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VOL. 7, NO. 2310 THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2012




Olusola Saraki dies at 79 ‘Godfather of Kwara politics’ loses five-year battle to cancer

•The remains of Saraki on arrival in Ilorin…yesterday



•Eminent Nigerians storm Ilorin in jets for funeral •’Kwara people know I don’t deceive them’ •A family and its senators •Exit of a people’s general •Last struggle of a colossus •Jonathan, Mark, Tambuwal, Tinubu, ACN, PDP, others pay tributes to Saraki •Widow: he was wonderful •His last moments, by son •The widow Madam Florence Saraki (right), son Senator Bukola Saraki and Saraki’s sister, •The late Dr. Saraki Alhaja Ramota Sanni at the funeral in Ilorin…yesterday From Yusuf Alli, Bisi Oladele, BUBAKAR Olusola SaraAdekunle Jimoh, Ilorin, ki, medical doctor, former Kelvin Osa-Okunbor Senate Leader and elder and Joseph Jibueze


statesman, who is widely known as the “godfather of Kwara politics”, died yesterday in Lagos. He was 79. Dr. Saraki’s death has ended an era of more than four decades in Kwara politics.

The Second Republic Senate Leader passed on in his sleep. He had been staying in his Cameron Road, Ikoyi, Lagos home since he returned from overseas after undergoing treat-


ment for cancer, according to his son, Olaolu. Describing his last moments, Olaolu said: “He had been battling cancer for about five years. He was fine this morning (yesterday). He was comfortable and even said his prayers. “He died in the presence of one of my brothers, my mother and

my two sisters.” The young Saraki spoke to reporters at his father’s Ikoyi home. “He gave up the ghost at about 6 a.m.,” he said. Saraki’s death threw Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, into mourning. His Lagos home was besieged by dignitaries. Continued on page 4





‘Kwara people know l don’t deceive them’ •Former Lagos State Governor Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (left), Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) governorship candidate in Kwara State, Mohammed Belgore (SAN) and ACN National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed at the late Saraki’s home in Ikoyi.... yesterday

•Two female relatives consoling each other at the late Saraki’s Ikoyi home...yesterday

•Former Ekiti State Governor Niyi Adebayo (right), Mr. Muyiwa Bakare (left) and Mr. Toyin Pinhero (SAN) at the late Saraki’s Ikoyi, Lagos home...yesterday

Abubakar Olusola Saraki, who died yesterday, was in politics for about 50 years. In this interview, he spoke on the PDP, Kwara politics and others. Excerpts:


OU are an Islamic elder. How true is it that women don’t take leadership position in Islam? It is not true; there is nothing like that. Even in Pakistan and Bangladesh, a woman is their leader... We have women in high offices in this country like commissioners, ministers, ambassadors, (and so on), so what are we talking about? How many wives and children do you have and are Bukola and Gbemisola of the same mother? I have only one wife, Morenike; she is a Christian and I am a Muslim and we never discuss religion in our house. My wife is the first wife in the world because she is very wonder-

ful. I married her in London in 1962. Bukola was our first child born in London in December 1962, when I was doing my house job as a medical doctor. We both returned to Nigeria and gave birth to Gbemi two years later. So they are of the same mother. People are only saying rubbish that his mother is from South Africa. I have only one wife and she has four children for me. I don’t have any wife elsewhere. Why did you float the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN, considering that you were a respected person in the PDP? ACPN was registered in January 2011, and we were led to do that because of the way the PDP was behaving. In 2003, Atiku Abubakar and

Eminent Nigerians I

LORIN, the Kwara State capital, was agog yesterday, as eminent Nigerians stormed the city to pay their last respects to the late Dr. Olusola Abubakar Saraki. Saraki died in a Lagos hospital in the early hours of yesterday, ending a chapter in the political history of the state. Though the body was scheduled to arrive the city at 3:30p.m., the state government practically relocated to the Ilorin International Airport before 2:00 pm to receive not only the body of the most influential Kwara State indigene in recent history but also the eminent citizens expected at the burial. The VIP Lounge was filled with the team waiting to receive the body and guests. The team was led by Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed and Speaker Abdulrazaq Atunwa and his deputy, Yisa Gana. They were joined by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Isiaq Gold, commissioners, state lawmakers, special advisers and the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and local government chairmen. Reporters, photographers, politicians and airport staff also roved up and down on the tarmac to catch a glimpse of guests. Also at the airport were senators

From Bisi Oladele, Ilorin

Simeon Ajibola, Shaba Lafiaji and members of the House of Representatives from the state. First to arrive was Alhaji Yusuf Alli (SAN). He arrived with a member, House of Representatives, Hon. Ahmad Alli aboard a chattered jet. Chairman of Bicourtney Aviation Services Dr. Wale Babalakin (SAN), Senator Danjuma Goje and Andy Uba arrived at exactly 3:20 pm aboard another private jet marked: M-ANGA. At 3:26 pm, a presidential jet marked Nigerian Air Force 5N-FGS conveying the Minister of National Planning Dr. Shamsudeen Usman touched ground. Some other top Federal Government functionaries flew with them. Two minutes later, Speaker Aminu Tanbuwal, former Imo State Governor Jim Nwobodo and others arrived aboard another chattered jet marked DAFAC. They were received by the Kwara State Speaker and other state government functionaries. At 15:40 pm, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, arrived aboard a chattered jet marked: 2S-UBS. He arrived with some aides. At 4:03 pm, another chattered jet marked: 3B-RGT conveying Kola Abiola and some federal lawmakers

Aregbesola, Yuguda, Chime,


•Former Lagos State Deputy Governor Kofo Bucknor-Akerele signing the condolence register...yersterday

SUN State Governor Rauf Aregbesola, Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda, Enugu State Governor Sullivan Chime and the Northern Governors’ Forum yesterday with the death of Second Republic’s Senate Leader, Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki, the country has lost a great leader. Aregbesola, in a statement by the Director of Communications and Strategy, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, said the death of Dr. Saraki is a big loss to the nation. The governor said Dr. Saraki’s experience, knowledge, versatility and ingenuity in the art and dynamics

From Chris Oji, Enugu, Austine Tsenzughul, Bauchi and Jide Orintunsin, Minna

of lawmaking and politics would be missed greatly. The statement reads: “He was a Second Republic Senate leader on the platform of the ruling National Party of Nigeria (NPN). Dr. Olusola Saraki for decades bestrode the political firmament of Kwara State like a colossus. “During his time, he was a shrewd politician, though a conservative, a medical doctor by training, who excelled more on the political turf; astute administrator, a religious leader, bridge-builder, leader of men, and a




I have only one wife, Morenike; she is a Christian and I am a Muslim and we never discuss religion in our house. My wife is the first wife in the world because she is very wonderful. I married her in London in 1962. Bukola was our first child born in London in December 1962, when I was doing my house job as a medical doctor. We both returned to Nigeria and gave birth to Gbemi two years later. So they are of the same mother. People are only saying rubbish that his mother is from South Africa. I have only one wife and she has four children for me. I don’t have any wife elsewhere •The late Saraki former PDP chairman, Audu Ogbeh, met with me and begged that I joined the PDP because then, they could not win ordinary councillorship seat in Kwara State. They asked me to take any positions I wanted, so I took the chairmanship, secretary, woman leader, and treasurer. It was on that platform that Bukola, my son, contested election in

2003. I actually formed the ACPN in 2003 but mellowed on it. I ensured that my members were going for INEC meetings with parties and running the party, as if I knew that things might change. According to the PDP constitution, the governor is the leader in the state, and at the national level, it is the president. I told Bukola

that I cannot be here in Kwara and still be in politics and you call yourself the leader of the party; I thought he would take note of that but he didn’t and was acting in that capacity... So, I decided it was better for me to leave the PDP for another party, but my team of elders advised that we should return to our party, ACPN, and we came fully on stream. We are now fully ready to win all the offices in the state. We have no presidential candidate but whoever wants to talk to us we are ready. I told President Jonathan that I am not a member of PDP, but a supporter because I have two of my children there. The party should be independent and the government independent but now for a governor to be running the party is not healthy at all. Here in Kwara, PDP cannot deliver anything for anybody; it is ACPN they need to talk to. What sort of governance will Gbemisola bequeath to the state if she gets elected? Peace, love, and positive development. She cannot do anything less than that and I am happy with the way Kwara people are accepting her. I quote Leo Max, a British poet: “Life that I have is all that I have and the life that I have is yours and yours and yours; the love that I have of the life that I have, is yours and yours and yours”. My life is for the Kwara people. Why Kwara people love him... Kwara people know that I don’t deceive them and they know whatever I tell them is the truth. •First published in TELL in March 2011

He was a man of uncommon compassion, says Atiku


ORMER Vice-President Atiku Abubakar has described the death of Dr. Olusola Saraki as the fall of a big star from the galaxy of Nigerian politics. In a condolence message yesterday, he said the late Olusola Saraki was not only influential, but also compassionate. Atiku said: “His uncommon compassion was the source of his political relevance and influence among his people. Despite occasional controversies that trailed his politics, few Nigerian politicians could rival Saraki’s compassion towards the ordinary people. “He touched many lives while he

From Yusuf Alli, Managing Editor, Northern Operation


HE Chairman of the Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Senator Smart Adeyemi yesterday described the demise of a former Senate Leader, Senator Olusola Saraki as a huge loss. Adeyemi, who paid the tribute in a statement in Abuja, said the death of Saraki has left a big vacuum in the hearts of the poor people in the nation. The statement reads: “The way he attended to people, his passion for the poor affected me and it made me to make up my mind to join politics. “As a journalist, I once asked him how to succeed as a politician and he told me I must help the poor, the women and the youth. He said that when you help the poor, they write your matter in their hearts.” He also said that Saraki was a detribalized person, who remained faithful to his desire to uplift the poor. “I recall that in the Second Republic, there was no community that wanted to set up a school in the old Kwara state that Saraki did not donate to. I do not know of any Nigerian that is as passionate about the poor people as Dr. Olusola Saraki. He believed in raising the standards of living of the poor people and that has influenced the way I do my politics. “He was a wonderful man who contributed immensely to the socio-economic development of the old Kwara state. He did not know religion or tribe and as a Muslim, he sent people to Jerusalem more than many Christians. The power of Baba Saraki was that he helped many people. He was a great man.” Also, a former presidential candidate of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), ex-Governor Ibrahim Shekarau (Sardaunan Kano), in a statement through his Special Adviser on Media, Alhaji Yau Sule yesterday described the late Saraki as “a very rare politician, a gentleman, philanthropist and a community leader whose absence has created a vacuum difficult to fill. May Allah forgive his sins.”

also touched the ground. Senator Bukola Saraki and some family members arrived aboard a Riv-

ers State jet marked: N565RS at 4:09. Decked in white agbada and a white cap to match, the former governor

who wore mournful look, was received by his successor and Speaker of the House of Assembly, among others. He was immediately massed by a retinue of aides and politicians. They condoled him. Security operatives tried in vain to keep people away from the bereaved. At exactly 4:28 pm, a chattered Overland jet marked 5N-BCR landed with the body. The body tucked in a brown coffin, was moved into a waiting ambulance marked: KW 240 A08 belonging to the Specialist Hospital, Sobi, Ilorin. The body was received by Bukola and Ahmed among others. The arrival triggered uncontrollable emotions among sympathizers. Some burst into tears. Many shouted: “Allahu akbar” repeatedly as the coffin was being trasferred into the ambulance. The crowd of A-list guests left the airport located on Ogbomoso road creating traffic snarl. Their vehicles were joined by the masses who rode on commercial motorcycles along with police escorts leading the body and the dignitaries to the Muslim praying ground on New Yidi Road. Residents who lined the road at both sides shouting: “Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar.”

Northern governors: a great leader is gone firm believer in selfless service to his immediate people of Kwara and by extension Nigeria in general. “No doubt, the personality of this great, old political warhorse would be hard to come by again. Indeed, a huge gulf has been created with the demise of Wazirin Ilorin. “On behalf of myself and the people of Osun, I offer our condolences to the entire family of Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki, the people of Kwara and Nigerians as a whole. We pray that Almighty Allah grants the departed soul Aljaana Firdaus.” Yuguda, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Ishola

Michael Adeyemi, said: “His knowledge of politics contributed to the success democratic process and the second Republic.” Chime commiserated with Senator Bukola Saraki and other members of the deceased’s family over the death of their father and frontline politician. The governor, in a message by his Chief Press Secretary, Chukwudi Achife, described the late Turaki of Ilorin as a vibrant and exemplary political leader. He said Saraki also worked hard to bring development to his people. Chairman of the northern gover-

nors and Governor of Niger State, Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, in a statement in Minna, commiserated with the government and people of Kwara State over the death of the political giant. In the statement by Aliyu’s Chief Press Secretary, Malam Danladi Ndayebo, the forum described Saraki as a man of peace and a rare patriot. The forum said: “It is also noteworthy that his over three decades in the nation’s political firmament brought tremendous progress and modernisation to Kwara State and Nigeria.”

lived. He was a constant feature at every level of Nigeria’s democratic experiment, from the First, Second and Third Republics. “He played a leading role in bringing Kwara State and its leading lights back into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2003 after the state had initially strayed into the All Peoples Party (APP). One of the greatest virtues of the late Ciroma of Ilorin was that he lived for the people and they loved him in return.” The former Vice-President urged the Kwara State Government to immortalise the late politician.

Ohakim: we’ve lost a great leader


ORMER Imo State Governor Ikedi Ohakim has described the death of Dr. Olusola Saraki as a big shock. He said the nation has lost a great leader. Ohakim, in a statement by his Special Assistant, Mr. Ethelbert Okere, said: “The death of elder statesman, Senator Olusola Saraki, yesterday, came to me as a big shock. His demise at this time is a big blow to our country, especially when viewed against the backdrop of the current efforts by our compatriots to rediscover those nationalistic ideals for which he and his contemporaries worked so hard.

“We should find consolation in the fact that our great leader and father, Olusola Saraki, lived an exemplary life both at the family level and as a politician. He was popular. He was an epitome of humility and candour. Nigerians will miss him. Saraki’s passage should, indeed, be a celebration of life given the totality of what he represented during his life. “My family and I join millions of other Nigerians to commiserate with his immediate family and pray to God Almighty to give them the fortitude to bear this great loss. May the soul of this late icon rest in peace.”

Fayose mourns ‘outstanding politician’

storm Ilorin in jets for Saraki F Shekarau, Adeyemi mourn

From Gbade Ogunwale, Assistant Editor, Abuja

ORMER Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose yesterday expressed shock over the death of Dr. Olusola Saraki, saying the vacuum created by his death would be difficult to fill. He commiserated with the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Sulu Gambari, Kwara State Governor Abdulfatai Ahmed, his predecessor, Senator Bukola Saraki and political associates of the Kwara kingpin. Fayose described the late Saraki as an outstanding politician, role model, political tutor and populist politician who was loved by

By Emmanuel Oladesu

his people because of his mobilisation prowess and philanthropic activities. He added: “He was a great politician in all standard. He was a masses-oriented politician. He was an indefatigable leader. He was a man of the people. Dr. Saraki groomed his son to an enviable level of leadership. He left his footprints on the sand of time. I commiserate with the traditional ruler of Ilorin, his family, political and business associates as well as the people of the emirate. May his soul rest in peace.”

Yakasai, others mourn Oloye


HE death of Dr. Olusola Saraki has been described as a big loss to Nigeria and Kwara

State. Second Republic Political Adviser, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, Second Republic Deputy Senate President, Abubakra Mamman Dan Musa, and former civilian governor of old Kaduna State, Alhaji Lawal Kaita yesterday paid tributes to the departed strong man of Kwara politics. In his message, Yakasai said the death of Saraki is a great loss, not only to his family and political associates but to the people of Kwara State and the nation. He described Sarki as a man whose philanthropic excellence cannot be rivaled, adding that he was a symbol of unity of the country. Yakasai said: “His demise signaled a painful end of an era as it will take a very long time for Nigeria to replace him. Saraki was able to master the loyalty of his people for decades and was able to use that position to forge a strong national unity. “By his death, Nigeria has lost one of its leaders who worked hard to sustain and strengthen democracy in the nation. He established bonds of friendship across ethnic and religious divide in Nigeria. He died as an embodiment of national unity. “May Allah forgive his sins and grant an abode in Jannatul Firdaus. May Allah grant his family the fortitude and courage to bear the irreparable loss. May his gentle soul rest in

From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano and Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

eternal peace.” Dan Musa described the late Saraki as a great man, whose contributions promoted stability and peace in the country, adding that he was a great politician who worked for his people and enjoyed tremendous political goodwill from his people. Kaita said: “It is a sad development and a big loss to Nigeria. He was an outstanding person in Nigeria politics.” The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Kwara State chapter described the death of Dr. Saraki as a loss to the nation PDP added that the politician helped sustain the unity of the country. In a statement, the PDP spokesperson, Alhaji Mas'ud Adebimpe, said: "The selfless service and unrivalled generosity of the former Senate Leader and Northern Union (NU) and indeed his love and concern for his country, people of Kwara and Ilorin Emirate would remain ever green in our memory. "While we commiserate with the Emir of Ilorin Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu Gambari and the Kwara State government on this colossal lost of an Illustrious son whose entire sojourn in his life time symbolises selfless services and hope for the people, our consolation therefore lies in the fact that he lived a life worthy of emulation.




He was wonderful, says widow


•House of Reps Speaker Aminu Tambuwal (second right) with Kwara House of Assembly Speaker Razaq Atunwa (second left), Moshood Mustapha (left) and Dr. Ahmodu Alli in Ilorin…yesterday

LORENCE, widow of the late Dr. Olusola Saraki, yesterday described him as a wonderful man. She said: “I have to thank God for everything. He was a very wonderful man. I can never forget him. He was a good father, a good husband and he was very good to his people. He was a nice man. I pray that Almighty God would grant him eternal rest.” Daughter Mrs. Tope Edu said: “He was a loving man, nice, generous. I pray that God will grant him eternal rest. “I will miss his kindness and his warmth and his affection. He was a very affectionate father. I will miss his generousity and love he had for everybody.” Frontline businessman Chief Adekunle Ojora, the late Saraki’s in-law, described his death as “a tragedy at this time when we still need very much of his contributions. But

From Bisi Oladele, Ilorin

we thank God for his life and his legacy. “All of us that were close to him would ensure that his legacy is preserved. May his soul rest in peace. Baba made his mark. You can see the thunderous crowd. That shows his contributions to Kwara State.”

•The widow...yesterday

Jonathan, Mark, Tambuwal, Tinubu, ACN, PDP, others pay tributes


RIBUTES poured in torrents yesterday for the late Dr. Olusola Saraki, the Second Republic Senate Leader who passed on in Lagos. President Goodluck Jonathan said Dr. Saraki will be remembered as a political colossus. A statement by Presidential spokesman Dr. Reuben Abati, said: “President Jonathan extends sincere commiserations to the elder statesman’s family and the people of his home state, Kwara, to whose service and upliftment he selflessly devoted his long and very successful career in politics. “He urges them to be consoled by the knowledge that their departed father, leader and mentor lived a very successful and fulfilled life, rising to national prominence by dint of hard work, uncommon generosity, political sagacity, dedication and wholesome commitment to the service of his people and the entire nation. “President Jonathan be-

From Onyedi Ojiabor and Gbade Ogunwale, Abuja

lieves that the late Dr. Saraki will be long remembered and eulogised as a consummate politician, an astute grassroots mobiliser, and a political colossus with awe-inspiring powers of political organisation. “The President has no doubts that this public-spirited politician will always occupy a place of honour in the hearts of his people, supporters, friends and associates across the nation. “He believes that the ordinary people of Kwara in particular will always remember the “Oloye” with great affection because of the constant support they received from him. “The President further notes that Dr. Saraki’s brand of people-oriented politics and his success in building on his strong support base to contribute positively to Nigeria’s political development as a powerful voice in the nation’s dominant political parties, as the Senate Majority

Leader in the Second Republic, and as the ultimate reference point in the politics of Kwara state for decades, have assured him of a place amongst Nigeria’s heroes of democracy. “President Jonathan urges Nigerians to emulate Dr Saraki’s patriotic commitment to national unity, politics without bitterness as well as his magnificent spirit of philanthropy. Senate President David Mark said Saraki was a political giant and shinning star of Nigerian politics. A statement by Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, to the President of the Senate, Kola Ologbondiyan, quoted Mark as saying that Saraki was “a political tactician and political engineer” who navigated the political environment like a colossus. He noted that the political sagacity of Saraki helped to midwife the modern day Nigerian politics. Mark said: “Saraki was a political leader who stood to be counted when it mattered.

“He stood on the side of the people and worked assiduously for the liberation of the down trodden. “He was a leader who lived and worked for others. “We shall miss his fatherly counsel. We shall miss his candour. We shall miss his humility. We shall miss his robust political debate. He was one of our brightest and focused political leaders. “Saraki has left a vacuum that would be difficult to fill. “The nation has lost one of her best and fertile minds”. As a parliamentarian, Mark noted that Saraki distinguished himself and unarguably laid solid foundation for today’s National Assembly. He added that Saraki left his positive footprint on the sand of time, saying the only way to immortalise him is to uphold the virtues of hard work, honesty and dedication to the ideals of nationhood which he stood for. House of Representatives Speaker Aminu Tambuwal described Dr. Saraki as a quintessential politician and

father-figure who gave his all for the development of the country. In a message of condolence issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Malam Imam Imam, Tambuwal said Saraki has earned his place as one of Nigeria’s most consistent advocates of democracy. He said Saraki would be best remembered for his pioneering role in the formation of leading political parties in the country especially during the Second Republic which led to the establishment of the then National Party of Nigeria (NPN) and in the present dispensation, the All Peoples Party (now ANPP). Tambuwal said as the Senate Leader in the Second Republic, Saraki, along with his colleagues, worked assiduously to entrench parliamentary democracy by putting national interest above personal and other parochial interests. While urging Nigerians to emolute Saraki’s virtues of dedication, humility and compassion for the ordinary folks,

the Speaker prayed to Almighty Allah to forgive the deceased and grant him Paradise. National leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria (AC N) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu said Nigeria has lost a statesman and political tactician. In a statement, Tinubu said the death of Dr. Saraki, the man popularly called “the strongman of Kwara Politics” is a monumental loss not only to the people of Kwara State but also to Nigeria. “Saraki remains one of the builders of modern Nigeria. He was a political tactician who played pivotal role in the political advancement of his people and that of Nigeria”, Tinubu said. “From his days in the Constituent Assembly in 1977-1978 to his meteoric rise to become Senator of the Federal Republic where he served as majority leader, Saraki soon became a political institution, a force to be reckoned with not just in Kwara politics but also in national politics. He worked with others to make laws for the deContinued on page 63

Ex-Senate Leader Olusola Saraki dies at 79 Dignitaries, huge crowd at burial

Continued from page 1

The Kwara State House of Assembly adjourned sitting for eight days. Speaker Rasaq Atunwa ordered the suspension of all matters on yesterday’s order paper. The House observed a twominute silence in Saraki’s honour and directed the national flag at the Assembly to be flown at half mast. Kwara State Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed declared yesterday a work-free day to allow residents receive the body of the late politician in Ilorin. Besides, a three-day mourning period was announced. The state-owned radio station, Radio Kwara, suspended all regular programmes in honour of the late Waziri of Ilorin. The station was playing various tunes eulogising the life and times of the late politician. Senator Bukola Saraki, elder son of the late Dr. Saraki announced his father’s passing. He said in a statement: “With gratitude to Almighty Allah,


HE body of the late Dr. Olusola Saraki arrived at the Ilorin International Airport in an Overland aircraft by 4.30pm. yesterday. At the eid praying ground, Chief Imam Akeem Muhammed led the prayer, which lasted for about 10 minutes. It began at about 5.05pm. The eid arena was heavily crowded. Many supporters struggled to catch a glimpse of the body. It took several minutes before it could be brought out of the ambulance. The Saraki family, led by the Matriarch, Madam Florence Saraki, Senators Buko-

we announce the passage to eternity of our beloved father and grandfather, His Eminence, Oloye (Dr) Abubakar Olusola Saraki, Waziri of Ilorin, former Senate Leader, Second Republic, Federal Republic of Nigeria, who answered the call to great beyond early hours of today. “We take solace in knowing that our father lived an exemplary life of service and selfless devotion to development of his people and nation,’’ the statement added.

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

la Saraki, Gbemisola Saraki as well as Olaolu Saraki arrived in a Rivers State aircraft. The body was taken after prayers to his Ilofa home at about 6.05 pm and lowered into the grave at about 6.20pm. Dignitaries at the burial included House of Representatives Speaker Aminu Tambuwal, National Planning Minister, Shamsudeen Usman who led the Federal Government delegation, Internal Affairs Minister, Comrade Abba Moro, Senator Andy Uba, Senator Danjuma Goje, Cen-

The former governor, who saw his father last on Monday before leaving for Senate plenary in Abuja, said his father left “many legacies” and would be missed. He said: “We give praise to Almighty Allah who has life. My father lived a great life. He left many legacies. We are proud of what he achieved in his lifetime and all of us his children thank Almighty God for his life. “He touched many lives and we are proud of what he has

tral Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, business mogul Aliko Dangote and Former Governor Niyi Adebayo. Others include former acting National chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Abubakar Baraje, and his predecessor in office, Alhaji Bello Mohammed, Chief Jim Nwobodo and Dr. Wale Babalkin. There were also Minister of Sports, Bolaji Abdulahi, MD of GTB Segun Agbaje and Alhaji Kola Abiola. All federal and state legislators from Kwara State were also present.

been able to do.” Asked if his father had any unfulfilled dreams, he said: “Let’s look at what he fulfilled rather than what he didn’t. He fulfilled many good things.” According to a family source, the former Senate Leader died between 6.30am and 7am. The source said: “Oloye(as he was politically known) died in his sleep. Dr. Saraki had been in and out of hospitals both locally and abroad

in the last one and a half years. “I can tell you that in the last six months, he had been in Nigeria receiving treatment. “The former Senate Leader had some words with his son Bukola, in his sitting room without signs that death was lurking around on Monday. There were signs that his health had deteriorated. “The ex-governor was in Abuja on Wednesday when he was asked to come over to Continued on page 63

•The late Saraki

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NEWS ABUBAKAR OLUSOLA SARAKI (1933-2012) Amaechi condoles with Kwara, family RIVERS State Governor and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Chibuike Amaechi, has commiserated with the Saraki family and the people of Kwara State on the death of the former Senate Leader, Dr. Olusola Saraki. In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. David Iyofor, Governor Amaechi said the death of Saraki was a huge loss to the nation. Amaechi described the late Saraki as a political giant with great values whose commitment to nation building and the development of Kwara State was great. He said: “The late Saraki was an astute politician and great leader. He contributed to the political development of Nigeria. On behalf of my family, the government and people of Rivers State, I condole with my friend, Dr. Bukola Saraki, the Saraki family and Kwara State indigenes as they go through this sad time. “We pray for the repose of his soul and urge the Saraki family to take heart and stay strong in unity as they mourn the passing away of this great man.” The Governor also en-

Dafinone mourns him SENATOR David Dafinone yesterday joined Nigerians to mourn the death of his colleague and friend, Senator Olusola Saraki. In a condolence message to the family, Senator Dafinone described Saraki’s death as painful, especially at a time Nigeria is in a state of flux. He lauded Saraki’s great concern for the unity of the country and the growth of democracy. “Dr. Saraki as a medical doctor, international businessman, philanthropist and politician gained the respect, trust and love of the country. He would be greatly missed,” Dafinone said. He prayed Almighty Allah to grant the soul of the late Second Republic politician eternal rest and grant his family the strength to bear the loss.

Saraki a political giant, says Belgore


WARA State Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) leader, Mohammed Dele Belgore SAN, has said with the death of Dr. Olusola Saraki, Nigeria has lost a politician who touched the lives of many people and whose contributions would be debated for years to come.

Rafiu Ajakaye, issued a condolence statement, quoting the lawyer as saying: “We are saddened by the sudden death of our father, Abubakar Olusola Saraki, who passed away today (yesterday). No doubt, Nigeria has lost a political giant. “He was a man who

touched the lives of many people and whose contributions would be debated for years to come, especially in Kwara where he was the dominant figure for over four decades. “We condole with the family and friends and pray that Almighty Allah should grant him eternal rest.”

•Kwara State Governor AbdulFatah Ahmed (middle) waiting for the body of Dr. Saraki at the Ilorin Airport...yesterday. PHOTO: KAYODE OKUNOLA

Fayemi: Saraki’s death end of an era


KITI State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has described the death of the Second Republic Senate Leader, Dr. Olusola Saraki, as “the end of an era of one of Nigeria’s political legends.” Fayemi in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Yinka Oyebode, said Saraki bestrode the political terrain of Kwara State and the North Central like a colossus during his life. He lamented that Saraki’s death came at a time when the polity was

yet to recover from the shock of the demise of former Oyo State Governor, Alhaji Lam Adesina, who died on Sunday. The Governor noted that Saraki touched the lives of many people in his life through his philanthropy and generosity from which indigent people benefited. According to him, Saraki provided leadership and direction to his political disciples in critical times, adding that his counsel would be sorely missed. Fayemi said Saraki never

believed in violence in his political activities and used persuasion in spreading his political ideology. He said although Saraki was a Muslim, he touched the lives of Christians, Muslims and adherents of traditional religion without discriminating against anybody. Fayemi said: “Despite being a Muslim, Dr. Saraki had a Christian wife and never stopped her from practising her religion because he believed that religion should be an instrument of unity rather than division.

“It is also on record that Dr. Saraki sponsored Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem and Muslim pilgrims to Mecca annually throughout his life. “This great man contributed to the development of his community and country as a medical doctor, businessman, politician, philanthropist and an elder statesman. Our condolences go to the immediate family, the government and the people of Kwara State. We pray that God should grant them the fortitude to bear this huge loss.”

Ajimobi: his death a colossal loss

Oyo Assembly mourns Saraki THE Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Mrs. Monsurat Sunmonu and her colleagues have condoled with the Kwara State Government, the State House of Assembly and the people of the state on the death of Dr. Olushola Saraki, who died yesterday. A statement by the Publicity Officer to the Speaker, Mrs. Afolake Balogun, described the late Saraki as an astute politician who contributed to the development of politics in Kwara State. It said the political class in the state would miss his roles. The statement said the late Saraki’s contributions to Kwara politics could not be quantified and the vacuum his death would create would be difficult to fill.

Belgore, who was the ACN governorship candidate in the 2011 poll, was reacting to the death yesterday morning of Second Republic Senate Leader, Dr. Saraki. He was among the early callers at the Ikoyi, Lagos home of the late politician yesterday morning. Belgore’s media aide,

•The late Saraki


OVERNOR Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has described the passing away of the Second Republic Senate Majority

Leader, Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki, as a colossal loss, not only to the people of Kwara, but also to the entire country. The governor, in a statement issued in Ibadan yesterday by his Special Adviser on Media, Dr. Festus Adedayo, said the news of the death of the ‘Strongman of Kwara Politics’ came to him as a shock. He described it as unfortunate. He said the people of Kwara State and indeed other Nigerians would sorely miss the political sagacity, organisational ability and ad-

ministrative wizardry of the late Dr. Saraki, which placed him above his peers in the political circle. “Dr. Saraki was a shining example of humility and philanthropy, as he shared virtually everything he had with the needy, irrespective of where they came from. “Though he never held any political office since 1983 when he left the Senate, he endeared himself to the hearts of Kwarans, thus becoming a rallying point in the politics of the state. “Dr. Saraki left an indelible

imprint in the sand of time. The vacuum created by his death will be difficult to fill,’’ the governor said. While commiserating with the Saraki family, the government and people of Kwara State on the demise of the elder statesman, Governor Ajimobi urged them to seek solace in the fact that the medical doctor-turned-politician lived a fulfilled life and served God and humanity. He prayed God to grant the soul of the deceased eternal rest.

Painful exit of a democrat, says Ekweremadu


EPUTY Senate President Ike Ekweremadu yesterday described the death of the Second Republic Senate Leader, Dr. Olusola Saraki, as a loss to the nation and exit of a people’s democrat. A statement by the Special Adviser to the Deputy

From: Onyedi Ojiabor, Assistant Editor

Senate President, Uche Anichukwu, quoted Ekweremadu as saying that the late politician was a people-centred leader. He said Dr. Saraki “lived for the people, politicked for the people and was committed to the people.”

Ekweremadu lamented that the death of Saraki was a loss for the Senate where he distinguished himself as one of the most charismatic and vibrant senators. He said the late politician would be remembered in the annals of Nigerian politics for “promoting the philosophy of people’s

welfare as the crux of politics.” Ekweremadu condoled with the people of Kwara and Saraki’s family over the loss, urging the political class to emulate his brand of politics by impacting on the lives of the people. He prayed for the repose of his soul.

Fashola: Nigeria has lost a compassionate politician


AGOS State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), yesterday commiserated with his Kwara State counterpart, Governor AbdulFattah Ahmed, on the death of elder statesman, Senator Abubakar Olusola Saraki. Dr. Saraki, who bestrode the nation’s political sphere, particularly that of Kwara State, for nearly four decades, passed on in Lagos yesterday after a brief illness. He was 79. In his condolence message, Governor Fashola expressed sadness over the sudden passage of the elder statesman whom he described as one of the most vibrant, colourful politicians Nigeria has ever produced. He said the nation has lost a compassionate politician. Tracing the political history of the man who is widely referred to as the Father of Kwara Politics, Governor Fashola noted that from the time he emerged in the nation’s political space in 1977 as a member of the Constituent Assembly that drafted the 1979 Constitution, Senator Saraki had consistently impacted on the politics of the country with such effectiveness, which made him a household name across the country. He said: “The consistency of his political views, which he expressed eloquently, was, perhaps, responsible for the leadership positions he held in the Senate into which he was elected in 1979 on the platform of the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN), the All Peoples’ Party (APP) of which he was the National Leader in 1998 and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) where his influence saw to the election of his son, Bukola, as Kwara State Governor in 2003.” According to Governor Fashola, “Nigeria has lost a political giant whose advice is needed, particularly at this period when our budding democracy is cutting its teeth and taking its challenging steps towards consolidation.” He prayed for the repose of the soul of the elder statesman and said Almighty Allah should grant the government and people of Kwara State, particularly the Saraki family, the fortitude to bear the loss.

A great loss to ANPP, says Onu From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja


HE All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) yesterday described the death of Senator Olusola Saraki as a big blow to the party, Kwara State and the nation at large. ANPP National Chairman, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, in a statement he signed said as one of the founding fathers of ANPP, Saraki played a crucial role, which helped build the party. It reads: “It is with a heavy heart that on behalf of our great party, I mourn the transition to eternal glory of one of our distinguished founding leaders, the late Senator (Dr.) Olusola Saraki, Wazirin Ilorin.



NEWS LAMIDI ADESINA (1939-2012) Lam had kidney ailment, says UCH


HE management of the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, yesterday spoke on the death of the former Governor of Oyo State, Alhaji Lam Adesina, who was initially admitted in the hospital. Though the management said its personnel did their best to save the life of the political icon, “there is little anyone can do when the nature strikes.” The ex-governor was reportedly admitted in the hospital for some weeks before he was transferred to a private hospital in Lagos, an action the UCH management said was at the request of his family and political associates. UCH’s Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the hospital, Dr. Temitope Alonge, said this while fielding questions from reporters at the beginning of the 55th anniversary of the hospital. The Professor of Orthopaedic, however, insisted that the death


From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan

of Lam Adesina had nothing to do with his transfer to a private hospital in Lagos. He said death would occur when it would occur and it could be anywhere. Recalling the efforts made by his hospital when the deceased was brought there, Dr. Alonge said he was almost in a coma, but he recovered after about 24 hours. He said it was then it was discovered that he had kidney problems and was placed on dialysis. While stressing that the discharge and transfer of the late politician out of UCH was not due to inefficiency or lack of equipment to take care of him, the CMD said the hospital offered him the best service that could be offered a personality, “but we had to bow to the wishes of his associates to get him transferred.”

•The widow-Deaconess Florence (middle) and her son, Senator Bukola Saraki (at the back), the late Saraki’s sister, Alhaja Ramota Sanni; the deceased’s daughters - Mrs. Gbemisola Saraki-Fowora (second right); Mrs Tope Edu and others at the airport, Ilorin...yesterday

Ibadan community mourns Adesina


HE Kasumu Estate Residents Association (KERA), Odo-Ona Elewe, Orita Challenge, Ward II, Oluyole Local Government in Ibadan, Oyo State, has commiserated with the family of the late political icon, former governor, National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) chieftain and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) leader in the state, Alhaji Lamidi Adesina. Members of the association said his death was a great loss not only to the ACN and Oyo indigenes, but also to Nigeria. Describing the late Adesina who ruled Oyo State from 1999 to 2003 as a political leader and lover of the masses, they said his death has left a vacuum in the progressives’ camp. In a statement signed by KERA’s Chairman Mr. Niyi Fagbemi Public Relations Officer Mr. Wale Afinjuomo and Secretary, Mr. Abdulraham Abdulazeez expressed their heartfelt condolence to the widow, Alhaja

•The late Adesina

Saratu Adesina, Governor Abiola Ajimobi, Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade I, the Adesina family and Oyo State indigenes on. The community suggested that the Ajimobi administration should name The Polytechnic Ibadan after the late politician, being the first Ibadan indigene that ruled Oyo State for four years as a governor. “His was a straight forward and detribalised person. We will sorely miss him, but we seek solace in the fact that he impacted positively on humanity and Nigeria as a whole. May Allah grant him aljaana firdaus,” the association said.

•Hon. Ahmadu Alli (left) and Senator Jim Nwobodo at the airport...yesterday

Adesina was a patriot, says Afenifere


HE Afenifere Renewal Group (ARG) said it has received with shock the death of Alhaji Lamidi Adesina, the former Oyo State governor. The group, in a statement by its Media/Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kunle Famoriyo, described Adesina as a patriotic, illustrious Yoruba son and a dogged fighter for the progressives. The group said: “As we mourn his departure, we believe that he will rest in peace because he spent his life fighting for the welfare of the masses.

“We send our heartfelt condolence to the family of GREAT LAM, Governor Abiola Ajimobi, Oyo State indigenes and Nigerians who will miss his unique contributions to the political development of the country. “The belief of Lam Adesina in true federalism and the par- •Alhaji Kola Abiola...yesterday liamentary system of government as a better option to the current presidential system of government and the integration of the Southwest should be pursued with vigour in his memory.”

‘A patriotic Nigerian leader has passed on’


HE Initiator and Chairman of the Movement for Nigeria’s Total Transformation and a renowned author, Chief Areoye Oyebola, has said with the death of Lam Adesina, Nigeria has lost a patriotic leader who exercised genuine gift of leadership throughout his life. He said: “Lam Adesina, my close friend of over 50 years, will be greatly missed at this hour when our country badly needs its best citizens to rescue it from the pit where it now prostrates. “Lam was very bold, selfless, altruistic and humane. When the struggle was fierce against the tyrannical rule of the late Gen-

eral Sani Abacha, Lam, who travelled with me from Ibadan to Owo, the home of the late former Governor Adekunle Ajasin for the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) meetings, demonstrated his dogged fighting spirit. “At one of the meetings, he nominated me as the chairman of a three-man ad-hoc committee, which was assigned to carry out espionage on the activities and manoeuvres of Abacha. “Nigeria will miss a great educationist, a man of deep knowledge, a thoughtful columnist and a man of uncompromising integrity who was kind •Muslim clerics at the Ilorin home of the Sarakis...yesterday to a fault.”

•A relation...yesterday




Atuche’s trial starts afresh By Eric Ikhilae



HE trial of former Managing Director of defunct Bank PHB Plc Francis Atuche and one other began afresh yesterday at a Federal High Court in Lagos. Atuche and an ex-director of the bank, Charles Ojo,

who have been in court since 2009, were re-arraigned before a new judge on a 45count charge. This followed the transfer of Justice Fatimat Nyanko. Justice Rita OfiliAjumogobia, has been assigned to the case. Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia is the third judge to handle the case. Justice Akinjide Ajakaiye, who earlier handled the case, was also transferred out of the Lagos division, a few months after he started the case. He has since retired from service. Atuche and Ojo were accused of alleged money laundering by the Economic and Financial Crimes Com-

mission (EFCC). They were accused of recklessly granting loans, without adequate securities, to companies in which they had interest. The duo were also alleged to have falsified the bank’s records. Atuche was accused of exceeding his loan approval limit. The transactions involved were said to be worth over N125billion. Both men pleaded not guilty. Prosecution lawyer Kemi Pinhero (SAN) asked for a trial date. Defence lawyers Abubakar Shamsudeen and Olumide Adefila did not object. The duo urged the court to allow their clients remain on

the bail granted them in 2009 by Justice Ajakaiye, which Justice Nyako also adopted. Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia ordered them to file fresh bail applications within seven days. She fixed January 16 to hear the bail applications and possible commencement of trial. The judge allowed them to remain on the earlier bail, pending the determination of their new applications. Atuche and Ojo (also an ex-Managing Director of the equally defunct Spring Bank Plc) were first arraigned on October 28, 2009 on a 26count charge. The charges were substituted with the amended charge of 45 counts.


ERA holds conference

NVIRONMENTAL Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) will hold its fifth annual National Consultation on the Environment today and tomorrow at the Excellence Hotel & Suites, Ogba, Lagos. The consultation, with the theme: Corporate Accountability and the Environment, will bring together stakeholders and international experts to speak on the ecosystem. The chairperson is Minister of Environment, Housing and Urban Development, Hajiya Hadza Mailafiya.

Two Red Cross members killed From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Nnewi


WO members of the Nigerian Red Cross have been killed in a road accident in Onitsha, Anambra State. State Vice-Chairman of the Red Cross Peter Katchy said they died on their way back from the flood relief camps. He identified the victims as Chigozie Umeluh, who is married with a daughter and Moses Chijioke from Nbuo Ogbatu in Aninri Local Government Area, Enugu State. Chijioke will be buried today, while Umeluh has been intered.

‘Let’s access ballot papers after elections’ From Augustine Ehikioya, Abuja


ROF Richard McLand of the Loyola University, Chicago, yesterday urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to allow Nigerians access ballot papers for verification after elections. McLand, who works with electoral bodies in 35 countries, spoke at the INEC Headquarters in Abuja during the National Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue on Enhancing Women’s Political Participation through Constitutional and Legal Reforms in Nigeria. He said this will help to quell the crisis that follows release of election results and will also show whether the elections were free and credible. The don said INEC has the power to prevail on parties to comply with the rules and regulations regarding elections and make them give more room for women’s participation.

Group sues Fed Govt By Adebisi Onanuga


•A cross section of guests at the University of Ibadan 2012 Convocation Lecture delivered by Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola (SAN) with the theme, "Framework for Re-inventing Higher Education for Nigeria's National Development" at the Trenchard Hall...yesterday. INSET: Fashola...delivering his lecture

EFCC to prosecute lawyer for alleged N600m ‘fraud’


HE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is to arraign an Enugu lawyer, Christian Chukwudozie Ebuzoeme, today for an alleged N600million scam. A statement by its Head of Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, said the accused and his accomplice, Amaechi Okoye (now at large), set up a phoney investment scheme to defraud the public. The statement said: “Ebuzoeme,the Chief Executive officer (CEO) of Karchack Services Limited, will be arraigned for allegedly defrauding the public through a phoney investment scheme involving over N600million. “The duo for three years mobilised deposits from the public ,promising huge returns on investment as a bait.

•Arraigns another for $5,450 scam From Yusuf Alli, Abuja and Adebisi Onanuga

“At the beginning, few investors were paid dividends which helped to convince others to join the fray. “But the flow of dividends soon dried up. After several months of being unable to pay their investors, the two partners split the company. “Okoye continued to manage the business while Ebuzoeme moved on to establish Yardenit Limited but the operations were still the same. “They continued to defraud unsuspecting Nigerians. “ Ebuzoeme and his partner in crime expanded their business to new frontiers in China and South Africa.” The commission yester-

day arraigned Etchie Joseph before a Lagos High Court, Ikeja, for alleged impersonation and false receipt of money. The EFCC alleged that Joseph falsely presented himself as Stanley Oberman from Los Angeles, USA, to a lady, Veronica Pena, who he had wanted to defraud of $5,450. He was arraigned before Justice Adebisi Akinlade on a three-count charge of attempts to obtain money by false pretence and possession of fraudulent documents. EFCC’s counsel Francis Usani told the court that Joseph was arrested by EFCC operatives at a cybercafé in Lagos. Joseph allegedly claimed he was a resident of Ken-

tucky, United States of America. He was said to have confessed in his statement to the EFCC, that he attempted to swindle Pena but was not successful. When the charges were read to him, the defendant pleaded not guilty. Usani said the agency was ready to begin trial and asked the court to fix a date. But defence counsel O. F. Latona told the court that he got the notice of the arraignment late. He pleaded for a short adjournment to study the charges and prepare his defence. Justice Akinlade adjourned the case till January 19 for hearing of the bail application. She ordered that the suspect be remanded in Kirikiri Maximum Prison.

Jonathan, IBB, Sultan for Anyiam-Osigwe lecture


RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan, former Military President Ibrahim Babangida and the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar III, will attend the 13th session of the annual Osigwe Anyiam-Osigwe Foundation lecture. Also to attend is former Sri Lankan President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, who will speak on ‘’Ethnic policy and national integration’’ . Jonathan is expected to speak on the theme of the lecture: ‘’Synthesis for Nationhood: Ethnic policy and na-

tional integration: From Indigenes to citizens’’, and his efforts at fostering nation-building. The Sultan, who is the royal father of the day, will speak on how his role as a natural ruler and spiritual leader is promoting national unity as well as ethnic and religious harmony. The lecture will take place on November 29 at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Kofo Abayomi, Victoria Island, Lagos.

GROUP, Women Empowerment and Legal Aid Initiative (WELA) has sued the Federal Government for the non-swearing in of Justice Ifeoma Jumbo-Ofo as a justice of the Court of Appeal. In a motion on notice filed by its Executive Director, Mrs Funmi Falana, in Lagos, the group is challenging the provisions of the Federal Character Act, which states that women must revert to their state of origin for purposes of federal appointments. Mrs Falana asked the court for a declaration that Section 2, Part II of the Guiding Principles and Formula for the Distribution of all Cadres of Post under the Federal Character Commission that provides that a married woman shall continue to lay claim to her state of origin for the purpose of implementation of the Federal Character Formula at the national level contravenes Section 42 of the 1999 Constitution. A date is yet to be fixed for the hearing.


Website for flood relief

RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has launched an integrated website for flood relief donations. The website, created by the Presidential Committee on Flood Relief and Rehabilitation is to help mobilise funds from Nigerians all over the world, he said. The website is The President said the launching of the website was another major highlight of the fund-raising efforts of the Federal Government through the Presidential Committee. The Committee also launched its official pages on some popular social media channels - Twitter ( NigFloodRelief), Facebook ( NigeriaFloodRelief), YouTube ( NigeriaFloodRelief), Google Plus ( and Flickr (

NEMA advises on dry season From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan


HE National Emergency Management Authority (NEMA) yesterday urged Nigerians to be prepared for the challenges of the dry season and its associated emergencies. Its Director General, Mohammed Sani Sidi, spoke to stakeholders at a workshop in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital. He urged Nigerians to be wary of environment associated epidemics, notably measles, cholera, lassa fever and cerebral spinal meningitis, among others. Sidi, who was represented by the Southwest Zonal Coordinator, Iyiola Akande, said measles, cholera, lassa fever and cerebral spinal meningitis are among the 10 most critical health disasters associated with dry season.

Abuja Carnival to hold Nov 24-27 From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja


HE Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved November 24 to 27 for this year’s Abuja Carnival. Twelve countries from Africa, Asia, South America and the Caribbean, according to the Minister of Culture and Tourism, Edem Duke, will participate in the Carnival. The minister said unlike the previous ones, this year’s Carnival is being diversified to include the introduction of various competitions among schools as part of efforts to encourage culture and tourism in schools. A special exhibitions by the National Council for Arts and Culture, National Gallery of Arts and National Commission for Museum and Monuments is also lined up to spice up the carnival.



NEWS Ekiti courts shun criminal cases From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti


OURTS in Ekiti State have been shut since Monday, following the withdrawal of the police orderlies of judges and magistrates. Yesterday, prison officials, who brought some suspects to the courts, were discussing with some judiciary workers in groups. Some judiciary workers, who pleaded for anonymity, said following the withdrawal of orderlies, judges and magistrates received a circular directing them to vacate their duties. Deputy Registrar of the State Judiciary, Mr. Johnson Apuabi, confirmed it. He said the development has affected the hearing of criminal cases, but civil cases were being heard. Apuabi said: “It would be extremely dangerous for the courts to sit on criminal cases, such as armed robbery and murder, without security presence around the judges and the court premises. “It is true that judges and magistrates are not sitting, but it affects only criminal cases. The civil cases are still being heard. No one would expect them to sit on criminal cases without police protection.” He said the directive withdrawing the police orderlies came from the Commissioner of Police, who he said hinged it on a directive from the Force Headquartres. It was learnt that police stations have been overwhelmed with the high number of suspects in their cells, who cannot be arraigned. Some Divisional Police Officers, who pleaded for anonymity, said: “The implications for us are legion. You have to feed them and guard your loins in terms of security, especially when hardened criminal gangs are involved.”

Osun tailors to graduate


HE first batch of Osun State trainees in garment making will graduate tomorrow. In a statement yesterday, Commissioner for Information and Strategy Akinrogun Akere said the graduands, who were drawn from the 332 wards of the state, would be employed to sew the free uniforms to be distributed to public school pupils. As part of efforts to revolutionise education, Governor Rauf Aregbesola introduced free uniforms pupils in primary and secondary schools. To create jobs for the people, the government insisted that the contractor, Sam and Sarrah Garments, must train local tailors to sew the uniform and site a branch of its factory in Osogbo, the state capital. The branch has almost been completed at Abere, near the Government Secretariat. Ten tailors were drawn from each ward, making a total of 3,320 and 125 will graduate tomorrow. The ceremony will hold by 10am at Sam and Sarrah Garment’s Head Office on Km 42, Lagos/Ibadan Expressway, Mowe, Ogun State.

‘Oyinlola’s appointment of ex-CJ T was illegal’

‘Strangers can’t be Ogun indigenes’

•Osun Assembly rejects CJ-nominee

THE people of Ogun State yesterday rejected any planned amendment of the 1999 Constitution, which would allow strangers residing in the state to become indigenes. They said strangers are free to live in the state for as long as they desire, but such residency should not confer indigeneship status on them. The people spoke in Abeokuta, the state capital, at the Public Session on the Review of the 1999 Constitution in Abeokuta, the state capital, which was organised by Senators Sefiu Kaka (Ogun East), Gbenga Obadara (Ogun Central) and Akin Odunsi (Ogun West). They said there should be a line between strangers and indigenes of a state, adding that ministerial posts should also be appointed based on indigeneship instead of residency. Ogun West spokesman Mr. Kayode Odunsi warned that any provision that confers ingigeneship status on strangers would breed ethnic conflicts and crisis. Citing examples of Jos, the Plateau State capital; Lagos and Abuja, Odunsi said the natives may phase into minority, as well as lose their identity, historical and cultural heritage through the influence of strangers. The people called for fiscal federalism, where all taxes paid in the state would be controlled by the state and not the Federal Government. The meeting, which was held at the June 12 Cultural Centre, Kuto, agreed that the current two terms of four years for the executive should be continued. The Awujale of Ijebuland, who was represented by Otunba Olu Adebanjo, urged Nigeria to return to the Parliamentary System of government. Awujale said: “Let us return to the Parliamentary System, since people are complaining that the Presidential System is too expensive.” He said the rotation of executive offices between the constituent parts of the federation should be addressed within the political party and should not be entrenched in the constitution. Governor Ibikunle Amosun, represented by his deputy, Prince Segun Adesegun, said if the country was to continue with the Presidential System, it had to look into the tenure of senators and members of the House of Representatives.

HE Chief Judge nominee for Osun State, Justice Oyebola Ojo, has said the appointment of the former Chief Judge, Justice Olaniyi Ojo, by the ousted administration of Chief Olagunsoye Oyinlola was illegal. She said the appointment of the former CJ, who was then President of the Customary Court of Appeal, violated the order of seniority and precedent. Justice Ojo spoke on the floor of the House of Assembly during her screening. Answering questions from lawmakers, she said the then number two Judge, Justice Awotoye, should have been appointed. Justice Ojo said she would maintain a good working relationship among the three

arms of government, if she is appointed CJ. On a petition sent to the National Judicial Commission (NJC) by a group within the state judiciary, called Body of Judges, Justice Ojo said it was to convey the feelings of Osun Judges to the NJC, when they heard that a judge would be brought to Osun from Lagos State. She said: “The letter written by the Body of Judges was not meant to be confrontational, but to convey our feelings on the Judge that was to be brought from Lagos State

to the NJC.” When Mr. Folorunso Bamisayemi asked why the Body of Judges did not resist the alleged illegal appointment of the former CJ, Justice Ojo said it was the decision of the State Judicial Service Commission (JSC) and she had no power to tinker with it. Speaker Najeem Salaam debunked a story published in the Nigerian Tribune yesterday, where it was reported that the lawmakers shunned the sitting for the appointment of CJ. He said the story was in bad faith.

Some lawmakers rejected the nominee on the grounds that the Assembly cannot act on a matter pending in court. After a hot debate, Mr. Timothy Owoeye moved the motion for the nominee’s rejection and it was seconded by Mr. Folorunso Bamisayemi (Ife South). Mr. Johnson Ojo (Ede South) moved a counter motion for the nominee’s confirmation and it was seconded by Mr. Kamorudeen Akanbi (Ede North). Majority of the lawmakers rejected the nominee and the speaker urged the governor to fill the vacant post in acting capacity until the litigation against the JSC, in which the Assembly and the governor are joined as respondents, is disposed of.

•MTN Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Brett Goschen shaking the winner of of the MTN Ultimate Wonder Promo Aeroplane, Miss Ebubeoniso Garricks. With them are MTN Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer Larry Annetts (left) and the Corporate Service Executive, Mr. Wale Goodluck during the presentation of the price to the winner in Lagos...yesterday. PHOTO. MUYIWA HASSAN

Fayemi: good drainage system’ll enhance road durability E

KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi has said a proper drainage system would ensure road durability. Fayemi spoke during an inspection of ongoing road projects in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital. He said the clearing of blocked drains and the introduction of concrete slabs on drains would prevent roads from retaining water and ensure their durability. Fayemi said the work done by Hartland Construction Company, which is handling the dualisation of the Old Garage-Ojumose and AtikankanFirst Baptist roads, shows that the company is competent. He said he had received many phone calls from people, who hailed the quality of the work done. The slabs are designed to prevent waste from getting

•Governor laments low patronage of health centres From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti

into the drains. Fayemi was optimistic that the 16 roads being handled by the contractor in Ado-Ekiti would be completed in two months. He said the government’s attention would shift to roads in Ikere, Ikole and Ijero-Ekiti, when Ado-Ekiti road projects are completed. On Tuesday, the governor regretted the low patronage of health centres by residents across the 16 local government areas. He said lack of patronage has rendered the centres useless.

Fayemi spoke in his office while receiving a delegation of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA). He said the centres would be renovated and upgraded next year after consultation with the medical directors and nurses in the hospitals. Fayemi said the renovation would be futile, if the medical personnel, who know the areas of need, were not consulted. He said the proposed renovation of the 293 primary health centres across the state was not just to beautify them, but to fortify them with requisite tools for optimal service delivery. Fayemi said the Primary

Health Care Development Agency is working hard to ensure that the grassroots are not neglected. On the alleged huge tax deduction from the salary of health workers and the levy on private hospitals, Fayemi said the Federal Government, and not Ekiti State, determines the tax regime and the state government only acts in compliance with the existing tax law. He assured doctors of fair treatment. Ekiti NMA President Obitade Obimakinde hailed the governor for the various investments in the health sector. Obimakinde urged Fayemi to look into the welfare of doctors. The NMA team was accompanied by the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Olusola Fasubaa.

From Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta

Sacked Ondo council chairmen reinstated


HE nine local government caretaker committee chairmen that were suspended by the Ondo State House of Assembly have been reinstated. It was learnt that their reinstatement was prompted by the intervention of Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who returned from an overseas trip on Tuesday. But the Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Mr. Oye Aladetan, told

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

reporters after the plenary session that the House recalled the council chairmen after they submitted the staff audit report. He said the decision was not influenced by the governor. Aladetan said: “We are independent of the Executive. The decision to suspend them was taken unanimously by the House and a similar step was taken to reinstate them.

“Since they have complied with our directive by submitting the documents we requested for, we decided to forgive them.” When the chairmen were sacked, the Assembly appointed new persons to replace them. It was learnt that top government officials, including Deputy Governor Ali Olanusi and the Chief of Staff, Dr. Kola Ademujimi, on Monday met with the new appointees and

told them not to resume office until the governor returned. A group, the Ondo State Democratic Awareness Forum (OSDAF), hailed the Assembly members for their attempt at ensuring transparency in councils. In a statement by its Chairman, Mr. Ikuejemilo Isaac and Secretary Mr. Oladeinde Victor said the people appreciate the lawmakers’ courage, “even though it was thwarted by the executive”.

OSDAF said: “The entire citizenry in the state is solidly behind your action and with this development, you (lawmakers) have proved to the world that you are worthy ambassadors of your various constituencies. No matter what the Executive may have done to reverse the sack, your efforts are appreciated.” The group urged the Assembly to make the council chairmen account for the allocations they have been collecting since their appointment.





NEWS CONSTITUTIONAL REVIEW Yoruba Assembly slams review


HE Yoruba National Assembly yesterday described the proposed constitution amendment as an exercise in futility. It said the restructuring of the country can only be accomplished at a Sovereign National Conference (SNC). The group, led by Gen. Alani Akinrinade (rtd), acknowledged that the 1999 Constitution was foisted on Nigeria by military rulers without recourse to federalism. In a statement in Lagos, the Assembly reiterated its call for an all-embracing ‘Conference of all Nationalities’ to address the structural problems and resolve the lingering national question. The group said: “Wisdom dictates that you do not amend a useless document, rather you discard it and fashion another

By Emmanuel Oladesu, Deputy Political Editor

one. “This current effort will again serve no useful purpose, as this is clearly not what this country needs at this time. It can only take the country back to square one.” The group said Nigeria deserves a peoples’ constitution and not an imposed document achieved through an orchestrated process of consultation with the people. “The National Assembly is not constituted in a manner to give Nigeria a desired constitution. “It possesses a different mandate, which is law making, but it lacks the constituent powers to undertake the process of constitution making. We must learn from history,” it said.

•Senator Tinubu flanked by ACN leader in Lagos State Tajudeen Olusi (left) and Pa Ali at the event...yesterday.

ACN senators hold constitution review hearing •Senators Tinubu, Ashafa, Solomon to pursue party position


TATE police, immunity for governors and status of local councils were prominent issues at the public hearings in Lagos Central, West and East senatorial districts yesterday. Other issues included devolution of powers, creation of more states, recognition of three geo-political zones , constitutional roles for traditional rulers, removal of the Land Use Act, fiscal federalism and state police. Others are rotational presidency, gender issues, residency and indigenship, and rotation of governorship across the three zones in the state. The senatorial district sensitisation programme organised by Senators Oluremi Tinubu (Central), Gbenga Ashafa (East) and Ganiyu Solomon (West) took place simultaneously in the three districts. The Lagos Central public hearing, organised by Senator Tinubu, was chaired by a member of the House of Representatives in the Second Republic, Pa Adekunle Ali. At the meeting, it was agreed that four committees will be set up to look at the memoranda and come up with the district’s position. The committees will be chaired by Ali, former Minister of State for Defence Demola Seriki, Wasiu Eshinlokun Samnni and Olajide Jimoh. Senator Tinubu rejected the 1999 Constitution, saying it was a legacy of the military

By Emmanuel Oladesu, Deputy Political Editor

government which has never reflected the will of Nigerians. She recalled that the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) had consistently called for an overhaul of the constitution to guarantee true federalism, good governance and grassroots participation. "As the people entrusted with your mandate in Lagos , I and other members of our great party, the ACN, have made known the party's position on some issues highlighted above and consistently called for devolution of power, fiscal federalism and creation of state police.” Mrs Tinubu, who is a member of the Committe on Constitution Review, said the Southwest public hearing would hold today at the Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja. Senator Tinubu urged Lagosians to demand the listing of the Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) in the constitution and conferment of special status on Lagos. At the East forum, Senator Ashafa said the 1999 Constitution had been a source of disagreement among stakeholders. He said: “The National Assembly is aware that the 1999 Constitution is militarised, hence the decision to exchange ideas and aggregate views of stakeholders to produce a document that will truly reflect the wish of the people.”

‘Special status for Apapa’


ONSTITUENTS in Apapa Federal Constituency in Lagos State have resolved that a special status be accorded the constituency and state, which should reflect an increase in the grant received from the Federation Account. The lawmaker representing the constituency in the House of Representatives, Babatunde Adewale, said the Federal Government should accord Apapa Federal Constituency a special status because it is the home of two seaports, which are sources of revenue for the

By Tokunbo Ogunsami

Federal Government. He said Lagos State should enjoy a special status, being the nation’s commercial capital. The constituents, however, voted against state creation because, according to them, most of the existing states are not viable. They asked for an independent local government system, state police and two terms for the president and governors. Adewale said the review was aimed at aggregating the views of Nigerians to produce a people’s constitution.





Naira snaps three-day decline as CBN boosts supply


HE naira appreciated yesterday, snapping three days of declines, after the Central Bank of Nigeria sold the highest amount of the currency in eight weeks of auctions. The currency gained less than 0.1 per cent to N157.80 a dollar. It has strengthened by 2.8 per cent this year, the second-best performer in Africa, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The CBN sold $200 million at an auction yesterday, it said in an e-mailed statement. That brings its sale at its two scheduled auctions this week to $350 million, the highest in eight rounds, according to data on its website. The regulator sells dollars on Mondays and Wednesdays to keep the currency within a three per cent band around N155 a dollar. “The apex bank’s supply strengthened the naira, given limited dollar demand at this time,” Edgar Ebinum, an analyst at Lagos-based Cowry Asset Management Limited., said in a telephone chat. The CBN has left the benchmark interest rate unchanged at a record 12 per cent this year, increased lenders’ reserve requirements and limited access to money auctions to stop dealers from buying foreign currency using naira purchased from the bank at a discount. The yield on the nation’s 16.39 per cent naira debt due January, 2022, was unchanged at 12.74 per cent, according to yesterday’s prices compiled by the Lagos-based Financial Markets Dealers Association. Also, borrowing costs on the nation’s $500 million Eurobonds due January, 2021, declined 10 basis points to 4.28 per cent yesterday.

We will make sure that there is a transparent process that every Nigeria will look at and say we have done fairly. We don’t want anybody to think that these banks were taken over and handed over to special interests. It must be a very transparent process. - Mr Mustapha Chike-Obi, CEO, AMCON

‘Fuel scarcity to last till next year’ T

HE lingering fuel scar city in the country is expected to last till next year, a report of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream), has indicated. The report listed outstanding debts of over N141billion owed oil marketings as one of the reason for fuel scarcity in the country. The report, which blamed the Mnister of Finance, Dr Okonjo Ngozi-Iweala and the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) for the scarcity, said the debts have discouraged petroleum marketers from further importion, given that banks are no more willing to extend further credit to them. These disclosures are contained in the report of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) on the re-occurrence of long queues in filling stations across the country.

• Report blames Okonjo-Iweala, PPPRA From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

It said Nigerians should be prepared for an extended scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) as commercial banks are no longer willing to give credit facilities to petroleum products’ marketers. In addition, the Committee said System 2B, which distributes about 70 per cent of petroleum products from Lagos, Mosimi, Ejigbo, Ibadan, Ore and Ilorin has collapsed, and has affected the petroleum product distribution system. The report was presented to the House yesterday by the Chairman of the Committee, Dakuku Peterside. In the executive summary of the report obtained by The Nation, the Committee expressed fears that due to a number of factors, “the current scarcity will last for a fairly long time beyond the

first quarter of next year.” The committee said apart from the the Ministry of Finance withholding payments of marketers under investigation, there was inadequate provision in the 2012 budget for payment of subsidy. It said only N306billion was allocated to PMS in the N888billion set aside for payment of subsidy. It said: “The delay in payment to petroleum marketers traceable to the Ministry of Finance is adversely affecting the availability of reduced and credit worthiness of marketers. At a point, it took not less than six months to process payment due importers. “The collapse of Syatem 2B which distribute about 70 per cent of petroleum products starting from Lagos, Mosimi, Ejigbo, Ibadan, Ore and Ilorin severely affected the distribution system. “Too many inconclusive

investigations are affecting the willingness of banks to give credit, and thus importers given allocations by PPPRA cannot perform. For instance, out of 37 companies that were given fourth quarter allocation, only 19 performed by bringing the product into the country. “There is a marked decline in investment in the downstream sector due to very low profit margin that has been gradually building up due to lack of storage facilities as has been observed over time.” The Committee recommended that the Ministry of Finance should as a matter of urgency, pay every marketer being owed and whose claims have been verified by all relevant authorities, adding that all necessary measures should be taken by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to immediately fix fix the collapsed System.

Ajaokuta, steel, NIMC get sole administrator From John Ofikhenua, Abuja


DATA STREAM COMMODITY PRICES Oil -$107/barrel Cocoa -$2,686.35/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢95.17pound Gold -$1,800/troy ounce Rubber -¢159.21pound MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE JSE NYSE LSE

-N6.503 trillion -Z5.112trillion -$10.84 trillion -£61.67 trillion

RATES Inflation -10.5% Treasury Bills -7.08% Maximum lending -22.42% Prime lending -15.87% Savings rate -2% 91-day NTB -15% Time Deposit -5.49% MPR -12% Foreign Reserve $35.8b FOREX CFA -0.2958 EUR -206.9 £ -242.1 $ -156 ¥ -1.9179 SDR -238 RIYAL -40.472

“That in 2013 budget, the Petroleum Support Fund (PSF) should be skewed in favour in PMS by the Ministry of Petroleum. “That all investigations carried our by the Prsodency in the oil and gas industry should be concluded within a time limit. “That PPPRA should give allocation to only marketers that had performed “All necessary steps should be taken to determine the actual quantity of daily consumption of PMS that will enable the country plan ahead”. It would be recalled that the Committee was mandated to carry out the investigation following the adoption of action by Bashir Baballe (PDP, Kano) on 7th November, 2012. According to Pererside, the purpose of the report was to find out from relevant authorities why the country is experiencing fuel scarcity and profer ways of resolving the issues.

• From Left: Executive Director, Lee Engineering & Ltd, Mr. Antonio Brescia, Snr. Manager. Business Development, Mr Godwin Abhulimen ; Chairman/CEO, of Lee Engineering, Mr.Leemon A. Ikpea, – Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison; General Manager, Administration, Mr. Joseph Ikpea and - General Manager Operations, Engr. Antonry Ikpea at the the commissioning of Lee Engineering ultra modern operational complex in Ekpan, Warri by the Minister recently

ATM charges: Erring banks risks sanction, says NDIC A NY Deposit Money Bank (DMB) that vio lates the policy stopping lenders from taking transaction charges from customers that use Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) from other lenders will be sanctioned, the Managing Director, Nigeria Deposit Insurance Commission (NDIC) has said. Speaking yesterday at the NDIC media workshop in Jigawa, he said customers whose accounts are debited after ATM transactions should lodge complaints at the Consumer Protection Unit at the CBN. The Bankers’ Committee made up of Chief Executive Officers of banks, directors

By Collins Nweze

and top officials of the CBN and NDIC had last Tuesday unanimously agreed to bear all charges associated with the use of ATMs. Before then, account holders had been made to pay a flat rate of N100 per withdrawal any time they used other banks’ ATMs. The NDIC boss said the decision to stop the charge would help to increase the patronage of ATMs, thus deepening the financial inclusion strategy. Ibrahim has also called for the institution of

Agency Banking to support the apex bank’s drive for financial inclusion. He said that the Agency Banking provides financial services to the widely dispersed population at affordable price and has assisted some countries in decongesting existing customers from crowded branches. He added that it will equally serve same purpose in Nigeria. According to him, agency banking provides financial services by a third-party agent to customers on behalf of a licensed, prudentially-regulated financial

institution. The NDIC boss listed other projects meant to promote financial inclusion to include the cashless policy designed to bring low-cost, secure and convenient financial services to urban, semiurban and rural areas across the country. He also called for the promotion of all-women microfinance banks, adding that evidence from other countries indicate that such institutions have the potential to promote easy access to credit among rural women, especially at the group levels. He said the platform can also be used to mobilize large pool of funds from the group.

RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has ap proved the appointment of Isa Joseph Onobere as the Sole Administrator for Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited. Onobere, a metallurgical engineer, was also a top management staff of the company. He hails from Kogi State. Also, Abubakar Yaro Ibrahim was appointed the Sole Administrator for the National Iron Mining Company, Itakpe also in Kogi State. Ibrahim, a Mining Engineer, hails from Taraba State. Their appointments are with immediate effect. Minister of Mines and Steel Developmet, Musa Mohammed Sada announced the appointments yesterday. The Minister noted that the two sole administrators were appointed on the basis of their experiences and professionalism in the minerals and metals sector, that they should be able to bring about the expected turn around in the two facilities. The handing and taking over ceremonies between the new Sole Administrators and the former Interim Management Committee on the two companies are expected to be completed within one week. Arc. Sada explained that what informed Federal Government’s decision on the appointment of the new sole administrators for the two companies was to inject new ideas into the two facilities to make them operational in line with the transformation agenda on service delivery.





Fed Govt approves N275.82b for contracts

N a bid to beat the No vember 28th contract ap proval deadline set by President Goodluck Jonathan, the Federal Executive Council (FEC), yesterday approved contracts worth N275.82billion. The projects whick cover key sectors of the economy, include roads, power supply, education, health, water resources and tourism. The approvals were granted at yesterday’s weeklycouncil meeting presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan. The contract for the engineering, procurement and construction of the 700megawatts Zungeru Hydroelectric power project, has the largest chunk, gulping N162.990billion. The sum is inclusive of all taxes, project consultancy and supervision. The project has a completion period of four years and is expected to create about 10,000 jobs in the course of its implementation. Other projects are in the oil rich Niger Delta for which N98.59billion have been provided. The projects brought by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) cover roads construction, bridges, land reclamation, erosion, electricity supply and markets. The Ministry of Works also got a fair share of the contracts with various road projects spread across the three geopolitical zones.

From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja

Also, about N2billion was approved for the purchase of 80 Image Mass Readers Scanners for the marking of examinations conducted by the National Examination Council (NECO). Each of the scanner is at a cost of N24.9million. Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, alongside his colleagues in Works, Mike Onolememen, Education, Rukayyat Rufa’i, Water Resources, Stella Ochekpe, Culture and Tourism, Chief Edem Duke, Minister of Health, Onyeabuchi Chukwu and Minister of State Works, Ambassador Bashir Yuguda, said the projects are crucial for the development of the Niger Delta and in line with it’s determination to create the necessary atmosphere and conducive environment for sustainable development of the Niger Delta region. The Council also approved contracts on road rehabilitation in the North- West, SouthSouth and South- East zone of the country. Maku said 14 road projects have been completed and awaiting commissioning. The projects approved for the Works Ministey include, the construction of WudilUtai-Achika-Darki-Jigawa road in Kano/Jigawa states, for N4.39 billion, with a completion period of 24 months. The construction of Section II, Phase I of Kontagora-Rijau-

Tunga Magaji Road (Gulbiri Boka - Shambo village, km 49+500 - k74+000) in Niger State for N3.6 billion out of the total contract sum o N16.76 billion, for Section I and II respectively with a completion period of 48 months. Also approved is the Nnenwe-Uduma-Uburu road in Enugu/Ebonyi State comprising of Section I: NnenweUduma-Uburu road (26.274km) and Section II: Spur to Ishiagu-Mile 2 road (14km) for N11.6 billion with a completion period of 30 months. The road when completed, will generate jobs. The completion of Auchi Poly-Ekperi-Uzea-one (with Spur to Fugar) - Afuda road in Usugbenun road, Waterworks-Ivue-Ibore-Irrua road section II and the construction of Pedestrain bridge at Auchincloss Poly Main Gate in Edo at N8.9 billion. Council also approved the augmentation of the rehabilitation of Funtua-GusauSokoto Road Section III: Sokoto-Talata Mafara, in Sokoto State in the sun of N3.12 billion to N3.431 billion. Speaking further on the various road contracts, Onolememen said, the sociology-economic importance of the roads and their potential to reduce vehicle operating cost, travel time and accidents on the roads made council to approve the contracts.

• Chairman Aveon Offshore limited, Mr Tein Georger, Managing Director Mr Frederick Gere, Vice chariman Mr Chijioke Igwe and Director Mr Kenneth Dan-Ayiam at the Aveon Offshore Limited Brand launch, recently held in Lagos.

PIB divides House


HE House began con sideration of the gen eral principle of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) yesterday on a contentious note, with lawmakers taking opposing sides over certain aspects of the bill. Already, from the first day of the debate It seemed apparent that there would be serious contention during the deliberation on the PIB. Leader of the House, Mulikat Akande-Adeola, gave a background of the bill before the House. She said: “This bill, as most of us are aware, was first introduced to the 6th National Assembly in 2010. Unfortunately, due to a number of factors, it was not passed into law. “From 1959 to date, there have been about 16 laws in our statutes regulating the petroleum industry. Some of these are the Petroleum Profits Tax Act, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Act, the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Act among

From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja

others. “The Petroleum Industry Bill 2012 is seeking to harmonise and consolidate all these laws in order to better regulate, coordinate and manage the operations of the industry.” The House leader further noted that the sector currently accounts for 98 percent of our export earnings, 95 per cent of our foreign exchange earnings, 88 per cent of Federal Government Revenue and 40 per cent of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product.” She observed that the sector has been plagued by secrecy, corruption and inefficiency, leading to poor economic and social returns from the industry for the Nigerian government and people. One of the most contentious issues that came up yesterday on the floor of the House was that of the 10 percent Petroleum Host Community Fund which

dovetailed into who really owns the oil- Federal Government or the host community in which the Oil is prospected? The tone of the debate started with the presentation of the first contributor, Aishat Ahmed Dahiru (PDP Adamawa) who criticized various aspects of the bill. According to her the immense powers of the Minister in the PIB was what killed the first PIB. She said the powers conferred on the Minister in the current PIB would negate the efforts to overhaul the oil and gas sector, adding that the Minister should be prevented from acting as chairman of various Boards as indicated in the PIB. She however stirred the hornets’ nest when she criticized section 118 (6) of the proposed legislation while stipulates a 10 percent after tax profit as Petroleum Host Community Fund.

Nigeria migrates from analogue to automated flight planning


IGERIA will from to day join the rest of the global aviation community by moving from the analogue method of preparing flight plan to the automated system. This is mandatory for all contracting states of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). Speaking at a shareholders forum for the implementation of the new ICAO flight plan in Nigeria, the managing director of the Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Nnamdi Udoh, it is imperative for Nigeria to comply with the global aviation directive as a contracting state to adhere to the increasing need for safety , even as he said ICAO in its pragmatic posture will

By Kelvin Osa-Okunbor

continue to evolve new ideas to address the challenges facing the industry. Udoh explained with the new flight method airlines could now reduce the cost of aviation fuel consumption during flight, as well as ability of air navigation service providers to make maximum use of aircraft capabilities. He listed other benefits of the new flight procedure to include ability of the aircraft to conduct flights more closely to their preferred trajectories, facilitate the utilisation of advanced technologies thereby increasing efficiency. Others according to the airspace agency managing di-

rector, include optimised demand and capacity balancing through the efficient exchange of information. He also listed increase in airspace capacity, enhanced safety by the use of modern capabilities on on board the aircraft as well as enhanced of search and rescue operations in addition to generally enable performance based navigation capabilities. The stakeholders forum which had airline operators, regulators and service providers in attendance provided a robust platform to exchange ideas on how to ensure successful implementation of the new ICAO requirement of transiting from the analogue to the current flight plan to the new procedure which becomes operative today

Govt to revitalise Abuja Commodity HE Federal Govern sent to the National AsExchange besembly. ment has commenced


the process of transforming the Abuja Securities and Commodity Exchange into a first-class commodity exchange as part of the Ministry’s broader Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan. The transformation is expected to have been completed in the next 12 months. The Managing Director, ASCE, Mr. Yusuf

From Franca Ochigbo, Abuja

Abdurrahim, disclosed during a stakeholders’ sensitization workshop on the revitalization of the Exchange in Abuja, that a new bill for the establishment of the Nigerian Independent Ware House Regulatory Agency would soon

He said, “The Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, had already initiated reforms aimed at making Abuja Securities and Commodity Exchange a world class institution in line with the Transformation Agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.












EU, ECOWAS pact will kill real sector, says MAN T

HE Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has kicked against the proposed European Union-ECOWAS Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA) . MAN described the EPA as a deadly bait, whose coming would result in the collapse of manufacturing firms in Nigeria and West Africa. Speaking at a forum on EPA at MAN House, Ikeja, Lagos, its President, Kola Jamodu said EPA is an instrument to perpetuate the hold of EU on economies of developing countries. He said EPA would not benefit West Africa because the economic performance of ECOWAS is too low for positive impact on the population’s socio-economic conditions. Jamodu said the key problems identified as limiting growth in the industrial sector in most ECOWAS countries, particularly Nigeria, included poor and high cost of infrastructure, particularly electricity, transportation and telecommunication, among others. “In summary, these constraints have combined to deprive the subregion of the catalytic benefits usually offered by the industrial sector, particularly manufacturing as the engine to stimulate economic development similar to results in other regions such as Latin America, Asia and Far East where export-oriented manufacturing has transformed the countries.

Stories by Toba Agboola

“It is against the background of ECOWAS’ weak industrial base and the myriad of problems and constraints affecting the industrial sector that the envisaged full liberalisation of trade between ECOWAS and the European Union under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) will pose a lot of threats and challenges to the subregion, particularly the manufacturing sector,” Jamodu said. Chairman, Economic Policy Committee, MAN, Mr Gbade Giwa, said in the more than 30 years of economic and trade relations with EU, 12 out of the 16 countries in West Africa remain classified as Least Developed Countries (LDCs). “The implication of this trend is that the goals of EPA with regard to ‘robust’ export opportunities in EU market for ECOWAS products is very unrealistic, especially in the face of stiff and unrestrained competition expected from new entrants into the membership of EU and other trading blocs with which EU is engaging in similar trade protocols,” Giwa said. “However, in pursuing this initiative, caution should be adopted so as not to destroy our national economies and our shared vision concerning regional integration. The frenzy of globalization should not be allowed to deepen the wedge which had widened the lack of investment and trade cooperation among countries in our subregion in the past,” Giwa said.

Nigeria loses N36.7b to rice smuggling yearly


HE Rice Millers, Importers and Distributors Association of Nigeria (RIMIDAN) has raised the alarm on the country losses to smuggling. According to RIMIDAN, Nigeria loses N36.7 billion yearly to rice smuggling and wastes in local rice processing. On smuggling and duty evasion, it said N20.4 billion was lost yearly, adding that there is N16.3 billion in unpaid taxes by local processors, whose investments had been crumbled by smugglers. The President of the association, Mr Tunji Owoeye, said in Lagos that the figure came from the monitoring and analysis of developments in the rice sector. According to Owoeye, the group arrived at the figure based on the simple summation that 30,000 metric tonnes of rice are smuggled into the country monthly, indicating that the government would be losing over N1.7 billion worth of revenue monthly. His words: “This is in addition to the problems it is causing for the

local development initiatives of the Federal Government. “What the smugglers are riding on is the increase per tonne of rice and the porous land borders. Thus, we are faced with a situation where thousands of bags of rice are being smuggled into the country on a regularly, especially through the rivers linking Nigeria with the Republic of Benin, while genuine processors are left gloomy.” Owoeye said the body had been partnering the Federal Government to ensure the availability of rice in the country at very competitive prices. According to him, this will receive a big boost once the borders are policed. Besides, he said it would be a big incentive for the local farmers to produce more, and subsequently meet the local demand for rice. He said the move would also enable genuine importers to meet with their obligations to their immediate families and the larger society.

•Director-General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Dr Joseph Odumodu (left), presenting a certificate of recognition to the representative of the Korean Agency for Technology (KAT), Mr Jong Yoon JUN , at the 47th African Regional Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO), Council meeting in Arusha, Tanzania.

Fashola: Lagos accounts for 65% non-oil GDP


AGOS State accounts for 65 per cent of the nation’s nonoil Gross Domestic Products (GDP),GovernorBabatunde Fashola has said. Speaking at the just-concluded 26th Lagos International Trade Fair, organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), at the Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS), Fashola said the state also accounted for 60 per cent of the value added manufacturing, adding that it is projected to be Africa’s largest megacity and the world’s third largest by 2015. “Despite being a relatively small state in terms of land mass, Lagos accounts for over 65 per cent of the nation’s non-oil Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 60 per cent of the country’s value added manufacturing. Projected to be Africa’s largest megacity and the world’s third largest by 2015. According to the UN Habitat Report of November 2010, Lagos remains the industrial, financial, telecommunications, transportation and commer-


locations to serve as proof of concept. “Subsequently, it would be replicated in all 9,555 political wards in the country based on each ward’s comparative advantage in terms of natural resource endowment,” he said. He said the replication of the project for other wards would be in collaboration with state and local governments, non-governmental organisations, development partners, banks and multinational companies.

and articulated to highlight our areas of focus in terms of development needs and this is why we are indeed enthused by the opportunity availed us through this forum, the Lagos State Day, to showcase the investment opportunities in the State to such a distinguished audience with a view to facilitating the creation of mutually beneficial trade and business relationships,” he said. Fahsola said power remained the bedrock of any meaningful development aganda. In his address, President, LCCI, Mr Goddie Ibru, said the state governments have to face the challenges of providing more social services demanded by citizens in order to use complaints on the dull business environment. He said government should consider putting in place a programme where entrepreneurship training talks/lectures on various areas are given by private sector business/ professional Associations, including the Chambers of Commerce.

Lafarge Cement assures consumers of quality products


AFARGE Cement Wapco Nigeria Plc has promised to continue to innovate and come up with products that will meet customers’ needs. Speaking at the just-concluded 26th Lagos International Trade Fair, its Managing Director, Mr Joe Hudson, said the company’s decision to have more than one cement brand was informed by the need to providing customers with a range of alternative cement brands to pick from. “For us in Lafarge, we are set to

Fed Govt okays 9,555 industrial clusters HE Federal Government has approved the establishment of 9,555 industrial clusters, the Minister of Science and Technology, Prof. Ita Ewa, has said. Ewa spoke at the Fourth Annual Continental Conference of the Pan African Competitiveness Forum in Abuja. The minister said parastatals in the ministry had been sensitised and mobilised to implement the programme at pilot levels in a few

cial hub of the country occupying a strategic position in the nation’s economic development,” Fashola said. He said government was not unaware of the challenges encountered by entrepreneurs in the state, adding that to constantly address these challenges, the state government organised the maiden edition of the Lagos State Corporate Assembly tagged “BRF meets Business” in March, this year, at the State House, Marina. To address some of the economic challenge, Fashola said government would be meeting with the Organised Private Sector (OPS) later this month. “For us in Lagos State, the forging of strategic partnership with the private sector is an economic development model that has been informed by the need to embrace an economic development approach that will guarantee sustainable growth and development. Our economic development agenda has been well reasoned out

Ewa said: “The implementation of the cluster programme shall involve training of prospective Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) by deploying technologies to designated Skills Acquisition Centres, where prospective SME operators would be trained on the use of the technologies. “At the end of the training exercise, the ministry will coordinate support from relevant agencies to empower the graduates to acquire and use the technologies for commercial ventures”.

re-define the cement industry in Nigeria. We have the technical expertise to do that, because we have built the biggest research cement laboratory in the world to keep us abreast in terms of innovations in cement landscape in Nigeria. ‘‘We are leading the required differentiation in the cement market and will continue to deliver value to our customers and stakeholders through our innovative products and services,” Hudson said. He said the company had invested a substantial amount of money in the provision of its other products , aimed at providing products and services to building contractors in need of large volumes of already mixed concrete to ensure faster and quality execution of products. On the Lafarge Readymix Nigeria Ltd, a subsidiary of the company, he said the company had decided to introduce the Readymix concrete in the market because of the huge opportunities for such products, adding that the model of Readymix was already operational in various African countries, such as South Africa, Zambia and Morocco, where the

company operates. His wrods:“Our ReadyMix business has become a preferred solution in the concrete sector in Nigeria. We are expanding with three new plants across the nation”. “Lafarge Powermax has also been launched, an innovative 42.5AL high quality performance cement that is used for large construction projects like bridges, high rise structures, slabs and beams, spun pipes, garden paths and driveways and so on.” “ The company is building plants across Nigeria, starting from Lagos. The aim is to provide commercial Readymix concrete product, targeted at providing products and services to building contractors who need large volumes of already mixed concrete to ensure faster and quality execution of jobs. “We have plants located strategically around various cities, but at the moment, Lagos is where we technically mix the concrete with cement and transport it to the construction site which ensures that the strength and quality is maintained and according to specification,” he said.




Report that ruffles feathers


•From left: Okeme, Category Manager, Fabrics Cleaning, Unilever, Mrs Nnenna Osi-Anugwa and Communications Channel Manager, Unilever, Mr Chris Adigwe, at the press conference.

EFORMS are part of the dynamics of civilisation,no human society does the same thing the same way in the original form through ages. The adage, when the going gets tough, the tough get going, aptly amplifies this change process. Following the fuel subsidy protests nationwide last January, and the apparent loopholes in the oil and gas sector, President Goodluck Jonathan initiated a process to mitigate the attendant crisis by setting up four committees.They were Special Task Force on the Review of the Petroleum Industry Bill; Task Force on Governance and Controls headed by Mr Dotun Suleiman,National Refineries Task Force led by Dr Kalu Idika Kalu,with Alhaji Yusuf Ali as Alternate Chairman,and the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force under the leadership of Malam Nuhu Ribadu. People were shocked over Ribadu’s choice, but they were ignored since oil matters were national issues. All seemed to have gone well as the committees went about their task. Between February and June, the Ribadu panel took time to do its job, with the assignment stretching into July, a month after the Special Task Force on Review of the Petroleum Industry Bill had tendered its report. What followed shook the nation as Reuters published the report of the PRSTF, prompting President Goodluck Jonathan to call for the report, which was officially submitted to him on November 2. There was drama during the presentation. Ribadu’s deputy Steve Oronsaye and a member, Ben Otti claimed that the report was inconclusive. Ribadu denied their claim saying Oronsaye was appointed into the board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) during the

T From left: Wife of the Chairman, Ojokoro LCDA, Mrs Omolabake Olabinjo, Executive Chairman, Ojokoro LCDA(holding his award), Hon Benjamin Olabinjo and Supervisor on Agric, Hon Idowu Tijani, at the Award Nite organised by the Ministry of Rural Development in commemoration of this year’s Community Day, in Lagos.

Sesame seed exports hitN210b


IGERIA exported Sesame Seed products worth N210 billion in the first-half of the year. Executive Director, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) Mr David Adulugba, who made this known in Abuja, listed sesame seed among the export products that earn Nigeria huge income. He said though the country’s main export revenue earner was oil, there were strong indications that the swing would change soon. He said sesame seed may become the major earner of foreign exchange for the country. “The sesame seed, an increasingly popular oil seed, is believed to be oldest of all cultivated seed crops, and is a food of high value throughout Asia since ancient times.

Stories by Toba Agboola

“In Nigeria, however, it ranks second to cocoa in terms of export volume in Nigeria, is fast becoming prominent among non-oil exports,” he said. He said there are indications that it if well-cultured, it becomes the main foreign exchange earner for the country, especially given that it is suited to Nigerian soil. His words: “This is so because sesame is produced across many states in Nigeria . “Although Nasarawa is the leading producer, it is, however, well grown in such other states as Benue,Taraba, Kebbi, Kano, Bauchi, Kogi, Plateau, Adamawa, Kwara, Cross River, Ebonyi, Niger, Gombe, Katsina, Yobe and Borno

“With the efforts of the NEPC thus far, it is believed that just a little more sensitisation and probably increased empowerment of the farmers and the evolution of the right policies that the product would take its pride of place in foreign exchange earning for the country. He said aside sesame seeds, other export products in the profile included cocoa and cocoa preparations, oil seeds, edible fruits, nuts, citrus, tobacco, fish, shrimps and gum Arabic. Aside Nigeria, other major producers of the commodity in Africa include Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Niger, Chad but Nigeria, given other considerations, has been charged with the successful establishment of the African Sesame Seed Producers Alliance (ASSPA).

‘Why we want to hold specialised fairs’


HE specialised fair and exhibition slated for November 13 to 24 is to enable the country develop its local content policy, Group Deputy Managing Director, Aulic Nigeria Limited Dr Chika Ezeh has said. The forthcoming fair, with the theme Boosting Nigeria’s development through trade exhibition, will hold at the Lagos International Trade Fair Complex. She said the fair is the maiden edition of what would become an annual event. The company is the concessionaire of the complex. Ezeh said the fair aimed to open

up the world to young Nigerians as they are targeting business development and investments through involvement of foreign and local businesses as more than 400 firms have indicated their readiness to participate. She identified ‘irregular government’s policy and lack of respect for agreement as the bane of businesses in the country as the public and private sectors are guilty, adding that this works against the country’s favour as foreign firms find it difficult to cope under the harsh economic climate.

She said foreigners leave because they cannot cope with the way business is being done in the country. “Unlike local businessmen who have nowhere to go, foreigners bear their loss alone as because no insurance company will like to do business with them. On why the fair is Aulic’s first,Dr Ezeh said: “The need to study the environment and the issue raised due to the concessionaire agreement, is why this is their first trade fair and exhibition, with more to come up as from next year as, the venue will be used to its maximum capacity”.

By Adetunji Ayoola

life of the task force. There was nothing unusual about NNPC being represented on the Committee. Ribadu and the members visited NNPC during the investigation and were briefed by the Finance and Accounts Directorate,Crude Oil Marketing Division, Information Technology (IT) Department and other divisions. Contrary to Ribadu’s claim, Oronsaye’s and Otti’s appointment into NNPC board has nothing to do with the issue and the president said so inequivocally. “Being Board members of the NNPC does not disqualify them from the committee, sometimes you need those in establishment to explain certain things and not to influence anybody.I don’t believe anybody can influence Ribadu negatively, “ Jonathan said. Besides, Petroleum Minister Mrs. Diezani AllisonMadueke gave Ribadu a free hand. Hear her: ”I never for once, called in members to seek to influence them one way or the other and I gave them full access to the parastatals, to deal with all elements of their terms of reference,to the extent that some members have even said that I was too aloof from their work.” Ribadu could not have asked for a better conducive atmosphere to to his job. But, he could not put his house in order. He had the NNPC at his disposal. The Presidency backed him and Mrs Allison-Madueke bowed to his committee. Why could Ribadu not agree with his Deputy in public? Ribadu had an opportunity to do a thorough job, but he might have bungled it. •Ayoola, a Public Affairs analyst, wrote in from Lagos.

Omo celebrates 50

O mark the golden jubilee of OMO stain remover detergent, Unilever has unveiled a promo “Omo 1 Step to Dubai” to reward consumers who have ensured the brand’s dominance in the market. The promotion, which kicked off on November 2, to end on January 31, 2013, will reward any consumer, who finds any image in the Omo stain remover detergent pack labelled ‘Win a prize’. Various prizes will be won. The star prize is a paid trip to Dubai. Other prizes include washing machines, Blackberry phones, Ipads, LCD televisions and many other gifts. At a briefing in Lagos, the Brand Building Director, Unilever Nigeria Plc, Mr David Okeme, said the promo is to reward consumers for making the brand an icon in the 50 years of its existence in the market. He said the promo is not just a shortterm game but a way in which consumers will experience the brand in a new dimension “Though it can help to achieve sales, income penetration and loyalty which boils down to making consumers who use the brand, definitely grateful to the brand,” he said. He said consumers, who are the rea-

sons behind the success of any brand deserved to be rewarded. “OMO is one of Nigeria’s iconic brand and has become an household name. What makes a brand become an icon is the consumers. These are the consumers who everyday take decision to buy the brand and go back to the brand again and again. Behind the success of this brand are the consumers and we belive that there is need for us to appreciates them. “Though we said this at the beginning of the year, when we unveiled the 50th anniversary activities and that is what we are trying to do.We are launching the biggest promotion this brand has ever unveiled over the last 50 years and to commemorate 50, we are offering a holiday package to Dubai for 50 lucky consumers and other prizes.” Speaking on the promo participation, he said: “We have made the promotion so simple and all you need to do is to buy a pack of OMO, use the brand, tear open the wrapper and you will see the image of whatever you win right at the back of the wrapper. When you find out, call the toll free number at the back of the pack to get the details on how the prizes can be redeemed.”

Winners emerge in Indomie promo


EVEN consumers of Indomie Super pack, produced by Dufil Prima Foods, have emerged millionaires in the seventh week draw of the promo in Lagos as a previous millionaire winner, Onih Chika, was presented his check. Thirty consumers emerged winners of various items, such as microwave sets, laptop computers, refrigerators, television sets, cooking range appliances, washing machines, musical sets, air-conditioners and an I-pad The winners were picked randomly by guests at the venue. According to the management of Dufil Prima foods, it is to reward and appreciate their consumers while enjoying the brand. More winners are expected to

emerge at future draws.Among the winners were seven lucky consumers who won the star cash prize of N1 million, while others won iPads, laptops, refrigerators, TV sets, Blackberry phones, washing machines, air conditioners, microwaves, cooking range, grinders/mixers, lunch boxes, dinner sets, emergency light/ fan, printers, T-shirts and caps, and cartons of Indomie. The winners were announced by Public Relations Manager, DUFIL Prima Foods Plc, Tope Ashiwaju, after the seventh weekly draws. He said no fewer than two million entries have been recorded so far within the first seven weeks of the nationwide consumer promotion.





PHCN versus Sokoto • A needless face-off leads to unnecessary distress


VEN for a country whose longsuffering citizens have become used to the excesses of those who purport to govern them, the allegation that Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko, assaulted officials of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) because of their supposed inability to supply power to his local government area is shocking. The governor is said to have invited the Business Manager of PHCN’s Gwiwa Business Unit, Mr. Moses Osigwe, to explain why power had not been provided in spite of his administration’s provision of funds for that purpose. An apparently unsatisfactory response from the PHCN official angered Wamakko, who allegedly personally flogged him and two other PHCN staff with a horsewhip. Such was the governor’s fury that he ordered two security aides to continue with the punishment until Osigwe collapsed. In response, the state chapter of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) gave Wamakko an ultimatum to apologise for his action or face a statewide blackout. That threat was put into action, as the state endured an electricityfree sallah celebration. An estimated three deaths have been attributed to the absence of public power supply in the state. While there is the usual clash of claim and counter-claim as to whether the governor really whipped PHCN officials, the mere fact that such allegations are in the public space is ample testimony to the regularity with which public office holders abuse the powers associated with the positions they hold. In one of the

south-eastern states, a governor was alleged to have meted out the same treatment to an individual whom he felt had subjected him to unceasing criticism. An ex-governor of a south-western state was notorious for his penchant for slapping those who did not see eye-toeye with him. There is also the routine brutality dished out by policemen and members of the armed forces. In the peculiar case of Sokoto, it is clear that the PHCN and the NUEE feel that the governor treated their colleagues with very little respect. The governor’s aides claim that he merely handed them over to security operatives for further interrogation when they were unable to answer him satisfactorily, but even that explanation does not preclude the possibility that the PHCN staff were indeed rough-handled. It is clear that the governor did order the PHCN officials to see him; it is also clear that someone assaulted them. As the person at the centre of the dispute, it is surprising that Governor Wamakko did not feel it expedient to do anything other than to issue the usual denials that are a standard response to issues like these. If the governor did not assault these men, he should have launched an intensive enquiry into finding out who did, and on whose authority they did so. The PHCN is notorious for its inefficiency and corruption, but assaulting its staff for perceived dereliction of duty is counterproductive, particularly for a governor who is supposed to be a model of sobriety and respect for due process. As for the PHCN, this lamentable affair

does it no credit, even though it does appear to be the injured party. Decades of incompetence and extortion have made it the most-hated of Nigeria’s many predatory institutions; it is widelyreviled as being symbolic of all that is wrong with Nigeria. The decision to punish a whole state for the alleged offence of one person is yet another testimony to its destructive nature. Since the case has apparently gone to court, it was completely unnecessary for the company to engage in such a needless show of force. Those who bear the brunt are the ordinary people of Sokoto, none of whom participated in the alleged assault. Rather than worsen an already-bad situation, the PHCN should restore power to the state without delay, while making every effort to obtain legal redress.

‘The PHCN is notorious for its inefficiency and corruption, but assaulting its staff for perceived dereliction of duty is counterproductive, particularly for a governor who is supposed to be a model of sobriety and respect for due process. As for the PHCN, this lamentable affair does it no credit, even though it does appear to be the injured party ... The decision to punish a whole state for the alleged offence of one person is yet another testimony to its destructive nature’.

Adieu, ‘Great Lam’ •Lam Adesina will be sorely missed beyond the south west


ONDLY known by his teeming supporters as ‘Great Lam’, the eventful life of Alhaji Lamidi Onaolapo Adesina, former Governor of Oyo State and a national leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), came to its terminus on November 11. He breathed his last at the St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos, during a protracted illness. The flood of condolences and tributes that have poured in since the demise of the elder statesman shows that, though he was a regional political figure, he was admired and respected nationally. With his death, the curtain has been drawn on a memorable era in the politics of Oyo State. It is a testimony to his political astuteness and sagacity that Lam Adesina held his own in the often

‘True, Alhaji Lam Adesina had neither the managerial genius of an Awolowo nor the philosophical fecundity of a Bola Ige. But those who were critical of his administration soon began to look back with nostalgia when Oyo State degenerated into sheer anarchy, disruptive godfatherism and u n p r e c e d e n t e d underdevelopment under the PDP’

turbulent politics of Oyo State for over three decades. Born on January 20, 1939, Alhaji Lam Adesina acquired his secondary school education at Loyola College, Ibadan, after which he attended the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, from 1961 to 1963. After a one year stint at the University of Ibadan in 1971, Lam Adesina worked as a teacher in private educational institutions before becoming fully engaged in politics. His keen interest in public affairs became evident in the ‘70s when he ran a popular column in the Nigerian Tribune that was often critical of the military administration then in power. In the run-up to the inauguration of the Second Republic in 1979, it was not surprising that Lam Adesina emerged as a member of the ‘Committee of Friends’ put together by Chief Obafemi Awolowo; a group that later metamorphosed into the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN). He emerged as a member of the House of Representatives on the platform of the party and served his constituency with characteristic diligence and commitment. During the aborted Third Republic, Lam Adesina was a leader of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in Oyo State. As a staunch supporter of Chief MKO Abiola, he played a significant role in Abiola’s victory in the June 12, 1993, presidential election, described as the freest and fairest in the country’s history. Alhaji Adesina was fiercely opposed to the annulment of the election by the military and in 1998 was at the vanguard

of a massive protest in Ibadan against the government of General Sani Abacha. On that occasion, he was arrested by soldiers and the then Military Administrator of Oyo State, Ahmed Usman, famously described him as a ‘prisoner of war’, following public outcry. At the inception of this political dispensation in 1999, Lam Adesina was elected governor of Oyo State on the platform of the defunct Alliance for Democracy (AD). However, he was voted out of office in the controversial 2003 elections that saw the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) sweeping to power in the South West, with the exception of Lagos. True, Alhaji Lam Adesina had neither the managerial genius of an Awolowo nor the philosophical fecundity of a Bola Ige. But those who were critical of his administration soon began to look back with nostalgia when Oyo State degenerated into sheer anarchy, disruptive godfatherism and unprecedented underdevelopment under the PDP. Alhaji Adesina was a key contributor to the current progressive resurgence of the ACN in the South West. Loyalty, credibility and ideological consistency were the defining elements of his politics. It is instructive that not a whiff of corruption tainted his name in public life. Unlike most members of the Nigerian elite, he refused to be flown abroad for medical attention, either in or out of office. May his soul rest in peace.

Fix immigration now


N THE DAYS since President Obama’s victory, it has become an instant truism that Republicans, desperate to halt their free fall with Hispanic voters, need to make a sweeping deal on immigration reform. But no matter how strong the political impetus, fixing the nation’s broken immigration system, which proved too tough for Congress in the past decade, remains a subject for hard bargaining. And no part of the deal will be harder than resolving the status of illegal immigrants. It’s obvious — though Mitt Romney had to learn it the hard way — that 11 million undocumented residents will not “self-deport,” nor should they. Two-thirds of them are in the work force; many of those have been in this country for a decade or more; and some have children, born here, who are American citizens. They are a pillar of the American economy. The fair and sensible solution is to grant them a path to citizenship. Still, some fudging at the margins may be necessary to reach an agreement, especially given the depth of grass-roots Republican hostility to”amnesty.” A creative compromise could take many forms, such as conferring legal status on undocumented immigrants and removing the threat of deportation for those with no criminal history but postponing the question of citizenship for a finite number of years. That wouldn’t be ideal — it could be portrayed as a program of second-class citizenship. But it would put an end to state legislation designed to harass undocumented residents and would allow immigrants to lead open, secure lives. The other components of an immigration deal will be only marginally easier, but without a comprehensive bargain that includes the “smaller” pieces the two parties are unlikely to resolve the central question of the 11 million. Democrats should be prepared to agree to additional enforcement measures, especially in establishing a watertight system for employers to verify that job applicants are in the country legally. Legal immigration will also have to be changed. Among the urgent priorities is attracting skilled workers and especially students who receive advanced degrees at American universities in science, technology, engineering and math. Too often, they are turned away; that is lunacy. At the same time, businesses must have timely access to adequate numbers of seasonal and agricultural workers, and U.S. citizens’ relatives who wish to immigrate should not languish for years. Both parties will have to compromise on the mechanisms by which annual quotas are set. In the past, much of the jockeying around solving the immigration problem has been about who would get blame or credit. Even now, some Republicans are openly fearful that a deal would simply cement Democrats’ electoral advantage among Latinos — and, possibly, create millions of new Hispanic voters. Some Democrats might rather milk the status quo, which has helped them until now, than make tough compromises. Both parties would be wise to realize that standing pat carries its own risks. Every poll suggests that large majorities of Americans want the immigration system fixed. Congress should heed that message. – Washington Post

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IR: Last week, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Azubuike Ihejirika, disclosed that the Boko Haram sect has killed 3,000 people in the last few years. That is a high figure by all means and the menace needs a prompt solution. But by the end of this year, it is estimated that 300,000 Nigerians will have been killed, not by Boko Haram, nor through community clashes, road accidents, plane crashes, or war, but by a vicious killer called malaria. That figure is the combined population of five countries: Seychelles, Andorra, Dominica, Liechtenstein and San Marino. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa; it is also the most hard-hit by malaria in the entire globe. Often referred to as ‘the disease of poverty,’approximately 50 percent of all malaria cases occur in only five of the world’s countries. Nigeria has the unenviable distinction of placing first among inflicted countries by raking up 23 per cent of all reported cases. Inflicting much pain and suffering, malaria not only destroys lives, but tears apart families and cripples the


The cankerworm called malaria ability of countries to move forward. According to Nigeria’s National Malaria Control Programme, some 90 million of the country’s total population of 169 million are affected by malaria annually. Over 300,000 Nigerians perish as a result of the disease each year, a figure which represents ten per cent of the yearly death total in the African continent. Malaria is a cruel disease which strikes people of all ages, and 30 per cent of infant deaths in the country can be attributed to complications stemming from malarial infection. The disease also contributes to Nigeria’s ongoing economic issues, costing the developing country an average 160 billion naira (one billion dollars) a year in medi-

cal expenses and lost hours of productivity. As yet, no efficacious vaccine has been developed to combat malaria. In affected regions of the world, the only defence people have is the near-impossible task of avoiding mosquito bites. For this specific reason, malaria relief efforts to date have centred on mosquito net donation programmes. Sleeping under insecticide-treated nets has proven to be somewhat effective, preventing five to six out of every 1,000 children they protect from being infected, according to independent non-profit organization, the Cochrane Collaboration. Aerosols and coils are also known to be effective in combating the malaria scourge. Locally developed repel-

lants have also been ascertained to be effective in the fight against these noxious insects in most rural settlements. As good as these measures are, they have harmful and side effects to human health. With our limited means of defence against the disease, malaria is once again on the rise. Recent research by Dr. Vincent Corbel and a team of French scientists, published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, shows that malaria-carrying mosquitoes are developing a tolerance to the various insecticides employed against them. Corbel’s research also notes a shift in the insects’ feeding habits, circumventing the use of mosquito nets by concentrating their attacks outdoors. The challenge is to eradicate mos-

Deeper concern over healthcare waste


IR: Recently, Federal Ministries of Environment, Health and Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) organised a stakeholders’ summit on healthcare waste management as a collective responsibility’. It is interesting that representatives of both the federal ministries, State Ministries of Environment and Health, Federal Medical Centres, University Teaching Hospitals, National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research & Development (NIPRD), Private Health Care Facilities, Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON) and House Committee on Environment, were in attendance among others. The summit recommended the establishment of a national inventory on healthcare waste management to support evidence-based interventional schemes implementation; training programmes for regulatory officers, healthcare facility workers and waste handlers; urged

the federal government to play a lead role in the assessment of best available technology/best environmental practice approaches for healthcare waste management; facilitate information sharing and to attract necessary capacity and infrastructure support to states and their call for approval of policy on healthcare waste. But my challenges go to federal and state ministries of health and envirnment because majority of healthcare waste falls wthin their jurisdiction. The NCH meeting centred on the problems of healthcarewaste management n the country’s healthcare facilities and recommended among others that, by the end of 2007, all healthcare and research facilties should put in pace infection control systems. And that waste management committee must include head of the hospital or his representative, the heads of departments in a hospital, and their registered Environmental Health Officers in chrge of waste managemnt. By the end of 2007, the meeting also recommended that every healthcare and research facility,

where none exists, shall create an Environmental Health Department/ Unit manned by qualified professionals charged with the responsibility of environmental health services including waste management; by the end of 2010, every Teaching Hospital, Specialist Hospital and Federal Medical Centres and other similar health care facilities with more than 200 beds shall provide within their premises, a modern incinerator and ensure the employment of sufficient Environmental Health Officers for effective management of wastes within their facilities, and many others. These and other recommendations were communicated to all Chief Medical Directors of University Teaching Hospitals and Federal Medical Centres by Federal Ministry of Health. The Registrar, Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria [EHORECON], Mr Augustine Ebisike also wrote to the Minister of Health in 2007 over the issue. Sadly, till date, there is no appreciable progress in our teaching hospitals and federal medical centres,

state specialist hospitals and other healthcare facilities to support summit’s recommendations on healthcare waste. Only a few health centres like Federal Medical Centres Yenagoa, Birnin-Kudu, Azare, Nguru, Dala Orthopaedic Hospital, have units that take care of environmental health issues as against the directive of former Minister of Health, Prof. Eyitayo Lambo on the creation of such departments/units and the employment of environmental health officers based on 2007 NCH. The only way this stakeholders summit on healthcare waste can achieve its objectives is by the monitoring of the Federal Ministry of Health to make sure the Lambo directive is implemented to the letter. More so, the Federal Ministry of Education should be involved as it has jurisdiction over universities health centres/clinics, which are also generating healthcare wastes. • Sani Garba Mohammed, Department of Public Health Technology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri.

quitoes completely. But since that is a long shot, the onus is on all stakeholders to find a more effective way of preventing mosquitoes from biting people, especially young children and pregnant women. Organizations as well as government agencies should take this as a challenge. In recent times, the Global Fund has saved more than 7.7 million lives by funding treatment and preventative care programmes across the planet. Leading humanitarian agencies such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Roll-Back Malaria (RBM) and DFID have over the years been committedto fighting malaria. In the light of the present realities, it is expected that iconic innovative companies will invest more in research and development in order to come up with safe and affordable products that will ensure that the mosquitoes are entirely stamped out. • Azuka Onwuka Lagos, Nigeria.

Ode to Obama’s triumph IR: The fiery Barrack Obama’s victory in the 2012 US presidential elections dispersed hope to all on earth; and stitched us all to joyous dancing mood. Mr. Obama has brilliance, discipline, compassion and fabulous good luck. He makes life feel like we are all walking in the procession of freedom and unending joy. He is balanced and inspiring. He certainly will make the world more secure in the richness of the vast bonds of love that infinitely bind us together in this life’s long and tedious trek. Mr. Obama’s intellect ceaselessly tends the glory of mankind’s unyielding mutual respect that conquers the sword of fear and hatred. With him is the world locked in soothing peace and the bounty of life. I hail the connecting powers of President Obama’s personal allure and share in the global joy sprouted by his latest grand political triumph. • Adewale Adeeyo,OON Ikeja, Lagos






Y children who have had to leave Nigeria largely because of unfulfilled expectations and are now living in white man’s countries, where they are settled and doing materially well for themselves, but largely lack psychological fulfilment have always asked me what I thought was Nigeria’s main achievement since independence in 1960 apart from the fact that we have remained a country in spite of the various fissiparous tendencies that have been pulling us apart and culminating in a civil war between 1967 and 1970. The euphoria over independence in 1960 now seems to have been misplaced and for many of us, it is a distant dream that has now become a nightmare. In 1960, I was a strapling teenage boy in class 5 at Christ School Ado-Ekiti, arguably one of the best boys schools in Nigeria. Every time I write about Christ School, I’m always full of emotions. When I tell my children about Christ school, they always think of an idyllic environment until they get to the place to find out that Christ School is not out of this world. Christ School remains for me the source of my inspiration and the reason for whatever success I have in life. I remain eternally grateful to our teachers especially to the young Britons who left the comfort of their homes to come to Ado-Ekiti where there was neither pipe-borne water nor electricity in those days. Our school had a giant generator that worked between 6:30pm and 10:00pm in the evening, during which time we had evening prep and evening devotion before light out. It is a matter of joy that even up till today, through the efforts of the old students and the government of Ekiti State, Christ School has maintained its reputation, distinction and its environmental uniqueness in its location at the Agidimo Hills. How I wish Nigeria had made as much progress as Christ School has made since 1960. In 1960, we celebrated independence with joy and dancing and we were feted to a sumptuous dinner while female students from Anglican Girls Secondary School, Ado-Ekiti were invited. To us boys, this was the icing on the cake, because many of us were too shy to look girls in the face, not to talk of talking to them. But on that day, some of us learnt how to talk to girls. When I tell my children this story, they always marvelled at our innocence in those days. But that was the truth. I remember that we always felt that students who had so-called girlfriends were doomed to failure so instead of wasting valuable time on poppy love and letter writing, we were advised to spend our time in reading books. Our strict upbringing then reflected positively later on individual and collective achievements of Christ School Boys all over the country. Our discipline was also rooted in the love of Christ and the struggle for righteousness which when attained, made us excellent citizens. Our people would not steal; tell lies, compromise with evil. Some people have suggested that this is why there are not many rich Ekiti people, which is probably true, but I believe we are a contented lot, because of our peasant integrity we are able to speak truth to power and if possible suffer the consequences without flinching. I do not want to sound arrogant and to think that there were no other schools that were operating at the same wave length with us. I’m sure there were. The various Government Colleges in Ibadan, Umuahia, Ugheli, Benin, Barewa, Keffi and their female counterparts were also operating on the same wave length. There were also

Nigeria of my dreams sectarian colleges like Dennis Memorial Grammar School, Onitsha; St. John’s Secondary, Kaduna; Holy Ghost College, Owerri; Loyola College, Ibadan; St. Patrick’s College, Asaba; Stella Maris, Port Harcourt; St. Gregory’s, Lagos; were all involved in training future leaders of our country and bringing them all in the ways of the Lord. The point that I’m making is that if we had followed the slow and steady way of doing things before the so called oil boom era, when we were overwhelmed by the corruption and the curse of oil, Nigeria would have been a better country than what it is today. In my youth, we could travel from Lagos to Kaduna, Kano Enugu and Port Harcourt and Kaura Namoda and Maiduguri by train. Admitted that the pace was usually slow, but one was sure to get there in one piece. There were even what we called passenger and goods trains. Road haulage was almost unheard of then. The roads were safe and there were no armed brigands and robbers waylaying people on the roads. In fact, people who had cars preferred driving in the nights and many times when I was involved in this as a child I used to wonder why we had to do that. We were told it was safer because the oncoming automobiles or trucks would have seen the headlights and therefore slowed down. There was no fear whatsoever of being waylaid. The Electricity Corporation of Nigeria (ECN) provided lights in the cities. Each city or district had its own generating plants. Unlike the behemoth that we have today where everything is concentrated in one centre and once the centre fails, the whole country is plunged into total darkness. As a young lecturer in the University of Ibadan, Jos Campus in 1972, I still enjoyed regular supply of power generated by the private English company in Jos that provided power for the Plateau before it was taken over and run down by the National Electricity Power Authority (NEPA). Schools in those days provided excellent education. The standards were very high and our A levels that is, Advanced levels and Higher School Certificates which were pre-requisites apart from concessional entrance examinations to entering university, were of high standards and probably the equivalent of first degrees nowadays. So what happened to this idyllic picture? We used to have five years development plans at Federal and Regional level and even at the University of Ibadan our ViceChancellor, Kenneth Onwuka Dike also ran quiquennial plans which means that there was planned development and this was measurable in those days unlike what we have now, where there are no plans at all or in the words of the military “rolling plans”. We are daily told about contracts being awarded but which were usually abandoned unfinished. The result is the growth without development that we have now in this country. A lady colleague of mine and an excellent medical scientist tearfully told me of the unbelievably high incidence of sickle cell anaemia in Nigeria. This she said can be prevented through education and counselling. We have the data; we know that millions of Nigerians, probably one out of every two carry the sickle cell traits and are blindly going into marriage without advice and bearing sicklers

who would become permanent sources of worry, if not sorrow to the couples involved. In a caring and civilised society, there would be policies to tackle this, but not in Nigeria. As individuals, there are brilliant and brainy Nigerians who can match their equals anywhere in the world. Jide A Dutch friend of mine Osuntokun said years ago that some of the most brilliant individuals he has ever met are Nigerians but as a collectivity, Nigerians are also the most stupid people that he has ever met. We are like a country of the blind being led by the blind. We all celebrate Obama’s victory and delegations upon delegations of Nigerian officials troop to China yearly in search of so called foreign investment. Yet some of the same officials cart our money to deposit in Chinese, Lebanese, British and American banks. We are a country of importers, but hardly would you find exporters. Our industry lies in selling other people’s goods and not in production. We make cheap money as commission agents and brag about it. We build palaces and even some copy palaces they’ve seen abroad and wear gaudy dresses and make attires from damask and laces that are ordinarily used for window blinds and chairs in civilised climes of the world. We need to change course. We need to go back to planning. We need to go back to God. We need to confess our sins and ask for forgiveness from our children. If we don’t do these, in the words of James Baldwin, it would be the fire next time. Our mono economy that is totally depended on hydro-carbons would soon crash and chicken would come home to roost when either hydro-carbons become environmentally unfashionable or America and even China, and India become energy self-sufficient. This may sound alarmist, but these three countries that I have just mentioned are working seriously to solve their energy problems as quickly as possible. This would leave us high and dry because after 56years of hydro-carbons production and refusal to diversify our economy and to industrialize while totally neglecting the agricultural sector, we would find out that we have nothing to fall back on. If we were a serious country and have invested hugely on education as was done in places like Japan, Germany and the USA, then we would have been able to tap our people’s grey matter and harness this for production. But as in everything, our policies of neglect, abandonment of what is good and needful would haunt us for a long time to come.

The Presidency and Ribadu-phobia

Oil business is always too oily. - Jonathan. OT many who watched the drama on television that night will forget it in a hurry. It was a show not fit for the hallowed grounds of the Presidential Villa, but there it happened right under the nose of President Goodluck Jonathan and some of his key aides. Channels Television transported millions of Nigerians to the scene with its brilliant coverage of the debacle. But for the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), it was its usual style of drab and pedestrian reporting, which told viewers nothing about the drama which overshadowed the main event. As it is wont to do, NTA left the meat of the story, which was the exchange between former anti-graft czar Nuhu Ribadu and former Head of Service (HOS) Steve Oronsaye. Ribadu and Oronsaye were at the Villa to submit the report of the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force of which they were chairman and deputy chairman. By now, almost every Nigerian knows what happened that Friday, November 2, when the duo threw brickbats over the authenticity or otherwise of the report. Ribadu stood for the report, but Oronsaye was against it because as he claimed the process adopted is flawed. With a bold face, Oronsaye not only condemned, but also bore down on the president with his uncouth language. That is what normally happens when people allow anger to becloud their reasoning.


‘’What I’m saying is that the president has said come and submit the report, so what? If we are not ready, we are not ready’’. Coming from a former HOS, who should be an exemplar in public conduct and decorum, that was too harsh a statement and the president deserves a public apology for it. How can Oronsaye address the president like that in public? With those words, he showed no respect for the high office of the president. As expected, neither the president nor his aides saw anything wrong in what Oronsaye did because they were more interested in his rubbishing of the panel’s report. They wanted something with which to discredit the report and they seemed to have found one in Oronsaye’s statement. Did Oronsaye play into their hands? Or was the former HOS acting a script? It is not unlikely considering how his excesses were overlooked on that occasion. Could Oronsaye have looked former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who he served as HOS, in the face and say to him, ‘’the president has said come and submit the report, so what?’’ We all know that he could not have done that to Obasanjo without the former president given it back to him in kind. Unfortunately, rather than rebuke him, those who should complain are not doing so. Why? The reason is as clear as daylight; they are happy with the tearing of the Ribadu report by no less a person than the deputy chairman of the

‘For Oronsaye and his ilk, who are not happy with the report, not to have written a a minority report, shows one thing : they don’t have their hearts where their mouths are. If they do, they don’t need to be goaded before they make their case’

panel. They don’t come bigger than that, do they? Contrary to what the Presidency wants the people to believe, nothing will satisfy it more than to get a pole on which to hang the Ribadu report. It seemed to have found that pole in Oronsaye’s statement. Will the Ribadu report be accepted and implemented by the government? The answer is no and I will show you why presently. Shortly after he received the report, the president, who sat through the exchange between Ribadu and Oronsaye, invited the former HOS to write a minority report, if he so desired. Must it take the prompting of the president for an aggrieved person to state his case? Oronsaye is not a dimwit; he knows what to do if he is aggrieved. For him and his ilk, who are not happy with the report, not to have written a a minority report, shows one thing : they don’t have their hearts where their mouths are. If they do, they don’t need to be goaded before they make their case in the approved manner. What Oronsaye should have done was to have come to the event with his and Ben Oti’s minority report, stating the areas where they disagree with the Ribadu report. They didn’t do that, but chose to come and make noise at that ceremony. Now, the government is trying to assist Oronsaye and Oti to finish the job. From the look of things, it is the government which instigated the theft that is shouting ‘’thief, thief...’’ in order to catch the culprit after the act. But Nigerians are wiser than that. If the Presidency is not happy with the recommendations of the Ribadu report, it should just dump it instead of looking for excuses, where there are none in order to rubbish the work done by the panel. If the government has no hidden agenda, why will it appoint

Oronsaye and Oti members of the board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) after it had saddled them with the task of auditing the corporation and others in that category. The government acted in bad faith. It knew what it was doing by bringing Oronsaye and Oti to the NNPC board; it was preparing for a day like this and it knew that when the day comes it can fall back on these men, just as it is doing now. he president was not so tact ful in his handling of the is sue; if he had been, we would not have seen through his failed attempt to use some members of the Ribadu panel against the larger house. Hear him : ‘’Of course, government will take the majority and minority reports, but in this case, there is no clear minority report. The issue is that there are some lapses in the processes, probably not everybody agreed on some of the conclusions’’. Mr President sir, the truth of the matter is that there was no minority report submitted to you on November 2. At best, what you got that day was a verbal complaint by Oronsaye. Can that pass as a minority report? No, it cannot. What Oronsaye intended to do was to rubbish the Ribadu report publicly in order to render it valueless and become unacceptable by government. He never knew that he had to write a minority report to make the government’s job of rejecting the report easy. Now, the government is in a dilemma over how to reject the report and make it look as if it did in the best interest of the people. The job that Oronsaye and Oti started but could not finish, is now being taken up by a presidential aide, Doyin Okupe. Who else but him? In his characteristic manner, Okupe opened wide his mouth to vomit rubbish about the report. The report, he says, is incomplete and


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not capable of indicting anyone. What about the panel’s finding that over N800 billion oil revenue cannot be accounted for by the NNPC? Is that not indicting? Are there no people in NNPC ,who can be held responsible for the missing oil money? Okupe is his master’s voice. He is telling us what the Presidency expected Oronsaye and Oti to have highlighted if they had written a minority report. Albeit in the absence of such report, the Presidency seems to believe that a disclaimer by a loose cannon like Okupe will do the trick. That is where the government is wrong. The people have seen many of the likes of Okupe and have come to know them for who they are. Okupe falls in the category of those Nigerians will not like to wake up and see. To wake up and see them is a bad omen. Nobody prays for that whenever the day breaks. The government should save us from the antics of people like Okupe and be honest with us on what it wants to do with the Ribadu report. Does it want to accept or reject the report? The Presidency should answer this question in a straight forward manner and stop speaking from both sides of the mouth the way it has been doing in the past 13 days.





PPOSITION plays a vital role in the democratic process. It does not just proffer alternative view on the ruling party policy thrust, it helps the ruling party to periodically review or consolidate what it had initially considered an unassailable position. Because it gives hope to the party in waiting and reminds the ruling party of its vulnerability, opposition guarantees stability in a democracy. We saw the beauty of opposition party politics in the recently concluded American presidential election. The divisive issue in that election was taxation. President Barack Obama’s party favoured tax cuts for the middle class. His republican opponent favoured tax cut for the wealthy employers of labour. The Republican Party did not attempt to invalidate the Democratic Party’s thesis that the middle class is the salt of life that guarantees development of societies all through the ages, but instead tried to impress it on the over 10% unemployed Americans that they and they alone could create jobs. Rather than dissipate energy over self evident facts, Obama focused on the twin evil of capitalism- greed and individualism which make the wealthy live on the sweat and blood of the overwhelming poor - his core supporters. Obama won through the Electoral College while Americans are evenly divided as shown by the result of the popular votes. That is the beauty of opposition in party politics in a democracy. Unfortunately, as against application of intellect in the battle over the minds of the electorate, what we have seen in Lagos since the beginning of the fourth republic has been opposition bereft of ideas, an opposition that strives to alienate the electorate by its acts of open hostility to those it aspires to govern and an opposition that has consistently demonstrated at every point its lack of faith in the electoral process. In 1999, one of the major problems facing Lagos was traffic gridlock, made worse by indiscipline of commercial bus drivers. It was claimed Bola Tinubu, supported by his young intellectual Turks, after a thorough study of the problem decided to organise and empower the transport unions as stakeholders in his planned Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project. The new administration then introduced Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) to control the unruly behaviour of other would-be traffic offenders. Instead of coming up with idea that could improve the state government’s initiative, the


OR many Lagosians, it is no lon-ger news that those dare-devil profiteering bike riders have had their wings chopped by the new Lagos Traffic Law. Simply, their presence is no more on Lagos highways. And while I miss my Okada when in haste to catch an appointment or when I don’t want to be trapped in a crazy traffic, I don’t miss their reckless conduct on the roads. I’m going to have to endure. But, here’s how I view the law as it concerns my love/hate relationship with the Okada. Like body-building or stamina-building, or intelligence-building, one might need to suffer shirt term pains, for long term gains. While a little part of me feels the law is draconian, I nevertheless appreciate its coming. Within a short spate of being used as commercial transportation mode, okada riders have become a menace, responsible for ghastly accidents, loss of limbs, deaths, and robberies. Any sane Lagosian will have to agree as much. But, reading a story, ‘Okada ban: Learn from Jonathan, PDP tells Fashola’ published on page 4 of The Punch newspaper of November 4, 2012, was infuriating. I could not just understand why some politicians take swipes at each other unnecessary. According to the story, the Lagos State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged the governor of the state, Babatunde Fashola (SAN), to stop the clampdown on commercial motorcyclists, known as Okada.

‘If Gani stays in Lagos, he must agree that Okada riders were filled with utter disregard for simple traffic laws; they wrongly overtook, sped like demons, overloaded, and did not even wear helmets. Gani should also know that Okadas were used to commit crimes and for quick entries and getaways’

Opposition party politics in Lagos State response of Lagos Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) opposition under the leadership of, Bode George and Ogunnewe, the then transport minister, was to unleash newly recruited and uniformed federal thugs on LASTMA men, bringing more chaos to an already chaotic situation. When the Tinubu administration initiated the ENRON electricity project to improve the electricity supply needs of Lagos, the nation’s economic capital, President Olusegun Obasanjo was quoted to have jokingly quipped during the inauguration that Lagos would soon be like London. The project, designed to take three months dragged on for three years because of bureaucratic impediments erected by federal authorities under the then President Obasanjo. Lagos State PDP opposition and its federal backers were not done. The state government created development centres to ensure even development. Claiming creation of local government was on the Exclusive List, an assertion which had nothing to do with the state government’s commendable initiative; the opposition prevailed on the Federal Government to withhold the local government statutory allocations. Even after a judicial pronouncement as to the illegality of such vindictive action, President Obasanjo, under pleasure from Lagos PDP, did not budge, stalling in the process development efforts such as the then ongoing construction of General Hospitals in all the Local Government areas. Now, the National Conscience Party (NCP)

has taken over from where PDP left off after its leading light had been consumed by its own war of attrition over sharing of federal patronage. Like PDP, the party has embarked on peddling lies, and the use of blackmail instead of providing alternative policy thrust as government-in-waiting. Early in the year, it pitched a battle against Governor Babatunde Fashola over his resolve to reclaim the Makoko water front from illegal squatters who had turned it into a slum. NCP at the time reduced the argument to the protection of the poor and under-privileged fishermen without telling us what their alternative policy on immigrants who erect illegal structures on Lagos water fronts would be. And in the past two weeks, Governor Fashola has been under severe strains because of his resolve to put an end to the okada menace in the city. When months after the state assembly’s passage of the Lagos State traffic law, many more months of education and sensitisation of stakeholders, the okada riders chose to defy the law and visit violence on law-abiding Lagosians in search of their daily meals, the Lagos State Chapter of the NCP claimed ‘the restriction of motorbike operators on highways and major roads was a confirmation that the ACN administration of Governor Fashola lacked any serious plan to solve the chaotic transport issues in the state’. For Mr. Tunde Agunbiade, the state party chairman, Lagos State Government is to be blamed for not providing employment for

Don’t politicise Lagos’ Okada restriction By Adebayo Joseph Quoting the Publicity Secretary of the party in Lagos, Mr. Taofeek Gani, said, “Seeing the level of hardship the restriction has caused, I think the reaction of a sensitive government would be to reverse the decision. Fashola should learn from Jonathan. When Jonathan saw the level of protest against the introduction of the N5,000 note, he stopped it. He also reversed the total removal of petroleum subsidy in January because of the effect it would have on people. That is how leaders who are interested in the welfare of people act.” Well, I think the Lagos PDP is entitled to its own views. But, it must understand that comparing President Jonathan’s executive excesses with the Traffic Law being implemented by the Lagos State government is puerile at best. The fuel subsidy removal was an anti-people policy which wanted to increase their cost of living unfairly. The on-going rot in the petroleum sector, exposing scrupulous deals among high-powered individuals shows where the stolen wealth has been going. Yet, the Jonathan-led executive government had wanted Nigerians on January 1st, to start suffering for the rich cows. It was snuck on Nigerians at a period they were celebrating. How callous? Also, the introduction of thee N5, 000 did not fly because its merits could not pass the test of whether it was the most pressing of our needs as a nation. For a government that has hammered on turning Nigeria into a cashless economy, the move to print higher currency denominations could only have drawn suspicion and anger from citizens. But, in the case of Lagos, while the motorcycle is recognised as a means of transporta-

tion, the actions of riders consistently violated existing traffic laws, hence, proving a grave hazard to the well-being and lives of the whole populace. Daily, the dare-devilry exhibited by many Okada riders have landed many Lagosians in hospitals after ghastly accidents, with limbs and lives lost in the process. According to statistics released by the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), in the past two years, 107 persons died while 512 persons sustained serious injuries in 442 Okada-related accidents in the state. If Gani stays in Lagos, he must agree that Okada riders were filled with utter disregard for simple traffic laws; they wrongly overtook, sped like demons, overloaded, and did not even wear helmets. Gani should also know that Okadas were used to commit crimes and for quick entries and getaways. Though, I don’t agree with the demonising employed Lagos State Commissioner of Police Umaru Manko who said that most of the robberies in the state were committed by Okada riders, I however agree that Okadas contributed a fair quarter in assisting robberies. But, still on the Lagos PDP’s position, it must be recalled that in the FCT Abuja, Okadas were banned by a PDP-led federal government. Subsequently, PDP-ruled states like Akwa-Ibom, Rivers, Enugu, Ebonyi, Delta, and Cross-River have all restricted the movement of Okadas. I wonder why Gani and his likes in the Lagos PDP conveniently forget that aspect. With decaying infrastructures and negligence of the people at the macro-level, Nigeria over the years became a jungle where survival was not just for the fittest, it was for the opportunist. Okadas presented an opportu-

those who are defying the laws of Lagos. For him, the state governor should do nothing as thousands of non-Nigerians shipped to Lagos by Lagos greedy businessmen who care only for their pockets kill, maim and create anarchy on Lagos major arteries. Agunbiade probably having little value to add to the debate further accused Governor Fashola of ‘imposing an anti-people law without consulting with stakeholders’, when every resident of the state knows this to be untrue. Mr. Akele, the party’s governorship candidate in the state during the 2011 election also wants the traffic law abrogated. He crudely described Mr. Fashola as ‘a pathological liar”, who used loot from the state treasury to buy and lure voters for his second term in office. He and his NCP, he said, are now set to ‘mobilise other political parties, civil society organisations, international human rights outfits as well as Amnesty International and other relevant masses-oriented organisations at home and abroad to intervene’ in what he said was a ‘genocidal policy against the people’. Lagosians who massively voted for Fashola will feel insulted by Mr. Akele’s unguarded outbursts and half truths. His efforts along with those of other civil rights groups in ending military rule in Nigeria no doubt deserve our commendation. But beyond this, I think it is equally appropriate to suggest he restricts himself to his area of core competence - civil right activities, where he can best serve the nation. It was obvious during his debate with Fashola and other governorship candidates in the run-up to last year election that his passion for civil right activities left him little time to adequately equip himself for party politics and the intellectual challenges of modern governance. During that public debate, Mr. Akele did not know the number of schools or projected number of teachers needed by the state he had wanted to govern. And since Fashola, the elected governor of the state who is in possession of records of those killed, maimed, robbed and raped has sworn to implement the traffic law as enacted by his state house of assembly, Akele and his party, in the absence of fresh ideas, should join the governor in advising those who cannot comply to go back to their villages where they will learn the hard way that even there in the village, they cannot pollute the environment, drive against traffic, molest innocent people or because of claim of poverty put up structure on a land not approved by the Village Head. nity from failure of organised transportation system. Riding Okadas in towns and cities became a ‘faster’ route to wealth. Youths were no longer interested in learning a trade. Hence, there was a rush whereby even citizens from states as far as Sokoto, Borno, Akwa-Ibom, Enugu all migrated to Lagos just to ride Okadas. After all, Lagos is as where the money is. Gani claims the ban would affect Lagosians. Of course, it would have its biting effects. A sore that has been left infested for so long would be painful when being treated. But, if only that pain can be endured, healing and a better life comes after. However if that pain is resisted, the sore merely festers on. Of course, the state government still has to solidify its alternatives, but like every law, the people have a duty to obey it. The rise of Okadas on Nigerian roads was a failure of governance and indiscipline of its citizens. But, truth is that, many Lagosians appreciate that is for everyone’s good. Stories of Okada-related accidents and deaths would be fewer. And contrary to pessimists, this move would not create unemployment. The state has different provisions to develop and sustain artisanship. Surely, as a mega-city, Lagos needs more carpenters, plumbers, welders, tailors, cooks, chefs, bar-tenders, sportsmen. I see enforcement of the Lagos Traffic Law as checking this trend, making Okada riding not that profitable anymore. The passage of the Lagos State Traffic law by the Lagos State House of Assembly was initiated by facts – the road carnage via which many people have lost limbs and lives, the armed robberies perpetuated with the aid of Okada, the aggression and the general disorderliness on the roads. The Law is simply aimed at improving the welfare of Lagosians. And the enforcement of this law is very much different from the oil subsidy removal or the proposed introduction of the N5, 000 note, both policies which had no legal backing, but were rather an executive decision meant to be secretly foisted on Nigerians. Lagos PDP should realise this. • Joseph writes from Agege








NATIONAL SPORTS FESTIVAL: All set for Kano Dala Hard Ogba leads AFN to Obudu, as Court Tennis Tournament LOC flies athletes to resort LOC assures on adequate security •Plans free tour for athletes, officials T •Unveils 47 Hotels for accommodation A A •Ekeji

SCSA honours Ekeji


N recognition of his well documented positive contributions to sports development in Africa, the Supreme Council for Sports in Africa (SCSA) has awarded its MEDAL OF HONOUR to the Director-General National Sports Commission, Patrick Ekeji. The SCSA Medal of Honour which is the second highest sports award in Africa is awarded to prominent personalities, international organisations, countries or national sports teams who have contributed positively to sports development in the African continent. It is a jealously guarded and highly respected Award within the African sports movement. According to the SCSA Executive Committee who recommends recipients of the award to the General Assembly of the organisation, “it cannot be bought”. Receipt of the Award is purely on merit. In Nigeria the Medal of Honour had been awarded to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the senior male national football team of Nigeria, the Super Eagles. Apart from the recent one awarded to Ekeji, only two Nigerians have been awarded the medal. They are late Chief Abraham Ordia and Dr. Awoture Eleyae, OON, former Secretary General of SCSA (1992-2005). Ekeji was awarded the SCSA

Medal of Honour because of the prominent roles he has played in the development of sports in Africa. Those roles included; serving as the Chairman of SCSA Technical Committee mandated to restructure the Supreme Council for sports in Africa; serving as Chairman, Africa Union Conference of Ministers of Sports (AU-CAMS) Experts Committee to draw a roadmap on the future of sports in Africa. The report of that Experts Committee is being used as a reference material on the designing of the new Architecture for African sports. In awarding Ekeji the Medal of Honour, the SCSA also took cognisance of the prominent role he played in resolving the issue of outstanding debts owed the SCSA by Nigeria from the 8th All Africa Games (COJA 2003). Ekeji ensured that a greater part of that debt was defrayed in December 2012. It was in recognition of the above roles and numerous other contributions to sports in Africa that the Executive Committee of the Supreme Council for Sports in Africa recommended to the SCSA General Assembly that Patrick Ekeji be honoured with the SCSA Medal of Honour. The medal was presented to him at the Extra-Ordinary General Assembly of the SCSA on November 9th, 2012 in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo.

LL is set for the 26th edition of the annual Dala Hard Court Tennis Championship in Kano, as the organizers have raked in N12 million out of the targeted N22 million budgeted for the tournament. But the Secretary of the Organising Committee, Barrister Yusuf Datti said that they are optimistic that the shortfall of N10 million would be sourced before the end of the championship. In a press statement issued by the organizers and made available to NationSport said the Nigerian Tennis Federation (NTF) has approved 16th-24 November, 2012 for this year’s championship. According to him, “ our target for this year’s tournament is N22million, so far we have received a total of N4.5 m. Fidelity Bank N4.2m, Jigawa State government N.2m, City Scape Properties Limited N.1m,.”.

From Kolade Adeyemi Kano

He said “ we are confident of [positive response from our customary donors First Bank Limited, which has donated N7.5 million, while that of the Central Bank of Nigeria,(CBN) and others are been awaited.” Datti explained that the organisers have advised the NTF to invite the first 20 men and ladies ranked players into the main draws of the event, adding that the preliminaries will hold between 16th and 18th November,2012, while the main draw would commence on the 19th November, 2012. He stated that “ as usual the organizing committee will provide accommodation and feeding to both national officials and players, while the executive governor of Kano State, Engr Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso is expected to be the special guest of honor at the final/closing ceremony of the championship.

thletic Federation of Nigeria (AFN) president, Solomon Ogba will lead the federation's team to Saturday's 8th Obudu international mountain race and the fourth African nations mountain running championships at the Obudu ranch resort in Obudu,Cross River state. Confirming this to the local organising committee for the race in an e-mail is Maria Worphil,the secretary general of the federation. Ogba will be the first AFN boss to grace the world class event jointly organised by the federation and the Cross River state government.


IJJANI Babangida has argued that the absence of Mikel Obi and Victor Moses against Venezuela will allow other players to show themselves. The former international told that though their presence could have added quality to the team, Keshi could use this chance to test other players ahead of next year’s AFCON. "In my own opinion, their absence is good for the team and the coach because it would afford him an opportunity to test other players,” Babangida said.

From Patrick Ngwaogu, Abuja matches, before resuming fully in January. But the way things are now, and the league may not start so soon, it would have a serious negative effect on us, and that means we have to start off possibly by the 2nd January to enable me do something before the AYC, you know the AYC is very difficult to play. I prefer the World Youth Championship than the Africa Youth Championship'.He said that the weather condition in Algeria as at that •Mark Clattenburg (L) and Mikel Obi time would determine his choice of camping site 'we would have 3SC FANS TO MANAGEMENT to start at home first, but Abuja is entirely out of it, we would look for a remote area that has all the facilities we need , before moving out of the shores of the ANS power was on full display coming season because his better country. Before, we would go for when 3SC fans rejected days are behind him,” a top source our final preparation, we would prospective signing veteran informed take a look at the quality of goalkeeper Uche Akubuike, insisting “The management therefore did friendly matches we would get, he is past his prime. very well to listen to their misgivings and what other countries that are Akubuike trained on Monday and because a day after he trained with in our group are doing, and it was the first and last time he the team, they gave him transport moreover the character of play of would train with the Ibadan club as money to return to his base.” our players before finally taken a fans protested against any plans to Akubuike was considered for a decision' the former Sharks of sign him. place in Nigeria’s final squad for the Port Harcourt handler also He would later be sent off by the 1998 World Cup in France. advised the club's new handler club management the following day. He has played for several top local Austin Eguaevon to work “The fans protested that Akubuike teams including Enyimba, Gombe modalities of amicably working cannot help their club battle for top United as well as in South Africa and with clubs fans . honours in the Asia.

We don’t want Akubuike


•John Obu

HE Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the 18th National Sports Festival (NSF) has assured on adequate security for all and sundry ahead of Nigeria’s biggest sporting fiesta. Speaking to Journalists in Lagos on Tuesday, the Secretary –General of the LOC Kweku Tandoh said the issue of security is of utmost priority to the governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, adding that the Security Council has been working round the clock to ensure stability securitywise. He said: “Security is one aspect that the governor has taken seriously and the members of the Security Council meets every week since January on the National Sports Festival and all the other things that are taking place in Lagos throughout the year. So a comprehensive plan has been drawn up and every week they review the plan and assess the developments here and there that may affect whatever plans that have been done in the past. “In terms of security I know we are on top of the situation because the Security Council is up and doing. Right now they have commenced mass deployment of men and

equipment round the state. We might not reveal everything that we want to do in terms of security, but we want to assure everyone coming to Lagos for the festival that their security can be guaranteed and with the help of God”. Tandoh further informed that the LOC has but in place a tourism package that will avail the athletes and officials the opportunity to know more of Lagos, as they have lined up both land and sea tours across the state during the festival. “Many of them are coming to Lagos for the Festival, so what we have put in place is a guided tour of Lagos state which will be available to the athletes and it is free of charge. We have sea tours and land tours and any state that is interested in taking its athletes to know more about Lagos should indicate interest by going to the desk that will be set up and register. “We will also be having entertainment centres where at the end of everyday competition they

Lagos to field students —Oshodi

F/Eagles resumes camp January


competition.We have an ultra-modern airstrip,Bedi airstrip at the ranch which is reputed as one of the best airstrips in the country.”Says Ugbe adding that His Excellency,senator Liyel Imoke inspected the airstrip last year and it has since been in use. 'I recall that the Governor inspected the Bedi Airstrip last year and was pleased with its modern equipment. He knows that one of the most difficult tasks a pilot has to perform is to achieve a smooth and safe landing and the airstrip is fitted with the latest landing aids which will help pilots find the correct landing course and to make landing safer,” Ugbe said.

Mikel miss is Eagles' gain T —Babangida


ATIONAL U-20 head coach John Obu has revealed to NationSport in Abuja that his team will resume camping in January for the Africa Youth Championship holding in Algeria in March next year. According to him, he expected the team begin camping this month to enable them fine tune themselves before the christmas and new year holidays ' this becomes necessary if we consider that bulk of players are drawn from the local league, and the league is not on, and there is no possibility that it would start now. So we wanted to begin now, play some friendly

Also expexted to be in the delegation are Mrs Worphil and the second vice president of the federation,Jide Josiah as well as Samuel Fatunla,the only athletics statistician recognised by the Association of Track and Field Statisticians. Meanwhile, Honourable Patrick Ugbe,the state Commissioner for Youth and Sports has confirmed that all the elite athletes participating in Saturday's race will be flown straight to Obudu from Lagos and Calabar. 'The LOC has concluded arrangements to airlft all elite runners,both the local and foreign to the venue of the


X-LAZIO striker Ayodele Makinwa has joined the club owned by Italy goalkeeper Gigi Buffon to keep fit while waiting on a lucrative deal. Former Nigeria international Makinwa, who began his career in Italy with Reggiana alongside Obafemi Martins, was not short of suitors outside Italy, but decided to stay in Italy because of his wife and kids, one of his representatives Akinola Makinwa told "Ayo (Makinwa) has joined

“The coach has already seen them and know what they are capable of. And added to this is the fact that the EPL is really very demanding with games after every three days. As such their absence should be positively exploited." In the meantime, the former international has called on Sports Minister Bolaji Abdullahi to allow Keshi do his work. The sports minister has ordered Keshi to stop experimenting with new players and get on with the serious job of preparing for the Nations Cup in South Africa. "The minister is just trying to cause trouble, he should be focused on ensuring that the funds needed for the AFCON campaign are released in time,"

said the former Ajax Amsterdam winger. "If Keshi fails today, the minister cannot save him. They should leave Keshi to run his

programme the best way he deems right. If he wants to test players for the Venezuela friendly I don't see anything wrong with that." He added: "Keshi has qualified us in style for the Nations Cup. Has the minister come out to commend him? They should sack Keshi now if they want to, but they should not interfere with his job. Because this is how it starts. The next thing you would hear is they want to bring a foreign coach to boss him."

Makinwa to revive career at Buffon's club a Serie C team Carrarese Calcio. The club is owned by Gigi Buffon and they are currently bottom of the table. They will bank on his experience to help them out,” said Akinola Makinwa. “He did that mainly to keep match fitness pending when we will get a better deal. “We have offers for him outside Italy especially from

China and Malaysia, but he wanted to remain in Italy because of his family. His wife is schooling in Italy, same applicable to his children. The 29-year-old striker who has played for Reggiana, Como, Genoa, Modena, Atalanta, Palermo, Chievo, Larrisa (Greece) and Lazio, is likely to be in Carrarese till the summer.


HE Lagos State Government on Wednesday said a significant number of its athletes at the 18th National Sports Festival would be students. Wahid Enitan-Oshodi, the Commissioner for Sports, Youth and Social Development disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos. He said the state`s choice of young athletes for the Games was deliberate, explaining the objective was to expose and nurture them for future competitions. NAN reports that the Games, tagged ``Eko 2012``, holds in Lagos between Nov. 27 and Dec. 9. ``The most important thing for us in this Games is the development of these young athletes to enable them to have a great future in sports and to harness them properly. ``I think over the years, we have been working hard with our young athletes, a lot of them are in school and we are very proud of this.

``Even with these young talents, I think we are going to surprise a few states. ``We are looking very hopeful in many sports across all the 25. I think Lagos will put up a good show this time,’’ he said. The commissioner added that the morale of the athletes was high in camp, saying the government was From, Osmwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin doing everything possible to make sure they were in good shape for the ITH two weeks to the Games. commencement of the National Sports Festival (NSF), tagged Eko2012 holding in Lagos, Edo state Athletes have refused to report in camp over unresolved issues with the ministry of sports. The Athletes that were expected to have started camping Tuesday following the release of 120 million Naira by the state Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, stated that the Permanent Secretary, Francis Otiode, who now overseas •Oshodi affairs at the ministry has refused to disclose what the camping allowances of the athletes will be. They stated that Otiode did not account for the 15 million Naira that was given to them last year after the National Sports Festival in PortGovernment for the moral, Harcourt, including addressing the material and financial support given problem of promotion of coaches. to the team in spite of the C o m r a d e B e n a r d J u m a n , environmental challenges the state Chairman of the Sports Council was facing because of the recent Union told NationSport that until the flooding. issues stated above are resolved, the He said that with the motivation, matter of camping and going to the the athletes would win laurels. National Sports Festival will be a ``Gov. Idris Wada has been so mirage. magnanimous with his welfare He also advised the Governor to package and accommodation for the set up a committee that will lead the athletes. Right now, our athletes are state contingent to the Festival, after in camp in one of the best hotels in all the pending matters would have Lokoja. been resolve. ``He has equally visited the team Some of the Athletes also to raise their morale for outstanding complained of lack of training performance at the festival.’’ facilities which they said was giving The director said the state them a lot of concerns. contingent would arrive in Lagos for When our reporter visited Dr. the fiesta on Nov. 26 with 100 Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium athletes, 35 technical officials and 30 yesterday morning, Athletes and delegates. coaches were seen in groups He said that the state would discussing, while the leaders of their participate in 12 sports comprising Union were also seem coordinating one team event and 11 individual their activities. sports. Vehicles and caterers that were According to him, the team sport organised by the ministry to take is female handball, while the Athletes to their various camp and individual ones includes badminton, cook for them were asked to leave boxing, weightlifting, kickboxing, pending when the whole matter is judo, scrabble, Para-table tennis, resolved. Ayo and others.

Kogi targets 7 gold medals at Eko 2012 festival—Director


HE Kogi Director of Sports, Joel Abu, has said the state is preparing to win more than seven gold medals at the 18th National Sports Festival in spite of the recent flooding. The festival, tagged ``Eko 2012’’, will hold between Nov. 27 and Dec. 9. Abu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Wednesday that the state would exceed its performance at the 17th edition of the Games in Port Harcourt in 2011. According to him, though the state did not win any gold medal at the last edition, it has prepared well to achieve its target at Eko 2012. ``We, the officials and athletes, are in high spirits in all our camps and we will do our best to excel at the forthcoming festival. ``I want to assure the people of Kogi that the athletes are training hard to improve on their record this time around. We will compete very well to appear on the medals table,’’ he said. Abu thanked the State

can come together and mingle with athletes from other states so that the bond of friendship and unity that is one of the objectives of the festival be fulfilled. “We are also looking at the volunteer project that will assist both athletes and officials in terms of any emergency. About 1,000 of them and they will be dispersed across the state to provide information and assistance to anyone that needs it during the festival. These are some of the things we are putting in place to ensure that the festival is unique,” he said. On accommodation, Tandoh explained that 47 Hotels have been listed to compliment the accommodation arrangements, and that visitors are expected to take advantage of the initiative. "This is mainly an initiative that will take care of the visitors that would be coming into Lagos between now and December. It is for as many that will be taking care of their accommodation during the period of the festival. Hence we have contacted experts in the Tourism and hospitality industry, Support and Management Company to help put this together," he said.

Eko2012: Edo contingent shuns camping for festival









OOU to review cases of 825 sacked workers -Page 28

Oyedepo’s N40m lifts four schools

•Oyinloye (right) and Alhaji Alabi

THE President of Living Faith Church International (a.k.a Winners Chapel) Bishop David Oyedepo, has donated N40 million for the purchase of science equipment for four community schools in OmuAran, Irepodun Local Government Area of Kwara State.

•Biology and Biotechnology students in a ‘dry’ laboratory

It was a shocking find. An 11-man panel has found that universities have more non-teaching than teaching staff. This, it says, is not good for the system. Besides, there are other problems on which the panel has made recommendations. KOFOWOROLA BELO-OSAGIE reports.

-Page 40

CAMPUS LIFE •An eight-page section on campus news, people etc

All for OAU @ 50 OBAFEMI Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State, has a rich history. When it was founded in 1962, it was named University of Ife (UNIFE), after the ancient town where it is sited. UNIFE, as it was once popularly known, became OAU in 1987 following its renaming after its founder, Chief Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo, who died on May 6 of that year.

-Page 29

Varsities without teachers, tools I

T is no news that the Nigerian university system is bogged down by many problems. Some of them are of inadequate funding, mismanagement of resources, overpopulation of students, inadequate and dilapidated classroom/hostel accommodations, ill-equipped laboratories and workshops, empty libraries; insufficient teachers and too many non-teaching staff. The report of an 11-man Committee on Needs Assessment of Nigerian Public Universities presented by the Education Minister, Prof Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i, to the National Economic Council in Abuja on November 1, paints a grim picture of the situation. On all indices examined when the committee visited 61 of the 74 federal and state-owned universities, virtually none was above board. The committee headed by Prof Mahmood Yakubu, Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), documented facts and figures that allow for accurate assessment of the level of degradation of facilities and why they must be upgraded, exposing the unsavoury truths vice-chancellors and other principal officers hide from the National Universities Commission (NUC) when seeking accreditation. The committee was shocked by the unsatisfactory quality and quantity of academics; ratio of teaching to non-teaching staff, poor state of hostels and toilet facilities, high number of abandoned projects, poor state of laboratories compared with the usually beautiful pictures painted by university administrators in their


Teaching/Non--teaching staff

Student enrolment/Hostel accomodation

•701 physical projects uncompleted •163 (23.3%) are abandoned - 22 in UNN; 16 in UDUS •583 (76.7%) ongoing •60% funded by TETFUND •More than 50% of lecture theatres lack public address systems •Many universities operate ‘dry’ laboratories •Open-air sports pavilion, old cafeteria, convocation arenas and even uncompleted buildings used for lectures. In some cases, workshops are conducted under corrugated sheds or trees. •77,511 non-teaching staff on varsities payroll •37,504 academics employed by universities •Only 43% with PhDs •9,376 are part-time lecturers •Only 44 per cent are senior academics •Only 1,343 of 7935 scholarly articles are published in international journals •Most varsities workers are ‘Closed’ (homogeneous staff – in terms of ethnocultural background) •1,252,913 students enroled in varsities •85% undergraduates •1,503,931 wrote 2012 UTME •Lecturer/student ratio as high as 1:300 •Eight universities (NOUN, LASU, UNIABUJA, UNIBEN, UNIPORT, ABU, EKSU,UNIMAID) provide 33% of total enrolment •Seven account for less than one per cent •Hostels can only accommodate 109,509 students •All hostel projects by NDDC abandoned •Most hostels are overcrowded, dilapidated and lack good toilet facilities and water

convocation speeches. STAFFING Non-teaching staff If the committee’s recommendations are implemented by the Federal Government, the Federal Ministry of Education, will be directly responsible for the employment and remuneration of non-academic staff of universities, a development

it believes will prune numbers and save costs. The committee made the recommendation based on its findings that universities have only 37,504 lecturers compared to 77,511 nonteaching staff employed on fulltime basis. In some universities, it said the ratio of non-academics to academics was as high as 3:1, while

institutions like the University of Benin, and the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife have more senior administrative staff than academics. The committee found that the situation has resulted in universities expending more of their scarce resources on administration than their core business, which is teaching and research. The report said: “In most universities, there are more nonteaching staff than teaching staff. In fact, the number of non-teaching staff in some universities doubles, triples or quadruples that of teaching staff. In some universities, the number of senior administrative staff alone is more than the number of teaching staff (e.g. UNIBEN, OAU Ile-Ife). In the University of Benin, there are more senior staff in the Registrar cadre than professors. Almost all the universities are over-staffed with non-teaching staff. The implication of this is over-blown personnel cost and misuse of available resources in the university system.” Recommending their transfer to the civil service, it said: “For government, and other funding agencies to concentrate on the business of supporting teaching, learning and research; and for the university managers to concentrate on pursuing the mission, vision and core values of their institution, it is recommended to government to study the feasibility and viability of converting all non-teaching staff in Nigerian universities into the staff of Federal or State Ministry of Education (as the case may be). If this is done, governments and funding • Continued on page 26




•Engineering workshop

•Inside the female hostel of a university in the Southeast

Varsities without teachers, tools • Continued from page 25

agencies know for certain every investment would go into the main mandate of the university. Administrative spending and personnel cost would only be restricted to academic matters. Universities would have more resources, more time, and more attention to research, learning, and teaching. And government would have full control over the increasing growth of the population of non-teaching staff in the universities.” Besides, the committee called for a staff audit, specifically targeted at the over bloated registry and bursary units of universities, while seeking to restrict the powers of vice-chancellors to employ personal staff. Accordingly, it recommended: “There is a very urgent need to halt the very fast artificial growth of Registry and Bursary departments of Nigerian universities. To this effect, it is recommended to government to direct all university governing councils to constitute a highpowered committee for the reorganization of these departments with a view to making them leaner, more professional and more effective. “All the non-establishment positions in the offices of vice chancellors of many universities shall be scrapped forthwith. The positions of special advisers, special assistants, bodyguards, special consultants, etc that are creeping into the university system are no more additional conduit of mismanaging university resources.” Academics While there are non-teachers in abundance in the universities, teachers are so inadequate that the ratio of lecturers to students on the average is as high as 1:100 in many. Of the 37,504 lecturers, 61 per cent (23,030) work for federal universities, while 14,474 are employed by state universities. “The teaching staff-students ratio is very high in many universities: National Open University of Nigeria – 1:363; University of Abuja 1:122; Lagos State University 1:114 (compared with Harvard 1:4; MIT 1:9; Yale 1:4; Cambridge 1:3),” stated the report. The committee also found that over 9,000 of the lecturers are employed on part-time basis by more than one institution. And to meet their obligations to these institutions, many neglect their duties in their places of primary assignments to travel round. “There is an increasing culture of visiting lecturership in the university system. Of a total of 37,504 lecturers, only 28,128 (75 per cent) are

engaged on full-time basis. This means that 9,376 (25 per cent) are recycled as visiting, adjunct, sabbatical and contract lecturers. “The phenomenon seems unregulated or the regulation is defied. A tenure staff in one university can visit many universities, irrespective of distance, without any control. “Some Academics are always on the road travelling from one university town to another and unable to meet their primary obligations with their tenure-employer.” Another problem the committee uncovered was that only 43 per cent of the inadequate number of academics have the requisite qualification for teaching, which is the PhD, while a majority of the teaching staff are in the junior cadre, which should not be. “Teaching Staff distribution in the country, both by qualification and rank indicates that Nigeria’s university system is in crisis of manpower. Instead of having 100 per cent of the academics having PhDs, only about 43 per cent do so. Instead of having 75 per cent of the academics between senior lecturers and professors, only about 44 per cent are within the bracket. “There are universities in which the total number of professors is not more than five; and the total number of PhDs in the whole university is not up to 30.” The committee recommended that universities with shortages in the right quality and mix of academic staff should be given a moratorium of six years to enable their academics get the requisite qualifications after which they should be denied accreditation. “University with very poor staffing situation and unacceptable staff mix should also be given a moratorium of six years within which massive recruitment must be made with a view to meeting the minimum number and benchmarked mix of teaching staff. If after six years the staffing need is not satisfied, such universities should be denied accreditation and be stopped from admitting new students.” Student enrolment In all, the committee discovered there are 1,252,913 students in the 61 universities visited, a number too large for existing classroom, laboratory, workshop and hostel facilities. However, the over-enrolment notwithstanding, the committee discovered that 1,503,931 wrote the 2012 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME), a reflection of the acute problem of access in the system. Eighty-five per cent of the students are enroled for undergraduate programmes, five for sub-degree,

•An abandoned project

three, postgraduate diploma, five, Masters, and two per cent for Ph.Ds. Breaking down the number of undergraduates in relation to programmes of study, the committee found that as against the National Policy on Education that stipulates 60:40 enrolment in favour of science-based programmes, 66.1 per cent of them are studying arts, social sciences, management and education courses. Only 16 per cent of students are studying science and science-education courses; 6.3 per cent, engineering; five per cent, Medicine, while 6.6 are studying Agriculture, Pharmacy and Law. Faulting the distribution of students in these programmes, the committee stated that “there is no relationship between enrolment and the tangible manpower needs of the nation” and recommended that universities revert to admitting students into programmes based on the technological needs of the country. To solve the problem of access, the committee recommended that Nigerian universities commence distance learning training as done successfully by foreign universities. Post-graduate studies With regards to post-graduate training, especially the production of Ph.D holders who can teach in the university, the committee suggested that six first generation universities,

University of Ibadan, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), University of Maiduguri, University of Benin and the University of Ilorin should focus on postgraduate training. “Six Federal Universities (the oldest University in each geo-political zone) should be designated as essentially Postgraduate training institutions. These Universities have the requisite number of senior academic staff who are currently largely engaged in undergraduate teaching. From 2012, 50% of their enrollment should be PG students to rise to 70% by 2016. Already, the University of Ibadan is inching towards this ratio.” It also recommends that postgraduate admissions should favour science-based programmes. Infrastructure The committee described most of the infrastructure on campuses, including classrooms, laboratories, libraries, offices, water facilities, and road networks as overstretched, dilapidated, and inadequate. Most of the classrooms, accommodating large numbers of students did not have public address systems, or multimedia tools compliant with the digital age. Laboratories lacked equipments, while

libraries stocked inadequate or old books and were not automated. Many workshops were filled with obsolete, while those that are modern are inadequate for the number of students to use. Hostels Except for the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) in Kaduna, the committee discovered that no university accommodated more than 35 per cent of its student population. The 109,509 bed spaces in the universities could only accommodate about 10.3 per cent of the student population. At accommodations managed by most institutions, students live in sub-human conditions – with hostel rooms overcrowded and lacking proper ventilation, with toilet facilities so poor that many students resort to bathing in the open or defecating in the bush. Laundries and common rooms have also been converted to hostel rooms, which are usually overcrowded. More than 70 per cent of the hostels assessed needed rehabilitation. Also, many of the hostels lacked adequate water, making students to endure long queues in search of water or do without bathing to class. Despite the non-expansion of hostel facilities commensurate with • Continued on page 27

MEMBERSHIP OF THE COMMITTEE S/N NAME 1.Prof. Mahmood Yakubu 2.Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu 3.Honourable Jerry Alagbaoso 4.Raymond Brown 5.Dr. Jamila Shu ara 6.Adeyinka O. Jones 7.Emmanuel Ina Uchola 8.Mrs.Victoria Omolade Oluyole 9. LateArc. (Mrs ) Chinwe Obi/ Mr. Ayo Bankole 10. Prof. Ukachukwu Aloysius Awuize 11. Mr. Femi Melefa

INSTITUTION Executive sectary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund(TETFund) Representative, senate committee on Education, National Assembly Representative, House of Representative Committee on Education, National Assembly Representative, Office of the SGF Repersentative, Federal Ministry of Education Representative, Federal Ministry of Finance Representative, Federal Ministry of Trade & Investment Representative, National Planning commission Representative, National Planning Commission Universities (ASUU) President/IPP , Academic Staff Union of Tertiary Education Trust Fund

POST Chairman Member Member Member Member Member Member Member Member Member Secetary



EDUCATION College reopens for exams


HE Edo State-owned College of Education, Ekiadolor last Monday reopened and began the second semester examination. The institution was shut over a protest following allegations that the management was holding on to the N5,000 refund from their school fees promised by Governor Adams Oshiomhole during last July’s governorship campaign. The protest was led by their Students’ Union Government’s president, Comrade Augustine Oriakhi last Monday. The school had scheduled its second semester exams for last Monday when the students started the protests. Provost of the institution, Prof Amen Uhunmwangho said the college is yet to get the refund but assured that the Governor will fulfil his promise. “I understood the students’ grievances, the refund is a promise made by the governor, which the govern-


From, Osemwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin

ment intends to keep. Management is yet to get the refunds from the government. When the subvention comes, we will surely refund to the students that have paid. “I don’t think this should be abused. The students are remaining calm and they are writing their exams, the primary reason they are in school”. The professor of English said that Comrade Oshiomhole recently gave the students two hummer buses, built bus stops, and renovated the hostel to the tune of N100 million. Uhunmwangho who took journalists round some projects so far executed said the library building is at the roofing level, while the School of Education complex at is at various stages of completion. “To easy transportation, two 34seater coaster buses and a water tanker was recently bought for the college.

Indian envoy for award

HE India High Commissioner to Nigeria Mr Mahesh Sardev will be the Special Guest of Honour at the India Universities Alumni Association Nigeria award ceremony. The event, which holds at the India High Commission in Lagos on Saturday, is to promote India-Ni-

•From left: Mrs Justina Adomokhai, Mrs. Angela Akhimien, Mrs. Cicilia Abu, all of UNILEVER Supply Chain Oregun, teaching pupils of St Agnes primary school handwashing techniques during the Lifebuoy Schools Engagement Initiative in Lagos.

geria relationship, according to its national president Mr Collins Onyenze. Some of the awardees already penciled include Managing directors of multinationals including Zinox Group Prestige Assurance; Seven Up Bottling Company, among others.

Govt to repair maritime school


HE Federal Government has said it will rehabilitate the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) maritime training school even as it pledged to address dearth of manpower in the maritime sector. Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar disclosed this at the weekend during a working visit to the abandoned institute in Apapa, Lagos. Umar said: “The present administration is committed to completing abandoned projects littered all over the country. The NPA training school which had been the training ground of many seafarers and maritime workers will not be an exception.” He expressed dismay that the well-equipped school could be neglected when the nation is experiencing dearth of skilled sea men.

From Olugbenga Adanikin, Abuja

In a statement in Abuja, the Assistant Director, Press, Abiodun Oladunjoye said the project will be executed under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement. Meanwhile, at the Badagry site of the proposed maritime academy, the Minister expressed concern at the culture of abandonment, stating that all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have been mandated by President Goodluck Jonathan to evaluate abandoned projects in order to restore them. “There is a need to put in facilities that will address the obvious shortfall in human resources to complement what the Maritime Academy of Nigeria , Oron, Akwa Ibom State is already doing,” he added.

Varsities without teachers, tools • Continued from page 26

enrolment over the years, the committee faulted the poor management of existing ones. As universities are not allowed to use their capital votes for construction of hostels, funding for those under construction, many of which have been abandoned, were sourced from Internally-Generated Revenue (IGR), TETFUND, the Niger-Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and private donors. The committee recommended that universities provide up-tostandard residential facilities to accommodate at least 50 per cent of its population on a public-private partnership basis. It advocated a cost structure that would provide for the maintenance of the facilities regularly. Abandoned projects During the tour, the committee documented that 163 of the 701 physical uncompleted projects it found had been abandoned – with the UNN and the Usmanu Danfodio University, Sokoto (UDUS), having the highest number of 22 and 16 abandoned projects. It also found that over 60 per cent of the projects were being funded by TETFUND, while the abandoned projects were funded by the NDDC

and IGR. The committee faulted the non/partial release of capital votes by the federal government to federal universities and the lack of investment of most state governments in capital projects in universities owned by them. This, it discovered, has made some state universities largely depended on TETFUND for capital projects. University governance structure Though acknowledging challenges of inadequate funding, overpopulation, poor manpower the committee identified leadership as a problem affective the effective running of the universities. It highlighted the constitution of the governing councils of universities as a problem, recommending that its members, especially the prochancellor be carefully chosen by the government as their governance roles are important to the stability of the universities. It stated: “The first is the composition and character of the GOVERNING COUNCILS, especially the external members, among them the Pro-Chancellor, appointed by Government. They need to be carefully chosen and saddled with clear tasks that they must accomplish ab initio. The integrity of Councils is central to the rejuvenation of our universities.”

Prof Ojerinde (fourth left) and Dr Sijubomi (third left) with other officials of JAMB and FCE

JAMB picks FCE for e-UTME


HE officials of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) have visited the Federal College of Education (Technical), Akoka, in Lagos, as part of its preparations towards computerising its Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) in 2013. The delegation, led by the board’s Registrar, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, was at the college to ascertain the school’s capacity to accommodate the new development. According to Ojerinde, the college was one of the many centres already penciled by the board to conduct the examinations otherwise called EUTME. Listing the benefits of the new system, Ojerinde said it would ensure prompt delivery of raw scores, eliminate case of incomplete results, eliminate result blackout, and controls examination malpractices, among others. Passing a vote of confidence on the

•Students’ toilets

By Adegunle Olugbamila

college for its capacity to provide the needed support, Ojerinde commended the institution’s management for what he called the modest development recorded so far. He therefore promised more meetings between the college and the board to facilitate smooth take-off of the initiative. Commenting, the college’s Provost, Dr. S. Olusanya, commended JAMB for the innovation and

pledged his support towards its success. Meanwhile, JAMB has made the computer-based testing system optional for the pilot scheme but plans to go online fully by 2015. Also, as part of the new initiatives by the body, all applicants regardless of their courses of choice or method of testing would have to be tested on two general reading books: The Successors by Jery Agada and The Potter’s Wheel by Chukwuemeka Ike.

Association to hold party MEMBERS of Osogbo Grammar School (Set ‘75) will hold their End-ofYear party on December 1 at 11 am at Brymor Hotel, Osogbo, Osun State capital. Its Financial Secretary, Tunji Jaiyeola, who described the event as historic, said it would be the first time members would hold a party in the last 30 years. He enjoined them to attend with their wives and children, saying a lot of gifts await them.



EDUCATION IBBUL FILE Council approves two DVCs THE Governing Council, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai (IBBUL) at its 19th regular meeting approved the appointment of two new Deputy ViceChancellors and a Director of Academic Planning for the university. The new appointees are: Dr. Baba Alfa, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academics), Dr Muhammad Yakubu Auna, Deputy ViceChancellor (Administration) and Dr. Muhammad Tajordeen Mustapha, Director, Academic Planning. Alfa, an Energy Scientist was the only Deputy Vice-Chancellor in the institution before his new appointment as Deputy ViceChancellor (Academics) following the splitting of the Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor into Academics and Administration by the Governing Council. Alfa was appointed for his diligence and commitment to the development of the university. On his part, Auna was elevated from his former position of Director Academic Planning at the university because of his hard work, humility, kind-heartedness and doggedness to service delivery. The Soil Scientist is a product of Usmanu Danfodio University, Sokoto.

OOU to review cases of 825 sacked workers


UNDREDS of Academic and non-teaching staff of the Olabisi Onabanjo University(OOU), Ago - Iwoye, who were unjustly relieved of their jobs following the scorched earth policy of the then Dr Alex Onabanjo - led Governing Council of the institution, would soon enjoy respite as a committee to review their case is being arranged. No fewer than 825 teaching and non-teaching staff of the university lost their jobs between 2009 and 2010 in manners the victims and various labour unions in the institution viewed as “arbitrary, witch - hunting, illegal and destructive.” A breakdown shows that 150 lecturers lost their jobs as a result of activities linked with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) while 100 others left on their own

Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta

following the harsh academic climate prevalent then. The institution’s branch of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) had 265 of its members sacked while the rest are spread between Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities (NASU) and one other union. But last Thursday, the Acting Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Adejimi Adesanya, said the case of “disengaged staff” would be “solved,” adding that a “broadbased committee is being put together to look into the matter and advice the management on what to do. Adesanya spoke at the Annual Lecture and Awards of SSANU and urged union leaders to come up with “facts and figures” in respect

of the disengaged members when such cases would be entertained in the next couple of weeks. The Acting Vice-Chancellor was reacting in part to the OOUSSANU Chairman, Comrade Taiwo Egberongbe’s comment, who in his speech, recalled the arbitrary sack of 265 members of the union and how the Right activist lawyer, Mr Bamidele Aturu, stood by them. Adesanya noted that the University management does not want a “repeat of the mistake of the past” and the attendant setbacks and urged the unions to exercise patience while the matters are being sorted out. Among those honoured at event were the Ebumawe of Ago-Iwoye, Oba Abdul-Rasaq Adenugba, a federal lawmaker, Hon. Abiodun Abudu-Balogun and Mr Aturu, the guest lecturer.

Workers donate salaries IN their commitment to ensuring the development of basic education, the members of staff of IBBUL have resolved to contribute one per cent of their basic salaries for a period of six months towards the construction of a Staff School for the university. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof Ibrahim Adamu Kolo revealed the plans while addressing the University’s 5th Congregational Assembly, recently. While commending the kind gesture, Kolo urged them to make it one per cent of full salary. On his part, he donated N500,000, additional to the one per cent of his salary for six months to the project. He charged the workers to work hard and reiterated Management’s determination to work harmoniously with various unions in the institution towards the realisation of its world class vision.

AAUA NASU exco dissolved


Aliyu on self-reliance THE Nigerian Academy of Education has been charged to evolve a more pragmatic intellectual and self reliant programme for education sector to help facilitate national development. Governor Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu of Niger State gave the charge while addressing assembly of Nigerian Academy of Education (NAE) who gathered at the Justice Idris Legbo Kutigi International Conference Centre, Minna for its 27th Annual Congress with the theme: “Entrepreneurial Education”. He underscored the roles of educational bodies in the country as catalysts to the growth of the nation; stressing that the academy should continue its strive towards realising the educational goals. Dr. Aliyu also emphasized the need for issues of corruption and dichotomy in the secular indigeneship and settlers’ syndrome to be discarded; advising agencies of education, religious bodies and parents to make concerted efforts to fight negative tendencies that could hamper educational development.

•Prof Mimiko

•From left: Dr Ayokunle, Vice-Chancellor and Rector, Liverpool Hope University, Hope Park, Liverpool, United Kingdom, Prof Gerald John Pillay, overall best graduand, Miss Mercy Oluwadara Jaiyeola and Prof Olagbemiro, at the event.

Bowen varsity chapel: A favourite of grads


HE chapel is one place graduating students of Bowen University, Iwo in Osun State, will miss on the campus they spent four years pursuing their bachelor’s degrees. It is not just because the cross-shaped 5,000-seater edifice is beautiful but because it was the centre of spiritual activities on campus. Whether they liked it or not, the students had to assemble in the chapel at least four times a week for various programmes – Sunday worship services and fellowships, mid week services, bible studies and the rest. And doing so out of routine for four years has now left an indelible impression on their minds. Some of the graduands who spoke with The Nation during the 7th convocation of the university, which held in the chapel that the ViceChancellor, Prof Timothy Olagbemiro said cost N680 million to build, will for long after their graduations remember the sermons, advice, lessons admonitions and hymns they heard seated in any of the three wings of the worship centre weekly. Being a faith-based university, where compliance to rules and regulations is more strictly monitored than in secular public universities, the graduands felt restricted by the code of conduct but said they survived it. Oluwafunke Ladapo, a Mass Communication graduate said: “Schooling in Bowen was tough because of the rules and regulations. For me to abide for four years is but the

By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

grace of God. I will miss the Bowen Chapel and the Chaplain. I had to go to the chapel thrice in a week.” Bisola Bello, a graduate of Sociology said she got spiritually enriched at the chapel. “I will miss the chapel. We came here four times in a week. We had opportunity to be closer to God while here,” she said. For Emina Audu, a Mass Communication Graduate, it was the prayers and talks, while for Angel Arewa of the Economics department will remember the godliness that enveloped the atmosphere. “I will miss the prayers; the awesome power of prayers, and all those wonderful talks. There will be nobody to talk to us again,” Emina Said. “I will miss waking up early; the devotions and the godly atmosphere. Whenever you are here, there is this shadow over you,” said Angel. It is not only the students that are in love with the chapel. In an interview with The Nation, Prof Olagbemiro said it serves as a rallying place for the university. “We all assemble in the chapel. We do services in the chapel and it is a must for everybody. Everybody come to the chapel regardless of denomination. It is a rallying point. We teach them how to respect God, obey God and pray. It is a place for serious business to serve God. Olagbemiro has a soft spot for the chapel which he said he saw in a dream years before coming to the

university. The chapel is a cross-shaped building with wide arches and a red roof. The roof over the altar is dome shaped, and red lamps hung on strings hand down from the ceiling and encircle the altar, which is a high platform where the ministers sit. During the convocation, it seated the Visitor to the University and President of the Nigerian Baptist Convention, Reverend Samson Olasupo Ayokunle; the Chancellor, Rev B.U. Enyioha; the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council, Deacon Gamaliel Onosode, and the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Olagbemiro. Representatives of government agencies, other universities, special guests and principal officers were also seated on the platform. In his speech, the Vice-Chancellor said 1001 students across five faculties and the college of health sciences graduated with bachelor’s degrees while the university produced its first set of Masters graduates – eight in all. Of the 1001 undergraduate degrees, 33 graduated with First Class; 285, 2.1; 447, 2.2; 216, Third Class; and 20, Pass. He charged the graduands to be good ambassadors of the university which has provided them quality academic, moral and spiritual training. “I admonish you to make the university proud through your contributions, especially by our commitment to hard work, innovativeness, and ethical as well as your spiritual life in your future endeavours,” he said.

HE national leadership of the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU), has dissolved the executive committee of the Adekunle Ajasin University, AkungbaAkoko (AAUA) branch of the union for embarking on illegal protest and for “gross misconduct.” The local NASU alongside the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) had embarked on protests over the non-payment of arrears of the 2009 hazards component of the Federal Government/Unions Agreement for over six weeks, which paralysed administrative activities in the university. Normalcy returned to the university Tuesday last week when the university’s Governing Council ordered the protesting workers to resume duties or face appropriate sanctions. The NASU leadership conveyed this decision in separate letters to the AAUA Vice-Chancellor, Prof Femi Mimiko, and the leadership of AAUA NASU in a letter by its Senior Deputy General Secretary, Mr. F.J. Ajayi. The letter of dissolution with reference no. NASU/UV/63/ VOL.II/109, dated November 2, 2012 and addressed to all the members of the Executive Committee of AAUA NASU reads, “You were reported to have embarked on indefinite strike/ protest from the 10th October 2012 without the authorisation of National Executive Council (NEC) of NASU. “When queried, you lied that verbal approval was given to you. You were again issued an order to call off the strike viz our letter ref. NASU/UV/1/T.4 dated 31st October 2012 and resume work immediately which you equally disobeyed. “Your action amounts to gross misconduct. Your Committee is therefore dissolved with immediate effect from Monday, 5th November, 2012. “By a copy of this letter, the Vice Chancellor is advised to stop any further dealings with you until further notice. “You are in your own interest advised to stop parading yourselves as NASU Branch officers. There should be no further bank transactions and the use of NASU properties henceforth.” The parent body in a letter to the Vice Chancellor advised the University Chief Executive that “all NASU dues and levies should be kept in Management suspense account until a new committee is constituted and Management informed.”


Two die as cultists invade college

*CAMPUSES Empowering *NEWS the girl-child *PEOPLE through *KUDOS& KNOCKS Last week, all hell was let loose at the Ekiti State University (EKSU) following the death poems of a final year student of Accounting, Teslim Adebola Ibrahim. OLATUNJI AWE reports.

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CAMPUS LIFE 0802-4550-354 email: THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2012



Rhino Oworkhire, 400-Level Human Kinetics, is the immediate past president of the Students’ Union Government (SUG) of the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT). He is vying for the senate president of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS). He spoke to CHRIS OKAFOR (Microbiology) on his agenda.

‘NANS unity is not negotiable’

•Students of Dramatic Arts Department during the road slow.

Students and staff of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) led by their Vice-Chancellor, Prof Bamitale Omole, took to the streets last week to celebrate the institution’s golden jubilee, reports SIKIRU AKINOLA (300-Level Political Science).

All for OAU @ 50


BAFEMI Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun

State, has a rich history. When it was founded in 1962, it was named University of Ife (UNIFE), after the ancient town where it is sited. UNIFE, as it was once popularly known, became OAU in 1987 following its renaming after its founder, Chief Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo, who died on May 6 of that year. It’s being 50 glorious years since OAU came into being. This first generation university is as popular as any higher institution in its class. It is referred to with nostalgia by its alumni. Last week, the institution rolled out the drums to celebrate its golden anniversary.

Students swarmed the roads leading to the university in different colourful attires. The procession sang as it moved round town. Onlookers watched as some students and police officers performed stunts on motorcycles. The week-long event started on November 4, with a prayer at All Souls Chapel, OAU. On November 5, Prof Omole briefed reporters on the institution’s achievement in the last 50 years. Omole said the institution had achieved some of the dreams of its founding fathers. The university, he said, has about 33, 000 students, 1,440 academic and 3,500 nonteaching staff. As at 2010, he said, OAU had

produced about 81,212 degree and more than 950 doctorate degree holders. The institution’s research work has also been acknowledged internationally, with the National Universities Commission (NUC) rating it as the best in research in Nigeria. “The university has produced from among its academia, a Nobel laureate and six Nigerian National Merit Award winners. Our students have also excelled in national and international competitions. We believe our founding fathers have left an unparalleled legacy for us and we are trying to keep the flag flying,” Omole said. The university, he said, has the •Continued on page 30

•Rhino •Story on page 30

•OAU to admit 10,000 for Distance Learning-P32 •Ogun students threaten protest over bursary-P33



CAMPUS LIFE Where do we go from here? (1)


N 1991 while I was still in the University, I vividly recollected an incident where we matched to the office of the Dean of Student Affairs to register our displeasure over a slight increase in some of the charges we paid back then. The Dean subtly tried to lecture us that the amount he pays for his daughter in the kindergarten is more than one of us will pay in his four years stay in the university. The students almost stoned him for the analogy because they felt it’s their right to have qualitative education in a country bursting in the seams with petro-dollars, after all, what does the government do with the money anyway? Today however, the issue of fees hike is generating tensions in tertiary institutions across the country and may end up depriving a substantial student population the opportunity of a tertiary education. From the University of Nigeria (UNN), Nsukka to Lagos State University (LASU) Lagos; from University of Jos (UNIJOS) Jos to Anambra State University (ANSU), Uli, down to Osun State University, Osogbo and Abia State University (ABSU) and others, the story is the same, Nigerian undergraduates will have to pay more if they want to lay hold of that precious certificate that is likely to open doors of opportunities for them. While some Nigerians don’t see anything wrong in fees hike because of the rapidly changing times and current economic realities, others are of the opinion that the government has the responsibility of providing affordable education at all levels to its citizens. This issue has pitched students and university authorities in a game of chess. Five weeks after UNN began a new session, some students are yet to resume as reported by one of our correspondents in UNN, Oladele Oge. Only a few students, who have paid their school fees, are attending lectures. Lecturers said the absence of students may affect academic activities. According to Oge, students at the Enugu

Pushing Out with

Agbo Agbo 08052959489 (SMS only)

• campus demonstrated against the hike in Internet charges, which jumped from N3,000 to N12,000. This does not include other charges students have to pay during registration. The students argued that their parents could not afford the new fees. They also said there was no electricity to charge their laptops to ensure they logged on to the Internet when they want. At the Nsukka campus, students complained that the management was unfriendly and insensitive to their plight. It was even reported that some students who were yet to return to campus said they needed to raise money before they could come back. Lecturers are lamenting that the development may affect their course outlines and period with some departments yet to commence lectures. Some lecturers even vowed not to go back to teach students who missed their courses while trying to source for funds to pay their fees. As expected in such situation, the students staged a peaceful protest to register their grievances which prompted the registrar of the institution, Chief Anthony Okonta to deny any increase in tuition fees in the institution. He, however, said the institution had introduced a service charge for the university’s 24-hour internet service on both Nsukka and Enugu campuses of the institution. The Registrar said in a statement that: “Following a restriction and near shutdown of the service in the last academic session, various stakeholders prevailed on the univer-

sity management to reintroduce the service given the benefits to all users. The students union in particular led a delegation to the Vice Chancellor Prof Barth Okolo to make a case for the service and agreed to a minimal cost for it…University of Nigeria then introduced a service charge of N12 000 per session as Internet Service Charge, and this translates to N1000 per month for always-on internet service”. While the authority of UNN was trying to address the issue, students of UNIJOS are spoiling for a fight following the over 130 percent increase in tuition and accommodation fees by the management of the institution. The Student Union Government (SUG), wrote to the Vice Chancellor urging him to use his good office to reverse the fees because they “were not duly consulted before such a decision was taken” and “there hasn’t been any visible development or project done to justify the development levy charged students in recent past and to demand for such levy now is outrageous.”. They kicked against hostel accommodation of N 27,000 and N12,500 as against N12,000 and 4,500 respectively paid last session. They also frowned at the N59,000 fee for new students and 27,000 for returning students maintaining that if the institution goes ahead to implement the new fees, students catering for themselves and paying their fees will find it difficult to cope. The letter was copied to the various security agencies in the state and other stakeholders in the system. At ANSU, students of the main campus went violent and reportedly burnt down the Bursar’s office and other university structures as a result of tuition fee hike. They were kicking against the University management increase of their tuition fees to N230,000 per session. The reality that stares us now in the face can be traced to the mid-1980s when the economy started witnessing strains leading to fiscal cutbacks in education budgets. Various arms of governments were confronted with the dilemma of funding tertiary and university institutions in order to maintain quality and service delivery with respect to academic programmes and

facilities such as accommodation, water supply, security, computer training, books, lectures, examinations, library, curriculum review, staff welfare, student admission, staff training, conference attendance and teaching facilities,. During the oil boom years in the seventies, the sector was heavily subsidised as undergraduates literally paid peanuts. Conventional thinking amongst policy makers then was that education was for the public good. When the burden of funding education became too heavy for the governments to shoulder alone, various strategies like “deregulation” entered the lexicon and shifted the perception of education as a public good; to education for profit, or “qualitative education” against “quantitative education”. Education was no more perceived as an investment, but a costly burden. This thinking coincided with the World Bank inspired Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAP) which in its wake urged the universities to adopt cost recovery, cost-sharing methods, and initiate income generating activities and profit-oriented commercial ventures to mobilize resources needed for “the smooth operation of the university activities”. The measures included the introduction of school charges in the following areas: sharing costs on academic-related matters such as library, computerization of results; departmental related issues such as books, chairs, tables, fans, and air conditioners; student-related issues such as admission and screening; staff-related issues such as training, welfare and promotion, and other school – related issues such as security, vehicle parking spaces, business operation and servicing of infrastructure. Fast-forward to 2008 when Vice Chancellors in the South East said it will cost an average of N245,000 a year to train the average undergraduate and N129,000 for a post graduate student. This excludes the cost of development of infrastructure. Four years down the line, this projection would have been more than doubled given the current inflationary spiral thus necessitating the question where do we go from here?

‘NANS unity is not negotiable’ •Continued from page 29

OUR tenure just ended as the SUG president of UNIPORT. How will you rate your government? From where the union is coming from, we did well but you know that even in Utopia, things are not perfect. We had some minor challenges but by the grace of God we were able to put them behind. My tenure had a lot of pictures and even when the ugly pictures raised their ugly heads, we repainted them to the ones embraced by all. What were these challenges you referred to as ugly pictures? During the peak of the security challenges in the nation, we also shared in the problem because it almost denied us the most interesting part of students’ social life, which is the SUG Week. Even though we had to abandon some of our events like the bonfire night; we still had a beautiful week. Another of such ugly picture was the rancour within the union. Some elements were bent on doing everything to frustrate our efforts but God made us to triumph. You handed over to an interim union government, is it supposed to be so? Of course not but when all options had been exhausted, an interim government remained the only available option. Issues that arose in the last election led to the present situation. I will plead with all students to support the interim government so that a proper transition would be achieved. There are views that the UNIPORT union is not as vibrant as it used to be, do you agree with the notion? To me, I feel the internal hatred in

Y •Prof Omole acknowledging cheers from the crowd •Continued from page 29

best developed Information and Communication Technology (ICT) system in the country, with its own VSAT access to the Internet and an efficient intranet. “The university has, in its efforts to ensuring efficiency in Internet facilities, upgraded the bandwidth capacity with the help of the World Bank Step-B project,” Omole added. Efforts, he said, were on to increase the quota for postgraduate admission to about 40 per cent of undergraduate enrolment. On November 6, academic activities were brought to a halt. For close to four hours, students, staff and the principal officers held a road show. They moved round major streets in Ile-Ife in celebration. The procession was led by Prof Omole. Decked in blue T-shirts, the VC and others danced to the melodious tunes wafting from mobile sound system. Associations such as parapos and Kegites’ Club entertained the revellers, who stopped temporarily at the Enuwa palace of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, to receive royal blessings. Though the Oba

All for OAU @ 50 was not around, his chiefs were on hand to receive the revellers. The students praised the late Chief Awolowo for “conceptualising the idea of the university” and eulogised the late Ooni of Ife Oba Adesoji Aderemi, who provided the land. A football match between OAU and the University of Ibadan followed the road show. The match ended in a draw. On November 8, a lecture with the theme: Possessors at the Gate was delivered by former Nigeria Ambassador to the United Kingdom Dr Christopher Kolade, who called for autonomy for universities. He said: “It is only through university autonomy that government’s aspiration to boost education in the country, especially the ivory tower, could be possible. Each university should be able to decide which course to teach, what research to pursue and how the advancement of members of faculty should be determined.” “Even though universities were created initially by government’s

decision, it is recognised that such institutions must have considerable autonomy.” He said universities should justify the belief that scholarly expertise enables society to address economic problems. Kolade urged university authorities to maintain high standards and train students in the best way. He said instead of relying on the political leadership alone, the people should also look at nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) for help in remaking universities. Kolade urged universities to conduct research on corruption. “If corruption is our enemy number one, are there research efforts ongoing now that have the potential to generate original idea for fighting this malaise?” he asked. On November 9, a Jumat service was held in the university’s mosque. The week-long event ended, with an anniversary music night during which the masked Afrobeat crooner, Lagbaja, entertained guests.

the system is the root cause of the problem. The attitude of students our activities did not help matters. For instance, we fixed transport fare on the campuses but we later found out that some campus drivers were collecting more than the stipulated fare. We impounded their vehicles but students started abusing us that we should let the drivers be. This is one of the many reasons why the system is no more what it used to be. You were a senator in NANS and now you are vying to be Senate President , why are you contesting? Serving as a senator in the NANS legislative arm opened my eyes to the injustice being meted out to students. Having gotten a nod from my colleagues in UNIPORT, I think it will be good for me to extend my tentacles and vie for the highest office of the arm to correct some of the things I noticed while I was a senator. What loopholes would you plug if elected? The present regime in NANS has done its best but Nigerian students are still far from united. There is no way anybody can twist a bunch of broom. This is unity and lack of it exposes us to a great torment. NANS needs to be more united. This is not negotiable. What’s your take on the lynching of four UNIPORT students in Aluu community? It was a barbaric act. Jungle justice shouldn’t be found anywhere in this century. It is a big mockery to our values system and the importance we attach to life. The act did not only tarnish the image of the Aluu community, it equally affected all of us as human beings. When a finger touches oil, what happens to the rest of the fingers? They get stained too. That is my submission.



CAMPUS LIFE After a cultural feast at the College of Education, Katsina-Ala, Benue State, which was well-attended by students, suspected cultists struck on the campus, killing a student. Another was killed two days later. MSONTER ANZAA writes.

Two die as cultists invade college


LL was calm at the College of Education, Katsina-Ala, Benue State, penultimate Saturday. Tiv Students was celebrating their day. Students trooped to the event, which featured a beauty pageant and cultural displays. The programme ended around 5pm and the revelers moved back to their hostels. However, at about 8pm, sounds of gunshot rented the air. By the time the dust settled, a student lay dead in the old dining hall on the campus. The victim, an NCE III student of Political Science and Social Studies, Vihishima Ikyum, was shot dead after a hot chase by his assailants. He was said to be a cultist. Incensed by the development, students, who took the corpse around the campus, disarmed one of the attackers, intending to lynch him. They blamed the security personnel for the laxity, which resulted into the killing of the student. Afterwards, there was a protest, which led to the destruction of property and torching of a building in the

•Some suspected cult members arrested by security agents at the college

college. Two days after, another NCE III student of English Theatre, Ahangba Tsea, was shot dead in his girlfriend’s room. The incident led to the closure of the college. The Provost, Harns Senwua, said the school would remain shut until a committee to look into the crisis was set up. He said students should not go back to campus to forestall further anarchy. Confirming the incident, Clement Ogabo, NCE III English and Political Science, who is the presi-

dent of the Students’ Union Government (SUG), said he could not explain what led to the killing of the students. “I can only narrate what happened. We had a Tiv Day celebration and everyone left by 5pm. Around 8pm however, I was called that one of our students was killed in the old dining hall. Before we could get to the scene, angry students had taken the body to the administrative block, where the security office is located. They began protesting and destroying

things. One of the suspected cultists could not escape with his colleagues and was caught. Students said they would kill him as they hit him with all sorts of materials. However, the security rescued him and whisked him away. As I talk to you now, he is at the General Hospital. They almost attacked me when I got to the scene. Then I put a call to the Students’ Affairs Officer and the Provost, who also came to calm the situation.” “On Monday again, a student

called me that another NCE III student, Ahangba Tsea, from English Theater was killed in his girlfriend’s house. This happened off-campus, so I didn’t go there because of my personal security. I reported to the Students’ Affairs Officer (CSO) who told the Chief Security Officer and the police to retrieve the body and investigate. I have been hearing that five people were killed altogether but I don’t know the other three.” Clement said students would resist the expulsion of the girlfriend, who is in detention in Makurdi, if she was found not to be a member of cult group. The Students Affairs Officer, Mr Sebastian Akia, confirmed the death of the two students, but declined further information. “I have already told you that the person to talk to you is the Provost who is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the college. I have information on all these things, but I can only tell you if the provost directs me,” Akia told our correspondent on phone last weekend. When CAMPUSLIFE contacted the Provost, Dr Han Senwua, he did not answer his mobile phone was not picked up. It should be recalled that the college was just recovering from the paralysis of activities after months of strike. The Academic Staff Union of Tertiary Institutions (ASUTIBS) in the state had embarked on a strike that crippled activities in colleges of education and polytechnics in Benue State last year. The strike was called off in February. The college was just trying to make up for the lost time when the latest incident happened.

The Community of Tiv Students (CTS) at the University of Calabar (UNICAL) held its Cultural Day to showcase its tradition and values. STANLEY UCHEGBU (400-Level Accounting) was there.

•Tiv students’ troupe entertaining guests with Swange dance


IHE crowd draped in black and white native attires trooping to Malabo Square could be mistaken for Dramatic Arts students who were going for rehearsal. However, it was not a drama; the programme was the annual cultural festival of the Community of Tiv Students (CTS) at the University of Calabar. Tiv is one of the two largest ethnic groups in Benue State in the North Central region of Nigeria. The event, which was organised to showcase the beauty of the Tiv rich heritage, was graced by lecturers and some elite of the ethnic group in Calabar. They included Prof D.I. Denga, who was the chief host and his wife, Prof Hana Denga, who was spiritual mother of the day. Others were Chairman of the occasion Lieutenant Commander Aondowase Mnguve; President of Mzoughu TIV, Calabar chapter, Mr Emmanuel Apetagher; a senior lecturer in Sociology department, Dr Judith Otu; CTS Patron Dr Stanislaus Iyorza; Mr Michael Ingoh, Manager

•Mnguve (right) being given anger and Kpaabor

The beauty of Tiv culture of New Nyanya Mass Transit, Calabar branch, Adaa Samuel Aondo and Prince Linus Sulumba, among others. Mnguve, who spoke in Tiv dialect, emphasised the need for the students to unite and promote their language and cultural heritage wherever they may be. According to him, Tiv culture is regarded as one of the richest heritage, adding that there is proper transfer of culture from parents to offspring. He said being together at the occasion was a pointer to the fact that Tiv people were always united wherever they were on earth. He welcomed the lecturers and students who attended the event. He urged them to inculcate the ethnic morals and values in their wards, saying it would make them to remember where they started and think about their future. He stressed that it

would be a death penalty if Tiv people did not hold on to their culture and values. Prof Denga praised the student for turning out for the cultural fiesta. He said the future of the Tiv culture depended on the enthusiasm of the youths to propagate their custom. In his address, the president of CTS, Joseph Atongo, thanked the participants for celebrating with Tiv people. In UNICAL, he said, Tiv students were known for academic excellence and love for unionism. “We unite, promote and provide a forum for unity, peace and harmony among TIV students in particular and Nigeria at large,” he said, adding that the students also show equal enthusiasm to enhance welfare and socio-cultural life on the campus. The feast featured a dancing session to highlight the rich culture of the Tiv

people. Students-troupe, dressed to reflect the traditional Tiv style, doled out various dance steps such as Swange dance. The performance moved dignitaries and the students at the event into ecstasy; participants showered mint Naira notes on the traditional dancers. The students also honour some of the guests including Mnguve, Prof Hana Denga and Dr Out, who were all decorated with Tiv traditional attires. In Tiv tradition, three-prong iron staffs called anger and brownish leather bags called Kpaabor are used to honour individuals, who contribute to the ethnic’s cause. Mnguve was decorated for his contribution to the development of the Tiv culture in Cross River State. There was an intermittent shout of Ayatutu Ka Uno, the motto of the

Tiv students, as the programme progressed. The students responded Kase. One of the students, Tersur Gyado, told CAMPUSLIFE that the display of Tiv attire and dance was to educate and entertain students from other ethnic stock. When asked how Tiv culture enriched the heritage of Nigeria, Joseph said the people had made the country to be proud in a number of ways. “Benue State today can say it is the food basket of the nation because of the hard work of Tiv people to produce various food materials for export and local consumption,” he said. A post-graduate student of Education Administration and Planning, Terfa Swem, who is an ex-president of the Tiv students, said the ethnic was unique, adding that the black and white attire Tiv people wear signified they were rich both in agriculture and culture. “We are generally kind and generous to people, especially the poor; we sympathise with empathy,” he added.



CAMPUS LIFE Campus journalists elect leaders From Maureen Ogunade UI

•The doctors taking the oath at the ceremony

O fewer than 76 medical doctors took the oath as the College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar (UNICAL), held its 35th graduation ceremony. The ceremony was held at the UNICAL International Conference Centre and was attended by notable dignitaries. Declaring the event open, the Provost of the college, Prof Saturday Etuk, congratulated the new medical doctors for surpassing the difficult moments, which he said accompanied their training before graduation. He advised them to see hard work as a good virtue, adding that the sky would be their starting point if they could stick to the guideline of the profession. The Chairman of the occasion and Vice-Chancellor, Prof James Epoke, noted that the road of the graduates was littered with tension and anxiety but “you have all successfully completed the first phase of


76 doctors take the oath From Isaac Mensah UNICAL

training as medical doctors.” He urged them not to betray the confidence reposed in them by involving in unethical practices that would portray institution in bad light. In a lecture entitled Paradise lost, can it be regained? Prof Emmanuel Ekanem, a Pediatric at the UNICAL Teaching Hospital (UCTH), said ‘paradise’ was gradually being regained with the noticeable improvement in the nation’s health sector indices. According to the former Chief Medical Director of University of Uyo Teaching Hospital (UNIUYOTH), the nation’s infant mortality rate, which measures Nigeria’s standard of health ser-

vices, was 126 per 1,000 live births in 1990; 86 in 2009 but 74.36 in 2012. According to him, the health indices were open to contention, but he said they showed improvement of the health situation in the country. He noted that for the new medical doctors to be effective players in the regaining ‘paradise’ lost, they must read “good books” that would expand their worldview, treat other members of the health team with utmost respect, believe in the Nigerian project and develop themselves professionally and academically in accordance with the oath they had taken. Administering the physician oath on the graduates, the Acting Registrar, Medical Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), Dr A.A Udugbaillevbare, noted that the oath-taking placed a moral bur-

den on the graduates to live above board, stressing that they would be held accountable for whatever action they took. The Chairman, Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Cross River chapter, Dr Ofem Enang, while receiving the new medical doctors, congratulated them for “weathering the storm”. He urged them to stick to the tenets of the profession. Prof Maurice Asuquo, Dean, Faculty of Clinical Science, advised the medical doctors to study further, saying it would keep them in the know of the best practices in the evidencebased medicine. One of the graduates, Dr Edidiong Ekang, who was full of appreciation to God, promised to be a good ambassador of his alma mater and the medical profession.

•Prof Obinna (fourth left) with his wife and professors of the school after the lecture

French teacher delivers 10th inaugural lecture


PROFESSOR of French, Valentine Obinna, has delivered the 10th Inaugural lecture of the Imo State University (IMSU). Prof Obinna spoke on the topic Communication Matters: Language in literal and literary concatenation, beyond the French eye. The ceremony was held at the university auditorium. The occasion started when the Vice-Chancellor, Prof B.E. Nwoke, led a procession of lecturers including the Registrar, Bursar, Chief Librarian, Deans of Faculties and professors to the hall. Prof Obinna, during the lecture, differentiated communication

From Ekene Ahaneku and Chidiebere Enyia IMSU

matters as a noun and as a verb. He said as a noun, it could be rearranged as matters of or in communication. But as a verb, he said the phrase could be used in action sense. He said it brings out the idea of “it matters to communicate”. He explained the literal language. Prof Obinna said: “A professor is not really smarter than others; he just has his ignorance better organised.” Professor Obinna said the word concatenation in literal language suggested “the more you look, the less you see” but in the

literary concept, it amounts to “the more you look, the more you see.” Prof Obinna concluded the lecture with story of a man, who “talks like a professor, walks like a professor, dresses like a professor and behaves like a professor and everybody sees him as a professor”. Prof Jasper Onuekwusi, the Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, presented a portrait of the lecturer designed by the faculty staff. He said out of the 10 inaugural lectures delivered in the university, the faculty lecturers delivered four. Mr. Augustine Emela, a lecturer of the English and Literary Studies department, described the lec-

ture as an outstanding academic exercise.

MEMBERS of the Union of Campus Journalists (UCJ), University of Ibadan (UI) chapter, held their election last weekend. Ninety-eight members voted out of about 150 registered voters expected to vote during the exercise. The election process was strict as aspirants went through different stages of screening, including aptitude test and manifesto debate. Some of the candidates were disqualified during the debate. At the end of the election, Titilodunayo Daniel was elected the president of the union with a 66 votes as opposed to his contender’s 30. Titilodunayo thanked his colleagues, saying he would not disappoint them.

OAU to admit 10,000 for Distance Learning From Musliudeen Adebayo IBADAN

THE Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) Centre for Open Distance Learning (ODL) will soon admit about 10,000 pioneer students for the programme, which will commence next year. The Director of the programme, Prof Bode Asubiojo, made this known last Tuesday at the closing ceremony of a two-day workshop organised by the university in collaboration with the Venture Garden Group (VGG) and the Green Education Group at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan. The seminar, according to him, was to sensitise admission seekers, parents, teachers and stakeholders in the education sector on the importance of online programmes such as e-learning and open distance learning among others. Asubiojo disclosed that lecturers of the institution, who will teach various courses in Education, Accounting, Nursing and Economics, were being trained for the programme. The President of VGG, Mr. Bunmi Akinyemiju, said the aim of the programme was to leverage on technology to save time and energy and reduce cost of education in the country. He said about 45,000 students on yearly basis struggle for about 5,000 admission spaces at OAU. He added the program would provide opportunities for the remaining 40,000 students who could not be admitted. The workshop was attended by educators, tutors, consultants, students and media practitioners.




‘True federalism is solution to Nigeria’s problems’


HE 59th inaugural lecture of Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, has been held. Titled Diabetic Economy: A paradox and a dilemma, it was delivered by a professor of Economics, who is also the Dean of Faculty of Social and Management Sciences, Prof Oladapo George. Having declared the occasion opened, the Acting Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Prof Saburi Adesanya, read out the profile and academic works of the lecturer. In his lecture, Prof George noted the topic of the lecture could not have come at a better time given the prevailing economic condition in Nigeria. “I have chosen to address a contemporary issue which underlies the fabric of our progress, development and collective existence as a nation,” he observed. He defined diabetes as fatal disease capable of affecting critical functional units of human body such as kidney, hearts, eyes and other vital organs. The lecturer said Nigeria was suffering in the midst of plenty. “In many ways, Nigerian economy has been exhibiting the symptoms of diabetes in many areas, which

•Prof George (third left) with body of OOU principal officers after the lecture From Muritala Omikunle OOU

make it to unable to harness its potential in natural, economic and human recourses to develop.” The don said Nigeria’s problem was not lack of money but how to spend it. He highlighted some of

the causes of the diabetes symptoms to include bad leadership, wastage of recourses, unproductive planning and corruption. He said the consequences of these aforementioned diseases were volatility in income, rising inequality, distortion in government policies and probability of state failure. Proffering solution to the prob-

lems, Prof George said effective and qualitative leadership, constitutional review, good governance, true federalism, adoption of appropriate trade and fiscal policies would make Nigeria to retrace its step to greatness. Dignitaries that attended the lecture included Ogun State Commissioner for Education, Mr Segun

Odubela, Alake of Egba land, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, Acting Registrar, Mrs Omolara Osisanya, Liberian, Mrs Paustina Oyesike. Others were Provost of the College of Health Sciences, Prof Samsudeen Abayomi, Dean of Faculty of Education, Prof Bilesanmi Awoderu and members of Abeokuta Club.

Ogun students threaten protest over bursary


HE National Association of Ogun State Students (NAOSS) has urged the Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, to approve the bursary payment and scholarship to students for the 2010/ 11 and 2011/12 academic sessions. The president of the association, Azeez Ayodele, during a press conference at the NUJ House, Oke Ilewo, Abeokuta, last Thursday appreciated the governor for his achievements in primary and secondary schools, but pleaded with him to extend the same gesture to the students of tertiary institutions. “We believe in the governor, but we plead with him not to rob Peter to pay Paul. The free education given to the primary and secondary school

Varsity disowns college

•The new MSSN leaders after their inauguration

Muslim students elect executive


T was reminiscent of a day of reckoning for the outgoing leadership of the Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN), Lagos State University (LASU) chapter, when it presented its achievements to the members. The event, which was held in the university’s Central Mosque, also witnessed the swearing in of the new executive. The members of the incoming executive were screened by the Shu’ra (consultation committee) saddled with the responsibility of conducting a test for the nominated Muslim students across different faculties. The outgoing Amir, Abdulmojeed Olayinka, 400-Level Mathematics, said he appreciated the members for standing tenaciously to make his team successful. Abdulmojeed, who urged members to remain united and support

From Musbaudeen Shekoni LASU

the new executives, added: “You supported us because you realised everybody cannot be leaders at the same time, which is why you must also extend your support to the incoming executive.” The Shu’ra committee, which selected the leaders, comprises Hakeem Adelu, 400-Level Economics Education (Chairman), Nurudeen Emmanuel, 500-Level Law (Secretary) and Ismail Abdulmalik, 400-Level, Industrial Relation and Personnel Management (member) among others. Hakeem said the assignment to choose the members of the executive was cumbersome but added that the criteria used by the committee to select the members included knowledge of the Qur’an, Hadith, Islamic History, Fiqh, appearance and composure and knowledge of current affairs.

When the members of the news executive were Abdulmojeed was selected as the Amir for another term. Others were Abdulwasi Kewulere, Naibul Amir, Abdulaziz Bakare, General Secretary, Qosim Okeshola, Assistant General Secretary, Musoliudeen Ahmed, Financial Secretary, Abdulganiyy Aminu, Public Relations Officer, Abdul Rasheed Muhammed, Director of Studies, Yekeen Miftaudeen, Asset Management Officer, Abubakr Fashanu, Business Chief, Hammed Kosoko, Welfare Director and Nurudeen Yusuf, Editor-in-Chief. Lateefah Olupitan, 400-Level Zoology, became the Amirah, Kaothar Bakare, Naibat Amirah, Baseerah Raji, Secretary Sister’s Circle, Fatimah Kassim, PRO, Mariam Arole, Librarian, Zainab Ogunbowale, Treasurer and Mujidat Haroon, Welfare Director (Female).


HE management of Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) has dissociated itself from a publication in the media linking it with African Thinkers Community of Inquiry College of Education (ATCOICOE). The college allegedly invited applicants for admission into various programmes that were purportedly being undertaken in affiliation with ESUT. The uni-

From Tosin Adesile and Oluwatobi Makinde ABEOKUTA

pupils should not divert government’s attention away from the students of tertiary institutions, who are indigenes of Ogun State,” he said. He added that they were not out to attack the government, neither were they being used by any political party or politician, “but we are out to protect the interest of our members failure of which may result to protest.” According to Azeez, delay in payment of bursary, lack of concern to the plight of the association by the government and insecurity in tertiary institutions within the state were among the reasons for the planned demonstration. From Chinenye Igwe ESUT

versity management denied it was running an affiliate programme with the college. In a release by the Registrar of the university, Mr Chris Igbokwe, ESUT management said it wished to inform the public that ATCOICOE applied for affiliation with the university but the process was yet to be completed. “The Management of the University (ESUT) dissociates the university from the said publication and further states that ESUT does not run any outreach centre in any part of Nigeria, either by itself or in affiliation with any Institution,” the statement reads in part.



CAMPUS LIFE To empower the girl-child to discover her potential through poetry, an ex-Corps member, Taiwo Thompson, asked pupils in his place of primary assignment, the Federal Government Girls’ College, Abaji, Abuja to write a collection of poems. SIKIRU AKINOLA (300-Level Political Science, Obafemi Awolowo University) writes.

Empowering the girl-child through poems


S an undergraduate of English at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Taiwo Thompson participated in campus politics and within three years, he was elected a member of the Students’ Representative Council (SRC), the legislative arm of the Students’ Union Parliament. He was also appointed the Secretary-General and chairman of the OAU Students’ Union Election Petition Committee. His contributions to the union and the university earned him many awards. However, during his national youth service in Abuja, Taiwo developed a strong passion for the girlchild, many of whom, he said, have untapped literary potential. To unleash their literary prowess, he prodded the female pupils of the Federal Government Girls’ College, Abaji, Abuja, to write a collection of poems titled Portrait of a poet as a young girl. He edited the 58-page book, which is an anthology of the school. It is composed of chapters on love, hope, motivation, patriotism, friendship, death, family, empathy, chaos, experience and contemporary social

•The pupils who were mentored by the ex-Corps member

issues. Taiwo, who just finished youth service, said the idea came to him last Augustm, after a discussion with a journalist friend. Anthology, Taiwo observed, was the first phase under the Developing the Girl-Child through Literature Initiative, his pet project. He said: “I approached the Principal with the idea. She emphasised the readiness of the college to financially support any idea targeted at discovering and developing the potential of the girls in the school since such idea is one of the college’s visions.” The girl-child, he said, are faced with discrimination and violence, adding it is evident inh the way soci-

ety treats the female child. “Many of them are forced into marriages at tender ages and scores of them in some parts of the country are not allowed to go beyond the secondary school level while some fall victims of child trafficking and are sold into prostitution,” he quipped. He posited that the aim of the initiative and its financier was to revive and revolutionise the thinking of the young girls and groom them to be future writers, whose writings would be to ensure a just and balanced society. Jumoke Verissimo, the author of I am Memory, wrote the foreword of the book: “This is a collection that is,


indeed, a portrait of the mind of the young poet’s innocence, the resonating influences of older poets and the social structure. It has a rare intensity that brings emotion fluctuating like a moving ridge, as it conducts a contemplative exuberance on the reader’s mind.” Taiwo noted that the writers were in their prime of experimentation with individual and collective feelings. “Yet, many of the poems are well written and matured in perspective and diction,” he said, praising the Principal of the school, Mrs N.C. Uzowulu, who he described as “a doting mother who nurtures the lushness of our dreams and waters the greenness of our future.”

In one of the poems Tragic Christmas, by Hannah Anyanwu-Iwu, the Boko Haram onslaught on education and religion was captured. Specifically, the Christmas day bombing in Suleja last year was described. The choice of words encapsulated the place, the country and the victims. Thompson’s poems are also featured in the book. One of them Don’t Let Them Die was dedicated to the late human right activist, Chief Gani Fawehinmi. The memorial poem was used to praise the man, who, he said, fought conscientiously for an egalitarian society and mobilised his personal resources to educate the indigent, regardless of sex, tribe and religion.

A game of mentorship Corps members in Agulu-Awka organised a novelty football match to mentor pupils of the community secondary school. AYODEJI ADESINA (one of them) writes.

T •The pupils of the Community Secondary School before the match

•The Corps members’ team

O mentor the pupils of their host community, Corps members serving in Agulu-Awka organised a football match between them and pupils of Community Secondary School, Agulu-Awka, Anambra State last Friday. The match, which was played immediately after the school closed for the day, attracted indigenes of the community and passers-by, who cheered on the teams. Dressed in blue jerseys, the Corps members were confident of winning but the pupils did not feel intimidated. Their performance in the first 10 minutes of the game indicated they could carry the day, but the pupils, who were in senior class, changed tactics and turned the game in the their favour after 45 minutes. The first goal came when one of the Corps members, Ben Collins, pulled a cross to his team mate, Ark Iku, who in turn beat the defenders of the school team, before laying a pass to another player, who kicked the ball into the net. Few minutes later, the Corps members’ team scored the second goal. The school team, in quick succession, equalised before half-time. The second-half of the game was

challenging for the Corps members after they made a “substitution error”. After 90 minutes, the pupils mauled the Corps members six goals to five. The Corps Liaising Officer (CLO) and the team captain, Daniel Anieten, praised the performance of his team but said his colleagues’ efforts were not good enough to win the match. Speaking on the rationale behind the novelty football match, the CLO said the match would build an aura of friendliness and sustain the Corps members-students relationship. He also praised the school management for providing materials for the pupils to play the match. “The match is to improve the relationship between us and the students beyond the classroom. We want students who are brilliant, disciplined and physically-fit to represent this community and Nigeria in several competitions”. A Batch B Corps member, John Salemu, said the pupils did well and deserved the victory. Top striker for the school team Stanley Urbondoro said it was the team’s goalkeeper that should be praised for their victory.

‘The match is to improve the relationship between us and the students beyond the classroom. We want students who are brilliant, disciplined and physically-fit to represent this community and Nigeria in several competitions’





HE September 28 students’ riot that rocked the Ekiti State University (EKSU) will continue to linger in the minds of many students. Perhaps the story of the unrest would also be told to generations of students yet to be admitted. On that day, students showed their capacity to destroy in extreme rage that greeted the death of their colleague, Ibrahim Adebola, who was hit by a car. In the resulting protest, cars belonging to the school were torched while others were destroyed. Some students looted the university farm, carting away rabbits, chickens, eggs and pigs, among others. When the dust settled, the management counted its losses while students were sent home. But now, it is the turn of the students to count their losses. This is why I feel pained. From near and far, the behaviour of students during the crisis was condemned and I must also express here that I did not support the looting and destruction of

Letter to Ekiti varsity students property. We should learn to fight and expect not to win all the time. We have always fought our battles expecting to always win. No! There is a saying that soldiers that retreat leave the battle to fight another day. Same is applicable here. I console the bereaved family; I pray to God to give them the fortitude to bear the loss. However, the death of Ibrahim should serve as a lesson to us. After the incident, security agents arrested innocent students, arraigned them before a court in Ekiti State over a protest majority of them did not participate in. Now, we have been asked to pay damages for the destroyed property. The management may have felt it was high time it sounded a note of warning to students not to always express extreme anger when

such unsavoury incident happens. However, the punishment is harsh, too. They asked over 39,000 students to pay N10,500 for damages. We cried to let the management know that we could not afford the amount. It took our Students’ Union Transition Committee a great effort to persuade the management to slash the levy to N6,500. We heaved a sigh of relief. But have we really achieved anything? Speculation was rife that if we had paid N10,500, we would have resumed on November 5. The rumour also had it that if we choose to pay N6,500, 70 per cent of the students must pay before a resumption date could be announced. What kind of condition is this? The meeting of management on October 30 and 31 showed that the university did not care if we spend the rest of the year at home. The

management met with the Students’ Union Transition Committee and came up with recommendation that no payment by 70 per cent of students, no resumption. There was also a Senate meeting but a resumption date was not discussed. Later, Governor Kayode Fayemi went on air for 30 minutes without mentioning the protest and the solution. This tells us that our lives are in our hands. We have been left in the cold after the violent demonstration. I implore my colleagues to pay the levy so that we can resume soon. It is not a thing of joy having the academic calendar disrupted in three sessions. This is a collective sin individuals must pay for. Next time, we will remind ourselves before we go gaga. I have paid my damages even though I did not throw a stone or stole a chicken or eggs from the poultry. Have you

By Olatunji Awe

paid yours? Olatunji, 200-Level Political Science, EKSU

Challenges of Nigeria’s education

By Mark Orgu


AST year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, in a paper titled Reinvigorating education in Nigeria: An essay in honour of Professor Adamu Baike, said under-funding of universities was the reason for the exodus of students to countries, such as Ghana, China, South Africa and others which have good education systems. Sanusi also said through the rev-

elation by the Network of Migration Research on Africa (NOMRA), migration research expert group, about 10,090 Nigerians were granted visas into the United Kingdom (UK) in 2009 and they paid N42 billion to their host nation. He stressed that Nigeria was ranked third on the list of countries with the highest number of students studying overseas. From his argument, one could deduce that Nigerians migrate abroad in search of the proverbial greener pasture (in this case, education) because schools there are better-structured, funded and well-positioned to train their youths and prepare them for future task. In a recent survey, no Nigerian university was among the best 85 universities out of the 7,000 world recognised universities. The almighty University of Ibadan and University of Lagos didn’t make the list of the first 100. This is wrong signal for our education system. Although, many blamed bad leadership and lackadaisical attitude of the academics, who have failed to justify their erudition in their various fields. The Secretary-General of

the National Universities Commission (NUC), Prof Juilus Okogie, dropped the bombshell during the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) convocation when he said 60 per cent of university teachers didn’t have doctorate degree and as a result, they could not focus on research work. Alas, this is the reality of our education, whose fortunes have continued to dwindle to the detriment of the national development. In the 2011, Quacquarell Symonds (QS), a world university ranking body, graded the University of Cambridge high in research. Ditto Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard University, University College, London, University of Oxford, and Imperial College, London among others. As the ranking implies, the UK and US institutions dominated the peak of the grading with only Mc Gill (Canada) and Eth Zurich (Switzerland) breaking the into the top 20 universities in the world. The latter is the top ranked among the non-Anglophone universities, as well as the best performer from Continental Europe.

Asia’s top ranked university is the University of Hong Kong, which is 22nd. The University of Cape Town was ranked 156 as the only African university with high grade. Does it mean that African universities cannot be compete favourably with their peers across the world? Does it mean we lack manpower, innovation, research, creativity, technological advancement to propel our institution to the world stage? Is it that our leaders have seen no reason why they should invest in the sector? Meanwhile, some analyst have said that apportioning N426.52 billion to education out of N4.92 trillion proposed budget, that things would change while others are of the opinion that adequate funding could not result in the expected progress except there is a total reform in the sector. This may not be accepted to many because they may it think I won’t work out but in I think, the step would go a long way to solving most problems confronting our education system. In January 2010, the Business Day online reported that Nigerian stu-

The power of focus


OHN L. Mason, author and motivational speaker, once said: “Determine what you really want and what God wants for you. This will keep you from chasing butterflies and put you to work digging for diamonds.” In other words, we need to engage in things that are more productive and helpful to our lives. We all should not take on frivolities. We have limited time, money and resources to invest in anything. But it is the devil’s strategy to make us waste our energy by doing too many things at the same time. He brings distraction into our lives to keep us from being focused on God’s plan for our future. Focus is the key to success in any area of pursuit. George Bernard Shaw said: “Circumstances for what they are; I don’t believe in circumstance. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, make them.” It is true that if we channel our resources to best opportunities, success is inevitable. So we must not let the future take up our thinking

through apprehension and worry; we must concentrate on one thing at a time. Focus your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical energy on the things that is working positively in your career, don’t waste time on the things that are giving you trouble. The more one focuses on situation one can do nothing about, the more frustrated he may become. Establish your goals for the future and map out your strategies for accomplishing them. Invest your time, energy, passion and attention to that thing that will make your life better. When you focus on the major purpose of your career, you will eventually become an authority. There is so much movement around us but little progress. There are too many people in too many cars, in too much of a hurry, going too many directions but get nowhere. An author once said: “I can tell you how to get what you want. You’ve just got to keep a thing in view and go for it, and never let your eyes lose focus on the right or left or up down. And looking back is fatal.”

The fastest route to outstanding success is for you to do one thing at a time. Mark Twain quipped: “Behold the fool saith ‘put not all eggs in one basket,’ which is but a manner of saying, scatter your money and saith, put all thine eggs in one basket and watch that basket.” The situation in our country today is making many people to try their hands on just about anything possible, so they can keep body and souls together. We must, however, keep in mind that there are no outstanding visible achievements when one is Jack of all trades, he becomes master of none. The more complicated you are, the more ineffective you will become. The person who begins too many things accomplishes too little. Staring accomplishes too little. Starting little all over the place cannot create enough passion in your heart. When diligence is coupled with focus, it builds the fire of desire with the belief that one’s dreams will come to pass. Now the questions are:

dents spent N246 billion yearly on education in the United Kingdom while statistics also showed that over 71,000 Nigerian students in Ghana pay about N155 billion annually when the annual budget was put averagely of the then N121b for all federal varsities. Our leaders have been the cog in the wheel of Nigeria’s education progress. Their lack of clearcut policy to improve on what they inherited from the founding fathers makes Nigeria’s education to go on a backward journey. They send their wards to world-class universities and then leave the poor’s children to bear the brunt of the bad system. The rot in our education system will be cleared only if policy makers initiate guidelines that will restore confidence back to the system. If we continue to hope without reforms, Nigerian education will continue to sink in the bottomless pit of infamy in which it is in presently. Mark, 300-Level Business Education, School of Technical Education, YABATECH

To be good journalists


By Mabel Opara

what do you want? Where are you going to? What are your goals, your dreams, and your aspirations? What are your objectives? You will realise that nothing becomes dynamic until it becomes specific. There are many people who want to be everywhere at once and they get to nowhere. Mabel, 400-Level Information Technology, FUTO

OURNALISM is a confidence-building profession. It requires practitioners to be able to speak and understand languages since the tool of communication is language. A good journalist must be a master of English languages or be multi-lingual to put it in a more simple way, which ensures effective dissemination of information. In essence, being multi-lingual connotes having a good command of language of communication. A journalist must be conscious of the fact that his job is useless without the people that form the audience. Therefore, the ability to relate with them without fear must be developed. The skill to convey the message in a way that the audience will perceive exactly what is being disseminated makes one a good communicator. A journalist should be confident as a public speaker. Print media is not excluded if the practitioners think they don’t need it. A journalist should always be ready to accept and welcome criticism as well ready to face challenges bearing in mind the social task conferred on the profession.

By Hauwa’u Mustapha

A journalist is a person who deals with people and ready to relate with them. Even at National Youths Corps (NYSC) camp, the moment your colleagues finds out that one is a journalism graduate, they expect him to know everything and inform others. Since journalists are teachers who teach the public moral by directly or indirectly shaping their perception, they should not be ashamed of speaking before the audience they tend to educates, inform and entertain rather they should be out spoken and they should show readiness and willingness to express their opinion wherever they find themselves. Conclusively, journalists are taught to see and say in order to inform the people we take pride in serving. Try to refer back to the law of improvement which entails read, read and read say, say and say, write, write, write and write. You will deduce that journalism discourages shyness but encourages confidence to say for others to benefit. Hauwa’u, 400-Level Mass Communication, BUK




Students float Campus Light O ensure information gap between students and staff of the University of Calabar (UNICAL) is bridged, some students have floated a magazine, Campus Light. The old Senate chamber, where the magazine was unveiled, was filled to capacity with students and members of the staff of the university. The eight-page journal is being edited by Emmanuel Shebbs, who is also the publisher. The final year student of Political Science said: “The innovation is a manifestation of a vision borne so long to promote peaceful and cordial relationship between students and management of the university.” Emmanuel, who won CAMPUSLIFE award last year, said: “This magazine, which is founded to promote the UNICAL students, has come to stay. I am glad that my dream has come true.” Unveiling the preview edition of the newspaper, the Chairman of the occasion and Vice Chancellor, Prof James Epoke, represented by Mrs Benita Ikpeme, said the birth of the magazine was a welcome development in the university, adding that the management and student of the university embraced the idea. Prof Epoke commended the editorial crew, urging them to use the platform to promote peace on the campus. He said the manage-


•Mrs Ikpeme being presented with a copy of the magazine by Emmanuel From Sam Ibok UNICAL

ment was always ready to share in the vision of students, who support the development of the school in any capacity. Speaking at the event, Charles Udenze, who

On and Off Campus By Solomon Izekor 08061522600

won CAMPUSLIFE Culture Report Award in 2010, urged the crew to improve on the picture quality of the magazine. The law graduate of UNICAL also suggested a sport page in the journal, which he said would serve the interest of sport lovers in the campus. On his own part, the Speaker, Students’ Union Government (SUG) parliament, Emmanuel Olayi, congratulated editorial crew urging them to sustain the idea. In his remark, the magazine’s Associate Edi-

tor, Isaac Mensah, expressed appreciation to students and staff for attending the event despite their tight academic schedules. Other dignitaries present at the ceremony included the Dean, Students Affairs Division, Prof Eyong Eyong, represented by Mrs Elizabeth Egbe, Mr. Omini Oden, former Chairman of National Union of Journalists, Cross River State chapel, and former Chief Press Secretary to the Cross River State Government, Mr Iban Orok among others.

Omatseye, Okediran honoured at OAU From Hannah Ojo OAU


HE La Charla Editorial Club of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) has honoured the Chairman of The Nation’s Editorial Board, Mr Sam Omatseye, with an award of excellence. It was at the second edition of the late Prof Isaac Akinjoghin Lecture. Also honoured at the event, which was held at the Corporative Building, was the guest speaker, Dr Wale Okediran, who is a former member of the House of Representatives and a writer, whose book Tenets of the House won the Wole Soyinka Prize in Literature. The event also witnessed the presentation of prizes to winners of the essay competition organised by the club. The topic of the essay, Terrorism: In pursuit of permanent solutions was also the theme of the lecture.

The Director, Institute of Public Health, OAU, Prof Segun Fatusin, admonished the participating students on the need to be passionate about their vision. Omatseye, speaking through Mr Taiwo Ogundipe, an Associate Editor with The Nation, appreciated the club for the honour, while promising more support for the editorial crew in the future. Mr Gbenga Akinjogbin, son of the honouree, expressed gratitude to the organisers and the sponsor of the essay contest for preserving the legacies of the late scholar. Observed that La Charla members were mostly from the College of Health Sciences, he challenged students and lecturers from History department where his late father taught to also do something to promote the virtues of excellence and brilliance which the honouree stood for.

•Deputy Provost, Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education, Otto/Ijanikin, Mrs Oladehinde Agoro (middle) flanked by his wife, Victoria and the Director, Centre for Lagos State Studies (CEFOLASS) Femi Keshinro during a lecture organised by CEFOLASS at the college premises. PHOTO: ADEGUNLE OLUGBAMILA




World Bank proposes African centres of excellence T HE World Bank has sent a team to Nigeria to discuss the proposal to support the emergence of centres of excellence in some universities in seven African countries, as part of its mandate in the region, with key stakeholders. Welcoming participants to a consultative meeting, organised by the National Universities Commission (NUC), to discuss the modalities for the project, last Tuesday, the Executive Secretary, Prof Julius Okojie, said centres of excellence (CoEx) must be relevant to the needs of the country, if their objectives were to be achieved. He advised that an institution hosting a centre of excellence must have human and material resources required to sustain it. He noted that for an institution to qualify for such a centre, it must have existed for some years, with good learning facilities and quality research output. He challenged the 21 universities, present at the meeting, to remain focused and provide what it takes to sustain the centres, stressing that first and second generation universities in the country should provide leadership in research. Advising the universities to learn from foreign universities that are consolidating their programmes rather than splitting them, he decried a situation where a university introduces a new programme and immediately begins to mount pressure on NUC to start others that are closely related to it, without considering its capacity to run those programmes or NUC’s guidelines for the same. In his remarks, the World Bank

Chief, Mr. Andreas Blom, explained that Nigeria was the first in the bank’s tour of seven countries, because it is the largest and most important country on the continent. Blom added that the bank embarked on the African centres of excellence project for two reasons, the first being that many countries on the continent had asked for support for their higher education and the second was that Africa is a continent on the move with high growth rate, skills gap and need for professional human capital. The World Bank chief then took the participants through a presentation titled, ‘Funding the Best Proposals’, which dwelt on steps of the selection process for participation, eligibility and evaluation criteria, among others. He said there will be regional call for proposals, between January and

February next year. The eligibility criteria include, Academic Depth (institution must offer master and PhD degrees) and Academic Breadth (programmes in at least one out of the three priority disciplines: Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Health Sciences and Agricultural Sciences). Minister of National Planning and Deputy Chairman, National Planning Commission, Dr. Shamsudeen Usman said, in a goodwill message that the bank’s initiative was in line with Nigeria’s first National Implementation Plan (2010 – 2013), which emphasises creation of such centres in tertiary institutions within each geo-political zone. Dr. Usman, represented by Mr Abraham Taiwo, observed the mismatch of skills and curricula in higher education in some West African countries, where graduates’ marketability is very low due to curricula that hardly address the needs of the society. He stressed the need

FEDPOFFA FILE Students resume November 19

•Prof Okojie

for the continent to build a mass of university graduates, who are competent to develop machines and technologies for manufacturing/ industries, ICT, research and development, medicine, engineering, agriculture and politics, to reposition the Region.

College Registrars meet


OVERNOR Babatunde Raji Fashola of Lagos State is to declare open the 44th edition of the Conference of Registrars of Colleges of Education in Nigeria (CORECOEN) next Tuesday at the Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education (AOCOED), Otto/ Ijanikin, Lagos, AOCOED is hosting the annual conference of the 120-member group for the first time. Themed “New Paradigm in the funding of tertiary institutions in Nigeria”, the conference will feature high profile education administrators led by the Executive Secretary of the National Commission for Colleges of Education, Prof Mohammad Junaid and the Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), Prof Mahmood Yakubu. While Junaid will present a paper titled: Re-engineering the NCE Curriculum for National Development: Challenges, Prospects and a Roadmap on the first day, Yakubu will tackle Funding Higher Education to meet the Peculiar Developmental needs of Nigeria: The role of Government and other Stakeholders the next day. AOCOED Registrar Bola Disu, a lawyer, will speak on: “The judicial overthrow of disciplinary powers of tertiary institutions: ADR to the rescue” on Wednesday afternoon.

THE Federal Polytechnic Offa (FEDPOFFA) will resume for the first semester of the 2012/2013 academic session on November 19. According to the academic calendar released by the Registrar of the Polytechnic, Alhaji AbdulHamid Raji, registration for all students will be on between November 19 and December 3. Late registration, which will attract a penalty fee, will extend from then to the 17th. Lectures would begin on the two campuses of on December 3, while the first semester examinations have been scheduled to hold March 25.

New deans elected DEMOCRATIC inclinations were recently on display at FEDPOFFA when members of the teaching staff in various schools went to the polls to elect their deans. The election took place in four out of six schools in the institution, including: School of Applied Science and Technology (SAST); School of Communication and Information Technology (SCIT); and the School of Environmental Studies (SENV) and School of General Studies (SGS). In the School of Applied Science and Technology (SAST) Dr. Moshood Omotosho Fowomola emerged the winner with 26 votes while Mr Omotoso Badmus polled 21 votes. Mr Abel Kolawole, Surveyor Anthony Otunola and Mr. William Salako were returned unopposed as Deans of School of Communication and Information Technology (SCIT); School of Environmental Studies (SENV) and School of General Studies (SGS).They, however, acquired T! votes in their favour at the polls.

Christian group praises management

•From left: YABATECH Librarian, Mrs. Tayewo, Adebowale, Raheem and Dr Ibiyeye-Ladipo during the inauguration

YABATECH alumnus donates library


N alumnus of the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH), Mr Taofiq Idowu Raheem, has donated a library to the School of Environmental Studies to aid teaching, acquisition of skills and learning. Raheem, who is the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Win Development Limited, graduated from Yaba College of Technology over 18 years ago. He provided over 170 volumes of books, journals, furniture and air conditioners for the library to take off. At the inauguration of the library, Raheem said it was with passion that he gave back to the institution that moulded, tutored, and mentored him to make a mark in his profession.

•Nigerite equips studio He added that the dearth of books during his days in YABATECH and the need to update the knowledge of the lecturers also inspired the library project. He advised the government on the need to have hybrid graduates of both universities and polytechnics if technological development of the country is to be advanced. Raheem also instituted an award for the best student in Environmental Studies for the next five years at the first instance and pledged to update the library with current books. Similarly, Nigerite Plc equipped one of the Architecture Department studios with a modern set of studio

facilities. While inaugurating the studio, the Rector of the College, Dr. Margaret Ibiyeye-Ladipo, praised the donors for the effort, which he said would bridge the gap between labour competence and industrial requirement. In his welcome address, the Dean, School of Environmental Studies, Mr. Inyang Udoh Inyang, said the inauguration was a dream come through of having an architecture Studio and library which can meet the universally acceptable standard. He said the possibility of the feat was as a result of the town and gown relationship that has been in existence between the School and the corporate bodies who are members of its advisory body.

PAUL and Cedar Associates, a Christian religious organisation, led by a lecturer in the School of General Studies, Pastor A.O. Israel, has praised Dr Mufutau Olatinwoled management for the vision and determination to take the polytechnic to greater heights. In a commendation letter signed by the Pastor, the group congratulated the Rector and polytechnic community for successfully completing the 2011/2012 academic session without a hitch. The group further expressed satisfaction with Olatinwo’s leadership style which it said had positively affected the status of the institution among its peers, as well as his open-door policy and the passion to make the polytechnic one of the best citadels of learning. The organisation also expressed its eagerness to continue to partner with the polytechnic in moving the institution forward and shaping the characters of students through acceptable morals, eradication of crime and cultism.

UNN don among top five women scientists for L’Oreal-UNESCO awards


LECTURER from the University of Nigeria (UNN), Prof Francisca Nneka Okeke, is among top five women to win $100,000 prize money at the 2013 Women in Science Awards of the L’Oreal Foundation and the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). The L’Oreal Foundation and UNESCO cited Prof Okeke of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at UNN, for her research on understanding daily variations of the ion currents in the upper atmosphere.

According to UNESCO, the research by Prof Okeke and the other Laureates, as the scientists are called, “demonstrates exceptionally original approaches to fundamental research in the Physical Sciences”. Winners of the awards will receive their $100,000 prize money at an awards ceremony in Paris in March next year. Speaking on the award, Prof Okeke said: “I felt very excited, was full of joy and I knelt down to worship God.” According to her, the award will inspire other people, especially women to venture into the world of

Physics because it will open up many opportunities for them. “Physics is all about life and life is all about physics », she stated. Other winners of the award are: Prof Pratibha GAI, University of York (United Kingdom); Prof Reiko KURODA, Tokyo University of Science (Japan); Prof Marcia BARBOSA, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre (Brazil); and Prof Deborah JIN, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and University of Colorado, Boulder (USA). Prof Ahmed Zewail, winner of the 1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, and

Linus Pauling Chair Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Physics, California Institute of Technology, chaired the awards jury. UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova praised the works of the five awardees. “These five outstanding women scientists have given the world a better understanding of how nature works. Their pioneering research and discoveries have changed the way we think in various areas of the physical sciences and opened new frontiers in science and technology. Such key developments have the potential to transform our society.

•Prof Okeke



EDUCATION FUNAAB FILE Produces Registrar THE Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) has produced a Registrar for Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State. He is Mr Akinlabi, Peter Tale. Until his appointment, he was the Secretary, Post-Graduate School of the university. With his appointment, the university has now produced and “donated” six veteran and seasoned top echelon of its vibrant Registry staff to other institutions as registrars. They are: Mr. E. A. Lawale, (Bowen University, Iwo, Oyo State); Mr. E. O. Okoro, (Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State); Mrs. Oluwayemisi Gbadebo, (Bells University, Ota, Ogun State); Dr. (Mrs.) L. O. Onwuka, immediate past Registrar, Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun, Delta State, Mr. Adeleke Adeboye, (Samuel Adegboyega University, Edo State), and Mr. P. T. Akinlabi, (Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State).

‘Bad leadership worsens education’ BAD leadership and festering political crisis, which rocked the nation under the military era, have been identified as the cause of the downward trend in ivory towers and the education. Senator Babafemi Ojudu dropped the hint while delivering the fifth annual lecture series of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) FUNAAB branch, held at Professor Mahmood Yakubu Lecture Theatre. Speaking on the theme: Leadership and the challenges of higher education in Nigeria, the lawmaker representing Ekiti Central Senatorial District in the Upper House, lamented that the incursion of the military into politics in 1966 “destroyed” higher education in the country with the support of successive civilian government. Ojodu said: “With higher education destroyed by the military, aided and abetted by their civilian cronies, it was no surprise that virtually every other institution of our society was virtually wiped out”. “Thirteen years after, we still face many of the old challenges in the area of higher education in Nigeria as illustrated in the capital flight and brain drain, which attended the outflow of students from Nigerian to foreign universities”, he added.

VC urges SUG on leadership THE Vice-Chancellor, FUNAAB, Prof Olusola Bandele Oyewole, has charged the new executive of the Students Union Government to seize the advantage of being called to lead, as an ample opportunity to groom themselves for the leadership of the country in future. Oyewole gave the charge at the swearing-in ceremony of FUNAAB new Exco, held at Julius Amioba Okojie lecture theatre 3. Speaking on the occasion, the Vice-Chancellor told the new leaders to see leadership as a responsibility, which can only be achieved through purposeful vision and determination to succeed against all odds. Oyewole said: , “I am, therefore, looking forward to this executive to bring true leadership, that is truly committed to moving fellow students and other young people forward”. The Vice-Chancellor tasked them “to believe and know that people will be looking at you. They want to see how you behave and what you do.”

SCHOLARSHIPS APPROACHING DEADLINES 2012 James Henry Green Asia Scholarship at University of Sussex, UK Master's Scholarship in Anthropology, Development Studies or Migration Studies for South East Asian Citizens at University of Sussex, UK 2012 Study Subject(s):Anthropology, Development Studies or Migration Studies Course Level:Master's Scholarship Provider: James Henry Green Charitable Trust Scholarship can be taken at: UK Eligibility: The James Henry Green Asia scholarship is available to students of South East Asian nationality or descent* who are wishing to pursue an MA degree in Anthropology or Development Studies or Migration Studies at the University of Sussex. The one-year scholarship provides an award of £5,000 as a contribution to tuition fees Scholarship Open for International Students: Yes Scholarship Open for Students of Following Countries: South East Asian nationality or descent

Scholarship Description: The James Henry Green Asia scholarship is available to students of South East Asian nationality or descent* who are wishing to pursue an MA degree in Anthropology, Development Studies or Migration Studies at the University of Sussex. The one-year scholarship provides an award of £5,000 as a contribution to tuition fees. The scholarship is offered by the James Henry Green Charitable Trust through the James Green Centre for World Art at Royal Pavilion & Museums (RP&M), Brighton & Hove. On behalf of the Trust RP&M cares for an important collection of artifacts from Burma formed by a British man, James Henry Green. Through the Trust's support RP&M is able to engage in research and collecting activities in Southeast Asia with a particular focus on Burma. How to Apply: Email Scholarship Application Deadline: 30 June 2012 END Undergraduate/Diploma Laws Scholarships at University of London, 2012 UK Diploma and Bachelors Scholarships in the field of Law for the applicants of Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda at University of London, 2012 UK Study Subject(s):Law

Course Level:Diploma and Bachelors Scholarship Provider: University of London Scholarship can be taken at: UK Eligibility: The University of London International Programmes is awarding scholarships to study law at an undergraduate level in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda. Scholarship Open for International Students: Yes Scholarship Open for Students of Following Countries: Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria,Tanzania and Uganda Scholarship Description: Five LLB scholarships are available for students in Tanzania and Uganda. The scholarships cover all registration and examination fees charged by the University of London.Ten scholarships to study our Diploma in Law are available for students in Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria. The scholarships cover all registration and examination fees charged by the University of London. However, as it is compulsory to study the Diploma at a recognised teaching centre, you may have to pay fees to the centre. How to Apply: By Post or electronically Scholarship Application Deadline: 1 July 2012

Kano, Niger to partner on school


ANO State government and the Nigerien Ministry of Education have concluded plans to construct a secondary school in Niamey, Niger Republic, Governor Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso has announced. Under the arrangement,Kano State will build hostels, dining hall and other facilities, while the ministry will construct classrooms and administrative block, the governor explained. Kwankwaso, who spoke while receiving a Nigerien government delegation, led by a director in the its Ministry of Education, Alhadji Muhammadou Saidou, said during his recent visit to Niger, the parties agreed to build the school based

From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano

on an agreement that each side would present its design for the project, which would later be harmonised. He said both parties have finalised plans on the project, adding that Kano State has gone a step further by contacting the government of France on how to get qualified teaching staff and facilities for the proposed school. Explaining that the school is expected to accommodate at least 1,000 Nigerien and Kano students, Governor Kwankwaso said the aim is for the students from Kano to learn French and to improve multi cultural relations.

He said money for the project has been set aside by the state government, even as construction work would start soon to enable academic activities commence in the forthcoming academic session. Kwankwaso directed the state ministries of education and higher education to fashion out modalities for allotting a quota to Nigeriens wishing to study in the newly established Northwest University, Kano as part of efforts to strengthen bilateral relations between the citizens of Kano and Niger Republic. Earlier, the head of the Nigerien delegation, Alhadji Muhammadou Saidou stated that the visit was to wrap up agreement on the proposed school project which he added,

• Kwankwaso

would go a long way in consolidating Nigeria-Niger relations.

AOCOED Provost receives SU, contingent


HE Provost, Adeniran Ogunsanta College of Education, Otto/Ijanikin Mr Bashorun Wasiu Olalekan and members of the management have received the newly elected Students’ Union Government (SUG) executive. At the event, held in the council’s chamber, the students were presented to the management by the Sub-Dean, Students Affairs. The Provost, who promised to give the SUG executive every support needed to thrive, urged them to be law-abiding, well behaved and focused. “I urge you all to be law-abiding, as this is the only way we can all move this institution forward. Let me also assure you that the management is determined to give you all the support that you’ will need to succeed. With your support, we want to ensure this college remains one with the best Stu- •From left: Sub Dean Students’ Affairs; Mr Peter Oladapo; Librarian Mr Omotayo Oluwole, Mr Bashorun (condents’ Union Government in the gratulating one of the winners) and Registrar Mr Bola Disu. country.” By Adegunle Olugbamila tions in Nigeria. The conference Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Members of include Yekini Sadiq At this year’s edition, the college with the theme: Fighting corruption; (Speaker); Halim Gabriel (Sadiq deputy executive)Ogbaro Abdul- (Court Baliff); Edenojie Ehijiator Promoting peace and responsible citi- contingent made up of eight stuOrderly); Yussuf zenship, was held in September at dents and two staff, won several azyz, (Chief Judge);Saba Sebastein (Court (General-Secretary); Ogedemgbe Olamilekan (Chief Whip); Imran the International Conference Cen- awards, such as the institution with the Best Drama Presentation; Best Oluwadamilola (Court Registrar); Ahmed (Press Secretary); and tre, Abuja. The NigMUNS conference draws Cultural Costumes; and Second Ogundare Oluwagbenga (Clerk); Olowonira Oluwatosin (Commerstudents from tertiary institutions Best School Delegates, among othOgbonna Nwanneka (Financial cial Director). In a related development, the across the country and abroad to ers. Secretary)Olotuipaye Yemisi Receiving the NigMUNS delCollege Management, led by the take on roles as representatives of (Treasurer) Others are: Samsondeen Dada Provost, also hosted members of member countries of the United egates, promised to ensure con(Welfare Director); Okoye Martins the award winning college contin- Nations to analyse, debate and prof- tinuous support of AOCOED for the (PRO); Ashafa Adebanji (Assist. gent to the seventh and eight edi- fer solutions to real life global programme and other similar ones. General Secretary); Faloye Adeoye tion of the Nigeria International challenges. The conference, now in He also announced awards of schol(Sports Director); Tokemi leonard Model United Nations Conference its eight year, is endorsed by the arships to the representatives for (Social Director); Hassan Adeola (NigMUNS) for Tertiary Institu- Federal Ministry of Education and making the institution proud.





O solve the problem of poor leadership in Nigeria, Group Managing Director, Royal Exchange Plc., Mr Chike Mokwunye, said the organisation is supporting the development of leadership skills in young people. Speaking at the fifth annual Leadership Conference for Secondary School Prefects in Lagos State, held at the Igbobi College, Yaba, Mokwunye said through the programme, the pupils would learn important values that would help them become good leaders as adults. He said: “The problem of leadership has been identified as a major impediment to the development of the society. It is said that our country is blessed with huge natural and human resources, enough to eradicate want and hunger from our land. Un-

Prefects prepare for future roles By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie

fortunately, the leadership is yet to harness our full potential to make our country great. This informs our belief that we need to start building our future leaders from a tender age, from school in order to have the right caliber of people running the nation’s affairs in years to come. “Today’s seminar is one of the initiatives designed to impact the virtues of honesty, diligence, hard work and empathy, which are tools/skills necessary for effective leadership.” The prefects, drawn from private and public secondary schools across Lagos State learnt from many speakers who handled various sub-topics under the theme: The Youth as Catalyst in the National Transformation Agenda.

In his presentation, one of the facilitators, Mr. Ayeomoni Niyi, urged the prefects to take their roles seriously by being obedient to rules and performing their duties well. He said doing so would prepare them for leadership in the larger society. “You must perform all duties assigned to you diligently and honestly. When you are performing well at home, we know you can perform well outside school. You have duties to perform to Nigeria as a country. You must be patriotic. When you love this country, money meant for roads will not be diverted into your foreign account,” he said. In his speech, the Special Adviser to Governor Babatunde

Fashola on Education, Otunba AbdulFatai Olukoga, counselled the prefects to set goals and be role models. Olukoga, who was represented by Mrs Olutoyin Oyedele said: “Your ability to set goals is the master skill of success. Goals unlock your positive mind and release ideas and energy for goal attainment. Without goals, you simply drift and flow on the current of life but with goals, you fly like an arrow, straight and true to your targets.” In another lecture titled Insurance and You, Mr. Kayode Agbomabini exposed them to the world of insurance by explaining issues such as risk, the nature of risk, insurance, how insurance

works and the relationship between risk and insurance. He said, “Insurance is vital to human existence, buying insurance is one method of controlling the financial aspect of the unknown future. If you buy an insurance policy, you exchange a situation of risk for one of financial certainty”. Head Girl, Reagan Memorial Baptist Girls School, Yaba, Miss Omolola Adisa thanked the organisers. She said: “In our own little positions we are also exposed to some challenges, especially when you have to deal with a student who is stubborn and unwilling to bend to rules. I believe standards should be set at this level by ensuring that students take responsibility for their actions”.

Nollywood actress, others mentor pupils on career choice


OR the first time, the platform presented an opportunity for pupils of Carol Nursery and Primary School, Ikeja to exhibit their choice of career orally and in their costumes. About 300 children aged between five and 10 adorned various costumes with accompanying tools depicting different professions at their school’s maiden Career Day. The event also featured other attractions, such as cultural display and drama presentations. Nollywood actress Foluke Daramola led other technocrats to provide inspirations to the young pupils on pathways to their careers. A woman pilot with one of the domestic airlines Florence Madumere; an architect with the Lagos State Ministry of Works, Mr Femi Wahab; a Wema Bank official, Mr. Bode Dairo, and Ola Tony Obot of Kandival Communications in Lagos also mentored the pupils. The school’s spokesperson, Mrs Emily Udoh, said the rationale behind the programme was to shape the children’s thoughts about the paths they aim to follow when they grow up. Mrs Udoh said the initiative also aims at preparing pupils’ minds ahead of their future by getting them acquainted with the various career opportunities available for them She said televisions and other modern tools of information dissemination should not only shape the minds of the young ones whom

By Adegunle Olugbamila

she described as being ‘vulnerable’. “The main objective of this event is to give our children an opportunity to explore a variety of career choices available to each of them in the future and how their curriculum is connected to these careers. The professionals we have assembled here today will get you excited as they educate you on picking/deciding a field of study as you grow, as well as choose a career for your future. They will acquaint you with the educational qualifications, jobs, salaries, career opportunities and much more as regards each of these professions,” Udoh said. Expressing her satisfaction Carol’s head teacher, Mrs. Bola Adeaga, said it is one of the institution’s ways of entrenching pupils’ foundation, adding that once their beginning is solidly laid, then they pose no threat to the country’s peace and unity. Each of the professionals enumerated the skills required of anyone willing to pursue each of the careers and intimated the parents on better ways to look out for the potentials in the kids and how to encourage them. The children were also afforded the opportunities to mention their role models and how to aspire and surpass their records. Earlier, a drama presentation by the school’s drama troupe focused on the mutual roles of homes and schools on training of kids and the building of an economically-viable and secured nation.

•Some of the pupils in various costumes

‘Mathematics, Physics, drivers of development’


HE Vice-Chancellor of Redeemers University, Prof Debo Adeyewa, has described Mathematics and Physics as the main drivers of development and the basic foundation for inventions and technological breakthrough. Discussing the theme: The Role of Mathematics and Physics in National Development at the Nigerian Asso-

•From left: Gabriel Akpan, Head, Organising Committee Old Students’ Association, Awori Ajeromi Grammar School, Agboju, Mrs Bola Oshinowo (second left) with other members of the alumni: Dennis Omenuwa (left); Biyi Tunji-Olugbodi(second right) and Sola Ogayemi at the inauguration of the alumni at the Lagos Country Club, Ikeja.

By Ramat Musa

ciation of Mathematical Physics 23rd annual colloquium and conference held at the Resort Centre of the Redeemers University, Mowe, Ogun State, Adeyewa who was also the special guest of honour said: ‘’Mathematics and Physics are the main drivers of development and the basic foundation for inventions and technological breakthroughs, the main tools of globalisation. The fastest growing industry in the world is Information and Communication Technology); it has brought communities and nations closer to each other. “The instrument has been and will remain Mathematics and Physics and all its applicable forms. Advances and development in technology and national and development are a great deal to these twin subjects; computer science has helped development; statistics have helped exploration and understanding of phenomena and other sciences. Natural and social sciences have also provided vehicles for man to explore and overcome nature. God has endowed us with necessary resources, abilities and competences and all that it takes to make our world better to live in.’’ According to him, mathematics is very logical and not magical. Adding to this, the RUN’s Dean of Natural Sciences, Prof Kolawole Gabriel said the two subjects (ICT); form the bedrock of industrial growth and development as

• Prof Adeyewa

they provide an essential tool kit for technological discoveries and advances. ‘’Where is industrial growth without Mathematics and Physics and where is national development without these twin subjects?’’ “We have to take a responsibility to make training and research in mathematics and physics more attractive , more productive, more fulfilling and more relevant but less a vocation for the highly cerebral.’’ Giving the welcome address earlier, the Vice President of the association, Prof Garba Babaji implored the Federal Government to implement a three-point agenda: fighting against corruption, seeing to the area of agriculture and the issue of Niger Delta crisis. He said research has to be linked with development because it is difficult to make the former without the latter.





Unprogressive culture

W •Oyinloye (right) and Alhaji Alabi at the event


Oyedepo’s N40m lifts four schools

HE President of Living Faith Church International a.k.a Winners Chapel, Bishop David Oyedepo, has donated N40 million for the purchase of science equipment for four community schools in OmuAran, Irepodun Local Government Area of Kwara State. The benefiting schools are: OmuAran High School; Ofe-Aram Commercial College; Ogbo Grammar School and Aperan Comprehensive College. Dr Oyedepo, an indigene of OmuAran, at this year’s Omu-Aran Day celebration announced the donation for the rehabilitation of science laboratories in the community. At the inauguration and handing over of some of the projects, the Olomu of Omu-Aran, Oba Charles Ibitoye eulogised the largeheartedness of the clergyman, saying “Bishop Oyedepo single-handedly donated N40 million to support the education of our youth. “Education is the bedrock of any development in the society, which is why the community is complementing the efforts of the state government.” Earlier, the National President of the Omu-Aran Development Association (ODA), Chief Peter Oyinloye, said proceeds from the Omu-Aran

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

Day celebration held in May had been used to aid infrastructural development of the community. He said the N2billion development fund launched then was aimed at upgrading Omu-Aran High School to a model full boarding school and providing science laboratories for four community secondary schools. He said: “We are happy today that the community has kept faith with its mandate and promise of being partners in progress with the state government in providing essential facilities for our people. The facilities that we are gathered here to commission today include: rehabilitation of science buildings and reconstruction of laboratories at N14,899,00; science equipment/materials and home economics materials in the four schools at N7,176,520; computer (20 units each), printers and backups in the four schools at N7,568,000; tiling of computer laboratories in the four community schools at N881,950 and ceiling and industrial fans at the laboratories at N146,000.” Oyinloye also urged the state government to supply the schools with relevant teachers. “Today’s ceremony is certainly in tandem with the educational policy


of the Kwara State government in ensuring that every child acquires functional and qualitative education. Therefore, we urge the state government to assist us by deploying teachers in various subjects, especially in English, mathematics, physics, biology, chemistry, civic education and trade subjects to teach and man the equipment; making Omu-Aran High School as one of the model science schools in the state and provision of motorised boreholes in the schools.” Governor AbdulFatah Ahmed, represented by a Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education and Human Capital Development, Alhaj Lamidi Alabi, praised the community’s efforts in supporting education, adding that “you have reached a landmark for others to emulate.”

E need to unlearn some aspects of our culture that impedes progress. Kofoworola Last week, the Registrar of the National Examinations CounBelo-Osagie cil (NECO), Prof Promise Okpala rightly pointed out that our inability to punish wrong 08054503077 (SMS only) doing is a cultural defect that has impeded the fight against examination malpractice. When someone does wrong, then begs, usually those who witness the incident expect that he should be left off the hook - his begging having supposedly atoned for the wrong doing. Usually, in such cases, the wrongdoer becomes the underdog while the prosecutor or plaintiff is viewed as a villain. It is in exceptional cases, such as armed robbery, kidnapping, that Nigerians are interested in meting out instant judgment on criminals, regardless of what the law says. This response to wrong doing has affected our ability to enforce laws and instill discipline. For instance, in 2007, Mrs Obiageli Ezekwesili as Education Minister blacklisted more than 300 schools and 200 officials involved in examination malpractice. They were meant to serve the punishment for three years. However, the punishment was suspended forever after she left office the same year, so they did not even feel any inconvenience. As far as many were concerned, the former minister was too harsh. Prof Okpala spoke of the frustration of the examining body in prosecuting exam fraudsters because nobody would willingly testify against them. The 'I don't want to be responsible for someone's downfall' mentality stops people from giving the information that would enable the law to take its course. If we must progress in this country, we need to call a spade its name and be ready to live by the book. We need to start enforcing this in our school system. As participants at the examination summit that held in Abuja last week have noted, the Federal Government needs to make it easier to implement the Exam Malpractice Act by giving more courts jurisdiction to try malpractices cases. Also, those cases need to be made public so we actually know that people are spending three to four years in jail because they import 'microchips' into examination halls, impersonate, collude or commit any other act that compromises the integrity of our examination. Examining bodies usually sanction perpetrators. However, beyond the number of candidates caught cheating and the seizure of their results, we hear nothing more. Some of these candidates are supposed to be barred from retaking the examination for a period but I doubt if such ever happens. They need to happen. We also need to know the names of schools that are blacklisted. I learnt from a retired director in Lagos State that usually, very few schools are axed. I am sure fewer schools than deserve get this punishment. From our interactions with secondary school pupils, the issue of schools helping their candidates during public examinations is more rampant than appreciated. Pupils are assisted for the Junior School Certificate Examinations, which does not attract as much spotlight as the senior school examination. The relevant bodies should not be lenient with erring schools. They need to be disgraced. Officials should not be spared either. At several forums, the Head of Nigeria National Office of the West African Examinations Council, Dr Iyi Uwadiae has assured that any employee of the council found complicit in issues relating to leakages, collusion and other offences are not spared. They are dealt with accordingly, he assured. Sadly, members of the public do not get to find out about them. Many Nigerians assume, rightly or wrongly, that malpractice is made possible because WAEC officials themselves partake. We do not want the silence any longer. However, beyond sanctions, we need to help our school children appreciate learning and hard work to earn deserving scores. With such attitude, they are unlikely to prefer cheating.

•Gasper (middle) with some of the trainees

AGDC prepares 100 trainees


HE second set of trainees under the Modern Apprenticeship Training Programme (MATP) and Graduate Vocational Apprenticeship Employability Skills (GV-ESTP) of the Lagos State Technical and Vocational Education Board (LASTVEB) is undergoing entrepreneurship training. The programme, anchored by the After School/Graduate Development Centre (AGDC), will last five weeks during which participants will be trained on marketing, writing a business plan and other intricacies of running viable outfits.

Afterwards, participants will proceed on their MATP and GVESTP designed to provide workbased-on the job training in Industries/accredited workshops and technical colleges approved by LASTVEB. Executive Secretary of LASTVEB, Mr Olawumi Gasper, who handed over the trainees to Mrs Kenny Olubanjo, Director of the centre under the AGDC Employability and Enterprise Training, said the training is important as it would prepare the trainees for what is ahead. He added that the MATP and GV-

ESTP are aimed at grooming youths with requisite skills needed to address youth unemployment and contribute to the successful working of the mega city vision of the Lagos State government. Under the initiative, the trainees will gain skills in Electrical Power/ Machine repairs and Maintenance Services; Hair dressing and Beauty Therapy/cosmetology; Industrial and Medical Instrumentation; Heavy duty Diesel Engine Repairs and Maintenance Services; Automotive Mechatronics; Floristry/Floral Design and Land Scape and Lawn care services.

‘Examining bodies usually sanction perpetrators. However, beyond the number of candidates caught cheating and the seizure of their results, we hear nothing more. Some of these candidates are supposed to be barred from retaking the examination for a period but I doubt if such ever happens. They need to happen’

First published December 22, 2011







ABUBAKAR OLUSOLA SARAKI (1933 - 2012) The death, yesterday, of Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki marked the end of an era in the politics of Kwara State. For 35 years, he was the reference point for politicians in the state. Deputy Political Editor EMMANUEL OLADESU examines the essence of the man, his politics, struggles and dynasty.


HE Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Kolapo Sulu Gambari, and leaders of the emirate are in a mourning mood. Muslim clerics and political associates are downcast. Families and relations are in sober reflection. Three days after the demise of the Alhaji Lamidi Adesina, former governor of Oyo State, death has also sneaked into Ilorin, capital of Kwara State, snatching the Wazirin Ilorin, Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki. No politician had bestrode the Kwara political firmament like the multimillionaire Second Republic Senate Leader and Leader of Northern Union. His death marked the end of an era in the ;politics of Ilorin, Kwara State and Nigeria. He was a political mentor, role model and godfather in Kwara that could not be ignored for over 50 years. He was colourful, charismatic , pragmatic and politically resourceful, making his demise to create a vacuum in the Ilorin enclave. From the beginning, he made no pretence about his political leaning. The future political leader of Kwara cultivated the aristocrats who looked up to the Sardauna of Sokoto and leader of the Northern Peoples Congress, Alhaji Ahmadu Bello. NPC lacked a national outlook because enlisting any marginal support from the South was not a priority. Even, when few youths canvassed the change of name to Nigerian Peoples Congress (NPC) to convey the vague impression of ‘Nigerianess’, the suggestion was shot down. Throughout the independence years, it was a party to beat in Nigeria. Yet, Saraki, one of its young devotees from the Middle Belt, lost his deposit in his first bid for parliamentary power at the federal level on that conservative platform. Indisputably, he lost power, but he was regarded as a promising politician. When Westcentral State was created in 1967, Governor David Bamgboye requested Sakari to serve as commissioner. He declined and nominated a protégé into the cabinet. But throughout the military era, he was a factor in the politics of Ilorin, Kwara and Nigeria. In 1978, Saraki was elected into the Constituent Assembly. In the assembly, he was not a bench warmer. There, he became a founding member of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN). He sought to fly its presidential flag, but the entrenched forces in the North preferred a core Fulani candidate. That may have lent credence to the gulf between the core north and middlebelt in the so-called monolithic north and plight of Yoruba-northerners inhabiting the Kwara/Kogi axis. The same fate was befall the late Chief Sunday Awoniyi, the Aro of Mopa and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chair-

•The late Saraki

Exit of a people’s general man aspirant. Former President Olusegun Obasanjo objected to the ambition, saying that Yoruba could not be President and national chairman of the ruling party at the same time. At the formative stage of the NPN, Saraki had established himself as a party financier. This however, did not give him an edge ahead of the primaries. When his presidential ambition crumbled, he was advised to vie for governorship. But he opted for the Senate, after sponsoring the Ebira prince, Alhaji Adamu Attah, for the governorship. Since the party’s zoning formula was also not in his favour, Saraki’s ambition to become the Senate President crumbled. Then, the party favoured the youthful Dr. Joseph Wayas for the number three position.

But he emerged as the Senate Majority Leader, a position which also secured an eminent seat for him in the powerful and influential NPN Caucus presided over by the party chairman, the late Chief Adisa Akinloye. Saraki singlehandedly frustrated Attah’s second term bid. When the party insisted on fielding him in 1983, he supported the governor’s rival and Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) candidate, Senator Cornelius Adebayo, who later displaced Attah during the election. Kwara NPN threatened fire and brimstone. A federal minister, the late Chief Akanbi Oniyangi, warned at a rally in Ilorin that, should Attah fail at the poll, Saraki would lose his honour. The opposite happened. Attah lost and the party could not expel Saraki for anti-party activity. He was

re-elected senator on NPN platform. In the Third Republic, the Kwara kingpin bounced back. He installed Alhaji Shaba Lafiagi as governor. He also renewed his battle for the Presidency. He had the wealth of experience, connection and resources to prosecute a nationwide campaign. However, the ambition was stopped by the Head of State, the late Gen. Sani Abacha, who mooted the idea of transmuting to a civilian President. At the constitutional conference set up by Abacha, the late politician was a towering figure. It was evident that Saraki would never contemplate retirement from politics. In 1999, he had emerged as the father of the All Peoples Party (APP) in the state. He wanted to vie for the Presidency. However, he could

•The late Dr Olusola Saraki (left), Kwara State Governor AbdulFattah Ahmed and Senator Bukola Saraki.

not make it because the party agreed to the APP/AD joint ticket, which catapulted Chief Oluyemisi Falae. The chief had made a surrogate, Salman Adebayo, the senatorial flag bearer in his Central District, with the hope of coming back to retrieve the ticket from him, should he fail to get presidential nomination. When he returned to Ilorin, Salman, was said to have deliberately gone abroad and did not return until the close of nominations. He served as senator on APP platform for four years. Since then, nothing has been heard about him politically. Saraki later became the APP Board of Trustees (BOT) chairman. This dispensation is a turning point. The new breed of Third Republic had grown wings. Many of them were in a strategic alliance to frustrate the political veterans of the First and Second Republics. Party supremacy, party loyalty and party discipline were all gone. Saraki lamented the collapse of the party culture, when he waded into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP crises in Lagos State, following pleas by the former chairman of the chapter, Olorunfunmi Basorun. He said young turks in politics were impatient and rude. Barely two years into the democratic dispensation, his political empire was shaking. Saraki was having a running battle with the governor he installed, Mohammed Lawal, a retired Real Admiral, who had served as governor of Ogun State. The party was polarised. Ethnic tension was also played up to convey the impression that the descendants of Afonja, the antiAlaafin warrior and first surrogate ruler of Ilorin, were again at loggerheads politically with the descendants of Alimi. When the old political warhorse, Saraki, gazed at the future, he discovered that the future of his group was bleak in the ANPP. He struck a deal with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). For the first time, the rich politician who had been sponsoring other people was advised to put forth his son and daughter’s name for election. His son, Bukola, became the governorship candidate and his daughter, Gbemisola, who was in the House of Representatives, became the senatorial flag bearer. Bukola rode to the State House on the massive goodwill and formidable machinery of his illustrious father, the Waziri of Ilorin, in 2003. He was reelected in 2007 for a second term. Before he became governor, he was a Senior Special Assistant to the President on Agriculture. Dr Bukola later disagreed with his father on succession. He issued a red card to the old man. The Leader of Northern Union also declared war on his biological son when he insisted that his sister, Senator Gbemisola Saraki-Fowora, should succeed him as governor on May 29, 2011. Bukola, who had the party in his pocket, kicked against it. In the spate of four years, the son had become the new rallying point, kingmaker and godfather. The former governor raised Abdulfatai Ahmed as the PDP governorship candidate in opposition to his father’s choice. The man who fought the likes of Adamu Attah, Akanni Oniyangi, Senator Salman, and Admiral Mohammed Lawal to a standstill was on the edge, fighting to retain his relevance in the politics of Kwara State. The turn of event was tragic for the political gladiator who was reputed to have saved the household of Alimi from disgrace twice when enemies rose against the dynasty. But his own political dynasty was now on edge, no thanks to the strategic move of his son. Dr Olusola Saraki did not prepare •Continued on page 44




Last political struggles of a colossus I

N 1998, Olusola Saraki became a National Leader and member of the Board of Trustees of the All People’s Party (APP), contributing to the APP success in Kwara and Kogi states. He assisted Mohammed Alabi Lawal in becoming Governor of Kwara State. In 2001 he was head of a team from the Arewa Consultative Forum, a Northern cultural and political group, sent to meet and discuss common goals with Northern state governors and other leaders. Later Saraki switched allegiance to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and in the 2003 elections supported his son Bukola Saraki as candidate for governor of Kwara state in April 2003, and his daughter Gbemisola R. Saraki as senator for Kwara State Central in April 2003. He was the chairman of the Societe Generale Bank (SGBN). He fought relentlessly to enthrone his daughter, Gbemisola to succeed her brother, Bukola as the governor of the state under the platform of PDP. He failed to achieve his dream just as his first at elective post. Though not a card carrying member of PDP, he announced his departure from the party for the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), the party that he floated and registered in 2003. Perhaps, the most devastating blow to Saraki’s almost 50years’ robust political career, was his inability to ensure the realization of the gubernatorial ambition of her darling daughter, Senator Gbemisola Saraki. The ambition of Gbemisola to succeed her brother, the governor of the state, Dr Bukola Saraki had polarized the feared Saraki’s political dynasty. While Bukola held firmly to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the elder Saraki and Gbemisola sought solace in the ACPN. “ACPN was born January 2nd this year, now so many states have heard I’m the brain behind have applied to join. I thank God I have been nursing the party; sending my members to attend INEC meetings,” he said. His words then: “The door of the PDP has been locked against me, I can-


F the late Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki was not a Muslim who had to be buried within 24 hours of his death, the Senate would have held a special session to mark his contributions to the evolution of the legislature. He was not only a Second Republic Senator, indeed Leader of the Senate, he died the Patriarch of perhaps the only family that has produced three Senators. As Senate Leader between 1979 and 1983, his image loomed very large. He was very visible and wielded so much influence on the national political plane. He held his turf in Ilorin and Kwara State and went on to make his impact felt in the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) and the federal government. Initially, his strength was his money. At the time of return of governance baton to the civilians after 13 years of military rule, very few people who were part of the First Republic were in position to play prominent roles. Only titans like Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Alhaji Aminu Kano and Alhaji Waziri Ibrahim had the clout to come up with political parties. They had their natural followers. The NPN offered opportunity for those who were not neck-deep in the politics of the First Republic . True, Saraki had been introduced to politicking in 1964 when he sought a place in the legislature on the platform of the Northern Peoples Congress (NPC). Then a neophyte in Ilorin politics where the Ilorin Talaka Parapo held sway, the young medical doctor vowed to contribute meaningfully to governance in his locality. He thereafter built himself up as a formidable businessman and was already an established businessman in the period of transition to civil rule.

• A quintessential politician in action. From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

not enter and by their law. When that door is locked there is no way to enter it unless you want to break it. But I don’t want to break it as am a lawabiding person. The law of PDP is so dry and once it is applied it is very difficult to cross. “When I met President Goodluck Jonathan I told him I was leaving the party. PDP says congresses can only be run by delegates and delegates have been determined before the ward congresses in the state. I have left PDP and anybody that believes in me will follow me to other party. But my absence from home gave them a lot of chance to do all this, considering how the party was taken over by us and considering how we have been managing it. “They have locked the door that other candidate cannot get any delegates to

support him. So what is the point in putting your head into it. So the best thing is to leave and that is why I left. Some people just sit somewhere to excuse others from entering the door.” “My son Bukola spent a lot of time in Abuja helping late President Umaru Yar’Adua stabilize his government leaving the PDP to be run by others at home. Those people have wreaked a lot of damage to his government. Please join me to pray to God to bring my son back home for me.” Shortly before the 2011 polls, the late politician popularly called Olooye announced to quit active politics after the 2011 general polls. He added that “by now I should be resting. I don’t want to continue in politics. How many of my colleagues of my age are in the forefront of politics?” He said “after the election and ACPN

forms the next government I will hands off from the party.” He frowned at party primaries. He said: “I don’t believe in party primaries. They cause a lot of frictions and bad blood. I believe in negotiations as there are many offices that can be shared among party members. I don’t also base occupation of political offices on ethnicity and religion. When I gave the governor to Cornelius Adebayo it never occurred to me he was an Igbomina man, but Bukola says he has zoned the governorship seat to Kwara south.” He said ACPN did not have a presidential candidate in the forthcoming polls because “we don’t want to get ourselves involved in that. Any body that needs our votes during the presidential elections should come and talk to us. We are ready. When I met President Jonathan I told him that I’m not a

A family and its three Senators Dr. Bukola Saraki

By Bolade Omonijo, Group Political Editor

He was a prominent member of the 1978/79 Constituent Assembly where he joined people of like mind to found the Nationalist Movement. His wealth stood him in good stead as he made a bid for the presidential ticket of the NPN against Mallam Adamu Ciroma, Alhaji Maitama Sule, Professor Iya Abubakar, the late Chief Joseph Tarka and the eventual winner, Alhaji Shehu Shagari. Although he lost, it marked the beginning of his effective sojourn in politics. Since 1977, he has been a major player on the political field.

Senator Gbemisola Saraki Prior to the inception of the Fourth Republic , no one in political circles knew anything about the lady who was later to bid for power in Ilorin . But, riding on the back of the father, and running along the track laid by the late Senator, she contested for the Ilorin federal constituency seat and was active in the House of Representatives from 1999 to 2003. After four years of effective representation, she moved up the ladder to the Senate and even moved, on reelection in 2007 to become the Senate President. She lost to General David Mark. Last year, backed by the father, she attempted to succeed her brother, former Governor Bukola Saraki on the expiration of his term of office. However, she was stoutly resisted by the outgoing governor who refused the father’s plea on the

• Senator Gbemisola Saraki

ground that such a move could destroy the family’s legacy. The Wazirin Ilorin lost the battle. Bukola won. He succeeded Gbemisola Saraki as Senator representing Kwara Central.

Like his father, Bukola Saraki is a medical doctor. He also got introduced to the world of business as a director of Societe Generale Bank. Later, he followed the footsteps of the father into politics. At 50, he has been a Special assistant to the President, was, for eight years, governor of Kwara State and chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum. Today, he sits in the Senate as chairman of the Committee on the Environment. When he contested the governorship in 2003, it was a tough battle against an incumbent Rear Admiral Mohammed Alabi Lawal, a former protégé of the late Senator. Dr. Bukola Saraki owed his triumph at the poll to the support of the father. But, by the time he had to quit the stage last year, he had become his own man, with an independent network and platform. Realiisng that the locus

member of PDP but a supporter as two of my children are members.” But shortly after Bukola and his party recorded a major victory in the last general election, winning all the available elective seats, except two House of Assembly seats in the state, the former governor initiated reconciliatory move between himself and his father. The result of Bukola’s initiative came to fruition months after the election when a special prayer was held at the Saraki’s Ilofa, GRA residence to mark the end of “hostility” between the warring factions of the Saraki’s political family. The elder Saraki did not only confirm the resolution of the crisis, he also openly blessed the election of the new governor, Alhaji AbdulFatah Ahmed, assuring him of his support and that of his followers. And Baba Oloye did not make any stringent demand from the new governor for the new found ‘love’ to flourish. He only requested that “I must be informed before hand about your programmes, policies and activities.” He emphasized that “I have never taken any contract from those that I had helped into power, including Bukola Saraki. All I have always demanded for is to be informed about programmes, policies and activities of such people. This will afford me the opportunity to counsel you and provide the right answers to those who may have come to report you to me.” The late Saraki said “I succumbed to pressure from Bukola for peace and unity to reign supreme in the state. “I urge the new governor to be broadminded and work with everybody. Secondly, here in Kwara anybody who is in position of authority needs to consult before taking any action. Bukola in the first six years was consulting. I cannot run their government for them. I can only make suggestions. It is the crack that happened in the past that brought other parties to the state.” Political observers in the state have contended his demise will change the political configuration and calculus of the over 40 years old state. of power had shifted somewhat, Oloye, as the late Senator was known and addressed by his teeming supporters, had to move out of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). To prove his total control of the political scene, Oloye founded the Allied Congress party of Nigeria (ACPN) to push the candidacy of Senator Gbemisola Saraki. She lost to her brother, but the family retained control of the political territory. What would have torn the family apart was controlled as the former governor resisted all temptation to publicly denounce his father and the new party. Now that the patriarch is gone, what happens to the political edifice he left behind? Could Senator Gbemi who could not overcome his brother’s preference even with the support of his father now take on the ex-governor? Is Dr. Bukola Saraki now the undisputed king of Kwara politics. The days ahead will show. But, Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki played his part, established a legacy, was a phenomenon and succeeded in building a political dynasty.

Exit of a people’s general •Continued from page 43

for the battle in advance. He had to pull his divided supporters out of the PDP. Gbemisola was also infuriated. She struggled to realise her ambition on the platform of ACPN, a relatively unknown and weak platform. In his old age, Senator Olusola Saraki was on the firing line, traversing the nooks and crannies of the state to canvass support for his daughter in a state where two issues-poverty and religion-have shaped politics for de-

cades. Dr Bukola Satraki scored a goal during the National Assembly elections. When PDP won the three senatorial seats in Kwara, the strongman received the news with a heavy heart. He still waited patiently for the governorship battle, which, based on experience, he knew his daughter was likely to lose. The political rift was later settled, but the discord it generated in the family lingered till the post-election period.

With his death, there will be a vacuum in Kwara politics. Some followers of the late Senator now concede that the Bukola Saraki challenge may have been the saving grace of the family’s hold on the power structure Analysts say this will be filled by his son, who had been heir apparent to the political dynasty. But Saraki’s political family would face onslaught from opposition parties which are not relenting to reduce or alter its influence in the state.





Thickened arteries cause of heart attacks, A stroke, says expert TRADITIONAL doctor and provost, Federal College of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (FEDCAM), Nigeria, Lagos, Dr Idowu Ogunkoya, has attributed arteriosclerosis, which is thickened arteries, as the major cause of heart attacks and stroke. According to him, arteriosclerosis can be cured naturally with herbs. Arteriosclerosis, he said, is where the arteries become thickened and lose their elasticity. It is often called hardening of the arteries and, over time, can lead to heart attacks and stroke, he added. Ogunkoya said herbs can be used to remove fat from the system. “There are herbs made from Tagiri, Epakun and Bara that can purge fats. But, they must, however, be used in a good combination,” he said. He said this herbs will not only clean the digestive system but also the colon. “It will remove fats along the gastrointestinal tract (GIT).

By Wale Adepoju

Purgatives alleviate the disease,” he added. He said the most common form of arteriosclerosis is atherosclerosis and the two terms are often used interchangeably. Atherosclerosis, he noted, usually occurs when fatty material, such as cholesterol, is deposited along the walls of arteries, forming plaques and atheromas. This, often causes obstruction of the normal blood flow, which can be partial or complete. “Under such circumstances, not enough oxygen-carrying blood gets to the parts of the body that need it. If the brain is affected, a mini-stroke (transient ischaemic attack) or fullblown stroke may occur. “When the heart is affected, it may result in angina chest pain or a heart

• Ogunkoya

attack,” Ogunkoya said. He said the narrowing of the blood vessels can affect any part of the body, including the eyes, kidneys and legs. This is called

peripheral vascular disease (PVD). He said the loss of elasticity of the blood vessels can also contribute to the development of high blood pressure (hypertension) and impotence (erectile dysfunction). He said another major concern is that pieces of the plaque may break off. When this occurs, the fragment is carried along in the blood until it reaches a part of the artery that’s too narrow for it to pass through. On the causes, he said, the damage to the arteries does not happen overnight. It takes years for them to become hard, brittle and furred up. Ogunkoya identified age and family history as risk factors for atherosclerosis that can’t be eliminated, saying other major risk factors can be dealt with. “These include smoking, high cholesterol, diabetes and high blood pressure,”

‘Infections, watery sperm responsible for infertility’


TRADITIONAL Obstetric and gynaecologist Dr Nkem Atu-Akowe, has identified infections, low sperm count and hormonal imbalance as major causes of infertility. Others are assospermia, which is no sperm at all, blockage of the fallopian tube, cervical blockage and pelvic inflammation. According to her, nature has a cure for these problems. Herbal preparations, she said, can reverse the problems when applied correctly. She said about 80 per cent of infertility comes from men. This, she added, can be attributed to infections, which often leads to low sperm count and (or) no sperm at all. “In Nigeria, it is women who take medicine because it is perceived the problem is with them whereas it is the men. “A lot of people also attribute infertility to spiritual attack, which may not be so,” she added. She said women can have blocked fallopian tube due to infections. On treatment, Mrs Atu-Akowe said the first step is subjecting the patient to diagnosis after which treatment commences. “If there is infection, we use herbs to detoxify the system. Through this, we flush out free radicals and then we give the patient some system cooling herbs. “In the case of hormonal imbalance, we balance the histrogen, progesteron and the body,” she added. Mrs Atu-Akowe said herbs can also be given to infertile women to trigger ovulation. “We use herbs, such as Ogbolo roots to enhance ovulation. Also, Abere is used to deworm or control the worms, which hinder concep-

Treating keloid scars with herbs

By Wale Adepoju

tion. We try to control vaginal bleeding/ discharge known as Eda in Yoruba with some herbal preparationn, she added. She said infertile women can also be given tummy massage and set the womb to the right position if its wrongly positioned. “Some wombs are distorted due to abortions, among other conditions but tummy massage can help to correcct that. For those women who have advanced in age, she said, there are herbs that can be drunk to prolong their menstruation, to keep menopause temporarily away. “But most times, we encourage women to eat nutritional foods such as ugwu, oha leaf and okra to normalise their hormones,” she said.

By Olatunde Odebiyi


•Keloid scar

Benefits of bitter leaf


DDING bitter leaf to your diet may reduce your risk of chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes, according to the University of Texas. Bitter leaf, technically known as Vernonia amygdalina, is a traditional ingredient in African cuisine. Although it may have a bitter taste, its flavour is quite mild. Additionally, bitter leaf has a number of important potential health benefits.

Reduces diabetes risk

•Mrs Atu-Akowe

he said. Other contributors to heart disease and stroke include inactivity and being overweight. On treatment, he advised that smokers desist because further damage to the arteries should be avoided. He said: ”Keeping cholesterol levels and weight at safe levels can be achieved by eating a healthy diet and regular exercise. Regular exercise and avoiding obesity will also reduce the risk of high blood pressure and diabetes. “When lifestyle changes aren’t enough, you may be prescribed herbs to lower your cholesterol, weight or blood pressure, or to control diabetes. Those with established atherosclerosis are also advised to take herbs daily to reduce the risk of clots forming. “Herbs is also used to help keep the blood vessels wide enough for good blood flow to be achieved. In this way, symptoms such as angina chest pain can be kept low.”

Mrs Sarah Abagia, Head Dietetics Department at the National Hospital, says “It is not that bitter leaf can cure diabetes, but it has some sugar controlling influence to a certain degree. Bitter leaf is able to influence some drop in the sugar level. But it is not suppose to be regarded as an entire medication for diabetes. You can take

a handful of fresh bitter leaf, pour in a blender, pour the desired amount of water, blend and strain it, then drink. Some people take a handful of bitter leaf and eat it too.”

Reduces bad cholesterol Elevated cholesterol especially “bad” LDL cholesterol is a risk factor for heart attack and stroke. According to the February 2008 edition of the “Journal of Vascular Health and Risk Management,” bitter leaf can reduce bad and total cholesterol. In an animal model, supplementation with bitter leaf extract reduced LDL cholesterol by 50 per cent while also boosting “good” HDL cholesterol. However, no research investigating bitter leaf on cholesterol has been conducted on humans. •

T is said that people with keloid scars face a lot of inconvenience. Besides, they also experience serious pain and itching. A traditional doctor, Mr Latunde Alade, said a combination of herbal remedies can be used to treat the infection. He said keloid scars are a dense smooth over growth of collective tissue or ugly scar formation on keloid skin. “This often appears shiny and may result from injuries that refuse to heal. The injury could be from burns or self-inflicted like; bleaching, extra earlobes or injuries gotten from unsterilised instruments”. “They can appear at the back of the neck, under the feet, chest, earlobes and any other part of the body. People with keloid skin often have keloid scars after any injury”. He advised people living with the infection to seek prompt treatment as soon as the scar is noticed. Alade said a natural herbal product can be used to manage keloid scars, adding that the keloid scar product will remove the scar from your skin totally. He said sceptics, an herbal cleaning tincture, can be used to clean the scar which contains antimicrobial materials. Alade said products such as emollient cream can be useful in treating the infection if applied tropically at all times. This, he added, will reduce its formation on the skin. “In time of itching, which occurs mainly when one is under the sun, anti-histamine powder should be applied on the scar to reduce the itch”. He said an oral tincture such as cancer herbs can take care of the scar internally and reduce the formation. A special paste made from ginger and rice can be applied hourly after which the scar is bandaged for a period of time for it to fully heal.




How to overcome embarrassing, bleeding piles T

ODAY is an Open Day of sort or, if you like, a Clinic Day, to answer one or two specific questions often asked by readers of this column. One reader asked in a text message: "Please help me. Any time I eat rice, I have severe pile. But if I stop eating it, it will cease. But rice is my best food. Please any solution" Another reader asked: "I've been with pile for over 15 years. Because I was afraid of losing blood on treating it. Now, the protrusion after toilet is as large as my folded palm and it takes up to an hour to go in. How can I get a cure? Piles Hemorrhoids or piles, as this condition is also called, can be an enormous source of embarrassment, especially when it comes with bleeding and a Lord of the Manor has to change pads as though he were a menstruating woman. When I see a man or a woman at a gathering who cannot sit straight, balancing on one buttock or slouching, I suspect he or she has a serious problem with his or her anus, not just with the lower back. Many men suffer from piles. Even the great French Emperor, Napoleon Bornaparte, suffered from hemorrhoids which caused him such pain as distracted him from the crucial Battle of Waterloo. The emperor who, through battle conquests, wished to rule the whole of Europe, lost the war, disgracefully, to English general Lord Chamberlain.

Digestive disorder


ILE is a digestive system disorder caused by food less foods, poor digestion, and constipation, pres sure in the intestines, straining to stool, engorgement and inflammation of veins in the anus, among other causes. Anyone who has seen varicose veins on the arms and legs of a sufferer should have a faint idea about what is going on in the anus of a sufferer of piles. For piles are another name for varicose veins in the anus. The role of foodless foods in the formation of piles is shown in the first enquiry. Any time she eats white rice, her hemorrhoids flare or come up, or worsen. I can imagine about four reasons for this, namely‌ (1) White rice is foodless food. Rice is brown in its natural state. The white part is all starch, carbohydrate. The outer parts contain the nutrients which help the body to digest the white part for energy. Among these nutrients are Vitamin B complex, particularly thiamine (Vitamin B1). It is like the outer part of wheat which is refined to foodless food. The outer wheat contains wheat germ and wheat germ oil, cholesterol and lecithin. The lecithin helps to keep cholesterol soluble in the blood while the B - Complex vitamins help to burn the carbonhydrate. In Europe, hypertensive people soak brown rice in water to extract these nutrients and drink this infusion to lower their blood pressure. If you wonder why we should not eat white rice and should eat not brown rice, and you get the right answer, you'd most likely change over to brown rice pretty soon, to the joy of such people as Mrs Veronica Momoh of Benin who, on becoming well informed in these matters, not only eats brown rice now but produces and sells it nationwide. The answer is this: when brown rice is shipped from Thailland to Nigeria, for example, the exporters lose a lot of money because weevils find their ways into the sacks of rice and eat up the brown portion. This shows that these small animals are more sensible than many men. They know the brown of the rice is a power house in terms of nutrients. Soon, the exporters learned their lessons and beat the ravenous weevils in their game. The rice exporters put the brown rice in machines which neatly scraped the brown parts, leaving the white. To make assurance doubly sure that all traces of nutrients are removed from the white chaff, the rice is sent to giant boilers which boil more life out of it. Next, it is sent to dryers which make it crisp again. This is the parboiled rice consumed with relish in Nigeria and many parts of the world. Where it is a major staple food, Vitamin B deficiency known as beriberi occur. This is a muscle and nerve wasting disease. For food to be well digested and the waste moved out of the intestines within 18 hours of its consumption so that it does not begin to decay there and cause a poisonous nuisance which may result in, say, piles, Vitamin B complex, for nerves of the intestines, and Vitamin E, for intestinal and other muscles, is provided in food by Mother Nature. Processing, as in the milling of rice, removes them. So is lecithin removed while cholesterol factors are left, creating the possibility, as observed in population studies, of high levels of cholesterol building up in the blood after long exposures to lecithindeficient diets. When foodless foods are not well digested as explained, sledges of them occur in the intestines, producing gas, congestion and a heaven for overpopulated unfriendly bacteria, thereby creating grounds for damage of the system. White rice is not the only foodless food we consume with relish in Nigeria. By the way, foodless food means food without nutrients to help its

of the herb sprinkled on the stool, the healing process should be by way of radiation. As humans, waves of power leave us by way of radiations. As a matter of fact, everything in existence radiates. Bible reports the Lord Christ perceiving power go out of Him when the woman with the issue of blood touches His garment in the faith that she would be healed by so doing. The Bible also reports the Prophet Elisha ethereally (not physically) taking the garment of his master, Prophet Elijah, as the latter departed the earth in the faith that he would, this, be imbued with Elijah's spiritual powers. Our belongings are imbued with our radiations. So are our urine and our stool. The stool communicates with us through a process of radiation after, after it is voided. Like an electromagnetic wave carrying radio signals to our radios or television sets. The radiation connection with our stool enables healing factors in the herbs to the communicated to those areas of the body which need it.

Other Treatment

digestion and to supply the body materials for its maintenance and immune defiance. To this unenviable club of foods belongs white flour bread, pastenristed or tumed milk, margarine, white sugar, friend foods, including biscuits, pastries and all processed and overstored foods. I always advice in public speeches that, if white rice must be eaten, it has to be with intelligence. If you observe, with food intelligence, how white rice is eaten in Nigeria, you would laugh at the ignorance of many people. They serve a mound or mountain of it in a plate and add stew or sauce and beef. A more intelligence way to eat it, in my view, is to restrict the white rice to no more than a quarter of the plate and make vegetables, raw or lightly cooked, three quarters. The vegetables may include letterce, parboiled or raw tomato, onion, cabbage, carrot, beet root, garden egg. A sprinkling of fiber such as from the proprietary FORTIFLAX. While the white rice is nothing but a load of empty carbohydrate, the vegetables supply vitamins minerals, hormones, trace elements, co-factions. The Fortiflax is fiber from flax seed with some flax oil, a rice source of Omega - 3 essential fatty acid, hynins, which are anti-carcinogenic, and other nutrients. There is no doubt that this type of meal will be well digested and the wastes promptly evacuated. NOTHER problem I suspect in the first case is the "Swallow food" syndrome. Many people do not chew many carbonhydrated foods, believing they are meant to be swallowed. Starchy foods are complex carbohydrate foods or polysaccharides. Ptyalin, an enzyme in saliva, converts polysaccharides to simpler carbohydrates called disaccharides which, in the intestine, are converted to simpler forms named monosaccharides. It is monosaccharides that are absorbed into the bloodstream for use of the cells. If complex carbohydrate foods are swallowed, without saliva being allowed to do its work, polysaccharides arrive in the intestines where there are no enzymes to break them down. This is a cause of constipation. Bacteria go to work feeding on them and, thus, have a source of nurture to grow their population. A lot of gas is produced in the sluggy fecal matter which may congeal and narrow intestinal passage. Naturally, blood circulation becomes sluggish, a breach of the law of motion, and engorgements occurs in the anal veins, of the arms and legs. When the blood-engorged veins of the anus reach their elastic limits under this pressure, they may break, leaking blood. That may be a reason fresh blood is often found in the stool or on the toilet tissue paper after clean-up. There may be other reasons for a bloody stool, such as polyps, ulcers, cancers, injuries inflicted by parasites. When the bleeding occurs from damaged, anal veins, the condition is internal piles or hemorrhoids. It may be a cause of anemia and weakness which often goes undetected. Germs feed on the weak, damaged veins, further damaging it. And the damage to tissue in this region may progress to colon cancer, if care is not taken. That is why it is not enough to get back into the body piles that have protruded outwards as external hemorrhoids, bleeding or otherwise. The damage must be healed and the system cleansed of opportunistic germs, Candida in particular. I know of a gentleman who overcame his protruded piles and, literally, went to sleep. The bleeding must have persisted internally. He was always tired, perhaps from blood loss. One day, he slumped and died.


Traditional treatment There are many cures amazing to the uninitiated. In some Nigerian cultures, protruded bleeding piles are cured. When the sufferer sprinkles a herb on his or her stool. Many, many years ago, I would have been a Doubting Thomas of His therapy. It is as amazing as a therapy I learned from Dr V.C. Vogal in his book, THE NATURE DOCTOR. When bleeding becomes life-threatening, he says, get a live chicken, kill it and get some flesh, warm flesh which is placed over the bleeding zone. In the case

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As stated above, prevention is better than cure. And when the harm has been done, it is better to retrace one's steps dietarily. The first step is the achievement of soft and easy bowel movements. The habit has to be enctivated of drinking two to three glasses of warm water on rising and before bedtime, one or two glasses 30 minutes before a meal and two to three glasses two or three hours after Not the emphasis on warm water. Life is warmth. Death is cold. Cold water shrinks or congeals, slows down all process Each organ of the non digestive systems needs attention. The stomach can be aided with Apple Cider Vinegar, the Liver with Carquega, Chanka Piedra, Milk, and thistle, Dandelion, Maria Treben Bitters and Dynatonic. The Pancoeas does well with Amazon Pancreas Support, Swanson's Pancreas Essentials, All-Zyme et.c. I have already mentioned Fortiflax as a source of fiber. Other sources are Psyllum Powder, and green or red or blue powder drinks. Another important support in hemorrhoids, as in all cases of intestinal health, is probiotic. Probiotic comes in various power strengths measured in terms of how many billions of cells are in a capsuleal the time of manufacture. Some have one billion cells, others as many as 30 billion. Spicy foods are to be avoided, to prevent or reduce itching. Abrasive toilet papers should be avoided.

Stopping the bleeding


HIS is the province of astringent herbs. Long ago, I witnessed the wonders of Chanka Predra which the Yoruba call Ehinbisono or ehin olube. When I gave an Igbo Chief resident in Badagry a local preparation, he took it with disbelief. About three days later, he telephoned, shouting "It's a miracle, it's a miracle." I may return to this herb, if space permits. Ice cube wrapped in an handkerchief and placed over the pile causes the nerves to shrink and, thereby, pull in the protrusion. In English folklore, raw, bruised onion is applied to inflamed hemorrhoids. But this remedy is not advisable where the tissue is sore. Another useful herb is pilewort, an acrid tasting but fast acting herbs, taken as tea or used as an ointment, just like Marigold.

Healing the veins First, intestinal pressure has to stopped to avoid pressure on the veins. Therapies which help varicose veins also help piles. In this regard, proprietary supplements such as Healthy Veins and the Witch hazel. Professor of medicine Marvin Schuser, M.D., head of the department of digestive diseases at Frascus Scct KEY Medical Centre in BALTIMORE, Maryland, United States, is reported by editors of THE DOCTOR'S BOOK OF HOME REMEDIES as saying "Barbers use Witch Hazel when they cut you‌because it causes the blood vessels to shrink down and contract" The same book asks: Stoneroot, the herbal solution? Stoneroot is NOT another name for Chanka Predra, an Asian name which means "Stone breaker" or "Stone crusher" because, traditionally, it is used by herbalists to expel kidney stones. It isn't surprising, therefore, that it is a lead ingredient in Amazon KDY-CL, which has helped in some cases of kidney failure warranting dialysis. Says Dr. Grady Deal, D.C, Ph.D., in the book: "I have one patient who has found that collinsonia is the only flung that will control his hemorrhoids" . Richard Marbey corroborates this view in his NEW AGEHERBALIST when he says the "main use is to strengthen the structure and function of the Veins" and that "it is particularly food for the treatment of hemorrhoids. Chanka Predra, the stone crusher, has been extensively studied as an antimalerial, diuretic, stone expeller from kidneys and the gall bladder, astringent, pain killer, hypertension, diabetes, liver ailments, antiviral properties, hepatitis, bronchitis, urinary tract injections, hiccups, digestive disorders and lots more. I have no doubt that, with all this help from Nature, hemorrhoids should never strike anyone and, if they have, their revisal should be speedy, even in cases such as the seemed enquery, where the protrusion is as large as a folded palm, bleeding and taking time to recoil the battle of waterlow would have taken a different course if French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte knew what to do with his hemorrhoids. We appear to know better. Aren't we luckier?

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e-Business Wanted! User-friendly Internet Despite the landing of three submarine cables in the country and the bandwidth provided by SAT 3, access cost and speed remain a challenge to Internet users, reports LUCAS AJANAKU


HEN Joseph Akomolafe bought a modem from one of the service providers for N4,500 a few months ago, he thought his problems wth getting Internet access on his laptop at home were over. A resident of Ajasa Community, a Lagos suburb, he said he was compelled to buy the modem to stop constant harrassment by plain-clothe policemen who raid cyber cafes. He also thought he could work within the comfort of his home and assist his kids to do their homeworks. He was wrong as he learnt later that there is no network coverage in his area. “I inserted the modem and waited for it to get installed. Installation completed, I bought recharge card and signed up to a data plan. I was shocked that it could not connect to the Internet. I had to start searching for signal around the neighbourhood. When I eventually got one, the speed was slow and frustrating,” he told The Nation, adding that he had no choice but to give out the modem to his undergraduate younger brother. The experience of Joseph is similar to that of Richard Adeyemi, a resident of Baruwa, another Lagos suburb. According to Adeyemi, who is self-employed, he had bought the modem of a particular Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operator on the recommendation of his friend who lives and works in Ikeja, Lagos. Thinking that what was good for the goose would also be sauce for the gander, he bought the modem and took his time to install it as instructed. “After the installation, I recharged and hooked-up to a data plan. I was disappointed that the signal strenght was not good enough to open the internet pages I wanted. The speed was slow. The waiting game was painful and frustrating,” he said. The experiece of Akomolafe and that of Adeyemi confirmed those of other Nigerians who have subscribed to one data plan or the other from telecos. Nigerians are disappointed that they are going through this harrowing experience despite the commercial launch of three submarine cables in the country. In addition, they still pay through their noses for services they don’t get. According to them, the monopoly of bandwidth supply hitherto enjoyed by Sat 3 undersea cable through former staterun, but now moribund telco, NITEL, has been broken by the coming on stream of Glo 1, MainOne and the West Afrcan Cable System (WACS) which MTN funded substantially. The expectation of a new era of low cost and speedy internet access brought about by the promises of owners of the cables, meant that it would lead to a 50 per cent crash in the cost of bandwidth in Nigeria, as it is in other countries where the cables have landing points. The Chief Executive Officer of Etisalat Nigeria, Steven Evan, said the country has attained maturity in voice, adding that the next frontier is data. The same sentiment was shared by the Executive Vice-Chairman (EVC) of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Eugene Juwah. However, telecoms and submarine cable operators have laid the blame at the footstep of the government, citing the punitive cost of bandwidth in the country.They said submarine cable operators have tried by bringing broadband capacity to the country through their submarine cables, but lamented that the broadband capacities were being underutilised because of the absence of a national backbone infrastructure that will take broadband capacities to the nooks and carnnies of the country for last-mile connectivity. Director, Regulatory Affairs for Airtel Nigeria, Mr Tobechukwu Okigbo, said the government must address the situation, by fully supporting telecoms operators in taking broadband capacities from the shores of the country, to address the needs of the people in the hinterland, instead of leaving it to the operators alone. An official of MainOne has given an insight to what is wrong with the system. The official, who spoke in Lagos, said most consumers are yet to feel the impact of the broadband services. The official ascribed the major reason for this, as the paucity of access to infrastructure for the distribution and last mile portion of service provision from existing infrastructure owners to end

A submarine cable being pulled ashore.

users, adding that service providers are compelled to choose between developing their own backbone network infrastructure, or are compelled to purchase access from the existing last mile providers at cut throat, uncompetitive prices. Speaking on the development, Ismail Olubiyi, Chief Executive Officer, Geoid Telecom Nigeria, an internet service provider (ISP), said the absence of last mile infrastructure is responsible for the low speed and high bandwidth cost. “Both Glo 1 and MainOne submarine cables have landing stations, but they have not made provisions for last mile connectivity to all areas. Unless that is looked into, crash in pricing and speed may not be feasible in the forseeable future,” he said. On the contrary, the Chief Executive Officer, Telecoms Answers Associate, Titi Omo-Ettu, argued that the solution is not in government providing infrastructure, but in making the environment conducive for private investors to do so. “Many solutions have been thought out and we have identified and recommended them. One solution is the one that our firm has presented to NCC for endorsement and it has been endorsed. We are working now to mobilise the industry to raise the level of penetration of available internet capacity which must be taken from the mouths of the submarine cables in Lagos to all corners of the country. “Our own solution involves mobilising industry players to confront the barriers to investment and asking for government to support the needs of investors when they come forth. The major barriers are access to funding and building human capacity,” Omo-Ettu said. Glo 1 undersea cable, which has since gone commercial, is a-9,800km-long cable from the UK through Mauritania, Morocco and 16 West African countries with dedicated extension to New York, anchored at its Landing Station at Alpha Beach, Lekki, Lagos. The $800million undersea cable was fianaced solely by Nigeria’s second national operator, Globacom. Glo 1 cable is expected to deliver transmission capacity that will radically change Nigeria and Africa’s economic landscape by providing high speed internet services, thereby making telecom services much faster, more reliable and

‘Many solutions have been thought out and we have identified and recommended them. We are working to mobilise the industry to raise the level of penetration of available Internet capacity which must be taken from the mouths of the submarine cables in Lagos to all corners of the country. Our solution involves mobilising industry players to confront the barriers to investment and asking for government to support the needs of investors when they come forth. The major barriers are access to funding and building human capacity’

cheaper for consumers. With a capacity of 640 Gigabit per second and an ultimate capacity of 2.5 Terabit per second, experts say its ultimate capacity is enough to cater for the required broadband capacity of Nigeria for at least in the next 15 to 20 years. The facility will provide the needed opportunity for West African countries and, indeed, Africa to leap-frog economically through an excellent communication network and a cost-effective voice, data, video and e-commerce services across Africa, Europe and elsewhere. With 99.9 per cent up time reliability, world-class long distance voice, video and data communication services for African customers, the undersea cable will support the large bandwidth requirements of direct consumers and other service providers. The firm said the cable will free up resources for other forms of investments which governments and business developments need through broad market coverage at high capacity and at a fraction of cost and time, and also facilitate foreign investment and employment opportunities in the sub region. The Intrepid, the ship which brought the Glo 1 cable, left for Accra, Ghana to complete the Phase One of the installation in other West African countries, including Senegal and Cote D’Ivoire. Glo 1 in Ghana will also boost the nationwide launch of Glo Mobile Ghana. Glo also said the Phase two of the submarine cable project will connect South Africa through Angola. The MainOne submarine fibre optic cable involves, the laying of 7,000 kilometres of submarine fibre optic cable between Seixal (a suburb of Lisbon) in Portugal, Accra in Ghana, and Lagos. The system is based on a trunk-and-branch topology, and it includes branching units to the Canary Islands, Morocco, Senegal, and Côte d’Ivoire. The 1.92 Terabits per second of available bandwidth, is being leased wholesale to telecoms operators and internet service providers on an open access basis, thereby encouraging competitive pricing and large customer base. According to the Chief Executive Officer, Funke Opeke, with 1.92Terabites per ssecond in submarine capacity, MainOne is capable of effectively servicing the connectivity requirements of West Africa. Sector analysts say the investments are coming at an appropriate time as it will unlock the constrained West African telecoms market and boost the economic potential of the region. “A compelling opportunity exists to lower the restrictive cost of international telecoms and significantly expand internet access via submarine cable, which will lead to greater efficiency and more competitive business. MainOne is an important step towards realising this opportunity,” an expert said. WACS is 500 Gb/s initial capacity upgradable to 5.12 Tb/ s, the most of any undersea cable landing in Africa to date, a capcity which is actually too much for coastal areas with direct access. In most of the nations served by the WACS cable, mobile broadband will become a reality. 4G and LTE will truly be possible. MTN Nigeria said it has rolled out a bouquet of services running on the new ultra-high capacity submarine cable. The services, according to the telco, are being rolled out and managed by MTN Business, a division of the company focused on business-to-business solutions.




Airtel condemns NCC over distressed CDMA operators’merger


IRTEL Nigeria has condemned the approval granted three distressed Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operators by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to merge. The development, it warned, was capable of giving undue advantage to that segement over Global System for Mobile (GSM) communication by unleashing anti-competition practices. Shola Adeyemi of Airtel’s Regulatory Affairs Department, who spoke in Lagos, also faulted the non-delineation of the telecoms market before the study on the levels of competition in the industry. He argued that the action amounted to putting the cart before the horse. He said: “The proposed merger by the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operators (Multilink, MTS and Starcomms), which will establish a single national Long Term Evolution (LTE) broadband operator is an action capable of giving the CDMA operators a competitive advantage over GSM operators who are unable to launch LTE services in Nigeria owing to the dearth of spectrum and until release of the Spectrum in 2015 as announced by the NCC.” He warned that the devlopment

Stories by Lucas Ajanaku

might result in the CDMA operators having a dominant position in the broadband market. Adeyemi, who spoke at NCC Stakeholder’s Forum, lamented the impact of interconnect debts on GSM operators. He said: “Some CDMA operators do not comply with the terms of the Interconnect Agreements and are owing GSM operators substantial amounts as Interconnect debts. This act has an impact on the operators’ cash flow and network expansion projects as well as increases operators’ bad debt exposure. “The Commission’s inability to intervene and compel the CDMA operators to pay their debts is spurring them to act with impunity thereby distorting the telecommunications market. It is noteworthy to mention that failure to comply with Interconnection obligations under the Competition Practices Regulations 2007 is a conduct deemed to be substantial lessening of competition.” Adeyemi recalled that the NCC informed operators in September 2012 that it was conducting a study on the level of competition in the industry and that it had appointed

KPMG as its consultants. He said: “We are concerned that the Commission did not clearly state the specific market in focus and the purpose of the study.(Section 20 of the Competition Practices Regulations, 2007 requires the Commission before examining potential dominance in telecommunications markets to define the relevant markets).” Adeyemi recalled that when a similar exercise was conducted by the Commission in 2008/2009, leading to the determination on dominance in selected markets in 2010, the market areas in focus were identified prior to the examination of dominance. “In our view, it is only after a proper market delineation has been carried out that an in-depth market review can be conducted to enable the Commission determine the level of competition as well as whether telecoms operators hold a position of dominance, and, if so whether they are abusing this position by acting in a manner that substantially lessens competition,” he said, adding that the telco has it doors opened to discuss other anticompetitive practices directly with the regulator and consultants.

Microsoft launches Windows 8


NITED States technology giant, Microsoft, has launched the Windows 8 in Nigeria, promising to revolutionise user’s experience. Speaking at the event, Emmanuel Onyeje, country manager, Microsoft Anglophone, West Africa, said Windows 8 showcases local application that will create a fun for marketing. He added that the new the application is in now available in many countries. He said Microsoft’s Open Door event addresses the demand for more spaces in which African technology professionals are able to experience the latest-generation technologies first-hand, exchange ideas, build skills, and network with their local IT community and Microsoft technology experts. Windows 8 is available for download in over 140 markets and in 37 languages and at retail locations around the world including Nigeria. “With the launch of Windows 8, Microsoft is unveiling a re-imagined Windows to the world. Whether you want a tablet or a PC, whether you want to consume or create, whether you want to work or play – Windows 8 delivers a personalised experience that fits your unique style and needs. Windows 8 will be available in two

By Adedeji Fakorede

versions at retail, Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro,” he said. According to him, for the firm’s business customers, Windows 8 Enterprise offers new possibilities in mobile productivity with features such as Windows To Go, Direct Access, and Branch Cache, as well as enhanced end-toend security with features including Bit Locker and AppLocker. Also showcased at the event was a new member of the Windows family designed for ARM-based tablets, Windows RT, which will be available pre-installed on new devices. Windows 8 features the new fast and fluid Start screen that gives people oneclick access to the apps and content they care most about, the entirely new Internet Explorer 10 that is perfect for touch, and built-in cloud capabilities with Sky Drive. In addition to the range of new devices available, consumers can also upgrade their existing PCs. Through the end of January, consumers running PCs with Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7, are qualified to download Windows 8 Pro the statement added. An offical of the firm said that the global availability of the product started in October 26, 2012, adding that based on the embargo placed on shipment to Nigeria, it is not yet available in the country, promising that Windows 8 would be available tomorrow.

Vodacom introduces M2M solutions


•From left: Dr. Wesley Okei of University of Lagos (UNILAG); Segun Fayose of MultiChoice Nigeria; Mrs. Aderonke Bello, Managing Director, Innovative Technology Literacy Services Limited and Prof. Folorunsho Falade of UNILAG, at the final judging of the DStv Eutelsat Star Awards in Lagos.


Base stations’closure affecting service quality, says group

HE Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) has faulted the closure of Base Transmission Stations (BTS) by law enforcement agencies because of its members’ refusal to pay spurious charges. President of the group, Gbenga Adebayo, said the development has taken a toll on quality service delivery, urging the Federal Government to stop the agencies’ illegal activities. The BTS’ closure, he said, is affecting quality of service. He told The Nation in Lagos that the body might be compelled to seek redress if reason is not allowed to prevail over its quest for more internally generated revenue (IGR). He

insisted that resort to extra-judicial methods of employing task forces to forcefully seal off facilities is unacceptable. He recalled the spate of premeditated attacks on telecoms infrastructure and the losses incured due to the floods that swept across the country, which had combined to challenge quality of services. “In addition to the above issues faced by our industry, we continue to face closures of functional sites by agencies of government, and we hereby draw the attention of the Federal Government and the public to the continuous incessant and unlawful closure of tel-

ecommunication facility sites by some individuals, communities and indeed state authorities, in spite of the disasters that we face,” he said. According to him, the impunity by the task force using extra-legal means to effect such closures without regard for the inconveniences on telecoms subscribers and the socio-economic disruptions it presents gives great concern. “We are deeply concerned by this unending illegal closure of sites, as it does not enable service recovery and maintenance activities on functional sites,” he said, adding that this would affect service delivery.

Fed Govt okays PC ownership scheme


INISTER of Communication Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson, has launched the students PC ownership scheme with the theme: “promoting increased access and utilisation of ICTs in education”. The initiative was launched in conjunction with the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in Abuja. A statement by the ministry, quoted Mr Johnson as saying that the scheme is a collaborative and mutually beneficial effort among

PC assemblers, universities, banks, global technology companies and telecoms companies. ‘’This initiative is entirely technology driven and contributes to the growing number of e-commerce initiatives that will move us to the desired digital, diversified, productive and efficient economy,’’ she said. She informed participants at the launch that the technology used to power the initiative was developed by a group of extremely talented Nigerian software developers- a

testament to the fact that Nigerians can develop a viable and vibrant local software industry catering to the nation’s domestic needs and exportable to other markets. Mrs. Johnson decried the low PC penetration in Nigeria which is ranked the lowest in Africa. She added that affordability and availability of the devices and the slow pace by which ICTs were being adopted for teaching and learning in secondary and tertiary institutions was partly responsible for the low PC penetration in the country.

ODACOM Business Nigeria, providers of communication solutions, has launched its Machine-to-Machine (M2M) solutions suitable for the financial and the retail sector of Nigeria’s economy. The new Vodacom M2M solutions are dual-SIM enabled, providing reliable, secure and a cost-effective solutions for Automated Teller Machine (ATM), point of sales (POS) connectivity and back-up applications. In a statement, the firm stated that the solution, which includes ATMLink, POSLink and 3G BackUp represent a milestone in scalable M2M technology in Nigeria. These next-generation solutions utilise the GSM data network to connect retailer’s POS to the central servers or to the Nigerian Interbank Settlement Systems (NIBSS) network and the ATM to the bank’s central servers. It enables seamless network failover to a secondary GSM network in the event of failure on the primary network and vice versa, in which case, the user is oblivious to the network changeover. Speaking on the security of the solutions, the Product Manager,

Vodacom Business Nigeria, Abu Etu, said: “Our solutions are built on a secure network and all transactions are encrypted over the Vodacom MPLS network. We have put in place IPSEC tunneling, private APNs, SIM authentication and a host of security measures to provide much needed peace of mind.” For the Managing Director of the firm,Guy Clarke, “This technology provides huge opportunities for a fast growing market like Nigeria, especially in the enterprise space. By using M2M technology to provide viable solutions to our customers, we are delivering on our commitment to continuously provide best of breed products to support our customers businesses in any given way.” The M2M solutions are able to offer connectivity in commercial districts and remote locations across all 36 states of Nigeria. This is done by using our extensive countrywide network and leveraging the reach of the GSM data networks. At 99 per cent guaranteed availability, Vodacom’s M2M Solutions offer businesses the ability to improve service delivery and increase their competitive advantage.

WiniGroup, MobileIron seal deal UNITED States-based IT security company with strong focus on Nigeria and Africa, WiniGroup, has partnered with MobileIron, the 2012 Gartner rated leader in mobility, to bring mobile security to Nigeria. In three years, mobile IT according to a statement has become a core function of capability and competitive advantage for major organisations. The firm said the largest companies in the world trust MobileIron as their foundation for mobile IT, adding that it was purpose-built to secure and manage mobile apps, documents and devices. In this era of mobile commuting, mobile security has become a strong need for companies whose data resides on mobile devices. This is because employees now have access to corporate solutions and company data via smart phones, thereby increasing the risk of exposure to the companies. Therefore, the need to secure companies and their information has led to investments in mobile security.


MobileIron has the ability to protect, delete and separate corporate and personal data on mobile devices, in the case of resignation of the employee or theft of such devices. However, the goal of mobile security is not to restrict – it is to enable broad-based capabilities and remain as invisible as possible to the end user.MobileIron is used by Fortune 500 organisations to protect their information, data and devices. The Vice-Chairman of Wini Group, Mr Tim Akano, says the opportunity that exists in the partnership with MobileIron is almost limtless at this material time. Wini Group as a company focuses on IT Security, Risk and Compliance and Business solutions with strong partnership with over 30 global IT security firms.WiniGroup has seen the great need for Nigerians also to have mobile security because of the increase in the use of smart phones in the country. The partnership would boost mobile security which is a major issue corporate organisations need to focus attention on.











CITYBEATS Police shot me twice, says guard presumed dead H

E lived to tell his story. A security guard, Nuhu Musa, who the Police claimed was found dead at a robbery scene last saturday, spoke yesterday on his ordeal. He told The Nation he was shot by policemen who thought he had died. The Police had rushed to the 2 chiloville Street, Ikota, Lekki, robbery scene, were Musa work as a guard. On arrival, the police team from Makoko Division reportedly shot Nuhu and two other persons – an employee of Access Bank identified as Femi Badejo and a yet-to-be-identified woman. The Police denied the shooting, saying Musa was found dead. The Nation learnt that the police are footing the bill of Mr. Badejo, who at St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos Island. Musa, who has just come out of coma at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), said “I was first

08033054340, 08034699757 E-mail:-

Pupils evacuated as fallen tanker spills content


By Precious Igbonwelundu

shot from the back and when I fell, the policeman still shot my chest,” he said, “Initially, I thought it was the armed robbers who had returned but when I heard oga Femi (Badejo) telling the policemen that I am not an armed robber and that they should not shoot me, that was when I knew they are police.” His uncle, Askira Adamu, a retired Assistant Superintendent of Police, (ASP) told The Nation. “But for the landlord and other tenants who contributed money and rushed him to the hospital, he would have died just like that.” Adamu expressed dissatisfaction with the police handling of the incident. He said: “I was at Abeokuta, Ogun State, in a meeting which the Lagos State Police Commissioner also attended. Immediately I heard the incident, I told the CP but till this moment, not one policeman has come to see him.

•Nuhu at the hospital... yesterday

“It is very disappointing that till now, the police have not thought it wise to come and see the condition of an innocent civilian whose life they almost wasted. Instead, they have been spreading rumour across that my son is dead while he is still alive. It means they want to dodge the issue. “The mistake has been done, one expects the Force to admit its error and even tag it a coincidence. I am also waiting for his father, who is my younger brother to come from Borno State, and then we will know what action to take.” Some residents who spoke to The Nation corroborated Musa . A resident, who spoke on con-

dition of anonymity, said he was not robbed since his apartment was upstairs. He said the robbers did not shoot anyone in the building, adding that it was the police that shot the victims. “Some of the tenants attacked the police for shooting them and they told us that they were shot because they were outside; they said assumed that they were armed robbers. “It will be disgraceful for the police to turn around and deny shooting Musa, while they accepted that they shot Badejo. We were all there when it happened and we shall testify against the police if need be,” he said.

Group donates hearing aid to physically challenged

A •The fake LASTMA men.... yesterday.

Two fake LASTMA officials charged with extortion


WO men, Bolaji Adigun, 37, and Hakeem Adebesin, 42, were yesterday arraigned before a Lagos Chief Magistrate’s Court in Ikeja for allegedly posing as officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA). The fake LASTMA officers were arraigned before Chief Magistrate Olufemi Isaac on a four-count charge of conspiracy, false representation, forgery of traffic tickets, and criminal extortion. Adigun and Adebesin, who hail from Lagos and Ogun states, were arrested at Mile 12, Lagos, during an operation led by the General Manager of LASTMA, Mr. Babatunde Edu said he received petitions from motorists who had fallen the imposters victim.

By Adebisi Onanuga and Miriam Ndikanwu

At the time of their arrest, Edu said the defendants had an inventory book which showed they had arrested about 13 vehicles for various offences. Under interrogation, the suspects presented identity cards to prove they are workers of Ikosi-Isheri Local Council Development Area of the state, but later claimed that they are consultants to the council, contracted to enforce traffic rules and regulations around the axis. Edu, while enjoining residents to disregard any enforcement agents in mufti, said LASTMA officials are always in uniform with name tags on their chest. Motorists, he said, had the right to challenge law enforcement agents

The prosecuting counsel, Babatunde Sumonu, told the Chief Magistrate that the defendants fraudulently used forged traffic tickets purportedly issued by the traffic section of LASTMA, with which they criminally extorted money from unsuspecting motorists. According to Sumonu, the offence committed is contrary to sections 411 (1), 78(b), and 364 (1), criminal law of Lagos State 2011 and is punishable under Section 363 (1) of the same law. The offence is also said to be punishable under Section 2 of the Illegal Collection of Dues in Public Place (Prohibition) Law 2003. The defendants pleaded not guilty and the prosecuting counsel told the court he was ready to call two witnesses.

CIVIL society organisation Women Protection Organisation (WOPO), will today in partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Education donate 1,000 pieces of hearing aids to pupils with hearing disability in Lagos State. The donation which will take place at Campos Sports Complex, Ajele, Lagos Island, is the outcome of WOPO’s engagement with the Social Mobilization Units in two (2) Local Government Education Authority Epe and Lagos Island under Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (ESSPIN) and Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) since 2010. A statement by one of the directors of the group Mrs Oluwatoyin Towobola said: Through our intervention with the communities, we discovered that some of the School children have challenges ranging from hearing impairment, sight problems to physical problems of movement. These hinder their ability to enjoy the benefit of free education, more so that their parents are poor and could hardly assist them with the aids required to function effectively.

Tenant gets 50-hour community service for battery


FTER seven years of trial, a 63-year-old man, Oladimeji Aderibigbe, has been sentenced to 50 hours of community service by an Isolo Magistrate’s Court in Lagos. Aderibigbe was found guilty of maliciously damaging the property of his landlady, Mrs Adewunmi Ishola. He was arraigned in 2005 before Magistrate M.O. Ajayi, for allegedly damaging a wall and door frames valued N6,700. The charge reads: “that you

By Abosede Alimi

Aderibigbe on August 1, 2005, at about 8pm, at 31, Maye Street, Yaba, maliciously damaged an erected wall and door frames valued at N6, 700, property of Adewunmi Ishola, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 451 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Lagos, 1996.” Aderibigbe pleaded not guilty and was granted bail. He told the court that he rented the two-bedroom apart-

ment from the complainant’s father in 1970 and that there was no restriction on his movement. However, after the death of the landlord, Aderibigbe said the complainant erected a burglar proof that blocked the entrance to his apartment and told him to use another entrance. “I was not comfortable with the development and decided to remove the gate, only for her to arrest me and I was lat-

er charged to court,” Aderibigbe said. Delivering judgment, Magistrate Ajayi said: “Having gone through trial and with the facts and evidence before this honourable court, I hereby find the defendant guilty as charged. “He is hereby sentenced to 50 hours of community service at Isolo Local Government Area, and he is also ordered to write an apology letter to the registry.”

HERE was panic in Anthony Village, Lagos, yesterday when a fallen full tanker’s spilled content spread into a private school. Pupils of Green Springs School, were immediately evacuated. A cement laden truck had hit the tanker which fell and spilled its content. The Nation learnt that the 33,000 litre capacity tanker, which was coming from Oshodi, was descending the curvy Access Road, linking Ikorodu Road at Anthony, when the incident occurred. Lagos State Fire Service Director Mr Rasak Fadipe said the situation was quickly brought under control, with the movement of two fire fighting vehicles to the scene to avert any disaster. “We got a call about the incident and immediately we deployed two vehicles from our Anthony and Isolo stations to the scene, to ensure that there was no outbreak of fire,” he said. He said the fire fighters made a blanket on the spillage with chemical foam compound,

By Miriam Ndikanwu

adding that the spilled content spread into a nearby canal which was also blanketed with the chemical to reduce the impact and prevent fire outbreak. News of the fallen tanker was spread to the nearby mechanic village and residents living close to the canal to ensure that there was no spark from their end. “We followed the spillage with the foam compound down to the canal to blanket it as well and there after went round the area to discuss with the mechanics of the danger involved, and that there should not be any naked light or spark that will lead to a major disaster,” he added. Fadipe said besides talk with the residents, the government went on air to alert motorist plying that route not to speed. “We cordoned off the entire area and our men were on ground to ensure that motorists were not on high speed. And officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority later towed the tanker to their yard in Oshodi,” he said.

Why PCRC was created by ex-IGP


HE Police C o m m u n i t y Relations Committee (PCRC) was established to foster good relationship between law enforcement agents and the public, and enhance community policing, its initiator and former Inspector-General of Police Etim Inyang has said. Inyang, who spoke in Lagos when Rivers State PCRC Chairman Mr. Austen Yong, donated copies of a book on the committee to him, said policing would be impossible if policemen

distanced themselves from the public. He said participatory policing, where the public works in tandem with the police, will engender mutual confidence and exchange of information, to facilitate arrest of suspects, quick gathering of evidence and prosecution. Inyang urged the PCRC to live up to its name by assisting the police protect lives and property, avoid abuse of their position, merely to secure bail for suspects or intervening in just any arrest.

GUS 9: Onyinye ‘dumps’ Paschal


ead Warrior, Onyinye picked Nuhu as her partner over Paschal when she had the opportunity of selecting a partner in the day’s challenge. Perhaps,she had forgotten that she and Paschal emerged winners when they were paired in the ‘Raise Your Flag’ and ‘Ladder of Pain’ tasks earlier in the competition. Onyinye’s choice meant Paschal and James had to team up for the challenge. Tagged Wounded Warriour, the Council of Elders decided to simulate a rescue mission in the challenge. A member of the team would act as the wounded warrior while the other would be the carrier. The carrier was to carry the wounded warrior on his back. The latter’s feet were not to touch the ground at any point during the game.

With the aid of a compass and coordinates, they were to make their way over a beam, and search for two clues vital to the search for the Gatekeeper’s Fortune. Paschal was his team’s wounded warrior while James was the carrier. Nuhu carried Onyinye throughout the challenge. Both teams found two clues each, but the James and Paschal team finished first and won the challenge. James went from bearer of Stump of Shame to Head Warrior. Chidi Mokeme, the anchor man, asked both teams to make sense of the clues when they get back to their camp. The show continues tonight on AIT, African Magic World (DSTV), Real Star (Star Times), AKBC, Uyo and ITV (Benin) at 10pm.




Market recovery: Investors, stakeholders meet today •NSE adds three stocks to market-making portfolio EADING portfolio investors, fund managers, operators and policy makers for the Nigerian financial services industry will meet today to brainstorm on quickwins and medium to long term strategies to ensure sustained development of the Nigerian capital market. Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala will lead the policymaking team that includes the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Lamido Sanusi, Minister of Trade and Investment, Dr. Segun Aganga and Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), to the discussions with private operators, including the Nigerian and international fund managers and investment advisors. The stakeholders’ rally is expected to identify strategies for economic growth with particular focus on emerging opportunities and the extent to which the government reforms and movements at the macro level can impact on market development. Managing Director, FBN Capital, Mr. Kayode Akinkugbe, whose investment firm is putting together the annual investors’ conference, said high-level engagements between policy makers and private sector operators would further help to unlock existing and potential opportunities in the economy. He noted that previous in-


By Taofik Salako and Tonia Osundolire

vestors’ forum contributed immensely to boosting Nigeria’s image as a foremost destination for investments in sub-Saharan Africa through deepening of Nigerian capital markets, improvement of access to unlisted companies as well as highlighting capitalraising and growth opportunities. He outlined that discussions would centre around major macroeconomic issues that could impact on the Nigerian capital market including oil and gas sector growth: the contributions of indigenous services firms; unlocking the value in Nigerian brick and mortar. It will also dwell on commercializing investment opportunities across the agriculture value chain; boosting investor confidence in the Nigerian equities and fixed income markets; attracting sustainable foreign investments into Nigeria and transforming Nigeria at the state level. Market analysts have commended the two-day high-profile brainstorming sessions, noting that achieving longterm and sustainable outcomes from reforms would require unwavering commitment and collaboration among all stakeholders. Analysts said the focus on key areas as the economy power and agriculture are critical to sustaining expected outcomes of ongoing reforms.

The high-profile policy dialogue comes just as the Nigerian stock market recovered from a bearish streak that shaved average return from about 20 per cent to about 26 per cent. The All Share Index (ASI), the benchmark index at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), heaved a sigh of relief with a modest recovery of 0.21 per cent yesterday, indicating addition of N18 billion to market values of equities. The ASI rose from index-onboard of 26,290.41 points to close at 26,346.70 points while aggregate market value of all equities improved from N8.378 trillion to N8.396 trillion. Nestle Nigeria led the rally with a gain of N9 to close at N590. Cadbury Nigeria followed with addition of N1 to close at N25 while Nigerian Breweries added 97 kobo to close at N135.03. However, Flour Mills Nigeria Plc led the decliners with a loss of N2.35 to close at N63.80. Oando followed with a loss of 60 kobo to close at N11.40 while UAC of Nigeria dropped by 22 kobo to close at N40. Total turnover stood at 394.93 million shares worth N2.39 billion in 4,175 deals. Meanwhile, the NSE will today add the trio of Dangote Flour Mills Plc, Unity Bank Plc and Prestige Assurance Plc to market making stocks, bringing the number of stocks under the initiative to 30. The inclusion of the three stocks becomes effective today. The NSE had said it plans to bring all stocks on its board to the market making programme over a period of six months. The addition of new stocks has been taking place every fortnight since inception on September 18, 2012.





‘Govt needs N16t to bridge infrastructure gaps’ Besides, it said that countries with large pool of funds generally have better developed economies, with developing countries holding only three per cent of longterm funds (LTFs) globally while developed countries hold 34 per cent and emerging economies hold the majority 63 per cent. It hinted that global LTFs range from a size of $300

billion in foreign direct investments to $3 trillion in private equity funds with Nigeria having 15 per cent sub-optimal growth gap, going by the difference between nominal output growth of 22 per cent and real output growth of seven per cent. It said that another N16 trillion is needed to meet the population’s housing needs.

Tax director advocates tax system reform

IDELITY Bank Plc has adopted the Equator Principles as a means of demonstrating its commitment to environmental sustainability. The bank explained in a statement that the principles are a credit risk management framework for determining, assessing and managing environmental and social risk in project finance. It said the principles are adopted voluntarily by financial institutions and are ap-


HE Federal Government requires N16 trillion to provide the needed infrastructure in the economy, the National Pension Commission (PenCom) and the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) have said. The duo disclosed this in a joint statement issued at the end of Stakeholders’ Forum on Nigeria’s Pen-

Stories by Collins Nweze

sion System held in Abuja. The highlights from the presentations and discussions at the forum indicated that Nigeria’s pension sector currently has 5.32 million registered contributors. PenCom said that there are currently N2.93 trillion in pension assets with 5.3 million registered pension


ness in the country. The director in a statement explained that tax matters need to be made easy to administer given the important role they play in the economic and national development of the country. Speaking at the 2012 Ernst & Young’s Africa Tax Conference held in, South Africa, he said Nigeria, with its 37 states tax authorities still has a lot to

TAX director at the Nigeria Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr. Samuel Ogungbesan has called for reforms in the Nigerian tax system to enhance stability of the sector. He also said that FIRS is reengineering Nigeria’s tax systems to ensure that there is transparency, understanding and certainty on legislation and practice when doing busi-

contributors, about 64 per cent of whom are below 40 years. It said that only 25 to 30 per cent of quoted stocks are active on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). The Commission also said about that same percentage meets minimum criteria for pension funds investment and this form up to 80 per cent of the trading activities in the market.

learn on taxation. However, he explained that Nigerian tax system has undergone significant changes in recent times as the laws are being reviewed for simplicity. He said a new National Tax policy has been drafted - awaiting government approval. “The policy, which will be enforced by the Federal Ministry of Finance, calls for standardisation between tax

law and practice across all tiers of government. It also provides for exchange of information and statistics across all spheres in order to keep tabs on taxpayers, “he said. The policy, he said, will facilitate coordination between all agencies of government and harmonisation of laws and practices across State Internal Revenue Boards.


Private equity poised for push into Africa


from banks and insurance, to places to eat out. That consumer boom is at the heart of Carlyle’s deal on Wednesday for a minority stake in Tanzania-based agricultural commodities firm Export Trading Group, one of the world’s largest cashew nut traders, which employs more than 7,000 people across 30 African countries. It’s also behind Emerging Capital Partners investment in Nairobi Java House, the

RIVATE equity houses are swapping lowgrowth buyout deals in Europe and North America for a slice of booming consumer demand in Africa. According to Reuters News, they are drawn by a youthful and booming population that could almost double to two billion by 2050, some of the fastest growing economies in the world, and an emerging middle class, which wants everything

the Carlyle Sub-Saharan Africa Fund. Private equity firms and their investors that long shied away from sub-Saharan Africa, worried about losing money on deals in countries in the grip of war and corruption, are changing their views on the risks as democracy takes hold. And with portfolios focused on Europe and North America scarred by poor returns from deals that firms

largest so-called casual dining restaurant in Kenya, twice the size of its nearest rival. But this is no mega-chain. It has just 14 restaurants. “Africa is an emerging market in a similar fashion to Asia or Latin America and the story behind it is growth and the emerging middle classes. And that’s what we are focusing on, ways to tap into that growth,” said Marlon Chigwende, Managing Director and Co-Head of


Rate %


3-Year 5-Year 5-Year

35m 35m 35m

11.039 12.23 13.19

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

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

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

Price Loss 2754.67 447.80

INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%


Rate % 10.96 9.62 12.34

Date 28-04-2012 “ 14-04-2012




7.70 24.00 18.08 5.40 1.54 0.97 8.40 12.75 0.58 5.66


8.08 25.00 18.81 5.60 1.59 1.00 8.56 12.98 0.59 5.75


4.94 4.17 4.04 3.70 3.25 3.09 1.90 1.80 1.72 1.59

O/PRICE 12.00 1.61 0.61 1.03 1.48 1.93 1.10 2.26 5.30 0.53

C/PRICE 11.40 1.53 0.58 0.98 1.41 1.84 1.05 2.16 5.10 0.51

CHANGE 5.00 4.97 4.92 4.85 4.73 4.66 4.55 4.42 3.77 3.77

Exchange Rate (N) 155.2 155.8 155.7

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


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

Current Before

C u r r e n t CUV Start After %

147.6000 239.4810 212.4997

149.7100 244.0123 207.9023

150.7100 245.6422 209.2910

-2.11 -2.57 -1.51














July ’11

July ’12





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

8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 1.00% 12.10%

8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 2.00% 12.10%

9.50% 5.50% 30.00% 2.00% 11.8%

NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days


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

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

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

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

% Change -1.44% -1.44%


LOSERS AS AT 14-11-12


Amount Sold ($) 150m 138m 113m

EXHANGE RATE 6-03-12 Currency

Tenor 91-Day 182-Day 1-Year

plied where total project capital costs exceed $10 million. “By adopting the Equator Principles, we commit to providing loans only to projects that pass environment risk assessment, such that focus on profit making does not endanger human lives,” the bank said. The principles were launched in 2003, following the convening of nine international banks in London, together with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), to discuss the development of a banking industry framework for addressing environmental and social risks in project financing that could be applied globally and across all industry sectors. This framework is based on the Policy and Performance Standards and the Environmental Health and Safety Guidelines set down by the IFC.



OBB Rate Call Rate

Fidelity adopts Equator Principle




paid too much for and financed with too much cheap debt, they have been under pressure to find better deals. But Africa has been slower than some had hoped. Some $698 million of deals have been done in sub-Saharan Africa in 2012 so far, compared with more than $49 billion in the United States, according to data from the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association (EMPEA) and PitchBook.

•Finance Minister Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Offer Price

Bid Price


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NEWS Atiku, Okorocha for school honours From Okodili Ndidi, Owerri


ORMER VicePresident Atiku Abubakar and Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha will on Saturday be decorated as grand patrons of the alumni of the Federal Government College, Okigwe, Imo State. Addressing reporters on the 35th anniversary of the college, the spokesman for the organisers, Dr. Onumo Harold, said the two were chosen because of their contributions to the development of education. Dr Harold said in the last 35 years, the school has undergone a revolution that has repositioned it as one of the best Federal Government colleges in the Southeast. The spokesman said the alumni would launch a N100million water reticulation project during the anniversary. The head teacher, Mrs. Rose Nwachukwu, explained that the reunion of the Old Students’ Association would inspire the pupils to strive hard to achieve their dreams. She said the college’s challenges include inadequate infrastructure, such as modern classrooms, toilets and indiscipline among the students.

Four ‘kidnappers’arrested in Enugu


HE police in Enugu State have arrested four suspected kidnappers, who allegedly abducted an eight-year-old boy and two others. The victims were rescued unhurt. The suspects, Victor Augustine, from Kogi State; Ezeani Chidiebere, from Imo State; Ogbonna Nwobodo, from Enugu State and Matthew Baba, from Benue State, were said to have abducted little John Ogiri and two other un-

From Chris Oji, Enugu

named persons at Aguwani Zone 1, Akwuke, Enugu South Local Government. The victims were allegedly taken to an uncompleted building in the area. The mother of the boy, Mary Ogiri, was said to have raised the alarm, which attracted her neighbours. It was learnt that some


MO State residents have decried the activities of the newly inaugurated Imo Security Network. They described its members as brutal and unchecked. The residents urged the Rochas Okorocha administration to disband the group and kit the police and other security agents to protect the life and property of the people. The vigilance group, which is equipped with sophisticated weapons and vehicles, has allegedly unleashed terror on many residents, especially in Owerri, the state capital. Those who spoke with The

From Okodili Ndidi, Owerri

Nation, in confidence, alleged that the security outfit has been harassing and intimidating perceived political enemies of the government and cowing the people. Investigation showed that there is tension in opposition parties following the onslaught against council chairmen by the group. But the Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Mr. Ebere Uzoukwa, said the security outfit is “a lawfully constituted group working in tandem with se-


vating sand at the base of the Niger Bridge to desist or face the wrath of the government. The governor spoke after inspecting the Bridge Head and its environs. He said the action of the excavators threaten the bridge. In a statement in Nnewi, Obi said he was shocked to see some people excavating sand from underneath the

From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Nnewi

bridge. The governor said he would not allow anything to affect the strength of the important transportation link. According to him, his administration has taken steps to check congestion on the bridge to avoid dead weight as well as remove obstructions and illegal structures in the area.

munity level and in the nation. This is with the view to remedy the situation through multi-sectoral collaboration.” Topics to be examined include: Consequences of substance abuse on youths in Nigeria, by Mohammad A. Umar; Access to justice, policing narcotics: the indispensible role of the community, by Dr. N. D Nte, Head of Department, Intelligence and Security Studies, Novena University, Ogume, Delta State; War against illicit drugs: the effective media/security agencies collaboration, by the HOD Mass Communication, Rivers State University. Dignitaries expected on the occasion include the Minister of Youths; the Inspector-General of Police; the Comptroller-General of Customs; the National President of PCRC, Alhaji Ahmed Tahir; the Chairman, Senate Committee on Narcotics as well as the President , African Business School, Dr. Goddy Idaminabo.

Southeast urged to embrace constitution review


‘The security outfit is a lawfully constituted group working in tandem with security agencies in the relentless war against crime’ curity agencies in the relentless war against crime”. The police command said it has begun investigation into the cache of arms recovered from members of the vigilance group, who were

arrested by the police. About 12 members of the security outfit were arrested on Tuesday following their alleged involvement in the invasion of the 27 local government secretariats in the state to eject the council chairmen. Police spokesman Vitalis Onugu, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said the police were investigating the similarity in the security outfit’s uniform and that of senior police officers. He added that the police would probe who authorised the uniform and why.

Obi warns sand excavators near Niger NAMBRA State GovObi promised to discuss Bridge ernor Peter Obi has sand excavation and illegal

HE Rivers State chapter of the Police Community Relations Committee (PCRC) will hold its 2012 annual conference with the theme: Hard drugs: a threat to community and national security, on November 22. The Chairman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mr. Ahmadu Giade, will chair the conference. The state’s PCRC Chairman Austen Yong said the conference will hold at the Main Hall of the Ministry of Justice in Port Harcourt, the state capital. He said the conference will examine the nexus between drug trafficking and insecurity in the country. Yong said: “The PCRC conference will draw attention to the nexus between drug abuse and criminality, especially at the com-

HE Coordinator of the Southeast Progressive Elements, Mr. Igboeli Arinze, has urged the people of the region to brace up for the constitutional review process. He advised community leaders, members of the intelligentsia, civil society groups, the business class and university students to use the exercise to correct what he called the systematic neglect of the Igbo.

were helping the police in the investigation. Police Commissioner Musa Daura hailed the Awkunanaw Division of the command for its swift response and the public for heeding the woman’s cry for help. He urged the public to be security conscious and pass vital information to security agencies.

•Police to probe source of arms, uniform

NDLEA chief to chair police lecture on hard drugs


people quickly alerted the police on the incident. Following a tip-off, the police reportedly trailed the suspects to the uncompleted building and rounded them up. Spokesman for the police command, Ebere Amaraizu said investigation has begun into the incident. He added that the suspects

Residents decry activities of Imo vigilance group

warned those exca-


•Eight-year-old, two others rescued

The group leader urged the people to make presentations to National Assembly members on major demands, including creation of states and the need for true federalism. Speaking with The Nation in Enugu, Arinze said: “Let us ask ourselves the following questions: Are we satisfied with the present state of things in Nigeria, the Southeast in particular? Are we at home with the systematic marginalisation

of the Igbo, with the failings of the Nigerian state towards its people? Is it okay to live with this imbalance or shall we leave things to factors like chance or a change of heart by those who have chosen to humiliate NdiIgbo? Are we satisfied with the state of our infrastructure and the portrayal of the Southeast as the largest catchment area of abandoned projects by the Federal Government?”

collection of money from the excavators with the Minister of Works. An excavator, Mr. Ikechukwu Ugboma, said he and his colleagues paid some levies to the National Inland Waterways Authority and other agencies. He assured that the excavators would comply with the governor’s directive.


Abia trade fair begins today From Sunny Nwankwo, Aba

ABA’S maiden international trade fair, which would have begun on Monday, will start today. The fair, its organisers said, will attract over 20,000 investors from within and outside the country. Chairman of the trade fair management team, Mr Philip Ekwempu, told reporters in Aba, Abia State, that the event was shifted because of some logistics challenges. He said exhibitors will occupy about 400 stands indoors and outdoors during the fair. Ekwempu added that participation is open to business organisations in Nigeria, the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS) memberstates, diplomatic missions and trade representatives from European and Asian countries. He said the exhibitors from South Korea have indicated interest to participate in the fair. The chairman assured exhibitors of tight security, adding that a made-in-Aba television programme, Business Round Table, will feature for five days as well as a beauty show. Ekwempu urged investors in the Enyimba city to showcase their businesses at the fair. A member of the Planning Committee, Mr Chucks Okoye, described Aba as the centre of businesses in the Southeast and a gateway to the oil-rich Niger Delta. “Nigeria is the largest market in Africa and with unique opportunities for trade and investment in almost all its economic sectors. The timing of this fair is a unique opportunity for all,” he said.



NEWS Ukiwe urges Nigerians to fight insecurity FORMER Chief of General Staff (CGS) Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe (rtd) yesterday urged Nigerians to assist the government to fight insecurity and save the country from collapse. The former CGS spoke in his Lagos office when members of the Association of Industrial Security and Safety Operators of Nigeria (AISSON) visited him. He noted that the present insecurity across the country should bring Nigerians together for peace and security. Ukiwe said: “We cannot go on like this. Much effort is needed from all because no social or economic development can take place in the face of the present insecurity.” He urged AISSON members to ensure that the communiqué from the recent security seminar, organised by the association, is sent to President Goodluck Jonathan, whom he believed would pass same to the relevant authorities for implementation.

Gunmen attack Benue ACN chieftain


GUNMEN suspected to be members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) youth wing in Benue State have attacked Bala Bagu, a chieftain of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in Gboko. The politician, who bled profusely from the injury he sustained in the atteack, was left in a pool of his blood. Addressing reporters in

By Our Reporter

his hospital bed in Gboko, Bagu said he was leaving Gboko Mechanic Village after fixing his car at 5pm when gunmen in a bus shot at his Honda Accord car from behind. He said: “I heard gun shots from behind and the bullets narrowly missed me. Then a bus overtook my car and blocked it. Five men with pistols forced

me out of my car and started hitting me with their gun butts and sticks.” The ACN chieftain said a policeman saw what was happening and threatened to shoot his assailants. Bagu said this forced the hoodlums to flee while he was bleeding. Another group of hoodlums also invaded the home of ACN councillorship aspirant for Gboko

South, Shon Terhembe. Though the hoodlums did not meet him at home, they reportedly cut down the flowers and warned that they would cut him like that if he refuses to step down for the election. The police command said investigation into the incidents has begun. It added that security has been tightened in Gboko to forestall a breakdown of law and order.

Assembly empowers deputy governor to act for Suntai


HE Taraba State House of Assembly yesterday passed a resolution empowering Deputy Governor Garba Umar to become Acting Governor in the absence of Governor Danbaba Suntai. The governor was flown to Germany last month after crashing the stateowned aircraft into a farm near the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) depot in Yola, the Adamawa State capital. Suntai was flying the plane with some of his security aides as well as the

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co-pilot onboard. No one died in the crash but they were severely injured. The lawmakers invoked Section 190 of the 1999 Constitution for their action. The section reads: “Whenever the Governor transmits to the Speaker of the House of Assembly a written declaration that he is proceeding on vacation or that he is otherwise unable to discharge the functions of his office, until he transmits to the Speaker of the House of Assembly a written declaration to the

contrary, such functions shall be discharged by the Deputy Governor as Acting Governor.” It was not clear whether or not the governor sent a letter to the Assembly on his inability to perform his duties following the crash. The motion that made Umar the Acting Governor was moved under “matters of urgent public importance” by the Majority Leader Charles Maijankai. Other lawmakers, who contributed to the motion, include the Deputy Speaker Abel Diah and


Mark Useni, representing Takum 2. Useni recalled that Suntai, on three occasions, had transmitted letters to the Assembly, asking it to empower the deputy governor to act in his absence.

Kogi elders to Jonathan: our state is drifting


GROUP of Kogi State elders and political leaders has urged President Goodluck Jonathan to assist the state from drifting into a crisis. It also urged the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Chairman Bamanga Tukur to intervene to prevent the death of the party in the state. In a joint statement in Abuja, the group accused the Idris Wada administration of lacking a sense of direction, incompetence, corruption and sundry illegalities. In the statement by Senator Alex Kadiri, Senator Mohammed Ohiare, former Speaker of the House of Assembly and former Acting Governor Clarence Olafemi, former state PDP Chairman John Odawun, Air Vice-Marshall Salihu

Atawodi (rtd) and a former governorship aspirant, Dr Adinoyi Ojo-Onukaba, the group noted that the underdevelopment of the state, the crisis in the House of Assembly, the alleged looting of resources and several illegalities and undemocratic practices need to be addressed. The statement reads: “We, the undersigned, are stakeholders and prominent members of the PDP in Kogi State. We wish to make our feelings known to you on the series of illegalities and undemocratic practices being perpetuated by the Captain Idris Wada administration and to urge you, as the leader of our great party, to take urgent measures to save our party from imminent death and the state from the coming anarchy.” The group listed a number of problems the state is facing and the solutions it seeks to save Kogi and the PDP.

Benue Assembly elects new Speaker From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi


EMBERS of the Benue State House of Assembly yesterday elected Terhile Ayua as the new Speaker. Ayua replaces David Iorhemba, representing Guma, who was allegedly forced to resign last Thursday. At plenary, Iana Jato, of Katsina-Ala Constituency, moved the motion for the election of a new Speaker. He cited Section 92 of the 1999 Constitution. Jato was seconded by Godwin Akaan. There was no objection to the motion when the Clerk, Mr. Terese Agena, threw the question to the floor. Ayua was nominated unopposed by Baba Ode of Otukpo Constituency and seconded by Benjamin Adanyi of Makurdi South. All the 28 members in attendance, except Iorhemba, supported the motion. Ayua becomes the third Speaker of the Seventh Assembly in the last 17 months. He thanked the leadership of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the two parties having members in the Assembly, for their support. The new Speaker promised to bridge the gap between the Executive and Legislature for the benefit of the people. Ayua spoke of the need for all to condemn the invasion of the Assembly by some thugs who took away the mace, the symbol of the House. He urged aggrieved members to see his election as a fence-mending affair.

Wamakko denies flogging PHCN worker


HE Sokoto State Government yesterday denied reports that Governor Aliyu Wamakko flogged some Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) workers. In a statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media to the Governor, Sani Umar, the government described as irresponsible the reaction of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) President Abdulwaheed Omar, on the alleged assault. Omar had demanded a public apology from the governor for allegedly assaulting the Business Manager of the Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDC), Moses Osigwe, and two other

officials following a power failure that occurred during a wedding ceremony in the governor’s village of Wamakko. The NLC president reportedly threatened to “shut down” economic activities in the state by putting workers on a strike notice.. But the government denied the allegations. It accused Omar of shielding the PHCN officials from “public scrutiny.” The statement claimed that Osigwe had collected “N17million to restore electricity to Wamakko town but failed to do so”. It added: “He (Omar) lied when he said electricity went off during a ceremony. An-

other lie he told was that the PHCN worker was flogged publicly to a coma. Where did the flogging take place and which hospital was he taken to be resuscitated? “The NLC should not be used as a platform by some disgruntled persons to fight a personal war. We believe that the NLC president is being used by the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) to cover up their inherent misdemeanour.” The government urged Omar to probe the incident to know the truth. “It is important for the NLC to note that the governor owes nobody an apology. A fraud has been committed for which a manage-


ment level staff of PHCN is culpable and must be addressed. No amount of blackmail will make us waiver in our determination to seek redress for the people of Sokoto State, who were subjected to unnecessary hardship and losses,” the statement added.

Niger SURE-P fund hits N2.5b, says Aliyu From Jide Orintunsin,

HE Niger State Government yesterday said its savings in the state’s Subsidy Reinvesting Programme (SURE-P) has reached N2.5billion. Governor Babangida Aliyu spoke in Minna, the state capital, when he received committee members of the fund, led by Alhaji Aliyu Mamman. The governor said of the



amount, N1.5billion was deposited into the fund for the state government while the balance belongs to the 25 local governments. He said a separate bank account has been opened for the fund to ensure that the money is used judiciously and accounted for. Aliyu assured that an effec-

tive mechanism has also been built into the programme to avoid a duplication of federal projects by the state. The governor said three representatives each from the state and the 25 local governments would join the federal committee in Minna to understudy and give technical advice on projects to be undertaken.

Mamman told Aliyu that about 1,200 indigenes have been employed, adding that the committee would meet the target 3,000 jobs before the end of this month. He explained that the committee operates in the 25 local government areas but needs government assistance to get vehicles and renovate its offices.




‘Reduce Fed Govt’s power’


HE powers of the Federal Government should be whittled down and states allowed to have their police, Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi canvassed yesterday. To the chair of the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF), Nigeria is the only federation with a central police system. He spoke yesterday at the Alfred Diete-Spiff Civic Centre, Port Harcourt during the Rivers State People’s Public Session on the Review of the 1999 Constitution. Amaechi said the central policing was becoming inefficient. He said other federations have state and local police, making the security of life and property more effective. The Rivers State Economic Advisory Council, chaired by a former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT), Prof. Nimi Briggs, advocated true federalism, a

‘central policing was becoming inefficient... other federations have state and local police, making the security of life and property more effective ’ merger of the two chambers of the National Assembly and a six-year single tenure for the president and governors. A retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Adolphus KaribiWhyte, who chaired the wellattended event, described the 13 per cent derivation paid to the nine oil producing states as poor. A former National President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), O. C. J. Okocha (SAN), said there is an agenda to create states. He said economic viability should be considered before creating new states.

Amaechi said: “The centre should not be as strong as it is. There are 17,000 policemen in Rivers state. The policemen have no accommodation. They live at the Civic Centre (venue of the event) and Olympia Hotel (near Government House, Port Harcourt and owned by Rivers government, but moribund and being rehabilitated). We have told them to pack out. “State police will ensure effective policing of the citizenry, with the policemen wellequipped and adequately accommodated. There is no forensic laboratory in Nigeria. With state police, states will have forensic laboratories. “Election matters should be given to federal police, while cases of kidnapping and stealing can be handled by state police.” The Rivers governor also frowned on creation of more states, while citing the financial situation of Anambra state, which had been receiving N3

Oshiomhole appoints Ihonvbere, Obahiagbon



billion monthly from the federation account, but would use N2.1 billion to pay salaries, leaving N900 million, which would not be enough for development. Amaechi said any matter not on the exclusive and concurrent lists, should be on the residual list and be left to states to handle, for the progress of Nigeria. The NGF chairman added: “The National Assembly members should carry Nigerians along,” while assuring that he would support the positions taken by Rivers people.

Tribunal gives Airhiavbere ultimatum to open case


HE Edo State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal yesterday gave the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the July 14 election, Maj.-Gen. Charles Airhiavbere (rtd.), until tomorrow to open his case. Airhiavbere is challenging the election of Governor Adams Oshiomhole of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). At the hearing yesterday, Airhiavbere’s counsel Efe Akpofure said they could not open their case because of the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC’s) “refusal” to give them certified true copies of the voter register as ordered by the tribunal. Akpofure said they intend to use the documents to prove that

•Appeal Court to rule on petitions today From Osagie Otabor, Benin

malpractices allegedly occurred during the election. He urged the tribunal to compel INEC to produce the documents and demanded an adjournment. INEC’s counsel Robert Emukpero said the commission had given the documents to the petitioner since October. He said Akpofure did not complain that he had not received the document, when they met at the Court of Appeal. Oshiomhole’s counsel Adeniyi Akintola said the petitioner had no reason not to open his case because the petitioner’s pleadings cut across 51 units in

five local governments. Akintola said witnesses could be called from the available documents while they wait for other documents. He said most of the issues raised by the petitioner have nothing to do with the voter register. ACN’s counsel Ken Mozia said no valid reason was given why the 31 witnesses of the petitioner could not give evidence. Chairman of the tribunal Justice Muazu Pindigi told the petitioner and INEC to sort themselves out. He adjourned sitting till tomorrow, when the petitioner is expected to start his case. The Court of Appeal will, today, deliver ruling in the two

Amaechi: we’ve spent N7.2b on schools


HE Rivers State Government has spent over N7.2 billion on building model schools in Etche Local Government. Governor Chibuike Amaechi spoke at the Etche Council Secretariat in Okehi on Tuesday during a Town Hall meeting with the people. He said all schools under construction in Olakwo I, Ndashi, Igbo-Etche, Obibi, Ekem and other communities in Etche would be completed soon. Amaechi said about 78 students from Etche have benefited from the government’s overseas scholarship.

He said his administration would soon begin rural electrification projects in Etche, adding that the projects would attract development and investments to the area when completed. The governor said while plans are ongoing to fix other roads, the Igbo-Etche Road would be built immediately the rains stop. He said the government would build the Ozuzu Health Centre next year. Amaechi urged contractors handling projects in the area to deliver them promptly. He said the People With Disabilities (PWD) Bill was

Firm to create 20,000 jobs in C’River


Singaporean firm, Wilmar International, has inaugurated 50,000-hectare Oil Palm plantations in Cross River State. The plantation has the capacity to employ over 20,000 persons, which is equivalent to the state’s work force. Inaugurating the Calaro, Ibiae and Biase oil palm plantations, jointly owned by Wilmar International Limited and PZ Cussons, at Mbarakom in Akamkpa Local Government Governor Liyel Imoke said the investment would transform the communities and make Cross River the biggest oil palm producer in Nigeria. Imoke said the plantations would be managed by the people of Cross River and two expatriates, adding that Wilmar International plans to establish an oil palm refinery in the state. He said his administration intends to boost the state’s economy through commercial agriculture. Imoke said there is a global demand for oil palm and Nigeria is a major importer of the product. He urged the Federal Government to partner the state in oil palm production.

sent back to the House of Assembly for some amendments and assured the people that it would be assented to immediately it is returned to his office. Amaechi said his administration has empowered physically challenged persons with taxis and urged beneficiaries to make good use of them. Etche Local Government Chairman Reginald Ukwuoma hailed Amaechi for keeping to his promise that the Town Hall meeting would hold periodically. He said it would help the governor identify the people’s needs.

Police warn vehicle owners THE Lagos State Rapid Response Squad, Governor’s Office, Alausa, Ikeja, has warned owners of found and unclaimed exhibit vehicles to remove them or lose them to the public through auction. The affected vehicles are a white Mitsubish bus, with registration number BE612KRD, Volkwagen bus with Lagos commercial colour XA571AFZ, Volkwagen bus, with Lagos commercial colour XP483JJJ, Volkswagen bus with commercial colour XN129EKY, Volkwagen bus, with Lagos commercial colour XT289LSD; Blue colour Lexus car, AH 828BDG; Red Honda Accord car CA609EKY and a blue Hyundai Sonata car, marked BC 585 BDJ.

appeals filed by Oshiomhole and Airhiavbere to contest the ruling of the lower tribunal. The lower tribunal had struck out some paragraphs in Airhiavbere’s petition, which bordered on academic qualification, on the grounds that they were pre-election matters. It ruled that the tribunal could hear the remaining issues in the petition.

ROF. Julius Ihonvbere has been appointed Secretary to the Edo State Government (SSG). A former member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Patrick Obahiagbon, is now the Chief of Staff. Mr. Stephen Idehenre has been appointed Deputy Chief of Staff, Governor’s Office. Comrade Yakubu Aliyu is the governor’s new Principal Private Secretary. Former Chief of Staff Mr. Osarodion Ogie is the Vice-Chairman of the Economic Team. Mr. Peter Okhiria was retained as Chief Press Secretary and Princess Theresa Erediauwa as the Executive Director of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Mr. Godwin Obaseki remains Chairman of the Economic Team. The new appointees will be sworn in today at the Festival Hall of the Government House in Benin, by 10am.

Stop giving handouts, governor tells multinationals From Osemwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin


DO State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has told multinational companies to stop giving handouts to the society. He spoke yesterday while inaugurating the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Centre donated to the Edo College, Benin, by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo) and the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). The centre comprises an ICT block, 20 desktop computers with interconnectivity facilities; a 27 KVA power generating set and C Band Internet of 512/256 Kbps with three years subscription. Thanking Shell and NNPC for the gesture, Oshiomhole said: “I appreciate NNPC and Shell for realising that they have a duty as beneficiaries of public-funded capital development to spend some of their profit on the development of human capital. The human capital that drives technology is baked by institutions such as this. “I am satisfied with what I have seen and I am happy that some of the students are already taking full advantage of it. I have no doubt that it would be of immense benefit to the entire state. “As an oil-producing state, Edo should benefit more from Shell. Those who live by the riverside should get more than those to whom the water is passed.”




Nine killed in Israeli attacks on Hamas in Gaza A N Israeli air strike yesterday killed the head of Hamas’ military wing, the first attack in a broader military operation against terrorist targets in response to an increase in rockets fired on Israel from Gaza. Palestinian leaders immediately condemned the Israeli attacks as an escalation, with President Mahmoud Abbas calling for an emergency session of the Council of the League of Arab States to discuss what he called Israeli “aggression,” the Egyptian state news agency MENA reported. Hamas’ military wing warned that Israelis had opened “the gates of hell on themselves.” Palestinian medical sources said nine people died in the air strikes, including a young girl, and 35 others were wounded, with 10 in serious condition. However, the health minister in Gaza, Mufid al-Mukhalalati, put the death toll at seven, including two young girls. The dead included Ahmed al-Ja’abari, the popular and influential head of the Hamas military wing, and his son, the group said on its website. At least nine Israeli strikes occurred in the day, and Hamas said there had been more than 10. As night fell,

more air strikes could be heard, but details on the further attacks were not immediately available. The Israeli operation — which the military calls “Operation Pillar of Defense” — came after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned this week of pending retaliation by Israel for increased rocket attacks from Gaza. “I would ask you, I’d ask any person around the planet: What would you do if your population was targeted day after day?” Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev told CNN, later adding that “you have to see our operation as fundamentally defensive.” The Israel Defense Forces said in a statement it targeted “a significant number of longrange rockets sites” to deliver “a significant blow” to Hamas’ underground rocket-launching capabilities and munitions warehouses. Some of the munitions warehouses were in civilian residential buildings, which showed that Hamas uses a strategy of human shields, Israeli military sources said. “The aim of targeting these sites is to hamper their rocketlaunching weapons build up

capabilities,” the IDF statement said, adding that the Gaza strip had become “a frontal base for Iran firing rockets and carrying out terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens.” Brig. Gen. Yoav Mordechai of the IDF said all options remain open to “seriously damage Hamas” and other terrorist organizations, including a possible ground operation with infantry brigades. Angry crowds gathered at the heavily damaged vehicle that contained the bodies of alJa’abari and his bodyguard, and analysts warned that the Israeli attacks could lead to an escalation in the ongoing conflict. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum told Aqsa TV that Israel had “declared the war and will pay a heavy price for that.” Saeb Erakat, the chief Palestinian negotiator, condemned “in the strongest possible terms” what he called the Israeli assassination of al-Ja’abari. In an interview with CNN, Erakat labeled the attack the beginning of a “major, major Israeli escalation,” and he called on the international community to pressure Israel to halt its operation.

• Palestinian firefighters extinguish fire from Jaabari’s car ...yesterday


Obama: rich to pay more


NITED States President Obama has reiterated his call for high earners in the US to pay more in taxes, in his first news conference since winning re-election. He called for quick legislation to rule out tax rises on the first $250,000 (£158,000) of income, but refused to extend cuts for the wealthiest 2%. “We should not hold the

middle class hostage while we debate tax cuts for the wealthy,” Obama said. The US faces a so-called “fiscal cliff” of spending cuts and tax rises. The fiscal cliff, looming at the end of 2012, would see the George W Bush-era tax cuts expire in combination with automatic, across-theboard reductions to military and domestic spending.

The automatic cuts are set to occur because Congress failed to reach a deal on deficit reduction after a standoff over the US debt ceiling in mid-2011. Congressional Republicans have said since last week’s US elections that they are open to raising revenue thought tax reform and closure of loopholes, but oppose tax rises on the wealthy.

Jonathan hails Abdulsalami at book launch


RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday said former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar rescued the nation at a time when its corporate existence was under threat. It was at the presentation of a book, “The Time and legacy’ of former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Alhaji Abubakar, the liberal and solution to stable democracy in Nigeria” in Abuja. Jonathan said Gen. Abu-

bakar became the Head of State at such a turbulent time in the nation’s history. The book, written by Abdullahi Modibo Umar, has its forward written by former President Shehu Shagari. Praising the efforts of the former military ruler at resolving the political crisis that engulfed the country at that time, Jonathan said however that, under the administration of Gen Abubakar, democracy was restored and the polity

was sanitised. Jonathan who was represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo, said the administration of Gen Abubakar helped to place Nigeria in the enviable position in the comity of democratic nations. The Chairman of the occasion and former Military President Ibrahim Babangida hailed Abubakar, who he said, successfully steered the ship of the nation to stability.







NEWS N5.6b pipeline contract: sack fever grips ex-militants


HERE is anxiety among former militant youths and beneficiaries of the N5.6billion pipeline surveillance contract in the Niger Delta following report that President Goodluck Jonathan might not renew the contract. The contract has been due for renewal since February, but it was gathered that the president is unwilling to renew it due to perceived failure of Alhaji Asari Dokubo, Boyloaf , Farah Dagogo and some other beneficiaries to justify the payment in Bayelsa and Rivers states where attacks on oil facilites have cripped crude oil production. The development led to panic by about 5,000 pipeline guards, who besieged the offices of Oil Field Surveillance Limited, the contractor han-

From Shola O’Neil, Warri

dling the project in Delta State. Niger Delta activist, Comrade Paul Bebenimibo, cautioned President Jonathan against bowing to pressure to suspend the multibillion naira contracts awarded to former militant leaders in the region. He said terminating the contract would lead to fresh crisis in the Niger Delta, worse that the Boko Haram insurgence. Bebenimibo said, “I want to advise Mr. President against cancelling the surveillance contract because doing so would unleash a fresh crisis in the region. People have blamed the crisis of Boko Haram (in the north) on poverty; but I can assure you that Boko Haram will be a child’s

play compared to what will happen here. “This contract is vital to the President’s transformation agenda. I don’t agree that the contract failed in Delta State. Oil companies and security agencies will attest that incident of bunkering and vandalism have gone down drastically. It has also helped in maintaining peace and security in the Niger Delta region because over 10,000 youths are currently employed in the programme and laying them off will plunge them and their families further into poverty. “In spite of the failures you talked about, the contract has led to steady rise in the volume of crude oil production, especially in Delta State, where it has recorded a huge degree of success,” he added.

Responding to our question on renewing the contract Bayelsa and Rivers where beneficiaries have failed to combat illegal bunkering, Bebenimibo advised the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to meet with the beneficiaries to forge a way forward, maintaining that cancellation would be counterproductive. Besides, he called for the commencement of the other stages of the contract in Ondo, Edo and Akwa Ibom states in order to achieve the 30,000 employment slots earmarked in the original deal struck between Chief Ekpemupolo a.k.a Tompolo and the late former President Umar Yar’Adua.

Ex-Senate Leader Olusola Saraki dies at 79 Continued from page 4

Lagos at about 8am. He was trying to find out from his relations why the urgent summon but they tried to hide the death of his father from him. “But as a medical doctor, he needed no one to tell him that his father was dead, having known Dr. Olusola Saraki’s condition. He was just supplicating as he left for Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja. “With a chartered jet, the exgovernor hastily moved to Lagos but his father had passed on before his arrival. “Upon sighting his father’s body, he became solemn and wept with relations consoling him. But he took time to pray for the repose of the soul of the

great man.” Early callers at Saraki’s home in Ikoyi, Lagos included Action Congress of Nigeria (AC N) National Leader Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, former Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank, Mr. Lai Alabi and GT Bank Group Managing Director Mr. Segun Agbaje. The Kwara State Government raised a burial committee, headed by a former Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Saka Onimago. Tinubu was accompanied by the ACN’s National Publicity Secretary Alhaji Lai Mohammed and the party’s governorship candidate in the last election, Mr. Mohammed Dele Belgore. Also in the delegation

was former Ekiti State Governor Niyi Adebayo. Industirlist Molade OkoyaThomas and the Olofa of Offa, Oba Muhammed Esuwoye II, were also at the house. The remains of Dr Saraki were flown to Ilorin aboard an Overland Airways aircraft, which took off at the executive jet terminal at the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos. The body arrived at the private terminal at about 3.00 pm in a motorcade, including a hearse belonging to the undertakers MIC, which conveyed the body in a casket that was ferried into the aisle of the aircraft. The body of the late politician was accompanied by his

children – Senator Saraki, Olaolu, Senator Gbemisola and Tope. The atmosphere was solemn as scores of friends and family members of the late politician joined the children. The body of the late politician was moved from the hearse into the aircraft with registration number 5N- BCR, flown by the airline’s proprietor, Captain Edward Boyo. Another aircraft belonging to Rivers State Government, with registration number N56SRS, was on hand at the apron to convey Senator Saraki, his friends and associates. The third aircraft parked at the terminal also ferried other friends and family members to Ilorin for the burial.

Jonathan, Mark, Tambuwal, Tinubu, ACN, PDP, others pay tributes Continued from page 4

velopment of Nigeria’s political culture.” Tinubu recalled that Saraki was one of the brains behind the formation of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN). “A tactician, Saraki’s image loomed large during that era as he pursued a populist oriented politics and became a rallying point for the masses and a reference for political tolerance”. The former Lagos State governor described him as a political phenomenon, loved by his people and respected by his political peers. “Nigeria, has lost a political general and a formidable leader of influence and clout. Saraki was not just the issue, he was the main issue in Kwara politics and now that he is no more, Kwara politics will never be the same again”. The ACN expressed shock and sadness. In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party described Dr. Saraki as a colossus who possessed ab efficient political machinery that he used effectively to rally the people. ‘’Dr. Saraki defined his era, and since his entry into politics several decades ago, politics has never been the same again, especially in his native Kwara state, where he became synonymous with the politics of the state. ‘’Any politician who ignored him in his lifetime did so at his own peril, and only the casualties of his deft political manoeuvring can appreciate his

clinical political efficiency,’’ it said. ACN said the death of Dr. Saraki, coming a few days after the passing of another great politician, Lam Adesina, is a big loss to Nigeria, especially at a time the nation needs the wisdom and rich experience of its great sons and daughters to help steer it to less-turbulent waters. ‘’The vacuum being created by the death of these political titans is a challenge to young politicians to strive hard to step into their shoes and work hard to make our country a proud member of the comity of nations,’’ the party said. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) described the late strongman of Kwara politics as a political Titan, saying his death marks the gradual extinction of the last of the Mohegians. A statement by the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh said the nation has lost a political guru who compared in every respect with the generation of the independent Nigerian leaders. The statement reads: “Here was a fine medical doctor, philanthropist, humanist and an astute politician. Here, most importantly was a game changer, a man who changed the destiny of his people. Like the great Zik of Africa, like Ahmadu Bello and like Awo”. The party commiserated with the government and people of Kwara State and prayed God to grant them, especially the immediate family, the fortitude to weather storm of the irreparable loss.






UHU Ribadu seems so unlucky. When the former Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) chief was asked to head the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force, he was obviously excited - not in anticipation of any material reward; it was all in his remarkable passion for fighting corruption. He did the job with all his heart, but now he must be feeling awful, ruing the day he signed up for it. The assignment has become a subject of bitter acrimony between the committee and the government on one hand and between Ribadu and some members of the team on the other. I do not remember the last time such a seemingly simple job turned into an open show of recriminations. It was shameful watching Steve Oronsaye and Mallam Ribadu exchange verbal blows right in front of television cameras-like kindergarten pupils brawling over a cup of ice cream. On Oronsaye’s side was Ben Otti, who joined the former Head of Service to pillory the report as if it was all rubbish that was not worthy of the paper on which it was written. Was the government and its troubled baby, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), expecting a clean bill of health from the Ribadu Panel? Would the Presidency have come so hard on the panel, if its report had read like a romantic poem written by a love-struck man to the woman of his dream, despite the hard facts and figures? If Oronsaye and Otti disagreed with the process, how about the content? Where is their own report, the one with a flawless process? What protocol allowed Oronsaye to publicly disagree with the chairman in so theatrical a manner and right in the presence of the President? Did somebody have prior notice of the drama? If Oronsaye did not participate in the committee’s work – he said he was away overseas - on what basis was he attacking the report in such a blistering manner? Ego? Just playing the spoilsport? I doubt whether the respected former civil servant will do that. But then, why? The committee submitted a “final report” to Petroleum Resources Minister Diezani Alison-Madueke. She said it was no final report because another committee had to look at it and get the government’s input before it could be said to be the final report. What is that? Does that obliterate the existence of those scary facts and figures? Consider these: 47 oil companies owing the Federal Government royalties; $5,830,261 recovered; $3.027billion outstanding; N86.6billion underpayment to the government’s purse in 10 years and more. Add these to the blazing N382billion petrol subsidy scam. Shouldn’t we be ashamed of our impetuosity? Or is it all part of the barefaced official robbery that has kept Nigeria toddling and bleeding since 1960? Dr Doyin Okupe did more harm than good when he followed the Oronsaye line to lampoon the report and its authors. But, why leave the message to go after the messenger? Whose story sounds more believable? Does the Okupe railing, coming days after the Presi-



...and that’ll be the 8TH WONDER OF THE WORLD


VOL. 7, NO. 2310

‘For Oronsaye and his ilk, who are not happy with the report, not to have written a a minority report, shows one thing : they don’t have their hearts where their mouths are. If they do, they don’t need to be goaded before they make their case’




Intrigues, rage in high places this way, killing talents in the name of a federal policy that is all controversy and no character? I do not blame Justice Mukhtar for playing it by the book. But, shouldn’t somebody have told Justice Jombo-Ofo to stay away from the ceremony? If she has worked in Abia for 14 years, isn’t she eminently qualified to be in the Court of Appeal on account of that? If the state government, which has expressed some anger over the development, says she is its nominee, UNIPORT FOUR: Tekena, Lloyd, Chidiaka, Ugonnathat be enough? Would anybody • Oronsaye shouldn’t ••THE Ribadu have questioned her elevation based on state dent had promised to consider the report be- of origin? I doubt it. cause, according to him, the government has I am sure our lawmakers have seen this nothing to hide signify a change of mind? I discomfiture and will do something about hope not; the implication will be, to put it it. That is why the battle for true federalism mildly, bad for the administration. and all its corollary of fairness, justice and Seen Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala recently? equity will keep raging. Any system that A crowd of policemen, secret service agents fails to recognise skills and talents because and others has woven a security ring around of the origin of the person endowed with her. It is alleged that the Co-ordinating Min- such will surely collapse under the weight ister for the Economy and Finance Minis- of its own contradictions. Well, the Constiter’s life is under threat from oil barons who tution Review Committee has its work cut feel threatened by the probe of the multi- out for it. billion naira subsidy scam that has thrown In Sokoto State, it was a different kind of up a long line of suspects, including the sons anger; executive anger. For some time, of the rich and the powerful. The matter is Wamakko, the village from where Goversaid to have caused some resentment in the cabinet, with some members believing that the government should not go all the way to punish those indicted and others insisting on justice. We are watching. LORIN, the Kwara State capital, was It is not only the oil sector that has got throbbing with dignitaries yesterday. Nigerians wondering: where lies our hope? They came to witness the end of an era The other day in Abuja, the swearing in of Court of Appeal justices – a simple cer- in the state’s politics. It was the funeral of emony, ordinarily – became a complex anti- Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki, former Senclimax when Justice Ifeoma Jombo-Ofo was ate Leader and godfather of Kwara polidenied her turn to take the oath. Chief Jus- tics, who passed on yesterday in Lagos. The elite outside his camp may not like tice Aloma Mukhtar would not allow her because of her state of origin. She is, by his politics – that isn’t strange – and his conmarriage, from Abia and by birth from fidence – some call it bravado – but one Anambra. The CJN was mindful of the Fed- fact remains incontestable: Dr Saraki was in control of Kwara politics for more than eral Character principle. Good. 35 years. No break. He loved his people. For how long are we going to carry on


nor Aliyu Magatarkada Wamakko hails, had been in darkness following a long power failure. The Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) manager, Moses Osigwe, was summoned to the Government House where His Excellency whipped out a horse tail (koboko) and dealt the poor man some hot lashes. He then handed him to riot policemen who descended on him like hungry wolves. They turned him into a punching bag, hitting him hard, until the man collapsed. Not satisfied, His Excellency summoned two more officials of the company. They got the same treatment as their senior colleague. To Wamakko’s aide Sani Umar, it was all in a day’s job at the Government House; nothing to worry about. Nothing unusual. He said the governor’s village had suffered power outage for over one year. Wammako, according to him, gave PHCN N17million for a new transformer but the equipment was not supplied. His Excellency was furious. Right. But why did he take the law into his own hands? Why the jungle justice and utter lack of decorum that goes with his office? Is it legal for PHCN to collect cash for transformers? Why did His Excellency encourage the officials to collect the money – if, indeed, he handed them the cash? What kind of transformer was he paying N17million for? A golden one? Osigwe should go to court to demand compensation for this reprehensible abuse of his person. If Wammako can’t be sued because of his immunity, his accomplices should be made to face the law. Being a governor’s guard is no licence for savagery; is it? The local Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has demanded a public apology, threatening to teach His Excellency and his henchmen how to relate to fellow human beings. It should get it. Otherwise, those in whom power has been vested will continue to abuse it, taking us all back to the jungle. Should we allow them? Never!

Abubakar Olusola Saraki (1933-2012)



His people loved him. Oloye (the chief), as he was fondly called, understood their aspirations. Many made the hajj on his ticket. He wanted to be president, but never made it. Even then, his political stature did not shrink. From the first day till the end, the late Saraki never lost touch with the grassroots. He built a solid political structure. He was consistent and loyal to his people. That is the lesson of the Saraki school of politics. •For comments, send SMS to 08082036515

•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above

Someday, traffic offences will attract death penalty


HE Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) was reported in the Wednesday edition of The Punch to have submitted a proposal on constitutional amendment to the National Assembly. One of the striking recommendations the northern political group made, the paper said, was capital punishment for those found guilty of corruption. This startling suggestion is bound to attract more than a cursory attention from the public, especially against the backdrop of the Edo State governor’s insistence on executing two state convicts on death row. The convicts, Messrs Daniel Nsofor and Osayinwinde Agbomien, were condemned to death many years back. Their sentences have now been confirmed by the Supreme Court. It is unlikely the ACF proposal was inspired by Governor Adams Oshiomhole’s resolve, but the northern group probably sustains its argument with the same philosophy that undergirds the Edo approach to crime fighting. Hear Oshiomhole’s argument: “I am convinced that those people (the two convicts) need to die. In the interest of society they need to die under the law. The rule of law is different from resolutions by some NGOs and nations are not governed by NGO resolutions. We must have a balanced view of human rights in which the rights, not only of the man they killed but the right of his relations,

and much more importantly, to send a clear message to would-be murderers, that when you kill a human being and you are caught, you are likely to die. If you don’t want to die, then abstain from killing. If criminals abstain from killing, fewer people would be killed by robbers and other murderers and that is the truth.” Oshiomhole’s rationalisation is not too different from that of the ACF. Hear the northern political group: “The law classifies crimes according to the severity of their consequences both on the individual victim, the community or the country. If crime holds a high potential to gravely harm or kill its victim, the more severe the punishment, which was designed to punish and deter offenders. This is to say that punishment must always fit offences. One crime that has proved capable of gravely harming or killing its victim, Nigeria, is corruption. Sadly, our laws have not recognised corruption for what it is. ACF recommends that corruption be recognised as a capital offence and made to carry capital punishment.” Neither the governor nor the ACF is right about the capacity of the death penalty to deter capital crimes. There is no country where capital crimes have inverse relationship with capital punishment. In fact, even in the United

States, which still retains capital punishment in the statutes of a few states, states with capital punishment have higher incidence of capital crimes than states without the death penalty. Both Oshiomhole and the ACF should avail themselves of the numerous studies on the topic rather than rely on general impressions and suppositions. They must recognise from available statistics that robbery rate has not declined in Nigeria since the Gen Yakubu Gowon administration promulgated a decree to make robbery punishable by death. Robbery has in fact increased. And in spite of extra-judicial killings by policemen, robbers have not become less vicious or less fecund. It is disquieting that we have found ourselves in the position of recommending the death penalty for certain categories of corruption instead of examining scientific ways of curbing the malaise. Would we not someday get the brainwave to extend this extreme measure to traffic offences? Life has been made very cheap by both lawbreakers and security agencies; we should not now make it even more worthless by extending capital punishment to sundry crimes, further vitiating the little claim we have left to decency and civilization, and reducing ourselves, like the lynch mob, to the bestial level robbers would like us to sink.

Published and printed by Vintage Press Limited. Corporate Office: 27B Fatai Atere Way, Matori, Lagos. P.M.B. 1025,Oshodi, Lagos. Telephone: Switch Board: 01-8168361. Editor Daily:01-8962807, Marketing: 01-8155547 . Abuja Office: Plot 5, Nanka Close AMAC Commercial Complex, Wuse Zone 3, Abuja. Tel: 07028105302. Port Harcourt Office: 12/14, Njemanze Street, Mile 1, Diobu, PH. 08023595790. WEBSITE: E-mail: ISSN: 115-5302 Editor: GBENGA OMOTOSO

The Nation November 15, 2012  

The Nation November 15, 2012

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