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•Uneasy calm in Itsekiri
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VOL. 8, NO. 2603 WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
TR UTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM TRUTH
PDP crisis: Jonathan, Aliyu, Lamido, Nyako meet
•SWEET VICT OR Y: VICTOR ORY Rafael Nadal kissing the trophy after beating Novak Djokovic in four sets to win the US Open, his 13th Grand Slam, in New York...on Tuesday
•Babangida, Ali also at Villa
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan was meeting last night with some of the aggrieved governors in a bid to end the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) crises. The meeting was ongoing at the First Lady’s conference room in the State House as at 10:30pm. Reporters were barred from the venue of the meeting, but it was gathered that Governors Sule Lamido (Jigawa), Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto), Babangida Aliyu (Niger) and Murtala Nyako (Adamawa) were at the
From Augustine Ehikioya, Abuja
meeting. It could not be confirmed whether Rivers State Governor Chibuike Amaechi was there, but a source said Kwara State Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed and Kano State Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso could not attend because they were abroad on official assignments. The aggrieved governors on August 31 broke away to form the “New PDP” under the chairmanship of Kawu Continued on page 4
Obasanjo attacks Atiku Ex-president accuses his deputy of corruption Aide: Atiku will reply Waziri denies Ibori link
ON EX-VP Well, I don’t know what the EFCC has found out about him, but I don’t know if he can go to America. Do you know? I am asking you, do you know?
FTER a long break, former President Olusegun Obasanjo and his deputy, Atiku Abubakar, seem set to renew their hostilities. Obasanjo is insinuating that
Tukur urges court to jail Baraje, others
By Joseph Jibueze
HE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday urged the Lagos State High Court, Ikeja, to commit leaders of the party’s faction to prison for allegedly violating an order made by Mr Justice Ganiyu Safari. The application is different from the one at the Federal High Court, Abuja, in which the party urged the court to jail the alleged contemnors for “appointing” Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola as “National Secretary” Continued on page 4
•More governors to join Baraje •Jonathan meets IBB, Ali PAGES •PDP caretaker for Kano 2-5&58 •Party youths plan protest
The woman they brought to replace Ribadu (Farida Waziri) was not the right person for that job, because I understood that one of those who headhunted her was James Ibori.
From Yusuf Alli, Abuja
ex-Vice President Atiku is corrupt, saying he was investigated by his administration following alert from the United States. He said Nigerians should
EX-EFCC CHAIR: If I was in league with him, wouldn’t I have said ‘lie low, don’t worry’, that we will just do that and pretend... if I was in league with Ibori...would he have gone to Dubai?
ask Atiku why he has not visited the United States since he left office, if he has no case to answer. Obasanjo, who bared his mind on why he moved against his deputy in an inter-
view with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) magazine, Zero Tolerance, said he could not understand why the anti-graft commission has not taken Atiku to court.
He said he did not at any time instigate former EFCC Chairman Nuhu Ribadu against Atiku. Obasanjo said: “Ask Ribadu, if I ever say to him, ‘go do this’. “No; that is not true. We got a letter from America in June 2006, listing a number of people to be investigated; Atiku was one of them and that letter went straight to the EFCC. “It was just shown to me because they will not be able to investigate my number Continued on page 4
•Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola unveiling the plaque to open Ibeshe Road in Ikorodu ...yesterday. With him are Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure Obafemi Hamzat, Special Adviser (Works) Mr. Ganiyu Johnson (in cap) and other officials
•NIGERIA SPENDS N10B ANNUALLY TO IMPORT MILK P8 •EFCC RECOVERS N6.5B P58
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS CRISIS IN PDP
Ex-militants •Post-convention dinner a waste of money, says Baraje
E •From left: First Vice President, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Otunba Debola Osibogun; former Chairman, First Bank of Nigeria Plc Oba Otudeko; CIBN President Mr Segun Aina and Minister of State for Finance Dr Yerima Ngama at the 7th Annual Banking and Finance Conference in Abuja...yesterday.
•From left: African Advisor, International Hospital Federation(IHF)Dr. Leke Pitan, President,Campaign for Democracy (CD) and Women Arise (WA) Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, Project Director,Management Science for Health, USA Dr. James Rice, Lagos State Commissioner for Health Dr. Jide Idris and Dr. Ogun State Commissioner for Health Olaokun Soyinka at a medical exhibition in Lagos...yesterday.
From left: Head, Information Technology, Skye Bank Plc, Mr. Richard Amanfoye; Executive Director, Corporate & Investment Banking Mr. Timothy Oguntayo; Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer Mr. Kehinde Durosinmi-Etti; and the Chairman/CEO, IBM International Mrs. Ginni Rometty, during Rometty's visist to the bank...yesterday. PHOTO: DAYO ADEWUNMI • From left: Deputy Commissioner for Insurance (Technical), National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) Alhaji Ibrahim Hassan; Commissioner for Insurance Mr Fola Daniel and DirectorGeneral, Securities and Exchange Commission Ms Arunma Oteh at an International Microinsurance Conference in Abuja...yesterday.
X-militants in the Niger Delta have told the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) and the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) that there will be no peace for former VicePresident Atiku Abubakar until he leaves President Goodluck Jonathan alone. The former freedom fighters, led by ‘General’ Reuben Wilson, declared Atiku persona-non-grata in the Niger Delta, for being opposed to Jonathan’s re-election in 2015 and being behind the New Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Wilson, who is the leader of the Leadership, Peace and Cultural Development Initiative (LPCDI), spoke yesterday in Port Harcourt. The ex-militants said: “The ACF should warn the former vice-president (Atiku) to leave President Jonathan alone, so that he can concentrate on issues of governance. “As long as Atiku is not relenting in the fight to chase President Jonathan out of office in 2015, he will not know peace; neither will the security of his investments in the Niger Delta region. “The ACF leaders are a bundle of jokers, who are playing with fire. If the ACF members so like Atiku, let them advise him and other power-hungry northern elements to leave President Jonathan alone. “President Jonathan has been in office for just two years and they (ACF leaders) have done everything possible to make sure he does not concentrate on development issues. The ACF should not provoke us. “Where were they when their son, Muhammadu Buhari, promised hell for Jonathan? All this while that the Boko Haram warlords have been killing and maiming our people in the North, where was the ACF? “Why have they not called Kawu Baraje and Atiku to order? Why can’t they talk to their own children to leave President Jonathan alone? “The likes of Atiku may be working hard to divide this country. The ACF leaders may have closed their eyes to the devilish acts of their Boko Haram brothers. But this country will remain together and Dr. Jonathan will be re-elected in 2015. “Your Boko Haram people have not allowed President Jonathan to remain focused. Your northern brothers, who believe that the Presidency is their birthright, are doing all they can to distract him and they expect us to keep quiet. When the North held sway for over three decades, they had the support of the South. “If there are people that should be angry, it should be the former freedom fighters, who have not benefited from the Federal Government, especially as the lifeline which the late President Umaru Yar’Adua promised us before we decided to surrender our arms, has not been provided. “Jomo Gbomo is a pseudo name used by MEND fighters while in the creeks. We challenge him to come out publicly for people to see him. “Jomo Gbomo is not in existence as a human being and could not have spoken against our stance on the political developments in the country, especially on the decision to ban Atiku Abubakar from visiting any part of the Niger Delta. “Rather than continually insulting and condemning President
•Adamawa State PDP Chairman Chief Joel Madaki (left), condoling with families of some party members who died last Sunday while returning from the PDP Convention in Abuja...yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
From Bisi Olaniyi, and Clarice Azuatalam, Port Harcourt
Jonathan, the northern politicians should be bold enough to tell Nigerians what they consider to be the sins of the focused President.” The Abubakar Baraje-led faction of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has explained the absence of its members from the post-convention dinner of the party. A statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, said: "As a serious group, we cannot be a party to such squandermania while Nigerian masses are wallowing in abject poverty and our children kept at home instead of being in school because the Federal Government could not meet ASUU's demands. "We wish to have nothing to do with such wasting of public funds and such trivialities associated with Alhaji Bamanga Tukur and his leadership - which explains why he must be kicked out of the National Secretariat of the party. "We cannot be a party to such a gathering while the PDP family is facing serious crisis that if not checked would dim the party's chances of winning future elections." He praised members of the faction from Bayelsa State. The statement warned the Bamanga Tukur-led faction of the PDP to stop threatening to suspend or expel "governors and members of the National Assembly who are indentifying with the true leadership of PDP under Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje". Eze also condemned the abuses being heaped on former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar "just because he has decided to identify with our campaign for justice in the PDP of which he was a leading founding father and was instrumental to the payment of both the staff salaries of those working at the National Headquarters of the party and paid the rent for the National Secretariat in which some of these funny elements are currently operating from for three good years!" He said it was wrong for the Tukur group to call Governor Chibuike Amaechi of a traitor because he has been "standing firm to his rights and likewise most of our people that have stuck out their heads to restore the party to the path of honour and democratic tenants."
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS CRISIS IN PDP
nts to ACF: no peace for Atiku
‘House not thinking of impeaching Jonathan’
HE House of Representatives will not impeach President Goodluck Jonathan, Deputy Minority Leader Sumaila Kawu has said. He warned those who might want to exploit the factionalisation of the PDP to foment trouble in the House to stay away. The All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain from Kano said: “Impeachment of the President is not on our agenda as a parliament and as such it is a figment of anybody’s imagination to suggest anything like that. “On our return from the annual recess, we shall continue with legislation that will put food on the table of Nigerians and not waste our time on none-issues because the 7th House is a serious chamber that cannot be distracted. “The earlier they realised that the House is unshakeable the better for them. They should rather gear their energy towards solving the multi-
PDP crisis inevitable, says Lanlehin
HE senator representing Oyo South Senatorial district, Olufemi Lanlehin, has described the crisis rocking the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as inevitable . The PDP, he said, deserves what it is getting. He spoke with reporters in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital yesterday during the inauguration of two blocks of six classrooms at Yejide Girls Grammar School, Molete and Ebenezer African Church Primary School, Salvation Army. Lanlehin said the crisis in the PDP was self-induced. He said: “ The crisis in the PDP really portends a bad signal. I mean what is happening in PDP is inevitable. PDP has taken the country for a ride for From Dele Anofi, Abuja
farious crisis bedevilled their party than trying to fight a lost battle. “Nigerians are suffering and any responsible government should at this time gear all its energies towards putting smiles on the faces
From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan
too long. They have taken the country for granted for too long. You know, they asked for people’s votes, they get it rightly or wrongly. “ Now, they are beginning to take each other for granted , having taken the country for granted for too long , having taken the country for a ride for too long , they are beginning to rip each other and there is implosion. “Believe you me, if this madness is not well managed, the nation’s democracy may go down the drain because the two feuding sides are really poised for battle and at the end of the day, it is the country that suffers.”
of its citizens but not fighting its party members because of ambitions to perpetuate itself in power. “House is a symbol of Nigeria because of its broader representation of each and every crannies of Nigeria and that is why we are working together to salvage the
country. “It is obvious that some people are very jittery over the mass movement of PDP members to the New PDP and even other political parties and in their desperate attempts to cause trouble and confusion they may want to capitalise on the crisis
to foment trouble in the House. “If the executive or indeed the presidency is feeling guilty for failing to deliver on its mandates to Nigerians, they still have time to do so by working harder and in accordance with constitutional provisions Those spreading false are doing so for personal benefits and maximising their political gains with their masters. “I wish to state here that the House of Representatives is one and indivisible body of 360 members who are committed to the development, political stability and progress of Nigeria. “We will never shy away from those things that will bring happiness to all Nigerians. We are however, using this opportunity to call on those people who may want to use the crisis in the PDP to foment trouble in the House to stay away from the House.We won’t allow anybody to divide us, we cannot be divided.”
PDP NWC to constitute caretaker committee for Kano chapter
HE National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is to constitute a caretaker committee for the party‘s Kano chapter. The party’s National Publicity Secretary, Mr Olisa Metuh, told reporters on yesterday in Abuja that the decision was taken following the expiration of the tenure of the existing executive committee. “Because nature abhors vacuum, a caretaker committee will be constituted, pending when a new executive will be inaugurated for Kano PDP,’’ Metuh said. He said that Gov. Rabi’u Kwankwaso of Kano State would be involved in the process when the time came. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some PDP stakeholders from Kano had earlier visited the national leadership of the party to intimate it of the expiration of the existing state executive. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) gathered that the tenure of the state executive, headed by Alhaji Adamu Sumaila, elapsed on Aug.14.
‘Ruling party’s hold on Nigeria ending’
UMAN rights activist and Executive Director of the African Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), Rev David Ugolor, has said the crises in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were signs that its hold on the country was coming to an end. Rev Ugolor said: “The common man in Nigeria is not interested in which of the political party that is running the governance of the country, but they are interested on how that translate into proper benefits for them in terms of concrete development. “If you put PDP into perspective at the federal level, you would agree with me that there have not been meaningful development. They had the opportunity The agency recalls that Gov. Kwankwaso was among the seven governors that staged a walk out from the party‘s Special National Convention on Aug. 31. The governors had since then formed a parallel PDP with an alleged secretariat having the inscription “New Peoples Democratic Party.” The secretariat, which the group
From Osagie Otabor, Benin
to demonstrate to Nigerians that they were going to be the vehicle that would provide concrete development for the people but unfortunately they missed it. On the performance index of the Ministry of Niger Delta, Rev Ugolor said: “Nothing is happening. Even though you go to Ijaw land where Jonathan comes from, interview anybody from the creek, nothing is happening beyond some pockets of individuals who are in comfort with this government who would not want to listen to alternative views. And we have the responsibility to begin to tell this government that things are not going well.”
intended to inaugurate on Sept 7, however, was not possible as security operative condoned off all access roads to the building following an injunction. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, the PDP National Chairman, had earlier said that he was fully in charge and threatened to declare the seats of those that joined the purported new PDP va-
cant. Meanwhile, PDP has applauded the sealing off of the alleged new secretariat. The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Olisa Metuh, in an earlier statement, said the action was in line with the Abuja High Court injunction of Sept, 6. The court had held that the splin-
ter group should not operate or parade themselves as leaders of the PDP until the hearing of the suit before it. It affirmed the leadership of the party under the chairmanship of Tukur. “By the order of the court, no person is authorised by law to open a secretariat or operate under the name, colour and flag of the PDP other than the one led by Tukur. “The sealing off of the secretariat opened by the splinter group, under the name, colour and flag of the PDP, is therefore, in order and in line with the law,” Metuh said. Several reconciliatory meetings were however going on to have the seven governors and other aggrieved PDP members to return to its fold. NAN gathered that the scrambling for the seat of a new chairman for Kano PDP had commenced in earnest in the state. Ghali Na’Abba and Aminu Wali were among those that visited the PDP leadership but it was not known if they expressed interest in the proposed leadership.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS PDP crisis: Presidency strengthens base
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan is strengthening his camp, in anticipation of more onslaught by the members of the Kawu Baraje faction, it was learnt yesterday. Also, the mainstream Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), led by Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, is preparing for its suit at the Federal High Court, Abuja, for the determination of the legality or otherwise of the faction led by Alhaji Kawu Baraje. The court, presided over by Justice S.O. Chukwu, will resume hearing on September 12. The regular meetings by the President and his camp with the various party leaders and stakeholders may have slowed down governance at the federal and state levels. Many governors now spend more time in Abuja attending caucus meetings related to the festering crises. They also carry out some assignments for the President, who is building resistance to the onslaught by the spinster group. A party source said Tukur has directed the 16 state chairmen of the party loyal to the President and his leadership to prevent further cracks in the troubled chapters. The source also said that the party leadership has mandated the state chairmen to vigorously enforce discipline and sanction members supporting the Baraje faction, in a bid to curtail the split across the branches. Following the directive, the Osun State leadership of the party has suspended chieftains who attended the rally organised by
•Chairman, Police Service Commission Mike Okiro (second left) welcoming Minister of Police Affairs Caleb Olubolade to the wrap-up seminar for Strategic Police Managers on Geopolitical Intelligence Sensitisation and Community Partnership workshops in Abuja…yesterday. With them are IG Mohammed Abubakar (right) and former IG Ibrahim Coomassie
Tukur urges court to jail Baraje, others
Continued from page 1
after the court had nullified his nomination by the PDP Southwest Zonal Chapter. Applicants in the suit filed yesterday by their lawyer, Mr Ajibola Oluyede, are: PDP Chairman Alhaji Bamanga Tukur; Deputy National Chairman, Uche Secondus; National Women Leader Dr. Kema Chikwe and National Publicity Olisah Metuh. They are urging the court to jail Alhaji Kawu Baraje, Dr. Sam Sam Jaja, Oyinlola, Maode Hiliya, Timi Frank, Mrs. Binta Koje, Mallam Nasir Issa, Chief Chukwuemeka Eze, Aliyu Wadada and Mallam Tanko Gomna. PDP is praying the court to jail Baraje, Jaja and Oyinlola for one year or as the court may otherwise determine for alleged criminal contempt which they committed “in their conspiracy and actions to flout the purpose and authority of the court”. The party said they obstructed the administration of justice through subverting the court’s processes and engaged in overt acts of defiance and violation of an order made on
More governors, lawmakers to join Baraje PDP
More Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors and lawmakers will join the Kawu Baraje faction of the party, Adamawa State Governor Murtala Nyako said yesterday. “I know that many governors will soon be joining us while the entire caucus of the PDP at the National Assembly is with us in principle, but others will soon make it public,” the governor said in an interview in Yola. Apart from Nyako, six other governors - Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto), Sule Lamido (Kano), Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano) Babangida Aliyu (Niger) and Abdul Fatah Ahmed (Kwara) - broke off along with former Vice President Atiku Abubakar to form the Baraje faction last month. Nyako urged elders to openly identify “with the cause of progressive democrats” in the PDP under Baraje’s leadership so that together we shall fight for the enthronement of lasting democracy in the PDP. He said: “I want all Nigerians especially our elders to come out openly and identify with people of like minds who believe in true democracy and people-centred political party under Baraje. Nyako praised the governors who formed the new PDP, for their courage and statesmanship. He also hailed Atiku for his courage.
September 2. Justice Safari had ordered in a ruling that “parties maintain the Status Quo ante pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction”.
From Barnabas Manyam, Yola
But the factional Chairman of Adamawa PDP Chief Joel Madaki, who is loyal to PDP National Chairman Bamanga Tukur, said Nyako and Atiku could not deliver quality programmes to Adamawa State. Madaki told reporters that there are no injustice and tyranny in the PDP as claimed by the duo. The PDP factional chair claimed that Nyako directed Secretary to the State Government (SSG) Kobis Ari-Thimnu and two commissioners to represent him at the launch of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state. He said: “Governor Nyako and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar are pretending to fight injustice within the PDP by leaving to form a new PDP. Has he forgotten so soon that he became a governor in 2007 without due process, with no primaries? What about the misused flood victims fund and the salaries/allowances of the civil servants in the state? Are these acts not portraying the government of the PDP in bad light in the eyes of the masses? That is why we are saying that the pronouncement by Nyako to fighting injustice is a complete fallacy.”
The judge was said to have reaffirmed the order on Monday. Despite the order, PDP said, the “contemnors” opened a new office /secretariat on September 4, and appointed
themselves and the others into various offices constituting the PDP National Working Committee (NWC). The applicants said the “contemnors” did so “for the Continued on page 58
two without my saying ‘ok’. So, I said if we got this letter from America, so be it. “If we have agreement with FBI, Metropolitan Police and they are helping us and we are helping them and they write to us and say these are the people we want you to help us investigate, what do you think we should do? You as EFCC, what will you do, coincidence or no coincidence?” He said Atiku had refused to travel to the United States since he left office because of alleged corruption. He went on: “Well, I don’t know what the EFCC has found out about him, but I don’t know if he can go to America. Do you know? I am asking you, do you know? “He travels? Travels to where? To Dubai? Let him go to America and return to Nigeria. “Well, I don’t know what the EFCC has found out about him, but I don’t know if he can go to America. Do you know? I am asking you, do you know?” But Atiku could not be reached last night for his reac-
Group Political Editor
factional National Secretary, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, at Okuku, at the weekend. Also, some chieftains loyal to Oyinlola have declined the offers of the factional Legal Adviser and Auditor zoned to the Southwest by the Baraje group to avoid running into trouble. According to the source, the President has been reaching out to the founding fathers of the PDP, who have not taken sides in the crisis. He has also dispatched emissaries to other eminent Nigerians, including traditional rulers and leaders of thought, to assist in neutralising the break-away group. Also, a group, ‘The Committee for Change and Equality” headed by former Senate President Ahmed Ebute, comprising the President’s loyalists, is coordinating the activities of other proJonathan groups in their onslaught against the faction in the core Middle Belt states. The 16 governors under the leadership of PDP Governors’ Forum (NGF) led by Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio have been mandated to work with the state chairmen to ensure a united party, it was also learnt. A top PDP chieftain in the Southwest said: “The President has our support, although we know that there is a rift between the President and our leader, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. We also have the mandate of the Continued on page 58
Jonathan, Aliyu, Lamido, Nyako meet Continued from page 1
Baraje. Reporters monitored the movement of the governors’ vehicles from a distance of about 600 metres. Earlier in the day as part of the peace efforts, some elders of the party, including former Military President Ibrahim Babangida and former PDP Chairman Ahmadu Ali met yesterday with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa. Other party leaders at the meeting could not be ascertained as at press time. The PDP faction led by Kawu Baraje emerged on August 31 when former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and seven governors announced the splinter
Obasanjo accuses Atiku of corruption
Continued from page 1
By Emmanuel Oladesu,
group after storming out of the mini-convention in Abuja. It could not be confirmed yesterday whether former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who is the arrow head of the reconciliation move, attended the meeting held at House 7 in the State House. Reporters were eaqually barred from the venue of that meeting, which lasted for about one hour. They were also not briefed on the outcome. Besides, no statement was issued. The meeting was, however, said to be a preparatoryto last night’s meeting. Some governors were seen at the Presidential Villa before the meeting. They include Chairman of the PDP Governors’ Forum Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom), Emmanuel Uduaghan (Delta) and Gabriel Suswam (Benue).
I never knew Ibori, says ex-EFCC chair Waziri
FORMER Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs. Farida Waziri, has said that ex-Governor James Ibori was not behind her appointment. She said she never knew Ibori before she was made the EFCC chair. Her position contradicted the claim by exPresident Olusegun Obasanjo that Mrs. Waziri was head-hunted for the job by Ibori. Mrs. Waziri, who spoke in an interview with EFCC Magazine, “Zero Tolerance”, to mark the 10-year anniversary of the agency, said some groups deliberately fought her and churned out false documents. She said: “I never knew him; I never knew James Ibori. When I was appointed, I went to the Villa very often because the President called his staff and told them Farida has free access to him 24/7 whether in the office or Villa. “So, I went there very often and I met Ibori; he was always there.” On the allegation that she aided Ibori’s escape to Dubai through a tip-off, she said: “It’s all lies of the enemies.”
tion. He was away in China. His Media Adviser, Mallam Garba Shehu, said: “Turaki (Atiku) is in China and the time difference is about eight hours. There is no way I could reach him. You can run your story, we will react later. Turaki will wish to personally re-
From Yusuf Alli, Abuja
“By the time I write my book, the truth will prevail. I never knew Ibori; look, I believe what is worth doing at all is worth doing well. I don’t believe in half measures. “By my training and upbringing, I can never betray my country for anyone, for any reason; I never had to go to National Security Adviser with the police to assist, that was when the police was attacked. “If I was in league with him, wouldn’t I have said ‘lie low, don’t worry’, that we will just do that and pretend. Let me ask you, if I was in league with Ibori and was not sincerely pursuing him, would he have gone out of this country to Dubai? “Of course, I was all out and that was how he ran out and went and got himself in more trouble.” Mrs. Waziri also explained that contrary to insinuations, a former Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Mike Aondoakaa (SAN), did not know about her appointment. She said Aondoakaa was shocked that the
act,” he said. The ex-President insisted that Ribadu was not his attack dog. “He is an attack dog to those people who have run foul of the law, people like (former Vice President) Atiku! He is an attack dog to take down Tafa
late President Umaru Yar’Adua picked her outside the list submitted to him. She added: “I think what happened was that my younger brother, Aondoakaa, the former AGF, was close to Ibori. This former AGF is from my area, my local government, but I never knew him. Well, he might have known me because young people know the elderly. “When I was in Turkey with my husband, one of my relations called and said, ‘you know your brother is now the AG’. I said ‘really’. People probably linked me to him and thought he brought me. “Believe you me; he was against my becoming the EFCC chairman. When the President picked my CV, that was when he came to my house for the first time and said the President had shocked them. “What happened? He said ‘he picked your CV, now are you going to do the job. Because the press will come after you, why don’t you answer now so that I can go back?’ “I asked him, ‘is it the president that sent you?’ He said ‘yes’. I said ‘I will think about
Balogun, my own Inspector General of Police? Is that what you call attack dog?” He denied influencing a report of the EFCC which led to the exclusion of some politicians from the 2007 election. Obasanjo said: “No, no. Yes!. He brought a report to me and
Continued on page 58
said these people are corrupt; how can I in my position receive a report that says these people are corrupt, and then I say ‘extol him as a governor’. Is that the type of leader you want me to be? I will not be that. So he brought a report; I didn’t ask him to carry out an
investigation; he even came out and said he had found 28 governors as corrupt. He said EFCC under Ribadu investigated him while in ofContinued on page 58
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THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
From left: Chairman, Electricity Management Service (EMS) Team Peter Eweso (left), Chairman, Senate Committee on Power Senator Phillip Aduda, Minister of Power Prof Chinedu Nebo, Minister of State for Power Hajia Zainab Kuchi and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Power Ambassador Godknows Igali, during the inauguration of the newly-constituted Management Team of EMS in Abuja... yesterday. PHOTO: ABAYOMI FAYESE
CRISIS IN PDP
Southwest PDP: Obasanjo alone can’t fill zonal position T
HE leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Southwest has faulted reports that the Office of the National Secretary and other offices meant for the Southwest will be conceded to former President Olusegun Obasanjo as part of the ongoing reconciliation efforts. The leadership of the party, consisting of the Zonal Caretaker Committee, the State Chairmen Forum, the Elders Committee, the Stakeholders Forum, the Organisation and Mobilisation Committee, the Women and Youth fora, said: “No one individual or group, no matter how powerful, can singlehandedly fill positions allotted to the Southwest zone. We are opposed to anything short of a free, fair and democratic congress where delegates would elect their leaders as ordered by the court in Suit No FHC/ L/CS/347/2012.” In a statement yesterday by the Acting Chairman, Caretaker Committee, Southwest PDP,Adedeji Doherty, the party noted that it was the irregularities of the past that necessitated the sack of the erstwhile Zonal Executive Committee, was headed by ousted Ekiti State Governor Segun Oni – and the removal
‘Don’t blame ex-president for crisis’
By Jeremiah Oke
ORMER Minister for Commerce and Industries Chief Jubril Martin-Kuye has said it iswrong to blame the crisis in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on former President Olusegun Obasanjo. He said the PDP family should appreciate Obasanjo for mediating between the two factions of the party. Kuye spoke at his Ijebu-Ode country home during the 10th annual ancestral memorial prayers. He said the people alleging the former president masterminded the problems in the party do not appreciate his reconciliation roles. Kuye described the crisis in the party as a storm in a tea cup, adding that the division was a challenge to unify party members ahead of 2015 elections. He said the issue would be resolved before the 2015 general elections. Kuye said: “Obasanjo should be appreciated for trying to bring all the factions together. We can see all his effort to reconcile the two factions and resolve the crises in the party. He cannot be the evil behind the brouhaha in the party.” of the former National Secretary, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola by the court. The party said any attempt to fill the vacant position of the National Secretary, except as prescribed by the court, would be tantamount to another illegality. “It would be recalled that a Court Order/Judgment was given in the matter between Chief Adebayo Dayo and others Vs Prince
Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Peoples Democratic Party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Suit No. FHC/ ABJ/CS/504/2012 whereby Oyinlola,our representative from Osun State, was relieved of his duties. “In the same Order/Judgment, the court also directed that the zone should conduct a Congress to nominate a replacement to the above po-
sition. “The court says inter alia ‘that an order is hereby granted directing the third defendant (INEC) to rectify the records of the second defendant (PDP) by deleting the name of the 1st defendant (Oyinlola) and replacing same in accordance with the provision of the Constitution of the first defendant with a candidate nominated at a valid congress of the Southwest zone chapter of the 1st defendant (PDP).’ “In obedience to the Orders and Judgment of the Court, the Caretaker Committee under the supervision of the former Chairman, Chief Ishola Filani on Saturday, July 13, 2013 conducted a Special Congress where Prof. Wale Oladipo (Osun State) was nominated as Oyinlola’s replacement. “We have since filed the returns to the court and the National Secretariat. All that is remaining is for the court to decide the matter, one way or the other, and the national leadership of our great party will act accordingly,” Doherty said. He said any deviation from the path set by the law would be counter-productive and throw up another round of crisis instead of resolving it.
ASUU: PDP youths to protest against Fed Govt
HE battle against the Federal Government’s refusal to meet the demands of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) got a major support yesterday as the National Youth Leader of the new Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Comrade Timi Frank, vowed to mobilise students for a protest against the government. According to the leader who spoke in Abuja, the new PDP would ensure that the striking lecturers call off the strike. Although he described the proposed protest as a peaceful one, he noted that meetings have been ongoing to ensure that students return to schools. Frank said: “And it is my position today that we should stand to protect ev-
From John Ofikhenua and Chioma Onyia, Abuja
ery youth that belongs to PDP in this country. I will defend their rights at all levels. No matter the intimidation, no matter the harassment, we will do everything we can to make sure that Nigerian youths will go back to school.” On the protest, he said : “I have been holding meetings with various student groups to address them and tell them our plans about what we want to do. So, it is something that we are going to come out emmasse in a peaceful manner to make sure that the Nigerian youths must go back to school.” Commenting on the 2015 general elections, the youth leader noted that the new PDP would not entrust pow-
ers into the hands of politicians who place youth education as the least priority. He said: “Yes! It is something I have kicked against even before today. Everybody knows. I have said it . But this is the issue that the new PDP will address and I am going to take this campaign; as a member of the new PDP, I am going to lead a protest campaign against the current government of today because the government of today has not convinced me that they have plans or that they have future to rescue Nigerian children. “Nigerian children are at home and nobody is talking about it. What they are talking of is 2015. We will not give them 2015 . PDP will not not give 2015 to any leader that will not stand by the youths of this country; that
will not resolve the ASUU crisis. “Anybody that wants to stand under the PDP will tell us how he is going to take care of the welfare and the well-being and the unemployment of the Nigerian youths. Until that is being done, we will not relent even as members of PDP. So I urge all Nigerians to have confidence in the new PDP youth group under Baraje. “We are going to fight to make sure that youths go back to school. We will not keep quiet because this is PDP government. We will not keep quiet because the ASUU strike does not affect the PDP. Majority of the young students today are members of PDP therefore we will do everything we can to make sure that Nigerian youths go back to schools.”
New PDP may open office in Kogi •We are not in crisis, says Wada
From Muhammad Bashir Lokoja
S the crisis rocking the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) thickens, there are moves by some aggrieved members of the party in Kogi State to join the Abubakar Kawu Baraje-led faction. They plan to open a new secretariat in Lokoja, the state capital. The state Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Hassan Salau, in a text message, said he was not aware of the plot to factionalise the party. He wrote: “I am not aware.” But, Special Adviser to Governor Idris Wada on Media and Strategy, Jacob Edi, said the party had never been in any crisis. He said the administration of Wada had given members of the party a sense of belonging. “This administration is focused and will never be distracted in it transformation programme for the people of the state.” Some of the aggrieved members, it was were are supporters of former governorship aspirant of the PDP, Alhaji Jibrin Isah Echocho. One of the members of the parallel PDP told The Nation that their reason for joining the Baraje group was not only because of the impasse at the national level, but also because of developmental backwardness in the state, led by the Idris Wada PDP administration. Attempts to speak with Echocho failed.
Crisis can break up PDP, says don
From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan
UNIVERSITY teacher, Prof. Oluwole Charles Akinyokun of the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), has said the crisis in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) can break it up. He spoke in Ibadan yesterday at the 80th birthday anniversary lecture of Chief Dejo Raimi, delivered at the Trenchard Hall, University of Ibadan. Akinyokun, a professor of Computer Science, who spoke on the topic, ‘Philosophy, Conflict and Conflict Resolution: The Practice, in Nigeria’, said President Goodluck Jonathan’s remark that the problem rocking the party it a minor issue was a mild way of expressing it. At the event, which had in attendance the wife of the former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Bola; President, Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE), Robert Adeyinka Adebayo; wife of the former governor of Oyo State, Rashidi Ladoja, Mutiat, former Minister of Special Duties, Wole Oyelese, among others, the guest speaker maintained that “unmanaged or poorly managed conflicts generate a break down in trust and lost productivity”. He said: “By resolving conflict successfully, you can solve many of the problems that it has brought to the surface, as well as getting benefits that you might not at first expect.”
New PDP Southwest faction meets in Akure
From Damisi Ojo,Akure
HE Abubakar Baraje-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Southwest has held a meeting in Akure, the Ondo State capital. Sources said the meeting was held at the weekend, with some aggrieved leaders, including former National Assembly members, in attendance. A source, who was at the meeting held at a popular hotel in Ijapo, said two key members of the past State Executive members of Ekiti State attended the meeting. Six former members of the National Assembly members, nine former members of the State House of Assembly and nine leaders of the party spread across the three senatorial districts of the state were also said to be in support of the new PDP. The source said a former principal officer of the House of Assembly was the rallying point of the group.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS Kwara CAN suspends participation in religious matters From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
HE Kwara State branch of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has suspended its participation in the state’s Committee for Religious Matters. The association alleged that appointments at every level in the state are in favour of Muslims. The state CAN chairman, Rev James Folaranmi, told reporters yesterday in Ilorin, the state capital, that the association was demanding fair representation at all levels from the government. The cleric threatened that “if the requests are not attended to, other actions may follow” in the next seven days. The Kwara CAN is asking for immediate stop to “marginalisation of Christians, either by design or connivance; a fair share of Christian chairmanship candidates in the October 26 local government election in the state; a fair representation in the State Executive Council and board appointments at the state and federal levels; a stop to “marginalisation” of Christians in the civil service and denial of employment to Christian job seekers. It is also asking for the use of merit in the appointment and posting of heads of government-owned schools; “depoliticisation” of the Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board, where it said Muslims are decide for the board and use pilgrimage slots for political patronage. The association called for the allocation of a Christian cemetery,which it said has been pending before the state government since 2009.
Assembly okays renaming of Kwara Varsity after Saraki
From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
Nasarawa killings: Drama as panel impounds lawyers’ phones T HE Judicial Commission of Enquiry probing the killing of 63 police personnel and 10 State Security Service (SSS) operatives in Lakyo village of Nasarawa State yesterday confiscated the mobile telephone sets of lawyers and commission workers. This followed the reports on the presentation of the police, which the commission took in camera on Monday. The commission was said to have been miffed that what transpired at the closed-door hearing of the police report appeared in some national dailies yesterday. The Officer in Charge (OC) of Legal Services of the Nasarawa State Police Command, Saleh Adam Maidawa, was said to have drawn the panel’s attention to the reports on its proceedings during the closed-door session. Maidawa was said to have told the commission that the proceedings of the previous closed-door session were
From Sanni Onogu, Lafia
“leaked” to the press. It was also learnt that lawyers who arrived late for yesterday’s sitting were denied entry into the Magistrates’ Court II venue of the proceedings on Shendam Road in Lafia, the state capital. Besides the embargo earlier placed on the three “security memoranda”, our reporter gathered that the panel’s workers took oath of allegiance ahead of the closeddoor sessions. The workers were also said to have been subjected to intense interrogation to know how the panel’s proceedings got to the newspapers’ front pages. The three submissions, tagged: Security Memoranda by the panel, included the presentations of the Nasarawa State Police Command, the SSS and the Nasarawa State Government on the killing of the
security personnel in Lakyo village. It was learnt that a drama occurred during the submissions of the SSS, leading the panel to withhold the lawyers’ and workers’ handsets until the sitting ended. During the cross-examination of an SSS witness, a lawyer, Ovye Ezekiel Yakubu, asked how many security men went on the operation. Yakubu was said to be oblivious of the police counsel’s complaints on the “leak” because he was not there when it was made. The panel chairman, Justice Joseph Fola Gbadeyan, was said to have asked Yakubu to underscore the relevance of the question. The lawyer’s mobile phone was said to have rung at that point. It was learnt that as Yakubu wanted to pick the call, the chairman directed him to hand over the handset. After hand-
ing it over, the chairman reportedly asked Yakubu who the caller was and the lawyer said it was a “fellow lawyer”. The panel chairman was said to have mandated one of the workers to dial the caller’s number to ascertain if he was “truly a lawyer” and not a “journalist”. The caller was said to have identified himself as a lawyer and Yakubu’s friend. The panel yesterday adjourned till tomorrow. The one-day adjournment, according to our source, followed a request allegedly made by a counsel representing the state government, Sambo Vongjen, that the legal team would be ready for the panel tomorrow. Justice Gbadeyan ordered the lawyers at the hearing to switch off their handsets and hand them over to the panel’s Secretary, Abubakar Sadiq Ishaq.
HE Kwara State House of Assembly yesterday approved the renaming of state university (KWASU) after the late frontline politician, Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki. KWASU has, by law, become Abubakar Sola Saraki University (ASSU). About two months ago, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed initiated a bill seeking to name KWASU after the late politician. The bill for the new name was read for the third time before its passage yesterday. It had been subjected to public hearing after it scaled first and second reading. The report of the House Committee on Education and Human Capital Development said 40 stakeholders made oral and written submissions on the matter. Speaker Razaq Atunwa said: “However, only five of the stakeholders were against the proposed Bill… on the ground that state and local government resources are used to fund the university. Hence, KWASU should not be renamed after Sola Saraki.”
Dangote Cement begins ‘practical’ block-making training
ANGOTE Cement has begun “practical” training and demonstration of how to make strong blocks for buildings. The exercise is part of the company’s campaign to prevent incessant building collapse across the land. The company also donated tools and materials to the block makers to enable them make quality blocks. It also held an interactive training with block moulders in the Southwest in its ongoing enlightenment programme for block makers and other sandcrete sub-sector players. During the session, the stakeholders were trained on
how to mix the right quantity of materials to make blocks. The training, which is in partnership with the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) and the Council of Registered Engineers (COREN), enabled Dangote Group to enlighten participants on how to produce quality blocks for strong buildings. The Southwest Regional Head of Dangote Cement, Ms Funmi Sani, said the company was touched by the rising building collapse and the deaths it causes. She said these are traceable to the low quality material, especially blocks, used in constructing buildings.
•Enugu State Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and his men showing reporters drums containing alleged stolen crude oil in Enugu...yesterday.
•Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio (right) receiving a goodwill message for President Goodluck Jonathan from the leader of the New Northern Political Frontier, Dr. Abdul Ahmed Isiaq (left) in Abuja. With them is Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Anyim Pius Anyim.
Airports get additional security tools
By Kelvin Osa Okunbor
HE Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has installed additional modern security equipment at the nation’s airports. FAAN’s General Manager, Corporate Communications, Mr Yakubu Dati, explained that the authority has installed seven new X-ray scanning machines at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos. He said five of such equipment were installed at the cargo basement of the international terminal and one at the Hajj and Cargo terminal. Another, he added, was installed at the airport’s Domestic Terminal 1. The equipment, Dati said, are in addition to existing security machines at the airport. He said: “All the other airports in the county are also benefitting from the installation of these new scanning machines, which include cargo screening machines, carry-on screening machines, hand-held metal detectors, three dimensional body scanners, hold baggage screening machines and walk-through metal detectors. “These scanners will help us to ensure increased security surveillance of outgoing baggage for aircraft bulk hold. This is in addition to the CCTV cameras installed within the airports...”
North’s group to Presidency: call Asari-Dokubo to order
PRO-DEMOCRACY group, the National Democratic Forum (NDA), has condemned the threat of bloodshed by a former Niger Delta militant, Mujaheedin Asari-Dokubo, if President Goodluck Jonathan is not returned in the 2015 election. It said the Presidency should call him to order. The group, in statement in Minna, the Niger State capital, by its National Coordinator, Mr. Jonathan Vatsa, said Asari-
From Jide Orintunsin, Minna
Dokubo’s utterances were inimical to democratic norms and ethos. Asari-Dokubo’s outburst on Channels Television, last Sunday, is threatening the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP’s) peace talks. Former military leader, General Ibrahim Babangida, has indicated that he may pull out of the mediation in the party’s crisis following his complaints that Asari-
Dokubo’s “reckless” comment could frustrate the efforts of the seven-man panel, headed by former President Olusegun Obasanjo. The NDF frowned at the Presidency’s nonchalant attitude to Asari-Dokubo’s utterance since he made the threat. The statement reads: “It is sad that the Presidency, and indeed President Goodluck Jonathan, have not seen anything wrong in AsariDokubo’s reckless statement
and called him to order. It is not proper for the government to keep sealed lips on a comment that is capable of throwing spanner in our fragile democracy. “In a democracy, leaders do not emerge through threats. The emergence of leaders is through a non-violent electoral process of voting and not via intimidation and threat to life. We belong to a civilised society and democracy in Nigeria cannot be different from what obtains globally.”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS Falana gives govt ultimatum on child education By Adebisi Onanuga
AGOS lawyer and human rights’ activist Mr. Femi Falana has urged the Federal Government to comply with the judgment of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Court on the right of every Nigerian child to education. He said if a report of compliance with the judgment was not filed in the registry of the court by September 30, he would file a suit in the ECOWAS Court to direct the relevant organs of the sub-region to impose sanctions on Nigeria for failure to fulfil its obligations under Article 77 of the Revised Treaty of the ECOWAS. The activist wrote a letter, titled: “Demand for compliance with the ECWAS Court judgment on the right of every Nigerian child to education”, addressed to the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke (SAN). A non-government organisation (NGO), Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), sued the Federal Government to the ECOWAS Court to seek an order for the right of every Nigerian child to education. Falana, counsel to SERAP, reminded the minister of Justice of the failure of the Federal Government to comply with the relief granted his client over 10 months after the ECOWAS Court delivered judgment in the matter.
Lawyer sues FRSC over number plates
Oritsejafor: treat kidnappers as armed robbers, terrorists
HE Federal Government came under fire yesterday over the high rate of kidnapping in the country. The Christian Association of Nigerian (CAN) accused the President Goodluck Jonathanled government of incompetence in handling a situation it described as criminal. CAN President Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor said: “Nigeria may be in for an even worse situation than it is with the terrorists’ activities.” He advised the Federal Government to treat kidnappers as armed robbers and terrorists to stop the menace. A statement issued in Abuja by the Special Assistant, Media and Public Affairs to
the CAN president, Kenny Ashaka, said: “The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, received with dismay, the news of the kidnapping of the Archbishop of the Niger Delta Province of the Anglican Communion of Nigeria, His Grace, Most Rev. Ignatius Kattey and his wife, Beatrice, who has been released. “He appealed to the kidnappers of the Archbishop to release him unconditionally and unharmed as a means of atoning for the sacrilege they have committed. “Pastor Oritsejafor observes that the action or crime of forcefully taking away or
holding somebody as a prisoner, usually for ransom, has become a showy display, a kind of publicity stunt in ways that explain the insecurity in the country. “Given the ferocious and violent manner these kidnappings are carried out, the CAN president is worried that if the crime of kidnapping is not matched with equally harsh or severe punishments, in circumstances where kidnappers shoot and kill people before forcefully abducting the victims, Pastor Oritsejafor calls on the Federal Government to treat kidnappers as armed robbers and terrorists by invoking laws to stop crimes and criminality.” In the statement, the CAN
By Oziegbe Okoeki
president wishes the Prelate of the Methodist Church Nigeria, His Eminence Dr. Sunday Ola Makinde, a fruitful and beneficial retirement. Pastor Oritsejafor congratulated the new Prelate, Most Rev. Samuel Uche, saying as he stepped into the shoes of his predecessor, he should strive to be a source of inspiration to Christians “and in particular to us in the CAN family.”
THE Chairman, Committee on Health in the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr. Hodewu Suru Avoseh, has urged doctors in government hospitals to be friendly when attending to patients. He spoke during the committee’s visit to OrileAgege General Hospital as part of the committee’s oversight functions. The lawmaker said he was informed that some doctors were fond of using derogatory words on patients. This, according to him, negates the service charter of the state government, which is geared towards efficient service delivery to people. Avoseh reiterated the government’s commitment to providing prompt and qualitative health services to Lagosians. He assured that more drugs and personnel would be provided in general hospitals to complement the existing ones. The chairman said the purpose of the visit was to know how the medical personnel discharged their duties.
861 graduate from Aviation By Kelvin Osa Okunbor
•From left: Chief of Defence Staff, Adm. Ola Ibrahim; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Alhaji Aliyu Sumaila; and Commandant, National Defence College (NDC), Rear Adm. Thomas Lokoson, at the inauguration of NDC Course 22 in Abuja…yesterday.
From Damisi Ojo, Akure
KURE lawyer and human rights activist, Mr. Morakinyo Ogele, yesterday sued the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) over the issuance of new number plates to motorists. He is seeking five reliefs in a suit filed at the Federal High Court, Akure, the Ondo State capital, dated September 8. He is pleading for: •A declaration by the FRSC (respondent) to start impounding vehicles from October 1 without an order of competent court of law as null and void and contrary to Section 44 (1) of the 1999 Constitution; •An order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondents, their men, women, agents and officers serving under them from compelling owners of vehicles to obtain what the respondents tagged new number plates and from seizing their vehicles; and •A declaration that the number plate already being used by vehicle owners produced by the respondents and obtained by vehicle owners after paying necessary fees is still subsisting as there were no genuine reasons offered by FRSC to change the old number plates.
From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
Health committee urges doctors to be friendly
Erring road contractors face sanction
HE Federal Ministry of Works has threatened not to pay any of its contractors, who engages in shoddy road construction. The Deputy Director, Federal Ministry of Works, Mr. Umuna Ikenna, said this in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, when reacting to an allegation by Mr. Kunle Fajembola, a member of the Campaign for Democracy, who accused the government of using substandard contractors and materials. “The ministry has decided that any contractor, who does a shoddy job on our road sites, will no longer be paid,” he said. At a stakeholders’ forum in Ibadan, civil rights activists attributed the bad roads across the country to the poor work and materials by the ministry’s contractors. Ikenna, an engineer, however, identified factors, such as overloading, lack of rail lines and dumping of refuse in the drainage as some of the reasons the roads do not last. He added: “Durability of roads depends on designs. People may overload the vehicles. Those that carry cement and factory goods overload their vehicles. Loads meant for two trips are carried per trip.” Ikenna said this was why the Ministry of Works introduced
weigh bridges at Ojota and Owode Onirin in Lagos to know the weight of loads carried by vehicles, who plied the highways. “There is over-dependence on road transportation. For over 16 years, there has been no rail construction, we depend on road transportation. It is recently that government is reviving the Lagos-Kano rail lines,” he said. Ikenna said once the rail system becomes assured, the pressure on the roads would
be reduced. The engineer decried the attitude of Nigerians, who dump refuse inside the drainage, thereby causing erosion to wash away roads each time it rains. He said the increase in vehicles, which plied the roads, also contributed to road damage. “For instance, in 2012, over nine million vehicles were on the roads.” Mr. Ikenna said the major problem of road building,
maintenance and rehabilitation was funding, which, according to him, had not been adequate for some time now. “Annually, the ministry gets between N100 billion and N102 billion to fund the building and maintenance of the highways and this has not been adequate,” he said. He urged public/private partnership in fixing the roads, so that there would be an agreement as when the sponsors would recoup their money.
THE Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) said yesterday that it graduated 861 aviation professionals, including pilots, air traffic controllers, aircraft maintenance engineers and others between 2011 and this year. The Principal of NCAT, Cpt. Chinyere Kalu, said this in Lagos at the public presentation of a book by one of the instructors of the college. She said the graduation of 861 professionals was evidence that the college is covering the time list in the training of core aviation professionals. The principal said the college has embarked on an extensive growth plan, organisational restructuring and equipment upgrade, to strengthen aviation training capacity in Nigeria and the West African sub-region. She said the college had embarked on the acquisition of training equipment: flight simulator; trainer helicopter; mock-up helicopter for engineers; language laboratory as well as a gas turbine trainer.
Nigeria, Austria sign MoU on trade
ISTORY was made yesterday in Lagos, with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Nigeria and Austria. The event, the two governments said, would herald huge investment inflow into both countries. Signing on behalf of the Austrian government, the President, Austrian Federal Economic Chamber, Mr. Christoph Leitl, said his government is interested in developing a long standing relationship with Nigeria in areas of the economy, such as power sector, solar energy, mining, machinery and others.
By Okwy Iroegbu - Chikezie
He said his government would work with the big manufacturing firms and small and medium scale enterprises. Leitl hinged the success of the planned trade relations of both countries on the success of the planned energy sector reforms and infrastructure upgrade planned by the present administration. The President of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), Alhaji Muhammad Badaru Abubakar, said the current global economic strategy
adopted by countries, such as the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China); Europe and USA on trade matters underscores the value to promote economic diversification, trade facilitation and international trade cooperation in support of economic growth and poverty reduction. He encouraged the Austrian investors, noting that the economy recorded a robust Gross Domestic Products (GDP) growth of 7.43 per cent in 2011 and 6.58 per cent last year. Abubakar said on the average, the annual growth targets were surpassed in eight of the 14 broad sectors highlighted in the transformation
agenda. The president, who was represented by the Second Deputy President, Iyalode Alaba Lawson, said with this ranking, the nation’s GDP improved from the 44th position to the 36th position. He said: “Since we are Austria’s second largest trade partner in Sub-Saharan Africa, all hands need to be on deck to make it work. He, however, highlighted some challenges experienced in the country currently relating to infrastructure and electricity, but encouraged them to seek investment in agriculture, manufacturing, solid minerals, oil and gas and tourism.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
• From left: Group Executive, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, VISA, Kamran Siddiqi; Group Managing Director/CEO, Diamond Bank PLC, Dr. Alex Otti; Business Development Manager, VISA, Uloma Ike; Country Manager–West Africa, VISA, Ade Ashaye; and Head, Cards Services, Diamond Bank PLC, Joachim Iloemezue during a courtesy visit by the Visa Group Executive to Diamond Bank’s head office in Lagos.
PHCN will cease to exist in few weeks, says Nebo T
HE end has come for the Power Holding Com pany of Nigeria (PHCN), the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo has said. He said the end would come after the handover of the entities to the core investors. Nebo, who spoke in Abuja yesterday after the inauguration of the Electricity Management Services Limited (EMSL), said in the next few weeks, the Federal Government may declare the Transitional Electricity Market, signalling the end of PHCN. His words: “I can tell you that PHCN has almost ceased to exist. Once the Transitional Electricity Market is declared in a few weeks time, that is the end of PHCN. Functionally, it is ceasing to exist, but there must be a formal hand-over, and once that takes place, they will cease to exist.” Asked to comment on the payment of PHCN staff severance package, Nebo said that the Ministry has paid almost all the staff retirement benefits, adding that the ministry needs to declare a tran-
From John Ofikhenua and Chioma Onyia, Abuja
sition electricity market after the conditions for the declaration have been put in place. Nebo said: “We have come very close to the end of PHCN. Basically, almost all of the staff have been paid. What is left is independent retirement benefit that is going to be paid into their accounts. We are actually ready to hand over and many of the companies are willing to take over.” He revealed that the privatisation of the PHCN successor companies is almost concluded, stressing that there is need to ensure a certification for all the equipment of the distribution, generation and transmission sub-sectors. He said there is need to ensure that equipment that are being brought into Nigeria and the facilities that are going to be used in the electricity industry, are all top brand, and not fake equipment that are risky to the lives of people, and that could endanger the community.
While stressing the need for the EMSL, Nebo said: “If they are doing expansion, they cannot expand in vacuum. They are going to be bringing in equipment, and we want to make sure that the equipment meet global best standards with regards to efficiency and proficiency,” adding that the EMSL is to take over the responsibilities of some non-core professional and subsidiary services of the defund PHCN and it’s successor companies. He listed the mandate of EMSL to include, providing all needed ancillary and support services to the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI), and as well render, Engineering Laboratory, Meter Test Stations, Central Store System, Testing and Certification of Major Electrical Power Equipment services. It would also provide the platform for standardisation in the industry, thereby archiving the needed power sector data and information management
Meanwhile, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Senator Philip Aduda, said both the Senate and House of Representatives committees on Power would invite the new owners of the PHCN throw light on their Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) and the milestones for the sector. He said this is the best time to invite the investors for explanation since the committees would not want to scare investors away once they have commenced business. He said: “Privatisation is about liberalisation. Now we expect those who own these companies will begin to move to action for Nigeria to have steady power supply. We are soon going to invite them at the various committees, both at the House of Reps and in the Senate. We are waiting for them so that we do not scare investors away by calling them everyday. Now that the ship is sailing, we need to find out what they are doing. We need to find out the Power Purchase Agreement, the milestones that need to be achieved.”
Fed Govt bans issuance of new insurance licences
HE Federal Govern ment has ordered the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) not to issue new insurance licences to investors. Instead, they should acquire some of the distressed insurance companies. This order was handed down yesterday by the Minister of State for Finance Dr. Yerima Lawan Ngama at the inauguration of the Board of NAICOM in Abuja. He lamented that there were many distressed insurance companies in the country. He urged local and foreign investors “to buy two or three of these distressed insurance companies, merge them together, recapitalise them and run the companies”. He directed the new Board them not to “yield to pressure, we have so many insurance companies that are just
• Suspends further allocation to NAICOM From Nduka Chiejina (Asst. Editor), Abuja
on the shelf, distressed, but it is either we liquidate them or get some serious people to take them over. So, there is no need to issue new licenses when they have several licences to take over. It is just like the banking system, if we have so many distressed banks, why should we issue a new license to a bank, why not buy one of the distressed ones and restructure it? That is why the sector does not have a single distressed bank. So, the same thing with insurance, we have so many of them. Anybody who is interested in investing in them, you are
welcome.” Ngama, who implored the insurance regulator to be up and doing in its responsibilities said the Federal Government has initiated several reforms for the insurance designed to make the regulator stronger as well as have the capacity to bark and bite. As part of the reform exercise, the minister of state for finance disclosed also that the year will be the last time the insurance commission will get budgetary subvention from the government. From next year, he said the governmentexpects NAICOM to leave up to its responsibility by contributing to the treasury. In his words, “this is the last time NAICOM will get one kobo from the budget”. The minister lamented that insurance penetration was low in the country because of what he called “the rigidity of the system”.
IGERIA spends not less than N10 billion yearly importing milk, Minister of State for Agriculture Bukar Tijani said yesterday. He urged animal scientists to raise a breed of cattle that could help to meet the demand of the nation. The minster spoke at the second Animal Science Association of Nigeria (ASAN) and Nigerian Institute of Animal Science (NIAS) joint yearly meeting in Abuja Tijani said the Federal Government had also signed an agreement with Friesland Foods Limited for 10 per cent inclusion of local dairy produce in its milk production in order to encourage livestock farmers. He said the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) of the government which involves the livestock value-chain has been sub-divided into four other value chains to further explore potentials of the sector. The sub-chain includes: leather, dairy, poultry and beef. The NIAS inducted 171 new animal scientists, thereby taking the membership figure to 1541. About 514 young
The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said the government expects the insurance industry to support the economy which was why it created the Board. Chairman of the Board Chibudum Nwuche said the Board would study the activities of the industry before making a leap, assuring that it would make a difference.
From Olugbenga Adanikin and Jane Maha, Abuja
animal science graduates from 16 universities were inducted into the corps of Graduate Animal Scientist (GAS). Tijani said government is working to improve the quality of beef production in the country. The NIAS President, Prof. Placid Njoku, said the young graduates passed the institute’s maiden graduate animal scientist exanimation in June as part of the institute’s catch-them-young practice of uplifting the standards of training, practice and competitiveness of the graduates of animal science. Country Representative of Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, Dr. Louise Setshwaelo, said a lot needs to be done to improve productivity levels and competitiveness in the livestock industry, if it is to attract and encourage significant investment. Setshwaelo, who gave the keynote address, urged butchers and operators of slaughter houses to adhere to safety standards.
Lack of skills cause of unemployment, says Aganga
ACK of relevant skills is the reason unem ployment is so high in the country, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga, has said. Speaking at the opening of the 19th Industrial Training Fund (ITF) Biennial National training Conference in Calabar, yesterday, Aganga said job opportunities are abundant in the country contrary to widely held opinions that there are no jobs. He said for a country like Nigeria attracting so much investment, there are jobs everywhere, but there is a dearth of people equipped with relevant skills to handle them. “We have not been able to ensure relevant skills are acquired. For instance we have a lot of construction going on in the country, but how many electricians do we have? he queried. While commending the ITF
S • Dr Okonjo-Iweala
Nigeria spends N10b yearly to import milk
From Nicholas Kalu, Calabar
for their efforts so far, he reminded them that the onus was on them and other relevant agencies to deal with the situation. He emphasised the need to fill the skills gap, urging training to be tailored according to the needs of states in the country. Chairman of the Governing council of ITF, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, said the conference was organised to bring contemporary Human Capital Development issues to the fore, and in addition, to use the outcomes of the deliberations to shape policy directions in relation to training and manpower development in the nation. Director-General of ITF, Professor Longmas Wapmuk, said they remained committed to achieving the objectives of the transformation Agenda of the Federal government through skills acquisition.
Customs may re-open warehouses today
EVEN days after Cus toms’ bonded ware houses belonging to Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCo ) Plc and Skyways Aviation Handling Company Limited ( SAHCOL), were shut, feelers emerged last night that the facility would be opened today. The opening of the import cargo bonded warehouses, an official of Customs at the Lagos Airport command confirmed, is sequel to the approval of the Comptroller- General of Customs. The official said the affected organisations : NAHCO, SAHCOL, clearing agents, airlines and stakeholders, yesterday signed a collective undertaking to abide by the new terms of engagement contained in the memorandum
By Kelvin Osa Okunbor
of understanding worked out for operations at the airport. The official said stakeholders have agreed that they would abide by the new rules of engagement , part of which is the new processes for the release of cargo from the warehouse . The official said all knotty issues related to improper documentation and exit of cargo from the warehouses at variance with extant regulations have been addressed by stakeholders . Security still remained tight around the cargo complex yesterday as officials of the Federal Operations Unit of the Nigeria Customs Service, stationed their vehicles at locations leading into the complex.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Sawmillers, timber merchants honour Fayemi
KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi was all smiles yesterday as a crowd of admirers poured encomiums on him. He was honoured by members of the Sawmillers’ Association and Timber Traders’ Association with the Distinguished Leadership Award. They said the Fayemi administration had improved the standard of living, adding that the state had been experiencing “unprecedented transformation”. The unions presented the award to the governor at a colourful rally in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital. The rally, which was attended by the unions’ members, caused a traffic gridlock in Okesa. Chairman of the Sawmillers’ Association Kayode Ogunrotifa said the union’s members were impressed by the administration’s policies and programmes, such as the empowerment of artisans, youths and traders; free health missions; payment of monthly stipends to senior citizens; road construction; and beautification of Ado-Ekiti, among others. Chairman of the Timber
•Fayemi acknowledging cheers at the rally... yesterday.
Traders’ Association Francis Adebayo lauded Fayemi for making Ekiti a model state, despite its limited resources. He said: “We are happy that you have made our state a model in Nigeria and with your wonderful performance so far, we have unanimously agreed to support you for another term.
We are solidly behind your reelection, so that you can continue the good work you are doing in virtually all sectors.” Fayemi described the unions as important partners in the state’s development, saying his administration would continue to support them. He said Ekiti ranks among
the major suppliers of timber in Nigeria, with the sub-sector providing employment opportunities for many people. The governor pledged to donate buses to the unions and look into their other demands. He said they contribute greatly to the Internally Gen-
Fashola inaugurates 7km road in Ibeshe
OMMERCIAL activities at Ibeshe, a rural community in Ikorodu Local Government Area of Lagos State, have improved, following the construction of a sevenkilometre road. Inaugurating the road yesterday, Governor Babatunde Fashola said the project was in fulfillment of his electoral promises to residents. He said: “I remember that this Ibeshe road was an electoral issue during my campaign. Infact, the 7km road took us 45 minutes to travel. We have done
By Miriam Ekene-Okoro
that journey today in less than 10 minutes. “The road was broken and there was virtually no commercial activity here. The textile factory is now picking up; petrol stations are springing up; schools are expanding; our children can now walk decent and motorable roads to school and I have seen other businesses springing up, so for us it is more than a road. It is a statement of fidelity.”
The governor said the contractor would soon move back to site to begin work on a ferry terminal, jetty and a housing estate with 720 flats. He said: “Hold me to those promises because our work in Ikorodu is not finished. It is a strategic economic centre and we have made a lot of progress on the 13.3km Mile 12-Ikorodu Road, which we are rebuilding from four lanes to six, with BRT corridors.” He urged residents to pay their taxes promptly and stop
trading on drains. Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure Obafemi Hamzat said the road had opened up the community and would prevent rural-urban migration. He said the road, which was awarded to the Arab Contractors on April 29, 2010, was built with interlocking stones and has 15 metres width. Hamzat said the government would soon complete 10 inner roads under construction in the council.
FRSC: no scarcity of number plates
governor has approved the planting of trees in forests, which she said had not been done since 2004. She said the government had the support of the European Union (EU) and the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) on the review of forestry laws.
Students win activist’s essay prizes
By Uyoatta Eshiet
HREE students have won an essay competition organised to mark the 55th birthday of Mr. Richard Akinola, an activist and author of 15 books on the media, human rights and politics. Mr. Ajibola Alabi, a 100-Level Fine Arts student of the University of Benin (UNIBEN), won the first prize of N100,000. Mr. Inibehe Effiong, a 500-Level law student of the University of Uyo (UNIUYO), won the second prize of N50,000. Mr. Rasheed Otegbola, a 500-Level Pharmacy student of the University of Ibadan (UI), won the third prize of N30,000. They were presented their cash gifts at the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Press Centre at Alausa in Ikeja, Lagos. The students thanked Akinola for encouraging them. The title of the essay competition was: “100 years of Amalgamation: The dialectics of Nigeria’s structural imbalance with the context of the dysfunctional federal system.”
Odidere FM begins transmission
HE Oyo Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Godwin Ogagaoghene, has said there is no scarcity of the new number plates. Speaking with reporters yesterday in Ibadan, the state capital, Ogagaoghene said: “It is no longer news that the old number plates will cease to be valid on September 30, and from October 1 any vehicle with the old number plate would be impounded. “The motor licensing authorities have the right to issue the new number plates and not the FRSC, as is being speculated in some quarters. The FRSC will only enforce the law. I assure you that the licensing authorities have a large stock of number plates for vehicle owners to buy. There is no scarcity of number plates.” On the delay experienced in obtaining the new driver’s licence, the FRSC boss admitted some challenges, which he said, no longer existed. He said: “There were some initial bottlenecks with the exercise, but we have opened more centres, thereby eliminating delay. After going through the processes and having your biometrics captured within a day or two, a temporary driver’s licence, which can be used for 60 days, would be issued to you. Within the 60 days, an original licence would be handed over to the applicant.”
erated Revenue (IGR). Fayemi said he would discuss with the Bank of Industry (BoI) on how to grant members of the unions loans, adding that the government would continue to protect forest resources. Commissioner for Environment Dr. Eniola Ajayi said the
From Adesoji Adeniyi, Osogbo
NEW radio station in Osun State, Odidere FM, has started transmission on 96.3 Frequency Modulation.
It is an arm of the Reality Radio-Vision Service (RRS) in Iwo, financed by the state government. Commissioner for Information and Strategy Sunday Akere, in a statement, said the station, which was inaugurated four months ago, started operation on September 2. He said transmission was delayed to enable the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Abuja, inspect the place and approve operations. Akere urged the people to patronise the station.
Oyo council empowers 450 women From Tayo Johnson and Diamond Adebowale, Ibadan
•Sokoto State Governor Aliyu Wamakko treating a patient at the inauguration of the Free Cataract Surgeries and Eye Treatment Scheme organised by MTN and the state government in Sokoto... yesterday.
BOUT 450 women from 11 wards in Ibadan North West Local Government Area of Oyo State have been trained in various skills. They were taught how to make cakes, snacks, tie and dye, soap, beads, wire works and thread. At their graduation yesterday, the governor’s wife, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi, said the programme was meant to liberate women financially. She urged the beneficiaries to take their jobs seriously to guarantee a better future for their families. The Council Caretaker Chairman, Wasiu Olatunbosun, said the programme was to support Governor Abiola Ajimobi’s empowerment programmes. His wife, Adenike, said the programme would improve the well being of women.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
CITYBEATS Infrastructure Bank to raise N167b for Lagos-Ibadan Road repair T HE Federal Government has mandated The Infrastructure Bank Plc to raise N167 billion for the reconstruction of the 127kilometre Lagos-Ibadan dualcarriage way. The bank’s Managing Director, Mr Adekunle Oyinloye, in a statement in Abuja yesterday, said the bank would leverage on its financial expertise and culture of excellence on the reconstruction of the expressway. He said his bank was thrilled to “have been able to provide the financial engineering to ensure the bankability of this project” and promised to raise the requisite capital to fund the road project. He confirmed that the government, through the Federal Ministry of Works, mandated The Infrastructure
Bank, a specialised development finance institution, to raise N167 billion for the reconstruction of the dual-carriage way. Oyinloye added that said the bank was the transaction adviser and leader of a consortium of local and international financiers and investors that would provide the required funding for the project. “The project is now to be completed in a record time of 24 to 30 months as opposed to the 48 months initially proposed by the contractors,” he said. Oyinloye said the bank was providing cutting-edge advisory services for the project, adding that it would continue to work with the
‘For Nigeria to rapidly reduce its infrastructure deficit and improve on its socio-economic development indices, it behoves the nation’s financial sector to unlock its potential’
government towards its timely completion. He called on other banks to channel their funds into the development of infrastructure, adding that banks must help to unlock the nation’s potential by financing the development of its infrastructure. “For Nigeria to rapidly
reduce its infrastructure deficit and improve on its socioeconomic development indices, it behoves the nation’s financial sector to unlock its potential,’’ he said. At the flag-off of the project in July, President Goodluck Jonathan said “the road is an important economic artery that connects our nation’s
economic nerve centre to many of the states of our federation. “This strategic national infrastructure is therefore of great socio-economic importance, not only to Nigeria, but also to the people of Africa.” The Minister of Works, Mr Mike Onolememen, described the project as further evidence of the unwavering commitment of President Jonathan to transforming the transport infrastructure. He said the government was delighted to have worked closely with the Infrastructure Bank in structuring innovative financing solution for the rehabilitation and expansion of the expressway.
• L-R: Mr Ogakemieji Oduyebo, Corporate Services Manager, Fidson Healthcare Plc; Ogalekan Coker, Divisional Police Officer, Pedro Divisional Headquarters Shomolu, Lagos; Lt Colonel Abah Robert (rtd), Chief Securitiy Officer, Fidson, and Mrs Ayodele Ofuya, Assistant Sectretary, Obanikoro North Community Development Association, during the presentation of a new patrol van to the Shomolu Command ... yesterday
CITYBEATS LINE: 08023247888
NURTW to honour Ajimobi, others THE National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Oyo State Council, will on October 1, hold a musical concert in honour of Governor Abiola Ajimobi for his administration's efforts at ensuring peace in the union. The event, being organised by GENERIC Consults, with the union's approval, will hold at the Watershed Events Centre, Old Ife Road, Ibadan, Oyo State capital, from 10am to 7pm. According to the organisers, frontline Fuji musician, King (Dr) Saheed Osupa will entertain guests. Various awards will also be presented to the followings: Governor Ajimobi (Peace Ambassador); Chief Mrs Florence Ajimobi (Mother of Peace); the chairman, Oyo NURTW, Taofeek Oyerinde (Peace Master); Secretary, Comrade Akin James (Peace Lover), and Treasurer, Hajj Ademola Adeboye, (Peace Lover), among others. Mr Yanju Adegbite, CEO, BCOS, Ibadan; Mrs. Nike Olufade, Zonal Director, NTA Ibadan Network Centre, and Chief Adebayo Akande, chairman, Splash FM, Ibadan, among others will present then awards.
PHOTO: ABIODUN WILLIAM •Ajimobi
HUMAN rights group, Niger Delta Youth Awareness Initiative (NDYAI), has petitioned President Goodluck Jonathan and the National Assembly over the alleged killings of some inhabitants of the riverine Ese-Odo Local Government Area of Ondo State three years ago. They are also complaining about the continued threat to lives in the area. The group, through its National President, Dr Patrick Otekpo, on March 7, wrote to Senate President David Mark, accusing two ex-militant leaders in the area of alleged complicity in the killings. Otekpo attached to the letter, several documents on the victims, whose names were given as Posiwei Obiko, Ogede Bowei and Oloye Samuel. He said the activities of the repentant militants had thrown the communities into panic. The NDYAI leader said the Senate acknowledged the group’s letters and invited him thrice this year, through a committee’s clerk, Mr Jonathan Toruemi. He urged Mark to transfer the case to a neutral committee for
‘Murderers mustn’t go unpunished’ From Damisi Ojo, Akure
consideration. In another July 3 petition addressed to President Jonathan, capital, Otekpo sought the president’s urgent intervention for justice to be done the matter. The group accused a Senator of alleged cover-up because of “his closeness to the two ex-militants.” It also accused a frontline oil company and its contractors of allegedly colluding with the ex-militants to invade Arogbo Ijaw kingdom. It called for “proper” investigation of the oil firm’s activities, especially on the permission/ authorisation document it tendered to the Senate. According to the petition, the document was characterised by falsification of signatures, fake representations and fictitious names to cover up illegal deals and operations without due process in the area. Senator Ayo Akinyelure from Ondo Central Senatorial District, who spoke with The Nation on phone yesterday, said he heads a committee set up by
•Rights group seeks justice over killings in Ondo community the Senate to look into the issue, saying: “The outcome of the committee’s findings
is not something for the media. We will report back to the Senate for appropriate
decisions. I can assure you that the matter is under active consideration and
•The wreckage of a strucure destroyed in the violence. Inset: A victim
every aspect of people’s grievances will be addressed dispassionately.”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
CITYBEATS LINE: 08023247888
Group, stakeholders for seminar on peace, security THE Lagos Zone of the Rosicrucian Order, AMORC, a cultural, educational and philosophical organisation, will host a symposium on September 14, at the Cinema Hall 1 of the National Arts Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos. Scheduled for 9am, the event will begin with a World Press Conference to be addressed by the Grand Administrator and President of AMORC in Nigeria, Dr Kenneth Idiodi. According to a statement from the organisation, he will speak on sundry issues after which the technical sessions to be addressed by eminent
•Children with coaches and other officials at the 14th edition of Olumide Oyedeji Basketball Camp in Lagos ... yesterday
Police officer ‘corners’petition addressed to his boss
N Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) attached to the Office the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), Zone 2, Lagos, has allegedly cornered a petition addressed to his boss. The petition was said to have been sent to the AIG, Mamman Tsafe, by Inspector Friday Igbinoba, who alleged harassment by an Indian, Mr Ramnani Marrawin, to whom he was attached as at December, 2012. Investigation revealed that the ASP, who allegedly wanted to protect the Indian, intercepted the letter and signed the photocopy that the original copy was received by him, but did not pass it to the AIG for action. Sources said he wanted to treat the petition himself as if the AIG did, in order to extort money from the Indian. The petitioner said Marrawin slapped him severally while he was his security orderly at his 4A, Oko-Awo Street, Victoria Island, Lagos home.
By Jude Isiguzo
“On November 17, 2012, Mr Ramnani Marrawin asked me to open the pedestrian gate after an earlier order that the gate should not be opened due to the bad condition of its padlock. As I was trying to open the main gate, he gave me slaps on my face without any offence. This is what he did always. He maltreated other Nigerians working with him. “I resolved not to let him go free like he did to others. I petitioned the AIG to seek for justice without taking the law into my hands,” Igbinoba said. He said after waiting for sometime without getting any invitation from Zone 2, the Indian called him one day to warn him on the petition he sent to the AIG. He said he told him that the petition had been taken care of, that nothing would happen.” “Marrawin called me on my mobile phone; I thought he was going to apologise to me. I did not receive any
invitation from the AIG’s office over my petition. He told me that he had settled with the AIG and that the AIG told him to relax as the case was going nowhere. “He mocked me that he knew the police authorities more than I. He said I should stop writing petition against him as no one would do anything against him. He claimed he was born in Nigeria, therefore, nothing can happen to him,’’ Igbinoba said. He said when he visited the Zone 2 to find out the true position of his petition, he got the mobile phone number of the ASP supposedly assigned to investigate the case. Igbinoba said he called the ASP to find out the extent of investigation on his petition and the officer queried the right he had to do so and warned he never to call him again. AIG Tsafe said he was neither aware of the petition nor have any discussion
Family seeks dialogue over land crisis
WNERS of the Orudu Village land in Ifo Local Government Area of Ogun State, Otunba Adebayo Ajao and his lawyers, have opted for a peaceful resolution of the crisis over the land. They said they were ready for dialogue rather than demolishing anybody’s building on the 653 acres of land. The assurance came on the heels of an allegation that agents of the landowner invaded the area to demolish houses. Ajao claimed that he acquired the 653 acres of land from Orudu Oyekan Family in 1972 for the purpose of farming and was later surveyed and registered with conveyance in the then Western region with registration number 40 page 40 vol. 1366 of the Land Registry, Abeokuta (formerly Ibadan.) According to him, farming was carried out on the land until it was stopped at the outset of the oil boom. He said following long years of inactivity, another family started
By Adebisi Onanuga
selling the land. Recently, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Abubakar, ordered fresh investigation into the incessant violence at Orudu over land ownership. His order followed a June 20 petition, which was written by solicitors to Basorun Ajao, through Kola Awodein Chambers. Signed by Shola Lamid, eight persons were reported to the IGP as sponsors of the crisis. They were accused of “unlawful possession of firearms, illegal firing of ammunition, threat to lives, malicious damage and criminal trespass.” While report of police investigation is being awaited, it was alleged that Basorun Ajao’s agents were planning to demolish buildings on the disputed land. But speaking to newsmen on behalf of Almaroof and Co, counsel to Basorun Ajao, Mr Babatunde Eleshin described the allegation as false. According to him, Basorun Ajao only engaged the
services of a land agent to help him claim his land being encroached by trespassers. Elesin said for years, efforts by Basorun Ajao to inspect the land were thwarted by the trespassers, who unleashed violence and intimidation against Basorun Ajao. “This led to the engagement of Almaroof and Co by Basorun Ajao to help him recover his land within the ambit of the law. As part of the efforts of the agent to go about the matter peacefully, they invited the illegal occupants to a meeting held on August 3, 2013, which some of the landlords attended. “Unfortunately, some of the trespassers, who believe that their illegal activities on the land would soon come to an end, resorted to propaganda and falsehood to incite the government against Basorun Ajao and his agent,” Elesin said. He said the Basorun Ajao and Almaroof and Co were interested peaceful resolution of the crisis, saying they would not demolish or destroy any structure at Orudu village.
with Marrawin over the petition. Tsafe, who spoke through the Zonal Police Public Relations Officer (ZPPRO), Mr Suleiman Lewi, a Superintendent (SP), said: “I am sorry the AIG is not aware of the petition. I have just called the officer. He only signs for the letter with his name without AIG’s official stamp. The officer now serves in Langbasa Police Division. I advise you request the petitioner to do another petition to the AIG and pass through the right channel.” When contacted for comments, Marrawin refused to speak on the matter.
scholars on issues such as: The role of government, individuals, the family and corporate bodies on national peace and security. Among the discussants expected at the event are: Dr Douglas Anele of the Dept of Philosophy, University of Lagos; Professor Isaac Alaba, Independent Consultant, Culture and Languages; Mrs Olabimpe Giwa, Consultant on Educational Matters and Babatope Ogunnowo, a Tax and Financial Consultant. The sessions will be moderated by Johnson Ikube, Managing Consultant/CEO, JI Global Solutions Ltd.
Ex-DIG Jenkins Coker dies at 75 THE former Deputy Inspector General of Police, Mr Jenkins Olubunmi Coker is dead. He passed away on September 4 after a brief illness. He was 75. The late police chief had a distinguished career that spanned over 30 years. The late Coker was a renowned athlete in his school days at the Kings College, Lagos, where he held sway alongside sprinters like the late S.A Oladapo and Abayomi Akinloye. He will be buried in Lagos on September 18 after a funeral service at the Cathedral Church of Christ, Marina, Lagos. He is survived by his
•The late Coker
wife, Eki, children and grandchildren.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
•Ogun State Governor Ibikunle Amosun (middle); his wife, Olufunso, and members of the Uplift Football Team at the Governor’s Office in Abeokuta, the state capital...yesterday.
Fashola outlines virtues of good leadership
AGOS State Governor Babatunde Fashola has said a good leader must be dependable, flexible, courageous and principled. He spoke at the Rio Tinto in London during the Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellowship Programme organised by the African Leadership Institute. Fashola said: “Dependability means the quality of leadership that derives its value from the confidence reposed in the leader by his followers. “One of the attributes to look out for in a credible leader is whether the person is living by the principles by which he takes his actions.” Citing an example of America’s position on the Syrian crisis, he said: “Many of you might recall that United States (U.S.) President Barack Obama, as a young senator then, took a view that the President could not go to war without congressional approval. It was a strong view at the time
•’Bishop Tutu is a role model’ and it resonated to many of us. But as President, he sought to attack Syria without congressional approval. His realisation that the decision was at the core of his values showed that he is a principled man. “It takes a very principled man to realise that this was a call on his values. In the event, we are familiar with the fact that he has gone back to the Congress. It may be humbling, perhaps it is another attribute of leadership, but I take a view always that as difficult as it is to say you are sorry, it puts you on a very high moral course when you admit to yourself that you are wrong. That is the message we have seen from the course of event.” The governor identified flexibility as an invaluable quality needed by every leader, saying: “What should be borne in mind is that things or situations may change rather quickly,
which may not need adopting rigid positions. “A leader who is courageous sometimes needs to be flexible because he would be called upon to make decisions. What lies at the heart of every courageous leader is not the absence of fear, but the conviction that the action he is about to take is the appropriate one.” Citing the demolition of the partly collapsed Bank of Industry (BOI) building in Lagos in 2008, he said although he knew the challenges associated with his decision, he went ahead with the demolition. Fashola said a leader needs compassion, trust, teamplaying ability and the good will of the citizens to take hard decisions. Attributing the achievements of his administration in the last six years to team work, he said: “Despite being the driver of whatever achievements the present
administration in Lagos may have made, the credit should go to all members of the team because, just as in a football match, when someone has scored a beautiful goal, it is the captain that is called upon to pick up the trophy.” Extolling the virtues of Bishop Tutu, Fashola said: “His life and struggles define many of the things that many present-day leaders would like to be. How many of those characteristics come to the fore will depend on the challenges being faced and whether the present crop of leaders are ready to face those challenges.” The governor’s presentation was followed by an interactive session with Fellows from various countries in Africa, including Nigeria. A Fellow from Zambia, Ms. Monica Musonda, who said she used to live in Lagos, hailed the “rapid urban regeneration and infrastructural renewal” executed in the city by the Fashola administration.
CHIEFTAIN of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State, Elder Wole Oyelese, yesterday said the Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ms. Jumoke Akinjide, was not in a position to speak for all members of the state party. Oyelese, a former minister of Power and Solid Minerals, said the minister can only speak for her faction. He was reacting to a newspaper advertisement on Monday, where Ms. Akinjide declared the support of Oyo PDP members for President Goodluck Jonathan, as regard the division in the national party. In a statement in Ibadan, the state capital, Oyelese said the party was as divided in Oyo State as it was at the national level. He said although the state factions had no “personal scores to settle with Jonathan”, it was wrong for a factional leader to speak for all factions, especially at a time when it was necessary to reconcile aggrieved persons. Oyelese said the party needed acts that can pro-
Cleric warns against distortion of historical facts •Yoruba Forum in U.S. to establish Oranyan Heritage Centre in Oyo
ETIRED Archbishop of the Methodist Church of Nigeria Rev. Ayo Ladigbolu has urged leaders to imbibe the virtues of Oranyan, a Yoruba deity. He listed Oranyan’s virtues as dignity, decorum, courage, administrative efficiency and excellence in governance. Archbishop Ladigbolu spoke with reporters at the Alaafin of Oyo’s Palace on the second Oranyan Festival. The Basorun of Oyo and Chairman of the Planning Committee, Yusuf Akinade Layinka 1 and other members of the Oyo Mesi (the Alaafin’s cabinet) were at the press briefing. Archbishop Ladigbolu, who is the deputy chairman of the planning committee, said: “We urge Yoruba sons and daughters to imbibe the attributes of Oranyan, which qualify anybody to be described as an omoluabi. Whoever embraces these values and exhibits them is qualified to be a true descendant of Oranyan. “There was unprovoked uproar by critics of the maiden edition of the Oranyan Festival. They complained about the authenticity of Rev. Samuel
From Bode Durojaiye, 0yo
Johnson’s History of the Yorubas and quoted doubtful sources. They even told the world that the Oyo Empire never existed and that it has no founder. “They cared very little about falsifying history and distorting facts about land allocations, boundaries, dates of events and people’s settlements. They obviously knew nothing about the differences between Ife and the Oyo tradition. They tried unsuccessfully to deny historical facts which stood the test of time.” The cleric, who is an Oyo prince, said none of those claiming to be descendants of Oduduwa can take the celebration of Oranyan away from Oyo. He said: “It is an indisputable fact that we were the pacesetter in inaugurating and popularising the Oranyan festival in Yorubaland. We are happy to have issued the wake-up call to all Oranyan descendants worldwide to rise up and honour the Alaafin, who is the living symbol of the legendary Oranyan.” Archbishop Ladigbolu said theOyo State Progressive Asso-
ciation of North America Incorporated (OPANA-INC) was ready to establish the Oranyan World Heritage Centre and Institute in the ancient town. He said: “This is a challenging development, which will encourage those of us who see the Oranyan Festival as a labour of love to this generation and to posterity.” Archbishop Ladigbolu said this year’s festival would feature a lecture on the impact of culture on the environment, to be delivered by an environmental expert from the Ladoke Akintola University of Tech-
nology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso. He said the lecture was to reawaken the culture of cleanliness in the people. The cleric denied any dichotomy between Oyo and Ife, Osun State, on the celebration of Oranyan festival, saying it was pioneered by Oyo and they were happy that it was adopted by other communities. He said: “We urge well meaning Yorubas to unite and uphold the legacies of our heroes past, whose labour must not be in vain. Let us give the living symbol of the legendary Oranyan,
the Alaafin, the honour and recognition his exalted office and person deserves.”
‘APC won’t disappoint Nigerians’
CHIEFTAIN of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State, Mr. Bunmi Tunji Ojo, a.k.a. BTO, has said the party will bring succour to Nigerians. Urging APC supporters to work for the party’s success in the 2015 general elections, Ojo said he had studied the APC’s manifesto and was convinced it would not fail Nigerians. Addressing members at
From Damisi Ojo, Akure
Okeagbe, Akoko Northwest Local Government Area, he said: “The APC has the personnel to deliver the dividends of democracy to Nigerians and this has been demonstrated in the states controlled by the party.” Ojo, who was the candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in the 2011 House of Representatives’ election in Akoko
Northeast/Northwest Federal Constituency, hailed the party’s National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; the Interim National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande, former Head of State Muhammadu Buhari and other leaders for “their sacrifices which led to the successful emergence of the mega party”. He urged the party faithful to be prepared to mobilise people of likeminds into the party.
Akinjide is a baby politician, says Oyo PDP chieftain From Bisi Oladele, Ibadan
mote unity, bitterness and division. He said: “My attention has been drawn to an advertorial in the Nigerian Tribune last Monday by Ms. Akinjide, where she pledged the support of Oyo State PDP for Mr. President, over what she called the events of the past week. “Ordinarily, one would have dismissed her action or an ill-advised desperate attempt by a public office holder to impress her boss in order to retain her position, but for the fact that her action is not even in the best interest of Mr. President, who she is claiming to support. “The party nationally is currently divided as it is in Oyo State. What we need most at this time are steps that would bring about peace and harmony, not actions that would cause further disaffection. “At a time when the party is facing a problem of the magnitude we are witnessing and when well-meaning people are desperately trying to find solutions to resolve the impasse, it baffles the mind that the minister would be speaking on behalf of a divided state party without consulting the real leaders. “Oyo is known to be a politically volatile state, where people and things should not be taken for granted. It, therefore, beats the imagination where Ms Akinjide obtained the mandate to speak on behalf of all members of the state party. Her position as minister does not confer on her the power to speak for a party in tumult, except if she was speaking for her faction.” Describing Ms. Akinjide’s action as “a subtle blackmail”, Oyelese said the minister was a baby politically and needs to learn the ropes. He said: “The minister is my very good younger sister but she needs to learn the political ropes. She must realise that she is a political baby being put on the back and should not try to put a baby on her own back. The true leaders of the party are in a better position to speak for the party and we cannot be led by the nose.”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
‘We needn’t lose lives to building collapse’ Lagos
Council drummers mobilise parents on immunisation
Amosun makes case for cocoa
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Fayemi enhances peace in communities
KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi has taken steps to ensure cohesion and good governance in communities in the state. At a public meeting with traditional rulers at the Oluyemi Kayode Stadium, Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, Dr. Fayemi urged them to be fair and objective in settling disputes in their domains, stressing that bias will undermine justice and peace. The governor also presented them an unusual gift: cars to aid their movement and discharge of their duties. It was a clear way of enhancing cohesion in communities. The monarchs took home no fewer than 123 Ford cars, of which 101 were Sport Utility Vehicles; a Toyota Hilux van was given to the council chairman. The traditional rulers were clad in their usual magnificent agbada, sokoto and buba topped off with beaded crowns of various colours and shapes. The cars were a promise kept by Fayemi. The event was attended by the Deputy Governor, Mrs. Modupe Adelabu, Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Dr. Adewale Omirin; Secretary
•The cars given out to the monarchs
Traditional rulers get cars From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
to the State Government, Alhaji Ganiyu Owolabi, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Yemi Adaramodu and top government functionaries. In his address, the governor said the gesture was a mark of respect for the traditional institutions which the monarchs represent as enshrined in the state’s chieftaincy laws, rather than to them as individuals. He added that the introduction of the special healthcare programme for the traditional
rulers tagged Ilera Laafin, the first phase of which has just been concluded, was an affirmation of the sincerity of the administration on the welfare and well-being of traditional rulers. Governor Fayemi, who assured that government would not stop striving to improve quality of life of the citizens in line with the administration’s 8-point agenda, further stated that all efforts are geared towards making life more meaningful for the people. Fayemi urged the monarchs to seek alternative measures in
resolving communal and chieftaincy disputes, adding that it was more honourable for the monarchs as traditional rulers to spare the time and patience to settle amicably and fairly cases among aggrieved parties rather than resorting to litigations in the courts. He, however, added that it was not wrong to approach the courts for redress when other means fail, even as he insisted that needless approach to the law courts without fully exploring alternative means to resolving disputes could bring the royalty into disrepute. The governor, who used the occasion to inaugurate the •Continued on Page 47
‘Ajimobi has raised grassroots infrastructure’
HE Association of Local Governments (ALGON) in Oyo State has praised Governor Abiola Ajimobi’s efforts in developing infrastructure in rural areas of the state. The association, which is also known as Forum 33 in the state, in a statement in Ibadan, said by making grassroots residents the fulcrum of his development policy, the governor has set the pace for genuine transformation of the entire state. The statement, signed by by its chairman and secretary, Yekeen Popoola and Ayodeji AbassAleshinloye, respectively, said by constructing bridges, community roads, neighbourhood markets, public toilets and motor parks, among others, the Ajimobi administration is making life comfortable for residents across the
From Bisi Oladele, Ibadan
state. Forum 33 urged the governor not to be distracted by people whose intentions are to derail him. Rather, the forum advised, Governor Ajimobi should be focused on his vision to make Oyo State the pride of the nation. The group also urged residents of the state to cooperate with the Ajimobi administration, saying the state has never had it so good in recent times. The group’s statement read in part: “If this administration can bring great development to the grassroots people within two years by constructing markets, several grassroots roads and bridges, motor parks and beautification of the environment in addition to
environmental sanitation, among others, it is clear that Senator Ajimobi is on a rescue mission and he is determined to put Oyo State on the map of leading states in the country again.” According to Forum 33, Ajimobi’s achievements also makes the All Progressives Congress (APC) the party to beat in future elections. The forum also lauded the APC manifesto, saying it is the single document that offers practical solutions to the myriads of problems confronting the country. “This manifesto is coming at an auspicious time for the country. It is like cold water being presented to a thirsty nation and an actual answer to the many prayers Nigerians are offering everyday in the face of poor leadership that led
Nigeria to its present state. The manifesto confirms that the months of discussions and sacrifices made by our party leaders are worthy as this single documents addresses the yearnings of our dear citizens at home and abroad. “Given the pedigree and antecedents of APC leaders, nobody will be in doubt that the change Nigeria needs is here and the agents of change are committed to turning the country around in our generation, even though many have written off this generation as a wasted one. ALGON called on Nigerians from all parts of the country as well as those in Diaspora to support the noble ideas being promoted by the APC, stressing: “Our time of restoration is here at last.”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Council drummers mobilise parents on immunisation
•Comptroller General of Nigeria Immigration Services Mr David Paradang, Assistant Comptroller in change of Zone A, Mr Joseph Olaitan and Deputy Comptroller in charge of Ikoyi Passport Office,Mrs Modupe- Anyaleshi when the Comptroller General visited Lagos PHOTO JUDE ISIGUZO
Flood: Zamfara to relocate village with N120m
HE Zamfara State government has said that it would spend over N120 million to relocate Gutsura village of Gummi Local Government Area, due to persistent flooding. The Executive Secretary of the state Emergency Management Agency, Alhaji Atiku Maradun, said this in Gummi during the distribution of relief materials donated to the villagers. He said the community had always experienced flooding and consequent loss of houses and farm lands during the rainy season. Maradun said the government had voted N105 million for the building of 570 houses in new settlement, adding that N18 million had been paid as compensation for the land acquired. According to him, more than 3000 people will be accommodated.
Also, the Special Adviser to the state governor on Emergency Management, Alhaji Musa Kwatarkwashi, told the victims that relocation exercise would begin as soon as rainy season ends and urged them to be patient. He commended the Zamfara and Federal Governments for their assistance to the victims. In a remark, North West Zonal Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency, Musa Ilallah said the relief materials included over 500 bags of food items, 500 set of mosquito nets, 1,000 blankets, medicine and toiletries. He said at the Gyalenge village primary school where the victims were camped, that the items were donated by the Federal Government.
HE Illela Local Government Area of Sokoto State has engaged the services of 16 local musical groups to encourage compliance with polio and other immunisations for children in the state. The council’s Director of Health, Hajiya Amina Jibril, made the announcement in Illela at the flag-off of the September Sub-Polio Immunisation Days at the Bayan Gida-Ruwa area of the town. Jibril said the strategy contributed toward the large turnout of people at the exercise as over 60 children of less than five years of age were being immunised. “We are using the local musicians to attract the children and their parents and the system is working for us. “We are also giving out gifts like sweets and biscuits to serve as incentives to the children.” Jibril said the local government had voted N700,000 to ensure the success of the four-day exercise. The director said that about 87,960 children of five years and below were targeted in the council, adding that the council was working round the clock to ensure that the target was achieved. The Social Mobilisation Officer in the area, Hajiya Binta Aliyu, said the council would do everything possible to sustain the sensitisation to enable parents allow their children to be
immunised. Aliyu explained that this had become necessary, to protect children from polio and other child killer diseases. In a similar development, the Gada Local Government Council, said that it was targeting 58,839 children during the exercise. The Director of Health in the council, Alhaji Abdullahi Yabo, said that the council had received 114,600 doses of oral polio vaccines from the state government to meet the target. “We are leaving no stone unturned to ensure that none of the targeted children is left out during the exercise,” he added.
Group gives scholarship to students
BOUT five postgraduate students have benefitted from Ife May Club education support programme. The five students which include two PhD students and three MSc students were picked among the many postgraduate students who had participated in the screening exercise at Ife , Osun State. The President of the club, Mr. Olukayode Awofisayo, said the ceremony would have taken place in May but because students were in school so it was shifted to August. While charging the students to be good ambassadors, he said the club would not relent in its efforts in assisting Ife indigenes in their quest to get good education. The students were presented with letters and their cheques at a brief ceremony which was held at Ostra Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos. The programme is exclusively designed for Ife indigenes who are undergoing postgraduate studies in the Nigerian universities. Speaking at the occasion, the Chairman, Scholarship Committee, Senator Segun Bamigbetan charged the awardees to justify the assistance by doing well in their various fields. According to Bamigbetan, Ife May Club had
always been associated with the educational development in Ile- Ife right from the 80s when it started awarding scholarships to students. He said the scholarship was initially for the secondary school students, but a year ago, the club conceived the idea to give out scholarship to university students, particularly postgraduate students because ”it is fairly easy for students to undergo undergraduate students but for those who want to study further and who are intelligent and who came out with very good result, many of them do not have the opportunity to go further and we started to offer scholarship to them to study in the Nigerian universities,” The senator said it was not easy arriving at the beneficiaries as there were many postgraduate students who were qualified for the scholarship. “We advertised and we had large responses we interviewed over a 100 people and from that we pruned it to five because that is what the club can afford for now.” Bamigbetan charged them to be focused, saying merit and excellence will take them to greater heights.
The residents in separate interviews with journalists lamented the total blackout, claiming that it had negatively affected socio-economic activities in the area. The communities affected are Kosubosu, the headquarters of the council, Okuta, Boriya, Shiya, Bankobu Gure, Chikanda, Yashikira and Sinawu. Mr Abdullahi Ibrahim, a resident of Kosubosu said that the power situation in the area was worrisome. “It is disheartening that some communities could be experiencing a blackout like this and nothing is being done to salvage the situation. “These communities had made several efforts to address the power outage but to no avail,’’ he said. He appealed to the federal and the state governments to assist the communities, saying successive administrations had paid lip service to the plight of rural dwellers.
•Wife of Chairman, Mosan-Okunola Local Council Development Area, Mrs Oyedoyin Mafe flanked by leader of the legislative arm, Princess Adenike Olusoga and Secretary to the council (SLG) Akintola Falade after the sanitation at the council.
Unionist lauds govt over drainage system
HE Chairman of National Union of Air Transport Employers (NUATE), Nigeria Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) branch, Comrade Sunday Akintunde has praised the Lagos State government over the expansion of drainage system in Agege aimed at tackling incidence of flooding. Akintunde, who is also the Operation Manager of NAHCO and a resident of Agege, hailed the state government in a chat with newsmen at Ikeja. According to him, the ongoing drainage system the state government is putting in place at Agege will go a long way to ease the flooding problem in the area especially “now that we are entering the period of heavy rainfall”. Akintunde, a member of Rotary Club of Maryland, said in line with the Rotarian spirit of service to humanity, he had earlier donated relief materials such as bags of rice, drinks, milk, water etc. to flood victims in his community at Agege during the last flooding. “From the profit sharing I receive from my company every year I have been able to render this assistance and some other help especially in the area of education to the people; especially when I saw people who were rendered
T • Mr. Awofisayo (third from left) and Senator Bamigbetan (fourth from left), being flanked by the beneficiaries of the scholarship programme
Kwara communities decry power outage
OME communities in Baruten Local Government Area of Kwara have appealed to the relevant authorities to address the epileptic power supply in the area. A cross-section of the people from the communities claimed that they had been in darkness in the last eight months due to power outage.
By Oziegbe Okoeki
homeless as a result of the last flood”, he said. He also praised the representative of Agege 1 constituency at the Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, Commissioner for Transportation, Kayode Opeifa and the council chairman of Agege for “the wonderful transformation they have brought to the area to make life easier and better for the residents ”. Akintunde said he has sympathy for the All Progressives Congress (APC) because of the progress the party has brought to Agege, adding that if given opportunity by his community to serve in any elective capacity, he would gladly do so.“I like APC because it is a grassroots party and it has done much for my community,”he said. He urged leaders of the party not to rest on their oars, “they should be more focussed and ensure that they continue to touch the lives of the people”, he said. He also called on the Federal Government to build new airports and terminals in major cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Kano and also equip them with state-of-the-arts facilities while also updating existing facilities in the nation’s airports.
HE Development Initiative For African Women (DIFAW), a non-governmental organisation (NGO), has called on women to embrace its “waste-to-wealth” scheme to enhance their economic empowerment and skills development. The Volunteer Programme Officer of DIFAW in Gombe State, Mrs Shiphrah NuhuPoloma, made the call in an interview with journalistsin the state. Nuhu-Poloma said rather than idling around, women should join DIFAW, to build the capacity of women through the recycling of waste to create wealth. According to her, it does not cause much for the women to be members of the organisation to benefit from skill acquisition and wealth generation. “We have this programme called ‘10-teaching-10’, where we start with zero capital because we use waste products such as polythene leather, waste products from maize and other items. “We empower these women from dirt, we empower women through our programme of waste-to-wealth. “We start women with zero capital because most of the things that we use are around our
HE Rotary Club will continue to support projects that will improve the living standard of the rural populace.This view was expressed by the new president of the Rotary Club of Lagos West, Mrs. Elizabeth Bakare at her investiture. During her inaugural speech, she said Rotary is involved in great projects targeted at transforming the lives of the people and therefore called for support as huge funds are involved to get these projects executed. She said: “This installation is mainly to raise fund and let me quickly let those who are outside there who try to link our activities with cultism not to do so because it is an open oganisation that has no secrecy, the club caters for humanity. “The funds are meant for the programmes that the club wants to execute and our areas of focus are; disease prevention and treat-
for young people who are concerned about the future of the country,” adding that, “At the end of the day, we will be proud to say that we have built a better future for ourselves and other traumatised Nigerians.” It said the youth group lauded leaders and members of APC for their commitment and sacrifice, adding that the party represents the hope and future of Nigerians, since its leaders are honest and credible. The statement added that APC does not compromise resourcefulness and intelligence of Nigerians, and that is why it continuously interacts with its constituents across the country to know their feelings, challenges and address them.
environment. “Most of our raw materials are waste products such as the corn. “All of us know what the corn is; when we use it, we throw the waste but the back of the maize can be woven into bags, baskets and other items that we use to sell. “And you discover that these women go and pack them when people throw it around; so that is zero-capital. “We have been having this problem of littering polythene all over the country and it is time that we look into producing this recycling of the waste that we have and one of the wastes that we have is the polythene bag. “We tell our women to pack the polythene
•Governor Dankwambo bags and clean them up and knit them into bags, door mats, floor mats; that is what we teach our women to do,” the officer said.
Rotary to support community projects By Musa Odoshimokhe
ment, maternal and childcare, economic empowerment, basic education and literacy, we have peace and conflict resolution. “For instance, this gathering is desirous of executing certain project in the Festac community. We are planning a mega vocational centre where youths and other people who need training in various vocations would be trained.” Bakare maintained that the projects will cost
the club not less than N3 million to execute the Festac project and urged public-spirited individuals to support the noble ideas. “This is going to cost us over N3 million, have plan to donate incubators to the General Hospital, Ajeromi, this hospital takes care of 10000 babies. The only phototherapy machine in the hospital was donated by our club in the last 20 years. “It is our objective to donate to the hospital in order to assist it in the promotion of good health for the country,”she said.
Lawmaker trains 120 youths
HE Chief Whip of Oyo State House of Assembly Hon. Abiodun AdigunHammed has reiterated his commitment to support youths and the aged in his constituency. Adigun, who spoke during the graduation ceremony of 120 students who were trained in his vocational centre, said arrangement was in top gear to empower over 100 hairdressers and fashion designers and equip them with working tools. He said none of the beneficiaries was asked to pay during their programme, adding that the incoming students should endeavour to prove their worth in order to receive prizes meant for the best student. Adigun said he would continue to support the aged in his constituency to enjoy their own dividends of democracy. Speaking on the reason behind empowering people in computer-based skill, Adigun said the world is already a global village and anybody who lacks computer knowledge in the contemporary world will find it difficult to fit into the labour market and
that was why he decided to take the responsibility, saying he had started training youths in computer-based skill since 2007. The lawmaker also urged the graduates to make use of the knowledge they had acquired during the training so as to become employers of labour and not job seekers. According to him; “these programmes are a part of our promises during the electioneering campaign, that our youths will be empowered and no one will be left out. That is what we are doing as you can see and I promise that we shall empower more youths and aged people in my constituency. “ I also want to empower 50 hairdressers and 50 tailors before the end of this year and we are planning to equip all of them.” While speaking the chairman of Akinyele Local Government, Hon. Mukaila Ambali, said the future depends solely on the way the youth of today are groomed and that is the reason the government of the state is working hard to ensure that youths are empowered in the state.
•Mrs. Bakare (left) during the investiture
Youths seek support for APC
HE Coalition of All Progressives Congress (APC) Youth has described the registration of APC as the beginning of the change Nigerians have been waiting for since 1999, when the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) took over power. APC Youth, therefore, called on Nigerians, both at home and in the Diaspora to synergise with the APC and “Shape our decayed infrastructurehealth, roads, education, and poor economy-for the current and future generations of Nigerians.” According to a statement jointly signed by the group’s National Coordinator, Folawiyo Kareem Olajoku and Public Relation Officer, Mr. Adebayo Sodeko, the group described itself as a “Forum
‘Embrace waste-to-wealth scheme’
•Hon Adigun-Hammed(middle) in group photograph with the beneficiaries
IGERIANS have been urged to pray for divine direction for leaders in the country as the government battles with the problems of unemployment, kidnapping,corruption and incessant industrial actions. The admonition was given by the Superintendent of Lagos West Central ‘A’ Province of the Celestial Church of Christ,Most Superior Evangelist Gabriel Jerry at the 50th birthday anniversary of Brother Rasheed. He said: “For a society to overcome its crisis, the leaders need serious-minded Christians to stand in gap in prayer for them”,adding “Christians and non Christians should pray for government, that is the only way we can have breakthrough”. He said Nigerians should know that leaders are humans with their personal issues to contend with, they therefore need divine direction to handle the enormous problems at their disposal. Jerry noted:”We are all leaders in our various organisations, no matter the position” He charged Nigerians to join hands to solve the problems in the society and the various contributions will assist the leaders. “They actually cannot do it alone, for the leaders to be truthful, the government needs
Cleric urges prayers our support. Speaking on the forth coming anniversary of the death and life of the founder of Celestial Church of Christ worldwide, Rev. Oshoffa,he said,“The remembrance of Pa Oshaffa is an annual event. It is to remember a man of God who had done a great work for the whole world. “This gene r a t i o n needs to be told or be rem i n d e d about his good work. This is the purpose for this event.” He advised Nigerians to go back to t h e i r creator,saying without him everything will be meaningless. •Most Sup. Evang Jerry
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
COMMENTARY FROM OTHER LANDS
Gathering cloud in Offa
•Kwara electoral commission has questions to answer
HE political logjam in Offa local government council of Kwara State, following the August 31 elections has called attention once again to the danger that poll manipulation poses to growth and development. Since the results were announced on September 1, protests have rocked the state, as the aggrieved parties have mobilised their supporters, calling for an upturn of the outcome as announced by the Kwara State Independent Electoral Commission, KWASIEC. Chairman of the commission, Dr. Uthman Ajidagba, announced that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Abdulwaheed Olanipekun polled 35,937 votes to the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate Saheed Popoola’s 20,161. PDP’s candidates in the 12 wards in the council were equally declared winners. While the PDP and its candidates promptly accepted the result as authentic
‘On August 31, elections were conducted and the candidates list is being disputed. This is a show of shame and demonstration of incompetence on the part of the electoral commission that has kept funereal silence despite the loud protests. This is a replay of the 2011 senatorial election in Anambra State where the PDP went to the polls without the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) knowing the valid candidates of the party. It was left for the courts to sort out’
and thanked the electorate for reposing confidence in them, Popoola and his supporters rejected it as fraudulent, false and unacceptable. Since then, there have been fears that Offa, a town prone to violent response to such development, could erupt again. The opposition APC said the figures credited to the two parties were false as the actual votes were far less than those declared by Dr. Ajidagba. This could have passed for one of those ridiculous moments when politicians merely trade blames and insults but for the twist added by Kamarudeen Olalekan who claimed to have been declared winner of the councillorship election in the South West ward. Olalekan said his conscience would not allow him accept the unearned victory as the APC candidate won convincingly. This is unusual. Even though the PDP has disowned Olalekan who was described as a hired agent of the APC, having allegedly defected to the ACN in 2011, the development has further called to question the role that the KWASIEC played in the conduct of the election. Is the commission an impartial arbiter? Did Dr. Ajidagba and his team perform the role assigned them by the constitution without fear or favour? The antecedents of the commission cannot inspire confidence in anyone. The Justice Ibrahim Yusuf-led appeal tribunal that sat on the petition on the conduct of the 2011 election said of the commission: “The manner the commission handled the election was worrisome. It did a shoddy job. The two local government elections of October 30, 2010 and January 12, 2011 were conducted in violation of the state’s Electoral Law as amended.” On August 31, elections were conducted and the candidates list is being disputed. This is a show of shame and demonstra-
tion of incompetence on the part of the electoral commission that has kept funereal silence despite the loud protests. This is a replay of the 2011 senatorial election in Anambra State where the PDP went to the polls without the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) knowing the valid candidates of the party. It was left for the courts to sort out. Victors in electoral contests are quick to challenge losers to take their cases to the tribunals, knowing that they would have been sworn in and would thus enjoy the advantage of incumbency during the pendency of the matter. The issues to be resolved in the Offa rerun dispute are not just legal, but political, moral and sociological. Questions being asked the electoral commission are: Whose name was on the candidates list for the Shawo South West Ward released before the election? Whose name was on the official results list announced and published by the commission? Were the results authenticated by agents of both parties in the 12 wards? And, for the PDP, how did it sweep the polls in a council known to be the stronghold of the opposition at a time that the ruling party is in disarray? Unfortunately, having declared the results with the beneficiaries sworn in, the electoral commission is likely to hide behind legal technicalities in claiming that only a validly constituted tribunal could look into grievances. The commission and parties should note that confidence in the electoral process is the only antidote to breakdown of law and order. If the electorate is made to believe that justice is unavailable, voters may resort to self help; which is dangerous.
•His case brings to the fore the importance of parental care in children’s upbringing
T was not that we have not heard cases of stowaways above 18 years in Nigeria and elsewhere, but when a 13 year-old is involved, it is sure to generate news and excitement, and even surprise. That is why the story of Daniel Oikhena, who was arrested after emerging from the wheel compartment of an Arik Air Flight operating from Benin airport to Lagos on August 24, continues to generate debate. Although, Daniel, a Junior Secondary School (JSS) 1 pupil in Benin, Edo State, has been enjoying celebrity status of sort since his arrest, what he did was bad and he should be paying for it now but for his being a minor. It was for this same reason that his plight attracted the sympathy of a nongovernmental organisation, DE Rauf’s Volunteer Group, that has offered him a scholarship to university level, to enable him realise his dream of travelling by air in a legitimate way. This was after the director-general of the group, Amitolu Shittu, confirmed that a team of lawyers led by Yinka Muyiwa and Nafiu Adeniyi had been at the Shangisha, Lagos office of the State Security Service (SSS), to apply for administrative bail for Daniel, where they were told that he was not detained but was merely delayed for security reasons. What is needed in the circumstance is counselling and not necessarily punishment since the boy is only a misguided minor. That probably explains why, apart from the scholarship
offered by DE Rauf’s Volunteer Group, the Edo State Government that has taken custody of Daniel plans to send him to a “correctional facility” before allowing him to return to school. Opinions are bound to be divided on a matter like this. While many people believe that Daniel should not be punished owing to his tender age, others believe that the offence should not have been committed in the first place if the child was properly brought up. There is merit in both positions. Just as there is the fear that some other misguided kids who, seeing the way Daniel is treated as a celebrity, might want to capitalise on the incident to attempt to do likewise. This is why we support the “correctional facility” promised by the Edo State government for Daniel. Apart from this, however, our governments should provide recreational facilities for children to relax so that it is not all work and no play, which will make life boring for them. We must also stress the importance of parental care in the matter. Daniel is a typical example of a child from a broken home. Because they do not live together, Daniel’s father and mother showed up separately when their son was brought to the Government House in Benin. Daniel’s father, Osaigbowo (44), complained that he had a problem with his wife of 20 years. In fact, he showed up at government house when his son and wife were taken inside and was not allowed to join them. It was suspected that the father turned up only on hearing about the
scholarship being offered to his son. Situations like this can easily lead to a child’s indulgence in criminal activities because the child is not properly cared for. Daniel, like many misguided adults and kids, might have heard of the United States as a place for him to make it as a runaway child. Under the circumstances, we cannot reasonably put all the blame on him. It is a problem arising from the problems of the larger society, especially our governments that do nothing to improve the welfare of Nigerian families or make concerted efforts to see to the education of every child to a level where he or she would understand the need for self realisation.
‘Daniel is a typical example of a child from a broken home. Because they do not live together, Daniel’s father and mother showed up separately when their son was brought to the Government House in Benin. Daniel’s father, Osaigbowo (44), complained that he had a problem with his wife of 20 years ... Situations like this can easily lead to a child’s indulgence in criminal activities because the child is not properly cared for’
The Group of 20 Tackles Tax Avoidance
HE Group of 20 nations on Friday took an important step toward curbing tax avoidance by committing to exchanging information automatically on tax matters by the end of 2015. The growth of multinational businesses and international finance has made it easy for people and companies to get away with not paying the taxes they owe, because governments do a poor job of sharing data with each other. But since the financial crisis, international groups like the G20 and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development have been working to strengthen global tax rules and agreements. The tax agreement was one of the G-20’s few real accomplishments at its meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia. While many details still have to be worked out, including exactly what kinds of information will be shared and when countries that are not members of the G-20 can participate, the commitment should help make it easier for tax authorities to uncover avoidance and fraud. Currently, countries request information from other nations only when tax officials suspect filers are lying or hiding their income or wealth, which greatly limits the ability of tax officials to uncover cheating. To be truly effective, the data exchanges would have to include information about taxes paid and assets held in offshore accounts. And the information exchange needs to include data from tax havens like the Cayman Islands that are not part of the G-20. In its statement, the G-20 also endorsed an action plan being developed by the O.E.C.D. to tackle the issue of multinational corporations that avoid taxes through the creative use of offshore subsidiaries and tax havens. This important effort could help clamp down on a thriving area of tax avoidance, but it could take years to fully carry it out. This plan includes clarifying how profits from the sale of technology products and services like cellphones and software should be taxed when the businesses that sell them operate through subsidiaries in multiple countries. – New York Times
TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief Victor Ifijeh
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THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
CARTOON & LETTERS
IR: On March 24, 2011, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) announced the introduction of a new set of Drivers licence and vehicle number plates. One of the reasons adduced was that the new plate numbers would assist security agencies to tackle the challenges of national security. While the motive seems laudable, the pursuit of national security is, with due respect, not part of the mandate of FRSC. It would be tantamount to pure naiveté to think that terrorist acts will only be carried out using cars that have been registered. If the government is serious about counter-terrorism and information gathering, it should do so in a way that encompasses all Nigerians whether or not they possess motor
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FRSC’s new number plates is extortion vehicles. The new number plate is disappointingly without any security attachment or difference from the old one whatsoever apart from its reordering of the characters and addition of colours. The material used is not even different talk less of a tracking device to be attached to it. It is highly unfortunate that this is what the Corps Marshall and his team want Nigerians to swallow hook line and sinker. If the genuine aspiration of the
FRSC was to build a verifiable and reliable information system of all vehicles in Nigeria, I dare say that they would have been able to do this in the past one year. All that would be needed is simply ensuring that every vehicle that has its papers renewed are properly registered in the information system and then the checkpoints on the highways can check cars whose papers haven’t been renewed. The same applied to the drivers’
licence. Why demand that every driver renew their licences with the same deadline of October 1, when each of those licenses have their different expiry dates? By February 2014, the announcement of the new driver’s licence would have been three years, the same period within which the validity of the present driver’s licence lapses. If the new licences had been issued to first time drivers and those renewing since then, major-
tioneering). They are all living large in their big mansions and big offices in Abuja at the expenses of the people they are claiming to be representing. To save our economy from collapse and to prevent using 70% of our budget on recurrent expenditure, we need to borrow a leaf from a fellow West African country- Senegal, whose parliament recently voted to abolish the Senate as part to moves to help victims of last year deadly floods. Senegalese President Marky Sall would later explain that the $15million saved would be channelled to-
wards flood mitigation. If Senegal can take that giant and bold step, Nigeria must not shy away from taking the right step of abolishing the Senate, leaving the lower chamber that have more members and are closer to their constituencies. In Senegal, it was not also easy at the initial stage because the 100 Senators fought to be retained, but they lost the vote in the joint session of the parliament. Political jobbers in Senegal tried to stop the move by claiming that the aim was to weaken the opposition as most of the Senators were supporters of the ex-Presi-
dent, but at the end of the day the wish of the majority of the Senegalese prevailed. Nigeria should also expect the 109 Senators to oppose the move for their selfish interest, but I believe that the wish of more than 150 million Nigerians must prevail over that of the Senators because sovereignty belongs to the people of Nigeria. Our current bi-cameral legislature is too expensive and the work of the two chambers is mere duplication of functions.
tiary education. To now disrupt activities in these universities just because of the negligible few who are not themselves directly responsible for the lingering strike would never be justifiable. Secondly, majority of students in these private universities are themselves victims of our moribund education sector. Many were forced to study in these universities after several failed attempts to study in public universities. Many left public universities for private varsities because of the perennial strikes which make their academic calendar uncertain - the same reason why some misinformed students would now shut down activities in private universities.
Thirdly, if NANS would shut down private varsities because they think political office-holders’ children study in these schools, then, it may be justifiable for the populace to shut down private hospitals each time health workers are on strike. If these students are not cowards, they should rather shut down the Federal Ministry of Education and its agencies, the handlers of which are directly answerable to ASUU. Private varsities are private concerns and are distinct from government properties and businesses. That you or your sponsor should not be a political office-holder is not a requirement to gain admission into private varsities; why should it even be a requirement? These schools pay
Like Senegal, let’s consider abolishing the Senate
IR: “Our lives begin to end the day we keep silent about things that matter.” ……Martin Luther King Since Nigeria returned to democracy in 1999, a lot of things have been going wrong, but because our democracy is considered fragile and young, we have been keeping quiet all in the attempt to let the sleeping dogs lie without knowing that we are only postponing the evil day. One of the things that have been going wrong is the issue of the jumbo pay for political office holders at a time majority of Nigerians wallow in abject poverty. It was reported that it costs tax payers N290 million yearly to maintain each member of the Senate. Using a simple arithmetic, it means that a Senator takes approximately N24million a month. That is more than the annual income of a Medical Doctor; it is more than the monthly salary of 42 army generals, or 48 professors or 70 Commissioners of Police; it is more than twice the pay of American President or nine times the pay of American Congress men. It is incredible! Though, some lawmakers would claim that the monies include their constituency allowance, the question is what has really changed in the constituencies they are claiming to represent? For instance, some of these lawmakers only visit their constituencies once in a blue moon (probably during a festive period or elec-
• John Tosin Ajiboye, Lagos
ity of the drivers in Nigeria would be carrying the new licence by now. This simply points to the fact that even after announcing a new drivers licence, FRSC continued to issue the old ones! As of today, the new plate numbers cost nothing less than N20,000 and as much as N40,000 in some cases. This is at least a 100% increase against the “N10000 Standard Replacement fee” promised by FRSC Corps Marshall, Osita Chidoka. The FRSC is now coming round to say that only the plates will cost N10,000 while other registration costs would be “decided by the state VIO and Joint Tax Board”. Why did he not announce this at the inception of introduction of the policy? This is barefaced deception. Some years ago, car owners were compelled to acquire a plastic device tagged “encoding”. To my knowledge, no one I know ever had the validity of their vehicle licensces checked through that device; it simply became useless and the government gave no explanation as to why that happened. Today it’s the new drivers’ licence and new number plates which have a curious manner of implementation. It smacks of extortion and insensitivity from a government which Nigerians expect so much and has delivered so little. Nigerians cannot continue to be handled like subjects; we are citizens and demand that our government be accountable to us. • Adekunle Adedoyin Mbora, Abuja
That threat by NANS to shut private varsities
IR: I initially ignored the news because I couldn’t fathom how and why Nigerian students would contemplate shutting down private varsities. How did the students come to the erroneous conclusion that political office-holders who have failed to yield to the demands of their lecturers all send their children to private universities? I finished from a private university. While I can’t conclusively say that none of my coursemates has a politician parent, I can conveniently say that at least over 80% of them don’t have politician/political officeholder parents. Among us were those who were self-sponsored and really struggled to finance their ter-
licence fees and several other levies to the government. It is also imperative to add that our private universities actually came to salvage the sector from the mess it was before they came into existence. Little is left to be imagined on what could have been the situation if these varsities were not in existence when we compare the number of admission seekers with spaces available in the public universities. The ugly development is yet another evidence of the sad state of affairs in our student associations. We hope for a vibrant NANS which will deal with issues the appropriate way and be led by responsible students. • Abbas Abdullah Adebayo ACA Ibadan, Nigeria.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Boko Halal; Education and ‘Summer Renovation Budget’; Osun computers; Casualty painting
HOSE who profess Boko Haram should identify as co-conspirators politicians, political terrorists, who ensured that too many Nigerians in Tony schools graduate withMarinho out knowledge and cheat. This has resulted in their needing retraining before employment. My friend Professor M Aken’Ova told me that in the old Zaria days the children sent to read book were called boko, a form of enculturation of the word ‘book’. Haram means ‘no’. Perhaps we should have ‘Boko Halal’ to counter the Boko Haram. The lack of educational activities of politicians in proportion to needs demonstrates that you do not have to blow up or ban schooling to get negative education. Schools, under political budget under-funding, have poured barely literate youths into the marketplace resulting in one of the solutions - entrepreneurship partly to cater for a poor employee: job availability ratio. But the entrepreneurial drive also addresses youths leaving schools as products of rubbish education neglected by education budgets. These youths are programmed to be ill-prepared and cannot get jobs so they are diverted into creating jobs for themselves and blamed if they fail –a win-win situation for the politician. We talk of system failure and that the system has failed the teachers and lecturers in need of staff space like staffrooms, books, equipment, skills, justifiable promotions and overburdening the teacher or lecturer with students. The gold standard is 30 students /class. Do staff also fail the system? Many blame teachers and lecturers for shirking their responsibilities by selling items on-duty and doing jobs in three universities at once. Even students are seen as being mediocre, too expectant of spoon-feeding and without ambition. Most Nigerian teachers, education politicians and students have failed the system in spite of 200 plus annual general meetings, AGMs, and education summits at Minister, commissioner, ASUU, NUT, STAN, NANS, and sub- group meetings like professional, ethnic, religious and subject levels.
IGERIA is certainly passing through a dark phase in its history. From the wheelerdealers that are called businessmen milking the nation dry to the shenanigan of some of our greedy but visionless politicians and the satanic exploits of hoodlums, it is trouble all over the place. The situation confronting our nation today beats imagination. One thing that has remained constant in recent times is the rise and continued rise in criminal activities in every nook and cranny of the country. Perhaps, there is nowhere in the country, be it our cities, villages or any of the hamlets for that matter, that is safe. This reminds me of Bernard Odogwu’s book, No Place to Hide, or the late Chinua Achebe’s No Longer at Ease. What all these boil down to is that we are a nation at war with ourselves. Many years ago, once you leave the city to any of the villages, you are overwhelmed with the hospitality, conviviality and spirit of camaraderie that embrace you as soon as you step your feet into your village. Above all, there was this real or imagined air of absolute security that pervaded the entire environment. But not anymore! Hoodlums are on the rampage everywhere. Some of their victims have been traced right from the cities to their villages and are either killed, robbed or kidnapped. Not long ago, a serving police commissioner who was close to his retirement travelled from his base in Ilorin, Kwara State, to his hometown in Enugu where he was gruesomely murdered in cold blood. In the early hours of Sunday, August 25, while Christian faithful were getting ready to go to church
What little progress has been largely due to the unsung efforts of ASUU, the Old Students Associations and the high fees charged private students. The ASUU strike is on-going. The ‘democratic’ period from 1999 is long enough for the 38 governments to put in place sufficient equipment and staff to achieve education equality across all states. The current abysmal performances in some states are due to fraudulent administration and abandonment of the youth. The education money has been misappropriated and lost to education middlemen, summits, consultants, retreats, hotel bills, honoraria, travel expenses and huge hall rental costs of Ladi Kwali Hall, with apologies to Ladi Kwali, the famous female Kwali potter who died in 1984. If that money had been spent on a ‘TEN BOOKS, ONE CHILD PROGRAMME’ and equipment, all Nigeria’s schools would be well equipped. It is this material that makes a school - books, library, equipment, laboratory, wall charts, sports opportunities, desks, chairs, toilets and sanitation. Leave one out and you have no school. This is why we are still talking of ‘disadvantaged states and students’, when we should be talking about disenfranchised students, disenfranchised by their political leadership - governments. Governments disadvantage their children. Most of the good students even in advantaged states had parents who spent up to 80% of income on education only to be checkmated at JAMB cut-off. States failed even with their own tertiary universities to rise above mediocrity. When Jesus said ‘Suffer the little children to come unto me’, He did not mean that the children must ‘suffer’ but come unto Him without any suffering. ‘Suffer’ means ‘allow’, not ‘suffer-head’. Around the world, the long ‘summer holidays’ of July to September are the time for needs assessment for the next year and refurbishment, repairs and repainting in preparation the new year. In Nigeria these activities are zero. And that is where the problem of education lies. No preparation for the New School Year from anybody. This week some 30+million Nigerian students arrive in government-run unprepared schools and classrooms untouched for three months except by vandals and religious meeting participants. We all live near government education facilities. Name one that had a face-lift between July and September. Of course
some governors are making tremendous efforts. Years ago I campaigned for schools to set up summer camps. Now summer camps are everywhere. Today, campaign for budgetary provision for ‘Summer Renovation of Educational Institutions’. This is part of job creation as upgrade requires artisans, science equipment marketers and publishers of books and educational posters. No doubt during the 2013 summer political recesses multi-billions are routinely spent to maintain the offices of political power in Abuja and all state capitals. Nigeria’s children deserve more now, before the reckless spending on 2014 elections and political posters. Governments must insert ‘Summer Recess Renovation of Schools and Institutions’ into budgets. Nigeria’s children are not animals to be sent to pigsties. The children deserve a decent ‘Child and Teacher Friendly Learning Environment’, CATFLE. The cost of refurbishing one airport would upgrade 1,000 schools with 500,000 beneficiaries. Governments should get its priorities right from the foundation. A ray of hope from Osun State’s student computer introduced by Ogbeni Aregbesola. It is as monumental as Awolowo’s ‘Free Education’. It hopefully will be adopted with improvements if necessary, across Nigeria as it frees the students and equalises levels from village to Osun villa. We anxiously await the results of comparative performance studies across states. Alert! Alert! Most government and private casualties, wards and toilets are dirty, disease ridden and needing emergency annual painting budgets. Anyone listening?
‘Nigeria’s children deserve more now, before the reckless spending on 2014 elections and political posters. Governments must insert ‘Summer Recess Renovation of Schools and Institutions’ into budgets. Nigeria’s children are not animals to be sent to pigsties’
Ayala: A painful exit for the usual weekly worship, tragedy struck. This time, the victim was Reverend Father Peter Ayala, the Catholic priest in charge of St. Thomas Moore Catholic Church, Sobe, Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State. The lifeless body of the priest was discovered inside his apartment in the Cathedral. So far, information available said a locally made double-barrelled gun and two spanners were found with his lifeless body. The rumour making the rounds is that the priest mistakenly shot himself while cleaning his gun. But such outlandish claims have raised a lot of doubts in the sleeping town. Ayala’s neighbours were said to have rushed to his apartment when they heard the sound of a gunshot that early morning, and were shocked to see him in the pool of his own blood. The questions being asked by many are: Why would a reverend father be keeping a gun in the house? If it was true that Ayala actually owned a gun, why would he choose early Sunday morning, when he was supposed to be in the church, to clean his gun? If, indeed, his neighbours heard the sound of a gunshot and rushed to the scene, why would they meet the body stone dead? Was any attempt made to rush him to any hospital for medical attention? Again, some other people are saying that the reverend gentleman might have committed suicide. This assertion is arrant nonsense. Such a happy, quiet man had no worries for which he would even toy with
‘One thing that has remained constant in recent times is the rise and continued rise in criminal activities in every nook and cranny of the country’
the idea of taking his own life and he could not have died accidentally. Anyway, there is every possibility that he could have been murdered. This is more germane given the fact that if actually the gun belongs to Ayala, he would have known that it was loaded. In any case, why would he choose to service his gun on a Sunday morning instead of preparing for mass? And I don’t believe he could own a common locally made double-barrelled gun. What for? However, it is gratifying to note that, in the face of all these rumours and postulations, Rev Dr Gabriel Dunia, the Bishop of the Auchi Diocese of the Catholic Church, has called for caution and warned people not to engage in apocalyptic guesswork over the circumstances that led to the death of Ayala. According to him, though the church was traumatised by Ayala’s death, it was eagerly awaiting the result of police investigation. Dunia believes that “although the body of Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala was found lying lifelessly in his pool of blood with a locally manufactured gun and a big spanner on his body and floor respectively, they were only some of the clues on which experts’ examinations must be effected to ascertain more authentic proofs of what had led to the death.” The question is: What would a big spanner be doing on the body of somebody who supposedly died of gunshot either self-inflicted or fired by an assassin? I believe the talk of spanners, or what have you, is a mere decoy to mislead investigators into jumping to unfounded assumptions. However, Dunia spoke glowingly on the late Ayala. He said the late Father was a “calm, modest and well-behaved cleric who worked under me as a seminarian when I was the parish priest of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Emeora, 17 years
ago and as a priest who collaborated with me, nonetheless similarly in the Diocese of Auchi until his passage from this sinful world.” I cannot agree less with Dr Dunia. Ayala, until his unfortunate death, was a good friend of mine and a true friend for that matter. I met him in 2001 while he was serving as a parish priest in Iviukwe village on the Auchi-Jatu-Agenebode Highway in Edo State. Surprisingly, Iviukwe village is the home town of irrepressible lawyer, Mike Ozekhome, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, who was kidnapped by yet-to-be identified hoodlums at Ehor, a village on the Auchi-Benin Expressway on Friday, August 23. That incident happened two days before Ayala’s death. In that kidnap episode, four policemen were said to have lost their lives. As a priest who resided in the parish at Iviukwe, Ayala had a concurrent obligation to lead them in service in most of the adjourning villages in the area. That was how he came into contact with my aged mother in the late 1990s, when she relocated to Iviukhua, my village, also in Etsako East Local Government Area of Edo State, a distance of less than two kilometres from Iviukwe. Considering her active role in the church, it was not difficult for my mother to invite Ayala to come and perform the dedication of my country home in July 2001. That was when I met the late Ayala and our friendship blossomed ever since then. Shortly after the dedication, he was posted to Port Harcourt on pastoral duties. He was also in Rome for some time. All these times, we kept the contact alive. I remember in one of our discussions way back, he told me he had a cousin who was a journalist as well. He gave his name as one Brotu (Eric). That name stuck. I remember my days of freelancing with the de-
Dele Agekameh funct Daily Times. There was a guy who went by that name with Times International magazine, one of the titles on the Daily Times stable. It was edited at that time by Dr Dayo Alao, now a professor with the prestigious Babcock University, IlishanRemo, Ogun State. I received the news of Ayala’s death through a phone call by my mother from the village, in the early hours of Monday, August 26. The obviously devastated old woman spoke to me amidst sobs, as she said: “They have killed your friend, Fr Ayala.” I was particularly shattered and I tried to figure out whether such a quiet, jovial, nice, easy-going, young man deserves to die in such a violent manner. I will like to appeal to the police authorities to do everything possible to get to the root of this heinous crime and similar cases that have cast a dark spot on our national image. From all I know of Ayala, he could not have engaged in anything that could lead to his death in such a callous manner. He was a gentleman through and through. I will surely miss him; so also are the many people who traversed his path while he was alive. May his soul rest in perfect peace! Amen. Send reactions to: 08058354382 (SMS only)
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
COMMENTS ‘He who believes in injustice will definitely be consumed by the fire of injustice. Tukur and his backers are talking with impunity, believing that nothing will happen. A leader who does not believe in the rule of law will find himself in the ruin of law. The president has shot himself on the leg by allowing himself to be cowed by the hawks in PDP. The ruling party is like a torn cloth which can never be the same again if sewn. PDP’s coffin has been accompanied by the undertakers for its burial. PDP, rest in perfect peace. From Hamza Ozi Momoh, Apapa, Lagos’
For Olatunji Dare Sir, history repeats itself. This is a testimony to human stupidity. President Barack Obama will do well to understand that the most virtuous of objectives must be pursued in moderation, without the kind of single mindedness and the fanatic intensity that have so often in history transformed even the good into despotic and corrupt. While the opposition party may not wish him well, Mr. Obama must appreciate the fact that success is feminine and, like a woman, if you cringe before her, she will override you. So, the way to treat her is to show her the back of your hand. Then, maybe, she will do the crawling. Learning from recorded history is vital for positive achievement. From O. O. Adegoke, Ikhin, Edo State Some parts of the world may hate America but it is no lie it made the world a better place. Without them, some countries would have vanished. However, war in Syria should be fought without making America have more enemies. From Esan Ayegbaju, Ekiti Re: “Obama: 2nd term blues for a President.” As if it is a natural thing, almost all of them fumble after winning their second term; fumbling and distorting a smooth-sail for their next contestant thereby paving the way for the opponent! Were there to be third term in American Constitution, the departing President would not falter. Obama could not be an exception. He would fumble again because he is happier he had become a President. Although he would further fumble, he would however avoid and avert the impeachable fumbles. From Lanre Oseni British and American politicians are liars. They want to invade Syria on matters they cannot prove as they did in Iraq. From Dr. Mann Tolofari, Port Harcourt America has been the police of the world, particularly, in war crime issues. It will continue to be, irrespective of who is the commander-in-chief. From Chidi Promise Obama should act proactively against Syria for their chemical weapon usage against humanity as a deterrent to other nations. From Gordon Chika Nnorom, Umukabia, Abia State For Gbenga Omotoso We should watch out for more of this kind of election result fraud come 2015 from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). We should open our eyes and ears and guard our vote jealously from the enemies of the people. God save Nigeria. Anonymous To our greatest dismay in Offa, someone can testify that he cannot claim what does not belong to him because he fears Allah. Without mincing words, the boy deserves a national honour and honour from Allah. From Tai Omokanye, Abuja It is election result as declared in the Offa re-run that is giving President Goodluck Jonathan the impetus to think of 2015. From Sedi Bello, Benin City I cannot blame the Governor of Kwara State because he is a camouflage Governor. We all know that Bukola Saraki remains the governor of the state. He is the one behind all the problems fasing Offa. He is using Offa to fight Offa (omo ina laa ran si ina). My advice to Offa people is to stand up and fight for their right. From Bayo, FEDPOFFA Well, Offa Local Government election was
a clear demonstration of rigging, robbery and corruption with impunity. Let KWASIEC tread the path of honour and announce the authentic result. From Oyedotun, Ondo I always appreciate your sense of reasoning and objective criticism of national issues. I only pray that our politicians fear God and learn to leave the stage when the ovasion is loudest. From Eunybola, Osogbo. Clinton was the second American president to face impeachment. He, however, kept his job. From Aquaisua, A.E Esq.,Uyo. It is very clear that the election that produced the Governor of Kwara State, Mr Fatai Ahmed, was rigged. If not how could 4,710 be bigger than 11,337? As in the case of Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) where 16 is more than 19? It is a shame for the PDP and Nigeria as a whole. From Akinshola Ramoni G., Alimosho, Lagos I am nursing the ambition of going into politics. If politics is allowed to be played the way the PDP is playing it, Nigeria would remain undeveloped and this will discourage those of us planning to go into politics with our conscience. Majority of PDP members have no conscience. Offa vote heist and other PDP mess are a typical example. Mr. Afolabi Jimoh’s action in this case is worthy of emulation. From Ajijola, I. Olanrewaju, Unilorin I commend Mr. Afolabi Jimoh for speaking the truth about the result of Offa Local Government re-run election. This shows that we still have God-fearing citizens in our great country Nigeria. The so-called PDP party should stop this Abracadabra behaviour so that Nigera can remain one and not divided in 2015. Mr. Afolabi Jimoh is a progressiveminded man who stands for the truth and who wants a change in Nigerian politics. He should abandon PDP today and join APC where he has a very good future, politically. God save our Nigeria in 2015. From Mr. Okesola Folarin, Ibadan Can any truth come out of PDP? Yes,and that is Afolabi Jimoh. He is not of the majority in PDP. I have doubt if Saheed Popoola can be so blunt and open. Jimoh did what the late President Yar’Adua did partly, Obasanjo poorly did and the current President, and Kwara State governor may not do. Jimoh may not be a complete saint but he is more honourable than most people seeking elective posts. The people of Offa have spoken; we need not ask the governor to respect it. From Biodun Makanjuola, Bayelsa state The man is not a politician. I think he is an Alfa or Imam; he should go back to his real calling full time. Do not forget that the socalled rigging in Nigeria is nothing but a political game. Anonymous My concern is not Offa election now but 2015 elections. Governors’ forum election and Offa’s election will only serve as lessons for Nigerians; that is my fear. From Dosu Joshua PDP in Nigeia should emulate Mr. Afolabi Jimoh. From Michael Okoli, Enugu We do not need a soothsayer to tell us the meaning of what Fani-Kayode meant by intimate relationship. At least, there is nothing wrong in Fani-Kayode loving her because there is no law that prohibits that. Let all pray for both of them so that their relationship will come to reality. Bianca has been a widow for some time, so, she needs a partner to keep life moving. In this respect, Mr. Fani-Kayode should be encouraged to try harder so that the relationship can be cemented. From Hamza Ozi Momoh, Apapa, Lagos The ‘blessing’ from Satan carries sorrow. That is why those with stolen mandate will never have peace. I thank God for the life and the likes of Jimoh. Rare breed of politician! Anonymous After the death of Yar’Adua, there is no more justice in this country. This is an example of 2015. Oposition party should get ready for war. From Ahmed Olayinka Balogun
You were in Nigeria when 16 became greater than 19, so what do you expect? This is a pointer to what we should expect in 2015. From Ogundele Wole,Ore,Ondo State I am a man of God and l believe in the truth. The truth has prevailed, so there is no need to waste time. The APC candidate should be sworn in immediately. For the PDP candidate to have come out and said the truth, he will definitelly go to heaven if he should continue in that way throughout his life. But for the KWSIEC Chairman, he should ask for forgiveness from God and do the right thing. The National Assembly (NASS) should as a matter of urgency vote in favour of INEC for the conduct of local government election. From Ropo Coker Your article “Of love, power and politics” is one of the masterpieces I have read in recent times. I wish you more ink to your pen as we move this nation forward. We will not lose hope. From Dr. Adewole Adebayo When will PDP end this issue of upturning the people’s victory? This is a clear signal that Nigerians should watch the PDP come 2015. From Sunday Keyi Re: “Of love, power and politics.” The dispute between Bianca and Fani-Kayode is nothing but a man-woman matter. Acceptance or/ and denial by Bianca would not change anything; and, predictably, the court would pronounce out-of-court amicable settlement. If I were Suntai, I would ‘throw in the towel’. It is very obvious that Suntai requires a lot of medicare and needs a long-term leave of absence. If he goes to court, then, his lawmakers should impeach him. His stubborness at this stage should not put the governed at a loss. Despite that I never considered the ACN/APC a credible alternative to PDP, the upturn of authentic result to a fake in the Offa re-run was a show-of-shame, condemnable in its entirety. From Lanre Oseni Gbenga, all of you are puting the cart before the horse by not letting us know if the immunity enjoyed by Suntai demands that he must not be prosecuted for the plane crash of last October. It is better to get the security agents to invite and interrogate him. He should be well for trial before official work. What a disaster called Nigeria. Stowaway boy was arresed and detained even though he had no accident. Double standard that demands an apology from the Federal Government to the adventurous Daniel Ohikhene. Suntai must, as of priority, be prosecuted. Is any Senior Advocate of Nigeria listening? From Akinlayo A., State of Osun PDP is the problem of this nation. As we march towards 2015, it is only God Almighty that can deliver us. Look at the NGF where 16 is more than 19. In Rivers, five is more than 27 lawmakers. From Alex O., Sokoto For Tunji Adegboyega Your piece titled “Humpty Dumpty falls at last” made an interesting read. E ma sesi ba won ja, funra won ni won o maa funra won loogun je is a Yoruba saying which translates ‘don’t bother to fight them because they are condemned to poison or undo themselves’. Glad to note that the ‘civil war’ within the Peoples Democratic Party was internally generated and self-induced. As the Lord liveth, they will never overcome or survive their self- inflicted revolt. I’m laughing. From Olu Ajayi, Abeiokuta. Hi, Tunji, it is a pity that PDP has to degenerate to this level. My advice to APC is that they should not rejoice and be carried away by this. Rather, they should keep on planning and focus on how to liberate Nigeria from the PDP, whether ‘old’ or ‘new’. Thanks, more ink to your pen. From Tunji Balogun, Ikorodu. Re: “Humpty Dumpty falls at last.” The whole crash began when Mr. President imposed Bamanga Tukur as party chairman, thus disallowing internal democracy from thriving.
Such is brewing in some governorship reruns by some of the incumbents! Godfatherism and corruption, after all said and done, remain the bane of our development. What happened and is still ongoing in PDP is a lesson to all political parties, leaders and every individual. Honesty, internal democracy and transparency as well as hands-off from godfatherism will help us kill corruption and, ultimately, lead to achieving our political, social and economic goals in Nigeria. Although the PDP is in turmoil now, it has a way of doing a crash programme to win the 2015 presidency. To halt the forecast, APC can only achieve if the big guns there shun selfishness, egoism and impatience! From Lanre Oseni. The idea behind the formation of PDP as an all-encompassing national and nationalist party was noble. It even paraded some of the most credible names in our polity at its formation. But the greatest blunder committed by its founders and their ultimate undoing was to meekly surrender the party to the power-mongering, domineering and manipulative military rear-guard. And to think that Awoyinka and Lar aided, abetted and were neck-deep in this! The military rearguard has not looked back since. What is happening in the PDP today is merely a product of the strategic manipulations of the generals to maintain dominance and control over any sitting president produced by the party. They are still at it through Obasanjo and Babangida, but, this time, masquerading as party elders and mediators/peacemakers. Anonymous Oh, has Tukur been toppled as PDP chairman? So, Baraje is now PDP chairman? And it has to do with the great NGF election where an unruly governor rebuffed his party’s position that he should not contest and contested against his party’s candidate for that office? Interesting! But do you really believe Tukur has been toppled as PDP chairman and that Baraje is now PDP chairman? It is unfortunate how unreal, childish and low some of our commentators can go in pursuit of bias and sundry prejudices. Grow up and get real. From Festus. Tunji, it is clear that things have fallen part as the old and new PDP cannot reasonably be expected to work together harmoniously, again. There will be mutual suspicion, distrust and betrayal. From Barr. Moronkeji. He who believes in injustice will definitely be consumed by the fire of injustice. Tukur and his backers are talking with impunity, believing that nothing will happen. A leader who does not believe in the rule of law will find himself in the ruin of law. The president has shot himself on the leg by allowing himself to be cowed by the hawks in PDP. The ruling party is like a torn cloth which can never be the same again if sewn. PDP’s coffin has been accompanied by the undertakers for its burial. PDP, rest in perfect peace. From Hamza Ozi Momoh, Apapa, Lagos. May democracy survive forever in Nigeria. We all will look at our actions/inactions of our lives in 20 years’ time and see how stupid we were. Who advised Amaechi and co that they can form a parallel PDP without renouncing their membership of the original one? Did Amaechi think he is dealing with Rivers politics where a court in Ahoada will judge a case not tabled before it? Hope the NJC took note of it! Anonymous.
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Kidney patient seeks N10m to survive – Page 27
Metal feast at Temple Muse – Page 37
Celebrating foremost African legend – Page 38
‘Lagos was wonderful until the war came’ •Mimi
– SEE STORY ON PAGE 26
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
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She comes from a family of artists. Her parents, who lived in Lagos as American diplomats, were artists. Mimi Wolford returned to the city she left 44 years ago, noting that “everything is now barricaded”. Wolford, founder of the Mbari Institute for Contemporary African Art in the United States, believes that artists should focus on big business. She spoke with EVELYN OSAGIE on her passion, art development, plight of artists and art teachers, among others. enough. I hope that some organisations will donate funds so that they can keep it up. Special places like that are national treasures and they need constant attention to keep it neat and carefully organised. I saw some pieces that were deteriorating and needed new cement and work. Susanne’s commitment to the promotion of Osogbo art and artists was unbelievable. She adopted two artists, one of whom I saw while I visited – which was good to know. And she’s still working to preserve the shrine.
That Lagos I used to know Oh, the environment was so calm and serene. Then it was more open: you walked in the street; it was freer. If something went wrong or someone stole something, everyone would run after that person. I worry that everything is now so barricaded. It creates no space for intermingling: everything is ‘separate’ ... ‘separate’. It was wonderful until the war came.
My Nigerian Civil War experience It was very hard to be here during the Biafran war ... very saddening. The war was on, so there were issues - big unresolved issues. I love peace and saving the environment; so, it was hard to see people fighting. People need to work hard to overcome their differences. Artists have to come together to be stronger and to make more impact against the violence. They just need to take these issues to heart and work on them slowly, but truly.
Art development in Nigeria •Mimi (right) with United States Consul-General, Jeffery Hawkins and his wife, Annie
‘Lagos was wonderful until the war came’ My Passion
S a teacher and a lover of art, I have a passion for African art, especially. Actually, I had thought about going into the Foreign Service and discovered there was too much red-tape. And so I took up art instead. I love the independence and freedom that comes with being an artist. And l also learnt a lot by being out in the world from an early age travelling with my parents. I don’t have any children. My students are all my children. I had so many students and was so busy I never had children. I would love to leave behind the legacy that I was a supporter of all artists and that I care deeply for art and people.
Struggle being an artist It is a struggle to be an artist. It is the same for artists all over the world. Most artists have to have a job on the side to get by. In the US, we’re not any model to holdup really. It is so hard for artists and that is why I teach. To put food on the table, I teach. Luckily, I am in a position to teach only one semester a year so I can devote the other half of the year to working on art.
My inspiration My mother and father (Richard Wolford and Jean Kennedy) inspired my becoming an artist. And it started here. Aside being diplomats, they were artists who had been involved in the world of art from an early age, having graduated from the Cleveland School of Art. So, whenever we visited a country, we also knew their artists. We went first to Italy, later to Indonesia, Ethiopia and in 1961 to Nigeria. They were the first to open their home to artists in Nigeria to exhibit and socialise. Both Osogbo artists and others such as Bruce Onobrakpeya, Jimoh Buraimoh and Nike Okundaye were among artists they exhibited. For seven years, Nigeria was my home. And even though I was schooling, I would come back for vacations. After I graduated I came back, but that was when my parents had to leave. But, I did not want to leave so I stayed on an extra year. I left here in 1969. And this is my first time here since then. Living in Nigeria and being so close to artists from Osogbo and Onobrakpeya was also an inspiration. Their art came from their hearts and that was what was so beautiful about it and it’s what draws me. I was inspired by their dedication to their art, their vision; and when you are around them you want to do it. They were taught techniques and they ran with them. They were not told how humans or animals must look like, so what came out was straight from their hearts. Trained artists are very careful, they want to project the human figure with the right proportion and that is great too.
I am closer to Osogbo artists because we were growing up at the same time; and I saw them more. Buraimoh calls me his sister and I call him my brother. He was so focused on his work. He would bring it to our house: work and eat there. In the 60s, he and other artists would bring their works to our house for expatriates to see and purchase. And that encouraged the artists that they had something worthwhile. Now, those artists are world renowned. Like my parents, I also support artists from all over Africa. I feel enriched and blessed to have all this richness in my life and I am obliged to pass it on and enrich other people’s lives. In America, many people don’t understand African art. So, I do my best to visit wherever I find walls: where there are no museums or universities to exhibit in. I open my home and invite people there like it was here in Lagos. I have opened my home to artists to exhibit from Kenya, Mozambique, Lesotho, South Africa, Senegal, Togo, Ivory Coast and so many that I can’t even name them all. They include Mallangatana Ngwemya (Mozambique), Bethel Aniaku (Togo), from Nigeria are Muraina Oyelami, Twin Seven-Seven, Ashiru Olatunde, Rufus Ogundele, Isaac Ojo, Peju Layiwola, Adebisi Sobunmi, and Tayo Adenaike …so many.
Osogbo, the Grove I used to know The people are just the same - just wonderful. I got a queen’s welcome by Nike Okundaye in Osogbo - there were dancers, drummers and fire-eaters - I was in tears, I was so happy. Osogbo has so changed. I went to the sacred grove that Susanne Wenger spent all her life building. I hear a lot is being done by the government - but it didn’t seem to be
‘I don’t have any children. My students are all my children. I had so many students and was so busy I never had children. I would love to leave behind the legacy that I was a supporter of all artists and that I care deeply for art and people’
When I left here, Nigerians were not collecting art at all. That is why we invited expatriates into our homes to keep the art moving, for the artists to be encouraged. But I hear there are so many galleries such as Nike’s incredible gallery that looks like a palace, every inch covered with art. It is amazing and Omenka Gallery. The achievements of Nigerian artists like Buraimoh and Onobrakpeya and others are incredible. It is wonderful that they are alive to see it in their lifetime. Nigerians are doing world-class art. I think Nigerians are some of the smartest people I have ever met. They have such amazing talents and are determined. In my teens then, Buraimoh already had a computer before I even knew what a computer was.
Role of government In the United States, most universities are funded. And I’m happy to say that most schools have art in their schools. Here, in Nigeria, I have encountered many wonderful art teachers who have no supplies. Like teachers from Abuja that I’ve met are lacking funds for buying simple supplies. The Nigeria government should ensure that art is taught in schools and fund the schools so that the teachers would have the equipment to work with. Also, they should place artworks in and on government buildings and other buildings where businessmen work. They should oblige each businessman who builds a new building to put a certain amount of art in each of new structure.
What Nigerian artists must do Artists are in need of support from all areas in Nigeria. It is not easy to get support and grants. But artists need to be determined. I went to a hotel that I knew many years ago where there was a huge Buraimoh’s mural; they have torn it down and now in the room you find a piece of an adire cloth framed. Not a piece of art, a cut from a piece of cloth! And I heard that the owner of this hotel was an art collector, I was so surprised that “why isn’t he supporting the arts in his hotel?” He could even put a little price below the work and help in just a simple way to support the artist. Little by little people would realise, like in America, that art impacts everything/subject: music, dancing, mathematics, science, the textile quality, the mental quality and the visual quality. Nigerian artists just have to go after the politicians and make them sensitive to the plight of artists. They need to focus on big business. It is the politicians who have so much money and can afford to purchase. More and more Nigerians are collecting, and that is great. And that is why I have always praised Nike. She has singlehandedly done more work than any other person for Nigerian artists in this country. Singlehandedly, she has galleries in Abuja, Ogidi, Osogbo, and Lekki. She is an amazing woman and I love her so much. I was just shocked at the amazing pieces of works at Nike Gallery. It was so huge, a mansion full of art for people to support and buy. I also advocate recycling: reuse-renew - showing how you can make beautiful things, like El Anatsui is doing, from so called junk.
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Kidney patient seeks N10m to survive
The Journey Begins holds Sept. 28
HREE years after he underwent a kidney transplant, Abiodun Akinyemi needs N10 million for another operation. Why? The initial transplant relapsed after he could not keep up with the expensive drugs prescribed by his doctor. The drugs cost N150,000 monthly and are to be taken twice daily. His travails began in 2010 when he had recurring typhoid fever which forced him to undergo tests at the General Hospital in Ikeja, Lagos. It was then the father of three was diagnosed with kidney failure. Everything was okay after the first transplant. His medicals and laboratory tests revealed it was a success and he was diagnosed to be fit to keep up with his daily work. Adeyemi’s problem got worse when he could not sustain his medication schedule. The burden became too much for his wife, a hair stylist, who gave all she had for the dialysis. His doctor, Ebun Bamgboye of St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos advised him to prepare to undergo another transplant. Dr Bambgoye, a nephrologist and Clinical Director at the hospital, said if he could get a possible donor without a history of smoking or alcohol that is compatible, the chances of the correction is high. In the course of the kidney disease, he suffered other ailments associated with it including ulcer and high
•Adeyemi at the hospital
By Nneka Nwaneri
PHILANTROPY blood pressure. He urged Nigerians to come to his aid. “I am just a depressed person. Please come to my aid and save my life and that of my family,” he pleaded.
OTABLE entertainers like Yaw, Julius Agwu, Joseph Benjamin, Akpororo, Lepacious Bose, Banky W, Tim Godfrey & Xtreme, will on September 28 thrill music lovers as The Journey Begins holds at the MUSON Centre. Powered by Republic Of Xtreme (ROX) in conjunction with SwiftThink Limited, event was borne out of the need to inspire a generation of young Nigerians to take up responsibility and avoid using life’s numerous vicissitudes as excuses for apathy and failure. Directed by one of Nigeria’s finest Directors, Joseph Ofili, The Journey Begins is a movement geared towards building individuals who understand that mistakes, challenges and setbacks are a crucial part of the human experience and existence as well as young people who possess the strength to embrace them when they happen and the courage to move beyond them to live a worthwhile existence. Primarily set within a law court setting, the performance opens up with the story of six individuals confronted by diverse challenges of life. This story is delivered through intriguing hybrid of drama, music and dance. Then it follows the trajectory of each character’s peculiar emotional dilemma, leading to a thought provoking resolution, before climaxing in a high energy musical performance. Speaking further on the event, Tim Godfrey, the President of RoX said “In a time like this, we need to create an atmosphere where we can reach out to our youth with a message even in the midst of the mess, that they can turn a new leaf today, and let The Journey Begins again for them towards a better life. It promises to keep its audience wanting for more as they will be entertained, educated and also inspired by the classic performances of the A-List Entertainers that make up the cast of the show.
Jimoh Buraimoh, a renowned artist and coordinator of Osun Osogbo yearly festival, has just turned 70. Few people are into his brand of art, bead painting, which he introduced in 1965. In a recent exhibition, he introduced the use of acrylic in his works. In this interview with GBENGA ADERANTI, Buraimoh reflects on his life at 70; why few artists embrace bead painting in Africa and his staying power, among other issues.
‘Why few people do bead painting’
OW do you feel to be 70? I feel honoured. I thank God for allowing me attain the age of 70. I’m full of praises to God almighty for sparing my life to see my 70th year on earth despite all the odds I have passed through. It is a long journey I thank God for getting to this level and I pray that I will get beyond this. Many people would be wondering how you have managed to stay healthy, considering your busy schedule; what is the secret? I try to rest anytime I had the opportunity to relax, this helps to regain my energy, though there are lots of pressures due to my position in the community. But I thank God that I’m able to serve people judiciously. It is a fact that if I don’t work sometimes, I feel more sick than when I’m working, so my source of energy is when I’m thinking or working. I cant sit down doing nothing, I either paint, be on computer or be doing one thing or the other. I just like to get things done. You are IT savvy. I-phone, I-pad, android and other computer accessories are always with you, how did you manage to acquire this knowledge?
I think it is a gift and interest. When you have interest in something, you won’t find it difficult to learn and I remember maybe 1959 or something, my father had this big typewriter, when he could not pay for school fees, and my teacher went to him and appeal to him, that was how I was able to cope. Before then, I loved anything technical, anything that can task my brain. I remember again when computers were about to be springing up in Nigeria, I’ve been on computer since 1990, you know if you want to live in the US successfully you must be on computer, that is, you must know how to use computer. The people I’m working with, the students, they have to be computer literate, you must know how to use computer to function well and be able to communicate. I think I was one of the first group of people to have internet here in Osogbo. We started seeing the traces of computers here in Nigeria in 1990 or 92 and I’ve been on computers since then and since it is a day-to-day practice. I get to understand it better. How often do you paint now? I have painted this morning. I even use computer to design. I call it computer graphic. Hardly I sleep early, that is why I wake up late, maybe I sleep sometimes, depending on the interest, depending on my mood, perhaps sometimes between 12 and 1a.m. and I wake up late. If I feel like working in the midnight, I will wake up and go to my studio to work. I’m self employed, I have no other job than what I’m doing, my studio is closer to my bedroom that is where I live. Why do you prefer to work at night? It is more silent, nobody, no visitor will come to you, so you are always on your own. One will be able to concentrate well than when you are expecting visitors or going for a meeting. I have nobody to visit me, the whole place is quiet and concentration is better. Why is it that only few people are into bead painting? I wouldn’t know why though it is an expensive hobby. Bead is an expensive hobby because the beads and the glue are expensive. Some people feel once they do a painting, they will want to sell it, once they cannot get it sold, you now use the resources of one bead painting to do five to 10
paintings in oil. So, people now prefer to do oil painting than bead painting because, bead painting will cost them a lot and they are not sure whether they are going to get it sold. I know of some people who gate crashed but could not sustain it. Does that mean bead painting is meant for a class of people? Yes, because it is supposed to be more expensive than ordinary oil, it is an applied art. Something you added to the board which is more than oil, it normally cost more. May be because again, it is my invention some people may not go into it because once other see it, they will say “O! this is Jimoh Buraimoh.” It has been my identity. That may scare some people not to go into it and try their own medium. What is the future of bead painting in Nigeria, it seems it is more prominent abroad than here? It is more prominent here too; people who know it buy it. I’m not even talking about buyers; I’m talking about people doing it There are people doing it here but you know, people like David Dale, he is one of my ‘apprentices’ whom I inspired and I have the authority to say, I started bead painting in Nigeria. Again, what is the future? The future is okay, some of my children are doing painting, they use bead but the only difference is that they use it in another dimension because they can not use the same feature like I use, it will not augur well to use the same system like what I’m using. It will be like they are copying what I do, they do something different from what I do. Your advice for up and coming artists? Even if they are not using beads, they should be able to create something on their own; they should have an identity. To copy will not augur well for any artist because people buy name and creativity they buy art through the creativity but if the creativity is being molested, it may not last.
‘I wouldn’t know why, though it is an expensive hobby. Bead is an expensive hobby because the beads and the glue are expensive. Some people feel once they do a painting, they will want to sell it, once they cannot get it sold, you now use the resources of one bead painting to do five to 10 paintings in oil. So, people now prefer to do oil painting than bead painting because, bead painting will cost them a lot and they are not sure whether they are going to get it sold’
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Distinction holds at Terra
‘Distinction is about pushing some new frontiers… The art field is heavily populated now and there are so many things going on. It has become so dynamic even politically and we have all decided to look into it in order to position ourselves, relying on the experience and expertise we have acquired over the years. We needed to bring on new strategy and tactics; all premise these are on professionalism that would distinguish us’
O fewer than seven professional artists will showcase their paintings, mix media, installations, sculptures and drawings at a group art exhibition tagged, Distinction at the Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos. It will run from September 22 to 27. The exhibiting artists are Bunmi Babatunde, Alex Nwokoro, Abiodun Olaku, Fidelis Odogwu, Duke Asidere, Edosa Ogiugo and Reuben Ugbine. One unique character of the exhibitors is that they have been consistent in the art scene and have consequently established identity for themselves. Abiodun Olakun, who spoke for the artists at a preview session in Lagos, said: “Distinction is about pushing some new frontiers… The art field is heavily populated now and there are so many things going on. It has become so dynamic even politically and we have all decided to look into it in order to position ourselves, relying on the experience and expertise we have acquired over the years. We needed to bring on new strategy and tactics; all these are premise on professionalism that would distinguish us.” Olaku continued: “If you have spent time on something for so long the dividend is actually expected. The art sector in Nigeria is still undergoing some teething problems. For this reason, we have decided to be part of the process by restructuring and organising it well, where experience will start to count, grains most be separated from the chaff because we have all kind of players. We don’t intend to run anybody down, but we can promote what we believe we have.” He added: “We have always had the Society of Nigerian Artists but we decide to coordinate our affairs because the desires and aspirations of full time professional artists are peculiar. We eventually found the Guild of Professional Nigerian Artists, which incidentally all of us belong to. We have decided to put programmes that symbolise those professional aspirations we have, and this is one of the opportunities we have to come together. Every exhibiting artist is coming to the programme with his distinctive powers, abilities, style, philosophy which we are merging into one under the platform of Distinction,” he said. Some of the works for display include Possibilities: a breathtaking work by Bunmi Babatunde, carved in such a magnifi-
•Female model by Ogiugo By Udemma Chukwuma
VISUAL ART cent and symbolic way as the title indicates; Lucifer’s CallCard: a bold and philosophical title by Abiodun Olaku, a masterpiece that many will mistake for photograph due to the effect of the light illuminating from the background of the painting; with every detail in the right place. Others are
Women Empowerment, a painting done by Alex Nwokolo is a striking work with element of bright yellow, depicting faces of women, Fidelis Odogwu’s Crossroad, is a mystifying metal work that appears like flowing water with a passage in the centre, but on a closer look, it looks like children of Israel crossing the Red Sea, Faces by Reuben Ugbine, is a sculpture with a combination of many faces in one. A Concept of Peace by Duke Asidere, is a painting that consists of various colours that complement each other, but one cannot tell if the figures in the painting are women or ladies due to the style which Asidere had chose to compose the work; and Edosa Ogiugo’s Brand Ambassador a figurative painting of a female teenage carrying a tray on her head, obviously the child is carrying something for sale. Though Ogiugo didn’t use bright colours for this work, the strokes of his brush can be felt at first glance. The seven exhibiting artists are full time studio artists who had various solo and group exhibitions to their credit. Their works have graced many international art galleries across the globe including the Nigerian House during last year’s London Olympics. The seven artists are members of Society of Nigerian Artists (SNA), and the Guild of Professional Fine Artists of Nigeria (GFA).
Visual sensation: A break from the past T
HE visual art sub-sector in recent times, has taken a new dimension, as new movements and forms continue to emerge. These have also resulted in a new burst of creativity and enthusiasm from many artists. Keeping breast on these developments is Aladegbongbe Aderinsoye, an artist and Head of Department, Visual Art, Yaba College of Technology, Yaba, (YABATECH), Lagos who said it is only by moving forward and experimenting that an artist can continue to truly create new concept. Aderinsoye will exhibit about 62 artworks featuring paintings, metal foils and wood; titled: Visual sensation, in two locations starting on Saturday at the National Museum, Onikan, Lagos; while the second opens at the YABATECH on September 30. “Visual sensation is a presentation of collections of five different bodies of work that have been of intrigue to me presently, these works I hope expose a paradigm shift from my previous approach to solo or group exhibitions which are sets of works on experimentation, a way far from the normal paintings I do. Theme and titles of the works reflect socio-cultural and economic activities in the nation,” he said. Aderinsoye’s new experiment with new medium has led him to become more versatile, making it possible for him to break even further out of the restriction he found with painting thus giving his works a new perception, something entirely different from his previous exhibition, Water and Reflection. “I have decided to move out from my usual painting to other medium,” he confessed. “Aesthetics is a sensational appeal created through visual perception of works of art, in the case of these works, they are from nature and natural objects. In comparison to what I have previously been occupied by, this show is a door to new sets of experiment going on in the studio presently. My purpose is to draw attention to the uniqueness and spontaneity celebrated in exploration of materials and methods used in this production,” he said. The works that will be on display include paintings, metal foil, sliced blocks of wood with engraving, decorated trucks of tree backs, burnt wood of various sizes. Some of the works are; Elders’ Forum, Royal Discourse, Ethnic Dignity, New-yam Festival to mention but a few. “The sets of works done in metal foil are evidentiary of my interest in printmaking. My present experimentation employs the use of simple lines and curves in a reaction to the socio-economic activities going on in my immediate environment.” One important aspect of his works is the sliced wood that buttressed his view about deforestation which he said is one of the major causes of global warming. Elders’ Forum is not just another piece of artwork it serves as instrument to warn people on the implication and dangers of
•Ethnic dignity, by Aderinsoye By Udemma Chukwuma
VISUAL ART deforestation. The messages in the work which is in series will make people to think twice before cutting down any tree or burning it down. “I have this style of painting, my works are not realistic; they are abstract paintings. By the time you look at the paintings, they are not as real as expected and the form are only represented by the details of the body. I liquidize my colour, I then paint with brush to create form, what you see has to do with what you have in mind. His opinion on if art is profitable in Nigeria, he
said: “The pricing of artwork today in Nigeria has to do with the artist, how constant the artists is, is the artist known, how many exhibition an artist is putting up, is the artist known in the scene of art, the contribution the artist has made and the impact the artist has made in the Nigerian art sector.” Adding that, “If sealing of work is the vision of the artist, it will be difficult for the artist to create new ideas.” He obtained Ordinary National (OND) General Art in 1989 and Higher National Diploma (HND) Fine Art (Painting) in 1992 from YABATECH. In 2008, he bagged a Masters in Fine Art MFA (Painting) from the University of Benin. So far, he has featured in various solo and group exhibitions.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
BUSINESS THE NATION
Forecasts Niger Insurance Gross Premium - N2.73b Profit after tax - N212.95m Mutual Benefits Gross Premium - N2b Profit - N885.633m Regency Alliance Gross Premium – N812.596m Profit after tax – N256.437m Learn Africa Turnover - N1.06b Profit after tax - N58.336m Total Nigeria Turnover - N46.676 b Profit after tax - N942.1m MRS Oil Nigeria Turnover - N51.20b Profit after tax - N712 m Eterna Turnover - N27.64b Profit after tax - N563.834m Okomu Oil Palm Turnover - N2.667b Profit after tax - N1.044b Stanbic/IBTC Bank Net operating income N16.805b Profit after tax - N2.737b ASL Turnover - N1.084b Profit after tax - N101.355m GT Assurance Gross Premium - N3.892b Profit after tax - N710.62m Cornerstone Insurance Gross Premium - N1.223b Profit after tax - N80.01m Oasis Insurance Gross Premium N562.500m Profit after tax - N79.868m African Alliance INS Gross Premium - N1.215b Profit after tax - N107.213m Berger Paints Turnover - N976.303m Profit after tax - N88.258m SCOA Nigeria Turnover - N835.0m Profit after tax - N18.200m Dangote Sugar Refinery Turnover - N38.251b Profit after tax - N3.49b Studio Press Nig. Turnover - N3.375b Profit after tax - N20.422m Julius Berger Nig. Turnover - N80.125b Profit after tax - N2.55b Intercontinental Wapic Ins Gross Premium - N1.41b Profit after tax - N250.450m Equity Assurance Gross Premium - N2.45b Profit after tax - N287.283m Standard Alliance Insurance Gross Premium - N2.142b Profit after tax - N475.964m Continental Reinsurance Gross Premium - N6.917b Profit after tax - N805m PRESCO Turnover - N2.60b Profit after tax - N800.9m RT Briscoe Turnover - N4.553b
NLNG is one of the biggest success stories in our country. From what I am told, the company has invested $13 billion so far since inception, and has become a pacesetter in terms of revenue generation for the government. -Minister of Trade and Investment, Dr Olusegun Aganga
Foreign investors edgy over Nigerian stock market outlook F
OREIGN investors flowed out nearly a double of every penny they invested in the Nigerian stock market and Nigerian investors showed less enthusiasm amid concerns over the performance outlooks of dominant banking stocks. A latest report on foreign portfolio investment flow by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) indicated unusually high disparity between foreign portfolio inflow and outflow, which led to significant decline in net foreign investment in the stock market. According to the NSE’s report, recent filings showed that 66 per cent of the total value of foreign transactions were outflows- sale orders, a situation that led to about 42 per cent decline in net foreign investment in the stock market. The foreign portfolio investment report showed considerable month-onmonth slowdown in both the total foreign transactions and foreign portfolio inflow while there was an
By Taofik Salako
increase in outflow during the period. The seven-month report for the period ended July this year, the latest available data, indicated that total foreign inflow stood at N31.81 billion as against outflow of N61.90 billion in July, showing the widest divergence between inflow and outflow so far this year. Total foreign transactions thus slowed to N93.71 billion in July as against N150.24 billion in the previous month. However, foreign investors remained dominant in stock market’s transactions with 62.53 per cent of the aggregate foreign-domestic transactions in July, an increase on 51.13 per cent recorded by foreign investors in June. With the outflow in July, net foreign investment declined from about N73 billion in June to N42.59 billion in July. Total foreign inflow had
risen to N90.15 billion while outflow stood at N60.09 billion as total foreign transactions increased to N150.24 billion in June. Total foreign transactions in the market for the sevenmonth period stood at N676.25 billion, 50.73 per cent of aggregate transactions of N1.33 trillion by foreign and domestic investors during the period. Breakdown of foreign transactions during the sevenmonth period showed inflow of N359.47 billion as against outflow of N316.88 billion. Nigerian investors accounted for N656.85 billion over the seven months. Foreign investors had capitalised on general market optimism in July ahead of the release of the first half earnings reports of quoted companies to monetise and rebalance their portfolios. Nigerian equities had consolidated their bullish rally in July with capital gains of some N581 billion. Aggre-
gate market value of all equities closed July at N12.007 trillion as against its opening value of N11.426 trillion for the month. The All Share Index (ASI), which doubles as benchmark index for all equities on the NSE and country index for Nigeria, also rose from month’s opening index of 36,164.31 points to close at 37,914.33 points, a month-month average positive return of 5.08 per cent. First-half report on foreign portfolio investment flow had shown that total transactions-including buy and sell deals, by foreign investors totaled N582.64 billion, accounting for 49.24 per cent of total turnover at the NSE during the period. The report had indicated that in most instances, foreign investors flowed in more funds than they took out, leaving the stock market with a positive net foreign investment of about N73 billion within the period. Foreign portfolio in-
flow stood at N327.66 billion as against outflow of N254.98 billion. Total turnover value at the NSE during the first half was N1.18 trillion with both foreign investors and domestic investors dominating transactions in three months each. But while foreign investors had maintained gradual and steady increase and decline in portfolio adjustments, indigenous investors showed large fluctuations. They dominated the market in the first two months and were supplanted by foreign investors in March and April. They regained dominance in May and were displaced by foreign investors in June. Foreign investors accounted for 36.89 per cent, 39.65 per cent, 52.78 per cent, 64.48 per cent, 48.68 per cent and 51.13 per cent in January, February, March, April, May and June. Portfolio transactions by foreign investors totaled •Continued on page 32
•From left: Director-General (DG), Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE), Mr Kofi Yamoah; his counterpart, Securities and Exchange Commission Ghana, Mr Adu Anane Antwi; Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Stock Exchange and Chairman, West African Capital Markets Integration Council (WACMIC), Mr Oscar Onyema; DG, West Africa Monetary Institute (WAMI), Dr. Abwaku Englama; Mr Jeremias Pereira of CREPMF; and Vice Chairman, WACMIC/ Chief Executive Officer, Bourse Regionale des Valeurs Mobilieres Mr Edoh Kossi Amenounnve at WACMIC meeting in Accra, Ghana.
HIEF Executive Officer, Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Mr Uche Orji said he was worried about rising stock prices as he prepares to hand over the next tranche of the fund’s $1 billion of holdings to external fund managers. The Authority is seeking returns of 400 basis points above U.S. CPI in its $325 million future generations fund, one of three such pools created to manage the
Forex market hit by N1tr fund withdrawal - P 30
NSIA chief frets over costly stocks $1 billion, and plans to be fully invested by the middle of next year. It will weigh investments in about eight asset classes from private equity to developed and emerging-market stocks even as some securities gained on signs the global economic recovery is taking hold. Orji told Bloomberg he’s working with Cambridge Associates LLC on filtering
possible managers for the future fund after tapping former employers Goldman Sachs and UBS AG (UBSN), along with Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN), to help manage a separate $200 million fixed income fund. That accounts for about 20 percent of the fund’s total portfolio and will start reporting performance next month. Borrowing costs are soaring from record lows
SEC mulls 10-year master plan for capital market - P32
reached in January as speculation deepens that the Fed will curtail its so-called quantitative easing as soon as this month, signaling an end to cheap money that propped up asset prices. “A lot of asset classes are richly valued frankly. There’s still a lot I’m not comfortable with in developed market equities. I’m not going to try and be a hero and catch a falling knife with
people’s money,” Orji said. The wealth fund was signed into law in May 2011 by President Goodluck Jonathan and started last October to invest savings made from the difference between budgeted oil prices and actual market prices. A third pool is mandated to invest $325 million in infrastructure, with a further $150 million that can be •Continued on page 32
Interested in business? You need this coach! - P34
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Credit to private sector hits N15.6tr B
ANKING credit to the private sector stood at N15.6 trillion at the end of the second quarter, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said. According to the CBN Economic Report, the figure represents an increase of 2.8 per cent from the first quarter performance. It attributed the development to the three per cent rise in claims on the core private sector. Relative to the level at end-December, 2012, banking systems credit to the private sector rose by 3.6 per cent. The report said foreign exchange (FOREX) inflow into the country in the second quarter of the year was $9.44 billion, the CBN has said. In its quarterly Economic Report, the CBN said forex sales to authorised dealers stood at $10.77 billion, compared to $4.65 billion in the preceding quarter, adding that the development reflected the
Stories by Collins Nweze
fall in banks’ foreign assets, which suppressed the growth in their domestic credit and other assets. According to the report, the money in circulation is N1.42 trillion, indicating a drop by 5.6 per cent. It dropped by 7.6 per cent at the end of the preceding quarter. The development was attributed, to the 9.3 per cent decline in currency outside the banks. It said total deposits at the CBN amounted to N6.1 trillion, indicating a decline of 10.2 per cent, compared to the decline of 8.3 per cent at the end of the preceding quarter. The development reflected, the 24.6 and 21.9 per cent fall in deposits of banks and Federal Government, respectively. Also, the government’s total expenditure for the period was put at N1.2 trillion. The report said at fiscal operations of the Federal Government resulted in an estimated deficit of 4.8 per cent of es-
timated nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the review period, compared with the quarterly budget deficit of 3.1 per cent of estimated GDP. It said Nigeria’s crude oil production, including condensates and natural gas liquids, was estimated at an average of 1.93 million barrels per day (mbd), or 175.63 million barrels for the quarter. Crude oil export stood at 1.48 mbd, or 134.68 million barrels for the quarter, while deliveries to the refineries for domestic consumption remained at 0.45 mbd, or 40.95 million barrels. Also, the average price of Nigeria’s reference crude, the Bonny Light, fell by 8.8 per cent below the level in the preceding quarter. The average exchange rate of the naira against the dollar at the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) window, remained unchanged at N157.30 per dollar, but appreciated marginally by 0.03
when compared with the level in the corresponding period of 2012. CBN data indicated mixed developments in banks’ deposit and lending rates. The spread between the weighted average term deposit and maximum lending rates widened by 1.34 per cent in the preceding quarter. Also, the margin between the average savings deposit and the maximum lending rates, also widened by 0.43 percentage point, while the weighted average inter-bank call rate rose by 0.34 percentage point in the second quarter of 2013, reflecting the liquidity condition in the inter-bank funds market. The report said provisional data indicated that the value of money market assets outstanding for the quarter, increased by 5.9 per cent, in contrast to the decline of 0.6 per cent at the end of the preceding quarter. The development
Forex market hit by N1tr public sector fund withdrawal
HE N1 trillion public sector funds withdrawn from banks on August 7 is taking its toll on the foreign exchange (FOREX) market. The withdrawal followed the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to raise the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) from 12 per cent to 50 per cent. The CRR is the portion expressed as a percentage of banks’ deposit balances, which lenders must have as reserve in cash, with the CBN. The regulator’s plan was to mop up excess liquidity from the system, have less naira in circulation and get the currency strengthened. But the Managing Director, Bluewall Bureau De Change Limited, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, said the reverse had been the case. He said rather than the naira appreciating, the currency has been dropping in value. The naira on Friday retreated for three consecutive days, after the CBN and oil companies failed to selle the needed dollars to strengthen the currency. The naira last week lost 50 kobo at the inter-bank market, to close at N163.60 to a dollar from N163.10 to a dollar. The Bureau De Change
(BDC) and parallel market were in line with the trend in the interbank market, both markets lost 100 kobo to close at N164.50 to a dollar and N165 to a dollar respectively The naira has fallen 4.6 per cent against the dollar this year. Aiyedatiwa said: “Forex market is not funded. There has been a serious reduction in dollar supply into the interbank and autonomous markets. The condition has put pressure on both markets.” However, he said the market position remained temporary, and would be corrected as soon as dollar inflows from the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and CBN improve. Debate among Federal Reserve officials over whether to reduce monetary stimulus has roiled financial markets since May. Oil companies in Nigeria, which sell the dollar mainly at the end of the month to pay domestic expenses, are the second-biggest supplier of dollars after the CBN. CBN spokesman, Ugochukwu Okoroafor told The Nation on phone that there is nothing to worry. He said the naira should
be allowed to find its feet, adding that what is happening is temporary. He said the impact of the CRR hike on the naira will not be immediate, adding that over time, the naira will stabilise. The CBN auctions foreign exchange on Mondays and Wednesdays. The banking watchdog offered $600 million at the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) last week while a total of $525.1 million was sold. This comprised $266.6 million on Monday and $258.5 million on Wednesday’s auction. The Marginal rate at both auctions remained at N155.76 to a dollar. Analysts said the CBN support for the naira notwithstanding, strong demand pressure from corporate to meet dollar obligations would continue to influence its depreciation. Also, the down-side risk of declining oil receipts still exist, as Nigeria receives over 70 per cent of its forex inflows from oil proceeds. Also, decline in oil revenue is expected to affect Nigeria’s balance of trade position and ultimately, the value of the naira.
was attributed, largely, to the 5.6 per cent rise in Federal Government of Nigeria Bonds outstanding.
Banks scramble for merchants’ accounts
• From left: Chief Executive Officer, FirstBank of Nigeria Limited, Bisi Onasanya and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Akinwunmi Adesina during the panel discussion on “Growing agriculture as a business to diversify Nigeria’s economy” at the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) forum in Abuja.
•CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido
HERE is intense lobbying by banks to get merchants to subscribe to their Point of Sale (PoS) terminals, free. The banks are not only scheming to install a PoS at no costs to the merchants, but are promising to reduce the 1.25 per cent transaction charge per customer. It was learnt that the shop owners and retailers at strategic business centres were being targeted by banks to ease the implementation of their e-payment policy under the cash-less banking initiative. Lagos State has over 150,000 PoS deployed by banks at merchant shops. A senior management staff member of a middle-level bank, who spoke on condition anonymity, said lenders had included merchants as part of their intelligent marketing schemes. “You know e-payment is where everybody is going, and banks have to ensure that they are not left behind in the ensuing competition. They are also aware that merchants are critical to the success, or otherwise of their e-payment initiatives,” he said. On infrastructure, the Bankers’ Committee said the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was working with the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) and telecommunications operators to ensure that there are dedicated communication links for the PoS systems. It said the PoS was key to the
successful implementation of the cash-less banking initiative. “If the PoS or mobile phone is stolen, the money for the user is safe as the devices do not hold the money,” it said. To make the platforms secured and reliable, the Committee said that all PoS must have a minimum of two SIMs from telecommunication operators, even as there is minimum of 24 hours battery life, and sometimes, car charges are attached. The Committee disclosed that the literacy required in operating the PoS is minimal as many Nigerians can use a mobile phone needed to make mobile payments. Besides, biometrics is being installed in some Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and PoS to further check fraud in the industry. It advised merchants to recognise that there are other ways in which the PoS terminal can benefit them, such as selling other services and earning commissions. For instance, mobile credit can be sold through the terminals, or it can used to collect bill payment for firms such as the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN). Also training will be provided by the acquirer’s payment terminal service provider (PTSP). Part of the deployment process is to ensure a practical training of how to use the PoS for the merchant and their staff.
August forecast pegs inflation at 8.64%
HE headline inflation will remain relatively unchanged at 8.64 per cent in August from the 8.7 per cent recorded in July, the Managing Director, Financial Derivatives Company (FDC) Limited, Bismarck Rewane, has said. Rewane said in the FDC report for September that the forecast was supported by the moderation in the food index of FDC’s Lagos urban inflation. In August, FDC’s Lagos urban inflation was unchanged from July’s 11.57 per cent. This was due to a marginal increase in the non-food basket and a decline in the food basket, thereby creating a no effect. The interbank rates rose to a yearhigh average of 21 per cent perannum in response to the monetary policy decision on the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) for public sector deposits in July. The policy took effect on August 7, as the Central Bank of Nigeria debited N1 trillion from banks’ accounts. This, he said, caused an initial squeeze in liquidity which forced interbank rates to trend up-wards but thereafter stabilised to an average of 14.25 per cent per annum,
in August, compared to July’s average of 11.8 per cent per annum. We expect the impact of the CRR debit to abate by the end of third quarter and rates return to the two per cent band of the benchmark policy rate due to our muted inflation outlook. Despite the CRR debit, bond yields for two-year, three-year, five-year, seven –year and 10-year averaged 13.33 per cent per annum in August compared to 13.57 per cent in July. “Considering the downside risks to the naira coupled with the upside risks to government spending and benign inflationary conditions, we believe that debt investors will hold their current position. This is because the equities market performed poorly in the month amidst huge sell pressures occasioned by concerns for corporate performance given the high interest rates and global economic pressures,” he said. He explained that traditionally, high interest rates implies exodus of funds from equities market and with increased risks and liquidity concerns, portfolio managers are expected to favor fixed income.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
MARITIME By the end of December, the Customs will take over ports management from the service providers. Ahead of this change, stakeholders are expressing doubts over the Customs ability to discharge the obligations. Assistant Editor EMEKA UGWUANYI reports.
How ready is Customs for ports job • Service allays stakeholders’ fear Background
HE countdown has begun to the end of their job at the ports. By the end of December, service providers will call it a day at the seaports, paving the way for the Customs to take over their job. The snag is can the Customs cope? The service providers, including Cotecna, Global Scansystems Limited and others, use the Risk Assessment Record (RAR), an information communication technology (ICT) platform, to process cargoes for clearance. This process involves the use of scanners to detect contraband and under-declaration of goods’ value. Although Customs ComptrollerGeneral Abdullahi Dikko says his officers are prepared for the took, whose information generation will be based on Pre-arrival Assessment Reports (PAAR), stakeholders’ believe that the agency will revert to 100 per cent physical inspection after the service providers’ exit. The implication of 100 per cent inspection is the resurgence of congestion as cargoes will be delayed, with importers paying more on demurrage. The end-users bear the brunt as such costs are passed on to them.
Concerns When Apapa Port was transferred from Cotecna to Global Scansystems, cargo processing was upset, causing delays and problems between the Customs and the service provider to the detriment of importers. For instance, an importer whose cargo was wrongly lifted by the terminal operator is suffering the non-alignment of roles between the Customs and the operator. The duty on the importer’s cargo was assessed at $106,125 (about N16 million) by the terminal operator. The operator, through a letter to the Customs, admitted error on valuation, and requested that the goods be released to the importer. But the Customs held on to the goods and the demurrage kept rising. Besides, congestion is building up at the ports, thus defeating the essence of the ports reform, particularly the concession to private terminal operators which is intended to reduce the cost and time of cargo clearance. In a petition to President Goodluck Jonathan, the National Association of Government Approved Freight
Forwarders (NAGAFF) expressed worry over the rising, but avoidable congestion at the ports. In the petition signed by its Secretary-General, Increase Uche, the association said: “It is a fact that the concept of automated custom examination is to facilitate trade. It is also a fact that the contract terms with the service providers are to enable automated custom examination for all imports into Nigeria. These are deliberate efforts on the part of government to make our ports friendly, competitive and to add value. “It would seem that proper home work was not done, or that it is a mere neglect of responsibility on the part of those who did the verification of contract terms and performance duties. This has led to a seeming uncoordinated process. The situation at the ports, especially Apapa and Tin Can Island ports (TCIP), is that the operational capacity of the scan unit cannot work upon more than two hundred containers a day out of the expected 700 containers per day, thus leaving a balance of 500 TEUS per day, each way. “On the average, for five working days, the backlog of 2500 containers are left unscanned in each of the ports. You may wish to know that out of the 2000 containers scanned; about 750 are entered as “suspect” leading to physical custom examination. This is a case of double handling and waste of time. The so called suspected containers, most times were because the parking arrangement of the laden containers were unprofessionally done leading to a shift in position of cartons, added to the fact that the hydro scanners are the analogue model whose image output are laughable because you may not make anything out of it in terms of image analysis and goods description.
• Lagos port
“The above situation is a clear signal of avoidable congestion with its negative consequences to the economy. It is our considered advice and opinion that you consult with the Comptroller General of Customs with a view to addressing the situation. There is no doubt that the service providers may not have taken into consideration the inward cargo throughput of Nigeria abinitio, before deploying these analogue scanners.”
Stakeholders’ view The National Secretary, National
Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA), Uchu Block, expressed doubt over the effective implementation of PAAR after the service providers’ exit. He said there were lot of things that service providers, such as Cotecna, did not do at its former controlled Apapa Port. “There are lots of problems between Customs and Global Scan as a result of improper handover from Cotecna. The Customs claimed they have a platform which has not been unveiled to stakeholders at the ports. They would have been operating the platform alongside the service providers’ to be able to identify their teething problems before the terminal operators leave. With what is on ground, there may be a breakdown in service on exit of the service providers,” he added. The Customs spokesman at Tin Can port, Chris Osunkwo, however, told The Nation that he couldn’t understand the fears of stakeholders on the ability of the Customs to competently manage the ports on the exit of the servcie providers, confirming that men of the agency have been properly trained to take over. He said: “The truth is that I cannot
understand their fears. Anything that happens at the port, they blame the customs but the problem is strictly between Cotecna and the terminal operators. The terminal operator should know the capacity of the terminal, if it takes 1000 containers, why go for 5000 containers? “The terminal operator positions the containers for Customs’ examination, generates data for customs’ image interpretation and analysis, among others. We facilitate trade and don’t collect demurrage. Our duty is to protect our borders and government’s revenues. The problems are none of the Customs. “On our readiness, I can assure you that we are more than ready to take over. We are carrying along the importers, the agents and other stakeholders on PAAR.” Dikko also warned terminal operators who do not have the necessary cargo handling equipment. He said such terminals would be shut down. Stakeholders are concerned that the Customs and the service providers are not collaborating to ensure a seamless transition at the point that the agency would assume control of goods clearing. They said without integration now that the service contract is subsisting, service delivery may not be easy when the Customs assume control.
Fed Govt targets 500 foreign investors at Onne oil, gas fair
HE Federal Government has inaugurated a committee for this year’s international exhibitors for oil and gas in Onne Free Trade Zone with a target to attract 500 foreign investors. The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Samuel Ortom, who inaugurated the committee, said the exhibition is slated for between October 24 and 26 in Onne, Rivers State. He said: “The government’s target is to create 60,000 jobs through
From Franca Ochigbo, Abuja
Onne Free Trade Zone. The government is concerned about attracting investment into the country, particularly in the oil and gas where we have a comparative advantage. “If we attract more investment it will create multiple opportunities for Nigerians in terms of job and wealth creation. We have over 30,000 people working in Onne as a result of the investment in the zone. We are targeting to double
the number of job created. The oil and gas free zone had contributed significantly to the development of the economy over the years. As the oil and gas industry continues to play dominant role in the Nigerian economy, the free Zone concept would be central and strategic to defining a sustainable transformation of the national economy. He noted that since inception, the Onne Oil and Gas free Zone had made tremendous and sustained
progress in foreign direct investment (FDI), revenue generation, technology transfer employment and wealth creation. The Chairman, Organising Technical Committee of the forum, Mr Chubuisi Onyebuere, said the committee intended to mobilise over 500 investors operating in the zone, as well as investors from all over the world. We are expanding the available space for exhibition by about 30 per cent, he added.
NIMASA decries ‘indiscriminate’ ship recycling, scrapping
HE Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has decried the indiscriminate and unauthorised recycling and scrapping of ships within the seashores, especially in Lagos. Safe and environmentally sound recycling of ships, otherwise known as the Hong Kong Convention (HKC) 2009, is aimed at ensuring that ships, when being recycled after the end of their operational lives, do not pose any risk to human health. It is important to obtain approval from the industry regulator before ships are recycled and scrapped because they contain environmentally hazardous substances, such as asbestos, heavy metals, hydro-car-
By Emeka Ugwuanyi, Asst Editor
bons and ozone depleting substances, among others. It also addresses the working and environmental conditions at many of the world’s ship recycling yards. Ship recycling and scrapping are done on most beaches in the country, especially Lagos, without authorisation. Though Nigeria is yet to domesticate the HKC, it can implement and enforce the HKC as a proactive measure to check ship recycling in line with the powers conferred on NIMASA under the provisions of Part X of NIMASA Act 2007 and Section 382 (1 and 2) of Merchant Shipping Act 2007. Before the domesticates HKC, country, a stop-gap measure in regu-
lating the activities of ship recycling and scrapping has been developed by the NIMASA Marine Environment Management Department. Under it, ship recycling facilities (SRFs) and ship owners are to seek permit from the agency before embarking on any form of breakage. Ships, investigations show, are being scrapped at various locations within the Lagos shores. The Nation gathered that NIMASA decided to take proactive measures to stop the scrapping by inviting the companies involved to a meeting. It was also learnt that after the meeting, companies were issued with environmental requirements to fulfil before the issuance of scrapping permit to enable them continue with their activities.
This has resulted in the regulation and monitoring of ship scrapping activities by NIMASA. The agency has pegged N200,000 as the fee for processing the permit and N200,000 as approval of ship scrapping plan. Some of the requirements for obtaining ship scrapping permit include an application letter for scrapping permit from a vessel owner, ship recycling plan, approval to operate a ship scrapping yard, evidence of clearance from Regulator of Shipping (RoS) where applicable (deletion certificate), and letter of indemnity from company with seal. Others include compulsory insurance to cover entire operation, firefighting equipment, gas-free for hot work certificate, first aid apparatus, sludge and bilge water receptacles,
• NIMASA Director-General Patrick Akpobolokemi
and personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand gloves, nose protectors, safety glasses, safety boots, among others.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION INVESTORS
SEC mulls 10-year master plan for capital market
ECURITIES and Exchange Commission(SEC)has launched an elaborate market-wide consultation aimed at developing a long-term strategic master plan for sustained development of the capital market. SEC on Monday inaugurated three committees to conduct a holistic review of similar emerging markets and develop blueprints to structure the market for global competitiveness. The committees included the 10-year master plan committee, non-interest products committee and literacy committee. Former Chairman of Accenture Nigeria, Mr Adedotun Sulaiman chairs the master plan committee; Mrs. Hajara Fola Adeola chairs the non-interest committee while President, Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS), Mr Ariyo Olushekun chairs the literacy committee. Director-General, Securities and
Stories by Taofik Salako
Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms Arunma Oteh, said key areas will include investor protection and education, professionalism, product innovation and expansion of the role of the capital market in economic development will be covered. She said the long-term development committee will consider relevant factors that impact market growth and develop strategies for robust governance for improved efficiency, transparency and enhancement of the market stability. According to her, necessary recommendations with clear and actionable quarterly and annual milestones that will lead to a world class capital market are expected to be coordinated into a blueprint. She added that Nigeria’s growth plan would take into consideration successful growth strategies in other jurisdictions.
•From left: Executive Commissioner (Operations) Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mounir Gwarzo; Director-General, Arunma Oteh; former Country Chairman Accenture and Chairman, 10-Year Capital Market Planning Committee, Dr. Adedotun Suleiman, and Managing Director, Lotus Capital and Chairperson of the Non- Interest Products Committee Mrs. Hajara Fola-Adeola,at the inauguration of the committees in Lagos ... on Monday.
On the bearish trend on the NSE in recent period, Oteh pointed out that global factors were partly responsible for the downtrend at the Nigerian stock market. “But despite the challenges, the
Okumagba is Abbey Building Society Director
FORMER Commissioner for Finance Delta State Mr Bernard Okumagba has joined the Board of Abbey Building Society Plc (a Mortgage Bank) as director. A statement from the company stated that the Board of the Mortgage Bank approved the appointment on August 22, this yaer. The appointment is subject to the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Okumagba holds a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy from the University of Nigeria in 1987. He is also a qualified chartered accountant and an associate member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN). He worked in several banks from 1991 to 2007. His banking career started in
Oceanic Bank Plc where he was from 1991 to 1994 and worked in both the Financial Control/Strategy as well as the Corporate Banking divisions. Thereafter, he worked in Crystal Bank, Fidelity Bank Plc, First Atlantic Bank Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc from 1994 to 2007. He held various positions at these banks, including Senior Manager, Corporate Banking Division, Head of Internal Control/Audit Division, Chief Inspector and Principal Manager, Consumer and Commercial Banking Division among others. He left United Bank for Africa (UBA) in August 2007, following his appointment as Commissioner for Economic Planning in Delta State. He served from August 2007 to November 2010 and was appointed
Commissioner for Finance and served from November 2010 to May 2011. Mr Okumagba was reappointed Delta State Commissioner for Finance in July 2011 and held this position until July, this year. A scion of the Okumagba family in Warri, Bernard is Chairman Regents Consults Limited and Noly Insurance Brokers Limited.
•Continued from page 29
years, with foreign investors accounting for average of two-thirds of equity transactions between 2011 and last year. The report underlined the early positioning of the foreign investors, who had saw through the prospects of Nigerian equities amidst the downtrend and the rampant herd instinct of the domestic investors, who mostly usually look at recovering market. Foreign portfolio transactions increased from N615.6 billion in 2007 to N787.4 billion in 2008. These trimmed down to N424.6 billion in 2009 before rising consecutively to N577.3 billion and N847.9 billion in 2010 and 2011 respectively. Foreign portfolio trades stood at N808.4 billion in 2012. With these, the twoway flow of foreign portfolio investments showed that while foreign investors flowed in about N2.01 trillion during the period, they equally took away about N2.17 trillion. Market pundits said the investment flows at the stock market might underline concerns over the future earnings of banks, following a generally low fundamental performance in the first half. Most banks reported marginal growth in profit in the first half as they
have strengthened the capital market as investors are now trading on companies with good fundamentals while there is improved transparency and fuller disclosures.
Nigerians in the Diaspora woo French investors
Foreign investors edgy over Nigerian stock market outlook struggled with reduced income
N61.46 billion, N75.97 billion, N80.14 billion, N122.97 billion, N91.86 billion and N150.24 billion in January, February, March, April, May and June. The report underlined the structural outline of Nigerian investors, which was largely skewed in favour of institutional investors. For instance, institutional Nigerian investors accounted for 66.7 per cent or N95.78 billion of domestic investors’ turnover in June 2013 while retail investors contributed 33.3 per cent or N47.81 billion. The report had shown stronger momentum in foreign portfolio investments in the stock market as the 2013 first half report was substantially above six-month average over the past five years. Foreign investors staked about N4.08 trillion on quoted shares on the NSE between 2007 and 2012. Foreign investors had gradually and consecutively increased their investments in Nigerian equities from about 15 per cent of total market turnover in 2007 all through till a high of about 67 per cent in 2011. Foreign portfolios were particularly the main drivers of transactions on the NSE in the past two
Nigerian capital market is still doing better compared to other emerging markets like China, Indian, Indonesia, Brazil, among others,” Oteh said. She noted that ongoing reforms
streams and high cost of funds and operations induced by new regulations by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Banks remain the dominant subsector at the NSE, although reduction in number of quoted banks and increased capitalisation of nonbank multinationals have reduced the hitherto overbearing influence of banking stocks on overall market situation. Managing Director, Cowry Asset Management Limited, Mr Johnson Chukwu, said the market situation at the stock market might not be unconnected with concerns over future earnings of banks given that banks have been the dominant stocks at the market. He said the lukewarm operational earnings of banks will reflect on their share prices as investors priced in expected muted performance into banks’ valuations. “There are 31 stocks that have been driving the market this year, banks account for 15 of these 31 stocks. So, if banks’ prices begin to go down, you are going to see decline in market performance and I think that is what we are seeing in the recent past,” Chukwu said.
IGERIANS in France have created a platform to promote Nigeria’s unique competitive advantages and encourage foreign investors to invest in the Nigerian economy. Under the auspices of NigerianFrance Business Forum scheduled for Salon Hoche, Paris, Nigerians in Diaspora would network between Nigerian entrepreneurs and French investors explore opportunities for foreign investments into the Nigerian economy. Coordinator, Nigerian Networking France Forum, Mr Uche Ejims said the Nigerians in the Diaspora, said there was need to attract more foreign investors to manufacture in Nigeria so as to boost employment. According to him, the forum would attract business corporate, States, Local Governments, so as to showcase and interact with viable investors. He said the Nigeria-France Business Forum would provide an opportunity to find, meet and connect with potential strategic partners and gain exposure in both domestic and international markets, and further, enhance awareness of products and
services. “The priority will be to highlight new areas of cooperation, opportunities for marketing and joint venture tie-ups, capacity building and technology transfer, sourcing different products from both countries and drawing a road map for future collaboration,’’ Ejims said. Expected guests at the forum include Nigeria Ambassador in France, Amb. Akin Fayomi, Mr Olusegun Aganga, Minister of Trade and Investment, Dr Silas Eke, Micro Link Computers Nigeria and Mr Victorien Luret, a French Minister DES. Others were President Poitou Charente, Champagne Ardenne of Region France, Mr Parfait Gerard, President, Association- France Nigeria, the Mayor of Paris, Mr Delanoue, some African envoys, Governors of Delta and Kogi states in Nigeria. The managing directors of Julius Berger Nigeria PLC, Nest Oil Nigeria Plc, Dansa Group Nigeria, Anabel Group Nigeria and Chairman, Nigerian Tourism Board as well as Chamber of Commerce of the two countries are slated for the event.
NSIA chief frets over costly stocks •Continued from page 29
allocated to any of the three investment groups, Orji said. The infrastructure fund will invest in Nigeria and be internally managed because of a lack of local managers and is considering about 15 projects, said Orji. It’s targeting returns of 500 basis points above U.S. inflation and will probably announce “a couple” of investments by year’s end, he said. The Dow Jones Industrial Average index has gained each year since 2009 and with Europe’s economy showing signs of recovery equity values may be set to rise further amid the possible paring of stimulus by the US Federal Reserve, said Orji. Fed policy makers were “broadly comfortable” with Chairman Ben S. Bernanke’s plan to start cutting bond purchases later this year if the economy improves, minutes of their July meeting showed. “Nobody knows what tapering is,” Orji said in London. “I don’t think anybody has seen this level of quantitative easing in history so
we don’t even know how the market is going to act.” Jonathan’s government is in talks with Nigeria’s state governors on future transfers and savings after the latter protested allocations to the wealth fund, Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said July 2. The Nigerian federal government plans to step up contributions toward year’s-end and is targeting $5 billion for the wealth fund in the “medium-term,” she said. Such an increase would put it on a par with Angola, Africa’s second largest oil producer, which announced a $5 billion sovereign wealth fund in October. That’s headed by Chairman Jose Filomeno dos Santos, the son of Angolan president Jose Eduardo dos Santos. Growing the fund beyond the initial $1 billion “will not be easy and straightforward frankly, especially if you think that a country of 160 million people have competing needs for spending and you’re here fighting your corner,” said Orji.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION INVESTORS Managing Director and founder, Cowry Asset Management Limited, Mr Johnson Chukwu, leads one of Nigeria’s leading investment banking group licenses as an issuing house, broker-dealers, financial advisers and venture capital managers. A multi-dealing operator in the Nigerian capital market and fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), Chukwu is a well-rounded financial expert. In this interview with Capital Market Editor TAOFIK SALAKO, Chukwu speaks on the undercurrents behind the market, the prospects of the banking sector, the continuing downtrend at the primary market, capital market role in the power sector reforms and other emerging issues at the market.
‘Banks’ low earnings will subdue stock market’
OW will cost headwinds from the recent regulatory changes impact on the performance of banks going forward? The cost of regulation that banks are facing will impact in two waysone, directly on their profit and loss accounts. The banks are going to suffer reduction in profit and loss accounts because the cost of providing services has increased and again some of the income streams have been withdrawn by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). I give an example: the banks were charging commission on ATM before, now the banks have to provide that service free; so you see that the banks are subsidising the customer because there is the cost of providing ATM, stocking it with cash, maintaining the communication channels of the ATM with the banks and also providing security. So, that cost has increased without the direct income stream. Also, the banks can only now charge maximum of N3 per mille instead of N5 per mille as commission on transaction (COT). Then, the banks had very low cost of funds because depositors were accepting low interest rates but with the increase in Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) for public sector deposits, from 12 per cent to 50 per cent, banks are now scrambling for commercial deposits from private sectors; and that scramble has led to increase in cost deposit rate. In that regard, their net interest margin will shrink because they have higher cost of funds and will not necessarily be able to effectively re-price their risk assets to reflect the increase in cost of funds, because interest rates are already too high, if you increase them further, banks will face instances of loan default. So, banks will be constrained to maintain their lending rate, although there might be some marginal increase here and there. So, banks are going to suffer lower interest margin, lower commission on transaction and lower incomes on other services such as the ATM that I mentioned; these will impact on their profit and loss accounts. Now, the reduction in their profit and loss accounts will impact on their share prices at the stock market. Investors will have to price in
the potential for profit; and that potential will be constrained by changes in regulations. I think we are going to see the profit and loss accounts of banks declining at the end of full year and I think that will also be priced into banking stocks. So, investors will likely moderate their appetite for banking stocks because those banking stocks no longer yield the kind of returns; the kind of dividend yield and capital gains, that investors formerly looked out for. If you look at the position of banks in the capital market, how do you see the expected performance of banks impacting on market’s average return? Of course negatively! There are actually 31 stocks that have been driving the market this year, banks accounts for 15 of these 31 active stocks. So, if banks’ prices begin to go down, you are going to see decline in market performance and I think what we are seeing in recent past (sustained downtrend) at the stock market can be attributed to that. We have seen the index declining for most of the past two to three weeks. Like I said, because banks accounts for 40 to 50 per cent of active stocks in the market, when banks’ prices begin to go down, you are going to see moderation in market’s average return this year. How will this scenario impact on foreign portfolio investments? Yes, interestingly the foreign investors are involved largely in active stocks and they may lose appetite for banking stocks, thus ultimately their overall interest may be reduced. But also, if you look at the portfolios of the foreign investors, they have also invested in blue chips in the real sector, so I think the moderation of their portfolios may not be as pronounced as the changes in the prices of banking stocks and market structures. Is there any indication that the power companies may come to the market soon? It may be too early to expect their offers, but the probability that most of them will come to the capital market is very high. The simple reason is that they have taken funding from short-term sources, mostly from banks, and they will
have to refinance these loans to relieve them of high interest payment to the banks. I expect that when the structure these companies to become institutions that can come to the market; they will come to the market. Today, they are not institutions that can come to the market, they are still in fluid forms-you have to look at what are the corporate structures, what are the reporting standards and a lot of other details. Most of them as it is now do not have well-defined elaborate financial reporting standards in such that at a glance you can look at their performance quarterly. The new owners will have to put in place all these but ultimately, most of them will come to the market because their funding is short-term and very expensive, so they will likely come to refinance through equity and longterm debt instruments. Besides rights issues, why has the primary market been dormant, why have we not been seeing public offers? Well, the primary market only comes when you have a strong secondary market. Secondary market recovery has only been pronounced this year; 2012 was muted. What the companies are doing is testing the water. Normally, you start testing the water by doing rights issue, which is primarily ascribed to the shareholders. What happened is that in a weak secondary market; equities are not properly priced, the prices do not reflect the intrinsic worth of the companies, in such situation, such equities are undervalued. So, if you come to the primary market to issue shares when the secondary market is undervalued, what you will be doing is to transfer the intrinsic worth and benefit to the new investors. No group of shareholders will want to approve that their company come to the primary market to issue new shares when the price is undervalued and does not reflect the intrinsic worth of the company. The market has been bearish for long period, it’s just now that the market is recovering and beginning to re-mirror the intrinsic worth of the companies. So, it’s only when the companies are properly priced to the point that there is
premium on the price that the owners will consider coming to raise new capital and as such be able to offer discount to the market price. How do you see the emergence of the Over-the-Counter (OTC) exchanges like the NASD? The NASD makes it possible for those companies that are not listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange to have trading on their shares. For instance, WAMCO, it has been around for a long while but it’s not listed; it means that the core investors are not interested in listing. But the new exchange will allow those investors who really want to liquefy their
shares to have a window to do that. That, I believe, will encourage people to buy private placement when the primary market comes back because the fear that people have with private placements is that there is no secondary market for it. Having said that, unless there is a barrier between the NSE and the new bourse, you are going to see a lot of companies that will move over from the new bourse to the main board of the NSE; because if your stock is active on the OTC market, that will be the motivation for you to get listed and have a price, and let people actively trade on it.
UBA stakes N41b on agribusiness
NITED Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc has extended about N41 billion to agro and agro allied businesses as part of efforts to activate Nigeria’s largest economic segment for sustainable development, mass employment and poverty alleviation. Group Managing Director, United Bank for Africa (UBA), Mr Phillips Oduoza, said UBA has a minimum of seven per cent of its gross loan portfolio in the agribusiness sector, which make the bank one of the largest financiers of agricultural projects in the country. Contrary to insinuations, Oduoza said UBA’s experience has shown that the risks in financing
agribusinesses are low. According to him, UBA’s nonperforming loans (NPL) in its agricultural lending portfolio are as low as 0.06 per cent, the rate which is the lowest in the industry. He pointed out that the low rate of default underscores the monitoring mechanisms put in place by the bank as well as the readiness of farmers to repay their loans, with adequate monitoring and risk mitigation. He advocated for necessary interventions across all value chains in the agric sector in order for Nigeria’s potential in the sector to materialise. “In UBA, our financing of activities in the agribusiness sector cut
across the value chain, from production, to storage, processing, distribution and even transportation. We strongly believe that for Nigeria to see growth in the agricultural sector, interventions must be total across all the value chain,” Oduoza said He pointed out that the value chain financing approach adopted by the UBA Group is to ensure that maximum benefits are derived from all participants in the agribusiness line. According to him, the strength of the value chain is as good as its weakest link and as such everyone must be considered from the farmer in the village to the process that will transfer the goods to the
consumer in town in whatever form and put money back in the hands of the farmer. “Once the value chain is looked at, agriculture becomes very profitable and a very good business for financial institutions to key into,” Oduoza noted. Meanwhile, Minister of Agriculture, MrAkinwumi Adesina, has commended the role being played by UBA in its finance of key projects in the agribusiness sector. He expressed admiration for the low rate of defaults by farmers who accessed the agribusiness loans through UBA. He urged other financial institutions to emulate the strategies put in place by UBA.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
SMALL BUSINESS AND ENTREPRENUERSHIP
The 3ps of success in interior decoration You have heard of the four ps of marketing. Now, here come the three ps of success in interior decoration, according to a Lagos based female entrepreneur, Bukky Lepe. DANIEL ESSIET writes.
HEN Bukky Lepe, Chief Executive, Luxury Ease Etal Nigeria started her interior design business, she had no training. But she has so much love for designs. As a young woman, she spent time flipping through magazines on interior design. She spent hours looking at pictures of nicely painted homes, apartments and living spaces – sometimes just for the purpose of dreaming, sometimes for inspiration. She became an addict. In her mind, she wanted to help people make their spaces look gorgeous and functional. Today, the dream has translated into the business of making spaces livable, cosy, appealing and warm. Her words: “I always love improving spaces. As a teenager, I used to help my cousins and aunts with their bedrooms. The business partly started when I attended
Fate Foundation School of Entrepreneurship. I thought it would be nice to make my passion work for me. This time, financially.” She got her first project in 2009. The rest is history. How much is the business worth? “I don’t want to place figures, but I’ll tell you we have done well in the last five years, she said. According to her, excelling in the business is expensive in terms of skill acquisition and training. “Other things needed are invaluable, such as the passion and drive, as well as creativity which, of course, are natural characteristics of a start up in any business,”she said. She has put together the right masonry team as well as access to certain suppliers. “For instance, we have a mini franchise with a fabric company in Spain,”she added.
Her niche market/target clientele, are urban people with high taste in comfort and luxury lifestyles. She is reaching them gradually, though she is yet to ascertain her market share. She knows that positioning herself as a specialist in unique decorations would set her apart. “ It’s a large industry,” sh e said, adding, “however, we have a project called ergonomic and aesthetic improvement in hospital design. We think we might penetrate a certain market through this. For her: “Nothing good comes easy and quick, so I would say, here, you need to be an expert and that is not easy,” she added. She works from 9am to 6pm. “I have days when I work very late though,”she added. Her success factors: “It takes three p’s for me: passion, people, product. Your passion which would keep you
•From left: Lanre Olusola, Fela Durotoye, Niyi Adesanya, Olakunle Soriyan, all speakers and Olatunde Samson (Host) at the Business Growth conference for Young Professionals and SME CEOs in Lagos.
going, people: that’s your target market, product: what you have to offer. That differentiates you from the crowd. If you have these three figured out, you do not have a problem.” She has acquired a certificate in interior design from the British School of Interior Design as well as practical tutoring from an interior design outfit in Nigeria for two years. She is currently taking a course in enterprise management at the Lagos Business School. “You need to know what you are talking about. It goes beyond painting and making settees. Be focused, be an
Lagos entrepreneur Efe Imiren has set up her online business.
FE Imiren, founder,Service Forts Limited has a passion for entrepreneurship. She began honing her entrepreneurship skills in 1999 during her undergraduate years. With the advent of the Internet, she turned her passion into a profitable business named ServiceForts Resources Ltd. Today, ServiceForts brand name has grown into a business service concerns including technologies, travels, publishing and business academy. When she launched her business, she knew that her own success would depend on the development of the sector. To this end, she worked hard to create a striving electronic books segment which has attracted so many Nigerians. On what gave her courage to stay put considering the challenges in Internet business? Her words: “ I once heard of the story of an engineer who was called to produce a technological work; other engineers who had been called before him said it couldn’t be done, but he came and produced it.” How much did you start the
National life coach and entrepreneur Dr Maymunach Kadiri has launched a service business providing counselling to depressed employees, DANIEL ESSIET writes.
ans who have suffered from depression with capacity building and training to build assertiveness skills, confidence building and reducing anxiety. Through hard work and wordof-mouth, she has helped many people to get back into routine work places– where everyone understands that the good and bad
times can be difficult. She gives talks to professionals, and carers. She has done a lot of work through networks of schools, universities and Small and Medium Enterprises(SMEs), and networking groups to get the word out. Realising that starting, or maintaining a private practice is quite hectic, she enrolled at the EDC to learn business management. The programme enables her to learn business plan development and the creation of marketing strategies. Mrs. Kadiri coaches business owners. She equips entrepreneurs, academics and psychotherapists with the necessary skills to succeed in business . She seeks to create extraordinary results for individuals and businesses who desire aggressive growth. A strategic, creative thinker, she develops systems that support superior employee and customer relationships, and drive organisational productivity. A dynamic Consultant Neuro-
expert in your field and you will succeed. I will also advise that business training is essential. Thathelps us manage our resources effectively,” she added.
Her long road to success
Interested in business? You need this coach! EMALE entrepreneurs are becoming more optimistic about the growth of their businesses. One of them is Dr Maymunah Kadiri, a Goldman Sachs Scholar on Entrepreneurial Management, with the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Lagos Business School (LBS), Pan Atlantic University. Her interest is impacting lives positively. She has expertise in coaching business leaders. She found an opportunity in providing service to people who have been out of work due to emotional health-related conditions, and are finding it difficult to get back to work. A certified rational emotive and cognitive behavioural therapist from the Albert Ellis Institute, New York, United States, Mrs Kadiri, deploys therapies to help people overcome barriers to getting back into mainstream employment, aid recovery, and keep one well. It started as a small venture, but has expaned into a training and consultancy business. Her selling point is assisting Nigeri-
Psychiatrist and a Fellow of the National Post-Graduate Medical College of Nigeria (FMCPsych), with over 10 years experience, she is also the Medical Director, Pinnacle Medical Services, a medical consultancy firm dealing on psychological and mental health related issues. How much did you start the business with? About N2 million on rent, few equipment and staff. How much is the business worth now?Some millions and counting. Is it expensive to start?Yes, this is because you need the required expertise. This means you will need an intense training both medically and entrepreneurial management. What supplies do one need to start? She is committed to leaving her clients more capable to sustain achieving the future they desire. Her experience includes executive coaching, facilitation of group development sessions, and consulting. Her work blends building trust, coaching and counseling skills, and increasing engagement and commitment among employees with developing high performing teams and sharing leadership roles.
•Imiren By Daniel Essiet
business with? “When I was to venture into the business, I had N26,000 on me, savings from paid employment. All I had was little cash, ideas plus the determination and zeal to succeed.I used N10,000 to buy two videos from a guru, used N6,000 to register for a seminar being organised by the same guru and the balance to fix the nuts and bolts required to kick-start my business.” She faced many challenges. “ The Lord helped me to quickly locate the shoulder of an industry giant on which I can stand on. Newton said: ”If you stand on the shoulders of giant, you would see farther than your peers. And I believe this helps one make the right decisions.” Since her products are of excellent quality, to date she has not met with any major challenges in accessing new markets. Her words: “Success doesn’t just jump on one, all the gurus going about shouting and churning out “How-I-made N3million in three weeks”; ask them, they studied one material or another and put it to work. She studied marketing materials. When she began the business, she was already studying for her MSc in Marketing via Distance Learning in a UK University. To make it in any area of life as fast as possible, she noted that one needs a real coach. Imiren is happy to see young talents believing in themselves and taking the courage to build up their own businesses from scratch. Described as “Info queen,she has won an award in the information marketing industry, making her a leader in electronic books business. It’s self-funded. Looking ahead, she has no desire to go elsewhere for financing – her plan is to keep winning customers and grow the business.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
EMPOWERMENT CLINIC with
Panacea for wealth, happiness BOOK REVIEW Author: Jim Rohn BOOK REVIEW Publisher: African Pastors Literature Trust Reviewer: Goke Ilesanmi
T is a reality that wealth and happiness are two of the great desires of human beings. In short, they often go together because most people that are financially wealthy often feel happy because of the attendant financial abundance. I am sure this realisation must have informed Jim Rohn’s decision to entitle his book “7 Strategies for Wealth & Happiness”. Rohn is America’s foremost business philosopher who has helped people of all walks to improve their lives. In this text, Rohn offers guide on how you can unlock the fountain of your prosperity inside of you. The author reveals the seven valuable strategies that are central to your achievement of success and enjoyment of happiness. According to Rohn, for you to realise your aspiration of enduring success and happiness, you need to unleash the power of goals; seek knowledge; learn the miracle of personal development; control your finances; master time; surround yourself with winners; and learn the art of living well. This text is segmented into seven strategies (parts) of 11 chapters. Rohn isolates chapter one from the strategic segmentation, thus grouping chapters two to 11 into seven strategies. In chapter one, he examines five key words. According to Rohn, all the ideas in this book stem from a group of key words. He adds that to understand this book, therefore, and get maximum value from its contents, it is essen-
tial that we examine these key words one after the other. These key words, according to Rohn, are “Fundamentals”, “Wealth”, “Happiness”, “Discipline” and “Success”. He says fundamentals refer to those basic principles on which all accomplishments are built. “Fundamentals form the beginning, the basis and the reality from which everything else flows,” he adds. As far as the second key word “Wealth” is concerned, Rohn submits that wealth is a controversial word because it brings to mind a wide variety of images and sometimes conflicting concepts. The author educates that to one person, wealth may mean having enough money to do whatever he or she wishes; and to another, it may mean freedom from debt, etc. As regards happiness, Rohn observes that happiness embraces the universal quest, a joy that usually accompanies positive activity. He says happiness is the skill of reacting to the offerings of life by perception and enjoyment. Rohn expatiates that it is achieved by both giving and receiving, reaping and bestowing. In his words, “It belongs to those who are in control of both their circumstances and their emotions. Happiness is also the freedom from the negative children of fear such as worry, low self-esteem, envy, greed, resentment, prejudice, and hatred.” As far as the last key word, that is, “Success” is concerned, the author educates that it, too, maintains elasticity of interpretation. Rohn adds that it is an elusive notion, a paradox as it is both a journey and a destination. “Success is both accomplishment and a wisdom that comes to those who understand the potential power of life,” reflects the author. Strategy one of this text is generically labelled “Unleash the power of goals”, and contains three chapters, that is, chapters two to four. In these chapters, Rohn examines the concepts of what motivates people as regards goals, how
to set goals, as well as how to make goals work for you. In strategy two that is notionally christened “Seek knowledge”, and contains one chapter, that is, chapter five entitled: “The path to wisdom”, this great business philosopher says one of the fundamental strategies of living the good life is to know what information you need to achieve your aims. Rohn says once you know what you need to know, it is also helpful to know how to go about gathering that knowledge. Strategy three is labelled “Learn how to change”, and covers just a chapter, that is, chapter six, which is based on the miracle of personal development. In strategy four that is notionally summarised as “Control your finances”, and contains one chapter, that is, chapter seven, which is based on how to achieve financial freedom, Rohn em-
phasises the importance of taxpayment, the 70/ 30 Rule, charity, capital investment and savings to achieving financial freedom. Strategy five is tagged “Master time”, and covers just a chapter, that is, chapter eight, which is based on how to be an enlightened time manager, while strategy six is based on the need to surround yourself with winners. Strategy six covers chapter nine, which discusses the principle of association. “One of the major influences shaping the person you want to be is also one of the least understood. It is your association with others - the people you allow into your life...,” says Rohn. He adds that the influence of those around you is so powerful and subtle that you often do not realise how it can affect you. In the last strategy, that is, strategy seven which is tagged “Learn the art of living well”, and covers two chapters, that is, chapters 10 and eleven, he examines your road to richer lifestyle and the day that turns your life around. “Think of something you can do today to make you feel richer and better about your life...,” advises the author. Rohn says you should be happy with what you have while pursuing what you want. Stylistically, this text is a success. Apart from the simplicity of language, the presentation is also logical. Brilliant segmentation of the chapters into different strategies makes this text very reader-friendly. What’s more, to achieve conceptual reinforcement and ensure easy understanding on readers’ part, Rohn uses biblical allusions as well as autobiographical illustrations. However, “And”, the coordinating conjunction of adding should have been used instead of “&” in the title of the book to convey linguistic formality. Another error noticed in the book is, “I was yet to understand....” instead of the Standard British English version “I had yet to understand....” Please check any standard dictionary for confirmation of this standard usage. Generally, the text is a fantastic. If you aspire to be wealthy and happy in life, then it is a must-read for you. It is simply a must-read. PS: For those making inquiries about our ongoing Public Speaking and Business Presentation training programme, please visit the website indicated on this page for details. We are here to satisfy you. Till we meet on Monday.
OST of the time, your nervousness does not show at all. If you do not say anything about it, nobody will
notice. If you mention your nervousness or apologise for any problem you think you have with your speech, you will only be drawing unnecessary attention to it. So just keep quiet about your nervousness or speech problem. Let your concentration be on your message, and not the medium: Your nervousness will disappear if you focus your attention away from your anxiety and concentrate on your message and your audience, not yourself. Experience is very critical to your success. Experience builds confidence, which is the key to effective speaking. Most beginning speakers find their nervousness decrease after each speech they give. If the fear of public speaking causes you to prepare more, then the fear of speaking serves as its own best antidote. Remember, he who fails to prepare is preparing for failure. Therefore, prepare.
Speaking enthusiastically You need to speak enthusiastically in any speech situation. To speak enthusiastically, you need to do the following: Speak loudly: This is particularly necessary if you are emotionally upset, if you are shaking inside when you stand before an audience, or if you have ‘butterflies in your stomach’. Speak rapidly: Your mind functions more quickly when you do. You can read two books with greater understanding in the time you spend reading one if you concentrate and read with rapidity. But talking rapidly is not good for those who have natural speech challenges. Smile: In talking loudly and rapidly, you eliminate gruffness. You can put a smile in your voice by putting a smile on your face, a smile in your eyes. Modulate: This is important if you are speaking for a long period. You can speak loudly and intermittently change to a conversational tone and a lower pitch if you wish.
More tips on mastering essentials of public speaking By Goke Ilesanmi
Academic public speaking Another area worthy of discussion as regards public speaking and presentation is the academic type. This type of public speaking and presentation needs to change. In this type of public speaking and presentation, the speaker begins to read from the paper and speak in a soft monotone. Sentences are long, complex and filled with jargon. This type of delivery is common in the academic as well as corporate environment. As Paul Edwards, a professional speaker puts it, the speaker emphasises complicated details and with five minutes left in the session, he or she suddenly looks at his/her watch and announces that he or she will have to omit the most important points because time is running out. He or she drones on and even fifteen minutes after the scheduled end of the talk, the host reminds the speaker to finish for the third time. The speaker trails off inconclusively and asks for questions.
Stage fright The question that readily comes to mind is: Why do otherwise brilliant people give such boring talks? To this question, Edwards has this to say: “One reason is stage fright. It’s easier to hide behind the armour of a written paper, which you’ve had plenty of time to work through, than simply to talk. This is a perfectly understandable reaction, and in some circumstances, it’s still the best thing to do.” But a much more important reason is that this kind of boring, incomprehensible talk has somehow become a part of academic culture. Communication experts also attribute the presentation style in academic public speaking to the dominance of written language in academic culture. Although writing and public speaking are two very different arts, it has become acceptable to treat public speaking as the mere reading of written text.
Rhetoric It is ironical that rhetoric, the skill of persuasive argumentation is one of the most ancient academic disciplines, dating back to Plato’s Dialogues. Why then are academics delivering in a very boring way today? The current culture of academic public speaking and presentation is something that can be eradicated through public speaking and presentation training. It should be noted that for any presentation to be effective, it must: (1) communicate your arguments and ideas; (2) persuade your audience that your arguments and ideas true; and (3) be interesting and entertaining.
Discarding flexibility To display in-depth skill of persuasive argumentation, academics sometimes forget about making their presentation interesting and entertaining. Some people think it follows naturally from the first two. But it does not. Some even deliberately avoid making their presentation entertaining on the grounds that if it is so, it simply means that it is not very deep. It is difficult, if not impossible, to achieve effective communication and persuasion without entertaining your audience. Keeping your audience interested and involved by entertaining them is essential because you need their full attention to be able to disseminate your information. Listening is hard work, especially at conferences, where people attend seminars lasting many hours. People therefore need the speaker’s help to maintain their focus. This is the true meaning of entertainment. In academic presentation, entertainment does not mean making your audience laugh or distracting them from their troubles.
Solutions to academic presentation (1) Talk rather than read. It will be easier to understand you, and you will be better able to make genuine contact with your audience.
Furthermore, ultimately talking will help you think more clearly by forcing you to communicate your points in ordinary language. (2) Stand up. This is better for two reasons. First, people can see you better. Second, standing puts you in a physically dominant position. Though this sounds politically incorrect, in this context it is correct because you should remember that you are the focus. By standing up, you accept this invitation. (3) Move around/manage stage. Moving around or effective stage management is another solution. It is easier to keep focus on someone who is moving than on a stationary speaker. Hand gestures are also good. It is possible to over-use these devices, of course. Simply crossing from one side of the room to the other every three or four minutes is probably enough. (4) Face the audience and make eye contact with the audience. If this is anxiety-inducing, at least pretend to do this by casting your gaze towards the back and sides of the room. Be careful not to ignore one side of the audience. PS: For those making inquiries about our ongoing Public Speaking and Business Presentation training programme, please visit the website indicated on this page for details. Till we meet on Monday. •To be continued. •GOKE ILESANMI, Managing Consultant/ CEO of Gokmar Communication Consulting, is an International Platinum Columnist, Certified Public Speaker/MC, Communication Specialist, Motivational Speaker and Career Management Coach. He is also a Book Reviewer, Biographer and Editorial Consultant. Tel: 08055068773; 08187499425 Email: email@example.com Website: www.gokeilesanmi.com
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Essentials of Capital Gains Tax (CGT)
APITAL Gain may be defined as gains arising from increases in the market value of capital assets to a person or corporate body, who does not habitually offer them for sale and in whose hands they do not constitute stock-in-Trade. Therefore, it is a tax chargeable at the rate of 10 per cent on capital gains arising from the disposal of capital assets. Capital gains mainly represent the excess of disposal proceeds realised over the cost of the particular asset. Administration of Capital Gains Tax The CGT is under the management of the Board of The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and it is administered by the FIRS in respect of corporate bodies and individuals resident in the Federal Capital Territory including members of armed forces, police and foreign serving officers. The tax is also administered by the State Internal Revenue Service in respect of individuals based on the rules of residence. Under the provisions of the Act, tax liability will arise on Actual Year Basis (AYB) when a chargeable asset is disposed. An aggrieved taxpayer or the respective tax authority can appeal against the decision of the tax authority to a conventional court or to the Tax Appeal Tribunal (TAT) as the case may be. Some Highlights of the Provisions of the CGT ACT • CGT is chargeable at 10 per cent on capital gains from the sale of capital assets. • Capital loss on disposal of any asset is not deductible from capital gains on disposal of any other asset even if both are of the same type. • Where consideration is payable by installments over18 months, the chargeable gain shall be apportioned to the affected assessment years in proportion to the amount of the installments payable in each of the years. • Chargeable gains are assessed on current year basis, • Roll-over relief is available to any company acquiring a new asset to be used for the purposes of the trade in replacement of an old one. • Gains arising from disposal of shares and stocks are currently exempted from CGT. Chargeable Persons and Chargeable Assets Chargeable Persons A chargeable person is one who deals in a chargeable asset. A chargeable person may be: • A limited liability company, • An individual A limited liability company will remit its tax liability to FIRS while an individual will remit to the SIRS, with the exception of individuals resident in the FCT. Chargeable Assets Examples of chargeable assets are: • Options, debts and incorporeal properties. Incorporeal properties are assets that have values but are not tangible, e.g. goodwill, copyrights and patent rights. • Disposal of currencies other than Nigerian currency. • All qualifying capital expenditure under CITA, PITA, • Chattels sold for more than N1, 000 in any tax year. Persons / Institutions Exempted By law, any ecclesiastical, charitable, or educational institution of a public character, statutory or registered Friendly Society and co-operative society registered under the co-operative Societies Act are exempted. Same also applies to Local Government Council, purchasing Authority Company and corporation established for fostering economic development of any part of Nigeria. Also included in the the exemption list are, Trade Union registered under the Trade Unions Act, provided, The gain is not derived from the disposal of any assets acquired in connection with any trading or business activity carried on by such Institution or Society. The gain or profit is applied solely for the purpose of the Institution or Society. Other items on the list are the main or only private residence of an individual (including the gardens), Chattels disposed for not more than N1000 in a Year of Assessment, motor cars suitable for private use or a mechanically propelled road vehicle constructed or adopted for the carriage of
Computation Of Capital Gains Tax • In the computation of capital gains that will be charged to CGT, the following steps should be followed: • Identify the sales proceeds on the disposal of the chargeable asset • Deduct allowable expenses from the sales proceed to obtain Net Sales Proceed. • Deduct cost of acquisition and other capital costs from the Net Sales Proceed to obtain the Capital Gains • Compute the capital gains tax liability by applying the applicable rate of 10 per cent on the Capital Gains obtained above. The above steps can be placed in a better format as follows: N N • Sales Proceeds xx • Less: Allowable Expenses (xx) • Net Sales Proceed xx • Deduct: Cost of Acquisition (xx) • Capital Gains/(Losses) xx Capital Gains Tax @ 10 per cent
• Acting Executive Chairman, FIRS Alhaji Kabir Mohammed Mashi
‘For the purpose of CGT, disposal arises where any capital sum is derived from a sale, lease, transfer, an assignment, a compulsory acquisition or any other disposition of assets’ passengers, life assurance policy, benefits from superannuation funds approved by the Joint Tax Board, gifts, government securities, including treasury bonds, savings certificates and premium bonds, Nigerian currency, disposal of Stocks and Shares (effective 1/1/98), disposal of Investments in Statutory Provident Fund, or Retirement Benefits Scheme, acquisition of the Shares of a Company either merged with, or taken over or absorbed by another Company, as a result of which the acquired Company loses its identity as a Limited Liability Company, provided no cash payment is made in respect of the Shares acquired, gains accruing to Diplomatic bodies and gains from disposal of Securities in a Unit Trust provided the proceeds are reinvested. The Principle of Disposal For the purpose of CGT, disposal arises where any capital sum is derived from a sale, lease, transfer, an assignment, a compulsory acquisition or any other disposition of assets. The disposal is deemed to have taken place even where no asset was acquired by the person paying such capital sums. Thus, specifically, disposal is deemed to have taken place where: i. Any capital sum is derived by way of a compensation for loss of office or employment. ii. Receipt of capital sum under a policy of insurance; iii. On receipt of capital sum in return for forfeiture or surrender of rights or for refraining from exercising such rights iv. Any capital sum is received as consideration for use or exploitation of an asset. v. Any capital sum is received in connection with or arises by virtue of any trade, business, profession or vocation. Non-Allowable Expenses for the Purpose of CGT • Any allowable expenses under the provision of PITA, CITA and PPTA. • Any insurance premium or other payments made under a policy of insurance against the risks of any kind of damage or injury to, loss or depreciation of any asset.
Connected Persons Where in a transaction, one person has control over the other, a connected person transaction is said to have taken place. In such a situation, where transaction is not done at arm's length, market value is used. Connected persons for this purpose include: 1. An individual wife or husband; 2. A trustee in settlement is deemed connected with the settler as well as any person connected with the settler; 3. Partners of a firm are deemed connected with one another as well as with the spouse of each partner; 4. A company is connected with another person if that person has control of it or if that person and persons connected with him together have control of it. Roll Over Relief • This arises where a sole trader, partnership or limited liability company carrying on a trade, dispose of one eligible business asset and replaces it with a new asset of the same class as that sold. The seller will be entitled to deduct the capital gain arising on disposal from the cost of the new asset thereby postponing the payment of CGT on such a gain. • Roll over relief can be full, partial or no roll over relief. • The effect of this roll-over relief is to reduce the cost of acquisition of a new asset with resultant increase in the capital gain arising on eventual disposal. Classes Of Assets Eligible For Roll-over Relief: Class I: a) Any building or part of a building and any permanent and semi-permanent structure in the nature of a building, occupied and used only for trading; b) Any land occupied and used only for trading. c) Fixed plant and machinery which does not form part of the building Class II - ships Class III - Aircraft Class IV - Goodwill. However, the consideration arising on the disposal must be re-invested within Twelve months before or after the disposal before the rollover relief can be granted. Some Special Circumstances in CGT 1. Assets acquired by gift and later sold: the imputed cost is: i. The amount at which the asset was last disposed in a transaction at arm's length if known, or if that is not known ii. The market value of the asset at the date of transfer. 2. Assets devolving on death and later sold, Shall for CGT purposes be deemed to be disposed of by him at the date of his death and acquired by the personal representative or other persons on whom the assets devolve for a consideration equal to: i. Where ascertained, price of the asset as at date of purchase; or ii. Where unascertained, market value of the asset as at that date.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
The Midweek Magazine
•Tree of life, by Nwokolo
•The man and the horse, by Odogwu
Metal feast at Temple Muse
ANY artists, like their works, mature with time, especially in terms of craftsmanship and the message. Apart from experimenting with lots of materials while exploring modern trends, such artists tune their minds to creating works on issues that will uplift the spiritual growth of the people. One of such artists is Fidelis Odogwu, a renowned metal sculptor. Among his eight works listed for a forthcoming art exhibition, Metal Fusion, are Positive result, Unbreakable link, The man and the horse, The source and Aro meta. All these sculptures are wake-up calls on political leaders on the need to be tolerant. For instance, Positive result shows a symmetrically designed metal piece with bold interlocking curves surrounded by cubic forms that are symbolic of the result of the union. Odogwu will be featuring alongside three others, Billy Omabegho, Alex Nwokolo and a self-taught artist Uche Peters in a group show, Metal Fusion. To him, every relationship should be based on equity, peace and justice, be it business relations or relationship between neighbours in a community. The show opens at the luxury concept shop, Temple Muse, in Victoria Island Lagos, on September 16. Metal Fusion is a body of work which celebrates new expressions in Nigerian metal art, from the geometric stainless steel sculptures of master sculptor Billy Omabegho, to the symbolic forms created by carefully twisted and crocheted galvanised steel wires by Uche Peters, to the ham-
By Ozolua Uhakheme, Assistant Editor (Arts)
VISUAL ART mered and welded abstract mild steel forms of Fidelis Odogwu, to the layered metal montages of Alex Nwokolo. The collection is a diversified selection of 18 wall and free standing sculptures that touch on universal themes. The collection encompasses an intriguing range of the artists’ skill and expression including the forming, bending, cutting, joining, welding, twisting and layering of different metals such as steel, wire mesh, and metal scraps from beer and soft drink cans fusing into a carefully interwoven visual narrative. In fact, the four artists present a rich diversity of artistic experiences ranging from the classically trained Omabegho of the Cornell and New York universities and is known for his monumental modern sculptures, such as the zig zag Zuma sculpture in front of the Nigerian Mission in New York City or the massive sculpture at the Lagos International Trade Fair complex, to Nwokolo and Odogwu, both contemporaries and graduates of the Auchi Polytechnic art tradition, to self-taught financier turned artist, Uche Peters. Nwokolo will, among others, present Tree of Life, which shows ‘montage of a lone baobab tree that appears simple, but on closer scrutiny, consists of finely layered pieces of flat painted metal, set against a “ruffled” metallic back-
ground, to his multi-layered expansive abstract patch work panels, almost looking like a cityscape viewed from above, made from scrap metals, wire mesh, and even electronic panels.’ Nwoko’s other works are Age of terror, Urban project, and Scavengers. Uche Peter’s art works are a contrast to these lots. The young artist creates work by painstakingly twisting and crocheting of thin metal wires as reflected in his installation with fish, Bite what you can chew, and the life size human form entitled Weigh before you act. It consists of a man holding a symbolic magnifying glass and balance. His Rumples shows panel-beaten flexible metal sheet, which is a sarcastic commentary on the state of the nation. In fact, weigh before you act, speaks to all accross board, espcially those in leadershp positions. US-based Nigerian sculptor, Omabegho, who recently held a solo exhibition in Lagos, is showing works such as Divergence, which looks like a slim pillar that has an unusual twist made from polished stainless steel. Others are His Homage IV made of aluminum concentric circles connected on each side by a stylised male and female form cut out of brass, represents different levels of knowledge in the universe and how man and woman are connected to each other and the cosmos. The exhibition is being supported by Veuve Clicquot. Earlier this year, the Temple Muse expanded its focus to include visual art, with a maiden exhibition presenting the works of Victor Ehikhamenor, a multi-talented Nigerian painter, writer and photographer, which received critical acclaim. Since 2008, Temple Muse has established itself as a leading platform for luxury and design, showcasing the very best of world-renowned products, while nurturing home-grown talent.
‘Remain steadfast with your vision’
ENOWNED art scholar Prof Yusuf Grillo of the famous Yaba Art School has urged organisers of the yearly Life In My City Festival’s to remain steadfast with the vision. The festival, he said, should remain a platform for promoting awareness of cultural and environmental issues through art and a means of youth empowerment. He said holding a travelling exhibition of works that made it to the grand finale to cities, such as, Lagos and Abuja would boost the festival’s stature. Prof Grillo said it would be impossible for Life In My City to grow to its full potential without the involvement of the art community in Lagos. He praised the French Embassy and the Alliance Francaise for the support given to the festival since inception, noting that the standard of works on display each year is impressive. Prof Grillo, represented by Mr Dapo Adeniyi, spoke while opening the Lagos leg of Life In My Life City’s exhibition at the National Museum, Onikan. It was the first time in the seven-year history of the festival an exhibition of some of the best of art works by young Nigerian artists from Lagos zone was held in Lagos. Among guests at the exhibition were the Consul General of France in Nigeria, Mr. Francois Sastourne, the Director General of
By Ozolua Uhakheme, Assistant Editor (Arts)
FESTIVAL the Alliance Francaise network in Nigeria, Christine Deuve and and Curator of the National Museum Lagos, Mrs Edith Ekunke. Others were art lecturer and critic Akin Onipede of the University of Lagos and the delegation from the Life In My City, Enugu including the Art Director of the Festival Ayo Adewunmi and Kelvin Ejiofor, its Executive Director. The exhibition featured a selection from over 50 entries, which made it to the second stage of the competition in the Lagos area. Ato Arinze, a member of the jury that presided over the selection said ‘the Lagos committee had quite a challenging experience in the jury process during which each of the works passed through two selection procedures.’ He added that ‘it was a great experience for the young artists in Lagos and the panel of jurors’ noting that ‘we are looking forward to a greater outing next year and of course to the grand finale in Enugu in October.’ Mr. Sastourne also expressed the conviction that the Lagos exhibition would be much bigger next year because the Alliance Française in Lagos is now in a much better position to
give the Lagos zone the support it needs to grow the entries and hold exhibition in Lagos. In the past because of logistic difficulties in Lagos, the Alliance Française could not support the two-stage process leading to an exhibition. Entries from Lagos which were adjudged good enough after the first stage had to be sent to Allaince Française in Ibadan for exhibition. It is therefore a very significant step forward for Life In My City that this year exhibitions were held in Lagos and Ibadan alongside ten other centres around the country. Mr Sastourne commended the high standard of the works on display and assured that the support of the French Embassy for the steadily growing festival through its cultural arm and the Alliance Française network would continue. He confirmed that he and his team would be in Enugu for the grand finale. Similar exhibitions were held in other zones including Ibadan, Kaduna, Abuja, Jos, Owerri, Port Harcourt, Uyo, Calabar, Auchi and Enugu. With Lagos where the first winner of the festival’s overall prize came from in 2007 contributing all of 15 finalists to the grand finale exhibition this year, observers believe that this year’s festival will be truly remarkable. Sources in Enugu indicate that members and workers in the Local Organising Committee in Enugu are on their toes following the arrival of
•Hell-met, by Barak Uche Elezieolu
very exciting finalists from the zones. The theme of this year’s festival is Out of the frame, out of the box. Between 100 and 120 works from young artists not older than 35 years of age from all over the country will be on display at the grand finale week ending with a gala and award night on Saturday, October 12 at the Nike Lake Resort Hotel, Enugu. Diamond Bank is the major sponsor of the Life In My City Art Festival.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
The Midweek Magazine
Celebrating foremost African legend
HE United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Director and Country Representative, Prof Hassana Halidou has called on governments of Southwest states, corporate organisations, individuals and Yoruba in diaspora to support the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi 111, in his efforts to preserve and promote the rich cultural heritage of Yoruba. In a message at the grand finale of the second world Sango festival held in Oyo town, Oyo State, Prof Halidou said what owners of the culture do not appreciate at home are being cherished, admired and highly valued by those outside and are doing everything humanly possible to acquire it by all means and at all cost. Represented by the National Programme Officer for Culture, Mr Ayanwale Olayanju, UNESCO ountry representative noted: ‘’The uniqueness of Oyo traditions is worthy of emulation taking for examples the respect Yoruba people have for the institutional authority, clothing and mode of dressing, the beauty of Yoruba language with its semantics, the use of proverbs and aphorism, different satires of Yoruba poems full of wisdom and philosophy that has no equal all over the world.’’ He explained that Oyo tradition is the pride of Oyo, adding that it is the main reason why the city continues to enjoy respect among the African nations and the black races in general. “This best explained the common saying that due process is the nature of administration in Oyo. This is justice which Sango stands for. It is the practice his Imperial Majesty the Alaafin of Oyo is known for, and this is what Nigeria should be known for because where there is justice, there shall be peace and where there is peace, there will be development and it is development everybody should be working towards to complement whatever the governments at local, state and federal levels are doing.’’ Halidou recalled that in 2005, UNESCO declared Ifa as a masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage of humanity, adding that the government of Japan in collaboration with the Federal Government contributed to the establishment of Ifa Heritage Institute located in Oyo town, with former Vice-Chancellor of the then University of Ife, now Obafemi Awolowo University, Prof Wande Abimbola as the sole sponsor since it was established in 2008. Earler, Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola in his message stressed the importance of the preservation of culture. The governor, who was represented by the state Commissioner for Culture, Sikiru Aiyedun, appreciated the immense contributions of the Alaafin towards renaissance of Yoruba Culture, adding that his administration would not relent in its onerous commitment to bequeathing Yoruba culture its rightful place. ‘’Certainly, a lot more work could be done if policy makers would easily and without prejudice, acknowledge the importance of culture in development. Also, there cannot be any development without a serious motivation of the people concerned,’’ he said. Factional leader of the Oodua Peoples’ Congress (OPC), Mr Gani Adams who cautioned against the extinction of Yoruba culture, expressed worry over what he described as ‘’wholly assimilation of foreign cultures by younger generation in their lifestyles to the detriment of their invaluable customs and traditions.’’ However, another glamour was added to the justconcluded World Sango Festival, when a delegation of blacks and foreign nationals performed traditional rites in Yoruba language to the delight of invited guests.
•Alaafin Adeyemi (right) receiving a traditional drum from leader of delegation From Bode Durojaiye, Oyo
HERITAGE The guests who came from Cuba, Brazil, Puerto Rico, Germany, Cameroun and South Africa but based in Brazi were led by Chief Adeola Faleye, and Dr. Olumide Omidire, both of the Department of Linguistics and African Studies, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU). The delegation disclosed that they made it a point of duty to visit Oyo town because of its unique place in Yorubaland in particular, and the entire black race in
‘In everything, be it science, astrology, dressing, language, social sciences or even businesses, Yoruba remains the pace-setter. There are empirical data and proven track records to show for this assertion. Oyo not only remains centrepiece of Yoruba nations world-wide, but Mecca and Vatican of the richest culture and traditions in the universe’
general. They regarded Oyo as their original home, and that where they were living is their second home. Specifically, they expressed their delight when they saw Oba Adeyemi 111. For about an hour, they thrilled the guests to traditional dances and incantation of Sango praise poetry. The delegation later presented the Alaafin with a traditional drum that has 16 different tones, the first-ever said to be presented to any monarch in Africa. They also presented video tapes of their songs titled: Canticlces to the Alaafin. Responding, Oba Adeyemi thanked both the UNESCO and the World Bank for showcasing attributes of Sango when he was alive. The paramount ruler used the occasion to warn against extinction of Yoruba language, which he described as ‘’the most comprehensive and meaningful language in the universe.’’ Alaafin said: ‘’In everything, be it science, astrology, dressing, language, social sciences or even businesses, Yoruba remains the pace-setter. There are empirical data and proven track records to show for this assertion. Oyo not only remains centrepiece of Yoruba nations world-wide, but Mecca and Vatican of the richest culture and traditions in the universe.’’ The occasion was witnessed by the Oyo-Mesi, and the Olori Oluwo Agbaye of Aborigines Ogboni Fraternity of Nigeria and Overseas, who is also the Aare-Ona Kakanfo of Ibeju-Lekki Kingdom, Aare Oladapo Olufowora.
The Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Michael Gbadebo, will turn 70 on Saturday. A staunch Catholic, he is married to one wife. In an interactive session with some members of the public who hosted him at Niteshift Coliseum, Ikeja last Saturday. Oba Gbadebo responded to some questions raised on why the Egba people are among the greatest around the world. NNEKA NWANERI was there.
‘I don’t have subjects, but people’
HAT goes on in your mind when you see your subjects pay homage to you? They are not my subjects. They are my people. They are my brothers and sisters; so there is no form of superiority. So, when they say Kabiyesi, I raise my head to heaven and say to God, ‘Father Lord, you are the one they greet not me.’ So, I always think of what I can do to make a difference in their lives and also try to know if they have really been blessed. As a king, it is rare to marry one wife. How have you been able to keep up with one? Staying with one wife is a function of choice. Catholicism is the religion I practise and it forbids polygamy. So sticking to one wife is not an economic issue but a matter of choice. Some of my drivers have three to four wives and are comfortable with it. Never in the history of the Alakes is it known that it has one wife. I am proud to have broken that record and pray I have broken the jinx.
I am a product of a polygamous home and right from my youthful days, I made up my mind that my children will not go through what I experienced. So, those 15 vacant rooms in the Ake palace can remain there. How do you get Egba in Diaspora to develop Egba? I don’t ever urge those in Diaspora to come back home but to keep sending the little they have which goes a long way in making better the lives of our people. That way, they are encouraged to make their mark wherever they are and still make their contribution in the land. It is better they keep competing with internationals instead of coming back to be struggling with us on the little we have. But, it is important that when they buy big houses in London, they should buy small ones at home here, so they don’t get to stay in hotels whenever they come back. Between the state and traditional institutions, which is superior? We are in a secular state and the laws of the land prevail as superior to any other. What are the roles of traditional rulers? Since the wishes of the people must prevail, we have no rights to take decisions against the people. So, traditional rulers should play only the role of advisers; no more no less. Since you ascended the throne eight years ago, how have you settled disputes without having enemies or complaints?
As a traditional institution, we do not pass judgment but settle disputes among complainants. The ability to settle issues and members of my council are happy thereafter is a gift from God. How do you blend being an Alake; a Rotarian and member of various clubs? I share same vision as the Rotary by giving service above self. I also try to uphold some of the practices; for example, whenever triplets are born, gifts are presented to the babies as we have seen that all those who bear such children are from the low socio-economic strata of the society. On the paramouncy throne Since 1830, when Abeokuta was founded, the Alakes have been paramount. It is nothing special, but just a gift from God. What do you not like? I don’t like it that I don’t have to work regularly during working hours. As Alake, I must attend to everyone that comes into the palace before they leave. Even when they know I am asleep, they wait till I wake. Nobody goes back without seeing me so am busy from 9am-4pm being when I enjoy my golf time, after which I go back to attending to people. Some even wait till 9 and 11pm to see me. Sometimes I try to dodge them. Not that I don’t enjoy the work but sometimes, I need to rest. So, I dislike it when I know people are waiting to be attended to.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
The Midweek Magazine
Innovations in African bureaucracy U S V A I L
IN Innovation and Best Practices in Public Sector Reforms, Tunji Olaopa gives us an insight into the strategies, ideas, and conditions — an institutional blueprint — for redirecting the focus of public service in Africa, and for making the bureaucracy and the African state globally competitive and development oriented, especially with regard to service delivery. The task of reinventing African bureaucracies serves two significant purposes. One, it raises African states to democratic and developmental significance in a world sold to democratic governance. Two, it gives the African states the needed leeway to participate effectively in global conversation. This is because it is only a developmental and administrative state that possesses the requirements to escape the predicted demise of the state in global reckoning. Given this perspective, the important question, for Olaopa in the book is; how does a reinvented administrative capacity for the public sector (through innovation and best practice) intersect the goal of a sound democratic culture geared towards an all-round national development? He attempts to answer this question in 12 closely woven, and beautifully lucid chapters. Olaopa’s book is set in the context of a globalised World, in which over the past two decades, the African public service has been emaciated, devalued, and downsized under a regime of structural adjustment reforms and neo-liberal economic policies. Africa’s public bureaucracy was a major victim of the SAP policies of the 1980s and 1990s. In spite of those challenges, the African public service in varying degrees, in many African countries, has sought to reinvent itself, respond to national and global challenges, encourage innovative practices, set new standards and improve performance. Chapters one to three set the conceptual and historical foundation for the meaning of innovation, best practices and reforms. The placement of the idea of best practices in historical context in chapter also necessitates looking at the evolution of new public administration theories and practices. In this case, chapter three was particularly about the New Public Management revolution and the managerial model of service delivery. In chapter four, the author examines the operation of the performance management framework on the development of the administrative and service delivery capacities of selected countries around the globe. In this regard, it is important to note that while the “re-legitimising reform of the public sector” (p. 91) took off from the OECD countries, the successes resulting from the exercise as well as the compulsion for it has a global
Title: Innovation & Best Practices in Public Sector Reforms: Issues, Strategies & Conditions; Author: Tunji Olaopa Publishers: Bookcraft, Ibadan; 2012 Reviewer: Prof Said Adejumobi
ramification which crossed the OECD borders to some African countries like Botswana, South Africa, Nigeria, etc. No one can really doubt the spread and relevance of the NPM revolution in the evaluation of the administrative capacities of public sector in the 21st century. The author himself premised his analysis of the African bureaucracies on their ability to adopt and adapt the innovation and best practices based on the maxim of not only “letting managers manage,” but managing in order to achieve the goals of economy, efficiency and effectiveness on the private sector managerial model. It is in this regard, however, that Innovation and Best Practices in Public Sector Reforms derives one of its ultimate significance: It offers a structural but critical means of coming to terms with the NPM revolution within the cultural context of the African bureaucracies. Thus, in chapter five, the author raises a note of caution on taking wholesome the message of the NPM which encourages the private and privatisation model as the panacea for making the bureaucracy deliver. But then, the public-private sector partnership is also a crucial dimension of the NPM as well as local governance (chapter six). The core of the book can be found from chapters’ seven to eleven where the author discusses those conditions that are necessary for domesticating and establishing successful reforms. These conditions include: knowledge, human resource, capacity building, and governance. For instance, it should be noted that it is knowledge “about customers, about the market, about core processes, about how things get done, about who knows what” (p. 192) that inform innovation and the adaptation of best practices that make organization effective. Knowledge is however not a sufficient condition for ensuring adequate reforms. A further condition is the human capital available for the organisation and utilization of the accumulated knowledge for ‘organisational growth” (208). This is the concern of chapter eight. Again, these two factors must be converted into capacity building, ‘the ca-
pability to transform that knowledge into effective decisions and actions that solve development problems for both the short and the long term” (p. 251). Chapter ten addresses the nature of governance in Africa. This is essential because the implementation of any reform for successful service delivery is equally a function of the political environment in which the reform is taking place. This becomes crucial in the African context because of the patrimonial nature of the African state: For Olaopa, “the patrimonial nature of the state in Africa has often led to over-bloated government size, since there are often duplication of posts and creation of unnecessary functions and ministries in order to reward clients/cronies. These, by extension, also leads to waste of state resources since two different persons, or more, are paid separately for an individual’s job” (p. 284). This therefore requires a “governance approach” to public service reforms that establishes the linkage among the institutional environment, economic management and the incentive system. The success of this approach, and ultimately the success of reforms on the continent, requires the cultivation of a transformational leadership that will serve as the instrumental catalyst for growth. This challenge of leadership forms the focus of chapter eleven of the book. The chapter differentiates between leadership at the political level and leadership within the public service with both involved in a symbiotic relationship. Leadership at the political level is very important for the success of any reform programmes of the civil service because it is this kind of leadership which can help a state “in properly channeling its resources to enhance the fulfillment of its goals of securing the good life for its people… It is this kind of leadership that can ensure that the public service
is truly transformed into a corruption-free, performance-driven, result-oriented, customers’, citizens’ and investors’ friendly administrative arm of government” (pp. 311, 312). On the other hand, the leadership within the public service will work to formulate new methods with which the public service “can plan, organise, and direct its energies towards mission accomplishment… ([The leadership initiates) cultural change in the public organisation which will prepare the members of the organisation to cope with, and adapt to, changes of mission, environment, and/or direction” (pp. 314, 315). In the last chapter, the author argues that for the bureaucracies in Africa to make meaningful progress, it must redefine its role in a manner that will accommodate a mixture of three options: one, it must adapt to the dictates of its environment; two, it must be proactive by getting strategic, “i.e. by analysing the current changes and formulating policies and plans to take advantage of the changes” (p. 323); and three, it must assume leadership by shaping its own environment. On the basis of this, the author goes on to draw the relevant lessons that can be learnt from the analyses of public service reforms, especially with the African bureaucracies in mind. The first important lesson he draws concerns the need to “practicalise innovative ideas as a means of promoting social development” (p. 324). This eventually takes us to the need for political will to bring innovative ideas to bear on the development of the people. The second lesson concerns the professional competence of the workforce of the public service. This professionalisation effort will help nurture the “development of the capacity to function in a dynamic public sector environment” (p. 325). This book promises to stimulate administrative thinking on the necessity of adapting to global changes in public administration. Most important of all, however, its significance comes from the point that in the presence of such abundant global trends and best practices, there is the urgent need for the requisite political will to convert these practices to an enabling development agenda for providing the good life for the people. I suspect that it is only when African bureaucracies become so enabled that we can truly begin to talk of a genuine independent on the continent. The author of the book, Dr. Olaopa is a seasoned bureaucrat, and one of the most intellectually challenging minds in the African and indeed global public service. He has written extensively on public sector reform issues, and leads many initiatives and networks on public sector management in Africa. This book is a major addition to the corpus of knowledge from him in enhancing the performance of the public service in Africa. •Prof. Adejumobi, is Chief, Public Administration Section, Governance and Public Administration Division, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA),Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
NUJ to parley on role of media
HE Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Zone C, Southeast will on September 20, gather in Enugu to see how best the media can help in the integrating the zone. It is the second Southeast media summit. The first was hosted at Gregory University, Uturu, Abia State. The need for the people of the Southeast to own media outfit was discussed at that outing. This year’s edition was in collaboration with the host of the first Gregory University and it is aimed at promoting the political and socio-economic development of the zone. The venue is Nike Lake Hotels, Enugu and the theme is, Role of the media in Southeast integration, the Vice President of the Nigeria NUJ, Zone C, Mr Chris Isiguzo said at a press conference in Awka last Friday. Senator Ike Ekweremadu, Deputy Senate President and Governors of the five Southeastern states are expected to be Chief Guests and Special guests at the occasion. Isiguzo said the summit is aimed at creating a forum where issues that bother on good governance, media practice and investment as well as the nation’s democratisation will be discussed.
From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Onitsha
SUMMIT He added that some prominent Igbo sons and daughters, including Dr Ifeanyi Ubah, Senator Chris Anyawu, Chief Onyemuche Nnamani, Mr Dave Nwachukwu and Mr Ude Oko Chukwu would be honoured on the occasion. According to him, it is hoped that the summit would create an improved atmosphere and environment for the general wellbeing of people in the zone. “One of the expected outcomes of the summit is a mobilisation of captains of industry as well as stakeholders to invest in the media industry in the South-East zone to give the people a voice,” he said. Isiguzo recalled that the maiden edition of the summit, which held at Gregory University, Uturu, Abia State in last year, resulted in the establishment of more print and electronic media outfits in the zone. He said former Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji would deliver a keynote address on the theme. “The Chairman, Senate Committee on Gas, Senator Nkechi Nwaogu, will chair
•From left: Mr Hycenth Okolie, Isiguzo and Ms Monic Okechukwu.
the event. “The five governors in the zone will serve as special guests of honour while the National President of NUJ, Mallam Garba Mohammed will lead media stakeholders to the event. “It is hoped that a communiqué would be presented at the end of the event to the Southeast leaders, governors and National Assembly members as blueprint for economic, social and political ad-
vancement of the zone,”he added. Registrar, Gregory University, Dr Austin Orisakwe assured that as far as the varsity is concerned as well as their chancellor, that the outing would be a memorable event to both parties until Ndigbo buys into establishing media houses for its people. He reminded that the maiden edition hosted by the institution was unique and interesting.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
The Midweek Magazine
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
A police officer in the making?
PHOTO: NNEKA NWANERI
The making of new tourist centres in Anambra
NAMBRA State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Joe-Martins Uzodike has announced the revitalisation plans for tourism and recreational sites in the state. He disclosed this while hosting the Aghalieaku Entertainment Limited boss, Aghalieaku Benjamin Arinze and his team to present a certificate of recognition from Governor Peter Obi administration as a contributions to the growth and development of culture and tourism in the state. Aghalieaku festival is a yearly cultural and music panorama hosted every December at the open field of moribund Foundry and Machine Tools Production Factory (FOMTOP) at Ozubulu. The first edition was held last December and 15 states, with Lagos, Edo, Delta and Benue states in attendance. Uzodike disclosed that, Oye-Agu Abagana has been designated a tourism site and would be called Abagana sector drawing strength on its popularity during he Nigerian-Biafran civil war. He said: ‘’Oye-Agu Abagana would be designated a Tourist centre known as Abagana sector. We want to build a house to immortalise where Ata of Igala took off to other parts of the country. We would build a monument where the first Igbo man took off, all in Enugu Aguleri. ‘’There is a place at Enugu-Otu where we have the Trinity tree, three gigantic trees having one roof and we would upgrade the Ogbunike cave and the Igbo-Ukwu Museum. Our waterfalls at Owerre Ezukala and Ufuma and so many others we have around in the state. ‘’We are re-recreating our tourism and recreation centers. We are going to register all the hotels in Anambra and classify them to forestal robbery and kidnapping. On Aghalieaku festival, Uzodike said the Governor appreciated the efforts of Aghalieaku Benjamin Arinze’s efforts in gal-
From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Nnewi
TOURISM vanising various groups and communities in competition that costs in millions of naira philanthropy as a means of showcasing our true cultural heritage and tradition. ‘’We discussed it in the Exco and the Governor mandated that you be recognised and that it would now be an annual festival hence I am mandated to present to you this certificate from the Anambra State Government as an encouragement for you to do more. ‘’We would give you all the necessary support and encouragement to make the festival become an international event like that of Calabar and so many other festivals. We will equally continue to do our own annual cultural and masquerade festival but this year will have some new innovations like soup cooking competition among others. Agulu Lake Resort is being developed’’. Founder of Aghalieaku festival, Mr Arinze expressed shock that he could be called for recognition by Governor Obi’s government unsolicited and described that as a real motivation and encouragement to invest more resources into the festival. Aghalieaku said: ‘’I am overwhelmed by this surprise gesture from my Governor, Mr Peter Obi and the efforts of the Information, Culture and Tourism Commissioner, Uzodike. I equally thank Governor Obi for giving approval for our first outing because had it been he stopped it, we would not be able to prove that something of this nature could be done in our clime. “ He informed that various nationals, including Caribbean Island expressed profound interest in becoming part of the carnival like festival and assured that in the next two years he would attract foreign participation at the Aghalieaku festival. He prayed that this year’s festival would be greater than that of last year.
•Uzodike presenting a certificate to Arinze
He, however, requested for more space, noting that this was a problem last year, adding that the Aghalieaku team hope that government would provide them with space. He said he is committed to uplifting and enhancing Igbo culture and tradition through Aghalieaku festival. A Choreographer of Aghalieaku festival, Edochie Obiajulu said last year was unique and fruitful with promises, adding that soonest the festival would be competing with Calabar carnival and Argungu festival, among others. ‘’There is a future in this festival. It has come
to stay especially with this government recognition. This festival would be greater than Calabar because I was part of Calabar festival as a consultant and I know what is involved and what we are doing here,’’he said. Obiajulu confirmed that 25 states featured in the last festival and more have indicated interest to participate in this year’s festival. He urged more individuals and corporate organisations to sponsore events on Igbo culture and tradition as well as sporting tourist centres in the state such as founder of Aghalieaku festival, Arinze Aghalieaku.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
CRISIS IN PDP President Goodluck Jonathan and his benefactor and godfather, Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo, are now working at cross-purpose in the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The President is perceived to be nursing a second term ambition. But the former President has his eyes on another candidate. Group Political Editor EMMANUEL OLADESU writes on the antagonistic permutations of the two leaders, ahead of the 2015 elections.
Jonathan, Obasanjo: Torn apart by 2015 calculations
EFORE Dr. Goodluck Jonathan became the VicePresident in 2007, the relationship between him and former President Olusegun Obasanjo was like a father-son relationship. But the former President is now fighting the President by proxy. Obasanjo greatly admired the Ijaw technocrat and politician, who was a loyal deputy governor under former Bayelsa State Governor Diepreye Alamieye-seigha. The fondness was attributed to the fact that Jonathan neither undermined nor subverted his boss, until the governor was shoved aside, following the his face-off with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The relationship was cordial when Dr. Jonathan, in quick succession, became the Vice President, Acting President and President, following the death of President Umaru Yar’Adua. When the President contested for the highest office in 2011, Obasanjo was also a pillar of support for his administration. He mobilised support for him to defeat former Vice President Atiku Abubakar at the PDP primaries and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential election. The relationship has now turned sour. The President and the former President are divided by 2015 calculations. President Jonathan is perceived to be nursing a second term in office. But Obasanjo is looking at another direction. At critical moments, when the former President was expected to stand behind the President like the wall of Gibraltar, he was found in the company of those opposed to the President’s ambition. As the pro-Jonathan forces continue to push for his re-nomination, Obasanjo is propping up another aspirant to challenge him to a duel. The turn of events is worrisome to some admirers of Obasanjo in Jonathan’s camp. Efforts to broker reconciliation between the two leaders have failed. Although President Jonathan had visited Obasanjo in his Abeokuta, Ogun State residence, it has not led to a truce. The former President has also visited Dr. Jonathan in Aso Rock. But the visits have not endangered mutual confidence. Since 1999, when he assumed the reins as the President, Obasanjo has been playing the role of a godfather in the ruling PDP. As the PDP National Leader, the General decided who got what and how in the party for eight years. He brooked no opposition and his word was law. After completing his second term in office, Obasanjo reflected on the burning issue of succession. As a former military leader and civilian Head of State, he was not indifferent to the nature, tendency and sentiment of his successor. Thus, in 2007, he threw up former Katsina State Governor Yar’Adua as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) flag bearer. But another issue that came up at the convention of the party was the choice of the running mate. The former President, who had a running battle with his deputy, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, wanted a cool-headed politician as the vice presidential candidate. After care-
•Dr Jonathan (right) and Chief Obasanjo.
ful consideration, he picked former Bayelsa State Governor Jonathan for the role. After two and half years, President Yar’adua died. During his long absence, a cabal initially prevented Jonathan from stepping in as the Acting President. Obasanjo was among the eminent Nigerians who insisted that the 1999 Constitution should be followed in resolving the logjam. The former President even said that his successor should have thrown in the towel, owing to his incapacitation. When Yar’Adua died, the same forces were at work, until the ‘Doctrine of Necessity’ was invoked to pave the way for Jonathan’s emergence as the President. In those trying period, Obasanjo stood with the President. The relationship between Jonathan and Obasanjo was cordial, until his resignation as the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT) Chairman. It was believed that Obasanjo displaced another party elder, Chief Tony Anenih. A source said that the former President was dazed by Jonathan’s reaction. Instead of prevailing on the former President not to abdicate from the powerful and influential party structure, Jonathan simply welcomed the resignation and wished him the best in his future endeavours. From that moment, the source said, Obasanjo started to review his rela-
tionship with the President. But open confrontation was avoided. The resumption of hostilities came, following the removal of Obasanjo’s men from the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party. The sack affected the National Secretary, Gen. Olagunsoye Oyinlola, National Vice Chairman (Southwest), Mr. Segun Oni, and National Auditor, Gbenga Mustapha. They were national officers from the Southwest Zone. Gen. Oyinlola had a ruptured relationship with the PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. When crisis broke out between the Chairman and Secretary, Tukur’s Chief of Staff, Abu Fari, was shown the way out. The former Osun State governor alleged that Fari had hijacked his duties and preventing access to the chairman. But the heat was later turned on Oyinlola, following persistent pressures from party chieftains from his home state and other Southwest states for his removal. They complained that he did not properly emerge as the secretary. But Oyinlola’s election was not voided by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which voided the election of other 16 national officers. When Tukur refused to reinstate him, Obasanjo’s camp took up the battle, claiming that it was an orchestrated plan to reduce the former President’s
influence by eliminating his supporters from the organs of the party. Obasanjo has other grudges. He had taken side in the war of attrition rocking the Ogun PDP chapter. In hot competition for the soul of the party in the Gateway State were the Senator Dipo Odujinrin and Adebayo Dayo factions. Obasanjo supported the former. Following the collapse of reconciliation, the two parties went to the court. The temple of justice affirmed Dayo, an engineer, as the authentic chairman. Thus, the hands if the National Working Committee (NWC) were tied. Tukur had no option than to give recognition to the State Executive Committee headed by Dayo. The implication was that the control of the Ogun PDP slipped away from Obasanjo. It was a victory for his foes in the troubled chapter, who are financed by the billionaire businessman, Kashamu Buruji. The former President is not a coward who will run away from battles. He gathered his army and fired salvos at the President. As the relationship between Obasanjo and Jonathan deteriorated, relations between the embattled President and Nigerians who voted en mass for him over two years ago had strained. Their hope was raised by the transformation agenda. But, two years after, soaring unemployment, collapsed infrastruc-
‘President Jonathan is perceived to be nursing a second term in office. But Obasanjo is looking at another direction. At critical moments, when the former President was expected to stand behind the President like the wall of Gibraltar, he was found in the company of those opposed to the President’s ambition. As the pro-Jonathan forces continue to push for his re-nomination, Obasanjo is propping up another aspirant to challenge him to a duel’
ture, power outage, and poverty have created a deep hollow in the administration’s record. Gradually, the President begun to lose the goodwill and solidarity of the voters, owing to their inability to marry expectation with reality. Thus, Obasanjo secured a vantage position to attack the inept government, berating it for shortfall in focus and capacity. In fact, the former President wrote off the younger generation, which is exemplified Dr. Jonathan. Delivering a lecture at Ibadan, Oyo State, he said the generation has failed the nation, unlike his own generation, which he said, erected lasting legacies. Observers contend that the missiles at Ibadan were reserved by Obasanjo, who had earlier passed a vote of no confidence on the President when he shunned this year’s ‘Democracy Day’ at Abuja. Obasanjo was said to have been invited to the occasion where President Jonathan released his midterm score card. He declined the invitation. Instead, the former President went to Dutse, capital of Jigawa State, on the invitation of Governor Sule Lamido. After commissioning some projects by the governor, Obasanjo praised him to high heavens. The extraordinary encomium was perceived as an endorsement of Lamido for the Presidency in 2015 by Obasanjo. Also, to underscore his disapproval of the party’s recent special convention at the Eagles Squares, Abuja, Obasanjo stayed away, to the consternation of the President. Mid way into the convention, seven governors walked out on the President and Tukur, citing irregularities in the conduct of the exercise. Among them are the five aggrieved governors, who are loyal to Obasanjo. They repudiated the convention and demanded for Tukur’s resignation from office. Obasanjo was instrumental to the installation of the ‘G5" members as governors. He had directed Admiral Muritala Nyako to vie for the Adamawa State governorship in 2007 to checkmate Atiku. When Kano State Governor Musa Kwakwanso was dislodged by Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau of the defunct All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP), the former President appointed him as the Defence Minister. Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu was a Federal Permanent Secretary before his election. In 2007, Obasanjo advised Aliyu Wamakko to defect from the ANPP to become the governor of Sokoto State under the PDP. Kano State Governor Lamido was Obasanjo’s first Minister of Foreign Affairs. All of them have remained loyal to the former President. In fact, before they announced a parallel executive, they had visited Obasanjo to complain to him about the way Jonathan and Tukur have been managing the party. Their visit to Obasanjo in Abeokuta coincided with the President’s visit. But, following a tip off, they dodged the President. When the ‘G5’ teamed up with other aggrieved PDP chieftains to form a faction led by the former Acting National Chairman, Alhaji Kawu Baraje, many believed that Obasanjo was not kept in the dark. A source said that was responsible for why •Continued on page 44
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
POLITICS CRISIS IN PDP Assistant Editor LEKE SALAUDEEN takes a look at the chances of President Goodluck Jonathan, if he decides to seek re-nomination in 2015.
How far can Jonathan go? P
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan is likely to seek re-nomination in 2015. His reluctance to make any commitment on his perceived ambition at the peace meeting of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders and the aggrieved governors points to that direction. If the peace moves fail to reconcile the two warring factions, the Abubakar Baraje group, to which the seven governors belong, may align with the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM) or the All Progressive Congress (APC) to ensure electoral victory for the opposition. The President may emerge unchallenged as the standard bearer of the PDP under the leadership of Alhaji Bamanga Tukur.
Can Jonathan win 2015 election? Prior to the protracted crises, PDP had a broad political base, which was responsible for its winning streak since 1999, when civil rule was restored. In the 1999 elections, the party won a majority of seats in the legislature and its standard bearer, Chief Olusegun Obasano, was elected as the President. It was the same scenario in 2003. In 2007, late Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua emerged as the party’s presidential candidate. Dr. Jonathan was his running mate. In 2010, power shifted to Jonathan, who became the Acting President and later, President, following the death of President Yar’ Adua. When Jonathan announced in September 2010 that he would run for the Presidency, it generated controversy. The party chieftains went to the primaries with acrimony. However, his victory over his challenger, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, gave the impression that he had considerable
support in many Northern states, in spite of the fact that his candidacy was a deviation from the party’s rotational policy. Jonathan was victorious in the 2011 presidential election, which the international observers said was free and fair. But the volcanic eruption within the PDP has now weakened the party. In the National Assembly, PDP is no more a dominant party. The party split at its recent convention in Abuja, with seven governors forming a faction headed by Alhaji Kawu Baraje. The arrowhead of the group is the former Vice President. Already 22 senators have pitched their tent with the Baraje faction. Prior to the escalation of the crisis, the party had 74 members in the Upper Chamber; the Tukur faction is left with 52 senators. The Presidency may lose control over the Senate, if the 22 new PDP senators decide to team up with the opposition, which has 31 senators. Therefore, the opposition may be in the majority, with 53 as against 52 for PDP. Similarly, 57 members of the House of Representatives have pulled out of the Tukur group and aligned with its rival. Given this development,President Jonathan’s faction of the PDP has lost control over the National Assembly and some states. The implication is that the President’s popularity has shrunk. Besides, the President, to observers, has not lived up to expectation. The transformation agenda
of the administration is not producing positive results. Former Kano State Governor Ibrahim Shekarau has called on Nigerians to brace up for the challenge of unseating the President in 2015. He said Jonathan has failed woefully and does not deserve re-election. Shekarau, who was a member of the merger committee of the All Progressive Congress (APC), took a critical appraisal of the Jonathan. He said: “My assessment is that the government is a total failure. It is not about projects, but about the wellbeing and safety of the people.” Former Aviation Minster, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode said Nigeria deserves a new President, if the country must progress. He said: “We should have a new President in 2015, if we want Nigeria to do well. If we don’t have a new President by then, if we have the same President we have today and, if he doesn’t change drastically, do a new thing, build bridges, make peace with everyone and build up a serious team of competent people around him, I don’t think that he has much of a hope of winning the next election. And, if he continues like this and return in 2015, Nigeria would be finished within two years. “My worst fear is that, by then, the damage he would have inflicted
on this nation would have been so bad that it would be irretrievable. Nigeria would eventually turn into something of Banana Republic and a failed state. That is what is likely to happen, if Jonathan comes back in 2015 and if he’s given a new mandate. This is my greatest fear for our country and that is why we must stop him. “Today we have more division in terms of religion, ethnicity and more mutual suspicion than at any time in our history apart from during the civil war. This is what President Jonathan and his team have done to Nigeria. Everything has been ethnicised”. The way forward, according to Shekarau, is to get the right people to take over. He added: “ The electorate have a very big role to play because the people must have a change. The change we are advocating in APC is not change of government but change of attitude and people must vote according to their belief and consciousness of accepting who will do the right thing”. A chieftain of APC in Niger State, Alhaji Yusuf Lawal, has advised President Jonathan to accept the reality that his second term ambition will hit the rock because he will not have a formidable platform to lean upon in 2015. According to Lawal, the PDP may
‘The 2015 election should be about performance and the President has a lot of questions to answer about his stewardship. Unless something drastic happens between now and the election date, President Jonathan will be heading back to his hometown in Otuoke on May 29, 2015’
not recover from its crisis adding that the split in the party has marked the downfall of the acclaimed largest party in Africa. He noted that the PDP has inflicted pains on the people in the last 14 years and added that the governments it produced had failed the nation. He said: “President Jonathan should forget about 2015. He should heed the advice of “The Patriots” that he should not re-contest. He should be ready to be a statesman as from 2015”. Can his performance save him? President Jonathan won the 2011 poll, not because of his popularity, but because Nigerians insisted on voting for a candidate from the minority ethnic group. In 2015, Jonathan may not have the luxury of leveraging on the same sentiments. He may not be able to whip up emotions, based on his recall of poverty-striken childhood, which made the masses to think that he would transform the country. A political analyst, Dr Bernard Briggs, said the President’s performance makes him vulnerable to defeat in a free and fair election. “He has not lived up to the expectations of Nigerians. The President and his party are in for a surprise in 2015, when Nigerians will witness the power of their votes. The power of incumbency will not matter in 2015 because the President is poised to lose the election”. Briggs added: “President Jonathan should not blame anybody for his predicament, if he loses. He is the architect of his •Continued on page 45
Jonathan, Obasanjo: Torn apart by 2015 antics to pull the rug off the feet of his perceived enemy. ARTY insiders said that, initially, the President wanted to keep Obasanjo at arm length. But key chieftains loyal to him stressed the importance of reconciliation to prevent the escalation of the crisis. But when the President’s disposition to the Obasanjo effort was unraveled, many party elders shunned the reconciliation meeting at Abuja. It was evident that the elders have been polarised by the protracted crisis into pro-Jonathan and anti-Jonathan forces. Apart from Gen. Ibrahim Babangida and Col. Ahmadu Ali, who had worked under him as the military Head of State, other notable elders at the venue were Senator Barnabas Gemade and Anenih, who was the link between the reconciliation meeting and Presidency. However, key elders, including former Vice President Alex Ekwueme, Chief Solomon Lar, Mrs. Titi Ajanaku, Prof. Jibril Aminu, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, General
• Clark •Continued from page 43
Jonathan’s camp was weary of Obasanjo’s reconciliation initiative, following the split in the crisis-ridden party. Since they believe that the Ota farmer is not neutral in the crisis, the President’s associates feared that Obasanjo, who is unpredictable and cunning, had come up with his
Yakubu Danjuma, Chief S.K. Babalola, former Anambra State Governor Jim Nwobodo, Alhaji Mohammed Abba-Gana, Gen. Ike Nwachukwu, Chief Tunde Osunrinde, Senator Ahmed Ebute, former Information Minister Chief Edwin Clark, Commodore Bode George, Chief Peter Odili, Senator Olofintuyi, Chief Shuaib Oyedokun, Gen. David Jemibewon, Senator Olu Alabi, Chief Alaba Williams, Alabo Ghram Douglas, Alhaji Hassan Adamu, Chief Dapo Sarunmi, Dr. Umaru Dikko, and Senator Yinka Omilani, were absent. Jonathan’s camp faces a big hurdle, ahead of 2015. Ebullient and forktongued Governor Aliyu had canvassed for power shift to the North, claiming that the President had a pact with some Northern leaders on presidential zoning in 2011. He said the inexplicable pact should be honoured. When Obasanjo visited Jigawa and showered encomium on Lamido, it was interpreted as a subtle endorsement for power shift. Sources said that the President’s associates were infuriated by the rec-
ommendations of the elders’ committee-led by Obasanjo. The proposals favoured the ‘G5’, which is Obasanjo’s machinery, and other chieftains, who are united in their bitterness against the President and Tukur, his dependable ally. The President, the source added, may reject the proposals. Under this prevailing atmosphere of mistrust and mutual suspicion between the President and his erstwhile benefactor, the perceived hidden agenda of Obasanjo may unfold. But the former President also faces some challenges in his perceived bid to edge out Jonathan from the exalted office. Obviously, Obasanjo is not happy with President Jonathan. But, judging by his outburst at Ibadan, it is doubtful that the former President will endorse Atiku for the Presidency in 2015, although the former Vice President appears to be the arrowhead of the onslaught against the President and Tukur. There is no proof that the former leader will combine forces with Buhari, a likely presidential aspirant in the All
Progressives Congress (APC). It may be suicidal. Also, the newly registered Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM), which is believed to be fronting for the former Vice President, is ruled out in Obasanjo’s calculations. If he eventually settles for Lamido, Aliyu or any other candidate for the Presidency, will he have the last laugh?
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
POLITICS In 2011, former Central Bank Governor Charles Soludo joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Few months ago, he defected to the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA). Now, the renowned economist is having romance with the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM). Assistant Editor AUGUSTINE AVWODE examines the political trajectory of the technocrat-turned politician.
ORMER Central Bank Governor Charles Soludo is an accomplished intellectual. He became a Professor of Economics at the age of 36 years. He is a successful technocrat. But he has not been able to enact the same feat in politics. Soludo joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2010. Few months ago, he defected to the All Progressives Grand Allliance (APGA). Now, sources say that he is holding consultations with the top chieftains of the newly registered Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM). He became a public officer when former President Olusegun Obasanjo appointed him as his the Chief Economic Adviser and Chief Executive of the National Planning Commission (NPC). He served in that capacity between July 2003 and May 2004. Before that assignment, he had served as the Executive Director of the African Institute for Applied Economics (AIAE), Chairman of Queens Computerworld Limited, and consultant to many international organisations. Soludo was appointed as the Central Bank governor in May 2004. He introduced a lot of reforms. His legacy was the banks’ recapitalisation, which has prevented distress in the sector.
Foray into politics Before his tenure as the CBN governor, expired in May 2009, Soludo had indicated his interest in politics. When he eventually left as the nation’s number one banker, he pitched his tent with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), eight months to the February 6, 2010 Anambra State governorship election. He was favoured to pick the ticket of the party. And he did. But his victory generated controversy. Many aggrieved politicians left the party for the opposition parties in Anambra State. The PDP gave Soludo the support he needed. Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, who was the Vice President then, was the Coordinator of the PDP Campaign Committee. Other members of the committee were the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, former Kogi State Governor Ibrahim Idris, Bauchi State Governor Alhaji Isa Yuguda, former Oyo State Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala, Enugu State Governor Sullivan Chime, Ebonyi State Governor Martins Elechi and former Imo State Governor Ikedi Ohakim. During the electioneering, a confident Soludo advised Governor Peter Obi to start preparing his handover note because he would definitely leave Anambra Government House. Soludo was sure he would defeat him. Unfortunately, that confidence was like a balloon filled with hot air and resting on blades of grasses. It was soon shattered. The party failed to live up to expectation at the poll. The rest is history. Senator Andy Uba, who was governor of the state for less than a month in 2007, defected to the Labour Party (LP). Others openly vowed to work against the interest of the party. The PDP went into the election in acrimony. It was weakened by crisis. Soludo came third at the election, trailing Obi and Senator Chris Ngige of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). It was a traumatic period for a high flying •Continued from page 44
• Former Vice President Atiku and Dr Soludo at a recent meeting.
Soludo on slippery political terrain Soludo. He became a failed politician. That was how his first political ambition hit the rocks.
Shattered dream But Soludo is always optimistic. He is always full of hope for a brighter political future. He returned to his shell. Few months ago, he returned to the drawing board. He joined the governorship race. But he was disqualified by the APGA Screening Committee headed by Alhaji Tayo Sowumi. Soludo’s calculation was defective.To forestall a repeat of the 2010 experience, he was advised to pitch his tent with
APGA, giving the fact that Governor Peter Obi was on his second term in office. There were unsubstantiated claims that he got some encouragement from the seat of power in Abuja. He subsequently defected to the APGA. That was early August. His arrival coincided with the reconciliation of Governor Obi with the National Chairman of the party, Chief Victor Umeh. But, in a letter he wrote to PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, on July 17, 2013, Soludo said: “This is to convey my resignation as a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with effect from today. Let me use this opportunity to thank the party for the opportu-
‘But Soludo is always optimistic. He is always full of hope for a brighter political future. He returned to his shell. Few months ago, he returned to the drawing board. He joined the governorship race. But he was disqualified by the APGA Screening Committee headed by Alhaji Tayo Sowumi.
nity given to me to serve it in some capacities. “It has been a long process of taking this decision; it has taken months, equally doing the necessary consultations among my people, which dates back to January 2, 2013, and this is where my people belong. There is an overwhelming demand by the people of Anambra State for me to remain engaged in the political process and, after all the consultations, I come to the conclusion that there is need for that. “Also, there is a peculiar demand from the people for me to run for thegovernorship of the state in November this year to build on what our governor, Mr. Peter Obi, has done already with his predecessor, and I found out that there is need also to take Anambra to a greater height. We need continuity and consolidation on what Obi and his predecessors had done in the state. So, APGA is a party that is a mass movement; it lives in the consciousness of the people”. The Soludo aura immediately rubbed off on the political party. Many even claimed that he was brought into the party as a compromise candidate between the two warring chieftains. But those who had thought that his new move would help his cause were dead wrong. Few days after he defected to the APGA, and with the party’s primary election just around the corner, another aspirant surfaced. This time, a business associate of the governor and executive director of Fidelity Bank, Willie Obiano. His emergence immediately sent bad signals to other aspirants. About 20 days after he defected to the APGA, Soludo picked the nomination form. But he was disqualified. The party’s screening panel said at the conclusion of the panel’s sitting that six of aspirants failed to scale through the test. He said seven scaled through. The unsuccessful aspirants are Emmanuel Nweke, Ogbuefi Tony Nnaechetta, Chinedu Francis Idigo, Dr. Chike Obidigbo, Oseloka Obaze and Soludo. The successful aspirants areHon. Chukwuemeka Emmanuel Nwogbo, Paul Odenigbo, Hon. Uche Lillian Ekwunife, Obiano, John Nwosu, John Okechukwu Emeka and Nwachi Patrick Obianwu. It was alleged that those disqualified were guilty of non-presentation of voters and party membership cards, lack of evidence of financial strength to execute the campaign, invalid certificate and their inability to submit tax clearance. Obiano secured the APGA ticket, to the surprise of Soludo, who cried foul. `
A new search begins
But it cannot be said to be totally over for the renowned economist. Sources said that he is reaching out to the chieftains of the PDM. The party may however, not be able to meet the deadline set by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). Soludo’s recent visit to former Vice PresidentAtiku Abubakar, who is the perceived facilitator of the new party, lent much credence to the speculation that he is PDM bound. For Soludo, the search for another political identity and pursuit of the elusive dream continue. His political trajectory promises to be a case study for students of politics.
2015: How far can Jonathan go?
own misfortune as a President. For the President to have squandered the enormous goodwill and support from Nigerians is evidence of opportunities gone awry. It will dawn on his praise singers from his ethnic group who have been hailing him for doing nothing. An applicant from Akwa Ibom, John Akpan, is opposed to second term for President Jonathan. He said that, being an indigene of Southsouth, he should support Jonathan for a second term bid. But he prefers to differ on this issue. According to him, Jonathan has not proved himself to be a man that can take Nigeria out of insecurity, poverty, depriva-
tion, joblessness, and corruption. Akpan said the President that can wake up one day and increase pump price of fuel . “Jonathan has failed the Southsouth with his purposeless leadership and his inability to fight corruption. He is being swung around like “barber’s chair” by his ethnic leaders and numerous advisers making his government unpopular. “The unfortunate thing is that Jonathan has laid a bad precedence for the Southsouth and it will be extremely difficult for another Southsouth person to get to that position in the future. It is either the PDP dumps Jonathan and re-
main relevant in 2015 or retain Jonathan and go into extinction in 2015”, he added. Briggs said President Jonathan has a case to answer. “In 2015, Nigerians will ask Jonathan why corruption, which he promised to tackle in his inaugural speech, has become a hydra-headed monster in his administration. He will have to explain why his administration has not secured convictions, in spite of massive corruption in the land. Nigerians will in 2015, ask the President why cases of corruption involving his aides have been swept under the carpet. The impunity that has become a norm in this
country today is because the President has not been decisive in the fight against corruption. “The President will also explain why millions of Nigerian youths cannot find jobs, despite the concocted story of the economy growing at an unbelievable rate being dished out by government officials. The 2015 election should be about performance and the President has a lot of questions to answer about his stewardship. Unless something drastic happens between now and the election date, President Jonathan will be heading back to his hometown in Otuoke on May 29, 2015,” he said..
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Juju traps terrified girls into sex slavery Witchcraft is being used to force trafficked Nigerian girls into grim lives of prostitution in Britain, writes CAROLINE SCOTT of The Sunday Times.
MA was eight when her mother abandoned her. She went to live with her uncle and aunt but her uncle sexually abused her and it was not long before other men were doing the same. At the age of 12, Ama gave birth to a girl. Although she was bright, school was out of the question. Instead she sold chillies in a market in Benin City, southern Nigeria, making barely enough to feed herself and her baby. When Ama was offered a chance to work as a domestic cleaner in Britain she saw it as a route to a better life. She would have to borrow £50,000 to pay the “agents” but would earn £300 a week, enabling her to pay £150 towards her debt and still be able to send money home. “I was happy,” she said. But Ama’s happiness was short-lived as she was dragged into a nightmare world of witchcraft, mutilation and, when she finally made it to Britain, forced prostitution. First she had to swear an oath to pay back the cost of her passage to England. Then
she was taken into the bush by a juju priest, or witchdoctor, for a grisly ritual practised widely in west Africa. The priest stripped her, bathed her in goat’s blood, cut her head and chest with razor blades, and pushed black soot into the open wounds. He took snippets of her hair, finger nails and “private” hair which he placed in small jars. The ritual was used to take control of Ama’s mind, soul and sexuality. Afterwards, she was forced to swallow a bitter liquid mixed with blood. By drinking it, she had signed a covenant of silence and was warned that if she told anyone what was happening to her, a thunderbolt would strike her dead. Like many in Nigeria, Ama was terrified of the power of juju. Soon she was on her way to a three-bedroom flat on the edge of Birmingham where the brutal reality was brought
home to her. The three men holding her told her she had to “do prostitution”. She shakes her head as she recalls her terror. “They’d paid, so I had to do what they told me to do. I was scared that I’d be killed and no one would even know.” Since the start of last year, 249 Nigerians, including 73 children, have been identified as potential trafficking victims, among the highest figure for any nationality, according to the UK’s national referral mechanism, set up to ensure victims are identified and supported. The Serious Organised Crime Agency said 79 potential Nigerian victims were sexually exploited last year. Most are from Edo state, southern Nigeria; all have been through juju ceremonies which bind the girls to their traffickers. The trade in human lives is rooted in fear and poverty and fuelled by de-
mand from the western sex industry. Ama was moved around, to different houses with different girls. Most were teenagers but there were also women in their forties still trying to pay off the “debt” to the traffickers. Ama’s “customers” were mostly married men in their forties and fifties. Her work, at the flat, hotels and houses, went on day and night. “I was worn out, because everyone wanted to try the new girl,” she says. Dorcas Erskine, from the Poppy Project, which supports trafficked women, says that some men are “turned on” by the idea of sexual slavery. Research suggests that the market in the West for younger Nigerian girls is thriving. A report by the charity Eaves found that more than half of 103 London men interviewed believed that most women and girls they had paid to have sex with had been trafficked.
Hermione Harris, an anthropologist and expert witness in the few UK juju cases that have resulted in prosecutions, says: “A juju priest will take body parts and often girls’ underwear. It’s like a form of remote control. The girls swear an oath not to reveal what has happened and not to try to escape on pain of death, mental illness or infertility.” Crucially, it prevents victims from coming forward or giving evidence. This may explain research that shows the violence used to control women from Nigeria is much less than is used on those from eastern Europe. Andy Desmond, a Scotland Yard detective who has investigated human trafficking from Nigeria since 2008, has worked on the last three trafficking prosecutions in Britain. But such inquiries are expensive and he believes new police priorities will mean fewer prosecutions. Britain is both a destination and a transit country for traffickers. The girls are “broken in” — raped — by the criminals before travelling abroad. At Heathrow many of the girls are taken into local authority care but they always have a phone, with the trafficker’s number, hidden in hairpieces or sewn into the seams of their jeans. One call and they disappear. Philip Ishola, director of the Counter Human Trafficking Bureau, says the British system makes it easy for traffickers. “The mechanisms for protecting children are all there but there is no safe house in the whole of the UK
Fed Govt to states: use mass literacy to curb vices
HE Federal Government has urged state governments to invest in mass literacy programmes. Minister of State for EducationNyesom Wike said this would stem the tide of insecurity, poor health conditions and other social vices . He spoke yesterday at a news conference to mark the international literacy day in Abuja. He urged members of the National Assembly to invest in mass literacy and non formal education as part of their constituency projects. The minister said: “A literate community will be difficult to manipulate by mischief makers to increase the level of insecurity in parts of the country. It must be stated that once someone is literate, he will comprehend several
You hear several states declare that they have made education a top priority, yet they pay little attention to a huge percentage of illiterate adults societal issues and act in line with ways that would promote national development. “You hear several states declare that they have made education a top priority, yet they pay little attention to a huge percentage of illiterate adults. Our states must begin to focus more on ways of improving the literacy levels in the respective communities. “The importance of litera-
The danger of waste water, by commission
•Wike (right) speaking at the news conference in Abuja...yesterday. With him are Paiko (middle) and the Director, Administration NMEC Ahmed Abubakar.
cy speaks for itself. Literacy as we all know is one of the solutions to our national challenges of insecurity, poverty, poor health conditions among others. Indeed the embarrassing literacy statistics on Nigeria justifies the need for every stakeholder to redouble his/her effort.” Wike said there are 35 million illiterate adults and 10.5 million out-of-school chil-
dren. UNESCO Country Representative Prof. Hassana Alidou, who read the UNESCO Director- General’s address, described literacy as an investment in the future. She said that literacy is the key to the acquisition of knowledge, inter-personal skills, expertise and the ability to live together in a community. Executive Secretary of Na-
tional Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education Alhaji Jibrin Paiko said the Northeast, North west and Northcentral have the highest number of illiterates in the country, urging the state governments to collaborate with the commission to execute programmes that would address the literacy challenges facing the people.
Politicians’ jumbo pay bad for economy, says NES
HE Nigeria Economic Society (NES) has said politicians’ jumbo pay impacts negatively on the economy. Its President , Prof Akin Iwayemi, said the jumbo salary was indicative of the huge gap between the poor and the rich as well as between the ruler and the ruled.
From Tayo Johnson, Ibadan
He spoke with reporters yesterday at the NES secretariat in Bodija, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital. Iwayemi noted that it was unfortunate that the country was running the costliest democracy in the world, adding: “Until Nigerians begin to ask themselves how much
for trafficked children,” he says. Ishola says juju cases are similar to those of children sexually exploited by gangs. “It’s grooming by another name. Girls who’ve been through juju ceremonies are highly controlled and traumatised.” All 12 girls in the first house that Ama stayed at had been through juju rituals and more girls arrived every week. But the trail of misery starts in Edo where mothers sell their children into prostitution. “It’s hard to understand,” says Ama. “But when every day you struggle to find enough food, it’s one less mouth to feed.” The Nigerian government plans to toughen anti-trafficking laws and is educating girls about trafficking but the gangs move to poorer, more remote areas to find victims. Last week Theresa May, the home secretary, announced a Modern Slavery Bill but it will come too late to help Ama. She eventually escaped from her brothel and found refuge at a Poppy Project safe house but she still fears that juju will kill her and leave her 18-month-old boy, Isaiah, alone in the world. In Nigeria, the tragic cycle continues. Ama’s daughter, now 12, also has a baby conceived through sexual exploitation. “I didn’t have money to send her so she was fighting for her life, going with older men for food,” says Ama. “I came here because I wanted so much to give her a good life. I thought England was a safe place.”
value they get from every naira spent by their political office holders, they cannot attain sustainable development.” He said 70 per cent of the country’s budget is allocated to re-current expenditure. He added:” It is regrettable that we are using a huge chunk of the nation’s resources to service just less than 1,000 people in
a country of over 160 million people. “They should publish all the salary scale all these political office holders earn monthly. I do not understand why it should be a secret. It should be public information. So, this is a challenge to the Fiscal Mobilisation Committee to do justice to this issue and let the citizens know. “We are running the costli-
est democracy in the world. We cannot develop this way when we spend huge money to service a few people. How will you get money for productive activities to expand the economy? An average Nigerian cannot access good medical care, good roads and other basic things of life when the legislators are smiling to the bank.”
THE Executive Secretary, Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission (LSWRC) Mrs. Tanwa Koya has urged operators of businesses producing large volumes of waste water to curb the menace of uncontrolled discharge of wastewater. She said unless this was checked potable and groundwater would be contaminated. Koya spoke at the Annual National Conference of Association of Fast Food Confectioneries of Nigeria (AFFCON) in Lagos. She said it was high time Nigerians imbibed the culture of voluntary compliance. “We at Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission believe that the future of regulation is not in enforcement but voluntary compliance and self regulation. We should know about the standards and things we need to do so that the effect will show both in businesses and in the environment”, she said. She said the commission would organise a Waste Water Summit in Lagos for operators, regulators and other stakeholders to brainstorm on the issue of waste water management.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11 , 2013
NTENDING pilgrims from Nigerian to the holy land of Makkah have been warned against peddling hard drugs, an offence punishable by beheading. The warning was given by a Sokoto-based Islamic cleric, Sheikh AbdulAziz Kofar-Rini. The cleric, who spoke to reporters, said: “The moment any pilgrim is arrested with any banned substances like drugs, the Saudi laws provide for an irreversible punishment of beheading.” Continuing, he said: “So, all of us going there for this year’s holy pilgrimage and subsequent ones should be wary of drugs, especially the hard ones. “I am an Alumnus of the University of Medinah and have performed Hajj severally and this calls for concern,” he added. Kofar-Rini, who is also the Public Relations Officer of the state’s Pilgrims Welfare Agency (PWA), appealed to the intending pilgrims to seek for the required knowledge of the Hajj rituals. “In Islam, no act of worship is accepted by God unless it is done with the basic knowledge of conducting it. “So, why should somebody spend A huge amount of money as Hajj fares and fail to endeavour to seek the basic knowledge of the Hajj rituals. It will amount to a waste of funds because it will attract no reward,” he said. He, however, stated that the agency has embarked on a mass enlightenment campaign to educate and sensitise intending pilgrims from the state on how to be law-abiding and conduct a successful Hajj. In another development, no fewer than nine intending pilgrims from the state have been disqualified from performing this year’s Hajj on grounds of pregnancy and other healthrelated problems.
•Intending Muslim pilgrims from Oyo State at their orientation camp in Ibadan
Cleric warns pilgrims against drugs From Adamu Suleiman, Sokoto
The disqualification, which was announced by the state government, followed a screening exercise by the state’s medical team which was conducted across the 21 out of the 23 local government areas. The chairman of the Hajj medical team committee, Dr Bello Ahmed, disclosed this in Sokoto while speaking to newsmen. According to Ahmed, those affected were from six local government areas; namely Tambuwal, Binji, Wurno, Goronyo, Silame and Rabah. He explained that five of the barred intending pilgrims were found to be pregnant above four
months, while the two other affected females were suffering from uterine fibroid and uterine inconsistency. The chairman of the committee said: “The two male intending pilgrims were barred for severe hypertension which could result in stroke,” he added.
The moment any pilgrim is arrested with any banned substances like drugs, the Saudi laws provide for an irreversible punishment of beheading
Fayemi enhances community peace •Continued from Page 15
newly reconstituted State Council of Traditional Rulers, explained that the 56 members in the new council have Oba Idowu Adamo Babalola, the Onitaji of Itaji Ekiti as its chairman. He added that the council has the power to “advise the state government on chieftaincy matters and issues of public interest as may be directed by me.” He said: “The tenure of the new council whose effective date of commencement is August 1, 2013, and which is being formally inaugurated by me today, is for a period of two years.” “I want to emphasise that the membership of the Council is based on institutions and not individuals holding the titles.” He then directed the Bureau of
Chieftaincy Affairs to work out modalities for the maintenance of the vehicles. Pledging his loyalty to the governor, the chairman of the council, Oba Babalola urged civil servants and people of the state to co-operate with the governor in his determination to “lead Ekiti to the Promised Land.” According to him, monarchs in the state would rally support for the Fayemi-led administration in their respective domains to ensure its success, noting that the administration has “done wonderfully well in touching the lives of the people. In his own address, the immediate past chairman of the council, Oba Adedeji Gbadebo expressed gratitude to the governor for the opportunity to serve the state and the people for two years, adding that “he could
Government will not stop striving to improve the quality of life of the citizens in line with the administration’s 8-point agenda…All efforts are geared towards making life more meaningful for the people
His words: “Any intending pilgrim with pregnancy above three months or suffering from some severe ailments would not be allowed to travel for the pilgrimage,” even as he pointed out that other sicknesses include: diabetes, severe hypertension, blindness, deformities
not have achieved anything without the support of my colleague monarchs.” He said: “My tenure as chairman of the Obas’ Council has been a tenure when everyone connected with me directly or indirectly was a stakeholder. So, from the highest cadres of leadership in the state to the lowest, I acknowledge my indebtedness. “More credit should be given to the man at the centre of gravity, His Excellency, Dr. Kayode Fayemi who, with God on his side, orchestrated the machinery with the Council of Ekiti State Obas who earned almost the highest mark of respect among councils of Obas in the Southwest. “Let it be known to all that the government of the day has not bought neither me nor any other Oba under my leadership to become her paid piper. Nobody has dictated any tune to me, the Owa Ooye of Okemesi. “But, I see it as an act of cowardice or an indirect ingratitude when, instead of relaying a good deed for the sake of commendation, you swerve from the path of righteousness, justice and fair play to cascade into a biased umpire, beating about the bush, calling a spade a
spoon and giving Dick the honour meant for Harry. “Therefore, let me take His Excellency to the altar of governance for posterity’s assessment as follows: first Ekiti governor to introduce electronic payment which has eliminated fraud at the highest levels; first to introduce a genuine and sincerely well-organised monthly social security scheme for the elderly above 65 years; the first to introduce computer education by making laptop computers available for all teachers and students across secondary schools in Ekiti State. “This governor is also the first to renovate and reroof the 180 secondary schools in the state with costly aluminum roof which would not rust for donkey years; and the first to reorganise the State Traditional Council of Obas so that any recognised and crowned Oba can emerge the chairman when it is his turn. “I am not trying to say that past
and old age, among others. He further disclosed that the state medical team comprised six medical doctors and six nurses and midwives, adding that “we will diligently work to ensure that all the intending pilgrims are healthy both in Nigeria and in Saudi Arabia.” Ahmed, however, maintained that “we will try our best to do this and referrals would only be done when it becomes absolutely necessary.” Meanwhile, 389 intending pilgrims from Gada Local Government Area are being inoculated against yellow fever and Cerebro-Spinal Meningitis (CSM). The council’s Director of Health, Alhaji Abdullahi Yabo said stated this in a chat with Newsextra in Sokoto. He said the inoculation exercise was being carried out to ensure that all intending pilgrims were healthy for Hajj rituals.
administrations did not do anything. This is why I have said we leave everybody’s act or seed for posterity to assess. For instance, nobody will deny the fact that governor Fayemi’s 8point Agenda has functioned effectively in transforming lives of the people in economic and developmental terms,” Oba Gbadebo said. Earlier, the Special Adviser to Governor Fayemi on Chieftaincy Affairs, Chief Aderemi Ajayi, had said the academic attainment of the monarchs had offered muchneeded grounds for the success of the monarchs, adding that “this has eased for them the task of serving as heads of their communities.” He said: “I thank God for the crop of talented royal fathers we have in this state who have excelled in their various fields of endeavours. This has manifested in the approach to issues, robust debates and quality of advice they gave to government.”
More credit should be given to the man at the centre of gravity, His Excellency, Dr. Kayode Fayemi who, with God on his side, orchestrated the machinery with the Council of Ekiti State Obas who earned almost the highest mark of respect among councils of Obas in the Southwest
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11 2013
‘We needn’t lose lives to building collapse’
T is time we ended the culture of indiscipline that has developed a taproot in our society. And most importantly, we must attach enough value to human lives. Except we do this, we might be on an aimless search for sanity.” Those words of the Lagos State Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr Olutoyin Ayinde, came with a thunderous bang of his fist on the table. “Why,” he queried, “do we often have to grapple with the problem of collapsed buildings? Why do we take delight in burying dead bodies of innocent souls? Why do our people drive against traffic flow against laid-down rules? Why is it difficult for us to truly be our brother or sister’s keeper?” His heartache is understandable. He said he has seen the most heartrending of incidents of collapsed structures. “I have lost count of the number of times I would either hop out of bed or hurry off dining table to join others in rescuing trapped bodies in caved-in buildings. And I have wept many times over at such sights. There have been occasions where I would hit building sites as late as 10 pm,” he said. News Extra had sought to know why despite the efforts of his ministry, the state still suffered from structural suffocation and its attend-
BOUT 5000 children and expectant mothers will benefit from the Kwara State government’s maternal, neonatal and child healthcare programme. The strategy is to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Four and Five aimed at improving maternal health and reducing child mortality in the state, the state Commissioner for Health, Alhaji Kayode Issa has said. Alhaji Issah spoke this in Ilorin, the state capital at the flagged off of the state’s maternal, neonatal and child health programme. The commissioner, who said the programme would be conducted in each of 193 wards in the state with the
By Dada Aladelokun
ant maladies. “Planning is the bedrock of any meaningful development and if we have the plans, it takes discipline on people’s part to implement the plans. There are 21.5 million inhabitants in Lagos; this puts pressure on space and infrastructure,” Ayinde, who was reputed to have restored public confidence in the ability of his ministry and its agencies to deliver quality service with promptitude and decorum, said. Ayinde spoke further: “It is my belief that a Lagos that is ordered, beautiful and convenient for thriving of business and social enterprises is achievable only through discipline. When you plan, you create order; when you have order, you are organised. When you don’t have order, you are disorganised, and when you are disorganised, you agonise. So, it is either you organise or you agonise. “We must be ready to protect human life because when it is lost, that is the end. Therefore, it is better we do our best to prevent building collapse rather than agonising after it has occurred and claimed lives.” “But your ministry should be more up and doing in the area of monitoring things …” Newsextra cut in. His response: “The truth is,
the entire workers on the payroll of the state cannot monitor the various indices of planning indiscipline occurring in the state day and night. Many choose to develop illegal structures on Sundays, at weekends and at night. And we cannot be everywhere all the time. It is true that these activities take place daily on our streets, roads, in our neighborhood. The ministry and its staff alone cannot comb the entire state all round the day for illegal developments. “I, therefore, want the public to report any construction work whatsoever, at any level and especially those taking place at the odd times mentioned above, to the ministry via phone calls, sms and e-mail to the ministry. People can reach me on 08033013849 or the Permanent Secretary on 08034961936, among others. It is only through this partnership that we can forestall the type of recent avoidable collapse of four buildings and the concomitant loss of lives and economic wastage all within two days. The losses were colossal and traumatic on individuals, government and the community where the incidents occurred.” He, however, said his ministry had stepped up awareness campaigns to let people know that they are in the best position to effec-
tively monitor their environments and promptly alert appropriate authorities if there is any suspected infraction. The ministry, the commissioner lamented, had been lately inundated with unpleasant reports of sad reports of building collapse in some parts of the state, regretting that one common feature of the incidents is that the affected buildings were under construction, especially in obscure areas. He sternly warned that the end of the road had come for unscrupulous developers and builders who execute illegal construction work at weekends, public holidays and even at nights. “This will no longer be tolerated,” he vowed. The ministry, he added, would soon extend its monitoring services, removal of illegal structures and arrest of developers and their workers found on sites beyond the regular official working hours in order to tackle their unwholesome attitude squarely. The move, he stated, would stem such illegal activities. On measures to curb building collapse, Ayinde hinted: “A committee has been set up to investigate such incidents and proffer solutions and appropriate actions to be taken by government. Beyond this, the ministry has put measures in place
•Ayinde to curb the incidents of building collapse in the state. They include compulsory integrity test of building and construction materials in conjunction with the Materials Testing Agency; identification and removal of distressed and dilapidated buildings; removal of illegal and non-conforming buildings; inspections and certification of various stages of building construction, and evaluation of ongoing and completed projects.” He, however, said any headway in that regard depends on the co•Continued on Page 50
5,000 kids, women to benefit from Kwara healthcare From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
use of about 250 personnel. He also said that the state government would spend about N9million on the programme, adding that other items like ACT malaria drugs will be provided for children. He said: “There will also be provision of drugs to deworm children from age one to five years. We are also banking on support from the National Primary Health Care Development Agency and the UNICEF, NPHCA is to supply all the facilities to be used for immunisation services, while UNICEF will supply all the Vitamin A, and
some level of supervisory staff across the 16 LGAs. Aside, they will also take care of the training of such staff.” Alhaji Issa, who said the health programme will be conducted twice a year, added that it aimed to provide a holistic approach to reach women and children with integrated, evidencebased and high impact interventions for improved survival of women and children. He added that “we are targeting children between age zero to five years and pregnant women because we are going to provide iron foliage
to prevent the death of women resulting from anaemia in pregnancy. We aim to reach a target of about 25,000 children and women in the four pilot centres at Ajikobi, Adewole, Okelele and Children Specialist Hospital but in the entire state we hope to cover up to 500,000 children ages zero to five years, and pregnant women.
“This exercise involves mobilising people from their home to benefit from the programme. In Kwara State as at today, we have up to 5,000 children from zero to five years, while we have about 120,000 women of child bearing age. With this we are looking at covering up to 500,000 both children ages zero to five and the pregnant women.”
There will also be drugs to de-worm children from age one to five years. We are also banking on National Primary Health Care Development Agency and UNICEF to supply all the facilities to be used for immunisation
Mobile courts for polio cases in Niger
• Pupils of Local Education Authority (LEA) Primary School Kubwa II resume after the holiday in Abuja PHOTO: ABAYOMI FAYESEE
HE Niger State government is set to establish mobile courts to try persons who reject polio vaccines for their wards or preach against acceptance of the vaccine. The state governor Babangida Aliyu made the pledge at the flagoff the seventh round of Immunisation Plus Days campaign in Wawa Community in the Borgu Local Government Area of the state. He said that government’s actions followed discovery of new wild polio virus in some parts of the North Central Zone of the country, where Niger belonged. According to the governor, the State Government is committed to the success of polio immunisation and ridding the state of the scourge. “The discovery of new wild polio virus calls for our resolve and immediate attention on the need to put measures in place to contain the situation in the areas of outbreak.
“All council areas sharing borders with other states should as matter of urgency redouble their efforts in ensuring that all children under the age of five years are captured.” Aliyu said that the state recorded a case of wild polio virus in March 2012, saying that efforts to eradicate polio over the last one year had been rewarding with interruption of transmission in the affected areas. The governor said that the state was recently awarded the most improved state in the federation by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for its efforts in immunisation services. He commended traditional rulers and religious leaders for playing remarkable roles in the fight against polio. Aliyu said that traditional rulers and religious groups had been worthy partners with government in sensitising and mobilising the people.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11 2013
The programme, as conceptualised, is expected to transform the state’s agricultural sector to a more vibrant commercial entity that will position it as the food basket of the country, a dependable source of raw materials for agro-based industries, generate employment opportunities and attain desirable level of export for improved overall foreign exchange earnings of the country
Amosun makes case for cocoa production
GUN State Governor Ibikunle Amosun has said local cocoa production, if given the right priority, will not only boost farmers’ livelihood but also enhance revenue generation in addition to creating wealth and jobs. Senator Amosun made this disclosure at the third roundtable on Nigeria Cocoa Value Chain held in Abeokuta with the theme: “Promoting Local Cocoa Consumption in Nigeria: Myths and Realities.” Represented by the Deputy Governor, Prince Segun Adesegun, Governor Amosun disclosed that if given priority in the national development agenda, local cocoa processing would enhance local consumption of the produce and, by extension, improve the livelihood of cocoa farmers across the country. The governor added that, as part of efforts at boosting agricultural productivity and improving the livelihood of stakeholders along the cocoa value chain, his government had raised and sold one million high yielding cocoa seedlings to farmers at subsidised rate, even as he said that the government and has also taken advantage of the Federal Government’s agricultural trans-
•Cocoa seeds being processed formation agenda on cocoa where registered cocoa farmers get inputs for their farms at 50 per cent subsidy while federal and state governments pay the balance for the input at 25 per cent each. “Ogun State government has chosen increased agricultural production and industralisation as one of its five-cardinal programmes. The programme, as conceptualised, is expected to transform the state’s agricultural sector to a more vibrant
commercial entity that will position it as the food basket of the country, a dependable source of raw materials for agro-based industries, generate employment opportunities and attain desirable level of export for improved overall foreign exchange earnings of the country,” he said. Governor Amosun further explained that cocoa beans generated by government’s intervention are expected to feed the two cocoa
‘We needn’t lose lives to building collapse’ •Continued from Page 15 operation of the public, who must build right and help detect and report cases of illegal construction around them.” The commissioner said his ministry has stepped up collaborative efforts with the media and the
Ministry of Information to facilitating public education, information and enlightenment among stakeholders as it relates to Physical Planning and Urban Development in the state. Besides road shows, granting of interviews and distribution of fli-
ers, he said ministry officials had continued to hold interactive sessions with all stakeholders. Asked what the main commitments of the ministry are, Ayinde explained: “They include granting of layout, preparation of development plans, issuance of planning
•The Executive Director, International Association of African NGOs, Joyce Halliday; Mrs. Florence Ajimobi, founder of Access to Basic Care and initiator of Educate a Rural Child; Founder/Board Chair, Partnership Opportunities for Women Empowerment Realisation, POWER, Mrs. Obioma Liyel-Imoke, and the Secretary of State, the State of Maryland, Secretary John P. McDonough at the IAAN Annual International Conference in Maryland, USA.
processing industries located in the state. Also speaking, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Mrs. Ronke Sokefun, represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr. Lanre Bisiriyu, said that government has approved the establishment of 150 hectares of cocoa farm plantations by unemployed agricultural science graduates. In his presentation, Dr Adegboyega Ogunrade; a Professor
information, site selection, issuance of development permit, renovation permit, removal of illegal structures, establishment of ‘right of way’, monitoring of compliance of layout and development permits.” The ministry, with the submission of all relevant documents, he added, would ensure issuance of permit within a maximum of 90 days for application of up to six floors; maximum of 180 working days for other applications, while Planning Information is granted within 21 days in areas with enabling ‘Development Plans.’ The ministry, Ayinde said, was not resting on its oars because it had initiated further steps to improve its service delivery. Such efforts, he said, include: Establishment of Customers Service Centres (CSCs); introduction of dedicated telephone lines/e-mail for complaints and enquiries; Saturday service delivery; introduction of prescreening of applications for development/planning permits; consul-
•Senator Amosun •Governor Amosun of Economics at the Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA), disclosed that Nigeria might not meet its agricultural transformation agenda on cocoa if local consumption and utilisation of the produce is not encouraged. He therefore called on government and individuals to encourage the consumption and utilisation of the produce to discourage importation of cocoa-based products which he said had affected Nigerian cocoa produce and products negatively. In his address, Dr Kwaku Addai; a Professor of Anatomy at the University of Ghana Medical School, highlighted the curative, preventive and regenerative health benefits of the consumption of natural cocoa to include prevention of heart diseases, diabetes, hypertension, breast cancer and the reduction of the risk of blood clot, among others. tations with stakeholders, provision of working tools and improvement of working environment. His mastery of town planning and development issues prompted Newsextra to inquire about his past. A fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners and Association of Town Planners, Ayinde, it was learnt, has won the Deinde Award for Best Performance in Town & Regional Planning. He is also a registered Town Planner with Town Planners’ Registration Council. An alumnus of the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, he bagged Post-Graduate Professional Diploma (1990) and Master of Transport Planning Degree (1998) at the Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo. After various other studies, Ayinde began his career with the Lagos State Ministry of Works and Planning from 1978 to 1979 in the Master Plan Project Unit, where he participated in the preparation of the Lagos Metropolitan Master Plan and the state Regional Plan of 1980.
We must be ready to protect human life because when it is lost, that is the end. Therefore, it is better we do our best to prevent building collapse rather than agonising after it has occurred and claimed lives
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
•Lagos State Deputy Governor Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire (second left); Lagos State Commissioner for Health Dr Jide Idris (right), Head of Sustainability & Responsibility, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mrs Adrianne Nwagwu (left) and Cordinator, Special Project Programmes, Ministry of Health, Dr Dolapo Fasawe during a safety Campaign “Don’t Drink & Drive” organised for the Commercial PHOTO: ISAAC JIMOH AYODELE Drivers at Gbagada Motor Park, Gbagada, Lagos.
•Ekiti Deputy Governor Governor Prof Modupe Adelabu presenting the Staff of Office to the Obalaaye of Ejiyan Ekiti, Oba Nathaniel Olukayode Ikupolukun at Ipoti High School Playing Ground, Ipoti-Ekiti... on Saturday. With them is the Special Adviser to the Governor on Chieftiancy Affairs, Chief Aderemi Ajayi.
•Oba of Ojokoroland Oba Oluwalambe Taiwo (second right) assisted by the newly installed Apesin Ola of Ojokoroland Chief Benjamin Olabinjo; Yeye Apesin Ola of Ojokoroland Chief Omolabake Olabinjo (right) and Alhaja Fausat Hassan-Olajokun to cut the 10th year anniversary cake at Ebenezer Primary School, Ijaiye, Lagos. •From left: Wife of the late Justice Muri Okunola, Alhaja Ramdat Okunola unveiling a plaque of Customary Court built by Iru-Victoria Island,VI Local Council Development Area at VI. With her are the council boss Prince Abayomi Daramola and wife Alhaj Kafilat. •From left: President, Abuja Chamber Of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ABUCCIMA), Dr Solomon Nyagba; Vice President, Agriculture, Funsho Oridedi and Director-general, Mr Joe Wenegieme, during the 8th Pre-Trade Fair briefing in Abuja... on Monday.
•President, Solid Women Initiative for Development, Chief Queen Ume-Ezeoke (left), receiving a merit award from the Chairman, Igbo World Union (IWU), Niger Chapter, Mr Moses Onyegbule, at IWU award ceremony in Suleja... on Monday
•Lagos State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure and Lagos State Man of The Year Award recipient Obafemi Hamzat (second left) asisted by his wife Yemisi to receieve a plaque from Aderemi Ifaolepin (right). With them is Commissioner for Finance, Ayo Gbeleyi (left). •National President Jamat Ta’wunil Organisation Alhaji Daud Imran Molasan (second left); General Secretary, Tajudeen Oladejo (second right); Public Relations Officer Obenbe Lukman (left) and Prince Munirudeen Tadese at a press conference in Iwo to declare support for Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s efforts on sustenance of religious harmony in the state.
PHOTO: ISAAC AYODELE JIMOH
•From left: Alpha Mead Facilities and Management Services General Manager, Corporate Services Wale Odufalu; Lukman O. Kotun, Principal, Special Correctional Centre for Boys, Oregun; Dimeji Abdullahi, Corporate Affairs Officer, AMFacilities with (R) Jide Animashaun, Vice Principal of the Centre; David Owolabi, QHSE o-ordinator, AMFacilities and other officers during the donation of gifts to the Centre as part of AMFacilities CSR activities, in Lagos.
•L-R: Group Head, Corporate Communication, Mr. Tony Usidamen, Dana Air; Head, Commercial Mr Obi Mbanuzuo and Head Safety & Security, Mr Adil Bourmaki during the Airline Inaugural flight on Lagos-Uyo/Calabar route yesterday PHOTO: ISAAC JIMOH AYODELE at the Murtala Muhammed Airport-2, Ikeja, Lagos.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
23 killed as vehicles crash into collapsed bridge in Katsina
WENTY-THREE people have been killed when their vehicles plunged into a collapsed bridge at Yar’randa village in Charanchi Local Government Area of Katsina State. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) learnt that the first bus conveying 24 passengers reportedly plunged into the bridge a few minutes after it collapsed on Monday night. According to an eyewitness, the bridge collapsed about 9.30pm following a downpour. Moments after, the bus, with registration number XA 328 KZR, conveying passengers from Kano to Katsina, fell into the bridge. The villagers said efforts to alert the bus driver were unsuccessful as he was on high speed. The bus and the passengers were swept away by the
heavy current. Some of the bodies were recovered miles away in Ajiwa, the villagers and officials told NAN. NAN also learnt that only two of the passengers in the bus, including a student of the Federal College of Education, Bichi, Kano State, Jamilu Aminu-Elder, survived. Aminu-Elder, who was seen on the scene, could not speak as he was in shock. The police said 10 bodies had been recovered and deposited at the mortuary of the General Hospital, Kankia. The search for 12 others was ongoing. Another person was reported dead when the vehicle he was travelling in, a Mitsubishi truck, fell into the water about 5a.m yesterday. Two other persons in the vehicle, however, survived. A motorcyclist with his passenger, who also plunged into the collapsed bridge, were rescued.
* The collapsed Yar’randa Bridge where 23 passengers died in Charnachi, Katsina State...on Monday.
Deputy Police Commissioner Bala Senchi, who visited the scene, confirmed the incident. He said the police were not certain on the casualty figure. The police chief said the
search for the missing passengers was on. Senchi said policemen had been deployed in the area to control traffic and prevent further accidents. Malam Rabi’u Ibrahim, the
11 palace guards, three others die in road crash
OURTEEN people, including 11 palace guards of the Emir of Hadejia in Jigawa State, Alhaji Adamu Abubakar Maje Haruna, have died in an accident on the Hadejia-Kano Road. The accident reportedly occurred at 9pm about five kilometres after Ringim town. The palace guards were
•NUJ condoles with Emir
From Ahmed Rufa’i, Dutse
said to be travelling in an 18seater bus, which was heading to the Aminu Kano International Airport in Kano to receive the monarch, who was returning from an overseas trip. The Information Officer for Hadejia Local Government Area, Mallam Muhammad
Garba Talaki, said the accident was caused by a downpour. He said the bus conveying the palace guards had a headon collation with a fuel tanker from Kano. According to him, both vehicles caught fire at impact. The occupants were burnt beyond recognition. The information officer
Kwara Speaker to police: withdraw WARA State House of of police secumy security toritytheasprovision part of his pension enAssembly Speaker
Razaq Atunwa may have joined the fray between the new Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Presidency. In solidarity with his leader, Senator Bukola Saraki, the Speaker yesterday said he had notified the police command to withdraw his police security. Atunwa condemned last weekend’s withdrawal of Saraki’s security detail by the police. He said the Assembly yesterday passed a resolution condemning the police action. The Speaker urged Police Commissioner Agboola Oshodi-Glover to immediately reinstate Saraki’s security personnel. Addressing reporters in
From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
Ilorin, the state capital, Atunwa said: “Besides the resolutions by the Assembly today, I, as Speaker, have notified the police commissioner for the Kwara State command that by Friday, September 13, he should relinquish the police security attached to me until the police security of Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki is restored. “Senator Bukola Saraki is a former governor of Kwara State, having served meritoriously for two terms between 2003 and 2011. “By virtue of Section 2(3), Paragraph H of the Third Schedule of the Kwara State Governor and Deputy Governor Payment of Pension Law 2010, Senator Saraki is entitled
titlement. That was a law validly enacted by the Kwara State House of Assembly. “It is quite disconcerting and perturbing that the police command ordered that the police security of the former governor as provided for by law to be withdrawn. This constitutes a clear breach of the law. “I understand that the police were compelled to take that action following ‘orders from above’. “However, as the Speaker of the House of Assembly, which enacted the law, it would be utterly improper for me to sit indolently and do nothing in the face of such flagrant violation of the law. “If the police command does not deem it fit to protect a twoterm governor and senator,
Vigilante arrests seven robbery suspects in Kebbi
MEMBER of the Vigilante Group of Nigeria in Kebbi State, Umar Bala, has single-handedly arrested seven robbery suspects at their hideout in Zauro, a suburb of Birnin Kebbi. Alhaji Sanusi Geza, the leader of the group, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday in Birnin Kebbi, the state capital, that the suspects were planning an operation when they were arrested a week ago. He said Bala overheard the suspects planning an attack and arguing over the sharing of booty from a robbery. The vigilante leader said the group would reward the “gallant member for his bravery”. Geza said: “The criminals were arrested by the singular effort of one Malam Umar
Bala, who would be elevated to the rank of an Assistant Inspector.” According to him, the seven suspects were also involved in a robbery at Shukura Supermarket, Gwadangaji, where the security guard, Shekare Gwadangaji, was stabbed to death. The vigilante leader said textile materials worth over N500,000 were stolen from the supermarket. Geza said the suspects had been handed over to the police for further investigation and prosecution. NAN reports that residents of Birnin Kebbi have been subjected to a series of robbery attacks for over two months, leading to the death of some residents and loss of property.
said the bodies of the victims were taken to Hadejia for burial. The State Correspondents’ Chapel of the State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has condoled with the Emir on the death of his guards. In a statement by its Chairman, Malam Ahmed Abubakar, the chapel prayed Allah to grant the late guards Al-jannah Firdaus.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for Works and Housing and an official of the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) visited the scene to assess the damage. Ibrahim said a report
would be sent to the Katsina State Government for prompt intervention. He condoled with the families of the victims and prayed for the repose of their souls.
Offa union elects officers
By Wale Ajetunmobi
NDIGENES of Offa town who are resident in Lagos, under the aegis of Offa Descendants Union (ODU), have elected their leaders. The election was supervised by Dr Funsho Oladipo and observed by some prominent indigenes. The high point of the event was the absorption of (Offa Forum, a social club, into the union. The merger, it was learnt, was aimed at enlarging the membership of the socio-cultural group for effective coordination of Offa indigenes in Lagos. Alhaji Bisiriyu Afolabi, a graduate of Library and Information Science from Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, and Chief Executive of a Lagos-based consulting firm, was elected the club’s president. Also elected are: Abdulrasak Oyeleke (Vice President); Alhaji Kamoru Balogun (Vice President II); Lukmon Folorunsho (General Secretary); Mr Shehu Tijani Popoola (Assistant General Secretary) and Mr Jide Olatunde Financial Secretary). Others are: Mr Rasak Bello (Assistant Financial Secretary); Alhaji Demola Buraimoh (Public Relations Officer (PRO)); Prince Tayo Popoola (Social Secretary); Alhaji Rasak Jaiyeola (Auditor); Mr Akeem Oyewole (Treasurer); Mr Bisi Salau and Alhaji A. A. Saliu (Ex-Officio).
Kano to eradicate polio by December
then it is duplicitous to seek to protect a Speaker. “I would like to thank the police commissioner and all his officers for their efforts in combating crime and maintaining law and order throughout the state. I continue to have confidence in their ability to protect all the residents of Kwara State.”
From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
HE Kano State Government has restated its determination to eradicate polio by December. The Commissioner for Health, Dr Abubakar Labaran Yusuf, spoke on the resolve of the Rabiu Kwankwaso administration to ensure that the state was rid of polio by the end of the year. A statement in Kano by the Ministry of Health’s Public Relations Officer, Ismaila Garba Gwammaja, said the commissioner spoke when he visited Kumbotso and Tarouni local government areas on the ongoing immunisation against the disease. Yusuf, the statement said, described the exercise as encouraging. The commissioner attributed the success of the immunisation to the cooperation from parents and the enlightenment campaign by the local government and traditional leaders. He called for further cooperation among the stakeholders to complement the government’s efforts to eradicate the disease from the 44 local governments.
APC chieftain urges Shekarau to check his utterances
CHIEFTAIN of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kano State, Dr. Baffa Babba Danangundi, has criticised former Governor Ibrahim Shekarau for his alleged statement that defectors from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the APC be screened. Danangundi, who was Shekarau’s Adviser on Youth Development, described the former governor’s utterances as uncalled for and “a bad omen to our great party, the APC”. The Kano politician ad-
From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
dressed reporters yesterday on his reaction to Shekarau’s position on the speculated defection of some PDP governors to the APC. He noted that the former governor was not in a position to make such a sensitive statement on behalf of the party. Danangundi said: “I have seen the comment by former Governor Shekarau that they, in the APC, will screen any defector from the PDP, particularly the PDP governors who fell out with
the party’s leadership. My questions are: who is Mallam Shekarau to make such a statement? From where did he get the authority to speak on behalf of the APC? The APC’s spokesman, Lai Mohammed, has said the new PDP governors are highly welcome and would be inducted with red carpets, if they show their willingness to join APC. It is disturbing that Shekarau has forgotten that he has many issues to answer for from Kano people since he left office as governor in 2011.”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 10-09-13
Growing sale orders depress equities
HE downtrend in the stock market wors ened yesterday as increas in open sale orders further turned the equities’ market into a buyer’s market, with most investors opting to sell at lower prices. The preponderance of open sale orders in the face of cautious bargain hunting by buying investors reduced average return at the equities’ market by 0.70 per cent, pushing the year-todate return downward to 28.61 per cent. Aggregate market capitalisation of all equities lost N81 billion to close at N11.498 trillion as against its opening value of N11.579 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI), the common valuebased index that tracks all equities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), slipped from 36,367.59 points to 36,113.13 points. With 31 losers to 19 gainers, the market was influenced significantly by losses by several highly capitalised stocks. Mobil Oil Nigeria led the slackers with a loss of N6 to close at N106. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria followed with a loss of N3.20 to close
•Analysts see good buys By Taofik Salako
at N64. PZ Cussons Nigeria lost N2.50 to close at N39. Guinness Nigeria dropped by N2.28 to close at N245.01. Dangote Cement dwindled by N1.50 to close at N191.50. International Breweries declined by N1.37 to close at N20.12. Nigerian Breweries dropped by N1.20 to close at N162. Julius Berger Nigeria lost 70 kobo to close at N74. Guaranty Trust Bank dropped by 47 kobo to N24.63 while Evans Medical lost 34 kobo to close at N3.10 per share. However, market analysts said the sustained downtrend at the stock market has created good buy opportunities for discerning investors. Analysts at GTI Securities said the bear market has created buying opportunities for smart investors to cashin on low price stocks ahead of expected market rebound. “We encourage investors to view the market with a renewed sense of optimism as some under-priced stocks offer really good entry points for good risk-adjusted re-
turns,” analysts stated in a note to investors yesterday. Meanwhile, Jos International Breweries led the advancers with a gain of 51 kobo to close at N5.66. Red Star Express followed with a gain of 32 kobo to close at N4.23. Cutix added 18 kobo to close at N2. Vono Products rose by 15 kobo to close at N1.67. Learn Africa chalked up 13 kobo to close at N1.78 while FBN Holdings gathered 10 kobo to close at N15.70 per share. Total turnover stood at 196.43 million shares worth N1.66 billion in 4,895 deals. Abbey Building Society was the most active stock with a turnover of 50.50 million valued at N83.19 million in four deals. Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) placed second on the activity chart with a turnover of 19.67 million shares worth N27.80 million in 184 deals. Guaranty Trust Bank followed with a turnover of 13.12 million shares valued at N324.47 million in 384 deals. Banking subgroup recorded a turnover of 55.13 million shares worth N639.69 million in 1,712 deals. The transactions on Abbey Building Society pushed the mortgage subsector to the activity chart with a turnover of 50.70 million shares valued at N83.29 million in five deals.
NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 10--09-13
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
MONEY LINK CBN removes AMCON, BoI, from CRR public sector list
HE Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday removed the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), Bank of Industry (BoI), Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM) and Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) from the list of agencies that the 50 per cent Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) rule will apply. CBN Director of Banking Supervision, Mrs Tokunbo Martins who disclosed this in a circular to all de-
Stories by Collins Nweze
posit money banks (DMBs), said the list also include Bank of Agriculture (BOA), Bank of Infrastructure, closed pension funds belonging to Government Institutions, State pension Boards, Governments Staff associations and cooperative societies. The CRR is the portion expressed as a percentage of banks’ deposit balances, which they must have as reserve in cash with the CBN.
Bank supports Lagos project
ance of doubts, deposits from the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation Joint Venture accounts; Sovereign Investment Funds Government MDAs/ Companies’ Collection Accounts such as Customs, Federal Inland Revenue Service among others fall within public sector funds. Also in this list are pilgrim welfare board and all accounts belonging to government universities.
It was 12 per cent flat on all deposits until the apex bank raised it to 50 per cent on public sector deposits. Martins, said public sector funds will henceforth include deposits from all Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and Companies, State Government MDAs and Companies as well as Local Government MDAs and their Companies. She explained that for the avoid-
Fed Govt carpets banks on agric, real sector lending
HE Federal Government yes terday took a swipe at Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) for their reluctance to lend to agriculture, mineral resources and Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) sectors of the economy. To this end, the Federal Government has threatened that it may soon be compelled to reduce DMBs access to public sector deposits if they dont increase their funding to these critical sectors. President Goodluck Jonathan gave the warning at the opening session of the 7th Annual Banking and Finance Conference of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) in Abuja. President Goodluck Jonathan, who was represented by the Minister of State of Finance, Dr Yerima Ngama expressed displeasure that DMBs were not doing enough to support
the real sector despite several policies and other measures that had been put in place to create enabling environment for them to thrive over the years. President Jonathan noted that if not for “the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN’s) intervention through financial intermediation support such as the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS) and Nigerian Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) the agricultural sector would have been totally lacking the funding support it needed to grow and play its roles in national development.” Jonathan said banks that sourced money from the government at zero interest rate have continued to deny the productive sectors the required
funding support, it was thereafter that he warned the banks that if they failed to play their roles, the government “may further withdraw its deposits in the banks and put substantial part of the fund to support productive sectors.” According to President Jonathan, “if we want to believe that the banking sector is not innovative, is not ready to come up with solutions and they are always looking to the government and they are always looking to the Central Bank to do the magic, I am saying that time is running out and people are not patient.” President Goodluck Jonathan said banks needed to lend more to agriculture, solid minerals and the real sector as corporate social respinsibility and unless they played their roles in a manner that suggest their readiness to support the nation’s economic development ob-
Symposium holding from September 12 -16. Group Managing Director of Courteville, Bola Akindele said the programme would enhance the firm’s rating in the international market and also deepen its network in Trinidad & Tobago. “It would
also be an avenue for us to showcase our home built invention using local material and young developers to the world,” he said. He said Courteville and ABN, South Africa would be representing the continent at the sympo-
From Nduka Chiejina (Assit Editor)
•CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido
jectives, the CBN he warned may have to introduce new policy measures that would deny the banks continued access to government deposits.
Firm to represent Nigeria at confab
HE Carribean Export Develop ment Agency (CEDA) has invited Courteville to its fifth Management Consulting Business holding in Trinidad & Tobago. In a statement, the firm said Courteville will represent Nigeria at the Management Consulting Business
sium. Akindele said cordial relation between Courteville and CEDA as well as follow up discussions on need for improved trade links between the Caribbean and Nigeria as well as Africa as a whole earned it the invitation.
FGN BONDS Tenor
3-Year 5-Year 5-Year
35m 35m 35m
11.039 12.23 13.19
19-05-2014 18-05-2016 19-05-2016
WHOLESALE DUTCH AUCTION SYSTEM Amount Amount Offered ($) Demanded ($) 350m 150m 350m 138m 350m 113m
MANAGED FUNDS Initial Current Quotation Price Market N8250.00 5495.33 N1000.00 N552.20
OBB Rate Call Rate
Price Loss 2754.67 447.80
PRIMARY MARKET AUCTION (T-BILLS) Tenor 91-Day 182-Day 1-Year
Amount 30m 46.7m 50m
Rate % 10.96 9.62 12.34
Date 28-04-2012 “ 14-04-2012
GAINERS AS AT 10-09-13
SYMBOL COURTVILLE JOSBREW CUTIX VONO IKEJAHOTEL REDSTAREX LEARNAFRCA ABBEYBDS WAPIC AIICO
0.60 5.15 1.82 1.52 0.75 3.91 1.65 1.53 0.85 0.79
0.66 5.66 2.00 1.67 0.82 4.23 1.78 1.65 0.90 0.82
EXHANGE RATE 6-03-12 Currency
INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%
CHANGE 0.06 0.51 0.18 0.15 0.07 0.32 0.13 0.12 0.05 0.03
NGN USD NGN GBP NGN EUR NIGERIA INTER BANK (S/N) (S/N) Bureau de Change (S/N) Parallel Market
Year Start Offer
C u r r e n t CUV Start After %
147.6000 239.4810 212.4997
149.7100 244.0123 207.9023
150.7100 245.6422 209.2910
-2.11 -2.57 -1.51
DISCOUNT WINDOW Feb. ’11
Standing Lending Rate ,, Deposit Rate ,, Liquidity Ratio Cash Return Rate Inflation Rate
8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 1.00% 12.10%
8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 2.00% 12.10%
9.50% 5.50% 30.00% 2.00% 11.8%
O/PRICE 1.40 3.44 1.14 2.00 0.60 21.49 0.81 41.50 4.19 112.00
C/PRICE 1.26 3.10 1.03 1.81 0.55 20.12 0.76 39.00 3.96 106.00
CHANGE 0.14 0.34 0.11 0.19 0.05 1.37 0.05 2.50 0.23 6.00
NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days
Rate (Previous) 4 Mar, 2012 9.0417 9.6667 11.2917 12.1250
Rate (Currency) 6, Mar, 2012 10.17% 11.46% 11.96% 12.54%
Amount Sold ($) 150m 138m 113m
Exchange Rate (N) 155.2 155.8 155.7
Date 2-7-12 27-6-12 22-6-12
CAPITAL MARKET INDEX
NSE CAP Index
27-10-11 N6.5236tr 20,607.37
28-10-11 N6.617tr 20,903.16
% Change -1.44% -1.44%
MEMORANDUM QUOTATIONS Name
LOSERS AS AT 10-09-13
SYMBOL RTBRISCOE EVANSMED TRANSEXPR AFRIPRUD PRESTIGE INTBREW INTENEGINS PZ LIVESTOCK MOBIL
ERITAGE Bank Limited will partner Lagos State Government in its AdoptA-School programme, the bank’s Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Ifie Sekibo has said. He disclosed the bank’s commitment to the programme during a courtesy visit to Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola. Sekibo said the bank would adopt one of the schools in the state as part of its corporate school and also would renovate and equip the school with state-of-the art e-learning facilities. Speaking on the benefits of the programme, Governor Fashola called on corporate bodies to be part of the programme by adopting one of the schools in the state. He said by doing so, they will be investing in their own future, as the products of such school’s would provide the services needed by the companies in the future. During the visit, Sekibo expressed appreciation to the Fashola for accepting the Heritage Bank as one of the receiving banks for the state government. He said Heritage Bank commenced operations in March following its acquisition of the operating license of the former Societe Generale Bank of Nigeria and its deposit liabilities. Heritage Bank, he said, is committed to paying depositors of SGBN and prior to commencing operations, conducted an account verification exercise for SGBN customers. He said the exercise is still ongoing, and advised account holders to come with documentation evidence of the account and the bank will pay. He said the bank’s commitment however does not include interest payment on the deposit, but limited to the amount of money in the account as at the time SGBN was closed.
ARM AGGRESSIVE GROWTH 9.17 9.08 KAKAWA GUARANTEED 1.00 1.00 STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE INVE 141.19 140.70 AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND 156.04 155.62 LOTUS CAPITAL HALAL 0.80 0.78 BGL SAPPHIRE FUND 1.16 1.16 BGL NUBIAN FUND 1.18 1.16 FBN MONEY MARKET FUND 100.00 100.00 FBN FIXED INCOME FUND 1,000.00 1,000.00 NIGERIA INTERNATIONAL DEB. 1,817.15 1,813.39 PARAMOUNT EQUITY FUND 13.64 12.97 CONTINENTAL UNIT TRUST 1.39 1.33 CENTRE-POINT UNIT TRUST 1.87 1.80 STANBIC IBTC NIG EQUITY 11,004.94 10,680.29 • ARM AGGRESSIVE • KAKAWA GUARANTEED • STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE • AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUNDARM AGGRESSIVE • OPEN BUY BACK
Previous 04 July, 2012
Current 07, Aug, 2012
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS Akwa Ibom to partner doctors
HE Akwa Ibom state government yesterday reiterated its readiness to partner Indian doctors in the running of the 20th Anniversary Hospital. Governor Godswill Akpabio spoke when Dr. Kofo Oganyankin and John Viyaru the Indian medical team on a visit in Uyo, the state capital. Both Ogunsankin and Viyaru presented a partnership proposal on running the hospital to Akpabio. Akpabio said: “We don’t want to stop capital flight, but we want to minimise the number of people who die while trying to travel to Europe and India for check-up and to minimise the turn-out
From Kazeem Ibrahym, Uyo
of Nigerians who leave the country. “We would be glad to work with you where you will offer excellent services and you would be amazed by the number of patients who will patronise the hospital because they would be drawn to good services, best care and firstclass treatment in a first-class hospital. “We would look into the proposal because we are too ambitious and I hope the size of the hospital as you went on tour of the hospital did not overwhelm your operations. So, we tend to build living quarters.”
Three arrested for attack on commissioner
From Okungbowa Aiwerie, Asaba
HREE more suspects have been arrested by the police in Delta State for their alleged complicity in the attack on the Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Prof Patrick Mouboghare. Mouboghare was attacked by youths from Uwheru community, Ughelli North Local Government during the inauguration of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ward executive members at the party secretariat. He was accused by the youths of manipulating the executive list of the ward congress held last year. Earlier a suspect, who hails from Ohoro-Uwheru, was arrested. It was gathered that an ex-President General of Uwheru community, Clement Osieta, who is on the run, has been fingered for the attack. He was reportedly implicated by one of the suspects in police detention. Muoboghare was ambushed as he made to enter the party’s secretariat and stabbed in his right arm and upper abdomen.
Health mission in Rivers
UNITED States health mission, Hospitals for Humanity, will treat people with glaucoma and cataract and render other sundry medical services in Rivers State. The Commissioner for Health, Sampson Parker, told reporters at the Braithwaite Memorial Hospital, Port Harcourt, that the health mission was part of Governor Rotimi Amaechi’s specialist manpower development initiative. He said the Amaechi administration through the programme got medical experts from all over the world to work with the government’s medical personnel to deliver quality healthcare in the state. According to him, the foreign medical experts would provide quality medical care, particularly for glaucoma and cataract patients. He also said the Amaechi Administration also procured over N1 billion HIV/AIDS drugs for HIV patients.
Outrage over teachers’ strike
HERE is anger among parents in Cross River State, following the decision by primary and secondary teachers to resume their strike yesterday. The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) on Monday declared a resumption of the strike it suspended in June, following government’s inability to implement the Teachers Specific Allowance (TSA) and promotion of teachers. A parent, Glory Ekpenyong, said the government should do more to meet teachers’ demands. Mrs. Ekpenyong, who has three children in public schools, said it was a shame that her children had to stay at home even after the long hol-
From Nicholas Kalu, Calabar
idays. Another parent, Ibanga Daniel, who has a child in secondary school, said: “Universities are on strike all over the country. Now our primary and secondary schools are also on strike. Where is this country going to?” NUT Chairman Eyo-Nsa Eyo Itam said the strike would be “total”. He said: “This time our demands must be fully met or the schools will not open. This time around it is total strike. They think teachers are toothless bulldogs. We would show them we are not toothless bulldogs.”
Body of policeman still missing
HE body of a retired police inspector reportedly buried alive in a forest in Edo State remains missing. This is coming four months after a well-coordinated search was carried out by operatives of Zone ‘5’ Police Headquarters, Benin City. The Assistant Inspector– General (AIG) of Police in charge of the zone, Hashimu Salihi Argungu, said in Benin City yesterday that the remains of the late inspector were yet to be recovered. The AIG vowed that the police would not rest until the
From Osemwengie Ben Ogbemudia, Benin
body was recovered and other suspects arrested. He said their collaborators had been remanded at Oko Federal Prison since June. Argungu said the victim, Samuel Ekhoruyimwen Ajayi (82), the head of Oghobaghase Community, was on his way to settle a dispute in his domain, when he was allegedly waylaid by some youths of Ewudu village, near his community. Both communities are located in Ovia North East Local Government Area.
•From left: Managing Director, Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas, Babs Omotowa; Country Director, British Council Nigeria, Connie Price and Centre Manager, British Council Nigeria, Ijeoma Arguba, during the presentation of scholarship award to Nigeria LNG post graduate students in Port Harcourt...yesterday.
Warri monarch reverses controversial edict
NEASY calm pervaded Itsekiri land and other parts of Warri, Delta State, yesterday, as the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse II, bowed to pressure and retracted a controversial edict proscribing the Ogiame title. But The Nation’s investigations that the decision may not be enough to save the monarch’s reign. It was gathered that some prominent stakeholders may insist that he abdicate to save the dignity of the 533-year-old throne. Sources said the embarrassing event may lead to retributions, if not for the Olu, certainly for some chiefs, who reportedly deceived the monarch and appended their signature to the controversial edict. Atuwatse II signed the edict suspending the title of Ogiame, proscribed the Itsekiri anthem and initiated changes to the tradition of the Itsekiri (Iwere) people. A prominent Itsekiri leader and Chairman of the Itsekiri Leaders of Thought, J O S Ayomike, told our reporter that “Recanting now is not enough.” The renowned historian posited that the “pronouncement and resultant somersault of the monarch” was an embarrassment to the people. He said yesterday’s recant after four days of sustained
•Activist: ’ruler embarrassed Itsekiri’ •Uduaghan hails monarch, protesters From Shola O’Neil, South-south Regional Editor
protest was a clear indication that he never consulted widely as he ought to have done before he made the pronouncement. He lamented that the action of the monarch had damaged the revered position of Olu, who the Itsekiri pride as one who speaks and never recants. “Without consultation, he issued an edict and recants. He has embarrassed the throne and embarrassed Itsekiri. So recanting now is not enough. If he had consulted enough he would have got our (stakeholders’) explanation.” “A situation where the monarch makes a statement and recants is not desirable. He has recanted, that is fine, but the danger now is that up to now he has been acting outside the checks and balances.” Pa Ayomike said the incident makes it expedient for Itsekiri leaders and traditional chiefs to resuscitate ancient mechanism used to put monarchs in check and ensure balance in the kingdom. “The Itsekiri now have a problem of reviving their checks and balances for controlling the Olu. Itsekiri can’t
have an Olu, who would be behaving as a medieval tyrant. “A situation where he makes such far-reaching pronouncement, without wide consultation is most undesirable. Recanting because of the pressure is very good; but the Itsekiri would not want such a situation to arise again,” he said. The retreat by the monarch came seven days after he signed a controversial edict, which not only suspended the title of Ogiame, but also the Itsekiri anthem as well as initiated changes to the tradition of the Itsekiri (Iwere) people. The Igba of Warri Kingdom, Chief Rita Lori-Ogbebor, who met with the people yesterday, returned to tell the crowd of protesters encamped in front of the monarch’s palace that the monarch had listened to them and returned to the status quo ante. Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, an Itsekiri, praised the protesters for their peaceful disposition and the Ogiame for listening to his people. The governor, who spoke in a telephone interview, expressed joy that the siege to the palace was over, adding that the people would now re-
turn back to their business. “I want to thank everybody for the maturity displayed while this incident lasted. I know it is difficult to control crowd and things could have easily got out of hand, but they behaved themselves and showed a lot of maturity,” he added. Similarly, the leaders of the protesting Itsekiri youth, Omolubi Newuwumi, in a statement by his media officer, Osahon J. Osahon, said the monarch’s decision followed an “exhaustive meeting with Itsekiri leaders and chiefs”. Omolubi, who thanked the people for protesting against the unpopular decision, said: “There is no victor, no vanquished, as the people of Itsekiri remain ever loyal to their King, Ogiame Atuwatse II.” He called on the people to remains steadfast, loyal and obedient to the Olu as he remain their monarch. The news elicited shouts of joy from thousands of men and women dressed in symbolic red attires to express their displeasure with the edict. It also ended a four-day marathon protest by interest groups from across the Iwere (Itsekiri) land.
$1.69m fraud: Ajudua gets N50m bail
N Ikeja High Court yesterday granted bail to a former Lagos socialite, Fred Ajudua, who has been on trial for an alleged $1.69 million (N270 million) fraud. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ajudua was granted bail by a vacation judge, Justice Ganiyu Safari, on health grounds. His counsel, Olalekan Ojo, filed the application on August 19, praying the court to grant him bail on “exceptional circumstances”. Counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Wemimo Ogunde (SAN) opposed the application, claiming that Ajudua would abscond, if granted bail. Ruling on the application, Justice Safari granted Ajudua a bail of N50 million and two sureties. The judge said it was evident that the accused was suffering from complicated ail-
ments, which needed proper medical attention. He noted that the medical report attached to the application issued by Dr Adebisi Ogunjimi of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) showed that Ajudua was “gravely ill.’’ Safari said the medical facilities at the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons, where Ajudua was being remanded, could not provide proper treatment for him. The judge said: “There is no doubt that the medical condition of an applicant can warrant the granting of bail in exceptional circumstances. “The applicant (Ajudua) is currently on admission at LUTH after he was rushed there on August 3, following his inability to urinate. “The applicant has only one kidney and is also suffering from hypertension.” According to Safari, Ajudua’s health condition should not be allowed to worsen,
while the trial was still going on. The judge, however, said that Ajudua had abused the previous bail granted him in February 2005 by Justice Joseph Oyewole. “The accused travelled to India to receive treatment at Grant Medical Foundation and he thereafter, refused to attend court proceedings, leading to over 40 adjournments,” he said. Justice Safari said the court had no option than to grant Ajudua bail on stringent terms to ensure that the trial was not stalled again. He directed the sureties to deposit the title deeds of their buildings in Lagos to the court’s Chief Registrar. He also directed them to produce three years’ tax clearance from the Lagos State government. In addition, Ajudua was also asked to deposit his international passport with the
Chief Registrar and was barred from travelling outside Nigeria without the court’s permission. NAN reports that Ajudua and Charles Orie are on trial for allegedly defrauding two Dutch businessmen –Remy Cina and Pierre Vijgen - of $1.69 million (N270 million). The fresh bail application, which was granted by Safari was the fourth to be filed by Ajudua since the trial began in 2003.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
NEWS Anambra council poll postponed •To hold Dec 14
From Nwanosike Onu, Awka
NAMBRA State Independent Electoral Commission (ANSIEC) has postponed the local government elections scheduled for October 6. The new date for the polls is December 14 as announced yesterday by the Acting Chairman of the commission, Sylvester Okonkwo. Addressing party leaders at the commission's headquarters in Awka yesterday, Okonkwo said this was done in order not to bring bad blood in the state. He said the commission had been inundated with phone calls and petitions to cancel the election because of the November 16 governorship election. The chairman said parties refused to start their campaigns or submit their lists of candidates, 24 days to the proposed date. Okonkwo said 17 parties indicated interest to contest the election, but a few weeks to the date, nothing had been heard from any of them. “We considered all the variables during the stormy session of our meeting yesterday, we have the money but you know that money is not everything, if we go ahead with the election, we may not be able to satisfy everybody. "We have prayed, we do not want a violent election and we do not want anything to spill over to November 16. "Therefore, the commission decided to call off the local government election scheduled for October 6 and the new date for the election is December 14," he said.
SUBEB books sold in Abia From Ugochukwu UgojiEke, Umuahia
NIVERSAL Basic Education (UBE) books, produced by the Federal Government and meant to be distributed free to pupils in every state, are being sold in the open market in Umuahia, the Abia State capital. Investigations by our reporter showed that the books, which are customised UBE/ FGN book and marked not for sale, are being sold and teachers have asked parents to go and buy the books. A mother, who gave her name as Maureen, said she was given a list of books to buy for her children. "After collecting money from my husband, I went to the market to buy, 'Pupil Book 1 UBE Edition Learn Mathematics for Primary Schools', which I paid N1,100 for." Maureen said she went to the market last Friday. "But I was told that some of the books are not available and was advised to come back on Monday and when I got to the market I bought the books marked not for sale." However, the Chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board (ASUBEB), Micah Onyebuchi, said the books being sold are not meant for Abia schools. Onyebuchi said the books from UBE, which are meant for the state are sent to his office directly and they have distributed such books to the schools. The ASUBEB boss told the reporter to report to security agencies, instead of coming to his office.
•Police officers at the end of a seminar for strategic police managers on Geopolitical Intelligence Sensitisation and Community Partnership Workshops in Abuja...yesterday
‘Doctor’ in court for alleged certificate forgery
DOCTOR, employed by Seventh Day Adventist Hospital, Ogbor Hill in Aba, Abia State, Peter Ifeanyichukwu, has been arraigned before a Chief Magistrate's Court in Osisioma Local Government Area. He is on trial for alleged impersonation and illegal possession of a fake MBBS certificate. Police prosecutor Victor Mbama said the offences are punishable under Section 467 and 484 of the Criminal Code Act. He said the suspect
From Sunny Nwankwo, Aba
should be remanded in custody because he could jump bail. The magistrate, however, ordered that Ifeanyichukwu be remanded in the Aba Federal Prison till Friday. It was gathered that the accused worked at Living Word Hospital. Sources said he had featured on the Nigerian Television Authority Channel 6, Aba, where he spoke on the dangers of smoking.
They also said Ifeanyichukwu claimed that he was a student of the School of Health, Aba and worked in various clinics and hospitals. Another source alleged that the management of Living Word Hospital terminated his appointment after complications arose in a case he handled. Narrating how the suspect was arrested, the Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Aba zone, Dr. U.N Onwuchekwa, said: "He was arrested after Dr.
Anaele Agu alerted the NMA at a conference, for doctors in Aba, where he (Ifeanyichukwu) introduced himself as a doctor and a representative of the chief medical director of Seventh Day Adventist Hospital. "Initially, he told us he was a graduate of the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT). We also asked him some other questions which he couldn't answer. "It was at that time that we had to invite the police. When the police interrog ated him further, he
Anambra PDP crisis: Court hears motion today
FEDERAL High Court in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, will today hear the application on interlocutory injunction by the factional Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Anambra State, Ejike Oguebego and Senator Andy Uba on the governorship primaries held in the state. This followed an oral application by the plaintiff's lead counsel, Jude Nnodum (SAN), for extension of time to regularise their court processes, following the new party joined in the suit on August 30. Nnodum told Justice H. A.
From Rosemary Nwisi, Port Harcourt
Nganjiwa that they were unable to meet the seven-day period given parties to regularise their processes to include the new party. The defence objected to the application, but the court upheld it and urged parties to ensure they complete filing applications and service before 10am today. The defence counsel kicked against the arrangement by the court on how to hear the motions. They believed that the motion challenging the court’s jurisdiction ought to be taken first.
But the court maintained its position, saying it was acting based on the provision of Order 21 (1) of the Procedure Law. Two parallel primaries were held by two factions; the one conducted by Oguebego produced Uba as its candidate and the other by Ken Emekaya which produced Tony Nwoye. Uba approached the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt to seek for recognition as the authentic candidate. He asked the court to restrain the party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from accepting the result
produced by the Emekayaled faction. Justice Nganjiwa, in an interim order, granted Uba's requests and urged PDP and INEC to recognise him as the rightful candidate and restrained the party from accepting the election result submitted by Ekeanyi, pending the determination of the motions. Rather than obey the court order, the party suspended Uba and Oguebego and presented a return certificate to Nwoye. The matter took a twist last Thursday, when Judge Nganjiwa abridged time to vacate his earlier order to the defendants to recognise Uba.
Teacher, two children abducted in Edo
TEACHER at Ile Primary School, Ekpoma in Esan West Local Government Area of Edo State, Mrs. Queen Ogbodu and two unidentified children have been abducted. They were reportedly abducted on Monday, the day public schools resumed from a long break. Police spokesman Moses Eguavoen confirmed the incident. Chairman of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) Patrick Ikosimi described the kidnapping as sad. He said: “I received the information yesterday. Teachers are the least paid. In fact, the day a teacher receives his salary that is when his trouble begins.” A teacher, Mrs. P Elebe, who was abducted with her three children on August 18, is yet
•Police foil attempt to abduct Lebanese From Osagie Otabor, Benin and Mike Odiegwu, Yenagoa
to be released. In Bayelsa State, the police foiled an attempt by a fiveman gang to abduct a Lebanese working with a construction firm, Dantata and Sawoe. One of the kidnappers, it was gathered, was shot and arrested by the police. The incident was said to have occurred at Igbogene, a suburb of Yenagoa, the state capital. Dantata and Sawoe is handling the dualisation of Igbogene road that links Okolobiri and the East-West Road. Kidnapping attracts death
sentence in the state. The kidnappers were said to have engaged the police in a gun battle before escaping. A resident , who identified
himself as Emmanuel, said the gun battle created panic in the area, forcing people to scamper to safety. Police spokesman Alex Akhigbe confirmed the incident.
FUTO to make car
HE Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Prof Cyril Asiabaka, yesterday said the university will manufacture the first Nigerian made car in 2015. Asiabaka said the car would be produced in partnership with the University of Munich, Germany. He said the car, to be code named “Africar”, would be manufactured in commercial quantity by 2017."
From Okodili Ndidi, Owerri
Asiabaka spoke when members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) visited the institution. He dismissed insinuations that admission of candidates for degree programmes had become a cash-and-carry business, adding that the university has credible strategies to ensure that admission is based on merit for enhanced academic excellence.
admitted he was a fake doctor. "Upon his confessional statement, a house search was conducted. During the search, a blank MBBS certificate bearing the logo of the University of Port Harcourt's Medical School was found in his house." When our reporter visited Living Word Hospital, a source said Ifeanyichukwu was never employed there. He said: "Ifeanyichukwu did not stay up to a week in our hospital. He presented an affidavit in which he claimed that he lost his results and other documents after he finished his youth service. "After the oral interview, the panel gave him one week to bring his practisi ng l i c enc e w hi c h i s renewable every year and until now, he has not come back. "Our policy in this hospital is that before any doctor is employed, he must present all the documents."
Community exiles septuagenarian From Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, Onitsha
HERE is tension in Ezinifite, Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State, as a 73year-old man, George Umeibe, was forcefully taken away from the community. Umeibe from EnuamaAku village was whisked away by vigilance men from Unubi Community for alleged involvement in fetish activities. The villagers alleged that he was responsible for the death of many people from the area. They reportedly banished him for seven years. Eyewitnesses said a vigilance group from Unubi allegedly stormed the suspect's home and whisked him away in the presence of his wife, children and grandchildren. Police spokesman Emeka Chukwuemeka said the invasion was capable of causing tension in the state. He warned vigilance group members to stop interfering in other communities' affairs.
NEWS Obasanjo accuses Atiku of corruption Continued from page 4
fice to prove that nobody should be below board in the fight against corruption. He said: “I was investigated. I told the EFCC to investigate me. I told EFCC to carry out a clinical investigation and they did it. They also did same with all the people on my farm. One of them was telling me the other day how Lamorde called him three times and took statements from him. “The EFCC even made sure that they did not submit that report to me; they waited until I left and updated their report after going round the world and saying ‘look; this is the report’. Nobody should be below board in the fight against corruption.” Obasanjo, however, became angry when he was asked why EFCC never moved against a former Chairman of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) Chief Olabode George, until when the latter fell out of favour with him. He added: “No, no, no; don’t say a thing like that; that is a stupid statement. I take very strong exception to that and if you are from EFCC and you say that, I think you should be removed and I mean it.
“Ribadu brought a report and a blanket report to us and we said, ‘look, if there is something wrong with NPA, you don’t crucify 50 people, go and get the leaders’ and, eventually, he got the leaders and the leaders happen to be the chairman, the Chief Executive who is from Kano and they were charged and they went to jail. And it is in the same report of Ribadu; now, if Ribadu is no longer there and you want to run him down, it should not be from you and I will not run him down.” “I will say where I think Ribadu has gone wrong but where he is right, and he lifted that organisation, it should be acknowledged. “He did very well until he lost his direction when he left. He did so well that he became a threat even to the incoming administration; that is what happened. He was so successful that his success began to be a problem for him.” Although Obasanjo avoided rating Ribadu, he faulted the appointment of his successor, Mrs. Farida Waziri as the chairman of EFCC. He alleged that Mrs. Waziri, was head-hunted by ex-Governor James Ibori and should not have been given the appoint-
ment. Mrs. Waziri defended this several time, says it was false. He added: “I don’t know how to score him. I know that the woman they brought to replace Ribadu (Farida Waziri) was not the right person for that job, because I understood that one of those who head-hunted her was James Ibori. If James Ibori, who is now in a United Kingdom (UK) prison for fraud, headhunted somebody who will fight corruption in Nigeria, then you can understand what happened. “ Well, go and look at her track record, go and look at the condition or the qualification, go and look at the type of interaction that anybody holding that job will have with a similar organisation elsewhere; did Waziri have that type? What connection did she have with FBI; what relationship did she have with Metropolitan Police in London; what did she know. It is not a picnic! While Ribadu was doing it, he was doing it with all his ability and I believe he did it well.” He said he would reappoint Ribadu if he has the opportunity. “Yes, I will reappoint Mallam Ribadu and I will not dismiss him the way he was dismissed from EFCC and one thing I will
tell him, I will advise him not to go and hobnob with people he had declared as corrupt. Hobnobbing with such people does not do much credit to his image.” Responding to a question, Obasanjo explained why he had been critical of the Federal Government’s fight against corruption. He said political will is required to fight corruption in Nigeria. But when asked whether the nation still has the political will, the ex-President simply responded: “Go and ask your president, not me. “Political will is the courage, ability, the audacity to do what is right and most of what is right will not be pleasant.” He added: “I feel concerned about Nigeria and I will never stop feeling concerned and that is why occasionally I speak up. “Even now, I am speaking up to say that all of you in EFCC, there are areas you should be ashamed of yourselves. If you take an organisation which took Nigeria from level 2 to level 43 and then it start coming down to level 34 then something is wrong. You don’t come and blame that on me; you don’t come and ask me that.”
PDP urges court to commit Baraje, others to prison again Continued from page 4
purpose of rendering the said orders of this Honourable Court nugatory and of no effect”. PDP also sought an order committing the fourth to 10th alleged contemnors to prison for a term of one year for alleged criminal contempt. It said they should be jailed for “aiding and abetting the defiance and violation of the order of this Honourable Court through their appointment into various offices constituting the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the purpose of rendering the said orders of this Honourable Court nugatory
and of no effect.” Stating the grounds for the application, PDP said: “The Plaintiffs (Baraje and others) instituted this action via a Writ of Summons dated 2nd September 2013 and also filed a motion ex parte for interim injunction. “On the 2nd of September 2013, this Honourable Court refused the prayer for interim injunction but rather made an order directing that ‘Parties maintain the Status quo ante pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.’ “The above order of this Honourable Court that parties maintain status quo was reaffirmed by this Honourable
Court in the proceedings of 9th of September 2013. “Despite the said order of this Honourable Court directing parties to maintain status quo ante, the 1st to 3rd alleged contemnors rather than wait for the outcome of the judicial process to which they had submitted themselves and accord the requisite respect to the judiciary and due process of law, continued to parade themselves and to act as the chairman, deputy national chairman and secretary of the party. “On the 9th of September 2013, the 3rd alleged contemnor announced in a statement in Abuja the appointment of the contemnors into various offices in the National Work-
ing Committee (NWC). “This Honorable court has the power and the responsibility, as well as other courts in the land, to shed the cloak of indignity, which the contemnors have attempted to foist upon the judiciary generally and this honourable court in particular, to rescue the authority and majesty of the courts of the land from the denigration and insult which the Respondents and the Alleged Contemnors have conspired to assault the temple of justice with by ensuring that the Alleged Contemnors purge themselves of their contempt.” No date has been fixed for the hearing.
promo. According to a statement from the company, arrangements are on for the prize presentations which will take place simultaneously in Enugu and Benin tomorrow. The prize presentation will
take place at Ogbete market in Enugu and at Oba’s market, Ring Road in Benin-City. Lucky subscribers will collect cheques ranging from N10,000 to N5 million. The objective of the promo is to transform many lives and
create many millionaires and multi-millionaires from the company’s subscriber base. It is also aimed at ensuring that the telecom giant’s loyal subscribers are rewarded as they celebrate with the company during its 10th anniversary.
Globacom fetes Enugu, Edo customers
T will be another time of celebration for Glo subscribers in the South east and Southsouth as the national telecom operator is set to hand out more cheques to lucky winners in its ongoing Glo “Recharge to Stardom”
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
EFCC recovers N6.5b
•Records 80 convictions
HE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday said it has charged 368 cases to court and recorded 80 convictions as at the end of August, 2013. It also said it recovered N6, 583,108,350; $19,251,519; 20,520 Euros and 19,000 Pounds Sterling from those involved financial crimes. The commission released the statistic in a statement by its Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren. The statement said: “Within the same period, the Commission recorded the following recoveries: N6, 583,108,350; $19,251,519; 20,520 Euros and 19,000 Pounds Sterling. “Beyond the recovery, EFCC intensified the prosecution of politically exposed persons, failed bank executives, captains of industries, beneficiaries of fraudulent oil subsidy payments and senior civil servants involved in pension fraud. “A number of cases for which investigations have been concluded, would be charged to courts across the zones where the commission maintains offices as soon as the courts resume from recess. “Meanwhile, the Commission deplores attempts by mischievous elements to distract it by imputing political motives to some of its investigations. “The Commission will not be cowed by such insinuations which are clearly unfounded. “Nigerians can be assured that only those who run foul of the
From Yusuf Alli, Abuja
law have reason to entertain fear of the EFCC.” In an interview with EFCC Magazine, “Zero Tolerance,” EFCC chairman Ibrahim Lamorde, said the commission is at the mercy of the Judiciary. He said: “The best we can do as an anti-corruption agency is to take cases to court; no matter how good the case is, once the matter is in court, you are at the mercy of the Judiciary. “What we have in Nigeria is for a number of reasons; these cases have refused to move forward. Some people have blamed the judicial officers for the progress of some cases, others blame the judicial officers for the progress of some cases, others blame the defence counsel who deliberately frustrate cases. “Some also put the blame on the judicial procedure that gives privileges to the accused persons and allows all manner of applications.” He faulted those criticising the EFCC for not going after big fishes. Lamorde added: “Who are the big fishes, I think people like drama. You don’t go after an individual because you want to make a name for yourself. “You do things thoroughly and make sure the things you do stands the test of time. We have seen cases that were rushed to the court about two years ago and had to be reinvestigated because proper job was not done before it went to court.”
‘I never knew Ibori’ Continued from page 4
it’. He said ‘no, no, no, I should tell him now.’ I called my husband and told him this is what the AG has said and he said ‘well, you cannot refuse to serve your father land in any capacity, so convey to them the message.” On her sack as EFCC chairman, faulted the approach adopted by President Goodluck Jonathan. She said: “The manner of the sack was what bothered me. I have done a span of 35 years, fighting for my father land. I deserve some little dignity and respect.
“When you wake up and you see on AIT, Waziri sacked! ‘NTA, Waziri sacked!’ Channels, ‘Waziri sacked!’ That is the style I am talking about. “My predecessor’s case was even worse, but I do hope that the authorities will take note. Except you are removed as a result of gross misconduct, any other way, you should be treated with dignity, respect for human person. “So, it’s the style I frowned at, not about leaving; I knew I would one day leave. In fact, the hand writing was on the wall. I knew it was a matter of time.”
PDP crisis: Presidency strengthens base Continued from page 4
national chairman to put our house in order and prevent a split at the state level. We have our grievances in the Southwest PDP, but it is a case of self-inflicted wound. Our position is that Prince Oyinlola should have waited for the outcome of his case against the party in court, instead of trying to divide the party.” The state chapters have been holding solidarity meetings for the purpose of passing votes of confidence on the President and the national chairman. Rising from the meeting of the Southwest PDP stakeholders, the Acting Caretaker Chairman, Mr. Deji Doherty, said that the zone was solidly behind the main-
stream PDP, urging the chieftains across the six chapters to stand firm. The Lagos State PDP leader, Commodore Bode George (rtd), and chairman, Capt. Tunji Shelle (rtd) described the crisis as “unnecessary”, stressing that the aggrieved chieftains should have used the party’s internal crisis-resolution mechanism. George reiterated the support of the chapter to the Jonathan Administration and the PDP National Working Committee (NWC) headed by Tukur. Shelle expressed surprise at the emergence of the faction, saying that it is “embarrassing”. He dissociated the Lagos PDP from “the rebellion”, urging the members of the faction to embrace peace.
AUCTION AUCTION AUCTION
SPACE FOR SALE
On the instruction of Ikorodu North Local Council Development area secretariat: eweye road, Isiwu Ikorodu authority the auction of unservisable vehicles and motor cycles and other items has been stated for auction on 17th September 2013 at 10:00am prompt at the secretariat premises Auctioner J. F. Obitunde 08033466559
THE NATION WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
90 deportees from Tunisia arrive in Lagos
INETY Nigerians, who were deported from Tunisia, yesterday arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos. A Southwest Zonal Coordinator of the National Emergency Agency (NEMA), Mr. Iyiola Akande, said the deportees arrived the airport by Nouvel Air Airbus 320-214 with registration number 177Y at 12.32am, instead of the earlier time of 3.05 pm, on September 9. The coordinator said the repatriation was facilitated by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), with the support of the Tunisian government. The returnees were received by agencies, including the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), which checked their
By Kelvin Osa Okunbor and Precious Igbonwelundu
identities to ascertain their nationalities; the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and the police. Akande said the deportees comprised two infants of five months and 14 months; 12 teenagers, 13 girls and 61 men. He said 71 of them came from Edo State, eight from Delta State, three are from Imo and Lagos states, while Kano and Plateau have a total of three. One of the deportees, Success Smart, a 15-year-old girl, claimed that she travelled out of Nigeria two years ago through the Libyan route. On why she did not return with the earlier batch during the Libyan repatriation exercise, she said she was
learning a trade to become a hair stylist and that her parents refused to sign an agreement with her master as an apprentice when she was in Nigeria. She, however, regretted travelling out of the country and urged other youths against seeking greener pasture abroad. Blessing Ogbabolo, 17, who also said she was learning to be a hair stylist, told The Nation that the harsh economic situation in the country forced her and her brother to travel out. Asked about her brother, she said they lost contact after her decision to return home. "He must still be in Tunisia," she said. Emmanuel Oduoba said government should make life meaningful for young people so they would not contemplate risking their lives in a bid to travel out.
Air Force takes delivery of 10 jets, aircraft
HE Nigerian Air Force, (NAF), yesterday took delivery of nine reactivated Alpha Jets and a C130 NAF Aircraft. While six of the reactivated jets were paid for, the others were rehabilitated by Aeronautical Engineering and Technical Services Limited (AETSL), a unit of the Nigerian Air Force Holdings Company (NAFHC). The refurbished aircraft, NAFs 452, 453, 455, 456, 470, 454, 457, 461 and 466, were part of those recommissioned under the newly introduced Periodic Depot Maintenance, PDM and carried out in conjunction with a foreign partner, Sabena Technics, Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshall Alex Badeh, in an
By Precious Igbonwelundu
interview with reporters, said the reactivation of the aircraft and jets was to help in transporting troops for internal and external aggression. He said: "On assumption of office in October 2012, we were faced with the enormous responsibility of supporting peace operations in conflict environments both internally and externally. "These required the use of credible platforms for movements to the theatre of operations. Meanwhile, the numerous competing demands placed enormous budgetary constraints on the allocations of NAF. "Once again, AETSL was
given the opportunity to bid for the in-country depot maintenance of one of our C130H Aircraft, NAF 913 and today we are witnessing the first successful completion of an in-country PDM of the aircraft." Also speaking, Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada said the dictates of the Federal Government's transformation policies emphasizes looking inwards and building capacity for self reliance. She said: "The import of the transformation drive of President Goodluck Jonathan has become more germane under the current atmosphere of dwindling budgetary allocation to the defence sector.”
Force Intelligence Bureau to be strengthened
HE Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mr Mohammed Abubakar said yesterday that the Police Intelligence Bureau across the country were being strengthened to effectively carry out their duties. He spoke at a one-day seminar for "Strategic Police Managers", Zonal Assistant Inspectors-General of Police (AIGs) and Commissioners of Police (CPs) in the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). A similar workshop was held in the six geo-political zones, for AIGs and CPs between May and June. To strengthen them, Abubakar said he had approved quarterly allocations to zonal and state bureau and the payment of basic transport allowances to operatives on course at the Force Intelligence School. He said a temporary police intelligence school had been set up in Enugu with regular courses being attended by police operatives and operatives of sister security agencies. The IGP said the foundationlaying ceremony of the permanent site of the school at Share in Kwara State was performed on September 4, adding that it took the police 87 years to achieve the feat. He said he had allocated five new operational vehicles to the Force Intelligence Bureau to assist it in performing its duties. "In addition, I've directed the Zonal AIGs and Command CPs to extend similar logistic support to the intelligence detachment in their commands.
From John Ofikhenua and Chioma Onyia, Abuja
"I am glad to note that a number of commands, including Enugu, Delta, Rivers, Edo, Oyo, Osun and Akwa Ibom states, have complied. I want to believe that other commands will soon follow suit. "It is an incontrovertible fact that intelligence-led policing is very fundamental to national
security," he said. Abubakar said the seminar was to sensitise the officers to the concerns expressed by the public at the zonal workshops and the virtue of engaging them and non-state actors in addressing crimes. "It is my view that crime prevention can be addressed through concerned citizenry that is responsive in partnering the police through giving
‘Community policing 'll tackle terrorism’
From Gbenga Omokhunu and Grace Obike, Abuja
OLLOWING the high rate of insecurity in the country, community policing is one of the best options to tackle terrorism and social vices, a retired Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Uba Ringim, said yesterday. Speaking during an interactive session by the Nigeria Security Exhibition and Conference (NISEC) in Abuja, he said the benefits of community policing would be felt in the war against terrorism, if well applied. "Most advanced countries control crime through community policing and I believe we can use community policing to tackle crime and terrorism. It will help a lot. We just need to address the issue urgently," Ringim said. A senior lecturer at the University of Lagos and a member of the NISEC, Dr. Rasheed Akinyemi, said the police were unwilling to adopt community policing to combat crime because their hierarchies were afraid of losing their powers. According to him, insecurity cannot be tackled without addressing the socio-economic condition of citizens, stressing that the government must de-emphasise party politics and focus on youth empowerment. The don said NISEC would hold the first security conference in 2014, which would bring together local and international security experts and showcase the latest security products and services. The convener of the security conference, Maj. Gen. Dum Chong (rtd.), said it would champion public awareness and help build the required capacity as well as sharpen security manager's skill and competence. The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubakar has said intelligence-led policing would assist the force in meeting its security obligation more effectively. Speaking at a workshop on the implementation of intelligenceled policing strategy in the Nigeria Police, the IGP said intelligenceled policing was fundamental to national security.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Strike fears ease as Syria accepts weapons plan
Rights group: Syrian regime behind chemical attack
N international human rights group said yesterday that evidence “strongly suggests” Syrian government forces fired rockets with warheads containing a nerve agent - most likely sarin - into a Damascus suburb in August, killing hundreds of people. The report by Human Rights Watch was released as the international community weighs how to respond to the attack on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta, which the U.S., France and others also have blamed on President Bashar Assad’s forces. The regime blames the rebels. President Barack Obama had been lobbying for targeted military strikes against regime positions, but a Russian proposal to put Assad’s chemical weapons arsenal under international control has raised hopes of a diplomatic breakthrough instead. The U.S. administration has insisted that there is very compelling evidence that the Syrian regime used chemical weapons against its own people, but it has not been presented to the public. Human Rights Watch did not have direct access to the affected areas or the victims, but said its conclusions are based on witness accounts, the physical fragments of the weapons used and the symptoms exhibited by victims and documented by medical staff. The New York-based group said it sought technical advice from an expert on the detection and effects of chemical warfare agents, and its experts studied documented medical symptoms of the victims and analyzed activist videos posted on the Internet after the attack.
OMENTUM to avoid Western missile strikes on Syria intensified yesterday, as President Bashar Assad’s government accepted a plan to turn over its chemical weapons stockpile and France pitched a U.N. Security Council resolution to verify the disarmament. With domestic support for a strike uncertain in the United States and little international appetite to join forces against Assad, the developments had the potential to blunt a thorny diplomatic problem and allow the Obama administration to back away from military action. But neither effort attempts to end or even address the civil war that has left more than 100,000 dead in Syria and the main opposition bloc dismissed the chemical weapons plan as a largely meaningless measure that would allow Assad free rein to fight on with conventional weapons. Syria’s foreign minister said the government would accept a plan from Russia, its most powerful ally, to give up its chemical weapons in order “to thwart U.S. aggression,” offering a diplomatic option for how to respond
to the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack that the Obama administration, France and others blame on Assad. Damascus denies its forces were behind the attack. The U.S. has said more than 1,400 Syrians died; even conservative estimates from international organizations put the toll at several hundred. France, a permanent member of the 15-nation Security Council, will start the process at the United Nations on Tuesday under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter, which is militarily enforceable, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said at a news conference organized shortly after meeting with the French president. Fabius said the French resolution would demand that Syria open its chemical weapons program to inspection, place it under international control, and ultimately dismantle it. A violation of that commitment, he said, would carry “very serious consequences.” The resolution would condemn the attack and bring those responsible to justice, he said. Fabius expressed caution that French authorities “don’t want to fall into a trap” that could allow Assad’s regime to skirt accountability or buy time. “We do not want this to be used as a diversion,” Fabius said. “It is by accepting these precise conditions that we will judge the credibility of the intentions expressed yesterday.” The details and timeframe of the French proposal remained vague, but Fabius said he expected a “nearly immediate” and tangible commitment
from Syria. Within two hours, he had a response from his Syrian counterpart, Walid al-Moallem. “We agreed to the Russian initiative as it should thwart the U.S. aggression against our country,” he said. Moallem’s comments amounted to the first formal admissions by top Syrian officials that Damascus even possesses chemical weapons. In interviews aired as recently as Monday, Assad repeatedly refused to acknowledge whether his regime did. Russia is now working with Damascus to prepare a detailed plan of action that will be presented soon, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said. Russia will then be ready to finalize the plan with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. President Barack Obama, who was scheduled to give a nationally televised address on Syria on Tuesday night, reached back into history - and the Cold War rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union to make his case against Syria, even as he cautiously welcomed the early developments. The Syrian National Coalition dismissed the Assad government’s turnaround as a maneuver to escape punishment for a crime against humanity. The coalition had been hoping for military strikes from abroad to tip the balance in the war of attrition between rebels and Assad’s forces. In a statement Tuesday, the coalition said Moscow’s proposal “aims to procrastinate and will lead to more
•Members of the Association of Relatives of Detained-Disappeared, hold portraits as they participate in a ceremony in Villa Grimaldi, which was used as PHOTO: AFP a detention and torture center during the dictatorship (1973-1990) of Augusto Pinochet, in Santiag ...yesterday.
Trial of Kenya deputy president Ruto begins
ENYA’S Deputy President William Ruto went on trial yesterday at the International Criminal Court for allegedly orchestrating deadly violence after his country’s disputed 2007 election. The trial is a critical test for the ICC to demonstrate it can successfully prosecute an African leader. In November, Kenya’s president, Uhuru Kenyatta, will be tried on similar charges, meaning two top politicians from a nation seen as one of East Africa’s most stable democracies will be fighting charges in The Hague. The court also has Ivory Coast’s former president Laurent Gbagbo in custody, charged with postelection violence, and has indicted Sudanese leader Omar al-Basir for genocide in Darfur. While ousted leaders like Yugoslav strongman Slobodan Milosevic and former Liberian President Charles Taylor have faced international justice in the past, it is unprecedented for two such high-ranking suspects as
Ruto and Kenyatta to stand trial at an international tribunal while still in office. Ruto smiled confidently as blinds were raised between the courtroom and public gallery before Presiding Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji outlined the proceedings. Ruto and broadcaster Joshua Sang are both accused of murder, deportation and persecution of political opponents in Kenya’s Rift Valley region in late 2007 and early 2008. Both men pleaded not guilty to all the charges. Prosecutors have complained of widespread witness intimidation prior into the trial and some witnesses have refused to testify, throwing the strength of the case into question. The start of the trial was twice delayed to give defense attorneys more time to prepare. Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda told judges the intimidation of witnesses was so damaging it was “something of an achievement” that she was able to bring the case to trial.
A lawyer for victims of the violence, Wilfred Nderitu, warned of grave consequences of such widespread witness intimidation, saying it “could spell the death knell for this court and for international criminal justice.” Bensouda told the court and a public gallery packed with Kenyan supporters of the two defendants that Ruto used networks within his Kalenjin tribe to target political opponents and members of the rival Kikuyu tribe. Bensouda said more than 200 people were killed in the Rift Valley and 1,000 injured. Thousands more were forced from their homes. “It is difficult to imagine the suffering or the terror of the men, women and children who were burned alive, hacked to death or chased from their homes by armed youths,” she said. Bensouda called the attacks “a carefully planned, coordinated and executed campaign of violence” targeting Kikuyu supporters of the Party of National Unity.
While Ruto allegedly armed and organized the attackers, Sang is accused of using his popular radio show to whip up hatred against Kikuyu tribe members and even broadcast coded instructions to direct attackers to their targets. Ruto’s lawyer, Karim Khan, called the case against his client “a very clear and glaring conspiracy of lies” and accused prosecutors of failing to properly investigate the case.
death and destruction of the Syrian people.” Syria’s acceptance yesterday did not detail how any disarmament could be carried out, and analysts cautioned that it was those details that would make the offer credible. “I don’t think this proposal was developed and thought through. I think it came a little bit out of the blue to solve a political crisis,” said Ralf Trapp, a disarmament consultant who worked for the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons from 1997 to 2006. “Now we’re in a situation where if we have political preparedness to go through with it, we now need to think in practical terms and that’s where, as always, the devil is in the details.” On Monday, Kerry said Assad could resolve the crisis by surrendering control of his chemical arsenal to the international community. Russia’s Lavrov responded by promising to push Syria to place its chemical weapons under international control and then dismantle them quickly, to avert U.S. strikes. Syria’s acceptance came less than 24 hours later.
Indian court convicts four in fatal gang rape case
N Indian court convicted four men yesterday in the deadly gang rape of a young woman on a moving New Delhi bus, a brutal crime that galvanized public anger over the widespread - yet widely tolerated - sexual violence faced by Indian women. As word of the verdict filtered out, protesters outside the courthouse chanted “Hang them! Hang them!” The men were convicted on all 11 counts against them, including rape and murder, and now face the possibility of hanging. The sentences are expected to be handed down Wednesday. Judge Yogesh Khanna said in his verdict that the men, who tricked the 23-year-old rape victim and a male friend of hers into boarding the bus they were driving, had committed “murder of a helpless person.” The parents of the woman, who cannot be identified under Indian law, had tears in their eyes as the verdicts were read. The mother, wearing a pink sari, sat just a few feet from the convicted men in a tiny courtroom jammed with lawyers, police and reporters. The hearing lasted only a few minutes, and the four men were quickly led from the courtroom by policemen after the verdicts were read. Speaking before the convictions, the father of the victim called for the four to be executed. “For what happened with her, these brutes must be hanged,” he told reporters as he left home for the courthouse. “Nothing but the death penalty is acceptable to us.” Protesters called the Dec. 16 attack a wake-up call for India, where women have long talked quietly of enduring everything from sexual comments to public groping to rape, but where they would often face blame themselves if they complained publicly. “Every girl at any age experiences this - harassment or rape. We don’t feel safe,” said law school graduate Rabia Pathania. “That’s why we’re here. We want this case to be an example for every other case that has been filed and will be filed.” Lawyers for the men have insisted they were tortured - a common occurrence in India’s chaotic criminal justice system - and that confessions, which were later retracted, were coerced. A.P. Singh, who at times has worked as a lawyer for all the men, said they were innocent.
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
THE NATION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013
Keshi thrilled with win over Burkina Faso N IGERIAN Coach Stephen Keshi has said he is happy with his wards after the Super Eagles defeated visiting Burkina Faso team 4-1 in an international friendly played on Tuesday at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna. Keshi, was full of praise for his team even as he chided the defenders for the goal that was conceded. "It was a good game. We needed a match like this to try new things out. "Overall I must say I'm satisfied, the team is taking shape and we can only get better." he said at a press
conference after the game. Kaduna fans were treated to a football fest as the full capacity Stadium saw Brown Ideye grab a brace and further goals from Newcastle United's Shola Ameobi and Emmanuel Emenike ensured Nigeria got an emphatic win. Stephen Keshi was, however, not happy his team which couldn't keep a clean sheet in the encounter but he expressed confidence these setbacks will be rectified. "Every but could would want a clean sheet especially if he is four nil up. I wasn't happy we conceded that goal, but we will try and fix
that area up. "We are ready for the next round of the African World Cup qualifiers. I don't have any preferences. You have to face what is in front of you. Any country that we draw is good enough for me." "There were a lot of positives from this game, we've learnt a lot and moving forward we'll take care of areas we feel should be taken care of." he added. Nigeria will know their foes for the next round of the Africa zone of the FIFA 2014 World Cup when they draws are conducted on 16th September.
From Segun Ogunjimi, Abuja
he as Sammy’s brother, cannot really force him to play for Nigeria, they could as well persuade him to do so. "Sammy is an adult and he makes his own decisions. Wherever he chooses to play we will support him as a family. Although we have been trying to encourage him to play for the Super Eagles. We will continue to persuade him to play for the Super Eagles but cannot force him to do so", Shola declared.
We want Sammy to play for Eagles—Ameobi
ESPITE the noncommital nature of Sammy Ameobi to lace boots for the Super Eagles, his elder brother, Shola Ameobi has raised the hopes that his Everton of England teammate will play for Nigeria soonest. Sammy was once invited by Coach John Obuh for the Flying Eagles qualifying series but was later dropped. It was then reported that Sammy was impressive while with the Nigerian junior
national team so he was disappointed that he couldn't make the cut despite playing regularly for Everton. Sammy it was learnt then vowed not to honour Nigeria's invitation again if he would be sent packing like Obuh did to him when he was first invited to the Flying Eagles’ camp. But Shola told NationSport in Calabar that in as much as
NFF shelves Ogunjobi/Kayode investigation panel hearing
HE panel set up to look into the relationship between the Pillar of Sports in Osun State, Chief Taiwo Ogunjobi, and Youth International, Kayode Olanrewaju, has postponed its first hearing till further notice. Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) last week inaugurated a committee headed by Barrister Chris Green, to work with another NFF Executive Committee
member, Alhaji Yusuf Ahmed Fresh, Professor Musa Garba Yakassai of the Bayero University, Kano, Mrs Edith Nwakire and Mr. Calistus Ebare. Alhaji Magaji Abdullahi is the secretary. The committee was given two weeks to submit their reports to the NFF leadership, but CAF seminar to be attended by Barrister Green, forced the postponement and NFF will
now fix another procedural hearing date. The panel, we learnt has received report from ASEC Mimosas, after the Ivory Coast side, sent their report via DHL to NFF. Ogunjobi, the former Secretary General of Nigeria Football Federation has vowed to make public all documents for Nigerians to judge after he must have appear before the panel.
Jonathan to host Okagbare today
HE President and Commander-inChief of the Armed Forces, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, will host the new queen of the track and field, Blessing Okagbare, on Wednesday morning at the Aso Rock Villa. A statement signed by Olukayode Thomas, Head of Communication Media Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) said the Presidential reception for Okagbare will be held during the council meeting. Okagbare did Nigeria proud at the just concluded Moscow 2013 IAAF World Championship where she won two medals, a silver in the long jump and bronze in the 200m. She also made the final of the 100m. President of the AFN, Evangelist Solomon Ogba, thanked President Jonathan for the honour and thanked the Minister of Sports for always bringing Mr. President’s attention to achievements of track and field, and for being a
Minister of Sports, instead of Minister of Football, as is often the case in Nigeria, ‘’ the athletics family is grateful to President Jonathan; this is the third time he is hosting us. The President hosted us when we won the African Youth Championships, he hosted the Sydney 2000 team whose silver medal was upgraded to gold and now, he is hosting Okagbare, we are more than grateful’’. Evangelist Ogba also expressed gratitude to the Minister of Sports Mallam Abdullahi for always being there for track and field, ‘’we would not have been African Champions at Youth, Junior and Senior level without the support of Mallam Abdullahi. He was with us in Porto Novo when we won the African title, he was with us in Warri when we won the Youth title, he was with us in Moscow when we broke the 14 year no medal jinx at the IAAF World Championship, he attends our local Golden League
and even the All Nigeria, he is the first Minister to give athletics priority, we are very grateful’’ said Ogba. Okagbare opened her international medal account at the 2007 All-Africa Games when she won the silver medal in the long jump.
TODAY IN THE NATION
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013 TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM
‘Nigeria’s children deserve more now, before the reckless spending on 2014 elections and political posters. Governments must insert ‘Summer Recess Renovation of Schools and Institutions’ into budgets. ’ TONY MARINHO
COMMENT & DEB ATE EBA
LITTLE over two years ago, on July 25, 2012 to be exact, this column tried to draw the attention of President Goodluck Jonathan to one good reason why the nation’s war against corruption has never made any serious headway, namely the highly selective application of the weapons used in the war against the scourge. I used the word corruption then not in its narrow sense of “dishonest exploitation of power for personal again,” – in Encarta Concise English Dictionary’s phrase. I used the word in its broadest sense of the abuse of trust for whatever reason. I illustrated my point with four examples; (1) the huge oil subsidy scam then just unfolding in which some of the beneficiaries were members of the president’s kitchen cabinet, (2) the blatantly nepotistic appointment of the First Lady, Dame Patience, as a Permanent Secretary in the civil service of Bayelsa State, 13 years after she had retired on her own as wife of then Deputy Governor Goodluck Jonathan, (3) the highly selective application of public service rules and regulations in the appointment and retirement of senior civil servants, senior military commanders, police chiefs and those of other uniformed services, and (4) more specifically, the arbitrary extension of office given the bosses of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) and the Nigerian Intelligence Agency (NIA), Alhaji Abubakar Mohammed and Ambassador Ezekiel Olaniyi Oladeji, respectively. The two had, on account of both age and years of service, been overdue for retirement. A year on after my article, things seem to have taken turns only for the worse, not better. And the main reason is clearly the president’s wish, regardless of all pretences to the contrary, to contest - and win – the 2015 presidential election, come hell, come high-water. The president has obviously become a hostage to this wish. Among those who seem to have taken him hostage is the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), former Senate President Anyim Pius Anyim, GCON. Anyim, it seems, has been exploiting President Jonathan’s apparent desperation for another term to gain as much undue advantage for his Igbo kith and kin in the federal civil service in return for a promise of the Igbo vote. There seems, at least in the eyes of Honourable Mustapha Bala, to be an irrefutable case of the gross violation of the principles of federal character as enshrined in the constitution against Anyim. Five months ago, Honourable Bala, a ranking member of the House of Representatives from Kano State, gave a full page interview in LEADERSHIP WEEKEND (March 16) in which he categorically accused Anyim of abusing his office. “Yes,” he said in the course of the interview, “the office of the SGF is corrupt and unfair to the North like I have stated before. Currently, we have many DGs (Directors General) of Northern origin whose tenure renewal is in the limbo because the SGF has failed to act on them.” The federal legislator went on to name several of the parastatals in question. Naturally, the SGF took umbrage. Four days after Bala’s interview, he took out a full page advert addressed to the Speaker, Rt. Honourable Aminu Tambuwal, in LEADERSHIP (March 20) in which he lambasted the legislator. Bala, he insinuated, was barely out of his diapers when he served as senate president with distinction nearly ten years before. After ticking off the “kindergarten” legislator – apologies, Chief Bisi Akande, the protem APC chief
40M NIGERIANS JOBLESS –Kolade
40M prospective ‘DEVIL’S WORKSHOP’
People and Politics By
MOHAMMED HARUNA firstname.lastname@example.org
Between Anyim and Bala
who recently dismissed Goodluck Jonathan’s presidency as “kindergarten”, much, of course, to the annoyance of all the president’s men – every inch of the way, Anyim concluded his advert by “humbly” requesting the Speaker to “kindly call Hon. Mustapha Bala to order.” Bala, he said, should be told to wake up “to the fact that Nigeria is no longer run by baseless ethnic sentiments as the divisive song has become archaic.” With due respect to the SGF, it is not a fact that the country has seized to be run by baseless ethnic sentiments. As the distinguished former Senate president knows all too well, Nigeria’s politics is a veritable bastion of ethnic – and sectarian – sentiments. This is why our politicians ask for – and all too often get our votes, not on the basis of their integrity, commitment and ability to deliver on their promises. They ask for, and willy-nilly, often get our votes essentially on the basis of where they come from and what god they claim to worship. Unfortunately, this ethnic and sectarian framework determines much of everything else in our society; our economics, our businesses, our bureaucracy and parastatals, name it. Take, for example, the parastatals over which the former Senate president and Hon. Bala have
HE above title is actually a wee bit misleading; it ought to be, playing with power – the power sector reform that is. If you have fo-
cused on Nigeria’s government as long as and as intensely as Hardball, you are bound to begin to see government officials as a bunch of comedians who have turned comical acts into statecraft or vice-versa. They seem to be possessed of the will, the wile and the immense capacity to do everything else but that which will benefit the people. And like people who are permanently afflicted with some peculiar dementia, they carry on their puppetry from age to age, from generation to generation without qualms. Why is Hardball going off the tangent in this manner? Simple, one would think that after all the hoopla about Nigeria’s power situation, all the money gone down the drains and the need to respond in an emergency fashion if need be, would drive the government of the day to pay an especial attention to the sector and deliver results at all costs. But that is not the way of the Nigerian government; nothing is sacred or sacrosanct for government around here it seems. The power roadmap which was presented to the public with fanfare by President Goodluck Jonathan had neither a road nor a map as it crashed shortly after the ‘show’. About two years down the line, the power sector reform agenda has been topsy-turvy with
been at war. There are at least eight – Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Nomadic Education Commission, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), PTDF and lately, Customs – whose leaderships have been in limbo for nearly a year now – except for Customs - simply because the SGF can’t seem to help the presidency, as it is his job, to make up its mind whether or not to renew them. On the other hand, there are other parastatals like the Debt Management Office, the Security Exchange Commission and the Federal Road Safety Commission the tenures of whose bosses have been quickly renewed at the SGF’s behest. He may have good reason for the difference in his speed of handling the two sets of parastatals but it may be more than mere coincidence that the second set has his fellow Igbos and Southerners as heads. If Anyim rejects these comparisons as unfair what can be his explanation for the single-minded determination with which the presidency, again at his apparent behest, has pursued the executive bill seeking to reduce the experience of the director-general of the Pension Commission (PENCOM) from 20 years to 15 just to suit the current acting DG, Mrs Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, who happens to be a fellow Igbo? The young lady may be a smart lawyer, but, for crying out loud, she is a 1998 graduate and came to her position as PENCOM’s pioneer company secretary and a general manager through a less than transparent procedure; she was appointed directly by the presidency instead of by the commission’s board as should’ve been the case. How, again, can the SGF explain recent goings-on at the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) which suggests he is being ethnicist? The agency, which is under the Ministry of Science and Technology and has the president as its statutory chair, has nine institutes, among them two scientific equipment and develop-
Power play results (if really any) coming in fits and start. Just last week, labour issues of the staff of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, which have lingered for so long and which we were told was to be sealed last May still linger. PHCN workers vow to resist handover to the new power firms, was the ominous headline last Monday. And the story reads: “Employees of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria have vowed to resist the takeover of the electricity distribution and generation companies by successful buyers until all outstanding payments are made.” About N400 billion was reportedly set aside for this huge pay off after a most protracted – well, let’s call it negotiations - and we were told that 75 percent of these soon-to-be-laidoff workers have been paid. But here we are, the job apparently has only been done after the fashion of comedians. However, nothing has so far exposed the lackadaisical and duplicitous manner of the so-called power sector reform than the current shenanigans at the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company, (Enugu Disco). Out of the 14 preferred bidders seeking to take over Nigeria’s generation and distribution companies, all but one met the
ment institutes, (SEDI) one in Minna, the other in Enugu. That of Enugu is headed by Professor Christian Nwajagu, the SGF’s fellow Igbo. At the expiration of the tenure of the agency’s DG/CEO in March last year, the minister at the time, Professor Ita Okon Bassey Ewa, advertised the post in The Guardian, PUNCH and Daily Trust. Sixty two people applied out of whom 16 were shortlisted for written tests and interviews. Seven emerged as the best, with Dr Mohammed S. Haruna, the acting DG, at the top with a score of 72.1%. Prof. Nwajagu came a distant sixth with a score of 58.1%. One of the things Hon. Bala accused the SGF of was that he sat on the recommendation of the minister for the appointment of Dr Haruna as substantive DG/CEO because his preference had been Prof. Nwajagu. Eventually, Dr Haruna got the job last April but it was backdated to April last year. Since then the professor has served out one year over his mandatory eight years as director. However, alone of his colleagues who have served for eight years, he has been given a letter to continue as director without tenure, contrary to the extant regulations. Not only that. There are speculations that the SGF’s office is making moves to have the SEDI under him removed from the science and technology ministry to education and made autonomous to boot. It all looks like in this war between the former Senate president as the SGF and our “kindergarten” legislator, the facts and the dialectics do not seem to favour the former.
IR, You are just an incurable northern irredentist. You praise (Lt-Gen T. Y.) Danjuma for his stupendous riches without alluding to corruption (“Another open letter to Gen Danjuma”, September 4). If it were OBJ (General Obasanjo), the phrase ‘ill-gotten’ would have been used to describe his gesture. OBJ had a cabal but Yar’Adua had ‘a so-called cabal.’ Double speak. Danjuma had about ten oil wells, most of which he acquired during Abacha regime. Is that a godly person and a man of principle? This, in a country where millions wallow in abject poverty? He sold one of them to a Chinese company and made a cool $2 billion. The genesis of the acrimony between them was that OBJ retrieved 3 out of the wells because he found it unfair and too much. We know the saintly patriots amongst us. Danjuma is not one. You are still pained that OBJ didn’t retain you as his spokesman when he became president. Too bad. Lanre. +234805363????.
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•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above August 21, 2013 deadline for paying up. The rule is that when the preferred bidder fails to pay on deadline, the reserved bidder almost automatically steps up to give a go at the bid. But the Bureau of Public Enterprises, (BPE) ,under such circumstance, ought to promptly trigger a meeting with the Technical Committee (TC) of the National Council on Privatisation (NCP). Such crucial meeting has however been stalled endlessly leaving the chairman of the TC, Atedo Peterside, with no recourse but to go to the press. Peterside says in a recent statement: “The reason we are unable to meet is because the DG of BPE… has surreptitiously vetoed all my efforts to convene a meeting of our technical committee of recent.” He added, “As you are all aware, the Technical Committee serves as an advisory/due process watchdog over the BPE and we are accountable to the NCP. Accordingly, I find the DG’s surreptitious attempt to keep us in the dark objectionable in the extreme.” It is said that Peterside had earlier written the DG of BPE informing him that allowing an extension to a preferred bidder amounts to granting it an unauthorised discount apart from degrading the integrity of the privatisation process. What is at issue here is power play; playing around with the destiny of the people and a troubling, ingrained corruption that seems to have no cure. Still wondering why we grope in the dark ages?
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Published on Sep 11, 2013