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Anti-subsidy protest

Ex-IG Ehindero, former CP docked

Soyinka to President: you're suffering from bad conscience

over N574m alleged fraud PAGE

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Nigeria’s widest circulating newspaper

VOL.07 N0. 2256

TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM

ONDO 2012:

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012 N150.00

Poll must reflect people's wish, Akinrinade warns

ACN, PDP, LP pledge free, fair election PAGE 61

N5000 banknote

It's total cancellation or nothing, Buhari's party,CNPP,ANPPtellJonathan

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Angry senators summon Information Minister over comment CBN mismanaged campaign, says ex-Ecobank chair Arewa hails President PAGE 2 Subsidy claims: FG pays fresh N56.7bn to marketers Stranded passengers at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja... yesterday. PHOTO: Abayomi FAYESE

Senate meets oil minister, NNPC boss over scarcity


2 NEWS

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

17 killed in Pakistani anti-Islam film protests

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•From left: Presenter of Nigerian Idol, ILL-Rhymes; Director Brands and Communication, Etisalat Nigeria, Enitan Denloye; CEO of Optima Media Group, Rotimi Pedro; Markerting Manager, Key Accounts, Pepsi, Patricia Ordia Iletogun; Chief Commercial Officer, Etisalat Nigeria, Wael Ammar; Nigerian Idol Judges, Yinka Davies and Jeffry Daniels at the Press Conference to kick off the third season of the Nigerian Idol reality show, which took place at Sheba Events Centre, Ikeja, Lagos.

rotests over an anti-Muslim film turned violent yesterday across Pakistan, with police firing tear gas and live ammunition at thousands of demonstrators who threw rocks and set fire to buildings. At least 17 people were killed and dozens were injured. Protesters also marched in at least a half-dozen other countries, with some burning American flags and effigies of U.S. President Barack Obama. Pakistan has experienced nearly a week of deadly protests over the film, Innocence of Muslims, which has sparked antiAmerican violence around the Islamic world since it attracted attention on the Internet in the past 10 days. The deaths of at least 47 people, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya, have been linked to the violence over the

CPC, ANPP, CNPP demand cancellation of N5000

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HE opposition All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) are not impressed by the suspension of the introduction of the N5000 note. Only an outright cancellation of the plan, they say, will satisfy them and the generality of Nigerians. President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday ordered a stay of action on the plan by the Central Bank to enable it enlighten Nigerians more on the issue. The parties declared yesterday that what Nigerians are demanding is withdrawal of the plan and not just suspension. National Publicity Secretary of CPC, Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, said the people’s wish must be respected by government. He said: “This is a welcome development as it firmly proclaims the constitutionally entrenched dictum that sovereignty within the democratic space rests with the Nigerian people. Indeed, any government exists for the welfare and security of the people. However, the overwhelming decision of Nigerians is for the total truncation of this plan and not just its suspension,” he said on the phone. “As a party, we align totally with Nigerians’ unconditional rejection of the planned currency re-denomination and ask the Federal Government to uphold the people’s wish.” Emma Eneukwu, National Publicity Secretary of ANPP, said: “We believe it is the weight of the people’s wish that tilted the recalcitrant stance of the Presidency on this highly unpopular and misguided planned policy. The joy of democracy is the sovereignty of the masses at all times, and we are positive that our great country is evolving in democratic best practices at an impressive speed, being catalysed by a patriotic and focused legislature. “A couple of days ago, we had a cause to condemn the despicable action of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in denying an opinion poll it carried out, whereby it was discovered that 75 per cent of Nigerians opposed the introduction of N5000 notes. “The curious rejoinder signed by the NBS management said that opinion poll ‘‘is not an official statistical tool because it is not based on any

Segun AJIBOYE, Gbenga OMOKHUNU, Abuja Sulaiman SALAWUDEEN, Ado-Ekiti/ Kolade ADEYEMI, Kano/ Oseheye OKWUOFU, Ibadan, Yusuf IDEGU, Jos, Sanni ONOGU statistical methodologies or systems that formulate the basis on which all of the NBS’ surveys are developed.” According to the survey, 75.1 per cent of Nigerians are opposed to the currency restructuring by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which will lead to the introduction of the 5000 note as the country’s highest currency denomination and the conversion of lesser bills to coins. “According to the poll, only 16.1 per cent of the Nigerian populace is in strong support of the CBN policy while 4.04 and 4.62 per cent are partially in support and against the currency restructuring, respectively. “We lamented that it was patently naïve, at best, and deceptive, at worst, for an agency as supposedly scientific and

well-informed as the NBS to go public with a ham’s act of a rebuttal which tried to discredit one of its own most authentic and effective ways of gauging the heartbeat of the people, just in a bid to play to the gallery. “Therefore, Mr President’s rejection of CBN’s plan has justified our stance that the NBS survey was a manifest signpost of the wishes of the people, as we questioned the competence of the Statistician General of the Federation in serving a nation of more than 150 million multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, and multi-creed peoples; for denying such patent and valid methodology for gauging the pulse of the people anywhere in the world.” CNPP National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, said: “It is refreshing that President Goodluck Jonathan listened to the voice of the people. That is the essence of democracy. It is unlike the case of Justice Isa Salami, where Mr President refused to listen to the National Judicial Council and the peo-

ple. We hope that the CBN will be able to adduce more cogent reasons and convince Nigerians before rolling out the new notes. Otherwise, is it not paradoxical to on one hand initiate a cashless society and on the other hand embark on jumbo printing of cash? Mr. Sam Ohuabunwa, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Neimeth Pharmaceuticals, welcomed the suspension of the banknote because, according to him, “It is the right thing for the President to do.” He added: “If Nigerians were vociferous in condemning a policy, I think it is the right thing for the President to listen to the people. The people have spoken against it, past leaders have spoken against it, and the National Assembly spoke against it. So, it is the right thing for Mr. President to do. “It is also good that the CBN has complied with the directive. It shows responsible stewardship. Nigerians are the owners of the nation.” Chief John Odeyemi, former

chairman, Ecobank and President, Lagos Chamber of Commerce, blamed the CBN for mishandling the campaign on the suspended currency. He said: “There was a lot of arrogance in the way they went about the campaign. By saying he (President Jonathan) has suspended the introduction, it is as good as saying that he has stopped it. It may be for one or five years, the bottom line is that the yearnings of the people have been addressed.” Prof. Kayode Familoni of the Economics Department, University of Lagos said the government’s action was an indication that it is a listening one. “The President has said the CBN should be given more time to sensitise the people on the benefits of the policy. That is okay. The CBN should be given the opportunity to convince us. I believe that the cost of the policy far outweighs the benefits. But if the CBN is able to convince us that the benefits out-weighs the cost, then that is good.” •Continued on Page 60

...angry senators summon Information Minister over comment T HE row between the Senate and Minister of Information and Communication, Labaran Maku, over alleged uncomplimentary remarks by Maku may be far from over. Yesterday, the Upper legislative chamber summoned Maku to appear before it on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 to offer explanations regarding some comments credited to him. The Chairman, Senate Committee on information, Media and Public Affairs, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, issued the summons in a letter addressed to Maku. The letter entitled “Re: Invitation to a meeting with the Committee” was dated September 20, 2012. It reads in part: “You are invited to a meeting with the Committee on a crucial national issue. Honourable Minister, please treat as urgent.” Insiders told our correspondents that “the way and manner Maku described Senate resolutions as a mere advice which is not binding on the President” was unbecoming of the minister. The Senate and the Presidency have been at daggers

Onyedi OJIABOR, and Sanni ONOGU, Abuja

drawn over non-implementation of Senate resolutions. Maku was reported to have told journalists that the resolution of the Senate urging President Goodluck Jonathan to take steps to halt all processes leading to the printing and issuing of N5000 banknote was not binding on President Jonathan. Only on Thursday, the Senate descended on Maku and only fell short of telling him to shut up, especially because he is not elected. The upper chamber expressed anger that an unelected Information Minister could have the audacity to declare its resolutions as a mere advice President Jonathan could choose to ignore. Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekwweremadu, who took on Maku on the floor of the Senate, came short of telling the Information Minister to shut up because he is a mere appointee of the President. Ekweremadu said the Senate, indeed the National Assembly, did not need the Informa-

tion Minister to tell them that their resolutions are not binding, “just as we don’t need to remind him that he was not elected.” He said there was no doubt that anybody who chooses to ignore the resolutions of the Senate does so at the expense of good governance. He noted that although the resolutions of the Senate are not binding, the positions taken by senators on issues are usually well thought out, indepth and borne out of patriotism. He said the time had come for President Jonathan to dust and implement the resolutions of the Senate on the Bureau for Public Enterprise. According to him, “if there are very fat buttocks that are sitting on it, he (President) should use the executive powers to push them out and get the reports implemented in the overall interest of this country.” He said: “There is a huge gap and anything to bridge this gap is helpful. Namely the response from the Minister of Information on our resolutions concerning the N5000 notes, that our resolutions are not binding.

“I don’t think we need the Minister of Information or any other minister to tell us that our resolutions are not binding, just as we don’t need to remind him that he was not elected. “We know that our resolutions are not binding but the positions we take in this Senate, especially regarding the resolutions, were all well thought out. They are borne out patriotism. They are well researched and they are an amalgamation of the views of very responsible Nigerians. “To that extent, they are very persuasive and any person who is ignoring the resolutions of this Senate is doing so at the expense of good governance and we cannot encourage such a thing. “I believe this is the opportunity for Mr. President to go and look for the resolutions of the Senate regarding the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) investigations. “If there are very fat buttocks that are sitting on it, he should use the executive powers to push them out and get the reports implemented in the overall interest of this country.”

film, which was made in California and denigrates the Prophet Muhammad. The Pakistani government declared yesterday a national holiday — “Love for the Prophet Day” — and encouraged peaceful protests. The U.S. Embassy spent $70,000 for advertisements on Pakistani TV that featured Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton denouncing the video. Their comments, from previous public events in Washington, were in English but subtitled in Urdu, the main Pakistani language. The deadliest violence occurred in the southern port city of Karachi, where 12 people were killed and 82 wounded, according to Seemi Jamali and Aftab Channar, officials at two hospitals. Armed demonstrators among a crowd of 15,000 in that city fired on police, according to police officer Ahmad Hassan. The crowd burnt two cinemas and a bank, he said. Five people were killed and 60 wounded in the northwestern city of Peshawar, said police official Bashir Khan. Police fired on rioters who set fire to three movie theatres and the city’s chamber of commerce, and damaged shops and vehicles. One of the dead was identified as Mohammad Amir, a driver for a Pakistani TV station who was killed when police bullets hit his vehicle, which was parked near one of the cinemas, said Kashif Mahmood, a reporter for ARY TV who also was in the car. The TV channel showed doctors at a hospital trying unsuccessfully to save Amir’s life. Police beat demonstrators with batons and launched volleys of tear gas. Later in the day, tens of thousands of protesters converged on a neighbourhood and called for the maker of the film, an American citizen originally from Egypt, to be executed. Police and stone-throwers also clashed in Lahore and Islamabad, the capital. Police fired tear gas and warning shots to try to keep them from advancing toward U.S. missions in the cities. Hospital official Mohammad Naeem says 45 people were wounded in Islamabad, including 28 protesters and 17 policemen. Police clashed with over 10,000 demonstrators in several neighbourhoods in the capital, including in front of a five-star hotel near the diplomatic enclave where the U.S. Embassy and other foreign missions are located. A military helicopter buzzed overhead as the sound of tear gas being fired echoed across the city. The government temporarily blocked cellphone service in 15 major cities to prevent militants from using phones to detonate bombs during the protests, said an Interior Ministry official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to talk to the media. Blocking cellphones could make it harder for people to organise protests as well. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry on Friday summoned the U.S. charge d’affaires in Islamabad, Richard Hoagland, over the film. Pakistan has banned access to YouTube because the website refused to remove the video. Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf urged the international community to pass laws to prevent people from insulting the prophet.


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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4 NEWS

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Ex-IG Ehindero, former CP docked over alleged fraud

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ORMER InspectorGeneral of Police, Mr. Sunday Ehindero and former Commissioner of Police in charge of Budget under him, John Obaniyi, were yesterday docked before an Abuja High Court over alleged fraud. They were arraigned by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) over a six count-charge of criminal conspiracy and misappropriation of about N574.4 million Police fund while in office. They pleaded not guilty. The arraignment of the two accused persons followed the dismissal of their preliminary objection to the charge. The duo had asked Justice Mudashiru Oniyangi to strike out the amended charge for lack of jurisdiction, adding that it constituted an abuse of court process. Dismissing their objection, the court held that there was sufficient evidence and prima facie to warrant granting the prosecution leave to arraign the accused persons.

Kamarudeen OGUNDELE, Abuja Justice Oniyangi also said the court had the jurisdiction to exercise that discretion. After taking their plea, counsel to Ehindero, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), urged the court to grant his client bail on self-recognition as a former Inspector-General of Police, a very senior member of the Bar and a holder of the Commander of the Federal Republic (CFR). He promised that he will not jump bail, if granted. Obaniyi’s counsel, Abubakar Odariko, also asked the court to admit his clienf to bail on selfrecognition. The prosecution did not oppose the application for the bail of the accused persons but asked the court to impose conditions that would ensure that they attend trial. Ruling, Justice Oniyangi admitted the accused persons to N10 million bail each and a surety in like sum who must swear to an affidavit of means. Before adjourning till

November 12, for trial, the court ordered that the accused persons be remanded in Kuje Prison, if they failed to meet the bail condition. According to the charge, the accused allegedly conspired with each other between May and November, 2006 to use their position to confer corrupt advantages upon themselves by placing the sum of N300 million in a fixed deposit account at Wema Bank Plc where it yielded an interest of N9.8 million for them. The money was part of the N557.9 million donated by the Bayelsa State Government to the Nigeria Police Force for the procurement of arms, ammunition and riot control equipment. They also allegedly placed another N200 million from the donation in a fixed deposit account at the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc where it yielded N6.5 million. The accused allegedly converted the interests that accrued from the two fixed deposits to their personal use.

The alleged offences are contrary to Sections 19, 25(1)(a), 26(1)(c) and punishable under Sections 19 and 25(1)(b) of the Corrupt

Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000. Ehindero was specifically accused of making false statement to Olayinka

Aiyegbayo, Jane Asuquo and Franklin that the sum of N16, 412,315,06 interest generated from the deposits were expended on operational duties.

Stallion Group wins Hyundai Korea award for Nigeria

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NTERNATIONAL conglomerate, Stallion Group, has won a major award from Hyundai Motor Company, Korea in recognition of its excellent performance in Nigeria. Hyundai Motor Company honoured its exclusive Nigerian distributor, Hyundai Motors Nigeria Limited, during the 2012 Hyundai Africa Dealers Convention held at Bali, Indonesia. Mr. Jang Ho Lee (Executive Director), Head of Africa Regional Headquarters, Hyundai Motor Company handed over the award to Mr. Haresh Vaswani, Vice Chairman of the Stallion Group in recognition of Hyundai’s excellent sales growth in Nigeria. Commenting on the award, Vaswani said: “We are proud that our association with Hyundai has progressed impressively over the years. Hyundai is a major global brand that is making a great impact worldwide in the automobile market. Stallion is committed to growing the brand to greater heights in key sub-Saharan African countries. Stallion Group has invested in assembly plants and extensive countrywide sales and after-sales infrastructure to run its Hyundai operations, operating them to international standards unmatched in Nigeria.

•Mr. Jang Ho Lee, Head of Africa Regional Headquarters, Hyundai Motor Company (Right), handing over the award to Mr. Haresh Vaswani, Vice Chairman of the Stallion Group, in recognition of Hyundai’s excellent sales growth in Nigeria.

Police get 50 patrol vans, decorate officers who arrested Cynthia’s killers

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HE police yesterday took delivery of another batch of 50 units of Toyota Hilux patrol vans for effective patrol of the nation’s four zonal borders. Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar who commissioned the vans said the vehicles would be deployed to check all forms of trans-border crimes, especially arms smuggling, illicit proliferation of light arms, human trafficking as well as drug trafficking. According to Abubakar, the police will synergise with relevant sister security agencies to ensure a water-tight security at the borders. “The Border Patrol Unit is also expected to liaise with the Police Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU) and Force Intelligence Bureau to checkmate the influx into the country of suspected terrorists and others with varying criminal intentions,” the IGP added. Abubakar warned against misuse of the vehicles, stressing that they are to be deployed for the purposes for which they were acquired. Meanwhile, the seven-man police team that arrested the killers of Cynthia Osukogu was yesterday accorded recognition by the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and honoured by the police authorities. The officers and men from Area E, Festac, Lagos included ACP Dan Okoro, DSP Gregory Imoh, ASP Mariam Ogunmolasuyi, ASP Agbaje Yakubu, Inspector Joseph Edo, Sgt. Patience Biokoro and Sgt. Frank Okorobon. Sergeants Biokoro and Okorobon were promoted to the rank of Inspector while Inspector Edo became Assistant Superintendent of Police. Assistant Superintendents of Police, Ogunmolasuyi and Yakubu were promoted to the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police, while DSP Imoh will be proceeding on Superintendent of Police course. The promotions take immediate effect. IGP Abubakar who announced the promotions stated that ACP Okoro could not benefit from the instant promotion because he was only recently promoted to his present rank. Director-General of the National Orientation Agency, Mr. Mike Omeri commended the police officers for their patriotism and dedication to duty, saying that his agency would continue to recognise hardwork and dedication to duty by public servants. He said the agency had instituted Civic Recognition Award for public servants and other Nigerians who display exemplary courage in their various endeavours.

David West criticises Ekwueme over support for ethnic autonomy Bisi OLADELE, Ibadan

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ORMER Minister of Petroleum Resources, Prof. Tam DavidWest, yesterday criticized former Vice-President, Dr Alex Ekwueme, for lending support to calls for autonomy of ethnic nationalities. Describing it as disappointing and disastrous, David-West, who spoke to our correspondent on telephone in Ibadan yesterday, said that it was least expected of Ekwueme, who swore to uphold the Nigerian constitution. Asserting that it was a contradiction for people to express their belief in further existence of Nigeria as an entity and still talk about autonomy for ethnic nationalities, West said it was doubtful that promoters of the idea believe in the unity of the country. Ekwueme had earlier in the week stated that etnic autonomy does not translate to division of the country. But David-West said: “It is a cowardly way of saying “Let us break Nigeria.” We can’t divide Nigeria into over 200 ethnic parts that make up the country and still say that the country exists. Rather, we should talk about ethnic integration and cooperation. We have over 200 ethnic units in Nigeria. Anyone who is talking in support of ethnic autonomy and then turns around and talks about the integrity of the Nigerian nation is contradicting himself. It is a contradiction.”

•Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State (left) looks on while the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammadu Sa'ad Abubakar III (middle), engages in a warm handshake with the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Akwa Ibom State, Bishop Cletus Bassey at Governor's Lodge, Uyo when the Sultan paid Akpabio a courtesy call.

Subsidy claims: FG pays additional N56.7bn to marketers

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R Ngozi OkonjoIweala, the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, on Friday said that the Federal Government had paid additional N56.75 billion to oil marketers out of the 2012 subsidy claims. While briefing newsmen in Abuja, Okonjo-Iweala, also Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, said that the payments were made to 14 companies after being screened by the committee on oil subsidy claims. She said that the companies were Bovas and Company Ltd., Folawiyo Energy Ltd., Forte Oil Plc, Ibafon Oil Ltd. and Integrated Oil and Gas Ltd. Others include M.R.S Oil Nigeria Ltd., Nipco Plc, Oando Plc, Northwest Petroleum and Gas Ltd., Rainoil Ltd., Shorelink Ltd., Swift Oil Ltd., Tecno Oil Ltd. and Total Nigeria Ltd. “The ministry of finance has been making payments and screening the activities of the

Senate meets Alison-Madueke, NNPC boss, others on fuel scarcity •Resurgence of fuel queues unacceptable, says senator

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ORRIED about the perennial fuel scarcity in parts of the country, the Senate yesterday invited Petroleum Resources Minister, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, the Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Andrew Yakubu, to find a way out of the problem. Apart from Alison-Madueke and Yakubu, the Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Mr. Reginald Stanley, was also invited to the meeting. They are scheduled to appear before the Senator Magnus Abe-led Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) next week. A statement by Senator Abe said that the long queues of vehicles at filling stations seen in Abuja and some other cities in the country are

marketers,’’ she said. The Minister said that the sum of N56.755 billion was paid this week to the marketers that had been screened successfully. According to her, the ministry has been on a mission to

Onyedi OJIABOR, “unacceptable.” It said: “We thought that the era of Nigerians queuing at filling stations for indeterminate hours to procure PMS and other petroleum products, was indeed gone forever. It is, indeed, an embarrassment that precious man-hours are wasted in the quest to fulfill a basic need. “What was initially perceived as a glitch in the distribution chain has now ballooned into queues in what now seems to be a gradual return to that inglorious era. “The Senate Petroleum Resources Committee intends to engage those in charge with a view to ascertaining and charting workable solutions to the challenges in the downstream sector. “To this end, we will meet with the Petroleum Resources Minister, the NNPC GMD, PPPRA and other relevant stakeholders next week.”

carefully screen and verify the oil marketers. “We are preparing to continue this new system where we carefully screen marketers of petroleum products. “We will carry out the screening before and after

any payment is made,” she said. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), recalls that the Federal Government said it had paid N78.9 billion to 43 oil marketers for 2012 subsidy claims as at Aug. 24.


COMMENTARY 5

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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N a despairingly tragic turn of events, the world woke up last Tuesday to the devastating news that Christopher Stevens, the American ambassador in Libya was senselessly killed. It was reported that Islamist gunmen attacked the US consulate as well as a safe house refuge in Benghazi, Libya. The act was supposedly for revenge against a film that directly insulted their beliefs. The violence in the eastern part of the city of Benghazi had been culminating amidst the 10thanniversary of the September 11 attack of the US by al-Qaeda. Indeed, the violence in the Middle East as a whole has reached a fever frenzy in Egypt, Libya, Iran, Yemen, Syria and Tunisia. The fact that terrorists use religion to instigate bloodshed and mayhem is intolerable. A fundamental trait in a reasonably objective person would be to respect another’s personal belief, but violent actions should be unanimously condemned. A majority of the world cheered and supported the unity and stance taken by patriotic nationals in the uprising of what the history books will remember as the “Arab Spring”, amidst mostly non-violent campaigns, Arab nationals rose against the darkening tide of dictatorship and corruption. The protests that took place were strategically planned and, interesting to note, they took place for the purpose of the betterment of the struggling working class. Egypt was a primary example of a non-violent type of protest. The marches that took place in Tahrir Square, Cairo, were so successful because the strategy was not only nonviolent but meticulously organized. The inflammatory antiMuslim film that has been blamed in the upsurge called “The Innocence of Muslims” was allegedly filmed by Blue Cloud Studious in Santa Clarita. It is disturbing on investigation to learn that the film negatively portrays the Prophet Mohammed as sexually promiscuous in several graphic films of a pseudo-pornographic nature. The maker of the movie, Sam Bacile, who identifies himself as an Israeli Jew, claimed that “Islam is a cancer, period”. The film has now sparked many parts of the Middle East to rioting and Egypt is no exception. Last week, after a particular violent demonstration, Egyptian president Mohamed Morsey on his official face book page addressed the crises thus: “The presidency condemns in the strongest terms the attempt of a group to insult the place of the Messenger, the Prophet Mohammed…and condemns the people who have produced this radical work. The Egyptian people, both Muslims and Christians, refuse such insults on sanctities.” But after a discourse with President Barack Obama in what the White House describes as a review of the “strategic partnership between the United States and Egypt”, Morsey criticized the attacks that took place in Libya. While visiting the headquarters of the European Union in Brussels, Belgium, Morsey said, “Those who are attacking the embassies do not represent any of us.” Following the fall of several dictatorship regimes in the Middle East, it is disturbing to note that moderate- Muslim governments seemed to have unwittingly paved the path for more extremists and terror unto their communities and

The folly behind the wisdom

international borders. Last Tuesday’s attack was indeed a dire setback to international peace, and is bound to put a strain in relations not only with the US but other countries too. While dictatorships and absolute monarchies have stifled and oppressed the Arab people for decades, several factors have pointed to the reasoning that these dictators were able to maintain an uneasy peace in their countries. Six years after the capture and execution of Saddam Hussein, the state of affairs in the ruined shattered streets of Iraq has left many Iraqis questioning the future of their country. The “Arab Spring” that was the series of revolutionary protests and demonstrations in the Arab world has somehow paved a path for several embattled countries with fatal security challenges, suicide bombings and mounting terrorism. Many sectarian clashes in the region have been described as spillovers of uprising resulting in the culmination of regional protests. Similarities have been drawn by observers comparing the Arab Spring movement and the prodemocratic, anti- Communist Revolutions of 1989 (known as the Autumn of Nations) that swept through Eastern Europe and the Communist world, in terms of scale, gravity and significance. But it is important to note that several differentiating factors – for example, the use of internet or social media to highlight struggles— were an advantage for protesters in the Arab Spring. Over a year after the fall and death of the former Libyan leader, Colonel Muammar Ghaddafi, Tripoli and other parts of Libya stand in ruin amidst constant bombings and sectarian crisis. Libya witnessed a popular uprising against the former dictator that lasted from February to October 2011. Libyans voted on July 7, 2012, in elections that observers called free and fair. The Libyan General National

Congress replaced the Transitional National Council in August; they are to govern the country until elections are held on the basis of the new constitution. The US Embassy in Libya only resumed operations on September 11, 2011; and the consular services for US citizens resumed August 27, 2012. After the general rejoicing of the downfall of Ghaddafi though, crime levels in Tripoli have significantly increased. There are increased reports of car theft, armed robbery, burglary and other even more serious crimes. Since the revolution, it would seem that the Libyan police and internal security institutions have not fully reconstituted themselves and, shockingly, 16,000 criminals released from prison by the former regime are still roaming the streets of Libya. Another contributing factor to the volatile environment are the thousands of firearms that were looted during the riots from government buildings and storage facilities. After last Tuesday’s siege in the eastern part of the country, Libya’s new prime minister, Mustafa Abu Shagour, said he would strive to improve security by boosting the national police force and army as well as collecting weapons. Even prior to the discovery of oil, the Middle East has been a region of religious conflict and wars over other rich resources and land. The fall of the Ottoman Empire paved the way for rising European imperial and colonial powers interested in securing various territories and controlling access to Asia. Edward Said, in his highly acclaimed book Orientalism, claims that for centuries Western populations have been acclimatized to a type of propaganda and vilification of Arabs and the Middle East, and this has provided an excuse for involvement to ensure “stability” for the “national interests” of powers that want to be involved in the region. The cultural stereotyping and apparent racism were magnified in the 1980s war films, always depicting Arabs as the bad guys. As a result on the terrorist attacks against the US on September 11, and the resulting “War on terror”, that imagery still exists. The Middle East is the most militarized region in the world and most arm sales take place there. Arabs are a suppressed people that generally see Western influence as a major root cause of the current problems in the region; this has led to a rise in acts of terrorism and anti-Western sentiment. The Iraq War/ invasion, conflict between Israel and Palestine, the crises in Lebanon, strikes against Afghanistan and Sudan, invasion of Libya and now the crises in Syria has culminated into a chaotic state of affairs. While the invasions and strikes may have been methodically planned, the aftermath of such actions may not have been fully considered by the invading countries. The West appears to have responded with what looks like a genuine humanitarian intervention attempt; but more amplified measures need to be taken to curb the escalating violence and bloodshed. On reflection, the concept of overthrowing merciless dictators may have seemed an initially wise one. But after years of brutal war and the spilled innocent blood of thousands of victims, we cannot help but be perplexed at the folly behind the wisdom.

Fuel subsidy protest: Jonathan suffering from bad conscience, says Soyinka

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OBEL laureate, Pro fessor Wole Soyinka, says President Goodluck Jonathan is suffering from a bad conscience. Prof Soyinka deplored the President’s recent condemnation of the January anti-oil subsidy removal in Lagos and said it is proof that he is “lamentably alienated” from the pulse of the nation. President Jonathan, speaking in Lagos on Tuesday, had alleged that the anti-fuel subsidy removal mass protest, organised by civil society groups in Lagos in the wake of the removal of fuel subsidy in January, was manipulated by an unnamed class of people to embarrass his government. He said it was not a true reflection of the position of the masses, but that of the sponsors who, according to him, hired top musicians and provided packed food and bottled water for the protesters. In a statement tagged, ‘Not Again, Jonathan’, Soyinka said it is the inalienable right of Nigerians to protest and it is wrong of government to stop such rally as it did during the January protest. “The most generous response that can be given

Segun AJIBOYE

to President Jonathan’s recent statement on the people’s fuel subsidy protest is that he is suffering from a bad conscience. The worst -which I fear is closer to the truth – is that he is lamentably alienated from the true pulse of the nation, thanks perhaps to the poor, eager-to-please quality of his analysts, those who are supposed to provide him an accurate feel of the public mood,” Prof Soyinka said. He condemned the deployment of soldiers to disperse the protesters, describing it as a violation of the rights of the people and a grave danger to democracy, and a warning. “The president sent in the army and shock Police squads to forcibly seize and occupy grounds from a demonstrating public, a violation of the people’s rights as entrenched in the constitution, a right – as it happens – that has been further consolidated by a pronouncement of the courts of law. This should be seen as a grave danger to democracy, and a warning.” The statement:

“The most generous response that can be given to President Jonathan’s recent statement on the people’s fuel subsidy protest is that he is suffering from a bad conscience. The worst - which I fear is closer to the truth – is that he is lamentably alienated from the true pulse of the nation, thanks perhaps to the poor, eager-to-please quality of his analysts, those who are supposed to provide him an accurate feel of the public mood. “Since I have had the opportunity to contest this perception of the protest with him directly, it is clear what kind of interpretative diet he prefers. The nation needs all the luck it can get. “The president sent in the army and shock Police squads to forcibly seize and occupy grounds from a demonstrating public, a violation of the people’s rights as entrenched in the constitution, a right – as it happens – that has been further consolidated by a pronouncement of the courts of law. This should be seen as a grave danger to democracy, and a warning. “Both the participants, and those who – myself included – even though un-

able to be present, lent both vocal and moral support to the demonstration, have been maligned and insulted by such reductionist reasoning. “The culture of public protest appears to be alien territory to President Jonathan, which is somewhat surprising, considering the fact that he has not only lived in this nation as a citizen but served in various political offices. He has lived through the terror reign of Sanni Abacha whose ruthless misuse of the military and the secret service did not prevent demonstrations against perceived injustice and truncation of people’s rights. “Jonathan’s pronouncements truly boggle the mind. What is this obsession with bottled water, comedians and musical artists? Must demonstrators drink water from the gutter? Is protest no longer viable when sympathizers cater to their needs, supply decent water and food rations? “And since when have entertainers been deemed a sign of unseriousness in a protest rally. Static or moving, demonstrators boost

their morale in any way they can, including dancing and even mini-carnivals. Sit-down occupation and hunger strikes are also legitimate public weaponry against unacceptable state conduct and policies. “It may interest the president to know that during the SNG protest march on the legislative houses, a march, not for any individual, but for the sanctity of the constitutional rules of succession, discussions were on for the acquisition of mobile toilets for the next stage, in case the protests attained the momentum of continuous encampment. Presumably Jonathan would have preferred to march into office over a field of human waste. “What is especially ominous in Jonathan’s distortive re-visit of that campaign is his attitude of self-commendation, from which one deduces a clear intent to repeat the same action if the people choose to exercise their right of assembly in the future. It sounds warning of a state of mind infected by one of his predecessors who was never weaned of his military antecedents, a predisposition to intolerance of

dissent that was expressed in mindless muscularity and contempt of judicial decisions. “We should not wait for a tragedy to happen before we serve notice that democracy is incompatible with the arbitrary deployment of armed forces against a people gathered or marching peacefully in freedom, articulating their grievances with or without accompaniment of songs, clowns, water sachets or bottled water. “The reaction of the public to attempts at military intimidation is always unpredictable - government at the centre should know its limitations, act responsibly, and refrain from incursions that override even the expressed wishes of state governors, and the rights of a people rendered fractious by decades of misgovernment. “Let there be no further attempts at revisionism. The Nigerian people’s right to gather and protest remains inviolate. Gani Fawehinmi Park – and any place of choice for a people’s assembly - is a people’s space. It should never again be invested by menace and attempted coercion.”


6

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

7


8

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012


9

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

I

N William Shakespeare’s ‘As You Like It‘, the exiled Duke Senior famously said – ‘Sweet are the uses of adversity, which like the toad, ugly and venomous, bears yet a precious jewel on its head.‘ Global adversity therefore, and reactions to it in the political and economic lives of some nations and the lessons there from, for the rest of us in the global community, form the basis of my analyses today. I start in France where the Socialist regime that has just been elected is fulfilling its campaign promise of taxing the rich to cut France’s huge budget deficit and some business men are fleeing France to do business in other parts of Europe. We move next to the US where the president, Barak Obama had to remind his opponent in November’s presidential elections that a president must be father of all and not just a few. We look at a part of the world Latin America- where the global financial crisis has had no adverse effect at a nation called Chile, which has managed growth positively in a largely mono product economy like Nigeria. We examine all these three situations and events meticulously to see how the issues they throw up affect the way nations manage both their economic and political systems as well as their regional and global environment at large. Let us go back to France where the Socialist government of President Francois Hollande is poised this month to tax any rich person 75% of earnings in excess of 1m euros which is $ 1.3 m. Since this was not a secret agenda but a campaign issue, French businessmen bolting from France into safer tax havens in other European capitals know what they are doing since they know it will be suicidal for the new government not to fulfill its electoral and campaign promise for which it was elected. Such businessmen must be commended for their commercial pragmatism as he who runs today can still fight tomorrow. Indeed this may be a right operational strategy for such people as the new tax regime will be for only two years and will be in force for that long to wipe out France’s budget deficit and return it to 3% of GDP as required by EU standards. Which to me is a new way of fighting budgets ,most different from the IMF and World Bank budget deficit solutions of retrenchments, austerity and layoffs leading to social discontentment in such environments. I could not but wonder at the French Socialist government’ s ingenuity and boldness in taking this step and not creating social resentment and upheaval led by the rich who are so massively taxed and seem to have taken it in their stride. A radio program I listened to later convinced me that it is French history and political culture that is responsible for the rich accepting such high tax as a fait accompli by a government that won an election on such a campaign promise. One of the business men affected who said he will not flee France because of the 75% tax gave his reason and it is that , that I find most fascinating and educative as a Nigerian. He said French business men would get by in the two years of the high taxes for a number of reasons. France, he said, has good infrastructure, high levels of education and productivity and the energy prices and affordability are reasonable enough for businesses to survive the two year period of the high taxes. That to me is wonderful and I wish I could say the

Tackling political and economic adversity

same for my country Nigeria. Another businessman though was not so optimistic saying that the taxes targeted rich young entrepreneurs and some will bolt abroad and never return to France which is a sort of brain drain or flight from which no nation can recover. But it is the reason that the French rich have become used to bridging inequalities that I find most fascinating as it reminded me about the French revolution of 1789 when the rich were murdered en masse and a unique murder equipment was made for the operation called the guillotine. Really I suppose that memory more than anything else made the rich resigned to their fate on the 75% tax as the historical alternative or its dark memory in France’s revolutionary history is not a fate to be contemplated or wished on French businessmen of today. Yet, it was from the same French Revolution that brutalized and murdered the rich and mighty in France that the cry of liberty, equality, and freedom rose to make democracy the ascendant ideology of our time. Really, sweet indeed and in very bloody terms, are the ‘uses of adversity‘ for the rich and poor in France. Next is the US where I have decided to start with Barak Obama’s rather patronizing response to his opponent’s testy gaffes on US politics and diplo-

macy. Mitt Romney at rich men fund raisers of the Republican party - at $50000 per head-reportedly told his audience that Americans who rely on government hand outs like health care, who rely on government for food and housing-about 47% of them will rather vote for Obama and will never vote for him in the November US presidential elections. He called such people – victims. In another video he said the Palestinians are not at all interested in peace with Israel judging from their utterances and actions. The two incidents center on US domestic politics and Middle East or world politics and Mitt Romney has not been politic on either. In the victims categorization he displayed a billionaire’s arrogance and contempt for lesser opportuned human beings not to talk of the poor. He could count himself lucky he was not born and living in France during the French revolution. Yet even in the US he seemed to have committed political hara kiri since he assumed that if the 47% victims don’t vote for him the remaining 53% would; which is very faulty arithmetic as his disrespectful statement will diminish that phantom 53% faster than he can ever contemplate. Romney has ridiculed adversity in American politics and would rue the day he made those two statements come November 6. The bitter sweet

thing about his utterances though is that he has firmly put the mark of the unbending rich on a Republican party that is trying to portray itself as having the common touch and has created an electoral liability and burden for the party in its run off to the presidential elections. On the Palestinians not wanting peace he needs to be educated not to say such things since the US is the major peace broker in the Israeli –Palestinian debacle which is a major threat to world peace given its global religious and socio political ramifications. He should be asked to look at events in the China Sea where Japan, a US ally, is at dispute with China, a foremost US trade partner, over the sale of some Islands to Japan and note that the US cannot be seen to be taking sides as he did when he condemned the Palestinians and seem to be favoring Israel as striving for peace in the Middle East. In effect then, these two examples of socio political values and political cultures in both the US and France provide lessons from which Nigeria can draw lessons, analogies and inspiration. Our attempt at making power constant and available even as the performing power minister is rusticated; as well as the publication of the names of those who received fuel subsidy without delivery of anything are similar at least to Greece’s ‘name and shame‘ tactics of making the rich pay tax and contain Greece’s budget deficit - just as the French taxed their rich astronomically to achieve the same effect. The recent debate on the introduction of the 5000 naira bill is a democratic exercise but it needs to take place in a constitutional milieu and not just because the CBN has the approval of the presidency to do it and this is where the example of Chile comes in handy for the rule of law.

I listened to a BBC Hard talk program involving a Chilean Minister on Development and I was impressed by the level of economic management and respect for the rule of law in Chile . Chile according to the Minister has long realized that high debts, high deficits, nervous markets and high interest rates are the symptoms of economic malfunctioning and financial mismanagement and Chile has grown economically on its major product, copper, while trying to avoid these pitfalls stringently. Chile is the largest global exporter of copper and China is the biggest importer and the two are doing brisk and mutually beneficial business but the Chinese economy has slowed down and the Minister admitted this too will affect Chile’s growth which is one of the highest in the world at 6% just like that of India. Chile, the Minister said will decelerate but in a planned way that will not affect jobs but still attract foreign investment while accelerating diversification to reduce its dependence on copper. When challenged that certain important projects like power and hydro electric plants approved by the Chilean governments have met obstacles in terms of operations from court rulings on environmental breaches the Minister replied that the government respects the judiciary which he said is quite independent in Chile. Which means that Chiles prosperity has not gone into the head of its leaders in such a way as to make a mockery of the rule of law. Which makes one to conclude easily that in Chile’s case -sweet are the uses of prosperity-when it is not allowed to be high jacked by adversity in the midst of plenty; just as the fuel subsidy beneficiaries did recently with Nigeria’s oil revenue- right before our eyes.


10 COMMENTARY

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Will Sanusi floor our honourable men again? vincentakanmode@yahoo.com

H

E who fights and runs away, they say, lives to fight another day. The stage appears set for a full expression of this aphorism in the brewing confrontation between the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Alhaji Lamido Sanusi, and members of the Senate and House of Representatives over the planned introduction of N5000 note to the economy next year. Two years ago, the CBN governor engaged the National Assembly members in a similar confrontation. He did not only emerge as the victor, he was lionised by millions of Nigerians who saw his victory as a symbol of the people’s triumph against their rapacious representatives in the two chambers. It all began at the eighth convocation of the Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State where Sanusi, as a guest speaker, threw a verbal missile at the lawmakers, declaring them as a burden on the nation’s exchequer. A quarter of the nation’s recurrent expenditure, he said, was being consumed by the two chambers. If that continued, he argued, the nation’s economy would never improve to meet its target of being one of the 20 largest economies in the world by year. His statement drew public applause, but it was a sword driven into the hearts of the legislators. They roared in exasperation as they summoned him to appear before an investigative panel led by Hon. Alli Ndume. The panel accused Sanusi of deliberately inciting the public against the National Assembly by dishing out false information about its finances. If what they expected was an apology, they were wrong through and through. Sanusi reached for his bag, waved a document he had sourced from the Budget Office and insisted that the Federal Government’s recurrent expenditure for 2010 was N536 billion out of which the National Assembly spent N136 billion. “This is a document of the Federal Government of Nigeria prepared by the Budget Office of the Federation, endorsed by the Minister of Finance, approved by the Federal Executive Council and submitted to the National Assem-

•David Mark

•Sanusi Lamido

bly by the President. If these figures are correct, then N136 billion is 25 per cent of the Federal Government overhead,” he said. The lawmakers stood crestfallen and helpless as Sanusi and his retinue of aides sauntered out of the chamber in a gesture of triumph. As fate would have it, the planned introduction of N5000 note has provided a golden chance for the lawmakers to get even with the banker. It was no surprise, therefore, that it was the issue the Senate latched on as soon as it resumed from its long break on Tuesday. The senators took turns to condemn the introduction of the high denomination, describing the arguments marshalled by Sanusi to justify its introduction as nothing but mere sophistry. The Senate President, David Mark, said: “If Nigerians say they don’t want a particular policy at any given moment, there is no harm in government retracing their stance on the issue, and I think that is the situation that we find ourselves. I have listened to the arguments from those who support it, but those arguments are simply not convincing. They appear to me to be highly theoretical and technical in nature, and they do not address any practical issue on ground. Any policy that does not address issues directly but just talking about indices we cannot verify for now should wait. “We have not reached that level where we are just talking of hypothetical cases all the time. I think

the disadvantages of the N5000 notes at the moment far outweigh not introducing it and on balance, we should not go for it. And also, from the contributions on the floor, we are all in support of the fact that the timing is wrong and the policy is unnecessary at the moment and the arguments being advanced are not convincing, and there is no urgent need for it to take place now. “There is no ambiguity on our stance on the issue. I am not sure that Sanusi is aware of the Constitution. If he was, he would make reference to us before addressing the issue.” Sanusi says the new note is a fait accompli, and the only choice left for Nigerians is to learn to live with it. The Senate says the denomination should not proceed beyond the realm of conception. The lawmakers believe that a policy endorsed by only 16 per cent of the population and vehemently opposed by the remaining 84 per cent cannot be said to represent national interest in a country that runs a democracy and not aristocracy. The tail, they insist, cannot wag the dog. A stalemate thus ensues and Nigerians wait with bated breath to see who blinks first. To be sure, Sanusi is not a stranger to battles. Indeed, he had warned in an interview he granted the Financial Times of London less than two weeks into his tenure that he was pre-

pared for battles. As the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, he said, he would not restrict himself to talking about money supply, interest rates and inflation like the governor of the Bank of England. “The financial system plays such a pivotal role in the economy that the governor of the central bank has to see himself, even though not a politician, as an important part of the government with a responsibility for delivering economic growth,” he declared. In the said interview, he also threatened to fire the chief executive of any bank found to have cooked the books, but many Nigerians took his words as empty threats, saying he had no power to remove a bank’s chief executive without the consent of the board of such a bank. It took Sanusi only two months to make good his threats. On August 13, 2009, he fired the managing directors of five banks in one fell swoop and appointed new ones. He also showed the executive directors of the affected banks the exit door. His turbaning as the Danmajen Kano in June this year at the height of Boko Haram insurgency in the ancient city was proof that Sanusi is a man that treads on roads the devil himself dreads. Surprisingly, the ceremony held and not a single shot was fired by the dreaded sect throughout the period. To convince anyone who was in doubt about his new status, he went to the office six days later in his full chieftaincy regalia. His audacity also came to fore a few days ago with a verbal missile he launched against former President Olusegun Obasanjo for saying that the introduction of N5000 note to the economy would result in further inflation and compound the continually dwindling value of the naira. Sanusi responded by saying that Obasanjo is not just a bad economist but a very bad one too. “This is an interesting country because my uncle or my father, who is our former Head of State, Gen. Obasanjo, is a very successful farmer, but he is a very bad economist. He stands up and says that this higher denomination will cause inflation and improve hardship,” he said. With its outright rejection of the new notes on Tuesday, the National Assembly has set the stage for a fresh battle with the Central Bank Governor. Unlike the clash between the two parties in December 2010, the odds appear to favour the National Assembly with public resentment of the policy and Jonathan’s reported promise to persuade Sanusi to put the new denomination on hold. But after all the grandstanding, it will be a surprise if the Sanusi we know gives up without a fight.

A truckload of messages for Mallam Sanusi Knucklehead

S

OMEHOW, I do believe that all hope is not lost in our collective bid to convince the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, and the President Goodluck Jonathan-led government to apply the brakes on the printing of N5000 notes. My optimism derives not only from readers’ response to last week’s piece titled ‘Did Sanusi actually say that?’, but also from the unequivocal stance of both chambers of the National Assembly that the arguments being bandied in support of the new notes are, at best, all noise without rhythm. Like the President of the Senate puts it, this latest collaborative effort between the government and the CBN is not only curious but comes out as “highly theoretical, technical in nature and does not address any practical issues on ground.” And this is hoping that someone would not dismiss Mark as a retired military officer without the faintest idea about the dynamics of the Nigerian economy. But should these proponents of N5000 notes find Mark’s remarks wide off the mark and out of sync with the aggregate opinion of the men of power, it should not be difficult for them to decode the body language of the members in the Green Chamber where one of them, Patrick Ikhariale, Chairman, House Committee on Power, declared that some voodoo economic theories were being concocted to deceive the government and Nigerians into swallowing a bitter pill that bodes no good for anyone. He said: “These people are misleading Nigerians by comparing this policy with the case of the United States. But they fail to tell us the truth that, in the US, only $100 bill has been used in transaction since 1969. Any attempt to allow the N5000 note into our economy will lead to genocide and economic sabotage!” I am aware that, as should be expected, the Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, did not waste time in reminding us that the resolutions reached by the National Assembly are not binding on the executive. They are, in the main, advisory and nothing compels the President to obey such directives. Maku was quoted as saying: “I believe we should allow the CBN to take leadership initiative on this issue. This is not an opinion poll debate but a technical matter and the heated debate will not help in the management of our economy. The National Assembly has oversight functions and the Executive takes resolutions of the National Assembly seriously. But resolutions are not Acts of Parliament. We can discuss, debate resolutions, take them seriously and factor them but they are not Acts of the National Assembly.” Hmnn, who else could have said if not the government’s paid town crier? But, how can that be? I ask. If what Maku is saying is that we should surrender our right to question government’s fiscal

policies to a megalomaniac and a select group of businessmen in power to handle for us, then he missed the point. Even in the worst of dictatorships, people still summon the courage to tackle the government. No society is built on a remote system that is permanently on the mute mode. And so, on this matter, the National Assembly has raised germane questions in line with its constitutional responsibility. Is the CBN’s action illegal as the lawmakers have opined? Does the policy negate the apex bank’s cashless initiative? Were the hawks at the CBN aware that the money-printing binge is not acceptable to Nigerians? Was it right to side-track the leadership of the National Assembly in the processes leading to the adoption of the policy? Do lawmakers have any role to play and is the Economic Management Team (EMT) the body constitutionally recognised to approve such fiscal policy? Questions, questions and more questions. Beyond the lame rebuttal issued by the National Bureau of Statistics on the data obtained from its website where an opinion poll showed that over 75 per cent of Nigerians are solidly against the printing of N5000 notes, we all know the pendulum is not swinging in the direction of the proponents. In fact the NBS shot itself on the foot when it whimsically whined that the particular site is ‘‘a social interactive tool to engage users of our statistical data’’ but ‘‘it is not an official statistical tool because it is not based on any statistical methodologies or systems that formulate the basis on which all of the NBS’ surveys are developed.’’ Oh please! Wouldn’t it have been more dignifying if these folks had kept quiet? When a body trusted with the responsibility of feeding the government and the people reliable data for developmental purposes begins to tamper with the truth as seen on its website, then we can only assume that someone high up there must have questioned the rationale behind a government institution making public a data that contradicts the government’s position. Now, we do not need to set up a panel to unearth reasons behind our perilously flawed data! Yet, it is not all messages that can be censored. Some Knucklehead readers would want Sanusi to ponder over these posers. Kunle ( 07043537000) writes: “It is obvious that President Jonathan is helpless. This good-natured man is held captive. It is the duty of all us to collectively stand up to feudal oligarchs who are working the script to demonize Jonathan because of 2015 so that he fails. At the end of the day no one will remember their cruel policies, everyone will blame Jonathan, then they would have used us to achieve their political irredentism.” Another reader, who sent a message from 08023157985, thundered: “I feel highly insulted. Why is Sanusi Lamido Sanusi getting away with this attitude? The president must do something fast before this sparks another crisis. By the way, knowing Obasanjo, why has he not reacted? It’s a bit weird,

With

Yomi Odunuga E-mail:yomi.odunuga @thenationonlineng.net SMS only: 07028006913 ominous to me and many others!” And Seye (08033894418) fired this retort: “We don’t need to bother about the introduction of the N5000 note again because I am sure that the President has given his approval and the contract for the printing awarded. But if the president knows that the people of Nigeria actually ‘elected’ him last year, and the members of the National Assembly are sure that they are representing us, they should allow the lower denomination to stay.” There was also Patrick (08036844032) who suggested that someone must be pushing for the policy because: “There are lots of international awards to be won next year by governors of central banks of developing countries especially in Africa for evolving policies as dictated by the West. Are you sure Sanusi’s aides and advisers are not whites? Does our President truly understand these fellows with the way he buys into everything they offer? Please double check. Is it surprising that our de-facto Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is in agreement with Sanusi? Is the drum not being beaten by the West? Of course, there are many other reactions that could not make it to this page. What is important is that there appears to be a groundswell of opinion against the policy. Nevertheless, if it is true that President Jonathan has promised to soft-pedal on the matter, then he should be commended for having the courage to take that bold step. Contrary to what some of his aides might tell him, it is not in any way defeatist to consent to the people’s position but rather a display of statesmanship. But it must be stressed that, just like it happened in January when the people trooped out en-masse to protest the unilateral hike in the prices of petroleum products, this President’s submission to the will of the people should not be denigrated with the slur of being obtained on a platter of bread and pure water offered by some unnamed opposition party men! If only some people can learn that, in this democratic journey, you can’t be a winner all the time, they’ll appreciate what it means to tread softly. Case closed!


‘We used to pluck groundnuts, now we pick bullets’ •Inside the killing fields of Kano

My stand on 2015, by Sule Lamido –Pages 48&49

–Pages 19 - 22

THE NATION, Saturday, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

A JAYI CROWTHER

First African Bishop’s home town in a shambles ...100 yrs after

11


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

12 OURTEEN-YEAR-OLD Adeola Adeoye looked thoroughly confused when asked what he knows about Reverend Samuel Ajayi Crowther. Adeola, a senior secondary student of Lanlate High School, Lanlate, Oyo State, has heard about Samuel Ajayi Crowther being a kinsman, but he knows little or nothing about the exploits of the man who single-handedly put the town of Osoogun on the world map. The young man, and indeed most young boys and girls of his age in Osoogun, are not alone in this total or partial ignorance about the deeds and history of their kinsman who was taken into slavery, but who later returned to become the first black African Bishop and was credited with the translation of the Holy Bible into Yoruba language. Even among the elders, late Samuel Ajayi Crowther exists only in the minds. With few or no important edifice to his name in the town, it is only a matter of time before the memory of the former slave boy is deleted from their consciousness. Osoogun, according to Chief Bolatito Bambi, Bashorun of Osoogun, was a large happy settlement until it was torn apart by invaders who seized its inhabitants and sold them captives into slavery in 1821, leaving the town desolate because those lucky enough to escape never returned. “Osoogun was a large town where people from neighbouring towns came to trade. But invaders came and took our fathers and mothers and sold them into slavery, leaving the lucky ones to abandon the town.” Among the unfortunate indigenes of Osoogun sold into slavery in 1821 was a little boy named Ajayi, but who would later become a world-renowned missionary. The whole town of Osoogun was in flames. Ajayi, his mother and two sisters ran into the hands of two of the raiders, who put nooses round their necks. They were led away to join thousands of others under the same affliction. They were later marched to Iseyin where Ajayi was exchanged for a horse. This was how he became separated from his mother and was taken to the town of Ijaye where he was sold into slavery. Ajayi was later sold to the Lagos slave market from where he was sold to the Portuguese traders. The Portuguese traders put him on a ship him with other slaves and set out to sea. Fortunately, the British anti-slavery warship, the Myrmidon, attacked the Portuguese schooner and destroyed it at sea. About 102 out of the 189 slaves on board the Portuguese ship perished in the resultant shipwreck. Within six months of his arrival in Sierra Leone, Ajayi had so sufficiently applied himself to his studies that not only could he read the New Testament of the Bible, he was also appointed a pupil teacher in a local school earning seven and half pence a month. He assisted Rev. Raban in collecting the vocabularies of the Yoruba language. In 1852, he published and revised his enlarged version of Yoruba Grammar and Vocabulary and the translation of four Books of the New Testament – Luke, the Acts of the Apostles, the Epistle of James and the Epistle of Peter. Crowther and Thomas King did an excellent and commendable translation of the Bible and the Prayer Book, which are still regarded as works of high literary value today. It was credit to the effort of Reverend Samuel Ajayi Crowther that the town,

F

•The tree to which the Late Crowther (inset, left) was tied as a slave

n Segun AJIBOYE and Innocent DURU n made desolate after the attack in 1821, was reestablished around 1912. “When papa (Crowther) was on his death bed, he told his daughter that he would wish that his town was reestablished. So after his death, they gathered the remnants of our people scattered everywhere and sought permission from the Alaafin to reestablish the town.” Fast-forward to 2012, a period of a century, Osoogun sadly is still firmly rooted a few steps away from pre-civilisation era, with electricity, an abandoned hospital building and a secondary school, overgrown with weeds, as the only notable presence of government. Osoogun, hometown of the forgotten legend, is located in Iseyin Local Government Area of Oyo State. It is bordered by fellow Ibarapa tribes like Lanlate, Maya, Eruwa and Iseyin, a little farther away. To access Osoogun, the erosion-battered mud road may leave you visiting the mechanic for a change of your shock absorbers. In the town, as you move round, you are left to believe that the people are definitely not aware of the first stanza of the national anthem: ‘the labour of our heroes past shall never be in vain'. A visit to Osoogun, the home town of the late Black Bishop, Samuel Ajayi Crowther, points to the direction that the memories of his labours are fast going down the drain, except something drastic is done. If urgent steps are not taken to remedy the situation, it would be only a matter of time before his contributions are perpetually dumped in refuse heap. Findings by The Nation showed that no remarkable edifice that can stand the

,

We always travel for about an hour to Eruwa whenever there is need to get medical care. Imagine what would happen if we are to have emergency case

,

•Pa Matthew test of time is named after him in his home town. In the outskirt of town, the tree to which he and others who were taken into slavery were tied before their journey into the world of the unknown, stands, with some makeshift brick blocks as the only sign that the tree holds an important place in the history of the town. A few distance away from the tree, a rustic signboard stands in the middle of the bush, with its message cleaned off by age and weather. According to Pa, the board was erected in 1975, a bore a sign that the site would be made a tourist centre in memory of Ajayi Crowther. “The government came and promised us that they wanted to turn the site into a tourist site. We were all happy, we bought cows and celebrated that papa was finally being honoured. But that was where it ended.” That was not the first time the lofty dreams of the people of Osoogun would be turned into mirage. Almost two decades ago, the women society of the Anglican

•Chief Bambi Church in the town established a hospital to take care of the health needs of the people. The hospital, named Samuel Ajayi Crowther Memorial Hospital, was the best in the entire Ibarapa area and as far as Iseyin. According to Pa Bambi, “Sick people from neighbouring towns came to the hospital. It had the best facilities that you can find in any hospital. Even the white people donated cars and equipment to run the hospital.” But the tides changed when the military government took over the hospital and handed it over to the local government arm of government. Today, the Samuel Ajayi Memorial Hospital in Igboora is desolate and dilapidated, with rodents and reptiles as its occupants, and leaving the people to go as far as Eruwa, a neighbouring town about 40 kilometres away to see a doctor. Today, the sign post announcing the hospital has been partially wiped off by weather, making it difficult for passer-byes to read the inscription at a glance. A larger


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

•Kinsmen lament

•Ogunbiyi part of the buildings have been overgrown with weed, while other parts not yet taken over by weed are already in a state of disrepair. Also, the church and school named in his honnour have seen better days, as they are either dilapidated or barely able to stand. For example, the mud structure, Samuel Ajayi Crowther Memorial Anglican Church, Osoogun, has multiple cracks on its walls, while the roof is riddled with holes. The church building is probably exercising patience for a heavy down pour to finally cave in. Given its deplorable state, the building named after the first Anglican Bishop qualifies for a sheep pen than a place of worship. At the present rate, it will probably take a few more years for the next generations of Osoogun to forget about their famous kinsman that took the name of the obscure village to international recognition. Though members of the community feel very proud to hail from the same community with the deceased bishop, they

•Collapsed part of St. Mary's Anglican Primary School

•A view of the community

•Adeoye lamented the poor state of all that was named in his honour. Decrying what he described as an undeserving treatment to late Crowther, Chief Bolatito Bambi, who at a guess should be in his 80s, said: "We are very proud that Late Samuel Ajayi Crowther came from our community. We treasure him so much and we have made efforts to bring his remains to this village to no avail. We have still not given up because we believe that there would be a tremendous change in our fortunes if we succeed in bringing his remains here from Lagos. When we tried years ago (decades ago) we had his remains exhumed. There were still some strands of hair on his skull. I carried it in my hands and used it to touch my head. At the end of the day, they said we would not be able to take it away because as a bishop, he would have to be buried where he worked until his death. His grave is still there at Ebute Metta. But we feel very sad that even if we cannot have his remains buried here, there is nothing tangible in

terms of monumental buildings in this down the drain.” community that was named after him. The The Bashorun, and indeed, several few places like the church and the hospital people in the town are unhappy with men are not in good shape. While we are still of God, who they chorused make use of the managing the building for church service, Yoruba language Bible without giving a the hospital has long been shut." thought to the man who did the translation. Going down memory lane, he recalled: "It pains us that Christians, especially "The present church was initially not pastors here in the South-West, who have named after Crowther. It was established immensely benefitted from Crowther's together with a primary school in 1949 and effort of his translation of the Bible to named St. Mary's Anglican Church and Yoruba language, have refused to show any Primary School respectively. While we concern about his legacies. Most of them retained the name for the primary school, have become billonaires using the Yoruba we later renamed the church, Bishop Samuel Bible that Crowther translated, but care less Ajayi Crowther Memorial Anglican Church. about immortalising him, particularly in his The good parts of the primary school home town,” he said. buildings have collapsed. The church we The indigenes of Osoogun are also named after Crowther is also not in good unhappy about the situation of the only shape. It is a mud building and from all hospital in the town. indications, it is neither a befitting place of "The hospital which was named after him worship nor good enough to be named in ceased to function several years ago. The honour of Bishop Crowther. hospital was built by the women wing of “We have really been putting in our best the church. They equipped it so well that it to make sure that his memories are kept for became the best hospital in the whole of as long as mankind lives, but our efforts are this environment. People from Lanlate, seriously limited by finance. Iseyin and other In 1989, there was a move by communities always came Iseyin Local Government here for medical care then. Chairman named Alawode The women managed the to turn this area to a tourist We treasure him so hospital for about three centre. We welcomed the years after which they idea. Even though most of us much and we have handed it over to the are paupers, we gladly government because the made efforts to contributed money to buy cost of running it was too bring his remains two cows and other much for them. to this village to no necessary things for the "It was when the celebration. military came that the avail. We have still “We invited people from whole thing went bad. not given up all walks of life because we They ordered that the thought our dream had hospital should be because we believe finally come through. managed by the local Shortly after the celebration, that there would be government. Before we the chairman could not knew what was a tremendous execute the plan because his happening, all the change in our tenure ended almost equipment disappeared immediately he came up one after the other till we fortunes if we with the idea. Unfortunately, got to the sorry state we the man who succeeded him succeed in bringing find ourselves now. We did not pick interest in the solely depend on prayers his remains here project. That was how the and God on health from Lagos plans died naturally. The matters. We thank God whole money we spent that we have not been planning for the project went Continued on page 14

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This is Osoogun, Ajayi Crowther’s home town

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THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

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•A view of the crumbling Bishop Crowther Memorial Anglican Church

•Fatimo frying garri with daughter

‘Osoogun is the oldest community in this area, yet we’re the poorest’ Continued from page 13 •Millenium Development Goal VIP toilet built by federal government in 2009

most members of the community fled the area and resettled in other neighbouring communities. He said it took the initiative of late Crowther for the community to resettle in its present base. He said: "We are living in abject poverty here. We are the oldest in this area, yet we are the poorest. No other community in this area has produced an outstanding person like Crowther, yet we are totally abandoned and left to rot away in abject poverty. We are peasant farmers. “We have no good roads, no good market, and no single industry where our children can get employment after their education. The males resort to riding okada and the females petty trading after secondary education. Other communities that came after us and have no record of outstanding personalities have become big cities. “We always travel for about an hour to Awojobi Hospital in Eruwa whenever there is need to get medical care. Imagine what would happen if we are to have emergency cases? Apart from a Millenium Development Goal VIP toilet, electricity and bore hole, we have no other social amenities as

you can see. "We don't toy with the memories of late Crowther in this community. Apart from translating the Bible to Yoruba, we regard him as the father of present day Osoogun. After the Fulani invasion, many of our people ran away and resettled in other communities. It was Crowther that instructed his children to get the permission of Alaafin to resettle where we are today. “He took that decision because he never wanted his roots to perish. Unfortunately, there is practically nothing to keep his memory alive in a community that he made popular and resettled after a tribal war. If the government can give awards to people who have done little or nothing to shape the image of the country, Crowther deserves a posthumous award and befitting edifice in his name here in Osoogun," he said. Pa Mathew Olalekan, the Otun Olosoogun, is angry that the spirits of the people have been dashed several times after lofty promises. For him, our reporters’ presence in Osoogun may end up as part of the failed promises

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having outbreak of sicknesses since the hospital closed down. We recently got information that medical personnel would be sent to the hospital very soon to commence work afresh." Sure enough, God has been merciful to the people of Osoogun. Despite the absence of a hospital in the town, the people, who are majorly farmers and petty traders, have enjoyed good health, making the death rate in the town relatively low. However, the people's headache has been compounded by the backward state of the community in terms of development. Osoogun of 2012 still wears the primitive look of the Osoogun ravaged by fierce war in 1821. And going by the account of the people, the community is unarguably worse off than it was a century ago when Crowther was taken away as a slave by the Portuguese slave traders. Around the town, no single sign of a modern drainage system or tarred roads. Instead, the community is littered by collapsed and dilapidated mud buildings and red earth roads bordered on both sides by shallow water ways created by erosion. Apart from epileptic power supply and only one functional of three bore holes in the town (two of the boreholes were sunk by private people), the only notable presence of government in the town is a government-sponsored Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) public toilet, named: VIP Toilet. The toilet, constructed in 2009, is antithetical to a community where the use of a modern toilet would probably be strange. In its place would have been a structure that would have more impact on a larger set of people. The community is totally not in sync with basic developments in the modern age. They had remained incommunicado until MTN and Airtel erected their masts in the community recently. That most members of the community are emaciated and look much older than their real ages, is simply an indication of the fact that poverty walks on all fours in the community. The males are predominantly peasant farmers while some of the women engage in petty businesses. Felix Ogunniyi, an elder in the community, decried the backward state of the community. According to him, Osoogun is the oldest and previously the centre of business in the whole of the area. He traced the woes of the community to the invasion of Fulani warriors that left the community desolate. He recalled that after the Fulani invasion,

We have many members of this community that are doing brilliantly well in their various life endeavours, but they don't come back home to see the condition of the community, let alone contribute to its development

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of the past. While not sparing past administrations, who he said have failed the town, he also blamed some prominent members of the community for its underdevelopment. He regretted that some of the successful members of the community have ceased to come home or have anything to do with the development of area. "We have many members of this community that are doing brilliantly well in their various life endeavours, but they don't come back home to see the condition of the community, let alone contribute to its development. “If they have been as concerned as we are about the future of this area, they would have used their clout to influence the government at state and federal levels to do something about the community. We have called several meetings to discuss the way forward for the community but it seems not to work. “People only came for the meeting twice and thereafter they stopped coming. One thing we are sure of is that God who used the Late Bishop Crowther to put this community's name on the world map would raise people that would develop it. We have tried our best and will continue to do more until we can no longer do anything again because of age," he said. A female member of the community, who identified herself as Fatimo, appealed to government to come to the aid of the community. At her age, she said she has not been to a bank nor have the idea of how it operates. "The idea of a bank that I have is the small safe we keep money. I don't know any place called bank or have an idea about what they do there. I fry garri using the cassava I get from the farm. The income I make from this is very small and barely enough for us to eat. When I don't have cassava, I stay at home doing nothing. "We wish to live a good life like people in other communities. The government should come and help us because we have been neglected for too long. We need tarred roads, hospitals, schools and banks like you said. Christians in the Yoruba speaking states irrespective of denomination should also come together to do something in this community in honour of Late Bishop Crowther because it is his sweat that they are enjoying today." As the people of Osoogun continue in their struggle to honour the late Reverend Samuel Ajayi Crowther, the man who translated the holy bible into Yoruba language, and first black African Bishop, the chorus is for governments at all levels to come to their rescue.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

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I don’t rob, I only sponsored robbers –Suspected receiver of stolen goods

•Recovered slolen vehicle n Ebele BONIFACE n The second suspect, Ugochukwu Joseph (35), an indigene of Nkanu, Enugu State, says he is not an armed robber but merely lent money to Tony. He said: “I am happily married with four beautiful children. I reside at No. 5 Pet Edochie Street, Okpanam Road, Asaba, Delta State. I am a businessman. I deal in pharmaceautical products. I lent N20,000 to Tony when he approached me for a loan. Although I am not a money lender, we usually help one another when it comes to that. Any genuine trader will confirm that. “Tony told me that he wanted to buy some electronics and needed N20,000 to facilitate its transportation to Nkpor. He told me to come to Army Gate Onitsha to wait for him. Two weeks later, I got to Army Gate hoping to meet him, but the person that I saw was the officer in charge of SARS, SP Abba Kyari and his boys. “He told me that I was under arrest and I asked why they wanted to arrest me. He told me that I was being arrested on the orders of the Commissioner of Police, Umar Manko, and that I would have enough time to explain in writing when we got to Scorpion House, Lagos. That is why I am here. “Tony is just a friend to me. He merely told me to lend him the sum of N20,000 and that if I were interested when the goods arrived, I would take part. I had not known Tony up to one year. I am not a money lender. I did what traders do for fellow traders. “If I knew that he would use it to facilitate transportation of stolen goods, I would not have given him a dime. I swear, I am not a criminal. I did what a friend should do for another friend, and that is common among traders. I don’t even want to be used as a prosecution witness. I do genuine business. “My only regret is to have lent him money without being a money lender. If I were a licensed money lender, I would not have received this embarrassment because a money lender is not after what the borrower wants to do with the loan; he is more concerned with its repayment as and when due.” The third suspect, Chukwuma Ede (47), a native of Nkanu, Enugu State, said: “I have five children, but I lost one. I deal in tokunbo (fairly used) tyres on Fatai Atere Way, Ladipo, Lagos. I stay in an open space. I am a member of the gang, but I do not follow them to the scenes of operation because of my fractured leg. I would not be able to escape if it comes to running away or being chased by an angry mob. “My role was to network for the gang. I used my mobile phone to communicate with members and assigned roles to them. I am not a greedy person I took whatever they decided to give me when they shared the loot.

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N alleged dealer in stolen goods and native of Akwuzu, Anambra State, Anthony Eze (37), has confessed that he sponsors robbery operations, hijacking of trucks loaded with expensive goods, snatching of vehicles and looting of warehouses because of the easy money he makes from such activities. Narrating his role as a member of a seven-man robbery gang that has been operating since 2009, Tony said: “I am married with five children. I have a shop at old Motor Spare Parts Market in Nkpor, a town in Idemili North Local Government Area, Anambra State where I reside with my family. “I don’t know Sunny, John Paul and Chukwuma (alleged co-suspects) very well. The only person I know very well is Ugochukwu (another suspect) because he is a fellow business man. We are so close and friendly that when I didn’t have enough cash to settle criminals who supply stolen goods to me, he easily made some cash available to me and even bought some of the stolen goods. “The only person I know is Obinna. He once brought milk track. During that time, I was a hustler in Ladipo Market, Lagos. I did not know that Obinna was an armed robber until police started looking for him. At times, he came to Onitsha with his products, and he used to help me to get vehicle parts. “As I am talking to you, I don’t know whether my wife has been delivered of a baby because she was in labour when policemen whisked me away. “I am not a money lender. I sponsor armed robbers, vehicle snatchers, hijackers and diverters of goods in transit, especially truck loads and containers, and warehouse looters. But I have never participated in any operation. I stay in my shop and wait for the arrival of goods. “Fellow traders in Nkpor thought I was importing the goods because I sold them to other traders at very cheap rates. They (traders) patronised me well because they make much gains buying from me. For instance, an engine of a lorry that is worth N600, 000 can be sold to them for N200,000 or less. “I used to tell my customers that I was selling my stocks cheaply because I needed quick money to pay the white men who supplied the goods to me and that paying them on time and regularly made them to have confidence and trust in me. “I used to be generous with the gang members to the point that whenever any of them is confronted with financial problem, I assisted them. I sponsored the marriage of many of the gang members. That is why they call me Father Ochiriozua, MD Tony Enterprises. My company is not registered, but it is more popular than registered ones.” Recalling the circumstances surrounding his arrest by operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Lagos State Police Command, Tony said: “I met these three rogues (Ede, Sunny and Tony) at Igando. They told me that they needed money to hire a truck to take their imported goods to Nkpor Old Motor Spare Parts Market. I gave them N18,000 but they said the one they hired broke down at Benin and I gave them another N27,000, making it a total of N45,000. “When the goods arrived Nkpor, I kept it in my warehouse. I had not finished selling the goods when SARS operatives stormed Nkpor and whisked me away to Lagos. I am not an armed robber. I only sponsor armed robbers as a business man, I have never followed them to rob or loot. I made money selling stolen goods to the envy of my peers. “When I was an apprentice, my master told me that the biggest problem of an apprentice was the capital to start business with. But the people who encounter the greatest financial problems are apprentices with poor financial background. But that should not worry us because those who are rich were once poor and all of them that are now rich had passed one or two crucibles of risk taking before they found their bearing. “He also told me that the love of money is the root of all evils but solves 80 per cent of man’s problems if not 90 per cent, as there are fortunes left for the gods and fate to decide. He emphatically said that there is no serious rich man that did not take one or two risks to cross the poverty line. “I had thought that taking risk in business is going to native doctors’ shrines to do charms for wealth and moving business, but my starting business in Nkpor opened my eyes to the realities of trading on the fast lanes. I discovered that majority of those doing excellently well and better were people involved with cheats, liars, armed robbers, drug pushers, car snatchers and warehouse looters, just to mention a few. “I have done more than seven types of business since I got freedom from my master. Yet, none of them got near to making me think of counting millions of naira until I ventured into sponsoring looters. My only regret is that upon all the money I made, I have no landed property or any tangible asset I can fall back upon if I regain my freedom.”

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“I was the one who went to Sunny to ask him whether he knew somebody who had a truck and was willing to buy a lorry load of electronics. It was then that Sunny called a man named Ndubuisi in Abuja, who said he was not around but gave Tony’s phone number to Sunny. When Tony came, Ede, Sunny, Tony and I met in a hotel. Tony gave Sunny N45,000. He first gave him N18,000 and later gave him N25,000 to get the truck. “I later rushed to Nkpor to collect our share of the sold electronic. One Ejima, who gave the goods to me, is still at large. Ejima is our gang leader from Imo State. “I know Ejima very well because he sells gas at Idumota, and he told me that there were goods he wanted to bring. I told him that as at that time, I had nobody to call and that if it was not genuine, he should tell me. He said his brother was importing goods from abroad and that Ejima was riding state-of-the art cars. “I knew Sunny through my late brother, Mike, who used to sell clothes at Oshodi. When I called Sunny, he said he knew where to get a truck and he brought Tony who I had not met before. Tony said he came to Lagos to look for lorry parts and would soon go back to Onitsha. “Ndubuisi called me and said he needed a truck to carry cigarettes and that they needed one that has cover. Sunny told me to get him some money because he had not eaten since he came. I gave him N100 as I had not much money on me. “I was the one coordinating. I communicated with everybody. My role was to network and I did it very well. But in spite of that, I was arrested.” The fourth suspect, Sunny Ezeilo (49) a native of Awkuzu in Ihiala Local Government Area, Anambra State, said: “I am an idle man. I have tried all types of business but none of them worked. I even tried government job but it did not work. I decided to stay at home since my wife trades in second hand clothes and had an income that could take care of the family. “Even the shoe I was selling nearly landed me in jail. I used to go to Vespa area along Badagry Road to buy second hand shoes. But each time I displayed the shoes, I ran into trouble. I decided to stay at home for some time. “It was while I was resting that these trouble makers came. It was Ndubuisi who linked me with them. I told him that I knew where to get a truck, and that was it! “The first day, Ede came with N70,000 and gave it to one Azuka to get the truck to evacuate the loot with. When Azuka demanded for more money and gave one unbelievable reason, Ede went to Tony and collected another N27,000 and later N18,000 and gave all to the truck man, yet he could not provide any truck. I became apprehensive and started thinking of leaving the gang. I was tired of the excuses Azuka was giving each time he collected money to look for a truck.

I was the one coordinating. I communicated with everybody. My role was to network and I did it very well. But in spite of that, I was arrested

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“When I realised that Azuka was playing games with us by obtaining N70,000 and later N18,000 and third N27,000 without providing any truck, I decided to quit. “They later called me on the phone, telling me that they had succeeded in taking the truck to the buyer at Nkpor and that they wanted to give me some money for my effort. I asked them how much but they said they would not discuss money on the phone because walls have ears. They said I should come straight and collect what they wanted to give me. “When I arrived, Ede told me to wait, that the man with my money would soon arrive. As I waited there, another man appeared whom I had never seen before. He asked me whether I was the Sunny they were waiting for and I said yes. He asked me whether they had given me my own share of the money and I said no. He then asked me to turn back and receive the money from somebody that stood behind me. As I turned to see the person at my back, I received a slap that dazed my eyes. It was then that I knew that they were SARS operatives. They handcuffed me simultaneously as they were slapping me. “My wife warned me not to have anything to do with the bad boys. She even promised to go and see her brothers to get some money to assist me in my shoe business, but I did not listen to her because I felt it was a woman’s advice which should not be taken seriously. Now, see where my stubbornness has landed me.” The fifth suspect, Johnpaul Ndubuisi (27), a native of Nnewi, Anambra State and owner of a shop at Block 3, New Ageline, Idumota, Lagos, said: “I am yet to get married because my fiancée was acting like a prostitute. I am a professional tailor. I sew clothes in commercial quantity. I can sew as many as 50 shirts and 50 trousers in a day. We sew the clothes for traders who sell them as imported clothes. “To tell you the truth, I did not know Chukwuma from Adams. The day I went to Igando to see a friend, a butcher who sells meat, to collect money for the clothes I sewed for him was the day I met Chukwuma. The name of the butcher is Nnamdi. “On another day, one Festus called me, telling me that they were in one hotel in Igando. This time, I wanted to go to Oshodi Market to buy clothes which I intended to sew for my customers when I met Festus. He told me it was he who called me and told me that he did one big business with one man but the man wanted to take the whole money. He said the man’s name was Raji Rasaki. “When we entered the hotel at Oshodi, I saw the man sitting with Chukwuma. We went and sat with them on one table. Chukwuma asked whether I would drink and I said yes. He told them to give me a bottle of beer. I rushed the beer and he ordered another bottle for me. As we were discussing business, Ejima, the gang leader, appeared. “I knew Festus at Festac town where I usually go to give clothes to designer tailors to work on. I usually go to Festus to do designs on the clothes I sewed. Festus gave me Ede’s number to call him. I am not an armed robber. I met these people at a beer parlour in one hotel. Ask them whether they knew me before. I am innocent. It was beer that put me in trouble. Now I really believe that free drink can cause stomach upset.” Explaining how the syndicate was smashed, Manko said on August 15, at about 2am at Adebowale Furniture Industry premises where there are warehouses belonging to G.W International Ltd, importers of Sharp electronics products, a 10-man robbery gang invaded the compound, shot sporadically and tied the security man before looting the warehouse. They loaded their loots, including Plasma television sets, air conditioners and counting machines, all amounting to about N35 million and tore the waybill in the drawer before zooming off with them in a green truck. The case, he said, was reported at the Alausa Police Station by the security guard and was later transferred to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad at GRA, Ikeja for investigation. The O/C SARS, SP Abba Kyari, travelled to Onitsha with some of his men as they investigated the matter. He said already, they had got hints of the buyer of the stolen goods, Tony Eze, in partnership with one Obinna who had been on police wanted list over more than five cases bordering on looting of warehouses, hijacking of containers and armed robbery. He said it was while SARS operatives were in Benin to arrest Obinna that they got hints that one Chukwuma was with Tony Eze at ‘33’ area, behind Central Police Station, Onitsha. They immediately alerted the SARS team that had reached Onitsha to trace Chukwuma and Tony Eze, which led to the arrest of the five suspects. He said SARS men were still spreading their dragnet to get the members of the gang who were still at large.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

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‘Tragic incidents that

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HEN Sampson Aloh’s parents gave him out to a successful businessman as an apprentice at the tender age of 14, he least suspected that arrangement would not take him to the land of milk and honey he had anticipated. He had finished primary school and looked forward to secondary education when the indigent parents handed him over to the Nnewibased businessman because they could not afford his school fees. It was agreed that Sampson would serve his master for seven years, after which the master would empower him to start his own business. It is a usual arrangement in the eastern part of the country that an apprentice would serve his master for an agreed period, after which the master would give him a substantial sum to start his own business. With this in his mind, Samson tucked his few clothes in a sack he got from his father and gladly left home to commence his apprenticeship in Nnewi, one of the commercial nerve centres of Anambra State. As he bade his parents farewell, the thought that they would be separated by time and distance forced tears to roll down his cheeks and those of his parents. They, however, took solace in the fact that the fortunes of the family would improve after he would have completed his apprenticeship and started his own business. True to their expectations, Sampson began to see a light at the end of the tunnel six years after he commenced his apprenticeship. The seven years agreed for his apprenticeship, which initially seemed like eternity, was almost over and the time for his settlement fast approaching. However, his boss shifted the goal post when the agreed period of apprenticeship ended and requested that Sampson should form a partnership with him. Sampson alleged that it was within this period that he started experiencing some problems with his sight, which eventually resulted in his blindness. Reliving the circumstances that culminated in his ordeal, Samson said: “I had gone for apprenticeship

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•Okochima n Innocent DURU n in beer distribution and marketing after my primary education. I came in contact with my boss through his in-laws, who were our neighbours in Ebonyi State. The man’s wife and her relations who I said were our neighbours went to my parents and told them that they would want me to go for apprenticeship at their place. My parents agreed because they could not afford to send me to secondary school. “I am the first child of the family. My parents were peasant farmers. They agreed that I should go for apprenticeship so that I could be in a position to support the training of the other children after I would have started my personal business. “A month after I started apprenticeship, my boss’ wife died mysteriously. When it was almost time for my boss to settle me, I started having challenges with my left eyes. I went to Niger Hospital in Nnewi and they said the eye would have to be operated upon. When I told my boss about it, he said he would not support any form of operation on the eye. “At the expiration of the agreed period of apprenticeship, he said I

I don’t know what I have done to deserve all that I am going through in life. My father died just when my mother was carrying my pregnancy. After my birth, she managed to see me through primary school. After completing primary six, I was taken to Port Harcourt where I became an apprentice to a relation. The arrangement was that I would be with him for about six years, after which he would give me money to start my own business. At the end of the agreed period, however, he failed to give me any money

should stay for another two years. During this period, he began to persuade me to enter into combined business with him. By that, he meant we should be doing business together as partners. I refused and told him that I wanted to go into the sales of electrical parts and not the beer business he was into. We dragged this for as long time. After nine years, he gave me N80,000. By that time, the condition of my two eyes had deteriorated. “I was forced to go back to my parents in Ebonyi. They took me to Ephrata Eye Clinic where I had an operation on one of the eyes. We spent half of the money my boss gave me on the operation. Unfortunately, they said it was not cataract that affected my eyes and advised that I should go and register in any school for the blind. “I was not satisfied with what they said. With the help of relations and well wishers, my parents were

•Okpata

able to raise some money with which my brother and I travelled to Kano for another round of eye test at the ECWA Eye Clinic. But my hope of getting medical help was dashed when armed robbers attacked us on the way and collected all the money my parents gathered for me to go for the treatment. We even had to beg for assistance before we could raise money to return home. “That was how my nine-year apprenticeship and all the money that my boss gave me went down the drain. The agony became too much for my parents to bear and that resulted in the death of my mother in 2009. “I finally agreed to attend a school for the blind after I was so advised by the medical team at Mary Slessor Eye Clinic in Calabar. That was how I decided to come to Farm Craft Vocational School for the Blind here in Lagos.” Another visually impaired inmate of the centre, Ugochukwu Okpata,

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also spoke about his unpleasant experience as an apprentice. He said: “I am a 31-year-old indigene of Imo State. I went for apprenticeship after my primary education because I could not go to secondary school. My father was killed by armed robbers where he was trading in Delta State. “The agreement my people had with my boss was that I would serve for seven years, after which he would settle me. My boss was into sales of plastics in Calabar. After completing the agreed seven years, my boss came up with all manner of stories and ended up not giving me a dime in spite of the fact that I served him diligently during the agreed period. “I therefore went back to my village where I was handed over to a relation in Onitsha. I suffered all manner of humiliation and exploitation in his hands. I was meant to learn a trade at his place for some time, after which my uncle, who was based overseas, would send some money for me to start my own business. “When I finished learning the trade, my boss gave me the sum of N9, 500 and later added another N4,

50 questions for Preamble: EADERSHIP,

in every sphere of life, is predicated on upholding the virtue of sacred trust. That is why it is often referred to as a social contract between the policy makers and the led majority. Right from the household level through educational, religious, political and economic sectors a leader must enthrone the enduring values of vision, courage, commitment and candour. And he should also muster the capacity to be a team player to carry his people along. But once that trust is brazenly violated by the leader, it elicits bad blood. This is characterized by outright deceit, whereby he says one thing and does another, or deliberately refuses to fulfil his promises to the people. In this context, we of the Akeredolu Campaign Organisation(ACO) and members of the ACN in Ondo State want to ask Governor Olusegun Mimiko the following pertinent questions as a form of accounting for his stewardship over the past three years. The answers to these should inform the good people of Ondo State whether he is eminently qualified to seek reelection or not. Your Excellency, what happened to: 1. The whopping N65 billion OSOPADEC Fund, an issue currently being investigated by the EFCC? 2. The N278 million meant for the stadium at Ile-Oluji, long abandoned? 3. The N1.5 billion meant for the Dome Project,Akure now doomed? 4. The wasteful Ministry of Commerce and Industry, without a single industry to boost the state’s economy? 5. The abandoned Akure stadium?

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n Idowu AJANAKU n 6. The N50 billion bond borrowed by your administration from the Capital Market? 7. The failed Owo-Akure road dualisation project? 8. The Ondo-Akure road dualisation project? 9. Arakale road dualisation project, Akure? 10. The multi-million naira Owena Dam project at Owo? 11. The five-kilometre road dualisation project in Owo town? 12. The Mother and Child Care Centre you promised to replicate in the two other Senatorial Districts? 13. The promised water project in Akure? Are the people to drink the wasteful fountain? 14. The mega school project promised to be replicated in all the senatorial districts, yet unfulfilled after claiming to have spent N600 million? 15. Dilapidated school buildings across the state? 16. And why is there no single housing project in the state over the past three years? 17. The criminal neglect of the rural areas in infrastructural development? 18. All the projects the Agagu-led administration started, including roads, schools, water-why did you abandon them? 19. The Oluwa Glass industry was also abandoned? 20. The ceramics industry in Okelusi was similarly abandoned? 21. The tomato paste factory at Arigidi in Akokoland for which N400 million has been expended? 22. Why did you fight with Chief Olaiya Oni, the former

Chairman of the Labour Party, who stated that you, ‘Mimiko prefers to be a king in hell than a servant in heaven’ because of your dictatorial tendency? 23. Why did you betray Chief Adekunle Ajasin (of blessed memory) then of the UPN in 1983 by supporting Chief Omoboriowo of the NPN? 24. You similarly betrayed Chief Adebayo Adefarati, who gave you the opportunity to serve as the Commissioner for Health by joining forces with the reactionary PDP to remove him from power? 25. As a serial betrayer, you again did the same to Dr.Olusegun Agagu who gave you the opportunity to serve him as the SSG in the state in 2003? 26. With your trade mark betrayal, you did the same to Chief Olusegun Obasanjo by rupturing the PDP governorship formula in the state? 27. Why did you betray Chief Johnson Fasawe, an illustrious son of Owo, who stood by you to reclaim your mandate in 2007? 28. Why did you betray Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who assisted you with the funding of the forensic expert to get your mandate from the PDP in 2007? 29. Why did you betray the leadership of the ACN with stalwarts such as Chief Segun Osoba, Lam Adesina, Chief NiyiAdebayo, Chief Bisi Akande by reneging on your mutual agreement with the party? 30. Why have you fallen out with Senator Ajayi Boroffice, one of your pillars of support in the struggle to retrieve your mandate? 31. Why did you fall out with Hon. Abe Abegunde(aka Abena) representing the Akure South Federal

READER’S VIEW


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

17

culminated in our plight’

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When I finished learning the trade, my boss gave me the sum of N9, 500 and later added another N4, 500. He said that was what my brother asked him to give me. I later learnt that he got much more than he gave me. I could not do any meaningful thing with the paltry sum he gave me. The situation became worse when I started having challenges with my sight

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500. He said that was what my brother asked him to give me. I later learnt that he got much more than he gave me. I could not do meaningful thing with the paltry sum he gave me. “The situation became worse when I started having challenges with my sight.” Emmanuel Okochima, another victim, said: “I don’t know what I have done to deserve all that I am going through in life. My father died just when my mother was carrying my pregnancy. After my birth, she managed to see me through primary school. “After completing primary six, I was taken to Port Harcourt where I became an apprentice to a relation. The arrangement was that I would be with him for about six years, after which he would give me money to

•Sampson start my own business. At the end of the agreed period, however, he failed to give me any money. “When I found that nothing was forthcoming from the arrangement, I went back to my mum in the village. She later fixed me up with another relation in Abuja. But the story was the same at the end of the agreed years. “Luckily for me, a friend took me in and set me up with some money. A few months after I started my business, I got a call that my mother went to the farm and stepped on something that made it impossible for her to see again. I was shocked to hear such a story, and as the first son of the family, I left everything and went to the village to attend to her. “We started moving her from one place to another without any solution till date. In the course of carrying her from place to place, I spent the little money I had realised from the business I started. When I saw that I was close to begging for money to eat, I left her in the village and went back to Abuja to continue my business. I was sending her some money from whatever I realised. “Some years after she lost her

dimmed to the point that I was not able to carry on with my business effectively. It A month after I was at a hospital that specialises in eye care started Kwara State that I apprenticeship, my in was told that I had boss’ wife died glaucoma. “The doctors said mysteriously. they would not be When it was able to carry out an almost time for my operation on my eyes I came at a boss to settle me, I because time the eyes had been terribly damaged by started having the problem. They, challenges with however, placed me on eye drops which I my left eyes. I used until I was told went to Niger by a pastor to stop Hospital in Nnewi using any medication apart from the and they said the handkerchief he gave eye would have to me.” Chidi, a trader at be operated upon. Idumota in Lagos, is When I told my another apprentice turned a victim of boss about it, he blindness. He said he said he would not had sight, my elder served his master sister’s lover, who for eight years support any form was based abroad, getting a of operation on the without proposed to her dime at the end of his and came home for eye apprenticeship. At the the traditional point he was marriage. He also supposed to be assured me that he empowered to start would help me his own business, he with some money said, he was struck by a strange to support my ailing business. I was mental illness that made him to highly elated by his promise because wander about for many years. life was beginning to be meaningless He said: "I am from Oru West to the family before he told us of his Local Government Area, Imo State. I plan to come to the country. went for apprenticeship after my “Unfortunately for the family, the primary five in Anambra State. I man did not live to fulfill his plans. served for eight years, after which Just as he was getting ready for the my boss did not give me a penny to traditional marriage with my sister, start my personal business. tragedy struck. He was poisoned to "Towards the time I was about to death together with my sister, thus complete my apprenticeship, my compounding our woes. The boss became unnecessarily hostile to tragedy devastated my mother and me. At the end of the day, I suffered the entire family. My expectation a serious mental problem that made that my brother-in-law to be would me to wander from one place to help me to revive my business also another. My family did not know crashed like a pack of cards. my whereabouts until a relation saw “As if that was not enough, I me and told them about my began to experience some challenges condition. with my eyes. The problem "l was later taken to a persisted in spite of all the medical rehabilitation home where I help I sought from various hospitals. regained sanity. I thereafter came to Before I knew it, my vision had Lagos to do some menial jobs to

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raise money to start the business I am doing now." He added: "Going for apprenticeship is not an easy thing. Though there are some masters that are good and settle their servants very well, majority of them are wicked. Some of them that are incapable of feeding themselves take apprentices just to show that they have arrived. The government should do something about it to save innocent children and their parents from the agony that unscrupulous masters put them through." The President of Auto Spare Parts and Machinery Dealers Association (ASPMDA), Chief Anthony Ughawu, said there is no law that regulates the relationship between masters and servants. “The terms and conditions are strictly determined by the master and the family of the apprentice. There are some masters that are good and settle their apprentices well at the end of the agreed period, just the way there are others who are wicked and for no good reason send their apprentices away empty handed at the end of the day. “Some go to the extent of levelling all manner of unfounded allegations against their apprentices just because they don’t want to settle them. There are also some apprentices who are naturally wicked. There are cases of some who ran away with their masters’ money." Asked what can be done to check the menace, he said: "As an association, there is nothing we can do. Although we have a constitution, we have no power to tell any man not to bring a boy within school age to serve him. “If the South East governors can pass such into law, it would go a long way in checking the menace. But that would only be possible in the South East. Such laws, when made over there, cannot prevent a man from bringing a child to Lagos, because the law cannot be enforced here. "It is only when such a law is made by the Federal Government that it can be enforced anywhere in the country. We would not hesitate to bring any offender to book any time such a law is made."

Governor Mimiko Constituency? 32. Why did you betray the good workers of Ondo State by refusing to pay the agreed 27.5 per cent Education remains the number one priority of the executive chairman of Apapa Local Government, Hon. Ayodeji Joseph.minimum wage? 33. Why should Ondo State which is the only oil-producing in the South-West geo-political zone be dragged by your administration into a debt trap, owing N20 billion and has gone ahead to borrow another N50 billion,N20 billion of which has been advanced? 34. What happened to your promise to create 4,000 jobs within 100 days in office, but three years on, there is no single employment created through manufacturing concerns? 35. Why have you not employed a single teacher over the past three years? 36. What happened to the Okelusi Cement Factory for which this administration has reportedly spent a whopping N5.6 billion but nothing on ground to show for it? 37. Why have you not opened up the Labour Party to democratic reforms since 2011,thereby making yourself the sole gubernatorial candidate? 38. Why should your party chairman, Iwanyanwu, whom you made the Pro-Chancellor of the Adekunle Ajasin Unversity, refer to your kinsmen as ‘aliens’? 39. Why should the Sunshine Stars, the football team of the state go as far as Ijebu-Ode to practise? Why have you not put the stadium in good shape? 40. Why is it that the federal allocation to the state is as high as N550 billion, but the poverty rate has escalated to unimaginable level? 41. Why have you refused to pay students’ bursary for over

three years? 42. Why are you wasting enormous state funds to garner spurious awards? 43. What happened to the Kaadi Igbeayo Social Security programme for database to mitigate the scourge of unemployment? 44. What happened to the promised Igbokoda township road from Ugbo junction to the jetty? 45. What happened to the University of Science and Technology promised for Okitipupa people? 46. Where is the oil refinery you promised the highly disenfranchised Ilaje community? 47. Where are the one million oil palm seedlings purportedly imported from Malaysia? 48. What about the N5 billion Ore Sunshine Mega Plaza City meant for 153 hectares of land along Ore-Sagamu expressway? 49. How could a laughable ‘revised budget’ earmark a whopping N178 million for a 90 -metre Owo-Ogbese road? 50. Where is the N38 billion the previous, Dr.Olusegun Agaguled administration left in Ondo State coffers without owing a kobo? Mimiko, where is the money? Where is it?! N.B. My dear, highly intelligent and respected people of Ondo State, will you, in good conscience, give your precious votes to the serial betrayer of your sacred trust to come back and impoverish you and your children the more? Have you not suffered enough? The choice is yours! •Mr. Ajanaku is the Media Director of the Akeredolu Campaign Organisation

•Governor Mimiko


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

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Murder of 16-year-old girl triggers anxiety in Anambra •Residents fear commencement of annual ritual killings as Christmas approaches

•Ogalaku

Hospital in Awka. Narrating the incident to our correspondent at their residence in Nawfia, the late Nwanneka’s uncle, Friday Ogalagu, said he was yet to come to terms with the broad daylight murder of his niece. He said: “The girl in question was my elder sister’s daughter and the third child in a family of five siblings. She had lived with me in Anambra for more than three years. Even the elder sister lived with me before she got married. “I was not at home when the •The building where the deceased incident occurred. I had gone to the lived with her uncle police station to secure the release of my goods which the police had confiscated when I got a call from somebody that my sister had a terrible accident. “I was told that the person who killed my sister dressed like a mad man. They said there were three of them and that the other two stood close to the bush when she wanted to sell groundnuts to the one that •The late Nwanneka killed her. “I was told by some people close by that when my sister bent down to sell groundnuts to the man, he pulled an axe from his waist to cut her neck. Unfortunately for him, the girl was already raising her head up. So, the weapon hit her on the head and she slumped. “They said when the incident happened, an okada (commercial T age 16, Nwanneka Odah bubbled with life. At motorcycle) man who was going their base in Nawfia, Njikoka Local his own way saw the girl struggling Government Area, Anambra State, she lived and somebody was standing close with her uncle who did all he could to supply by. As he made to stop, the man her needs. n Nwanosike ONU, Awka n that stood beside her and the other two who stood close Nwanneka, a native of Okpoto village in Ebonyi State, to the bush ran into the bush and passers-by began to had relocated to Nawfia about four years ago to join her beginning of the usual ritual killings that occasion the shout. business man uncle, Friday Ogalagu. Perhaps her approach of Christmas in that part of the country. They “As people gathered at the scene, my friend who I parents would have dissuaded her from relocating to the are living in fear that young men who are desperate to called Ejima had arrived the scene and saw an FRSC’s Anambra community if they had an inkling of the cruel make quick money are again on the prowl. vehicle and flagged it down. Good enough, they said fate that awaited her. Spokesman of the Anambra State Police Command, they got information and came down. They took my On Monday, August 27, the student of Nawfia Girls Raphael Uzoigwe, told The Nation that the command sister to the hospital, but she could not make it.” Secondary School, who had just finished her Junior was still conducting investigation into the girl’s death. Our correspondent gathered that Nawfia Secondary School Examination, was brutally murdered. “In such a case of homicide, you hand over the matter to Comprehensive Secondary School axis of the town had She was said to be hawking groundnuts during the the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to get to become a dangerous zone day and night. A middle aged holidays when she was accosted by three young men the roots of it,” he said. woman, who did not want her name in print, lamented who pretended that they wanted to patronise her near a “For now, the command cannot conclude that the that young girls were being raped on a daily basis, while bush opposite Nawfia Comprehensive Secondary person who perpetrated such act was a madman. cases like Nwanneka’s murder had become a constant School. Another thing is why a madman would run after feature of the community. A source said as Nwanneka attended to the three men committing such an act? And who are the other men?” She said: “Two days before the incident, a man was and bent down to put some groundnuts in a polythene Uzoigwe added. murdered behind Koka International Hotel. The head bag, one of them, who was dressed like a madman, He said the command had set the machinery in was taken away and only the body was found. He could brought out an axe-like instrument and made to chop off motion to get to the roots of the matter, adding that the not be recognised. Nwanneka's neck, but the instrument hit her in the head the body had been deposited at Amaku General “An uncompleted building adjacent to Nawfia and she slumped. Comprehensive Secondary School has become a camp Although no part of the girl’s body was removed, a for bad boys. Young men go there to smoke Indian hemp source told our correspondent that it was because a and commit all sorts of crime, yet our security agencies motorcycle operator arrived at the scene at that moment, are not forthcoming. It is unfortunate.” I was told that the person who killed my causing the three men to run into the nearby bush. The traditional ruler of Nawfia, Igwe Chijioke sister dressed like a mad man. They said Nwanneka’s death has thus triggered a debate on Nwankwo, told The Nation that the culprits must not go whether her killer was actually a madman some police there were three of them and that the unpunished whether they are from his community or officers had told our correspondent in confidence or he other two stood close to the bush when not. was a member of a gang of ritual killers. He said he had spread his dragnet to make sure that she wanted to sell groundnuts to the one An eye witness, who identified herself simply as those who perpetrated the act face the wrath of the law. that killed her. I was told by some people Ejima, said the victim was rushed to the hospital by men “We cannot continue to live in fear because of some close by that when my sister bent down of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) foolish people,” Nwankwo said. to sell groundnuts to the man, he pulled immediately the incident occurred, but Nwanneka gave Only two weeks ago, Governor Peter Obi led security an axe from his waist to cut her neck. up the ghost on the way to the hospital. agents to dislodge suspected kidnappers. Buildings and Since then, there has been tension in Nawfia hotels associated with the kingpins were demolished community. Many people believe it could be the during the offensive.

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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

'We used to pluck groundnuts, now we pick bullets'

Saturday

THRILLER

Inside the killing fields of Kano

SEE STORY ON PAGES 20-22


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

20

•Durbar festival: a melting pot of culture, tourism and fanfare... didn’t hold this year

•Kano dye pits: used to be a thriving industry before the violence

•Meat sellers at the popular Kurmi Market

K

ANO is breathtaking for once and only once; just past noon, while you are perching in the heart of the city centre, in a plane. In that space and at that hour, you get to see what the founders had dreamed many years before: pearl of the north, melting pot of commerce and culture, and long, open avenues forking into an ancient and yet metropolitan paradise – all within the shining veins of a city with warmth like the return of better times. However, cruising through the city, you get to see the perversion of that dream. Living in Kano is like sleeping in the folded petals of a poisonous flower. Ask Hafiza Shema, a traditional bone-setter. “Life in this place has become very dangerous. Death is around the corner everywhere you go,” she said. But for patronising fate, Shema would be dead by now. According to her, she was billed to visit the state’s immigration office to see the mother of one of her patients but had to make a quick detour to resolve a family dispute. According to her, people don’t get to have a good night’s sleep anymore. “We all sleep with one eye open these days. Everybody is afraid of what might happen to them even while they sleep,” she said. At least, she still gets to sleep. Chidi Okaghie never gets to sleep. According to him, the fear of bomb attacks keeps him and his household awake most of the night, everyday. “I lost my uncle in the January bomb blast. He was the one that invited me to this town after I completed my national service in Bauchi. He gave me a house, gave me a job and later set me up. He gave me everything. Now, he’s dead and I can’t even understand why he deserved to die. We could not even get his body to give him a decent burial. We knew he was killed by the bomb blast because we saw the remains of his briefcase very close to the scene of the blast. He didn’t deserve to die like that. There is no more peace and quiet in this town. Everybody wants to leave,” he said. But many are already leaving. Kano State has suffered a record high death toll and human casualties as a result of sporadic bomb attacks and gun violence in recent times. On January 20, this year, a series of coordinated attacks on security institutions and federal establishments left over 200 persons dead. In the wake of the attacks, not a few residents of Kano, natives and immigrants alike, fled the city. While many natives fled to seek safe

Olatunji OLOLADE, Assistant Editor haven with close and distant relatives in neighbouring states, immigrants to the state – from the Southeast, South-south and Southwestern parts of the country to be precise – relocated to their home states. The situation has deteriorated with every subsequent attack by the Boko Haram sect and every gun battle between it and the security forces in the state. Just recently, the sect took out a number of telecom masts in the state. The attack caused adversely affected major telecommunication companies in the country with masts scattered across Kano and other affected states in the country’s northeast. An atmosphere of fear prevails among the city’s residents as random attacks and mafiastyled executions render the render the city uninhabitable. For instance, tragedy struck recently as four men shot dead a member of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), his wife, three – year old daughter and his crippled brother staying with him. Police sources disclosed that the four men arrived who arrived on two motorcycles allegedly invaded the home of the NSCDC officer in Hotoron Gabas district, locked the entire family in a room and shot them dead. However, not too long ago, the Joint Task Force (JTF) discovered a bomb depot during an early morning raid at Tudun Bayero by Tamburawa in Dawakin Kudu Local Government Council, few kilometers away from Kano metropolis. Shortly after the operation, Bassey Eteng, Director of State Security Service (SSS) in Kano, revealed that three suspected members of the Boko Haram sect were arrested during the operation that lasted several hours. According to the SSS director, “The operation was successful. We were able to discover 12-primed bomb cylinder, 12 hand held improvised explosive devices, army uniforms, some face masks, 10 electronic detonators, AK47 rifles, two pump action, submachine gun and seven bags of urea. Intelligent information also indicates that plans of these people were to launch attacks on Sallah day. Investigation is still going on.” Perversion of Kano city Life in Kano city has taken a turn for the worse. Until the first multiple bomb blasts rocked the city, residents lived without fear of being blown apart by deadly bomb devices. Today, however, every little sound causes the residents to scamper about in

Inside the killing fields of Kano panic. The violence has virtually snuffed the once boisterous city of life. Residents lament total collapse of almost every industry in the city as a result of the violence and curfew imposed by the government. The usually busy streets are now deserted as early as 6.00pm. “We have no choice but to close our shops and hurry home. Nobody wants to be harassed or molested by the soldiers on the street. Even with proper identification they still go ahead and molest innocent citizens. And if you are unfortunate enough to be outside seconds after Boko Haram strikes, they won’t ask you questions, they will simply shoot you,” said Bauwa Abubakar, an animal feed dealer. Ayisatu detests the brazenness and force with which security agents extort money from motorists at the security checkpoints. “Rather than focus on catching miscreants, they run the checkpoints like toll gates forcing everybody to pay before passing through,” she said. This causes many of the residents, motorists in particular, to dread plying the major routes where the security operatives are stationed. The commercial business sector in the city has nose-dived. Banks, saloons, shopping ar-

cades and even the local markets, to mention a few, are taking the heat as they are forced to offer skeletal services. Traders at the popular Kurmi market, for instance, lament very low patronage. This, they attribute to the declining number of patrons that visit the market. Reality, indeed, corroborates the traders’ complaints. For instance, the 600-year-old Kurmi market, fabled for its labyrinth of skinny alleys lined with stalls crammed with every imaginable object and enterprise, is in the throes of a record lull. Vendors and shop owners at the market blame it on the violence. Some of them, however, accuse security operatives of scaring away their customers by their overzealousness and transferred aggression on innocent citizenry in the wake of any Boko Haram attack. Local artists and traders at the dye-pits equally complained of their inability to make sales. Many of them complained of having lost their most loyal customers, most of whom have relocated from the city to neighbouring cities and their home states in the wake of the violence. Muhammad Usman lamented the departure of two of his best customers from the Southeast. According to him, both of them have fled the city with their families. “They used to place orders and buy from me in large bulk, so that they can retail it in their shops and white collar offices but now they have left the city. Our people (Kano indigenes) are not really as crazy about our products as the Yoruba and Igbo people…these days, we barely make enough to feed,” he


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

•Relics of a bomb blast

•Ruins of bombed shops in Bompai

•A victim of gun violence is visited by NEMA officials in Dala

•Red Cross officials to the rescue in the wake of a bomb attack

Now we are known for violence and bloodshed. We no longer have the groundnut pyramids and our kolanut business is in the doldrums. I can’t remember the last time I saw our youths gainfully engaged plucking groundnuts or picking kola. All they do now is carry guns and bullets about...

said. Corroborating him, Khadijatu, a tailor, and Idris Shekana, a cloth beater, painted vivid imagery of the economic downturn with words. Shekana lamented that he never though he would see the day that his business would suffer a decline. “And it’s all because of these stupid bomb blasts,” he said. Impact on agriculture The violence has also affected the state’s trade in Kola. The upsurge in violence has made it difficult for farmers in Kano to market their produce due to persistent insecurity in the capital city. Consequently, lots of Kolanut remain unsold, according to Yaya Haliru, a Kolanut trader. Although many farmers in the state were expectant of a bumper harvest this year, many of them dread the situation whereby they won’t be able to find any market for their crops. “If the current situation persists, it will severely hamper crop sales for many farmers,” stated Anid Bako, a large scale grocer. The crisis in the North has forced some of the crop farmers and pastoralists to abandon their lands and relocate to the neighbouring countries of Niger, Chad and Cameroun. In March, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said about 65 per cent of northern farmers had migrated to the South because of the insecurity they faced. The agency warned that the country faced a famine by the end of this year because most of the small-scale farmers and mechanised farmers in the Nigeria’s northeast are threatened by terrorist attacks. “The

attacks on these farmers who produce beans, onions, pepper, maize, rice, livestock and catfish in the Lake Chad area for the southern states, have forced them to migrate since the Boko Haram insurgency broke out in Borno State in July 2009,” it said. A countrywide food crisis, therefore, looms, considering NEMA’s disclosure. Since most of the foodstuffs consumed and traded in Nigeria are grown in the north, the agency warned about an impending famine. Incessant bombings and other violent attacks on local markets perpetrated by both the Boko Haram sect and Nigerian armed forces pose grievous risks to northern farmers, livestock breeders and dealers in farm produce, forcing them to migrate to new locations far from their farmlands, while placing additional burden on the transportation of food and farm produce to other states. Consequently, prices of foodstuffs have skyrocketed, particularly in the southern part of the country. The influx of migrants to the less volatile northern states and the south has made rental accommodation expensive, just as several families have been rendered homeless, and without medical assistance. The forced movements and relocations have devastated communities and disintegrated key social ties and networks. Though difficult to measure, communal support networks and social capital lost as a result of the forced disintegration of communities also comes into reckoning, according to Victoria Ohaeri, Executive Director at Spaces for Change, a non-governmental organisation. “It’s a very sad situation. Kano used to be revered as the commercial capital of north-

ern Nigeria, now we are known for violence and bloodshed. We no longer have the groundnut pyramids and our kolanut business is in the doldrums. I can’t remember the last time I saw our youths gainfully engaged plucking groundnuts or picking kola. All they do now is carry guns and bullets about. Many of us have fled the city. Many are still preparing to flee…I moved my family to Ibadan (Oyo State) in November last year. I stayed back because of business but now I have no choice but to relocate with them,” lamented Danladi Abu, a commercial transporter. Plight of women, children and vulnerable groups Ohaeri, a former Programme Coordinator with the Social and Economic Rights Action Centre (SERAC), alleged that women, children, youths, the elderly, and other vulnerable individuals and groups have all suffered disproportionately from terror-linked molestation in the ancient city of Kano. According to her, fear of stigma, compounded by religious prejudices has encouraged a culture of silence and unwillingness of victims to speak out and name culprits. True; the dusk to dawn curfews imposed on Kano has severely limited women’s access to healthcare and productive economic opportunities. Many pregnant women cannot access healthcare at night when they suddenly go into labour, forcing them to have homebirths manned by unskilled neighbours, attendants and local midwives. Mothers are only able to take their sick children to the hospital for treatment during the day, totally depriving the sick and wounded of their rights to access emergency assistance at all times of the day. Nearly all the privately-owned heath institutions have closed shop, leaving residents to their own devices and often inadequate options of medical treatment particularly when such treatment is needed most. Several residents and children either shot or wounded during the routine gun battles between the Boko Haram sect and the JTF have suffered avoidable deaths as a result of inadequate access to emergency medical services. In Kano, frequent bomb explosions have led to a situation whereby most hospitals are constantly filled to capacity, while morgues have no more spaces to accommodate the increasing number of dead bodies. A history of violence The first host-settler violent eruption in Kano occurred in 1953 following northern opposition to the Southern motion in 1953

for Nigeria’s political independence in 1956. The northern representatives believed that the country was not yet mature for self-rule. The South decried this refusal in disparaging language and booed Northern representatives on the streets of Lagos. The campaign for independence sparked off riot in Kano. The rioters attacked Sabon – Gari and at the end, about 35 people were declared dead, while 251 were wounded. In the January 1966 coup d’ tat led by an Igbo major, eminent politicians and high - ranked military men mostly from the North were killed. The North perceived this development as an attempt by the South (Igbo) to dominate them and the promulgation of decree 34 for unification of Nigeria by an Igbo general confirmed their fear. On March 29, 1966, the rioters again attacked Sabon-Gari. The counter coup d’ tat of July, 1966 produced similar attacks in other Northern cities killing thousands of settlers in the state. After 1966, conflicts between the Kanawa and the settlers became more religiously defined. The 1980 Maitatsine riot and the 1996/97 Shiites attacks on orthodox Muslims were intra-religious conflicts with some political undertones between the fundamentalist religious groups and orthodox Muslims in Kano. Kano had played host to many Islamic fundamentalists scholars from Chad and Cameroon from the 1940s. Several clashes between them produced hundreds of casualties. In severe cases, death tolls were high. Intra-religious riots scarcely spread to other parts of Kano. The 1980s and 90s were periods of inter-religious violence as well. Nigeria opened up to fundamentalist Christian groups in the 1980s. Many of them are found in Kano and their activities, especially their mode of preaching, are often considered provocative by the Muslims. Eruptions were moves to check their excesses and ascendancy of Christianity. The fagge crisis of 1982 was aimed at preventing the reconstruction of a dilapidated church located close to a mosque. Also, the Muslims, in 1991, detested the tone of advertisement for Reinhard Bonnke’s crusade. More so, the permission given to Bonnke to preach in Kano could not be reconciled with the government’s refusal to allow Sheikh Deedat from South Af-

•Continued from Page 22


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Inside the killing fields of Kano •Continued from Page 21 rica into Kano for Islamic revival. Riot broke out October 13 as soon as Boonke arrived in Kano. The1991 riot marked a watershed in the history of conflicts in Kano. For the first time, the Southerners launched counter - offensive against their host. Again, both Christians and Muslims from the South were attacked unlike before when such attacks were restricted to the former. A riotous situation in 1994 following the beheading of an Igboman, Gideon Akaluka, by the Shiites for allegedly desecrating a Koran was quelled by the government. Rise of Kano as a cosmopolitan city Kano, one of the largest advanced cities in Nigeria, started around seventh century as a settlement of immigrant Abagayawa blacksmiths, who came to mine iron from the iron stone outcrop of Dalla hill. The Maguzawa immigrants, led by Bagauda, conquered the settlement around 11th century and established a formidable political entity. The construction of city walls from 1095 was completed in the 12th century. Rimfa extended it by 54 per cent in the 15th century to accommodate immigrants from Borno and North Africa. Kano’s exposure to various cultures explains its early liberal policies towards strangers. The emergence of a distinct Kanawa identity was a consequence of massive migratory trends and mixture of diverse social groups. The Kanawa (Kano indigenes) engaged in long distance trade, pilgrimage and warfare. Islam was introduced in Kano in the 14th century by the Wangarawa traders from Mali. It became the official religion of the state in the 15th century. Kano played host to a number of Islamic scholars whose activities facilitated the overthrow of the Maguzawa. The city was also a major trading post in the trans-Saharan trade. Kano skirmishes with the Kwararafa led to the assimilation of Kwararafa slaves into the Kanawa society. It as well played host to war captives after the Fulani Jihad. Thus, unlike most cities in Nigeria that assumed their cosmopolitanism sequel to colonial migrations, Kano’s cosmopolitan outlook dates back to its formation stage. By the 16th century, its population was 74,000. The emergence of central political authority in Kano was closely associated with the foundation of birni (city) Kano itself. This was like other Hausa states were the birane (cities) where the centers of political authority. These cities developed as a result of immigration of diverse groups who have no kinship relationship and were integrated gradually displacing authorities whose power depended on kinship loyalties. It has been postulated that political authority in Hausaland evolved from farming family groups whose farms were very close to their homes and they were separated by waste-lands. These separate settlements were called kauyuka or unguwoyi (Kauye, unguwa). It was further suggested that authority was of two types, family and communal. The communal authority was vested in the sarki (ruler) which was recognised for specific purposes, especially farming which was the backbone of the economy. The sarkin noma (king of farming) coordinated all the farming activities including the religious rituals for rains. The head of the family unit regulated all other affairs not related to agriculture. The kauye was a collection of these independent family units gidaje (Gida) each headed by the

•A security operative on guard at the scene of a bomb blast

maigida (family head). The society expanded as a result of immigration of families who were not related to each other unguwoyi and kauyuka merged and became towns garuruwa (Gari). The community leader of the gari was known as sarkin gari who was assisted by ward heads masu unguwanni (sing. Mai unguwa). As the town developed the authority of the sarki became expanded beyond the farmland with diminishing emphasis on kinship since most of the immigrants were not related. The birni (city) evolved from the gari (town). The birni of antiquity was cosmopolitan; it was an urban center with a considerably large population of diverse groups who lack kinship relations with one and the other. Economic factors were responsible for the growth of birane (sing. Birni) of ancient Hausaland, because only buoyant economy could support a large population. Agriculture supported by fertile soil was the mainstay of the economy. The iron industry also supported agriculture by producing farm implements. Dutsen Dala, which was an iron site, was the foundation of Kano the greatest of all Hausa birane. Birnin Kano became the nucleus of fertile kasar (country of) Kano. Trade and religious attraction was contributed to the growth of kano. Dutsen Dala and Kurmin Jakara both located in Birnin kano were centers of iskokai (spirits) adored by the ancient Hausas. Barbushe the first known Sarkin Kano was a chief priest of Tsumburbura which were also iskokai. For any birni to flourish, it needed security thus another very important feature of any birni of ancient Hausaland was the ganuwa (city wall) which was a fortification. It has been suggested that this security of the birane was an essential element in their emergence as centers of “unusual political power.” The emergence of states in Hausaland appeared to have been linked with the foundation of birane as these centers of political power. The lost economy Kano was a major producer of groundnuts. In fact Kano produced about a half million tons which was about half of Nigeria’s groundnut production. Oil replaced agricultural commodities as the main source of foreign exchange and government revenue. The oil boom of the 1970’s made the government to neglect agriculture. Many of the rural dwellers rushed to the cities in search of “greener” pastures now they are fleeing the city for fear deadly bomb blasts. Commercial activity in Kano received its first encouragement with the establishment of Kurmi Market by Sarkin Kano Muhammad Rumfa in the 16th century. Subsequent leaders made contributions to the emergence of Kano as a leading commercial center in Africa. For example, the first two Emirs of Kano, Sarkin Kano Ibrahim Dabo and Sarkin Kano Sulaiman in the 19th century encouraged traders to move from Katsina because of Maradi raid. This was one of major contributing factors that made Kano the richest province in the Sokoto Caliphate. The Jihad leaders of the caliphate encouraged Kolanut trade and Kano was the greatest beneficiary with an annual turnover of about $30 million. Kano merchants were also very innovative and they were able to integrate commerce and craft industry during the pre-colonial period thus making substantial contribution to the prosperity of the province. Kano was producing an estimated 10 million pairs of sandals during that period because of economic harmony. Sarkin Kano Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi established the Bompai Industrial Estate which was the first of its kind in the state through a loan guaranty that was later used against him by

•Many residents of the ancient city live in a state of anxiety

•In the wake of the violence, many non-indigenes fled to their states of origin

the Northern Regional Government. Kano State is the most important and largest commercial centre in Northern Nigeria. With about 10 million people, it provides a stable and continuous market for both manufactured and semi processed goods. The volume of trading activities conducted on daily basis in the markets, notably Muhammadu Abubakar Rimi Market (Sabon-Gari), Kwanar Singer, Kantin Kwari, Kurmi and Dawanau signify the state’s great potentials as a market for various products. In addition to the large and unique markets, Kano is also blessed with plentiful and various kinds of agricultural products which provide huge raw materials for Agro-Allied industries. Agricultural products like Maize, Guinea Corn, Rice, Cotton and Groundnut are readily available to serve as raw materials for oil milling, flour and textile industries. Other agro based raw materials are Gum Arabic, Livestock, Hides and Skin, Cowpeas, and Citrus fruits. A governor and his heartfelt promise Worried by the wanton destruction of lives and property in the state, the Kano State Governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, has promised to ensure peace and stability in the state. His reassurances come at the heel of government officials’ and clerics’ conference to pray for peace in the state. The prayer gathering which was held in the wake of the January bombings, attracted some 200 Muslim clerics and political leaders to a mosque in the palace of the Emir of Kano, Ado Bayero, for special peace prayers. “I will pray to God that we should never re-live the catastrophe that resulted in the

deaths and maiming in our city…We are working seriously to ensure peace in Kano State, and by the grace of God. I want to assure you that we have seen the first and the last of these attacks in Kano State. Kano will not explode again,” promised Governor Kwankwaso. Despite his heartfelt prayer, by 5:30 p.m. every day, the ancient city of Kano goes berserk with impatient motorists making hurriedly for home; the air simmers like draft from a stubborn harmattan fire and that is just the subtle city war renewing itself for another day. Unlike the major gun wars and bomb attacks, it is comparatively light on actual violence but intense with dread and bad feeling. You have to be pathologically insensitive not to sense the impacted rage and despair, impotent gnawing resentment that has turned Nigeria’s “Centre of Commerce” into a bloody battlefield. There, every bomb blast and gunshot reverberates in the hearts of the natives months after the last boom had gotten silent. Nothing so horrible ever happens in Kano that’s beyond prayer and cheap consolation. You did either meet an optimism that no violence could daunt or cynicism that eats the cynic empty every day until it turns hungry and malignant on whatever it could, for a bite. A skilled psychiatrist would call this “lashing out,” but the average Kano resident would call it “survival.” The people are so traumatised that these days, they talk as though killing a man was nothing more than depriving him of his vigour. Thus is the tragedy in Kano.


LOCATION

BACKSTAGE

SNAPSHOT

REEL NEWS

MUSIC

SCREEN

Edited by: VICTOR AKANDE

Tel: 07029013958

E-mail: victor_akande@yahoo.com

ntertainment

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

23

SEE PAGES 28-37

My desire to get married ress t c a d o o w y l l o 窶年 again Steph Nora Okereke


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

THINK

STAND BY! h

Wit

VICTOR AKANDE E-mail: victor_akande@yahoo.com Tel: 07029013958 (SMS only)

SNAPSHOTS

nt part of An importa s of any the succes is its civilisation late the mu ability to e t led to the a th factors ther success of o Eric .— s civilisation rt Reine

Joke Joke Silva joins others for GWIL 2012

Where goes the classical music culture? I T is peculiar with us as a country to think that everything is subject to a phase, without thinking that the phenomenon of change isn't about jettisoning the things of old. Rather, it is in advancing them, and making them look up-to-date. A heritage, for example, should not be seen as ephemeral, because indeed, it is a part of one's history that does not stand on its own, but which also says a lot about a people's today. I am inspired by the annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival, which I have been privileged to be a part of. I see a concerted effort of artistes, show promoters, tourism organizations and music lovers who do not want Jazz to die in the face of other contemporary genres of music that hold sway among today's youths. And this brings my mind to other forms of local music in Nigeria, which are only managing to survive in the heart of those who savoured them in their good old days. These are men and women who have been considered as 'old school', without the evidences of show promoters and the corporate Nigeria to do proper market segmentation and letting their brand live in the minds of other music lovers, other than just the rap, hip hop and R&B enthusiasts. After all, every product cannot be a youth brand. Recognition must however be given to some Nigerians, who either as individuals or corporate organizations have tried to distinguish themselves, by promoting some of these genres of music that have been in comatose. An attempt by MTN in late 2008 brought the older generation of the Nigerian artistes together on one stage at the Ocean View Restaurant, Victoria Island. That event came across, as one of the best, jolting our memories to the early days of Nigerian music, but for whatever reasons, another

Cape Town International Jazz Festival has grown into an enormously successful international event since its inception in 2000. As it celebrates its 12th anniversary this year, industry watchers have ranked this proudly South African event as No.4 in the world

edition has not seen the light of the day. Another effort that looks like it was the dream to make Chief Ebenezer Obey and King Sunny Ade to perform on one stage. After the first attempt was aborted for reasons the show promoters could not say, another promoter gave the idea life at the last Children's Day celebration. The level of success of the show notwithstanding; history was made in what they tagged Oleku Concert. But if we think that High Life, Juju and Reggae genres of music are out of vogue, I can only take our minds to

But if we think that High Life, Juju and Reggae genres of music are out of vogue, I can only take our minds to the success of the Jazz concert in Lagos two years ago, which sold out its tickets even before the day of the event

the success of the Jazz concert in Lagos two years ago, which sold out its tickets even before the day of the event. If a genre that you may consider foreign to our culture, but which was part of our development as a music destination could achieve that feat, this only tells us that the impossible is yet to be born. I am referring to the concert staged by Smooth FM which brought critically acclaimed international artistes, including Angie Stone, Gerald Albright, and Richard Bona and featuring Mike Stern and Nigeria's Bez, Tiwa Savage, and Pure and Simple to what it tagged the 'Love Music, Love Life Luxury Concert'. It is therefore plausible what the South African Tourism Board and other agencies are doing by promoting an undying culture of jazz music, and presenting the country, South Africa, as a major runner of this initiative that brings about 34, 000 visitors to that country every year, thereby boosting its tourism potentials. Undoubtedly, Cape Town International Jazz Festival has grown into an enormously successful international event since its inception in 2000. As it celebrates its 12th anniversary this year, industry watchers have ranked this proudly South African event as No. 4 in the world, outshining events like Montreaux Jazz Festival and the North Sea Jazz Festival. With more than 34,000 in attendance and more than 40 international and local artistes who perform over two days on five stages, the festival has earned the status of being one of the most prestigious events on the African continent. Sure, there are lessons to be learnt by Nigeria, a country that is blessed with so many brands of local music that could be exported to the world.

WRITE TO US! Do you watch Nollywood movies? What do you think of the Nigerian motion picture industry? Send your review of any movie or short essay on any topic of your choice about the film industry in not more than 200 words. Send entries by e-mail to: victor_akande@yahoo.com or SMS your short comments to 07029013958

F

OR the 2012 Great Women Independence Lecture holding on Saturday, October 27, 2012 at Lagos Airport Hotel, Lagos, veteran actress, Joke Silva, with the likes of Prof. Dora Akunyili, Dr. Keziah Awosika, Barrister Comfort Ogunye, Laraba Shoda , Susan-Eyo Honesty, Mrs. Adenike Craig and many others have been confirmed speakers.

Tagged Sustaining The Gains of Women in Leadership, reports say the women are expected to speak on issues affecting womanhood, with the wife of the Governor of Ekiti state, Erelu Bisi Fayemi as special guest of honour. The event is organised by Laurelsize Company, to mark Nigeria's 52nd independence anniversary.

S

Victoria Island, Lagos. Celebrating the ever gorgeous Nollywood screen goddess and autism advocate who recently launched her Arise Monalisa Foundation were some of Nigeria's most loved movie stars and socialites, including Segun Arinze, Ini Edo, Desmond Elliot, Emem Isong, Omoni Oboli and hubby Nnamdi, Mike Ezuronye and Banke Meshida Lawal among others.

Colleagues honour Monalisa Chinda

ULTRY Nollywood actress, Monalisa Chinda was treated to a classy birthday party by friends, family, well wishers and colleagues in the entertainment industry as she turned a year older recently. The star-studded party took place in the swanky and pristine ambience of the elite hangout known as Grotto Lounge & Bar,


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Why I remixed ‘Oliver Twist’

As a burgeoning artiste, I believe my uniqueness and unpredictability is my selling point, and those traits add-up to the Celine brand that I am trying to promote. I'm also good looking, I have stage presence and a good voice...

—Celine Dimas Delectable Celine Dimas sent tongues wagging on the music scene when she hit the airwaves with the female version of D'Banj's •Christopher wave-making single, 'Oliver Twist'. The Imo State-born model and actress spoke to AHMED BOULOR about her burgeoning music career and other sundry issues.

T

HE Ohaneze Ndigbo, it is expected will fete with one of its own, as inspirational singer, Mako Ranko brings out another set of songs that many say will delight his followers. Titled 'Piagbolum Ndi Irom', an elated Mako Ranko said the album release event will be anchored by MC Obanla A1. According to him 'Piagbolum Ndi Irom' is a must have for lovers of melodious and inspirational music because it brings everyone closer to God. Scheduled for release on September 29, 2012, the work is a follow-up to the fairly successful album, 'Ebube Chukwu Buwe Agha'. The event which holds at Cynergy Suites and Nite Club, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos, is expected to witness an explosion of the crème de la crème of the society and several top-notch businessmen and women- among them; Barrister John Abang; Prince Charles Esieigbe Samuel Igbo, Dr. Kenneth Imarenezor, Barrister Emmanuel Omahiomor, Chief Paul Eze, Ifeanyi Chris Ibe, Emeka Ekagha, and Chief Ogbuefi (Chairman Ohaneze Ndigbo).

Gospel music:

The Revolution to the rescue

H

OW far have you gone with works on your debut album? I am still working on my first album and it will be released soon; though the album is still going through fine-tuning before it is released into the music market. I also just finished recording a song titled 'Where I am Coming From' produced by TY Snoop; the song will be officially out in a week. Why did you choose to do the remix of D'Banj's Oliver Twist? (Sighs) I did it for the fun of it; it was my first time in the studio and I just wanted to do something memorable. Funny enough, I heard the song for the first time in the studio where I recorded the song. It sounded like a nice song to remix and it turned out that way. We were just having fun in the studio. How well did the song fare? I didn't really promote the song; I just had copies of the song on CD and gave them out. The song was like a test run for me in the music industry, I think a lot of people heard the song but didn't know I did the remix because I had been in a situation where I was sitting beside some people who were talking about my song and didn't even know me. It was a hilarious situation myself and my friend couldn't stop laughing. It was fun… What about the video for the song? As you know, the song is not originally mine, so I didn't do anything official concerning it. But I shot a viral video of me and my friends having fun which will be out soon. How do you manage to combine being a singer, songwriter, model and actress? The most exciting thing about me is that I multi-task, and that has helped me develop really fast. The movie jobs that I get come once in a while and since am not officially under a record label at the moment, I work at my own pace and that means I plan everything to fit into my somewhat crowded schedule. How were you able to develop your skill in music? Oh! I am still very much of a baby when it comes to music but every day is a learning process for me. I go for vocal

Mako Ranko returns

classes every now and then and I am now working on learning how to play the key board. I strive to be good if not the best in anything I concentrate my mind on. I learn every day… At what point in your life did you actually discover you could sing? I have always been singing; as a kid growing up, I used to enjoy recording my voice and I loved singing everywhere, especially in the bathroom. I would say I discovered my talent for singing a long time ago, and am still discovering my vocal capabilities. What texture should your fans expect from your debut album? They should expect a package full of lots of fun musically! My music portrays my personality, which is fun and loving with a bit of depth to it. The texture is expected to be smooth music that will sure put its listener in a good mood. What other forms of arts are you drawn to? Like I said earlier, I am a multi-talented person and that made me recently join a group to learn how to dance and I am still very passionate about improving my acting skills. Were you inspired into doing music by any local or foreign artiste? Not really, but I love and listen to people like Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Keri Hilson, Beyonce and R. Kelly and our own Onyeka Onwenu 'The Elegant Stallion'. Would you say that you have role models? I have a lot of role models; my Mum, Celine Dion, Beyonce, Keri Hilson, Joke Silva, Halle Berry and Oprah Winfrey. Have you come across any crazy male fan of yours? I used to have one crazy male fan who stalked me for a very long time. He tailed me for almost a year and he made it a

duty to call me at 6am in the morning, requesting to visit me. Are you in any relationship at the moment? (Takes a deep breath)For now, I want to keep my affairs personal because I wouldn't like to be misquoted. You'll know more about that when I am ready to divulge that part of my life. Do you have any regrets doing music thus far? I've had no regrets thus far, but it has been challenging. No regrets. Are your parents in support of your music career? My folks are my number one fans and I never lack support from them at all times. How do you intend to stand-out in the very tough music scene in Nigeria? That would be just being myself and selling the brand Celine. I hope to make a mark with my kind of music not minding the fact that I have to contend with other equally talented artistes that are out there. I will just concentrate on being me and try not to copy too much… Are you signed to any record label? I am not yet signed to any record label at the moment but there are positive signs that I'll be hooked soon because my album will be ready to hit the market sooner than later. What do you think is your selling point as a young entertainer? As a burgeoning artiste, I believe my uniqueness and unpredictability is my selling point, and those traits add-up to the Celine brand that I am trying to promote. I'm also good looking, I have stage presence and a good voice, and I'm a good songwriter too. I also believe in myself because I have the total package. Though I am still a baby in the industry with a lot to learn but the sky I believe, is my starting point.

Dada ALADELOKUN positive revolution aimed at repositioning gospel music, particularly in Nigeria, will hit the airwaves on October 1 when The Revolution, a ten-tracker, will be formally launched in Lagos. The duo behind the new album, Emmanuel Michael and his equally talented wife, Gracious, hinted that the new work was specially packaged to minister to souls and give gospel music its ideal meaning. With Xdimension as their stage name, the artistes, who ventured into the genre eight years ago, revealed that they had taken their time to study the worrisome trend of gospel music in the country, noting that they felt compelled to contribute to revamping the genre. “Primarily, gospel music is supposed to be a sacred kind of music and an avenue to preach salvation to human souls in order for them to lead Godly lifestyles. Unfortunately, over the years, the genre has been greatly turned into a secular venture, mostly aimed at making money by some practitioners. This is why we decided to come out with this album to halt the trend,” said Xdimension. The launch, which is billed to hold at 228, Ikorodu Road , Obanikoro, Lagos , according to the artistes, will attract the presence of men of God and other Christian faithful who share in their conviction that gospel music has a role to play in spreading the gospel of Godliness. The duo enjoined other gospel musicians across the country to deemphasise materialism and pull themselves back on the track in line with the true essence of the genre to ensure a saner society.

A


27

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Who wins Maltina Dance All tonight?

D’banj, Wizkid make MTV EMA nominations

I

T will be zero hour tonight at the popular Expo center, Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, as five families slog it out for a brand new car and N6 million top prize in the Maltina Dance All competition. The showdown in the family dance reality show will involve the Efiokwu, Green, Eghove, Boyle and Zibe families. The first and second runners up will take home N1million and N500, 000 respectively in the sixth edition of the Nigerian Breweries sponsored show, fashioned after its premium malt beverage. After about two months of rigorous and intensive competition process, the five families that made it to the finals proved better in a series of entertainment skills and dance communication that left out five others in a previous leg involving 10. The race started on September 2, 2012 with ten families in the picture; however, five families were unable to survive the various dance styles that were introduced in the MDA Academy: the “Wazobia” (contemporary Nigerian dances), Salsa, Pantomime, Out of the 10, that made it to the academy, the first set to be evicted were the Ozurumba and Nwogwugwu families; they failed to convince the judges after the Wazobia and Salsa performances. The Wazobia performance had placed the Ozurumba and Nwogwugwu families for eviction while the salsa performance placed the Okasia family as the only family up for possible eviction. The second phase of the show was the contemporary African and Gumboot dances. After the performance, the Amilo and Onyebuagu families were put up for possible eviction. They could however not survive at the heat and as such, were showed the door gumboot performance. At the eviction show down the four families came back to compete and the judges did what had never been done before in the history of Maltina Dance All; saving two: the Onyebuagu and Efiokwu families, and gave the audience an opportunity to vote between the Amilo and the Okasia families. The live audience voted the Okasia amily back into the academy, kicking the Amilo family out of the show. After the second eviction, the families were introduced to the last two dance styles which were to usher them to the grand finale -

the Hip-hop and Pantomime dance styles. After the hip-hop performance, the Zibe and Okasia families were put up for eviction, making it the third time the Okasia family was up for eviction. After the Pantomime performance, the Onyebuagu and Boyle families were placed on possible eviction making it the first time the Boyle family will fall into this category. The Onyebuagu and Okasia families however failed to convince the judges and they were evicted from the academy setting the stage for the five remaining families to compete for the grand prize. Ifeoma, the representative of the Efiokwu family promised to give her best when she said “being in the grand finale is a dream come true for my family and I and by the special grace of God we are going to come out with our best dance ever.” According to Ngozi Nkwoji, Senior Brand Manager, Maltina, the company undertook the journey because the brand's story has always been the story of sharing happiness within the

Nigerian family and beyond, with emphasis on the values of friendship, trust, togetherness and faithfulness. “It is all about bringing the entire family together in an atmosphere of friendship and bonding with other families so that as units they can share common problems and ideas effectively throughout their time at the Academy and beyond. We are very passionate about the family institution and we will do the little we can as a responsible corporate entity to ensure that the institution continues to remain relevant because a healthy and sound family system will resonate on the Nation as a whole, the family unit is the bedrock of any society.” On why the brand chose dance as its consumer engagement platform, Nkwoji said dancing is a creative form of expression that transcends boundaries and it is also an art that almost everybody enjoys. She stated that this was the main reason the recently concluded auditions was done in such a way that all consumers of the brand benefited through winning prizes or making it into the Academy.

ands Showkey Ranky rebr, Da ddy

r singer OUNGER brother to popula no longer wants he t tha ed eal rev Showkey has ky. The young Ran ey wk Sho to be addressed as Ranky. He dy Jud s fer pre man, who is also a singer,ng the first alias, is to give ppi dro for said the reason his music career a 'facelift'. real name is Jude Asemo Before now, Juddy whoseDancehall style of music. gae Reg his was known for giving up that style of The artiste has said he's notl be doing gospel songs. wil music, except that he the world before. I The artiste said, “I was intell you there is can I and have seen it all then, I heard clearly nothing in the world. Butning spreading his God spoke to me concer from that time, I gospel through music and have been and d Go to k bac e have gon h music”. oug thr pel gos the g propagatin name the On why he had to drop need 't don “I ed; not he ', 'Showkey . My now out me ng bri anybody to . brother cannot bring me out . Tuface cannot bring me outout. Wizkid cannot bring meout to With God, I can reach I the world and that is who o.” look unt

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D

'BANJ and Wizkid are among the Africa's hottest contemporary artistes that have been nominated for EMA, MTV's annual celebration of the biggest musical artistes from all over the globe. Others who will be joining the two to fight it out for a slot in the Worldwide Act category, where they will compete against their peers in India and the Middle East, from Monday 15 October are: Sarkodie, Camp Mulla, and Mi Casa. Topping the nominees list are reigning queens of pop; Rihanna and Taylor Swift, who have six and five nods respectively, while Justin

Club Vegas agog for Remy Martin

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Bieber and Katy Perry got four EMA nominations each. Other notable EMA nominees who got three nominations are Lady Gaga, Carly Rae Jepsen, Lana Del Rey, Nicki Minaj, Jay Z and Kanye West. Up for two nominations are the likes of Green Day, Gotye, Pitbull, Rita Ora, Flo Rida, Muse, Arctic Monkeys and Jack White. In its 19th edition, the event is billed for Sunday November 11 at thye historic Festhalle in Frankfurt. Fame winner, Iyanya will lead a star-studded cast of some of Naija's finest acts like Rexx, Shaydee, world famous DJ Spinall, and Shody among others. According to Remy Martin Senior Brand Manager, Thibault Robert, the brand's ability to sustain its drive to provide top class entertainment for all its consumers and other fun lovers on a monthly basis is as a result of the level of excitement generated during the last event at Aura Lounge, Victoria Island, Lagos in August 2012. “This initiative by the brand is one which has surely come to stay and I can guarantee you that it would only keep getting bigger and better as the months progress,” he stated. The At The Club With Remy Martin monthly party is proudly supported by The Beat 99.9 FM and TRACE Urban TV.

HE music jam fever continues, as Remy Martin's latest trend of providing premium excitement for its loyal consumers through its monthly event tagged At The Club With Remy Martin. The next stop for the road show is the popular Club Vegas, Ikeja, come next Saturday, organisers have said. As always since May 2012, the brand keeps an open invitation for all, every month end, for a rave moment, featuring notable artistes on the show. For the next edition, wavemaking MTN •Iyanya Project


28

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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HAT are you doing presently?

I am working on my talk show called The Lounge with Steph Nora. The show is designed to celebrate icons that are doing things to project Africans and the world. The major target is to create positive role models for the youths. What brought about this idea of yours? The initial idea was to start from the Nigeria society. I realized that the media, and by that, I mean the entertainment industry, the social media, every aspect of technology that is used to pass information has been used to paint a very negative picture of Nigerians. It is like that because that is what has been used to feed the people out there. I realized that our youths are fast adopting the negative ways of life as a norm because that is what they get to see all the time in the papers, on TV, online and hear on radio. I just felt that for once, we should start painting good pictures of good Nigerians, and Africans. Let me narrow it down, there are people who are helping the society through sponsorships, helping the widows and helping their communities. I thought it is time to start showcasing these people, to affect the minds of the youths positively. When did you start this? I have been on if for a year and six months and you will not believe the level I am now. I have been shooting features and people for the project. Right now, I am putting it on studio link, preparing it to go on air next quarter, which is in January. It was to come out in October but I found out that to get airtime is not as easy as I thought. I have to wait and get the airtime that will be convenient for my target audience. That way, I just don't work and put it on air at the wrong time. So far, do you have any sponsors? Right now, I am self sponsored. You know how it is with these things. When you put it on air and people start seeing it, sponsorships will come. Do you mind sharing your budget? I have to go back, sit and take a pen to do that. I told my directo r last

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week that one thing I have consciously refused to do is to calculate how much I have spent because I will be discouraged. From the onset, I had a budget of N10m, but right now I have spent way beyond my budget and I will not dare to take a pen and start calculating. I have travelled to places like Dubai, London, and I will be going to US in two weeks time to talk to Africans who have made a mark. Having spent so much and yet to start getting returns, are you not discouraged? The Lounge with Steph Nora is a part of a bigger picture. I have an NGO Big Sister Initiative, so the programme is like an introduction to a whole lot of things that I have packaged. The Lounge is a bit of a bigger show called Open Lounge, where all that matters come in. My driving factor is the fact that I want to do something that is different. I am not telling you that by the time I get on air, my money will be lost. It is still business, but I believe that by the time we start airing and the adverts start coming in, I will be able to recoup all that I have spent. I first have to invest and I believe that what I am doing is worth investing. Is this what has taken you off your first love; acting? No, I took a conscious break in 2008. It is like when you are driving on top speed and you get to a bend, you slowdown so that you can negotiate properly. It got to a stage where the movie industry was becoming repetitive. And I got bored. I am not a routine type of person that can be predicted so I just decided to take a break. I have done more than 200 films and it was still the same routine, it was the same thing. I produced eight movies too, the same way. But this show didn't start until a year and a half ago, so my being off the movies was to enable me dig deeper into what I was doing. Art for me is a universal thing because I trained as an artiste; I did not dabble into it. I was made to understand that acting should be enjoyed without the actors being around to explain what they are doing to them. What we did in Nollywood, before I took a break was like almost feeding just our immediate society and I had the hunger for bigger things. Even after The Lounge, a whole lot of other things will spring up. What were you doing before you started producing The Lounge? I am a playwright and I have been writing scripts. I actually have three scripts that are big picture productions and I was in the studio in between 2009 and 2010, working on my album. I was going to release it but for some reasons, I had to put it on the low for now. Have you sorted out the issue between you and PSquare? It is a stale issue. You see I have discovered that people find a way of using a situation to settle their own scores, and I saw that happening so I put it off for the meantime. I got calls from people that I respect

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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A graduate of Dramatic Arts from the University of Ife, Steph-Nora Okere was a frequent face in the make-believe world before she took a break in 2008 to concentrate on other aspects of the arts. The actress, playwright and singer, in this interview with DUPE AYINLAOLASUKANMI talked about her TV show, and her willingness to give marriage another shot.

‘Kids? I never thought of having them’ so much and I decided to let the matter rest so I don't like talking about it. Is the album ready? I have four tracks ready and I am working on the fifth one now. I also had a single that I put out last year. When did you discover that you also had talent for singing? I actually started entertainment with music. But then I did not have any album or singles like we do now. In school, I used to sing and write songs but back then, my father won't hear of it. When I was in O.A.U, I was in a musical band where we do shows though I studied Dramatic Arts, which translated today to Nollywood for me. Just coming out of school, which was the thin option open for me. If you remember towards late 80's and 90's, the music industry was on the dull side, and that was when Nollywood was coming up, so that was what I came up with. I have always had it in me.

When a man of God can marry and divorce at will and sill stand in front of the congregations. Values are dropping. That is why Catholics say if you no fit, no marry at all So what style of music do you sing? It is called Soul music. Do you think you can withstand the competition out there? Sometime ago, I told someone that I am in music to compete with anybody. It is like some people who are good at plaiting hair but have no saloon. When you go to them, and they make your hair well and ask them why they don't have a saloon, they tell you they love doing it.

Music is something that I do because it is inside me. I believe that what God put inside of you as a human being is meant to bless mankind and not necessarily for financial gains. You might also have a need for that thing, because it is what you have that you will need to survive in life. So I am doing my music because I am happy and good. It is something that someone that is driving or in a bad mood can listen to. I am not doing it to start touring and rubbing shoulders but if it comes, so be it. Did you work with any artiste on the album? For the remaining five, I intend to work with other artistes, though I did the first four tracks myself. Somebody told me they heard I want to feature Tuface on my album and I said cliché. Everybody wants to feature Tuface. If I want to feature him, it will mean that I have a song that will suit him and not just because he is Tuface. When are you returning to the

WAPTV set to go

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happens, and people really respect screen? those norms, I think marriages will Coming back for me means when I last. see that very big production that I With all these, are you willing to want to be part of, but I would not get married again? do that quickly. Next summer I am I tried getting married to someone, travelling to New York Academy for we had our introduction and all the a course in Film Making and some yama yama started getting in so I told other minor courses too. I am everyone to hold on. The thing there looking at the international picture. I is that one should also pray that one am going there neither to join gets a partner who understands Hollywood nor Bollywood, but as things about the society, in such a the eye of Nollywood. I am here, I way that he is not a confused person am back. I intend to shoot my own trying to fuse the western culture movie, which I intend to star in and with African culture. Beneath all get my hand on one or two scripts these, I think since the society has too. become a confused place to live, if Since you want something big, one puts God at bottom line, one will why don't you start with your then be able to walk the right scripts? direction. The money I have put in The There is the belief that fame is Lounge is about a quarter of the one disadvantage to celebrity money I need for the kind of movie I marriages. What is your take on would love to do. I used to shoot that? movies with between three to five If you go to Surulere High Court million naira but the kind of movie or Ikoyi high court, you will see that one can take to the cinemas, people lined up for divorce. You international film won't see one artiste festivals and tours, present. Artistes are Now people like they say is not part of the society and moi moi. don't pay marriages are having You look slimmer. emphasis on the problems. The reason What could be is that people do not traditional responsible for this? have respect for marriages I did not values. When a man of consciously plan to anymore. To God can marry and have a new look. It divorce at will and sill them it is like a just happened. But if stand in front of the ceremony, you have seen me congregations. Values frequently, you will forgetting that are dropping. That is see that I have always why Catholics say if the white been like this. People you no fit, no marry at wedding is the all. assumed that I am bigger because of the white man Knowing all these, soap Family Ties. In are you still willing to cultural wedding that production, they take that bold step give me oversize again? clothes; they make me I am not a negative to look older. This is minded person. And me and I feel I am fat. the fact that marriages Since I took the break break up, does not from what I do, I have mean that all been constant with marriages will break Family Ties and people up. You still have to use that to weigh how take your chances. I look. I just returned Yoruba people say if from where we went you close your eyes for to shoot new the bad people to pass, episodes. you won't know when When you are not the good one will pass busy with work, how by. do you relax? How come you speak Yoruba I sleep a lot because fluently? I am a work alcoholic. I drink a lot of water I have been here all too. So If I am not out my life. I had my there seeing a movie, I primary and secondary am writing a script. Sometimes I education here, although towards the end, I went to complete my read. secondary school in the East. I came In your opinion, why do back and went to Ife for my tertiary marriages not last these days? education. Except I am such a It is actually an attribute of dullard, will I be here, that long and Western culture infused into African not be able to speak Yoruba? culture. Divorce is not an African Don't you feel lonely? culture. Growing up, our fathers and How, because I am not married? mothers lived together. I was Why should I feel lonely? I have listening to a radio programme on family; I have brothers, sisters, this same issue and somebody said friends and neighbours. that it is because women are over What about children, don't you empowered. That is that person's feel bad about not having any? opinion. There has been a wrong adaptation of the Western culture by Why should I feel bad about things that I cannot do anything about? I the Africans. It is the same way a am human. If I get married, I will government official gets into the have kids and all that. But if I am not office and does a wrong thing. Now married, why should I worry myself people don't pay emphasis on the that I don't have any kid. Should I traditional marriages anymore. To start brooding about that? Except I them it is like a ceremony, forgetting want to have kids without being that the white wedding is the white married? man cultural wedding. If a lot of Are we to expect that soon? importance is placed on the traditional wedding, and they tell Well, I have not given it a thought them if you do this, this is what yet.

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S the October 1st kick-off date for transmission by the much publicized Wale Adenuga Production Television (WAPTV) draws nearer, the company has

reiterated its commitment to providing quality family entertainment. It would be recalled that the company recently announced that it has been granted a Direct to Satellite (DTS) Broadcast License by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and full transmission will commence on October 1, 2012. Known for award-winning TV programmes like Superstory, This Life, Papa Ajasco & Company, Odd World and Nnena & Friends, Chief Executive Officer of the company, Wale Adenuga MFR, says the outfit intends to continue raising the bar with WAPTV, a 24-hour family entertainment channel, featuring some new in-house productions, exclusive content and local and international shows. The station is expected to be available on StarTimes Channel 222 and StarTimes Mobile TV from the proposed date.

Seun Kuti to thrill at the New Africa Shrine

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ELA'S Egypt 80 Band led by Seun Kuti will be performing live at the New Africa Shrine on Saturday September 29. Seun Kuti and the band, having toured Europe and the U.S extensively this year, promoting his second Album From Africa with Fury RISE will embark on a musical tour of Australia after the Felabration in October and also perform in India at two festival venues in November. The Saturday show promises to be very exciting for Afrobeat fans with lots of fun and heavy Afro Beat vibes from Seun Kuti's second album currently rated high in the international music chart in Europe and the U.S.

Tenstrings Music unveils facilities

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ITH the standards of music deemed to be dropping by the day and the need to groom a younger and better equipped generation, Tenstrings Music Institute launched its new branch recently with a mission to raise musicians and music professionals who will be truly successful and remain relevant in the ever changing global music market. The institution, chaired by music instructor, Akapo Emmanuel offers youths the experience to learn the art of music in areas such as music production, sound engineering, voice

training, piano and guitar lessons, musical instruments, D.J academy and presentations. The institution which started in February, 2007 has expanded rapidly and it is currently running six different study centres in Ikeja, Surulere, Lekki, Festac, Port Harcourt and Abuja. Three new artistes namely S.O.J, 9T9 and Frankkie were also unveiled at the launch of the new branch and Mr. Akapo said he has mentored so many artistes, one of which is Jaywon, whom he groomed before he was signed onto Kennis Music.


CHIBUIKE DECLARES:

Keshi will call

WHEN HE NEEDS ME


CHIBUIKE DECLARES:


THE NATION SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Rosenfeld: We won't underestimate Nigeria A

S they prepare to kick off their FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup against Nigeria, Canada coach Bryan Rosenfeld believes the African side are not to be underestimated as the Canucks take start against a nation with a burgeoning reputation in women’s football. Despite an encouraging runners-up finish at the CONCACAF U-17 Championships, Rosenfeld is approaching the game with understandable caution as Nigeria similarly qualified comfortably. However, the

Flamingoes’ improving performances across the board in women’s youth tournaments has meant he expects to face a well drilled outfit at Baku’s Tofig Bahramov Stadium. “You look at a little bit of their history right now with how they’ve done in U-17 and U-20 there seems to be consistency of their play,” Rosenfeld told FIFA.com. “[They] are becoming more and more organised in their women’s football, the talent keeps growing. “They are definitely a squad to be reckoned with, not to underestimate, and their strengths are definitely

something that we are going to have to deal with.” Having reached the final four in the last two FIFA U20 Women’s World Cups, including a final in Germany 2010, and the quarter-finals at the last U17 global finals, Rosenfeld’s reserve is justified. However, the Ontario-born coach was sure not to undersell his confidence in his own side. Coming off the back of a fine display at the regional championships in Guatemala, conceding only once – to USA in the final – and beating fellow Azerbaijan 2012 qualifiers

Mexico in the semis, Rosenfeld believes the wind is in their sails. They are definitely a squad to be reckoned with,

Canada coach Brian Rosenfeld on Nigeria “I think it was a really positive experience for us in Guatemala, considering in the second half of the final game we had the better of the play, really putting the Americans on their heels. We didn’t get the win but towards Azerbaijan it’s something we can build on and take that momentum into our game on 22 September.” Also drawn alongside the hosts and Colombia in Group A, Rosenfeld was positive they would be able to play their own game. “We have a team that is very much a hard-working unit,” he said. “But at the same time I believe we do have some special players who can make a difference in a game and with the right supporting cast around those players I think we can do quite well.” Sublime spine It’s the spine of the Canadian team that he believes particularly holds the key. He expects the likes of Kallen Sheridan in goal, Kadeisha Buchanan in defence to star, alongside the midfield pair of Rebecca Quinn and captain Ashley

•Canadian coach (R) and players

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O much have been said and written about the Chairman of Nigeria Premier League (NPL) especially in the social media, the same platform the President’s minders have dismissed its participants as noisome, idle and pestle bearing lot. The first time we attempted a conversation was few days before the Federations Cup match in August and given the volume of discrediting reports about him and the NPL Board, the chance encounter convinced me to bring him face to face with some of his traducers and also with those who have spoken well of him. It was a dinner in his honour by my company, Youdees Integrated Services Limited and a partner at the New China Restaurant, inside the OPIC Plaza on Bank Anthony Way, Ikeja and when it was over, some held to their positions and many more saw a new side of the man. Below are excerpts from our interaction. On the highpoints of the 2011/2012 season of the Nigeria Premier League which was concluded on September 7, he said. “The fact that we set a kickoff date of January 7 and

not to underestimate, and their strengths are definitely something that we are going to have to deal with.

Lawrence, with front two Valerie Sanderson and Summer Clarke. The latter were on fire in Guatemala, scoring 11 between them. Though Rosenfeld is undecided on whether they are right for the opening game with Nigeria, he is convinced they are key to their chances as the duo hope to emulate another Canadian attack who have already had something of a vintage summer. “They’re looking sharp and they’re excited about the tournament and obviously young girls get their inspiration from the likes of Christine Sinclair and Melissa Tancredi,” Rosenfeld revealed. “Them having an excellent run at the Olympics and what they did for our senior women has seen [Clarke and Sanderson] draw a lot of inspiration from those two.”

Conversation with Baribote, the NPL Chairman concluded the League in exactly eight months on September 7 is quite remarkable. Given the challenges we have faced in the last 20 months ranging from sponsorship issues to internal boardroom wrangling, we did remarkably well to have organized the league without any interruptions like we experienced last season. Again, we will point to the decision to expel Ocean Boys in accordance with our rules and regulations. There were some persons who were criticizing on the grounds that the decision came late but what they didn’t realize is that the Chairman cannot stand up and take such decision. It has to go through due administrative process and secondly, the Ocean Boys violation only happened in Week 37. We

By

Harry Iwuala don’t base decisions on television commentaries and reports in the media but by documents that come to our office. There were also some persons who were reading the rule in breach; they deliberately ignore the caveat that states the club must have failed to honour two consecutive matches without acceptable reasons. We didn’t have anything to gain by from keeping Ocean Boys in the League and there was also the need to ensure that we didn’t blunt the competitiveness of the league. We met and evaluated the reasons

adduced by Ocean Boys and when you really take some factors into consideration, they were not entirely liable technically speaking because they were owed money by the NPL and they cited lack of funds for failing to honour their game. Technically speaking also, it cannot be said that they didn’t honour a match when the report showed that there was no security at the stadium. Now, remember it is the duty of the State Football Association to provide security and such failure cannot be blamed on the team. However, we ruled against Ocean Boys because

they also didn’t take steps to escalate their problems to the NPL. Finally, it is to my understanding a major achievement to have organized this league season with a shoe-string budget as we lost major revenue in title sponsorship fees. Whereas past NPL Boards had funds of over N800m to run a league season, we had just the television broadcast rights fee and the less than N50m in combined rights fees from our other sponsors. On the position of the title sponsorship rights which has been mired in civil litigation: “We inherited the problem and have been trying to resolve the matter amicably with Globacom but have somehow been handicapped because before I took over, they were already in court. However, the Honourable Minister for

Sports, Alhaji Bolaji Abdullahi has been able to bring Globacom and Total Promotions to the discussion table and we are at the point of coming out with something positive. At this point, it is not appropriate for me to disclose what has been agreed but we are very grateful to the Minister who had the wisdom to get them talking outside the courtrooms. The league will definitely have a title sponsor come next season. On how the Board will respond to Sponsor’ complaints about the absence of fans at most match venues: “ First, we must face certain realities arising from globalization of the world markets. It is neither peculiar to Nigeria nor to football. You find out that in most homes, people are not watching local television channels but are hooked to CNN, Al Jazeera etc. We want to spend holidays abroad for those who can afford it and more so, the rich fly out for treatment abroad. These are established patterns of a preference for better services and products that are indirect competition with what we have here. Coming to football, the access to satellite television channels have placed us in direct competition with the very rich European football league. European football is not only drawing away our fans, it is denying us the services of good players and it is this way because they have the money. It is the same way we had brain drain in the professional ranks because today, every university graduate who has an opportunity to work abroad grabs it. But we are not folding our hands, we are developing strategies to fill the stands and also improve the economy of the league so it can not only retain the good players but also attract foreigners to our league. From next season, clubs will be encouraged to set up campaigns that will increase attendance and I will have the Board approve monthly prizes for clubs that are able to get 10, 000 fans in any particular match. It is fool proof because the number of fans you declare will reflect in the money the club will remit to the NPL from gate takings. We also plan to set up attractive prizes to be won by fans for attending matches. We are in discussions with some companies to partner us especially to put up cars as grand prizes. And in the area of improving the quality of the league, the NPL encouraged coaches to attend a number of seminars facilitated by the Nigeria Football Federation this year and we will be reaching out to the NFF to collaborate with us in organizing more of such capacity building workshops. Players will be motivated in the coming season with monthly awards for all positions and the composition of an all stars squad every month. This way, we hope to improve the competitiveness of the league”.


THE NATION SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

I can play anywhere — Yaya

•Xavi

Xavi denies defensive crisis I B

ARCELONA playmaker Xavi has played down talk of a defensive crisis in the Catalan camp ahead of the first El Clasico meeting on the 7th of October. Gerard Pique is Barca's latest casualty, limping off in the 3-2 win over Spartak Moscow on Wednesday night after just 12 minutes. Pique was immediately assessed and it was concluded that he will miss up to three weeks of competitive football, meaning he faces a race against time to be fit for the first El Clasico of the season, a derby that pits arch-rivals Real Madrid versus Barcelona. The Spanish centre-back follows his defensive partner for club and country Carles Puyol into the treatment room. And despite the Catalan giants having their first-choice centre-back pairing sidelined, their midfield talisman Xavi Hernandez believes the squad is strong enough to cope. He told the club's official website: "All of the players that have picked up injuries are important. Puyol and Pique without a doubt are very important, but the team is big enough to cope with their absence. "We're focusing on Saturday's match (against Granada). Before the Clasico there are two more league games and another Champions League fixture. "It's clear that it would be good to get them (Puyol and Pique) back before the Clasico, but we have a good team.

"(Sergio) Busquets, (Alex) Song, who played a good game (against Spartak), (Javier) Mascherano...all of them can play in the centre-back position."

Sat 22 Sept 2012 Real Zaragoza v Osasuna Celta Vigo v Getafe Real Betis v Espanyol Barcelona v Granada Sun 23 Sept 2012 Mallorca v Valencia Levante v Real Sociedad Atletico Madrid v Valladolid Athletic Bilbao v Malaga Rayo Vallecano v Real Madrid

F there was one Premier League player which would improve every side on the planet, you would be hard pushed to find one more suitable than Yaya Toure. Toure saw his stock rise as the steel in the centre Barcelona’s ‘tiki taka’ side, but it is his exploits going forward over the last few years that have given Man City a base on which they can play off, so much so, that Alan Hansen asked the question on Saturday night’s Match of the day, “Why don’t they just start him forward?” Firstly, the form of Gareth Barry last year meant that Toure had license to roam against weaker teams, and with the accusation of Javi Garcia already seeming to be a prudent one, there should be times for Toure to make those explosive runs which have seen him flourish in the Premier League. And secondly, with the host of world class, yet somewhat egotistical strikers at Mancini’s disposal, playing two up front, with one of Aguero or Tevez dropping deeper to interlink with play, is almost a necessity. With Nasri, Silva and Aguero/Tevez all trying to drop into the hole, there is no choice but to have Toure playing deeper, a role he made his name in might I add, his £24 million, 220 grand a week name. It is also not a bad problem to have; against physical sides (a la Stoke) playing Yaya (we’re on first name basis) further

forward does add another element to City’s play. Also, against teams where they are likely to be starved of possession, teams like this week’s opponents Real Madrid for example, having a physical presence like Toure running straight at the defence is a daunting one for players and managers alike. Toure’s capture from Barcelona in 2010, was a huge one in City’s project, considering the club he had come from, but he has been an even bigger (literally) success than first thou ght by many fans, as he can pull of two roles, a goalscoring one, rather surprisingly after his exploits in Spain, and a deeper role, being assigned to break up play, bully midfielders, while keeping possession ticking over.

Time running out for

contribute for me on the football field. "His passions are for the football club, he wants what's best for the club and I enjoy working with guys like that. "There's no doubt there's maybe that role beyond playing for him later on, but for me, what he has given me in these opening few months there is no reason he can't play on for a few more years yet. "He's an incredible character and I can see why he has played more than 700 games for he was at in terms of his career. He's been a this club, because his focus stalwart and has been a regular until the last and concentration into season, so he was wondering where he goes," his work is Rodgers said. "He's one of the guys whose the soul of the club phenomenal." and there has to be a place for someone like him. Whether he wants to do that is another thing. "Okay, the legs may not be the same as they were six or seven years ago, but he still has a lot to

Rodgers reveals Carragher dilemma L

IVERPOOL manager Brendan Rodgers says leaving Jamie Carragher out of his first team has been a difficult decision to make. Carragher will captain the Reds in their Europa League clash with Young Boys on Thursday, but Rodgers has left the veteran defender on the bench for his side's Premier League games this term. It is a decision that the Northern Irishman describes as the 'hardest part' of his job given Carragher's standing at the club and professionalism. "For me this is the hardest part of my job - he (Carragher) is the hardest part of my job, because every day of his life he comes in and he gives his all," Rodgers told reporters. "He works himself to a standstill every day of his life. And guys like that I want to put in the team when it matters. "The Europa League matters of course, but every player wants to play in the Premier League on Sunday. "And that is the most difficult decision I have as the manager of Liverpool - seeing him every day give his life to the club as hard as he does and then not being able to give him a shirt in the starting 11 at the weekend." Rodgers insists that he will not force the 34-yearold to retire, and has offered him a role within the backroom staff at Anfield. "When I came in to the club, I had a real good chat with Jamie and he •Rodgers wasn't sure himself where

•Toure

•Di Matteo

Sat 22 Sept 2012 Swansea v Everton Wigan v Fulham Chelsea v Stoke Southampton v Aston West Brom v Reading West Ham v Sunderland Sun 23 Sept 2012 Liverpool v Man Utd Newcastle v Norwich Tottenham v QPR Man City v Arsenal

Udinese is Di Matteo Allegri's I last chance

F Roberto di Matteo believes the biggest problem to emerge from his Chelsea side's draw with Juventus was the ease at which they surrendered their twogoal lead build on the foundation of the ingenuity of Brazilian wonder kid Oscar, then the depth of the Italian's managerial acumen following his Champions League and FA Cup double win last season has been substantially overstated. Granted, Di Matteo must surely stray away from the ultra-defensive displays which accompanied the victories over Barcelona and Bayern Munich, during this season's group phase, but against a wily Juventus side, who went the whole of last season in Serie A unbeaten on their way to the title, The Blues were the victim of their own self-confidence. Two pieces of excellence from Oscar had provided Chelsea the platform to get their Champions League campaign off to the perfect start, but elsewhere, chances were seldom fashioned by a creative engine room among the best on the continent. However, there was no faltering the determination of the effort of the likes of Eden Hazard, Ramires and Oscar in that department. The Lille winger was a constant source of optimism on either flank, even if his tendency to drift inside is beginning to become predictable; Ramires's early season injury appears to have hit his early form while Oscar, away from his double, was asked to track Andrea Pirlo for long periods.

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ASSIMILIANO ALLEGRI will have to beat Udinese on Sunday to keep his job according to reports. Milan started the season in pathetic form with four points out of 12 possible (including the Champions League) and time is running out for coach Massimiliano Allegri who has found himself under fire recently. Some fans at the San Siro booed and jeered Milan after yet another terrible display of football on the Meazza pitch and Philippe Mexes ‘answered back’ to these supporters, showing the fans his middle finger. After the awful game against Anderlecht, the newspapers in Italy are claiming that Allegri’s job is in big risk as Milan recorded their worst Serie A home start in 82 years. La Gazzetta dello Sport and Sky Sport Italia are claiming that Silvio Berlusconi and Galliani had a conversation last night regarding coach Allegri. Silvio phoned Galliani after the Anderlecht draw and they decided that Allegri will be given one more game to redeem

•Allegri

himself. Gazzetta claims Berlusconi wanted to fire Allegri yesterday but Galliani convinced him to keep Allegri at least until this weekend. Milan are taking on Udinese, who have a Europa League game tomorrow, on Sunday and if Allegri fails to beat Guidolin’s Zebrette, the former midfielder will get the sack. Reports in the Italian media are already suggesting Milan are after Rafa Benitez who coached Inter for six months in 2010. “It’s not true that Benitez has offered himself to Milan,” the agent of Benitez, Manuel Garcia Quilon, said on Wednesday. “If Milan called us then we’ll talk because we listen to everyone – both in Italy and abroad. If the Rossoneri should call, then Benitez would listen to their offer and evaluate it carefully.” Earlier rumours suggested that Milan would prefer to bring a man from inside to replace Allegri if Max gets the sack as a Mauro Tassotti has been thought of. It seems that Allegri will have to win in order to stay.


THE NATION SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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HE Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) examination is conducted to determine the age-range of an individual. The tests are carried out on the bone structure, meaning that the stronger your bones are, the older you are. The MRI examination is not a new-fangled bit. The tests were conducted on the U-17 Boys’ National Team (Golden Eaglets) that represented the country at the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup, which our country hosted. That team was coached by John Sam Obuh, the man presently in charge of the U-20 National Team. That U-17 squad, led by midfielder Ramon Azeez, reached the final of the championship, playing exciting football, before losing to Switzerland. Two years later, a good name of those players were in the U-20 National Team (Flying Eagles) that won the African Youth Championship in South Africa and reached the quarter finals of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Colombia. I am a staunch opponent of age cheating in sports, and I have said this several times. The present Executive Committee of the NFF will not, under any guise, condone or tolerate age cheating in any of the age-grade National Teams. In 2009, as a Member of the NFF Executive Committee, I fully backed the MRI examination on the players. Like any process that we know of, it is not one hundred per cent fool-proof, which was why some people still made noise around the squad. But it is guaranteed to curtail brazen corruption in the age matter. Which is why I am happy with the comments going round town about the new set of U-17 National Team, Golden Eaglets. Before I go further, it is important that I express the very sincere appreciation of the Nigeria football family to the Executive Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency, Senator Liyel Imoke, CON for all that he has been doing for both the Super Eagles and the Golden Eaglets. The Super Eagles played their 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil preliminary match against Namibia, and the 2013 African Cup of Nations qualifier against Rwanda, at the U. J. Esuene Stadium,

Eaglets and MRI tests Inside The

Glass House WITH AMINU MAIGARI Calabar. They did not just play the matches in Calabar. Governor Imoke extended the best hospitality and the uncommon warmth and generosity of the people of Cross River State to the team, as they spent at least one week in the Canaan City before each of these matches. The Golden Eaglets had a screening camp in Abuja earlier in the year, but ever since the serious exercise of building a team started, their home has been CALABAR. Last week, I spoke to members of the team’s Technical Crew, from Coach Manu Garba, and they were ecstatic to say that Calabar has become their home. It is not just the ‘home’ that Governor Imoke (CON) and the good people of Cross River State has provided for them that excites the players and officials. They have had a

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HE piece of news that attracted my attention late last week was the move by the National Sports Commission(NSC) to hire a foreign coach for the Super Eagles. The idea of engaging one must have come from upstairs as Sports Minister, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi had told the Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) to win the 2013 African Cup of Nations even if it involves sacrificing current coach, Stephen Keshi. The move to hire a foreign coach is nothing new. We have had many in the past and will always occur. Three had justified their contract and the huge amount spent to hire them. Professor Otto Gloria, the Brazilian, led Green Eagles to the Unity Cup in Lagos and left shortly afterward, opening

•Keshi

wonderful environment to build a team that the whole country is now proud of. Calabar has played tremendous role in the formation of a new GOLDEN EAGLETS that looks set to set new standards and marks, and which could also become the most accepted U-17 National Team in history. Those who have seen the team play, even from the early stages of rash of friendly matches, have spoken glowingly of the youthfulness of the players. The players are truly young. And as we are determined to implement the transformation agenda in the football sector, the new Golden Eaglets will grow and mature to the Flying Eagles, to the Men’s Olympics Team and to the Super Eagles. Looking back, I commend the insistence of the world football governing body, FIFA

and the continental body, CAF for the players to undergo MRI tests. Ordinarily, I would have insisted. Their stipulation made it mandatory. And off the players went to the National Hospital, Abuja, some months ago, to conduct the tests. As usual, the media was awash with sensational reports of how many of the players had failed the tests. There was anxiety and uncertainty among those who claimed to be career football critics. “Yes, the NFF had come again!” “The NFF will always fumble.” “Oh, what is the meaning of this? This is international disgrace.” The critics had their say, but we knew the truth. There were those who claimed that as many as 25 players had failed the tests. Out of 40 players, that was. But in the end, the results sent to us and certified by the experts at the National Hospital declared only

NINE PLAYERS to be outside the range. Aside the 40 players that were recommended by the team’s Technical Crew, the NFF also sent another 20 players, mainly from our long-term U-15 programme, to do the tests. At the end, National Hospital declared that we have a pool of 50 PLAYERS from which we can pick a new team of Golden Eaglets. The players and technical officials were happy with the tests, because it meant their months of hard work and perseverance and dreams had not gone down the slope. The NFF was happy with the tests because we had not only fulfilled the requirements of FIFA and CAF, we had also not wasted money. And the results have been coming. I have been monitoring the team’s friendly matches all over the country (they even won a trophy in Anambra State) and the heartlifting results that have come from those friendlies. But I kept telling the Technical Crew that the results that would matter were those against their counterparts from other countries, especially in competitive games. The two-match friendly against Rwanda’s U-17 Team, early September, was an opportunity for the Golden Eaglets to start proving themselves real good. Against Rwanda in the first match, the Eaglets were 5-0 winners. In

the second match, two days later, they swept it 3-0. The applause from this had hardly died down when the boys went to Niamey for the start of their 2013 African U-17 Championship qualification series. The same day the Super Eagles drew 2-2 with Liberia in Monrovia in a 2013 African Cup of Nations qualifier, the Eaglets pounded their hosts 41. I learnt it could have been worse for the hosts. Member of the NFF Executive Committee, Alhaji Muazu Suleyman who was Leader of Delegation, and Director of Technical (Dr Ikpeme) and Director of Competitions (Dr. Sanusi) as well as Member of Technical Committee, Mr. Paul Bassey regalled me with heartlifting stories of the players’ dexterity. “If you have a headache, or something bothering you, just go and watch the Golden Eaglets play,” Dr. Sanusi said on a general note. Today, in Calabar, the Eaglets host their Nigerien counterparts in the second leg of that fixture, and will then be ready to confront their Guinean counterparts in three weeks’ time. They have a long way to go to qualify for the African U-17 Championship (I understand they still have one more round after Guinea), and the FIFA U17 World Cup, and to becoming the next set of Flying Eagles, and Olympic Team, and Super Eagles, but the new Golden Eaglets are surely on their way.

NSC, Keshi and Foreign coach the eyes of Nigerians that the country had what it takes to rule the continent in the game of football and beyond. Clemens Westerhof, the Dutch, won Nigeria's second Nations Cup with the Super Eagles in 1994 and qualified for the World Cup, our first. Bonfrere Jo, another Dutch, won the gold medal at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, USA with the dream team and finished as runner up in the 2000 Nations Cup in Lagos, having been beaten in penalty shoot-out by Cameroun. Yugoslav Father Tiko was near success. He failed to qualify for the World Cup after a splendid run, denied by an own goal scored by defender Godwin Odiye in Lagos. He built an efficient team in the seventies, which was feared in the continent and beyond. Westerhof was successful because he had time on the job. He was in charge of the Eagles for about five years. The continuity in coaching and playing staff made for the success he achieved as the gaffer. Bonfrere was part of Westerhof's team though they fell apart subsequently and the second Dutch stayed behind to write his name in the history books. He knew the players and had time to raise a formidable team which kept Nigeria;s flag flying in international football. Gloria also had time to nurture his Eagles to stardom and ended up as successful in charge. Ditto Father Tiko. Our glory in football came in the era of the foreign coaches and that would have moved the egg-heads in NSC to contemplate hiring another for the national team. The players also will respect the foreign coach and will give their all. They will prefer the foreign coach though they would be diplomatic about their desire so

AKINLOYE

AT LARGE

08050246155 atlarge84@yahoo.com that they would not lose their places in the national team. They do not take the Nigerian coaches serious and their respect for them is superficial. They will play with full commitment under a foreign coach and the national team would be better for it though the NFF members would not agree. Westerhof built a team using home based players because the country did not have many players plying their trade in Europe. He had no choice other than to stick to what is available. Bonfrere did not look at the home based players in his time. We had many players in Europe and invitation was extended to them to come and play for the country. Keshi has given the home based players the life line despite years of neglect though it is debatable whether they have what it takes to drive the national team. He has given them places in the national team and has sacrifice merit on the altar of rebuilding. The foreign coach will reverse the situation. His players will come good on merit and he will sweep mediocrity out of the national team. Though the foreign coach will not come to develop our football, our position in international football will be better for it if we hire the right one not a journey man. He will bring superior technical input. He will build his team on players who are on fire not on the premise to please some in the soccer house. The best will wear the national colours not minding where they play their football and there will be no division based on home or

abroad. Talent will not be slaughtered on the altar of mediocrity and we will have players desiring to answer national call because it would be attractive. The mistake we made in the past was in hiring foreign coach late. The last came with few months left to the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa and he made no impact because he had no time to work on the team. The Swede just came for his retiring benefit not to work to lift the standard of the national team and our football. If those in the corridors of power have found Keshi wanting on the job and think the national team would be better served by a foreign coach, they should start early to get one so that he could have time with the national team for at least one year. That should come after the 2013 Nations Cup in January when we would have seen the result of the folly called rebuilding. It is not that the foreign coach would win the World Cup or get to the final in one year. No, not all. The national team will have stability and semblance of a team which has been coached by a technicalminded coach. We erred in throwing away the Samson Siasia's team for failing to qualify for the last Nations Cup. The players were technically better and the fact that they did not lose any match except the reverse friendly to Argentina in Bangladesh should have informed us to keep the baby. We should have built on the team through elimination by substitution. Was it not the team

that beat Zambia 2-0 in Kaduna in a friendly prior to the 2012 Nations Cup in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea? The Zambians went on to win the trophy for the first time. The team only needed to be fine-tuned for success and not thrown away. It takes four years to prepare a team for the World Cup and we had begun before its life was caught short because it drew a match at home. The decision to rebuild halfway through has thrown spanner into our works and it is a set back. The team Keshi is rebuilding will not blend before the Nations Cup and the approach in bringing in new faces with every match will be counter-productive on the long run. The players will continue to find it difficult to understand each other having had to play with fresh faces in every match and there will be no fluidity in the team. The best a domestic coach has achieved as Eagles's minder has been a second place at the Nations Cup though another qualified the country for the World Cup twice. They did these with limited resources, time and support to be fair to them. But they still lack the technical know how and stature to take the national team to greater heights. They need to move with modern trends in soccer, develop themselves and try to be different. Then they will need more time in charge to try and prove that they can put smiles on the faces of Nigerians by winning the Nations Cup. Westerhof's tenure of five years did not come by design. He had to play politics to remain in charge and get his contract renewed.. He helped matters with the result that the team recorded. After a disastrous start, Eagles finished second in 1990 in Algiers, won bronze in 1992 and ended up the winner in 1994 in Tunisia.


LONDON 2012 AWARD CEREMONY Saturday, September 22, 2012

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NTDC ON NIGERIA'S

GOLFLINE

with

Tony Akhigbe golflineintl@yahoo.com 08094863638

50 most celebrated golfers

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ICKING the nation's 50 most celebrated golfers could be fun. It could indeed be a practical thing and way long from this sad statement of 'one man' s trash is another man's treasure'. Truth is whoever is picked to be one of the 50 most celebrated golfers must have merited the slot. Otunba Olusegun Runsewe OON, the Director General of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation [NTDC] and indeed the Publisher of Nigeria's only golf magazine, the Nigeria Golf Network, did ponder on the issue and yes, a 100-page all-colour glossy magazine is already on the way to chronicle the Huge 50. Last week, Golfline pondered on names that could make the great list. From General Gowon and former President Obasanjo to the likes of late statesman Anthony Enahoro, Senate President, David Mark, Mobolaji Johnson, PDP National Secretary, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Olusola Adekanola, Matthew Jacob, Lucky Omoluwa, Uche Okpuno, Engineer Joseph Olo.... we just mentioned names. At the end of it all, we requested that you, great readers, should nominate those golfers that could make the 50 list. Interestingly, the response from readers was indeed overwhelming. Matthew Jacob, the first Director of the Professional Golfers Association of Nigeria [PGAN] indeed put Golfline through the 'history path'. At one point, I erroneously mentioned that it was the great late Statesman, Anthony Enahoro, w h o sponsore d t h e overseas

training of the first five golf professionals in Nigeria. Through Matthew Jacob, I soon discovered that it was indeed the Nigeria Tobacco Company {NTC] which picked the bills of that training of the first pros abroad. So, like Chief Enahoro, the NTC, now British-America Tobacco will make the 50 list. The list is indeed building. Angela, the lovely daughter of General GT Zidon was bold enough to nominate her dad as one of the Big 50. And rightly so if one must consider the great job General Zidon did to uplift the Calabar Golf Club at that very point when the club was clinically dead and no one would dream of playing golf there. This is not to even make mention of the uncommon passion Zidon attaches to the game. From Shagamu, Alhaji S.O. Akinosho wrote in to nominate past spirit behind the Energy in Nigeria, Engineer J.O. Makoju. And again, rightly so. It's indeed on record that Makoju, in the early eighties, put in place golf courses at the West African Portland Cement in Ewekoro and Shagamu. The courses are still there today... especially the Shagamu course which adorns 'green putting surfaces'. We are still counting. Someone who would not want his name nominated Architect Ibrahim Abdullahi Haruna and Akanji Kayode who sent in words from Ikoyi, nominated Dapo Ojora and Sani Dangote, while another unnamed fellow nominated Alhaji Akeem Afolabi, CEO of Saratu Motors, Oshogbo. Yet, another unnamed person nominated Dr. Gaius Obaseki, former GMD of the NNPC for contributing in no small measure in the 'Green Project' of the Benin Golf Club and indeed putting in place grand conveniences on ground in that club. Someone picked Elizade which presently constructing what could end up as Nigeria's best course. Some 76 other messages, especially through twitters [follow me on Tony Akhigbe], could not be relayed here. The list is becoming endless. We still say you can nominate someone today. You can even put your message on SMS through the phone number above. Truth is Golfline will not have a say on who hits the 50 list. Otunba Runsewe has since constituted a panel of golf afficionados who will pick the 50... strictly based on what the fellows contributed to the game of golf in Nigeria. This has nothing to do with how rich a nominee is. It has everything to do with contribution and passion to the game. Hear Otunba Runsewe: "I just came from a tour of America and I discovered how the people treat the game and the people who follow it just to boost the Tourism business. Every place I moved I was always meeting up with Hall of Fame on golfers and special publications on people who helped develop the game in some particular areas. I said to myself why can't we do same in Nigeria? This is what this whole project is all about. NTDC will honor those who has given to the game. This will encourage more people to come into helping the game and this will indeed boost the Tourism business in Nigeria".

McIlroy turning into a solid rival for Woods

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ORLD No. 1 Rory McIlroy will once again be paired with 14-time major winner Tiger Woods as he shoots for his fourth victory in his last five events at this week’s Tour Championship. Woods and McIlroy tee off as the final pairing of the 30-man PGA Tour field on Thursday. It will be the fifth time in the last four tournaments that Woods and McIlroy have played in the same group and the eighth time this year. McIlroy says that he’s pleased with what he has accomplished on the PGA Tour this year but doesn’t think Woods is intimidated in any way by him.

“No, how can I intimidate Tiger Woods?” he said. “The guy’s got 75 or 70 whatever PGA Tour wins, 14 majors. “He’s been the biggest thing ever in our sport. I mean, how can some little 23-year-old from Northern Ireland with a few wins come up and intimidate him? It’s just not possible. “I don’t know where he got that from, but it’s not true.” McIlroy was referring to a recent comment from former Australian golfer Greg Norman who said that he believes Woods sees the two-time major winner McIlroy as a threat.

“What I’m seeing is that Tiger’s really intimidated by Rory,” Norman said. “When have you ever seen him intimidated by another player? Never.” Woods has seen numerous rivals come and go during his 17 years on the PGA Tour. McIlroy heads into the Tour Championship as world number one and first on the the PGA Tour’s money list. McIlroy began his recent run of fine form with a record eight-shot victory at Kiawah Island in the PGA Championship for his second major.

All hail Paralympians, says Mr President

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ATURDAY, September 15th 2012, will be for a long time a memorable day in the lives of paralympians and Nigeria’s under-20 falconets. It was a day of honour for sports men and women for doing very well in the London 2012 Paralympics and the under-20 FIFA World Cup competition in Japan. The Paralympians won a total of 13 medals, made up of six gold, five silver and two bronze medals, while the falconets came 4th but very impressive in their performance. It was a night to reward performance of athletes and also proffer solutions for a greater future of athleticism at the global level. This brief write up, attempts to capture the highlights of the occasion and other relevant issues about the future of sports in Nigeria. This reward and award night took place at the auspicious and opulent Banquet Hall of Aso Villa. To be on this occasion, was a rare privilege and honour, and this writer felt so, as he witnessed the occasion. The high and mighty were present to honour the great paralympians. There was plenty of music, phased meals and speeches. The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, gave a resourceful speech on sports particularly, in terms of his prescriptions for future prosperity of sports development in Nigeria. Mr. President has elevated sports to be a key area of national development and promised that his government would give it the best shot. For a start, he restated his desire to actualize the Presidential retreat on sports, which would be a platform to work out the organic strategy for a prosperous future of sports development in Nigeria. Mr. President spoke of his desire to: a) Revamp the Nigerian sports sector b) Restore sports to its glorious days, while setting new peak for the future. c) Use Sports for promotion of national unity, social cohesion and youth development. He reaffirmed sports as a cross cutting area of national development. d) Engineer all state governments to join the bandwagon e) Revamp and develop sports facilities. f) Support programmes of early preparations for future Olympics g) Use scholarships to attract young people to sports h) Create an enabling environment for sports to thrive. In broad outline, the foregoing seems to capture the core of Mr. President’s prescriptions to lift Nigerian sports to greater and befitting height of achievements, regionally and globally. Having made his laudable prescriptions, he went ahead to pronounce his sumptuous awards to paralympians and under -20 falconets which included: (1) N5m for gold medalists and National Honour of MON (2) N 3m for silver medalists (3) N 2m for Bronze Medalists (4) N 500,000 for non-medalists (5) N 1 m for each falconet The coaches and officials were not left out as they were also handsomely rewarded. Mr. President, thank you, for your love of sports and reward for excellence in sports. At this auspicious ceremony, no single word of appreciation went to the London 2012 Olympians, even if they did not win medals. In my view, all Olympians who got to semi-finals and finals of their events in the 2012 Olympics should have been part of this ceremony and some word of encouragement and reinforcement of their efforts mentioned. The truth is that they remain the best we could put on stage at the time and just as the paralympians who did not win anything got some reward, this group of 2012 Olympians who got to semifinals and finals of their events, should have been remembered, at least with a handshake with Mr. President and a thank you for their efforts. We may still fall back on some of them in Rio 2016. From all the speeches made, I saw a nation so desirous of Olympic and Paralympic success and a government that is willing politically to achieve this objective. Are we now to believe that there is a new dawn in Nigerian sports? My advice is that we must be hands –on from base to apex of sports programmes and engagements. The Olympics is the culmination of competitions. Athletes are cultivated and nurtured to fruition before bounteous harvest can be achieved at the Olympics. We can do it, if we do the right things. If for example, we do the things prescribed in the vision 20-20-20 documents on sports, I am convinced, we will get there. Once again, thank you, Mr. President.


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

HO LLYWOOD

HE'S previously admitted to being 'a little bit part of the green club' and Gaga revealed all to her fans many of them young - as she smoked marijuana onstage. In a video captured at her performance in Amsterdam, the singer was seen midshow lighting a big joint and inhaling on it during a break in the show. Praising the 'wondrous' drug, the 26-year-old singer told fans she had cut down on drinking alcohol because she prefers smoking the substance. The Born This Way hitmaker revealed cannabis has helped her approach her music from a 'spiritual' perspective. She was quoted as saying: 'I want you to know it has totally changed my life and I've really cut down on drinking. 'It has been a totally spiritual experience for me with my music. It's like saying everybody needs to take a breath and it's going to be OK.’

Gaga smokes cannabis live on stage

Depp films stunts for new movie

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RESSED in full costume as the character Tonto, Johnny Depp shot a stunt scene in Los Angeles. The actor was seen leaping from train to train as he played the Native American spirit warrior in the new Lone Ranger film. Depp, 47, appeared nonchalant as he performed the stunt, which appeared to show him sprinting to a precarious edge before jumping off. Titled Lone Ranger, the flick will follow the adventures of a masked exTexas Ranger who is aided by his Native American companion Tonto to fight injustice in the American Old West. The Lone Ranger first appeared in 1933 in a wildly popular radio show which spawned an equally popular television show that ran from 1949 to 1957, as well as comic books and

movies. Depp has previously revealed he has Native American heritage.

•Depp on set of a movie, Lone Ranger

A

FTER winning Best African Act at the 2012 BET Award, Ghanaian rapper, Sarkodie has again received nomination for another international Award. MTV has unveiled the nominees for its annual European Music Awards (EMA) with reigning pop princesses Rihanna and Taylor Swift topping the list with six and five nods respectively. Africa's hottest contemporary artists could also be in the frame for an EMA award, as Sarkodie, Camp Mulla, Wizkid, Mi Casa and D'Banj fight it out for a slot in the Worldwide Act category, where they will compete against their peers in India and the Middle East (from Monday 15 October). The final Worldwide Act nominees from each

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•Shakira with Pique

GHOLLY W OOD

Sarkodie nominated for EMA

•Sarkodie

region (Europe, Latin America, North America, Asia Pacific and Africa/ India/ Middle East) will be announced the week of 30 October and the winner will be named at the show in Frankfurt.

Leila Djansi threatens to sue film distributors

Shakira expecting her first child OLOMBIAN singer, Shakira has confirmed she and Spanish soccer star Gerard Pique, who is 10 years her junior, are expecting a baby together. She has also revealed that she has decided to cut down on her work schedule over the coming weeks. Writing on her website, Shakira told her fans: 'As some of you may know, Gerard and I are very happy awaiting the arrival of our first baby. At this time we have decided to give priority to this unique moment in our lives and postpone all the promotional activities planned over the next few days.' The Hips don't Lie singer, 35, was expected to perform at the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, but had now cancelled her appearance. Hiding the baby bump? Shakira was most recently spotted in Italy on September 7, and she wore a baggy T-shirt to go furniture shopping

Crane over

Sharon Stone and lover light up Venice

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HARON Stone certainly relished showing off her younger beau during a trip to Venice. The lovebirds could possibly have remained incognito if not for the incessant PDAs as they took a boat ride and soaked up the adventures of their Italian jaunt just like any other tourist couple. Sharon, 54, was keen to remain low-key in a faded black baseball cap and a pair of shades, wearing a simple but stylish monochrome dress and a thick belt to cinch her in at the waist. Her beau, Argentinian model Martin, 27, looked typically stylish in his navy jeans, a similar cross pendant to Sharon, and a Jimi Hendrix T-shirt. The pair seem to have proven critics wrong, still going strong after debuting their romance in May. Twice-married Sharon was enjoying a break from her latest silver screen project, What about Love.

HANAIAN filmmaker of international repute Leila Djansi has threatened to go to court to seek redress in an issue involving her and Distributors Guild of Ghana, a body responsible for film distribution in Ghana. The body has allegedly stopped its member, Abdul Salam, producer and CEO of Venus Film, who is about to distribute Leila Djansi's Ties that Bind, from releasing the film. Last week, the group allegedly cautioned its members not to work with Leila, a mafia style move which is known by Film Producers Association of Ghana (FIPAG). The group is fighting Leila Djansi because of a certain comment she made about working with one of the members of the

group and her opinion about distribution in Ghana. Leila allegedly lost a huge amount of money to one of the guild's members, and made a comment on it on Facebook. For Leila, she was exercising her constitutional right, the freedom to express herself against treatment being meted out to her and her business through underhand tactics.

John Dumelo Foundation gives scholarship

A

WARD winning Ghanaian actor John Dumelo has demonstrated that indeed he believes in education. On behalf on his foundation, the actor presented a sum of GHC 3,000 to the

Students Financial Aid Office of the University of Ghana, Legon to give scholarship to two students who are brilliant but lack the financial backing to complete their course at the university.

•John Dumelo presenting the cheque to Dr. James K. Adomako


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Teenage sex: Should I or should I not? By Richard “Should I or should I not?” is a common question among teens. Perhaps you are in a relationship that is progressing in that direction, but you’re not sure what to do. In your mind, you are probably weighing the pros and cons of adolescent sex. On the positive side of the scale, there is immense pleasure to be gained from the act acceptance from your peers, and the fulfillment of sexual desires. The negative side of the scale carries the weights of morals, fear of pregnancy or disease, loss of selfrespect and guilt. How do these scales balance? What is the right decision? Let’s take a look at some of the facts. Sex in itself can be really good for system as it serves many purposes besides reproduction. Indeed, several health publications have listed a number of benefits to be derived from a regular sex regime in our lives, benefits that range from a boost in the body’s immunity to healthier looking skin and, for men, an increase in sperm production. It is a way to express love for someone; it provides a feeling of security and has the effect of calming people in stressful situations. That being said, as with all things good in the hands of a ‘wrong’ user, there are outcomes that are less than desirable. A knife can be used to cut bread, in the hand of a killer however, it becomes an instrument of death. The argument is thus advanced that while the object (sex, in this case) may not necessarily be on trial; the user (Teenagers) may create outcomes that are far less desirable and harmful to themselves, since their immaturity on matters of sex often lead to ineffective contraceptive and preventive methods (indeed condoms have a technique to their use and can pull out during intercourse, if put on wrongly). Physically speaking, teenage sex poses more of a risk to the female gender than it does to the male. Whereas adolescent boys may have regular sex without any physical side effects, researches conducted in the U.K. has shown that girls who engage in sex before the age of 25 risk of developing cervical cancer as a result.

Social Pressures: Most often when boys and girls begin to date, the pressure to engage in sex early in the relationship usually comes from the boys as their social concept of virginity differs considerably from that of their female counterparts. Research has found that, depending upon gender, adolescents generally think of their loss of virginity in one of the following ways: as a gift, as a stigma and as a normal step in development. While girls generally think of virginity as a gift, boys think of virginity as a stigma (that is to say they often seek to cover up the fact that they are virgins). In studies, girls said that they viewed giving someone their virginity like giving them a very special gift. As a result they often expected something in return such as increased emotional intimacy with their partners. However, after the act they are often disappointed because they do not feel as though they actually received what they expected in return and this makes them feel like they were used. It is a feeling of giving something important up and afterwards feeling like this action was not recognized. Thinking of losing virginity as part of a social developmental process therefore results in power imbalances in the genders, with girls often left confused as to whether their refusal to engage makes them seem immature. Many young girls understandably feel conflicted by what society is telling them to do; on the one hand they are told to maintain a good reputation by abstaining, while being told on the other hand that in order to maintain a romantic relationship they must behave in ‘adult ways’ (which of course includes having sex with their man). Teenagers, more importantly girls, need to understand that it is their lot to wait patiently for the right age (which is 25, scientifically speaking) before partaking of this wonderful fruit called sex; indeed most religions go even further to advocate total abstinence until marriage (even if marriage has to wait till age 40). The morality issue is however a matter of personal conviction and beyond the scope of this article. Suffice it to say however that the health implications (both psychological and physical) should be motivation enough to wait, if not till marriage then at least till the right age.

Hearts With Adeola Agoro E-mail: libranadeola@yahoo.co.uk Tel: 08023162609

My time and cat Phew… I really had to find time between clearing my table at work, rushing to pay school fees for children and wards, doing airport runs and getting home to cook. Of course, the first sound that greeted me as soon as I got into my house was the meow sound of Fresh. Guilt seized me as I remembered that the last time I fed her was about six hours before then. Poor Fresh! You would feel sorry for her if you knew her story. Fresh was barely out of her mother’s womb before somebody saw how cute she was and got her for me. The person feared that other people would see her and take her and he felt I deserved to have her more than anybody else. Since she got to my home, I’ve had to literarily bottle-feed her. Her

10 tips for a happy marriage To have a really good marriage, you need to work at it. As the saying goes, the only place you find success before work is in the dictionary. Here are some things you can do to help build a strong marriage. Watch Your Relationships. To preserve your determination to make your marriage succeed, don’t get too close flirt with members of the opposite sex. If you do, in the back of your mind, you might begin to view them as alternatives in the event that your marriage doesn’t work out. This will weaken your resolve. After all, why work so hard when you have an escape route? Also, these types of close relationships are likely to make your spouse feel threatened. Pay Full Attention. Listen to your spouse when he or she talks to you. It’s a sign of respect. Try to give him or her your undivided attention. Also, nod in agreement occasionally—it tells your partner you’re listening. If your

spouse talks to you when you’re in the middle of something important, say so, and suggest a time when you’ll be able to pay full attention. Share Enjoyable Activities. Do fun things with your spouse. Exercise together, take leisurely walks, or share a pursuit that’s mutually enjoyable. Such activities strengthen your relationship and make it easier for the two of you to endure the hard times that come in every marriage. Learn from Your Experiences. Learn from the past. For example, if you find that you’re often tense when you’re very hungry, minimize your conversation with your spouse during those times. Similarly, if you see that your spouse gets worked up whenever you mention the name of a certain relative, don’t mention that person’s name unless absolutely necessary. Try to learn from the past. Be Polite. Be courteous to your spouse. When speaking

with him or her, use phrases such as “please,” “thank you,” “would you mind if I….,” and so forth. It will make your spouse feel appreciated and respected. Never Say “I Told You So.” Remove the phrase “I told you so” from your lexicon. Saying these words only causes ill will between you and your spouse. People say this phrase for two reasons: To show off that they were right and to get their mates to listen to them in the future. What they don’t realize is that the message that comes across is, “Aren’t I smarter than you?” which is insulting. When you’re proven right after an argument, your spouse will realize this on his or her own. There is no need to point it out. The poet Ogden Nash wrote the following poem to encourage people to act this way: To keep your marriage brimming, With love in the wedding cup, Whenever you’re wrong, admit it; Whenever you’re

From right: Special Adviser to Osun State Governor on Land , Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr. Ayodele Owoade; Owoade’s daughter-in-law, Vanessa; Owoade’s son, Adewunmi and his wifeVanessa; Owoade’s wife, Chief Olufunke, during the wedding of Adewunmi and Vanessa in London.

right, shut up. Don’t Keep Score. Don’t walk around with a watchful eye making sure your partner carries his or her share of the workload. Instead, take the view that it doesn’t matter if you end up doing more than half of what has to be done. Making sure your relationship stays fiftyfifty will put so much tension into your marriage that it’s not worth the effort. So unless your spouse is very lazy or a real responsibility shirker, don’t keep track of who does more. Watch Out for the Little Things. A family court judge once commented that in 99 percent of the divorce cases he presided over, the couples were upset about very small matters. Here are some of the types of complaints he was referring to: ”She never lets me leave the window open at night.” “He always wears that loud shirt that embarrasses me.” “She never replaces the toilet roll when it’s finished.” ”He always leaves his socks on the floor.” These small matters can be very detrimental to a relationship, so watch out for them. There is, however, a silver lining to this cloud: Just as little things can ruin a relationship, they can also build one. A brief call to ask how your spouse’s day is going can make a big difference in his or her feelings toward you. Remembering your mate’s birthday with a little gift can mean a lot. Even just bringing your partner a chocolate bar or a novel you think he or she will enjoy can mean a great deal, because it shows you care. Women in particular often need small but frequent gestures of love. Greet Your Partner Happily. Smile at your mate when you greet him or her. It will make your spouse feel appreciated and loved. Even if you’re in a bad mood, be sure to flash that grin. It’s a small investment that can go a long way. Respect Your Spouse’s Privacy. Don’t go through your partner’s things out of curi-

osity or in an effort to make them look neater. Privacy is a fundamental need all humans have, so be sure to respect it. Similarly, make it a habit not to repeat your spouse’s words to others. You never know what your mate wants kept secret. Spaghetti, Spaghetti, Spaghetti. Two with meatballs, one without. A wealthy man was having an affair with an Italian woman for a few years. One night, during one of their rendezvous, she confided in him that she was pregnant. Not wanting to ruin his reputation or his marriage, he paid her a large sum of money if she would go to Italy to have the child. If she stayed in Italy, he would also provide child support until the child turned 18. She agreed, but wondered how he would know when the baby was born. To keep it discrete, he told her to mail him a postcard, and write “Spaghetti” on the back. He would then arrange for child support. One day, about 9 months later, he came home to his confused wife. “Honey,” she said, “you received a very strange postcard today.” “Oh, just give it to me and I’ll explain it later,” he said. The wife handed the card over and watched as her husband read the card, turned white, and fainted. On the card was written “Spaghetti, Spaghetti, Spaghetti. Two with meatballs, one without.” A lie detector robot that slaps people who lie A man buys a lie detector robot that slaps people who lie. He decides to test it at dinner. He asks his son, “Son, where were you today during school hours?” “At school.” The robot slaps the son. “Okay, I went to the movies!” The father asks, “Which one?” “Harry Potter.” The robot slaps the son again. “Okay, I was watching porn!” The father replies, “What? When I was your age I didn’t even know what porn was!” The robot slaps the father. The mom chimes in, “Haha! After all, he is your son!” The robot slaps the mother.

first few days in the house were delicate for us as well as well as for her. While she wanted the warmth of a mother and snuggled close to us at every opportunity, we had to be sure she wasn’t sitting on chairs so we won’t press out her small brain with our weight. We also had to be careful while closing our doors and we walked around the house with caution. We all soon forgot about those delicate days as Fresh began to play by herself, showing she was independent. She also identified her bowl of milk and so, the task of feeding her ended. I was so happy the day I was cooking fish and the nice smell of it brought her to the kitchen and from the way she was licking my feet and meowing, I knew she was begging me for a piece of the action. I was so delighted to know she could now eat solid food. That meant she was growing. My cat, Fresh has really brought a gush of fresh air into the home and we just love watching her. But when I have to go out to work, not knowing when I’d be back home, it makes me feel guilty. I can’t look for a nanny for her; or can I? That would be the greatest insanity of the year. I wonder if anybody has ever gotten a caregiver for their cats. I know about dog handlers, groomers for horses and farmhands for big animals. But cat nannies? None that I know of. Even if there are people like that, I don’t fall into the category of people those who can afford that. And since I do not have a housekeeper now and everybody has gone to school this week, I’m alone most times. I have had to do my house chores, make a living and look after the cat by myself. I have been able to set the ‘table’ for Fresh in the few minutes I got back home and as I type this, she licking my feet and rubbing her body against mine. I guess that’s her way of saying thank you to me. That is it. She’s no longer angry now that she’s okay and I can face the Hearts page. Richard my neighbor, thanks for your contribution this week. I’m happy to offer you a space for you to try your writing skills. All those writing books you got from the UK are not a waste. I’m sure all those youths who have asked questions on teenage sex would be happy. Chioma from Owerri and Mr. O from Abuja, I will not be able to personally answer your questions on how to make a marriage successful, I however got you the piece on marriage as sent to me by Jonathan. I hope you will learn from it. To you all in the dating game, I’ll be back fully next week. I love you all and that’s what matters. And to make this weekend really nice for us all, I’m giving us some jokes to make us laugh. Happy weekend.


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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HE looked at me sharply and asked: “What’s that supposed to mean? Have I not been supportive enough?” “You are getting me wrong. I’m not saying that. All I’m saying is that this project means a lot to me and I need all the support I can get for it to take off,” I explained calmly. I could see she was getting worked up and since I didn’t want us to get into an argument, I let the matter drop. It was a few days later that the issue came up again. It was Meera who brought it up. “So what kind of business are you planning to go into?” she asked one evening after dinner. I looked at her, surprised and pleased as well. I had already done the proposal on my laptop which I quickly showed to her. “Hmm. This doesn’t look bad,” she commented, as she used the console to scroll down the page to check all the details including the start-off capital I would require. Later, after discussing more about the business, she stated: “It looks viable. I think I like it.” I simply smiled, glad I had won her over. With her support and that of her family, I was able to raise the capital and the business took off. Meera offered me the use of one of her buildings which was vacant then and with the initial staff I recruited, we moved in. That was how I started my own business. My wife really tried to support the business especially at the beginning. The first major job I got was through a contact of hers. It was a big, multi-million naira job and I threw myself into it to ensure I delivered. With time, more of such jobs came and I started doing really well, making more money than I had ever dreamt of. To add to my joy, Meera gave birth to a daughter whom we named Cyndi. It was a happy time for us and we became closer. However, it wasn’t long before cracks began to appear in our bubble of happiness. Actually, they emanated mostly from our home life. Shortly after our wedding, I realised quickly that Meera was not the domestic type of woman. She knew next to nothing about running a home and worse, was not even ready to learn. She couldn’t cook, wash, clean the house and take care of stuff in the home that a good wife is supposed to do. “I was brought up in a home with a lot of domestic staff. A cook prepared all our meals and maids cleaned the house. I

never learned to cook,” Meera explained when I grumbled about her shortcomings in the home. We had moved after the wedding, to another accommodation not too far from Meera’s apartment. It was a big mansion owned by my wife’s family with a large garden, a swimming pool and other facilities. To run the place, Meera employed a large retinue of staff including a cook, maids, drivers, a nanny for Cyndi and even a man to do the laundry. “Are they not too many? We don’t need all these people,” I stated when the staff resumed for work. “We sure do. Who’s going to do all the work around here? Definitely not me!” she declared. Besides her inability to cook and do other domestic work, my wife also turned out to be very sloppy and untidy. Most days, our bedroom looked as if a tsunami had passed through it as her expensive outfits, handbags, dirty clothes and other stuff would be strewn all over the place. I liked to live in a clean environment and I couldn’t understand why she was so messy. This caused several quarrels between us but she refused to change her sloppy ways which only manifested at home. Whenever she was going out especially to parties, she would spend hours dressing up and by the time she finished, she would look so beautiful and glamorous, she could be mistaken for a model. Sometimes, I found it difficult reconciling that untidy lady at home with the glamour puss outside. It got to a stage I could not bear it any longer and I had

If you are the type with an aversion for nude pictures, then I will advise you to steer clear of the internet this period. This is because, in the past couple of weeks, the internet has been awash with nude photos of certain persons, both famous and the unknown. Never knew that taking naked pictures of one, has become the latest hobby in town. First, it was those of a certain lady said to be a top banker in one of the financial institutions in the country. The story goes that the photos were the handiwork of a jilted lover, who incensed by being dumped, took his revenge in a most shocking way, by posting his lover’s nude photos on the web. Those who saw them, all agreed they were not a sight you will want your young children to see. They were that raunchy. Who knew that some bankers, in a profession renowned for its conservatism, lived such ‘wild lives’ on the side? They present such a serious image in those banking halls, it’s quite shocking to hear stuff like this about some of them. And secondly, the British Monarchy is in the middle of a serious media storm as a result of naked pictures of Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge and wife of Prince William that were published in a French magazine last week. The offending pictures were allegedly taken by the sharp lens of a paparazzi while the couple were holidaying in a villa in France. This latest scandal is coming so soon after the Harrygate affairwhen naked photos of Prince Harry while holidaying in Vegas, were published on the internet. From all these examples, it’s becoming crystal clear that the

The millionaire’s daughter (3) to move out of our bedroom to a spare room in the house. “I need my own space,” I explained when she asked why I was moving out. That was not all. Her attitude towards our lovely daughter became a source of worry to me. Meera hardly paid attention to her, leaving all the care to the nanny. It wasn’t as if she was a busy career woman. She was a director in the family business but she didn’t have to be in the office every day. She went a few days a week and closed whenever she liked. So, she had a lot of time on her hands, yet she neglected Cyndi. She would go out in the morning and would not return home till very late. Since I was very busy at work, I didn’t know what was going on till my mum came to stay with me for some time. She drew my attention to my wife’s neglect of her baby. “She’s supposed to be a nursing mother, yet she’s hardly at home. She leaves the baby with the nanny all day and only comes home at night,” my mother disclosed one night on my return home from work. I looked at the baby who was sleeping peacefully in her cot. She was nearly six months

old and was growing very fast. The nanny had closed for the day and she was in the care of my mother. It was nearly 10 pm yet Meera was not back from wherever she had gone to. That night, Meera did not come home till nearly midnight. I was really angry with her and I gave her a piece of my mind. “The baby is still too young to be left alone. You are the mother. She needs your love and care now,” I told her firmly. We were in her room where she was undressing and as usual, flinging clothes and shoes carelessly everywhere. She turned an angry look on me. “She has a nanny who’s doing a good job. So, what am I supposed to do? Sit at home and hold her hand?” she asked with a hint of sarcasm. I shook my head. “That’s not the point. A baby needs bonding with the mother especially at this early stage of her life. A nanny can’t do that,” I pointed out. “Besides, the nanny takes care of the baby, the cook prepares our meals and the other staff do all the work. So, what do you, as the wife do in this house?” I asked.

She came up to where I stood and smiled coyly at me. “I take care of this,” she said softly, her hand slipping inside the loose house robe I was wearing to caress my chest and body. At first, I resisted her caresses as I was still angry with her. But as she slipped out of her undies and she wrapped her warm, voluptuous body round me, I melted. I kissed her and fondled her succulent breasts. She began to moan and held me tightly. Soon, we were hungry with desire for each other and falling on the bed, bodies entwined, all was silent in the room for a while except the sounds of our lovemaking... * * * Despite my talk with Meera, her attitude did not change. In fact, it got worse. She even started sleeping outside our home. When I complained, she would give the excuse that she had gone to a party with Tracy and her other friends and it was too late to return home. “I slept at Tracy’s place. What’s the big deal about that,” she grumbled, turning over on the bed with the intention of going back to sleep even though it was nearly twelve noon.

“The big deal is that you are now a married woman. And a responsible married lady doesn’t run all over town with her friends, going from one party to another and sleeping outside her matrimonial home,” I said angrily and stormed out of her room. I could not understand why she couldn’t just focus on her home and family and reduced her partying ways. I knew when we were dating that Meera was the fun-loving, partying type who loved to attend all kinds of bashes with her friends especially at weekends. Most of her circle of friends, who were all from wealthy backgrounds, were like that including Tracy who was like the head of their group and the most ‘crazy’ of them all. Return of Elfreda But I had thought with marriage and motherhood, that she would calm down, become more mature and responsible. How wrong I was! She was only interested in two things; shopping and partying. Those were the things that absorbed all her attention to the detriment of her baby and even husband. She could travel to any part of the world just to shop or attend a high class party. She never bothered about my meals or wellbeing as a caring wife should. Agreed, the domestic staff took care of all that but it was not the same. You can call me old-fashioned but I still believe it was a wife’s duty to look after the home and her family. I often longed for a nice meal cooked by my own wife instead of by a cook no matter how delicious his meals were. When I was growing up, my mother did all the cooking in our home and my father never ate food cooked by a servant. I wanted the same for myself but it seemed I had chosen the wrong woman. Whenever I complained to my mum about my wife’s behaviour, she would preach tolerance. “You should not blame her too much. She must have been spoilt as a child and never learnt the things a woman needed to know about running her home,” she stated one evening. To be continued Next Saturday, Dave runs into his old flame, Elfreda and sparks start flying... Don’t miss it! Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals. Send comments/suggestion to 08023201831 or psaduwa@yahoo.com

The internet and naked photos

web is becoming a tool that the inventors never envisaged- a medium for exacting revenge and for publishing stuff that will put people, especially the famous in a very bad and embarrassing light. For the lady whose pictures were circulated on the internet, one can image her state of mind when the photos, taken in privacy became public property via the web. Anger and despair must have been some of the emotions she felt. And regret for taking such intimate pictures in the first place and sending them to her boyfriend. One of the questions asked by some who saw the photos was why would a grown woman, and a married one at that, with a responsible position in a bank, take such pictures in the first place, much less send them to a boyfriend, not even her husband? To them, she brought all the mess on herself and as such has no one to blame for all the humiliation and embarrassment

she’s going through, including losing her job. I agree totally with them. Nobody put a gun on her head and forced her to take those pictures. It was a choice she made, a very bad choice as events have shown. And her experience should be a lesson to others-those who think nothing of taking lurid pictures of themselves and storing them in their computers, mobile phones and other gadgetsremember, they might come back to haunt you one day. If in doubt, ask former actress Anita Hogan, whose movie career, prematurely ended due to some nude photos of hers that were splashed all over the internet in 2006. Six years later, she’s yet to recover from that scandal. As for the Duchess of Cambridge, all I can say is, welcome to the club! As soon as she married into the Royal Family, she ‘signed’ a life-long contract with intense media interest, the paparazzi and public scrutiny. All her actions will be covered by the media (especially the papps) who will go to any length to get exclusive photos of her as the ones taken in France show. She will learn now that with the kind of ‘gold fish’ lifestyle and the life of privilege and luxury she married into, also comes great responsibility. And that includes keeping her clothes on all the time except perhaps in the privacy of her bedroom. So, no more topless sunbathing by the pool, please since she’s not a page 3 girl.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

41

I was sad when I learnt I would be king

–Ex-Senate President’s aide now Osun monarch See Pages 44&45


&STYLE

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THE NATION SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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TEL:08035733605

Jenny Adeosun loses husband

Tom Iseghohi, Rasheed Muri Okunola await new babies

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Tonye Cole trudges on

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hen his name cropped up among the ministerial nominees under the President Goodluck Jonathan administration, a huge number of Nigerian youths were delighted by the development. They believed he is one of them and knows exactly where the shoe pinches. They also believed that appointing him a minister would be a major departure from the fever of gerontocracy, which had been one of the banes of the nation's development. Unfortunately, good reasoning gave way to chicanery and Tonye's name was dropped. But the man, whose sincerity of purpose lifted the Sahara group to a brand name internationally, has chosen to trudge on. He runs his Nehemiah project, through which he is reaching out to the teeming population of Nigerian youths. Those who should know told Happenstances that Tonye Cole is also warming up for the 2015 elections. But the details are still under wraps.

ormer TRANSCORP boss, Tom Iseghohi, is in jolly good mood at the moment. His lovely wife and former beauty queen, Anita Iseghohi, is set to give birth any moment from now. Insiders say the heavily pregnant former most beautiful girl in Nigeria will temporarily relocate to the United States of America in readiness for the arrival of her third baby. The stylish lady in the last trimester was said to have been given a baby shower at Mega Plaza, Victoria Island, Lagos last Sunday. The ceremony was well-attended by Iseghohi's friends who presented her with gifts and baby items in large numbers. Also, in a jolly mood is Rasheed Muri Okunola, one of Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola's aides and younger brother of Hakeem Muri Okunola. Happenstances gathered that Rasheed's lovely wife is also heavily pregnant and he awaits the cheering news of her delivery any time soon.

If eulogies and tears can raise the dead, Chief Oluwole Adeosun, who died in New Delhi, India, where he had gone for a check-up a few days ago, would have woken up from his eternal sleep. Sadly, the reality is that the former managing director/chief executive officer of First Bank Plc is gone for good. Born on November 25, 1938 to Chief and Mrs. Joseph Makinde Adeosun, the brilliant husband of Jenny Adeosun attended Abeokuta Grammar School from 1954 to 1958. He worked briefly as an Agric officer with the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ibadan, before proceeding to the University of Bradford in Britain where he bagged a Bachelor of Science in Economics. He was a man without guile. Despite his involvement in the fickle and factious world of high society, he retained a rustic sweetness of character and good nature till the very end. He was the quintessence of humility and sense of perspective and proportion. He was as gracious as he was polite. The Lagos social space has since been thrown into deep mourning by his demise.

Temi Harriman loses son

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emi Harriman, a former member of the House of Representatives, is not a happy man at the moment. Penultimate Friday, her first son, Abayowa, 25, was involved in an accident on Ikoyi road, Lagos, and his death has plunged the entire Harriman clan into grief. Abayowa had just returned from London after completing his studies to do the mandatory National Youth Service when death came calling. He was said to be returning from a night club when the accident occurred. He was buried amidst tears a few days ago after a requiem mass at the Church of Assumption, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Terry Waya, Eno Olafisoye rekindle romance

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ontroversial businessman and party pillar, Terry waya, and his lover of many years, Eno Olafisoye, are back together. Many months ago, it was widely reported that the two party pillars had parted ways. But the sight that confronted one at the Alakija/Cardoso party in Lagos last Saturday confirmed that the two are still very much in love. They stepped out hand in hand and clinged to each other throughout the event. Those who should know say the two are back together for good. They had either fixed their conjugal cracks or none ever existed. Eno looked so radiant and cheerful that many celebrities at the party had to worm up to her to exchange warm pleasantries.

Leke Alder smiles again

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op PR guru, Leke Alder, is a happy man again. He had parted ways with Lola, his wife of many years, some time ago. A few days ago, he got married to beautiful Morenike Popoola, a corporate executive, in an exclusive ceremony in Lagos. The two were love-smitten at the

event. Leke is a man a great number of people, organisations and even government parastatals look up to, to imbue them with human resources efficiency and personal development through his impactful tutorials given at different local and international fora. He has been consulted on policy and politics at the highest level. Leke consults for the leading lights in financial services, oil and gas, telecoms, IT and professional services. His firm, Alder Consulting, is credited with introducing branding as a discipline in Nigeria. He recently served on the board of Nigeria Extractive Industries Tranparency Initiative (NEITI) and is a prolific author and public speaker.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

44 Oke-Ila, an ancient town on the hills in Osun State, celebrated the Ishinro Festival a few days ago. It was a day to mark the beginning of a new year for the people of the town and all came out in their resplendent best to celebrate. Oba Adedokun Abolarin (the Aroyinkeye 1), the Orangun of Oke-Ila, was former Special Adviser on Legal and Constitutional Matters to former Senate President, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim (now Secretary to the Government of the Federation). He was recalled about six years ago from Nigeria’s seat of power in Abuja, to ascend the throne of his forefathers. He, a few days ago, led his people in a funfair that witnessed a variety of cultural display of dances, drumming and festivities- a cultural outing by the Orangun and his subjects that happens only during Ishinro Festival, coinciding with the commencement of the eating of the new yam. An elated Oba Adedokun Abolarin spoke to PAUL UKPABIO about life on the throne, his challenges and aspirations.

‘How I’m rebranding royalty in my town’

ABIYESI, how many years now have you been on the throne?

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•Oba Abolarin wouldn’t be what to build on. If there was no yesterday, then we won’t have today! So my past Obas did their best and nobody can finish solving the problems of any society in a lifetime. That is why most of our leaders who think that they can solve the problems of the polity in their lifetime are jokers. You can only do yours and leave the rest. My predecessors did their best. They gave us a local government council. At least, I remember when I was a child, the road leading to Oke-Ila wasn’t tarred, there was no electricity in Oke-Ila. Coming to Oke-Ila then was difficult in terms of accessibility. It’s still difficult. But the last 20 years has witnessed major developments. I, however, still pray that the federal and state government will have more compassion for my people in Oke-Ila, and other people in this country, who presently live in rural areas, by providing more needed development. We know you as a man of class and style with urbane taste, how are you able to harmonise this with life as an Oba? Oh, my people are emulating this. When you go around, you’ll definitely notice that there are pockets of developments all around us here. My children all over the world are the ones carrying out some of the developments. They are interested in developing OkeIla. My people know what is good and they want what is good around here. Education is very important. And I know that they are going to do more than what they are presently doing. And those that

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To the glory of God, I’ll be six on the throne come December. For somebody who was used to shuttling between the cosmopolitan city of London in the United Kingdom and working in the office of the Senate President, how have you been able to adjust to your present life as an Oba of Oke-Ila? Naturally I have a liking for people. I relate with people as equals. I love people, and I have a passion for human development, probably because my father was a teacher and I was a teacher too for some time. Actually, my days then as a teacher were my glorious years. So I see this as a continuation of what I have always been doing. And where I am today, I’ve found out that it is important for all of us Nigerians to know that leadership is about sacrifice. That’s what a lot of us don’t know. A lot of people do not know that to build Nigeria, we must sacrifice. Very many of us seem to think only of a cake that is to be shared. But the cake can’t go round. We have to bake the cake too, we have to sow little by little, and get round to bake the cake too little by little. So for me, I thank God that with all my education, I have to make this little sacrifice for humanity. I am interested in the future, I am interested in the next 50, 60, 70 years. Though I am hundred percent certain that in the next 60 years, I won’t be around, and in the next 50 years, I don’t even pray to be around because I will be over a hundred years old then. But I will work for that period now because we have to build a future. That is what greatness is about. That is what any leader should do. For me, this is exciting, so far so good. Coming to Oke-Ila as an Oba, what did you meet on ground? I met development because if there was no development, perhaps there

I was sad when I heard I would be king. My intention was to run away. I made this known to my family and my extended family too. I felt I did not go to school to be a king. I felt I was not schooled to mount the throne of my forefathers. When I was younger then, I prayed specially to God that He should make my life a little flower in my community. But my prayer then was directed to the cities

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are in the Diaspora are coming home more regularly these days. At the festival, one noticed that farming is a way of life of your people. Tell us more about your people. They are farmers. Though there is still a lot to be done with regards to modernised farming here. They are traders too. And they are interested in their environment. By the grace of God, soon, Oke-Ila is going to be a choice destination for tourism. The location is beautiful, peaceful and a serene place for intellectual retreats: A sort of Camp David in the United State. It is the kind of place where leaders can come and stay for a while and think and create things for their people. We have waterfalls here and the town is on a hill. We can have a sport academy here. I’ve started work on that already and before you know it, we will be using this place to prepare people for the Olympics. My people have stamina, something we can build on. My people are resolute and determined. There is an IT Centre here now, so my people are browsing the internet 24 hours in a week. And the project is courtesy of one of my children. But we still need more. The government should not let the rural children be behind their peers in the cities. The rural children should not be neglected. It is in our interest to make sure that the children in the rural areas are educated. With that, there will not be an influx of people into the cities. If there is no development for children in the rural areas, it will mean that the rural areas will be a breeding


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

made this known to my family and my extended family too. I felt I did not go to school to be a king. I felt I was not schooled to mount the throne of my forefathers. When I was younger then, I prayed specially to God that He should make my life a little flower in my community. But my prayer then was directed to the cities. But I guess the Lord knows differently. He has answered my prayer, but he did not prepare me for the city alone. Many people also advised me. I thank God for my father and my grandfather too. At a time, I was very close to late Chief Bola Ige. Professor Osaro also advised me not to reject the offer. He said it was a call to service. I knew the present governor of Oyo State back then and he actually told me that he saw a crown on my head. My late friend, Senator Maccido asked me, ‘why did the Lord not make you to come from

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place for vagabonds, but God forbid! And for the elite in the cities, it is my advice that they plough back their economic fortunes into the rural areas. It is for their future good and that of their children too. There are talents here I must confess to you. We notice the good roads around your domain. How did they come about? For that, I must thank the Governor of Osun State, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, there was a time then when he said me, ‘do you remember I was the Works Commissioner in Lagos for eight years? Leave the roads to me, I’m going to work on them.’ That’s what you are seeing now. How is your relationship with other traditional rulers around you like? The 21st Century Yoruba Obas are well read. In Osun State for instance, we have architects, doctors, lawyers, journalists. That is not peculiar to Oke-Ila alone. I know of one that left the University College, Ibadan in the 70s to ascend the throne: So, most of the traditional rulers in Osun State are well read. That is why we need to work with each other. I cannot be an Island, we need to complement ourselves. If the communities around me are not in peace, it will affect me in terms of refugee population. So I see beyond Oke-Ile, my immediate community. Any meaningful development here will definitely affect our neighbours and that is why we should be conscious of the things we do because, we will give

account someday. You once worked in the office of the Senate President. How much of Abuja are you missing? I miss Abuja because I wanted to be the greatest political lawyer in this country. I already knew the workings of Abuja. I had a full grasp of the National Assembly and a full grasp of the relationship between the executive arm and the legislative arm. My intention was to exploit that and use it to assist my people. I can’t help but miss being in Abuja because, that is our Washington DC. I was very busy there. However, for whatever I might need in Abuja, I still reach out to people over there. We still communicate. Like I said earlier, I have to be where I am today because there are challenges here. If people are able to make a good living in their communities, why will they want to go to Abuja to stay? That is why nation building must be a continuous process and given the seriousness it deserves. We have to make sacrifice here and there for humanity sake. We have to shed the toga of selfishness because it is in our own interest. If we fail to take heed now, they won’t allow our children to enjoy too. And that is why we have these issues like kidnapping, youth restiveness, Boko Haram and all-whatnot in our midst. Nigerian elite quite easily forget where they are coming from. You cannot build a nation with such shortsightedness. It is sheer wickedness. For me, it is better I serve humanity and have peace within me. As the traditional ruler of the ancient town of Oke-Ila, does the position restrict your movement? Do you miss travels? I still travel; it’s a global village though. But I care more about the Nigerian state; I think we should also deemphasis on things that are foreign, we should concentrate on things that are domestic. Our entertainment industry, for instance, is coming up and so also are other things that are Nigerian. The first time you heard that you were coming here as the Orangun of Oke-Ila, how did you feel? I was sad when I heard I would be king. My intention was to run away. I

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I am busy here, I dress down at times, supervise the cleaning of the environment, I go to the football pitch to play volleyball with my children, I go to the classroom to teach them how to use the computer and generally interact with the youth. They are enjoying me. I am re-branding the royalty here

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the big cities of Nigeria? Why did he make you to come from Oke-Ila? It’s because the Lord wants you to go and make a difference there.’ And here I am. And your pains? My immediate family is not here with me, and I am not with them the way I would have loved to be. But that is still the sacrifice that I am talking about. They visit and I thank God that they see royalty as a sacrifice, but more importantly, they now see the true plight of the poor because the elite just create this utopian scenario that all is well. Now, my immediate children want to help the poor and they are asking how they can help. What legacy would you love to leave behind? I leave that to God and my people. As a leader, mine is to show compassion, meet needs, and give leadership, though it may be difficult because some people may not be used to that kind of leadership. Some may have even been thinking that to be a king is to wear a crown and for the subjects to come and prostrate. It’s more than that. I am busy here, I dress down at times, supervise the cleaning of the environment, I go to the football pitch to play volleyball with my children, I go to the classroom to teach them how to use the computer and generally interact with the youth. They are enjoying me. I am re-branding the royalty here. During the festival earlier in the day, one noticed the presence of a theatre group who came to felicitate with you and your people. What is the relationship? A lot of them were there at the event, you know they use this place for shooting and production of films or movies. You know we have a waterfall here and there are a lot of other sceneries that our land is blessed with. We have lots of festivals all around us here, the famous Osun-Oshogbo Festival and I must say that Osun State is where to be. The government and the traditional rulers are working to make sure that we give our people the cultural platform to excel at all times.


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Geekly

chic Wumi OGUNTUASE

W

E all have a bit of inner geek, and this is the time to go with the trend and look sexy. The fashionable dark rimmed geek glasses, either oversized or normal, will complete your look any day and you only need to get the perfect dressing. The glasses can even be worn without the lens, but the frame must be bigger than the recommended type. Select the glasses that will flatter your face, and they come in different shapes. So no matter the form of your face, you will get the right ones that will fit you.

•Chichi Ujiegbuniwe

•Nneka Ezeaka

•Amaka Williams

•Asa

•Tiwa

Ways to rock the look Take a T-shirt, most preferably a comic one. Add a pleated skirt. Go for ballet flats or converse. Tie a scarf round your neck or on your head in a vintage look way. To complete the look, put on your geek glasses and you are good to go. Pair your leggings with a cute long inner and denim jacket. Put on your high-tops gladiators and finish with the glasses. Get a gown, if it is long, pair with flat sling-backs and the geek glasses. If it is short, you can wear any type of footwear. Add a bowler hat to look sophisticated. For an overall look, just put the glasses on anything, as long as your whole appearance would look stylishly geeky.


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Show off in bum shorts Wumi OGUNTUASE VERY lady wants to own a pair of shorts ,either jeans or chinos or any other material. Yes, it can be very useful, but the main question here is do we all know where and when to wear it? Bum shorts are very fashionable and can look graceful on you or trashy, depending on the way you wear them. For starters, if you do not have nice legs, please refrain from them. As much as you may envy other people wearing shorts, do not be tempted. Another problem people have with bum shorts is when yours shows your butt cheeks. Honestly, nobody wants to see that, so pick the ones that are not too small for you. Wearing shorts to parties is cool.Wearing it to red carpet events, if you can pull it off with a nice top and jacket or a shirt, is lovely too. If you have no idea of how to pair it, no please. Shorts are also a nice choice for this season, and you can do yourself a favour by getting one and rocking it depending on your body. If you get it, flaunt it.

E

•Jecintha Powell

•Mo’ Cheddah

•Ono Bello

•Buki Tijani

Tips Go for shirts or loose fitted tops for your shorts. Choose sleeveless tops that have embellishments or comic tees. You can look sophisticated by adding a pair of highheeled shoes (if you want to elongate your legs) or just look homely with ballet flats or sling-backs. Use statement jewellery, if you are going for flat shoes and a simple top. If not, make only your earrings bold.

Independent Fashion Expo makes a debut in Lagos

E-Zone Africa Group is set to host Independent Fashion Expo and Award, a pan-Africa event, billed to parade African top designers on September 30 in Lagos. The designers include Modela Couture, Steve Ray Couture, Generation Consciente (Benin), Dinal Fashion (Haiti) and some emerging designers, including Sxgab Couture, Fatfate Design and Fountain Stitches. The exhibition, according to the convener, Oredola Adeola, and the E-Zone Africa team, is scheduled for 4p.m at Jocason Hotel Event Centre, Amje, Lagos/Abeokuta Expressway, Lagos State. It is supported by Z-Mirage Multimedia Ltd, Lorna Nig.Ltd;makers of Amigo/Darling Hair, Veleta Fruit Drink, MIIT Technology Services, with the primary aim of establishing that raw talents originate from Africa. The objective is to create a platform for these budding talents and to project them to the mainstream of global fashion industry. Guests expected on the red carpet include Alh. Lateef Ibirogba, Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy; Mr. Bonny Botoku, interpreter between Nigeria and Republic of Benin; Hon (Dr) A. Arogun, Chairman, Agbado/Okeodo LCDA; Hon.(Mrs) Fausat Olajoku, Vice Chairman, Ijaye/Ojokoro LCDA; Mrs.A Ajibade and Oba Rilwan Lambe , Oba of Ojokoro. Others are Mr Tunde Kelani, Benjamin Joseph, Yinka Davies, Ayanbirin, Tunde Joseph(host artiste), Sound Sultan and other top music and nollywood celebrities.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

48 How do you feel as a governor from a service to comrade life? mankind. do not see any big deal being the Leadership governor of a state. I am still myself entails working and I continue to relate with the for your people people the same way I have been continuously, dealing with them when I was a private enhancing their individual. The only thing I have come to wellbeing and realise is that some people see governors dignity. as super-human beings with so much How strong powers and influence that they can do is your anything. It is not so. To me, governance financial base? is just a position of leadership to provide Well, these service for your people. It does not are very change anything in me. What I can say is germane that governors are not super-humans. issues. Our They have many challenges to grapple financial base is with and they need all the support and very, very weak understanding of their people in order to and as a succeed. Governance is not as simple as government people think, especially in an economy policy where most of the people expect therefore, we everything from the government. Many try to lay the people are surprised at the way you have foundation for dramatically changed since you became education, a governor. What informed this change? health and Look, Sule knows who Sule is from the many other vital areas. Our belief is that very beginning and Sule remains Sule till when people are educated and they are in today. It is only the views of the people sound health, they can have the energy to about me that keep changing. I know who invest in agriculture and be able to move I am and I keep to that, despite the way I about. We have created the environment am being perceived by some persons or to give people the ambience to do the groups. What has been your guiding work because the human being is the principle in trying to develop the state? greatest asset or resource in the You see, we are building a state that workplace. We want to put in place a was forsaken. We made a mistake and we conducive investment climate for have to learn from our mistake, forget the business to thrive and create wealth for past and make progress as a people. If we our people. Once our manpower and refuse to forget the past and work for infrastructure are stable, we would be ourselves, we will have ourselves to able to attract the kind of investment we blame in future. It is up to us. It is up to need. Even as we have started to lay the the people of any state to work for foundation, there are a number of themselves. We have been destroying companies that have already come into ourselves by ourselves and we have seen the various sectors of the state. There are a the consequences-the way we are seen by lot of requests from investors who are other Nigerians as people of Stone Age, convinced that Jigawa is very peaceful uncivilised and primitive. So, anybody and conducive for their business to who wanted to see a zoo came to Jigawa. succeed. When I came on board, I said to the What I am doing in Jigawa State is people, we must change the ugly nothing spectacular. It is just the normal perception about us. I reasoned that if job a governor does. The difference may other Nigerians are making it, we could just be that my own priorities are different also make it. So it is simply what we want from others. The money I get is different to do for ourselves that can take us to the from what others receive monthly. I use desired level. 65 percent of my income for salaries and I We have to work for our own pride, get about N3 billion per month. Jigawa is image, honour and reputation. We a new state and whatever you see here is decided that we must bring Jigawa from new compared to what obtains in the whatever position to the fore and from older states. So whatever I am doing here below the sea level to the sea level, and are things that other states must have put then gain our vision and march ahead. in place already. I am just trying to catch So, my vision is like any other family or up with others and put in place the household, which desires the best it can necessary institutions and structures to get for the members. A good man wants give our people what to work with. We the best gold for the wife and the best have done over 1300 kilometres of roads house for the children and so on. So, I here just to make the driving fun. I feel want the best for the state and the people. that driving in the state should be as I want everyone who smooth as what comes to the state to feel obtains in Europe. It is at home and to believe a very expensive that we are doing the undertaking but the right thing. We can benefits are enormous. Why should I eat make the best for I need to network the into the income of ourselves. It is left to us. facilities that would the next governor? Most people are provide the synergy for surprised about the things to work well for It is not right. A way you have the state. governor should act transformed Jigawa. How are you What is the magic? managing without and behave as a As I have said, it is borrowing to run a good cook by because people did not state with a weak determining what know me in the first financial base? place. They did not I have a simple he really needs to know who Sule is. Those philosophy or rule for make a good soup who know me, know or understanding of that I remain honest, and working out the my role as a governor. I simple and am entitled to four cost of the straightforward at all years as a governor ingredients and times. The people from and I am not supposed my political background to spend more than calculating it do not see performance what I should, so as against his income in office as a big deal. not to leave debts for They don’t see my successor. The law or the strength of performance as a feat or provides that I am his purse before as a particular attribute, entitled to four years in making the soup... but as part of our office and I should not upbringing and political therefore be seen to be formation and entire accumulating debt for

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Amid speculations of his interest in 2015 presidential race and an outstanding performance in office, Governor Sule Lamido of Jigawa State, bared his mind to a select group of journalists in the serene, but emerging city of Dutse. Our Managing Editor, Northern Operations, YUSUF ALLI, was there and reports:

My position on 2015, by SuleLamido the next governor. I am always conscious of the fact that if I begin to take loans, it might be difficult for my successor to grapple with the development of the state. What I am saying is that you have no right to spend more than your income because somebody is going to take over from you after four years. That is why I have made it a policy that by the time I leave office as the governor of Jigawa State, I will not leave behind a single kobo as debt. I don’t see any justification why as a governor I should go and borrow any money. If I cannot pay the money back during my time, it means that the next governor will not have something to work with. Why should I eat into the income of the next governor? It is not right. A governor should act and behave as a good cook by determining what he really needs to make a good soup and working out the cost of the ingredients and calculating it against his income or the strength of his purse before making the soup. In reality, it is either you borrow money to cook an extra-ordinary soup or you eat what you can conveniently afford. While I am looking for ways and means to develop the state and make it one of the best in the country, I do not intend to borrow any money for that purpose. Why don’t you want to talk about your modest achievements? The other way to answer that question is to ask why I wanted to be the governor of the state. Why was I elected? I am not doing anything new. I am working for the purpose I was elected. It is not something I should make noise about because the people who elected me to serve them

must be given the best of what we can afford as a state. I was elected to work for the state and its people and nothing more. If I fail, then the purpose of being elected would be defeated. That is why I am working round the clock to ensure that the people derive maximum benefit from my tenure as their governor. I am not a new person in this country and there is no amount of publicity that I can do to add any benefit to the citizens of Jigawa State. I prefer to work quietly for the state and allow God and the people to judge me after my tenure. Does that explain why you don’t name projects after yourself or publicise them in the media? It is not in my political culture and upbringing to begin to appropriate something which is for the public. The resources are theirs and the money we use for the projects is not mine but that of the people. So it is wrong for me to put my name on those projects. Why should I? It is the support of the people, the various institutions- civil servants and others who have made whatever achievement recorded so far possible. I am only one of the players in the development of the state, providing leadership for many others in the background to move the state forward. A tree does not make a forest. There are many others who are working even harder than me and they are not mentioned either on radio or on television. You would be surprised to see that as late as 11:pm some people are still working in the state secretariat because of their strong belief that we should work more for the transformation of the state.


THE NATION, Saturday, September 22, 2012

Jigawa civil servants know and believe that they are not working for others but themselves. They see themselves more as partners than mere workers. They see the development of the state as a collective effort and they work for it as it is their personal business. So whether one works as a contractor, civil servant or teacher, there is something that is challenging and compelling them to put in more. So what you see in the state today is a product of collective effort and determination to succeed and not my personal effort. There are suggestions that Nigeria should return to the parliamentary system of government. Would that solve our problems as a nation? You see, Nigerians like to seek help from where there is none. Whatever you want to achieve, you have to work for it. We just feel that by changing the system or things, we will get what we want. First, Nigerians don’t seem to have the patience and discipline to work for what they want. Parliamentary system or any other system would not work without changing the mentality and attitude of Nigerians. There is growing agitation that power should shift to the North in 2015. Where do you stand? Neither zoning nor whatever is the answer. What we really need in this country is for people to believe in themselves and their leaders for things to

country and its people should be able to educate the people to know that there is a task for everyone since the country is for all of us and remembering that we are better off working together as members of the same family. By so doing, each Nigerian would have a better understanding and meaning of the country and what it is doing for everyone. Are you worried about this country? To be honest, nothing worries me about this country. Nothing. Let me tell you that what is happening today in Nigeria is because everyone tries to transmit our personal pains and feelings on the country. To me, we have enormous resources which should be properly harnessed for the people. Are you not even worried about the security challenges? Look, it will come and go. We know what it is. Any boy who is 18 or 19 and who feels that there is no future for him, there is no hope for a stable and comfortable life, is likely to commit a crime. But then, when he feels that there is no future in the midst of wealth and opulence, there is frustration. Nobody would want to be a criminal. Nobody would want to fail his family. Everybody wants a good life. Everyone wants to be a decent human being, but if you feel abandoned by the system, and hopelessness begins to stare in you in the face, there is the work well. By the time every Nigerian tendency to begin to look for self-help. develops confidence in each other, trusts But we shall get it right as other nations each other and supports one another, have done. then who becomes the president or Why are northern governors opposed governor would be immaterial. But to state police at a because our culture is time of national that of a rich culture security challenge? with poor people and You must because the resources of understand the this country have not The issue of situation very well. been properly applied, leadership in this State police is not we think it is the system country is something that can which is denying us just be picked up like what we really need as a something which is a product from the people. within the exclusive shop. There are But once they apply preserve of God, procedures that can the resources well for the bring it about if need overall benefit of the who gives power to be. people and people are whoever He wants But the question is: happy and feel a sense of at the time He is that the answer to belonging, then there chooses...And so to the nation’s many will be unity and challenges? development in this me, what matters is To me it is all about country. Once you are let God give to how we want our comfortable and Nigeria what is best country to be. This prosperous, you don’t feeling of I want state give a damn about who for this country and police and I do not your president or it does not matter want state police is governor is. But because who he is. It could informed by the mind the system is so rotten of the people and the while the country is so be any Nigerian. So fear that something is rich, the people believe be it failing apparently, that changing the system because there is a or institution is the system failure in solution. But then the

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•Governor Lamido

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Nigeria. But if the system is functioning, this attempt to resort to self-help would not arise. Where there are strong institutions, there would be no need to resort to the wrong things in a bid to succeed. This attempt to do what is wrong in order to survive would not be there. We have numerous challenges as a people. This is a country where people kidnap, bomb, kill and use human parts as if they were mere tools. These are things that are very despicable and should not be allowed in this country because no matter what we do, we have just one country to live and work in. We should therefore begin to work to create a safe environment to ensure that there is trust and confidence. Although these things take time, but we must continue to build on them in order to succeed as a people. We shall overcome these challenges. Other nations rose above them over time. Your Excellency, your name is being peddled as one of the likely PDP presidential aspirants for the 2015 poll. What is the truth about it? To be honest with you, I feel flattered that in a country with over 160 million Nigerians, my humble self from a small village in Jigawa State is being talked about. Secondly, the issue of leadership in this country is something which is within the exclusive preserve of God, who gives power to whoever He wants at the time He chooses. Those who are here now were not there 10 years ago and those who were there some years ago are no longer there. So, no matter what happens, someone will be in an office and a Nigerian must be there. And so to me, what matters is let God give to Nigeria what is best for this country and it does not matter who he is. It could be any Nigerian. So be it. At a point in your career, you were a rebel against the status quo, you became revolutionary but now, some people think otherwise. Has anything changed in you? What they think and say about me does not in any way change who I am. I know myself and your own view of me is different from who I am. Some people say I am even arrogant. Some say I was a rebel and so on. My response to them is yes, I was a rebel with a cause. I rebel at all times against injustice. I am a strong believer in human dignity because God has said that He made us in the best of form and anything done to diminish the human dignity is what I abhor. So I rebel against injustice and I have no apology if that is what people perceived it to be a rebellion. I think that one’s status in life should not be used as a criterion for treating the person in life because someone can choose to live a very simple life and still be respected as a human being. And to me, your social status or standing or your wealth accumulation should not be a criteria for your grading or being degraded. But we seem to have lost our sense of human value in this country with an unprecedented clamour for wealth by the people. People now feel that when you have a lot of money and wealth you can be recognised and respected by society, but to me, it is the person you are that is most important. But in truth, I was never a rebel per se. Rebellion against who? But let me say that we should not lose sight of the fact that whatever we do, we should be guided by human love, human compassion and self-esteem, honour and dignity. But when you lower a man’s honour and dignity through squalor and poverty, then you compel him to come and beg you. you have forced him to lower his human dignity. These are the things that I hate. So, my rebellion all along has been against injustice. The perception of what people thought I was and what they think I am now is their own opinion because Sule has been Sule and Sule knows Sule very well and remains a friend of Sule.


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ITH 2015 still a long way from now, there have been whispers from different regions of the country as to who produces the next president. How ready is the South East now for the presidency or would the Igbo, as usual, adopt someone else from other regions? As far as the South East is concerned, the point has been made clearly that the region is the only one that has not produced a president. Unlike other regions, South East is also the only region with five states, while all others have six and the North West seven. When you look at this glaring lopsidedness, you cannot but agree that it has been a clear case of injustice. It is part of what I captured in my new book, How I governed Anambra State. There has been a lot of injustice meted out to the Igbo. There is no way you can discuss the unity of Nigeria without the cry of injustice against the Igbo. Gen. Johnson Aguyi-Ironsi was there for only six months during which he was savagely killed. The North, from what I gathered, is agitating for power to go back to them in 2015. But if we must ensure that there is justice and equity, it should be the turn of the South East in 2015. As a political scientist, I do not think that power is ever given and it has never been given. So nobody is going to say let us give power to the South East in 2015. Power is taken and that is why it is up to the South East that has been at the receiving end of power marginalisation to do all that is necessary to wrest it from the other regions. We recall how the South West, including the South East, reacted to the June 12 debacle. At the end, they were assuaged with the presidency in 1999 with the emergence of President Olusegun Obasanjo. It is that same mindset that the South East needs to approach the issue of the Igbo presidency in 2015. But the problem the Igbo will have is President Goodluck Jonathan. President Jonathan is from the South/South and by 2015, he would have ruled for just one term. However, the Constitution allows him the right to aspire to the office for a second term. But if you have to stop him from exercising his right of a second term, you will be abridging his constitutional rights. That is what the Igbo will contend with. In 2011 presidential poll, the Igbo gave him the largest votes. But this time around, we will have to sit down with President Jonathan and discuss the issue of 2015. If he is interested in 2015 and he tells us to support him with the understanding that he will support us in 2019, we will have no choice but to support him. The President has, after all, been doing everything possible to convince us that he has our interest at heart. What he has been doing for the South East is a subtle appeal to us to queue behind him whenever he makes his decision for 2015 known. But then, he needs to sit down with us and convince us that if we align with him for 2015, he will in turn work with us to have a shot at the presidency in 2019. I feel that we should give President Jonathan the opportunity and believe that if he makes an agreement, he will keep it. So far, there is no indication of such an agreement being made and there is the feeling also, that he may not want to enter into an agreement that will tie his hands as a politician. And

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Doctor Chinwoke Mbadinuju was the Governor of Anambra State between May 29, 1999 and May 29, 2003. But in the run up to the 2003 governorship poll, he ran into troubled waters with the powers that be and was subsequently denied the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ticket for a second term. Even though the Alliance for Democracy (AD) offered him a lifeline to fly its flag, the former governor said the forces arrayed against him were too prevailing and as such, militated against his return to Government House Awka. In this interview with Assistant Editor, LINUS OBOGO, Mbadinuju opens up on the chances of the South East ahead of 2015, the Jonathan factor and sundry issues. Excerpts:

2015: Jonathan is South East’s problem —Ex-Anambra Governor Mbadinuju

•Mbadinuju

that is the problem that the Igbo will have. But once he enters into an agreement, I believe sincerely that he will keep it because the President is a gentleman and also a man of his words. With the emerging babble of voices from the South East, what do you think will be the fate of the Igbo should they enter an agreement with President Jonathan and he loses or fails to win in 2015? There will be nothing much that could be done in that regard except that we have to go back to the trenches and start afresh. How do you hold a man who has lost power to his word? Once a president is defeated at the poll and he is out of office, you cannot go back to him to keep his promises to you. But my feeling is that unless the impossible happens, given my own experience with the party, but should Jonathan be given the ticket, he will still

win because PDP remains the party to beat at any election. President Jonathan was recently in Anambra State, where he inaugurated the Onitsha River Port Complex, declared the state an oil producing state and promised to build the second Niger Bridge. Against this backcloth, the Igbo seemed to have favoured him for 2015 presidential election. Doesn’t that portray the region as rather cheap? Let us not lose sight of the fact that the bridge he promised to build is neither an Anambra State bridge nor an Igbo bridge. Rather, it is a bridge that links the region with other regions. The bridge will connect the region with the South/South, South West as well as the North. So, if anybody is promising to build a bridge across the Niger is not doing that for the

Igbo alone to enjoy. It is for the whole country, particularly those in the South, including the North. It is not going to be the property of Anambra simply because it is located in the state. What needs to be appreciated here is that successive governments have come and gone without any tangible effort to find an alternative route across the Niger until President Jonathan came on board. Today, it takes three hours instead of 30 minutes from Onitsha to Enugu by road because of its deplorable state. This is not President Jonathan’s fault, but he has also promised to look in that direction. What is happening in Anambra, particularly in the country, is part of his transformation agenda. The country has never felt this kind of transformation before and we must commend him for this. On the


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

•Mbadinuju

The President has, after all, been doing everything possible to convince us that he has our interest at heart. What he has been doing for the South East is a subtle appeal to us to queue behind him whenever he makes his decision for 2015 known. But then, he needs to sit down with us and convince us

issue of the President declaring Anambra an oil producing state, it is a noble gesture, given that the oil has always been here in Anambra, but no successive president or head of state has ever bothered to accord it the status of an oil-producing state. His recognition of the state as oilproducing is also a worthy aspect of his transformation agenda. The presence of oil was not discovered today. It was there when I was a governor and there were steps I took to acquire a licence for its exploration. But the president then, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, said we could not go ahead. He said we should leave it as a strategic reserve. We argued then that if it was for strategic reserve, then the state needed to be paid some sum as derivation. However, this was not to be. Obasanjo refused. So, why shouldn’t we applaud Jonathan for recognising the status of the state as oil-producing? He has done what a transformational president should do. If he keeps doing what he has been doing by transforming every Igbo state, what else is left for an Igbo president to do?

The crisis of consensus among the South East political class is attributable to the apparent absence of a formidable front in its quest for the leadership of the country. How does the region intend to overcome this morass as a people? The crisis of consensus which you identified to be an Igbo problem is not peculiar to the South East alone. This problem pervades all the various nationalities in Nigeria. Today, the North has split into nine groups. Would you say they are speaking with one voice by splitting into nine groups? Or is it the South West where you have the ACN, the PDP and the AD that you will say with certainty that they are speaking with one voice? Was there a consensus among the Yoruba, when President Obasanjo was running for the presidency in 1999? As we speak, have they been speaking with one voice? There is no reason why the Igbo should be subjected to that level of scrutiny or judged by a standard which is not found in other regions. There is no time the Igbo will speak with one voice. As a people, we are bound to have diverse opinions on issues.

We must not always see things the same way. What other people should worry about is the absence of justice for the Igbo. The Igbo need an additional state and the chance for the highest office in the land. We should be bothered about this kind of injustice and not the perceived lack of consensus among the Igbo. The Igbo race is what can be described as an atavistic society perpetually at war with itself. How possible, do you think justice can be ensured in such a society which is perpetually in dissonance with itself? And will the Igbo be ever ready to wrestle power from other regions? It is just like asking the question: is there an Igbo man qualified enough to be the president of Nigeria? Having asked this question, my answer is if there is only one Igbo man who is qualified to be president of Nigeria, let us give it to that Igbo man. When Obasanjo was selected from the South West, the region was not speaking with one voice. He was selected with the hope that the entire South West would rally round him, but as soon as he emerged, there was more division within the region. The same thing applies to the South East. Everybody does not need to agree on an issue. That is the beauty of democracy. However, it is enough that we have somebody who is qualified to rule Nigeria. Take the former Vice-President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, for instance, he came so close to becoming the president of this country, but he was denied. Of course, he is still alive and if the rest of the country can do to the East what they did to the South West in the person of Chief Obasanjo, Ekwueme should be allowed to rule this country. Remember when he also came close to winning the primary in Jos, but because of the same injustice, he was sidelined and abandoned. I still feel that he should be given the chance to rule Nigeria. He has paid his dues for this country. The same thing goes for me as well, I should be allowed the chance to do my second term for which I was denied the opportunity after winning the primary elections three times. So, you can see the trend of injustices meted out to the people from the South East. It is not just fair. The country cannot move forward with this brazen injustice. It is until we ensure that justice becomes the watchword, before God, Himself will begin to work with us. You spoke of Alex Ekwueme being sidelined and how he should be allowed to rule Nigeria. The former Vice-President, many will agree, is already in the evening of life and in the ‘departure lounge’ of his political career. Is this the quality of leadership the Igbo would be prepared to offer the rest of the country? When the time comes for the Igbo to produce a president for the country, and if that candidate is Alex Ekwueme, the Igbo will demonstrate that the former VicePresident is not only in the afternoon of his life, but also in the ‘arrival lounge’ of his political career. Apart from Ekwueme, the Igbo have as good quality leaders as any region to represent this country. I do not agree with you that Ekwueme is in the evening of his life. The Igbo have a reservoir of qualified and experienced sons and daughters to rule Nigeria. The problem is not the personnel from the South East, but for Nigerians to accept that Igbo have been grossly wronged. For a very long time, the state governors have advocated for the establishment of state police, but there have been divergent positions of late by majority of the governors. What is your take on this? I had my views when I was governor of Anambra State on the state police. Where were the police when the Aguleri and the Umuleri were killing and carrying their dead in wheel barrows for burial? Where the police not there when armed robbers were writing letters telling their victims in Onitsha when they would come visiting? The women were sleeping in churches. People were afraid to come home for Christmas because of the menace of armed robbers, yet there was police security in the state. It was when I came in as governor that I set out my priority to address the challenge of insecurity in the state. To me, the

peace and security of the people were paramount. At the end of the day, I put up a security outfit with the help of the police. Within six months of putting up the security outfit, armed robbery disappeared from the streets and we returned to a state of peace and tranquility. The federal allocation accruable to the state during my tenure was N300million out of which I had less than N200million to carry out developmental projects. In spite of the paucity of allocations to the state, I was still adjudged the best in terms of provision of adequate security for the people. Funnily enough, my opponents who did not want me to succeed went to Abuja to tell the President then that my security outfit was chasing them out of the state. And before I knew it, Obasanjo used his federal might to disband the outfit when I left office. Before long, armed robbers and kidnappers found their way back to Anambra to continue their business as usual. So for the state police, as long it is used to stabilise the states along with the federal police, no problem. But if it is the autonomy of state police controlled by the governors, it is not necessary. The fear of those against state police is that governors will abuse it. And their fears are well founded. The North has been kicking against the inclusion of the six geo-political zone-arrangement in the ongoing constitution review. Do you support their position on the retention of the North/ South arrangement? I will prefer that the six zonal-structure be included in the Constitution. It should not only be included in the Constitution, but the Constitution should also make provision for the six zones to produce six vice presidents to work with the president. There should be one president with each zone electing its own vice president. Today, the tension of representation is rather too high and the only way to lower it is to allow the zones to elect vice presidents to work with the president. The feeling has always been that once your man is not in the scheme of things, everything is against you. The North will be making a mistake to think that the North/South arrangement is what is good for the country. Before now, it was a three-regional structure that we had always had before they were split into 12 states. After your first term of four years in 2003, you appear literally frozen out of politics. Why have you not found it necessary to seek governance of Anambra State for a second time or any other political office for that matter? In 2003, after completing my first term, there were two us, Governor Rabiu kwankwaso of Kano State and I who could not make it back, even though we sought reelection. We were not allowed to go back. This was despite that I had won the primary of my party three times. But the power thatbe did not want me back in office. While Kwankwaso contested and lost, he was later compensated with a ministerial appointment by President Obasanjo. He was made Minister of Defence. In my own case, I was penciled down for ambassadorial appointment to Germany. But Obasanjo deleted my name from the list for reasons that were inexplicable. The PDP, after realising that I was wrongly excluded, decided to forward my name for ambassadorial position. Today, Kwankwaso is back in the saddle as governor of Kano State, having served as Minister of Defence. That was my fate. The PDP decided to abandon me despite that I remained a loyal member of the party. Of course, there was no way I could impose myself on the people when my party did not lend its support. Part of my effort in Anambra State while I was governor, was what led to the discovery of oil in the state. I have taken time to document my stewardship and accountability as governor of Anambra State in my book.


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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Understanding your uniqueness (3)

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EAR Reader, In the past two weeks, I have taught on the creation of male and female genders and also the difference in the male gender. In continuation of last week’s teaching, I will be enlightening you this week on the difference in the female gender. To say that men and women are the “same” is to deny physical reality. Science makes it plain that male and female are different from the moment of conception. The estrogen and testosterone hormones have a significant impact on the behaviour of the male and female. Some often wonder why boys typically like to play with trucks and girls with dolls. Activists usually claim this is the result of socialization, but there is growing sci-

Continued from last week

entific evidence that boys and girls are greatly influenced by their respective hormones. Similarly, it is important for you to know that the female gender, being a unique creation of God, is an incontestable fact! Everything about her person suggests that there is something special about her. God’s Word says: And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man (Genesis1: 27). That is, the woman was specially, wonderfully and skilfully made, built from a single rib of Adam in a miraculous way. So, from creation, we see that God decidedly made the woman as a complement of the man. He made her to make a difference in the life of Adam; He created her to spice up his world. I cannot imagine what the world would have looked

like without the female gender. Some men think that the world would have been a much happier place without women, but that is due to certain negative experiences they have had in times past. The truth is that God created the woman different in the world. Primarily, I suggest a woman is distinct because she is God’s idea. But it’s quite unfortunate that some women don’t understand how unique they are. Adam hadn’t even imagined the woman, but God had her particularly in mind. God’s Word says: And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him (Genesis 2:18). While Adam was busy around in the bush thinking of how to give names to animals, God said, “This is not good. This man needs help.” So, it was God who said that the man needed the woman. She was God’s idea. A woman is a product from God; this makes her God’s property. It is, therefore, advisable to you as a man that if you handle your wife well, you are handling God’s property perfectly. Briefly, let’s examine some of female’s mannerisms that make them different from the

male: Companionship! Women like friendship all the time. While men oftentimes want to be alone, women want to talk. Women always like to be in the company of loving arms, go out together, hear your feelings about them, recognize their person, beauty, input at home and praise her, and give her listening ear always. She wants to be your best friend anyday, anytime. Time spent with her is no waste, but invested. To this end, it is important you know that as couples grow older, desires fade, but friendship remains. Thus, a female company will always be necessary. Compassion! This is one of Jesus’ characters as the head of the church (Matthew 9:36; 14:14, Mark 1:4). Women love and appreciate to be identified with, invested in, assisted and supported wherever and whenever you can. She’s concerned about being a help indeed, not a hurt. Thus, she expects that her husband’s strength should be for protection, not for bullying and barking. She wants the demonstration of tenderness and affection that you care. As a true husband, you need to let her

know that she is a part of you in words and deeds. Responsibility! Responsibility is the price for greatness. Every woman needs a responsible man as husband, financially, physically and otherwise. That is why marriage is not for boys and girls, but for “men and women”. I’ve been privileged to counsel women who are separated, and who said that their marriages failed because their husbands were irresponsible. When asked in what way were they irresponsible? One response is that the husband just delegates his responsibilities to her. Another said he lets her work and take care of the finances, while he just stays comfortably idle. Another said that he would run away from problems, instead of facing them and finding solutions. Another one cannot handle the responsibility of taking care of children, etc. This happens vice versa, when the wife too does not live up to her role as a wife and mother. Maturity, to a great deal, will determine how responsible you are! Romance! In the context of marriage, every woman likes continuous courtship. So, as a husband, you must learn to be roman-

tic. Continue to do better those things you used to do before marriage. Give expression to your love for her. Love grows; it is your responsibility to make it grow. Express your love to her in thought, words and in actions. Give her cards and gifts on special occasions; it is not the volume that counts to her, but the value you place on it. You shall not fail! You need to give your life to Christ to have all it takes to enjoy a blissful marriage. You can say this prayer: Dear Lord, I come to You today. I am a sinner. Forgive me my sins. Cleanse me with Your precious Blood. I accept You as my Lord and Saviour. Now I know I am born again! Congratulations! Till I come your way again next week, call or write, and share your testimonies with me through: E - m a i l : faithdavid@yahoo.com Tel. No: 234-1-7747546-8; 07026385437, 07094254102 For more insight, these books authored by me are available at the Dominion Bookstores in all the Living Faith Churches, and other leading Christian bookstores: Single With A Difference, Make Life Count and Marriage Covenant.

Drugs that aid sleep

Zolpidem and zalepon have been used as recreational drugs and are drugs of abuse because of their fast and short lived actions. Zalepon, for this purpose, it is inhaled for fast mind and judgement altering actions to achieve a “high”. Used in this manner it produces short-lived hallucinations and anterograde amnesia (inability to remember what happened after taking the drug). Such sleep aids may be obtained via a doctor’s prescription legitimately but may end up being used for social intentions illegitimately. “According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, zolpidem (Ambien, Stilnox) is quickly overtaking illegal sedatives as the most common date-rape drug. Perpetrators of sexual assault have used zolpidem on unsuspecting victims. However, alcohol continues to be the most common date-rape drug by far. Being a widely prescribed pharmaceutical drug, zolpidem is more accessible to potential sexual abusers than rohypnol, or “roofies,” and its side effects when mixed with alcohol can exacerbate the sedative effects” (Wikipedia). Parents should warn their teens about such matters. Benzodiazepines are also controlled substances and have been used for a long time as sleep medications. Benzodiazepines are generally antianxiety drugs and have a high risk of dependence. The benzodiazepines that are used as sleep aids have more hypnotic-sedative effects and include: estazolam (ProSom), flurazepam (Dalmane), quazepam (Doral), temazepam (Restoril), and triazolam (Halcion). Users can become physically and psychologically dependent on these drugs. A person may not be able to sleep without it and may experience withdrawal symptoms (such as anxiety, rebound insomnia) if he or she fails to use the drug. To avoid becoming dependent, these sleep aids

should be used as prescribed, usually short-term. If used nightly for a long time, the brain can develop tolerance to a benzodiazepine within a month and the drug becomes ineffective unless higher doses are used. Benzodiazepines have a tendency to produce next-day drowsiness or hangover effect. Some of these drugs, e.g, flurazepam and trizolam are also used recreationally to achieve a “high”. Elderly people are more vulnerable to adverse effects of sedative/hynotics and need to stay close to their doctors’ advise. Good night.

Questions on sleep I read what you published in The Nation newspaper; date 08/ 09/2012. My name is Mr Henry Nwosu; 38 years old. I have been suffering from insomnia for the past 5months. I sleep for 4 hrs daily for 5 months now. I go to bed by 9.30pm and wake up by 2am or 2.30am and won’t be able to sleep again, Whenever I go to bed like 12pm or 1am I can’t be able to sleep thru out the night and when I take sleeping pills I will sleep for 8 hrs and if I don’t take the pills the next day I will go back to my constant 4hrs sleep circle. I have been exercising on daily basis - still the same 4hrs circle. To be honest, I have no single problem that disturbs me at all; I am comfortable by God grace. Even when I travel out I still face the same 4hrs sleep. It has affected my sexual urge and performance seriously. Doctor, please I need an urgent solution. Waiting for your response. My number 0803…..8 Dear Mr Nwosu, Thank you for sharing your problem in this column. I am sure many people who sleep well and enjoy satisfying

sleep would feel for you. You did not mention that you have considered seeing a physician. In the past few weeks we discussed in this column about ruling out any underlying disease, side effects of drugs and other substances consumed, and examining lifestyle, behaviour, and environment. I think you therefore still have some homework to do and you should take your time about it but please don’t leave anything out. Our body-mind relationship is complex and its balance can be affected by many diverse factors. Five months of too little sleep has probably brought you into a state of fatigue, with depression or anxiety (if these were not pre-existing) and therefore related sexual dysfunction. “To be honest, I have no single problem that disturbs me at all; I am comfortable by God grace.” This statement of yours is a classic statement of denial that is common to all of us humans as we go through a special phase in life. Beware of it so that you can free yourself up and arrive at a proper solution to any real problem that you may have. Begin with a thorough physical and any other necessary examination with your doctor. I hope you get your sleep back soon. Dr. ’Bola John is a biomedical scientist based in Nigeria and in the USA. For any comments or questions on this column, please Email bolajohnwritings@yahoo.com or call 07028338910.

Beating insomnia

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LEEP is essential for wellbeing as it restores and regener ates the body. Not getting enough of it can put one at great risk of certain ailments such as risk of heart disease and cancer. Besides, lack of adequate snoozes can leave one feeling dull, lethargic and listless with no energy for work or play. Sleep benefits the brain as well, as findings show that it can make one smarter. Yet researchers are finding that most adults have experienced insomnia or sleeplessness at one time or another in their lives. An estimated 30%-50% of the general population are affected by insomnia, and 10% have chronic insomnia. Insomnia is a symptom, not a stand-alone diagnosis or a disease. By definition, insomnia is “difficulty initiating or maintaining sleep, or both” or the perception of poor quality sleep. Insomnia may therefore be due to inadequate quality or quantity of sleep. Insomnia is not defined by a specific number of hours of sleep that one gets, since individuals vary widely in their sleep needs and practices. Although most of us know what insomnia is and how we feel and perform after one or more

sleepless nights, few seek medical advice. Many people remain unaware of the behavioral and medical options available to treat insomnia. Insomnia Causes Insomnia may be caused by a host of different reasons. These causes may be divided into situational factors, medical or psychiatric conditions, or primary sleep problems. Insomnia could also be classified by the duration of the symptoms into transient, shortterm or chronic. Transient insomnia generally last less than seven days; short-term insomnia usually lasts for about one to three weeks, and chronic insomnia lasts for months or even years. Many of the causes of transient and short-term insomnia et lag •Changes in shift work •Excessive or unpleasant noise •Uncomfortable room temperature (too hot or too cold) •Stressful situations in life (exam preparation, loss of a loved one, unemployment, divorce, or separation) •Presence of an acute medical or surgical illness or hospitaliza-


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Health Matters With DR MIKE OYAKHIRE 08170268670 email: drmikeoyakhire@yahoo.com Continued from last week

FEMALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM In humans and some primates, two structures present in the developing embryo, the mullerian ducts disappear in the male by the 9th week of pregnancy ,but the ducts in normal developing females go on to fuse, forming the fallopian tubes and the vagina. When this does not occur, affected individual will have double sets of vagina, cervix and uterus. The outward appearance will be normal, unless you take a closer look. In uterus duplex bicolis, the cervix and uterus are duplicated, but there is one vagina, where as in unicornuate uterus, one fallopian tube may be malformed. The presence of two uteri in a woman may be responsible for frequent miscarriages from one or both wombs ,the internal arrangement of which might not be favorable to implantation or growth of baby . Some women with two uteri have successfully harbored pregnancies in each of them to full term, and had deliveries actively managed. Attempts to clean up the uterus could also end in disaster for the same reason, and the woman may die from post abortal infection when products of conception are retained , hence Doctors now insist on trans vaginal or abdominal scan as routing procedure for even what may seem to the patient as minor problems in obstetrics and gynecology . Hernia uterine inguinale, otherwise called uterine hernia syndrome, is an inherited x-linked, or autosomal recessive disorder, where individuals look like normal males, but in the inguinal region(junction between the thigh and lower abdomen,) the womb(uterus) ,alone or with a fallopian tube appear in an inguinal sac . There is usually no problem with fertility but with time, the uterus in the inguinal canal will organize and set itself for various changes that will threaten life such as cancer. What you need to know then is that not every swelling you see in that region is a hernia, and medical help should be sought. It is now believed that these problems revolve round the mullerian inhibitory factor(MIF) , a homodimeric glycoprotein which belongs to the transforming growth factor superfamily, expressed not only in fetal but also in prepubertal and though in low levels, adult sertoli cells either, in its function or defective ability of the mullerian ducts to respond to it . The embryonic role of this MIF has been the subject of research into the possibility that it may posses the ability to suppress the growth of cancer involving the ovaries or endometrium, the former can affect females of all ages but more in the older age, and the latter, more of older females Problems associated with congenital conditions of the reproductive system may also be as a result of abnormal synthesis of androgens, at various levels, deficiencncy of hormone receptors, post receptor elements or pathways involved in the synthesis as well as uptake. Time and space will permit Only a few examples: MALE PSEUDO HEMAPHRODITES:- In this condition, the individual has female appearance at birth, but has testicless like males which instead of being inside the scrotum are located in the inguinal canal . As the child grows, to puberty, what happens depends on the extent of conversion(peripheral) of the naturally occurring Androstenedione to either Testosterone or Estrogen. The child may as a result develop female size breasts or large penis type clitoris and so early detection very important before gender identity is established, usually around the age of three. The other variety is where there is gonadotropin resistant testes; the individual unlike the one above is female, but has testes which also are located in the inguinal canal In these two cases, the real danger is the possibility of the testicles developing to become cancerous tissues INCOMPLETE MALE PSEUDO HEAMAPHRODITES— The major problem here is deficiency of an enzyme, 5 alpha reductase. Patient has under developed vagina, with severe Perineal hypospad, hence this entity was first called, pseudovaginal peri-

FAMIL Y HEAL TH AMILY HEALTH

Matters of sexual health: Common congenital conditions of the male and female reproductive system neoscrotal hypospadias (PPV). INCOMPLETE ANDROGEN INSENSITIVITY represents a spectrum of disorders, due to inherited x-linked recessive variants of incomplete testicular feminization. Two groups have been recognized; those with Lub syndrome appear much more like females whereas patients with Reinfensteins syndrome have predominant male characteristics. COMPLETE ANDROG INSENSITIVITY In this condition, there is Congenital insensitivity to male type hormones, It is tramnsmitted through maternal x-ressive genes. Mullerian inhibitory factor (MIF) is present and so mullerian activity is suppressed whereas Wolfian duct system fails to develop . Complete androgen insentivity is believesd to account for about 10% of all cases of women failing to experience their first normal menstrual flow(menarche) when the conditions of 47kg age of 13 and above plus other developmental milestones have been met. The affected Woman has a vagina, but it it is short and completely closed inside ((derived from Urogenital sinus only)the uterus and fallopian tubes are absent. RECOMMENDATIONS Avoid unprescribed drugs during pregnancy especially excessive intake of nutritional supplement. Avoid exposure to environmental chemicals as smoke from various pollutants Mind what you eat and drink especially once you become pregnant especially from the 3rd to 9th week when organs are forming Do family planning, each pregnancy should be taken as unique, and well planned Register for antenatal care as early as possible, Seek medical advice always Arrange your pregnancy and delivery to be managed by someone trained to do so and if you cannot afford Hospital antenatal care, see at least a traditional birth attendant Parents should check for anything unusual from when a child is borne, continue observation thereafter .When a child is borne, ensure there is proper examination and bring the child regularly as instructed by your centre for further examination, according to the protocol in the road to health chart, Ensure that penis is where it is supposed to be, and not where the vagina is supposed to be . See that urine is coming from the proper place. As the child grows, watch if he sits down or hides to urinate, and for any unusual or excessive shyness from your daughter Whenever anything unusual is found in the genital area draw attention of medical personnel, and check other parts of the patients body Watch out for normal regular activities such as child making urine, opening bowel, crying and suckling Listen well to complaints of abdominal pain from your toddler, teenager, wife, hysby, and watch out for any swellings of the vagina labia, scrotum, in the junction between the anus and vagina or penis, PARENTS, GUARDIAN, SCHOOLS COULD do well to carry out periodic physical examination of children ;Mom for daughters and Dad for Sons, school admission medical tests should also be taken seriously When discovered, the family physician or pediatrician should be seen immediately Caution is necessary when anything unusual is discovered, such words as abnormal should be avoided as they can permanently create psychosocial problems for everyone in the family Other things you could think about include:Excessive tallness with feminine voice for a male at puberty Unusual hair growth for age and gender Unusually prominent clitoris (penis at 12.0 clock) Severe pain with swelling around the vaginal opening Unusually small breasts for age in the female. And unusually large breasts in the male Unusually prominent buttocks with evidence of steatopygea Unusual patterns of social behavior

tion •Withdrawal from drug, alcohol, sedative, or stimulant medications •Insomnia related to high altitude (mountains) Uncontrolled physical symptoms (pain, fever, breathing problems, nasal congestion, cough, diarrhea, etc.) can also cause someone to have insomnia. Controlling these symptoms and their underlying causes may lead to resolution of insomnia. Causes of chronic or long-term insomnia The majority of causes of chronic or long-term insomnia are usually linked to an underlying psychiatric or physiologic (medical) condition. These include anxiety, depression, stress (mental, emotional, situational, etc), schizophrenia, and/or mania (bipolar disorder). Insomnia may be an indicator of depression. Many people will have insomnia during the acute phases of a mental illness. As mentioned earlier, depression and anxiety are strongly associated with insomnia. Out of all the other secondary medical and psychological causes of insomnia, anxiety and depression are the most common. Those at risk Insomnia affects all age groups. Among adults, insomnia affects women more often than men. The incidence tends to increase with age. It is typically more common in people in lower socioeconomic (income) groups, chronic alcoholics and mental health patients. Stress most commonly triggers short-term or acute insomnia. If you do not address your insomnia, however, it may develop into chronic insomnia. There also seems to be an association between depression, anxiety and insomnia. Although the nature of this association is

unknown, people with depression or anxiety were significantly more likely to develop insomnia. Certain age groups and conditions are more prone to insomnia. These are seniors, adolescents or young adult students, pregnant women, women in menopause, those who abuse drugs and alcoholics. Lack of sleep can lead to poor concentration and focus, difficulty with memory, impaired motor, no coordination (being uncoordinated), irritability and impaired social interaction and motor vehicle accidents because of fatigued, sleep-deprived drivers.

53 Coping with diseases with Prof. Dayo Oyekole

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Fibroids

IBROIDS are tumors of the womb, consisting of muscle and some fibrous tissue. They are benign and are the most com mon of all uterine tumors. It is called fibroma when the growth or tumor is composed chiefly of connective tissue, while it is called myoma when the growth is composed of muscle element. Its other names are fibromyoma and leiomyofibroma when it consists of mixed tissues. However, myoma is most appropriate, since they rarely contain much fibrous material and consist almost entirely of smooth muscle. It is usually discrete, round, firm and often multiple. They can be as small as an orange seed or as big as the head of a newly born baby. They can be totally symptomless or can be so worrisome as to become an emergency. Based on its anatomical location, it may be classified as intramural (within uterine muscle), submucous (within the inner lining of the womb), subserous (in the outer lining) intraligamentous (within the ligaments holding the uterus), or cervical (in the cervix). The disease occurs three times more frequent in black women than white. Fibroid has been a major cause of infertility and the various pregnancy related deaths in Nigerian women. It may grow silently and progressively over a period of 5 to 10 years; and may be so big in the abdomen that it may be mistaken for normal pregnancy. Many women have carried such fibroid for many years, regarding it as pregnancy and seeking for help in spiritual and instant healing homes! However, some women with fibroid still get pregnant and some even deliver successfully with the fibroid. Clinical evidence suggests that the development of fibroid is related to the action of estrogen, a hormone produced by the ovary. Fibroids arise during the period of menstrual activity. They do not originate as a new growth once menstruation has ceased (menopause). Non-utilized and under-utilized uterus in the productive age, as well as use of oestrogenic contraceptive pills would enhance the occurrence of fibroids. Smptoms of myomas include; increased abdomen, frequent urination, painful menstruation (dysmenorrhoea) and heavy bleeding (often with anaemia and fainting). They can give rise to severe lower abdominal pains and headaches. There may be multiple menstruations in one month, which may be accompanied by the passage of blood clots. Fibroids can be detected accidentally by the physician either during physical examination or via ultrasound scan for infertility or related abdominal ailments. In Holistic Lifecare, it is strongly advised that women (or ladies) should avoid the abuse of contraceptives and unnecessary delay of pregnancy for too long a period during the reproductive age. They should take proper care of venereal diseases and avoid frequent and excessive abortion (especially with D and C). The use of phytoestrogenic contraceptives (plant-derived oestrogens) is highly recommended, as may be prescribed by experienced herbal scientists. Actually, with the use of safe and potent herbal remedies, through the oral route, it has been confirmed that the fibroid tissues dissolve gradually. They are absorbed by the body and finally eliminated through the various excretory routes. However, it is necessary to ensure that the remedies come from a very good and dependable source. A good ultrasound scan detailing the site(s), size(s) and number(s) of the fibroids should be done before treatment. This should be repeated 3 months later, to determine if the remedies are working or not. The holistic natural remedy being advanced for the control and total cure of fibroids is a combination of natural extracts of Ricinus communis, Aframomum melegueta, Cocos nucifera and Xylopia aethiopica. For further information and consultation on Holistic Lifecare research and services, especially on Blood Infections, Infertility, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Chronic Debilitating Conditions as well as mental and social problems, please call on: 0803-330-3897 or visit: Mosebolatan Holistic Lifecare Centre, Adeyalo Layout, Ogbere-Tioya, Off Olorunsogo Express Bridge, Ibadan. Website: www.holisticlifecare.com. Distance is no barrier, we can send remedies by courier if need be. We also have facilities for accommodation, admission and hospitalization in a serene and homely environment.


54

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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IGERIA’S tourism en dowments are like a rich art work on canvass with bright esoteric strokes, and each stroke tells a story. In trying to deconstruct the mind of the artist and interpret the work, the connoisseur must go on a soulsearching journey, a journey that captures every facet of his life. That is the story of tourism in Nigeria. That is the story recently captured by the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) through a compendium, Nigeria: Tourism is Life. In this compendium, Nigerian tourism endowments were brought to the fore for both local and foreign tourists in vivid colours, and it leaves one absolutely stunned and giddy by the plethora of tourism assets in country. One important thing is that there is no particular part of the country that has the monopoly of endowments. Many tourists desirous of visiting a destination tries as much as possible to get all the information they need to get baout that particular destination before embarking on a trip. This helps a tourist prepare in terms of weather, culture and other things that would make the trip an enjoyable expererience. Unfortunately in the past, Nigeria lacked such a compedium that could be a source of information for a potential tourist. This is captured in Nigeria: Tourism is Life. The landmass, vegetation and people are all captured in the beginning of the book. The policial history of Nigeria is well articulated in the book.

•Dutse Hill, Jigawa State

•Ijele masquerade

Capturing allure of Nigeria’s tourism Another vacuum which Nigeria: Tourism is Life will also fill is the desire of local tourists to get to know about destinations that they want to visit. It is a known fact top tourist destinations in Africa like South Africa, Ghana and The Gambia depend so much on the tourism traffic from Nigeria

to actually balance their tourism book. For example, if Nigerians refused to go South Africa for a year, that country’s inbound tourism arrivals would be down by close to 30 per cent. The same applies to Ghana and, to a lesser extent, The Gambia. But the local travel in Nigeria is abysmal. This has been attributed to lack

of knowledge about the sites and the tourism endowments in the country. The NTDC compendium has solved the problem. The sites have been captured so vivdly and in an attractive page layout and colours that lure any person desirous of leisure or simple adventure to hit the road. This is part of the core

•Sultan of Sokoto’s palace

NTDC mandate to develop and market Nigeria’s tourist sites and destinations. However, this has also brought to the fore the poor state of the infrastructural facilities like roads to the sites and the development within these sites for them to attract tourists. It is only Cross River with its huge investments in tourism that has really put their money where their mouths are.Maybe one can

Tourism News

Africa to lead debate in WTM

Etihad Airways waiting for Boeing 787 Dreamliner E

TIHAD Airways President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), James Hogan, recently visited Boeing’s Everett production facility, as the UAE flag carrier prepares to take delivery of more 777s and awaits the arrival of the 787 Dreamliner. Mr Hogan is leading a senior delegation of Etihad Airways and Airberlin executives on a one-day visit. Etihad Airways owns almost 30 per cent of Airberlin, Europe’s sixth largest airline. In March, the two carriers announced plans to strengthen their partnership by integrating their respective Boeing 787 Dreamliner programmes. Inspecting the 777 and Dreamliner assembly lines, Mr Hogan said: “It is exciting to see these aircraft take shape and we look forward to taking delivery of nine more 777s over the next 15 months. “For both carriers, the Dreamliner’s arrival will be a positive milestone for two strategically aligned partners who are looking to successfully work with Boeing on our integrated fleet programme. “Already we are sharing infrastructure, streamlining our purchasing activity for engines, rotables, avionics and in-flight entertainment systems and are also hard at work on common onboard product specifications for our respective brands which will give passengers a consistent product experience,”Mr Hogann said.

add Ekiti State in the light of Governor Kayode Fayemi’s efforts in Ikogosi. The NTDC has done its own part in articulating and properly documeting these sites. Other tiers of government should also do their own part. The tourism endowments are divided into eleven groups. One could broadly group these into natural or eco-tourist and man-made

A

Last December, Etihad Airways announced it was taking its total order book for the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to 41, the first of which arrives in the last quarter of 2014. The order, valued at US $9.3 billion, will make Etihad Airways the largest operator of the aircraft type in the world. The UAE flag carrier has options and purchase rights for an additional 25 aircraft. Etihad Airways has already taken delivery of three Boeing 777-300ER passenger aircraft in 2012, including the airline’s first three-class aircraft type. The airline’s current fleet of Boeing aircraft includes: 11 Boeing 777-300ER, one Boeing 777-200 freighter and one Boeing 747-400 freighter (wet leased).

FRICA’S airline industry will be put under the spotlight at World Travel Market 2012, the leading global event for the travel industry, as part of a wider series of discussions among aviation chiefs over the industry’s future. The airline events programme will start on Tuesday 6 ,November with the Airline – Out of Africa session which will look at how the continent’s airlines are taking on international airlines to secure a slice of this growing market. In the past, many local airlines have complained that they are missing out on the increasing passenger numbers Africa is generating. However, the emergence of strong African airlines is countering this issue

Nigeria’s Aviation Minister Stella Odua helped by the introduction of new generation aircraft, such as Boeing’s 787 and the Airbus A350. The session will focus on both the opportunities in Africa for air travel and tourism development, but also the


55 Airlift of Christian pilgrims starts October 22

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012 endowments. The eco-tourist endowments include rock formations, lakes, waterfall and springs, while the man-made endowments include monuments, dams, palaces, festivals, cities, holiday resorts and many others. Monuments: the monuments include the Nok terra cotta figurine from Kaduna State, one of the well known cultures of black Africa having been around for over 2,500 years. The intriguing Sungbo Eredo earthwork in Epe, Lagos State. The moat in the league of the Benin moat served as defence between 800-1000AD. Other works under the monument include the ancient Sukur village in Adamawa. Rocks and hills in Nigeria come in different forms and shapes, but they always add allure to any place the hills are located. They are most in the middle belt areas with a few exceptions like the Olumo Rock and Idanre Hills. Rock formations such as Agbele, Olosunta, Zuma, Pulka, Gembu hills, Kilang hills and many others. Nigeria is blessed with exotic waterfalls. With Tourism is Life book, a tourist has vivid capturing in picture of these waterfalls and could go on adventure to some of them. Top among them are Olumirin Waterfall in Erin Ijesa, Owu Waterfall in

A nation with over 250 ethnic groups, Nigeria is the most plural and most culturally diverse nation in black Africa. Its rich cultural heritage is expressed in its fascinating festivals rendered in songs, dance, drama, acrobatic display,

Kwara State, Farin Ruwa, Gurara, Awhum and many others. They are places that seeing them triggers the desire for adventure. The NTDC boss, Otunba Runsewe, speaking on the compendium in his forward said: “With an area of about 923,768,64 square kilometres stretchiang from the Atlantic Coast and the rainforest in the South through the savannah to the semi-arid region in the north, Nigeria is magnificently endowed by nature. “The diverse eco-system, manifesting in varying climactic zones, network of rivers, lakes, beautiful beaches , awesome caves, warm and cold springs and waterfalls all add to the geographical landmass called Nigeria. “A nation with over 250 ethnic groups, Nigeria is the most plural and most culturally diverse nation in black Africa. Its rich cultural heritage is expressed in its fascinating festivals rendered in songs, dance, drama, acrobatic display, poems, epigrams, incantations, costumes , riveting arts and craft products. “The beauty of her natural environment, richness of her culture and diversity of her people readily make Nigeria a foremost tourist destination in Africa. “One of the biggest prob-

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HE Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Mr. John Kennedy, has dsiclosed that the 2012 airlift of pilgrims to Israel •NTDC boss presenting the book to the CEO of Daar Com- will commence on October 22. munication Ltd, Chief Raymond Dokpesi Kennedy made this disclosure during a courtesy visit to the Nigerian ambassador to Israel, Mr. David Obasa. lems of marketing Nigeria festivals in the country. He explained that their visit was in tandem with the as a destination in past had “While the new work calendar of activities of the commission as approved by been the lack of promo- would greatly help in the President Goodluck Jonathan. According to him: “we tional materials at major promotional materials for are here to sign an agreement with the Ground Handlers international tourism exhi- country, it is also important and the Israeli authorities for the 2012 pilgrimage.” bitions and fairs. Recently, the embassies and other He affirmed that the airlift of 2012 pilgrimage would a Japanese travel agent foreign outlets that have one commence on October 25. came to Nigeria with some or two things to do with the He explained that in April this year during pre-visit, tourists. One of the her Nigerian image should have the commission interviewed and screened the ground complaints was that there copies of this book. handlers and 10 were successful. was no promotional mateHe commended the ambassador for the love he always “Outside this, the book rials for them to know should be in soft copies and shows each time members of the commission visit Israel about eco-tourism sites and posted on the net.” on pilgrimage matters. The chairman of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrim Commission (NCPC), Archbishop Nichola D. Okoh, led members of the NCPC Board to the Nigerian Embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel on a courtesy visit to the ambassador, His Excellency Obasa, during the evaluation of the State of Readiness for the 2012 Christian pilgrimage exercise. The chairman thanked the ambassador for all his efforts and support to the commission, especially to the Nigerian pilgrims. He appealed to him and his team to help the commission so that they would be able to finish well, stressing that the final lap of any race is usually very important. He explained that this year is very important for his board in the sense that if well-handled, they could likely receive applause. Consequently, he said” it is very important that we do it well.” The chairman further commended the ambassador for his spirituality, his organizational ability and the promptness with which he attends to issues. In the words of the chairman, “we are grateful to you for your assistance so far; we ask for more”. In his remarks,the Nigerian ambassador to Israel, His Excellency Obasa commiserated with the chairman of the NCPC, who is also the Primate of Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, on the demise of his dear mother who passed on to glory recently. His Excellency stressed the fact that changing a winning team is not usually the best, thus he prayed that at the expiration of the first tenure of NCPC board, they would be re -confirmed for a second term. •Kwa Waterfall, Cross River State

e in WTM 2012 airline programme challenges it faces regarding infrastructure, regulation and the sheer problem of the distances flown in Africa. The session will be chaired by John Strickland who runs aviation consultancy JLS Consulting and has 30 years experience in the industry. Before founding the consultancy, he held senior positions in Caledonian, British Airways, KLM uk and Buzz and is now regularly called upon by the international media to comment on aviation issues. He will be joined by Ethiopian Airlines Chief Operating Officer Tewolde Gebre Mariam who, over a period of 27 years, has worked his way up through the airline. During this time, he has held many overseas positions, giving him a view

•NCPC team at the Israeli tourism office

on Africa’s airline industry from both the in and outside of the continent. Also lending his expertise to the panel is FastJet Chief Executive Officer Ed Winter who is running the low cost African carrier which has 10 aircraft serving about 25 domestic and regional destinations. Further strengthening the line up is Kenya Airways Chief Operating Officer Mbuvi Ngunze. The event is one of three focusing on the aviation sector with the second on Wednesday 7, November entitled “Airline – Setting the Scene: The Big Challenges.” Chaired by Strickland again, the session will focus on the many tough issues the industry faces, from rising taxation and oil prices to weakening demand and airport capacity. A core panel speaker will be Iberia Director of Corporate Affairs, Manuel López Colmenarejo, who has spent most of his career at the airline. He also boasts of additional experience on the boards of several other companies, including Amadeus and was also President for Amadeus Spain. He was joined by Gatwick Airport CEO Stuart Wingate who has a long and distinguished career at airports having held the positions of MD at Stansted Airport, CEO of Budapest Airport and Customer Services Director at Glasgow Airport.

ANJET to promote viable tourism industry

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HE Association of Nigerian Journalists and Writers of Tourism (ANJET), an affiliate of the world body, Federation of International Journalists and Writers of Tourism(FIJET), has reconvened after a long absence from the tourism scene with a commitment to bring the vast wealth of the experiences of its members to bear on the industry and ensure that the cause of the Nigerian tourism industry is given the attention it desired across the country. In a statement released by the body for travel and tourism journalists in Nigeria after its meeting in Lagos, the second for the month of September, the body urged its members to close ranks and work together for the good of

the tourism industry and avoid any politicking that would affect its becoming a united body. It, therefore, resolved to build a stronger body that would earn the respect of the industry and be a reference point. Also the body resolved, among others, to contribute its best to the building of a viable tourism industry by ensuring that it upholds the tenets of journalism profession in its reportage by drawing attention to issues affecting the industry. The body also pledged to interface with all the relevant associations and professionals in the industry in its drive to give a stronger voice to the industry. It would also resume its

monthly roundtable discourse on issues related to the industry, visit destinations across the country and engage state governors, tourism boards and committees as well as ministries, parastatals and other government agencies on working to develop the industry. As a first step to announcing its presence again on the scene, the body is planning a series of courtesy calls on some of the tourism associations and practitioners while also deliberating on a formal re - launch of the body, investiture of its patrons and officers as well as the first roundtable session for the year.


56

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Wada, Kogi Speaker: The currents behind the face-off

• Governor Wada

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HE uproar that greeted the swearing-in of Captain Idris Ichalla Wada as the Governor of Kogi State by the President of the Customary Court on January 27 may have simmered but the bad blood generated by those who stood for due process and the right thing being done has simply refused to thaw. In fact, the bile that attended the day the state infamously had three ‘sitting governors’ still runs deep in the political equation in the state as it has continued to define the relationship between the House of Assembly and the Wada-led administration ever since. Nowhere is this hate-love association more manifest than between Wada and the Speaker of the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon. Abdullahi Bello. For those in the know, the Speaker incurred the ire of the governor for accepting to be sworn into office on acting capacity following a statement by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke, that speakers of the five states affected by the judgement should assume leadership on acting capacity. Wada was said to have stepped up efforts to get back at those he considers as threat to his administration following his favourable outing at the Federal High Court in Abuja recently. The governor has been accused of encouraging the state legislators to impeach the speaker, especially and other principal officers of the House in order that has men may take over. According to an insider, the governor is said to have branded the current principal officers of the House as belonging to the era of the erstwhile Governor Ibrahim Idris and thus it is time for him to put his loyalists in charge. Another claim is that the governor has apparently misinterpreted the constitutional duty of the House to appraise the year’s budget performance as a ploy by the current House to serve as a prelude to possible impeachment proceedings against him from the House. Wada is also said to be angry that after the Vice President and the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had ‘settled’ the political confusion as to who would occupy the governor’s seat following the Supreme Court’s ruling and directed the Speaker

nar rather than rallying members to receive him to Government House in Lokoja after the peace parley in Abuja. For others still, he claims that the Speaker and some of the principal officers are Alhaji Echocho’s loyalists and that now that Echocho had lost his case against him at the Federal High Court, they must be removed. “The final reason for wanting to impeach the Speaker and the other principal officers is the belief that the budget appraisal to be embarked on by the House was a move against his government. • Hon. Bello This was the dummy sold out to him by the few undesirable members of the House who trade in lies and backbiting for their selfish interests”. The source added that Wada was being fed with lies by some members of the House who are bent on reaping from where they did not Sanni ONOGU, Abuja sow. He said: “The governor’s problems began to hand over to him, that the Speaker led other when he started to hobnob with some memmembers of the House from Abuja to Ilorin to bers of the House who are out to make curry attend a seminar instead of leading them back his favour. This group having realised that the to Lojoka to welcome him. The governor is Assembly is not a goldmine as they initially said to have resorted to starving the House of believed decided to blackmail other members, funds, a situation that has adversely impeded especially the principal officers, for their selftheir ability to carry out their legislative funcish gain. tions. “Unfortunately, rather than the governor Again the governor is said to view the checking his facts, he began to treat Assembly Speaker as a loyalist of Jibrin Echocho, who is matters on hearsay based on the information currently waging a judicial battle to reclaim available from the obnoxious informants from his purported mandate from the governor. But the House. supporters of the Speaker are quick to point “The speaker who has laboured so much to out that the governor’s assumptions are far establish and stabilise this government has from reality. They contend that the Speaker now become the number one enemy of the did not only fight to ensure that Wada emerged governor. Assuming there are areas where the the governorship candidate of the PDP during speaker might err, is it not expected of the the last primaries but mobilised the entire governor to call on the speaker who can pass Kogi Central to vote enmasse for the goverfor his son for an amicable dialogue? What is nor during the December 3, 2011 election. Bethe moral justification for killing the bird that sides, the governor was said to have engaged lays the golden egg?” in subtle blackmail against the Speaker with Another source said that the grand design to spurious allegations to instigate members of silence perceived political enemies in the state the House to move against him and other prinis not only targeted at Speaker Bello and other cipal officers. But discerning members of the principal officers of the House but also the House who have worked with the Speaker for Chief Judge of the state who swore in Bello about seven months before the advent of Wada against the wishes of Wada and his godfather, remained unperturbed as they perceived it as Alhaji Ibrahim Idris. a sinister move by the executive to cow the He lamented that “during the peace parley state legislature by having the governor’s men convoked by the Vice President Namadi Sambo in charge. in Abuja that led the Speaker to formally hand Not minding the handful of alleged moles over to Wada, it was agreed that nobody in the House, the majority expressed this when should be witch-hunted for whatever roles they recently passed a vote of confidence on they played in the aftermath of the Supreme the Speaker apparently to thwart the move by Court’s ruling, but going by the body language the executive to erode their legislative indeof this administration, it is clear they are not pendence. willing to let bye gone be bye-gone”. A highly placed government official, who The Special Adviser on Media to the Goverspoke on condition of anonymity, said: “He nor, Jacob Edi, when contacted, however, degives different reasons to such members on scribed the allegations as baseless. He said that why he wants the principal officers removed. Wada has no axe to grind with the speaker and To some, he averred that the officers were apother principal officers of the House. pointed by the former Governor (Ibrahim Idris) Edi said: “Without mincing words, the Govand that he wants to appoint his own. ernor of Kogi State, Capt. Idris Wada, is not at “To others, sometimes, he opens up that he loggerheads with the Speaker of the House of is unhappy with the Speaker for having the Assembly, neither has the executive as a body courage to accept to be sworn in as an acting any problems with the legislature. governor in January, 2012 following the Su“From my opening salvo, even the question preme Court’s judgment. He is also angry with is irrelevant. I can tell you confidently that the him for leading the House to Ilorin for a semirelationship between the two arms of the gov-

ernment and even the judiciary is very robust and cordial, while the executive is also respecting the tenets and principles of separation of powers as enshrined in the Constitution. “The allegation of bribe would have even been believable if the governor, assuming without conceding, that the money in question will go to his pocket. I wish to state categorically that nothing like that has happened or will happen in the future. “Capt. Wada is not the bribe type and I mean in giving and taking. He neither gives nor takes. How can the governor be against the House of Assembly for carrying out their Constitutional role? That’s quite inconceivable for a man that is easily called ‘Mr Due Process’? No way!” Notwithstanding the position of the governor’s camp, an alleged plot to impeach the Speaker and other principal officers of the House backfired last week in Lokoja. Some members were allegedly encouraged to effect a change in the House’s leadership without any “serious allegation” against them, failed to budge. One of the lawmakers, Barrister Henry Ojuola, representing Yagba East constituency, confirmed the development to reporters in Lokoja. Ojuola said the retrogressive development was motivated by some “powerful forces” in the state. He noted that the Speaker has done splendidly in his leadership role and wondered why the hurry to hound him out of office. Why using the House of Representatives as an example, he said the House must be allowed to choose and sustain its leaders without any external influence. He said the House had severally passed votes of confidence on the Speaker because of the vast support he enjoys from the members and urged him not to be deterred. Ojuola said: “The Speaker as at today controls majority support in the House and I am advising those canvassing for his removal to exercise restraint in order to avoid anarchy.” A member of the House of Representatives representing Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency, Hon Abdul Rahman Badams, has vowed that the people of Kogi Central would vehemently resist any attempt to impeach the Speaker. Hon. Badams spoke when political stakeholders from Kogi Central met at Okene to review the security situation in the area. The Special Adviser on Media to the Speaker, Alhaji Ibrahim Isa-Amoka, in a statement, said Hon. Badams called on the Governor Wadaled administration not to compound the present security malaise in the zone. The statement reads in part: “Hon. Badams said that the government should be told out rightly that the position of the Speaker is zoned to the Kogi Central Senatorial District and Hon. Abdullahi Bello is their choice in whom they are well pleased. He reiterated that any means adopted by the government to impeach Bello for no just cause will be resisted by the people. “He said members of the National Assembly from the state are contented with the good leadership of the speaker which is characterised by his gentleness, hardwork, honesty and transparency in the discharge of his duties in the House of Assembly so far. “Hon. Badams said that the federal lawmakers from the state would soon meet on the disturbing development and make their opposition to the alleged impeachment scheme against the speaker known to the state government and political leaders in the state. He called on those he described as being on a ‘retrogressive path’ to retrace their steps in the interest of peace, unity and development of Kogi Central and the state in general.” Moreover, political stakeholders in the zone are of the view that any attempt to subvert the wishes of the people by effecting a change in the leadership of the House would further worsen the already fragile peace in the state. Gen.Emmanuel Abisoye (rtd) and Dr. Tom Adaba may have alluded to the seeming frosty relationship between the governor and the speaker when they advised the governor to work with political office holders from Kogi Central. The two leaders were part of the high-powered delegation from the zone led by Senator Nurudeen Abatemi-Usman to Lugard House penultimate weekend to discuss the way forward for the current security challenges bedeviling the area with the governor. Abatemi-Usman’s media aide, Michael Jegede, in a statement, said: “In their separate remarks, Gen. Emmanuel Abisoye and Dr. Tom Adaba expressed confidence in the ability of Wada to pilot the affairs of the state to greater heights, while urging him to work closely with political officer holders from the Central Senatorial district, particularly Senator Abatemi-Usman and the Speaker of Kogi State House of Assembly, Abdullahi Bello.”


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012


NEWS 59

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

PUBLIC NOTICE

PUBLIC NOTICE

I, formerly known and addressed as MISS OFOR GENEVIEVE CHIKA now wish to be known and addressed as MRS MADU GENEVIEVE CHIKA. All former documents remain valid. Nigeria Immigration, FSDT & T Enugu , and general public take note.

I, formerly known and addressed as PAUL SIMON now wish to be known and addressed as ANIONOH IFEANYI LADISLAS. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

OFOR:

PAUL:

PUBLIC NOTICE RESCUE OPERATION BIBLE CHURCH No.35 Azuabie Street, Azuabie Town,Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

This is to notify the general public that the religion organization known as Rescue Operation Bible Church, Port Harcourt as applied for in co-operation/registration under part “C” of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: REV. PATRICK I. USANI (JP) ————General Overseer PASTOR NGOZI AMAKA USANI (JP) —Women’s President BRO. BERNARD EZE ————————Administrator EVANG. NKECHI OMEJE ———————Treasurer BRO. SYLVESTER IKPI ————————General Secretary AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 1. Preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ and fostering the growth of Christian religion in all parts of the world. 2. Establishing and maintaining Christian training schools, including all levels of Education,such as pre-schools, elementary schools, high schools, colleges, Bible training schools or any other schools which may be deemed necessary. Objection (if any) should be forwarded to the registrar, General Corporate Affairs Commission, P.M.B 198. Garki, Abuja, within 28 days of this publication. Signed: Chief (Barr.) Sampson N. Worlu (Solicitor)

PUBLIC NOTICE TRIUMPHANT WORDLIFE MINISTRY The general public is hereby notified that the above named Ministry has applied to Corporate Affairs Commission for Registration Under part “C” of the Companies and Allied Matters Act,1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. PASTOR SAMUEL ALA DAVID — PASTOR 2. CECILIA JAJA ——— SECRETARY 3. BELEMA DAVID ALAGBARIKA -EVANGELISM DIRECTOR AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 1) To propagate the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2) To win Souls and nurture the Saints. 3) To raise believers that will touch the Nations. Any objection to the Registration should be forwarded to the RegistrarGeneral Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, off Aguiyi Ironsi, Maitama Abuja, within 28 days of this publication. Signed: CECILIA JAJA (Secretary)

Illegal bunkering: Navy hands over 16 suspects, four vessels to EFCC I N its determination to rid the Niger Delta of illegal bunkerers of petroleum products and oil thieves, 16 suspects and four vessels were yesterday handed over by the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS), Pathfinder, to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at Rumuolumeni, Port Harcourt, Rivers State. A wooden boat laden with 150 drums of illegally-refined petroleum products was also handed over to the operatives of the EFCC for further investigation and prosecution. The Commanding Officer, NNS Pathfinder, Commodore Oyetunji Fadeyi, during the handing over, disclosed that ten of the suspects were arrested onboard a vessel, MT Aegle, with IMO number 8023890 on May 4, 2012, around 23:00hours by NNS Thunder, around Bonny waterways. He stated that the vessel (MT Aegle), owned by Mr. Akin John of No. 13, Rhodes Crescent, Apapa, Lagos, was granted approval by naval headquarters to load 200 MT of Automated Gasoline Oil (AGO) into Lubcon Calabar, on account of Fontana Oil Nigeria Limited. Fadeyi noted that by the time it was arrested, the vessel was allegedly carrying petroleum product suspected to be illegally-refined AGO and operating outside the

Bisi OLANIYI, Port Harcourt

timeframe approved for its operations by the naval headquarters. Six of the suspects, including Mr. Godwin Tugbe, were owners of the wooden boat and were arrested on August 21 this year, around 21:55hours by NNS Pathfinder’s officials on routine patrol along Bille waterways in Rivers State.

It was learnt that Tugbe, who was not onboard of the boat, was arrested when he offered N200,000 bribe to a naval officer to assist in ensuring quick release of the wooden boat and crew. The commanding officer of NNS Pathfinder also described the suspects’ crimes as detrimental to the economy of Nigeria, while recommending that the suspects should be

prosecuted to serve as a deterrent to others. Two other barges, MV Light 11 and MV Princess Sophie, were also released to the EFCC based on the directive from the naval headquarters. It was revealed that MV Light 11, which belongs to VICO Corporate Ventures and MV Princess Sophie, were arrested on June 3 this year by men of the NNS Pathfinder.

From left: Mr. Oluremi Ajalogun, conference chairperson; Mr. Kayode Ogungbuyi, President Nigerian Institute of Training and Development (NITAD); Mr. Charles Ugwu, Guest Speaker; and Dr. Bola Mustapha, Registrar/CEO, NITAD, at the 20th Annual Trainers’ Conference of NITAD, held recently in Abuja.

Cross River paramount ruler ousted

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HE paramount ruler of the Efuts in the Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State, Muri Munene Effiong Mbukpa, was yesterday ousted following the emergence of Prof. Itam Hogan Itam in an election that was endorsed by the state government. Hogan, it was learnt, emerged in a quiet election exercise supervised by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr John Eyikwaje. A source, who witnessed the exercise, said it was carried out under heavy security presence. The event held at the legislative chamber of the Calabar South council secretariat. It was gathered that traditionally, the event was supposed to have held at the palace which at the moment is sealed off by government since Mbukpa was attacked there a few months ago. It was gathered that five out of the eight clan heads of the Efut people attended the event. The clan heads nominated Hogan and unanimously voted for him, it was learnt. The Cross River State Government had, in a letter dated September 18, 2012 and entitled, “Filling of the vacant stool of Muri Munene of the Efuts”, signed by Eyikwaje, directed that the purported vacant position of the Muri Munene be filled.

•I’m still Muri Munene, Mbukpa insists Nicholas KALU, Calabar The letter, addressed to Mbukpa and the seven other contestants to the stool, reads: “Please be informed that His Excellency, the Governor of Cross River State, Senator Liyel Imoke, has given ap-

proval for the filling of the vacant stool of Muri Munene of the Efuts in the Calabar South Local Government Area.” But reacting to the development, Mbukpa said “he still remains the paramount ruler” and described the alleged selection as a nullity and not in

the tradition of the Efut land. Also, the Efut Combined Assembly (ECA), which claims to be the highest policy and decision- making body of the Efut nation, said only the assembly had the right to conduct the selection of any Muri Munene.

Jonathan pledges sustained peace in Niger Delta

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RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan yesterday pledged to sustain the current peace in the Niger Delta by ensuring Federal Government’s commitment to the implementation of Amnesty Programme. He said existing peace in the region results from government’s faithful execution of all the components of the programme. President Jonathan spoke in Lagos yesterday at an event where the Senate President, David Mark, Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Kingsley Kuku, and Prof Godini Darah of the Delta State University gave suggestions on how to ensure that violent agitation in the Niger Delta was permanently put to an end. The event was the public presentation of a book, ‘Remaking the Niger Delta: Challenges and Opportunities,’

Eric IKHILAE written by Kuku. President Jonathan, represented by the Vice President, Namandi Sambo, noted that the amnesty programme introduced by his predecessor bailed out the nation’s economy from trouble. Praising the success of the programme since its introduc-

tion in 2009, Jonathan said the country lost about N3 trillion in 2008 to insecurity in the Niger Delta region. The President, who said over 13,000 former agitators would be covered under the programme, said over 7,000 have graduated from their various training programmes, among which some have been employed.

Four robbers arrested in Lagos Ebele BONIFACE

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OUR suspected armed robbers have been arrested by the police at the Oworonshoki area of Lagos. They were arrested during a raid ordered by the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Umar Manko. The arrests were effected by the men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) after three days of thorough search of the area. The four robbers are Rasheed Semino, aka One Life, aged 28, from Abule Oloni, Ogun State; Hassan Sunday Olaiya, aka Baba Dara Sobo, aged 26, from Ikare, Ondo State; and Yomi Olorunfemi, aged 26. In a short interview, Rasheed said: “I am an armed robber, but I concentrate on car snatching because it is not stressful. I bought my locally-made pistol from Lateef for N50,000. I don’t know his residence because he intentionally did not want any of us to know. He likes Toyota Camry a lot and I have given him more than one Camry cars. “We have operated in Oworonshoki, Bariga, Gbagada, Somolu, Ikorodu, but mostly in Oworonshoki and Bariga areas.” CP Manko, in a chat with our correspondent, vowed to clamp down on all the dangerous criminals in Lagos who refused to run away from Lagos, stressing, “We just started with Oworonshoki. We will comb the whole of Lagos. We will also extend the clampdown to other criminals who come to Lagos from other states for operation. He warned all area commanders and divisional police officers that henceforth they would be held responsible for robberies committed in their areas, “if it is established that they fail in their duties to prevent the robberies.”


60 NEWS

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

CPC, ANPP, CNPP demand cancellation of N5000

•(R-L) Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi with Managing Director, Oando Plc, Mr. Wale Tinubu, Minister for Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga and the Minister for Transport, Sen. Idris Umar, at the Oando exhibition stand, during the 1st Nigeria Oil and Gas Trade and Investment Forum at Onne, Rivers State…Thursday.

Impeachment: Why I am collecting T signatures—Chukwumerije

HE controversy generated over alleged threat of impeachment of President Goodluck Jonathan deepened yesterday. Presidency sources told our correspondents that the threat of impeachment motion in the Senate jolted President Goodluck Jonathan and his close aides who are currently battling to fend off similar threat from the House of Representatives over poor budget implementation. But Senator Uche Chukwumerije, who threatened to move impeachment motion against President Jonathan, has, however recanted. In a statement entitled “I am collecting signatures for implementation of BPE report, not impeachment of Mr. President,” Chukwumerije described reports linking him as one of the arrow-heads of the impeachment move against Jonathan as “sensational” The Abia North Senator had on Thursday during the debate of a Bill for an Act to amend the Public Enterprises (Privatization and Commercialisation) Act Cap P38 LFN 2004 lamented the refusal of President Jonathan to implement Senate resolution on BPE. The Bill, sponsored by Senator Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta North), seeks to provide for the inclusion of host communities

•Plot jolts Presidency Onyedi OJIABOR, and Sanni ONOGU, Abuja in the sale of shares and to ensures better accountability for other related matters. In his contribution, Chukwumerije also complained that public funds were being looted with impunity without the appropriate authority saying anything. He declared, “Where it comes to the stage of threatening impeachment, I, Uche Chukwumerije, will move the motion.” He, however, noted, yesterday, in the statement that “the predictably sensational report about imaginary plan to impeach President Jonathan was a gross distortion of the meaning of my short presentation in the Senate Chambers.” His words: “In my short speech, which focused on the inexplicable delay by the Presidency in taking action on the findings of Senate report on Privatization, I emphatically declared that I, along with others, was resolved to ensure that the corrective and redemptive measures pre-

scribed in the report were implemented to save Nigeria from this sad pattern of massive flow of public funds to private pockets under the guise of privatization, and in consolidation of the foundation of primitive accumulation of capital, which is Nigeria’s brand of capitalism. “In pursuit of this determination, I said I was collecting signatures to co-sponsor a motion to get the Presidency to act on privatization report. Collection of signature is not impeachment notice.” In his contribution during the debate, Chukwumerije had said, “The Ahmad Lawan report (on BPE) is the highest moral ground of the Seventh Senate so far. “It was that report that convinced everybody, including the public, that the hope for this country lies with the Senate; that there’s still one body that’s concerned with the nation, which lies far above sectionalism. “The pattern in this country all along has been onesiphoning of the country’s funds through all sorts of legal subtleties to private pockets and private companies. “And for the first time, there

was a bold report that exposed the rot, and we called for a reversal of this pattern. Unfortunately, it is business as usual. “It is, therefore, in the interest of this Senate, that in addition to what we are doing on this Act as we are doing now, we must pass a resolution calling the attention of Mr. President to the main body of that report. “As at two weeks ago, we have started collecting signatures, that if we collect up to two thirds of the Senate here, we are going to get here a motion that would give marching orders to Mr. President. We are getting to that stage. “They are looting public funds with impunity and nobody is saying anything. “Where it comes to the stage of threatening impeachment, I, Uche Chukwumerije, will move the motion.” A reliable source said that the Presidency was not comfortable with “another threat of impeachment coming from the Senate.” He said that Presidential aides were already battling to reach the leadership of the Senate to iron out the grey areas in the relationship of the two arms of government.

FG releases N300bn third quarter budgetary allocation to MDAs

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HE Federal Government has released the sum of N300 billion third quarter allocation to Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in an apparent move to ease the tension generated by the slow pace of the implementation of this year’s budget. Much of the pressure on the executive is coming from the House of Representatives which has threatened to consider an impeachment move against President Goodluck Jonathan if 100 per cent implementation of the budget is not achieved by the end of this month. The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala, confirmed yesterday that “a total of N710.4 billion has so far been released for capital projects and of this amount, N553.2 billion has

Nduka CHIEJINA (Assistant Editor) been cash backed.” The utilisation of these resources,she said, now stands at “N320.9 billion meaning that utilisation has gone up to 70 per cent as the end of August.” “The new utilisation, that is the amount used as a per cent of the amount cash backed, is now 58 per cent but as a per cent of the amount released, it is 45.2 per cent,” she said. Okonjo-Iweala, who came to the briefing bearing a green box containing the details of the 2013 budget in the tradition of the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, explained that details of the 2013 budget would be given by President Goodluck Jonathan in his budget speech on Oc-

tober 4. The finance minister said the President “wants to reverse the trend of late implementation of budgets; he wants to give the National Assembly adequate time to consider the budget.” Discussion with National Assembly members on the budget, she added, has been “very fruitful”, adding that the executive “had a long session on Thursday with the National Assembly on the status of the 2012 budget implementation and updated them on the recent third quarter releases” when the legislators were told that N300 billion has been released for the quarter. Capital budget is N1.3tn but implementation of the 2012 budget could not begin until April because MDA’s

were still implementing the 2011 budget. On the fate of the 2012 budget, Okonjo-Iweala noted that the executive would like to see the 2012 budget concluded in December so that the 2013 budget can take off in January. President Jonathan has directed all MDAs to be unrelenting in the implementation of the 2012 budget. Aside from the presidential directive, the finance minister said federal government expects “to make fourth quarter releases as soon as practicable early in the quarter.” The planned releases, she said “, will continue along with the ability of the MDAs to implement during the dry season so that going into 2013 we would have made the best possible effort in implementing the 2012 budget.”

•Continued from Page 2 A retired permanent secretary in the old Ondo State, Chief Deji Fasuan described the decision of the Federal Government to introduce the N5000 in the first place as a form of madness. He said: “ I have been in contact with many currencies in the world, minus the Yen. You can hardly find a national currency with such heaviness at the top and nothing at the bottom.” He called for the outright cancellation of the plan, saying the facts which informed the move were spurious and a “mere fraud”. “Nothing is straight forward here in Nigeria. Nothing is honest. No data is correct. The statistical data on which the argument for the introduction is based is wrong and defective, and it should not be introduced at all.” However, Second Republic Presidential Adviser on National Assembly Matters, Alhaji Tanko Yakassi said President Jonathan should have held firmly to his decision to introduce the bank note. “What I will advise Jonathan is not to allow the media to hijack his administration because if he accepts that, it could derail his administration,” he said. A Jos based labour activist, Yilden Bilgwan, is in full support of the N5000 banknote. He said the National Assembly members who rose against it were speaking for themselves, as there was nothing to show that they consulted with their constituents on the matter before opposing it. A member of the House of Representatives, representing Jos East/Jos South, Mr. Bitrus Kaze, said he expects the President to order a total withdrawal of the policy and save Nigerians from what he called the scourge of policies being churned out by the CBN governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido. Nigeria, he stressed, “cannot risk another protest over anti-human policies,” adding: “I want the President to be aware that the CBN governor is about to get him into trouble with Nigerians. Sanusi has earned himself a reputation of forcing his policies on Nigerians, and the President should be able to defend Nigerians from the scourge of such policies.” Mr.Lawrence Anya, a Jos based lawyer is in support of the withdrawal of the policy, while the National Secretary of Jama at Nasril Islam (JNI) Dr Abubakar Khalid hopes the suspension of the N5000 would mark the beginning of the total withdrawal of the plan. He said: ”The directive to the CBN to sensitize Nigerians before introducing the new policy will not work, and it will also fail the way the introduction of the policy failed. But for now, let’s give the president the benefit of the doubt. He has begun to react to the wishes and aspirations of the masses, and I’ m also sure the CBN cannot convince Nigerians, no matter the level of enlightenment it tries to create. Also speaking, the President of the Nigerian Voters Assembly and former National President of the Campaign for Democracy (CD), Comrade Mashood Erubami, dismissed the suspension of the plan as an insult on Nigerians. He condemned what he called the arrogance of the CBN governor on the issue, and said what Nigerians are demanding is the cancellation of the plan. He said: ” It is now very certain that there is an evil alliance between the CBN and the Presidency, confirming the insinuation that the urge to use part of the cost of printing the currency for election might be the real reason at the root of the desperation of the two institutions. “The printing of N5000 denomination and restructuring of the lower currency into coins has been rejected by those who are genuine economist known to Nigerians. hence nobody should be trapped by the fake explanation of the governor of the CBN and his deputy, which tends to insult the intelligence of Nigerians that there is no link between inflation and higher currency denominations. “ If the reactions of Nigerians to the proposed currency overhaul is a transferred aggression from the hardship in the land, the CBN should not add more,” the social crusader stated. an act of oppression on Nigerians. The Executive Secretary of the Anti-Corruption Network, Dino Melaye said President Jonathan ordered the suspension because he had no option. “The President’s decision to rescind the N5000 note is applaudable, because democracy is about the people,” he said, adding that, “It is about carrying out the wishes and aspirations of the people and the constitution is clear about that. “Any government policy or any government programme that is in conflict with public interest must be discarded. So the President had no option. “Nigerians are the ones who suspended it. So if you print it I will reject it I will not spend it. But we are happy that the National Assembly listened to the voice of reason and stood behind the people.”

...ACF hails Jonathan

Tony AKOWE, Kaduna HE Northern socio-political organisation, Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has said the order by President Goodluck Jonathan to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to suspend the issuance of the proposed N5000 bills is in order. There has been agitation against the introduction of the higher denominations, with the National Assembly asking the President to direct the CBN to halt the introduction. However, the President only asked for the suspension of the exercise which was planned to commence in 2013. Spokesman of the Forum, Anthony Sani told The Nation on Saturday that there was nothing wrong in the decision of the President, adding that the President may not have enough information to take a concrete decision. “I don’t see anything wrong in the President’s decision. Maybe he does not have enough information, and he needs time to get this information. “We all know that there is a public outcry against the introduction. But I think the President needs time to articulate these information and know why Nigerians don’t want the notes, and why the CBN wants to introduce it, before he takes a final decision. “So, I think that tje President should be commended for the decision to suspend the introduction rather than outright cancellation for now. I am sure that at the end of the day, the final decision will be in the general interest of the Nigerian people”.

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61NEWS

THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

Ondo 2012: Poll must reflect people’s wish, Akinrinade warns F ORMER Chief of De fence Staff, General Alani Akinrinade (rtd), in the countdown to next month’s governorship election in Ondo State yesterday said the people of the state cannot afford to “play into the waiting hands of the anarchy that results from manipulated elections.” “Election must be a true reflection of the people collective wish,” he declared at a one-day workshop to sentisize the people and the parties on the election. Gen. Akinrinade, who was the chairman of the

Damisi OJO, Akure

workshop, stressed the importance of free and fair elections and that when elections are not free and fair, the results are the erosion of democracy and enthronement of bad leadership. He maintained that election must be a true reflection of the people’s collective wish. “All democrats must stand up to salute President Goodluck Jonathan when he

unequivocally pledged his commitment to the principle of one man, one vote and an electoral system in which every vote counts.” The Chairman of the Independent Electoral commission, (INEC) Prof. Attahiru Jega, represented by Hajiya Aminat Zakari urged all contestants and stakeholders to adhere strictly to the rule of the game and play politics of no bitterness. The INEC boss promised

Lagos State Commissioner for Sports, Mr. Wahid Oshodi (left), receiving keys of vehicles from the Managing Director, Alliance Autos Nigeria, Mr. Regis Tromeur (third left), during the presentation of cars to the Local Organising Committee of 18th National Sports Festival in Lagos. With them (from left) are Chairman, Media and Communication Committee, Mr Wale Edun; Secretary General, Dr Kweku Tandoh; and Chairman, Marketing and Sponsorship Committee, Chief Molade Okoya-Thomas... yesterday PHOTO:TAJUDEEN ADEBANJO.

Cross River proposes budget reduction

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HE Cross River State Government has pro posed a reduction of its budget size from N148,329,681,932 to N144,152,966,783.53. This was contained in a bill requesting for the amendment of 2012 Appropriation Law forwarded to the state Assembly yesterday. Highlights of the proposed adjustment necessitating the request include Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) which until June 2012 was N6,231,540.000 against the mid-year target of N 13,023,500.00 representing 47.85 percent achievement.

Nicholas KALU, Calabar Governor Liyel Imoke said in comparative terms, the performance was the highest of all mid-year performance ever recorded, but, however, stated that when matched with the state rising current commitment and significant potential, more can be achieved. The governor said the Federation Account inflow which had also necessitated the adjustments had always been determined by the volatility of crude oil price in the international market and general economic conditions.

The state had anticipated a favourable judgment in respect of the 76 oil wells and accordingly made a provision for inflow of N6,037,685,934 by mid-year but noted that the performance level of N4,083,813,373.18, representing 67.64 per cent as at June 2012 preceded the Supreme Court judgment, noting that as expected, this had severe ramification on the state cash flow. On donor funds, the governor said the provision hadbeen reduced from N2,667,999,980 to N500 million.

a free and fair election in the state with the efforts of security agents. Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who is seeking a second term on the ticket of Labour party (LP), emphasized the principle of one man, one vote and urged the people of the state to protect their votes on election day. The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), represented by his running mate, Mr. Saka Lawal, condemned the denial of air time to opposition parties by public electronic media in the state. He also lamented the series of attacks by the LP against members of the PDP. He said: “We in the PDP, we are not violent, but the sitting government ever since has not learnt anything from us. Over the last one month, we have been to 203 wards, we have visited about 350 communities.We were at Idanre, we got police permit, but the SA to the sitting governor led thugs to attack our members.If not for the timely intervention of the Commissioner of Police, that rally would have been aborted” The Action Congress of Nigeria governorship candidate, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, represented by the vice chairman, South West of the party, Senator James Kolawole, noted that the consequences of not conducting a free and fair election are grievous. He maintained that Ondo State has sophisticated citizenry which makes it mandatory to ensure free and fair election in the state. Kolawole said the ACN, being a peaceful party, will not tolerate and promote any form of violence. Political parties, fielding candidates in the election, endorsed the principle of free and fair election and agreed to play the game according to the rules. In a communiqué jointly signed by the chairmen of the parties, they pledged to desist from violence and politics of do-or-die. The workshop was organized by the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Inter-Party Affairs, Senator Ben Ndi Obi, with the objective of preaching peace, love and unity in the polity.

Oil wells: Anambra community dares Enugu, Kogi

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HE battle over who owns the oil wells lo cated in Aguleri in Anambra State between Enugu and Kogi states has continued to heighten tension in the state. Since the President Goodluck Jonathan declared Anambra State as the 10th oil producing state in the country, neither Enugu nor Kogi states has rested, as they continue to claim joint ownership of the oil wells. On Wednesday, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) made a statement in support of Kogi State on the matter. But the traditional ruler of the host community (Aguleri), Igwe Christopher Idigo, has warned the two states that nobody had mo-

nopoly of violence in this country. He, however, said that he had been restraining the youths of the community from doing anything silly, but added that Aguleri community would do everything within its reach in making sure that peace reigned. “Ordinarily, Aguleri community would have allowed the state government to sort out themselves believing that the extant boundaries between the three states are properly delineated. “Aguleri people have been living in the locations of the oil wells known as AguIgbuili, Agu-ovo/Okpalia, Ngene-Ejo, Okpa Nkwocha and Nnobi Aguleri right from time immemorial and have engaged in farming and

Nwanosike ONU, Awka fishing in these locations from historical times to date.” According to the monarch, “historically, Odeke, the headquarters of Ibaji Clan in Igalaland of Kogi State traces its origin to Aguleri and because of this ancestral connection, they live very close to Aguleri and share common boundaries with Aguleri. “The Igga community of Enugu State knows that they have no title to the Anambra Forest Reserve, and so have no claim to make on the land. They came in 1967 and demanded compensation from SAFRAP (Nigeria) Limited, which ended in court, and they lost out. “Similarly, in 1984, when

Elf Nigeria Limited came for the oil wells, they quickly demanded compensation, but did not succeed. Now that Orient Petroleum Resources has taken a bold step to commence operations, Igga community has come again, but as in the past, they are bound to fail, as they neither have any title to the aforementioned Anambra oil wells nor any further claim to make, having been stopped by a court of competent jurisdiction. In fact, their case was at best considered not only as misconceived or mala fide. “From all indications, Kogi people, like the Igga people of Enugu State, will also fail in their claim of Anambra oil wells at Aguleri.”

Eagles: Too big to fly •Continued from Back Page der this surveillance garb to receive visitors. We know of a case where one coach and a support staff infringed the rule. But Stephen Keshi chose not to rock the boat by wielding the big stick. That’s okay, but would that be the decision if players had committed the same offence? Our coaches take issues with players in the media. Their coaching methods don’t convince the players, who laugh behind them essentially because when they return to their clubs, they struggle to retain the shirts they had. Ours break the ranks in camp and don’t speak with one voice. Poor Stephen Keshi. He has taken the worst job in his life. He must understand that he will be criticised. He must rally his forces together to play well. The idea of playing with two midfielders is obsolete and cannot win games in this era where Spain played six against Italy and won handsomely. There is something wrong with Keshi’s methods. He must get a competent match reader. It is clear that his assistants don’t help him with tips. One wonders what they tell him. Eagles’ coaches have failed to transit from being players to managers. They ought to deal with the finer aspects of managing the players’ egos. And the best way to achieve this is to be fair in team selection, such that when they are in camp, the fight for positions makes everyone to sit up. A competitive camp will compel the errant ones to shun devious acts. We have seen top-rated players such as Franc Beckenbauer, transit from a glorious career, rising to be the captain of the Germany side and then leading his country to win the World Cup. We recall how he played with a slit to keep his shoulder together in the 1974 World Cup finals against Holland. The Germans won. That was commitment which won’t happen now with our players, although we saw how greats, such as Segun Odegbami, played for us with injuries. Commitment comes from the patriotic instinct inherent in players. Such players’ adrenaline rises at the sight of the fans rooting for them. They understand how they toiled to get the cash to watch them. They know that victory is the balm for the fans just as it restores the country’s pride of place in the comity of soccer playing nations. Osaze Odemwingie’s, Mikel Obi’s and Vincent Enyeama’s conduct signposts what happened in the past. It is retributive justice for the current Eagles coaching crew that perpetuated the mafia. Now they can appreciate what other coaches encountered when they played for Nigeria. The Eagles are missing Mikel because the coaches have failed to play three or four men in the midfield. We have boys who can do job. Soccerstar’s Editor Kunle Solaja still holds Samson Siasia et al responsible for the country’s absence at the Italia ’90 World Cup. Solaja said the Eagles kept everyone waiting at the airport in Lagos, only for Siasia, the team’s spokesman, to storm the place, asking that their outstanding allowances be paid before any movement to Yaoundé. Solaja is livid anytime this group talks about restoring discipline in the Eagles. My phones were jammed with messages asking that I name those involved in the episodes reported in last week’s “Eagles: Too big to fly.” The Deputy Editor (News) of The Nation, Adeniyi Adeshina wrote this about his experience with Dan Amokachi, the late Uche Okafor and others (1997 in Ouagadougou, the Burkina Faso versus Nigeria France ’98 qualifying game). “After the match, since the Nigerian contingent travelled in a chartered aircraft, Chairman of the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) (as it then was) Col. Abdulmumuni Aminu (rtd), asked the journalists in the travelling party to join the national team players and a few NFA officials in the same bus from the hotel to the airport – a short distance. “But the players, surprisingly, kicked, even when there was enough space in the bus. As the journalists made to enter the bus, Daniel Amokachi physically pulled back Vanguard reporter Ademola Olajire (who is currently the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) media officer, asking him and other journalists not to ride in the same bus with the team. “This created a row between the journalists and the players. But Col. Aminu intervened on the side of the journalists who then entered the bus even when some of the players were overtly unhappy and only grudgingly agreed. Inside the bus, some of the players sat alone on three-sitters, preventing others in the travelling party from sharing seats with them. Particularly guilty was the late defender Uche Okafor. “Interestingly, the same journalists along with some NFA officials and some members of the Nigerian Football Supporters Club had travelled from Lagos, two days earlier, in the chartered plane to pick up the players who had a short camp in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, for the onward trip to Ouagadougou. The Super Eagles won the match, which eased Nigeria’s path to clinching a ticket to the France ’98 World Cup,” Adeshina wrote. Comrade Sunny Moniedafe can rely on Deji Tinubu’s revelation that he once suffered the snobbish fate from Obafemi Martins. And the list of complaints, Moniedafe, will shock you. Keshi can restore discipline in the Eagles, if he accepts that the team hasn’t showcased its potentials and Nigerians’ patience is running out. A word, they say, is enough for the wise.

Youth group holds conference Dayo OLUODO OUTH Alliance for Leadership and Development in Af rica (YALDA), a non- governmental organization, will hold its forth biennial conference in Lagos next month. The conference tagged, “Innovation and Creativity For a Better Africa: Implementing Your Dreams, will take place at Lagos Business School from October 4 to 7. Addressing journalists during a media briefing on the workshop, the conference chairperson, Miss Kalaya Okereke, said this year’s event would expose African youths to opportunities that abound on the continent by creating an interactive platform between business leaders, successful entrepreneurs, leading professionals, like-minded youths and delegates. She said the four-day conference would adopt an interactive lecture and workshop approach which would utilize five key methods in empowering the expected 250 delegates.

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THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012


THE NATION, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012

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TOMORROWPUNCHLINE IN THE NATION

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2012 TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM VOL.7, NO. 2256

While it is appropriate for leaders in a post-military era to repeat the mantra of indivisibility of the country, it is unimaginative to insist on non-negotiability of the distorted federation and ineffectual unification policies left behind by military governments

—Ropo Sekoni

T

HE battle for the soul of Nigeria is on in deadly earnest. Let no mistake be made about it. The much advocated sovereign national conference, a veritable dialogue of the swamp dwelling 'tribes' of a much abused stunted nation is in full swing. No, as Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, subtly insinuated in his characteristically perspicacious keynote address at the last South-South Regional Summit in Asaba, Delta State, it may be time to forgo the rather romantic idea of a grand, once for all dialogue to resolve all national contradictions. There is unlikely to be any such thing. In reality, a nation is a sustained enterprise in perpetual dialogue. The national discourse that shapes the terms and texture of communal co-existence within a given territorial jurisdiction takes place daily in the media, academia, think-tanks, social clubs, religious communions, market places, beer parlours, board rooms, party caucuses and sundry other locations. At times, the exchange is verbal, peaceful and conciliatory. At times it degenerates into fisticuffs, belligerent militancy or even booming bombs exploding in the name of God! If, in the final analysis, the beleaguered nation is to survive as a going concern, some amicable compromises must be reached among contending forces or else the state must overwhelm the challengers of its authority through the monopoly of superior legitimate force. Edo State provided the last critical theatre of conflict in the ongoing titanic struggle to either sustain Nigeria in her present highly incendiary and alarmingly precarious condition or fundamentally transform her in the direction of greater stability, cohesion and prosperity. The last governorship election in the state was another phase in the ongoing informal national conference. The Edo polls were a veritable referendum on the state of the nation. In the aftermath of his emphatic victory in the contest, the comrade governor, Adams Oshiomhole, was surprisingly effusive in showering fulsome praise on President Goodluck Jonathan for allowing the polls to be free and fair. I think the encomiums were totally misplaced. Jonathan did Oshiomhole no favours in that election. The latter won clean and square, on the basis of his track record and wily political instincts. Let Oshiomhole be under no illusions. Jonathan and his tendency within the PDP needed to 'capture' Edo State badly. Only the politically blind and the perceptually bland cannot discern Jonathan's obvious ambition to contest for a second term in 2015. Jonathan and his strategic 'fixers' of unlamented political memory thus badly needed Edo State in the PDP bag as a major pro-Jonathan SouthSouth statement. It was not for nothing that Jonathan visited Edo twice to campaign for the PDP candidate. It was not for fun that troops were deployed in the state for the election. But neither appeal to primordial sentiments nor scare tactics could work any electoral magic for the PDP. Oshiomhole's victory dealt a resounding blow to the PDP mainstream philosophy of elite cake sharing. It was an em-

Ondo State under the radar (1)

•Mimiko phatic statement by the people that the current situation in Nigeria is unacceptable. Like the Edo governorship polls, next month's election in Ondo will have implications far beyond the confines of the Sunshine state. Once again, that election will be a referendum on the Nigerian condition. As they make the voting decision, the electorate in Ondo State must ask themselves: Are we better off today than we were in 1999? Can Nigeria and by implication our state survive and prosper as currently led without vision or dynamism? Will the outcome of the election be an endorsement for continuity or for change in Nigeria? The stark truth is that a vote for Governor Segun Mimiko's Labour Party (LP) will be a declaration of confidence and support for the current underdevelopment-generating status quo in Nigeria. Dr. Mimiko is in many ways an interesting, even charismatic, politician. But his political philosophy, if any such thing exists, has been exceedingly eclectic and syncretic as to lack any discernible concrete content. In this political dispensation,

Can Ondo State afford to be left out of a process that promises the unleashing of such tremendous developmental energy and transformation of the SouthWest into a magnet for international capital and labour flows for greater global economic competitiveness? Can the rest of the South-West allow Ondo to pursue a collectively ruinous path of autarchic isolation?

Mimiko has at various times been at home in the Alliance for Democracy (AD), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and now the Labour Party. The LP is today only a shell for an assortment of strange bedfellows to contest for power. The party is ideologically vacuous and programmatically famished. It is difficult to know the LP's vision and action plan for the structural and functional efficiency of the Nigerian state at a time when contending power blocs are embroiled in a bitter struggle to refashion the country in their desired images. Yet, the actualization of the potentials and well being of the component states of Nigeria will depend fundamentally on a workable and clear strategy to transform the character of power at the centre and the structure of the relationship between the centre and the states. How can a party without any such serious strategic vision be entrusted with the destiny of a state like Ondo at this critical juncture of the country's evolution? The ever blunt former

President Olusegun Obasanjo once said, during a visit to Ondo State, that even though Mimiko is in the LP, the Governor's spirit remains in the PDP. Mimiko's silence on this claim was deafening implying consent. Any supposedly progressive politician who is amenable to helping the PDP consolidate its hold on power after 14 years of plunging the nation into abysmal depths of misery is a clear obstacle to progress at a time when the primacy of change has never been more urgent in a country tottering on the edge of state failure. In Edo State, Oshiomhole carefully and deftly balanced his membership of the ACN with the sensitivities and imperatives of SouthSouth regionalism where all the other states are PDP. In Ondo State, Mimiko assumes a most curious position. The governor is not ideologically or philosophically opposed to an overbearing, visionless, unproductive and exploitative centre that has been systematically 'under-developing' every part of the country. Indeed, his body language suggests that if he gets a second term, he may be a willing tool in any PDP attempt to try to re-impose its vanquished 'mainstream' hegemony on the South-West. At the same time, Mimiko is at best lukewarm and at worst completely indifferent to the imperative of South-West developmental integration. Yet, the South-West in particular is well placed to demonstrate to the entire country how integrated developmental regionalism can be a powerful vehicle for stimulating path-breaking national development. The region already has Lagos as a huge resource - a global Megacity of immense cultural diversity, commercial dynamism, innovative creativity, emergent first class infrastructure and entrepreneurial energy. How then can Lagos as a Megacity serve as the centre of gravity for the transformation of the South-West into what development experts envision as a 'Mega-region'? As Richard Florida, Tim Gulden and Charlotta Mellander explain the concept, "Mega regions are more than just a bigger version of a city or a metropolitan region. As a city is composed of separate neighbourhoods, and as a metropolitan region is made up of a central city and its suburbs, a mega region is a polycentric agglomeration of cities and their lower-density hinterlands. It represents the new, natural economic unit that emerges as metropolitan regions not only grow upward and become denser but grow outward and into one another." Can Ondo State afford to be left out of a process that promises the unleashing of such tremendous developmental energy and transformation of the South-West into a magnet for international capital and labour flows for greater global economic competitiveness? Can the rest of the South-West allow Ondo to pursue a collectively ruinous path of autarchic isolation? Do the projects on ground in Ondo State relative to its substantial receipts as the only oil producing state in the South-West justify the triumphal chest beating that has characterized the Mimiko re-election campaign? We will, God willing, examine these issues next week.

Ade Ojeikere on Saturday talk2adeojeikere@yahoo.com

Eagles: Too big to fly (2)

E

VER seen an eagle? It is a large power ful bird of prey that flies high. When ever it flies low, chickens run for dear lives and mother hens crow for their loved chicks to come to the safety of their wings. Such is the power of the eagle. But, dear reader, what do you make of an eagle that cannot fly- a basic attribute, which is given? Strange? Or, in other words, why will an eagle not fly? I guess you know my thoughts; isn’t this the thought of all soccer lovers home and abroad? Put succinctly, why are the Super Eagles not flying? Isn’t the team full of stars? Why? Winning games is not just a matter of skills and hard work. There are other factors, among them character, discipline and humility, without which no man or woman can succeed in any venture. Are our Eagles disciplined? That

is the crux of the matter and except we tackle this problem, nothing good may come from this bunch. We have paid lip service to discipline in the Eagles. We have asked those who perpetuated some of the worst antics in the team to clean up the mess. It won’t work because it’s payback time for those masquerading as enforcers of discipline. They were the worst, as players. You don’t give what you don’t have. Coaches with undisciplined antecedents cannot nurture disciplined players. This is the cross that the Eagles will carry in this dispensation, no matter the uncouth methods those in the team adopt. They will be hunted by their past. It shouldn’t shock pundits why our players don’t play big time soccer anymore. In boxing, Muhammed Ali (aka Casius Clay) towers over Mike Tyson in character and conduct off the ring. Both men were great boxers. Ali was disciplined, unlike the wayward Tyson,

annex-convict and spendthrift. Football pundits are locked in the debate over who the best footballer is between Erantes D’ Nascinmento (a.ka Pele) and Diego Armado Maradona. The argument depends on the generations involved. Put to vote, Pele will carry the day, not essentially because of his sublime skills towering over that of Maradona, but his character. Maradona was a nuisance, especially considering his penchant for sniffing drugs. The more disciplined Pele is still the role model enjoying hefty sponsorship packages that bring him cash. Not so for Maradona, no thanks to his lascivious lifestyle. Soccer buffs would rather compare Lionel Messi to Pele in the future than Maradona, whose heroics left many fans dancing home after matches. Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United); Jose Mourinho (Real Madrid); Arsene Wenger (Arsenal); Fabio Capello (Russia); Louis van Gaal (Holland) et al are enforcers of discipline.

They do so by example. Those aspiring to play under these managers know what to expect because of their past. These managers’ records with undisciplined players are legendary. Need I waste space to list their achievements? They pick players on merit. Their training methods tell the level of their understanding of the game. They don’t chide players in the media. They understand the psyche of their wards and make the best of them even as the enforce discipline. Decisions made by the proven technical hands are not pretentious. What is good for Wayne Rooney, for instance, applies to everyone. What this trend portends in clubs where these managers superintend is that no one is in doubt about what constitutes a breach of the rules. Let’s not talk about what happens in the Eagles. Coaches still sag their trousers, yet they expect their wards to be disciplined. They wear braided hair, like spoilt high school kids. They loiter around the corridors of hotels when their wards are indoors. They hide un

•Continued on Page 61

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The Nation September 22, 2012  

The Nation September 22, 2012

The Nation September 22, 2012  

The Nation September 22, 2012

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