Page 1

Nigeria’s widest circulating newspaper

News Lagos-Ilorin rail services excite Ibadan residents Sport Eagles to play Zambia in friendly November 15 Businnes OPS, CNPP hail govt over Dangote’s GCON award

P8 P41 P6

VOL. 7, NO. 1930 MONDAY, OCTOBER 31, 2011



Governors, Jonathan for stormy talks on N250b cut Another FAAC meeting over Sept. allocation today From Nduka Chiejina, Abuja and Ogbonnaya Obinna, Abakaliki


OVERNORS are set for a crucial meeting with the President in Abuja over the September allocation to states, which they rejected. The meeting will hold on Wednesday. The governors are insisting that the deductions from states’ allocations should be restored before they collect the cash. “We will simply tell the President that it’s impossible for us to collect the allocations, unless they are fully paid,” a governor said at the weekend. The meeting of the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC), which broke up on October, will now hold today. Finance Commissioners, who walked out on FAAC chair and Minister of State for Continued on page 4

79 Nigerians back from Libya


ORE Nigerians returned home from Libya at the weekend. They recounted a tale of woes. The 79 returnees said they spent 40 days travelling through the desert from the wartorn country. Some of them are critically ill. No fewer than 329 Nigerians have arrived from Libya since the conflict started in February. The conflict ended with the killing of long-time leader Col. Muhammar Gaddafi this month. They arrived in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital at the weekend. They came in through Gamboru Ngala, a border town between Nigeria and the Republic of Chad. Continued on page 4

The shame of a nation:

An afternoon downpour gets vehicles stuck on the ever-busy but neglected Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway ... yesterday. PHOTO: ISAAC JIMOH AYODELE





Oil thieves, illegal refiners

Until recently, oil thieves were believed to have been eliminated in the creeks of the Niger Delta. But facts indicate that they are back in an unprecedented manner, building hundreds of makeshift illegal refineries along the river banks. This development has compelled an oil giant to stop production in an oil field where the bandits have become prominent. The security agencies seem handicapped to stop the onslaught, report OLUKOREDE YISHAU and BISI OLANIYI (Port Harcourt)


HEY all understand the winding creeks and waterways of the Niger Delta. Monday Friday, Jeremaiah Festus, Alabwe Asina, Ibianga Owei and Secondi Africanus were born and bred in the region gave. This gave them that edge, which encouraged them to tap into the often unguarded pipelines that pass through thousands of kilometres of creeks and waterways. But their vast knowledge of the region failed them and 41 others about a week ago when they were arrested. Last Monday, the Joint Task Force (JTF) for the Niger Delta announced their arrest. Friday and other suspects are in detention with their small oil tanker with which they were trying to ship illegally refined oil products. They are members of an underground industry, which is said to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars yearly. The JTF said the oil thieves were using 13 large wooden boats, known as Cotonou boats, and a speed boat to ferry barrels of oil products to a ship with the capacity to hold around 1,000 barrels, valued at around $100,000. The crude oil was processed in one of the hundreds of makeshift illegal refineries hidden in the creeks. They were illegally lifting and transferring refined petroleum products into an oil vessel, marked MV Omiesam, with Registration No. IMO 7048611. JTF spokesperson Lt. Col. Timothy Antigha, said: “These sus-

QUICK TAKES Mbiama, a border community, accounts for most illegal refineries Barges, large wooden canoes and ships are used by the oil thieves NIMASA DG says some elite are part of the illegal oil bunkering business Low scale bunkering involves smuggling through Seme and Idiroko borders Big time players operate in the creeks, tapping from wellheads Shell has suspended production in Imo field to cut supply to oil thieves Navy and JTF have recently arrested and handed to police over 100 bunkerers pects, who were nabbed by our patrol teams at River Akassa, were in the process of loading this vessel with illegally refined petroleum products. Presently, the oil vessel is detained at the Government Jetty in Yenagoa. These suspects have contributed to the destruction of the nation’s economy and the environment.” He added: “They were involved in illegal oil bunkering. They will buy residues of poorly refined adulterated petroleum products from the market. They use some equipment to siphon stolen crude oil and siphon illegally refined products. The intercepted vessel has a crew of eight and the other 38 suspects were found with 13 Cotonou boats and one speed boat that had assembled beside the vessel, with the plan to load it with the illegally refined products. “The 13 Cotonou boats con-

tained about 13 GP Tanks of various capacities, ranging from 500 to 1,000 litres, including numerous plastic drums that were already filled with petroleum products.” Lt. Col. Antigha said the products were “sourced through stolen crude oil or vandalised pipelines and subsequently processed in a crude manner.” He said 500 illegal refineries had been destroyed by JTF in different states in the region, adding that Mbiama, a border community between Bayelsa and Rivers states accounted for most of such refineries. The suspects have since been handed over to the police and may, upon prosecution, end up like two Ghanaians and seven Nigerians, who were sentenced last week by a Federal High Court, sitting in Asaba, Delta State, to 90 years each for conspiracy and illegal involvement

in petroleum products. The two Ghanaians are: Nelson Seanehia and Teko Peter. Their Nigerian counterparts are: Felix Ogogo, Augustine Elomofe, Yakubu Otun, Lucky Tonwei, Sunday Apoh, Segun Agbeyegbe and Felix Mogbeyiteren. Justice Ibrahim Buba sentenced each of the accused to 10 years imprisonment on each of the nine-count charge and ordered the forfeiture of their vessel, MT TROICA, which was used for the illegal business. Another blow to oil thieves was made public last Wednesday by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). The agency announced the arrest of five vessels for illegal crude oil transfer and bunkering activities, off the coast of Lagos. The tanker vessels, M.T Otakoy–1 and M.T Mariny were arrested early this month while

three others, M.T Cape Verde, M.T Selueshing and M.T Adamas, were arrested last week. NIMASA’s Director–General Mr. Patrick Akpobolokemi said the vessels were involved in illegal ship-to-ship transfer of crude before they were apprehended. Akpobolokemi said the crew were also arrested while the vessels were taken to NIMASA’s guard Command pending investigation. The NIMASA boss said his men became suspicious when the communication systems on the vessels were switched off. Akpobolokemi said: “They get crude oil from smaller vessels from Nigeria and transfer this stolen crude to mother vessels, with the connivance of Nigerians. Besides, the illegal ship-toship transfer, there are other areas of offshore high level stealing of petroleum products. We must stop all illegalities on our waters. That is a presidential order I just received and with the support of government, we will clear our waters of criminals.” On October 5, the Navy in Bonny, headquarters of the Bonny Local Government of Rivers State paraded 43 suspected oil thieves, who were nabbed with three vessels with 3.5 million litres of crude oil. They were arrested on the waterways of Bonny Island. Six illegal refineries were also destroyed in the creeks, off Karibama community. The Commander of the Navy in Bonny, Navy Captain Tanko




take over Niger Delta creeks

•From left: Suspected oil thieves arrested by the Navy in Bonny, Rivers State; one of the three vessels seized from the oil bandits by the Navy in Bonny; and a low scale illegal refinery, where crude oil is badly refined. Their activities also pollute the environment PHOTOS: BISI OLANIYI

Yakubu Pani, said on August 24 illegal oil refineries at Karibama were destroyed and nine suspects arrested. An 800-tonne barge, containing crude oil, two water pumps, welding machine and a heavy duty generator were recovered. He said illegal bunkerers have turned the Andoni/Opobo axis of Rivers State into a desolate land, with constant pollution of the environment. Navy Captain Pani said: “The illegal refining activities taking place within the creeks and environs are alarming. Many of the illegal refineries are being raided by the FOB and the Joint Task Force (JTF) on a regular basis. The illegal activities have led to pipeline vandalism, river and land pollution, environmental degradation, oil theft and loss of revenue to the Federal Government. The illegally-refined products, when sold and distributed, result in economic and health disasters, such as kerosene explosions and vehicle breakdown, among others.” The Nation learnt that bunkering is a well-co-ordinated illegal industry, which involves members of the elite. The NIMASA DG alluded to this when he declared last Wednesday that some top personalities were involved in illegal bunkering. The equipment used by the oil thieves, such as boats with massive tanks, vessels, imported arms and ammunition, are beyond the reach of the poor. They are obviously supplied by the rich who stay in their mansions and expect returns from the boys on the field, who get caught by the authorities. The organised crime largely goes smoothly because of the involvement of influential persons and members of communities in which they operate. The communities usually shield the perpetrators for pecuniary benefits. But mostly, though community members keep silent to avoid be-

ing killed by the oil thieves who are always fully armed. The use of sophisticated weapons by the oil thieves has led to speculations that security operatives could also be aiding the illegal business. But Lt.-Col. Antigha denied the involvement of officers and men of the JTF in illegal bunkering or connivance with criminals. The low scale part of the illegal industry involves illegal smuggling of fuel through jerry cans along the Seme and Idiroko borders into the Republic of Benin. However, the big time players operate from the winding creeks of the Niger Delta. Here, the oil thieves get their supplies from illegal tapping of oil field production wellheads or from Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation’s (NNPC) jetties or from a myriad of private jetties along the coastline. From the coastal states of Rivers, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Ondo, and Bayelsa states, stolen crude oil are shipped into larger ocean-faring marine vessels, waiting patiently on stand-by, either mid-stream or offshore, for their booty. The stolen crude oil may either be traded without documentation or with forged documentation. In the last few months, the JTF


has been busy tracking oil thieves. It has impounded several barges, canoes, speed boats, large wooden boats (also called Cotonou boats), drums of oil and other container vessels-laden with stolen crude oil. It has also destroyed illegal refineries, which are made up of drums and used to heat up the stolen crude oil to produce less-finished Premium Motor Spirit (PMS/petrol) or poor-quality Automotive Gas Oil (AGO/diesel). The illegal refineries are based in the creeks, which they assess by sand-filling some portions. Despite the JTF’s and the Navy’s destruction of many of the illegal refineries, their operators always rebuild them; further plundering the economy and contributing to oil spillage and its attendant effect on the ecosystem. A senior military officer said: “We have gone there several times. We have destroyed and destroyed and destroyed. Sometimes, you go and destroy about six, eight or 12 of them. When you come back, after may be two weeks, they have resumed work again. So, it is really a very big problem. Most of the lands there are desolate. If you go there and see the level of pollution, you will be sorry for the communities.” Last month, oil giant Shell Pe-


troleum Development Company conducted reporters by helicopters round its Imo River Field in Rivers and Abia states. The reporters saw evidence of a thriving illegal industry. The activities of oil thieves have had a telling effect on oil majors. Shell, for instance, has had to review its operations. One of such is the shutting of its Imo River Field in Rivers and Abia states, which produce 25,000 barrels of crude oil per day. The decision, which was taken in August, is yet to be reversed, it was learnt. The Anglo/Dutch oil giant’s Vice-President, Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) and Corporate Affairs, Mr. Tony Attah, said: “The scale of crude theft is unprecedented in the area. In September, we discovered 16 illegal bunkering points within Imo River Field. Besides revenue loss to government and other stakeholders, significant portions of the stolen crude are spilled, blighting large swathes of the ecosystem. This is why production from this field will remain suspended until we are sure that crude thieves and saboteurs have left the area for good.” Attah added: “Some 25,000 barrels of oil per day is affected. The company took the action on August 28 to starve the illegal bunkerers of crude oil, to prevent further environmental pollution. Imo River Field straddles Abia and Rivers states and has five flow stations, a gas compressor station and many kilometres of pipelines, among other facilities. “The criminal activity has recently resumed, with crude thieves using hacksaw to cut pipelines and siphon crude into waiting barges and canoes, some of which can hold as much as 40,000 barrels of crude oil. SPDC has continued to engage local and state government officials, including legislators and the Department of Petroleum Re-

sources (DPR), on the issue.” Shell’s vice-president said in 2009/2010, the oil giant experienced an upsurge in the vandalisation of its pipeline network by oil thieves. Attah said this led to the Government Security Force (GSF) carrying out an operation to clear illegal bunkering in the Imo river field. Unfortunately, he said, in late 2010, an increase in illegal bunkering was recorded in Bodo West and Ogbogolo in Rivers State. He said illegal oil bunkering, transportation and illegal refining are now done on a massive scale. Attah said the oil thieves are aided by the Imo river’s tributaries through which they transport the products to locally-made barges or sell directly to the illegal refineries in the creeks. The question on the mind of many is: can the prosecution of oil thieves serve as a deterrent to others? A source said: “This may be, but to a little extent. A lot of the people in the region see the oil as their birthright and believe they have the right to do whatever they like with it. “ The Nation investigation, however, reveals that the security agencies are handicapped so much that it may be a Herculean task putting a stop to bunkering. A source said the security agencies lack the required tools to drive oil thieves out of town. Also, the Navy, which operates on the sea and better placed to arrest the oil thieves, has no power of prosecution. It can only arrest and turn over the suspects to the police. It has no control over what happens thereafter. The Bonny Navy commander said this much when he stated that with the resources available to the Navy, it would take a long time for illegal bunkering and refining to be eradicated in the Niger Delta. He urged the Federal Government to support the Navy with more platforms, equipment, logistics and funds.



NEWS Governors, Jonathan for talks Continued from page 1

Finance Alhaji Lawan Yerima Ngama have now returned to Abuja.

•Forte Oil Plc Chairman, Mr. Femi Otedola flanked by the Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Michael Odior Ahme (right) and Company Secretary Aderemi Oguntoye at the company’s Annual General Meeting at the Transcorp Hilton, Abuja ... on Friday

Commonwealth leaders declare war on terrorism


OMMONWEALTH countries have laid out plans to combat terrorism in the world especially among its member countries. Leaders of the countries adopted four steps to combat terrorism at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) which ended yesterday in Perth, Australia. Terrorism has crept into Nigeria. It has also recently happened in member-countries, such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Uganda, Kenya, India, Australia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Tanzania. The communiqué of the meeting was read by the new Chairperson of the Commonwealth, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard. It was signed by the Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma; the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Mrs. Kamla PressadBissessar; the President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete; President of Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed and the Prime Minister of Samoa, Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sailele Malieliegaoi. The leaders said: “Maintaining their commitment to a stable and secure national and international environment, as a foundation for sustainable growth and resilience for Commonwealth countries and the broader international community. Heads committed to improve international security by: *Unequivocally preventing the use of their territories for the support, incitement to violence or commission of terrorist acts, *implementing the necessary legal framework for the suppression of terrorist financing; *preventing the raising and use of funds by terrorists, terrorist front organisations, and transnational terrorist organisations; and *accelerating efforts to conclude negotiations on a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. On the imminent global economic recession, the leaders urged the Group of 20 (G-20) leaders to avert a global economic recession. The communiqué said: “The leaders urge the G20 to take the necessary steps to address current economic instability and to take concrete steps to put open trade, jobs, social protection and economic development at the heart of the recovery. “This will provide the nec-

From Yusuf Alli and Vincent Ikuomola, Australia

essary confidence to global markets and ensure a more stable global economic environment. “In support of this, Commonwealth countries: (i.) committed to take all necessary steps to support the global economic recovery; (ii.) Supported ongoing high-level political engagement with the G20 chair and, in this context, welcomed the interaction of the Secretaries-General of the Commonwealth and La Francophonie with the Chair of the G20, as initiated in 2010; and (iii) agreed that Commonwealth G20 members would undertake to convey Commonwealth members’ perspectives and priority concerns to the G20 Summit in Cannes, France. “The leaders agreed to launch an annual officials-level Commonwealth meeting on the G20 development agenda, building on the Commonwealth’s current contributions to the G20 Development Working Group; and agreed to reduce the cost of remittance transfers by removing barriers to remitting and encouraging greater competition in the transfer market, by endorsing the World Bank’s General Principles for International Remittance Services. “In line with this, Commonwealth countries committed to implement practical measures at the national level to reduce the cost of remittances. “The leaders directed the Commonwealth Secretariat to institutionalise the principles of gender mainstreaming, as enshrined in the Commonwealth Plan of Action; and to provide recommendations to Heads, through the Tenth Commonwealth Women’s Affairs Ministers Meeting (WAMM) on steps that need to be taken to mainstream gender equality across all Commonwealth work; and to make real progress on implementation of the Plan of Action.” The leaders said they have accepted 30 of the recommendations of the Eminent Persons Group (EPG); subjected 12 others to financial implications; referred 43 to Foreign Ministers and rejected 11. The leaders accepted that “there should be a “Charter of the Commonwealth”, as proposed by the EPG, embodying the principles contained in previous declarations, drawn together in a single, consolidated

document that is not legally binding. “Heads will agree to a text for the Charter in 2012, following a process of national consultations, consideration by a Task Force of Ministers drawn from all geographical groupings of the Commonwealth, and a full meeting of Foreign Ministers in New York in September. “The leaders tasked the Secretary-General and CMAG to further evaluate relevant options relating to the EPG’s proposal for a Commissioner for Democracy, the Rule of Law and Human Rights and to report back to Foreign Ministers at their September meeting in New York.” The communiqué also gave details of the reform adopted by the Commonwealth leaders. It added: “To this end, Heads agreed to the following: “ Reform of the Commonwealth to ensure that it is a more effective institution, responsive to members’ needs, and capable of tackling the significant global challenges of the 21st century. “These include: (a) the reform of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG); (b) consideration of the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) recommendations on reform; (c) strengthening the management and delivery of Commonwealth programmes, including through regular review of their efficiency, effectiveness and results, against measurable indicators. On food crisis, the leaders adopted what they termed “the Perth Declaration on Food Security Principles” which all members must adhere to in order to boost food production. They agreed that vulnerability to climate change is widespread and particularly affects small states. “The Commonwealth agreed to assist small and climate vulnerable states develop their capacity to respond in a timely and effective way to disasters and to build their national disaster response capabilities.” While Fiji remained suspended, the Commonwealth leaders decided to “look forward to the conditions being created for the return of Zimbabwe to the Commonwealth and continue to encourage the parties to implement the Global Political Agreement faithfully and effectively.” They are already studying the applica-

tion of South Sudan to join the association. The communiqué said: “The leaders agreed to “congratulate the Head of the Commonwealth on her Diamond Jubilee in 2012. Heads welcomed proposed Commonwealth initiatives to mark this historic occasion, in particular the establishment of a Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, which would be funded by private donations and voluntary contributions from governments. “This will support charitable projects and organisations across the Commonwealth, focusing on areas such as tackling curable diseases, the promotion of all forms of education and culture and other Commonwealth priorities. The session also offered to reappoint Mr Kamalesh Sharma as Commonwealth Secretary-General for a further four-year term commencing April 2012. The next CHOGM will hold in Sri Lanka in 2013 and thereafter in Mauritius in 2015. The leaders welcome the offer by Malaysia to host the 2019 CHOGM.”

•Julia Gillard

They rejected the sharing of the September allocation from the Federation Account, unless the N250 billion deducted to service fuel subsidy is returned. There are signs that rather than thaw, the relationship between the Federal Government and the states may remain frosty. Governors are kicking against the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) and the allocation formula, which favours the Federal Government, even as it has less to do. And now, there are moves to abolish the Joint State/Local Government Account. The account is where local government funds are paid, which directly ties the local governments to the states. The governors have always expressed misgivings about the plan to scrap the account. There is an on-going battle between the federal government and the states over the creation of a Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) and the review of revenue formula. The states boycotted their September revenue allocation in protest over the deduction of N250 billion by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA). Chairman of the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) Elias Mbam said at the weekend that plans are afoot to scrap the Joint States/Local Government Account. He spoke in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital. “The Commission is of the view that the Joint State/Local Government Account should be abolished. The local governments should be allocated funds directly to their accounts in order to reduce or forestall any possible abuse or leakages. He said the measure will forestall any possible abuse of funds especially by state governments as allocations meant for local government areas would go directly to local government accounts without any interference from the state governments. Section 162(6) of the Constitution states: “Each state shall maintain a special account to be called ‘State Joint Local Government Account’ into which shall be paid all allocations to the local government councils of the state from the Federation Account and from the government of the state”. The RMAFC is the statutory body authorised to make proposals for revenue allocation from the Federation Account. Mbam said in line with the wish of the governors, a new revenue allocation formula will be proposed soon. “When I took office as the chairman, I addressed Nigeri-

ans on the need for a review of the revenue allocation formula and I promised Nigerians of our commitment to the review because it is long overdue. I went further to constitute a committee in that respect”. “The Committee has commenced work. We are conscious of the sensitivity of the assignment. We will make sure we do detailed consultations, researches and that is why it is taking quite some time. I have promised the nation that the new revenue allocation formula will be ready for presentation to the President in the first quarter of 2012”. He also said the Commission is working towards an amendment of the constitution which will provide RMAFC with the powers to monitor how the allocation is spent for the development of the states. He urged state governments to work towards increasing their internally generated revenue instead of depending solely on allocation from the Federal Account. He said the Commission has started a process of sensitising the governors on the need for revenue diversification. The RMAFC boss urged the governors to direct their finance commissioners to return for the Federal Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC)’s meeting and collect the allocation which they rejected. He said the grey areas will be addressed in due course. “I want to use this opportunity to call on governors to please direct their state commissioners of finance to attend the FAAC meeting and collect their allocation, while discussions on the issues of concern go on, because that will reduce the problem of distorting the governance and also heating up the polity,” he said. Mbam assured that the new revenue allocation formula will be based on the constitutional parameters of land mass, population density, equality of states, among others. The governors’ position on the SWF has been oscillating between rejection and acceptance. The governors described the fund as unconstitutional and illegal, and revived their suit against it at the Supreme Court. But Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole later dissociated his state for the suit. He said the explanation by Finance Minister Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala convinced him of the need for the fund. “The federal government will need to amend the Constitution to scrap the account. They may not be able to get the amendment through. “Don’t forget that in addition to the two-thirds of votes at the National Assembly, they require the support from twothirds of States Houses of Assembly, to amend any part of the Constitution. They may not be able to get this,” said a source close to one of the governor last night.

79 Nigerians back from Libya Continued from page 1

The returnees were transported in five Cameroonian commercial buses with the inscription, “Touritique Express”. They were accompanied by two officials of the Chad-based International Organisation for Migration (IOM). Officers and men of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) led by Abubakar Mohammed an Assistant Comptroller of Immigration (ACI), thoroughly searched and screened them to ensure that they were Nigerians. The screening was also intended at ensuring that the returnees did not carry any contraband into the country.

One of the returnees who hails from Edo State, Aishatu Suleiman, said she went through unimaginable agony. Receiving the returnees, the Northeast Zonal Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Aliyu Sambo, advised Nigerians to stay in their country to earn a living. Sambo said Nigeria is blessed with abundant natural resources which could provide comfort for its citizens. The NEMA official, who gave an assurance that all returnees would be transported to their states of origin, said 18 of them were critically ill.

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




•From left: Matthew Ndik, who made history as the first Nigerian at home to undergo a bone marrow transplant, in the sickle cell unit of UBTH; Apheresis machine, for the removal of excess haemoglobin; Plasma Apheresis machine, which ensures that Matthew breathes unadulterated air; and Mrs Odia, one of the eight nurses taking care of little Matthew PHOTOS: JOKE KUJENYA

‘Cost of bone marrow transplant is killing us’ On September 29, the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) recorded the first successful bone marrow transplant in Nigeria by transmuting young Matthew Ndik from SS genotype to AA genotype, using stem cells donated by his 14-year-old elder brother, Emmanuel. However, the cost of ensuring that the joy of the Ndiks last is beyond their means, reports Assistant Editor (Investigation) JOKE KUJENYA


HEY are still excited because their son made history. But for Mr and Mrs Hyacinth Ndik, the cost of post-transplant care is expensive. Matthew, their seven-year-old son, made history in September as the first Nigerian to undergo bone marrow transplant in the country. His mother, who was sitting by his bedside, when this reporter visited the hospital last Wednesday, said: “He is also responding well to treatment, although, his drugs are very, very expensive. Truly, I thank God for my son’s life. But now, the cost is killing us. Imagine, my husband has had to sell off my ‘Golf 4’ car during the peak days of the crisis just to make sure we keep Matthew alive.” She added: “We are now stuck with a bill of N5 million at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital. The operation has been very smooth, but the aftermath has been very challenging. For a child that has been isolated from his parents for so long, the emotional impact is crushing. The very serious aspect is how the situation has affected our financial life. Transporting ourselves to-and-fro the 10 kilometres from our residence at the GRA to the UBTH daily, coupled with the fact that we have been in it for about seven years has almost eroded the family finances. “We have had to bear sundry expenses for his post-transplant treatment. The cost is high. And I must admit that though the UBTH has really tried for us, I have been given a bill of N5 million. I must tell you also that the hospital has not stopped treating him, but each passing day, the Social Welfare Unit has been putting pressure on me to pay up. And that is why I am seeking for help, from my governor, Governor Liyel Imoke of Cross River and other Nigerians. I am begging Nigerians to come to my son’s rescue and that of his family.” The doctor, who led the team which performed the transplant, Dr Nosakhare Bazuaye, said: “I am not aware that management has asked him to pay the balance money because the hospital is paying for all the required drugs. I recall that I had written a letter at

Nigerians initiate sickle cell trust fund


FTER reading The Nation story with the headline, “How UNIBEN doctors freed a sickle cell patient”, some Nigerians have initiated a Sickle Cell Trust Fund (STCF) to support the cost of transplant for other patients. The initiative, facilitated by a computer scientist and an employee of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), Mr. Michael Ihezim, is to ensure that many others are not deprived of the life-saving medical feat. Ihezim said: “It is now sure that those suffering from the killing pains of sickle cell can be treated to lead normal lives.” Also on the team are: Regional Auditor, Mainstreet Bank, Mr. Sidiq Deen, Port Harcourt-based Mr. Kentowa Odu, and The Nation Reporter Joke Kujenya. At the group’s pioneer meeting with some memhis father’s request before to enable him get funds from his state governor. The UBTH is a Federal Government establishment and it is a basic routine to ask the patient to pay his bills and if he is unable to pay, he is referred to the social welfare unit, which will recommend to management for a waiver of bills. “The CMD of the hospital has no power to unilaterally write off any patient’s bill. The procedure is to ask social workers to meet any patient and assess if he or she cannot pay his or her deposit or bill. In the case of Mr Ndik, the letter with him had been given to him before the commencement of the transplant to enable him raise funds. But he was only able to pay N100,000 of the N500,000. And yes, the wife is occasionally asked to buy very few basic drugs which may not be available in the pharmacy of the hospital, but I am not sure she has bought drugs up to N50,000. Yet, we have never refused to provide therapy to Matthew because they could not procure any drugs. I think the UBTH should be commended for this.” Dr. Bazuaye said the concern now should be that Matthew is responding to treatment He said: “We are waiting for 100th day, which is the World Health Organisation’s mark for survival for transplant patients. But, once the

bers of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital’s (UBTH’s) management team last Wednesday in Benin, the Deputy Chief Medical Director, Dr. A. O. Ogbemudia, who represented the Chief Medical Director, Prof. Michael Ibadin, said a trust fund was a welcome idea. He told the team that the UBTH is favourably disposed to having an effective trust fund in place to help other Nigerians suffering from sickle cell but have no money to fund a transplant. The Sickle Cell Trust Fund will be registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission as a trust fund. Deen said he was willing to get his bank partner with the SCTF to ensure that those who need bone marrow transplants are not denied the life-saving opportunity. Dr. Ogbemudia urged the team to ensure that only patients with willing donors be given consideration.

donor cells in the patient have appreciated to a level to protect him for infection, then we shall move him out of the isolation room to another with only hyper-filtration. The platelets and blood products given to him are meant to support him before the new stem cells start producing blood cells. And he is tolerating the products very well. He will be discharged after the 100th day, but he will be out of isolation within the next two weeks. Thereafter, he will require physiotherapy and other support within the hospital before the 100th day discharge.” The cost of post-transplant care is expensive owing to the equipment used. For a patient in isolation, extra care is taken to ensure nothing goes wrong. Matthew alone has eight nurses to attend to him throughout the day. One of the nurses, Mrs. Faith Odia, Nursing Officer 1, said: “What we are doing with Matthew is called ‘total nursing care’. This involves being with a particular patient for 24 hours. We are eight nurses running shifts on the boy alone. We give him regular foods, such as Indomie. Crushed, but without the spice and pepper. And when we give him rice, we add dry fish and a little bit of pepper. He also takes porridge but everything we add in it must be mild. And all

these are helping him to recover fast. As you can see, he is beginning to gain some weight. Though he can walk a little, we have not allowed him to start walking because of the episode of strokes he experienced before the transplant. We need to allow his bone to be strengthened well enough for him before he could commence walking fully on his two legs. A physiotherapist comes in from time to time to treat him too so that his recovery can be whole.” Aside the total nursing care, which comes at its own cost, the fact that Matthew does not take in natural air into his system also comes at a price. He breathes in air from a special machine, which is connected to inverters in the event that public power supply ceases. Mrs Odia said: “Matthew is currently immuno-compromised, that is he currently has no immunity being that the donor’s stem cells he is carrying has not fully adjusted to his own body. So, he breathes in ‘Plasma Air’. The air is from a standing machine in his room that purifies the impurities in the environment to forestall his ingesting foreign bodies into his system. And since he is the only one that needs such air, every other person has to wear face mask to cover his or her nose. As a result, the Plasma Air machine is on

always and once PHCN light goes off, the three inverters connected to the room take over immediately and the machine is powered.” Outside Matthew’s oxygenated room is another that houses a machine, the ‘Apheresis’, which is used to collect specific blood components from donors. The machine is also used to remove excess haemoglobin. In Matthew’s case, the machine, according to a doctor, was needed to replace his destroyed cell lines. He said: “Following the transplant, the cell lines were completely destroyed. So, he required some blood donor support. He needed some ‘Platelets transfusion and red cells transfusion. So, what we need the machine for is to selectively collect platelets, a component of blood that helps clotting and prevents excessive bleeding, from donors, to maintain the platelets counts in his body above the required level. This helps to prevent stroke due to excessive bleeding to the brains and other sensitive parts of the body. We still got platelets from a donor, whose blood type, strictly matches his own, about 10 days ago because Matthew’s body still requires it. So far, Matthew has had two units of red cells. And he has got like four to six units of platelets. And now that he is blood group A, we get similar donors so we can ascertain his platelets counts as he recuperates. Then, we use the ‘Platelets agitator’ to ensure that the platelets are kept alive because if they are left alone, they stick together and form an ‘aggregate’ and when that happens, you may lose them. So, the vibration from the machine helps to keep them alive for use on the patient.” Dr. Bazuaye said stem cell transplant and post-transplant care can cost as much as N5 million. The haematologist and stem cell transplant expert said: “The maximum for the operation and subsequent treatment of a transplant is about N5 million. Just as we told you the last time the estimate for this particular transplant was between N2.5 to N5million. At admission the, parents were asked to pay a deposit of N500,00, but they could only afford N100,000. “



NEWS OPS, CNPP hail govt over Dangote’s GCON award THE Federal Government’s decision to honour Business mogul Aliko Dangote, with the second highest national award of the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON) continued yesterday to attract commendation from eminent Nigerians. Many described it as a positive development capable of encouraging entrepreneurship and local manufacturers. The Federal Government announced Dangote’s name last week as a recipient of the GCON. With this, he became the first private sector citizen to be awarded that prestigious honour reserved only for Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and President of the Senate during their first year in office. The GCFR and GCON are customarily bestowed on occupants of the office of President and Vice President. President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Chief Kola Jamodu praised the President, saying that it (the award) showed that the leadership of the public sector has an eye on the private sector and recognises it as a major player in the development of the nation’s economy. He said: “It is a very welcome development. We can only have positive things to say about this and we believe it is a mark of better things to come in the manufacturing sector in particular.” Also, the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) hailed the selection of the business mogul. Its Secretary-General Chief Willy Ezugwu, said in Abuja that the business magnate deserved the award and that the singular act of government will serve as encouragement to others to contribute positively to the economy. He explained that the Conference was delighted that a Nigerian in the mould of Dangote was being so honoured.

23 ACN members sue IG for N15b over arrest


WENTY-THREE members and leaders of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) have sued the Inspector-General of Police, Hafiz Ringim at the Federal High Court, Lokoja, for N15 billion for allegedly preventing them from entering the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja. They said the restriction of their freedom of movement on September 21 and on October 25 and 26 this year is unconstitutional, illegal, and null and void. According to them, it is a violation of their rights as guaranteed by Section 41 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Article 12 (1) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights. They filed two suits through their counsel, Kunle Adegoke of M. A. Banire & Associates. Ringim is the respondent in both. The first has the following applicants: Hon. Rasaq Oyesegun Folami, Omotosho Oluwaseyi, Olanrewaju Savage, Kolapo Olatunji, Theophilus Femi Kolawole, Olawale Aina and Hakeem Subair. Others are Babajide Alli-Balogun, Yakub Akilagun and Lukman Subair, Omoniyi Olayemi, Hon. Babatunde Abodunrin, Hon. Ayo Adesanya, Segun Desalu, Hon. Babatunde Lawson, Azuka Igbue and Lawal Yusuf. They are asking for a N10 billion compensation from Ringim. The second suit has Prince Benson Adekunle, Jimoh Olatunde Olayemi, Prince Akin Omolaoye, Ayo Laloye, Oyedeji Abayomi and Rabiu Yekeen as applicants. They prayed for N5billion compensation from the respondent The applicants sought a declaration that the act of police, led by Ringim in holding them hostage for hours under

Party protests SSS invitation of Udoedehe


HE Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has raised the alarm over the invitation of its governorship candidate in Akwa Ibom State , Senator John James Akpanudoedehe, by the State Security Service (SSS), saying the timing of the invitation is highly suspicious. In a statement in Lagos yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the decision by the SSS to invite Senator Akpanudoedehe, about the same time that the Appeal Court sitting in Calabar ordered a retrial of the election petition filed by the party’s candidate for the Uyo Senatorial District, raises a very serious concern. The statement reads: “The SSS has not said why it is inviting Akpanudoedehe. But coming at this time, we are concerned that it may be part of efforts to sabotage ACN’s preparations for the retrial at the tribunal. We say this because of the increasingly worrisome role of the security agents in intimidating the opposition. ‘’The SSS or the police can invite anyone they wish to interrogate, but they must not be seen to be working in tandem with the PDP to frustrate the opposition. Sadly, that has been the case in recent times, hence our concern.” It asked the SSS to tell the world why it is inviting the ACN governorship candidate at this time. The party also expressed concern at the way its chairman in Jigawa - another PDP-ruled state Dr. Abubakar Fulata, is being harassed and intimidated by the state government, with the connivance of the security agencies. The party accused Governor Sule Lamido of turning himself to an emperor who cannot and must not be criticised, even though he is holding a public office. It said: “Dr. Fulata’s offence is that he said the governor lacked the necessary qualifications for the post. Dr. Fulata should know because he once By Joseph Jibueze

harsh weather conditions without any lawful or justified basis is unconstitutional, and, therefore, illegal. They asked the court to hold that police officers restricting their freedom of movement and preventing them from entering the FCT on account of their membership of the ACN is in gross violation of their right to freedom from discrimination. The applicants prayed the

served as a Special Assistant to Lamido when he was Foreign Affairs Minister. Instead of refuting the accusation with facts, ‘Emperor’ Lamido took Dr. Fulata to a Sharia Court, where he has been detained since then.” ACN called for the immediate release of Fulata, saying even if the court must try him, he should not be held in detention indefinitely when he has not been found guilty of any offence. “This is a violation of Fulata’s fundamental rights, and a negation of the public stand of the PDP-run Federal Government on the rule of law. A government that shows no respect for its country’s laws, disregards the judiciary and stifles the media cannot get and does not deserve respect in the comity of nations,” the party said. ACN recalled its earlier statement that there seems to be a coordinated effort on the part of the PDP and its governments, whether at state or federal levels, to use the security agencies to stifle the opposition. The statement reads: “When the SSS’ invitation of Senator Akpanudoedehe is taken along with the treatment being meted out to Dr. Fulata in Jigawa, the unlawful arrest and detention of The Nation editors and the harassment and intimidation of ACN supporters by the police, especially in Kogi where they have twice been stopped from travelling to Abuja for no reason, one begins to wonder whether the PDP has decided to abridge the Constitutionally-guaranteed rights of all opposition party members and supporters. ‘’But we will like to warn that such attempts are sure to fail, if history is a guide,’’ the party said.

court for an order restraining Ringim, whether by himself, servants, agents and/or persons acting for or on his behalf from further tampering with, violating or otherwise infringing their rights. The N10 billion compensation, they said, is for the alleged gross violation of their rights to freedom of movement, right to dignity of human persons and right to freedom from discrimination. Besides, they argue that there is no provision in the

•The Secretary to the Lagos State Government, Mrs Idiat Adebule, flanked by United States Consul General Mr Josep Stafford (left) and Political/ Economic Section chief Mr Rolf Olson during the US Ambassador’s courtesy visit to the SSG at Alausa, Ikeja.

Amosun, PDP know fate today From Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta

OGUN State Governor Ibikunle Amosun and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will today know their fate as the governorship election petition tribunal sitting in Abeokuta is set to rule in the petition filed by the PDP. The PDP had taken Amosun, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to the tribunal, challenging Amosun’s and his party’s victory in the April general elections. The three -man tribunal headed by Justice Bashir Sukola yesterday notified the parties in writing in res About a month ago, the petitioner and respondent submitted and adopted their written addresses.

Constitution or any law enacted by the National Assembly restricting their rights to enter or exit the FCT, Abuja or any other part of the federation. The first group was turned back on their way to Abuja to witness the Code of Conduct Bureau arraignment proceedings of their leader Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, while the second group was on their way to attend a meeting at the party’s national secretariat, Abuja.

Group criticises Tinubu’s trial by Conduct Bureau


GROUP, the Congress for Southwest Youth’, has criticised the trial of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader, Senator Bola Tinubu, by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), saying it is instigated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Its leader Comrade Taiwo Ayedun, said in a statement in Lagos that PDP is uncomfort-

By Emmanuel Oladesu Deputy Political Editor

able with its electoral failure in the geo-political zone, which has been attributed to the efforts of progressives led by the former Lagos State governor. Ayedun said Tinubu has done much for the Southwest as governor than former President Olusegun Obasan-

jo, who left the zone worse than he met it in 1999 as Commander-In-Chief. He said: “For us, the achievements of Tinubu are unparalleled. While the father of the PDP, Olusegun Obasanjo is a double tragedy to Nigeria, Asiwaju has assumed the position of a genuine leader of the Yoruba land and a new Nigeria”. Ayedun said Tinubu cannot

be silenced as the opposition leader, stressing that Southwest and generality of Nigerians are behind him as a fighter for the rule of law and electoral justice. He added: “President Jonathan and the PDP should leave Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu alone because there is no democracy in the world that ever develops or grows without a conscious opposition”.

In an affidavit in support of the fundamental rights enforcement application, Kolawole said the police officers who stopped them claimed that Ringim gave the order. “As we displayed the ACN banner on our buses, the officials of the respondent were able to identify us and frustrate all efforts to proceed further on our journey and/or enter the FCT. “All the applicants, numerous ACN members and I were kept by the officials of the respondent under harsh weather conditions, mosquito bites and constant threat of being shot at throughout the night until the following morning.”At about 7.00 am on Wednesday, the 21st day of September, 2011, the policemen ordered us back onto the road, commanded us to enter our various vehicles and with an escort in front and another at the back of our convoy, we were led out of Lokoja back to Okene in Kogi State and told to go back to Lagos and never to attempt to return to Abuja again.” In an affidavit in support of the second application, Olayemi, a member of the Osun State ACN Executive Council, said the police officers insisted they must return to Osun State as they had Ringim’s instruction not to let ACN members enter Abuja. “We were kept in the bush and we all had to pass the night there at the mercy of mosquitoes,” he said. The applicants urged the court to determine whether their prevention from entering Abuja is in any way lawful and justifiable in any democratic society, and whether Ringim should be excluded from liability. The suits, filed on October 28, are yet to be heard.

CJN gets media aide From Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja


HE Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Dahiru Musdapher, has approved the appointment of Mallam Muhammad Adamu as his Media Adviser and Public Affairs Consultant to the Judiciary. On assumption of office, Justice Musdapher had promised to carry out reforms in the judiciary and to involve the media as development partners in the all-important task of building a worthy judiciary. A statement by the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court, Sunday Olorundahunsi said “Adamu is expected to lead the implementation of the new CJN’s initiative”. Adamu, a 1987 Graduate of the University of Sokoto (now Usman Dan Fodio University) holds a B. A. Degree in English/literature, with 20-year carrier as a Journalist mostly in the stables of the defunct Concord Press of Nigeria, CPN and African Concord Magazine. “Currently, he is a general media practitioner, a private consultant on the legislative process and a Public Affairs Analyst who until this appointment has been a Columnist and member of the Editorial Board of Peoples Daily Newspapers and a contributing Columnist with the Vanguard Newspapers”. “He has since resumed”, the statement added.



NEWS Kwara Assembly gets Security Bill

Pensioners‘ death blamed on greedy civil servants

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

From Nduka Chiejina, Assistant Editor, Abuja


REED and the desire to spend appropriated money for the public good are the reasons pensioners die during verification in Nigeria. The Director-General of the National Pension Commission (PenCom), M.K. Ahmad, told The Nation that officials of the civilian pension department exhibit greedy tendencies towards public funds. He said: “They get money because it is being appropriated for them. That’s basically the point. It is quite embarrassing, particularly with the civilian pension department. “In conjunction with the Ministry of Finance and Budget Office we (PenCom) undertook pension verification in 2006, which was concluded in 2007. The data was ready for Police pension, civilian pension, military pension, Customs and Immigration pension, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and State Security Service (SSS). There were about six pension services. “The idea then was that with that verification, we would never have any verification exercise to conduct again; we would have computerised the system.” Ahmed said the Budget Office and PenCom were frustrated, adding: “The data was never used by any pension department. They went ahead and, on annual basis, they have been conducting verification exercise.”

Ogun screens 5,000 for jobs


HE 5000 applicants shortlisted for the Ogun State Rapid Em-

ployment Generation Programme have been invited for screening and interview on Wednesday. They are the first set of beneficiaries of job creation scheme initiated by the Governor Ibikunle Amosun administration in the Gateway State. The programme is targeted at creating 10,000 jobs opportunities. Commissioner for Information and Strategy Yusuph Olaniyonu said the shortlisted applicants would be interviewed at the M.K.O Abiola Stadium and the June 12 Cultural Centre, both in Kuto area of Abeokuta, the state capital. The applicants with postgraduate and first degrees, Higher and Ordinary National Diplomas (ND), Nursing/Midwifery Certificates and National Certificate in Education (NCE) are to appear at the Cultural Centre while those short-listed with secondary school and Trade Test certificates to report at the MKO Abiola Stadium. The interview sessions will begin by 10am. Olaniyonu urged the candidates to bring the original and photocopies of their certificates and local government identification letters.

•Benue State Governor Gabriel Suswam flanked by his wife, Yemisi, and an Australian official at the presentation of a paper on business opportunities in Benue during one of the business sessions at the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Perth, the weekend

Family of six dies in Kaduna-Kano Expressway accident


IX members of a family at the weekend died on the KadunaKano Expressway when their car plunged into Tamburuwa River. The occupants of the black Mercedes “C” Class car were said to be heading to Kano from Kaduna when the accident occurred. Three children and three adults died in the accident. The car was said to have lost one of its tyres, somersaulted and crashed into the

From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano

railings of a bridge, before crashing into the river. The driver of the car reportedly lost control when the tyre burst on the Tamburawa Bridge, about 30 kilometres from Kano. Other road users were said to have begun rescue operations before the arrival of officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), the Nigeria Police Force and the Rescue Unit of Kano State

Fire Service. They ripped off the car to recover the trapped and mangled bodies of the occupants. An eyewitness, Musa Abdullahi said the deceased had offered him a bottle of water in Zaria, where they had stopped for light refreshment. The Nation learnt that the Tamburawa Bridge quakes and vibrates, an indication that it might collapse if urgent steps are not taken.

The Kano State Sector Commander of the FRSC, Mallam Hassan Kogari, confirmed the incident, blaming it on bad road. Kogari, who said the driver lost control while trying to avoid pot holes, urged relevant authorities to rehabilitate the failed portion of the road to save lives. The FRSC Sector Commander said 34 other people have died in the past six months at the same spot at the entrance of the bridge.

Belgore denies accepting tribunal’s verdict on Saraki’s election


HE Kwara State governorship candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in the April election, Mohammed Dele Belgore (SAN) yesterday denied accepting the ruling on the election victory of former Governor Bukola Saraki by the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal. He dismissed as “mischievous and absurd” a radio station’s claim that he (Belgore) had accepted the tribunal verdict and congratulated

From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin

Saraki. In a statement by his media aide, Rafiu Ajakaye, Belgore said he shared the view of the ACN leadership in the state, including the party’s senatorial candidate for Kwara Central, Dr Ibrahim Oloriegbe, that the tribunal’s ruling is perverse and is being appealed. Belgore said: “I totally stand by the resolve of our great party to appeal the rul-

ing, based on our conviction that justice has not been done to our petition. We urge our supporters to ignore the wingless propaganda. “We wish to say that Radio Kwara, which is funded by taxpayers’ money and which should be a respected voice for truth and fairness for the benefit of all Kwara people, has sadly become an instrument of cheap propaganda in the hands of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). “Therefore, its stories


about political events, especially as they concern ACN and myself, ought always to be double-checked for accuracy before anybody forms any opinion about them.”

IMF responsible for decay in Nigerian varsities, years than required in schools HE decay in Nigesays Hassan Adamu because of ASUU strikes. rian universities is


the result of the advice the International Monetary Fund (IMF) gave the Federal Government in 1987, the chairman of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), Hassan Adamu, has said. Adamu spoke at the weekend when he was made the Chancellor of the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) in Abuja. He noted that the decay started long ago “in 1987, when IMF started advising the government to cut down on funding health and education”. Adamu urged governments and the private sector to show more commitment in funding and equipping

From Nduka Chiejina, Assistant Editor

the education sector. The result of the IMF advice, he said, was the resultant brain drain in higher institutions and the less attraction that teaching has among graduates. He also said the effect of the advice was a drop in the quality of education as many frontline academics left the country to seek work abroad. Adamu, who replaces former Head of State, Chief Ernest Shonekan, as the Chancellor of the university, promised to improve infrastructure, examine the remuneration of workers, particularly lecturers as well as equip the institution

‘Money is not everything. They (lecturers) should not equate their salaries to that of workers in the oil and banking industries. It is more rewarding to impart knowledge’ during his tenure. He noted that incessant strikes by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has worsened the decay in university education, adding that students spend more

According to him, lecturers have the responsibility to stay in the classrooms, adding: “Money is not everything. They (lecturers) should not equate their salaries to that of workers in the oil and banking industries. It is more rewarding to impart knowledge.” The university’s representative, Ifeanyi Didiugwu said Adamu is known for his commitment to education, a virtue that has endeared him to the government of Enugu State and the decision to appoint him the Chancellor. According to him, Adamu will be officially installed Chancellor of ESUT during the school’s convocation in November.

KWARA State Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed has sent the Security Trust Fund Bill 2011 to the House of Assembly for consideration. The Bill seeks to establish a trust fund for equipment and logistical support to security agencies in the state to enhance their operation. Deputy Speaker Prof Mohammed Gana, who received the letter, said the Bill provides that the fund to be managed by a Board of Trustees (BOT), adding that the board members would be drawn from the private and public sectors. He said the BOT would make the fund transparent because the contribution to the fund would come from all sectors of the society. Ahmed said the passage of the Bill would boost the ongoing efforts to reduce crimes in the state.

Alleged N1.4b fraud: EFCC quizzes Rector From Jide Orintunsin, Minna

THE Provost of the Federal College of Education (FCE), Kontagora, Niger State, Dr. Nathaniel Odediran, is to appear before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allegedly defrauding the school through the award of contracts amounting to N1.4billion. But the Provost, who is expected to appear before the commission tomorrow, said his hands are clean. He blamed his ordeal on the handiwork of mischief makers and blackmailers. Four members of the school’s management have already been quizzed by the anti-graft agency over the matter. Investigations into the contracts followed a petition by Kontagora Emirate Youth Development Association (KEYDA), a pressure group in the area, protesting against the management of the college. The group reportedly accused the management officials of abusing their office. It alleged that the award of the contracts by the school management contravenes the code of ethics of public officers and is a breach of Public Procurement Act of 2007. Acknowledging the receipt of the petition in a letter dated October 10, the EFCC invited Odediran and five other management officials to appear before it. Confirming the EFCC invitation in a telephone interview yesterday, the Provost said he had no cause to fear. He accused a former director of the college, who was reportedly sacked, as the brains behind the petition. Odediran said: “It is true, I have been invited. But my hands are clean. The petition was sponsored by a former director of the college. It is a cheap blackmail and mischief.”



NEWS Ajimobi set to improve education

Robbers steal Osun health care drugs


OBBERS yesterday broke into the Central Medical Store of the Osun State Ministry of Health and stole drugs worth millions of naira. The robbers arrived at the store around 1am. They tied up the two security men on duty and operated for about two and a half hours. The hoodlums, whose numbers could not be ascertained, forced their way into the store by cutting the padlocks and burglary proof.

•Govt: we can’t rule out sabotage

From Adesoji Adeniyi, Osogbo

The security guards said the robbers took their loot away in a truck at about 3:30am. Some of the drugs stolen include cartons of anti-biotics, anti-malaria and analgesic drugs like Septrin, M&B, Paracetamol, Artemether/ Lumefantrine (by IPCA), Malamox, Amoxilline (Neomox), Maldox and Falcither.

In a statement, the governor’s media aide, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, said the government would not rule out sabotage. He said: “We would like to state that this ugly development amounts to a deliberate attempt to sabotage the comprehensive and qualitative health plans of the Governor Rauf Aregbesola administration, which had promised to restore healthy living to

citizens of the state. “The government assures all citizens that it will get to the root of the matter and bring those behind this criminal act to justice. “The government hereby alerts Nigerians to look out for drugs bearing the inscription ‘Property of the Osun State Government’ in the market.” The matter has been reported to the police.

•Director of Pharmaceutical Services, Osun State Ministry of Health, Mrs. Ojo Adepoju (right) narrating the incident to reporters at the store...yesterday. • Insert : One of the padlocks that was cut by the robbers.

Ibadan residents excited by Lagos-Ilorin rail services


ASSENGERS and carriers of heavy consignments from Lagos to Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, were excited at the weekend with the revival of the inter-city passenger rail express services of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC). After several years of inactivity, the first operation of the inter-city railway services left Iddo, Lagos State for Ilorin. It stopped over at Dugbe, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, at 2pm. A crowd gathered at the terminus in Dugbe and cheered the train as it stopped. NRC Western District

From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan

Manager Folorunso Gbadamosi told reporters at the Dugbe station that the train would leave Lagos for Ilorin every Friday and return to Lagos on Sunday. Gbadamosi said the NorthSouth express rail services would be restored within the first quarter of next year on completion of the on-going rehabilitation of Akere Bridge in Niger State. He said: “The NRC was able to achieve this feat following the successful handing over of both freight and passenger

services of the rail track route between Ibadan and Ilorin, which has been under rehabilitation for some time by the China Civil Engineering and Construction Company (CCECC). “In the light of the handing over, we have commenced the IddoIlorin passenger express train today (Friday). The train, which has 90 passengers on each coach of six, will be running to schedule every Friday of the week while there will also be return journeys from Ilorin to Iddo in Lagos every Sunday. “Arrangement has also been

concluded to begin a weekly haulage of 600 metric tons of cement to Ilorin in two weeks time. “The NRC shall not rest, until full freight and passenger services are restored on all our routes across the country.” On the security of passengers, Gbadamosi said the corporation has put in place Railway District Police Officers and Man O’ War in all its districts. Last month, NRC inaugurated freight services from Lagos to Ibadan and haulage of 750 metric tons of cement weekly from Lafarge (WAPCO) Plc plant at Ewekoro in Ogun State.

Ondo judiciary workers continue strike


HE strike by Judiciary workers in Ondo State has entered its fifth day. The workers are protesting the withdrawal of hazard and outfit allowances by the state government. The strike began last Tuesday, following the collapse of negotiation on the implementation of the Consolidated Judiciary Salary Structure (CONJUSS) with government. The aggrieved workers, under the aegis of Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), said many states had implemented CONJUSS. In a statement in Akure, the state capital, at the weekend, JUSUN Chairman Femi Ogunode and Secretary Toye Ilesanmi

•Govt: we gave them options From Damisi Ojo, Akure

said the government had earlier set up a Technical Committee to deliberate on the issue. It reads: “The committee agreed with our position and recommended to the governor the approval of the CONJUSS, having worked out the financial implication on the state. We agreed that the state can conveniently accommodate it. “A month after that agreement, there is still no response from the government and its workers have not received three months salary arrears for July, August and September. “The effect of three

‘The effect of three months salary arrears is telling much on our productivity and sustenance. We are tired of coming to work on empty stomach and trekking from our respective homes to offices’ months salary arrears is telling much on our productivity and sustenance. We are tired of coming to work on empty stomach and trekking from our

respective homes to offices. “If we want to opt for the old salary, our members on Grade Levels 1-6 will be collecting lesser than what the Minimum Wage Act stipulates.” Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the governor on Labour Matters Dayo Fadahunsi said: “We gave them two options of either settling with their old salary or moving to salary relativity, but they are in a dilemma over which to choose. Relativity favours junior workers from levels 1 to 6, while the old salary benefits Levels 7 and above. The ball is in their court.” Fadahunsi said the government had paid salaries from July to October into the accounts of workers, but they refused to collect it.

•Oyo difficult to govern, says Alaafin From Bisi Oladele and Tayo Johnson, Ibadan


YO State Governor Abiola Ajimobi has called on stakeholders to come up with suggestions on how

to improve the education sector. Ajimobi spoke yesterday while meeting with heads of schools and other stakeholders in the sector. The governor, represented by Commissioner for Education Mrs. Adetokunbo Fayokun, bemoaned the decline in the education system and urged stakeholders to fashion out ways of addressing the decay. Ajimobi said henceforth, there would be uniformity in the scheme of work across the state. He said from next month, there would be compulsory extension/after-school classes for pupils in SSS III, to prepare them for the mock examinations. Ajimobi said the extension/after-school classes would be strictly monitored by an independent task force to ensure compliance and urged parents to release their children for the programme. He assured teachers of a conducive working environment and improved welfare package. Also at the weekend, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, urged the governor to administer the state with wisdom, saying “Oyo is a difficult state to manage.” The monarch spoke at his palace while hosting the governor’s wife, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi. He said he believes Ajimobi would succeed, going by the way he has been handling issues since he assumed office. The monarch praised Mrs. Ajimobi’s pet project, which takes care of widows and the aged, and pledged his support for the Ajimobi administration. He dispelled a rumour that he was paralysed, saying he is “hale and hearty.” Mrs. Ajimobi also visited the Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Oyewumi Ajagungbade, and his Iseyin counterpart, Oba Samuel Adegbola.

Court to rule on Senator Tinubu’s election tomorrow


HE Court of Appeal in Lagos will deliver judgment tomorrow in a petition by the Labour Party (LP) challenging the ruling of the state’s Legislative Election Petition Tribunal, which upheld the election of Senator Oluremi Tinubu of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). The three-man panel, led by Justice Helen Ogunwumiju, chose the date last week after parties adopted their written briefs. The appellant’s lawyer, Chukwuma Ekumaru (SAN), urged the court to uphold his client’s appeal and order the President of the Court of Appeal to constitute a new panel to hear his client’s petition. He said the lower tribunal erred when it dismissed his client’s petition on the ground that it applied for the issuance of pre-hearing notices on parties through a letter to the tribunal’s Secretary. Respondents’ lawyers,

By Eric Ikhilae

Benjamin Omoruyi for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) for ACN and Senator Tinubu, urged the court to dismiss the appeal and uphold the lower tribunal’s decision. Osinbajo denied Ekumaru’s claim that parties had a pre-hearing session before the respondents challenged the manner the petitioner applied for the issuance of notices. He faulted the reliefs being sought by the appellant, noting that having failed to ask that the election be annulled, the appellant could not pray the court to order INEC to conduct a fresh election. Prof. Osinbajo said a request for the annulment of a disputed election was a condition precedent that must be fulfilled by a petitioner under Section 140 (2) of the Electoral Act.

Ondo LP chieftain resigns From Damisi Ojo, Akure


HE Deputy Chairman of the Labour Party (LP) in Ondo State, Senator Omololu Meroyi, has resigned from the party.

This came barely two months after the party’s former state Chairman, Dr. Olaiya Oni, resigned. In his resignation letter, Meroyi said he was leaving LP because it has lost focus. The letter reads: “This is to inform you that events in the party have clearly shown that the LP Government has lost its initial progressive objective. “What we all built with our toil have been converted into the personal gains of a few. There is no enough room for all any longer. “I can no longer identify with the demeaning activities of the leadership of the party and therefore resign my membership and the position of the Deputy State Chairman of the party.”



NEWS Waku cautions Reps on EFCC

Boko Haram kills Islamic cleric in Borno


N Islamic cleric, Goni Ali Gana, was at the weekend killed by suspected members of the Boko Haram sect in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. Goni was said to have been shot at 8pm on Saturday in front of his home at Kaleri area of the capital city when he was attending to some guests. The October 31 deadline given by the Joint Task Force (JTF) for Maiduguri residents and environs to surrender weapons in their possession expires today. A bomb blast yesterday rocked the troubled Maiduguri in an attack on a military patrol vehicle, the Army and

•Large explosion rocks Maiduguri From Joseph AMun Maiduguri

residents said. Although residents reported seeing an ambulance speeding away from the area, the Army said there were no casualties. The city has previously been targeted by scores of bombings blamed on Islamist sect Boko Haram. “There was a bomb attack targeting a military patrol vehicle, but there were no casualties,” said Col. Victor Ebhaleme, commander of operations of the Joint Task Force (JTF). Residents described a large

explosion and one said he saw an ambulance driving at speed away from the area. “There was a loud explosion,” said resident Hammadi Yakubu. “The explosion was the loudest I’ve heard so far in the city.” He said “nobody knows the extent of the damage because the area has been cordoned off by soldiers.” Another resident gave a similar account, speaking of a heavy explosion and smoke billowing. “The sound was really terrifying,” said Ahmad Gana. Another resident, Bunu Zarabe, said he saw a siren-

blaring ambulance speeding out of the area with a military van behind it. Residents in the neighbourhood, known as Bulabulin Ngarnam, were later said to be fleeing the area for fear of a military raid in response to the blast. Soldiers have, in the past, been accused of rampaging through neighbourhoods after such explosions, killing residents, burning homes and claiming that residents collaborated with the sect. Maiduguri has been hit by scores of attacks blamed on Boko Haram, which also claimed responsibility for the August suicide bombing of UN headquarters in Abuja that killed at least 24 people.

Subsidy removal ‘ll create investments, jobs, says NNPC T

HE Group General Manager, Public Affairs Division of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Dr. Levi Ajuonuma said the planned removal of fuel subsidy would bring about huge investments in refineries, petrochemicals and allied products. He said: “Removal of subsidy means that government would have more funds to channel into the provision of some identified vital infrastructure and social welfare packages for some vulnerable groups like pregnant women, children as well as unemployed youths,’’ Ajuonuma said in Lagos at the weekend. “It is common knowledge that about 10 years ago government gave licences to some private investors to build refineries and one decade after none of them has come on stream. The reason for this is very simple: No investor would enter a market where government prescribes how much the products should be sold.” Ajuonuma said the deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum industry would encourage private investors to build more refineries in the country to complement the four existing gov-

•NLC, TUC, indepedent marketers kick

Nurses say no to subsidy removal From Marie-Therese Peter Jos


URSES and midwives from the Forum of Federal Health Institutions have urged the Federal Government to desist from the planned removal of fuel subsidy. They said it would erode the benefit workers gain from the new national minimum wage. The forum insisted that workers would be at the receiving end of the hardship which the removal would bring. In a communique at the end of its 26th Scientific/Delegates Conference, the forum urged President Goodluck Jonathan to avoid the industrial unrest that could follow the planned removal by ensuring that the subsidy stays. The communique by the forum’s National Chairman and National Secretary, Nana Takai and Mrs. Ngozi Osunde at the weekend in Jos, the Plateau State capital, reads: “The forum would like to know who benefits from the fuel subsidy; who benefits from its removal; how much was realised from the previous removal of subsidy; what it was used for; why our refineries are producing below capacity; and who benefits from fuel importation.” By Dupe Olaoye-Osinkolu

ernment-owned refineries. He urged the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and other bodies opposed to the removal of subsidy to give government the benefit of implementing the deregulation programme and monitor how

the proceeds would be used for the benefit of Nigerians. But the NLC and TUC yesterday said they would never buy into the subsidy removal plan. NLC Head of Information, Comrade Chris Uyot said the Federal Government has engaged itself in a "dialogue of

the deaf". He said: "Rather than tinker with increase in fuel price, government should think about the interest of the people.” Secretary-General of the TUC Chief John Kolawole said fuel subsidy cannot be removed for now, because government cannot do it by magic. He said: "Government is not even talking to Labour. It is rather talking to its friends in commerce and politicians. We are resolute in ensuring that workers and the people are not deceived and misled that there is subsidy.” The Independent Marketers Branch (IMB) of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) urged the nation to reject subsidy removal. At its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting yesterday, the IMB said: "No to oil subsidy. Instead of removing the oil subsidy, the Federal Government should embark on a policy that will guarantee the safety of the masses wherever they live.”



ATIONAL Vice-Chairman of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) Senator John Kennedy Waku has cautioned members of the House of Representatives on the plan to amend the establishment Act of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The ACF chieftain, in a statement issued yesterday, said even if the lawmakers have a genuine reason to amend the law, the timing is suggestive of some ulterior motives. The statement reads: “ It is public knowledge that the EFCC has of recent charged a significant number of serving and past members of the House to court over alleged

involvement in corruption. These people are bitter and naturally will want to fight back. The only logical thing is to mobilise their colleaques on the floor of the House to engage the EFCC leadership or whittle down its powers. “As such, if the House is now initiating processes to amend the EFCC Act with full concentration on qualifications of who occupies the position of the Commission’s Chairman, the only logical conclusion that can be drawn is that the process is targeting the current head of the agency for obvious reasons. “As representatives of the people of Nigeria, I will want to urge our lawmakers to reconsider their position so that ordinary Nigerians will not take it that the House is only fighting a proxy war for its members facing corruption charges. The House has in particular lately suffered a lot of damage to its image and the on going effort should not be allowed to further lower the public perception of the green chamber of the National Assembly. “The mood of the nation and indeed the international community at the moment favours a total war against corruption in all its ramifications. ”

Ex-NEC Secretary Umar dies at 68 From Jide Orintunsin Minna


HE former Secretary to the defunct National Electoral Commission (NEC) that midwifed the annulled June 12, 1993 elections, the nation’s adjudged freest poll, Mallam Umar Aliyu, is dead. He died on Friday in Minna, the Niger State capital, at age of 68 after a protracted illness. He was the adminstative head of the electoral agency under Prof. Humphery Nwosu. Condoling with the falmily of the deaseased, Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu said the death of the former NEC Secretary is a great loss, saying he would be missed by the entire nation. In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mallam Danladi Ndayebo, the governor said despite his protracted illness, Umar’s death still came as a shock. The governor lamented that his death came at a time when the guidance and advice of our great leaders like Umar and his ilk are needed to help in strengthening our electoral system. Aliyu said: “But we are consoled that the great values he left behind will serve as guiding lights not only to his former colleagues in the state and federal civil service but also to the entire nation.”



NEWS China to invest in Edo From Osagie Otabor, Benin


HE Chinese Government is to collaborate with the Edo State Government by investing in agriculture and information communication technology. It said it was regrettable that the thriving rubber plantation in Edo State was neglected over the years adding that with good investment in oil palm and rubber plantations, Edo could become the richest state in Nigeria. Chinese Consul-General to Nigeria Guo Kun spoke in Benin City when he visited Governor Adams Oshiomhole. Guo, who was accompanied by some Chinese businessmen, said Edo used to be the largest grower of rubber in the country but now accounts for only 10 per cent of its vast rubber plantation. He said: “Edo State occupies a place in the heart of the Chinese people because the rubber, bamboo and palm industry which is a prominent industry in China have the potential of doing well in the state.”

‘I’ll take Delta to the world’ By Joseph Jibueze


ENIOR Adviser on Foreign Relations to Delta State Governor Oma Djebah has vowed to make the state Africa’s leading sub-national government in the world. He said the state has enormous potential for foreign investment, adding that he would make the world know about them. Djebah told reporters in Lagos that through the state’s Outreach/Partnership Unit (OPU), the Diaspora Direct Unit (DDU) and the Direct Global Programmes Unit (DGPU), he would bring “deliverables” to the people. The special adviser said he would leverage on his experience and “global linkages” to help Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan transform Delta. “Although each unit is specifically designed to work on its own and bring about progress to the state, each has inbuilt capacity for seamless integration in ensuring overall success of the work we need to do. “The OPU entails building good, credible and highly-placed friends, allies and contacts for the governor. “The DDU, which commenced in 2009, will build and sustain positive relations with Deltans in the diaspora for the overall benefit and development of the state. “The DGPU will focus on ensuring the facilitation of the state government’s active participation in key global programmes across US/Canada, Europe, Asia/Pacific, Africa, the Caribbean, China and the Middle East,” Djebah said. According to him, there is need to exploit the enormous possibility of using the international marketplace to bring attention to the growing demand of Delta’s quest to be a dominant player among foreign governments.

Uduaghan asks contractors to return


ELTA State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan has directed contractors executing projects to mobilise to site within one week or consider such contracts revoked. Uduaghan in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Sunny Ogefere, said the rains have subsided and can no longer be used as an excuse for contractors to continue delaying completion of contracts. He warned that contractors

who fail to mobilise fully to site and ensure speedy completion of the projects should be prepared to face the wrath of government. The governor gave the directive in compliance with the House of Assembly’s resolution on the complacency of contractors. Uduaghan assured the lawmakers that the executive would continue to collaborate with them to improve the living standard of Deltans.

‘Why we kicked against SWF’


DO State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has given reasons why governors initially kicked against the setting up of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) by the Federal Government. Oshiomhole said explanations given for setting up the fund by Minister of Trade and Investment Olusegun Aganga were confusing. Oshiomhole spoke when the World Bank Country Director, Marie Francoise

From Osagie Otabor, Benin

Marie-Nelly, visited him. The governor said he was convinced of the good intentions of the SWF after the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonja-Iweala, gave a satisfactory explanation. Oshiomhole said Nigeria cannot achieve its Vision 20:2020 without power. He said the market should be deregulated to allow people to generate and distribute power.

Bomb scare at CBN in Benin From Osagie Otabor, Benin


ECURITY operatives at the weekend cordoned off Akpakpava Street in Benin, Edo State, where the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is located. This followed an alert that a bomb has been dropped in the area. Motorists and pedestrians were made to take another route as the vicinity was combed in search of the bomb. It could not be confirmed who gave the alert that a bomb in a polythene bag was dropped in the area. Beside the CBN, other offices located in the area included the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), Nigeria Postal Services (NPS) and banks. The search for the bomb led into the night and it was yet to be confirmed if any bomb was found. Police spokesman Ahawara Ejiroro said he was in the church when contacted for comments.

•Guo (right) presenting a souvenir to Oshionhole at the Government House, Benin.


PDP stakeholders protest new chair


TAKEHOLDERS from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State yesterday called on the Acting National Chairman Abubakar Baraje and the Acting National Secretary Musa Babayo to resign. Their complaint against the duo is the alleged “unilateral imposition” of a substantive chairman on the state chapter by the National Working Committee (NWC) without their input. The NWC had, in an October 26 letter signed by Babayo, appointed former Bayelsa Central Vice-Chairman James Dugo as the chairman. Babayo, in the letter, said: “At its 286th meeting held on October 25, the NWC, after careful consideration and extensive consultations with stakeholders from Bayelsa State and the relevant zone as par the provision of Article 14.5 of our party constitution, approved your appointment as the substantive Bayelsa State PDP Chairman with immediate effect.” Already some aggrieved members of the NWC are reportedly protesting Baraje’s decision. They are calling for his removal.

But the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Prof Rufai Ahmed Alkali, dismissed the claim as ‘fictitious’, saying there is no such crack in the party’s hierarchy. A member of Bayelsa PDP, who carved anonymity, disagreed with Baraje and Babayo. He said the action amounted to an imposition. Although he admitted that the NWC had given the State Executive Committee (SEC) one week to meet and appoint a substitute, he said the SEC replied asking for more time for consultation with “major stakeholders”. The source said the Baraje and Babayo-led NWC did not wait for the outcome of the consultations before handpicking Dugo, claiming that he is from the same zone with the former occupant of the office, Rufus Abadi, who resigned last year to contest the Bayelsa Central Senatorial seat. “If they want to obey Article 14.5 of the PDP Constitution, they have to obey it to the letter. “They should resign their positions because their positions right now are contrary to the provisions of the same

Article 14.5. “Let Baraje vacate his seat for the Vice-Chairman , Southeast, Olisa Metuh, to take over since the position he now occupies was originally zoned to the Southeast. “Let the Acting National Secretary, Dr. Musa Babayo, resign for a person from the Northcentral where the position belongs to. “It is hypocritical for them to apply the provisions of the Article 14.5 to Bayelsa at this time,” the source said He added: “As a former governor, President Goodluck Jonathan advocated for the acting capacity of the then deputy chairman of the party when faced with a similar situation. “When Alfred Agbedi was suspended, he was replaced by the then Senatorial Vice Chairman, Christopher Hobobo, who Jonathan stoutly resisted. “The NWC then led by Ahmadu Ali succumbed to pressure by allowing the then deputy chairman, Darius Obiene, to assume the position on acting capacity. Why is this time different?” Besides, the source claimed that the State Working Committee had empowered Obi-

ene to act pending when a new congress would be conducted which is not the case now. The source further contended that when Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo resigned from office, his then deputy, Bello Haliru Mohammed, succeeded him and that when Mohammed was appointed Minister of Defence, Baraje assumed office in clear violation of Article 14.5 ,now being bandied by the NWC. The Article 14.5 of the PDP Constitution reads: “Where a vacancy occurs in any of the offices of the party, the committee shall appoint a substitute from the zone where the officer originated, pending the conduct of election to fill the vacancy.” Alkali has reportedly said Baraje would not resign because of the appointment of Dugo. He said Dugo was appointed to avert a possible litigations in view of the party’s governorship primaries. “If the former chairman is allowed to conduct the primaries, we could be taken to court for violating the party’s constitution later,” Alkali had said.

Sylva, Alaibe face investigative panel


AYELSA State Governor Timipre Sylva and former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Timi Alaibe yesterday appeared before an investigation panel raised by the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Sylva was said to have reported at the national secretariat at about noon while Alaibe came in at about 1.30pm. They interacted separately with the panel members behind closed doors for about two hours. Sylva told reporters that he was invited by the leadership of the party to clarify certain issues. He said: “The party invited me to come and clarify some issues which I have done. They asked me to give some explanations which I

From Gbade Ogunwale, Assistant Editor, Abuja

did. “I am not in the position to explain the issues to you. It’s the party that can do that. “But it was a fruitful deliberation. I have been cleared to take part in the primaries which goes to show that my clearance is subsisting and nobody can take that away” Prodded further on whether he was invited to give ex-

planations on certain petitions filed against him, Sylva said he was not aware of such petitions. “I am not aware of any petition but the truth is that everybody has the right to complain and I have the right to explain. “Everything that has been written about me is baloney.” He expressed optimism that the party would conduct

a free and fair primary in the state regardless of the recent changes in the executive of the party. “I believe that the party will conduct a fair primary. It doesn’t matter whether the state’s party chairman has been replaced or not”. Alaibe who emerged from the session about an hour after did not answer any question. He went away as quietly as he came.

Aspirant writes churches for prayers


GOVERNORSHIP aspirant in Bayelsa State, Dr. Morris Maxwell, has appealed to churches in the state to pray for his victory in the 2012 elections. Maxwell, who is yet to unveil the platform on which he intends to contest, said posterity would hold every one liable if the electorate fails to use what he described as divine intervention. In a similar development, an aspirant ,un-

From Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa

der the aegis of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Austin Ogionwo Febo, said he would set a four-point agenda for the transformation and economic development of the state. The agenda, according to him, would include infrastructural development, education, health and human capital. Febo said he’s in the race to offer selfless service for the state.





NERC stops meter maintenance fee From John Ofikhenua, Abuja


HOSE clamouring for the removal of meter maintenance fee won the battle at the weekend as the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) bans the fee. NERC’s Manager, Media Relations, Mr Michael Faloseyi disclosed this in a statement. He said the Commission at its last monthly meeting also constituted a Committee to conduct a public inquiry into meter procurement, metering and billing in the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) to unveil any under hand dealing and ensure that funds released for metering are accounted for. With this resolution, electricity distribution companies are to stop collection of meter maintenance fee as part of bills collectible from the consumer starting from October billing circle payable in November. Meter maintenance fee has remained a controversial bill heading among consumers of electricity, who have queried the rationale for its inclusion as part of charges in the industry as no maintenance is required on the meters as the name suggests. In arriving at the decision, the Commission observed that meter maintenance fee was introduced to shore up the utilities’revenue base following stiff opposition to tariff increase even in the face of daunting financial challenges to meet their obligations. The Commission resolved: “That as had been agreed at a previous meeting between the Commission and chief executive officers of distribution companies, the essence of the meter maintenance fee, which was justifiable as a means of raising tariffs when same was frozen can no longer be justified as this has been captured by the tariff in the MYTO of 2008 and the subsidy.

DATA STREAM COMMODITY PRICES Oil -$112/barrel Cocoa -$2,856/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢95.17pound Gold -$1,161/troy ounce Rubber -¢146.37pound MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE JSE NYSE LSE

-N6.747 trillion -Z5.112trillion -$10.84 trillion -£61.67 trillion

RATES Inflation -9.3% Treasury Bills -7.08% Maximum lending-22.42% Prime lending -15.82% Savings rate -2% 91-day NTB -10.23% Time Deposit -7% MPR -12% Foreign Reserve $30.8b CFA EUR £ $ ¥ SDR RIYAL



0.281 213.2 245.00 156.91 1.5652 245.8 40.57

The purchase of one good bulb ensures that one uses it for a longer period unlike inferior or substandard ones. -Dr Joseph Odumodu, SON, DG

Interbank rates rise on budget delay

Committee okays merger of PEF, Weights and Measures, others T


O resolve the conflicts and duplication of duties in the oil and gas industry, the Steve Oronsaye-led Federal Government Parastatals and Agencies Restructuring and Rationalisation Committee, has recommended in its preliminary report that the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF), Weights and Measures, in the Ministry of Trade and Investment be merged with bigger organisations with similar functions. It also called for the streamlining of the duties of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR). Our correspondent gathered from reliable sources that the committee has submitted its preliminary report to the Secretary to Federal Government, Senator Pius Anyim, for discussion at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.

By Emeka Ugwuanyi

In the report, according to the sources, the committee recommended that PEF, which oversees refunds for bridged petroleum products in the country, be merged with the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), while the Weights and Measures be fused with the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON). Other agencies, which the committee recommended for mergers include the Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIO), which it proposed to be merged with the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC). It also proposed that the Nigerian Aviation Management Agency (NAMA) be fused with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA). The committee, it was learnt, took the decision on PEF because the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), which is

considered a holistic document for the oil and gas industry didn’t make provision for PEF unlike the PPPRA. The committee also recommended that the activities of the DPR be streamlined or restricted to regulating the technical areas of the petroleum industry, such as the upstream. The committee, it was learnt, argued that the DPR lacks adequate manpower to man the upstream and downstream sectors. Besides, it said the PPPRA has a field services department that performs the same duty the DPR does at the filling stations, which amounts to duplication of duty. The committee also noted that it is inappropriate for the PPPRA to fix the price for petroleum products and DPR to implement the compliance. The agencies and parastatals that are being merged, it was also learnt, could have been scrapped without mergers, but the committee considered

likely reactions of the various labour groups, including the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) and the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG). Consequently, it is expected that the mergers would create room to accommodate as much employees as possible from the organisations that would cease to exist. The Presidency had set up the Committee on Restructuring and Rationalisation of Federal Government Parastatals and Agencies, headed by a former Head of Service of the Federation, Mr Steve Oronsaye. It was mandated to review previous reports on the restructuring of Federal Government’s parastatals, advise it on the relevance of the ministries and parastatals; identify duplication of functions and make recommendations.

HE interbank lending rates climbed last Friday to an average of 14.83 per cent, from 14.50 per cent two weeks, as delay in the disbursal of September budgetary allocations started to dry up liquidity. The disbursal of budgetary allocations from September oil revenues to the three tiers of government, according to Bloomberg News, was due two weeks ago, but it has been held up by what traders say is a row between the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the government over the handling of the account. The delay is starving the banking system of liquidity. Few details have emerged and neither the apex bank nor the government has commented on the alleged row, which has figured prominently in press reports in the past week. Nigeria distributes oil funds from centrally held accounts monthly to its three tiers of government — federal, states and local which provides a muchneeded cash inflow to the banking system.

NCMB partners Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone on job creation


• Chairman/Managing Director, Auto Company, Timothy Niyi Demurin (left), receiving a charge-free certificate from Team Leader, Access Bank Liability & Subsidiary Products, Victor Ohalete, during Access Bank Liability’s Customer engagement campaign in Lagos.With them are(from left) Mrs Toyin Daramola of Lagos State Lottery Board and Mrs. Ngozika Obidike of Consumer Protection Council.


CBN, PHCN, others abandon 500 containers at ports

HE Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) and some Federal Government agencies have abandoned over 500 containers at the Lagos ports. Some of them arrived the country as far back as 2006. Investigation conducted by The Nation revealed that PHCN may have abandoned not fewer than 250 container loads of energy equipment imported to boost power generation in the country. A senior Customs official, who crave anonymity, said 140 of the containers were abandoned at the Ports and Cargo Terminal, Tin Can port, Lagos, while the remaining 110 containers have been moved to Ikorodu

By Oluwakemi Dauda

Custom’s port to rot away as over time cargo, having stayed for over three years without any PHCN official coming forward to clear them. Investigation also revealed that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture abandoned 59 containers loads of items meant for the development of the agricultural sector by the Federal Government, while the CBN, which came third on the list, abandoned 25 containers at the port. Also, the Delta Steel Mills has six abandoned containers, Ministry of Power and

Steel - 15 containers, while the Ministry of Works has10 containers. Others belong to some state governments. Confirming these developments, the ComptrollerGeneral of Customs, Alhaji Dikko Abdullahi, warned government agencies to desist from abandoning containers at the port. He said not only had such recklessness been affecting the operations of Customs, but was also causing congestion at the ports The Comptroller-General said he was not happy when he visited Ikorodu and discovered that 28 containers belonging to the PHCN were abandoned at the Lighter

Terminal. The Terminal serves as the government warehouse for safe keeping overtime containers transferred from the various Lagos ports. “Some of the containers were transferred to the Ikorodu terminal since 2006. The last sets of containers were brought to the terminal during the Port decongestion exercise in 2009. How can we rationalise spending tax payers’ money to import these containers, only to abandon them?” he said. The Comptroller-General asid Customs has obliged PHCN’s request to clear the containers from the Overtime Cargo list, stating that 104 containers have been so cleared from the terminal in the last three months.

THE Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) is collaborating with the management of Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone to actualise the dream of getting more Nigerians into the petroleum industry. This is coming on the heels of the move to encourage employment of local experts for exploration services as well as high technology jobs which receive high skilled capabilities. To this end, NCDMB is teaming up with the management of Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone as well as Integrated Logistics Services Nigeria Limited (INTELS) to organise what it called “First Practical Nigerian Content Conference”. The conference, which is scheduled to take place in the Rivers State capital, Port Harcourt, has been described as an opportunity for in-country capacity building through its implementation imperatives. A statement by the organisers said Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone is a location for investments as a result of the cluster of industry stakeholders within the area. According to them, the conference would be used to showcase the success of Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone as a practical Nigerian content. Site visit and training shall be part of the conference. It will also feature special addresses from top government officials and stakeholders at Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt.



ISSUES With the recapitalisation of the rescued banks and non-performing loans dropping to about five per cent, many are looking forward to what happens next in the industry. The future holds a lot of promise, with the Asset management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) adopting a new loan recovery plan. COLLINS NWEZE examines factors expected to influence the new banking era key of which is transparency of boards and sound corporate governance.

•CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi


healthy banking system is crucial for any economy striving to achieve growth and remain relevant in an increasingly global business setting. With the resolution of the banking crises, experts are canvassing for the right skills and personnel to be engaged in the system. A major fallout of the banking crisis was the need to strengthen supervision and regulation, which led to series of reforms in various sectors. To address the crises, some regulatory agencies and governments took measures to address obvious weaknesses and new rules have since been introduced to address future banking crises. Experts’ perspective Some experts, who spoke at a recent conference tagged: The Future of banking in Nigeria : Stakeholders' expectations, organised by the Bank Directors Association of Nigeria (BDAN), advised banks to refocus their business strategies, by striking a balance between high street banking and the growing retail banking portfolio. The experts pointed out that the immediate implication of some of the major merger and acquisition deals would translate into reduction in the number of banks and changes in the competitive structure of the sector. To the Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Kingsley Moghalu, a new banking culture with emphasis on sound corporate governance, effective risk management, transparency and full disclosure as well as sound business ethics, is already taking root in the industry. Moghalu noted that the impunity, corporate governance abuses, rent-seeking, reckless lending and underwriting practices that characterised banking business before the reforms were no longer there. However, it is expected that policies such as the new banking model introduced by the CBN is expected to be fully implemented from May, next year, he said. According to him, the key objective of the new policy is to unveil a system where banks are involved in core or narrow activities, devoid of unbridled risky

•Mrs Sarah Alade


What next after banks’ recapitalisation? behaviour that fuelled the recent crises. Moghalu described the new model as a game changer that had obvious implications for the type, nature and structure of the banking system. "Considering the huge consequences of a banking crisis such as we have witnessed, the future of banking cannot be left for the banks alone to decide. It is a task that requires the individual and collective contribution of stakeholders, with each playing its role effectively," Moghalu said. "Banking needs to move away from the swashbuckling, deal-making accent it has acquired in recent decades, back to the traditional, conservative ethics that emphasise trust between banks and their customers, as well as prudence. Let the future of banking in Nigeria be well informed and shaped by the experience of the past 25 years. If that experience is any guide, all stakeholders-operators, regulators and the banking public-have a role to play in the growth of the banking sector. Banking is too important to any society to be left to bankers alone," he said. Bank directors’ role Moghalu said bank directors are critical to the shaping of the future of banking "As the umbrella body of non-executive directors of banks in Nigeria, BDAN has an important role to play as a key stakeholder through the continuous improvement of the knowledge and competence of bank directors, for the purpose of promoting sound

corporate governance and ethical practices within the industry in line with its mandate. Bank directors, being key decision makers in the industry, need to keep abreast of how these changes will shape the future of banking," he said. Moghalu listed seven factors that would shape the future of banking. These are: the new supervisory and regulatory paradigm the new banking model and its implications; global trends and future of regulation; implications of mergers, acquisitions and consolidation of the banking industry; banks contribution to the real economy; the importance of trust; and financial inclusion. President of BDAN, Chief Ferdinand Alabraba said in line with its desire to ensure that the gains of the reforms are sustained, the governing council of the association has approved a framework for greater engagement of its members with the CBN and other regulators. He called on stakeholders in the financial sector to team up to determine the future of banking. He said banking is too important to the society to be left to bankers alone Alabraba said: "The resolution of the banking crisis in Nigeria is not a guarantee against another crisis in the future. It is true that, with the average capital adequacy of 20 commercial banks now at 17.12 per cent, Nigerian banks are the most capitalised in Africa. Yet, while it is obvious that the nature of banking has changed as a direct consequence of the reforms, and no doubt use-

ful lessons learnt from the experiences and events of the last four years, the responsibility falls on all stakeholders working in collaboration to prevent the next crisis and create a durable framework for financial stability.” In this regard, the CBN he said, will over the next 12 months pursue the following strategic priorities as part of a longer term strategy to respond to future cyclical threats to the financial system: Develop and establish a framework for resolution of banking crisis in future, with strong scenario planning. Develop and implement a strong macro-prudential framework that anticipates and addresses the several macroeconomic imbalances, shocks and systemic exposures to which the banking and wider financial system in Nigeria is vulnerable, including global economic dynamics. Expectations from BDAN Council Alabraba noted that the Governing Council of BDAN has approved a framework that would enable the council, the Financial Institutions Training Centre (FITC) and their consultants decide the remuneration of boards of banks. This, has become exigent to harmonise the disparities that exist in the remuneration plans of different banks. The BDAN boss said the council has also decided to play a pivotal role in proposing a credible framework for the remuneration of non-executive bank directors. The framework will take cognisance of similarities and differences in contextual characteristics of the banks to reflect the renewed responsibilities of the board of a bank and also evaluate best practices of contemporaries in other nations. He said assistance from FITC and its consultants would be needful, adding that such recommendations would be based on researches and available industry information. It will also consider the interest of all stakeholders, business continuity and effective governance of the banks. Alabraba appealed to banks to cooperate with FITC to ensure the credibility and success of the exercise. The BDAN boss, who was represented by Vice President, • Continued on page 13

, 2011




What next after banks’ recapitalisation? marketing and lending to governments to finance fiscal deficits. "The over-arching objective of the CBN is to move the banking system away from a casino-economy characterised by speculative rentseeking and financialisation, to one in which the banks play active catalytic roles to drive real economic growth and development. While this is the desired end-state, the banks alone cannot do it, as they are only a part of a wider structural solution," Moghalu said.

• Continued from page 12

Ashim Oyekan said the association is working on a framework for greater engagement of its members with the CBN and other regulators as a means of supporting the ongoing banking reforms. "The bank directors also have a major role to play, part of which is to ensure that the reforms succeed. Achieving this requires they work closely with the regulatory authorities to ensure that the ongoing reforms in the sector achieve the desired stability," he said. He said: "Deposit money banks (DMBs) must as a matter of fact conduct annual board performance appraisal to build effective and high impact board of directors. "This will make members of the various boards to have a clear understanding of their duties, because from our stress test two years ago and since then, we have come to realise that some members of boards lacked strategic plan as to how banks should operate.” He said directors of DMBs must select members that would form an effective board structure. He called on the directors to balance the membership of their boards by making sure individuals with diverse competence were appointed as members. "So it is important that an effective structure with members that are versed in audit, risk management and credit assessment make up banks’ boards." He called on the directors to be upright in their conduct, stressing that the crisis in the sector was curable if all heads of DMBs were sincere individuals with unquestionable integrity. He said: "As a bank director, you know that the entire monies in the vault are under your custody, but it is more important for you to understand that these funds were placed in your care because of depositors trust in your bank." Cashless initiative The CBN believes that the cash limit policy expected to take off next year will in the long run, help bridge the gap between lending and deposit rates. This may be achieved, when the cost of managing cash in the economy, estimated at N192 billion by 2012, is curtailed. The CBN Deputy Director, Currency Operations, Mr. Albert Ikmseedun, argued that the cost of cash in the financial system was high and increasing, even as he appealed to residents of Lagos State to welcome the policy. He also revealed that while the total cost spent on cash-in-transit as at 2009 was N27.3 billion, cash processing stood at N69 billion. Ikmseedun explained that the policy does not mean cash would no longer be in existence but that it was aimed at moderating the volume of cash in the system. According to him, the disadvantages of transacting businesses with cash, outweigh its advantages. The CBN chief listed robbery, high cost of processing cash, revenue leakages, inefficient treasury management , among others, as some of the reasons why there is dominance of cash in the system . He said: "If there is reduced cash in the system, banks will be able to compete favourably. There are many alternative payment systems which are even more convenient and safe, but people are not using them. With the improvement in communication there have been improvements in the payment system.”

•AMCON CEO, Chike-Obi

•GMD, First Bank, Stephen Onasanya

Also, CBN Head Shared Services, Eyitope Mathew Daniel, said achieving an effective and successful cashless Lagos will require collective efforts from all stakeholders. The banks, payment companies and regulators have to partner in all indexes, to make the project work. "Something drastic needs to be done, otherwise the cost of doing business by banks will continue to rise and it will continue to be passed on to customers. CBN, in conjunction with the Banker's Committee embarked on a Shared Services programme with three key objectives, including a drastic cost reduction of 30 per cent. "Only 10 per cent of banks' cash transactions are above N150, 000, but they make up 71 per cent of the value of cash transactions. About 90 per cent of Nigerians carry out transactions below N150, 000," she

•CIBN Chairman, Joseph Jaiyeola

•GMD UBA, Phillips Oduza

said adding that, safety must take precedence over profit. The CBN Deputy Governor, Economic Policy, Mrs Sarah Alade, explained that since Nigeria is integrated into the global financial system, only sound risk management would save the financial system from possible collapse. She said banks must embrace safety measures in areas of sound risk management process instead of taking excessive risks that will deplete depositors' funds. "Banks must learn to be prudent in the management of depositors' funds and ensure diversification of their liabilities. Relevance of real sector According to Moghalu, a key plank of the on-going CBN reform agenda is to ensure that banks contribute to the real economy. This, he pointed out, is aimed at facilitating economic growth through robust

bank lending to such economic activities as agriculture, manufacturing, small and medium enterprises. As part of this, the apex bank introduced the Nigeria IncentiveBased Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL). This concept seeks to de-risk the agricultural and financial value-chains to encourage quality lending to agriculture which accounts for 40 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provides 60 per cent of employment. The NIRSAL programme is also aimed at increasing bank lending to agriculture from the current two per cent of total bank lending to 10 per cent over seven years. "All of these areas have effectively received a decreasing percentage of overall banking credit in the past two decades, as banks went after risk assets related to essentially rentseeking or speculative activities such as stock market margin lending, oil

‘The resolution of the banking crisis is not a guarantee against another crisis in the future...while it is obvious that the nature of banking has changed as a direct consequence of the reforms, and no doubt useful lessons learnt from the experiences and events of the last four years, the responsibility falls on all stakeholders working in collaboration to prevent the next crisis and create a durable framework for financial stability’

Reduction of banks NPLs To boost liquidity and enhance the safety and soundness of banks, the CBN in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Finance also established AMCON. The body is a resolution vehicle, meant to acquire bad loans from the banks at different pricing and replace them with government-guaranteed bonds. So far, the agency has paid over N1.7 trillion to the banks for the bad loans, and will be acquiring more risk assets as they exceed five per cent margin set by the CBN. AMCON has also taken over BankPHB, Afribank and Spring Bank and recapitalised them as new entities with N679 billion. The banks now operate asKeystone Bank, Mainstreet Bank and Enterprise Bank. AMCON Chief Executive Officer, Mustapha Chike-Obi said the capital provided by AMCON would strengthen beneficiary banks' liquidity to enable them meet their obligations to depositors before their take over. They were living on life support from the CBN. Lessons from other economies The banks have been advised to diversify, and allow each bank to spread its risks so as to absorb shocks during downturn. The banks were also encouraged to be prudent, and imbibe sound risk management principles that would guarantee depositors' funds at all times. Senior Banker, Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Wealth Management, Richard Gorab handed down the advice during the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Annual Lecture in Lagos. He explained that Canadian banks weathered the storm during the peak of the global financial crises in 2009 because of the soundness of their regulation and strict adherence to sound risk management practices. Financial inclusion Financial inclusion, which is now popular among central banks globally, has been defined as the provision of universal access to finance at reasonable cost, to everyone needing them. A large percentage of Nigerians remain excluded from mainstream financial services, a latest survey by Enhancing Financial Innovation and Access (EFInA) said. It said about 38 million or 46.3 per cent of adult Nigerians were excluded from financial services. This level of exclusion is considered high when compared to other countries in Africa such as South Africa, Kenya and Botswana with only 26 per cent, 32.7 per cent and 33 per cent of their adult population excluded from financial. The experts listed low level of financial literacy, low bank branch/retail penetration, lack of adequate payment system infrastructure, absence of a wide variety of alternative modes of financial intermediation, lack of adequate consumer protection mechanisms, among others, as factors hindering the huge unbanked population from coming into the system.

, 2011



, 2011









Getting the best from workers Head of Occupational Health and Safety Unit, Nigeria Labour Congress, Maureen Onyia, recently took hundreds of chemical workers through a training designed to improve their productivity. DUPE OLAOYE-OSINKOLU was there.





Getting the best from workers


S an employee, if you appraise yourself, what level of productivity can you boast of? Conversely, as an employer, how do you inspire a worker for increased productivity? These are some of the questions asked by Maureen Onyia, at an education conference organised by the National Union of Chemical Footwear, Rubber, Leather and Non-Metallic Products Employees (NUCFRLANMPE) in Lagos. The conference with the theme: “Building human resources capacity for effective industrial relations” was aimed at improving productivity of workers in the sector. She defined productivity as output, efficiency and production, saying the aim of creating a conducive workplace in organisations is to increase output no matter the business. Maureen explained that productivity, whether by the individual or a group, can and should be measured. She said: “In certain work environment, like in manufacturing, it is relatively easy to measure the output. Where items are being produced, our definition of productivity boils down to items produced per worker per unit of time. “In other situations, the measurement might have to be defined differently. If you run a call centre, for example, the key productivity measurement might be customers dealt with per hour. And if you are part of the editorial department of a media establishment, it might be numbers of published stories per employee per week.” Maureen listed the ethics needed for increased productivity to include: punctuality, hard work, honesty, eliminating distractions, insatiable thirst for knowledge, team spirit, accountability and habitual note-taking.

On punctuality as a tool for improved productivity, she advised that workers report to work on time, return promptly from lunch-breaks, and work diligently and steadily during working hours, with a minimum of time loss. She stressed that punctuality in the workplace is essential to win the respect of employers and colleagues. “The most precious commodity today is time. We buy time-saving devices; we never seem to have enough time. Interestingly, it would appear that most people think their time is more important than the time that belongs to others. Physicians are busy, using their time to care for patients. Is the waiting patient’s time any less valuable? Employees may think their ‘off’ hours are more important than their work hours.” To manage their official hours, Maureen said workers should plan their days ahead by writing the to-do lists. This, according to her, will enable them to undertake the most-important tasks as soon as they get to work. “Depending on where you work, keep a notebook and pen on hand at all times. This way, you can write down your thoughts, to-dos, and ideas at any time. The key is to get everything out of your head, on to paper. This way, your subconscious mind won’t be reminding you of it every other second. Write a BLOC to chronicle your own personal development and achievements. This keeps you accountable and always working towards self-improvement and personal growth,” she said. Another point she raised is that of hard work. She said there is no place a hardworking person cannot fit into. “Whatever your goal, you can get there,

• Minister of Labour Chukwemeka Wogu

• Isok

if you are willing to work.” To encourage hard work, she said managers should find ways of rewarding hard work. Managers at times should think about ethics at work. She said this is necessary if they want to achieve their goals. They should always be truthful. In doing so, their subordinates would emulate them, thereby working towards optimal utilisation of their skills. She advised employers to keep the communication channels open between them and their employees. The benefit of employees, she added, should be upgraded, while the workers should discharge their

duties faithfully. Making workers happy, in her view will improve their productivity. “Happy people are more creative. Happy people have more energy and are more efficient at everything they do. Low motivation means low productivity and the only sustainable, reliable way to be motivated at work is to be happy and like what you do,” she added. The union president, Boniface Isok, said the union will continue to work towards improved productivity and ensure that members of the union get adequate training towards achieving that.


Akinkugbe is FBN Capital Deputy MD

F • Akinkugbe

IRSTBank of Nigeria Plc has appointed Kayode Akinkugbe Deputy Managing Director of FBN Capital, its investment banking and asset management outfit. The appointment, a statement said, is another strategic move to further enhance the firm’s competitive edge and growing momentum in the provision of “best-in-class investment banking and asset man-

agement services to its clients.” Akinkugbe has over 18 years experience in top tier banks in the United Kingdom (UK) and Nigeria, where he focused on arranging finance and providing strategic advice to public and private sector organisations. He started his banking career at Ecobank Nigeria before proceeding to the UK for postgraduate study. On completion, he joined

HSBC where he spent three years in the Debt Capital Markets group. Akinkugbe spent 11 years developing the sub-Saharan investment banking businesses at Credit Suisse, and Deutsche Bank. He was Head of sub-Saharan Africa (ex-SA) coverage. He has led senior teams originating and executing over $7.5 billion of structured debts,

project finance, and equity financing syndicated across banks and capital markets, as well as advising on over $5 billion of M&A transactions. Akinkugbe holds an M.Sc (International Accounting and Finance) from the London School of Economics, an MBA from Cranfield University, UK and a first degree in Economics from the University of Ibadan.



HESE top interview tips will help you cover everything you need to know to successfully ace a job interview. From checking out the company to sending an interview thank you note, these job interview tips cover all the basics needed for interviewing success. How much do you know about the company that just contacted you to schedule an interview? It should be plenty, and all the information you need is available online. Here are tips on how to research a company, get the inside scoop on the company culture, and use connections who can help you get an interview advantage.

Use your contacts A key to success in most situations is having good and useful information. This is more so in job situation. So create contacts all the time. Get contacts in the company/ industry you are interested in? Of course the best is to have info about the specific company that has invited you for job interview. Use/ get/develop personal contacts, visit their website, peruse annual reports, industry magazine s and newsletter, etc. Who you know at

Top eight job tips By Olu Oyeniran

the company you are interviewing with really does matter. Use your contacts and connections to get an insider advantage so you can ace the interview and impress the interviewer.

Practise interviewing Taking the time to review typical interview questions you will probably be asked during a job interview will help give you a framework for your responses and will help calm your frazzled nerves, because you won’t be scrambling for an answer while you’re in the interview hot seat. Practise interviewing with a friend or family member ahead of time and it will be much easier when you’re actually in a job interview. In-front-ofthe-mirror and video-recorded practice is in the card.

Improve your interview technique

A job interview gives you a chance to shine. What you say, how you say it and what you do is going to either move you to the next round of consideration for employment or knock you out of contention. Do you know about eye contacts? Is you posture right? Can you handle behavioural interview questions? What about verbal and non-verbal communication techniques?

Dress for interview success The first impression you make on a potential employer can make a big difference. The first judgement an interviewer makes is going to be based on how you look and what you are wearing. That’s why it’s always important to dress professionally for a job interview. The principle is that you must look the part, be formal and moderate. If you don’t know exactly, dress a level-above the prospective level, i.e. dress like your prospective di-

rect boss.

Handle a group interview Interviewing with one person is tough enough, but it’s even harder when you have to interview with a group (or panel) of interviewers. This is the main mode of interviewing in Nigeria – talking to more than one person (could be more than 8!) at a time. Identify the leader/decision maker, focus on him, be well prepared.

Interview while dining Taking you to breakfast, lunch or dinner provides the interviewer with a chance to check out your communication and interpersonal skills, as well as your table manners, in a more casual environment than an office setting.

Prepare for a phone Interview While you’re actively job search-

ing, it’s important to be prepared for a phone interview on a moment’s notice. You never know when a recruiter or a networking contact might call and ask if you have a few minutes to talk. Have your pitch- why you think you should be give the job. Manage your voice and be positive. Smile, even to the phone!

Take the time to say thank you Taking the time to say thank you after a job interview is good not only for interview etiquette, it reinforces your interest in the position. Learn how to write thank you letter, which is an opportunity to address issues and concerns that came up during the interview. Write it within 24 hours, and to key/all people who took part at interviewing you; certainly the leader/person-withthe-power-to-hire. Olu Oyeniran is the Lead Consultant, EkiniConsult & Assoiciates. Website: E-mail: Tel 08083843230 (SMS Only).





Banking for Babel


No, thanks •There is no need for any ‘credible committee’ to manage ‘subsidy’ savings


IGHT from the onset, the concept and implementation of subsidy in the downstream sector of the oil economy in Nigeria has never been devoid of intense but hairsplitting debates, blame-trading and policy-threatening controversies. Even then, the Federal Government remains impervious even to the best of counsel that could either bring about a change in the present arrangement or induce a total overhaul. This is unfortunate but understandably so, particularly for two reasons. First is the obvious lack of transparency, accountability and capacity for self-renewal in the modus operandi of the Federal Government for the administration of the subsidy panacea. For instance, activities of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) are so shrouded in secrecy such that the arithmetic of the oil subsidy template (if there is any template at all) is unknown to the public, leaving them to grope in the dark; permanently bewildered.

‘We strongly oppose the idea of inaugurating any committee outside the structure of the Federal Government for the purpose of governance ... We have said it before; we remain totally opposed to any idea of ‘subsidy’ removal because Nigeria as a crude oil producer has no business importing finished petroleum products’

It is shocking that the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani AlisonMadueke gleefully admitted that all efforts of the Federal Government at curtailing racketeering in the oil industry failed. The pertinent question to ask is why would the Nigerian oil business appear jinxed after decades of exploration? How is this business run in other climes and successfully too? After all, subsidy as an economic concept works in other countries, both as fiscal control tool and as an effective leveller of perceived specific imbalance within the domestic economy. Secondly, the policy initiative, which is a lazy and rather convenient option, subsequently acquired a life of its own, and thereafter, provided an escapist leeway for the government to explain away the gross inefficiency that is rampant in the ministries, departments and parastatals, that are statutorily charged to manage the oil industry, of which the NNPC in particular, is a major offender. We hasten to add that the huge amount of money quoted as subsidy figure was largely officially created. We agree with, and understand ‘value and cost’ argument position to have warranted subsidy, but for how long will the country tolerate and encourage institutional fraud which the current subsidy administration represents? Mrs. Alison-Madueke went further to suggest that only a few individual Nigerians benefit directly from the subsidy scheme, hence the justification for its removal. Fine, if the minister is right, then why has it been so difficult for the Federal Government to curtail racketeering as she so eloquently reported to the

press? Patronising as her statement may seem, it has not advanced the cause of the government. Unfortunately, it has only portrayed the government as weak and unserious. Nigerians want to know why the Federal Government could not, over the years, review the policy and modify its delivery capacity as opposed to an outright abrogation with nothing on ground but empty promises for Nigerians. Despite huge investments in Turn Around Maintenance in all the refineries in the country, how is it that none is optimally functional till date? Here, the NNPC as usual is a major culprit. Yet, no one has gone to jail for messing up the TAM; no one has been sacked for wrong judgement and or decisions. The behemoth lacks any original idea tending towards meaningful innovation within the last 30 years, except the reckless creation and or expansion of dysfunctional layers of bureaucracy within the industry. We strongly oppose the idea of inaugurating any committee outside the structure of the Federal Government for the purpose of governance. It is not only illegal and unconstitutional for people not elected to spend public money un-appropriated by the National Assembly; it is a gateway to untraceable treasury looting. We have said it before; we remain totally opposed to any idea of subsidy removal because Nigeria as a crude oil producer has no business importing finished petroleum products. That was where the so-called subsidy crept in. And it is government’s duty to ensure that the template is changed. It is only then that the debate on subsidy will be worth it.

Consolidation •Lagos gives more tools to the police to enhance their efficiency; others should follow suit


HE Lagos State government is indeed not relenting in making the security and welfare of inhabitants its primary purpose. Governor Babatunde Fashola recently presented 50 patrol vehicles, 10 Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs), 100 walkie-talkies and 200 bullet-proof jackets to the state police command. The state government also recruited 300 trained drivers and motorcyclists for the police. All these are in addition to the N25, 000 paid monthly by the state government to each of the policemen attached to the Lagos Rapid Response Squad (RRS). Fashola, who repeated the call for state police underscored the significance of the presentation of the items held in Lagos House, Alausa, Ikeja , when he declared that “Handing over police equipment has become a significant occasion in our country because of the neglect of the force by different regimes and administrations that have governed the country … Provision of security equipment is not the responsibility of the state government; it is the responsibility of the Federal Government … But any state government that understands the importance of security has to find a way to augment.’’ The donation to the police by the Lagos State government, which has become a routine is commendable. The government has displayed commitment to inhabitants’ security and safety through its establishment, in 2007, of Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF). The once alarming menace of bank robberies, car snatching, ritual killings and burglaries

have drastically reduced around Lagos metropolis. The Lagos State Police Command 2010 Security Report launched at the LSSTF fourth town hall meeting showed that crime rate has nose-dived by 79 percent between October 2009 and September 2010. Within the period, 64 armed robbery incidents were foiled by men of the RRS. Also, between January 2007 and July 2009, crime rate in the state reportedly fell to 62.2 percent. The number of murder cases of 221 recorded before LSSTF began operations in 2007 was reduced to 193 cases in 2008; this later dropped to 80 at the end of July 2009. It was revealed in the report that from 59 police officers that were killed in 2007, the statistics dropped to 33 in 2008 and to just six in July 2009, showing a reduction of 89.3 percent. About 264 armed robbery incidents that were reported in 2007 came down to just 30 by mid-2009. Even armed robbers, according to the report, are taking flight from the state. Furthermore, in 2007, 602 armed robbers were arrested. This came down to 451 in 2008 and 177 by July 2009. The number of stolen vehicles recovered has also been on the decline: from 1,695 in 2007 to 939 in 2008 and 439 by July 2009. The number of ammunition recovered that was 4,238 in 2007 increased to 13,149 in 2008 and over a million by July 2009. The above is a reflection of the improving state of security in Lagos. Admirably, this is a consequence of the effective operations of the LSSTF and the drive put behind its existence by the state govern-

ment. Nevertheless, the government and the body must not rest on their oars because so must still needed to be done if the ‘Centre of Excellence’ must be rid completely of crime. If LSSTF can succeed, it means the time to revisit the issue of state police is now. The trillions pumped into the operations of the LSSTF could as well be used to fund Lagos State police but for constitutional constraints. We advocate for a return to the issue of state police because it is long overdue. And, on their part, police authorities must justify Lagos State government’s investment in the force by ensuring that the state is secure at all times. The force must take good care of the equipment and vehicles given to it at this crucial period. The Lagos example in combating crime is something that other states across the federation should emulate.

‘If LSSTF can succeed, it means the time to revisit the issue of state police is now. The trillions pumped into the operations of the LSSTF could as well be used to fund Lagos State police but for constitutional constraints. We advocate for a return to the issue of state police because it is long overdue’

HE spectacle of Europe’s leaders all gathering together in Brussels and being rancorously unable to agree on anything may look, at a casual glance, like a vast, collective failure of personal chemistry in high politics, unmatched by anything in postwar history. In fact, it was worse than that. Yesterday was not the failure of individuals, but the failure of an idea. Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and the rest had come together, in theory, to look beyond their national interests to rescue the wider eurozone. Yet they had no democratic mandate to do so. That is why they did not. Currency unions can work in principle, as the US dollar, for example, has shown. In every historical case, however, a single currency has been the outcome of a political union. The euro was an experiment – and a reckless one – in which the single currency came first, and the political structures required to make it function were expected to follow. Yet they have not followed, because Europe’s many electorates remain too wary of political integration to ever vote for it. The imbroglio Europe is now faced with is the predictable consequence of this. Eurozone members have given up their monetary independence, but retain their fiscal independence. The only way to preserve economic stability is to hasten the undemocratic but essential outcome to tighter fiscal integration and a single bank regulator. The heads of the governments of the eurozone must agree to a response to the debt crisis which is big enough for the task. This will mean an expansion of the emergency funding facility, a big restructuring of Greek government debt, and the recapitalization of European banks. Afterwards, political structures within the eurozone will need to catch up with this new reality. The peoples of Europe, however, may not be keen. It is a grotesque but foreseeable irony that whereas the integrationist project was supposed to create comity between nations, it has instead aggravated tensions. Greeks are incensed that their country’s budget priorities are being decided by heads of other governments. German taxpayers are unwilling to see their prudent behaviour serving only to bail out profligate governments elsewhere, or subsidizing their absurdly generous welfare benefits. It was precisely such considerations which kept the United Kingdom out of the euro, but gloating is not an option. The stability of the eurozone, as our major trading partner, is essential to Britain’s economic prospects. Ructions within the eurozone, however, are not just about relations between the core and the periphery. The divisions between Germany and France are also derailing this misbegotten scheme. Mr Sarkozy wants a new funding mechanism to essentially act like a bank, recapitalizing Europe’s weak banking sector. Ms Merkel thinks it should act more like an insurance mechanism, to impress the markets with a sense of purpose. Both, inevitably, are driven by their own respective national interests. France fears for its own credit rating without a cash injection; Germany wishes to preserve the independence of the European Central Bank, which is based in Frankfurt. In practice, eurozone governments now have no option but to throw as much money at this problem as it requires. British banks are relatively light holders of Greek debt and we must ensure that, having wisely stayed out of the euro, we are not liable for new financing arrangements. David Cameron is right to suggest that political reform in Europe could work to Britain’s advantage. The speed of change, however, makes those calling for a referendum on European Union membership in the near future all the more wrong-headed, given the profound uncertainty of the ongoing nature of the institution itself. First must come the economics, then the politics. This is how this mess began, and this is how it must be resolved. – The London Times

TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief Victor Ifijeh • Editor Gbenga Omotoso •Chairman, Editorial Board Sam Omatseye

• Executive Director (Finance & Administration) Ade Odunewu

•General Editor Kunle Fagbemi

• Gen. Manager (Training and Development) Soji Omotunde

•Deputy Editor Lawal Ogienagbon

•Chief Internal Auditor Toke Folorunsho

•Managing Editor Northern Operation Yusuf Alli

•Senior Manager (sales) Akeem Shoge

•Managing Editor Waheed Odusile •Deputy Editor (News) Adeniyi Adesina •Group Political Editor Bolade Omonijo

•Advert Manager Robinson Osirike •IT Manager Bolarinwa Meekness

•Group Business Editor Ayodele Aminu

•Press Manager Udensi Chikaodi

•Abuja Bureau Chief Yomi Odunuga

•Manager, Corporate Marketing Hameed Odejayi

•Sport Editor Ade Ojeikere •Editorial Page Editor Sanya Oni

• Manager (Admin) Folake Adeoye





IR: A kite is being flown that President Goodluck Jonathan is assembling a list of eminent Nigerians to manage the huge sums of money that will accrue from the removal of fuel subsidy. I am thinking that if the targeted persons are truly eminent and illustrious, they should not do like Chief Ernest Shonekan who accepted to be an interim president of Nigeria, so that General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida could escape easily after annulling the presidential election of June 12, 1993. An eminent person should not accept a responsibility that is calculated to perpetuate bad governance crowned with economic mismanagement. Chief Gani Fawehinmi of blessed memory rejected the offer to be the Attorney



What eminent Nigerians should tell President Jonathan General and Minister for Justice under Gen. Sani Abacha, because he rightly said that time was up for military dictatorship. An eminent person in today’s Nigeria should know that the only thing that every lowly Nigerian is enjoying is the so-called fuel subsidy, and it is irreplaceable for now. The only thing that can replace it is genuine privatization, which greed, self-

centeredness, and self-aggrandizement prevent our successive rulers, including the current ones, from achieving. An eminent person should tell Nigeria’s government that official prodigality is the father of mass poverty in Nigeria, and squander mania is its mother. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) cannot account for how our

petroleum is extracted and sold. Cases of non-accountability and miss-management characterize the oil industry. No solution is found to any of that and you are telling Nigerians that fuel subsidy removal is the solution to corruption and financial irresponsibility? The House of Representatives was trying to probe a N450bn NNPC mess. Both Dr. Ngozi

Governor Ajimobi should save us in Okeho

IR: I wish to inform Governor Isiaka Ajimobi of Oyo State on the danger of his administration’s failure to asphalt the 18-kilometre Iseyin-Okeho road and Okeho-Iganna road in the northern senatorial district of the state. Our fathers have been begging for government attention since the days of former Governor Lam Adeshina. Then came Senator Adewolu Ladoja, who came to Okeho township during his electioneering campaigns and promised heaven on earth on the road. Our expectation was high when Adebayo Alao-Akala governor came in; both old and young were dancing that Alao-Akala, whose father’s town in Ogbomosho is not too far from Okeho, would definitely do something on the said road but unfortunately, he shamefully left Government House without doing anything about the road. Okeho is an ancient town centrally located at the northern part of Oyo State. This town is blessed with both human and natural resources in addition to its endowment with several attractive tourist sites. The town has been described as the food basket of the nation, as most of the food items consumed in Ibadan, Lagos and other parts of the country are produced by the indigenous fathers from this great town. Yet, the town has been neglected, discriminated against and without government presence up till now. In fact, the phrase “dividend of de-

mocracy” only exists in the dictionary in the town. One wonders if the Federal Government and Oyo State know that this town still exists. Even the 18 km road should not ordinarily something beyond the capacity of the Kajola Local Government authorities but for the fact that the local government has not been blessed with visionary lead-

ers and people who have the love of the town at heart. Our representatives at both the State House of Assembly and the National Assembly are not known to sponsor bills that bring succor to our people; they are mostly “I support the motion” type of legislators. For my loving governor to make history and for his name to be boldly written in the heart of sons

and daughters of Okeho, this 18KM road is paramount to us. We will always remember you for something great if your government can break this record and rescue us from this “death trap” constructed by the colonial masters. • Olabode Olagoke, Agbeniga Compound Isia, Okeho, Oyo State

Okonjo-Iweala (the Finance Minister) and Mrs. Diezani AlisonMadueke (the Minister- in- charge of Petroleum Resources) who are key figures found one excuse or the other not to appear before the House committee. If that is not a deliberate trivialization of a serious financial issue, what is? God-fearing eminent Nigerians should be entrusted with privatization as done in developed countries. Over there, most of the best roads are privatized with toll gates. Electricity and water are run by private companies. Governments’ property is everybody’s property, and everybody’s property is nobody’s property, and so, usually stolen. God-fearing eminent Nigerians should be employed as ministers so that Nigeria can work for all Nigerians. Eminent Nigerians should no longer accept to be used to shield our imperial rulers and their foreign allies. Indeed, the expectation of right-thinking Nigerians is that our rulers will be God-fearing and bridge the financial gap between them and other civil servants, if truly they see themselves as civil servants. Otherwise no eminent Nigerian can redeem them. • Pius Oyeniran Abioje, Ph. D, University of Ilorin.

Edo politics and the ostrich game


IR: There’s a new game in Edo State and it is called Oshiomhole bashing played by some people who are unhappy at the wave of development and accolades received by the governor by those who see and appreciate the good works the man is doing to lift the state from her prostrate position to a level where she can hold her own among the comity of states in the nation. Almost every month, a new group, or put succinctly, the same group metamorphoses from one name to another and the names of the protagonists change too. Beyond that, their message remains the same: Oshiomhole must be painted black no matter what he does in his sincere bid to transform Edo State. However, Edo people know better. Edo People are not fooled by the many lies this cabal tells in a bid to confuse them. Edo people were in the state in the 10 years of PDP and they are here in the three years of the government of Oshiomhole so far and

will still be here after his administration to pass a judgment. The latest attack is by the a group which calls itself “Edo Collectives” and they are unhappy that the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) honoured Comrade Adams Oshiomhole as the Governor of the Year for his contributions in the education sector. The governor was honoured, alongside the governors of Bauchi State, Isa Yuguda and Liyel Imoke of Cross River State at a ceremony attended by no less a dignitary as the Vice President of Nigeria, Alhaji Namadi Sambo who stood in for President Goodluck Jonathan. In their desperate attempt to “Pull Oshiomhole Down”, they poured scorn on the leadership of the NLC led by Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar and NUT led by Comrade Michael Alogba for “daring” to give honour to whom it is due. They alleged that the national bodies of the NLC and NUT conspired to ‘give’ the award to Comrade Oshiomhole without the

input of the local chapters. In their own judgment, the local chapters were involved in the granting of the same award to Governors Yuguda and Imoke, but the Edo State Chapter of NUT was not involved in the case of Comrade Oshiomhole. What double speak! They alleged that Edo teachers were not in attendance at the ceremony in Abuja, but alas, the event was shown on international television and the Chairmen of Edo NLC, TUC, JNC and NUT were at the event. Edo teachers were also fully represented in the march past. Their anger over the NUT award is amusing because even as their ink was still dripping on paper, Oshiomhole had bagged two other awards: “Governor of the Year” of the Leadership Group of Newspapers, Publishers of Leadership Newspapers as well as Nigeria Social Entreprise Report Award (The SERAs-Nigeria CSR 2011 Awards) for his achievements in education, healthcare and infrastructure devel-

opment which are the priority areas of the Millennium Development Goals. It is curious that some people in our dear state, because of political exigencies want to sacrifice the greater stake of the people on the altar of their personal interests and selfish egos. However, no matter how long it takes, the sun will shine. Even if a few disgruntled people choose to play the ostrich and turn a blind eye to the good things taking place in the state, then others who see and appreciate it will show their appreciation in the way they deem fit, including giving awards to the state governor for transforming the state in so short a time. Nigerians should learn to appreciate their leaders when they do well to serve as morale boosters in the same way as they boo their leaders when they perform below par. • Osatohamen Nosakhare, League of Young Edo Professionals, Benin-City, Edo State




Hypocrisy of the West


IBYAN leader Muammar Gaddafi has now become history. His murder and that of his children by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) bombing forces backing the rebellious National Transition Council (NTC) forces, though widely, and wildly applauded was extrajudicial. Gaddafi’s long 42 years overstay in power cannot be justified. Similarly, his inconsistent autocratic reign can in no way be excused. But why should the western world leading the global fight against human rights abuse tolerate such unwholesome murder when legal sanctions, including death penalty are still the civilised legal means of dealing with a proven offender? No one is saying that Gaddafi should not be killed; but first try him in the court of justice, then when found guilty, let him face the full wrath of the law. The same rebels sponsored by the west were those he was trying to contain over the years. He was accused of killing those who rebelled against him, but under eight months NATO allies ended up killing more numbers than he was alleged to have killed in 42 years. Summarily execution is a crime. The killing of a captured Gaddafi is a transgression because two wrongs can never make a right. NTC and its allied NATO have committed the same felony for which they are accusing Gaddafi. A oncelabelled rebel group has now been backed to win the battle, eliminating the target. America and the entire West are now recognizing NTC as the legitimate government in Libya. But the same West would still speak from both sides of the mouth and see the Hamas, though a registered political party as a terrorist organization just as the Hezbollah in Lebanon and Eta’s in Spain would remain unrecognised. Rebels are rebels just as terrorists are the same. Whose interest was NATO pushing in Libya? Interest in oil - same as what happened in Iraq. With all the minuses of Gaddafi, the motive of the battle against him was insincere. It was less for the emancipation of the Libyans and more for the improvement of the western economy. It was all about oil money. American did not support the rebels out of love, but for their own interest. If the rebels have the peoples backing, there would not have been need for seeking foreign backing for the liberation of their country. But now, Libya has been sold. Imperialism has been restored. America will now have control on the richest oil nation in Africa. The real


HAVE watched the scenario playing out in Lagos State as fallout of the recently conducted Local Government Council elections with bated breath. That the Action Congress of Nigeria won in all 57 local government councils is not news. But what is news is the recent call for the cancellation of the exercise because the almighty PDP under the watchful eyes of Senator Musiliu Obanikoro claimed it won five local government councils out of the 57 local government councils in the state. For want of a better expression, I think it would be foolhardy for the PDP in Lagos to make such spurious claims, especially as we were aware of the drama that played out on days leading to the election and on Election Day. The “big” actor was Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, Nigeria’s Ambassador to Ghana because his son Babajide Obanikoro contested for the chair of Ikoyi/Obalende local council. I decided to pen down this piece not because I am a fan of Governor Fashola and a resident of Ikoyi in Lagos, but simply because I am astonished at the level of falsehood and distortions been bandied around by the PDP. It is despicable and smacks of disillusionment especially on the part of Senator Obanikoro who was supposed to be at his duty post in Ghana. If the truth must be told, the acts of gangsterism and idiocy displayed by the bandwagon “rented” by the PDP in Lagos State was at the behest of Senator Obanikoro, whose son Babajide Obanikoro was trounced despite the presence and “heavy pocket” of his father. Senator Obanikoro was very visible on the day of election. I recall that as a registered voter in ward C001 in Ikoyi, Senator Obanikoro threw tantrums at some people for not delivering on their promise despite paying heavily. This happened in the full glare of all. He later moved towards Falomo and Bourdillon road in Ikoyi distributing N500 and N1000 bills to voters. Trust Lagos voters; they collected his money and voted their choice. And that is what Senator Obanikoro cannot come to terms with.

‘Rather you should go the court to air your grievances. I believe the ACN understood the nobility in pursuing electoral discontent in the court of law, hence the victories it recorded in most south western states, including Edo State’

sufferings of the Libyans have started under a new bondage. Dissimilar to other oil producing African nations, Libya under Gaddafi experienced remarkable enhancement of the citizens’ welfare and infrastructural development. He supported liberation movements in the fight against colonialism and imperialism. But by the same measure, although he did not advance himself like other military juntas in the continent, he shored up African dictators like Uganda’s Idi Amin and our own Sani Abacha. Although Gaddafi courted the West by dismantling his country’s weapons of mass destruction programme soon after the US invasion of Iraq, he conceived a vision to free Africa from the neo-colonialist repression and burden. If oil is the recompense that the US is seeking from the war against Gaddafi, the enslavement of Africa might just be what Britain and France are after. Still, beyond oil and Africa’s economic autonomy, Libya’s refusal to join AFRICOM, the United State’s African Command, is also believed to be a cause for the battle on Gaddafi. Even as AFRICOM’s stated objective is to assist African nations, observers see the martial objective as a way of preventing China from gaining a strategic foothold in the continent. If only Gaddafi had employed wisdom when the NATO clampdown came, perhaps he would have escaped the planned disastrous end. Those after him knew that keeping him alive to face trial might just unearth the truth to the people. Yet, murdering him without trial would not change the impact he made in the heart of Africans who know and appreciate his value.

Bayelsa: Going Ogun way? Surely, all is not well with the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State. The President’s home state is reportedly soaked in political tension, division and bitterness. No fewer than six close associates of President Goodluck Jonathan have submitted their nomination forms for the party’s gubernatorial primaries in bid to oust incumbent Governor Timipre Sylva who is interested in going for a second term. The political intrigues ahead of the November 19 primaries can be likened to the Obasanjo/Daniel (OBJ vs. OGD) antagonism that sunk PDP in Ogun State and swept it out of power. Some of those lining up against Sylva appear formidable, especially with their credentials and link with the nation’s number one man. But Governor Sylva too has the demonstrated capacity to make or mar the party’s chance in the April 2012 poll. Although the president is not talking, except the defence that his hands are not in the conflict, his shadow is manifest in the confusion and uncertainty enveloping his party in the state. To Sylva, the conspiracy going on amounts to betrayal of trust. Once upon a time, it was clear to all that his relationship with Mr. President was far from cordial. It was

Lagos PDP should be honourable in defeat By Yahaya Etila For the average Lagos voter, you can spend all you care, but they would always vote their choice, not especially where the 36 members of the state legislature are ACN, the 25 members of the House of Representatives are ACN and also the three Senators. The electoral law is clear about how to pursue disagreement over election results. You don’t incite the public to disrupt relative peace, especially in areas like Ikoyi and Victoria Island in Lagos. Rather you should go the court to air your grievances. I believe the ACN understood the nobility in pursuing electoral discontent in the court of law, hence the victories it recorded in most south western states, including Edo State. It was a great show of shame that played out for a party that claimed it would rule Nigeria forever. Little wonder the meddlesome action of the presidency and the inglorious role of security agencies that allowed PDP thugs to invade the secretariat of Ikoyi/Obalende Local Government council to declare victory for the PDP candidate in Babajide Obanikoro. Interestingly, Babajide Obanikoro is a personal friend and also a friend on face book. I was quick to tell him off when he declared himself winner on the social network platform on Sunday October 24 at about 12.25pm. This was at a time when the constituted body charged with the responsibility hasn’t. How else can one explain this act of mischief with intent to cause or instigate crisis? Regardless, I think decorum should not be thrown into the air in the name of politics because you cannot declare yourself winner of an election under Law. It could pass for a treasonable offence. I am sure that if it were the candidate of the ACN that declared himself winner in like manner, the securities agencies would have swamped in like bees! That is how it works with the PDP. Wait a minute, if they actually won five out of 57 local government councils, is that a justifiable reason for the call that the entire elections to be cancelled? It is comical to realize that victory in five councils is less than 10 percent of the total. I think the PDP should stop crying wolf where none exists.

when the president was seeking the vote of his kinsmen in the last general elections that both had to parley in what was much of cat and mouse game. Today, the pledge made then by President Jonathan that he would give his support to the governor for a second term is not being kept. The unhidden conflict now threatening the unity of Bayelsa’s PDP is more because of the president’s men hustling to dislodge Sylva by any means, fair or foul. The national headquarters of the party too is not playing the role of an unbiased adjudicator judging by the way the state chairman of the party was removed. There was even the speculation at a stage that Abuja would, out of sync, host the state’s primaries. As if to further establish the desperation of the helm at leaving Sylva bare, the Bayelsa Commissioner of Police was unceremoniously yanked off his seat. Ironically, the calibre of the aspirants who were screened by the party in Port Harcourt last week might just turn out to be PDP’s hanger in Yenegoa. All of them are throwing their closeness to the president around as if it is a virtue. Yes, the office of the president is supposed to be powerful and influential; but history has proven even here in Nigeria, and in PDP as well, that the people’s will must always prevail over transient power. Just as was the case in Ogun State, the internal power struggle might end up splitting the cracking party in favour of any of the ready opposition. If the truth must be told, President Jonathan is yet to perform to the extent that would guarantee the commitment of the electorates. As for Governor Sylva, he is determined to re-contest on PDP’s platform and would do anything to fulfil his desire. If he is denied the ticket by hook or by crook, we should expect him to fight back. If he survives the struggle by winning the party’s ticket without the president’s support, the relationship won’t get better. If he loses, it can only get worse. Obj’s disagreement with OGD drowned the glory of PDP in his Ogun State. It is left in GEJ’s hand also to bury PDP in his state if he is unable to reconcile with Sylva.

‘The unhidden conflict now threatening the unity of Bayelsa’s PDP is more because of the president’s men hustling to dislodge Sylva by any means, fair or foul. The national headquarters of the party too is not playing the role of an unbiased adjudicator judging by the way the state chairman of the party was removed’ The Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) under retired Justice Abdulfatai Adeyinka did a marvelous job despite the difficult environment that it operated in due to the activities of the PDP thugs that pervaded every nook and cranny with the active connivance of security agencies. It may be sufficient to state that these PDP thugs at some point chased away officials of LASIEC, who had to relocate to a safer place to collate and announce results. I wouldn’t guess that they are insinuating that LASIEC was compromised by the ACN. And if true, I beg to ask what the results of previous elections conducted by INEC were? If under INEC the PDP could not win a seat in the House of Assembly, how could they have dreamt of winning a key local government council like Ikoyi/Obalende? Needless I mention that Ikoyi/Obalende and by extension the state voting pattern is structured along deliverables, which the administration of Governor Fashola has provided. This piece, like I mentioned earlier is not sympathetic to the ACN, but just setting the records straight and to also advice the PDP in Lagos State to be honorable in defeat. After all, during the gubernatorial elections, was Abdul Wahab Dosumu not trounced by Babatunde Fashola? Let’s call a spade a spade in the interest of the relative peace and tranquility Lagos State has enjoyed over time. The case must be made that the electoral act is very clear on what to do and the rights of everyone to head to the tribunal over election disagreements. Under the rule of law, propaganda, gansterism, fabrications, incitement to violence and manipulation of public sentiment cannot substitute for victory. As aggrieved as CPC is over the results of the presidential elections, it went to the court to prove its case. Let PDP and Obanikoro do likewise.

‘I wouldn’t guess that they are insinuating that LASIEC was compromised by the ACN. And if true, I beg to ask what the results of previous elections conducted by INEC were? If under INEC the PDP could not win a seat in the House of Assembly, how could they have dreamt of winning a key local government council like Ikoyi/ Obalende?’





N far away Adamawa Sate, a youth corps member citizen Stephen Enyinnaya Nwosu was said to have been shot severally by soldiers who mistook him for a member of the Boko Haram sect. According to a colleague of his who witnessed the incident, the duo had gone to withdraw some money from a nearby ATM. Unknown to them, soldiers had laid ambush for Boko Haram sect members who had earlier in the day robbed the bank. The soldiers in ambush arrested him claiming that he was a member of the sect that attacked Gombi town the previous day. They subsequently dragged him to Shengere junction where he was told to lie face down. Eye witness said that despite the repeated attempts by the young man to explain to his captors that he was a youth corps member by supporting his case with his identity card, the soldiers shot him severally and he died. But before his death, they were said to have made him to call his parents on phone. Down in Bayelsa State, citizen Victor Emmanuel who left the church after a Sunday service was also unlucky in the hands of police men culminating in his untimely death. Reports had it that the young man, who was closely following his mother as they left the church, was embroiled in an argument with the police at the check point. The issue at stake bordered on extortion from motor bike operators as the young lad was said to have made derogatory statements about the police. Apparently on account of that, the police grabbed him and having freed himself, he attempted to run. They pursued him and when his mother who was some distance off noticed that the boy being pursued was him son, she quickly went to a senior officer with them to complain. As fate would have it, before the officer could call them to order, much harm had already been committed. Even when he fell on the ground, they continued to shoot him until they made sure he had died. Thereafter they collected the bible he had and drove away. The story they came out with later was that he was seen smoking Indian hemp and when accosted, he brought out a pair of scissors and inflicted some wound on those that arrested him. On account of this, the only option the police had was to kill him in broad daylight near the church from which he was just coming from. Even when the mother, moved by

Emeka OMEIHE 08121971199 email:

Rising extra-judicial killings the passion of watching his son being killed attempted to attend to him, the men paid to protect us all threatened to kill her also. A couple of days ago also, there was the killing of another student of a higher institution somewhere around Ekiti State under similar very disconcerting circumstances. The three incidents mirror very vividly the sad tale of our citizens in the hands of our security agencies across the country. On a daily basis, we are inundated with chilling reports of the senseless killing and maiming of our citizens by sundry security agencies. Most often, the circumstances of this disdain for the sanctity of human life resulting in avoidable loss of lives are such that could have been easily avoided. The stories that emanate after these killings are such that raise posers as to the kind of people we entrust the onerous task of protecting lives and property on these shores. Questions have continued to be raised as to the kind of training the security agencies receive such that on a very regular basis, they fall below expectations in their duties. There have been several instances that have called to question their psychological and mental state of health. It was on account of this that the Ibadan chapter of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) recently called for psychiatric test for police men wanting to carry arms. It said that the test which should be conducted for serving police men especially the rank and file is necessary given the rising incidence of the killing of citizens by members of the force in recent times. Ironically, these are happening in a democratic setting that places very high premium on the rule of law and due pro-

cess. Apparently at a loss as to the factors that move police men to kill at the least provocation or at no provocation at all, the NBA thinks that some of these inexplicable actions may have to do with mental imbalance. That may well be. Stories told each time these killings take place seem to suggest that some of those involved may not have been in a balanced mental frame. It could also have to do with some form of madness. Otherwise how do we explain the killing of Victor Emmanuel and Stephen Nwosu? Stephen was suspected to be a member of the Boko Haram sect by the military contingent that had laid ambush to the bank. Having been arrested, the minimum expectation is for those who arrested him to investigate him. This they never did, even when he pleaded his innocence by showing them his NYSC identity card. Perhaps, if they had taken the little pain of looking closely at his ID card, his names and the fact that he was a serving youth corps member would have acted as a serious restraint. From what we know of Boko Haram, neither his first name Stephen nor his surname Nwosu fits into the profile and characterization of adherents of that dreaded religious sect. What gave rise to the suspicion that he was a member of that sect? If his appearance was the matter as was being suggested, why hurry to kill him without any atom of preliminary investigation? Had they taken the pains to listen to him, this monumental calamity would have been avoided. It is incidents as this that may have compelled the Ibadan NBA to recommend psychiatric tests for security operatives seeking to handle arms especially the rank and file. This

recommendation is unassailable given the sordid tales that confront the nation in this regard. Apart from psychiatric test, it will also help if those who carry arms are made to undergo drug and alcoholic tests on a fairly regular basis. If the case of Stephen was that of mistaken identity made worse by the refusal of the military operatives to listen to their captive, that of Victor would seem to border on those fears the NBA expressed regarding the mental state of the rank and file of the police that are made to carry arms. Smoking Indian hemp and injuring the police with a pair of scissors as the reasons for his killing are to say the least very ridiculous. Assuming these happened, was that sufficient to terminate his life prematurely? Is that the only option available to the police in such circumstances? What this points to is the incongruity in the tales we hear each time the police is asked to account for their misdeeds. Perhaps, the regularity with which these senseless killings occur has to do with the relative ease with which offenders get out of the mess each time they bring grief and pain to innocent families. It is high time we took urgent and severe steps to ensure that acts of indiscretion on the part of security personnel resulting to avoidable loss of lives are seriously punished. The impression that the police at the check point could do anything and get away with it is fast gaining ground. It is common to hear some of them boast that they can kill and nothing will happen. Such dispositions account largely for the embarrassing conduct of some police men. The cases of Victor and Stephen must not follow this predictable pattern. The authorities must investigate who it was that claimed Stephen was a member of the Boko Haram sect and his evidence for that. They must find out why those who arrested him did not care about his identity even when he had it on him. They must also find out how come Victor who was coming out of the church turned out a hemp smoker even with his bible in his hands. When properly investigated and the culprits made to account for their misdeeds, the tendency by law enforcement agencies to take laws into their hands will considerably reduce.



HENEVER I write about Occupy Wall Street, some readers ask me if the protesters really are halfnaked Communists aiming to bring down the American economic system when they’re not doing drugs or having sex in public. The answer is no. That alarmist view of the movement is a credit to the (prurient) imagination of its critics, and voyeurs of Occupy Wall Street will be disappointed. More important, while alarmists seem to think that the movement is a “mob” trying to overthrow capitalism, one can make a case that, on the contrary, it highlights the need to restore basic capitalist principles like accountability. To put it another way, this is a chance to save capitalism from crony capitalists. I’m as passionate a believer in capitalism as anyone. My Krzysztofowicz cousins (who didn’t shorten the family name) lived in Poland, and their experience with Communism taught me that the way to raise living standards is capitalism. But, in recent years, some financiers have chosen to live in a government-backed featherbed. Their platform seems to be socialism for tycoons and capitalism for

‘The upshot is that financial institutions boost leverage in search of supersize profits and bonuses. Banks pretend that risk is eliminated because it’s securitized. Rating agencies accept money to issue an imprimatur that turns out to be meaningless’

Crony capitalism comes home By Nicholas D. Kristof the rest of us. They’re not evil at all. But when the system allows you more than your fair share, it’s human to grab. That’s what explains featherbedding by both unions and tycoons, and both are impediments to a well-functioning market economy. When I lived in Asia and covered the financial crisis there in the late 1990s, American government officials spoke scathingly about “crony capitalism” in the region. As Lawrence Summers, then a deputy Treasury secretary, put it in a speech in August 1998: “In Asia, the problems related to ‘crony capitalism’ are at the heart of this crisis, and that is why structural reforms must be a major part” of the International Monetary Fund’s solution. The American critique of the Asian crisis was correct. The countries involved were nominally capitalist but needed major reforms to create accountability and competitive markets. Something similar is true today of the United States. So I’d like to invite the finance ministers of Thailand, South Korea and Indonesia — whom I and other Americans deemed emblems of crony capitalism in the 1990s — to stand up and denounce American crony capitalism today. Capitalism is so successful an economic system partly because of an internal discipline that allows for loss and even bankruptcy. It’s the possibility of failure that creates the opportunity for triumph. Yet many of America’s major banks are too big to fail, so they can privatize profits while socializing risk.

The upshot is that financial institutions boost leverage in search of supersize profits and bonuses. Banks pretend that risk is eliminated because it’s securitized. Rating agencies accept money to issue an imprimatur that turns out to be meaningless. The system teeters, and then the taxpayer rushes in to bail bankers out. Where’s the accountability? It’s not just rabble-rousers at Occupy Wall Street who are seeking to put America’s capitalists on a more capitalist footing. “Structural change is necessary,” Paul Volcker, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve, said in an important speech last month that discussed many of these themes. He called for more curbs on big banks, possibly including trimming their size, and he warned that otherwise we’re on a path of “increasingly frequent, complex and dangerous financial breakdowns.” Likewise, Mohamed El-Erian, another pillar of the financial world who is the chief executive of Pimco, one of the world’s largest money managers, is sympathetic to aspects of the Occupy movement. He told me that the economic system needs to move toward “inclusive capitalism” and embrace broad-based job creation while curbing excessive inequality. “You cannot be a good house in a rapidly deteriorating neighborhood,” he told me. “The credibility and the fair functioning of the neighborhood matter a great deal. Without that, the integrity of the capitalist system will weaken further.” Lawrence Katz, a Harvard economist, adds that some inequality is necessary to create incentives in a capitalist economy but that “too much inequality can harm the efficient operation of the economy.”

In particular, he says, excessive inequality can have two perverse consequences: first, the very wealthy lobby for favors, contracts and bailouts that distort markets; and, second, growing inequality undermines the ability of the poorest to invest in their own education. “These factors mean that high inequality can generate further high inequality and eventually poor economic growth,” Professor Katz said. Does that ring a bell? So, yes, we face a threat to our capitalist system. But it’s not coming from half-naked anarchists manning the barricades at Occupy Wall Street protests. Rather, it comes from pinstriped apologists for a financial system that glides along without enough of the discipline of failure and that produces soaring inequality, socialist bank bailouts and unaccountable executives. It’s time to take the crony out of capitalism, right here at home.

‘Capitalism is so successful an economic system partly because of an internal discipline that allows for loss and even bankruptcy. It’s the possibility of failure that creates the opportunity for triumph. Yet many of America’s major banks are too big to fail, so they can privatize profits while socializing risk’

, 2011







Capkovic, Hendler Win Bosso wants Governor’s Cup inquest

HE 11th Governor’s Cup Lagos Tennis Championship came to an end Saturday with a Slovakian and a Belgian carting away the male and female trophies respectively of the ITF-approved circuit. Tournament number one male player, Kamil Capkovic of Slovakia justified his rating in the tournament by not only getting to the final of the Men’s Singles but also winning the star trophy by beating number 3 seed, Indian Vijayant Malik in straight sets of 6-2, 7-5. In the Women’s Singles’ final Belgian Tamaryn Hendler, was too much for Croatia’s Donna Vekic as the number three seed beat the unranked Croatian in straight sets of 6-4, 7-5. Lagos State governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, who watched the men’s final commended the winner, Capkovic, a former junior champion of the French Open for living up to his tournament rating. “Winning this tourney today shows that you are indeed the champion and your coming to Lagos has not been in


By Stella Bamawo

vain,” said Fashola, who promised that his government will henceforth put up a programme that will see regular staging of tennis tournaments in the state to give local players a platform to prepare themselves and be in top form for the next Governor’s Cup. “Exposing our players to regular competitions will get the opportunity to perform very in well in future Governor’s Cups,” Fashola said. As expected the final of the Etisalat/ FCMB sponsored international tennis tournament was a colourful ceremony and it was attended by personalities like President, Nigeria Tennis Federation, Engr. Sani Ndanusa, chairman of the Local Organising Committe, Pius Akinyelure, Commercial Officer of Etisalat, Nigeria, Wael Ammar, Executive Director, FCMB, Peter Obaseki, top management officials of co-sponsor of the tournament, school children and tennis fans.

• Kamil Capkovic of Slovakia receives the second-leg winner trophy fom Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola


Nigerian youths scramble to please foreign scouts


F the five thousand Nigerian youths that registered for the IGI U-19 Football Hunt, those that have passed the tough screening processes of the six foreign scouts are still waiting for approval to get to their destination i.e football clubs across Europe. At the final stage of the screening, fifty two outstanding players will be selected and kept together to train routinely for a possible selection by the foreign scouts numbering five from Poland, England, Belgium and Finland. In a chat with one of the scouts, John Jackson, he noted that the players had been giving their all and he hopes to pick the best of the lot just as he expects that they should be able to prove their mettle on the field of play when they finally get abroad. However, FIFA licensed agent, Opeyemi Lawal is concerned about

By Stella Bamawo getting players within the specified age-grade. Lawal told Nationsports, that the final selection will be based on the age of the players and their skills. Hence younger players stand a better chance of being picked. The Football Hunt which is being sponsored by IGI will also see selected youths playing the maiden age-group football competition in November. The tournament is designed to discover budding talents with the aim of helping them to hone their skills and providing them an opportunity to play professional football in Nigeria and overseas. The main bowl of the National Stadium has been agog with excitement since the event kicked off on October 3 while local coaches like Yisa Sofoluwe, Rolandson Odeh have been on ground to assist the foreign scouts.


ANO Pillars coach Ladan Bosso says he is keen to see a proper and careful investigation into the ongoing match-fixing sacandal rocking in the Nigeria Premier League (NPL). Bosso, 45, calls on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) organising and disciplinary committee to make sure it gets to the root of the match-fixing complaint. “It is a serious allegation and I believe that we should not joke with it because the name of the league and country is at stake here. I want the football authorities to make sure that they investigate this very well. “And if anyone is found guilty that person should be punished according to the laws laid down,” Bosso told Bosso’s men are currently third in the NPL standings, five points behind leaders, Sunshine Stars. Lobi Stars vice chairman, Dominic Iorfa, had made a match-fixing allegation against Sunshine Stars after match officials for a game were found travelling inside a vehicle belonging to the NPL leaders. Fellow title contenders, Dolphins have also been fingered in alleged match-fixing following statements made by one of the referees, Chrisantus Okoro during a hearing on the matter in September. The NFF organising and disciplinary committee is yet to make a pronouncement after the hearing in September on the matchfixing allegation.


New coach will get full contract—Maigari N

Igeria Football Federation (NFF) President, Aminu Maigari has resolved to give Nigerian coaches another chance to take charge of the senior national team. Speaking to the NationSport at the weekend, the president stated that the new head coach of the Super Eagles would be given a full contract and not employ on an interim basis. ‘I want to hold someone responsible and not to create unnecessary distraction. It is either you are in or not. An interim coach has no place in my administration,”Maigari said. The Glasshouse boss also revealed that a foreign technical director would be engaged to take charge of the technical arm of the

From Andrew Abah, Abuja

football house since the sacking of Coach Samson Siasia. The Bauchi-born administrator also explained that the decision to terminate Siasia’s contract was collective and not personal. “Look, I love him as a coach and I have nothing against him but you know whom much is given, much is expected. Meanwhile, Information reaching Nationsport reveals that, a fresh move is in place by some powerful sports administrators to further cause chaos in the country’s football. An impeciable source who prefers anonymity has imform ed NationSport that “Some powerful sports administrators

• Maigari

few aspects of the game are still being worked out. Nigeria and Zambia’s last meeting was at the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Angola in the quarterfinals in Lubango. The Eagles won 5-4 on penalties after it finished scoreless. While the Chipolopolo have qualified for next year’s Nations Cup, Nigeria failed to do so. The Zambians have re-engaged former French coach Herve Renard after they sacked the Italian Dario Bonetti, who qualified them for the 2012 ACN. Nigeria have already confirmed they will host Nations Cup debutants Botswana on November 12 in another friendly.

UT–OF-FAVOUR gaffer of the Super Eagles, Samson Siasia will not rush into taking a decision for the future after being relieved of his duties. A close associate of the former Super

From Patrick Ngwaogu, Abuja

Eagles forward told NationSport that Siasia remained optimistic during the nine hours meeting by the board of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on Friday, until the final pronouncement was made. “The source said: “You know that Siasia is not bereft of ideas. He has so many things to do at every point in time. I think he would have a little rest, and come up with good programmes that would assist the youths of the country to achieve their potential in the game. He would now have more time for his Academy, and many other things he could not accomplish while serving as the country’s national team coach”. According to the source, Siaone as never displayed any emotion or desperation in Abuja where he was staying, while monitoring events: “You should know that Samson Siasia is an optimist. He has the love of the country at heart, while the meeting

lasted; he was only praying that the best decision be taken in the interest of the country. “But when the Board came out with their decision, he only thanked them and all Nigerians for their love for him, and moreover giving him the chance to serve,” he said.


• Eagles in a training session in Abuja

By Ade Ojeikere the versatile tactican and adminsitrator for the useful contributions that he had made both as a coach of Nigerian clubs, the senior national teams and as a very resourceful member of the body's technical committee. Indeed, the NFF topshots have declared unequivocally that they would be prepared to work with the

stressing that they will continue to consult him for unbiased views on pressing football matters. Interestingly, Onigbinde had informed NationSport penultimate Saturday whilst reacting to a column in The nation and NationSport on Saturday that he wants to quit the scene no that the ovation is loudest stressing that: "I have told the eggheads in FIFA and CAF of my willingness to quit the scene."

ADUNA United players will embark on an indefinite industrial action from today to demand the payment of outstanding salaries the club owe them. The players warned of the strike last Thursday by staying away from training, according to one of them, who wants to remain anonymous. The players are asking for the payment of seven months, outstanding salaries owed them by Kaduna United. The NPL club, which crashed out of the CAF Confederation Cup group stage, also owes the players match bonuses and contract fees running into millions of naira. Top stars of the club have refused to train ahead of their Match Day 36 game against Niger Tornadoes on Wednesday at the Kaduna Township Stadium. “We have not been paid our


• Siasia

salaries for seven months. Apart from that the club management owes us several match bonuses and our signing-on fees. We can’t continue like this and they expect us to give our best. “It is even worse when we travel for away matches (in the league), our bus has been bad for a while and we are facing real hardship at this club all in the name of playing football. This is unfair,” said the player to Kaduna United are in 10th position in the league standings with 52 points and will face Niger Tornadoes, Sharks and Gombe United in their remaining matches this season. The Crocodiles are not the first side to go on strike this season in the NPL, as 3SC, Enugu Rangers, Dolphins, Sharks, Crown FC, Niger Tornadoes and Enyimba have witnessed same occurence.

Eguavoen returns from Europe


ATIONAL U-23 coach Austin Eguavoen will on Monday resume training with the Dream Team V after a week long tour of European clubs to negotiate the possible release of players for the forthcoming CAF U-23 championship billed to kickoff on the 26th of next month in Morocco. Eguavoen who joined the team’s Genesis Hotel camp, Ibadan on Sunday described his trip to select European club as a success stressing that “ all we need to do now is send the clubs the official invitations with

date, venue and country of our training tour” he said. The Dream Team V gaffer added that “Even though I was not able to physically visit all the listed clubs I got in touch with them on phone explaining the importance of the eight nation championship”. According to Dream Team V media officer, Arafat Aliu, Coach Austin Eguavoen visited four out of the five countries penciled on his tour itinerary. “Coach Eguavoen was in England, Germany, Holland and Italy but

could not make it to Spain due to time constrain but was able to get in touch with officials of Granada and Atletico Belares” Arafat confirmed. It is still unclear what the European tour of the Olympic Eagles would look like but all things being equal, the team is expected to depart for Turkey in the first week of next month. The Dream Team V begins its U-23 championship campaign against host Morocco on the 26th of next month before taking on Algeria and Senegal.


EARTLAND forward Osas Okoro NPL side Heartland may have temporarily called off their strike but warned they will resume the action if in a week they are not paid because they are fed up with lies. The players agreed to call off the strike action following a meeting Friday with general manager Fan Ndubuoke. However, one of the most influential players in the team told that they have given the club a week’s grace after which they will resume their strike if they are still not paid. “We have been fed a lot of lies by the management and the government and we are no longer ready for such,” said the player who did not want his name in the press. We do not mind making history as the first club to be walked over in two matches and as such be relegated, if they fail to fulfil their obligations to us. A statement by Heartland media officer Cajetan Nkwopara said the team captain Chinedu Efugh and three other players met with the general manager for more than two hours in his office during which the players agreed to call off their strike. The players had on Wednesday embarked on an indefinite strike to demand for the payment of the balance of their sign-on fees as well as to persuade the state government to fulfil the reward it had pledged to the team after Heartland won the 2011 Federation Cup in Lagos last month. The Owerri club face regional rivals Enugu Rangers and Enyimba next week in continuation of the NPL.

Onuoha set for West Brom loan move

Kaduna Utd begins strike today

•Wishes him well for contribution to all technical committee meeting •Ready to work with him in the future astute administrator in the future



AMBIA will face the Super Eagles of Nigeria in a friendly on November 15, officials have disclosed. Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) vice-president Boniface Mwamelo told that the match venue had yet to be decided by both countries. “Yes, it is true (about Nigeria friendly). It is more or less a done deal,” Mwamelo said. Mwamelo said the team will assemble on November 10 ahead of the big clash against their old West African rivals. Top officials of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) have equally confirmed this match-up but said a

Siasia keeps mum on future O


s the storm gathers for the maiden edition of the President World Perace Cup to be organised by Power Uti Worldwide Sports, the Headbangers tag team of Mosh and Thrasher have agreed to be part of the wrestling extravaganza. The President World Peace Cup will be staged across nine cities from December 11 to 22. Eighteen wrestlers from 15 countries are expected to take part including Nigerian Nightmare tag team duo of Maifu and Saifu. The wrestlers will wrestle each other in a league format with the top two wrestlers fighting for the World Peace Cup in Abuja. The cities, according to Power Uti Worldwide Sports, Manager Sports, Leo Akunasha Onyekwere, are Aba, Lagos, Osogbo, Asaba, Ilorin, Calabar, Makurdi, Port Harcourt with the final billed for Abuja. Onyekwere in a statement said that the Headbangers tag team, a deadly pair, will be part of the Peace Cup, come December. He also revealed that preparations for the wrestling extravaganza have reached advanced stages, promising that the event is bound to achieve a huge success.

HERE are strong indications that FIFA and CAF instructor Adegboye Onigbinde will submit his letter of resignation from the technical committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) today and eggheads of the GlassHouse are poised to accept his decision with equanimity. It was gathered further that the NFF men will wish him well in his new assignments and commended

Eagles to play Zambia in friendly Nov. 15


Headbangers for President World Peace Cup

NFF set to accept Onigbinde's resignation

•Former Falcon Asst coach, Ralodson Odey, Ex Inteernational, Yisa Shofoluwe, Assistant Consultant Youth Football Academy London John Jackson, Chief Consultant IGI U-19 Football talent hunt tournament Opeyemi Lawal and Former Falcon Assistant coach Anne Chiejine at the IGI U-19 Talent Hunt in Lagos on Friday. PHOTO: Bola Omilabu

are planning to use the reconciliation committee set up

by the Minister of Sports and Chairman National Sports Commission Suleiman Yusuf and headed by former NFA Chairman Dominic Oneya to see through their plans. “ Two members of the committee are being used to ensure that the committee which would soon submit its report include that the present NFF as constituted is dissolved. “Immediately the committee submits its report, and the recommendations are made public, a popular musician from the Niger Delta region has been contacted to be on stand by to organise a one million-man match to Abuja to request for the sack of the Maigari- led Board, citing the failure of the country to qualify for major football events as the basis behind their action. They would use rented crowd to achieve this aim”.

NATION SPORT Angry Heartland 'fed up with lies'

HE People reports that Nedum Onuoha is set to sign for West Bromwich Albion when the transfer window opens in January. Onuoha, who has been frozen out at Eastlands, is looking for first team football as Roberto Mancini now only plays him in the Carling Cup ‘reserve team’. The deal is thought to be around £3m, although there will have to be some negotiation, as the defender currently earns £40k-a-week and the Baggies do not pay their players higher than that - but the former England Under-21 international would rather guarantee himself football.

• Onuoha


NFF charged to widen scope


HE Chairman of the FCT Football Association Musa Saeed Talle has advised the NFF Technical Committee not to narrow its search for a coach for the Super Eagles to a particular individual. In a release in Abuja, the FCT FA boss “I am optimistic the NFF want the best for the country’s football, to this end, I want the search for a coach for the Super Eagles to be wider. I know very well that we don’t have time on our side, if an interim coach is to be appointed, that should be done. But what we need now is a coach

From Patrick Ngwaogu who has the genuine interest of the country at heart, with wider experience and exposure, someone who would command the respect of the players, and with international connections that can help our football to grow. We want someone that will be ready to develop the game from the grassroots, building the team round the players that we have at local level. That person should be humble at every point in time”.





The legal tussles over the outcome of the April 9 National Assembly elections in Anambra State have kept the fate of both the petitioners and respondents hanging in the balance at the election petitions tribunals, NWANOSIKE ONU writes.


Anambra: Ripples from election petitions

ANDIDATES who aspired for the three senatorial seats from Anambra North, Central and South, including the 11 House of Representatives positions have all been flexing muscles at the tribunal. Though two of the senatorial seats at both the Centre and South have been settled by the first election petition tribunal led by Hon. Justice P.O. Onajite Kuejubola, the petitioners have declared their intentions to challenge the judgments. Former Minister of Information and Communications, Prof. Dora Akunyili of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) had challenged the declaration of former Anambra State Governor, Senator Chris Ngige of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) as winner of the Anambra Central Senatorial election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The election was held twice as a result of the controversies it threw up. The election of another former governor of the state, Dr. Andy Uba in the South Senatorial Zone did not end without a fresh bout of controversy, as the APGA candidate in the election, Hon. Chuma Nzeribe, filed a petition against Uba’s declaration by INEC as the winner. Dismissing the petition by the APGA candidate, the Hon. Justice Kuejubola-led tribunal described the petition against Uba as lacking merit. The tribunal said: “Consequently therefore, the petition lacking merit is hereby dismissed in its entirety. It is hereby declared that the declaration and return of the 1st respondent Andy Emmanuel Uba made by the 2nd respondent as in form EC8E for the Anambra South Senatorial district held on the April 9, 2011 remains valid and lawful. Nzeribe had asked the tribunal to nullify the election, alleging that it was not properly conducted while it was fraught with corrupt practices. Again, he had averred that Uba was not duly elected as he alleged that he was not qualified to contest, claiming further that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) fielded multiple candidates. Other cases at the tribunal in Awka that have continued to keep people on their toes are the ones involving the (ACN) candidate for Njikoka, Anaochba and Dunukofia federal constituency, Dozie Nwankwo against the APGA candidate during the election, Chief Hon. Uche Ekwunife. The others are the ones that have pitched Hon. Ben Nwankwo of PDP from Orumba North and South federal constituency with Dr. Okey Udeh of APGA.


North Senatorial zone

Senator Alphonsus Igbeke John Emeka Senator Joy Emodi



Anambra Central

Dr. Chris Ngige Prof. Dora Akunyili Hon Chudi Ofodile Senator Annie Okonkwo



Anambra South

Dr. Andy Uba Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu Chief Chuma Nzeribe Chief Chris Atuegwu



• Akunyili


Awka North & South


Anambra East & West


Anambra Dunukofia Aguata Constituency

• Ngige 4

‘The four election petition panels set up in the state to handle the electoral matters have continued to keep both the petitioners and respondents in suspense. Tension is high and the parties are restless, but what happens to the cases yet to be decided by the panels in the state since the 180 days given to them had expired is a matter to be decided perhaps on appeal’ The case of Udeh against Nwankwo for Orumba North and South had been settled at the lower tribunal in Awka by the sacked panel led by Hon. Justice Usman Bwala, but the petitioner (Udeh) went to the Appeal Court sitting in Enugu which ordered its re-trial. The case was struck out initially on technical ground, especially on non-joining of necessary parties at the lower tribunal in Awka. But with the expiration of the mandatory 180 days as stipulated by section 285 of the Constitution, the lower tribunal may not be able to go on with the matter again. Udeh had challenged the PDP winner during the election over alleged irregularities during the exercise. The case of Dozie Nwankwo of the ACN candidate for Anaocha, Dunukofia and Njikoka against Hon. Uche Ekwunife is another knot. The tribunal on Tuesday, ruled that election should be re conducted in about four units of Nimo, Umunachi, Nri and Enugwu Ukwu, where it said elections were not properly conducted. Even with the tribunal’s declaration, the APGA candidate seems to be leading with high figures, while the counsel to the

ACN candidate, Emeka Etiaba said that they would still challenge the tribunal’s decision at the Appeal Court, as their prayers at Anaocha were ignored. INEC now has about 90 days to conduct fresh elections in those four areas. Akunyili’s petition against Ngige was struck out sequel to the application brought by INEC counsel, Osita Nnadi (SAN), challenging the jurisdiction of the tribunal to continue with the hearing of the petition following the failure of the petitioners to file a statutory form TF008 as required by the electoral act. The form, according to some senior lawyers who spoke with The Nation, contains questions which the petitioners must answer to guide the tribunal on the cause of pre-hearing session. The tribunal found as a fact, that the form which the lawyers annexed to the counter affidavit was worthless as there was no copy in the court file and none was served on the other parties. So, the tribunal held that in the absence of that form, all the pre-hearing sessions which they had conducted in the matter had become null and void, thereby disabling their


Hon.Ozo Ughammadu Hon. Emeka Nwogbo Hon. Emmanuel Uchieze Comrade Tony Nwoye Hon Raphael Okeke Chinedu Idigo Chief Hon. Uche Ekwunife

Mr. Dozie Nwankwo Federal


Idemili North & South




Nnewi North & South


Onitsha North & South

Hon Chike Anyaonu Hon. Eucharia Azodo Chief Nobis Elendu Hon. Chukwuma Umeoji Hon Charles Odedo Hon Mayor Aroh Hon Forte Dike Hon Fidelis Okafor Hon Uzama Okpalaeke Hon Chris Azubuogu Hon Ben Chuks Nwosu Hon Cyril Egwuatu Hon Dozie Agbakoba Hon Linda Ikpeazu Hon Anthonia Okoye




Orumba North & South


Oyi & Ayamelum

proceeding further in the matter. On the issue of forgery earlier alleged on the matter, Senator Ngige told The Nation that he is at liberty to take up the issue of forgery of the form TF008 with the security agencies without the tribunal being involved. Prof. Akunyili, in her reaction through her media aide, Sir Oselloka Offor, after the judgment, said it was not the end of the road. Counsel to Akunyili and APGA, Obiora Obianwu (SAN) said they would challenge the tribunal’s decision at the Appeal Court sitting in Enugu. He stated that the court was bound by its previous decision that they filed the form TF008. However, Chief Emeka Ngige (SAN), Counsel to ACN told The Nation that the ruling was long overdue because according to him, the petitioner had been plagued with a lot of defects that by now, the matter ought to have been laid to rest. First, he said the petition was wrongly instituted against Ngige without joining ACN, the sponsor of the candidate and


Hon Sunday Nwafili Hon Chukwuka Onyema Hon Victor Afam Ogene Hon. Ben Nwankwo Dr. Okey Udeh Lady Ethel Obiakor Hon Chiedu Eluemunoh Chizor Obidigwe


who by the decision on the Amechi’s case, is the owner of the votes cast for the candidate in the election. Secondly, that the pre-hearing session was wrongly kickstarted by the petitioners through a letter without any payment and thirdly, that the requisite form TF008 was not filed. He therefore described the petition as very sound and defensible anywhere. The four election petition panels set up in the state to handle the electoral matters have continued to keep both the petitioners and respondents in suspense. Tension is high and the parties are in restless, but what happens to the cases yet to be decided by the panels in the state since the 180 days given to them had expired is a matter yet to be unraveled. On the retrial of Dr. Okey Udeh’s petition against Hon. Ben Nwankwo, Hon. Justice Kuejubola has fixed November 3, 2011 for the judgment. Will it hold? Only time will tell.




‘Uwais report must be fully implemented’ Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader Senator Bola Tinubu spoke with reporters on the need for the full implementation of the Uwais Report, shortly after casting his vote at the local government elections in Lagos. Deputy Political Editor EMMANUEL OLADESU was there.


T appears that, generally, the local government election in Lagos State was marred by apathy. What is your view? Everybody has been informed. We organised campaigns to create awareness and sensitise the citizens so that they could vote. Local council is the closest government to the people. But there might be voters’ fatigue, somehow. It is too early to generalise. Does the apathy relate to the disconnect between the people and the local councils based on the lack of performance on the part of the local governments areas? You cannot have a uniform opinion about that. One, some people, definitely, criticise the councils. If the tail is rotten, look at the top. You look at the federal government. In the last three years, out of almost 30 years of democratic governance, they have not reviewed the revenue allocation formula. Have they? The resource going to the local government is not even adequate for them to make impact. And that is the government that is the closest to the people. The federal government, after shedding so much weight; no more NITEL, no more NEPA to fund and many companies that are already privatised; ports authorities and others that used to take huge amount of money, cannot justify holding over 50 percent of the total revenue for this country. Yet, they are giving their responsibilities to the states and councils. You give more mandate; unfounded mandate. You ask them to be responsible for schools, primary health care, sanitation and others. So, if they have this burden and they are not given resources to execute them; if the federal government is still holding on to the huge amount of revenue that is for all, there is a problem of low funding at the grassroots level. So, don’t expect miracles. It is gradual development we have to see. You see recently, the salary issue; the minimum wage that was forced down the throat of the state government and local councils. How can they cope? If you don’t have accountability and transparency from NNPC, if you deliberately undermine the revenue that will go to the states and local governments by cutting the amount, saying that some amount is excess crude, what is excess revenue in our constitution? There is nothing like that. Go and read the constitution. How do you react to PDP’s allega-

‘The President said that they would implement the recommendations and heaven will not fall. What is the cause of the violence? Lack of implementation of Uwais Report, lack of justice, lack of transparency in governance, in electoral process. If they want to do something, let them do something right. Let them go and start from the foundation and that foundation is the Uwais Report’

•R-L:Governor Fashola, Asiwaju Tinubu, Ajomale and Sunmola

tion that ACN planned to rig the last coucil elections? When have they woken up to the fact that these local governments are here to stay? I am glad they contested. They don’t belong to here. They can make all sorts of allegations. Again, look at the top. They will cry foul, even before voting starts. They will criticise. Do they really exist? Are they honestly in Lagos? From previous elections, from 1999 to date, they are the master riggers. They don’t know how to conduct elections. PDP is a master rigger. You know how many elections were nullified throughout the country after 2007 elections and the elections were repeated. Who is in charge? Is it not PDP? The same PDP government that could not implement the comprehensive Uwais Report? It is the party in power, the so-called mainstream party. It is the fault of this government. If the integrity of the electoral process is in doubt, what have they done? They set up the Uwais Panel to make recommendations on how to ensure free and fair elections. The masqueraded the so-called white paper and turned to green leaf. They turned it around. They were manipulating which one they could manipulate, instead of implementing it fully on behalf of this country. All of you

still need to fight for the comprehensive implementation of that report. Uwais Panel did a very good job. Justice Uwais Panel did a comprehensive job that will bring about free and fair elections. PDP and President Jonathan should not shy away from implementing the report. They should implement it faithfully and stop crying foul about rigging. They were alleging rigging because they knew that they would lose. Go back to their history. Go back to their record. Look at the electoral process in this country. What have they done right? They don’t have moral basis to cry foul. But the allegation is baseless. It is hallucination. As we proceed to 2015, do you see more opposition figures being persecuted? Look, I foresee unnecessary desperate intimidation of opposition parties. It is the opposition parties themselves that would resist the type of intimidation that is coming up. PDP feels insecure and it does not have a clear vision for the country. We are coming from a critical past and we want to proceed to a period of stable government. We believe in the principle of federalism. We are going to work hard to resist any intimidation. They are making a desperate effort to clamp down on opposition, but it is not going to work. If you sign the Freedom of In-

formation Act; you say you put laws in place and you are arresting journalists; then, Nigeria is left to judge who you are and what kind of government you want to run. Later on, we will work hard to resist all of that. Nigeria is here to stay. Democracy is here to live. What is your view on constitution amendment? We need a comprehensive constitution review to bring about fiscal and true federalism for a democratic Nigeria. That is what we need. We need a free and fair election. Jega is trying, but you can only be independent to the extent that this PDP government will permit. You saw what came out of Lemu Panel on Electoral Violence and you read it comprehensively. The President said that they would implement the recommendations and heaven will not fall. What is the cause of the violence? Lack of implementation of Uwais Report, lack of justice, lack of transparency in governance, in electoral process. If they want to do something, let them do something right. Let them go and start from the foundation and that foundation is the Uwais Report. They should be bold enough to do that. And I challenge the President to do it. If he means well for this country, I challenge him to fully implement the report. If it is in

place, you will eliminate problems. There is no smoke without fire. The fire is lack of implementation of Uwais Report. There would not have been Lemu Panel or violence, if there were truly free and fair elections that is transparent. Nigerians are law abiding, to be honest. If you look back, in every ruling of the Court of Appeal or Supreme Court, we have seen full compliance with various electoral laws. Show me where there was a violent reaction or repulsive reaction after the Court of Appeal made pronouncement that a governor is the rightful owner of the mandate. Nigerians would obey, if the Supreme Court says the same thing. We have not seen a violent reaction. It means we believe in the rule of law. We believe in compliance. Look at PDP. Up to now, over Osun, Oyo, Ekiti, Edo, they are still asking for the head of a very honest, straight forward judge. Look at them decimating the Court of Appeal. If judges are not free to do justice, if they are afraid of their job, if you show that their job is no more secure, until they dance to the tune of the PDP, then, you have a nation in chaos. And to every action, there is a reaction. They better be warned now. You see a lot of uprising around the world. Dictatorship can come in many forms, not just when one person is there. Dictatorship can come from one party system. We are going to resist that and we will continue peacefully, in compliance with the rule of law. They better no promote the alternative. It is dangerous. It is to the peril of our country.

Anxiety as Jang, Tallen await fate today


• Jang

OS, the Plateau State capital, is gripped by anxiety as the governorship election tribunal sitting in Jos is expected to deliver its judgment on the electoral tussle between incumbent Governor Jonah Jang and his former Deputy, Mrs. Dame Pauline Tallen today. Both have been slugging it out at the tribunal since July when the case was mentioned. Tallen wants the tribunal to annul Jang’s election and declare her winner. Alternatively, she wants the election be re- conducted as according to her, that of April 26, 2011 was not in compliance with the Electoral Act 2010. To substantiate her claims, Tallen, the Labour Party governorship candidate had called 94 witnesses, all taken by the tribunal. But the respondent, Jang and INEC have asked the court to dismiss Tallen’s case for lack of merit. Both

From Yusufu Aminu Idegu, Jos

party have closed their cases and presented their final written addresses to the tribunal during the last sitting. In his own final address, Counsel to Tallen, Ibrahim Jam Jam said he had provided enough evidence to convince the court that Jang’s election was fraudulent and should be annulled for a rerun. However, Jang’s Counsel, Olorundare Isreal (SAN), in his final written address, insisted that Tallen’s petition lacks merit because Jang’s election was free and fair which was why INEC declared him winner and that Tallen petition should be dismissed. Counsel to INEC, Stephen Ibyem in his own final written address, also urged the tribunal to dismiss Tallen’s petition, claiming that the election of Jang was conducted in

strict compliance with the Electoral Act 2010. Chairman of the tribunal Justice Joseph Jella said members of the tribunal have taken a critical and deep look into the argument of both counsels and will make their judgment known this day. Meanwhile, the security agencies in Jos have mapped out security strategies aimed at avoiding any form of violent reaction over the outcome of the judgment. Knowing fully well that Labour and PDP have good followers that may trooped to the court for the judgment, the security agencies have planned to restrict entrance into the court premises. With this arrangement, all routes leading to the court will be condoned 200 metres away and only few relevant members of each party will be allowed into

the court premises. Anyone who will be allowed into the court premises will be thoroughly screened. Journalists, it was said, would not be allowed without proper means of identification. And no private or commercial vehicle and motor cycle will be allowed to ply the road for the period of the judgment which may last four hours from 9am. Security agencies have warned anyone with violence intent not to come near the court just as heavy security personnel will be drafted to flash points and other strategic locations in the town. “No hawking is allowed there and all form of jubilation by party members within the court premises have been declared unlawful. But the police have assured everyone in the state not to panic over the presence of heavy security around them but go about their normal business without fear,” a source said.


RESTRICTION Road-side trading to be banned

Doctors’ estate underway Lagos




REVIVAL Job scheme relaunched Anambra 38


Page 27


•The women displaying their certificates


HEY came away smiling, brandishing their certificates, certain that their businesses will not be the same anymore. They attended a capacity-building workshop organised by Change-A-Life foundation, a non-governmental organisation (NGO). Many of the women who attended the programme are involved in different forms of petty trading, while some hope to operate their own small businesses someday. At the workshop, they were taught various ways of boosting their trade. For instance, they learnt how to prepare accounts and manage their inventories. The women were equally exposed to better ways of getting the best out of their clients, as well as how to invest the little cash at their disposal. The workshop which held in Lagos, aimed at boosting the women’s entrepreneural skills, leading to better economic inde-

A boost for petty traders 19 women tutored on business expansion By Chuks Udo Okonta

pendence. Change-A-Life (CAL) has a clear vision. It aims at lifting people from bare existence to fruitful life through economic empowerment. The management of the NGO believes that with some capacity-

building, women will graduate from being dependent housewives or struggling petty traders to thriving businesspeople, even successful employers of labour. The workshop was, therefore, organised to empower these humble entrepreneurs and those hoping to be self-employers, and teach them

Change-A-Life aims at lifting people from bare existence to fruitful life through economic empowerment. The NGO believes that with capacity-building, women will graduate from being dependent housewives or struggling petty traders to thriving businesspeople, even successful employers of labour

to make a success of their chosen businesses. The NGO’s Public Relations Officer Miss Korede Akinduro said the event was aimed at equipping existing and would-be entrepreneurs with tools that will help them improve their businesses and become better competitors in their chosen fields. Nineteen women who participated in the workshop had earlier applied for a micro-credit scheme facilitated by Change-A-Life, and hope to benefit from the loan scheme. Meanwhile, they were excited because of the skills and insights the workshop availed them. They proudly displayed their certicates of attendance.

“The timetable for workshop which held at the Change-A-Life office contained four modules which covered important aspects of entrepreneurship including business management skills and client services,” Akinduro said. “Starting in 2012, CAL will hold two workshops every year with modules that will gradually expand to provide more modules and facilitators that will appeal to a wider scope of participants.” Founded in 2002 by Ms. Funmi Iyanda, Change-A-Life was run as an intervention project until 2010 when it was incorporated and made into a foundation. Over the years Change-A-Life has partnered with many reputable firms and has positively impacted several lives and given hope and a future to many children.

Mimiko’s wife cautions against road carnage


•Mrs Mimiko

HE wife of Ondo State Governor, Mrs. Olukemi Mimiko, has advised motorists in the country to be cautious especially as the yuletide season approaches in order to avoid carnage on the roads. She dismissed the notion that there is something inherently evil about the “ember” months. The governor’s wife pointed out that the only thing different about the last four months of the year is the hustle and bustle, and drivers’ rush to make more money, which in many cases result in ac-

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

cidents. Mrs. Mimiko made the plea at Ifon town in Ose Local Government Area of the state during her meeting with women groups. She also advised passengers to always caution drivers whenever they overspeed, saying that they should always be careful and patient and also avoid drinking alcohol while driving. “We should be prayerful and watchful and avoid night journeys,” she said, reiterating the

point that heaven helps those who help themselves. She also appealed to women to take proper care of their health and also to understand the physiology of the body with a view to detecting the type of ailment that may occur and thereafter seek immediate medical remedy. She enjoined the participants of the programme to make use of the knowledge gained particularly from the lecture titled “Fibroid and its management” to better their lives and that of their entire families.

Mrs Mimiko said that the lecture addressed issues such as what fibroid is, its types, how it can be identified, prevented and managed. “I wish to solicit your continued prayers and support so that more dividends of democracy will continue to flow for the good of the generality of the people in the state,” she said. The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Olayinka Alabi •Continued on Page 28



•Medical guild estate


ITH a N42,000 monthly premium payable for a period of four years or a little more, doctors under the Medical Guild, Lagos State Chapter will have a house of their own. According to Secretary, Medical Guild, Lagos, Dr Tajudeen Salau, the scheme became necessary to address doctors’ shelter challenges. Salau, who spoke at the foundation laying of the Medical Guild Estate at Warewa, near Arepo Journalists’ Estate, said the plan started two and a half years ago. “We were distributing television, refrigerators and other home appliances to doctors but decided to do something to reduce the housing problems of our people by building an estate,” he said. Salau said the Guild approached the Osho Olorogun family for a site for Medical Guild Estate at Warewa, near Journalists’ Estate at Arepo, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Ogun State, and they obliged to give 8.9 hectares to the association to build an estate. “The estate is on a level surface,” he said. “It will have green areas, drainages nd recreational facilities, among others,” he said.

Lagos doctors’ estate underway By Wale Adepoju

He said ETB was the first bank approached to fund the project and it didn’t disappoint as it released N60million, “and N50million was paid to the land owners, N5million to the agents who sought for the site and another N5million for the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) and other documentation.”

He said ETB also gave the Guild N20million for soil test result, adding that doctors have since repaid that. Salau said First Bank has also paid N60 million to the contractors to keep the project moving. He said Union Homes has been distributing the fund to the Johnson Brothers Limited - Construction Company, to build the

At the moment, there are 133 subscribers but 264 slots are available. The estate is 264 units of three bedrooms and duplex of four bedroom apartments

estate. “The doctors would be repaying gradually,” he said. On repayment plan, Salau said, there was understanding with the Lagos State government on the project, adding that subscribers’ premium would be deducted at source. “At the moment, there are 133 subscribers but 264 slots are available. The estate is 264 units of three bedrooms and duplex of four bedroom apartments,” he added. The major challenges, Salau said, are funds, land, documentation and get the site cleaned up. The representatives of Johnson Brothers Limited, Mr Kehinde Adams said Union Homes has pledged to provide N1billion for the construction. He said the construction company would deliver to time, adding that all partners are working to achieve the set target.

Mimiko’s wife cautions against road carnage

Council chair hails electorate


on. Hakeem Bamgbola who has been re-elected to steer the ship of ItireIkate Local Council Development Area (LCDA), Lagos, has praised the people for their patience and perseverance before and during the poll. “We cannot thank our people enough,” he said. “Despite the hues and cries that there was voter apathy, it is imperative to salute those who came out even during the downpour. They have again restated belief and commitment to the survival of democracy,” Bamgbola who contested under the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN),

By Tajudeen Adebanjo

said. The council boss was returned with a total number 8,877 votes to defeat his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) closest rival who scored 2,560. All the seven councillorship candidates under the ACN in Ramoni, Agunbiade, Odolowu, Airways, Sanusi, Karonwi and Baruwa were also elected. He promised to justify the mandate given to him with numerous developmental projects. “Our governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola has repeated it on

Man seeks dissolution of 14-year-old marriage


FORMER staff of Nigerian Tribune, Mr. Adebayo Olabode has urged the Customary Court in Oke-Eda, Akure, the Ondo State capital, to dissolve his 14-year-old marriage to his estranged wife, Oluwatoyin Olabode. In a petition filed before the court, he accused his wife of infidelity. He said: “I am seeking the court’s order for the dissolution of marriage on the grounds of incompatibility, disobedience, societal pressure, hardness of heart, no regards for me and threat to life by her mother.” The petitioner alleged in his statement that his wife had been involved in acts of promiscuity

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

and was fond of going to social functions any time she felt like without his consent. “The woman has not shown any sign of respect to me at home and she always disobeyed my instructions. With all these atrocities against me, I have decided to end the relationship,” Olabode said. The plaintiff’s counsel, Mr. Adeniyi Ayesa pleaded with the court to give him some time to work out the modality on how to settle the case out of court. He said: “I believe the 14-yearold marriage can still be saved from total collapse.”

several occasions that the reward for hard work is more work. On my own part, the reward for a renewed mandate is more people-oriented programmes. We would look into areas where urgent attention of government is required and move in without delay to address them,” he said. He solicited the support of the residents on the security of the council’s projects. There is no way, he said, developmental projects could be sustained if members of the public are not alive to their responsibilities. “We are all living witnesses to how government infrastructure is left to destroy. Nobody takes the initiative of seeing people deliberately or otherwise destroying government properties and show enough courage to stop them,” he stated. He was particularly grateful to the youths, religious bodies, community leaders and marketers for not allowing themselves to be used by unscrupulous politicians to achieve their selfish goals. Bamgbola who held several stakeholders forum during his first tenure vowed not to dump the initiative. “The forum, I must say, has really assisted our administration not only in getting closer to the people as the third tier of governance but created a synergy that we crave for to move the council forward,” he said.

•Continued from Page 27


The residents, he added, had through the regular meetings understood our plight as their representatives and have always shown understanding in tackling the various challenges of governance.

commended the state governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko and his wife for their Caring Heart programmes and for their numerous contributions to the lives of women, children and the entire citizenry of the state She said: “Mr. Governor has shown to the world that political statements are not a pack of lies but policy thrusts that can be faithfully kept and followed as demonstrated in all programmes and policies put in place to benefit the people of the state.” Alabi therefore appreciated the enormous contribution of wife of the governor to the success story of Mr. Governor, adding that Mrs. Mimiko championed the course of women and children in the state, most especially her charitable programme “Maternal Pulse Foundation “of assisting the needy.




Girl in search of mum needs assistance


HIS is not the best of times for 20-year-old Temitope Ruth Akinmolayan who lives in Ondo town, headquarters of Ondo West Local Government Area of Ondo State. She is appealing to public-spirited Nigerians to come to her aid in her long search for her mother who disappeared shortly after her birth in 1991. Tope said her father told her how her mother abandoned her a year after she was born to the care of her father, Mr. Abayomi Akinmolayan 20 years ago. She said the death of her father who she described as her sole financier and comforter and the inability to locate her mother have traumatised her. Tope who presently lives with a friend in a bungalow at Iluyemi Street in Ondo town, said in an attempt to meet her financial needs, she took to all sorts of menial jobs in order to survive. She explained that the income from such engagements was not enough to meet her aspirations for further studies.


LECTURER in the Department of Sociology at the University of Abuja Prof. Otaki Osana Alanana has advised the Federal Government to work out modalities that will ensure prompt payment of pensions to older people in the country rather than allow them to wallow in poverty and die early. Alanana also said provision of social security for them will go a long way in securing their lives. While delivering a paper on “The Growing Opportunities and Challenges of Global Ageing” at the 2011 International Day of Older Persons in Abuja, the university teacher said “most of the older persons disengaged from public service cannot get their pensions as at when due, some have died on queues waiting for their pensions and gratuities because there is no adequate measures to address such problem of the senior citizens.” He said to successfully provide for the elderly, there is need for a comprehensive census of the elderly at the national and sub-national levels. “The pension system which has a profound negative impact on the older persons should be

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

Tope, who described the disappearance of her mother as mysterious, lamented that her inability to locate her has not only brought her psychological trauma but has also denied her motherly care. She said: “Although I did not grow up to know my mother, I got to know about her after perusing a diary left behind by my father where he wrote her name as Adeola Oladimeji and her hometown as Owo in Ondo

State. “My father told me while he was alive that my mother left me when I was just a year old, and ever since then, I have never set my eyes on her. “Ever since she abandoned me to the care of my father who died in 2002 when I was in junior secondary school, I have been nursing my feelings towards her and sometimes I pray to God to get me in touch with somebody who can link me with her. “My desire to have me connected to my mother is not purely for pecuniary motives but

My father told me while he was alive that my mother left me when I was just a year old, and ever since then, I have never set my eyes on her…Ever since she abandoned me to the care of my father who died in 2002 when I was in junior secondary school, I have been nursing my feelings towards her

because I want to feel her love after being separated from her for the past 20 years. If I am fortunate to see her, I will be the happiest person on earth. However, if on the other hand it turned out that she too has died, I will then accept the situation as my luck. “It is on this premise that I am making a passionate appeal to public-spirited Nigerians to come to my aid in the search of my mother. Similarly, I am also calling on good Nigerians, religious bodies and non-governmental organisations to come to my aid in my quest to further my education. “I am making the appeal because of my present predicament. The only means of income from where I hope to finance my education, a landed property which was left behind by my late father has been fraudulently taken away by somebody to who my father entrusted it with, thereby leaving me with nothing to pursue my education,” she said. Tope, who is earnestly seeking


financial assistance, appealed to anyone wishing to help her to call the mobile telephone number 08132420723 or channel such donations through an account opened in her name at the Ondo town branch of OCEANIC BANK PLC with account number 1620001023937.

Don makes case for senior citizens From Bukola Amusan, Abuja

revisited to reduce the number of senior citizens begging for survival and queuing endlessly. “Government and other corporate organisations should work together to protect and ensure the rights of older persons in the families and communities. Concerted efforts are needed from corporate organisations to create a supportive environment for the older persons to have easy access to the basic social services at the national and sub-national levels,” he said.

The Minister of Women Affairs, Zainab Maina said since old age is a new frontier and the rising dependency ratio of older persons is one of the major factors that should influence a nation to provide for its elderly people in the society. She said one of the mandates of the ministry is to ensure that priority attention is given to the situation of older persons in the country. “Older persons should have the opportunity to work or have access to other income-generating opportunities. They should

Government and other corporate organisations should work together to protect and ensure the rights of older persons in the families and communities. Concerted efforts are needed from corporate organisations to create a supportive environment for the older persons to have easy access to the basic social services at the national and sub-national levels

be able to live in environments that are safe and adaptable to personal preferences. We should integrate older persons into the society and allow them to participate actively in the formulation and implementation of poli-

cies that affect their well-being,” she said. The Minister said elderly citizens should benefit from family and community care and protection in accordance with each society’s system of cultural values.

Council chief pledges to boost fish production


HE Transition Committee Chairman of Etsako East Local Government Area, Mr Peter Ofor Anyia has promised to boost fish production and fishing activities in the locality. Mr. Anyia, an engineer, spoke at Agenebode, headquarters of the local government area during a workshop with the theme “Handling and Maintenance of Modern Fishery Tools.” Represented by the Supervisory Councilor for Agriculture, Hon. Itoya Suleiman Abdulwahab, the council chief said it is the desire of this administration to update those who engage in fishing business with modern skills and knowledge. He stated that the local government will utilise the natural wa-

From Osagie Otabor, Benin

ter of River Niger and its tributaries to provide food for the people. He implored the participants at the workshop to organise themselves into co-operative societies in order to attract loan from government. Resource persons at the workshop, Mr. Egwenomhe Marinus of the College of Agriculture Iguorakhi and Mr. I. G. Asekomhe of the National Institute of Fresh Water Fish Resources New Bussa spoke on modern techniques of fish farming and fishing which they emphasised are capable of reducing poverty among the people.

It is the desire of this administration to update those who engage in fishing business with modern skills and knowledge…The local government will utilise the natural water of River Niger and its tributaries to provide food for the people

•From right: Mrs Elizabeth Adenola, Headmistress, Ireti Primary School, Ikoyi, Lagos receiving Mosquito Treated Net from Mr Gbogboade Akindele, Regional Head Procurement for Africa and Mr Babafemi Akindele, Management Reporting Manager, Finance both of Standard Chartered Bank at the event




Ondo launches N50m foundation

Osun may ban road-side trading


•Governor Aregbesola

SUN State Commissioner for Environment and Sanitation Prof. Bukola Oyawoye said her ministry had begun work on a bill to ban road-side trading in the state. Oyawoye, who spoke with journalists in Osogbo, explained that the bill would ensure safety of lives and engender sanity on the roads. The commissioner said that the bill became necessary more so that women and children were mostly involved in petty trading by the road side. According to her, the state government is not comfortable with the rate of fatal accidents along the road side which usually involve women and children.

Ilaje monarchs, community leaders back Ondo NDDC nominees


RADITIONAL rulers in the oil producing area of Ondo State have endorsed the nomination of Prince Oladele Omogbemi as the state nominee on the Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission [NDDC]. Besides, the Niger Delta Youth Movement (NDYM) said it is behind his nomination. Governor Olusegun Mimiko had recommended Omogbemi for the NDDC job barely one week after the disolution of the former board. Omogbemi hails from the Oil rich Obenla town in Ugbo Kingdom in Ilaje Local Government Area of the state. He is currently the Special Assistant to the Ondo State Governor on Project Monitoring. Addressing reporters in Igbokoda recently, the spokesman of the traditional rulers and the Alagho of Odonla, Oba Elias Ikuemola, said all monarchs and community leaders in the Oil Producing communities supported Omogbemi. They described him as a patriotic and good ambassador of the area. The Royal Fathers said Ilaje Constituency I which is dominated by Ugbo Kingdom

Ondo From Damisi Ojo, Akure

produces 97 percent of the oil produced in the state with numerous oil wells and 320 oil fields in different parts of the kingdom. The monarchs decried the recent publication that Ugbo Kingdom is not the only kingdom that produces oil in the state, stressing that such report was against the interest of its people. They pointed out that whoever would represent the state on the Board of NDDC must come from Ugbo Kingdom where oil are mainly deposited. The traditional rulers therefore called on the National Assembly and the Presidency to disregard the report and ratify the nomination of Omogbemi as new NDDC representative in the state. “This is a verifiable facts. Ugbo Kingdom is the only kingdom in this area that has what makes Ondo State part of NDDC and that is oil. It will therefore be unfair for any indigene of this Local Governemnt to dispute this fact.” The monarchs stressed.


HE Ondo State government has put in place a N50m foundation with a view to assisting people seeking medical attention at the Gani Fawehinmi Diagnostic Centre. Aside this, the government also dispelled the claim of the opposition parties that the centre is no longer functioning. The state Commissioner for Health, Dr.

Osun Oyawoye, however, clarified that the bill was not targeted at banning street trading but was simply aimed at discouraging road-side trading to save lives. She said there was a difference between street and road-side trading, stressing that the former had no security implications as the latter. “If we ban street trading, it may deny the people of their means of livelihood without much justification but if we stop road-side trading, we shall be saving their lives. “Street trading is in every nook and cranny of towns and villages through which people, especially women, fend for themselves and their families. “In case of road-side trading, the traders have no shops but only use the pedestrian lane to sell things to passers-by and motorists despite the threats of accidents.” Oyawoye said that government would not fold its arms while road-side traders are killed through auto crashes, especially those involving articulated vehicles. The commissioner said that by the time the road-side traders were re-located to the markets, sanity would have returned to the roads, which are currently laden with items of trade. Although, the bill has yet to be forwarded to the State House of Assembly, Oyawoye said the ministry had begun preliminary works on it.

Cleric decries subsidy removal Lagos By Charity Williams

T •From left: Speaker, Oyo State House of Assembly Hon. Monsurat Sunmonu; wife of the governor, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi; member of House representing Atiba Local Government Constituency Hon. Ganiyu Waliu Adekunle and Interim Chairman of Atiba Local Government, Prince Akeem Adeniyi Adeyemi at a function

Lagos to rehabilitate more roads


HE Lagos State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, has said that more roads would be rehabilitated next year. He told reporters in Lagos that the state government was constrained by funds in

Group protests discrimination


AITHFUL of traditional religion in Achina in Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State recently took to the streets protesting what they called discrimination, hostility, marginalisation and physical aggression against them by their counterparts in the Christian faith. The group, led by Chief Cyril Ezenwa (Obinyelugo of Achina) also marched to the palace of the traditional ruler of the kingdom Igwe Godwin Obiora to submit their protest letter. The monarch commended them for what he called their maturity, peaceful conduct and respect shown to his seat instead of being violent. Igwe Obiora however, promised to take immediate action to ensure equity and fairness to all irrespective of religions persuasion. Newsextra gathered that such alleged untoward scenario had lingered in the community for a long time to the extent that the community had, on several occasions, survived total breakdown of law and order. An outstanding case, after Newsextra checks, was when the most notable traditional shrine in the community known as Ezekoro, whose courtyard accommodates their popular Oye

Anambra From Nwanosike Onu, Awka

Market it was alleged, was virtually destroyed by some Christians. The matter, Newsextra gathered was taken to court and till date, instead of peace, it had been rancour, bitterness and antagonism in various forms among the groups in the area. However, briefing journalists during the protest, the leader of the group, Chief Cyril Ezenwa expressed regret that the Igbo suffer all kinds of maltreatment in the hands of other ethnic groups only to be subjected to something similar or worse than what they had already experienced elsewhere in their homeland. The Chief Priest of Ezekoro Shrine, Nze Udegbunem Ezenmuokwe appealed for peaceful and harmonious co-existence among the people of the area. He said that both Christians and traditionalists preach peace and love for their neighbours which had been the centre of their teachings, adding that the battle of supremacy between the two groups should not arise.

• From right: Mr. Afolabi, Mrs Towobola, Miss Daodu and Mr Johnson at the ceremony

•Ekeji Ilu of Imodi-Ijebu, Chief Musibau Okusajo presenting post humons award certificate to the daughter of the late Pa Amos Ogunde, Mrs Adenola Adebule during the Olumidi Day at Imodi-Ijebu, Ogun State.

Experts counsel youths


IGERIAN youths have been advised to remain focused and consistent in whatever endeavour they find themselves. Speaking during a programme, “Raising the bar” organised for schools in Lagos by the Rotary Club of Isolo, both Rotarian Vivian Onyeukwu who is the President of Rotary Club Lekki and Rotarian Bola Oyebade, a management consultant, stressed the need for Nigerian youths to be consistent in whatever they are doing. The speakers advised the youth to develop their talents, but not at the expense of their education. Oyebade said every human being is endowed with one talent or the other, but it is important that a peculiar talent is identified before it is developed. Onyeukwu advised the youth not to be discouraged by the problems which are confronting the country at present. “Not everybody can afford to start a business of his or her own. We are lucky today because we are now living in the age where creativity is appreciated and encouraged. Some years ago, it would have been a shame upon a family if any of their children is an actor, a beauty queen, a dancer and so on. Every parent wanted their children to be doctors, lawyers among other professions. But things have changed. So, if you are a creative person, there is a lot of competitions sponsored by big conglomerates where you can be

By Gbenga Aderanti

discovered for your unique talent. It is no more the case of I do not have anybody to sponsor me. If you are good, you will be discovered,” Onyeukwu said. He further charged the youth to apply the Rotary Club’s 4-way tests in whatever they do because this will “instill high ethical values in children at an early age.” She advised the participants to believe in themselves, never to give up on their dreams, be patient and consistent adding “the future of Nigeria is in your hands, dare to dream big.” Speaking at the event, the chairman of New Generation, the organisers of the event, Mr. Dauda Adedayo said the event was organised in order to make youths and children know that they can become something in future. He disclosed that 24 schools were invited, with 12 students per school. He said t h e programme would make t h e participants become better people in the • Adedayo society.

Lagos rehabilitating roads across the state. “Rehabilitating old roads and constructing new ones will depend on the vote for the sector in next year’s budget. “By the time the 2012 budget is out, we will show our plan for road rehabilitation and we can call everybody, so that we can sit down to discuss,’’ Hamzat said. The commissioner said contract for the rehabilitation of Ayobo–Idimu Road had been awarded, adding that the repair work would soon be extended to Ijegun area. Hamzat added:“ Deplorable roads are not peculiar to Ijegun; the government is only constrained by insufficient funds in rehabilitating them. “The Ayobo-Idimu Road has been awarded and the Ijegun Road will be captured in the contract.” Hamzat said priority was being given to roads which had heavy vehicular traffic in the rehabilitation programme of the government. “We look at traffic in rehabilitating roads. Traffic counts for each of these roads and when the resources come, we pick them one after the other,’’ he said. The commissioner urged residents and motorists to protect roads and other public infrastructure in their areas. “As a people, we must take interest in our community and the infrastructure there as it is being done in other parts of the world.

HE GENERAL Overseer and National Coordinator of Christian Pentecostal Mission International, Rev Obiora Ezekiel, has said that the proposed removal of oil subsidy by the Federal Government from January next year , may lead to increase in prices of goods and services and worsen the unemployment situation in the country. Rev Ezekiel said this during the Back to Bible Conference with the theme: Glorious Divine Nature, last week in Lagos. While advising every Nigerian to move closer to God, he said the down-turn in the global economy and fears within the country are not new as they are already recorded in the Bible, saying only the divine intervention of God would bring succour. He enjoined political leaders in the country to seek divine wisdom to be able to address our various problems,saying that the challenges staring us in the face are signs of the end time. He said Nigeria at 51 had not done well and this is largely because the leaders had not performed well. ’’Our leaders have not done well and it is only the spirit of God that has been moving this country forward” Declaring that the country has been stagnated in many fronts, Rev Ezekiel said imbibing the spirit of truth and hardwork will free Nigerians from poverty and insecurity. He advised President Goodluck Jonathan to be courageous as fear is the weapon of the enemy, “the president’s daily request should be God’s wisdom and direction, he cannot single handledly rule this nation,”the General Overseer said.


Council chief donates to pupils THE Chairman of Atiba Local Government Area of Oyo State, Prince Akeem Adeyemi has distributed learning materials to pupils in the 69 public primary schools in the council. The council chief made the donation at St Mary’s Anglican Primary School, Iyalamu , Oyo during the flag-off of free education for

primary school pupils in the council. Akeem, while distributing the materials such as exercise books, card boards, chalk, marker and pen, urged parents and teachers to support the Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi on his plans to provide quality education for pupils in the state.

Association decries unethical practices THE Association of Professional Party Planners and Events Managers of Nigeria (APPOEM) has decried alleged unethical practices by some members to the effect of stealing other people’s works. This, it said, is becoming a source of concern.The association spoke at a press conference in Lagos recently. “We event planners and vendors stand together as one saying no to piracy. Stealing of peoples’ works and parading them as yours is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. We will expose violators. “In order to maintain high standards in the Nigerian events industry, as well as providing re-assurance to colleagues, clients and potential clients, it is advisable to follow this simple code of conduct,” it said. The association specifically accused Bencol Bridals of using Tsoule Event’s pictures on its website and poaching its staff. Tsoule is owned by Temitope. They also accused Bencol of organising a “Dream Wedding,” promising to bankroll the wedding of winners in a raffle draw with

Ondo From Damisi Ojo, Akure

Dayo Adeyanju who disclosed this in Akure, said Gani Fawhinmi Diagnostic Centre was established by the Ondo State Government in conjunction with a private firm known as Me Cure Healthcare Centre Limited. Governor Olusegun Mimiko decided to establish the centre because of the poor diagnostic analysis performed on the late legal icon, Gani Fawehinmi who lost the battle against cancer. He disclosed that government will soon launch a N50m foundation to assist people seeking diagnostic treatment.

• Governor Mimiko

‘Real governance has berthed in Ogun’


ITH appropriate support, patience and understanding by the people of Ogun State, the current administration of Governor Ibikunle Amosun will soon be discovered to be one on a God-sent mission to rescue and put the state on a virile footing.” The above were the words of journalist-turned grassroots politician, Olufemi Ezekiel Ogbonnikan, who is eyeing the chairmanship of Imeko-Afon Local Government Area of the state on the platform of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). Ogbonnikan, a Mass Communication graduate who holds Master of Industrial and Labour Relations (MILR) degrees from University of Lagos, Akoka, Yaba, made a formal declaration recently at an event held at the ACN secretariat, Imeko. On Amosun’s leadership style, he said: “I have taken my time to study the •Ogbonnikan

Ogun By Dada Aladelokun

governor critically and I make bold to say that Ogun people are lucky to have him on board. He is a careful leader who will, no doubt, implement the progressive cardinal programmes of our dear party, the ACN.” He further said: “Governance does not come by magic, neither is it a rush-rush thing. It demands careful planning based on a wellthought-out blueprint. This is what is happening, which some have mischievously misconstrued as slowness. I make bold to say that a new era is here in Ogun. “For the fact that I share in the governor’s vision, the 10 wards under Imeko-Afon LGA Imeko, Afon, Ilara, Iwoye/Jabata, Idofa, Owode/Obada, Kajola/Agberiodo, Atapele, Okeagbede/Matale/Moriwi/Okuta and Agborogbomo–are in for better times. “If you go round Ogun State, you will see that normalcy has returned to every part of the state unlike in the past when mayhem was the order of the day. “He has also provided a level playing ground for all aspirants in the state.

Group seeks human capacity development


HE Lagos Mainland chapter of Personnel Practitioners’ Consultative Association (PPCA)’s has held its 2011 annual lecture luncheon. The subsidiary of Chartered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (CIPM) through more light on why businesses fail even at their most promising stagies. The theme of the lecture was “Divergence between Strategy Formulation and Effective Implementation in Corporate Organisations in Nigeria.” The guest lecturer Engr. Femi Okunade stated that many organiations often fail to translate theories and business plans into actions for effective and efficient implementation and sustainability. He disclosed that such situation has been one major reason why most business objectives are not met. He said: “Formulating strategy is one thing, executing it throughout the entire organisation... Without effective execution, no business strategy can succeed. Unfortunately, most managers know far more about developing strategy than about executing it-and overcoming the difficult political and organisational obstacles that stand in their way. “People are our greatest assest” these companies say, but they prefer to spend millions of Naira in servicing and polishing machines and equipment.

Lagos By Paul Oluwakoya

They regularly upgrade the latest technology. But at the slightest sign of trouble, they don’t sell off these equipment but they do away with ‘overheads.’” Similarly, the president/chairman of the council (CIPM) Mr. Abiola Popoola said success of a business is based on the account of highly competent people that the organisation hires. Popoola said: “Manpower planning is one of the key functions of human resource management that manages to maintain the good will of a business while according due importance to the ‘M’ (for men or human element) than on the other ‘M’ (machine, material or money). “Respecting the skills of the employees, their knowledge, experience and talents adds to the organisational development as well as the success of the business. It translates to effective recruitment and selection process in order to retain skilled workers in the employ of the going concernmay be made available at all times,” he said.

By Nneka Nwaneri

up to N4m, but failed to fulfill the promise. But Chief Executive Officer of Bencol, Mrs Winnie Okafor, denied the allegations. She said the designer of her website got some of the pictures he used on it from the Internet. According to her, when they realised some pictures were Tsoule’s, they promptly removed them from her website. She also denied poaching Tsoule’s workers, saying they applied like others to work at Bencol following an advertisement for vacancies. Mrs Okafor said Temitope threatened her staff, and even invaded her company with policemen, threatening to deal with them. She said: “Temitope first came into our establishment on July 15, 2011, with about six policemen when he learnt that some of his ex- workers are with us. He had a printout of his two cake pictures, which he claimed that he got from our website.

• From left: Mr Ola Azeez, Council member and Mr Sunday Abayomi Adeyemi at the event




•Baale Street, Orile, Iganmu. Inset: Lagosians at a polling centre

Lagosians’ agenda for council chiefs

HE announcement of the local government elections results by the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC), last week marks the beginning of a new era for the 20 Local Government Areas(LGAs) and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs). Though the election witnessed low turnout, an indication of people's disenchantment due to the perceived poor performance of some of the chairmen, they hope that governance might be business unusual across the council. However, as the newly


By Yinka Aderibigbe, Toluwani Eniola, Tajudeen Adebanjo, Mary Okon and Amidu Arije

elected leaders took their oath of office, Lagosians are leaving nothing to chance in their determination to make them accountable. From the Island to the Mainland, residents, who spoke with CityBeats, have a common expectation from the new leaders: overall grassroots development. Faced with many

Mass burial for unclaimed corpses The Lagos State Government said it plans to give mass burial to all unclaimed and unidentified corpses at the Isolo General Hospital. Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, who disclosed this in Lagos, said most of the unclaimed bodies had been in the mortuary for over three months. According to him, most of them are remains of motor accidents and ritual killings, among others. Though he did not give the number of the unclaimed corpses, Idris said the mass burial option remains inevitable to decongest the mortuary and bury them before they decompose.

infrastructural challenges, especially poor roads, which have subjected people to pain, Lagosians are asking their leaders to justify their election by living up to their responsibility. In Oshodi Local Government Area, residents told our correspondent that the newly elected chairman, Hon Bolaji Ariyoh, has to hit the ground running as Oshodi is beset with overwhelming infrastructural deficit.

Ariyoh, who is considered a new breed in the council, is in his youth. Among others, he has been urged to map out strategies to solve myriad of bad roads in the council. Unlike what obtains in the past, religious bodies, youth associations and civil society groups in Oshodi have teamed up to monitor him, to ensure that he fulfils his promises. The former President of the Muslim Students' Society of Nigeria (MSSN), Oshodi

Govt restates commitment to climate change advocacy LAGOS State Government will continue to give premium to climate change and provide enabling environment for proper urban planning that would promote sustainable environmental protection. Governor Babatunde Fashola gave the assurance at the World Habitat Day in Alausa, Ikeja. Fashola, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Ranti Adebole, said the government has strengthened the instruments of emergency response to disasters arising from effects of climate change. He noted that the recently concluded summit on climate change has provided experts and stakeholders another opportunity to discuss and come up with mitigating steps in rescuing the state from debilitating effects of climate change.

Area Council, Mallam Abdul-Hakeem Thanni, urged the council chair to take a tour of the local government roads to have a feel of the ordeal of the residents. He said: "I believe this is an opportunity for Mr Ariyoh to write his name in gold by embarking on aggressive infrastructural development and roads rehabilitation. There should be a sincere and practical approach to youth empowerment and development. He should be accessible and meet the people either through town hall meetings or other fora that would enable the residents to express

31 their needs. Another resident, Ahmed Ibrahim, listed many roads in deplorable state, such as Ariori and Branco Streets in Mafoluku, Brown, Daodu and Adeyemi Streets in Oshodi. His words: "There are many roads in deplorable state in the local government area, so the new chairman should work early and shun bureaucracy. As you know, there are many unemployed youths in Oshodi. Some of them have taken to crime to make ends meet. He should fulfil his campaign promises by initiating empowerment programmes that would keep them busy. There are also many communities that cannot even remember when last they had electricity because of faulty transformers. In Orile-Iganmu, around Coker/Aguda LCDA, residents, said expressed anger at the deplorable level of development in the local government. It was gathered that many drainages and culverts recently constructed have since turned to death traps as they have collapsed. Hakeem Olaolu, a resident of Baale Street, Orile Iganmu, said many of the drainages constructed before the last general elections have collapsed, thereby leaving many homes and streets flooded He said: "This area of Lagos is always flooded whenever it rains, despite the drainages constructed only two months ago. As you can see, Baale Street is marshy and impassable. This road should get immediate attention from the local government because many people passing through this street often fall into the gutters. In Ijesha, Itire-Ikate LCDA the story is not different. Godwin Chukwukezie, described the markets as eyesore, adding that sourcing potable water is a major challenge for residents. Chukwukezie, who urged the chairman to address water problems, said many water vendors in the area are raking in thousands of naira because there is no pipeborne water in the area. A secondary school teacher, Mr Oton Monday, said it was unfortunate that past governments in the council did not deem it fit to address unemployment. He said: "We have a lot of youths roaming the streets, with no employment. I won-


Group wants govt to act on Apapa road A GROUP, Concerned Businessmen and Residents of Apapa Municipality, has called on relevant authorities to tackle the public nuisance, being constituted by trucks and tankers in the town. According to the group, living in the town, which hosts the nation's major sea ports, has become a nightmare as a result of the maze of tankers and trailers that have turned most of the roads in Apapa into parking lots. The group stated that the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway through the Tin Can ports is most often literally shut down making traffic almost impossible. "Hoodlums have also taken advantage of this confusion to unleash mayhem on road users who have to abandon their cars to run for safety."



CITYBEATS Lagosians’ agenda for council chiefs •Continued from page 31 der why the local government, the closest to the people cannot look into this. No matter how little it can do to salvage the situation, it will reduce the burden of people." A community leader in the area in Itire/Ikate LGA, Mr Samuel Uchechukwu, urged the council chair to fulfil his manifesto, saying he is not only accountable to the people, but God. A tricyclist, who pleaded anonymity, decried the antics of past administration in the council. He said: "Four days to the election, they came to put gravel on Karounwi Street and even stopped halfway. This is saddening as the road has been abandoned. All we are asking for is the enablement to earn a living. Is this too much to ask from a government we elected? Many riverine communities in Lagos Island Local Government have also poured out their expectations. Residents of Ogundimu Street, EbutteMeta, have appealed to the council chair to rehabilitate their roads, which are in bad state. Mohammed Alelagba, a resident, said the torrential rain that fell in the area in the past weeks have made the roads inaccessible. He said: "Please help us tell the new chairman to come to our rescue.As you can see,

many of us are facing hard times. The drainages are too weak to bear the volume of flood occasioned by the rains.Besides, we are appealing to the chairman to equip the primary health care centres to help the residents. Everyone seems to be filled with expectations of a better deal from the council leadership within the next three years. Most are praying that their council chairmen turn a new leaf and learn from the governor’s doggedness in bringing dividends of democracy to the masses. Lagosians seem to be on the same page on their immediate needs from the closest tier of governmentgood roads, potable water, renovation of dilapidated health infrastructure and the upgrading of the shambolic structures that go in the name of primary schools where such exists, among others. CDA Chairman of Ifelodun, Bariga, Babatunde Musa, charged the council boss to redeem the various promises Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) made during campaign. “We, Ifelodun elders and youths, hope this time will be an era of change and transformation in our communities, because the past chairman and councillors have disappointed us. “One of the major things we need from the local government is good infrastruc-



ture and maximum security in our communities. We want the government to make it compulsory for the CMS Police Station at Ilaje, to always patrol at midnight. We need government’s total support with the drainage for effective flow of water during the rainy season, providing public tap water. We want at least two roads in our communities to be tarred and some of the government properties that are not working anymore should be repaired,” he said. Baale of the community, Alhaji Ibrahim Onileyan, said: “Although our council in Bariga has tried, there is still room for improvement. We still have various agenda

and project that are yet to be embarked on. For example, bad roads and boreholes that are not working anymore should be repaired. We just pray and hope these era would be the best government we are yet to have, since they know what our problems are, and we will never stop reminding them about what we want and what we need in our community,” he said. At Ilasamaja, under Isolo LCDA, the Baale, Chief Fatai Abereejo, also expressed joy over the success of Shamsideen Olaleye, as council chief, but lamented the poor state of the roads in the council. “The last time most of the streets, such as Ogunbowale,

Araromi, Aje, Salako and Bale Streets were worked on was 20 years ago during Jakande’s tenure.They are now filled with potholes. I pray Olaleye lives up to his campaign promises to work on the roads and to uplift the traditional institution. He has also promised to improve the health centres, schools and other socio infrastructural facilities”. In Mushin, Alhaji Ismail Taiwo, urged the re-elected council chair, Olatunde Adepitan to repair the bad roads that are unmotorable. “The government needs to provide us with good roads, drinking water and affordable health services. Residents of Ilasamaja also in Mushin lambasted the council boss for not implementing projects in the area during his first tenure. Mr Bisola Omikunle challenged Adepitan to point to a project his administration executed in the following streets - Oremeji, Olaide Awoye, Waidi Apesin, Olusanya, Ayuba Daudu, Oyinkan and Ogunbowale among others. “In ,when the contractor from the state government was enlarging the drainage on Lamina Street, the residents thought the road alongside others within the area would be tarred but we were proved wrong. No single road was tarred in the aforementioned areas,” Omikunle said. In Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government Area, residents have challenged Oloruntoba Oke to roll up his sleeve as the task ahead would demand more work than he bargained for.

Oke, who eventually got the nod of the party leadership after a failed attempt three years ago, had assured that his administration would address youth unemployment, women empowerment and improved welfare for the aged. But critical residents urged Oke to go beyond tokenism if he ever wanted to be successful. Mr Kunle Fadipe, a lawyer said Oke should pave a new route away from that of his predecessor if he intends to achieve success in the council. Another resident urged the chairman to focus on entrepreneurial training for the youth, as well as attending to the state of roads in the area. Other areas that need immediate attention, according to residents, are the roads, the primary health care centres and the markets. Residents said the council should have more ulta modern markets befitting the status of a semi-urban area in the state. Residents of Ojodu LCDA lamented the state of roads in the council, and implored the new chairman to immediately attend to the state of roads and the primary schools for their children. At Iyana-Ibiye, Oke-Meta, on the Badagry Expressway, residents lamented the state of roads that has made life miserable. They urge the new chairman to address the issue of the bad network of roads in the council among other immediate palliative measures.

Group lists benefits of e-health


HE Health I n f o r m a t i o n Managers Association of Nigeria (HIMAN), has said e-health is the best way to promote accuracy and quality health care delivery. HIMAN, a professional health group, said it is high time Nigerians started enjoying the benefits of ehealth innovation like the rest of the world. According to the group, ehealth is widely used in advanced countries for documentation of clinical information which assists in the proper management of patients. President of the association, Wole Ajayi, said this at the swearing-in of new executives for the Lagos State branch of the association. According to him, e-health is an emerging field in the intersection of medical informatics, public health and business, referring to health services and information delivered or enhanced through the Internet and related technologies. “In a broader sense, the term characterises not only

1. Fire and Safety Services Control Room Phone Nos: 01-7944929; 080-33235892; 080-33235890; 08023321770; 080-56374036.

By Oyeyemi Gbenga-Mustapha

a technical development, but also a state of mind, a way of thinking, to improve health care locally, regionally and worldwide, using information and technology,” said Ajayi. He identified benefits of ehealth to include efficiency in health care thereby reducing cost; enhancing quality of care; room for evidence-based medicine, where effectiveness and efficiency would not be an assumption, but proven by scientific evaluation; empowerment of consumers and patients by making the knowledge bases of medicine and personal electronic records accessible to consumers locally and on the Internet. “It also stimulates best relationship between the patient and health professionals; promotes education and provide training opportunities; extends the scope of health care beyond conventional boundaries; promote acceptable ethics and equitable health care

• From left: Mr Ayegbayo, Mr Akangbe, Mr Adebisi, Mrs Fagbenro-Anjorin, Mr Karunwi and Mr Adebowale

services,” stated Ajayi. Calling on HIMAN members, especially the Lagos State chapter, on their roles in the take-off of the ehealth, Ajayi said: “We have a duty individually and collectively to support ehealth project that will enhance and promote quality health care services to the populace. I urge the Lagos State government to expedite action on the e-health project

2. Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Lagos Zonal Command Phone No: 080-77690200; 01-7742771 Sector Commander Phone No: 080-776909201; 01-2881304 FRSC Emergency No: 070-022553772

to ensure that the milestones are met within the specified time frame and provide quality assurance. He said with improved access to patient’s records (health information), there would be improvement in care outcomes as there would be limitless possibilities to harness medical knowledge in new ways. Ajayi said occasionally, patients often encounter

difficulty in accessing immediate treatment, due to inability to produce up-todate records on time and in some cases, the manual procedures for gathering patient data is deficient, which consequently result in loss of vital health data. “The e-health project will ensure that information is obtained through clinical repository and shared databases. Sharing of this

EMERGENCY LINES 3. LASTMA Emergency Numbers: 080-75005411; 080-60152462 080-23111742; 080-29728371 080-23909364; 080-77551000 01-7904983

4. KAI Brigade Phone Nos: 080-23036632; 0805-5284914 Head office Phone Nos: 01-4703325; 01-7743026 5. Rapid Response Squad (RRS) Phone Nos: 070-55350249; 070-35068242 080-79279349; 080-63299264 070-55462708; 080-65154338

information will allow patients to be treated more efficiently and safely. The challenge is to utilise this technology ethically, by honouring and respecting patient confidentiality,” Ajayi said. Chairman of the Lagos chapter, Adebisi Adebambe, said the new executive is ready to play its role in the smooth take off and success of the e-health.

767 or email: 6. Health Services – LASAMBUS Ambulance Services Phone Nos: 01-4979844; 01-4979866; 01-4979899; 01-4979888; 01-2637853-4; 080-33057916; 080-33051918-9; 080-29000003-5.




'Eschew violence over council poll result'


CHIEFTAIN of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State, Princess Folasayo Akinbile, has advised aggrieved persons to shun any act of violence over the outcome of the council election. Speaking with CityBeats, Akinbile said:" There is no reason we must employ violence to express our grievances because of the result of the council election. It is known that every one cannot win in a contest and as such people must learn to eschew violence, embrace dialogue and follow due process to air their reservation about the council poll." “A situation whereby protesters or members of opposition party barricaded entrance to a council secretariat


By Kunle Akinrinade

like we have seen in the case of Agbado/ Ijaiye Local Council Development Area because their party or candidate lost to the ACN is an act of lawlessness." She advised those who have issues with the conduct or result of the poll to seek judicial intervention. "Any candidate or political party that is not satisfied with the result of the election should approach the election tribunal for adjudication and not constitute nuisance to the society all in the name of politics." Akinbile congratulated the leadership of ACN in Lagos State for the landslide victory recorded at the poll adding that the outcome of the election has confirmed that the party remains the only cred-

At last, school gets good toilets

•Mrs Akinbile

ible alternative for Nigerians in their quest for better life. "I want to congratulate the leadership of our party particularly Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Gov. Babatunde Raji Fashola for the successful conduct of the council election and the victory recorded by our great party. The result of the election has further confirmed that the ACN is the only party that can guarantee better life for Nigerians."

UPILS of Ajidagan Primary School, Gbagada, Lagos, will now drink clean water and use water system toilets. This was made possible by Rotary International District 9110 Nigeria, with support from the Rotary Foundation, Rotary International District 6900, Georgia, United States and Rotary Club of Dunwoody, Atlanta, Georgia, US. According to the Club’s District Governor, Mr Kennedy Ejakpomwhe, it is important for the pupils to wash their hands after using the toilet to prevent contracting diseases. Ejakpomwhe, represented by past District Governor, Yomi Adewunmi, spoke at the inauguration of 12 toilets and a borehole at the

By Wale Adepoju

school. He said once the pupils are exposed to diseases they could be affected, adding that the project would alleviate their sufferings. “The 12-room toilet and a borehole for a school that had lacked water and good toilets for many years, is a positive development,” he added. Ejakpomwhe said not many people are aware of what the clubs are doing or had done in the last 50 years, adding that people need to know so that they could be encouraged to contribute to the society. He said over two million children had been immunised against poliomyelitis, adding that if this had not been done, they

•Director, School Administration, Ministry of Education, Mrs Mercy Olaoye, cutting the tape, while Lawal and others watch.

• Prince Tajudeen Adetoro, President of the association, Alhaji Lateef Oseni, presenting the award to Abilawon while the spokesman of the group, Alhaji Rasheed Tiamiyu, looks on.


Taxi driver receives Fashola’s HE moment of hon- commendation advised members of the our came for a taxi public to be vigilant when

driver, Mr Moshood Abilawon, for his exemplary conduct on the road a few days ago. The 52-year-old taxi driver was spotted by Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola on September 25,while obeying the traffic light at the intersection of Glover Road and Kingsway Road, Ikoyi , about 10pm. Fashola had ordered his aides to write down Abilawon's vehicle number plate while auto registration check was done to determine ownership of the vehicle. A letter of commendation was subsequently forwarded by Fashola to Abilawon through the Lagos State Taxi Drivers and Cab Operators Association acknowledging his sense of patriotism to obeying traffic rules and regulations in the absence of traffic enforcement agents. The letter reads in part:" I seek to commend you on the exemplary behaviour you displayed on the evening of September 25, when you observed the red traffic light at Glover Street Junction by the Golden Gate Restaurant, Kingsway Road, Ikoyi despite the absence of law enforcing bodies and in spite of other errant drivers.

By Kunle Akinrinade

"Your act of obedience portrays a high sense of responsibility and strength of character. You displayed an understanding of the importance of a traffic light and a commitment to ensuring safety on the road. Not only did you distinguish yourself from the crowd but you also showed a sense of patriotism which is worthy of emulation… At an award ceremony organised by the Lagos State Taxi Drivers and Cab Operators in Yaba, Abilawon was commended by the President of the drivers' group, Alhaji Lateef Oseni for his outstanding conduct in public space. He said:" The commendation given to you (Abilawon) by Fashola has shown that you are a worthy ambassador of this association and this is the reason why we have decided to honour you for bringing honour to our association. "I want to advise taxi drivers in Lagos State to emulate this law abiding colleague who has demonstrated that our activities are not unnoticed by the authorities and members of the public." Speaking further, Oseni

boarding taxis in the metropolis. "I want to tell members of the public to always look out for two things before riding in any taxi or cab. One, they should look out for the sticker of our association on any taxi and ask for the identity card of the driver to ascertain the park where they belong. These minor checks would no doubt ensure the safety of the passengers and their belongings.

would have been exposed to the disease. “Every Rotary Club is supposed to engage in humanitarian service, after a walk organised to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Rotary in Nigeria. This inauguration is part of it,” he added. President, Rotary Club of Gbagada, Mr Tayo Lawal, said there are 82 clubs in the district which covers Lagos and Ogun states, adding that the government cannot provide all social infrastructure for the citizens. He added that private individuals and organisations profit and non-profit, should join the government to make life easy for the people. He said the project cost N1.2 million, plus other personal efforts from members of the club. Responding to the gesture, the State Universal Basic Education Board’s (SUBEB’s) Chairman, Mrs Gbolahan Dawodu, represented by Mr Lateef Oduntan, said water and sanitation are important to the growth of the children. She said the club has demonstrated its ideal which it is known for across the world, adding that the government cannot do it alone due to its dwindling resources. “We require the assistance from various organisations and individuals to ensure upgrade of facilities. We thank the School Support Initiative for its assistance to ensure the provision of facilities,” she added. She said the facilities would be judiciously utilised, adding that other social clubs should emulate Rotary.

Firm to set up e-waste centres


LECTRONIC giant, Hewlett Packard (HP) Nigeria Ltd, has disclosed plans to establish ewaste centres across Nigeria. The move is to address the dearth of IT waste disposal points. The Manager of Social Impact Country Lead of the outfit, Chuks Okpaka, said the lack of a proper waste disposal pattern, which is a source of worry in the state, has become a major priority for the company. To rid the state of this menace, Okpaka said HP is evaluating the options in the country on setting up e-waste centres with a pilot project slated to take off soon in La-

By Innocent Amomoh

gos. “We want to ensure the proper disposal of our old computers and replace them with news ones. We shall start with the Computer Village at Otigba in Ikeja, where we intend to set up a centre and have people bring their old hardware. “There are companies that buy thousands of these products for the purpose of recycling them and as they do this, we can take over those old ones they are replacing and see what can be used out of them. The one regarded as waste will be recycled,” he said.

•From left: Mr. Chuks Okpaka, Enterprise Services Solution and Networking Manager/Leader, HP; Mrs. Folashade Kadiri, Press and Public Relations Officer, LAWMA; Mr. Ime Umo, Managing Director, HP West Africa and Mr. Jeleel Olubori, General Manager, Technical Services LAWMA, at HP Social Impact Project launch.

Also in line with its commitment to corporate social responsibility (CRS), HP has embarked on a massive environment clean-up in Lagos as a way of giving back to the society. Starting with the Aguda community in Surulere area of Lagos, HP with over 150 staff in the Nigeria office, intends to make their presence felt in the various communities in Lagos and contribute their quota in keeping the state clean. Managing Director of Hewlett Packard West Africa, Ime Umo, said: “HP as a global corporation is turning to a shared value model, in which we work in alignment with society, rather than against it, producing mutual benefits to both the community and the corporation.” He explained that this approach evolves the traditional model of financial and material goods donations, to one in which the corporation leverages a range of corporate assets including employee skills, business acumen and partner networks, to drive social change. Also, Okpaka explained that in this model, corporate success and social welfare are interdependent. The same passion, energy and culture of innovation that make a particular company successful should also be used to make a profound and positive social impact in the world.



QUOTE OF THE WEEK “It is about service and the people have made their choices on the persons they wish to govern them and the progressive platform on which they can realise their democratic yearnings. They have demonstrated that they have faith in us and in our party.”


ACN National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on the successful outing of his party at the just concluded local government election.

Experts urge early care for Down Syndrome patients ESOURCE persons at the Down Syndrome Foundation Nigeria (DSFN) Awareness Week, held in Lagos, have advocated early medical intervention and care for children with Down Syndrome (DS). Expectant mothers were advised to go for medical test to ascertain whether their babies have the DS defects. This, according to them, will help children with DS to live long and help manage effectively other diseases they are vulnerable to. Speaking at the event, with the theme: Down Syndrome: 10 years of advocacy, determination and achievements, a cardiologist with the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) , Dr Janet Ajuluchukwu , said DS children are prone to heart and respiratory diseases. Dr Ajuluchukwu, who spoke on how to detect the early signs of congenital heart defects in a child with DS, noted that one in 1000 live births have DS. The cardiologist, who made reference to many advanced countries, said many children with DS can live long if they are well taken care of. She listed improper cell division, hormonal abnormality X-ray damage, viral infections, genetic predisposition, maternal age (advancing age) as some of the risk factors for DS. Dr Ajuluchukwu said DS is a condition in which extra genetic material causes delays in the way a


By Toluwani Eniola

child develops, both mentally and physically. According to her, the physical features and medical problems associated with vary widely from child to child. She said: "While some kids with DS need a lot of medical attention, others have healthy lives. Complications can be prevented through antenatal programmes, regular check-ups, post natal care, pre-school immunisation schedules and early diagnoses. This is because 60 per cent of DS children have hearing deficits-thus audiologic evaluation is necessary. 40 per cent also have congenital heart disease. The Executive Director, Startrite Mayton, Mrs. Delphine MisanArenyeka, who spoke on early educational methods for children with DS, enjoined parents to seek professional help and carry out a karotype test to establish the type of DS of their children. Sharing her experience, she said : "I have a child who has DS defects. He is eight. I made up my mind that I would create time for him to aid his learning in school. Ever since, he has been responding well. Parents should bear in mind that taking care of their children is their responsibility. In teaching the child, a lot of patience is needed because DS children learn slowly. The seminar, which attracted parents of DS children, National

•A cross section of Down Syndrome patients

Youths Service Corps (NYSC) members, non-government organisations (NGOs), was part of activities to mark the DSFN 10 years anniversary in Lagos. It also afforded parents of children with DS defects to rub minds with medical experts. Also present were the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Youth and Social Development, Dr Dolapo Badru, Dr Fola Oredugba and Prof. Paul

Sick journalist seeks help By Oyeyemi Gbenga-Mustapha

• Nduoyo


ISS Laura Nduoyo is a journalist and has flair for Public Relations and Advertising. She is down with what medics call gastroenteritis. Hers is acute. Before she was diagnosed of this con-

dition, she had undergone surgery at a private hospital in Lagos. After the surgery, she developed complications and was treated for episodes of pains and breathlessness on exertion. She went to Wuse General Hospital, Abuja where she was evaluated by Dr. A.J. Agidee and found to have acute gastroenteritis resulting in chronic partial intestinal obstruction with terrible pains. Gastroenteritis (stomach flu) is an infection caused by a variety of viruses, bacteria, paracites, and more. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting. She opted for the options presented to her, which are surgical operations. She has been operated upon twice. Yet she is not getting any relief. Her doctors told her that she is in urgent need of corrective

surgery and about five million naira will be required to go for the treatment in a facility outside the country. With an estimated treatment cost of N5million, Miss Nduoye is appealing to all Nigerians to come to her aid financially. All donations should be sent to Laura Nduoye (GSM No- 08185680503); Bank: Skye Bank, Toyin Street, IkejaLagos; Account Number: 1760075069.

Ajuwon of Missouri State University, US. Badru , who praised the DSFN for its contributions in alleviating the plight of the children, said the Lagos State government would continue to support the foundation. He said it was unfortunate that women with DS children are abandoned by their husbands. He encouraged the parents to show love to the children, saying it is the only way to bring out the best in them. President DSFN, Mrs Rose Mordi, said although the foundation has made significant achievements, it would continue an aggressive advocacy because many parents at the grassroots are still ignorant of the defect. Her words: "The awareness we have done over the past 10 years has yielded many results. Sometimes ago, somebody came all the way from Bayelsa State, having watched our programmes on TV. There are people in the grassroots who cannot read or write, who don't even listen to radio and television. They need to be enlightened in their local languages. "We still have a long way to go

but we envision that in the next 10 years, we will have some of these children to be counted among influential citizens of this country, making changes in Nigeria. "My advice to parents is to seek early medical and educational intervention and early social integration, because their condition predisposes them to many medical conditions such as congenital heart .In advanced countries, a lot of them live well like other normal persons. This is because they have learnt to medically take of them .We are looking forward to better medical structures in the country that will strengthen the care for them. "This is why we are appealing to government, private individuals and corporate bodies to help us. There are tests that can be done to ascertain whether one is carrying a down syndrome baby, even before the child is born. If the hospitals are equipped, the situation will get better."

Community asks govt to stop dredgers


ESIDENTS of Itedo community in Eti-Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State have urged the Lagos State government to stop the activities of Lagoon Dredging and Marine

•Members of the Women Wing of the United Aladura Churches at a Novelty Football match to mark the women’s National Conference/Health Day at Ilupeju. PHOTO: ABIODUN WILLIAM

By Toluwani Eniola

Services (LDMS) dredging sand in the area. They said the shoreline has been dug so deep that their businesses and the village are faced with imminent disaster as their houses are prone to being overrun by the surging sea because there is no retaining wall separating the shoreline and the offshore. Addressing reporters in Lagos on behalf of the community, Prince Toluwaleke Megba, said the LDMS claimed that the state government had contracted them to sweep and dredge the deep waters of the Lagos Lagoon from Ebutte-Meta to Epe for easy passage of barges, big canoes and ships to enhance water transport. Megba said rather than work accordingly to the plan, LDMS has continued to dig and dredge the shoreline. He said: "We are faced with the danger of being washed away by water apart from our businesses that are already in ruins as a result of the activities of LDMS which is defiantly still digging and dredging the area and reaping millions of naira through the daily sale of sand at the expense of our lives and environment.

" It is not only the digging and dredging that we are worried about, LDMS and those profiting from its illegal operation are depositing tons of sand and organic materials on our land thus making it marshy and impassable. "We have been forced into dragging the offending company and their promoters to court after several letters written by our counsel, Festus Keyamo and Co were ignored and our lives and daily livelihood facing extinction while they have armed soldiers and policemen protecting them as they boast that before the courts stop them, they would have made all their money. "We believe in the rule of law and justice, we will await the outcome of our legal suit against the company and their promoters. But of what use is justice when it is delayed and the people it is meant to protect have had all their rights and even lives taken in most brazen manner while waiting for justice to be served. "We are, therefore ,urging the Lagos State government and the Federal Government, to urgently intervene and stop the Lagoon Dredging and Marine Services from further damage to our shoreline, environment and our communities in the interest of peace.”




Cleric urges Jonathan to create jobs


N a bid to put a stop to the numerous insecurity challenges which the country is experiencing, President Goodluck Jonathan has been advised to tackle the high rate of unemployment by creating jobs for the people, especially the youth. The Pastor in charge of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Ondo Province Four in Akure, Ondo State Pastor Sanya Kolajo said the increasing population of youths has made it imperative for the Federal Government to focus more on youths. Kolajo spoke when addressing reporters on the 10th anniversary of his province which had “The Holy Spirit,” as the theme. The pastor noted that the country is experiencing security threats just because the leaders have failed to plan for the youth. He said: “The bombing, kidnapping and armed robbery issues are being perpetrated by the youth. They are doing these in order to find means to survive. If you ask some of them, they are not happy to be involved in this but they don’t have any choice because they believe they must get something to keep soul and body together.” The cleric also advised the various churches in the country to continue to emphasise on the need for the youth to abstain from criminal activities. His words: “If you look at the security situation in the country today, majority of the youth who are committing these crimes as-


AGOS State Governor Babatunde Fashola has spoken on the challenge of governance in Africa, saying that democracy and good governance will foster development on the continent. The governor delivered a lecture on ‘Democracy and Development’ organised by the Oxford Research Network On Governance in Africa at Rhodes House, United Kingdom as part of the university’s activities to mark the Black History Month. The university had recently studied the giant strides of the Fashola administration, which it considered a model in Nigeria and Africa. He relayed to the audience the constraints of Nigeria’s lopsided federalism, which has frustrated con-

From Leke Akeredolu, Akure

sociate themselves with some of these churches. It is our duty to ensure that we tell the youth the reason why they must not get in-

volved in bombing, kidnapping and robbery.” Kolajo, while commenting on the economy of the country, said the Federal Government must enlighten and convince the

The bombing, kidnapping and armed robbery issues are being perpetrated by the youth. They are doing these in order to find means to survive. If you ask some of them, they are not happy to be involved in this but they don’t have any choice because they believe they must get something to keep soul and body together

masses on why it must remove the oil subsidy. “Many Nigerians do not have enough knowledge on why the Federal Government plans to remove the oil subsidy. Government should explain to us the reason behind this. If it will ensure stability in the power sector, create more employments, government is duty-bound to let the masses know. We still need more explanation on this,” he said. He said that the province will be working on how to facelift some of its branches, stressing that some of them are still worshipping in rented buildings.

•President Jonathan

Mimiko promises new radio station



NDO State Governor Olusegun Mimiko has assured that the state will get a brand new radio station before the end of December this year. The governor disclosed this in Akure, the state capital while inspecting work at the permanent site of the Radio 2 Station of the Ondo State Radio-vision Corporation (OSRC), located at Irese Road, Akure. The governor noted that he was excited that the whole of the state now receives signals from OSRC broadcasts against the embarrassing situation in the past where the entire Southern Senatorial District of the state was cut off from radio and television signals. Mimiko acknowledged that telecast from the station showed high picture quality. He, however,

From Damisi Ojo, Akure

admitted that a lot still needs to be done to improve on the programme content in order to maximise the investment the administration has made in the agency. The governor, who described as excellent the extent of work on the new station just within two weeks of commencement of work, maintained that the new attitude of timely delivery on government projects signifies a departure from past experiences where projects were put through bureaucratic bottlenecks that ensured such projects took between three to four years to deliver on. “This symbolises a paradigm shift in government delivery on projects and programmes embarked upon. The quality of work

is commendable and we would get the right value for our investment,” he said. The new station will bring the number of radio stations to two in addition to a television station under the administration of the Ondo State RadioVision Corporation. In another development, the governor, in an unscheduled visit to Basic Health Centre, Molete in Igbara-Oke, expressed satisfaction that everything was working smoothly. He also expressed his happiness that drugs and medical personnel are available to man their duty posts in a very neat and modern facility provided by the present government.tween three to four years to deliver on…This symbolises a paradigm shift in government delivery on projects and programmes

‘Democracy will ensure development in Africa’ By Emmanuel Oladesu

certed efforts to resuscitate certain decayed public services and infrastructure critical to the achievement of his mega city dream. The governor observed that the termination of the independent power in Nigeria during the 1980s and his determination to harness the power of the private sector to transform his ‘megacity’. In a warm speech in which he discussed his childhood memories of being able to rely on government services and the way that his support for Manchester United has shaped his atti-

tude toward the difficult tasks that he faces, the governor went into considerable detail about his strategy for reviving an area once described as a ‘concrete jungle.’ Throughout, the governor was modest about his achievements and while he listed the progress that his government has made in terms of healthcare, the environment, transport and taxation, he was also candid about the many challenges that remain. Lagos is the economic capital of Nigeria and its gross domestic product (GDP) is greater than most West African countries. However, the state is growing at a rate of 300,000

•Sitting from left: Mr. Ewhubare Benedict Aloku, Mr Augustine Ejiofor, president of the International League of Friends Club, Sir Rowland Okolo, Secretary-General, Frank Isume, Jimmy Nwajei and other members of the club during their 2011 Annual Conference and dinner held in Lagos. PHOTO: DAYO ADEWUNMI

people a year and while the population is young, unemployment remains a serious problem. The governor explained that the government cannot hope to meet the needs of over 10m Lagos residents alone and so must work in partnership with the private sector. In particular, he laid out his plans to strengthen infrastructure and get a tighter grip on law and order in order to make the state a more attractive destination for domestic and foreign investors—thus simultaneously creating much needed new jobs and increasing the government’s tax take. To access a copy of the speech, scroll down to the bottom of this post. During a lengthy Q&A session, the Governor answered questions on a wide range of topics including the use of technology for healthcare, his relationship with the president, and his future ambitions. Members of the audience were particularly impressed by his thorough answer to a question about the poor quality of the water supply, in which he described his short, medium, and long-term strategy with remarkable precision. But the Governor also admitted that the success of his publicprivate initiatives will depend on whether businesses believe that the current favourable conditions will last. Given that he is currently embarking on his second and final term in office, this will depend on how smoothly the succession process is managed, and the willingness of those who come after him to finish the job. A researcher dovumented the impact of Fashola’s reforms. He found that: •The effective provision of public goods can enable African leaders to build a cross-ethnic support

base—even in extremely diverse contexts. •Although the willingness of the public to pay taxes is low in many African countries – where governments are typically viewed as wasteful and corrupt – willingness can be rapidly generated by an effective reform minded administration. •The provision of basic public services dramatically increases the willingness of individuals living in recipient communities to pay higher levels of taxation. This suggests that the provision of effective public services not only benefits the very poor who cannot afford to pay for education and health care, it is also critical to generate public willingness to pay taxes and public support for future reform agendas. Extending new services can also help to boost government legitimacy among marginalized and disgruntled communities and can therefore help to reduce the risks of civil or political conflict. The Lagos government should prioritise providing tangible services to communities and ensuring that the availability of these services is widely publicised. The governor responded that he has seen the positive impact of his reform agenda firsthand: for the first time, residents of Lagos are turning up at government offices asking how they can pay tax. But he also commented on how quickly such goodwill would evaporate if his administration failed to make good on its promise to invest taxpayers’ money wisely. The lecture was supported by the African History and Politics Seminar, the Centre for the Study of African Economies, the Development Office of the University of Oxford, and Rhodes House




Akwa Ibom spends N8bn on agric


N its efforts to improve food production and ensure food security for its population, the Akwa Ibom State government has expended the sum of N8b on agricultural development in the 2011 fiscal year. The Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Obong Eno Akpan, disclosed this to journalists in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital recently. Akpan said that the state took the step in recognition of the threats that food prices and instability pose, even as he disclosed that the government had initiated a lot of schemes that would generate people’s interest in agricultural production, increase income and raise the standard of living of its citizens. He listed programmes earmarked in the fiscal year to tackle the food crisis to include N2b for Women Agro-Entrepreneurship Development Programme (WAEDEP) in which 4,500 women would be given N250, 000 each to embark on agro-production and agro-trading. Others, he said, are the Integrated Farmers’ Scheme with 1,200 youths currently on two months’ training programme preparatory to their empowerment with N500, 000. This, according to him, would bring the number of beneficiary to 4,000 between 2007 and 2011.


HE Rotary Club of Eziukwu Aba, Abia State under its 3h grant programme, has introduced sanitation education campaign in secondary schools in the city. According to the club, 11 schools are expected to benefit in the initial programme. The President of the club, Eme Uguru Ikpoka said that the programme tagged “Training the Trainers,” was aimed at inculcating in the students the skills to cope with life on hygiene and health-related issues. Ikpoka expressed optimism that those trained in the exercise would carry the message beyond their immediate environment so as to benefit the wider community, stressing that good health at school is not only essential for now, but also an investment for the future. He said that training the students

From Kazeem Ibrahym, Uyo

The commissioner noted that the rice development programme of the state government would mobilise rice farmers in the state to ensure that Ibom rice gets to the market soonest while numerous farms have been earmarked for farmers as motivation through the out-grower scheme. The Accelerated Live Stock and Fish Production Programme (ALFIPP), he said, would harness numerous water body systems for fish cage culture and inland fisheries development while the hatchery plant for the production of 90,000 day-old chicks was under construction at Mbiaya Uruan. He added that plans are on to establish same in the other two senatorial districts. Akpan stressed that a strategic food reserve centre had been acquired at Abak at the cost of N1.5bn for processing and storage of the expected agricultural produce. He assured that at the completion of the centre, food wastages often experienced would be a thing of the past. He also stated that a programme aimed at transforming the sector from subsistence production-driven to market-driven agric business was being planned. He noted that the scheme would use the whole

•A rice farm

A strategic food reserve centre had been acquired at Abak at the cost of N1.5bn for processing and storage of the expected agricultural produce…At the completion of the centre, food wastages often experienced would be a thing of the past value chain approach known as Agro-Value Addition and Agric Business Development Pro-

gramme. The commissioner explained that the programme would go a

long way in enhancing the training of processors to produce; process and package products for markets. Akpan expressed worry that between 2005 and 2008, world staple food price soared to the highest levels in 30 years, while in the last 18 months, prices of maize increased by 74 per cent, with rice almost tripling by 166 per cent, causing food riots in over 20 countries across the world.

Rotary takes hygiene campaign to schools From Ugochukwu Eke, Umuahia

and other people at the secondary education level will help to bring hygiene and other health-related is-

sues down to the doorsteps of the people of the state, stressing that the students will take home what they have learnt. In a paper he presented as part of

Those trained in the exercise would carry the message beyond their immediate environment so as to benefit the wider community, stressing that good health at school is not only essential for now, but also an investment for the future

the health campaign drive, entitled “School Sanitation Education” (SSE), Dr. Madu Awa, one of the resource persons said that provision of sanitary facilities such as excreta disposal, drainage and garbage disposal in schools is important. He described school sanitation education as the combination of hardware and software components necessary to produce healthy school environment, which he said had wider outreach activities without adding extra burdens to their academic programmes. Awa, however, advocated a school sanitation education action plan which he said should be prepared as part of the school health programmes at the beginning of every session, adding that such education will help

them to keep their surroundings clean. He regretted that recent situation analysis conducted in public schools in Abia State showed that most schools lacked sanitary facilities, and where they existed, they needed improvement. Madu Stanley Okechukwu, while presenting his paper entitled “Water: The Most Precious Natural Resource,” advised the students against drinking untreated surface water which he said was the most polluted on earth. Okechukwu urged government to help prevent communicable diseases through the provision of potable water, adding that the provision of such treated water will help the citizens to be healthy at all times.

Foundation donates books to schools


•Chairman, Autoland Motors, Prince Segun Odutayo presenting a trophy to the winner of 31st Olumodi Day Football competition during the Olumodi Day celebration held at Imodi Ijebu, Ogun State

The Ovu Foundation, a nongovernmental organisation (NGO) has donated 8, 000 books worth thousands of naira to three primary schools in Ovu in Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State. Presenting the books to the three schools namely; Ovu Catholic Primary School, Ovu Baptist Primary School and CMS Primary School, the chairman, Board of Trustees, Evangelist Emmanuel Okorodudu, the National Co-ordinator, Mr. Adagbeni lsaac Adjekukor and Dr. Akpofure Rim-Ruke, President, Ovu Foundation said the organisation has taken education and the distribution of education materials to pupils as one of its paramount agenda. He further said that “our focus on the area of education was borne out of the fact that a child without education is like a blind man without direction. The foundation will

From Polycarp Orosevwotu, Ughelli

always do all within its power to ensure that Ovu sons and daughters receive the best of education.” According to him the foundation is geared towards giving quality education to the pupils of the community, even as he promised that the foundation will furnish the primary schools with computers considering the fact that the children are in their jet age and are very fast in learning. On his part, Mr. Adjekukor said during December period, the foundation shall embark on an exercise of de-worming children from the age of one to five. He also promised that the foundation shall also provide television sets for the pupils with which the pupils will be open to fast-learning through CD learning aids.



He urged religious organisations, non-governmental organisations and public-spirited individuals to key into the programme in order to fight poverty in the zone

Job scheme relaunched


ESIDENTS of Onitsha, the commercial capital of Anambra State, have welcomed the relaunch of an empowerment scheme initiated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The programme which is being run by the Entrepreneurship Development Centre (EDC), was first launched in August 2008. The EDC, an intervention outfit of the CBN, is powered by the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Development Research (CEDR), University of Nigeria Nsukka. It aims to alleviate poverrty, contain youth restiveness, generate selfemployment and create wealth for the unemployed and the underemployed youths and graduates of tertiary institutions. The project director, Proffessor C. U. Okoye, described the day as a new beginning and rebirth of a momentous project which for several months has been in limbo. He said the sole aim of the programme is “to provide entrepreneurship and business management training that would enable participants to set up and manage their own micro and small entreprises in a creative and sustainable way. The goal is to generate employment, increase income opportunities and create wealth.” He disclosed that the Southeast zone of EDC has trained over 2000 participants since inception, adding that some of the participants have been successfully linked to financial institutions and have had their projects funded. “Today, as we relaunch this programme, the fact that in the past it suffered some drawbacks can no longer be an issue. Today I am glad to announce a completely refurbished and re-energised EDC that is resolute in delivering the necessary capacity building, guidance and financial linkage for the teeming mass of struggling entrepreneurs in Southeast Nigeria. With this relaunch today, we seek speed, agility and syn-

•Participants at the programme From Adimike George, Onitsha

chrony in the enthronement of the much desired sustainablity in the activities of Onitsha EDC in partnership with all persons, institutions and agencies here gathered today,” he stated. Explaining the programme further, he noted that “EDC itself does not provide direct funding to its graduands; rather it ensures the collaboration of financial institutions actively involved in lending to Small and Medium Entreprises (SMEs) within the national microfinance policy framework developed by the CBN”. He said that “the Bank of Industry (BOI) and the Small and Medium Entreprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) were seeking to partner the CEDR for disbursment of funds to successful graduands. Looking forward, the CEDR, UNN is plan-

ning to register a microfinance bank of its own to fast-track the delivery of cheap credit to graduates of the EDC trainning programme”. He urged religious organisations, non-governmental organisations and public-spirited individuals to key into the programme in order to fight poverty in the zone. Earlier in his address, the Vice Chancellor of the UNN, Prof. Barth Okolo also noted that the programme was initiated to abate unemployment in Nigeria by changing the mindset of the people and rekindling self-reliance. He said that after the introduction of the programme in 2008, it became popular among the unemployed and the underemployed because of peculiar features that made it accessible and responsive to the immediate needs of the target audience, which included crucial training and linkage to credit. According to the VC, who was represented by Mrs. M. N. Dike, a law-

yer, “it is in recognition of this project and its potentials towards making our economy more viable and competitive that we have gathered here to revitalise it from an unfortunate limbo since the past 13 months. By relaunching this project today we are demonstrating our resolve to put behind us the crippling experiences of the past and chart a new course for the sake of the masses of the expectant poor”. He hinted that the centre is expected to be fully established and selfsustaining after five years of sponsorship by the CBN, adding that it is therefore critical for EDC to establish as early as possible sustainable sources of support other than the CBN. Okolo saluted the visionary management and workers of CEDR and charged them to march on with even greater vigour, expressing support and willingness to contribute to ensure the EDC was fully revitalized, adding “the process of restoring the

dignity of man will be more fundamental if it touches every folk. The best avenue of making this happen is undoubtedly by spreading entrepreneurship through the EDC way”. One of the past graduates of the Centre, Chuka Okafor, who came to the programme with some crates of eggs, said he came to testify of the positive impact of the programme. He added that before he came to participate in the programme, he had no job. He disclosed that after the training, the centre helped him to secure financial assistance from a bank with which he started poultry business. He said the crates of eggs which he came with were products of his new business. Speaker after speaker eulogised the centre for impacting positively on the zone. Some of them even came with their wives to show how independent they were financially as a result of the training from the centre.

Anambra community mourns philanthropist From Adimike George, Onitsha

•Late Nwakoby


The serene community of Nkwelle Ezunaka in Oyi Local Government Area of Anambra State is in mourning mood. They are mourning the death of its illustrious son and philanthropist, Chief Patrick Oguejiofor Nwakoby. The community that produced Cyprian Ekwensi, one of the country’s literary icons has been mourning the death of one of its a lawyers, bankers and publisher of the defunct

Weekly Trumpet and Daily News newspapers which flourished during the second republic. He died at the age of 80. Some members of the community who addressed reporters at the country home of the late Nwakoby at the hilly town said the loss was irreparable as the philanthropist contributed immensely to the development of the community especially in the areas of education and infrastructural development. They also disclosed that the late Nwakoby gave scholarship awards to many sons and daughters of the community. According to one of the sons of the deceased, Chief Oguejiofor Nwakoby, the late philanthropist obtained his Bachelor of Law (LLB) degree from the London University in 1959 and was called to the Middle Temple Bar in the same year. Until his death, he was the chairman Central Medical Softwares Limited. He was also a staunch member of the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN) in the Second Republic. Nwakoby, he continued, was the pio-

neer indigenous chairman of both the Union Bank of Nigeria Plc and the First Bank of Nigeria Plc. He was also a one-time chairman of various establishments, including East Central State Sports Council, Anambra State Sports Council, L.M. Ericsson Nigeria Limited, Enugu Sports Club, Enugu Recreation Club, Bamus Nigeria Limited and Manfec Nigeria Limited. He was also director of various companies, including Valid Assurance Company Limited, Syndicated Investment Company Limited, Valid

Properties Limited, Patmacoon Nigeria Limited and Evepon Industries Limited. Others who spoke glowingly of the deceased were Chief Nnanyelugo Mike Ikelie and Hon. Obiora Emenogha. They described the late Nwakoby as an astute politician, philanthropist and a dedicated man who propelled development and education in the community during his life time. They added that the good seed he sowed has manifested in NkwelleEzunaka and beyond, even as his chil-

Some of the philanthropic accomplishments of the late Nwakoby are, among other things, scholarship awards to over 300 people from secondary school to university levels, building of parish houses for both the Catholic and Anglican churches in the area, training of many journalists

dren have taken over his philanthropic activities as part of measures to immortalise him. They mentioned some of the philanthropic accomplishments of the late Nwakoby. They are, among other things, scholarship awards to over 300 people from secondary school to university levels, building of parish houses for both the Catholic and Anglican churches in the area, training of many journalists, as well as purchasing of two vehicles for the two churches and building of Rev. Sisters’ convent in the area. They further described him as “a most unassuming, warm and friendly person. He gets well with almost everybody. He is a strong believer in the old adage which says ‘make new friends but keep the old ones.’ He never wished anybody evil and by his nature was incapable of thinking evil. He believed that no evil or injustice can go unpunished.” According to his son, Chief Nwakoby will be buried on December 2, 2011 in his country home Nkwelle Ezunaka, after a funeral Mass at his home in NkwelleEzunaka.








Honda vehicles may be Japanese in technology, but the way Americans and other countries have embraced the Odyssey, has underscored its rating as the best family minivan. Safety, fuel economy and refinement in space and driving experience serve as guides to excellence. SEYI ODEWALE writes.

2012 Honda Odyssey: leading the pack


OMPLETELY redesigned for the 2011 model year, the 2012 Honda Odyssey remains the class-leading minivan for fuel economy and safety ratings, while continuing to offer the refinement, space and engaging driving experience that people have come to expect from this highly acclaimed family vehicle. Its class-leading achievements include the highest EPA highway fuel economy rating for an eight-passenger minivan of 28 mpg for Odyssey Touring. All Odyssey models achieve the best possible safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) with a five-Star Overall Vehicle Score and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) with a top safety pick, an achievement that no other currently-tested minivan can match. Designed and built in the United States, the five available models consist of the Odyssey LX, EX, EX-L, Touring and Touring Elite, with each providing a unique combination of features, value, luxury and in-vehicle entertainment technology. Changes for 2012 include the addition of select features to the Odyssey EX that were previously exclusive to the Odyssey EX-L. For 2012, the Odyssey EX now includes Bluetooth® Hands' FreeLink®, the intelligent Multi-Information Display (i-MID) with an eight-inch TFT screen, a 2-GB CD Library and a USB Audio Interface. The 2012 Odyssey Touring receives an exclusive exterior White Diamond Pearl, replacing Taffeta White on the prior model. The body uses a tapered cabin design with a signature "lightning bolt" character line to create a dynamic and distinctive appearance. Additionally, the styling cue creates a relatively large third-row window that enhances the outward perspective for third-row passengers. Engineered for a quiet interior, the Odyssey's highly-rigid body with 59 per cent highstrength steel (an exceptional amount by industry standards) helps enhance the effectiveness of the vehicle's sound-deadening material to isolate road noise. The high-strength steel also helps to reduce body weight for better fuel economy and optimise body rigidity for agile handling. The interior offers multiple modes for accommodating child seats, adult passengers and cargo, along with offering a comprehensive range of in-vehicle entertainment technology. To fulfill its design goal to be the ultimate family vehicle, the interior provides three rows of comfort-oriented seating with generous sedanlike leg room in each row; along with providing up to five Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) positions for child seats (the Odyssey LX has four LATCH positions). The passenger volume measures 172.6 cu-ft. (Odyssey LX and EX) and the cargo volume ranges between 38.4 cu-ft. cargo volume (all seats up) to 148.5 cu-ft. depending on the seating configurations. A 4x8 sheet of plywood can fit inside the Odyssey's cargo bay with the secondrow seats removed, and 10-foot-long 2x4 studs can fit inside the vehicle with the available front console removed. To help enhance driver comfort, especially on long trips, the driver's seat features 10-way power adjustable seating (eight-way power adjustable on Odyssey LX). A "3-mode" secondrow seat design provides the ability to attach up to three child seats across the second row (Odyssey EX and above) by relocating the outboard seats to alternate positions closer to the

•The Odyssey

•Interior of the car

•Another Interior of the car

doors. The one-motion, 60/40 split third-row Magic Seat®, one of the Odyssey's original concepts and most versatile features, affords legroom for average size adults and is easy to open and close with one hand. Highlights of standard features on all models include air conditioning with manual front and rear controls, power driver's seat, power windows with auto-up/down driver's and front-passenger's windows, tilt and telescopic steering column, a maintenance minder system and more. Odyssey EX models and above come standard with power sliding rear doors, an "intelligent" Multi-Information Display (iMID) with customisable wallpaper, center console storage, a flip-up trash bag ring, conversation mirror and more. Odyssey EX-L models

include leather-trimmed seating surfaces (front and outboard second row), heated front seats, XM Radio®, power tailgate, a cool box, rearview camera and much more. Standard equipment on the Odyssey Touring includes the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System2, a Rear Entertainment System with a nine-inch display, driver's seat with two-position memory, 115 Volt power outlet, fog lights, parking sensors, six-speed automatic transmission and much more. The Odyssey Touring Elite adds an Ultra-Wide Rear Entertainment System (RES), blind-spot information system, High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlights and more. Technology features available on certain models include a Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System2 with Voice Recognition, which

is available on the Odyssey EX-L and standard on the Odyssey Touring. The system features an eight-inch, high-resolution VGA color display and GPS technology to provide turn-byturn guidance to a destination, in addition to other features including subscription-free FM Traffic data and a Zagat® restaurant guide. Standard on the Odyssey Touring Elite is the state-of-the-art, factory-integrated Rear Entertainment System that includes an ultra-wide 16.2-inch flip-down LCD screen and a 12speaker, 650-Watt sound system capable of reproducing Dolby® Digital 5.1 Surround Sound in 360-degree detail. A High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) video input and two wireless headphones for rear passengers are also provided. The Odyssey Touring Elite also includes the Blind Spot Information system (BSI), which helps alert the driver via indicators near the side mirrors when other vehicles are detected in set zones to the left and right of the Odyssey. An advanced 3.5-litre, 24-valve, SOHC, iVTEC V-6 engine with Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) provides a balanced combination of performance, fuel economy and low emissions. The engine produces 248 hp (the most ever for Odyssey) and 250 lb-ft. of torque, while delivering an EPA-estimated city/highway/combined fuel economy2 of 19/28/22 mpg on Odyssey Touring models (18/27/21 mpg on Odyssey LX, EX and EX-L models). A five-speed automatic transmission is standard on Odyssey LX, EX and EX-L models. Odyssey Touring models feature a six-speed automatic transmission for enhanced driving refinement. A 118.1-inch wheelbase, a fully independent suspension design and features such as Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA®) with traction control contribute to the Odyssey's confident driving performance and comfortable ride. The MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension allows each wheel to maintain its own contact patch with the road, which is a significant benefit compared to less sophisticated torsion beam-style rear suspensions often used on other minivans. The Odyssey was recently named a top safety pick from IIHS, the institute's highest safety rating. The rating recognizes vehicles that do the best job of protecting vehicle occupants involved in front, side and rear crashes, plus rollover performance based on ratings in IIHS tests, as well as having a standard electronic stability control system. The Odyssey earned the highest-possible score of good in all four ratings, including the rigorous roof-strength test. In addition to earning the top safety pick designation, the Odyssey was one of the first vehicles to achieve NHTSA's best-possible "Overall Vehicle Score" of five stars. The Odyssey achieved its top "Overall Vehicle Score" with five-star ratings for the frontal crash safety test and both side crash safety tests 4 in all evaluated front and rear seating positions and scenarios. The Odyssey also received four stars for the rollover rating.





, 2011












Oil workers back deregulation •Seek passage of PIB


HE Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has expressed support for the deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector. Its approval came at the end of a meeting of its National Executive Council (NEC) held in Owerri, the Imo State capital at the weekend. In a communique, issued at the end of the session, in which it called for the speedy passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), currently before the National Assembly, NUPENG outlined certain conditions that must be met before its support can be guaranteed. The communiqué, co-signed by the President and General-Secretary, Comrades Igwe Achese and Elijah Okougbo, said it is not opposed to deregulation of the downstream sector of the oil and gas industry, but insisted that “practical and pragmatic steps must be taken to rehabilitate the existing four refineries to ensure optimal capacity utilisation, create an enabling environment to engender private investor’ interest in building refineries for the purpose of improving the local refining capacity, to meet the ever increasing local demand of petroleum products and indeed for export.” Also, it urged the government to engage in massive infrastructural development, repairs and construction of roads, modern railway system, expand energy generating capacity, embark on repairs and reconstruction of petroleum prod-

Stories by Dupe Olaoye-Osinkolu

ucts, pipelines network and depots to improve and ensure effective distribution of petroleum products. Not only that, NUPENG also asked the government to create appropriate palliative measures to cushion the impact, on the citizenry, the effect of the deregulation. However, NUPENG expresed displeasure with the government over its insistence on kickstarting the process, when as yet, many things are not in place. On that flank, it warned that its opposition stays. It said: “The NEC in session expresses total disappointment at the Federal Government’s attempt to deregulate the downstream sector of the oil and gas industry with the present situation of import-driven petroleum product supply, nonfunctional refineries, obsolete petroleum products pipelines network and depots, low local refining and inadequate energy generation capacity and dilapidated road network in the country.” The union expressed dismay

•From left: Achese and Okougbo at the meeting

over procrastination in the general reform of the oil and gas industry to ensure transparency and accountability, increased investment and return through the timely passage of the PIB, which has been at the National Assembly since 2008. “It is even more worrisome and disturbing that there are various versions of the bill in circulation

giving room to wild speculation and apprehension in the industry and the nation at large. “Therefore, the NEC in session calls on the National Assembly to make available the authentic version of the bill to the public to enable concerned stakeholders make meaningful contributions to the content of the bill. “The NEC in session further calls

‘Practical and pragmatic steps must be taken to rehabilitate the existing four refineries to ensure optimal capacity utilisation, create an enabling environment to engender private investor’ interest in building refineries for improving the local refining capacity, to meet the ever increasing local demand of petroleum products and indeed for export’

on the National Assembly to immediately put in motion all processes for the speedy passage of the bill for the actualisation of the much anticipated reform in the oil and gas industry. It also decried increasing wave of criminal activities including kidnapping, hijacking of petroleum tankers and armed robberies targeted at oil and gas workers in the Niger Delta. “The NEC in session, hereby, calls on all authorities at all levels of government to ensure adequate protection of oil and gas workers as the union will not hesitate to take apropriate action should these attacks and abductions continue unabated,” the communiqué said.

Court warns NLC against delaying case



WO sacked workers of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Iduh Lawrence, an Assistant General Secretary and Esther Ogunfowora, a Project Coordinator, have dragged the central labour body before the National Industrial Court, sitting in Abuja. They sued the Congress for alleged unlawful termination of their appointments. Joined in the

suits as defendants, are Abdulwahed Ibrahim Omar and Owei Lakemfa, President and Acting General-Secretary of NLC. Apart from asking the court to declare their sack illegal, Iduh and Esther, are asking the court to grant them damages of N45 million. When the case was mentioned, the presiding judge, Justice Babatunde Adejumo, chastised the NLC for its inability to file its statement of defence several weeks after it was served the court processes of the cases. According to Justice Adejumo, if the defendant, the NLC or its counsel, Anthony Idtejere, intends to use that as a delay tactic to frustrate and prolong the case in court, they will be disappointed as he was prepared to treat the case or any that comes before the court with the needed dispatch. He, therefore, ordered the NLC to choose a short date within which to file its defence. The defence counsel, therefore, promised to comply with the directive within one week. In his statement of facts, Comrade Onah, through his counsel, Messrs Okunade Olorundare

(SAN), is asking the court to declare that the letter of termination of his employment dated May 24, 2011, is null and void having been in violation of the constitution as well as the conditions of service of the NLC. Onah is also asking the court to grant him N5 million as general and aggravated damages for wrongful termination of employment and another N5 million as cost of his action, being legal and professional fees. Defendants in the suit are the NLC and its President, Abdulwahed Ibrahim Omar. According to counsel to Onah, Olorundare (SAN), apart from the NLC conditions of service, the Congress also has a constitution which not only provides for the procedure for the dismissal or termination of workers in its employment to ensure fair trial, but which also makes the security and tenure of workers generally as part of its prime “Aims and Objectives”. Onah, in his statement of claims, avered that contrary to the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

and the NLC conditions of service, his employment with the NLC was rather summarily terminated vide a letter dated May 24, 2011, without any opportunity of his being heard or given fair trial. According to the plaintiff, contrary to the reason stated in the letter abruptly terminating his appointment, the defendant’s action was rather a punitive measure founded on the wrong allegation that he and one Esther Ogunfowora attended an international conference on behalf of NLC without approval. He further averred that during a meeting of the Central Working Committee of the NLC on May 23, 2011, Omar openly accused him of conducts inimical to the interest of NLC, arising from the alleged international conference he was alleged to have attended, whereby Omar made a strong case for the termination of his appointment. Onah is pleading with the court to declare that the National Executive Council (NEC) of the NLC can only terminate his appointment in line with its constitution and as envisaged in its conditions of service. He is seeking for a declaration

that the letter of May 24, 2011which summarily terminated his employment was a violation of the NLC conditions of service and, therefore, wrongful in law. He is further asking the court for a declaration that the reason stated in his letter of termination of employment dated May 24, 2011 is not plausible as to justify the termination of his employment with NLC and that a declaration that non-payment of three months salary in lieu of notice on May 24, 2011 when his purported termination was to take effect was in violation of his contract of service with NLC. Comrade Ogunforwora is seeking for an order reinstating her position or alternatively, she wants an order compelling the defendants to pay her salaries and entitlement from May 24, 2011 till the expiration of her three-year contract. Ogunforwora is also seeking for an order granting her N30 million as general and aggravated damages for breach of contract of employment and N5 million as cost of her action. The case was adjourned to December 6, 2011 for hearing.

ITF promises overseas vocational training for the unemployed


HE Director-General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Prof Longmas Sambo Wapmuk, has said the body is working towards achieving the Vision 20:2020 programme of the Federal Government. He said local and overseas vocational training for the unemployed and collaboration with international skills’ acquisition and

development centres will continue, until unemployment and insecurity occasioned by skills’ gap and inadequate access to vocational training and development in the country is addressed. Speaking in Lagos during the Third Interactive Forum of the Apapa Area Office of the fund, Wapmuk said the ITF will not abandon its mandate in the provision of

vocational training that will drive national development. He said: “The Industrial Fund is poised to maintain its leading role in training as it concerns human capital development in Nigeria, in line with its mandate. This is to ensure continuous development of the various skills essential for the sustenance and growth of our organisation.

He said the fund has committed a lot of resources to developing the capacity and skills of its workforce at various levels within and outside the country. “A number of our officers were sent to Isreal, Singapore, Dubai and the United Kingdom for different programmes. This is aimed at preparing them for the enormous task and aspira-

tion of the government before 20:2020. Area Manager in Charge of the Apapa office, Mr. John Ayo, said the forum was organised to appreciate the contributions of partners of the fund in the area, and reiterated the commitment of ITF to the provision of training for human capital development.




Senate organises public hearing on expatriate quota abuse

Osun trains 200 cadets as traffic wardens


BOUT 200 cadets from Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES) have been trained in road traffic law. The cadets who completed their training on Friday, are expected to be deployed to township roads as traffic wardens. Oladepo Amudah, Special Adviser to the Governor on Works and Transport, said in a statement in Osogbo that the participants cut across the state’s three senatorial districts. “The essence of the training is to engage the cadets in “road traffic law enforcement and traffic management in the state,” he said. The 2,000 volunteers under the OYES are engaged in environmental sanitation in public places. Meanwhile, some volunteers of the scheme, who hold Bachelor’s degrees and Higher National Diploma (HND) are expected to be deployed into teaching service. Col. Enibukun Oyewole, the Commandant of the scheme, said Governor Rauf Aregbesola took the decision following the outcome of the Education Summit held in the state in February. Oyewole said members of the scheme, who went through screening and found to be suitably qualified, would be deployed to teach.

HE Senate has directed its Committees on Employment, Labour and Productivity and Interior, to conduct a public hearing on the alleged abuse of expatriate quota by foreign multinationals. The motion, presented by Senator Wilson Ake (PDP-Rivers), called the attention of the Senate to the Immigration Act which empowered the agency to grant expatriate quota to companies seeking to employ expatriates in the country. He added that such approvals are limited to four expatriates at first and were to be granted only where there are no local experts. The lawmaker argued that the objective, which was to train local manpower, was being abused. “In recent times, there had been an avalanche of petitions, complaints and newspaper publications of improper application of the above stipulations. ’’ He also drew the attention of the

Stories by Dupe Olaoye-Osinkolu

Senate to a report by the Federal Bureau of Statistics that put unemployment statistics in Nigeria at 21.7 per cent or 32.5 million unemployed persons. Senator James Manager (PDPDelta), noted in his contribution that unemployment was a serious issue in the country, adding that such allegations cannot be waved aside. Manager, however, said although the movers of the motion had not provided sufficient statistics to warrant an investigation, unemployment was high and there was need for investors to employ Nigerians. Senator Mohammed Ali-Ndume (PDP-Borno), said the motion was patriotic as it sought to investigate abuses in the expatriate quota allocation if there was any. He said there was nothing wrong in carrying out a public hearing to ascertain this, adding that if the alle-

gations were unfounded after the investigation, then would be discarded. Senator Pius Ewherido (DPPDelta), said Nigeria could not continue to have foreign investment at the detriment of its citizens. “In a company, such as Delta Steel, positions such as security guards are being handled by Indians. Are we saying Nigerians are not well trained to be security guards?’’ Ewherido urged his colleagues to adopt the motion as it would reveal if there are abuses in the system. Senator Yusuf Baba-Ahmed (CPCKaduna), however, argued that the fact that a Nigerian is qualified did not give him a right to be employed. Baba-Ahmed also maintained that the senators were assuming that the unemployment rate in Nigeria was as a result of the lack of employment opportunities for Nigerians in multinational companies. He was also of the view that the


•Senate President David Mark

foreigners were aware that some Nigerian graduates were unemployable. He advised the Senate not to castigate the multinationals for the little wrong they were perceived to be doing but to rather acknowledge their contributions to the country.

Ogun NLC threatens indefinite strike over tax


•Gov Amosun

HE Ogun State chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has accused the government of being insensitive to workers plight. It threatened to go on an indefinite strike if the trend is not reversed. The accusation came on the heels of the just ended seven days strike which the union said ran its full course without government making any move towards negotiation. The workers had abandoned their duty posts for one week to register their disagreement over the 300 per cent increase in income tax announced by the state. Ogun State NLC Chairman,

Akeem Ambali, directed the workers to resume their duties after the expiration of the warning strike. He, however, said the workers maay still embark on indefinite strike should government not review its tax law. Ambali described the government’s attitude as being “labour unfriendly’’, saying that it was capable of plunging the state into a deep crisis. “We are surprised because this is the first time in the history of Ogun State that such a thing is happening,’’ he said, reiterating that the government’s attitude was not helping a matters.

The NLC chairman stressed that the union, however, decided to call off the strike because it was a warning one. Ambali warned that the workers would not hesitate to embark on an indefinite strike if the government remained adamant. The state government has repeatedly insisted that the new tax regime in the state was consistent with the law. The government had hinged the tax increase on the premise that the computation of income tax under the previous administration was faulty, alleging that the workers were underpaying tax to the government.

Group tasks govt on deregulation, privatisation policies


MERGING from its Second Delegates Congress where a new leadership was elected, last week, the Joint Action Front (JAF), the pro-labour civil society partner in the Labour and Civil Society Coalition (LASCO) reiterated its objection to the policies of privatisation and deregulation. In a five-point communiqué signed by the Chairperson and Secretary, Dr Dipo Fashina and Comrade Abiodun Aremu, JAF said Nigeria is the only petroleum producing country without its functional refinery. And that successive regimes since former president Ibrahim Babangida’s administration “had used the same privatisation and deregulation argu-

ments; and severally deregulated fuel prices since the mid- 80s, with the implications being increases in prices of petrol, diesel, kerosene and aviation fuel, LPFO, that are expensive and in some cases, out of reach to the people and the industries.” JAF also described deregulation and privatisation as “neo-liberal policies of global capitalism in collaboration with the Nigeria ruling cabal to deprive the working people of our country of their collective patrimony”. The group lamented that the same policy of deregulation they have used to destroy public education and public healthcare, collapsed the textile sector and other manufacturing in-

dustries, incapacitated the energy sector (PHCN), grounded the Railways, the Nigeria Airways and aviation sector, NITEL, Nigeria Ports Authority, and several other public institutions that used to provide millions of jobs to Nigerians in the past. JAF, therefore, said: “Nigerians should ask why the government has never prosecuted anybody in the mismanagement and turn-aroundmaintenance of the refineries. And also ask for why instead of fighting corruption in the system and punishing those so-called cabals, it is the working people they have chosen to afflict with more sufferings. “Nigerians should reject the antiworking people policies of deregu-

lation and privatisation in its Entirety. “Nigerians should prepare for an indefinite Mass Actions should the government goes ahead to hike prices of petroleum products and join forces with JAF and its labour allies to resist these wicked policies. “The government has a responsibility to ensure that the existing 4 refineries are optimally functional and the building of new refineries to meet the fuel need of all, and that, “The government must ensure massive investment in public infrastructures - housing, healthcare, schools, roads, water, etc as a fundamental necessity of governance to ensure ‘maximum welfare and happiness’ of the working people.”

Adamawa workers call off strike


IVIL servants in Adamawa State have called off their eightweek old minimum wage

strike. Mr Babangida Philibus, the state’s NLC Vice-Chairman and Acting Secretary, announced the call-off last Wednesday in Yola, saying the government and organised labour had reached agreement on the implementation of the N18,000 national minimum wage. Philibus did not give details of the agreement but said parties had made concessions. While praising the workers and the public for the support and understanding shown throughout the strike, he urged the government to honour in good time all the agreements reached with the NLC on the minimum wage implementation. The labour leader also thanked those who contributed toward the resolution of the minimum wage issue between the government and organised labour.

•From left: General Secretary, National Association of Chemical, Footwear, Rubber, Leather and Non-Metalic Products Employees (NUCFRLANMPE) Douglas Adiele; President, Boniface Isok and Mrs Tonye Thom-Manuel, at the union’s NEC meeting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

•Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola

Kaduna urged to pay salary arrears HE Pro-Chancellor and the Chairman, Governing Council of Kaduna State University (KASU), Prof Idris Abdulkadir, has appealed to Governor Patrick Yakowa to pay the six months’ arrears of staff salaries. He made the appeal when he led members of the council on a courtesy visit to the governor in Kaduna. Abdulkadir said the arrears for July to December 2009 are yet to be paid despite the fact that it was earlier budgeted for in July 2010. He said this was against the backdrop of the agreement reached between the university’s staff union and the state government. Represented by Col. Shehu Ibrahim, the vice-chancellor also called on the state government to subsidise 50 per cent tuition fee for indigenes of the state. He said the university would soon commence its academic session at the Kafanchan campus and stressed the need for the state government to ensure the establishment of new faculties, including Pharmaceutical Sciences, Environmental Studies, Agricultural Science and Education. Responding, Governor Yakowa, assured the Governing Council of his government’s commitment to execute capital projects in the university so as to facilitate the commencement of the academic session at Kafanchan campus. Yakowa also charged the council members to make the university a model for others across the country.




THE CEO Mainstreet Bank is an offshoot of the defunct Afribank Nigeria Plc, one of the three institutions nationalised by the Federal Government two months ago, following their inability to meet the recapitalisation deadline. In this interview in Lagos, its Group Managing Director, Mrs. Faith TuedorMartins, whose management team has over 100 years of banking experience, says the institution is now strong and ready to compete with top banks. She talks about other issues vis-a-vis the bank’s vision and focus and the challenges of running a new institution. Group Business Editor AYODELE AMINU was there. Excerpts:


OU became the Group Managing Director of Mainsteet Bank last August 5. How have you been faring? The mandate I have is to rebuild the bank, stabilise and refocus it in the market such that it operates profitably, and in the long run, make it attractive to investors. We all know that money has been pumped into the bank, so there is the need for us to make it more attractive, add value to the institution so that the government can realise the money it put into the bank and bring in a good buyer. I believe it is something that is possible. The bank has a good legacy built over 50 years ago. It started as IBWA. It was the fourth strongest bank then. It is still a

• Mrs Tuedor-Martins


‘CBN reform ’ll enhance confidence of banking public’ very strong bank because it has a strong brand. We still have customers loyal to the bank, despite what it has passed through. We also have a workforce that has stayed with the bank for a very long time and showed a good degree of loyalty to it. So, we still have a strong institutional memory. How did you go about achieving the goals? When we came on board on August 5, we decided that there was the need to stabilise the bank immediately; there was the issue of sack, there were apprehension and anxiety so there was the need to calm the staff down. So, we started that by having a number of town hall meetings with staff all over the country to calm the tension by assuring

them that their jobs were secure and that we all needed to work together as a team to rebuild the institution. We told them that this was another opportunity for them to reposition the bank and in an attempt to reposition the bank, there have been different managements and they have left different challenges. I am glad that we have done that. So, there is continuous engagement. What we did next was to identify the gaps in the system. Clearly, when you look at the bank, there is a mixture of old and new generations in terms of attitudes and processes. I and my team met all the departments and units at the head office to identify the challenges and what the issues are; what we can

do together. We noticed there are gaps; we are looking at filling these gaps. Even in the system and processes, there are gaps. For example, in our technology, we have gaps and challenges we are currently addressing. We are also bringing in new people to see how we can become more competitive because what my shareholder - AMCON – told me was to go and run the bank. So, AMCON expects me to run the bank like any other commercial bank. So, what I am doing is to run it the way any bank should be run. What is your scorecard so far? Within the past 70 days, I can say we have • Continued on page 50



THE CEO • Continued from page 49

done well. Two days ago, we had a management profitability report (MPR) like performance session. Hitherto, the bank did not really have a platform for measurement of people’s performance. We, therefore, did two things; we looked at the organisational structure in terms of doing business, though we need to change the structure, which we did. What we did was to structure our business such that if you go to any branch, for example, the manager is responsible for the branch. Before now, we had like three different units; everybody was reporting to the head office. So, if there was a problem in a branch, nobody was responsible. We said it was necessary we changed that structure whereby the manager is the head of the branch though there are some units that will still report to people in head office but the manager is responsible for the branch and its performance. So, we have been able to do that and have been moving people around to put them in their right positions. This was an extensive exercise but we have been able to do that and after we have done that, we have been able to have MPR. I personally ran that session as the CEO for two days and we invited all our regional directors to review our performance and also to chart a way forward. The staff really need to buy into the idea and we are going to do this regularly until we are able to get the right culture and attitude. We are also looking at technology, we have some technology but they are application system but we need to look at it critically. We are talking to one or two companies that may be asked to deploy new application platforms that can enable us drive our business faster. We have over 200 branches and with those branches, we should be able to reposition the bank. On the staff side, we need to do a lot of training. We need to retool our people. We are also going to embark on a culture orientation and ensure people are adequately trained to be able to operate within a competitive environment. What will be the focus of management for the next six months? In six months, our focus is to stabilise the bank, regain the confidence of all our stakeholders - including customers and staff, rekindle the spirit of performance and accountability in our staff, streamline operations, and refocus the business; and within 12 months, return the bank to profitability and sustainability. In what sectors and market segment does the bank want to play? Mainstreet is primarily a commercial bank; therefore, our position is to focus on its traditional areas of strength, which include retail, commercial, corporate and PSG segments nationwide. Subsequently, based on lessons learnt in our first three months on the saddle, we will further refine our target markets as we strategise and re-focus the business. Mainstreet is a legacy bank. How do you intend to leverage on that to grow the institution? If by that you mean we are one of the old generation banks, I would say yes and no. Yes, because our predecessor Afribank Plc had been around for about 51 years and so comes with significant legacy advantages including an enviable corporate and PSG client list that has virtually all the big names you can think of in this market – relationships and ties that were built over decades. We also have a substantial and loyal customer base of over 1.5 million, cutting across all strata of the economy. We also have a nationwide branch network of 206; a respectable network of active Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and Point of Services (POSs) across the country; a wide array of tested financial products and services as well as seasoned and capable professionals across all areas of the business. No, because Mainstreet Bank is also a totally new entity that is being built “from the ground up,” based on very modern banking principles, while building on the good elements of our predecessor – bank. Also, you’ll observe that our executive leadership team is totally new and with primarily new generation bank experience and orientation. Therefore, you can expect to see the best of the old generation and new generation banks fused into one in Mainstreet Bank. We see this as an opportunity to build a worldclass institution, with focus on our customers. What are the values that will drive Mainstreet Bank? Going forward, Mainstreet Bank will be guided by the following values: integrity,

‘CBN reform ’ll enhance confidence of banking public’

• Mrs Tuedor-Martins

‘The CBN reform is good for the industry because, it is basically instilling proper corporate governance, improved risk management, discipline and transparency. This will also enhance confidence of the banking public. Those are some of the critical requirements for a thriving local banking industry’

• Mrs Tuedor-Martins service excellence, accountability, professionalism, ownership and corporate governance. What are the challenges facing Mainstreet Bank and the plans to overcome them? Our number one challenge is regaining the confidence of our customers and the market


at large, and jumpstarting the business after the transition to our current status. We also have the challenge of regaining the confidence of our staff. Another challenge is refocusing the business as a whole, in the light of subsisting and emerging market realities, as we see them. There is also the challenge

of establishing a new way of thinking and doing business among our staff. Besides, there is the challenge of refining the organisational/operating infrastructure. But we have our plans for addressing all of these. What should customers and stakeholders expect from Mainstreet Bank? Progressively, our customers should expect a more customer-focused and friendly bank; a listening bank, offering relevant/tailored products; an efficient bank delivering services seamlessly and warm and friendly people and business offices. How will Mainstreet Bank be different? Mainstreet Bank will be differentiated by customer intimacy, service excellence and innovative product leadership. We plan to offer our customers products that best meet their needs, deliver services flawlessly in a friendly, appropriate and conducive environment or channel, by people who understand and appreciate their needs. Furthermore, it is pertinent to note that Mainstreet Bank is now fully capitalised with the injection of over N319billion by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) and it operates with very strong liquidity (Liquidity Ratio of 41.4 per cent). The institution has a branch near you with over 200 business offices across Nigeria; and its led by a team of thoroughbred professionals with enviable track records each spanning decades of successful banking. Confidence and trust are key to banking customers. How will the bank work to build that? Yes, indeed, confidence and trust are key in banking, We intend to rebuild these by building confidence in our staff by investing in capacity building through training and culture reorientation; investing in upgrading our technology; our engagement with our customer being driven by integrity and transparency and consistently seek to promise what we can deliver and see our ultimate success as a bank in the progress and survival of our customers’ business. We also intend to do these by communicating financial, leadership and operating status as often as possible, to all our stakeholders; so they come to understand that Mainstreet Bank is truly rock-solid in terms of capital adequacy, liquidity, leadership and mindset; and in the institutions, resolve to be among the leading banks in Nigeria in the shortest time. We would also ensure that our customers’ experience at every point meet their expectations. You have been long in banking and you have proved your mettle. How has that prepared you for this job? My background and education strongly prepared me for my current position as GMD/CEO Mainstreet Bank Limited. I was fortunate to have started my career in the industry. Fresh from University of Aston in 1984 with an MBA, I joined the banking industry as a Special Trainee. In the 26 years since, I have worked in virtually all facets of banking culminating in my last position as Deputy Managing Director in one of the largest banks in West Africa. What are the challenges facing the banking industry at the moment? Same challenges facing most sectors, such as weak physical infrastructural support; weak/costly communications infrastructure; inadequate/unreliable power supply; the security situation and dependence on expensive foreign IT applications and vendors. Others include weak technical support capabilities; educational standards and quality of graduates and high cash dependence. All of which drive up the cost of operations and/ or impede productivity/efficiency Are banks doing enough to facilitate the growth of the real sector? The level of support the banking industry, or any bank, can give to any sector is dependent on the size and tenor of the funds available to the player. Historically, given that the funds available to Nigerian Banks were largely short-term, the industry has been constrained. However, with the emergence of longer-tenured funds such as pension funds, the bond market and the various government interventions to key sectors, the banking sector will definitely begin to play a more active and supportive role to the real sector. What are your views on the reform agenda of the CBN? I believe the CBN reform is good for the industry because, it is basically instilling proper corporate governance, improved risk management, discipline and transparency. This will also enhance confidence of the banking public. Those are some of the critical requirements for a thriving local banking industry.





Investor’s Worth

The boardroom guru


HIEF Olusegun Osunkeye chairs the boards of many highly-valued companies. No doubt, he is the mostsought after boardroom expert in the country. From Nestle Nigeria to GlaxoSmithKline Consumers Nigeria (GSK) and Lafarge Wapco Cement Nigeria, Osunkeye chairs the boards of key sector-leading companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). His deep understanding of the inner workings of the blue chip multinationals has enamoured Osunkeye to high-end equities of multinationals. Although multinational stocks are usually at the top-end of the pricing range and are also seldom available, Osunkeye holds significant shareholdings in these companies. With an estimated worth of nearly half a billion naira on the basis of publicly declared equities, Osunkeye holds the largest shareholding by any director on the board of Nestle Nigeria. With average yearly dividend income standing at about N3.8 million in the past two years, his shares more than doubles that of other directors. With the bonus shares declared this year by Nestle Nigeria, Chief Osunkeye’s shares like others, increased


RICE-Earnings (PE) Ratio is a measurement of the most recent earnings of a company in relation to its market values to ascertain the fairness of the pricing trend. The PE ratio is derived by dividing the closing price of the stock by the earnings per share for the period under review, usually the audited 12-month period. For instance, the PE ratio for a company with a share price of N40 and earnings per share of N5 will be eight. Simply, fundamental analysts tend to use the PE ratio to measure the attractiveness of a stock, using the ratio as indication of the probable period that it might

by 20 per cent; that is about N24 million at market value. Meanwhile, Chief Osunkeye built his largest nest egg in the health care company - GSK. With 1.25 per cent equity stake in GSK, Osunkeye’s worth in the firm is in three digits of millions of naira and his cash dividends have grown tremendously as GSK set new performance records yearly. From about N9 million in 2009, his cash dividends from GSK investments rose to N14.4 million for last year. Although his shares in Lafarge WAPCO may appear small on the basis of statutorily requirements, Osunkeye’s 0.0034 per cent equity stake in the company represents a significant stake in terms of value and potential for returns. A growth stock and long-standing nation builder, Lafarge WAPCO’s massive investments and strategic sector give a picture of sustainable returns and capital appreciation. While his main investments are in blue chips, Osunkeye has also made investments in penny stocks, showing dexterity as an asset manager by combining largely defensive value stocks with high-risk low-priced or penny stocks. As chairman of FTN Cocoa Processors Plc, his eight-digit



shareholding in the company brought in N770, 000 for the 2009 business year. He also serves on the board of Chams Plc, where he holds appreciable interest. A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Institute of Directors (IOD), Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM) and Society of Corporate Governance Nigeria, Osunkeye is the helmsman of the Nigeria chapter of the International Chamber of Commerce. With the impressive resistance shown by most non-bank blue chips and multinationals, Chief Osunkeye’s portfolio appeared shielded from the market recession, thus ensuring continuous income stream and value retention; the two most important goals for elderly investors.

Ask a Broker What is price-earnings ratio? take to recoup one’s investment. Thus the lower the PE ratio, the more attractive the stock is and vice versa. However, a low or high PE ratio does not necessarily indicate the value consideration and potential of a stock. In some instances, low PE ratio may indicate higher risk while high PE ratio may indicate lower risk and better returns depending on the earnings outlook and business cycle. So, beyond the simplistic view, PE ratio is a highly advanced measurement tool for both fundamental and technical analysts and it is better used in

relation to other indices. Besides, to ensure a more reflective measurement, many analysts undertake comparison of many PE ratios to determine the “appropriate” PE ratio. So, beside the PE ratio based on the current price, PE ratio may be found for the highest, lowest, opening and closing market values of a stock within a period or over several periods. With these, analyst can determine the median or mean PE as well as the range for a stock, a group of stocks or the entire markets and used these variables for stock-by-stock, sectoral and market reviews.

Ways and Means

Managing risks with life insurance (1)


ERSONAL financial planning is basically the discipline of managing foreseeable and unforeseeable risks through careful evaluation, allocation and management of current and potential incomes. From health risks, such as temporary or permanent incapacitation to economic risks of downgrade in job or income status or outright loss of job to social risks of losing influential personal qualities to the utmost risk of “untimely” death, the daily life of human being is all about risks and management of such risks. Death is particularly the scariest risk given the inability of man to comprehend many uncertainties surrounding it. No man knows the time of his death, the place and the type of death; three uncertainties that confound

man’s knowledge. While temporary and permanent disabilities may leave the affected person with other beneficial attributes and a person can work to regain economic and social status, the nature of death as a full transition of all the physical usefulness of man into a state of uselessness adds to the state of death as the riskiest of all risks. But man has learnt to manage the aftershocks of death by building the uncertainties into financial planning. This has led to emergence of several modes of life insurance. Generally, insurance is the generic term for any type of risk management that hedges against contingent and uncertain loss. Given that death, though certain in terms of occurrence, is shroud in uncertainties, life insurance seeks to hedge against losses or

Keeping sight of dividends

pains that may arise from death. Technically, life insurance is a contract between the policy holder and the insurer, where the insurer promises to pay a designated beneficiary a sum of money-known as “benefits”, upon the death of the insured person in exchange for regular payment of agreed amount by the policy holder. Besides death, several life policies take cognizance of such death-like events such as terminal illness or critical illness. Life insurance mitigates the sense of loss that comes with death, especially with regard to sustenance and retention of economic status; to some extent. But with religious beliefs and economic status serving as barriers to life insurance, insurance companies have devised new products with several value-added benefits to promote life insurance.

HE twin inseparable objectives of investment are the protection of capital and attainment of appreciable return on investment. Dividend is used in the generic sense as well as specific sense to refer to return on investment. In generic sense, dividend refers to gains that accrue on an investment including cash payouts, scrip or bonus shares and capital gain. But dividend is usually used in relation to cash dividend-the periodic distribution of net profit from the business to shareholders. Cash dividend and the resultant cash flow are important elements of portfolio management. To long-term investors, dividend is the continuous stream of sustenance while it provides short-term investors and speculators additional means to increase their returns. A good understanding of the nature of dividend, the rights of shareholders with respect to dividend declaration and payment, the dividend payment process and institutional responsibilities and necessary rules and regulations guiding dividend payment would enhance the portfolio management capacity of the investor. Besides, these will help to reduce the incidence of unclaimed dividends and frustrate some unscrupulous institutions and individuals who are exploiting poor understanding on the part of several investors to make huge gains on unpaid dividend. One of the crucial roles of registrars is the distribution of cash dividends to shareholders. The board of the company recommends possible cash payout, closure date for register of members and payment date to shareholders who usually approve these recommendations at a general meeting and thereafter the gross value of the dividend is deposited with the registrar for onward distribution to shareholders. Unfortunately, the problem of unclaimed dividends has made the process of dividend payment not as straight as enunciated. Registrars, especially have been at the receiving end of blames, whereas there are many reasons leading to unclaimed dividend. Shareholders poor attitude to dividend generally encourages bad corporate practices which in many instances have compounded failures of some companies.Companies have been alleged to borrow certain sum to pay dividend with mindset that certain

By Taofik Salako

percentage may not be claimed by their owners. One of the many reasons by the Securities and Exchange and Commission (SEC), for the controversial unclaimed dividend Trust Fund is the unwholesome practice of diverting unclaimed dividend. It could, however, not be denied that many unclaimed dividends resulted from inefficient public utility and the nature of dividend sometimes. Gone are those days when the postoffice officials moved through the nooks and crannies of cities and towns to drop letters. The private couriers are not better and more importantly far too expensive. So, many companies are left with the public postal system which often performs below expectation. Being a “cheque,” the requirement of a “current account” to convert dividend warrant into raw cash has been a major hurdle to many small investors who operate mostly “saving deposit account.” Another cause of the huge unclaimed dividend is the seeming intangibility of dividend especially by average and below average companies. For instance, a dividend per share of 10 kobo would result into a net of N90 on 1,000 ordinary shares. With the cheque-like nature of dividend warrant and the intangibility of some dividends, many shareholders who received their warrant merely dump them somewhere. Events, such as change of address, death and incorrect entry also contribute to the unclaimed dividend problem. But registrars have continuously improved the dividend payment process to ensure that shareholders receive their monies and promptly too. A mandate could be given to the registrars to pay dividends directly into either current or saving deposit account. Registrars provide e-dividend mandate form, either separately or attached to company’s annual report. Many banks have also introduced varieties of special deposit account that accepts monetised papers such as cheque and dividend warrant. Rather than the delay and uncertainties around the postal system, a shareholder can also undertake to pick his warrant directly from the registrars. With co-operation of the board, some registrars pay dividends at the venue of general meeting, thus giving shareholders immediate access to their monies. A dividend warrant be-

comes statute-barred, that is, unclaimed and due for return to the originating company after 12 years. But before this, it only becomes temporarily invalid after six months and this could be solved by simply taking it to the registrars for revalidation and revalidation can be for as many times as possible. In effect, many shareholders still have ample chance to claim their monies “lying waste in banks’ vaults.” In the quest to block loopholes and strengthen the institution of dividend payment, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) this year strengthened its rules on payment of dividends. SEC Rule 204 stipulates that a separate interest yielding escrow account shall be opened by a company within 24 hours of the approval of dividends at a general meeting in the case of final dividends or a board meeting in the case of interim dividends, and evidence of such opening must be forwarded to SEC and the company within 24 hours of the account being opened. Also, the rule provides that the total dividend declared by the company shall be paid en-bloc into the said escrow account within 24 hours after the opening of the account and evidence of such payment forwarded to SEC and the Registrar within 24 hours. The Registrar, then, shall be responsible for effecting dividend payment either by way of electronic transfer or by issuance and distribution of dividend warrant to the beneficiaries within the time limit prescribed in Rule 204(a)(5). Besides, the Registrar is expected to forward a monthly statement of account certified by the bank to SEC detailing the outflow and inflow into the accounts and the accrued interests on the dividend. Failure to open and fully fund the account by the dividend-declaring company within the stipulated timeline shall attract a penalty of N1million per day and a further penalty of five per cent above the Monetary Policy Rate on the amount declared. Also, in the event of failure to effect dividend payment either by electronic transfer or dispatch of dividend warrant to beneficiaries within the stipulated time, the Registrar shall be liable to a penalty of N1 million for every day of default. These rules, undoubtedly, empower shareholders to enforce their rights to declared dividends and also seek restitution and compensation where such rights are violated.

‘A good understanding of a dividend, rights of shareholders on dividend declaration and payment, the payment process, responsibilities and rules and regulations guiding payment would enhance the portfolio management capacity of the investor’

Mac 72 - 58-59 - CAPITAL MARKET




All Share index rise by 1.72%


FTER the precipitous decline in past weeks, activities at the exchange experienced bullish returns last week as market index, namely the All Share Index (ALSI) rose by 1.72 per cent in line with the previous week performance of 1.33 per cent increase, the slight increase was as a result of the recent restructuring in the money market as investors try to play around the stock market instruments in the mean time. The bullish return in our analysis is temporary as prices of stocks still dwindled across stocks during the week. Overall market performance instruments, that is, the Market Capitalisation, All share Index and the braIndex® rose by 1.71 per cent, 1.72 per cent and 1.28 per cent in support of the rise observed a fortnight ago. Banking sector accounted for 54 per cent of the total volume of transaction that exchanged hands at the stock market last week, which is lower than the 53 per cent acclaimed a fortnight ago. Contribution shows that traders exchanged 1.13 billion units worth N7.40 billion in 8,346 deals as against 0.16 billion units valued at N3 billion in 5,723 deals a fortnight ago. This pointed out that the banking stocks were passively traded at the exchange compared to 53 per cent the penultimate week, returns on banking volume rose by one per cent and the value of money spent on banking stocks stood at 37.49 per cent. The Insurance sector occupied the first runner-up with 163.27 million units worth N 84.65 million in 972 deals. On average evaluation, the Insurance sub-sector claimed about 19 per cent of the total activity and 0.42 per cent of the total funds invested at the Exchange during the week under review. Transactional volume shows that Petroleum Marketing sub-sector’s performance improved by four per cent last week. The total weekly value of stocks in this sub-sector stood at N960.24 million. Shares of Diamond Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, and Guaranty Trust Bank Plc were the toast of investors as they were actively traded in terms of volume and total investment. The Market capitalisation which measures the share price movement rose from N 6.41 trillion a fortnight ago to N 6.52 trillion last week; the All Share Index also increased to 20,607.37 from 20,135.05 representing a 1.72 per cent rise on weekly assessment. Apparently, the braIndex® also rose by 1.28 per cent. All the three market indicators rose last week showing that overall activities in terms of volume and fund invested also increased noticeably. The improvement in returns on both benchmarks was greater than one percent. On a year-to-date basis, both benchmarks - the NSE All-Share Index and the braIndex® - showed losses of 5.35 per cent and 5.82 per cent. Stock Market Sectoral Performance Investors in the stocks of Diamond Bank Plc exchanged 393.60 million units in 258 deals worth N 1.29 billion. The average number of deals remained well over 52 deals per day during the week. Zenith Bank Plc was second with 260.18 million shares worth N 3.27 billion. In the Insurance sub-sector, Mutual Benefit Assurance Plc led with 99.27 million shares worth N49.63 million. The sectoral volume amounted to almost 163.27 million units and constituted over 0.42 per cent of the sector’s trading volume. Companies Appraisal Diamond Bank Plc is the most active company in the Banking sub-sector with 393.60 million units, followed by the Zenith Bank Plc. Zenith

Table 1: A Five-Day Moving Average Data of the Market Indices Change(%)

Market Capitalisation (%)


Average Weekly Depth




Year To Date (YTD)




Month To Date (MTD) Week To Date(WTD)

(1.34) 1.71

(1.27) 1.72

(2.67) 1.28


Market Cap(trillion Naira)

All-Share Index


As of closing on October 27, 2011



Source: NSE & bra Limited Table 2: Stock Market Summary Statistics for the week ending Oct. 27, 2011 Period Market 20/10/2011 21/10/2011 24/10/2011 25/10/2011 26/10/2011 27/10/2011 Source: NSE & Bra Limited

Capitalisation (Trillion) 6.38 6.41 6.41 6.41 6.45 6.52

All-Share Index (Base Points) 20,135.05 20,257.47 20,255.22 20,255.22 20,376.73 20,607.37

braIndex® (Base Points) 13.28 13.23 13.18 13.21 13.29 13.40

Table 3: Statistics on Weekly Sectoral Contribution Sectors Banking Petroleum Marketing Food, Beverages and Tobacco Conglomerates Insurance Source: bra Limited

57.77% 4.85% 3.51% 2.75% 0.42%

% of Total Trading Net Worth 7,408.89 960.24 694.38 544.08 84.65

Trading Net Worth(in Naira Millions )

Figure 1a: The All Share Index and braIndex® Performance at a Glance

Source: BRA Computation

Source: BRA Computation

Bank Plc been the first runner up closed the week at N3.27 billion in 1,338 deals. Among the most active companies in the Insurance sub-sector were Mutual Benefit Assurance Plc, Niger Insurance Plc, Goldlink Insurance Plc, Intercontinental WAPIC Insurance Plc and AIICO Insurance Plc. In the Insurance Industry, Mutual Benefit Assurance Plc claimed to be the most active company in the sector. The Petroleum Marketing Industry was also active in terms of the market value. Oando Plc, Eternal Oil and Gas Plc and Conoil Plc were some of

the most active stocks in the sub-sector. Last week, shareholders of Dangote Cement Plc, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, WAPCO Plc, Nigerian Breweries Plc and Zenith Bank Plc saw the value of their investments earning profit less than five per cent while investors in UAC of Nigeria Plc, Nestle Nigeria Plc, Vita Foam Plc and NAHCO Plc made less than five per cent loss daily. Points to note: The weekly stock market analysis reports the position of the outlook of

the stock of the companies listed on the exchange and the aggregate market. The NSE closed the 43rd trading week on a bullish note on weekly assessment. Activities show clearly that the bearish may continue in coming week. Historical analysis of trading volume shows that in the new week, the Banking, Insurance and Conglomerates stocks are likely to continue to be the toast of investors. DISCLAIMER This report has been prepared for in-

formation purposes only and for private use. Whilst reasonable care had been taken in its production, bra Limited does not guarantee the correctness of its contents nor does the company accept liability for any loss arising from a reliance on its contents. Kindly note that our suggested recommendations and other tactical actions are based on bra Limited best estimates which are guided by generally available information and our Proprietary Tools. This is not an invitation or a solicitation to deal in any stocks and we do not guarantee the future outcome of such recommendation.



CAPITAL MARKET Bond and Money Market Review


RANSACTIONS at the money market continue to appreciate. Last week, market index rose by 2.76 per cent, with bond prices dwindling. This raised concentric reactions among investors. While the yield of most short term instruments increased slightly, the turnaround of the bearish returns may result in a stable market performance in the coming week. Market index increased by 2.76 per cent and capitalisation fell by 2.99 per cent to stand at N1.72 trillion up from a value of N1.67 trillion recorded in the penultimate week. The market rose by 0.36 per cent in value on daily evaluation. Fortnight ago, the market depreciated noticeably by 6.09 per cent, showing the magnitude of the bearish experienced in the penultimate week. The weekly increase in performance was as a result of slight increase in prices of all short and long term instruments, which serves as the major driving force of the overall market performance. The Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) bond Index began the week at 1,382.92 and closed at 1,421.42 points, rising by 385 basis points in support of the sharp drop of 6,596 basis points a fortnight ago. It ended the week at 1,421.42 points. Average index stayed at 1,404.97 points, compared to 1,461.61 points the previous week. The 30-day and 60-day and 90-day indices rose by 1.21 per cent, 1.17 per cent and 0.96 per cent to claim 17.29 per cent, 17.66 per cent and 17.95 per cent. The volume of market transaction increased from N1.67 trillion to N1.72 trillion, while the index on the other side closed at 1,421.42 points. It started the week with 1,382.92 points. Market capitalisation closed with N1.72 trillion as against N1.67 trillion observed in the penultimate week. The daily changes in the index increased slightly to close the weekly observation. Index movement represents an increase in the market performance supported by the changes on daily examination as it also increased slightly due to rise in price of some short and long term instruments for foreign exchange financing, these price changes in cited instruments are the major drivers of the market performance a fortnight ago. Among the 15 traded bonds, almost all the traded bonds have their price decline while some have their prices remain unchanged during last week’s trading. Surprisingly, the prices of short term instruments witnessed depreciation. The top price loser was the 20-yearbond, 15 per cent FGN Nov 2028, which depreciated by N15.36 to close at 101.44. Also, the five-year- bond, 10.50 per cent FGN March 2018, too, declined by N3.43 to end the week at 94.05 per cent. Last week, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sold foreign exchange worth $345.12 million to authorised dealers at the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) window as against $250 million a fortnight ago. The dealers had demanded $345.12 million before the auction while the actual amount offered stood at $350 million. At the foreign exchange market, the naira went down by 0.07 per cent as the lowest bid rate stood at N149.94. Figure 1 illustrates the year-to-date change in the bra FGN bond Index. The bra FGN bond index is a market value weighted index and is designed to measure the performance of the local investment-grade fixed income market. Although the index stabilised during most periods of January and February, it recorded a sharp drop in March as investor outlook turned negative in the bond market in anticipation of elections. The FGN index recorded its biggest decline (108 points) in March los-

Capitalisation is N1.72t Table 4: Key Statistics of Market’s Stock Performance as of Oct. 27, 2011 S/N

Company Name

Share Price Gain (‘N)

% of Shares’ Gain by Investors


Dangote Cement Plc




Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc








Nigerian Breweries Plc




Zenith Bank Plc



U.A.C of Nigeria Plc




Nestle Nigeria Plc




Chellarams Plc




Vita Foam Plc








Source: NSE and bra Limited Indicator Turnover Value Deals FGN Bond Index Market Capitalization Index Weekly Returns (%) Index Year-to-Date Returns (%) 1-Month Returns (%) 3-Month Returns (%) 12-Month Returns (%)

CurrentWeek 197.8 million N160.43 billion 1,301 1,421.42 N1.72 trillion 2.79 5.35 0.53 4.20 3.07

PreviousWeek 192.8 million N157.84 billion 1,296 1,382.92 N1.67 trillion (4.47) 5.23 0.48 4.13 2.97

% Change 2.59 1.64 2.76 2.79 (1.68) 0.12 0.05 0.07 0.10

Source: BRA Figure 1: FGN Bond Index

Source: FMDA

Figure 2: Nigerian T-bill Primary Market Auctions

Primary Market Auction

Source: Financial Markets Dealers Association ing roughly seven per cent of its value. We observe the stabilisation of the declining trend in April and a gradual recovery in May and June. July follows this recovery trend with index values reaching their March levels. The index stabilised in August closing at 1,512 points on August 26 compared to 1,517 points on July 30. Besides the sharp drop witnessed in August 23 to about 1504.4 points, the index sustained its up rise which peaked at 1525.26 points at September 22. However, the index closed the month at 1,503.74. The over-the-counter bond mar-

ket notched up by 2.59 per cent last week, yielding N160.43 billion with a turnover of 197.8 million units in 1,301 deals. The amount compared favourably with the N157.84 billion invested on 192.8 million units in 1,296 deals a fortnight ago. The activity was boosted by the 20-year-bond, due in July 2030 with 10.0 per cent coupon rate. It traded 41.95 million units valued at N31.30 billion in 316 deals. This was followed by the three-year bond, 5.5 per cent FGN February 2013 which traded 33.55 million units valued at N30.04 billion in 281 deals. Sixteen of the available 34 FGN bonds were traded during the week, compared with 12 the previous week.

In the NTB Primary Market, there two new issues of NTBs with five and 10 years’ maturities with yearly true yields of 11.27 and 11.53. These rates are slightly above the previous month’s bond auction with true yield of 11.21 for five years issue and 11.44 yields on the 10 years issue. However, we observe that the real interest rate on seven years Treasury bill was negative because it was below the inflation rate. Such observation if persistent, could discourage both domestic and foreign investors. Notably, the real interest rate on one year Treasury bills auctioned in

Ghana was positive, over 11 per cent, which is above their inflation rate of 8.41 per cent. Nigerian Yield Curves In terms of FGN bonds, there was only one issue with a maturity date of three years for a total amount of N25billion. The bond, whose yield was 10.5 per cent, trades below the observed yield on the same tenor bond issued last month (10.75 per cent). The decrease in FGN bond yield within the period suggests an increase in demand for FGN government debt. Figure 22 shows the volume of the NTB and FGN bond Auctions in Primary Market.




Investors gain N205b as stocks sustain rally


No of Deals 2 2

Quotation(N) 0.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5,000 2,500.00 5,000 2,500.00


No of Deals 1 1

Quotation(N) 8.00

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,000 8,000.00 1,000 8,000.00

Quotation(N) 2.04 5.45

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5,620,613 11,048,204.62 251,948 1,391,838.69 5,872,561 12,440,043.31

Quotation(N) 1.80

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 180,440 326,772.93 180,440 326,772.93

Quotation(N) 5.77 3.55 1.92 4.00 1.78 10.00 14.15 9.20 4.90 1.36 3.29 0.57 0.66 12.91

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2,055,121 11,902,520.00 6,881,085 24,320,844.55 9,500,923 19,414,654.75 565,651 2,263,723.54 1,746,223 2,984,609.66 9,459,662 92,515,047.10 10,593,809 149,156,727.63 1,716,810 16,008,673.00 5,514,868 27,320,430.52 32,050,844 42,694,127.89 71,504,166 236,910,172.36 15,150,386 8,436,607.52 211,395 140,534.65 14,271,532 183,027,806.02 181,222,475 817,096,479.19

Quotation(N) 202.00 91.50

Quantity Traded Value 104,931 581,304 686,235

of Shares (N) 21,452,189.45 53,247,874.35 74,700,063.80

Quotation(N) 14.70 5.00 107.00 42.00

Quantity Traded Value 343,546 26,137 286,801 366,200 1,022,684

of Shares (N) 4,960,066.85 133,685.00 29,394,823.68 15,289,035.74 49,777,611.27

Quotation(N) 9.45 18.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 472,027 4,153,082.95 189,825 3,471,897.45 661,852 7,624,980.40


No of Deals 42 57 99


No of Deals 14 14 BANKING


No of Deals 108 86 21 23 51 469 413 62 108 62 369 55 12 246 2,085 BREWERIES


No of Deals 66 127 193 BUILDING MATERIALS


No of Deals 31 7 20 45 103 CHEMICAL & PAINTS


No of Deals 16 27 43


No of Deals 1 8 9

Quotation(N) 0.50 2.42


HE Nigerian stock market for the first time in recent months sustained a four-day consecutive streak of upswings last week, leaving investors with capital gain of N205 billion. Aggregate market capitalisation of ordinary shares of all quoted companies closed weekend at N6.617 trillion, 3.2 per cent or N205 billion above its opening value of N6.412 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI), the common index that measures changes in prices of all quoted companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), also improved by 3.2 per cent from 20,255.22 points to 20,903.16 points, indicating that the additional N205billion was real capital gain rather than new or supplementary listing. The bullish rally at the NSE came on the heels of release of more corporate earnings reports for the third quarter, showing significant growths in earnings and improved dividend outlooks for most companies. Thirty-five companies submitted their third quarter reports during the week including reports from major multinationals in the food and beverages, oil and gas and building material sectors. Most analysts said the response of the market to earnings reports was a strong indication of the continuing

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 600,000 300,000.00 96,780 227,777.60 696,780 527,777.60

No of Deals 1 1


Quotation(N) 6.97

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 50,000 348,500.00 50,000 348,500.00

Quotation(N) 6.19 30.00 6.11 0.70 29.00 26.70

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 448 2,638.72 55,267 1,658,821.50 325 1,888.25 4,794,700 3,241,828.90 459,880 13,622,703.03 225,698 6,179,121.03 5,536,318 24,707,001.43


No of Deals 1 27 1 32 49 41 151 CONSTRUCTION


No of Deals 10 2 12

Quotation(N) 38.43 6.51

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 74,942 2,746,809.64 53,150 346,006.50 128,092 3,092,816.14


No of Deals 1 2 3

Quotation(N) 1.70 0.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5,000 8,500.00 6,500 3,250.00 11,500 11,750.00


No of Deals 9 33 104 90 41 19 15 28 1 1 341

Quotation(N) 48.00 14.20 6.00 6.00 63.01 2.88 4.40 400.01 0.50 0.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 12,532 585,127.50 471,171 6,706,423.18 2,049,640 12,306,429.37 35,760,665 214,642,209.37 445,965 28,679,073.16 754,400 2,076,436.00 141,215 627,988.00 577,258 230,909,165.34 600,000 300,000.00 186 93.00 40,813,032 496,832,944.92

Quotation(N) 0.91 1.30 27.00 2.46 1.65

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 46,320 41,688.00 204,207 262,009.30 29,832 779,978.00 136,702 337,660.56 399 626.43 417,460 1,421,962.29

Quotation(N) 7.50 2.30

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2,013,000 15,097,500.00 907,617 2,054,073.45 2,920,617 17,151,573.45


No of Deals 6 7 11 11 1 36


No of Deals 4 23 27


No of Deals 2 1 20 23

Quotation(N) 7.10 38.09 5.94

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 121,000 859,100.00 50 1,809.50 711,278 3,902,994.06 832,328 4,763,903.56


No of Deals 1 1 2

Quotation(N) 0.50 0.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 100,000 50,000.00 10,000 5,000.00 110,000 55,000.00


No of Deals 288

Quotation(N) 0.58

recovery of the stock market. However, profit-taking transactions might moderate the bullish rally, although several analysts said they expected the market to witness substantial recovery during this quarter citing the low valuation of several stocks and continuing stability of the financial services sector. Further analysis showed widespread bullish trend with significant gains overshadowing the long list of losers . The NSE 30 Index, which tracks the 30 most capitalised companies, appreciated by 31.03 points to close at 931.39. Three of the four tracked sectors also closed on the upside with the NSE Food and Beverage Index appreciating by 0.1 per cent to close at 633.46 points. The NSE Banking Index appreciated by 4.5 per cent to close at 301.01 points while the NSE Insurance Index appreciated by 0.5 per cent to close at 150.23 points. However, the NSE Oil and Gas Index, which tracks petroleum-marketing stocks, depreciated by 0.1 per cent to close at 245.34 points. Altogether, 33 stocks closed the week higher on their opening prices as against 29 stocks that depreciated during the week. For

the second consecutive week, Dangote Cement, the most capitalised stock on the NSE, led the bullish stocks with a gain of N7 to close at N107.00 per share. Lafarge Cement Wapco Nigeria followed with a gain of N3.05 to close at N42.00 per share. Flour Mills of Nigeria ranked third with a gain of N3.01 to close at N63.01 per share. On the other hand, Nestle Nigeria topped the losers’ list with a loss of N1.55 to close at N400.01 per share. UACN Property Development Company Plc followed with a loss of 76 kobo to close at N11.59 per share. Dangote Sugar Refinery dropped by 50 kobo to close at N6 per share. Total turnover stood at 8.5 billion shares worth N24.5 billion in 19,706 as against a total of 1.4 billion shares valued at N9.9 billion traded in 16,934 deals in previous week. Turnover was boosted by the cross deals for the divestment of Guaranty Trust Bank’s majority equity in Guaranty Trust Assurance. With this, the Insurance sector topped the activity chart with turnover of 6.96 billion shares worth N12.01 billion in 1,365 deals. Guaranty Trust Assurance Plc accounted for 6.773 billion shares, representing 97.4 per cent of the sector’s turnover . Banking sector followed with a turnover of 1.313 billion shares valued at N8.04 billion in 10,428 deals.



By Taofik Salako and Tonia Osundolire

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2,756,069 1,546,060.84


2 8 5 14 8 1 4 10 1 2 343

1.01 2.57 0.50 1.35 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50

1,000,000 50,285 508,180 585,582 774,990 3,773,000 700,000 9,546,653 5,600 601,586 20,301,945

1,010,000.00 135,146.65 254,090.00 779,282.47 387,495.00 1,886,500.00 350,000.00 4,773,326.50 2,800.00 300,793.00 11,425,494.46

Quotation(N) 0.85

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 155,000 132,350.00 155,000 132,350.00

Quotation(N) 0.78

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 3,293,075 2,514,179.92 3,293,075 2,514,179.92

LEASING Company Name C&I LEASING PLC Sector Totals

No of Deals 4 4 MARITIME


No of Deals 56 56


No of Deals 16 16

Quotation(N) 0.87

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 154,992 128,643.36 154,992 128,643.36

Quotation(N) 1.73

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 525,352 909,081.83 525,352 909,081.83


No of Deals 107 107


No of Deals 1 1 12 13 4 10 136 21 198

Quotation(N) 0.50 63.86 35.00 5.05 9.12 141.00 28.90 200.00

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5,000 2,500.00 138 8,372.46 20,801 724,478.14 133,268 642,836.40 8,204 78,512.28 4,515 610,391.60 12,138,270 351,548,879.95 10,717 2,051,355.00 12,320,913 355,667,325.83


No of Deals 3 3

Quotation(N) 3.61

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 4,000 14,350.00 4,000 14,350.00

Quotation(N) 11.59

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 241,250 2,863,613.80 241,250 2,863,613.80


No of Deals 20 20


No of Deals 1 1

Quotation(N) 50.00

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 5,000 250,000.00 5,000 250,000.00


No of Deals 3 3

Quotation(N) 0.50

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 59,000 30,090.00 59,000 30,090.00


No of Deals 35 35

Quotation(N) 11.97

Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,946,873 23,223,019.88 1,946,873 23,223,019.88







Banks demand guarantees for consumer loans


ANKS, which, hitherto granted consumer loans without collateral are now demanding that employers should sign a guarantee form providing 100 per cent cover in case of default. This means that should the borrower fail to pay at the agreed date, the responsibility will shift to the employer. The Nation learnt that banks adopted the new measure due to high default rate among borrowers. Most banks have a facility under which employers can guarantee loans for their workers. In the event of a default, the employer will pay the loan. The banks also have non-guaranteed loan facili-

By Collins Nweze

ties, which employers deduct at set times from workers’ salaries and remit to them. It was gathered that the situation would have been different if there was a viable savings culture in place. Such would allow borrowers secure loans with tenured funds or fixed deposits. “Due to prevailing low salaries, people do not have enough money to save. We also know that the cost of living is rising in the country,” a manager in one of the banks, who asked not to be named, said. Personal loans are given at between 25 and 30

Enterprise Bank woos customers with new campaign


HE ‘Spirit of Enterprise,’ a marketing communication campaign that promotes the new Enterprise Bank Limited (EBL) was unveiled by the bank at the weekend. The bank said in a statement that the new campaign is about celebrating the enterprise spirit in everyone who relentlessly chases their chosen goals. Likening this daily pursuit of goals to being on a journey, the ‘Spirit of Enterprise’ campaign, which broke on radio stations and newspapers, begins with a letter by the Group Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Kuru, introducing Enterprise Bank as a worthy friend and a co-traveller with every person of industry, whether man, woman or child. The bank chief explained that in a society where profiling is regrettably based largely on status, wealth and income, the bank through this campaign seeks to align or identify with the everyday story of hard

working people. This it would do by offering them a helping hand as a trustworthy friend providing the usually needed assurance of support in the face of buffeting vicissitudes of life. Having developed a carefully articulated blueprint geared towards making Enterprise Bank the preferred bank of value creation, the ‘Spirit of Enterprise’ campaign, therefore, is one of the platforms the bank is using to invite the Nigerian population looking for reliable partnership for growth. The offer of support by the bank is such that woulds endure in the sense that with each customer, the attainment of a desired destination of success is the beginning of another journey. The radio campaign is driven by a 60 second jingle that is running on strategically selected radio stations and will span eight weeks while for 11 weeks, newspaper readers will be treated to inspiring creative that will underscore this ‘Spirit of Enterprise’

per cent per annum while tenure credit, ranges from six months to two years, depending on the bank. Hiterto, demands for personal loans were outstripping supply, leading to delays in processing. This is coming at a time when some institutions spend one month to process personal loans, while others have suspended the issuance of loans to concentrate on pending applications. “The banks are becoming wiser in terms of lending, as they may not want the ugly situation of the past where bad loans crippled their liquidity to repeat itself. As things stand now, no bank wants to be put in a precarious condition,” the source said. The policy places more responsibility on the employer than the borrowing staff, thereby reducing the lender’s risk ratio to almost zero, the source explained. He added that although consumer banking assists in the provision of credit to buy products and services to meet the needs of individuals with a steady and verifiable income, there is the need to safeguard depositors’ funds through quality lending.

Analysts are of the view that banks have indirectly closed their doors on consumer credit because very few employers will agree to sign such guarantee. It is also believed that employees that are not in the good books of their employers may never have access to such credit thereby defeating the very essence of the product. A customer relations officer with MTN, who asked that his named be veiled, said this policy defeats the privacy that surrounds consumer credit as many borrowers would prefer to keep their relationship with the banks private. “I think consumer credit is a personal transaction, that unless so demanded, is not supposed to be disclosed to a third party when the borrower can meet all the lending requirements,” he said. Although many believe banks are just being more painstaking in advancing credit to avoid a repeat of what happened in the past where non-performing loans eroded their liquidity and profitability, they need to remember that security does not repay loans. “It is the willing-

Union Bank deploys full service to Lagos fair consumer credit finance , designed to meet various desires of high networth individuals and enterprise owners. The bank, said it would also use the fair to further reassure its numerous and prospective customers of its strong fundamentals, as it takes steps to consolidate its recent recapitalisation. Union Bank has successfully engaged the African Capital Alliance Consortium, as core investor, the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) and the existing shareholders, who have agreed to take up their rights as soon as the regulatory bodies give their final nod, adding that it would con-


NION Bank has said it would deploy its consumer and electronic products to the Lagos International Trade Fair. It said in a statement issued at the weekend that it would also offer electronic business platforms or products including internet banking, corporate pay, union galaxy, union –mobile, union online and point of sales (POS) services as well as collection platforms at the fair. Apart from electronic products, the bank said it would also display value creating consumer products such as Union – ever; a savings/ current account based products, Union-life-time, Union wealth,


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

Price Loss 2754.67 447.80

INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%

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

Amount 30m 46.7m 50m

Rate % 10.96 9.62 12.34

Date 28-04-2011 “ 14-04-2011


O/PRICE 2.20 2.62 12.30 5.45 4.65 3.44 3.25 2.45 2.25 2.46

C/PRICE 2.31 2.75 12.91 5.72 4.88 3.61 3.41 2.57 2.36 2.58

CHANGE 0.11 0.13 0.61 0.27 0.23 0.17 0.16 0.12 0.11 0.12


O/PRICE 4.42 5.95 2.47 1.30 5.71 18.91 30.00 2.09 0.80 1.39

C/PRICE 4.20 5.66 2.35 1.24 5.45 18.05 28.70 2.00 0.77 1.34


Offered ($) Demanded ($)


OBB Rate Call Rate

tinue its leadership role in the nation’s agric financing, especially, the finance for small and medium enterprises through its numerous products and services. In furtherance of this, the bank has put up a seamless process of documentations that would lead to loan disbursement to farmers and importers. Furthermore, it would also offer full range of business advisory services on imports, oil and gas, solid minerals as well as foreign exchange transactions, the statement, indicated. Union Bank has been a consistent participant in the Lagos Fair since its inception 30 years ago.




ness and ability of the borrower that determines how soon a loan is repaid, not the guarantor or collateral,” he insisted. He described consumer credit as loans provided to individuals to meet personal, family or household needs. Through such credit, the consumer will be able to meet his needs immediately, while payment is deferred or spread conveniently over a period of time. Consumer credit products, such as credit cards, automobile loans, household equipment loans, student loans, share purchase loans, personal loans and mortgage loans, are just a few examples. He said, considering the population of the working class, it is clear that consumer credit market has not even been scratched. Although many of the banks have developed consumer products, not many have fully tapped into the goldmine. Huge opportunity abounds to grow consumer credit as people have basic needs such as food, clothing, shelter, education, transportation among others.



Sold ($)

Rate (N)


















Year Start Offer

Current Before

C u r r e n t CUV Start After %




















Bureau de Change 152.0000 (S/N)




Parallel Market






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

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

% Change -1.44% -1.44%





July ’11

Aug ’11





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% 9.4%

Offer Price

Bid Price

9.17 1.00 118.31 100.28 0.76 1.02 0.91 1,639.36 8.24 1.39 1.87 7,230.13 193.00

9.08 1.00 117.70 99.71 0.74 1.02 0.90 1,634.12 7.84 1.33 1.80 7,028.67 191.08


CHANGE 0.22 0.29 0.12 0.06 0.26 0.86 1.30 0.09 0.03 0.05


NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days

Rate (Previous) 24 Aug, 2011 9.0417 9.6667 11.2917 12.1250

Rate (Currency) 26, Aug, 2011 10.17% 11.46% 11.96% 12.54%




04 July, 2011

07, Aug, 2011













Falana faults planned deportation of Nigerian prisoners from UK R

IGHTS activist Femi Falana has faulted plans by the British government to transfer Nigerian prisoners in the country to Nigeria. He described it as illegal and urged the Federal Government to reverse its decision on the issue. In an October 28 letter to the Senate, Falana cautioned the National Assembly against passing any law to support Nigerian government’s acceptance of the proposal. He argued that the nation’s laws do not support such action. Falana, who cited some legal provisions to buttress his position, said he would resort to court action if the National Assembly disregards his advice. “By the combined effect of the relevant provisions of the Constitution, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the Criminal Procedure Act, the Federal Government lacks the

By Eric Ikhilae

power to reduce Nigeria to a dumping ground for foreign convicts from the United Kingdom or from any other foreign country. “Convinced that the Federal Government has not been properly advised in the circumstances, we are compelled to draw the attention of distinguished Senators and members to the House of Representatives to the provisions of the following legislations: “By virtue of Section 35(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, every person shall be entitled to their personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty save in accordance with a procedure permitted by law which may include the “Execution of the sentence or order of a

court in respect of a criminal offence of which he has been found guilty. “Under Article 6 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights Act, “no one may be deprived of his freedom, except for reasons and conditions previously laid down by law. “Under Section 3(3) of the Prisons Act “every superintendent is authorised and required to keep and detain all persons duly committed to his custody by any court, magistrate, justice of the peace or other authority lawfully exercising civil or criminal jurisdiction, according to the terms of any warrant or order by which any such person has been committed, until such person is discharged by due course of law”. “Section 253 of the Criminal Procedure Act provides

that “A warrant under the hand of the judge or magistrate by whom any person shall have been sentenced or committed to prison for non-payment of a penalty or fine shall be full authority to the superintendent of any prison and to all other persons for carrying into effect the sentence described in such warrant not being a sentence of death. “In the light of the foregoing it is undoubtedly clear that the authorities of Nigerian prisons have no powers to admit and keep persons who have not been committed to their custody by Nigerian courts or judges. “In other words, Nigerian citizens tried, convicted and sentenced to prison terms by foreign courts cannot be admitted and kept in Nigerian prisons.”

Coastal road’ll be completed in five yrs, says expert


BUILDING expert and member, Council for the Regulation of Engineering (COREN), Mayne David-West, said it would take about five years to complete the proposed East-West Coastal Road. He said the project would be a catalyst for the development of the Niger Delta region. Mayne David-West spoke at the 6th annual lecture of Prof. Youpele Beredugo, organised by the Port Harcourt chapter of the Nigerian

Institution of Civil Engineers (NICE), in Port Harcourt , Rivers State . He said the project was divided and awarded to different companies. The contractors are to complete them within five years.The theme of the lecture is: ‘ EastWest Coastal Road : Challenges and Prospect.” Mayne David-west said he was involved in the firm that carried out the studies and design of the proposed coastal road.He explained that the project may be

completed in 10 years, if contracts for the different sections of the projects are not awarded at the same time. “It will take about five years to complete the construction of the East-West Coastal road. It was designed in such a way that the project will be divided into 10 sections and awarded to different contractors. “But if the project is not awarded to different companies, it will take up to 10 years to get it completed,”

David-West explained. The expert in civil engineering expressed fear that as laudable as the project might be, the responsibility of paying the minimum wage may pose a major challenge in securing the full support of the Niger Delta governors in the proposed construction. Mayne David-West said the planned 704- kilometre road would crisscross over 1,000 communities in the Niger Delta.

ACN condemns campaign of calumny against Tinubu


HE Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Anambra State, has warned the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) against the campaign of calumny and blackmail its national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. The party gave the warning yesterday in Awka in a statement ,entitled: “A ploy by APGA to pre-empt justice in Anambra State Election Tribunal”. It was signed by the party’s secretary, Ibe Emeka Denison. ACN alleged that a frivolous and baseless petition was written by APGA, which was published in one of the national newspappers (not The Nation) on October 26, where Tinubu was linked with the Election Petition Tribunal in the state. The statement reads: “May we remind the Anambra State chapter of APGA that the Election Petition Tribunal is not the final court for election cases.

From Nwanosike Onu, Awka “That instead of resorting to blackmail and unwarranted heating of the polity, the Court of Appeal is still there for them to go and vent their grievances. “It will be informative to state here that APGA did not end its short cut method and desperation to win by all means with the end of the election, it carried it over to the tribunal. “It is on record that it was the APGA-led legal team in the tribunal that was involved in the despicable act of alteration of documents and tampering of case file in panels 2 and 3 so that they can get judgment is in their favour by all means. “It is not new to us that they must have tried to influence the panel members but could not, that is why the party is raising this false alarm. “We wish to advise APGA

that it is not the duty of the tribunal to remedy frivolous applications but to do justice to them. And that when you bring a frivolous application to the tribunal and same was not granted, it does not show that the tribunal is biased. “We would ordinarily not have responded to this unfounded, frivolous and baseless publication, save for the innuendo which is contained in the said publication on the integrity of our esteemed leader. “We have now decided to put the facts straight to enable the masses to see the true position of things and their occurrences in the Anambra tribunal.” “It has become obvious to everyone that Anambra APGA is raising this false alarm because they have tried to do what they did with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), during the April election in the state. “In the said election, INEC


From Ogbonnaya Obinna, Abakaliki

for violating the state environmental laws. The clergymen pleaded not guilty, saying they were observing the sanitation exercise in their compound when the Ebonyi State Environmental Sanitation (EBSEPA) Task Force arrested them.

They alleged that the Task Force team arrested them to increase the revenue generated from the massive arrest. Ukwa asked the defaulters to pay a fine of N4,000 or serve two months imprisonment. The clergymen paid the N4, 000 to secure their freedom. But a woman and four male convicts were taken to the Abakaliki Prison at about

From Adimike George, Onitsha


EMBERS of the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) at the weekend created awareness on the coming birthday anniversary of former Biafran warlord, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu OJukwu. They reportedly took over the major roads and markets in Onitsha, Anambra State. The members, who were led by Chief Arinze Igbani, went to Mgbuka, Ochanja, Ose and Main Markets. They urged the traders to join in celebrating Ojukwu’s birthday scheduled for November 4 at his home in Enugu. About 2000 members of the movement barricaded major roads, obstructing traffic while they marched on the streets.

13 bags of Indian hemp found in HIRTEEN bags of IndiAnambra


an hemp was last weekend found inside the Electronics International Market, Onitsha, Anambra State. According to a source, four of the bags had earlier been found on Wednesday morning inside one of the shops, while nine others were found three days later inside another shop. Deputy President of the market Philip Iheanacho confirmed the discovery. Iheanacho said the matter had been reported to the police, adding that the bags had

From Adimike George, Onitsha

been taken to the Ogboko police station. Iheanacho blamed the market vigilance group for the development. PUBLIC NOTICE OLAREWAJU I, formerly known and addressed as MISS BUKOLA OLADITI OLAREWAJU, now wish to be known and addressed as MRS BUKOLA OLADITI AKANDE. All former documents remain valid. Oceanic Bank and the general public take note.

INDEMNITY I, Professor Peter Umoh of Block 1, Flat 4, Femi Okunnu III, Lekki Peninsula, Lagos, hereby notify the general public that I have applied to the LSDPC for its consent to change Ownership of Block 1, Flat 4, Femi Okunnu III, Lekki Peninsula; Lagos.Which was Originally allocated to Fine Homes Savings and Loans Limited. I have made series of efforts to contact the said Assignor from whom I bought the Property but all efforts have proved abortive. I hereby indemnify the Corporation against any future claims that may arise if my application is granted and under take to pay cost of any dispute that may arise on same. LSDPC, and the general public, please take note. PUBLIC NOTICE FIRST LION JUDAH BIBLE CHURCH This is to inform the general public that the above named Church has applied for registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission under Part C of Companies and Allied Matters Ac No. 1 of 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. PASTOR OLUWASEGUN AJIBOLA OLATUNJI (General Overseer/President) 2 .PASTOR (MRS) ELIZABETH OLAWUNMI OLATUNJI (Vice President) 3. DEACONESS TITILADE ELIZABETH IBILOYE (Secretary)

•Tinubu allowed itself to be used by APGA. “It should be further recalled that the same thing happened in election between our leader in the Southeast, Chris Ngige and Mrs Dora Akunyili where APGA tried to induce the Returning Officer for the election. The election was also declared inconclusive by INEC and a rerun was conducted, ACN won,”.

35 sanitation defaulters jailed in Ebonyi HIRTY- five persons were at the weekend jailed by the Ebonyi State Environmental Sanitation Court sitting in Abakaliki for not participating in the sanitation exercise held in the state. They are Pastors David Odoemenam, Evangelist Benedict Nwali and 33 others. Magistrate Chinue Ukwa convicted the two clergymen

Ojukwu’s birthday: MASSOB creates awareness

1.30pm on Saturday. The Magistrate warned top government functionaries to desist from defaulting during the sanitation exercise, saying defaulters would be prosecuted. Commissioner for Environment Dr. Paul Okorie decried violation of sanitation law by women. Okorie assured on the cleanliness of the state.

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 1. To preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all Nations. 2. To provide welfare services to all members. 3. To make Bible the Foundation of our teaching. Any objection(s)to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar General, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent ,off Aguiyi Ironsi Street ,P.M.B 198 , Maitama, Abuja within twenty-eight (28) days of the public action. SIGNED: Deaconess Titilade Elizabeth Ibiloye (Secretary)

PUBLIC NOTICE SURPASSING FAITH AND PRAISE INT’L GOSPEL CENTRE This is to inform the general public that the above named Organization has applied for registration to the Corporate Affairs Commission under Part ‘C’ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No. 1 of 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. PASTOR OBEKPA OWOICHO JEREMIAH 2. DCNS. OBEKPA EUNICE UFWIL 3. DCN. GABRIEL ELAIGWU 4. MR. KOLA-BABA YUSUF 5. DCN. JOSEPH ORAIGBU 6. MADOR YOHANNA ELISHA 7. OGWEZI COLLINS ONYEKA AIMA AND OBJECTIVES 1. To establish the Kingdom of Christ on earth in order to depopulate the kingdom of hell. 2. To wipe out tears, restore men to their destiny by the preaching of the word of faith and praise. Any objection(s) to the registration should be forwarded to the RegistrarGeneral, Corporate Affairs Commission, plot 420 Tigris Crescent, off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, P.M.B 198 Garki, Abuja within twenty-eight (28) days from the date of this publication. Signed: OBEKPA OWOICHO JEREMIAH CHAIRMAN




Our focus is “total quality health care that guarantees patients satisfaction”


hen he assumed duty as the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, (UITH), in March, last year, Professor Abdulwaheed Olajide Olatinwo introduced a radical change that marked a new era for the hospital. He reviewed the mission and vision statements of the hospital and came up with one-point agenda-Total quality health care that guarantees patients’ satisfaction. Many who thought he was acting weird with the decision have begun to have a re-think with notable achievements and progress being witnessed in the hospital. Aside enhancing the quality of medical services, he has also brought joy to many patients. Little wonder the rise in number of people seeking medical attention in the teaching hospital, which has also increased the bottom-line. Prof Olatinwo, a consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, recently spoke with The Nation on sundry issues, such as his background, challenges as an administrator, his priorities for the hospital and achievements. Born 48 years ago in Offa Local Government Area in Kwara State, the CMD obtained MBBS degree from the College of Medicine, University of Maiduguri in 1985 and was granted the fellowship award of the West African College of Surgeons (FWACS) in 1995 from the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital. “Thereafter, I became a Consultant Obstetrician / Gynaecologist with the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital where I became lecturer I. In addition to these professional qualifications, I hold a master degree in Business Administration (Healthcare Management and Financing) and a Diploma Certificate in Computing. Before my appointment I was the Chairman, Medical Advisory Committee and Director Clinical Services and Training, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital Ilorin between November 2006 and 18th of March 2010, when I was appointed the Chief Medical Director of UITH.” How did he emerge as the CMD despite the hurdles? Hear him : “Basically, the appointment was quite interesting. This is because in the hospital, we have more than 100 consultants and out of which more than 30 of the consultants were eligible for the position. And of course we contested for the position and we passed through many rigours. At a point I resolved that what would be would surely be. However, one has to pray for guardian and for support. And at the final point, I was selected and Mr. President approved my appointment. “So when we came on board, I I felt there is need to refocus our vision and mission statement. And I felt, how can I recapture everything in one capsule. And so I came up with one point agenda. And that is “total quality health care that guarantee patients satisfaction”. Our patients should be the focus. While we are giving them what they want, then we can be sure of quality health delivery. So we changed it from the aspect of what we were doing to what people should perceive us. And that has actually been the focus of the management.

- Abdulwaheed

This decision was his first litmus test as the bad eggs in the hospital did not support the vision .According to him About 30-40 percent of the people do not really appreciate the change to the new status-quo because of what they were benefiting from the old system. He explained : “Some were just watching to see how we are going to realize the new vision. So they were on the cross road of whether to support or not to support the new vision. Of course there were few of them who believed in the new vision and immediately accepted it and became the advocate for a change. And I need to say here that since then there has been a lot of improvement in the system. Other challenges that seemed insurmountable, he said, are utilities such as water and electricity. “This can be attributed to the many campuses that we were operating from. We have the permanent site, the temporary site, which were two in numbers. One of them is called the maternity wing and the other is the general wing of the hospital which used to be our main campus where 60-70 percent of activities of the hospital take place while the new permanent site now has only 30 percent of the activities of the hospital. “So the first challenge was how to integrate all the multi-campuses into the permanent site. The challenge of transportation of staff and patients on daily basis to the permanent site was also a challenge. Most especially when some of the staff were already used to the former temporary site they were operating from. That is the issue of distance. But we have been able to overcome all of those challenges through private support partnership. Despite these challenges , the hospital has witnessed significant achievements which he attributed to his onepoint agenda. He said: “The hospital under this administration has gone into collaboration with PHCN to connect the hospital to a 33KVA power source (dedicated powerline). Decentralized power supply to ensure greater than 90 percent power supply to the critical areas of the hospital. “I am happy about many achievements we have been able to make .Our focus is now on the one point agenda which is patients centred. And right now patients are quite happy and that they don’t need to know somebody before they receive quality care. We have been able to create this awareness for a change which is patients centred. Total quality health care that guarantee patients satisfaction. And now it is not business as usual. You must justify what you are doing. “We brought in the idea of ownership and that is where attitude comes in. We said let us look at our patients as our guest. Let us look at them as our own sisters, brothers and relatives and not just patients. Take them as the king because they are the reason why we are here in the hospital. And that they are the one that determine the quality of what we are doing. Since then, the perception of the patients has changed toward us. Also through this awareness , the attitude of the staff have changed tremendously towards the patients too. “Another area we have also looked into is the servicom unit. We have established servi-watch. They are the people in charge of monitoring the activities of other

Prof Abdul Waheed Olajide Olatiwon CMD, UNILORIN Teaching Hospital staff. They effect disciplinary measures on staff found wanting and also reward staff found to have delivered quality services to patients. “Lately, we have introduced into the hospital the use of electronic registration and discharge summary and electronic patients identity card. We have also established a website for the teaching hospital i.e. www. for quick access to information on what we are doing. He went on : “On the welfare of staff, we have increased the monetary value of our staff through the staff welfare committee on housing and vehicle loans. All these were done to enhance quality performance. “Besides,we have secured approval from the Kwara State Government to connect the hospital to the municipal water supply at Oke Ose reservoir. So right now we have constant supply of water in the hospital. Also we have succeeded in accrediting all previously failed accreditation. “One major area we have looked into is how we can stop Nigerians from traveling abroad for any form of treatment and to reduce the outflow of our foreign currency. And on such we have invested heavily on the state-of-the arts equipment. Such as hospital beddings and ward furniture. We have also realized it is not the beauty of the hospital but those that would make use of the facilities and such we have sponsored our staff for both within and outside the country for training. “One other thing I’m happy about is that within the short time that we have been to office, we have been able to host a lot of international conferences. Such conferences are The West African College of Physicians

Annual Meeting, National Post Graduate Medical College Annual Scientific Meeting , Nigerian Society of Peadiatric Surgeon Annual General Meeting, National Executive Council Meeting of Senior Staff Association , Nigerian Executive Council Meeting of the Nigerians Resident Doctors Association, Professional Secretaries Association of Nigerian Annual General Meeting. “At international level, we have hosted the international collaboration for skill exchange, capacity building and improved health care delivery. Hospice international based in Uganda on palliative care, International society of Nephrology and Shell Field University UK on twin sister renal care and kidney transplant. U.S based Nigerians in Diaspora on Neuro Surgery Care, Erasmus Institute on ENT Care. Orbis International (Flying Eye Hospital). Quality Management coordinators from the United State for training and analysis of the institution service delivery status. But in spite of all these achievements, Olatinwo said the management of the hospital will continually concentrate on the maintenance of uninterrupted and full capacity water and power supply to the hospital. He also said the management will maintain open forum with the staff to strengthen all departments and units integration to ensure full cooperation and ownership toward realizing the focus of the hospital and establish training and industrial relation units to ensure that staff are better trained for improved quality performance. Others are creating industrial harmony to reduce the incidence of strike and its attendant negative effect on patients care and the community . He also said plans are on for the establishment of IVF Centre, cardiothoracic centre and completion of phase 2 of the administrative block and the relocation of schools to the old maternity hospital wing. Plans are also underway for the establishment of schools of nursing and midwifery and the commencement of renal and transplantation programmes. In terms of complementing the effort of the Federal Government in financing some of the hospital projects,Olatinwo said talks are going on to collaborate with corporate bodies. He said: “We have been able to identify some institutions and individuals who have been very wonderful. The Nigerian Communication Commission, we were able to identity that they have some programme to support tertiary institutions. And so we were able to prove to them that though we are teaching hospital, we also have education component. “This is because, part of our mandate is to teach. Base on that we wrote a proposal to them which was approved and we were given 110 laptops. We also identified some individuals in Canada on the issue to have a website and to maintain it. They equally accepted and created a website for us free of charge and they have been monitoring it for the past 18 months. Somebody gave us recently a generating set. And somebody else is also putting up a bore-hole in the hospital premises. A few days ago, we had a meeting on palliative care and thereafter did fund raising and on the spot we realized N3M.” We will not stop until we have totally transformed the hospital.

1, 2011






Syria’s Assad warns against West intervention


YRIAN President Bashar al-Assad has warned of an “earthquake” if the West intervenes in his country. In a rare interview with the United Kingdom’s Sunday Telegraph newspaper, Mr Assad said involvement risked transforming Syria into “another Afghanistan”. The United Nations has renewed its call for the repression to end, and China has warned Syria the situation cannot continue. More than 50 civilians and members of the security forces were killed on Saturday, according to the two sides.

Activists said 21 civilians were killed and that army tanks had shelled a historic district in the city of Homs. The government said 20 soldiers were killed in Homs, and 10 members of the security forces were killed during an ambush of their bus in Idlib province. More than 3,000 people have died in the unrest since protests calling for the government of Mr Assad to step down broke out in March. In the Sunday Telegraph interview, Mr Assad said Western countries were “going to ratchet up the pressure, definitely”. “Syria is the hub now in this region. It is the faultline, and if

you play with the ground you will cause an earthquake,” he said. “Any problem in Syria will burn the whole region. If the plan is to divide Syria, that is to divide the whole region. “Do you want to see another Afghanistan, or tens of Afghanistans?” President Assad admitted that “many mistakes” had been made by his security forces in the early part of the uprising, but the paper said he insisted that “only terrorists” were now being targeted. He said he had responded differently to the Arab Spring

than other, deposed Arab leaders. Mr Assad described the uprising as a “struggle between Islamism and pan-Arabism”. “We’ve been fighting the Muslim Brotherhood since the 1950s and we are still fighting with them,” he said. Meanwhile China’s Middle East envoy Wu Sike said he had warned Syria on his recent visit to Damascus about the “danger of the situation and that it cannot continue”. Mr Wu, now in Cairo, said he had told Mr Assad he must “respect and respond to the aspirations and rightful demands of the Syrian people”.

UK threatens to withhold aid to anti-gay nations


RITISH Prime Minister David Cameron has threatened to withhold UK aid from governments that do not reform legislation banning homosexuality. Cameron said he raised the issue with some of the states involved at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth, Australia.

Human rights reform in the Commonwealth was one issue that leaders failed to reach agreement on at the summit. Cameron says those receiving UK aid should “adhere to proper human rights”. Ending the bans on homosexuality was one of the recommendations of an internal

report into the future relevance of the Commonwealth. Cameron’s threat applies only to one type of bilateral aid known as general budget support, and would not reduce the overall amount of aid to any one country. Malawi has already had some of its budget support suspended over concerns

about its attitude to gay rights. Concerns have also been raised with the governments of Uganda and Ghana. Cameron told BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show that “British aid should have more strings attached”. But he conceded that countries could not change immediately, and cautioned that there would be a “journey”.

Mubarak’s trial resumes on Dec 28


HE next session in the trial of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has been postponed until late December. The decision follows calls for the appointment of a new presiding judge to replace Ahmed Refax. Mr Mubarak, 83, is accused of ordering the killing of protesters during the uprising

earlier this year which ended his rule. He denies the charges. His trial is now due to resume on 28 December, two days after a separate court rules on replacing Mr Refaat. Lawyers for the alleged victims of Mr Mubarak have petitioned the court demanding that the judge be replaced.

NEWS Federal Character: Senate demands staff audit in Customs


HE Senate Committee on Federal Character has demanded the staff list of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS). The committee said its demand was to enable it determine whether the Service complied with the Federal Character principle in its recruitment and appointments. Committee Chairman Senator Dahiru Kuta gave the directive during a visit to the NCS headquarters in Abuja. It was part of the committee’s oversight functions. He said verifying compliance with Federal Character principles had

From Onyedi Ojiabor, Assistant Editor and Sanni Onogu, Abuja

become necessary to ensure equity and fairness in the service. Kuta noted that the list should include detailed breakdown of names of the senior cadre officers and their states of origin. Another member of the committee, Unche Chukwumerije, added that “documentation of the data should be as comprehensive as possible because we regard the issue of Federal Character as one of the serious intendment of the Constitution.”

No to state police, says Osayande From Onyedi Ojiabor, Assistant Editor


HAIRMAN of the Police Service Commission (PSC) Mr. Parry Osayande has advised those angling forstate police to shelve the idea for now. Nigeria, according to him, was not yet politically matured to allow the decentralisation of the Police. The retired police officer gave the advice while briefing the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs during an oversight visit to the Commission at the weekend. Osayande also blamed past military regimes in the country for the dearth of professionalism in the Police. He lamented that interference in the administration of the police, poor funding, understaffing and collapse of police infrastructure during military regimes left the police in bad shape. On state police he said: “Ideally, we should have state police even local government police. But right now, we are not politically mature. The Police, as it is today, constitutes the tie that binds Nigeria together.

Group to CD: caution your men


HE national leadership of the Campaign for Democracy (CD) was at the weekend advised to rein in its representatives in Ondo State. Making the call was the Ondo Liberation Movement (OLM), which accused the state chapter of the CD of using what it calledthe rights campaigners’ credible platform for blackmail and extortion.

OLM President Segun Famoroti said in a statement in Akure that it was high time to expose the activities of the CD officials in the Sunshine State, to protect the integrity of the group. Famoroti was reacting to the content of a purported communiqué said to have been issued by the CD where aspersions were cast on the Ondo State government.

Afe Babalola backs VCs on scrapping of UTME From Bisi Oladele, Ibadan


ROPRIETOR of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti in Ekiti State, Chief Afe Babalola has backed the proposal that rather than scrap the Post-Unified Tertiary Matriculations Examination (UTME), the matriculation examination conducted by the Joint Matriculation Board (JAMB) should be cancelled. The Association of Vice-Chancellors had written the Senate, demanding cancellation of UTME. The proposal followed a threat by the legislators to cancel the Post-UTME conducted by individual universities on the strength that it is illegal. But Babalola said JAMB has failed to live up to its responsibilities. He said UTME results are not usually a true reflection of the academic ability of candidates. Babalola explained that mercenaries write the exams for some candidates while the marking machines used by the examination body had once marked scripts inaccurately, reducing candidates’ scores by 15 per cent. He said: “The board’s grading system was attacked in 2009, when the overall performance was one of the poorest. It was later revealed, much to JAMB’s embarrassment, that the machines which optically graded the papers had erroneous answers and JAMB changed some students’ scores by as much as 15 per cent. There was also the problem of leakage of many of the question papers of examination conducted by the board.





Forlan: I hope to be M back in action soon

Messi's mum came after me with a frying pan' -Ex-girlfriend


NTER striker Diego Forlan insists he is fighting to return from injury as soon as possible. "I am recovering and

doing lots of physiotherapy so that I can soon return to the pitch as this is my main objective now," Forlan is quoted as saying by La

Gazzetta dello Sport. The 32-year-old has been recovering from a muscular strain he sustained in Uruguay's 1-1 draw against Paraguay in a World Cup qualifier earlier this month. Forlan has not set a date for his comeback, but cannot wait to get involved once he is given the green light by the club. It has been a slow start for

Forlan following his injury, but his assessment of life in Italy thus far is a positive one. "I have not been here very long, but I have adapted well. I am happy in Milan and it was nice to swap it for Madrid," he said. "Things are going well, we have some great players at Inter and they have helped me to settle."

Xavi lifts listless Barcelona to win



AVI celebrated setting a club record

for La Liga appearances when he netted a superb freekick to give an otherwise listless Barcelona a 1-0 win at Granada on Tuesday in a scrappy game in which the home side finished with nine men. The 31-year-old Spain midfielder, playing his 392nd league match, struck in the 33rd minute to lift the champion above surprise package Levante and rival Real Madrid to the top of the standings. Xavi's mark beat the previous record set by Migueli, a central defender known as "Tarzan" who played for Barcelona in the 1970s and 80s. Xavi already owned the appearance record for all competitions, which he extended on Tuesday to 591. "It was a difficult match that we were unable to kill

Yaya wanted to leave Barca — Guardiola


ARCELONA coach Pep Guardiola has insisted that he had nothing to do with Yaya Toure's departure to Manchester City - and added that he even tried to convince the Cote d'Ivoire international to stay at Camp Nou. "The truth is that he asked [club president Joan] Laporta to leave. We even tried to convince him to stay put. I will speak to him the next time we meet." Guardiola was quoted as saying by AS. Toure revealed on Tuesday that he left the Catalans for Manchester City in the

summer of 2010 because of his poor relationship with Guardiola, stating that the trainer hardly ever spoke to him. However, the 40-year-old has denied the accusations and has made it clear that he attempts to forge strong relationships with the players in his squad. "There's not much to say about this matter. I talk to anyone and the doors to my office and house are always open for the players," Guardiola said. The 28-year-old midfielder won the FA Cup in his first

season with City and also qualified for the Champions League with the Premier League side.

De Boer: We have a problem with our mentality JAX coach Frank de Boer has voiced his opinion that the Amsterdam giants' poor run of form is the result of a mental problem rather than the consequence of tactical or technical issues. "Our poor performances are mostly the result of a mental problem in my opinion and


Udinese writes off title chances


DINESE sit second in Serie A with a point behind going into this week's games yet coach Francesco Guidolin is still more concerned about avoiding relegation than winning the title. Guidolin, whose side are unbeaten after seven games, wrote off Udinese's title chances after their 3-0 home win over Novara on Sunday sent them to the summit. "We can't fight for the scudetto," Guidolin, whose side

have 15 points and are the only unbeaten team in Serie A alongside Juventus, told reporters. "None of the other coaches have mentioned Udinese among the possible title winners and I trust my colleagues, they understand football. "In the dressing room, we have a notice with our aim, which is to reach the 40 points needed to avoid relegation, so we are still 25 short.

off in the second half," he told reporters after scoring his fourth league goal of the campaign. "Generally it was a good performance but everything can be improved on," he added. Barca, which has not conceded a goal in seven matches in all competitions, has 21 points from nine games. Levante is on 20 from eight ahead of its home match against Real Sociedad, when Real, which has 19 points, hosts Villarreal. Sevilla stayed fourth on 17 points after it needed a stoppage time equalizer to rescue a 2-2 draw at home to struggling Racing Santander in the late kickoff. A 37th-minute Manu del Moral header put the Andalusians in front before second-half goals from forward Ariel Nahuelpan and youth team midfielder Jairo Samperio took Santander within sight of its first win of the season. However, Del Moral rose to nod in a second in the 92nd minute to preserve Sevilla's unbeaten start.

"We will enjoy it for one day but we have no reason to get carried away." Udinese finished fourth last season but were given little hope of a repeat performance after selling two key players, winger Alexis Sanchez to Barcelona and midfielder Gokhan Inler to Napoli, in the close season. However, with striker Antonio Di Natale, last season's league top scorer with 28, still knocking in the goals they have looked as good as ever.

don't have anything to do with tactical issues," De Boer was quoted as saying by De Telegraaf. The reigning Eredivisie champions have not won a league match since its 3-2 win over Heracles on September 10 and have collected only four points from of its last five games. De Boer spoke with his players on Tuesday to discuss their poor results, and the former Netherlands international is hopeful that they will soon be back on track. "I know what we're capable of, though, and have a good feeling about the meeting with the players. Everybody got the chance to say how he feels. "It's hard to find an explanation for our poor run of form, but I'm hopeful that we can get back on track following this meeting." Ajax sits sixth in the Eredivisie table, having taken 17 points from 10 encounters so far.

ACARENA Lemos, a young model, claims the player's parent threatened her in the electronics department but insists she has never done anything to tarnish the name of her old flame Macarena Lemos, a 20-yearold model from Rosario who briefly dated Messi when she was 14 and he 18, says she was out shopping with her mother and her aunt when she noticed the player's parent was following her and taking photographs. "She was following me and taking photos until I turned around and asked her what was going on," the model explained on Telenoche. "That's when she started insulting me. What was she doing there in the electronics section, with a frying pan in her hand? She was following me with a telephone and a frying pan." Lemos was bemused by the actions of Mrs Messi, claiming

she has never gone on record with any details of their relationship. "I have never came out and said whether I had slept with her son. I was 14 and he was 18 - and I didn't reveal anything about our relationship," she added. "She treated me like I was nothing, as if I were hanging from her son's ribs. She seems to think I said something to a magazine, but I never did. They are confused. "It shocked me because I wasn't expecting something like that to happen on a Sunday afternoon, especially with my mother and my aunt present. "He has bodyguards, but I don't. I go out on the street and meet my friends like a normal person." Despite the incident, Macarena claimed she would still like to spend a night with the world's best footballer. "That's unfinished business for me," she admitted.


Marseille spirit thrills Deschamps


ARSEILLE manager Didier Deschamps has challenged his improving team to complete a sequence of three wins in eight days when it takes on Dijon in Ligue 1 on Monday (AEST). Marseille was a 4-0 winner against Ligue 2 side Lens in the Coupe de la Ligue on Wednesday, while on Sunday it posted a 2-0 league victory over Ajaccio. The cruel blow of conceding a last-minute winner to Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey in the UEFA Champions League last week looks to have spurred Marseille rather than disoriented it. Goals from Andre-Pierre Gignac, Jordan Ayew and Loic Remy, who netted twice, saw off Lens in front of a crowd of 17,972 at the Stade Velodrome and guided Marseille into the cup quarterfinals. Deschamps gave fringe players a chance to impress and said: "It's a different competition but it's the first time we've won two games in a row. "It's good for confidence and for the people who came to the stadium, I think they enjoyed it. On Saturday, we go to Dijon, and given our situation we need to back it up." Marseille has crept ahead of

Dijon in Ligue 1, with goal difference separating the midtable teams, but it has aspirations to be again challenging for a Champions League place, so it needs to keep improving. Six goals and two victories have raised spirits at the club, and it now wants to add another success before travelling to London next week to face Arsenal again. Deschamps could not hide his satisfaction at the recent goal haul and the successive clean sheets. "Yes, and with a different team and goalkeeper," he said on Marseille's official website. "Compared to the last match, I changed six players so that everyone feels involved. "We have a run of matches every three or four days, so there's fatigue, minor injuries, and it's good that everyone has been able to participate and some have been able to rest with a view to the match on Saturday. "The team at Dijon certainly won't be the same as tonight, and it will again be different at Arsenal. "When I look at the spirit of my players before the match, it's very positive. What I see on and off the pitch gives me more strength."




First Deepwater retains title, wins N1m F IRST Deepwater Basketball Club retained the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) organised Zenith Bank Women Basketball League beating former champion, First Bank Basketball Club by 65-57 points in a keenly contested final decided at the Indoor Sports hall of the National Stadium on Saturday. Sunshine Angels Basketball Club of Akure finished the 2010/2011 season in 3rd position. First Deepwater Basketball Club won for itself a giant trophy and a cheque of N1m while First Bank Basketball Club got N750,000 and Sunshine received N500,000. The Coach Lateef Erinfolami-tutored side enjoyed a smooth campaign on its way to the title. The Oil and Gas ladies defeated the likes of Sunshine Angels (6858 points), Nigeria Immigration Basketball Club

Participants list gains of NOC’s training on Olympic values


TUDENTS that took part in the four-day training on Olympic values believe the exercise has impacted positively on them, even as they yearn for more of such an event. The training organised by the Nigeria Olympics Committee (NOC) was hosted by Greensprings School in Lekki with students drawn from the six education districts in Lagos. Some of the students, who were drawn from public schools, said the training thrilled them, as they learnt of the joy of efforts, which is one of the values of the International Olympics Committee (IOC). Specifically, fair play taught them that taking part in any competition is not to win at all cost, but exhibiting the spirit of sportsmanship during such events would go a long way in helping them in their studies. The exercise tagged Olympic Value Education Programme (OVERP), according to the coordinator of the project, Kemi Obidahunsi, was meant to help the students to imbibe the spirit of the Olympics. Being the second in a series of trainings after the ‘train-the trainers’ course earlier held in the year, the exercise is aimed at aiding the students to imbibe the qualities. Obidahunsi said: “Our world today is in need of peace, tolerance and brotherliness; Nigeria as a country needs peace too, which we believe Olympic values can deliver. “The NOC had the support of Greensprings School in encouraging and promoting Olympic values and it was meant to introduce the values of respect for self and others, fair play, joy of effort, excellence, friendship, balance between body and mind to young people all over Nigeria.”

By Akeem Lawal of Kano (75-57 points), Adolescent Health and Information Programme, AHIP (34-76) and FCT Angels (99-46) before the weekend’s final game. First Bank on the other hand beat Plateau Rocks (96-26 points), FCT Queens (68-17 points), Nigeria Customs Service (121-44 points) before

losing to First Deepwater on Saturday. First Deepwater and Nigeria Senior National team guard, Nkechi Akashili won a double award as the league’s highest scorer and Most Valuable Player, while Sunshine Angels’ Korede Sosanya won the league’s 3point award. A Delta Force Basketball Club of Asaba forward won the league’s highest rebounder award while Metro FM’s Patrick Ibeh won the best media award.

Taekwondo team hails Chukwumerije for cash prizes


A T I O N A L taekwondo coach, Osita Egwim on behalf of his team believes that the cash reward from Senator Uche Chukwumerije last Wednesday in Abuja will serve as a morale booster to the players in subsequent competitions. Chukwumerije had rewarded the medalists of the taekwondo team that represented the country at the All Africa Games (AAG) in Maputo, Mozambique in a reception in Abuja with a total of N3.3 million. Egwim, who guided the team to win 10 medals at the Games, admitted that the reception organised by the legislator would help to draw more attention to the sport in Nigeria. “In Maputo, Senator Chukwumerije was like a father-figure to the team because he was always there for us and he believed in us even when it seemed the medals were not coming, he was still confident that we would do well. “I think if we have more of (people like) him in taekwondo, there is nothing stopping us from winning the majority of the medals at the All Africa Games,” he said.

Dream Team V beats 36 Lions, Ebiede FC


IGERIA’S Dream Team V on Saturday posted back-to-back victories against National League sides, 36 Lions and Ebiede FC at the Liberty Stadium Ibadan. The Olympic Eagles defeated Lagos-based side 36 Lions by two goals to one with Ganiu Oseni and Afolabi Abdulwaheed finding the net in the 35th and 90th minutes of the game. 36 Lions got a consolation in added time from a controversial spot kick but the chairman of the club, Gafar Liameed fumed at the centre referee after the game. “Where did you people get these officials from?” he queried. “They are killing the efforts of this team. That was not a penalty. I don’t want referees manufacturing goals for my team. The ball was on the defender’s chest not his hand; why should he give us a penalty?” he wondered. “Please, you people should get good officials so as not to kill the morale of these players,” Gafar lamented while speaking to Dream Team V secretary, Shola Ogunnowo. Kabiru Dumoye, converted the spot kick for 36 Lions.

By Innocent Amomoh Egwim, who was also in charge of the two-man team to the 2008 Beijing Olympics Games in China, said that he was particularly excited that the efforts of the team have been rewarded by somebody who appreciated it. The 16-man team captained by Uche Perez Chukwumerije won 10 medals in the country’s total medal-haul in Mozambique. Chukwumerije said that the reception was staged to honour the young team for it’s determination and doggedness in Maputo. He however called on wellmeaning Nigerians and corporate bodies to support the game, which he said had been mopping medals for the country in major championships. For their performance in Maputo, gold medalists were rewarded with N500, 000 each while silver medalists got N250, 000 and bronze medalists got N150, 000 for their feat in Mozambique. Egwim and his colleague got N500, 000 each for guiding the team to success in the Southern African country.

RESULTS England - Premier League Everton 0-1 Man U. Chelsea 3 - 5 Arsenal Man C. 3 - 1Wolves Norwich . 3 - 3Blackburn Sunderland 2 - 2 Aston.V Swansea C. 3 - 1 Bolton Wigan 0 - 2 Fulham West Brom 0 - 2Liverpool Tottenham 3 - 1 Queens.P Italy Serie A AS Roma 2 - 3 AC Milan Catania 2-1 Napoli Inter Milan 1 - 2 Juventus Siena 4 - 1 Chievo Bologna 3 - 1 Atalanta Fiorentina 1 - 0 Genoa Lecce 1 - 1 Novara Parma 2-0 Cesena Udinese 1 - 0 Palermo Spain - Primera Division Valencia 3-1 Getafe Villarreal 2 - 0 Vallecano Barcelona 5 - 0 Mallorca R.Sociedad 0 - 1Real Madrid S.Gijon 1 - 1 A/Bilbao Osasuna 2 - 0 Levante Germany - Bundesliga I. Freiburg 0 - 1 Leverkusen B/ Munich 4 - 0 Nurnberg Mo’ladbach 2 - 1 Hannover Schalke 3- 1 Hoffenheim Wolfsburg 2 - 3Hertha BSC Stuttgart 1 - 1 Dortmund Mainz 1 - 3W/Bremen FC Cologne 3 - 0 Augsburg France - Ligue 1 Ajaccio 0 - 2 Bordeaux Brest 3 - 1 Lorient Dijon 2 - 3 Marseille Gaillar 3 - 1 Auxerre

1, 2011





IN TOUCH 08054501081(sms only) •Winner, Informed Commentary 2009 (D.A.M.E) •Columnist of the Year 2009 (NMMA)

A Nigeria without Nigerians

We must have Nigeria before we can have a Nigerian spring. All the conflicts in Nigeria, whether it was the civil war or the June 12 crisis have inevitably fallen under ethnic colorations. •Map of Nigeria

because it is still difficult to divine what is Nigerian as yet. Our soccer is pathetic. I thrilled recently to the unsung spectacle of the Federation Cup final, and I enjoyed it more than the synthetic razzmatazz of the so-called English Premier League or the La Liga or Serie A. Not that the skills were better, but that I could relate to the ambience of the game. The pity is that our leaders have given up. When role models chant Man U and The blues and Gunners for life, you know that it is tragedy of the top proportion. During the Russian Revolution, one of the participants said if the society did not change from the top to the bottom, it would change from the bottom to the top. Today, it does not appear possible either from the top or bottom when we are rotten through the middle. In fashion, we might say we have our cuts and designs, but the collapse of the mammoth fashion industry defines our lack of identity. Billions of Naira sank into it, and yet our people still bring containers of textile material from abroad. In my recent visit to Vienna, a cab driver tried to lure me with the prospect of

RIPPLES FUEL SUBSIDY MUST GO –Gov Suswam insists prepared to meet Nigerians on the STREETS!




USIC is an important part of a people’s life, and it is hard to play the history of the world, the march of nations, the fortitude of great men and the range of cultures without reference to music. In Nigeria today, I want to hail this generation of Nigerian musicians for appreciating their cultural roots. I also chasten my praise by noting that they are heroes but not authentic enough. I hail them more than I condemn them. If you attend any Nigerian party today, you are hardly going to hear music from other lands. If it is not D’Banj, it is WhizKid or any of the other popular raves of the youth. It is the only part of our culture that we can truly call our own. This is an important point especially when you refer to such other cultural obsessions as soccer and political economy, where Nigeria is in thrall with the West. We are adept at borrowing. A personage in the 19th century once asserted about Italy when the nation was formed through the sweat and genius of Cavour and Garibaldi. He said they had created Italy and it was time to create Italians. After over half a century of independence, we have not created Nigerians. And if the colonialists could not create Nigerians after Lord Lugard’s 1914 amalgamation, at least since 1960 we should have made progress. I must say we seemed to be doing so in the first decade. But it all seems now to be a false start. If we don’t create Nigerians, we cannot create Nigerian music, or Nigerian economy or Nigerian soccer. We can only craft caricatures. Even in the pursuit of Nigerian literature, some critics wonder if there is actually one. Achebe’s novels or Soyinka’s plays can arguably pass for Igbo and Yoruba opus rather than Nigerian. The Nigerian sensibility is still in the seed. That is why we cannot have our version of the Arab Spring. We must have Nigeria before we can have a Nigerian spring. All the conflicts in Nigeria, whether it was the civil war or the June 12 crisis have inevitably fallen under ethnic colorations. Attempts to calibrate them as national matters often get devalued by references to both tribe and faith. Even the long-drawn tempests of the Niger Delta never grew beyond regional definitions. And even within the region, some saw it as an Ijaw rumble. Yet, if we are Nigerians we need to craft a Nigerian music or economy. We have neither. But that is why I praise our musicians for their work, even though it is easy to see that they emphasise not the higher reaches of a Nigerian identity but the lower themes of our existence: sex, violence, cheating, etc. So, we listen to the danceable rhythm of D’Banj if his lyrics do little to ennoble the soul. But the average Nigerian would listen to him. He and his fellow travellers traffic in the language and beats of decadence familiar in these parts. Asha is the best of her generation. Her rhythms and lyrics are original. Even at that, I cannot say it is peculiarly Nigerian. That is

VOL.7, NO. 1,930


N a paper entitled “Re-invigorating education in Nigeria: An essay in honour of Professor Adamu Baike,” Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, suggested the need to restructure the polity to something more manageable than the current number of ministries, state and local governments. Last Saturday in Kaduna he illustrated his thesis with figures showing the inadvisability of retaining a 36-state structure in which each state on the average devoted about 96 percent of its revenue to pay civil servants. The federal government, he added plaintively, also spent about 70 percent of its revenue on staff salaries and overhead. He also moaned that barely 30 percent of revenue was left for the rest of the country, some 150 million people, as he put it. It is not often that this column agrees with Sanusi, but on this issue of restructuring the polity to make Nigeria run more efficiently, Hardball supports the CBN governor fully. Even though Sanusi is CBN boss under a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government, his advice has nothing to do with partisan politics. It is clear from what he said and what



‘The Federal Government lacks the power to reduce Nigeria to a dumping ground for foreign convicts from the United Kingdom or from any other country’

lion was left. The article did not wonder whether there were Nigerian investors savvy enough to obtain slices of the fund. Apart from a few critical paragraphs about corruption and inefficiency, the article advertised Nigeria as a place where the West, now in deep recession and bleeding from the consequences of self-indulgence and lax policies, could get cheap funds. I saw the article for what it was: a piece of imperialist journalism. Even our money is not our money. We now want the oil money to go the West to invest. Of course, a lot of Nigeria’s stolen money never remains here. If our money cannot remain here, how can our textile, or soccer or theatre? Our politics, other than its corruption, borrows everything from furniture to alcohol to office equipment to rice… Our people cannot get enough training from Harvard. Our schools are virtually dead. The schools cannot copy enough from outside but they cannot teach enough from within. How do you teach a Nigerian what is Nigerian when we cannot define it in any way? How many Nigerians can dare their palates to taste cuisines outside their regions? Not many, but quite a few are trying it, and it is a good sign. But we know that food and music are not necessarily great tools of cultural understanding. But they help. Politics is fundamental. But our presidential system wants to be faithful to the American model although we are not Americans. That is at the bottom of our inability to convene of sovereign conference. It is an irony that we need to be Nigerian enough to convene a conference to convert Nigeria into a nation for Nigerians. This harks back to a Soyinka polemic about two decades ago when he asked, “When is a nation?” That is why I have high praise for the Nigerian musicians. They have given us clue, if an imperfect one. I can point to our taste buds too. We have to start somewhere, but maybe the road to Nigerianness is a rhythm away.

buying lace and guinea brocades from Austria where most of the fabric we use in Nigeria originate. Recently I read an article from the International Herald Tribune about Nigeria and the socalled sovereign wealth fund. The article which made references to investment minister Aganga and finance minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala reported that big foreign investment companies like Goldman Sachs were shopping to invest portions of the fund. It painted a picture that it was not the usual 419 scam from Nigerians. Rather it was a genuine investment opportunity for the foreigners. They were invited to invest our money. The article painted both ministers in glowing terms, showing that they were serious about tackling an anaemic economy. The style and context of the story could not hoodwink any discerning reader. It did not reflect the debate over the legality of the fund and the arbitrariness of the federal government. It also did not refer to the controversy to the fund’s ancestor as excess crude account. It did refer to the fact that the fund had as much as $20 billion and it was shared out until only $1bil-

Y article last week generated some high profile calls and messages, and they came mainly from those who argued that I gloated over Gaddafi’s death. I did not. I however did not mourn. I would have wanted him alive to face justice, hence I recommended the Egyptian model. They also asserted that the ouster was Western inspired. The Western intervention would have failed if the people did not want it. The man who took power in 1969 and died at 69 years old was a tyrant. He did great good but also great evil. He died a megalomaniac, lost in his own delusions. I note the media coverage from the West. They hardly showed us the air bombardments, making us feel as though the war ended on the strength of the ground assaults. That was the West at its deceptive best.


•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above

On Gaddafi


Sanusi right on 36-state structure we know that Nigeria has been living beyond its means, and is run slavishly and ponderously along inherited and discredited lines, unable to pay its bills, and with its problems such as decaying infrastructure becoming exacerbated as the years roll by. In turn these problems have become a threat to the peace and stability of the country. Indeed, if the leadership had had the courage to do what is right, they would not need Sanusi to jolt them out of their complacency. What seems strange to analysts of the Nigerian situation is how the abundant statistical resources available at the CBN and other federal agencies have not led us sooner than now to re-examine the polity and take remedial measures. Sanusi has helped put the problem in clear perspective; let the federal government take another frank look at the structure of the country in order to advise itself on the inescapability of remoulding the polity. The easy way out of the logjam would be to raise more money through both the removal

of the so-called fuel subsidy and probably the devaluation of the naira, and then share it among the three tiers of government. But this dangerous illusion of wealth would amount to simply underwriting our inefficiencies and sowing the seeds of future turbulence and catastrophe. The plain truth is that the amount needed to repair the long-running damage to education, health and infrastructure goes far beyond what removal of fuel subsidy can tackle. Probably the most urgent step, if not the wisest step, the government can take in the circumstance is to restructure the country’s polity, make it more compact, and run it efficiently along lines every economics student of modest gift is familiar with. If we must guarantee a future for coming generations and avoid doomsday, then it is time we stopped shying away from the painful reality of restructuring. This time, Sanusi spoke well, and he did so elegantly without controversy.

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

The Nation October 31, 2011  

The Nation October 31, 2011

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you