatisation of the telecommunications sector to the ongoing reforms in power sector if it would record the expected success such as the telecommunications. The Chairman, House committee on Finance, Lagos State Assembly, Hon. Solomon Adeola, gave the advice in an interview with The Nation deploring the failure of past governments to address the epileptic nature of power supply in the country despite the huge investments made in the sector. Adeola, who has just been elected to represent Alimosho constituency at the Federal House of Representatives in Abuja, stated that it has become incumbent on the government to make the power sector work like that of the telecommunications sector. He said power is a critical sector of the economy such that once the problem in it is solved, 70 per cent of the country’s national problems
By Bidemi Bakare
would be solved as well. He said: “Energy is quite important in our every day lives. Without it, a lot could likely go wrong with our total economy. This is because this is a sector of the economy whose inefficiency is capable of impeding other sectors. No doubt, if this sector of the economy is taking care of a lot of self-employed people would be empowered to exhibit their enterprises. As a matter of fact, a lot of people that are working can even decide to resign to go into business. “Besides, all those companies that had moved in droves out of the country would be able to return to Nigeria when power is adequately supplied as the problem is not the lack of human capacity and infrastructure. The rising unemployment among our graduates would then be a thing of the past as the returning companies would absorb this army
of unemployed youths. The unemployment rate would consequently fall. Also, with energy, prices of a lot of goods will come down and development will be so rapid.” Suggesting that all that is required is to replicate what was done in the telecommunications sector in the power sector, Adeola said government has to provide and vest powers on a controlling body in the power sector like it did for the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) in the telecommunications sector. “The telecommunications sector has witnessed great development thanks to the privatisation process, which has made possible the evolution of GSM in the country. This has really changed the face of communication as Nigerians do not have to go through stress in communicating with each other and the outside world. “Before the advent of GSM in the country, we had NITEL.But what
could it do? Nothing. NITEL’s effort to provide telephony services was frustrated and the next thing was the coming on board of GSM operators. Now we have about seven of them now operating. So, depending on the one you choose to work with, you can be sure of easy and stress free communication process within and outside the country,” he said. Adeola added: “But quite honestly, I think the success should be attributed to the effective presence of a controlling body called NCC to regulate and control GSM operations in the country. That is why I am suggesting that if PHCN will remain, let it be while all other operators can come on board and we have a body to control their activities just as we have with NCC in the telecommunications sector. If what the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commision (NERC) is to the power sector is what NCC is to the telecommunications sector, then let the government give it the impetus to carry out its functions more effectively like the NCC is doing.”
N300,000. He said: “Following the ongoing enlightenment campaign against vandalism of PHCN facilities by the Power Holding Company of Nigeria Plc, Shomolu Business Unit, two vandals were recently arrested and convicted by Pedro Police Station at Shomolu Magistrate Court in April at Onipanu area of Lagos State. “According to the Divisional Police Officer of Pedro Police Station, CSP Issah Onize Lawal, the vandals – Osaro Elvis and Nnamdi Ifejiokwu, were arrested by his officers who were on patrol at the early hours of April 19, at Ladylak near Sowemimo transformer when they were trying to board a taxi with the stolen PHCN cables. “During interrogation, the vandals confessed to that they were going from one transformer to the other removing the cable that link the transformers and feeder pillar to sell at the rate of N60,000. The police are still searching for the buyers of the stolen items from PHCN installations. “Apparently, the communities that are being supplied with electricity through Sowemimo transformer in that Ladylak area would have been thrown into prolonged darkness because the management of Shomolu informed the communities to ensure the safety of PHCN facilities in their areas as the management will not be liable for the repelcaement of stolen items.” Okonkwo commended the Chief Executive Officer of Ikeja Distribution Zone, Chris Akamnonu for his support to the district and the commitment of CSP Lawal for expediting action on the case. He also said within his first six months as the business manager of Shomolu district July to December last year, he was able to raise the revenue profile from N180 million to N221 million per month and expects that between January to end of June this year, it would increase to N250 million per month. He has also replaced six 500kva transformers with new ones, upgraded two 300kva transformers to 500kva and has relieved 25 substations in less than one yesar as Shomolu District boss.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NIPCO to power 500 vehicles with gas
IGERIAN Independent Pe troleum Company (NIPCO) Plc said it plans to convert about 500 vehicles running on petrol and diesel to run on Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) at no cost to the vehicle owners before end of September. The Manager, Public Affairs of NIPCO, Taofeek Lawal, told newsmen in Lagos that the firm has already provided 200 conversion kits at no cost to taxi operators and converted their vehicles to CNG. Lawal said the free services rendered were self-styled to them as part of the company’s promotional exercise to encourage the use of eco-friendly CNG in Benin. To facilitate effective vehicles conversion, the company has made a state-of-the-art conversion workshop with modern amenities in all its CNG retail outlets. He said four out of the eight CNG retail outlets licensed in Benin has been operational with additional two to come on stream soonest. NIPCO spokesman said the CNG facilities that were inaugurated last year are expected to lead evolution of alternate transportation fuel options in the country and reduce the high demand pressure on liquid fuels and associated scarcity in the market. The CNG facilities, which include a huge gas compression plant, dispensing station and CNG kit conversion workshop were part of a joint venture between the company and Nigerian Gas Company (NGC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). “NIPCO’s commencement of compressed natural gas (CNG) as a vehicular fuel, is another demonstration of the company’s avowed interest in contributing our quota in effective utilisation of the nation’s abundant gas re-
sources and bequeath a more environmental friendly vehicular fuel for motorist in the country. “NIPCO Plc is a key operator in the downstream sector of the nation’s oil and gas industry floated by scores of independent fuel marketers who subscribe to the business venture,” Lawal said. He said NIPCO began operations at its office terminal in Apapa and ever since has consistently grown with support of its core investor, Pure Bond Limited, and currently has a combined storage facility of over 90 million litres of petroleum products. As part of its forward looking initiatives, the organisation’s entry into the gas sector has led to the construction of a massive Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) plant in Apapa, Lagos with a total storage facility of 5000 metric tonnes (MT). Lawal said the advantages of using CNG are enormous including lower operating cost on mile to mile basis, the commodity is cheaper than petrol by over 40 per cent and when compared to diesel, it will be over 55 per cent cheaper. Another advantage, he said, include lower maintenance cost due to complete combustion of gaseous fuels, the lead fouling of spark plugs, which is eliminated. CNG fuel systems are sealed, which prevents any spill or evaporation losses. “There is an increase in the life of lubricating oils, as natural gas does not contaminate and dilute the crankcase oil. CNG is also environment friendly: natural gas has less carbon per unit energy available as compared to petrol and diesel and hence reduces vehicular exhaust emissions (carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, unburnt hydro-carbons, among others) significantly,” he added.
•From left: Osaro Elvis and Nnamdi Ifejiokwu. Two vandals of Power Holdings Company of Nigeria (PHCN) facilities that were arrested by Pedro Police Patrol officers and convicted by Somolu Magistrate Court Area of Onipanu, Lagos in April, 2011
Emel, Suntech partner to improve power supply
S part of efforts toward its mission of contributing to the achievement of stable power supply in Nigeria, Emel Advanced Power Solutions (Nigeria) Limited, a subsidiary of Emel Group of Companies, has entered into a strategic partnership with Suntech Power Holdings Company Limited, one of the world’s largest producer of solar panels, to provide innovative, customised and affordable solar solutions to consumers in the country. The Managing Director, Emel Advanced Power Solutions (Nigeria) Limited, Roy Chatterjee, said the partnership with Suntech will add further value to the company’s vision of marketing quality products at affordable prices to customers in Nigeria and neighbouring markets. He said: “Emel Advanced Power Solutions prides itself on being a ‘total solutions provider’ and of-
fering both grid connected and off grid solutions. We offer a complete range of power products including solar panels, natural gas generators, inverters, gasoline and diesel generators, water pumps and multipurpose engines.” Emel’s extensive portfolio caters to domestic and commercial customers, in urban and rural environments, and addresses many of the country’s energy needs at the community, state and national levels. “The solar market in Nigeria has been adversely affected by a number of failed projects. This is due largely to the use of cheap solar panels, charge controllers and batteries as well as unqualified technicians designing these projects. Consumers also erroneously consider solar to be an expensive option. “Emel and Suntech are focused on enhancing the solar experience of Nigerians by providing consum-
ers with reliable solar solutions. Suntech’s premium quality solar panels will be backed by Emel’s excellent after-sales support from fully-equipped service centres,” Chatterjee said. As the world’s largest supplier of solar panels, Suntech is renowned for reliability and its relentless commitment to quality enables it to deliver high-quality solar products to customers across the world. Suntech was one of the first global solar companies to achieve both OHSAS18001 and SA8000 certifications, two respected occupational health and social accountability standards. Suntech also implements an Environmental Management System, which was certified according to the ISO14001 standard in April 2006. In addition, Suntech’s technology is backed by a global research and development team, which consists of more than 450 employees in five countries.
Nigerians in Diaspora demand stable power supply •Continued from page 38
couraging hence bidders are going into the business with a lot of caution. Investment decisions are often based on positive due diligence report carried out by the bidders. Indeed while the journey towards reform of the power sector is progressively pursued , those in the authority and public institutions in the power sector especially, the Ministry of Power, the Presidential Task Force on Power, Ni-
gerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, PHCN, Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited, should begin to look at credentials of firms bidding for the generation and distribution arms of the power sector, especially in term of accomplishment of some engineering firms such as Marubeni and in distribution Vigeo Power, which have distinguished themselves over the years in service delivery in the sector with a view to engaging them in this partnership drive to salvage
the entire power sector of the country. Partnership in this regard could be in form of equity holding, Operate and Management contract (O&M), Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT), among other private sector involvement strategy. Many engineering firms such as Marubeni/Hitachi, General Electric (GE), Rockson Engineering and Chinese companies, Asea Brown Boveri (ABB) are currently key players in the power sector among
many others. These companies have played a significant role in different development phases of engineering, procurement and construction of power stations, transmission lines and distribution network across the country. Similarly, as part of effort to realise its noble objective of sustainable power generation in Nigeria, the Federal Government has decided to explore the bilateral relationship between Ni-
Domestic prices of petroleum products
Energy & Oil Prices OIL ($/bbl)
PRICE* Nymex Crude Future Dated Brent Spot WTI Cushing Spot OIL (¢/gal)
99.65 113.80 99.65
CHANGE % CHANGE 0.68 1.08 0.68
0.69% 0.96% 0.69%
TIME 05/13 05/13 05/13
PRICE* CHANGE % CHANGE TIME Nymex Heating Oil Future 294.22 2.85 0.98% 05/13 Nymex RBOB Gasoline Future 307.44 1.05 0.34% 05/13 NATURAL GAS ($/MMBtu) PRICE* CHANGE % CHANGE TIME Nymex Henry Hub Future 4.25 0.05 1.24% 05/13 Henry Hub Spot 4.10 0.01 0.24% 05/13 New York City Gate Spot 4.30 -0.03 -0.69% 05/13 ELECTRICITY ($/megawatt hour) PRICE* CHANGE % CHANGE TIME Mid-Columbia, firm on-peak, spot19.16 -3.51 -15.48% 05/13 Palo Verde, firm on-peak, spot 34.31 -1.36 -3.81% 05/13 BLOOMBERG, FIRM ON-PEAK, DAY AHEAD SPOT/ERCOT HOUSTON 34.85 -2.29 -6.17% 05/13 Bloomberg Oil Buyers Guide subscriber? L Source: Bloomberg.com
geria and Japan. Through the dividends of this bilateral relation, the power sector has yet received another boost as the Japanese Government through its development programme has given a fast-track grant of JPY2 billion equivalent of N3.5 billion to the Nigerian Government for the rehabilitation of one of the units at Jebba. The application for the grant was made in November 2010 in response to the Vice President’s directive through the Federal Ministry of Power to Japan’s government to urgently address the critical situation of the power sector. Indeed, as one of the top priority projects and in the spirit of international co-operation and support for Nigerians and its government, Japan, despite its domestic challenges and huge losses caused by the recent earth quakes and tsunami, the grant was fast-tracked and JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) investigation team came to Nigeria in January 2011 to take a look at the Jebba Power Plant and Japan’s Government Cabinet approved it in March 2011. Currently, the Nigerian Government has already signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Japanese Government for this grant, which is targeted at restoring full operation of one of the units that was affected during the April 2009 accident.
“I challenge that referee to tell the whole world why that goal was disallowed. It was a good goal and it was a shock that it was not allowed to stand”
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
NIGERIA PREMIER LEAGUE...NIGERIA PREMIER LEAGUE...
CAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
I G E R I A ' s representative at this year's Confederation of African Football Champions League, Enyimba of Aba has expressed satisfaction at the group fixtures released recently, saying that the
•Anyansi keen on success By Innocent Amomoh People's Elephant is keen on achieving success at the continental club competition. The Nigerian champions
have been drawn against Sudan's Al hilal, Morocco's Raja Casablanca, and Cameroon's Cotonsport, oppositions the management of the Aba Warriors feels will
not hinder them from getting to the group stages of the m o n e y - s p i n n i n g competition. The top two sides will advance to the semifinals of the competition. Enyimba’s Chairman, Felix Anyansi is keen to see the club do well in the competition this year after a disappointing performance in the previous engagements. He had told Super Sport in an earlier interview: “We are really interested in winning the competition this year because we want to represent Africa at the FIFA club world cup. We couldn’t do that the first two times we won the competetion but we are eager to do so this time around. The final of the competition is staged on a home-andaway basis with the winners receiving $1.5m and a place at the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan.
Coach Okey Emordi of Enyimba, demanding to know why the centre referee nullified the only goal of the match between his club and Dolphins
Ref’s decision mars league game
ONTROVERSY shrouded the end of Ocean Boys versus Enyimba match after the referee disallowed a Victor Barnabas goal scored in the last minute of added time at the Samson Siasia Stadium, Yenagoa. Enyimba players, strained at the controversial decision surrounded the referee who quickly blew the final whistle ending the game at 0-0. Femi Thomas made a return to the first team after missing out on Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to Shooting Stars. However, there was no place for Emmanuel Enezi in the starting lineup. The home side quickly took control of the game, bossing possession without creating many clear cut opportunities while Enyimba were content to sit back and launch sporadic attacks of their own whenever they had the chance. The key moment of the game
arrived in the sixth minute of added time at the end of the match when Barnabas latched on to a mistake by Ocean goalkeeper Thomas who failed to hold onto a Ifeanyi Ede shot, to smash home what looked like the winner. The referee however disallowed the goal much to the consternation of the Enyimba players who duly surrounded him, demanding to know why the goal was disallowed. An angry coach of Enyimba, Okey Emordi said the performance of the referees in the local game in Nigeria left a lot to be desired. “I challenge that referee to tell the whole world why that goal was disallowed. It was a good goal and it was a shock that it was not allowed to stand,” he told SuperSport.com. Enyimba continue to claw up the log as they now have 32 points from 22 games.
Dolphins accuses Sunshine Stars of distraction
EADERS of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL), Dolphins have accused rivals, Sunshine Stars of “activities aimed at derailing us from winning the title”. Both clubs are the front runners in the 2010/2011 season with Sunshine Stars four points adrift of the leaders, having played a game less. An official of Dolphins who spoke to SuperSport.com on condition of anonymity claimed Sunshine were “working against us” to see that the league shield is not won by the Port Harcourt-based side. “They have been doing all within their power to see us fail. In our last away game (against Enyimba), all the match officials were from Akure (the city where Sunshine stars are based) and there was no way we were going to get a good result in that game. “We scored a good goal in the fifth minute when the scores was still 0-0 but the referees disallowed the goal. We also scored another goal in the second half and the referee again disallowed it. All our attacking moves were frustrated as the referees seemed determined to see us lose,” the Dolphins official complained. Respected CAF and FIFA
Heartland’s Kofarmata turns back Gombe
EARTLAND’s Bello Kofarmata became an instant hero in his club hard fought week 21 premier league 1-0 win over Gombe United on Sunday at the Dan Anyiam stadium, Owerri. Kofarmata scored in the 78th minute to give the Owerri based boys the vital three points that took their points to 30 and a slight leap on the log after Sharks dented their ambitious re-start of the league last Wednesday in Port Harcourt. Kofomata, who has brought his goal haul in the premier league to five, had early lost penalty kick in the 53rd minute in an encounter Gombe’s goalkeeper Yusuf Ahmed did everything to ensure that the
score remained at 1-0. Ahmed who was singled out as the revelation of the week 21 game by the Naze Millionaires spokesman, Cajetan Nkwopara told SuperSport.com that credit for the slim goal margin right should go to the agility of the goalkeeper. “Ahmed stood between Heartland and the goal, while our keeper was virtually on holidays, the Gombe keeper did a yeoman’s job to stop every move by our boys toward scoring, he saved Kofarmata penalty in the 53rd minute before he carved in to Kofarmata’s 78th minute header. “He was a revelation and if you asked me the man of the match, so Gombe have him to thank for the 1-0 score line
because the battled was simply between him and Heartland and he proved his mettle.” Nkwopara who gave credit to their new signees for bringing character to the team is however hopeful that Heartland’s away win drought may end on Wednesday when they visit Niger Tornadoes. “Ndubuisi Nkoro debuted today (Sunday), Kingsley Salami debuted in Port Harcourt against Sharks, the same as Suleiman Ahmed, Charles Ikenna among others. All the new players are impressive and their impacts are giving Heartland character. “Away win is not what you decide as you leave your house, it comes at times when you least
expected it, we will fight for it against Niger Tornadoes on. With the caliber of players in our fold I think we are almost there,” he said.
instructor, Paul Bassey was also fingered in the alleged conspiracy by Sunshine Stars to knock Dolphins off their perch. Bassey was the match commissioner in the Enyimba/ Dolphin game in Aba and the Dolphin chief claimed the CAF man was complicit in the “shameful incidents in Aba”. “Paul Bassey is on the pay roll of Sunshine Stars. It is not a secret and there is no way we would have gotten a good result in such a scenario,” he said. Bassey expressed shock at the accusations but said he would not be dragged into
“frivolities”. “I don’t get myself involved in frivolities. I was appointed as commissioner for that game a long time ago and this is not the first time I am commissioning a game in the NPL. They (Dolphin) don’t have a case and just crying wolf where there is none,” Bassey told SuperSport.com. Dolphin defeated Plateau United 3-0 on Saturday to travel to Enugu to face Rangers in their next league game on Wednesday. Sunshine Stars closed the gap on the leaders to just four points with a hard fought 1-0 win against Shooting Stars on Sunday.
Fatigue, reason for Kaduna Utd’s HE Proprietor of loss —Babayaro Kaduna United Football
Club Alhaji Sabo Babayaro has attributed the defeat of his team by Kano Pillars Football Club to fatigue. Speaking to NationSport shortly after Kano Pillars humbled his team by two goals to nil at the Sani Abacha Stadium yesterday, Babayaro said the defeat was occasioned by the four rescheduled matches which his team played in just five days. According to him, “the match is 100 percent ok, officiating is perfect. It is a good one because Kano Pillars is not a small team and we are an upcoming club compared to the experience of Kano Pillars. You see the stress in our players after playing a rescheduled match against Warri Wolves, far away in Warri. “We had an accident on our way coming back home. With that fear, we played another match on Friday, after reaching Kaduna on Thursday. We played the FA Cup match on Saturday, before leaving for Kano to play today (Sunday), so the stress adversely affected our performance. “In any case, I appreciate the game of our boys despite the stress. We would now go all out to maintain our position on the league table in our subsequent matches.” While corroborating the reason for the abysmal performance of Kaduna
From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano United, the sweat merchant of Kaduna United Mr. Maurice Coleman admitted that Kano Pillars played better than his team due to fatigue as a result of a series of rescheduled matches. “No single team in Europe can play four competitive matches in five days as we did in the last five days. Even Bacelona, the strongest team in the world can do that.” On his part, the Technical Adviser of Kano Pillars Football Club, Ladan Boso described the match between his team and Kaduna United as a good and balance game, pointing out that the experience of his boys gave his team an edge over the visiting team. “If you look at the flow of the game between the two teams, it was a good game. The two teams allowed the ball to flow, and that is what we are looking for. Kaduna United are a good team, they really showed their stuff. The victory of Kano Pillars over Kaduna United is coming at a time when the Kano based football club is experiencing serious financial crisis, but the Technical Adviser maintained that his boys were undaunted, adding that they would work harder to convince incoming government to come to their rescue.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Abuja Airport turnaround irreversible, says Fed Govt T
HERE is no going back on plans by the government to reposition the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, the Minister of Aviation, Mrs Fidelia Njeze, has said. She said there was no better time than now to reposition the airport when passengers and aircraft traffic are on the increase and overstretching facilities. Mrs. Njeze spoke at the inauguration of the completed perimeter fencing and other projects at the airport, which she said were part of the implementation of the safety reform agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration. She reiterated the Federal Government’s commitment to completing ongoing rehabilitation projects at airports across the country, to give the aviation sector a new lease of life. The projects, according to Mrs. Njeze, are in Akure, Ibadan, Sokoto, Ilorin, Lagos, Kano, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Enugu. With the completion of the perimeter fencing of the Abuja Air-
Stories by Kelvin Osa-Okunbor Aviation Correspondent
port, Nigeria can now pass the safety audit to be carried out by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), this month, she said. Mrs. Njeze noted that before the completion of the perimeter fencing, scores of visiting Heads of State, who flew into Abuja, parked their aircraft in either Lagos or neighbouring West African countries because of security concerns over the airport. She said with the airport fence completed, cases of runway and apron incursion would be a thing of the past, because safety and security have been upgraded making Nigerian aviation rank among the safest. The safety rating awarded Nigeria last year by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) could now be sustained with the completion of the Abuja airport perimeter fencing, identified as one of the key areas which was to be addressed in the post
2006 ICAO audit. She said the apron expansion could not be delayed more than necessary given that the Abuja Airport is the second busiest in the country, and needs facilities upgrade to accommodate the upsurge in passenger and aircraft traffic. The Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr Richard Aisuebeogun, explained that the completion of the apron expansion will eliminate flooding during the rainy season. He explained that the completion of the airport perimeter fencing will provide adequate security and safety for the airport operational areas. The FAAN boss said: “The expanded apron, on the other hand, makes more space available for the parking of aircraft, which number is increasing daily. For us in FAAN, these new facilities being provided by the government truly challenge us to match government’s huge investments with improved service delivery to
stakeholders in the industry.” Among the projects are runway rehabilitation and extension, apron construction and extension, perimeter fencing, terminal building remodelling and rehabilitation of access roads, improvement of power and water supply. Aisuebeogun said the ongoing make-over was made possible by efficient utilisation of the authority’s internally-generated revenue (IGR) and the intervention of the Federal Government. Even more exciting to stakeholders, he said, is the revelation by Aisuebeogun that FAAN was
studying proposals for more ambitious upgrades, which may include new terminals and greater private sector involvement in the development of infrastructure in the aeronautical and non-aeronautical spheres in and around the airports. “The aim,” he said, “is to strategically reposition our airports, especially the international ones, to make more meaningful contribution to the growth of Nigeria’s economy. We want our main airport at Lagos to serve as a regional hub, and we are sparing no effort to attain that.”
Aviation unions raise labour council for globalisation
ABOUR leaders from five continents have unveiled a new alliance to coordinate a multilateral union response to globalisation in civil aviation. Aviation unions in Nigeria are affiliated to the International Transport Federation, initiator of the Oneworld labour alliance. Unions representing employees in the Oneworld airline alliance said at a meeting in Washington DC, United States, that a labour council, with an elected coordinator, had been set up within the International Transport Federation (ITF). The labour council, details of which were highlighted in a statement, brings together unions representing workers in the alliance and facilitates information sharing. It also coordinates joint planning and activities on priority issues. Transport Workers’ Union VicePresident John Conley said partner unions were treating the alli-
• 20-year chart of Bangalore air traffic performance passenger cargo flights
ance as a “de facto” merger. He added that the Oneworld labour council had established goals as well as initial strategies. It is still a work-in-progress, he said, but it ha an identity and it lives. Speaking from Washington DC on April 20, ITF Civil Aviation Section Secretary Gabriel Mocho explained why such an alliance was crucial: “Yesterday, the Chief Executive Officer of Qantas, Alan Joyce, attacked the pilots’, engineers’ and ground crew’s unions, accusing them of running a “kamikaze” industrial campaign. This unfortunate comment compares professional and skilled workers, who have one of the best records of safe flights in the industry, with suicidal pilots from the Second World War. It gives us a picture of how incapable the management of one of the Oneworld alliance airlines is of establishing a productive and enduring relationship with the workforce.”
Expert tasks Okorocha on Sam Mbakwe Airport
N aviation expert, Mr Eke Ambrose, has called on the governor-elect of Imo State, Owelle Rochas Okorocha to consider equity participation in the development of the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport (SMICA) in Owerri, the capital. He said the upgrade of facilities at the airport if completed would reposition it as the preferred destination for aircraft carrying cargo into the Southeast. Ambrose, who is the Managing Director of Ambed Aviation International Airlines, explained that Okorocha could not afford to contribute less to the development of the airport given his vast experience and investment in the aviation sector. He said the dilapidated state of SMICA, was sufficient evidence of its abandonment by successive administrations, which should have contributed their best to jump start
the tempo of activities at the airport constructed under community efforts many decades ago. Ambrose spoke amid the claim of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), that it has attained 80 per cent completion in the perimeter fencing of the airport. It also said it was fast tracking the renovation and rehabilitation of the terminal building of the airport. Already, the contractor mandated to build a fuel depot at the airport has moved to site. Speaking on efforts by FAAN to reposition the airport, spokeman of the authority, Mr Akin Olukunle, said the construction of the airport perimeter fencing has attained 80 per cent completion, which is still on going. He noted that renovation of the terminal bidding, has reached 40 per cent stage, even as the airport is yet to get a contractor for the bonded warehouse.
He, however, affirmed that two fire vehicles have been received amid non-completion of the air field lighting . The cargo expert urged Okorocha to consider public and private sector participation for the development of the cargo airport, under the build, operate and transfer basis in infrastructural development. He explained that the governor elect could create an enabling environment for the development of the Imo Airport, through favourable policies that will attract private sector players in investment, infrastructure as well as a befitting terminal complex, Customs bonded warehouse, cargo bay fuel tank, farm or depot and other ancillary facilities that will boost commercial activities at the airport. The cargo expert explained that if the requisite facilities are put in place, the Imo State government could partner with FAAN on how
to review the feasibility of the airport to attract foreign airlines to schedule cargo flights into the state. He further explained that one good way of enhancing operations at the Imo Airport is for the authorities to improve the infrastructure, including dilapidated operational equipment, old conveyor belt, improved instrument landing system. The cargo expert said: “I do not think operations into Owerri Airport is unprofitable, it all depends on how the airlines carry out their operations and the model they are using. “If any investor should consider building a fuel dump in Owerri, it will attract aircraft traffic into the airport to make it more viable. Another further step is to carry out appropriate feasibility and lobby at the ministerial level to ensure that the Imo Airport is duly desig-
nated for international cargo operations through reduction of aircraft handling and landing charges. Why can’t African Petroleum and Con oil consider setting up a fuel tank farm in Owerri?” Olukunle further said about the state of the Owerri Airport: “FAAN has tried to enhance the status of the airport, thus far. We have carried out 80 per cent completion of the airport perimeter fencing, which is on going. As we speak, the terminal building renovation is on going, and it has reached 40 per cent completion. But, power improvement at the airport and air field lighting is yet to improve, but the aviation fuel depot project is on going, even the contractor just reported to site. The airport has received two new fire vehicles, and the cargo bonded ware house is yet to take off, as no contractor has been approved yet.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
AVIATION Briefs Air Nigeria launches mobile ticketing service AIR Nigeria has unveiled its mobile ticketing service known as My AIRMOBILE. The service aims to provide the airline’s teeming customers with a simple and convenient option of making their travel arrangements on-thego from their Internet-enabled phones. My AIRMOBILE, according to a statement, is coming at an ideal time as a significant number of the travelling public now has access to internet-enabled phones and desire solutions on-the-go that meet their busy lifestyle. My AIRMOBILE delivers greater choice and flexibility as passengers are no longer limited to using designated ticketing Offices or Travel Agency to make their travel reservations but now have round the clock access to Air Nigeria’s array of products and services by simply logging on to www.myairnigeria.com from their Internet enabled handset. My AIRMOBILE has inbuilt enhanced security features providing sound protection for all financial transactions and the platform supports payments in naira using Interswitch verve, e-tranzact as well as naira denominated Mastercard and VISA cards Air Nigeria, the statement says, is at the forefront of offering innovative products in the aviation industry. The airline clinched the “Airline of the Year 2010” at the Nigeria Aviation Awards (NIGAV), in recognition of its outstanding contributions to the development of the industry.
Overland plans multi-billion dollar maintenance hangar A
MULTI-BILLION naira maintenance hangar is to be built at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos by Overland Airways. The airline has also opened a new business office at the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) of the airport. At the opening of the new office and the foundation laying for the hangar in Lagos, the Minister of Aviation, Mrs. Fidelia Njeze, described Overland as a strong company committed to the development of the aviation sector. She said when completed, the hangar would provide employment for many and save airlines huge funds on flying their airplanes overseas for maintenance. “I am really excited and impressed with what we have seen today and I must say that we appreciate first, the effort, the commitment and the dedication to duty of the staff of Overland Airways. If you are not supportive to the CEO, this achievement would not have come to reality. So, I must thank you for that level of commitment because I know that it is difficult for a single individual to achieve this without getting so much support from his staff. So, I must thank you in a special way and urge
• Boyo Stories by Kelvin OsaOkunbor Aviation Correspondent
you to continue the good work. For him (Captain Boyo), on his own part, he has shown me what it means to be a very hardworking person. He is what I will call a true leader because he does it for you to follow.” The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Overland Airways and Landover Aviation, Capt Edward Boyo, said the company would keep on offering excellent services in the country and beyond. Boyo, who is one of Nigeria’s experienced pilots that is still flying, extolled the government for its efforts to reposition the sector. He stressed that the Nige-
ria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has vastly improved communication and radar coverage of the airspace making it now easier for pilots to fly in Nigeria. He said pilots in the past hitherto flew with difficulty but with the recently-inaugurated Total Radar Coverage of Nigeria and Total Radio of Nigeria Project, things have changed for the better. “We are very proud to say that air transport is safe in Nigeria. Pilots in Nigeria had a lot of difficulties flying in Nigerian airspace unknown to you, but as a practising pilot I can attest that from the cockpit of Overland Airways, we have seen vast improvement in the airspace, vast improvement in the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, which has improved on the communication in the airspace and we as Overland Airways are very proud of their commitment.” Boyo said although his airline started small, it has grown rapidly, expanding its routes and operations. He added that Overland Airways has contributed significantly in developing young, talented Nigerians. “Overland Airways is developing young and new tal-
ents in the aviation industry. We have successfully put air transport on the right platform in the western axis of the country, like Ibadan, Ilorin and Minna. Prior to this, these airports were completely dead and unused, but today Overland Airways is the toast of the states.” He said at the beginning the airline suffered a lot because it was considered a small airline but it is expanding its operations. “We suffered a lot in the beginning of our operation, which may be unknown to you in terms of being considered a small airline and we have been pushed to the wall but progressively, we have made some improvement. Significantly, we have a very viable aircraft charter department and the business model that we have pursued is to be the commuter airline of Nigeria and we want to believe and hope that we will cover the country. Today we are beginning our ferry into the Eastern axis to cover Enugu, PortHarcourt, Imo, Calabar and Uyo and link up all these in a network.” Boyo also gave kudos to the Minister of Aviation, for accomplishing invincible but crucial projects in the industry.
Resuscitate Nigeria Airways, group tells Jonathan
GROUP, Congress of Aviation Unions and Profes-sional Associations (COAUPE), has urged President Goodluck Jonathan to resuscitate the moribund Nigeria Airways Limited. The group said in Lagos that resuscitating the airline does not mean 100 per cent investment by government. It called for a different module for the airline’s return. According to the congress convener, Sheri Kyari, the Federal Government should invest at least 10 per cent in the airline while the public
should be allowed to invest a sizeable chunk so that some facilities and waivers can come to the airline. Kyari said with such an airline, the government could implement the Fly Nigeria act, which will counter the recent capital flight rush. He said most airlines were suffering poor patronage and lack of support because their current business modules did not give room for investment by Nigerians as they (the public) did not see it as their own. The statement on the national carriers’ resuscitation,
signed by both the congress convener and its secretary, Austyn Njoku, reads: “The various calls for the resuscitation of the national carrier by groups and individuals following the wrong decision taken by the government of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo on Nigeria Airways in-liquidation are given a critical look in view of the enormous losses occasioned by aviation activities in the last 12 years. “A national carrier is a generator of employment and sustenance of economic and industrial development. We
hope to hear from Mr. President when he addresses the nation on May 29.” Kyari also called on the government to settle the benefits of the Nigeria Airways workers. He said: “This has brought untold hardship to them and their families, leading to untimely deaths and reduced capacity to care for themselves and their families. We are calling on Mr President to use his good office to get members of his cabinet to put the issue to rest even before being sworn in on May 29.”
NAMA reconstitutes ATC investigation panel NIGERIAN Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has reconstituted its Air Traffic Service Incident Investigation Panel (ATSIIP) to tackle safety breaches by the airlines and the controllers. Its Managing Director, Alhaji Ibrahim Auyo, while inaugurating the panel in Lagos, noted that 70 per cent of incidents in the industry is attributed to human factor, while technical takes 30 per cent. He urged members of the panel to be conscious of this while analysing reports. He said the commitment of the panel members in handling all air traffic-related incidents would assist in checking future occurrences. Auyo advised pilots to feel free to report incidents involving their flights, stressing that this could be done by filling the incident reporting form(s) or through the online service of the agency. Members of the panel are drawn from NAMA and Arik Air. Representatives of foreign airlines are expected to join the panel very soon.
Customers rate British Airways service tops BRITISH Airways has topped a Skyscanner.net poll for reliability and customer service. The survey by the online booking site polled 600 travellers on which airlines they considered the best in terms of service, reliability and family travel. The airline, according to a statement, conducts its own monthly customer service poll, which showed consistent improvement during the first quarter 2011 and a significant number of customers who would recommend the airline to others. Kola Olayinka, country commercial manager for Nigeria, says the on-going investment in on-board product including the choice and quality of in-flight entertainment and consistent commitment to service in the air and on the ground is being recognised. “We keep a careful eye on customer satisfaction, but it’s gratifying to have the results confirmed independently,” he said. British Airways is a full service global airline with a worldwide route network which covers more than 150 destinations in 75 countries. British Airways operates from Terminal 5 at London Heathrow. The state-of-the-art terminal 5 is exclusive to British Airways and is capable of handling 30 million customers a year.
Air Zimbabwe praised for securing new plane AVIATION experts say Air Zimbabwe has moved in the right direction in securing a new Boeing 737-500 from Zambian-based Air Zambezi to update its aging fleet. South African-based aviation expert Guy Leitch, said indications are the plane has been secured on a long lease agreement with cabin crew, pilots and other staff. The state-owned carrier has been virtually crippled by a strike by pilots, engineers and cabin crew. The striking pilots recently complained to Parliament they are flying outdated planes. Leitch said while the new model is more commercially viable, Air Zimbabwe management must put its house in order to achieve profitability. “While it is commendable that the airline has secured a new plane, it should also address management problems that have led to the current strike,” Leitch said.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
HEALTH THE NATION
How to fight pneumonia, P by experts ROFESSIONALS have gathered in United Arab Emirate (UAE) to focus on invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) and pneumonia in children and address the critical issue of antibiotic-resistant strains. It was at the second annual Africa and Middle East (AfME) Pneumococcal Summit. More than 200 world-class specialists in the research, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of pneumococcal disease (PD) attended the event. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), pneumococcal disease is one of the leading vaccinepreventable causes of death in infants and children younger than five years worldwide and each year, pneumonia causes an average of 20 per cent of deaths in children under five in Nigeria. Nigeria is the second country next to India globally that carries the burden of this disease and number one in Africa. Pneumococcal disease is a group of illnesses caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae. The bacteria colonise in the upper respiratory tract and can spread to other sites in the body, resulting in several different types of disease: non-invasive pneumococcal disease and invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD). IPDs include types of meningitis (inflammation of membranes surrounding the spinal cord or brain), bacteremia (infection of the blood) and pneumonia (infection of the lungs). Those who attended discussed the role of vaccination programmes in Africa and Middle East (AfME) countries and the protection of children from pneumonia and meningitis through the introduction of new vaccines. There are more than 90 strains (serotypes) of pneumoniae, but only a small subset of strains cause the majority of pneumococcal disease. Serotype 19A is an important strain of pneumococcal disease. According
Stories by Oyeyemi Gbenga-Mustapha
to a recent data, the rates of disease caused by serotype 19A are on the rise around the world. Additionally, there is the emergence of antibioticresistant strains of serotype 19A. Experts have held that several classes of antibiotics are active against pneumococci. However, the growing resistance of pneumoniae to commonly used antibiotics underscores the role of vaccines to help prevent the spread of pneumococcal disease in children up to five years. Pneumoniae accounts for a substantial portion of the estimated two million deaths from pneumonia occurring in children yearly. Pneumonia alone accounts for 19 per cent of deaths in children under five years worldwide. A California, United States’ physician now with Reddington Hospital, Lagos, Dr Adeyinka Shoroye during the congress said, “The WHO has rec-
‘Antibiotic resistance is a serious public health concern with implications for the global economy, social norms and public policies. The introduction of new vaccines — which offers broader serotype coverage and includes strains that are increasing in prevalence and are frequently resistant to antibiotics, to protect ...’
ognised that vaccines offer a viable way to combat the spread of antibiotic-resistant strains of pneumococcal disease. “Antibiotic resistance is a serious public health concern with implications for the global economy, social norms and public policies. The introduction of new vaccines — which offers broader serotype coverage and includes strains that are increasing in prevalence and are frequently resistant to antibiotics, to protect our children, is an important step forward in our fight against pneumonia and other pneumococcal diseases.” An analysis of the Mid-point assessment overview and MDGs in Nigeria in September 2008 showed that Nigeria is making only marginal progress in reducing under Five mortality and the MDGs 4, which addresses child’s health. Achievement of the UN MDGS 4 for child mortality reduction can only be accelerated through prevention of Pneumococcal Diseases by use of Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccines (PCV) in Nigeria. Pneumococcal vaccines play a critical role in reducing the burden of disease and studies have shown that, the introduction of PCV through a national immunisation program is cost effective.? According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S.A., PCV has had a substantial impact on public health reducing the rate of IPD in areas where it is routinely used. The President of the Pediatric Association of Nigeria (PAN), Dr. Dorothy Esangbedo; its Secretary Dr. Ekanem Ekure; Director, Primary Health Care, Ministry of Health, Delta State, Dr. Casmir Amiebenomo and a key Specialist, Dr. Olayinka Shoroye, are some of the Nigerians who attended the summit.
Benefits of physical activity and regular exercise Regular exercise can prevent and reverse age-related decreases in muscle mass and strength, improve balance, flexibility, and endurance, and decrease the risk of falls in the elderly. Regular exercise can help prevent coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, and high blood pressure. Regular, weight-bearing exercise can also help prevent osteoporosis by building bone strength. Regular exercise can help chronic arthritis sufferers improve their capacity to perform daily activities such as driving, climbing stairs, and opening jars. Regular exercise can help increase self-esteem and selfconfidence, decrease stress and anxiety, enhance mood, and improve general mental health. Regular exercise can help control weight gain. Consequences of physical inactivity and lack of exercise: Physical inactivity and lack of exercise are associated with heart disease and some cancers. Physical inactivity and lack of exercise are associated with Type II diabetes mellitus (also known as maturity or adult onset, non-insulin dependent diabetes). Physical inactivity and lack of exercise contribute to weight gain.
Exercise recommendations: 30 minutes of modest exercise (walking is OK) at least three to five days a week is recommended.
But, the greatest health benefits come from exercising most days of the week. Exercise can be broken up into smaller 10-minute sessions. · Start slowly and progress gradually to avoid injury or excessive soreness or fatigue. Over time, build up to 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise every day. People are never too old to start exercising. Even frail, elderly individuals (ages 70 to 90 years) can improve their strength and balance.
Exercise precautions: Individuals can begin moderate exercise, such as walking, without a medical examination. The following persons, however, should consult a doctor before beginning more vigorous exercise: Men over age 40 or women over age 50. Individuals with heart or lung disease, asthma, arthritis, or osteoporosis. Individuals who experience chest pressure or pain with exertion, or who develop fatigue or shortness of breath easily. Individuals with conditions that increase their risks of developing coronary heart disease, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cigarette smoking, high blood cholesterol, or having family members who had early onset heart attacks and coronary heart disease. •Culled from www.medicinenet.com
Sultan, Bill Gates canvass support for polio vaccine
NCE a child contracts polio, there is no cure. But there is a simple, safe and effective tool to prevent the disease: the oral polio vaccine. The vaccine is a miracle. But it behoves the government, religion and traditional leaders and every adult to ensure this miracle protects every child in Nigeria. These were the words of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar and Bill Gates of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, during the latter’s visit to canvass support for the acceptability of the vaccine by Northeners and remove Nigeria from keeping the rest of the world polio free. Four countries are still polio endemic- Pakistan, Afghanistan, India and Nigeria, jocularly referred to as the PAIN countries. According to them, the Federal Government of Nigeria, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other partners in the global polio programme are providing the vaccine, training and most of the operational costs to stop polio. The monarch said: “Tens of thousands of experienced health workers are willing. Through the surveillance system for paralysis, we now have the ability to find every child affected
by polio and conduct a rapid ‘mopup’ vaccination campaign to corral the virus and stop its spread. Now it is up to the governors, LGA chairmen, traditional and religious leaders to use the tools, knowledge and resources, and commit to polio eradication in 2011. “Lead the state and LGA immunization committees. Provide the relatively modest funds required for logistics to reach remote villages, as well as those important ‘pluses’. Educate your constituents about the lifesaving power of vaccines. Show your support by leading flag-offs and speaking to media.” In the same vein, Gates challenged the nation’s heads when he said, “The progress Nigeria’s leaders make against polio can clear the path for additional progress as well. Reach a child with oral polio vaccine, and you can reach him with other life-saving immunisations. With mosquito nets. With clean water. With education. Now is the best chance to stop the threat of polio and usher in a new day of hope and health for Nigeria. You are 95 per cent of the way there. “We have a challenge for all Nigerian leaders. Seize the opportunity to protect Nigeria’s children and stop the polio virus 100 per cent in 2011.
•Eminence Sultan of Sokoto with Bill Gates, Co-Chair of Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Let the moment pass and polio will fully return. As a leader, this is one of the simplest choices you may ever have to make. “The new leaders in Nigeria have an immediate opportunity to prove their commitment to the people. They can do it by eradicating polio. Last year, polio was fought back to its lowest levels ever recorded in the country. Now, Nigeria’s fight is at a dangerous crossroads, and the choice to forever end this crippling disease, or let it come roaring back, is in your hands.”
Going down memory lane, the duo said their partnership on polio began just over two years ago in Sokoto State. According to Gates, “Nigeria had suffered one of the worst polio outbreaks in recent history. Almost 800 Nigerian children had been paralysed and Nigeria’s polio virus had spread to neighbouring countries. This was a massive setback for Nigeria’s, and Africa’s, polio eradication effort. “Out of mutual concern, we worked to help reverse that, along with the government and our international
partners – WHO, UNICEF, Centre for Disease Control (CDC) and Rotary. Nigeria’s northern traditional leaders mobilised Nigerian families to protect every one of their children against polio. Executive Governors signed the Abuja Commitments, and vowed to oversee high-quality polio campaigns. His Excellency the President, the Health Minister, and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency supported tens of thousands of health workers in fanning out across the country to immunise every child under five.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
‘Nigerians spend N1tr on malaria control’ A
FORMER World Health Organisation (WHO) National Professional Officer (NPO) on Malaria, in the Southwest, Dr Afolabi Bamgboye, has saidNigerians spend over N1trillion ($7b) on malaria control yearly. He said this has posed serious economic burden on the people because it has affected their income. Bamgboye, who is the Chief Executive Officer for Health Environment Development Foundation (HEENDEV), said an estimated $12 billion (N2trillion) is spent by indi-
By Wale Adepoju viduals in sub-Saharan Africa for the disease, adding that everybody should play his part to ensure a malaria freecountry. He spoke at the World Malaria Day walk organised by the Lagos State Ministry of Health,Journalists Against AIDS, Roll Back Malaria partners, including WHO. The theme is Achieving progress and impact while the slogan is Play your part. He said: “We must play our part at the governmental, state and local gov-
ernment levels, even at ward level, family and individual levels. Without everyone playing his role it would be very difficult to control the disease. “ He said Lagos State is the only state in the country that is ahead of others and even countries in Africa, adding that it has started indoor residual spraying and in two weeks it would be distributing four million nets across the state. Bambgoye called for clean environment adding that malaria thrives in dirty surroundings the occupants are poor.
He called for more funding of malaria programmes at the state level, adding that trainin courses and seminars are essential. “We also need to fund radio programmes, social mobilization and behavioural change communication so that people will get to know those things that are bad so that malaria can stop killing the children,” he said. The control of malaria, he said, is not a one-man show. It is a collective effort because we all have to be united. It has to be a team-work. If somebody is doing something some-
•From left; Consultant Paediatrician, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH), Dr Rasaq Olaosebikan, Mrs Olabisi Okewole-Adio, Dr Nkiru David at the first stakeholders’ forum of Zolon Health Round Table in Lagos
Maloxine anti-malarial drug not banned, says NAFDAC
HE National Agency for Food Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has reaffirmed that Maloxine, a brand of sulfadoxine pyrimethamin marketed by St Michaels Pharmaceutical Limited is still a drug of choice in the treatment and management of malaria particularly in pregnancy Reacting to rumours making rounds particularly in the South East and South, South, a source in the Registration department of the agency, explained that was never banned by the agency. “What happened was that the exclusive marketer of the product St Michaels Pharmaceutical limited,stopped importing for sometime and unscrupulous Nigerians cashed in and started import-
ing substandard variants. The only Maloxine registered by the agency remains the brand marked by St Michaels Pharmaceuticals. We can attest for its efficacy and safety in the treatment of malaria” At presently, sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) is the only antimalarial medicine for which data on efficacy and safety for IPT is available from controlled clinical trials, and WHO recommends that at least two doses of SP are given during regularly scheduled antenatal visits after the first trimester Mr Nnamdi Onyeukwu, Suprintendent Pharmacist of St Michaels Pharmaceuticals said the company has put in place effective anti-faking measures to halt the
activities of fakers. “ We have in place Maloxine in a new pack with silver linning hologram, which can be identified by any consumer. But we have always advised that patients should source the product from only registered pharmaceutical retail outlets. Malaria in pregnancy is a major cause of maternal morbidity worldwide and leads to poor birth outcomes. Pregnant women are more prone to complications of malaria infection than nongravid women.. Dr Jide Coker, National Coordinator, National Malaria Control programme Federal Ministry of Health who denied the ban of sulfadoxine pyrimethamin said the drug is particularly useful for Intermittent Prevention Treat-
ment (IPT) in pregnancy WHO recommends a package of interventions for the prevention and control of malaria during pregnancy. This comprises IPT to address the heavy burden of asymptomatic infections among pregnant women residing in areas of moderate or high transmission of P. falciparum, use of insecticide treated nets (ITNs), and access to effective case management for malaria illness and anaemia. Malaria kills more than a million people each year, mainly young children and pregnant women. It is caused by parasites that are injected into the bloodstream by infected mosquitoes. The most deadly form, Plasmodium falciparum, is responsible for nine out of 10 deaths from malaria.
where, the government has to know, where you are doing it and who is funding your organisation. In this way we can collectively put our hand together and move forward. He said the issue of environment is also very important, adding that the Ministry of Environment should be brought in because mosquitoes thrive in the environment. “If your environment is not properly controlled mosquitoes will thrive there. The Ministry of Works and Housing should also be brought in because people should build houses and put broken bottles on their fences. When it rains, water are accumulated in these bottles, thereby forming a breathing ground for mosquitoes. He called for a scientific ways of doing things where there is evidencebased results, adding that transparency and accountability are equally necessary. Bamgboye said money allocated for malaria control should be properly accounted for under strict supervision and evaluation. Malaria control, he added, has to be a teamwork among the government, civil society organisations, and international agencies, adding that they all need to sit as stakeholders to resolve the issue. “Malaria will keep making us to be poorer because we will be spending money where we do not need to spend it. All we need is to galvanised ourselves, to socially mobilise ourselves and to come together as a team and clean the environment,” he said. Bamgboye said there is a need for political will and big organisations to get involved. “If every worker in the country pays N5 every month from his salary through a common source, everybody would be able to afford a net, artemisimin-based therapy (ACT). He said there is the need to fund research centres so that researches are carried out on malaria, adding that Nigeria has plants that have active ingredients useful for the manufacturing of malaria drugs. “We also need to have equipment to work with like other countries in Africa.” Bamgboye challenged Nigeria to manufacture its drugs, adding that importation is a National Security issue because drugs may be laden with something you don’t know about. According to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO’s) representative in Southwest, National Professional Officer (NPO), Malaria, Dr Tolu Arowolo, the United Nations’ had designated 2010 to fight malaria with the Roll Back Malaria programme but at 2011 malaria is still an issue in the country. She said the people need to play their part in ensuring that malaria is totally eradicated, adding that malaria makes them poor.
‘Early treatment of severe traumatic bleeding patients saves lives’ A N hour can make the difference between life and death when using tranexamic acid to treat injured patients with severe bleeding, a study by a global network of researchers has suggested. New analysis of the CRASH-2 trial showed that rapid treatment, preferably within an hour of injury, dramatically reduces deaths from bleeding in injured patients. The discovery, published in The Lancet, has significant implications for Nigerian patients. Tranexamic acid is an old drug which is widely available in India. It has been used to treat heavy menstrual periods, but only recently with the completion of the large international CRASH-2 trial has it become known that it can save lives in severe traumatic bleeding. According to a team of indigenous researchers, led by Dr Adefemi
Afolabi, from the University College Hospital, Ibadan, approximately 10, 500 people die in Nigeria every year from severe injury related bleeding. The research showed that giving tranexamic acid to patients within the first hour of injury could save the lives of over 1, 500 patients yearly. And that it is vital that patients with severe bleeding resulting from injuries are taken to hospital as quickly as possible to receive this treatment early. If treatment is delayed beyond four hours after the injury, it is unlikely to be effective and might even be harmful. According to the arrow head of the team on behalf of the researchers in Nigeria: “These results show that early administration of tranexamic acid is critical. They have
major implications for trauma care provision not only in Nigeria but worldwide.” Giving the analysisi of the trial code named ‘The CRASH-2’, Dr Afolabi said the trial involved 20,211 adult trauma patients in 40 countries with, or at risk, of significant bleeding who were randomly assigned to either tranexamic acid or a placebo within eight hours of injury. Over 2,000 patients from 28 hospitals in Nigeria participated in this research, which was coordinated by Dr Edward Komolafe of the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching hospital, Ife. First published in The Lancet last June, the trial found that administration of tranexamic acid, which reduces clot breakdown and is used to treat heavy menstrual periods -
reduced mortality by around 10 per cent. “However, in the latest analysis, the authors looked at subgroups of patients who had received tranexamic acid within an hour of the injury; between one and three hours; or more than three hours, to explore the relationship between timing of administration of the drug and its effect. Early treatment (within an hour of injury) reduced the risk of death due to bleeding by more than 30 per cent. Treatment given between one and three hours cut the risk of bleeding death by 20 per cent but there was no benefit if treatment was delayed beyond three or four. Dr Afolabi added: “In patients with severe bleeding whether from accidents or violence, rapid treatment with tranexamic acid is vital an hour could mean a lifetime. The implication of this for the Nigerian
health care delivery system is the urgent need to make tranexamic acid readily available and to transfer injured patients rapidly to hospitals where this life-saving drug can be administered within one hour of injury”.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
•A cross section of participants at the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS’) Ministers of Health Meeting, held in Lome, Togo
Pharmacist bags award
HE President of Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Azubuike Okwor, has been listed to receive 2011 International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) fellow award in September at the FIP Pharmacy World Congress in Hyderabad, India. Okwor, who is also the Managing Director of Cosmos Pharmacy, Lagos has emerged the first African pharmacist recognised by the international body of pharmacists. The award, according to the General Secretary of FIP, Ton Hoek is usually bestowed on pharmacists, who have exhibited strong leadership internationally and have contributed to the advancement of the pharmaceutical sciences and practice of pharmacy. Fellows are expected to use the designation “FFIP.” “As a global federation, it is of utmost importance to FIP to pay
homage to those individuals, who are advancing the aims of the federation in an international community that is simultaneously expanding and becoming smaller, and it is in this spirit that the FIP fellowships are conferred,” Hoek said Okwor, who had held several positions in both national and African Federation of Pharmacists, including Fellowship of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists (WAPCP), received his letter of nomination last week. “You have consistently proven to uphold the qualities and professional characteristics deemed by FIP to deserve this special recognition,” the statement stated. Okwor is expected to receive the award during the opening ceremony of the 2011 FIP Pharmacy World Congress in Hyderabad, India,
Foundation strengthens HIV/ AIDS treatment in Nigeria
taking place on September 4, 2011. The FIP fellow award was established in September 2004, recognise individual members of FIP, who have exemplified through their career strong international leadership, distinguished work in pharmaceutical science or practice, and who have served FIP over and above the standard required of them.
‘The award, according to the General Secretary of FIP, Ton Hoek is usually bestowed on pharmacists, who have exhibited strong leadership internationally and have contributed to the advancement of the pharmaceutical sciences and practice of pharmacy’
‘Antiretrovirals protect partners from infection’
STUDY (HPTN 052) designed to evaluate whether immediate versus delayed use of ART by HIV-infected individuals would reduce transmission of HIV to their HIV-uninfected partners and potentially benefit the HIV-infected individual as well has been concluded. Initiation of ART by HIV-infected individuals substantially protected their HIV-uninfected sexual partners from acquiring HIV infection, with a 96 per cent reduction in risk of HIV transmission. Findings from the study were re-
viewed by an independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB). The DSMB recommended that the results be released as soon as possible and that the findings be shared with study participants and investigators. HPTN 052 is the first randomised clinical trial to show that treating an HIV-infected individual with ART can reduce the risk of sexual transmission of HIV to an uninfected partner. Mobilisation boosts HIV testing rates in developing Countries The addition of community mo-
bilisation activities and support services to a mobile HIV counselling and testing programme can greatly improve the rates of initial and repeat testing in remote rural communities. This was, according to new research, is supported by the HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN) and the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). Results from the “Project Accept” study (HPTN 043), conducted in rural communities in Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Thailand, and were published online in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.
Nigeria’s efforts at combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic has been complemented by a new project called PASER (PharmAccess Africa Studies to Evaluate Resistance). Supported by the Heineken Africa Foundation and managed by the PharmAccess Foundation, this project is the largest coordinated effort in Sub-Saharan Africa to monitor HIV drug resistance. Six African countries hosting 15 clinics, laboratories and research institutions are joined in a unique collaborative network to collect data on (emerging) HIV drug resistance. Over 3,000 adults, who receive antiretroviral treatment (ART) are being monitored. With funding of the Heineken Africa Foundation, Nigeria will be added to this study, supporting the implementation of a monitoring programme to assess
the emergence of HIV Drug Resistance in both Nigerian adults and children, who are receiving Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART). The Nigerian PASER initiative was announced at the HIV/AIDS Symposium hosted by Heineken in Amsterdam earlier this year. The event brought together leading figures from national governments, NGOs, the public health community and industry from across the globe. The symposium was particularly honoured by the participation of Ms. Morolake Odetoyinbo, director of the Global Fund and Chief Executive Officer of Positive Action for Treatment Access (PATA). Under the theme ‘Sharing Responsibilities in the ‘World of Work’ in Africa’, the conference reflected on three key issues: access to medication, resistance to treatment and the gap in funding.
Global Fund gets new chair The Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has elected Martin Dinham, a former Director-General in the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, as the new Board Chair. Dr. Mphu Ramatlapeng, Health Minister of the Kingdom of Lesotho, was elected Vice-Chair. At its meeting in Geneva, the Board also approved a comprehensive reform agenda to maximise the effectiveness of the Global Fund. The reform agenda include measures for greater financial controls and risk management, greater value for money and further improvements in the way the Global Fund manages its grants. It approved the framework for an ambitious five-year agenda, which will set the direction and targets for the organisation. The Board will approve a finalised strategy and work plan at its second meeting of the year. The Board reaffirmed its continued commitment to full transparency and the independence of the Office of Inspector-General. It also clarified an issue of eligibil-
ity for middle income countries to apply for funding from The Global Fund. A career British civil servant, Martin Dinham, has operated in senior leadership roles in the public service, advising successive Prime Ministers and other Cabinet Ministers on key issues. These include a position as senior advisor to the Governor of Hong Kong in the lead up to its handover to China and most recently as Director-General for International Issues in the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID). “I am delighted to accept this position at a time when the UK Government has strongly endorsed the Global Fund’s performance in its recent Multilateral Aid Review, an assessment which I very much share,” said Mr Dinham. “I am looking forward to utilise my experience over many years in the public sector in management and organisational change in supporting the Secretariat and the Board in taking forward their ambitious reform agenda.”
Pupils, parents for LUTH’s gum care
T •Director, Smile 360, Dr. Amy Traore-Shumbusho (middle) flanked by Managing Director/Creative Director, Etu Odi Communications, Uzoma Okoye (left) and Client Services, Temitayo Ige, at a briefing on “Project Smile” competition at Ikoyi, Lagos.
HE Child Dental Health Department (CDHD) La gos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) is to educate pupils and parents on basic gun care. They will also be conducted round the department. The department’s annual
Oral Health Awareness programme for children, according to a statement by the LUTH’s Chief Medical Director, Prof Akin Osibogun, is to commemorate the Children’s Day. The event will come up at the LUTH Dental Centre by 9:00am on May 27.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
NEWS FRSC flags off ‘Operation Restoration‘
Gowon calls for tolerance among religious groups
ORMER Head of State and Chairman, Nigeria Prays, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (rtd), has called for tolerance and understanding between Christians and Muslims to check ‘’unjustified aggressions and killings’’ in the country. Gowon spoke at a one-day national prayer rally, organised by the Southeast zone of the organisation, which had “Rebuilding our national desolation’’ as its theme. He noted that the post-election violence in some Northern states was unfortunate after a fair, credible and violence-free election, adding: “those who engaged in killing others without cause will not have peace. “Nigerians and Africans should eschew all forms of violence and cruelty to one another. “May we value the life of our fellowmen and women. May we never take any life for granted or with impunity; may God touch the hearts of those who are that way inclined, to desist from such acts
Ex-Bank PHB boss Atuche surrenders to EFCC From Yusuf Alli, Managing Editor, Northern Operation
BARELY three days after he was declared wanted, a former Managing Director of Bank PHB, Francis Atuche yesterday surrendered to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). Atuche is however being detained alongside his wife, Elizabeth in the Lagos Office of the agency. There were indications last right that the Atuches and two others may be arraigned today before Justice Okunnu of the Ikeja Judicial Division of the High Court of Lagos State. According to findings, the ex-Bank PHB Managing Director, who had allegedly traveled abroad for an undisclosed mission, reported to the EFCC office in Lagos . A source said: “To our surprise, Atuche came to our office in respect of the fresh charges against him. He is already being interrogated in custody. “We may arraign Atuche, his wife and two others in court on Tuesday over alleged N8.5billion fraud.” The Head of Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Mr. Femi Babfemi, confirmed that Atuche had reported to the commission. The four suspects may face a three-count charge today.
of evil. “Instill in us Lord, the virtue of righteousness in dealing with one another, especially the disadvantaged in our society.’’ Gowon also cautioned the media to condemn the postelection violence in a responsible way so that it would not lead to misunderstanding in the country. According to him, sponsors of violence were not the well-known religious leaders, but some leaders in-between their ranks that incite the youths. He also praised the youth corps members, particularly those who fell victims to the violence and said: “This group of Nigerians has paid
the ultimate sacrifice and they are the heroes of the free and fair elections we had. They would continue to be remembered.’’ The former head of state said that the recent incident would make the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme more significant and its members adequately protected because of the enormous benefits of the scheme. Also speaking, the National Vice-President of the Pentecostal Fellowship in Nigeria (PFN) in the Southeast, Bishop Paul Nwachukwu, called on Christian leaders to stop collecting gifts from politicians as the latter were bound to take their pound of flesh at a later date.
From Sanni Ologun, Abuja
He said: “Church leaders are shouting and condemning corruption, but they are part of it through their commitments and bad relationship with politicians, especially during electioneering periods.’’
HE Federal Road Safety Commission(FRSC) yesterday flagged-off a one-week nationwide special patrol codenamed ‘ Operation Restoration ‘, to run from May 16 -21. The FRSC, in a statement in Abuja, said this was in furtherance to its renewed determination to adopt a holistic approach to road crash prevention and management across the country. Coming on the heels of last week’s inauguration of the United Nations (UN) Decade of Action on Road Safety, operation restoration, according to the statement “will entail intensive patrol along designated routes on the nation’s highways, rescue operations, public enlightenment campaign and strict enforcement of traffic rules and regulations.” The Corps Public Education Officer, Nseobong Akpabio, said the “nationwide exercise was deliberately structured to re-awaken and invigorate nationwide enforcement patrol as a result of noticeable lull in highway operation in view of the Corps active participation in election duties and sustained involvement in the post-election Presidential inauguration, slated for May 29.” Party of the statement, signed by Akpabio reads: “Details of the exercise indicate that it would strive towards curtailing all forms of road traffic violation likely to upset the normal flow of traffic, curbing road vices such as driving against driving against traffic, learner drivers who contradict existing contradiction, real time rescue operations and removal of obstruction from the highway.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Police quiz Ekiti Senator over ‘forged documents’ •Court orders arrest of Anambra senator
HE Senator representing Ekiti Central Senatorial District, Festus Bode Ola, was yesterday quizzed by the police for presenting documents believed to have been forged to the court. Ola, who contested with Babafemi Ojudu on the platform of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), lost during the primaries and allegedly went to court with forged documents to claim he was the party’s authentic candidate. The Senator, who was quizzed over the matter last Friday, according to sources, was allowed to go home on self-recognition after he promised to supply the police with the documents he gave the court. Ola was said to have been allowed to go home after several hours of interrogation by officers attached to the Monitoring Unit of the Inspector General of Police, Hafiz Ringim’s office. Efforts to get Ola’s comments proved abortive as his phone returned a “switched off” signal. A Magistrate’s Court in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has ordered the arrest of Senator Alphonsus Igbeke for allegedly forging and “using as genuine forged documents”. Igbeke, who represents Anambra North Senatorial District at the National Assembly was said to have lost the pri-
‘The Senator who was earlier quizzed over the matter last Friday, according to sources was allowed to go home on self-recognition ‘ From Sanni Ologun, Abuja
maries organised by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to Prince John Emeka. The warrant dated May 13, according to the magistrate,
is to ensure that Igbeke is arrested and arraigned before the court to answer charges of forgery preferred against him by the police. Emeka, through his lawyers, Pelican Attorneys, had in a letter addressed to the IGP dated March 9, 2011 urged the IGP to investigate how Igbeke got the certified true copies of Anambra North Senatorial primary result and report held on January 10, 2011. A letter signed by Hon. C.J. Chinwuba on behalf of Pelican Attorneys, said: “The issue of who won the primary election of Anambra North Senatorial Zone is presently under litigation – Senator Alphonsus Uba Igbeke v. INEC, People Democratic Party (PDP) and Prince John O. Emeka. “My client applied for and obtained from INEC office, certified true copies of Anambra North Senatorial primary result and report on the senatorial primary election held on 10/01/11 at Johneb Hotel Awkuzu, Anambra state. “The photocopies of the two documents are here attached and, marked annexure 1A and 1B. The documents obtained from INEC office by my client was found to be at variance with copies of same records filed and exhibited by Senator Alphonsus Uba Igbeke, which was purported to be certified true copies from INEC office at Awka.”
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 Chadian Ambassador Mr. Issa Ibrahim presenting his letter 123456789012345678901234567890121 to President Jonathan 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 123456789012345678901234567890121 ??????????????????????????????
•Ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago to Nigeria, Nyahuma Muntuhotep Obika (left) presenting his letter of credence to President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa in Abuja...yesterday With them is Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Idi Hong
•Ethiopian Ambassador to Nigeria, Ali Abdo Suleiman signing the register after presenting his letter to President Jonathan...yesterday. With him is his wife, Halimat. •Spanish Anbassador Mr. Alvaro Castillo presenting his letter to the President.
PHOTOS:AKIN OLADOKUN AND STATE HOUSE
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
American ex-governors to lecture governors-elect in Nigeria •Tinubu, Duke, Makarfi are facilitators
WO ex- governors from the United States (US) and other facilitators are to lecture newly elected governors in Nigeria at an induction course before their inauguration on May 29. Mr Asishana Okauru, Director-General of the Governors Forum (NGF), made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja yesterday. He said the three-day induction course, which would begin tomorrow, would attract local and foreign facilitators. He said the NGF secretariat had the full cooperation of all stakeholders, adding that facilitators for the induction had started arriving in the country.
“Mr Bill Richardson, former Governor of New Mexico, and Mr Douglas Wilder, former Governor of Virginia, under the Democratic Party, would serve as facilitators,’’ Okauru said. He said Wilder was expected to arrive in Nigeria on Monday(yesterday), while other facilitators were Mr Howard Jeter, former U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, and three former Chiefs of Staff in the U.S government. He said former governors Bola Tinubu of Lagos State, Mr Donald Duke of Cross River and Alhaji Ahmed Makarfi of Kaduna State had also been contacted to act as facilitators at the induction. Okauru added that the gov-
ernors of Rivers, Delta, Jigawa, Sokoto and Lagos State would come in as participants and facilitators at the induction. He said the American Governors Association (AGA), which the NGF was modelled after, had provided it with materials and human resources to facilitate the induction. “If you look at what they have done in putting the materials and personnel together, you will realise that they have done a lot. “What they have done by helping us contact some of these governors and bringing them on board would have cost us lots of money but they did it for us and also provided us with classified materials,’’ Okauru said.
Fayemi dissolves caretaker committees
KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi, has dissolved the local government caretaker committees with immediate effect. According to a statement in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, his action was in accord with Section 4 of Local Government Transition Law of Ekiti State 2002 which
From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
stipulates three-month tenure for a single term, renewable once in like duration. The statement directed the caretaker committees’ chairmen to handover to the directors of administration
in their respective local governments. Fayemi thanked the chairmen and members of the committees for their selfless services to the state. He wished them the best in their future engagements. The caretaker committees were appointed in November 2010 after the dissolution of the Segun Oni councils.
Inflation rate falls to 11.6% •Remains above CBN target
IGERIA’s inflation rate declined to 11.6 percent last month as the Central Bank (CBN) struggles to bring it below 10 percent. The inflation rate fell from 12.8 per cent a month earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement yesterday in Abuja. Central bank Governor Lamido Sanusi on March 22 raised the benchmark interest rate for a second time this year, lifting it one percentage point to 7.5 per cent to stabilisse the naira and slow inflation. Further rate increases may be limited to stimulate lending and because pressure on the naira to weaken has eased, Sanusi said on May 5.
The bank “is expected to keep interest rates unchanged when the Monetary Policy Committee meets” next week, Bismarck Rewane, chief executive officer of Lagosbased brokerage Financial Derivatives Co., told Bloomberg by phone yesterday. Demand for dollars at central bank auctions peaked at $586.4 million on March 28, before dropping to a low of $277.1 million on April 27. The CBN keeps the naira within three per cent of N150 to the dollar at the auctions. Nigeria’s economy, the third biggest on the continent after South Africa and Egypt, will grow about 7.9 per cent in the second quarter, accord-
•Finance Minister Olusegun Aganga
ing to the statistics office. The economy is projected to expand 7.98 percent this year, compared with 7.85 percent in 2010.
Jonathan directs review of foreign policy
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday directed a review of Nigeria’s foreign policy, to reflect current realities, after 50 years of independence. Jonathan gave the directive during a breakfast meeting with the Presidential Advisory Council on International Relations at the State House, Abuja. “After 50 years of independence, it is time to review the country’s foreign policy, in line with modern realities and international developments,’’ he said. The president agreed with the Chairman of the Advisory Council, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, that the “successful, transparent and credible’’ elections conducted in April has elevated the country’s democratic credentials in the international community. The president expressed appreciation to members of the Council for their consistent credible advice.
Earlier, Anyaoku had congratulated Jonathan for his success in the election and for delivering on his “promise to conduct credible elections’’. The Council offered suggestions on many areas of national and international interest to Nigeria. In a related development yesterday, the President said his administration would pay special attention to the strengthening of economic relations with the international community. The President made the statement when he received the letters of credence of five new ambassadors at the State House yesterday. The ambassadors are Mr. Alvaro Aguilar of Spain, Mr. Ali Suleiman of Ethiopia, Mr. Alain Nyamitwe of Burundi, Mr. Issa Ibrahim of Chad and Mr. Nyahuma Obika, the
High Commissioner of Trinidad and Tobago. “In the next four years, we will pay special attention to the improvement and strengthening of economic ties with our partners in the international community as a foundation for stability and growth of our country,’’ Jonathan said. He specifically told Obika that Nigeria was interested in cooperating with Trinidad and Tobago in the oil and gas sector, while he welcomed the proposal for energy cooperation by Aguilar of Spain. The envoys congratulated Jonathan for ‘winning a wellconducted national election’ and assured him of the cooperation and support of their countries in Nigeria’s efforts to strengthen economic, social and cultural relations with others.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Ijebu-Ode tenants groan under yoke of high rents J IMOH and Kafayat got married not long ago and they have since been living in a one-
room apartment in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State. In anticipation of an enlarged family, they had planned to move into a bigger abode in the course of time. However, such an expectation has become far-fetched, as the combined salaries of the couple cannot actualise their dream. Residents of Ijebu-Ode complain that house rents in the ancient town, with an estimated population of 200,000, have become unbearable. They complain that the high accommodation costs in Ijebu-Ode have somewhat compounded the socio-economic problems of an average resident. “Landlords and agents are virtually suffocating tenants in the town with outrageous house rents”, laments a tenant, Lateef Olawale. While Ijebu-Ode remains the heartland of the ancient Ijebu Kingdom and one of Ogun State’s major centres of commerce, industry and agriculture, its rising population has brought about myriad accommodation problems. As a result of the high rents on the limited accommodation in the town, many residents are now relocating to settlements on the outskirts of the town, where they pay cheaper rents. Estate agents said a modest flat in Ijebu-Ode today goes for between N120,000 and N140,000, depending on the location, while a one-room apartment in large buildings, popularly known as “face-me-I-face-you”, attracts rents ranging from N48,000 to N65,000 per annum. Many residents, nonetheless, said by the standards of the town, the rents are excessive and out of reach of the average inhabitant. Hajia Monsurat Orelope, a civil servant, said the situation is bad because landlords and agents collude to rip off tenants. “The landlords are usually too happy to increase rents at will, while the agents insist on advance payments of two to three years, so as to push up their com-
•Ogun State Governor Gbenga •Oba Sikiru Adetona, Awujale of Daniel Ijebu-Ode By Victor Adeoti, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)
missions. “They also paid the main rent with all sorts of charges, such as ‘agreement fee’, ‘legal fee’ and ’10-per-cent agent’s fee’,’’ she said. Orelope said: “The exploitation is just too much but we hope that a time will come, when there will be enough houses to go round for both the rich and the poor.’’ Observers noted that while the accommodation crisis persists, some residents are already devising their own strategies to solve the problem. A businessman Mr. Ayodele Salami, said it is now commonplace for people to hurriedly build one or two rooms on lands on the town’s outskirts to escape perceived rip-offs by “shylock’’ landlords and estate agents. “I, for instance, hurriedly moved to my uncompleted fourbedroom flat, with no windows and ceilings. We used cement bags to cover the windows; all in the bid to escape from the hands of these wicked landlords,” he said. The residents are calling on government to take urgent steps to curtail the exorbitant rents
‘The exploitation is just too much but we hope that a time will come, when there will be enough houses to go round for both the rich and the poor.’ warning that if nothing is done the town will soon become a “nogo” area for tenants. Their fears are further heightened by the fact that the bulk of civil servants, who work in several towns in Ijebuland, live in Ijebu-Ode because of its central location. While Ijebu-Ode’s strategic location in the Lagos-Sagamu-OreBenin route seems to confer on the town a lot of economic advantages, observers stressed that such benefits ought to be complement-
•Housing Minister Chuka Odom
ed with adequate and affordable accommodation to boost economic activities in the town. Also, many residents called on the government to do more to ease housing problems in the state by enacting an edict to regulate rents and complementing same with the establishment of a rents tribunal. Two tenants, Mr Kazeem Dalemo and Mrs Fehintola Lawal, said an additional measure would be to proscribe all advance rents payments that are in excess of six months. However, such suggestions do not go down well with the landlords, who insist that they are only responding to the economic demands of the times. A landlord, Alhaji Isiaka Yahaya, rejected such calls, saying landlords are not to blame for the high rents. “Don’t blame landlords for the hike; you sell what you have, at prices you consider best, to make ends meet, while the buyer has a choice of buying or not buying. “Most of us, like others, have children in schools. Our children, who have left school are unemployed and are still living under our roofs. “Where do you want us to get
money to take care of our responsibilities,” he asked rhetorically. Yahaya added: “Although we sympathise with the tenants, the problem is simply caused by the shortage of houses and the high cost of building materials. “Even the houses built several years ago are being rehabilitated at costs twice their costs of construction. “It costs a lot to build houses now and because of that, not many people are building houses to rent out.“ Another landlord and estate agent, who simply identifies himself as “Double Alhaji”, blamed the frequent hike in rents on the current economic situation in the country. He said the high costs of building materials consequently brought about high accommodation costs. “Since the prices of building materials like cement, sand, blocks and roofing sheets are always spiralling upwards, house rents must of necessity go up,’’ he said. He criticises the Federal Government for not doing enough to ameliorate the housing problems nationwide, adding that it has failed to build low-cost houses and regulate the prices of building materials. “If governments can build houses with all the vast funds at their disposal and sell them to the people, nobody will blame landlords for fixing house rents arbitrarily,’’ he said. “Let our government address the issue of poverty and that will solve the whole problem,”an estate agent, Ibrahim Hassan said. “We, too, have to devise means of surviving under the present harsh economic environment,’’ he added. Analysts said the housing problem is dire, while creating enormous pressures on individuals and families. This, they said, limits productivity and the nation’s economic growth. The analysts, therefore, urged the government and the private sector to collaborate and pool resources to build good, affordable houses for the citizens.
Ibadan foam maker dies CHAIRMAN of Kanmi Foam Limited, Ibadan, Oyo State Prince Isaac Adekanmi Omole, is dead. He died on May 10 at the University College Hospital, Ibadan, after a protracted illness. He was 55. A statement by his family said there would be service of songs at his residence, Olukoya Street, Rab Area, Felele, Ibadan tomorrow. There will be a Christian wake keep at his home town, Oke Opo, GRA, Ilesa, Osun State, on Thursday. His remains will be buried on Friday at Oke Opo.
•Group Managing Director/Chief Executive, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc, Mrs Funke Osibodu (third left), her husband (second right) and siblings performing earth to earth and dust to dust rites at the graveside of her late mother, Muriel Marion Yetunde Johnston.
•The late Omole
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
Court warns banks against implementing MoU
R Justice Okechuwku Okeke
of the Federal High Court, Lagos, yesterday barred Finbank Plc and First City Monument Bank (FCMB) against taking further steps on a purported Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)they signed recently. Ruling on an ex-parte application filed by the former Managing Director of Finbank, Okey Nwosu, and a former Executive Director, Dayo Famoroti, Justice Okeke stopped the banks from altering the shareholding structure of Finbank in favour of FCMB. He said the orders would subsist pending the determination of the substantive suit. Nwosu and Famoroti are
By Eric Ikhilae
among top bank chiefs removed by the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Sanusi Lamido, in the wake of the banking reforms initiated by him. But the duo are challenging the propriety of the MoU signed by Finbank and FCMB without recourse to them as shareholders of Finbank. After entertaining arguments from the plaintiffs’ lawyer, Onyebuchi Aniakor, Justice Okeke also ordered that the defendants should be served the originating summons and other processes through the company secretary or any other officer at the Head Office at 1, Akin Adesola Street, Victoria Island, La-
gos. The court directed the plaintiffs to file an undertaking on damages should it turn out that the orders ought not to have been made. Justice Okeke fixed May 26 for the hearing of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction. Nwosu and Famoroti named Finbank and its Managing Director, Suzanne Iroche; two Executive Directors, Adam Nuru and Omoruyi Iyamu, as codefendants. Other defendants are: nine non-Executive Directors –Theo Osanakpo, Iheanyichukwu Anyadiegwu, Agnes Ebubedike, E.O Ofobi, Ernest Oji, Aliyu Gafar, Opeyemi Oye, Lamba Zannah and Usman Umaru, FCMB and CBN. The plaintiffs, in the petition brought pursuant to Rule 4 (A) (I) of the Compa-
nies Proceedings Rules, 1992 and Sections 310 and 311 of the Companies and Allied matters Act, 2004, claimed that they were shocked to discover through newspaper publications that Finbank and FCMB had already signed MoU for business combinations under the active supervision of the CBN without recourse to them as shareholders of Finbank. The plaintiffs averred that when they made further enquiry, they discovered that it had already been agreed under the said purported MoU that the entire capital of Finbank will be cancelled, adding that the bank will be dissolved without winding up. Nwosu and Famoroti claimed that they were illegally detained by the Economic and Financial
Crimes Commission (EFCC) till date when they went to report at the Lagos office of the agency in line with the conditions attached to the bail granted them by the Federal High Court in Lagos. They alleged that since taking over the affairs of Finbank, the CBN-appointed management had been running the bank in an oppressive and illegal manner without recourse to shareholders and their shares. They are urging the court to mandate Finbank directors and CBN to render the account of their dealings in the bank ever since they took over. They also want the court to direct that a general meeting of Finbank should be conveyed for the purposes of considering the report of the stewardship of the CBN-imposed management and also to elect
directors from the shareholders. They are also seeking an order restraining the respondents from disposing the investments and assets of Finbank including but not limited to the business operations and affairs to FCMB or any other similar entity.
CPC alleges plot by PDP to arrest its members
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HE Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) yesterday raised the alarm over an alleged plot by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to arrest and detain leaders of the party. A statement by CPC National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Rotimi Fashakin said the planned arrest would be tied to a “spurious security report” to disrupt the May 29 inauguration. “But the real reason for the arrest is to scuttle the planned use of forensic evidence to buttress our peti-
From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
tion on the massive manipulations of the April 16, 2011 presidential elections.” The statement reads: “The CPC, wishes to bring to the attention of Nigerians and the international community of a devious plan by the PDP-led Federal Government to arrest and clamp in indefinite detention, notable leaders of our great party. “As a prelude to this sinister plot, a report has been leaked to a section of the
media that is in cahoots with the PDP-led Federal Government in using subterfuge to hoodwink unsuspecting Nigerians. “Meanwhile, we are not unaware of the cash handouts to the band of renegades (formerly of CPC) that made the infamous press statement, denouncing the decision of the party’s national leadership to file its petition against the conduct and results of the Presidential elections. “We hereby use this medium to appeal to our loyal party faithful and admir-
ers, across the nation’s geopolitical divides and abroad, to remain calm in the midst of the ceaseless tribulation from the ruling PDP. Our petition at the elections tribunal shall be pursued with resoluteness and undiminished fervency.”
PUBLIC NOTICE ADERAMO
I formerly known and addressed as Miss Rashidat Adebukola Aderamo, now wiss to be known and addressed as Mrs Rashidat Adebukola Hamza.All former documents remain valid. University of Ilorin, Nigerian Law School and the general public should take note.
PUBLIC NOTICE LIVING BROTHERS CLUB OF IFO, OGUN STATE The general public is hereby notified that the above named association has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission for registration under part ‘C’ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No 1 of 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Mr. Nnaeto Kelechi 2. Mr. Ezenagu Ugochukwu 3. Mr. Ndinkoha George The Aims and Objectives 1. To formulate and execute plans on the matters of common interest of the members. 2. To bring together all adult males from all walks of life. 3. To foster unity, goodwill and friendship among members of the club and society at large. Signed: Barrister Iheanacho N. Iheanacho
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
FOREIGN NEWS Too early to see effects of bin Laden’s death, says US Gen
HE second-ranking United States General in Afghanistan said yesterday it was too early to tell if the killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in neighboring Pakistan will have an impact on the Afghan war effort. His comments come as the US tries to hang on to gains in Taliban strongholds, often at the cost of lives. Yesterday, four NATO service members were killed in an explosion in the south. The international military coalition did not provide details or the nationalities of the dead. The latest deaths make a total of 16 NATO service members killed so far this month, and 167 so far this year. Lt. Gen. David Rodriguez, who is in charge of NATO’s joint command, said that al Qaeda as a movement was not based on bin Laden’s leadership alone, and that the military has been waiting to see how his May 2 death will affect the strength of the terror group and its influence in Afghanistan. Rodriguez said bin Laden’s killing by U.S. Navy SEALs in the garrison city of Abbottabad had “no effects that we can see at this point. It’s too early to see that, but we are continuing to watch that over time.” According to Rodriguez, al Qaeda has fewer than 100 operatives in Afghanistan, mostly providing support and resources to insurgents. “The al Qaeda movement is not based on just one individual and we will have to see what that impact is ... and how much that will be on the strength of al Qaeda and associated movements. But that is yet to be seen,” Rodriguez said. There has been hope that the killing of bin Laden will weaken the terror group’s connections with the Taliban, especially with leaders such as Mullah Mohammed Omar who had personal ties to the dead al Qaeda leader. Pakistan may also feel pressured to help bring some Afghan Taliban leaders to the negotiating table. The Taliban’s leadership is thought to be hiding in Pakistan. Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who has often called on Pakistan for help with the Taliban, has been pushing for reconciliation with the insurgents. The United States has also been promoting what it has called a diplomatic surge to help find a nonmilitary solution to the fighting.
Pakistan questions teenager wanted in US
AKISTANI authorities interrogated a teenager yesterday wanted in the United States on charges of financing and supporting the al Qaeda-linked Pakistani Taliban, local intelligence officials said. Alam Zeb, 19, was charged in Florida along with his mother and a family friend. He is the grandson of the imam of a Florida mosque who was arrested in the United States along with his two sons on Saturday on the same charges of creating a network that moved funds from the United States to Taliban supporters in Pakistan. “He (Zeb) is being interrogated by the security officials at one of their facilities,” an intelligence official told Reuters. Zeb, his mother and a family friend all live in Swat Valley in the northwest, where the army launched a major operation in 2009 to clear the area of al Qaeda-linked insurgents. The college student denied any links with the militants. Zeb said his grandfather, Pakistani-born American Hafiz Muhammed Sher Ali Khan, 76, had sent money back to Pakistan only to help poor relatives rebuild their houses damaged in fighting in Swat between the army and Pakistani Taliban. Some money was used to renovate a religious school, Zeb said. Pakistani officials said they had not received any U.S. request to help track down the three suspects in Pakistan. The charges were made public as U.S. relations with Pakistan have become strained over the U.S. raid that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Pakistan on May 2.
Palestinians mourn 15 killed at Israeli border
ALESTINIAN President Mahmoud Abbas yesterday declared three days of mourning for 15 people killed in mass marches toward multiple Israeli borders that marked a stunning new tactic in the struggle for Palestinian statehood. Sunday’s marches, on the date Palestinians mourn their uprooting as a result of Israel’s 1948 creation, illustrated Arab dissatisfaction with the deadlocked efforts to establish a Palestinian state. The unprecedented tactic also reflected an Arab world emboldened by the anti-government protests sweeping the Middle East this year. Abbas, who is pursuing alternative routes to statehood after a breakdown in peace talks with Israel, quickly embraced those who tried to breach Israel’s borders from the West Bank, Gaza, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. “Their blood will not be spilled in vain, because their blood was spilled for the freedom and rights of our people,” he said. Flags at public buildings in the West Bank were lowered to half-staff. Some in Israel suspected an Iranian hand in the attempted border breaches with the help of Tehran’s allies in the region: Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza. That view was backed by the White House, which blamed Syria for inciting the deadly protests.
• Strauss-Khan being escorted by securitymen...yesterday
Strauss-Kahn sex case roils French election S
EXUAL assault charges against the man many thought could be France’s next president have thrown open the 2012 election, improving Nicolas Sarkozy’s chances of reelection and leaving the left scrambling to find a new star candidate. Even if Dominique StraussKahn is eventually cleared of charges that include attempted rape, few believe he can now run as the Socialist Party’s candidate in an April election the left is determined to win after 16 years in opposition. His removal from the field would be a boon for conservative Sarkozy, whose ratings are so bad that polls show he risks being knocked out in the first round of voting. Far-right leader Marine Le Pen, who polls to date had pegged to come second behind Strauss-Kahn in a first round vote, also stands to benefit given her long-running complaint about French politics as an elitist boys’ club. Only on msnbc.com Your
Career: When your work leads to divorce Gingrich explains personal ‘mistakes’ Best bets: ‘Pirates 4’ sails into theaters It’s A Snap! Vote for your favorite travel photo Cubans dream of being tourists — abroad War for American hearts and minds rages over Islam Race a factor in STD testing of young women Video: IMF chief accused of NYC sex attack (on this page) The Socialists, who have no other candidate to match Strauss-Kahn, vowed to press on with their primary selection process but convened a party meeting on the crisis on Tuesday. “It is the first time a judicial affair has such an impact on the presidential election,” analyst Frederic Daby of pollster IFOP told Reuters television. “It’s unprecedented in France’s political history.” France was mesmerized yesterday by TV images of StraussKahn, a center-left former finance minister and managing
director of the IMF, being led away in handcuffs by police for DNA tests over the alleged assault in a New York hotel. Without Strauss-Kahn, the Socialists’ strongest candidate could be former party boss Francois Hollande, although he lacks frontline experience as he has never been a government minister. French i>Tele TV commentator Michael Darmon said current party chief Martine Aubry was “not ready” to throw her hat in, though others could join the race. Polls had predicted Sarkozy coming in third in an election first round, a point or two behind Le Pen, and then StraussKahn easily beating the National Front leader in a runoff. An IFOP poll published on Sunday suggested that Hollande would draw with Le Pen in a first round, with Sarkozy just behind. “Only one person has said ‘I am ready psychologically’,
Pakistan to return remains of secret stealth helicopter
AKISTAN will return the pieces of the secret United States helicopter that went down during the operation that killed Osama bin Laden early this month, Senator John Kerry told reporters yesterday. Kerry, chairman of the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, said the chopper’s wreckage — which aviation experts said was the first public evidence of a secret U.S. stealth Blackhawk program — would be handed over to American officials today. Kerry (D-Mass.) met with senior Pakistani civilian and military officials today in Islamabad in hopes of improving relations between the two countries following America’s unilateral incursion into Pakistan to kill the al Qaeda leader on May 1. Following the operation, US officials asked Pakistan for the wreckage back, but Paki-
stan had not publicly agreed until Kerry’s visit. One Pakistani official told ABC News last week the Chinese were “very interested” in seeing the remains of the helicopter. Another Pakistani official said then that the Pakistan government “might let them [the Chinese] take a look.” A US official said at the time he did not know if the Pakistanis had offered a peek to the Chinese, but said he would be “shocked” if the Chinese hadn’t already been given access to the damaged aircraft. The helicopter made a hard landing after it clipped a wall during the Navy SEAL operation that took down bin Laden, the White House said. The SEALs who rode in on the bird attempted to destroy it after abandoning it on the ground, but a significant portion of the tail section survived the explosion. In the days after the raid, the tail section and other piec-
es of debris — including a mysterious cloth-like covering that the local children found entertaining to play with — were photographed being hauled away from the crash site by tractor. Aviation experts said the unusual configuration of the rear rotor, the curious hubcap like housing around it and the general shape of the bird are all clues the helicopter was highly modified to not only be quiet, but to have as small a radar signature as possible. Officials at the US Department of Defense declined to comment on the helicopter, and a senior Pentagon official told ABC News in the days after the raid the Department would “absolutely not” discuss anything relating to the downed chopper. Several Chinese government officials in the U.S. and in China also declined to comment.
since 2008, and that is Francois Hollande,” Darmon said. But he added: “There are others who could come out of the woodwork and make themselves heard, like Laurent Fabius for example.” Fabius, a former prime minister and finance minister, said over the weekend the party was losing touch with working class voters, possibly testing the waters for an election bid. Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers have said he will plead not guilty to charges he tried to rape a chambermaid after chasing her, naked, down a corridor and shutting her in a room. “Those close to him cannot believe he is guilty, and he will soon be back with us,” his Socialist Party ally Jean-Christophe Cambadelis told reporters, adding that there were contradictory accounts of what happened and foul play could not be ruled out. He said, without elaborating, that enemies had “promised a nuclear attack” should Strauss-Kahn declare a presidential bid.
Trump withdraws from Presidential race UNITED States tycoon Donald Trump says he will not be running for the presidency in 2012, ending weeks of speculation. Trump said he was not ready to leave the private sector and that his ultimate passion remained in business. “This decision does not come easily or without regret,” he said in a brief statement. “I maintain the strong conviction that if I were to run, I would be able to win the primary and ultimately, the general election,” Mr Trump added. The statement went on to say: “I have spent the past several months unofficially campaigning and recognize that running for public office cannot be done half heartedly. “Ultimately, however, business is my greatest passion and I am not ready to leave the private sector.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, MAY 17, 2011
FOREIGN NEWS Pro-Gbagbo militias chased out
IGHTING in western Ivory Coast between Ivorian troops and militias loyal to former president Laurent Gbagbo is over, but the militiamen killed a total of 220 people as they fled to Liberia, the government said yesterday. West Africa’s former economic star is still reeling from a violent five-month power struggle between Gbagbo and President Alassane Ouattara that killed at least 3,000 people, displaced more than a million and brought the economy to a standstill. “It’s over. The militiamen have fled to Liberia,” government spokesman Patrick Achi said by telephone. “In total, they killed 220,” he said, a toll which is much higher than the last count of 120 on May 11. He said most were civilians killed by the militias as they fled from Abidjan westwards to the Liberian border. Many of the militiamen were Liberian mercenaries hired by Gbagbo, the government said. Gbagbo, who refused to quit despite U.N.-certified results showing he lost November’s election, was finally captured by pro-Ouattara forces on April 11 with French military help. Fighting continued in parts of Abidjan until militiamen and Liberian mercenaries loyal to him were defeated two weeks ago, whereupon they fled through coastal forests and cocoa fields, killing many civilians along the way, the government says.
Haiti’s Martelly wants business leader as PM
War crimes prosecutor seeks to arrest Gaddafi A WAR crimes prosecutor yesterday sought an arrest warrant for Muammar Gaddafi accusing him of killing protesters against his 41-year rule as NATO stepped up air strikes on Libyan forces. Luis Moreno-Ocampo, International Criminal Court prosecutor, also asked judges, who must now see if there is enough evidence to issue warrants, for the arrest of Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam and his spy chief brother-inlaw Abdullah al-Senussi. In the uprising, civilians were attacked at home, protests were suppressed using live ammunition, heavy artillery was used against funeral processions and snipers deployed to kill people leaving mosques after prayers, the prosecutor said.
“We have strong evidence, so strong evidence,” Moreno-Ocampo said, adding: “We are almost ready for trial ... Gaddafi ruled Libya through fear and Libyans are losing that fear now.” The prosecutor’s office had received calls from senior officials in the Gaddafi government in the past week to provide information. Prosecutors spoke with eyewitnesses to attacks and assessed evidence from 1,200 documents, plus videos and photos. Thousands of people have been killed in the conflict in the North African oil-producing desert state, the bloodiest of the revolts which have convulsed the Middle East in what has been called the “Arab Spring.” NATO, which has been hitting targets in Libya for
nearly two months, appeared to step up its bombing campaign on Monday with strikes in several towns and cities including Tripoli, according to Libyan state television and rebels. On the diplomatic front, Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said the United Nations was working on the removal of Gaddafi to exile to make way for a new government and a Libyan government delegation was expected in Moscow on Tuesday. Libyan officials have denied killing civilians, saying instead they were forced to take action against criminal armed gangs and al Qaeda militants. They say a NATO bombing campaign is an act of colonial aggression aimed at grabbing Libya’s oil. Moreno-Ocampo said per-
secution was still taking place in areas under Gaddafi control with forces arresting, imprisoning and torturing alleged dissidents. Some people had disappeared. Prosecutors are also investigating reports of mass rapes, war crimes committed by different parties and attacks against sub-Saharan Africans wrongly seen as mercenaries once the Libyan situation developed into an armed conflict.
Sudan’s SPLM rejects win for ‘war criminal’
UDAN’S former rebels have rejected the election victory of Ahmed Haroun, indicted for alleged war crimes committed in Darfur. He has been declared the winner of the governorship poll in the oil-rich South Kordofan state, which borders potential flashpoints Darfur and South Sudan. South Sudan is set to become independent in July, while civil war is still raging in Darfur. Analysts fear the dispute could spark yet another conflict in Sudan. The International Criminal Court accuses Mr Haroun of mobilising Arab militias to commit genocide against black African residents of Darfur when he was the minister there in 2003-4. He has denied any wrong-doing. President Omar al-Bashir is also wanted on similar charges. Mr Haroun, from the president’s National Congress Party, defeated senior SPLM official Abdelaziz al-Hilu, according to the official results. Could Nuba mountains be next Sudan conflict? “We will not accept these results because the vote was rigged,” said Yasir Arman, head of the SPLM in the north. The SPLM fought the north for two decades before a 2005 peace deal, which paved the way for independence for the largely Christian and animist South Sudan from the mainly Muslim, Arabic-speaking north.
•Mandela’s grand daughter Ndileka (middle) helps him cast his vote...yesterday
Nelson Mandela votes early in South Africa election F ORMER President Nelson Mandela has voted at home in South Africa’s local elections, two days early, like others unable to reach a polling station. His foundation released the first photographs of the 92-year-old hero of the fight against white minority rule since he was hospitalised in January. He was accompanied by his wife, daughter and granddaughter. He has not appeared at a public engagement since
the closing ceremony of the football World Cup in July 2010. Correspondents say Mr Mandela has appeared increasingly frail on his infrequent public appearances since retiring from public life in 2004. The Nobel Peace Prize winner has been treated at home since his release from hospital following an acute respiratory infection. But Independent Elector-
al Commission chairwoman Brigalia Bam told Radio 702 that he was well enough to vote on his own. “Amazingly enough, the presiding officer was trying to help, and he [Mandela] said: ‘No, no, no. I’m fine. I don’t need any help’,” she said. She also said the former president had been looking forward to voting “so much”. Mr Mandela, known to
South Africans by his clan name Madiba, was imprisoned for 27 years by the apartheid government. He was released from jail in 1990 and went on to lead the African National Congress to a landslide victory in 1994 - the first time South Africa’s black majority was allowed to vote. He stood down as president in 1999 but the ANC retains a massive majority in parliament and runs all but one of the country’s provinces
Moroccan MPs favour probe into detention centre
EMBERS of parliament in Morocco back a parliamentary probe into a secret detention centre near Rabat, a senior politician announced Monday, a day after a demonstration by youths wanting it closed. “We are favourable to opening a commission of inquiry into this centre, even though no decision has been taken,” Ahmed Zaidi, the head of the parliamentary group of the government coalition, the Socialist
Union of Popular Forces (USFP), told AFP. “Among MPs, we are discussing it and exchanging views,” he added. Zaidi’s announcement came after the ministry of justice decided to open an inquiry at the headquarters of the Moroccan domestic intelligence service, the DST, which supposedly runs the Temara detention centre. The justice department “has given instructions to the state prosecutor to open
the necessary investigations into the site” closes to the capital, Communications Minister Khalid Naciri said, in a statement welcomed by MPs. “We have already lodged a request for the constitution of a commission of inquiry into this centre. Now, after Mr Naciri’s statement, anything becomes possible,” said Lahcen Daoudi, head of the parliamentary group of the Islamist opposition Justice and Development Party.
More than 10 people were injured on Sunday when police broke up a demonstration by about 100 youths of the February 20 Movement, named for the date of the first popular uprising to press for change in the north African kingdom. The protestors wanted to demonstrate outside the headquarters of the DST, denouncing the detention centre believed to be based there and demanding its closure and respect for human rights.
HAITI’S new president wants a business leader to serve as his prime minister, a government official said. The official announcement that President Michel Martelly wants Daniel-Gerard Rouzier to be the country’s No. 2 official comes one day after Martelly, a charismatic pop star known as “Sweet Micky”, was sworn in as Haiti’s next leader in back-to-back ceremonies at a makeshift Parliament and on the lawn of the National Palace, which collapsed in last year’s crippling earthquake. Parliament must still ratify Rouzier to the post. Also Sunday, an adviser to current Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive said Bellerive had submitted his resignation to make room for his successor. Bellerive, who also cochairs Haiti’s reconstruction commission with former U.S. President Bill Clinton, will stay in the job until the new head of government is ratified, his special adviser, Alice Blanchet, told The Associated Press. The new prime minister will also serve as co-chair of Haiti’s Interim Recovery Commission, whose mandate is due to expire in October. The body has been criticized for not doing enough to house and help survivors of the January 2010 earthquake that claimed 300,000 lives and displaced 2 million others. Martelly’s chief-of-staff Thierry Mayard-Paul said Sunday that Martelly picked Rouzier as his choice for prime minister because of his record as an established entrepreneur.
Syria: mass grave found in Dera’a SYRIA’S brutal crackdown against pro-democracy protests took a chilling turn yesterday with the discovery of a mass grave in Dera’a, the town at the heart of twomoth-long protests, an activist said. “The army today allowed residents to venture outside their homes for two hours daily,” said Ammar Qurabi of the National Organisation for Human Rights in Syria. “They discovered a mass grave in the old part of town but authorities immediately cordoned off the area to prevent residents from recovering the bodies, some of which they promised would be handed over later,” he said on the phone from Cairo. Qurabi said the Syrian regime must bear full responsibility for the crimes committed against “unarmed” citizens and urged the international community and civil society to pressure it to stop the “brutal repression” of its people. He was unable say how many people were buried in the alleged mass grave.
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 16-05-11 2ND-TIER SECURITIES Company Name CAPITAL OIL PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 2 2
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 20,000,000 10,000,000.00 20,000,000 10,000,000.00
AGRICULTURE/AGRO-ALLIED Company Name FTN COCOA PROCESSORS PLC LIVESTOCK FEEDS PLC PRESCO PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 4 3 9 16
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 195,200 97,600.00 0.50 2,718 1,359.00 7.23 143,000 1,012,210.00 340,918 1,111,169.00
AIR SERVICES Company Name NIGERIAN AVIATION HANDLING COMPANY PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 112 112
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 9.03 2,810,949 25,310,893.01 2,810,949 25,310,893.01
AUTOMOBILE & TYRE Company Name DN TYRE & RUBBER PLC R. T. BRISCOE (NIGERIA) PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 32 35
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 500,347 250,173.50 2.60 1,021,455 2,519,806.04 1,521,802 2,769,979.54
BANKING Company Name ACCESS BANK PLC AFRIBANK NIGERIA PLC DIAMOND BANK PLC ECOBANK NIGERIA PLC FIRST CITY MONUMENT BANK PLC FIDELITY BANK PLC FIRST BANK OF NIGERIA PLC FINBANK PLC GTBANK PLC STANBIC IBTC BANK PLC INTERCONTINENTAL BANK PLC. OCEANIC BANK INTERNATIONAL PLC BANK PHB PLC SKYE BANK PLC. SPRING BANK PLC STERLING BANK PLC UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA PLC. UNION BANK OF NIGERIA PLC UNITYBANK PLC WEMA BANK PLC ZENITH BANK PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 277 59 118 21 52 143 585 67 507 34 57 134 73 161 3 61 251 96 39 36 406 3,180
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 8.60 10,103,893 87,017,428.15 1.89 1,769,512 3,149,642.01 6.65 5,332,831 35,145,187.86 4.00 320,753 1,285,584.73 7.71 4,423,828 34,619,594.68 2.65 9,370,369 25,019,559.36 13.81 13,077,988 180,373,339.07 0.73 4,341,189 3,175,077.89 16.06 15,316,359 245,836,552.47 9.98 550,610 5,497,015.10 1.35 3,527,381 4,774,431.49 2.08 9,752,657 20,103,747.81 1.47 5,445,796 7,745,004.58 8.81 8,618,642 76,162,185.58 1.14 31,068 35,084.12 2.29 2,185,582 4,883,270.19 6.99 6,691,189 46,789,714.90 3.07 2,952,372 8,980,426.75 1.08 3,550,727 3,770,710.61 1.21 2,547,297 2,984,942.17 15.45 40,548,081 626,579,651.42 150,458,124 1,423,928,150.94
BREWERIES Company Name GUINNESS NIGERIA PLC INTERNATIONAL BREWERIES PLC NIGERIAN BREWERIES PLC PREMIER BREWERIES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 39 12 120 2 173
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 215.25 191,622 41,246,635.50 6.65 141,303 935,214.05 87.55 990,120 86,262,497.30 0.93 500 465.00 1,323,545 128,444,811.85
BUILDING MATERIALS Company Name ASHAKA CEMENT PLC CEMENT CO. OF NORTHERN NIGERIA PLC DANGOTE CEMENT PLC LAFARGE WAPCO PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 63 23 27 63 176
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 26.80 341,339 8,739,025.87 12.22 422,662 5,166,185.64 127.32 68,878 9,018,185.46 43.20 5,286,544 240,466,754.23 6,119,423 263,390,151.20
CHEMICAL & PAINTS Company Name BERGER PAINTS NIGERIA PLC CHEMICAL AND ALLIED PRODUCTS PLC DN MEYER PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 14 9 2 25
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 12.34 96,993 1,142,387.89 23.13 94,969 2,196,632.97 1.76 2,000 3,360.00 193,962 3,342,380.86
Onyema challenges insurance sector to lead NSE
HE Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Mr Oscar Onyema, yesterday called on the insurance subsector to take its place, as in most developed economies, to be the major contributor to the financials of the country. Speaking at the facts behind the figure of Continental Reinsurance Plc yesterday, he said there is great potential for the insurance industry in Nigeria. Given the population of over 140 million people and improving economic fortune, “we are capable of driving the biggest insurance market in Africa.” Regretably, the reality on ground is not comforting, he said. He said if the potential available in the nation’s population is well managed, it can become Africa’s hub in insurance business. “This is the challenge to all,” the NSE chief executive, stated. “Everybody must brace up to the challenge. Government should evolve policies that would make Nigerians embrace insurance policies. Operators should engage in best practices that would make the industry become attractive to investors and poten-
No of Deals 1 26 2 29
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 1,000 500.00 2.92 959,896 2,720,078.79 5.78 6,000 33,000.00 966,896 2,753,578.79
COMPUTER & OFFICE EQUIPMENT Company Name NCR (NIGERIA) PLC. Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 3
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 6.27 6,298 37,536.08 6,298 37,536.08
CONGLOMERATES Company Name A. G. LEVENTIS (NIGERIA) PLC JOHN HOLT PLC PZ CUSSONS NIGERIA PLC SCOA NIGERIA PLC TRANSNATIONAL CORPORATION OF NIGERIA PLC UAC OF NIGERIA PLC UNILEVER NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 3 72 1 97 69 66 311
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2.00 18,500 36,150.00 7.21 3,540 24,249.00 35.50 2,840,308 98,482,202.78 7.48 250 1,777.50 1.11 10,787,654 11,763,183.61 42.50 1,272,806 53,001,465.84 27.99 631,038 17,476,397.65 15,554,096 180,785,426.38
CONSTRUCTION Company Name COSTAIN (WA) PLC JULIUS BERGER NIGERIA PLC MULTIVERSE PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 7 21 3 31
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5.49 50,000 263,100.00 52.00 163,101 8,481,152.20 0.50 14,500 7,250.00 227,601 8,751,502.20
ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGY Company Name CUTIX PLC NIGERIAN WIRE AND CABLE PLC. Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 5 8
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2.00 87,599 174,260.55 0.50 204,000 102,000.00 291,599 276,260.55
FOOD/BEVERAGES & TOBACCO Company Name 7-UP BOTTLING CO. PLC CADBURY NIGERIA PLC DANGOTE FLOUR MILLS PLC DANGOTE SUGAR REFINERY PLC FLOUR MILLS NIGERIA PLC HONEYWELL FLOUR MILL PLC NATIONAL SALT COMPANY NIGERIA PLC NIGERIAN BOTTLING COMPANY PLC NESTLE NIGERIA PLC NORTHERN NIGERIA FLOUR MILLS PLC TANTALIZERS PLC UTC NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 8 48 105 87 58 17 22 16 64 4 7 2 438
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 46.00 32,333 1,501,139.40 21.99 277,765 6,081,471.13 18.56 1,538,778 28,538,153.90 14.50 1,601,587 23,667,493.64 88.00 168,035 14,790,632.92 4.60 277,571 1,269,688.92 5.49 235,578 1,303,561.68 37.50 59,485 2,234,881.55 395.00 149,268 59,608,015.10 30.73 1,344 41,301.12 0.52 221,253 114,410.56 0.64 2,560 1,608.40 4,565,557 139,152,358.32
HEALTHCARE Company Name EVANS MEDICALPLC. FIDSON HEALTHCARE PLC GLAXOSMITHKLINE CONSUMER NIG. PLC MAY & BAKER NIGERIA PLC. NEIMETH INTERNATIONAL PHARMACEUTICALS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 10 24 14 21 1 70
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1.21 425,011 523,853.31 2.13 662,538 1,412,051.43 25.93 37,956 973,821.07 4.15 1,234,316 5,134,598.60 1.96 400 748.00 2,360,221 8,045,072.41
HOTEL & TOURISM Company Name IKEJA HOTEL PLC TOURIST COMPANY OF NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 15 1 16
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1.50 599,280 884,715.20 4.76 147,528 702,233.28 746,808 1,586,948.48
tial policy takers. Other stakeholders too should help contribute their quota to the growth of the industry in the interest of the general economy,” he said. Onyema, said Nigeria has continued to record sub-optimal patronage in Africa’s insurance market, despite her huge population. Citing an example, he said, South Africa, the largest insurance market in Africa, has a population of 40 million people and contributes 78.13 per cent of the continent’s premium. In South Africa, he stated, the insurance industry contributes about 16 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product, while in Nigeria, it contributes less than one per cent of the country’s GDP and only about 2.3 per cent of the continent’s total premium. Going by last Friday’s market statistics, he said, the Insurance Sub-sector on The NSE, accounts for 1.8 per cent of the market value, while the Association of British Insurers, made up of 400 insurance companies and 94 per cent of United Kingdom insurance services, has almost 20 per
DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 16-05-11 LAW UNION AND ROCK INSURANCE PLC. MUTUAL BENEFITS ASSURANCE PLC N.E.M. INSURANCE CO. (NIG.) PLC. NIGER INSURANCE CO. PLC. OASIS INSURANCE PLC PRESTIGE ASSURANCE PLC. SOVEREIGN TRUST INSURANCE PLC STANDARD ALLIANCE INSURANCE PLC UNIC INSURANCE PLC. UNIVERSAL INSURANCE COMPANY PLC INTERCONTINENTAL WAPIC INSURANCE PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 10 1 2 12 26
No of Deals 13 1 24 38
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 7.75 82 635.50 8.40 1,100 8,840.00 42.66 237 118.50 0.55 20,500 10,865.00 5.70 62,750 343,162.60 84,669 363,621.60
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 3,800,000 1,900,000.00 2.81 100 267.00 0.73 3,116,705 2,329,011.70 6,916,805 4,229,278.70
INSURANCE Company Name AIICO INSURANCE PLC. CONTINENTAL REINSURANCE PLC CORNERSTONE INSURANCE CO. PLC. CUSTODIAN AND ALLIED INSURANCE PLC GOLDLINK INSURANCE PLC GUARANTY TRUST ASSURANCE PLC CONSOLIDATED HALLMARK INSURANCE PLC INTERNATIONAL ENERGY INSURANCE COMPANY PLC LASACO ASSURANCE PLC.
No of Deals 49 22 2 18 17 12 2 3 3
0.57 0.50 0.55 0.74 0.50 2.03 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.51
3,283,079 4,000 1,650,750 41,068 11,380 81,601 1,991,400 14,000 4,000 118,000 1,941,830 26,222,317
1,871,345.03 2,000.00 882,428.80 29,158.28 5,690.00 157,964.93 1,011,336.00 7,000.00 2,000.00 59,000.00 990,333.30 23,533,503.09
No of Deals 17 17
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1.22 1,103,200 1,396,504.00 1,103,200 1,396,504.00
MARITIME Company Name JAPAUL OIL & MARITIME SERVICES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 84 84
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1.35 4,055,911 5,520,159.84 4,055,911 5,520,159.84
MEDIA Company Name DAAR COMMUNICATIONS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 40 40
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 1,402,000 701,000.00 1,402,000 701,000.00
MORTGAGE COMPANIES Company Name ABBEY BUILDING SOCIETY PLC RESORT SAVINGS AND LOANS PLC UNION HOMES SAVINGS AND LOANS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 1 25 27
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1.44 10,000 14,000.00 0.50 600,000 300,000.00 0.66 3,616,358 2,333,109.70 4,226,358 2,647,109.70
OTHER FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS Company Name CRUSADER NIGERIA PLC. NPF MICROFINANCE BANK PLC ROYAL EXCHANGE PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 1 4 6
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.50 3,900 1,950.00 1.27 4,000 5,320.00 0.50 9,999 5,188.14 17,899 12,458.14
PACKAGING Company Name NIGERIAN BAG MANUFACTURING COMPANY PLC NAMPAK NIGERIA PLC POLY PRODUCTS (NIGERIA) PLC. WEST AFRICAN GLASS INDUSTRIES PLC. Sector Totals
No of Deals 31 1 1 2 35
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2.58 1,016,700 2,595,278.54 3.60 100 342.00 1.46 2,150 2,988.50 0.63 9,400 5,640.00 1,028,350 2,604,249.04
PETROLEUM(MARKETING) Company Name AFRICAN PETROLEUM PLC. BECO PETROLEUM PRODUCT PLC MRS OIL NIGERIA PLC CONOIL PLC ETERNA OIL & GAS PLC. MOBIL OIL NIGERIA PLC. OANDO PLC TOTAL NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 53 5 20 41 31 54 143 23 370
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 20.10 279,137 5,603,690.14 0.50 1,363,290 681,645.00 72.00 31,380 2,246,248.70 34.00 226,584 7,670,127.19 5.12 1,170,357 5,965,484.84 158.00 861,205 131,861,660.52 54.95 688,263 37,324,656.37 195.50 56,789 11,102,732.30 4,677,005 202,456,245.06
PRINTING & PUBLISHING
INFORMATION & COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY Company Name CHAMS PLC IHS NIGERIA PLC STARCOMMS PLC Sector Totals
15 1 21 4 1 8 16 3 1 3 8 209 LEASING
Company Name C&I LEASING PLC Sector Totals
INDUSTRIAL/DOMESTIC PRODUCTS Company Name ALUMACO PLC B. O. C. GASES NIGERIA PLC NIGERIAN ENAMELWARE PLC FIRST ALUMINIUM NIGERIA PLC VITAFOAM NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
cent of the investments in the London Stock Exchange (LSE). Also, out of the 30 companies listed in the Nigerian market, only four, that is, 13.3 per cent of them are trading above N1.00 per share, while majority are trading just above par value. These include Custodian and Allied Insurance (N3.02), Prestige Assurance (N2.03), Guaranty Trust Assurance (N1.65) and Continental Reinsurance (N1.04) per share respectively. Meanwhile on the floor of the exchange, key indicators opened the week with a slight increase of 0.1 per cent each. Market capitalisation appreciated by N4 billion to close at N8.252 trillion, while the All-Share-Index, added 12.79 points to close at 25,826.50 points. Besides the blue chips’ stocks featuring on the gainers table, market operator, CEO of Lambert Securities, David Adonri, said there was an unusual volume of transaction traded by Mobil Oil Nigeria. The stock opened the week with a volume of 861,205 shares worth N131.863 million at the rate of N158.00 per share. The stock recorded a price gain of N6.00.
NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE
COMMERCIAL/SERVICES Company Name COURTVILLE INVESTMENTS PLC RED STAR EXPRESS PLC TRANS NATIONWIDE EXPRESS PLC Sector Totals
By Tonia Osundolire and Eshiet Uyoatta
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.90 3,105,267 2,784,753.36 1.04 10,897,500 11,268,702.00 0.50 5,000 2,500.00 3.02 527,757 1,595,018.29 0.50 1,065,000 532,600.00 1.65 1,382,905 2,282,783.10 0.50 11,900 5,950.00 0.50 29,880 14,940.00 0.50 56,000 28,000.00
Company Name UNIVERSITY PRESS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 10 10
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5.05 22,185 108,457.36 22,185 108,457.36
REAL ESTATE Company Name UACN PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT CO. PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 5 5
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 16.40 10,882 178,464.80 10,882 178,464.80
ROAD TRANSPORTATION Company Name ASSOCIATED BUS COMPANY PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 3
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.60 98,750 59,250.00 98,750 59,250.00
TEXTILES Company Name UNITED NIGERIA TEXTILES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 5 5
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 0.65 28,448 17,667.76 28,448 17,667.76
THE FOREIGN LISTINGS Company Name ECOBANK TRANSNATIONAL INCORPORATED Sector Totals Overall Totals
No of Deals 50 50
Quotation(N)Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 15.60 14,057,778 214,642,452.30 14,057,778 214,642,452.30 5,550
THE NATION TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011
CAF disbands WAFU
HE West African Football Union (WAFU) has been disbanded by the Confederation of African Football (CAF). The decision was taken at the CAF Executive Committee meeting in Cairo on Monday. A CAF statement said the move was being made "considering the organisational issues that face WAFU" and that the region would be divided into two. WAFU was being run by an interim committee, led by Ghana's FA President Kwesi Nyantakyi, pending CAF's review of the regional bodies. The previous president of WAFU, Amos Adamu of Nigeria, is appealing against a three-year suspension from football for allegedly seeking bribes during 2018 and 2022
World Cup bidding. The WAFU Cup has just been completed in Abeokuta in Nigeria, where the hosts were beaten in the final by Togo. The eight-team tournament had been hit by its own organi-
sational problems - with three teams failing to show up. The region will be split into two areas - Western Zone A and Western Zone B. Zone A encompasses Cape Verde, Gambia, Guinea,
Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal and Sierra Leone. Zone B features Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Niger, Nigeria and Togo.
Eguavoen lists 25 against Gombe Utd • Osadebamwen Okoro in action against a Togolese player at the just concluded West Africa Football Union (WAFU) in Abeokuta.
From Patrick Ngwaogu, Abuja
IGERIA National U23 team chief coach Austin Egueavon has called on 25 players for the friendly match against Gombe United to declare open the newly constructed Pantami Stadium in Gombe. The match will be played on May 22nd. The Stadium constructed by the Gombe State Government will serve as the team's home ground. Revealing this in Abuja, NFF Assistant General Secretary( Competitions) Mohammed Sanusi said “We see the game as a tune up match for the Dream team, like you already know the team has five games between this month and next month. So the Federation sees the friendly as an opportunity for Coach Austin Eguavoen to test some more legs ahead of the All Africa games and Olympic qualifier against Ghana and Tanzania”. The players are to report to the Emerald Hotel, Waje road, Gombe, on 17 May, 2011.
Mmadu charges Falcons to focus on W/Cup F ORMER Super Falcons midfield maestro, Maureen Mmadu has charged the Nigeria senior female national team to put behind their loss in Ghana so as not to jeopardize their chances at the Women World Cup finals slated for Germany in July. NationSport from Norway stressed that though it was unfortunate that Falcons lost to Ghana and thereby being denied the access to defend the gold medal they won in Algeria, at the expense of South Africa but the country should look at the positive sides of the defeat to denote that other African countries were not sleeping at all and were looking at every opportunity to dislodge Nigeria as the unarguably African best. “It is sad that we have been eliminated from the All Afri-
From Tunde Liadi, Owerri
can Games but to continue to brood about the defeat would tantamount to crying over spilt milk. I will enjoin then to put the defeat behind them and see it as a wake-up call that other African countries are not sleeping and that they are looking at ways to unseat Nigeria. We have been up there since 1991 and the gap between us and the other countries has becoming so wide that it will take something unprecedented to overtake us. If things like this happen (the elimination by Ghana), it is a wake-up call for us to look at what we have been doing right and what we have not been doing correctly toward making corrections. It is no time to apportion blames at all but con-
NCF launches online database
HE Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF), in its ongoing exercise to re-engineer its processes to make it more efficient and effective in service delivery to stakeholders of cricket in Nigeria, has entered into a relationship with CubeServ, an Information Technology Company based in Victoria Island, Lagos which operates as a complete Information System Provider. The federation successfully launched an Online robust database software that captures information of Cricketers in Nigeria/Foreign based Nigerian players that play at the Primary/Secondary School,Tertiary, Club, State and International level, Ex-Internationals, Umpires, Scorers & Curators.The robust software package, designed by CubeServ, has also been customized to capture data of Cricket Administrators in the country, Club Owners, Sponsors and Media Personnel who cover cricket.
At a brief signing ceremony performed on behalf of NCF by the General Manager/COO, George Wiltshire & Head of Operations, Abimbola Maduka, on behalf of CubeServ, held at the Secretariat of the federation in Lagos , George Wiltshire explained that cricketers,administrators, other stakeholers of Cricket in Nigeria can access the Url www.nigeriacricket federationdatabase.com from cybercafes,comfort of their homes, office, from mobilephones with internet access and follow the simple procedure to register as appropriate either as Player,Umpire/ Scorer,Administrator, Sponsor or Media Personnel etc.The user friendly system will serve as information bank and will be very useful to anybody who is interested in knowing more about stake holders of cricket in Nigeria. He urged stakeholders to start registering online from today inorder to populate the database with profiles of them-
selves. Wiltshire, on behalf of the Nigeria Cricket Federation sincerely acknowledged the contributions and genuine support of CubeServ towards the Federation and looks forward to a long and fruitful relationship with the company.
structive analysis of the remote and the immediate cause of the defeat.” The 102 capped Nigerian ex international stated. She however suggested that it would be operation in futility if the technical crew is by any way relieved of its duties at this point in time with less than two months to the World Cup in Germany affirming that Uche Eucharia led crew should be allowed to finish the job they started and a holistic appraisal of the team should be taken at the end of the World Cup in order to avoid disharmony in the team. It would be recalled that The Super Falcons were dumped out of the All African Games (AAG) when they were beaten by the Black Princesses of Ghana 2-1 in Accra for a 3-2 aggregate scoreline. Ghana thus booked a place in the AAG at the expense of the once fearsome Nigeria. This is Nigeria’s fifth lost to African oppositions. They have lost thrice to Ghana, and once to Equatorial Guinea and Algeria respectively
Ganiyu Oseni out Costa Rica friendly • Visa to Tanzanian threatens his involvement
ANIYU Oseni is the latest Under-23 star to have pulled out of the May 29th international friendly between the Dream Team and their Costa Rican counterparts in San Jose and may sensationally miss the Tanzanian tie in DaresSalam, if something urgent is not done on the procurement of his visa to the country. A close source of the Kieng Kiang of Vietnam forward broke the news to NationSport on Monday morning stating that club commitments was the brain behind Oseni unavailability even when the Dan Amokachi look alike was ready to lace his boots for Nigeria even against Costa Rica. “Oseni will not be available for the Costa Rican game and that is authoritative. His club has vehemently turned down every entreaty to ensure he attends the match. The club said he would only be available to travel on the 28th of this month (May). He however said, in as much as he would like to play his club turned a deaf hear on his pleas to travel down to join the rest of his colleagues.”The source noted. Oseni’s close confidant further enumerated that his friend may not feature in the Tanzanian game too if Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) does not make moves to ensure the Tanzanian visa is processed for him in his absence.
From Tunde Liadi, Owerri “I was told it takes seven working days for Tanzanian visa to be processed and issued. He said he would be in Nigeria on May 28th while the team is travelling on June 2nd or thereabouts. From the look of things it will be difficult for Oseni to get the visa on his own if concerted effort is not made to assist him to ensure the working days do not elapse. “He told me he would be in Nigeria by May 28th the same day he would be officially released by his team and from what he said I think he is very enthusiastic about playing for Nigeria and I expect it is the country’s turn to make his work lighter if they do not want to lose one of their best for that crucial tie in Tanzania.” A source close to him enthused. It would be recalled that Odion Ighalo had also cited the same reasons for his pulling out of the Costa Rican match but affirmed he would be available for the Olympic tango with Tanzania. Nigeria U-23 entertains the Junior Taifa Stars of Tanzania in the first-leg of the second round of the Olympic Qualifier in Dares-Salam on June 5th with the Tanzanians known to have been responsible for the exit of 2000 Olympic champions, Cameroon in the previous round while Nigeria Dream Team eliminated Equatorial Guinea 9-1 on aggregate at the same stage.
Garden City Games LOC rewards sports fans
HE Local Organising Committee of the forthcoming National Sports Festival is set to splash gifts on sports fans ahead of the Garden City Games in Port Harcourt. The sports festival holds between June 27 and July 11 in Port Harcourt, but the organisers are building up to the event with a promo that will reward participants with fantastic prizes. The promo, devised to generate awareness for the games and test the knowledge of Nigerian sports fans, is in form of a text quiz. To take part in the SMS quiz, fans are required to text ‘QUIZ’ along with their names and locations to 33382; questions will be sent back to the participants and
correct answers will earn the participants entries into the regional and national draws. The regional draws will be in Lagos and Abuja, while the national draw will be in Port Harcourt. Prizes on offer include a brand new car, laptops, Plasma TV sets, refrigerators, Blackberry phones and consolation prizes. The marketing consultant to the Garden City Games, Mr. Patrick Ukah of Ventolite Marketing International, Lagos, said the SMS quiz and the great prizes are indications that this year’s festival is going to be one of its kind. “This is the first time we are having something like this ahead of any sports festival,” he said. “This clearly shows that the Garden City Games will be unique and historic.”
Police barricades Bayelsa Utd’s camp
RESH trouble has erupted at the camp of former Nigeria Premier League (NPL) champions, Bayelsa United, in Yenagoa following armed policemen taking over their hotel entrance. A defender of the club, Jerome Ezoba, told SuperSport.com that they woke up to find mobile policemen laying siege to their Blue Ways Hotel camp in Yenagoa. Ezoba claimed that Bayelsa United chairman, Victor Baribote Rumson, had ordered the policemen to mount the gate and ensure that no player
leaves the hotel camp. The Bayelsa United player also alleged that Rumson ordered the arrest of six playing personnel including him. "The chairman on six occasions told mobile policemen to come and arrest six of us. He said we are the ring leaders in the peaceful protest that we embarked upon recently. But the players here have taken an oath that none of us will be arrested unless they arrest all of us," said Ezoba. The six players are Ezoba, Kola Ige, Uche Okechukwu, Obi Oparaogu, Ebiti Timimi and Suleiman Mohammed.
Ezoba also lifted the lid on the amount owed him and his colleagues saying: "Two seasons ago we were paid only 30 per cent of our signing fees. Last season nothing was paid and it is the same this season with 10 matches left to end the season. The only amount we have collected this season is N180,000 each and that is for old players while new players got N50,000 each. "As I speak to you now we are yet to get our April salary. Also, we have not collected match bonuses since last year. From my own es-
timation, Bayelsa United owe me nothing less than N8 million." But Rumson dismissed the allegation of Ezoba saying he never ordered the arrest of any player. The Bayelsa United chief countered in his reaction that Ezoba and five others have been suspended indefinitely for leading the team on a protest. Rumson also claimed that the presence of the policemen at the Blue Ways Hotel camp of the National Division One League is to ensure safety of officials and properties.
TUESDAY, MAY 17, 2011 TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM
WHO SAID WHAT
‘May we value the life of our fellowmen and women. May we never take any life for granted or with impunity; may God touch the hearts of those who are that way inclined, to desist from such acts of evil’ VOL. 6 NO.1762
COMMENT & DEB ATE EBA
NDER any sane construction of the laws of war, his killing was lawful regardless of whether he ‘raised his hands in surrender’ or whether U.S. troops weren’t to give him the chance. First came the street celebrations; then the changing accounts of what happened; then the second-guessing — domestic and foreign. An “extrajudicial execution,” that’s what many in the international community are now calling the killing of Osama bin Laden. The U.N.’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has called for an investigation. According to a U.N. special rapporteur, if the U.S. commandos were under shoot-to-kill orders and did so without offering Bin Laden a “meaningful prospect of surrender,” his killing could have been a “cold-blooded execution.” In that case, the soldiers who shot him, together with President Obama and any other U.S. commanders who issued the kill orders, would in principle be guilty of murder and should be prosecuted as war criminals. These claims are absurd. Under any sane construction of the laws of war, the killing of Bin Laden was lawful regardless of whether he “raised his hands in surrender” or whether the American soldiers were under orders to shoot without giving him a chance to surrender. By suggesting otherwise, human rights lawyers only make international law look out of step with basic morality and common sense. The opportunity to surrender is a cherished, civilized and valuable part of warfare. But accepting an enemy’s white flag in the heat of battle is a life-endangering proposition: The flag could be a ruse; a bomb could be hidden; the captors could end up dead. We give enemy soldiers the benefit of this dangerous doubt for two reasons. First, because soldiers who have fought honorably, complying with the laws of war, have earned it. And second, because we want the enemy to treat our soldiers the same way. Neither reason applies, however, to enemies who flagrantly violate the laws of war, targeting civilians for death, hiding bombs behind burkas, using children as shields or — yes — faking a Red Cross, upraised hands or other symbolic white flags to perpetrate lethal attacks. A white flag makes a statement. It says, I’m giving up; I’m unarmed and pose no threat; I respect the laws of war under which this flag must never be used as a ruse, and I am not using it as a ruse to attack you. Even if we imagine Bin Laden actually waving a little white sock on a stick in Abbottabad, there would have been no reason for our soldiers to credit these statements. No soldier had a duty to
OPEN FORUM By JED RUBENFELD
US justified in killing Osama Bin Laden
• President Obama (second left) and members of theNational Security Team receive an update on the mission against Osama bin Laden in the Situation Room on May 1. (Pete Souza, White House)
take the slightest risk to his own life because Osama bin Laden promised to be good from now on. Moreover, Al Qaeda terrorists have made it unspeakably clear how they treat their prisoners, whether captured soldiers, whom they have killed, or journalists such as Daniel Pearl, whom Al Qaeda leader Khalid Shaikh Mohammed reportedly claimed to have decapitated with his own “blessed right hand.” Nothing could be more wrongheaded than the notion that, if we don’t give terrorists an opportunity to surrender, they might stop being nice to the Americans they capture. The official U.S. position is that if our commandos had been completely assured of their safety, the U.S. would have accepted Bin Laden’s surrender. But there is a hint of unreality or pretense here. Realistically,
...Now lets CLAP with ONE HAND for UNCLE JOE
there was no way for Bin Laden to credibly ensure anyone’s safety. That’s why the raid on his compound was almost certainly a mission to kill, or at any rate almost certain to end in his death. But that doesn’t make his killing an extrajudicial execution. As the 1995 U.S. Naval Handbook states, “the law of armed conflict does not precisely define [how] surrender … may be accomplished in practical terms.” Terrorists do and should face much greater obstacles — in the heat of battle, sometimes insuperable obstacles — when attempting to credibly surrender. Certainly the rule that a soldier can halt all gunfire in the heat of battle merely by communicating an “intention” to surrender doesn’t apply to a self-declared flouter of the laws of war who has repeatedly endorsed the use of human bombs and could
AST week, Inspector-General of Police, Hafiz Ringim, appraised the pre and post-election performance of his men and came up with an assessment that many would fiercely dispute. At a meeting at Force Headquarters, Abuja, with Police Commissioners posted on election duties, he said: “Never before in the history of the country has it occurred that the police performed so credibly. We lived up to the promise of being impartial. We proved ourselves right and others wrong. “No police officer was arrested for election malpractice in the last poll. No police officer was arrested for any form of malpractice, ballot box snatching, stealing or tampering with electoral material. This has never been achieved before.” The most controversial aspect of his comments was his conclusion that postelection violence which ravaged several Northern states was spontaneous. Many high profile Nigerians – including President Goodluck Jonathan – have said that the mayhem was premeditated. So what are the new facts that have informed the IGP’s position? Just as debatable is Ringim’s assertion that the violence could not be prevented on
GEN YAKUBU GOWON
easily have explosives strapped to his back. If Bin Laden wanted to surrender, he could and should have done it sometime in the last decade. He could not do it by raising his hands during an attack on his compound. In countless military bombings, the targets have no opportunity to surrender. Britain and the U.S. targeted Saddam Hussein in his palace in numerous 2003 bombings; Americans shot down and killed a Japanese general in an airplane in World War II. As far back as Grotius in the 17th century, the great international law jurists have declared that enemy leaders may be targeted in wartime. But if Bin Laden’s compound could simply have been attacked from the air, human rights lawyers should be praising, not condemning, the U.S. for sending in boots rather than bombs, which saved enemy and noncombatant lives at considerable risk to American soldiers. It is pure foolishness to suggest that by going in on the ground, the U.S. turned its soldiers into policemen required to give Bin Laden “due process,” place him “under arrest” and read him his Miranda rights. There are many in the international human rights community who still refuse to accept that Bin Laden or an Al Qaeda training camp could be a valid military target at all. They think Bin Laden was a mere criminal, so that the correct U.S. course of action was to ask Pakistan to extradite him. They say that 9/11 was a crime, not an act of war. But of course it was both, entitling the U.S. to respond either militarily or by arrest and prosecution. International lawyers today see the law of war as “humanitarian law.” That’s what they call it. They see the waving of a white flag as the exercise of a human right. This is moral and legal confusion. Surrender isn’t a human right. It’s a privilege of lawful combat. Terrorists don’t lose all legal protections — for example, they can’t be sadistically tortured, even if they torture their prisoners — but they forfeit the special rights earned by lawful combatants, including the right to stop the shooting by raising one’s hands in purported surrender. Most of the laws of war depend on a modicum of reciprocity: We give our enemy’s soldiers certain rights in the hope that they will do the same for ours. Men who make war on innocent civilians and behead their prisoners live by a different law. They should expect to die by it as well. •Rubenfeld is a professor of law at Yale Law School and a former U.S. representative to the Council of Europe
•Culled from The Los Angeles Times •Olatunji Dare returns next week
•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above
Ringim and police election scorecard account of this alleged spontaneity. What mattered, he said, was the speed with which the police reacted once the riots started. Hardball begs to differ. Much of the violence could have been prevented if there was no failure of intelligence. It is common knowledge that intelligence is one of the pillars of modern policing. It did not require extraordinary brilliance to guess that given the pre-election build up some sections of the country could be susceptible to violence over certain outcomes. What stopped the police from strengthening their presence in such areas as pre-emptive measure? Ringim is concerned about the image of the force, and goes on about how the police are constantly “vilified” by a critical public and press. Not too long ago, he took umbrage when a reporter at a press briefing asked what he considered an “unreasonable question.” Rather than blame the media for the horrid image of the force, he should sit back and weigh the sheer gravity of the challenges confronting him as IGP. Many of his men may not have been caught snatching ballot boxes,
but that alone cannot wipe away the many failings that have produced such an unpleasant image. For instance, some of the youth corps members, who were slain in the violence in the North, were killed at the police station where they had run for refuge. Every day ordinary Nigerians go through harrowing experiences on the roads at the hands of corrupt and extortionist cops. Their impressions about the police will not change in a hurry just because Ringim is crowing about their supposedly “excellent” performance during the elections. Today, with the cooperation of private sector organisations and state governments, the police are better equipped and more smartly turned out. However, public perception about the force will only start to change when the police hierarchy becomes less thinskinned about criticism, and focuses on reforms that can transform this archaic organisation into a modern, crimefighting institution.
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