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VOL. 7, NO. 1898 THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Govt to spend N30b on national ID card
T •Mr Maku
HE country is taking another shot at creating a national identity card after some failed attempts. Yesterday, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved N30.066 billion for a Unified Identity Manage-
From Vincent Ikuomola, Abuja
ment System. Nigerians from age 18 and above are to be captured in a data system. The implementation of the first phase of the project will start immediately and end in
2013. Minister of Information Labaran Maku told reporters at the end of the FEC meeting, which lasted over six hours, that the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) will manage the project.
Maku said the project “is to be executed in conjunction with different agencies of government which presently keep separate identity data.” The agencies are: the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Federal Road Safety
Commission (FRSC) and the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), among others. All existing data will be networked to create a common data base from where Continued on page 2
ACKSON TRIAL: La Toya Jackson arrives with police escort at the courthouse ahead of the second day of the trial of JA •THE J Michael Jackson’s doctor in Los Angeles ... yesterday. Story on page 59. PHOTOS: AFP •The late Michael’s parents ... yesterday.
Boko Haram kingpin, five others arrested Chukwumerije: it’s all about 2015 The solution, by Uwais, Akinyemi
MAN who security agents have described as the “operational commander” of Boko Haram has been arrested in Borno State. Ali Saleh and five others are being held, even as security agencies are trailing more suspected members of the Islamic fundamentalist sect. But, Saleh’s status seems contro-
Joint Task Force (JTF) after an attack on some buildings on Baga versial, with the claim in some Road in Maiduguri, the state capital. quarters that the suspect is a Governor Kashim mere gun runner. The government has not SEE ALSO Shettima confirmed the arrest of the Boko ruled out peace talks with the PAGE 7 Haram chiefs yestersect, despite its rejection of day. dialogue. He told the Associated Press in Saleh was arrested alongside some members of the sect by the an interview that with the arrests,” From Yusuf Alli, Abuja
I believe the worst is over”. The governor said Boko Haram maintains a loose command-andcontrol structure, which allows groups to operate autonomously. “They operate in some sort of cells, some sort of units that the interlinked, but generally, they take directives from one commander,” Shettima said. The governor said a negotiated
peace could be reached between the government and the sect. But, he warned that those who continue with assassinations and bombings will be hunted down. While Shettima and others say progress is being made, residents of Maiduguri largely refuse to talk about the security situation in pubContinued on page 2
•SPORT P24 •EDUCATION P25 •POLITICS P43 •NATURAL HEALTH P45
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Govt to spend N30b on national ID card
•Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola presenting some copies of the Lagos Indicator Magazine to the United Kingdom’s Minister of State for Immigration, Mr. Damian Green at the Lagos House Ikeja ... on Tuesday.
agencies can access information for use. “The system will also bring down the cost of data management by public institutions including banks, pension commission etc. One area where the programme will be very useful for the nation is national security management since all citizens’ data are expected to be captured,” the minister said. A similar attempt to create a national identity card was made in 2001 under former President Olusegun Obasanjo in which a $214m contract was awarded French firm SAGEM. In 2003, a large scale fraud was discovered in the project. After investigation by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), six people, including three former ministers were charged before an Abuja
Tribunal sacks CPC Senators, Reps
PPOSITION Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) was dealt a huge blow yesterday. The party lost two senatorial and eight House of Representatives seats at the election petition tribunal. All the seats were lost in Katsina, the home state of the party’s presidential candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari in the last general election. The National Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal sitting in Katsina nullified the election of Senator Ahmed Sani-Store (Katsina Central)
and Senator Abdu Yan’doma (Katsina North Central). The affected House of Representatives members include: Tasi’u Duguru, (Mashi/Dutsi Constituency), Muhammad Tukur (Katsina Central), Umar Adamu (Daura/Mai’adua/Sandamu Constituency), Aminu Ashiru (Mani/Bindawa Constituency) and Musa Salisu (Kankia /Kusada/Ingawa Federal Constituency). Others are Muntari Dandutse (Funtua/ Dandume Federal Constituency), Murtala Isa (Faskari/ Sabuwa/Kankara Federal Constituency) and Abdu
Dankama (Jibia/Kaita Federal Constituency). Delivering the judgment, tribunal judges Justices Solomon Akintaye and Halim Saleeman ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct fresh elections in the affected senatorial districts and federal constituencies. The judges according to the News Agency of Nigeria said all the affected CPC contestants were not qualified to contest the April elections based on the judgment of the Court of Appeal which set aside the January 15, 2011 CPC primary elections that
recognised them as the party’s standard bearers. The tribunal said it relied on sections 141 of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended and 135 of the 1999 Constitution which provided that candidates should only contest election under a political party’s sponsorship. They, however, said that the tribunal was not unaware of the pending case at the Supreme Court involving the affected legislators, but that the judgment of the Supreme Court could only take effect from the date it was passed, “hence it will not affect our verdict”.
High Court, with fraud. Those charged were former Internal Affairs Minister the late Chief Sunday Afolabi, former Minister of Labour and Productivity Alhaji Hussein Akwanga and former Minister of State for Internal Affairs Dr. Mohammed Shata. Others were then Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Internal Affairs Ms Turie Akerele; former National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo and a representative of SAGEM S. A. in Nigeria, Mr. Niyi Adelakun. Chief Afolabi was accused of receiving $330,000 bribe, while Alhaji Akwanga was accused of allowing his daughter to receive his own share of $300,000. Dr. Shata was alleged to have received $415,000 while Akerele allegedly got $500,000. Adelagun was accused of distributing the bribes. Nwodo was said to have conspired with him and facilitated the distribution. They were granted bail on 31 December 2003, but Afolabi died in London in May 2004. In June 2004, the Federal Government dropped all charges against them. It failed to make public the reason for its decision. Prosecution lawyer Makanjuola Esan while applying for the withdrawal of the case, told the court the ICPC was willing to stand down the case and that the anti-graft Commission might likely file fresh charges against the accused persons. Presiding Justice Mudashiru Oniyangi struck out the case and ordered that the seized international pass-
ports of the accused persons be returned to them. The Judge, however, rejected a motion by the defence counsel to acquit the accused persons from subsequent arrest and arraignment. Another approval granted by council yesterday according to the minister was the establishment of a professional Public service- officer cadre for the federal public service. He said it is all about professionalisation and the pooling of the planning officer cadre in the federal public service. It will be under the coordinating supervision of the National Planning Commission. The essence, he said, is to boost the culture of planning, monitoring and evaluation of government programmes and projects. Maku said the need to strengthen planning, policy analysis and data gathering functions in the ministries, extra ministerial departments and agencies, informed the decision. “It has been observed over time that government programmes and projects have suffered due to lack of data, analysis and well-coordinated plans. “Also evaluation of project execution and performance has been very difficult because data collection, collection and analysis have been rather uncoordinated.” “The PPS cadre will be pooled together as professional cadre and posted to Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to coordinate the planning, research, policy analysis and performance measurement of the MDA projects and programmes.”
Boko Haram is battle for 2015, says Chukwumerije
NEW twist was added to the Boko Haram debate yesterday, with Senator Uche Chukwumerije, saying it is the result of the North’s bid for power in 2015. In his view, President Goodluck Jonathan’s emergence is linked to the illegal activities of the Niger Delta militants. The Yoruba used the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) agitation to win the Presidency, he said. Boko Haram (Western education is a sin) has claimed responsibility for the various bombings across the North, including the August 26 suicide bombing at the United Nations House in Abuja. Despite efforts to pacify them, members of the group have remained intransigent. Chukwumerije, representing Abia North, is worried about what he calls the politicisation of militancy in some parts of the country aimed at achieving political objective. The Senator expressed his views yesterday in a paper he presented at the 2011 Igbo Day Lecture at the Women Development Centre (WDC) in Abakaliki, capital of Ebonyi State. He urged the Igbo socio-political group Ohanaeze Ndigbo, to devise a means of constructive engagement with the youth, who, he said, should stop behaving like somebody stung by a bee and flees at a mere hum of a house fly. Chukwumerije said: “The
Boko Haram kingpin, five others arrested Continued from page 1
lic. Privately, they say they remain scared of both Boko Haram and the security agencies, who have been accused of brutality in their new crackdown against the sect. A highly placed source, who spoke in confidence, said the attack that led to Saleh’s arrest occurred about three weeks ago and the JTF operatives combed the area and arrested the suspects. “It was during interrogation that the JTF discovered that Saleh is an operational commander of the sect,” said the source. “We have to crosscheck our information on Saleh with the members of the sect in custody with him and with other intelligence networks to ascertain that he is a key member of the leadership of the sect. “It is safe to say that we have an operational commander of Boko Haram with the JTF and some members of the sect under his command.” Saleh and some of those arrested are said to have confirmed their involvement in some of the bombings in the From Ogbonna Obinna, Abakaliki
issue of militancy in the Niger Delta has yielded them (the Southsouth) the presidency. If you watch what is going on now, the politicised illegal activities of Boko Haram are a proper determination to win the second round of presidential election in 2015”. He accused other ethnic groups of using similar organizations, such as the Move-
country. “We are still interrogating them and we are on the trail of others too,” the source said. When contacted through text message at 6.29pm yesterday, the Commander of the JTF, Col. Victor Ibalemen, replied: “I am in a meeting.” Another source, however, said: “I think it is too early to say that Saleh is a Boko Haram leader. Based on local intelligence, some are claiming that he is a notorious gun runner in Borno State. “Saleh was arrested, following a tipoff by some people. “And you cannot dispute the claim of the locals because they know themselves. Whatever is the status of Saleh and relationship with Boko Haram, it is the duty of security agencies to tell the nation.” President Goodluck Jonathan has asked security chiefs to be on the alert, irrespective of the gains the JTF has recorded in Borno State. He also insisted that there must be synergy among all the security chiefs.
ment for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), to win the presidency. He cited the OPC, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) and other youth groups in the Niger Delta as vehicles used by the Yoruba and the Niger Delta to win power. The Abia senator urged Ndigbo to support MASSOB as a veritable youth group
The President reportedly gave the order at the review meetings he had with the security chiefs on Monday and Tuesday. A source said: “The sessions were lengthy but fulfilling. But the President asked the security chiefs to be on the alert. He said they should not take any situation for granted. “Apart from improved intelligence gathering, the security agencies were directed to take pre-emptive measures as may be dictated by any situation.” But the Federal Government does not rule out dialogue with the sect. A top government official, who pleaded not to be named, said: “We have read what they said but the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan does not rule out peace talks with Boko Haram leaders. “Already, Vice-President Namadi Sambo has a copy of the Galtimari Panel on Boko Haram in Borno State and the findings are being studied by the presidency. “No government will succumb to threats but as far as the President is concerned, the crisis at hand is resolvable at the peace table.
that will work towards achieving the cause of Igbo presidency. Chukwumerije noted that the structure in Nigeria does not support the development of Igbo land after 40 years of Nigeria’s civil war, citing the example of failed promises of successive administrations to build the second Niger Bridge. He said since the war ended, the Igbo have been marginalised socially and
economically while they continue to cry foul without anybody listening to them. The Senator warned that Ohanaeze Ndigbo and the Igbo language will soon die, if no drastic measure is taken urgently to salvage the situation. Other speakers, such as Mrs Loretta Aniagolu and Prof. Okoro Ijeoma, urged Ndigbo unity and the revival of Igbo language as the vehicle for cultural rejuvenation.
Mrs Aniagolu advocated a regional economy and sanction system against erring political office holders from the zone. She called on the five governors of the Southeast to rebuild the bad roads without waiting indefinitely for the Federal Government. Prof. Ijeoma said the Igbo cherish kingship based on merit and character. He warned against allowing the Igbo language to die. “Destroy a language, destroy a people,” he said. The lecture was attended by many Igbo, including Ebonyi State Governor Martin Elechi and Ohanaeze President-General Amb. Ralph Uwechue. The other Southeast governors were represented. The lecture was a prelude to the main Igbo Day Celebration holding today at Abakaliki Township Stadium, Ebonyi State.
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THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS A Nigerian-born doctor and ordained pastor, Rev. Christine Daniel, who has been convicted by a US court for peddling snake oil treatment to dying cancer patients, mail and wire fraud, tax evasion and witness tampering, faces up to 150 years imprisonment when her sentence is pronounced in December
US court convicts Nigerian pastor for cheating dying cancer patients F
OR years, the Nigerian pastor preached the love of Jesus. Practiced medicine for the poor. And promised a sure-cure for terminal cancer patients. But Rev. Christine Daniel, the founder of Sonrise Medical Clinic in Mission Hills, was a fraud. She was convicted by a federal jury this week of peddling snake oil treatments to dying patients across the nation. “This is the most egregious fraud case I’ve seen,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph O. Johns, prosecutor in the case. “The defendant used her victims’ religion to blind them to logic, to overcome their common sense. And to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a bogus cancer cure.” Daniel, 57, of Northridge, was found guilty on Monday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles of 11 counts of mail and wire fraud, tax evasion and witness tampering. Her sentence will be pronounced December 5 and she faces up to 150 years in prison and a fine of $5.5 million. Her trial, which began in March, included the tear-filled testimony of dozens of relatives of terminal patients who had died while taking Daniel’s product. “In addition to giving them false hope and stealing their money, she also stole their time,” said Johns, chief of the environmental crimes section. She also failed to report $1.3 million on her corporate tax returns from 2002 to 2004. Daniel is an ordained Pentecostal minister who got her medical degree from Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia. For decades she ran medical clinics for the poor, in the San Fernando Valley and downtown, and worked in hospital emergency rooms. She was also devoted to regular missions overseas. “If I can just help somebody - one person,” she told the Daily News in 1995. “I just want to make an impact on one person’s life. Just show them love. Just let them know you care.” A receptionist at her Sunrise clinic on Tuesday said she was too busy with patients to come to the phone. She did not return a request for comment. Prosecutors said Daniel had used her status as a minister to create trust within the evangelical Christian community. At her clinic and via the Trinity Broadcasting Network, Daniel promised cures for illnesses from Alzheimer’s disease to terminal cancer. Her secret: remedies like “C-Extract” created from herbs gathered around the world, then blended for
•Sonrise Clinic (on the left) was where Dr. Daniel operated before she was found guilty of ‘killing’ many people, including the wife of Bishop McKinney (above)
QUICK TAKES Failure to report $1.3 million on corporate tax returns. Her concoction cost $4,270 a week to between $120,000 and $150,000 for a six-month treatment. Convicted by a federal jury of peddling snake oil treatments to dying patients. Faces up to 150 years in prison and a fine of $5.5 million. Her sentence will be pronounced December 5. each individual patient. But a chemical analysis by prosecutors found such ingredients as beef extract flavoring and sunscreen preservative, none of which could cure disease. The cost of such nostrums ranged from $4,270 a week to between $120,000 and $150,000 for a six-month treatment, prosecutors said. “They were encouraged to fly to Mission Hills. Stay in a flea-ridden motel. And spend the last few months of their lives drinking a foul concoction ... that tasted like sewage water,” Johns said. Daniel and her employees induced 55 victims to send roughly $1 mil-
lion to the Sonrise clinic, most of whom died within three to six months after the bogus cure. One of them was 33-year-old Paula Middlebrooks, a married mother of two from Smiths, Ala. Diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer, she contacted the Sunrise clinic after her dentist told her his wife had taken the cure - and would soon come home cancer free. After visiting the clinic, Daniel told the devout Baptist that chemotherapy wouldn’t help. The doctor said she’d need her herbal treatment to shrink the tumors and kill her cancer cells. Family members said they had bake sales, yard sales and sold everything they had to pay up to $100,000 for bogus treatments. Middlebrooks’ sister, Tammie Fleming, even quit her job to work in Chatsworth to be with Paula. For nearly six months, Middlebrooks drank the herbal treatments daily while joining Daniel for Sunday services. “It literally looked like mud,” said Fleming, 45, of Raeford, N.C., of Daniel’s herbal brew. “It was horrible. We were told it would work, that my sister would be cancer-free.” While in church one day, she complained to the physician-minister of intense and enduring pain.
“She said, `The pain is all in your head,”’ Fleming recalled, adding that each patient was told to pay up at the clinic each Monday, or be turned down for further treatments. In 2002, Daniel pronounced Paula Middlebrooks cancer free at a party held for clinic patients. By then, the cancer had in fact spread from her breasts to her bones and brain. “She brainwashed them. She brainwashed us all,” Fleming said. “She sent my sister home cancer free on March 15, 2002. On April 10, Paula passed away.” Another of her victims, Margaret Antwi, who traveled from Africa, was diagnosed with melanoma in 2003. Her daughter, Christiana Kwakye, was channel surfing one night after spending hours by her mother’s hospital bed when she came across a testimonial about Daniel’s treatment. Kwakye, 41, of Minneapolis, cobbled together money with her four siblings and paid about $3,500 for a shipment sent from Daniel’s offices. Antwi drank the brown liquid and soon after Kwakye called a number and prayed with a woman on the other line. “At that stage you do anything,” Kwakye said, trying to explain why they entrusted Daniel. “I should have known better. My mental state
wasn’t clear at that time.” Antwi’s family bought another round of medicine that cost about $5,000 after Daniel bumped them up to a higher concentration that would be more effective. Antwi died a couple of weeks later at age 62. She had been hopeful Daniel’s treatment would work as promised, Kwakye said. “I struggle with the fact that she (Daniel) wasn’t true,” she said. “Being a doctor, they do no harm. Why would she do that?” Other patients traveled to California and stayed at local motels while they were being treated, court documents show. Prosecutors said Daniel even fleeced other clergy. In late 2003, George McKinney, who founded St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church of God in Christ in San Diego, agreed to have his wife, Jean, treated by Daniel. The couple moved into their son’s home in Los Angeles, and Jean McKinney took an herbal mixture three to four times a day for her terminal colon cancer. Daniel also used a heat machine that was supposed to reduce the tumour, authorities said. The couple paid Daniel more than $100,000. Jean McKinney died in June 2004.
American woman admits aiding Nigerian fraudsters
GREER woman, Glenda Bryant Perry, 45, has pleaded guilty in federal court to mail fraud as part of a Nigerian money scam. Greer is a city in Greenville and Spartanburg counties in the United States. She pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court in Anderson to mail fraud conspiracy, according to a written statement from U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles’s office. Senior U.S. District Judge G.
Ross Anderson Jr. accepted the plea and will sentence Perry later. According to the statement, employees of the Greer Post Office contacted Postal Inspectors about 50 express mail parcels that had been left in the lobby drop box. The parcels were destined for various states and had out-of-state return addresses. Postal inspectors contacted the addressees, confirmed they were
not expecting the packages and received permission to open the packages. Inside, inspectors found counterfeit money orders and correspondence. Video cameras identified Perry as the person who mailed the packages, according to the statement. Investigators later found that Perry had been recruited to participate in a Nigerian scam. Perry “worked” for a man she knew only as “Paul Benson.” She never met Benson but communi-
cated with him over the phone and via e-mail. Benson sent Perry counterfeit checks and money orders and provided her with a list of names, according to the statement. Perry made out the counterfeit checks and money orders to the individuals on the list and mailed the money orders along with a letter telling the recipients that they had been employed as a mystery shopper. They were told to cash the check,
keep a portion of the proceeds for themselves and wire the remaining amount to a bank in Hong Kong. Perry admitted that she knew the checks were counterfeit, according to the statement, and told authorities that between April 2010 and January 2011, she had mailed about 250 counterfeit money orders per week for Benson. Perry faces a fine of $250,000 and/or 20 years in prison.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Lecturers rule out arbitration From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
HE Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) yesterday made a sweeping remark on the Industrial Arbitration Panel (IAP). It passed a vote of no confidence on the panel’s ability to mediate in the current impasse between ASUU and the Federal Government. It ruled out any possibility of seeking legal resolution to the industrial dispute over the non implementation of the agreement signed in 2009 by ASUU representatives and officials of the Federal Government. ASUU had served a notice to embark on an indefinite strike if the Federal Government failed to implement the 2009 agreement after the expiration of the on-going one-week warning strike. In an interview with The Nation, the Chairman of ASUU in Kano Zone, Dr. Abdullahi Baffa alleged that the Federal Government was not favorably disposed to the development of varsity education in the country. Baffa said the union would embark on an indefinite strike if the Federal Government failed to commence, what he called “full and sincere implementation of the agreement signed in 2009.” He went on: “We have lost confidence in the Industrial Arbitration Panel, because members of the panel are more Catholic than the Pope. They are more government than the government itself. “We have discountenanced any legal resolution of the industrial dispute, and we are insisting on the full and sincere implementation of the agreement the Federal Government freely entered into with ASUU in 2009.”
‘We are not at war with VC’ THE Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Abuja chapter, Dr Clement Chup, yesterday said the union is concerned about the rehabilitation of existing facilities on the campus. In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Gwagwalada, Chup said the position of the union had been misconstrued to mean an opposition against the school authority’s activities. The union, in a statement, raised alarm over what it described as “decaying nature of infrastructure in the university following insensitivity of the university management”. The Vice -Chancellor, Prof. Sunday Adelabu, had responded at a news conference that the university management was not only rehabilitating but also putting up new structures on the campus.
Students decry strike STUDENTS of the University of Agriculture, Benue and Benue State University (BSU) have decried the ongoing warning strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), saying it was not in their interest. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) said the three-day-old strike had paralysed academic and economic activities on the two campuses. A cross section of students from the two institutions told NAN in Makurdi yesterday that the industrial action had a lot of negative effects on them. Some students of the University of Agriculture said the strike had distrupted their examination, scheduled to commence on Sept. 26. Mr Williams Tyosaa, a 300 level student of Chemistry, said the strike had resulted in a major setback for them, noting that the semester had been pushed forward, while the academic calendar had been distorted.
•Minister of Labour and Productivity Emeka Wogu (left), member, Senate Committee on Labour and Productivity,Senator Dahiru Kuta and Vice-Chairman of the Committee, Senator Oluremi Tinubu during the inauguration of the committee at the National Assembly, Abuja... yesterday. PHOTO ABAYOMI FAYESE
DAY FOUR OF ASUU WARNING STRIKE
Senate, Reps intervene in face-off
HE House of Representatives has requested the Federal Government to respect the 2009 agreement it entered with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) as a matter of urgency. Reps also at plenary yesterday decried the infraction of the Constitution by the Federal Government in establishing nine universities without a legal backing from National Assembly. The lawmakers posited that the industrial action by the university lecturers would only impact negatively on the education sector in the country. This resolution in respect of the ASUU strike was sequel to a motion by Farouk Lawan, Chairman, House Committee on Education. Lawan moved the motion under matters of urgent national importance. He said: “Strike has become so common and constant that lasting solution has to be found to these recurring strikes.” He regreted that the Federal Government has not found it necessary to implement the 2009 agreement which borders on funding with private sector participation. “These incessant strikes have dire consequences for our students as they are forced to spend extra years in school. Standard is also being eroded and this has made it difficult for many of our graduates to compete on a global level.” The motion was unanimously favoured with a voice vote when Speaker Tambuwal put it to vote. On the issue of the nine universities established last year by the Federal Government without enabling legislation, the lawmakers agreed that though the necessity of establishing more tertiary institutions was acknowledged, it would be unconstitutional to appropriate money for illegal institutions. Faleke Abiodun, who moved the motion, drew the
From John Ofikhenua, Abuja
•‘Govt is operating new varsities illegally’
‘Govt’ll review agreement next year’ From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
DUCATION Minister Prof. Ruqqayat Rufa’i yesterday spoke of a plan by the Federal Government to review its agreement with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) next year. The planned review of the agreement signed by both parties in 1999, but yet to be implemented, came on the heels of the ongoing warning strike called by the National Executive Committee (NEC) of ASUU. The one-week strike, which began on Monday, had crippled academic activities in federal and state varsities. Expressing her disappointment over the strike , Prof Rufa’i said despite government’s promise to improve on the 2009 ASUU/FG agreement, the academic body still went ahead with the seven-day strike. In a chat with The Nation, the minister called on parents and the students to plead with ASUU to call off the strike , hoping that normalcy will soon return to public varsities. She explained that the government was also mindful of the situation and that it would continue to play its role. Her words: “We agreed on two months with ASUU on how to move the 2009 agreement forward. Within those two months, there will be an appreciable improvement in terms of the critical areas that we agreed on. As a promise to ASUU, there will be improvement within two months. “We are expecting that at any time they can call off the strike. ASUU agreed with us that was why they signed the two months agreement. Since ASUU has that confidence in us, they should allow things to work. “Parents should be able to plead with ASUU that government is working, government is meeting their demands and next year we are going to review in terms of our agreement with them. “But what we have agreed two years ago, the government will be seen to be actualising. So, where ever we have not been fulfilling, we have to do that in the next two months. “Parents and the students should plead with ASUU to go back to work. And government is actually committed to its own responsibilities. It is not that government do not care about what is happening at the universities.” From Victor Oluwasegun, Dele Anofi, (Abuja) , Onyedi Ojiabor, Assistant Editor and Sanni Onogu, Abuja
attention of the House to the admission of students to the schools since September 15, a development which he described as illegal. He said the approval of the schools by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) provided no regulations for their internal and external activities. “It is worrisome that the establishment of these universities without presenting
their enabling Acts to the National Assembly is an infraction of Section 5 of the 1999 Constitution and therefore the process of establishment remain inchoate”. Faleke noted that “the financial implication of establishing and sustaining these universities that has never been previewed by the National Assembly as required by Section 81 of the 1999 Constitution equally calls for concern.” Minority Leader Femi Gbajabiamila said the era of military fiat is over. “We cannot establish a uni-
NLC justifies strike
versity by fiat or magic wand, every single one of them must be established by an Act of Parliament, if not they are non-existent. This is because we cannot appropriate money to an institution that is not in existence.” Farouk Lawan, Chairman House Committee on Education noted that with the inability of the existing schools to accommodate about 300,000 from over 1.5 million candidates that sit for University Matriculation Examination (UME), the nation could do with more schools. “However, the legal instrument should be presented”, he said. It was overwhelmingly agreed that the FEC should formalise the establishment of the universities by presenting Bills for their establishment to the National Assembly. The Senate yesterday expressed worry over the ongoing strike by ASUU. Chairman Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, told reporters in Abuja that the concern of the Senate stemmed from the negative effect of the strike on the education sector. Abaribe said:“We are no doubt concerned about the unfortunate strike. We cannot shy away from what is happening but we are working through the Senate Committee on Education to ensure that the issues at stake are resolved in the best interest of the country.”
RESIDENT of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) Abdulwaheed Omar yesterday justified the on-going strike by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). Omar, who spoke in Abuja while receiving a delegation of the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), said ASUU had no other choice since the government refused to honour the agreement it entered into with it. According to him, the strike is a testimony to the fact that the Federal Government cannot be trusted with agreements. The labour chief expressed the support of the NLC for the strike, adding that any government has a duty to respect agreements, lamenting that in Nigeria, governments breach the agreement they freely reached with Labour with impunity. He, however, noted that agreements are not worth entering into if they are meant to be breached. Omar said: “I must use this opportunity to express the congress’ total support for the ASUU over its strike. Again, it is a testimony that in most cases, you cannot even trust government. You go into dialogue, you signed agreement and then the government continues to breach agreements that they have signed. “I don’t even know where we are heading for. Government is expected to be the first institution to respect agreements that are reached and signed. But where agreements are reached and breached with impunity it will not take us anywhere. We really support the action taken by ASUU because they are really compelled to do so because if agreements are breached at will, it means they were worthless entering into in the first place.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Mayflower alumni seek return of school to Solarin’s family By Olukayode Thomas and Abike Hassan
FORMER students of Mayflower School, Ikene, have appealed to Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State to allow owners of private schools take full control of the schools taken over by the state government but later released to them by his predecessor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel. They said the schools, if administered by their original owners, will not only restore the high standard for which they were renowned, but also relieve the state government of the heavy financial burden as the sole financier. Speaking for other members of the Mayflower School, Ikene , an Associate Professor of Medicine at Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Dr. Folu Oluwole said: “We voted in the present government because we wanted a change from the past government. My advice is that the government should not generalise. If they want to take over from those that do not have the capacity to run it, they should, but they should allow those that have the capacity to turn their schools around like the Solarin Family to take over Mayflower. “There was a time when Chief Olusegun Osoba, a former governor of the state, banned PTA in all schools. We the ex-students of Mayflower met him and discussed with him. When he got to know what we have done to keep the standard of this school running, we were advised to change the name from PTA to Parents Club.”
ACN demands restructuring of Nigeria THROUGH its Lagos State chapter spokesman, Joe Igbokwe, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) yesterday threw its weight behind the call for the restructuring of the country. The party cited the unfolding developments across the country as reasons for joining forces with those agitating for a restructured state, saying that the country is sitting on a time bomb. In a statement, Igbokwe said the ACN as a party believe that Nigeria has no meaningful future unless the constituent units sit down to talk and iron out their differences, as well as agree on the basis of continued coexistence. It called for the convocation of a Sovereign National Conference (SNC) . The statement reads: “As much as we try to run away from it, we believe that there is no alternative to a sovereign national conference to look into the myriad of problems facing this country. “We warn that further foot-dragging in acquiescing to the rising demands of Nigerians for this conference will not augur well for the country and its citizens.”
Tambuwal placates opposition with more committee slots
HE House of Representatives will today inaugurate 85 special and standing committees bringing to a close an exercise that has seen the House almost divided over the issue. This is at variance with the former situation in the House whereby committees were inaugurated individually on different days. Tambuwal, who declared that the inauguration of the committees would be conducted in one day (today) cited financial constraints and time factor as being responsible. He gave no further details. The Speaker seems to have accommodated the opposition by conceding more House
•Reps inaugurate 89 Special and standing committees today From Victor Oluwasegun and Dele Anofi, Abuja
Committees to them. Yesterday at plenary, Tambuwal announced the chairmen and deputies of five committees. Abike Dabiri Erewa (ACN Ikorodu Federal Constituency) was announced as the chairman of the House Committee on Diaspora, a position she had held in the sixth Assembly. Betty Apiafi (PDP Rivers) was announced as her deputy. Similarly, Jumoke Okoya Thomas, (ACN Lagos Island 2) was announced as the Chairman, House Commit-
tee on Public Procurement (Due Process). Marouf Akinderu Fatai (ACN Oshodi – Isolo 1) got the chairmanship position for the Committee on Legislative Compliance. House Committee on Army has Mukhtar Garuba as its chairman, while the Committee on Judiciary has Aminu Shehu Shagari (Sokoto PDP) as its chairman In the initial announcement of committee placements at plenary on September 14, Tambuwal gave out only 18 positions to the opposition of the 80 chairmanship positions. This created tension in the House as the opposition be-
lieved the number was grossly inadequate. Of 85 chairmen of standing committees released by the Speaker, 18 committees were allotted to the opposition parties. Prior to yesterday’s announcement by the Speaker the breakdown of the list was as follows: All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), with 27 members in the House was given seven slots. The Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) with 40 members was given three slots. The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) with 71 members was allotted six committees, while Labour Party (LP) and Peoples
Party of Nigeria (PPN) got one committee each. Yesterday’s announcement, shows a more favourable disposition towards the opposition by the leadership of the House. Tambuwal also announced yesterday the constitution of five new committees, namely Reform of Government Institutions (FOI), Lake Chad, FRSC, FERMA and Civil Societies.
CNN broadcaster launches news radio station By Miriam Ndikanwu
•LAST MINUTE RUSH: GSM subcribers on the queue to beat the deadline for registeration of SIM cards at Onipanu ...yesterday PHOTO: ABIODUN WILLIAMS
INEC to prosecute 800,000 voters over multiple registrations T HE Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) would soon prosecute 800,000 Nigerians for engaging in multiple registration during the last voter’ registration exercise. The electoral umpire said it was already collaborating with the Legal Aid Council to prosecute the registrants, vowing that there was no going back in its determination to convict those found culpable to serve as a deterrent to other perpetrators of electoral malpractic-
From Oseheye Okwuofu, Ibadan
es in the future. INEC’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for Lagos State Dr. Adekunle Ogunmola, spoke in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, yesterday while delivering a lecture entitled: “ INEC and Challenges of Credible Elections: The 2011 Experience”, organised by the Nigeria Union of Jour-
nalists (NUJ), Oyo State Council. Ogunmola said the electoral body would sanction those who registered more than once, saying; “if we fail to prosecute the perpetrators now, it will portend grave danger for the future elections in the country”. He, however, said the 800,000 registrants already identified in the computer as having registered more than
once may not truly reflect the actual number of multiple registration, “because of the malfunctioning of the Direct Data Capture Machines (DDCMs)”. The REC assured that after the ongoing investigation by the commission, anybody proven to have registered more than once would be arrested and taken to court. He expressed confidence in the ability of the Commission to deliver to Nigerians credible, free, fair and peaceful elections in 2015 and beyond.
X-Cable News Network (CNN) broadcaster Mr. Bill Tush is set to launch the first news/talk radio station, 99.3 Nigeria Info in Lagos. The station’s coverage will extend to the Southwest. It is established by the management of Cool/Wazobia FM and would be launched on October 1,to commemorate the nation’s 51st independence anniversary. Tush, who spoke with reporters in Lagos yesterday, said the station would be devoted to talk shows , weather issues, news, sports and entertainment. The veteran journalist, who was CNN’s first talk show presenter, said a lot could be achieved by the Nigerian media through talk shows. The Managing Director of the station, Mr. Amin Moussalli, said the new station was the first ever 24-hour news/ talk radio station in the country. Moussalli said: “So, who could better groom the news team and on air personalities than Bill Tush; the newscaster, who pioneered CNN from Channel 17 in Atlanta. ”We broadcast news, top of the hour and bottom of the hour with headline news and breaking news. We have a precise programme schedule that will keep you listening to the station 24/7. It will definitely be your one stop shop for news, business news, weather, talk shows, sports, entertainment and music.”
Mark urges states to pay minimum wage
ENATE President David Mark yesterday urged state governments and other stakeholders to implement the new national minimum wage without further delay. Mark, who spoke at the inauguration of the Senate Committee on Employment, Labour and Productivity, said state governments cannot afford to back out of the agreement since they voluntarily signed it with Organised Labour. He said: “State govern-
From Onyedi Ojiabor and Sanni Onogu, Abuja
ments must pay the minimum wage because everybody signed it. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria does not make provision for any state government to opt out of the agreement already signed with Labour. If the agreement on minimum wage has been reached we have to honour it.” Workers, Mark said, have reasons to get agitated when
the government refused to honour agreements with them. The Senate President, who called on governments to create more jobs, urged relevant agencies to come out with the statistics of unemployed persons in the country. His words: “Government should be able to publish the statistics of jobs created in the course of the year so that we can know how many people are on the unemployment line annually.” In his remarks, Committee Chairman Senator Wil-
son Ake said members would strive to ensure that the Nigerian workforce ranked among the best in the world. He added that the committee would fine-tune existing labour laws in the country to create room for industrial harmony in all sectors of the economy. Ake’s deputy, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, also assured that the committee would work to justify the confidence reposed in it. Inaugurating the Committee on Drugs, Narcotics and
Financial Crimes, Mark urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to upgrade its technology to tackle current sophisticated dimension of financial crimes. He lamented that the treatment meted out to Nigerians outside the country was far in excess of the actual crimes perpetuated by a few in the society. Mark noted that despite the country’s poor image, there are still good and honest Nigerians which he noted, are in the majority.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Posterity ‘ll treasure Kudirat Abiola, says Tinubu
Strike: NANS urges govt, ASUU to resolve dispute
By Musa Odoshimokhe
HE National Association of Nigeria Students (NANS) has appealed to the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to resolve their disagreement once and for all in the interest of the students. University lectures are currently on a warning strike to press for the implementation of an agreement they reached with government on their condition of service. NANS National President, Comrade Dauda Mohammed, reacting to the development said: “In furtherance of our appeal to the parties in the Federal Government/ASUU dispute, which has led to the paralysis of academic activities on the campuses of universities, NANS wishes to appeal to the Federal Government to see the ongoing strike as an issue that demands urgent national attention”. “It is our opinion that both parties in the agreement must, this time around, come to a final resolution which must be made public as the reccurring strike actions being experienced on the same agreement are no longer acceptable to us as Nigerian Students.” “The NANS sympathises with members of the Academic fraternity on the hardships they have been made to face due to the prolonged non-implementation of the ASUU/ FG agreement”. “It should be noted that government is a continuous process and hence any agreement reached by any previous government deserves to be honoured by parties in such agreement”.
Mark re-appoints aides
ENATE President David Mark, has reappointed Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan as his Special Adviser, Media & Publicity. Also reappointed are Dr. David Obasi Ukoha, Personal Physician and Catherine Onyenso as Personal Secretary. Their letters of appointment were signed by the Chief of Staff to the President of the Senate, Senator Anthony Manzo. The appointments take immediate effect. The Senate President, according to his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Paul Mumeh urged his aides to face the challenge of service delivery in tandem with his agenda of a new dawn in the Senate. Ologbondiyan first served the President of the Senate between 2007 and 2011 in the same capacity. He holds a 1990 degree in English from the University of Lagos and a Post graduate Diploma (PGD) in Journalism from the Nigeria Institute of Journalism (NIJ), Ogba, Lagos . He has participated in several courses on parliamentary practices and procedures. Before his appointment as Special Adviser to the Senate President in 2007, he was the Group Political Editor of ThisDay Newspapers.
• Oyo State Deputy Governor Moses Adeyemo (right) receiving the relief materials donated by the Executive Director, Finance and Investment of Industrial and General Insurance PLC (IGI), Mr. Yinka Obalade (middle) at the Governor’s Office, Ibadan...yesterday. With them is Mrs. Kikelomo Adekoya.
South Africa ACN flays trial of Tinubu
CTION Congress of Nigeria (ACN), South African chapter, yesterday described the trial of the party's national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, as a deliberate attempt to victimise the opposition. The branch lamented that the Federal Government was busy chasing shadows at a time Nigerians yearned for infrastructural renewal, adding that plans to turn the country into a one-party state would fail. Also, House of Representatives member from Agege Constituency, Dr Samuel Adejare, decried the witchhunting of the former governor by the Federal Government and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the party’s electoral defeat in the Southwest. Adejare told reporters in Lagos that the PDP was heating up the polity, warning that history would apportion it a harsh judgment . He added: "The ruling party is jittery in the Southwest
•'Victimisation of opposition will not stay' By Emmanuel Oladesu Deputy Political Editor
and having failed in the last election, PDP will not rise again. The repression, victimisation and war against our leader would only make our party to develop a thick skin and wax stronger. In as much as PDP fails to satisfy the yearnings of the people, they will continue to gravitate to ACN for political liberation". The Publicity Secretary of ACN in South Africa, Comrade Daini Olusesan, in a statement said Tinubu's trial by the Code of Conduct Tribunal lacked a sound premise, pointing out that he is not on trial for abuse of public office. He said some of his colleagues between 1999 and 2007 who were accused of corruption are still in power at the federal level without molestation of any kind. Olusesan said: "No one who understands the Nigerian
economy and the worth of the former Treasurer of Mobil, ex-Senator, former governor and a leading investor in the Nigerian private sector would think he stole the money. Besides, some of the accounts belong to children schooling in the U.S. and each below 1,000 Pounds. " How many Nigerians have children in the U.S or Europe now? Why should it be surprising that Tinubu's children are also there or that provisions are made for their upkeep? Could the Code of Conduct Bureau come up with details of when the accounts were opened, whether they were operated while Tinubu was in office and the balances in the various accounts so touted before the public? Describing the trial as politically motivated, Olusesan said that it has followed the old pattern of the war against first leader of opposition, the
late Chief Obafemi Awolowo of the Action Group (AG), before the Coker Commission of Inquiry and later at Justice George Sowemimo's High Court for treasonable felony trial. He said: "It is ironic that Tinubu, who fought for the restoration of civil rule is being victimised by a government presided by people who collaborated with the military to prolong Nigeria's lean years under dictatorship. Olusesan added: " Like the devil, the hawks are highly destructive. They exist only to steal, kill and destroy the chicken population. The birds typify the ruling parties in underdeveloped societies. They regard the opposition leaders as irritants who must be taken out of the way in order to perpetuate their hold on power. We condemn in strong terms the victimisation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu by the Code of Conduct Bureau.
ORMER Lagos Stategovernor Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has extolled the virtues of the late Kudirat Abiola, describing her as an Amazon of democracy who will ever be treasured. He made the remark at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos yesterday during the N250 million endowment fund for the building the Kudirat Abiola Women Centre, Abuja, to mark her post-humous 60th birthday. Tinubu, who was represented by the Chairman of The Nation Editorial Board, Mr. Sam Omatseye, stressed the need for Nigerians to rise to the occasion and put in place a befitting structure in memory of the fallen heroine. He said: “A woman like the late Kudirat went out in the face of dictatorship and said no to the tyranny of one man. She was courageous and for people like her we have democracy in the country today and that is why this project ought to be fully supported.” He said he would commit himself to the development of the centre and ensure that everything necessary was done. In the same vein, Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State, who was represented by the Secretary to the Government, Mrs Oluranti Adebule, called on women to avail themselves of the noble services the centre will render. He said: “As we celebrate her memory today, let us align ourselves to the statement of JFK Kennedy that think not of what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country. Kudirat was a rare kind of woman who believed in the rights of man and she will forever be remembered as the mother of the nation.” Dignitaries at the occasion included Ogun State Governor Senator Ibikunle Amosun, the wife of the Ekiti State Governor, Mrs Bisi Fayemi, Prof Adebayo Williams, representative of Ondo State Governor, Eni Akinsola and Hafsat Abiola-Costello, hostess and daughter of the deceased.
At wake, family, friends bid The Nation man Bardi, bye
LL was solemn yesterday at the Abaranje, Lagos home of the former Pre-Press Manager of Vintage Press Limited, publishers of The Nation titles, the late Chukwuka Bardi. A wake was held in his honour. The widow, Esther, was speechless. She only managed to nod her head in response to the sympathisers who came to condole with her. The late Bardi died on September 18, after a brief illness. He was 44. Leading clerics to conduct the service, Rev Father Vincent Olofinka described death as a mandatory journey for man- • The widow, Esther (second right) and her children Donald (left), Anslem and Sylvia kind, warning that only those who have faith would find solBy Tajudeen Adebanjo the destination in the hands of either abroad or our village. ace and comfort in the journey. God.” “Bardi has commenced the would embark on it is not His words: “It is unfortunate The son of the deceased, final journey of faith. He has known to anybody. That is that no one has gone and come John, described his father’s started the race of eternity beback to tell us what operates why we must make adequate death as “shocking and painfore us. What he needs from over there. As unique as the jour- preparation more than the ful”. us is prayers for his shortcomney is, the time and place man way we prepare for travelling According to him, his father ings so that he would arrive at
PHOTO: NIYI ADENIRAN
“had always been there for us. He is irreplaceable,” he said. Mr Celestine Chizea, a family friend, thanked the guests for coming. He spoke on other funeral activities.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Army chief’s trial: Falana to present final written address From Yusufu Aminu Idegu, Jos
R Femi Falana, counsel to the Brigade Commander of 33 Artillery Brigade, Bauchi, Brig.-Gen. Muraina Raji, who is facing trial for allegedly aiding the escape of two Boko Haram suspects, is expected to present his final address today. This is to prepare the grounds for the judgment of the Court Martial trying the alleged conspiracy at the 2 Armoured Division Headquarters, Maxwell Khobe Cantonment, Jos, Plateau State. The special court, in its sitting yesterday, received the final written address of counsel to the prosecutor, led by Colonel A. A. Ariyibiyi. In his final address, Ariyibi said: “Eight witnesses testified for the prosecution through whom documentary evidence was tendered and admitted. “The prosecution shall rely on the evidence of witnesses and exhibits before the court with relevant laws to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused officer committed the offences as charged and, therefore, deserves punishment.” Introducing the matter before the court, the prosecutor said the address was made pursuant to Rule 62(1) of Rules of Army Procedure of 1972. He averred that the case against Raji involved neglect to perform military duties. Aribiyi said: “The senior officer, while serving as Commander, 33 Artillery Brigade, Bauchi, was alleged to have accepted two high profile Boko Haram suspects from the Department of State Service (DSS), Bauchi State Command, for safe keeping in Wetland Detention Facility (WDF) in 33 Artillery Brigade, Shadawanka Barracks, Bauchi. He was also alleged to have given instructions to Garrison Commander, 33 Brigade, to detail guards to WDF Shadawanka Barracks, Bauchi, sometimes, on January 11, to secure the two high profile Boko Haram suspects but failed to assign responsibilities to the appropriate experts in handling the detainees to ensure their security and safety...” He gave the names of the escaped suspects as Nasiru Inusa and Inusa Bello. The prosecutor urged the court to return a verdict of guilty on the accused based on evidence. Falana is to present his final written address today while the President of the court will sum up the case and deliver judgment within 24 hours, in line with the Military Law establishing the Special Court Martial.
•Acting General Secretary of the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Comrade Abdul-Kareem Motajo (left) addressing Domestic Airports Cargo Agents Association (DACAA) members at the inauguration of the association as an affiliate of NUATE at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos...yesterday PHOTO: ISAAC JIMOH AYODELE
How to deal with Boko Haram, by Uwais, Akinyemi F ORMER Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Justice Muhammadu Lawal Uwais has said the Federal Government could either prosecute members of the Boko Haram sect for crimes they have allegedly committed or negotiate with them politically. He, however, did not endorse any option, but said Nigerians should assist security agencies with information, if they have same. But a former Foreign Affairs Minister, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, said dialogue was not the best option because the sect’s demands threaten the country’s core values and Constitution. Uwais addressed reporters in Lagos on Tuesday night at the Justice Taslim Elias Memorial Lecture, organised by the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) and presented by Akinyemi.
By Joseph Jibueze
It was entitled: New Developments in International Law and Diplomacy: One Step Forward, Two Steps Backwards? Uwais said: “It’s either way. If you go by the position of the law, you feel crime has been committed and, therefore, people who are responsible should be dealt with according to the law. “On the other hand, it’s also a political issue. A crime may have been committed, but if you want to deal with it politically, you have to dialogue. But I don’t have any particular opinion on the way to go. “I’m not a security man; so, it’s not easy to say what all of us should do. But we ought to be vigilant because it is said that the price of liberty is eter-
nal vigilance. We ought to be vigilant and we ought to help the security agencies with information if we have any.” Asked if he thought the Goodluck Jonathan administration is dealing effectively with it, Uwais said: “That’s political, and I’m not a political animal.” Akinyemi disagreed with the dialogue option recommended by the Presidential Committee on Security Challenges in the Northeast, and chided judges who allegedly refused to preside over the trial of Boko Haram suspects. “You cannot dialogue with a group or any set of individuals if their objectives fundamentally challenge the fundamental and constitutional values of the country. You cannot.
“What will be the purpose of the dialogue? That you reach a compromise with them as to which sections of the Constitution will not be applicable in some parts of the country, or what? “I have a problem with Nigerian judiciary. I have been told by people who know about this matter that there is no judge in the Northeast who is prepared to try any Boko Haram case. I don’t blame them: I am sitting in Lagos and I am hesitating to express my views on this matter. “But there are laws that can bring Boko Haram members under the Federal High Court, if you really want to,” he said. “My greatest fear is that the Americans do not see Boko Haram as a part of al-Qaida and then move into Nigeria to help with Boko Haram. I just pray they (the sect) don’t attack the American Embassy,” Akinjide said.
EFCC petitions NJC over Akingbola’s trial
HE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has petitioned the National Judicial Council (NJC). It accused Justice Charles Achibong of bias in his handling of the trial of former Group Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank Plc, Erastus Akingbola. Akingbola, accused of sundry offences, including granting of unsecured loans and abuse of office, is standing trial before Justice Achibong of the Federal High Court, Lagos. The lead prosecution lawyer, Godwin Obla (SAN), yesterday informed the court of a pending motion he had filed, asking the judge to stop hearing of the case. He said the motion is informed by the EFCC’s letter to the NJC.
•Accuses judge of bias By Eric Ikhilae
EFCC, in the letter, accused Justice Achibong of bias, asking that the case be withdrawn from him. The judge said he would continue to preside over the matter until there is a directive from a higher authority. He said the case would proceed in his court until the hearing and determination of the EFCC’s motion. Proceeding was stalled when the parties could not agree on which of the three charges before the court was valid. While Obla cited the latest
of the charges, a 26-count amended charge newly filed by the prosecution as the valid one, the defence, led by Chief Felix Fagbohungbe (SAN), insisted that the 22-count charge to which the defendant had filed an objection was the valid charge. The confusion was occasioned by the frequency with which the prosecution had amended the charge, having done so twice since the case began before Justice Achibong. Akingbola was initially arraigned before another judge, Justice Mohammed Idris, on 28 counts. The case was later transferred to Achibong. Rather
than proceed on the same charge, the EFCC amended it, reducing the counts to 22, prompting the defence to file an objection. While the objection was pending, the prosecution again amended the charge, raising the counts to 26. Justice Achibong adjourned the matter to January 25 for the hearing of the defendant’s objection and when the valid charge would have been established.
Judge criticises IGP’s failure to execute bench warrant By Eric Ikhilae and Joseph Jibueze
JUSTICE Habeeb Abiru of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja, yesterday deplored the failure of the InspectorGeneral of Police (IGP) to execute a bench warrant he issued for the arrest of a businessman, Fidelis Anosike, and his brother, Noel. The judge had, in July, issued the bench warrant upon the refusal of the Anosike brothers to appear in court. A charge was filed against them by the Federal Government, through the Office of the AttorneyGeneral of the Federation (AGF), over the alleged unlawful sale of Daily Times property, valued at N1.7 billion. By the warrant, the IGP was to arrest the duo, who are directors of Folio Communications Limited, and produce them in court on September 28 (yesterday) for arraignment. But the Anosikes yesterday appeared in court. Their lawyer, Olisa Agbakoba (SAN), told the court that he had filed three applications on their behalf, to which the prosecution, led by Akin Akintewe, Deputy Director, Public Prosecution, Federal Ministry of Justice, had replied. The matter was adjourned till October 18 for hearing on pending applications. By his applications, Agbakoba is challenging the competence of the charge and the pattern with which it was served on his clients. He is also seeking the setting aside of the bench warrant.
Nnamani, Agbakoba differ on Constitution amendment
ORMER Senate President Ken Nnamani and former Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) President Olisa Agbakoba have disagreed over who should amend the Constitution and the procedure for doing it. While Nnamani averred that a Constituent Assembly should be elected in the making of a new Constitution rather than the National Assembly, Agbakoba said it is the duty of the lawmakers. The former Senate President said the amendment of the Constitution has become too frequent and has been turned to “a family minute book”, adding: “Constitution amendment should take a one-time deep cut.” But Agbakoba said a piecemeal approach to the amendment would work best for Nigeria. They spoke in Lagos at the third Justice Augustine Nnamani Memorial Lecture, entitled: Setting the Agenda for a New Nigeria: Challenges of the Constitution.
By Joseph Jibueze
The late Nnamani (SAN) was a former Attorney-General of the Federation (1976-1979) and later Justice of the Supreme Court (1979-1990). But former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Muhammadu Lawal Uwais, who chaired the event, said: “We need to do more than just amend the Constitution.” While Nnamani said it is not the National Assembly’s duty to give Nigerians a new Constitution, Agbakoba, a rights activist, who presented a paper, disagreed. A second lecture on the subject was delivered by Dr Koyinsola Ajayi (SAN). Agbakoba said the seventh National Assembly should hit the ground running by producing a people’s Constitution, adding that a piecemeal approach should be adopted as the lawmakers have achieved three amendments through the process.
Represented by Mr Victor Nwakasi, the former NBA President called for the devolution of powers from the centre to the states. Devolved powers from the Federal Government to states, he said, may include arbitration, trade (except external), driver’s licence, bankruptcy issues, insurance and prisons. Others are evidence laws, labour relations, pensions, taxes, municipal police, judicial powers and court system, and electric power. Agbakoba noted that states should handle natural and mineral resources (excluding petroleum and gas), education (especially primary and secondary), income security, healthcare, environment, agriculture and municipal affairs. He said: “The history of Nigerian Constitution-making shows that it has been regarded as an event, but it is a process. Constitution-making is not easy and sometimes threatens comfort zones of political elites. All concerns must be accommodated to achieve a balanced Federal Constitution.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
•Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola (middle); Mrs. Toke Awoyinfa (3rd right); Leader, Afenifere Renewal Group (ARG), Hon. Wale Oshun (4th right); Mr. Ayo Afolabi (3rd left) and others, during the submission of a report on the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) by ARG to the governor at his office in Osogbo, the Osun State capital...yesterday
Tribunal sacks Oyo PDP lawmaker •Declares ACN candidate winner
HE Oyo State National and House of Assemblies Election Petition Tribunal yesterday nullified the election of Mr. Rabiu Musiliu Adesola of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), representing Oorelope constituency at the state Assembly. The candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in the said election, Mr. Yisau Azeez, had petitioned the tribunal, alleging that Adesola’s election was fraught with irregularities in six polling units. After considering the evidence of witnesses and exhibits tendered before the tribunal, the panel Chairman, Justice Frank Iwizu, said Azeez had established a clear case of irregularities and non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 in three of the polling units. Justice Iwizu nullified the results of Ward 2 Unit 2, Ward 2 Unit 3 and Ward 10 Unit 01. After subtracting 523 votes from the 6,484 recorded for the PDP and 284 from the 6,335 recorded for the ACN, Azeez had 6,051 votes, while Adesola had 5,961 votes. The tribunal nullified Adesola’s election and declared Azeez winner. This has increased the number of ACN lawmakers in the Assembly to 14. PDP now has11 lawmakers, while Accord has seven in the 32-member Assembly.
One killed, five injured in Ilesa bank robberies F
IVE days after a police inspector was killed in multiple bank robberies in Iwo, Osun State, armed robbers yesterday attacked two banks in Ilesa, killing one person and injuring five others. The robbers, about 30 young men, attacked two new generation banks at Ita Balogun at about 10:30am. An eyewitness said the bandits blew open the banks’ security doors with explosives. Their operation, which lasted almost an hour, was reportedly similar to last Friday’s attack on four banks in Iwo. Sources said the hoodlums, armed with General Multi-
Court remands six robbery suspects
MAGISTRATE’s Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos, has remanded six men in Kirirkiri prisons for allegedly robbing shop owners in Mende, Maryland, of goods and cash worth N11, 893, 400. They are Monsuru Bakare (20), Michael Adegbeju (21), Fadipe Olatubosun (28), Tutu Taiwo (30), Babatunde Akande (22) and Sunday Akinrimisi (22). On August 17, the suspects, armed with guns and other weapons, allegedly robbed Mr. Cheng Fuller of three laptops valued at N325, 000; five de-
MISSING DOCUMENT This is to inform the public of the loss in transit of a letter of Allocation issued by the Federal Housing Authority in respect of Flat 7 Block 5, 111 Road Festac Town Lagos. Any one who founds it should please report to the above address or phone Ms Angela Uwazie on 08033211823 or 08033065138. Signed Angela Uwazie
By Abike Hassan
signer wrist watches valued at N215, 000; 10 packed shirts valued at N125, 000; 10 suits valued at N480, 000; three Blackberry phones valued at N158, 000; one E-61 Nokia phone valued at N35, 000 and Nokia phones valued at N105, 400. On July 8, the suspects allegedly robbed Mr. Emeka Udoye of eight wrist watches valued at N350, 000; eight pairs of shoes valued at N160, 000; and three cameras valued at N180, 000. On July 16, the suspects allegedly dispossessed Mr. Daniel Okereke of 100 wristwatches valued at N8, 000, 000; one laptop valued at N160, 000; five mobile phones valued at N300, 000; three Sony cameras valued at N170, 000; 25 sunglasses valued at N400, 000; five pairs of shoes valued at N250, 000 and N350, 000. Senior Magistrate A. T. Omoyele remanded them in Kirikiri prisons pending their next hearing. The case was adjourned till October 12.
purpose Machine Guns (GMMGs), split into two groups and robbed both banks simultaneously. Sources said the hoodlums came and left in a white Toyota 18-seater bus with Edo State registration number. On their way out, they snatched a Mazda Bus at Bolorunduro and later abandoned it on Akure road. Police Commissioner Solomon Olusegun said he was not aware that anyone was killed.
Olusegun said two policemen, who were shot during a gun battle with the robbers, had been taken to the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, Ile-Ife. He said his men recovered three AK 47 empty magazines, 36 rounds of ammunition and three vehicles abandoned by the bandits. The robbers blew up a Toyota Camry car, 2010 model, with dynamite, when they realised that the owner had immoblised it before fleeing to safety. The car was among the three recovered by the police
Foreign accounts don’t promote corruption, says Fayemi
Group urges President to sit up HE pan-Yoruba group, Yoruba Ronu Leadership Forum (YRLF), has criticised President Goodluck Jonathan’s statement on his style of governance. It described the President’s statement that he is “neither Pharoah nor an army general and will not rule with the iron fist” as uncalled for. In a statement by its Secretary General Akin Malaolu, YRLF said: “We confess to how regrettable we view the statement by the President on the critics of his government. It is sad that such superstitions and fallacies can be displayed by our President. “We state clearly that a leader should be seen to be leading, putting up, hurrying around, turning about, laying down, making, organising, exceeding and restraining. These are the attributes Americans saw in President Obama and other good leaders. “It is right for critics to show the President the absurdities he is guilty of, and most essentially when his administrative decisions fail to ameliorate the conditions of our millions of helpless people. “For the President’s information, kerosene is still N200 per litre, as against its official price of N50, while a bag of cement is still selling above N2,000 in the aftermath of his Presidential orders to petroleum minister and cement manufacturers.”
From Adesoji Adeniyi, Osogbo
in Ilesa. There have been incessant robberies in the state lately. Some of the places robbed recently include Osogbo Sports Club, Patnic Supermarket, Jayeola filling station, Ata Juice Shop and bars with large patronage. In spite of police check points and stop-and-search barricades on major roads leading into Osogbo, the state capital, robbers have continued to operate successfully, often overpowering the police. A source said the police lack the equipment to fight back, adding that Osun State does not have a single Armoured Personnel Carrier (APS).
From Suleiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
KITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi has called on the National Assembly to abrogate the law barring public office holders from having foreign bank accounts. Fayemi suggested that public office holders should only be made to disclose such accounts. He described the trial of exLagos State Governor Bola Tinubu by the Code of Conduct Tribunal as a “judicial lynching, which is not unconnected with the subterranean moves ahead of the 2015 elections.” In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Yinka Oyebode , Fayemi described the law barring public office holders from operating foreign accounts as “very unrealistic , false and primitive, which must be done away with.” He argued that those who
steal public funds don’t launder money through their personal accounts, saying “they know how they do it and it is not by keeping traceable accounts.” The governor, who lived in the United Kingdom for about 15 years before joining politics, said he had to close his foreign account when he became a public office holder in accordance with the Code of Conduct Rule. Fayemi said he now has to pay his son’s school fee abroad through a third party, having closed his foreign account. He said full disclosure of foreign accounts, without necessarily closing them, would allow anti-graft agencies to monitor them. Fayemi said: “If we are serious about curbing corruption, there are other things we ought to do that we are not doing. What we should do is ensure that everyone who owns a foreign account makes full disclosure of that account. “Once you have closed an account, you will face a lot of difficulties, at least in the countries I am familiar with (the UK and the US), to reopen it. You will nearly go and bring your mother, especially after you have become politically exposed. “So how do I deal with my
mortgage? I have a mortgage for example, how do I pay it? Is the government saying because I have offered to serve my people, I should not maintain a decent livelihood in a country where I must keep credit record?“No fewer than five ministers in the Federal Executive Council were, until their appointment, living abroad. Are you then saying they should close their accounts? The question is how do they maintain their mortgages, how do they take care of their families that are still abroad? Are you then saying they should cut off from a society in which they have lived for close to two or three decades? “This does not happen in any civilised state and I hope this is one of the laws that will be done away with in this constitution review process that we are embarking on, because it is not a serious law and it does not prevent corruption. “I have had to close an account that I have kept for close to 20 years simply because I am now governor. I think it is unfair; I should not be punished for offering to serve Nigeria. “So what happens when I leave? I don’t think it is an appropriate mechanism for strengthening either the rule of law or transparency that we want to promote in good governance.”
The governor said details of his foreign account are clearly stated in the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) Assets Declaration Form he filled and submitted, which are traceable and verifiable anywhere. He said the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) is not opposed to moves to sanitise the country of corrupt practices, but condemned the “politically motivated trial” of its national leader, Tinubu. Fayemi said: “All the accounts listed in the papers, in relation to Tinubu, are in his name. They are not in some institutional frames and the point is: did he run the accounts during the period or not? “Before this matter went to court, I said categorically that this is judicial lynching, and again, our party believes that it is not unconnected with the subterranean moves on the 2015 elections. This is what I said and it is on record. “But now that it is in court, I don’t want to comment on the issue. Let’s leave it to the lawyers handling it on behalf of our leader. “I just hope that whatever forces are behind this are fifth columnists trying to paint President Jonathan and the Nigerian Presidency bad in the eyes of the Yoruba people and every democratic and peace loving Nigerian.”
‘Lagos NURTW stands dissolved’
HE National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) Elders Forum has condemned a statement by Lagos State Commissioner for Transport Kayode Opeifa that the union’s executive council in
Lagos has not been dissolved. Speaking to reporters in Lagos, Chairman of the Forum Alhaji Mojeed Bakara said: “The NURTW national headquarters holds the sole power to dissolve any state council. In this case,
the national headquarters, during the 2011 convention, dissolved all the 36 states and Abuja councils. As such, the Lagos Executive Council, led by Alhaji Rafiu Olohunwa, stands dissolved.
“The NURTW is not an affiliate or under the umbrella of any government. It is like the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) and other unions in the country.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS Ogun PDP petitions police over alleged burglary
HE Ogun State chapter of the Peoples
Democratic Party (PDP) has lodged a complaint with the police over alleged burglary of its secretariat on Kobape Road, Abeokuta. In a September 24, 2011 petition entitled “The unlawful carting away of our party registers from the PDP State Secretariat, Abeokuta, by Senator Babatunde Osolake and others”, the party alleged that at about 5:30pm on Friday, 23 rd September, 2011, Osolake and others forcefully broke into the office and carted away the party registers. It said: “All the members of staff on duty were caught unawares. They tried to prevent them from entering the premises and most especially the office where sensitive party doc-
uments (e.g party registers) were stored. They forcefully entered and the three persons who followed Senator Osolake carted away 240 registers meant for 236 wards in the state. Four wards in Obafemi/Owode Local Government have two copies each of the registers.” The party urged the police “to quickly step into the matter so as to avert chaos,” and vowed to resist Osolake’s attempt to forcefully take-over the secretariat. The petition, which was signed by the State Secretary of the party, Akogun ‘Pegba Otemolu, was also sent to the Assistant-Inspector General of Police (AIG) Zone 2, Lagos; the Director, State Security Service (SSS) and the Acting National Chairman of the PDP.
INEC result sheets show conflicting scores for Kwara ACN A T yesterday’s proceedings of the Kwara State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Ilorin, the state capital, certified true copies (CTCs) of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) result sheets showed conflicting votes credited to the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). In some wards, the votes for the party were higher than what some local governments recorded. The documents also showed that votes credited to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in some wards were lower than what was reflected in local governments. INEC is the fourth respondent in the petition filed by the ACN against the commission’s declaration of PDP candidate, Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed, as winner of the governorship poll. Counsel to ACN, Osaro Eghobamien (SAN), presented before the tribunal Form EC8B (result sheets for wards) for Afon Ward, Asa Local Government Area, in which ACN was
From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
given 836 votes against PDP’s 808. He also showed the Form EC8C for the same Asa Local Government Area, in which the column for the result from Afon Ward showed that ACN got 245 while the PDP polled 920. Eghobamien produced the forms (exhibits) during the cross-examination of Iyemesa Eseoghene, the INEC Collation Officer for Ila Oja Ward of Asa Local Government Area, where Mrs. Eseoghene claimed collation was done without errors. For Polling Unit 001 in Ila Oja Ward, which Eseoghene supervised, the Form EC8A showed that the valid votes
(123) exceeded the 16 recorded for voters who queued for the election. The two witnesses the commission called on Monday, when it opened its defence, admitted that the number of votes exceeded the number of voters accredited for the election. They also admitted that the results declared in Forms EC8B and Form EC8A conflicted with the number of votes scored by each political party. Again, INEC’s Presiding Officer for Share Ward 5, Pastor Sunday Giwa, when cross-examined by ACN lead counsel, Ebun Sofunde (SAN) to give the figures of valid votes recorded for the parties at a polling unit of Ila Oja Ward of Asa Local Government Area said it was
414. The figure, comprising the valid votes, exceeded 25, the number of voters on queue when voting began in the polling unit under consideration. Sofunde asked Giwa to count from the voter’s register for another polling unit, Open Space Unit 001 of Share Ward 5 in Ifelodun Local Government, the number of marks (accreditation) for the Governorship/House of Assembly election. Giwa counted 77 marks, whereas Form EC8A for the same polling unit showed 291 as the number of accredited voters. The witness also claimed ignorance of what the abbreviations for the three categories of the April 26 elections
Kano tribunal nullifies PDP candidate’s election T HE Kano State National and State Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal has nullified the election of a member of the House of Representatives, Surajo Harisu, representing Dambatta/Makoda Federal Constituency on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The three-man tribunal also declared Alhaji Badamasi Ayuba of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) winner of the April 9 House of Representatives election, having scored the highest number of lawful votes. Tribunal Chairman, Justice Muhktar Ladipo Abimbola said the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) wrongfully rejected the valid votes cast for the petitioner. He ruled that the onus of proving whether or not a ballot paper is wrongfully or rightfully rejected rests on INEC, which he said failed to prove the justification for the rejection of the votes. Justice Abimbola said: “The
From Kolade Adeyemi, Kano
oral evidence, thereof, that the rejected votes were wrongfully rejected, is sufficient evidence linking the rejected votes to the case of the petitioner. “We have looked with serious pains and examined very carefully and scrutinised the certified copies of the rejected ballot papers, which are in 7,683 ballot papers. Out of this number, 6,983 votes were validly cast in favour of the petitioner. “An examination of the ballot papers shows that most of them were rejected because of ink stains. Section 54, Subsection 1 of the Electoral Act states specifically that any ink stain from the staining of the thump of the voter on any part of the ballot paper, in our view, shall not be a ground for rejecting a ballot paper, if the choice of the voter is very clear. “The petitioner pleaded co-
piously and specified the number of votes he claimed were wrongfully rejected by INEC. In our view, this is prima facie proof and this proof ought to have been contradicted or controverted by officials of INEC who, instead, admitted that at the election, there were indeed rejected votes. “INEC officials have the duty to prove the justification for the rejection of the votes but failed to plead or produce any evidence before us. “We, therefore, hold that the 6,983 votes, which were validly cast for the first petitioner, were wrongfully rejected by INEC. These votes ought to have been added to the votes of the first petitioner... “Judgment is, therefore, given in favour of the petitioner and the election of the first respondent is hereby set aside. INEC is hereby mandated to issue the first respondent the Certificate of Return.”
Yuguda defends appointment AUCHI State Goverof 1,070 aides nor Isa Yuguda yes-
terday defended his appointment of over 1,000 political aides, saying it was in compliance with the Constitution. The governor’s defence on the heels of criticisms by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Women’s Wing, civil servants, opposition parties, public commentators and state lawmakers. He spoke through his Chief Press Secretary Chief Ishola Michael Adeyemi, who addressed reporters on his 100 days in office at Government
From Austine Tsenzughul, Bauchi
House, Bauchi. Yuguda maintained that the appointment of the aides was made by PDP in the state, saying: “The women did not come to Government House to protest but to the state PDP office to register their anger. “The directors-general (DGs) cannot be equated with the 20 Special Advisers I requested from the lawmakers. “The DGs are to carry out the practical advice given to
me by my Special Advisers. But if they are particular about the nomenclature, we will dialogue and have a common understanding to move the state forward. I am ready to dialogue with the legislators.”
Three Plateau ex-commissioners re-arraigned before CCT
HREE former commissioners in Plateau State were re-arraigned yesterday before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT). They are Sylvester Sukhu Dasak, former commissioner for Commerce, Sylvanus Mangtit Nemang, Information; and Diket Satso Pleng, Science and Technology. Also docked was a former member of the House of Assembly, Joe Dawan.
From Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja
They were accused of failing to declare their assets within the prescribed period of 30 days having received asset declaration form CCB1 from the Code of Conduct Bureau. The alleged offence is contrary to Section 15 (1) C of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, Cap 56 Law of
the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1990 as amended, and punishable under Section 23 (2) of the said Act. The CCT Chairman, Justice Danladi Umar said the Tribunal under him is a brand new one and that the proceedings under the former chairmen were no longer valid. He warned the prosecution counsel in the trial against delay and adjourned the trial to Ocober 25.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
BUSINESS THE NATION
‘Why Senate has not passed PIB’ From Onyedi Ojiabor and Sanni Onogu (Abuja)
HE Senate President, Senator David Mark, yesterday said the Senate failed to pass the controversial Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) during the Sixth Senate due to discrepancies in the PIB in circulation then. Mark, who explained this while inaugurating the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) specifically, said there were various versions of the Bill in circulation making it impossible for the Senate to work on any. He stressed the urgent need for the Senate to get the PIB off the ground to resolve some of the problems bedeviling the petroleum sector. He wondered why the nation’s refineries have refused to work. Mark agreed that the PIB is germane to the smooth functioning of the sector. He said: “Why can’t our refineries operate optimally? We are worried about the PIB. The bill could not be passed during the Sixth Assembly because we had so many versions of the Bill in circulation. “There is urgent need for us to get the PIB off the ground to resolve some of the problems bedeviling the sector.” Chairman of the Committee, Senator Magnus Abe, decried a situation where there has been no appreciable improvements in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry in the past 12 years of democratic governance in the country. Apart from epileptic refineries, he lamented that the country still import petroleum products due to inefficiency in the sector.
DATA STREAM COMMODITY PRICES Oil -$118.7/barrel Cocoa -$2,856/metric ton Coffee - ¢132.70/pound Cotton - ¢95.17pound Gold -$1,161/troy ounce Rubber -¢146.37pound MARKET CAPITALISATIONS NSE JSE NYSE LSE
-N6.747 trillion -Z5.112trillion -$10.84 trillion -£61.67 trillion
RATES Inflation -9.3% Treasury Bills -7.08% Maximum lending-22.42% Prime lending -15.84% Savings rate -1.42% 91-day NTB -6.99% Time Deposit -6% MPR -8.75% Foreign Reserve $34.87b FOREX CFA EUR £ $ ¥ SDR RIYAL -
0.281 215.1 245.00 153.16 1.5652 243.2 40.57
From the 122 enterprises that have been privatised so far, N146 billion has been realised from the sales. 33.6 per cent of them are doing poorly while 66.3 per cent are doing well. -Bolanle Onagoruwa, Director-General, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE)
Challenges of non-interest banking, by CBN T
HE Central Bank of Ni geria (CBN) yesterday raised an alarm on the success of Islamic Banking without an established Islamic insurance institution. CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, said the absence of Islamic insurance to protect the investments of such non-interest banks against unforeseen hazards could impair the growth of the Islamic banking industry in Nigeria. Sanusi, who spoke through a CBN Director, Mallam Dahiru Mohammed, raised the alarm in Jimeta, Adamawa State, during the 16th Finance Correspondents and Business Editors seminar, organised by the bank. He listed other challenges to the development of Islamic non-interest banking to include limited knowledge of accounting and auditing standards pertinent to Islamic financial institutions,
From Nduka Chiejina, Assistant Editor (Abuja)
dearth of knowledge, skills and technical capacity to regulate and supervise non-interest banks, lack of Sharia compliant liquidity management instruments, the absence of which permits the investment of excess liquidity in interest bearing instruments and lack of robust comprehensive legal guideline, especially at the level of conflict adjudication involving Islamic financial contracts, products or entities. Despite these challenges, Sanusi insisted that the CBN would not be deterred in embarking on a learning process to develop a robust regulatory guideline that meets international standard. He stated that Islamic banking in Nigeria has received the endorsement of Islamic De-
velopment Bank since last year following the approval in January of a technical assistance granted it, adding that the apex bank has organised and sponsored several training programmes and other initiatives aimed at enhancing capacity towards effective regulation and supervision of Islamic Banking in the country. The CBN described most critics of the proposed new banking model as ignorant. Mohammed, who chaired the first session of the conference commented on a paper, Overview and Conceptual Issues of Non Interest Banking in Nigeria, which was presented by the Special Adviser to the CBN Governor on Non-Interest Banking Dr Bashir A.Umar. He maintained that many of those who are op-
posed to the Islamic Banking model do not have knowledge of the subject, as such their opinion is not informed, adding that Islamic Banking is for all and does not discriminate against anybody. He said rather than brand the CBN as a promoter of Islamic Banking, the apex bank should be seen as a regulator doing all in its power to educate the public on the concept and the modus operandi of the new banking model. In his presentation, Dr. Umar, said the approach to the introduction of non-interest financial services in Nigeria is anchored on the need to provide alternative and complementary financial services to the financial servicessector of the economy.
NCC extends SIM registration deadline By Adline Atili
HE Nigerian Commu nications Commission (NCC) has extended the deadline for registration of telecommunications subscribers in the country to enable those who have not been registered to do so. NCC, in a statement signed by its Head of Media and Publicity, Mr Reuben Muoka, added that the commission has also begun collation and harmonisation of registered Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards in the country, following the completion of the exercise, which second phase started six months ago, yesterday. Mouka noted that the harmonisation will involve the collation, reconciliation, cleaning and consolidation of the captured data into a central data infrastructure for efficient management of Nigeria’s subscriber data base. “Given the vast geographical spread of the country, and the logistics involved in the registration exercise over the past six months, there is need for proper harmonisation of the data in line with the specifications issued by the commission,” he said. For subscribers, who were unable to register their SIM cards at the expiration of the deadline yesterday, Muoka said the commission has decided to extend the deadline.
APMT cuts fees to fast-track clearing By Uyoatta Eshiet From left: Executive Director, Sterling Bank Plc, Mr Lanre Adesanya; Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Razack Adeyemi Adeola and Chairman, Alhaji Suleiman Adegunwa, at the court-ordered Extra-ordinary General Meeting of the bank, in Lagos ... yesterday.
Shareholders approve Sterling Bank, ETB merger
HAREHOLDERS of Sterling Bank Plc and Equitorial Trust Bank (ETB) Limited yesterday approved the merger of the two banks, describing the merger as a fair deal. At their separate Extra-ordinary General Meetings (EGM) in Lagos, shareholders overwhelmingly voted for the merger, citing opportunities for better returns and strengths of the two banks as part of the reasons for their action. With the shareholders’ approval of the scheme of merger, Sterling Bank
By Taofik Salako
would issue two ordinary shares of 50 kobo each in exchange for one ordinary share of N1 each of ETB. This implies an exchange ratio of two shares for two shares exchange ratio where ETB’s share is subdivided into 50 kobo nominal value. With the merger, shareholders of ETB including AMCON would assume 20 per cent stake in Sterling Bank Plc, consisting of 10 per cent equity stake each for existing shareholders of ETB and AMCON. ETB would also
nominate a director unto the board of Sterling Bank. Speaking at the EGM, Chairman, Sterling Bank, Dr. Suleiman Adegunwa, said that with the common values of both banks and other numerous synergies, the merger would maximise values for the customers and shareholders of both banks. According to him, the merger would further strengthen Sterling Bank into a formidable financial institution wider branch network and strong retail franchise. “We also envisage that the emergent Sterling Bank
from the merger would be a market leader in service delivery in all locations with branches well situated in metropolitan centres in Nigeria with attractive demographic characteristics,” Adegunwa said. Addressing shareholders on the benefits of the merger, the Group Managing Director, Sterling Bank Plc, Mr Yemi Adeola, said the bank expects to increase its earnings, reduce costs and leverage on the synergies from the two banks to consolidate its market share.
Shell adopts Nigerian Content model for global operation
HE Royal Dutch Shell has adopted the Local Content Model being implemented in the country for use in its global operations. To successfully implement the model, Shell has appointed the immediate past General Manager, Nigerian Content Development, Shell Nigeria, Simbi Wabote, an
By Emeka Ugwuanyi
engineer, as the Local Content Manager, Shell Exploration and Production International Limited. Speaking at the send-off ceremony organised by the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board for Wabote in Lagos, the Executive Secre-
tary, NCDMB, Ernest Nwapa, explained that the structured implementation of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act is yielding results and attracting international acclaim. Nwapa said: “It is significant that Shell found it necessary to take the Nigerian Content model being implemented in
Nigeria and implant it in their global system. That tells us that what we are doing here is effective and we want to show the world that if Shell says this implementation model is effective, then it is effective. “It is through Nigerian Content Development that this industry and country can be transformed and industrialised.”
O decongest the ports of containers under physi cal inspection, APM Terminals, Apapa has announced that containers classified as Fast Track (blue channel), would no longer attract the general Customs Inspection charge, but a minimal administrative and operational charge instead. Chief Commercial Officer/ Spokesman for APM Terminals, Koen De Backker, said: “We hope to encourage more importers to effectively use the fast-track scheme for their cargo. The level of physical inspections carried out at the terminal is very high and slows the process of delivery and creates congestion at the ports. It encourages more importers to use the Fast-Track cargo Clearance, and this will assist in reducing inspections needed on site”. APM Terminals also announced reduction of charges for containers undergoing scanning. “The success of the new scanning logistics introduced by APM Terminals has allowed us to properly evaluate the costs involved in providing terminal trucks for this system. “As a result, the new charge is almost 50 per cent less than what was charged before,” De Backker stated.
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Govt woos foreign investors for real sector T
HE Minister of Trade and In vestment, Olusegun Aganga, has urged investors from the United States (US) to focus on the manufacturing of machines and automobiles. The minister spoke when he received a delegation from the US Federal Trade Commission (USFTC) in Abuja. He said since Nigeria is the largest trading partner of the US in Africa, American agencies should continue to work with Nigeria to improve standards of products to enable the country to take advantage of the Africa Group Opportunities Act (AGOA). Aganga pointed out that con-
Stories by Toba Agboola
sumer protection was one area that has not received adequate attention not only in Nigeria but all over the world. He stressed the importance of adequately protecting and compesations. consumers. “We have to work and ensure that the average Nigerian consumer is not only protected but feels protected by the law, by the government and the council as well as compensated when things go wrong,” he said. The minister noted that, globally, consumers have not been given adequate attention, especially when financial and mortgage crises en-
gulfed Western economy, it was consumers that suffered most as they were not adequately protected by most governments, adding that he was delighted that Nigeria was hosting a conference on consumer protection. Aganga said the world has become a global village, which has made it easy for countries to export goods. “But the downside is the encour-
agement of dumping of substandard goods and the victims, are the consumers”, he said. The Director-General, Consumer Protection Commission, Mrs Ify Umenyi, said the delegation and others from Africa were in the country for the third African Conference on Consumer Protection taking place in Abuja. She said the US-FTC has been supporting the agency to facilitate
dialogue among its African counterparts. Earlier, Deputy Director for International Consumer Protection, Mr Hugh Stephenson, commended the ministry and the CPC for the co-operation in consumer protection and the support given to the CPC to engage in International Consumer Network which has enabled them to dialogue and share experiences.
‘But the downside is the encouragement of dumping of substandard goods and the victims are the consumers’
‘Venture fund for new business needed to grow economy ‘
HE National President of the Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME), Dr Ike Abugu, has said for the economy to grow and develop, the government should provide venture funds for new businesses. Abugu said new businesses or start-ups create 90 per cent of new jobs. He said this at a briefing held in Lagos to announce the 11th Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) International Conference and Exhibition scheduled for Abuja on November 15 to 16. This year’s conference, anchored on job creation, is expected to highlight the challenges militating against SMEs and the imperative of using the sector as a vehicle for employment and self sustenance. The theme of the conference is ‘Revolutionising job creation through MSME development and growth with
By Ajose Sehindemi
various sub-themes to be addressed by different speakers. Abugu said there were over 11 million MSMEs in the country, making the informal sector the highest employer of labour and a vital sector for the government to focus on. He advocated another bailout fund from the government, saying the N200billion bailout fund though good, with its seven per cent interest rate and 15 years repayment plan, was meant for existing manufacturing firms and not for start-ups, which are a must have for any growing economy. The conference will be declared open by President Goodluck Jonathan, with the Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Chief Samuel Ortom chairing the occasion and keynote address given by the Minister of Finance,Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
•From Left: Oyo State Governor Senator Abiola Ajimobi, presenting a gift to Minister for Trade and Investment Olusegun Aganga, during the launch of the trans-national border market in Saki.
Shut sugar firm re-opens
AVANNAH Sugar Company, shut two months ago follow ing a misunderstanding with its host communities in Numan, Adamawa State, has been re-opened. Its was the highpoint of a meeting between the State Deputy Governor, Mr Bala Ngalari, the Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Samuel Ortom, stakeholders and leaders of the host communities. The meeting, tagged: “Conflict resolution forum”, which took place at the Government House, Yola, considered the report of the Ministerial Fact Finding/Peace Restoration Committee, set up by the minister a few weeks ago. The forum was part of the committee’s recommendation. Five host communities in four local government areas of the State had complained and protested some issues involving compensation, out growers scheme and casual workers, among others, which led to the closure of the company for about two months. As a result of the negative effect of the closure on the finances of the people and the company as well as on government’s efforts at ensuring creation of employment opportunities through the private sector and conducive atmosphere for industries and businesses to thrive, Ortom set up a six-man fact finding/peace restoration committee which submitted its report at the weekend.
In response to the committee’s recommendations, the minister contacted the State Governor who agreed to convene and host the forum, with all stakeholders in attendance. The governor, who was represented by Ngalari, appealed to the host communities and Dangote Group (owners of the sugar company) to sheathe their swords and allow for meaningful dialogue to resolve the issues at stake. Reiterating the governor’s appeal, the minister called on all to allow for the implementation of the various recommendations made by the committee to foster a lasting solution. Ortom said the government of President Goodluck Jonathan was bent on transforming the economy and uplifting the standard of living of Nigerians, and will partner with the private sector, state governments and communities to achieve this goal. Meanwhile, plans are underway by the company to set up an independent power plant that will use by-product of sugar to generate electricity, its Managing Director, Mr Taaziya Akila Todi, has said. He explained that the power plant will generate 50 megawatts which will address the company’s growing electricity needs and that of its host communities. The host communities are Numan, Lamorde, Shelleng and Guyuk.
From Left: Director-General, LCCI, Mr Muda Yusuf, Deru and Odumodu, at the meeting .
Lagos Chamber seeks more funding for SON T HE Lagos Chamber of Com merce and Industry (LCCI) has urged the Federal Government to adequately fund the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to discharge its responsibilities effectively. Speaking at an intercreative session with the SON, LCCI President, Otunba Femi Deru, said there is no way SON could effectively enforce its policy of zero tolerance for substandard products without sufficient funds at its disposal. He said SON Director-General Dr. Joseph Odumodu has been doing a good job since he started the enforcement of the zero tolerance policy, but added that he could achieve more if the agency was well funded. “The Federal Government needs to equip and fund SON to enable it continue to do what it is doing. Its output is important in the transformation agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan administration. “We would like to appeal to the Federal Government to improve the funding of the agency. The ca-
pacity of this agency needs to be improved for it to play the desired role of standards selling , monitoring , enlightenment, and enhancement,” Deru said. He said it was high time the government fully supported SON to tackle substandard products and those who are behind them. “The incidence is killing morale; it is killing initiative and intellectualism. It is also killing entrepreneurship. “Now that the SON has shown commitment to work, the Federal government should give it all the necessary support to make this a reality. It would help a lot of SMEs and save hundreds of thousands of jobs,” he said. Odumodu said despite the efforts by SON to ensure that goods manufactured in Nigeria and imported ones are of good quality, more efforts from stakeholders are needed to achieve tangible results. He stated that the organisation has
numerous challenges, which have hampered its efforts to ensure standardisation of products in the country. He said: SON has been doing its best to ensure that all products that are manufactured in Nigeria and those being imported are of good quality, but we are not well funded. The government expects us to generate our own funds. “The only money we get from government is just to pay staff salaries. Apart from that, our staff at the borders are not armed. This has made them unable to face the smugglers of sub-standard products. “Also, the situation at the nation’s ports is not making it easy for us to identify containers with sub-standard products. There is no way we can effectively check the numbers of containers with fake products at the ports without causing congestion.” He said many manufacturing companies had closed their factories due to their inability to maintain standards in the production process.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EDITORIAL FROM OTHER LAND
Dangote’s gesture •His donations to flood disaster victims is a both praiseworthy and model for other padded Nigerians
ITHIN one month, the Dangote Foundation spent a total of N524.7 million in its effort to put smiles on the faces of victims of various social crisis and those affected by flood in five states of the federation. The states, which benefited from the relief materials and cash are Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Oyo and Lagos. Specifically, the Foundation donated N50 million and relief materials worth N10million to victims of the recent flood disaster in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital. It did not stop there. Alhaji Aliko Dangote, the president of Dangote Group promised to do more in resettling the victims, a thing he had done in many parts of the country before. The previous week, the foundation had donated N100 million to the
‘We commend the Dangote Group for these humanitarian gestures. It is particularly gladdening that we still have such organisations in our kind of society where people engage in primitive accumulation and ostentatious lifestyle in a way that sends the less privileged thinking about the essence of their existence’
Lagos State government to assist in the rehabilitation of the victims of the July 10 flood disaster in the state. As in the case of Oyo State, he led a team of the management of the group to the Government House, Marina, Lagos, to make the presentation. Dangote Foundation also provided succour for victims of the social crisis in Bauchi, Gombe and Kaduna through the donation of goods and cash worth N364 million. Victims in Bauchi State received cash and relief materials worth N38.22 million, those in Gombe State received N9.38 million in cash and goods while Kaduna victims got N317.10 million. Natural and other disasters come, often unannounced; and even when technology helps us to predict them, preparations for their management might never be adequate. The scope could be far greater than predicted or envisaged, thus leaving a gaping hole between what those engaged in rescue activities can do and what they actually have on their hands. This was the experience in all the crisis situations – from Bauchi to Gombe, to Kaduna, Oyo and Lagos — in which the Dangote Foundation had made donations to assuage the hardship and losses of the victims. At least, those fortunate to have survived such crises must carry on with their lives. But they need the assistance of good-spirited individuals and organisations to reintegrate themselves into the society. We commend the Dangote Group for
these humanitarian gestures. It is particularly gladdening that we still have such organisations in our kind of society where people engage in primitive accumulation and ostentatious lifestyle in a way that sends the less privileged thinking about the essence of their existence. We recall that the Dangote Foundation has always been a dependable ally of Nigerians in times of adversity. It had identified with all kinds of humanitarian gestures in Nigeria and beyond, especially in the areas of human capital development, education, nutrition and public health. This is the least responsible organisations should do to give back to the society. They should come to the aid of the governments to complement their developmental efforts, since governments alone cannot shoulder the responsibilities. How, for instance, could the state governments that benefited from Dangote Foundation’s milk of human kindness have handled the disasters in their domain, considering the magnitude, without assistance from outside? The wealthy in our society should emulate this gesture of selfless service to mankind. At least this is what all religions, from Christianity to Islam and even the traditional religions preach. They enjoin us to be our brother’s keeper. And we do not have to be super rich to help in such hours of need. Our widow’s mite might just be all that the victims need to get back on their feet.
Adieu Maathai • Kenya’s Nobel Peace Laureate and activist goes home. But her life work is uncompleted AILY Telegraph of the United Kingdom, in a tribute, called her the “Green revolutionary”, in clear reference to her ideas on preserving the environment and breaking sustained poverty among rural women. Others, who applauded how she faced down the government of Daniel arap Moi, in her native Kenya, would regard her as a brave woman who remained unbowed, incidentally the title of her autobiography published in 2006, no matter the odds. But Prof. Wangari Maathai, Africa’s first female Nobel Peace Laureate and Kenyan academic-activist and environmentalist, finally bowed out in glory on September 26, losing the battle against cancer which she had reportedly fought for years. The world knew Prof. Maathai as a consummate environmentalist and a crusader against poverty, aside from political agitations that often put the arap Moi government on the back foot. But for her brains and her exposure, she could well have been any of those rural women, or indeed the majority of dirt poor Kenyans, who were gluttons for punishment under the yoke of the Kenyan ruling class. When President arap Moi in 1989 came up with the rather hare-brained idea of erecting a 62-storey skyscraper and office complex, bang in Uhuru Park, the green sanctuary of central Nairobi, a city fast turning a concrete jungle, complete with a giant statue of the president, Prof. Maathai rallied a popular campaign against the project that scared off its foreign investors. The Moi government did not confront the brave woman on the soundness of her cry for environmental preservation for sustainable development. It only got riled
because a mere woman could challenge the diktat of the proverbial African Big Man. She would later pay a stiff price when later she had the temerity to contest for parliament. She was not only barred, she was frozen from her Nairobi University job. On an intense personal front, she got divorced from her husband for alleged adultery. But when the court gave its verdict, the irreverent activist said the judges were either incompetent or corrupt to have come to such conclusion. That fetched her instant jail term of six months for contempt of court, though she got released after only three days after she apologised. She would later pooh-pooh the alleged adultery charge. The real reason, she said, throwing barbs at her former husband, was that she was “too educated, too strong, too successful, too stubborn and too hard to control”! Hardly a rare charge among Africa’s brood of career women, struggling to keep their marriage! Despite all of this, however, Prof. Maathai found her niche in finding a nexus between massive tree planting and economic empowerment of thousands of Kenyan poor rural women. For embracing tree planting and halting desertification, the women got rewarded with token payments that, for the first time in their lives, gave them financial independence from their husbands. The moral of Prof. Maathai’s exceptional life is that the African world is especially skewed against the woman – and one needs not be a feminist to know that. The other, with devastating consequences for development and prosperity, is that African misrule often comes with the swagger of male chauvinism, aided by a ruinous infrastructure created, backed
and sustained by culture. Yet, the women folk, with their children, are the most vulnerable, when the dire consequences of that misrule hit the people. It was this double jeopardy that the late Maathai battled all her life, though her platform was the environment. Fittingly too, she did so without the support of a hectoring government and the institutional cover of a marriage that broke down. Hers really was a life of heroism – and her 2004 Nobel Peace Prize win is good testimony to that. But her life work was not quite complete before her life ebbed out at 71. But fortunately Wanjira, one of Maathai’s two daughters, works for the Green Belt Movement (GBM), the environment non-governmental organisation that has inspired the planting of millions of trees in Kenya. Will Wanjira, with GBM, take Prof. Maathai’s legacy to another level? Africa and the world wait!
‘Despite all of this, however, Prof. Maathai found her niche in finding a nexus between massive tree planting and economic empowerment of thousands of Kenyan poor rural women. For embracing tree planting and halting desertification, the women got rewarded with token payments that, for the first time in their lives, gave them financial independence from their husbands’
Just a small step: Women’s right to vote in Saudi Arabia
AUDI ARABIA has been a major reactionary force in the Arab Spring. It backed the regime of Hosni Mubarak in Egypt to the bitter end and pressured the Obama administration to do the same. It sent troops to neighboring Bahrain to help suppress a popular uprising there. It has used huge cash grants, to its own people and to other autocracies such as neighboring Jordan, to forestall demands for reform. The announcement by Saudi Arabia’s ruler, King Abdullah, of a small but potentially significant expansion of political rights for women on Sunday was consequently a pleasant surprise. The king said that, beginning in 2013, women will be appointed to the shura council, which offers policy advice to his regime, and that in 2015 women would be allowed to vote and run for municipal councils. It’s easy to describe the smallness of this step. The municipal councils are only half-elected, and toothless; the shura council is not elected at all, and it lacks legislative powers. Women probably won’t be able to declare their candidacies unless they obtain permission from a male guardian. And would-be female politicians still cannot drive: In fact, an activist who has campaigned for driving rights was summoned by a prosecutor for questioning on the same day King Abdullah made his announcement. Saudi women’s rights activists nevertheless appeared thrilled by the change, which they see as a possible first step toward easing what may be the world’s most oppressive gender discrimination. In the Saudi context, King Abdullah is seen as a reformer willing to do battle with more conservative forces in the clergy and his own family. During his time as ruler, he has taken significant educational initiatives, investing billions in a new coeducational university. Now he appears to have responded to rising pressure from Saudi women for rights that women in other Arab kingdoms, not to mention the rest of the world, obtained long ago. The danger is that this is simply another palliative meant, like the $130 billion in salary hikes and social spending ordered by the government this year, to defuse pressure for more far-reaching change. Saudi reformers don’t expect an Egypt-style democratic transformation, but they are asking for more meaningful steps in that direction — such as an elected shura council that would have some oversight powers. Arab reformers in other countries want to see Saudi support for a negotiated political liberalization in Bahrain and for the implementation of promised political reforms in Jordan and Morocco. The Obama administration, which has had rocky relations with the Saudi regime in part because of differences over the Arab Spring, understandably rushed to publicly praise King Abdullah’s initiative. In private, it should be telling him that it is not enough. – Washington Post
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THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
“Yes, PRAYERS and CURSES, too... God’ll PUNISH those LOOTERS in ABUJA”
IR: President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan recently waxed philosophical on who is in charge of our dear country in an address at an interdenominational service ahead of Nigeria’s 51st Independence Anniversary in Abuja. One would have wished that the president just attended the service without making any remarks. Sadly, his voice of reason was crowded out by the tug of faith and now he might have created more problems for the country through his ill-advised philosophical rant. As Fredrick Douglas once remarked, “I have found that to make a contented slave, it is necessary to make a thoughtless one. It is necessary to darken his moral and mental vision, and, as far as possible, to annihilate the power of reason.” Herein lies the tricks of modern
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Nigeria on auto-pilot? day religious purveyors. Again as Douglas reiterated in his clarion call to reason against blind faith, “I look upon it as the climax of all misnomers, the boldest of all frauds, and the grossest of all libels. Never was there a clear case of stealing the livery of the court of heaven to serve the devil in”. Those who profit from the perfidious religious tote bags of Nigeria will want Nigerians of all hue to focus on the religious and
ethnic differences between them even while they loot the country. They anoint themselves as bearers of religious symbols and standards even while they commit the most heinous crimes against the people of God. I don’t know where the president got his information from, but I have never read any newspaper in and outside Nigeria where anyone enjoined him to be a pharaoh, a military general or a
Nebuchadnezzar. All we asked is for him to uphold the oath he took to enforce the laws of Nigeria, no matter whose ox is gored. All we asked is to bring culprits of religious riots to book be they Christians or Moslem. All we asked is for the president to act as commander in chief of Nigeria! If he likes he can use servant leadership or commander leadership, all we asked is for him to lead! Enough of sending
The fear of Bola Ahmed Tinubu IR: Boldness, is welcoming any suffering that comes from doing what is right, because it will produce a greater power of love. Honour is given to those who are bold in the face of provocations and persecution. John Knox was a sixteenth century reformer. He spoke the truth to power and to his large congregation in Scotland but was arrested for it and chained to the oars of a galley sheep. During the long months of pulling on oars, he built not only physical strength but also strength of fervent prayer. His cry was “O God! Give me Scotland or I die” his life and work for God became so powerful that the queen of Scotland was quoted as saying “I fear the prayers of John Knox more than all the assembled armies of Europe” The Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) summon to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a plot to bring him down at all costs. It was a plan meticulously put together by the powers-that- be to silence the powerful voice of the opposition. Asiwaju Tinubu’s Action Congress of Nigeria gave PDP a run for their money both in the governorship and the presidential elections. A party that rudely claimed that it will rule Nigeria for 60 years suddenly found itself gasping for breath in an election it was destined to lose as a result of non-performance, political idiocy and deceit. Now the political traders in PDP feel that it is time to nip in the bud
what led to the high blood pressure they suffered before the elections. Their nemesis, Tinubu must be stopped no matter whose ox is gored. The criminal governors that were either sent packing by the election tribunals or through the ballot box in 2011 have never forgiven him. Ever since the verdict of Edo, Osun and Ekiti States were delivered and their subsequent electoral rout in Oyo and Ogun, the ex-governors have been going to and fro Abuja to cry at the feet of President Goodluck Jonathan to kill Asiwaju for them to enable them remain politically relevant. When the vote robbers lost their cases in Edo, Osun and Ekiti States, Judges were blamed for their predicament. Through subterfuge, mediocrity, and dangerously working on a script prepared by the PDP hawks, they went after Justice Ayo Salami.
When they ‘finished’ with Justice Salami, Tinubu became the next man to be brought down by all means. The poor students of history went back to the days of Asiwaju as Governor of Lagos and began to sing that he maintained a foreign Account while he was a governor . How much was in the accounts and how much went through the accounts in the eight years that Asiwaju held office? Were they used for looting and money laundering? What is all this fuss about? The fear of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is now the beginning of wisdom in the PDP mad house in Nigeria. Any political misfortune anywhere in Nigeria where ACN is doing very well, BAT is the problem. BAT is the problem when GEJ is facing the Electoral Tribunal. BAT is the problem when PHCN cannot deliver power. He is the problem when all the federal roads are bad. He is the one who created
Boko Haram just as he must have a hand in the crisis in Jos. Deficit in anything that is honourable and worthy, the hawks in PDP are even linking Asiwaju with Boko Haram and the Al Qaeda! I ask the President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to call the political contractors in PDP to order. They may tell you that BAT is your problem but believe you me, you need the contribution of BAT to move the nation forward. He came from a humble background and has drilled the deepest well, went through tough and hard times, crossed many difficult bridges, fought many battles, took many risks, and he has been humble in all these. This witch-hunting, intimidation and political harassment must stop. He deserves respect even from his enemies. • Joe Igbokwe Lagos
godfathers to placate law breakers. We do not care if President Obama offered him praise or Ban Ki Moon gives him an award, his loyalty is not to these masters but to the Nigerian people. The president was also reported to have said: “Some people were saying; is Nigeria on auto-pilot? And I say yes. Nigeria is being piloted by God himself. There is no pilot, no matter the number of hours he has to his credit flying an aircraft that can take an airline to a destination if God wants to stop it half way. God is in charge and God will take us to the destination he has for us. It is not going to be easy but God using you and us; we will go to where we want to go.” We all know the folks who flew jets to the Twins Towers on 9/11 believed they were being used of God! You can be sincere in your religious belief and still be sincerely wrong! Many have proffered that God was using them in the name of religion even while they make their adherents to drink poison. The President should stop hiding behind God cloak and start keeping the law. As Abraham Lincoln once said, our concern should not be whether God is on our side; it should be that we are on God’s side, for God is always right. It is not right for a country that is the fifth largest producer of oil to be immersed poverty. It is not right that a Nigerian citizen of southern parents, born in Zungeru cannot claim to be a citizen of Niger State. It is not right that corrupt politician who supports the ruling party during the election could walk freely and flaunt their ill gotten wealth while the common thief that stole his neighbor’s goat for hunger rot in jail without trial because of a corrupt judiciary. God is counting on the President to steer the ship he thought was on auto pilot to safety. • Francis Adewale Spokane, WA USA
On Abia’s lay-off of non-indigenes from service
IR: My attention has been drawn to the series of attacks by some groups and individuals on the decision of the Abia State government to offload non-natives in its workforce. More worrisome is the scathing remarks made by the Catholic Bishop of Umuahia, His Lordship Luscius Ugorji in describing the governor as being insensitive to the plight of the non-Abians. I want to inform his Lordship that in 2002, Abia indigenes working in
Akwa-Ibom, Cross River, Ebonyi, Enugu, Anambra and Imo State were sent packing by the various state governments and heaven did not fall. What the state government did was to re-absorb them into the civil and public service in the state. Even those that were displaced arising from the crises in the northern states, were also accommodated. I do not see the reason why Chief T.A. Orji should be crucified for this initiative. He has written to the various state
governments asking them to see reason with him and re-absorb their indigenes in their workforce. The governor has also explained that due to the fact that many qualified Abians are unemployed, coupled with the issue of the payment of minimum wage, he has no other option than to create employment for the teeming Abians and also to pay the minimum wage, which is his first charge. The policy, he said would not apply to staff of tertiary institutions in the state. The
Abia State House of Assembly has also passed resolution endorsing it. I had expected Bishop Ugorji to commend Governor Orji for the giant strides in the development and upliftment of the living standard of the people of ‘God’s own state. Why did he not call former Governor Ohakim to order, when he sent the remnants of Abia indigenes working in Imo State government packing? • Eze Nwosu Okigwe Road Umuahia
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Nigeria and the curse of elections – 4
NTIL 1947, the northern part of Nigeria was not represented in the Legislative Council. The area was administered through the Indirect Rule System in which power was shared between the emirs and British colonial administrators. The events in the south led to the emergence of cultural associations like the Jam’iyyar Mutanen Arewa. This was to later become a political party in response to the Macpherson Constitution of 1951. The North actually wanted to be left alone and they were honest about this. In 1948, Mallam Abubakar Tafawa Balewa who subsequently became Prime Minister of Nigeria said: “Many Nigerians deceive themselves by thinking that Nigeria is one….This is wrong…”. In fact in the constitutional talks between 1949 and 1950, northern leaders impliedly threatened secession if they were not granted their demands. Their demands, which they articulated were as follows: No boundary adjustment between the North and South to favour the south; representation in the Federal House of Representatives must be according to population and that the North must be guaranteed 50 percent representation; and, central revenue should be shared on population basis. The coming of the north into the main stream of Nigerian politics introduced a forceful element into the tripartite politics of Nigeria in which the north remained the fulcrum of power around which the others revolved. It did not matter what the north did or did not do it was always on the winning side. The history of Nigeria is clear on the fact that the north forced its way through in spite of whatever their compatriots in the south wished. This was a classical
‘The A.G under Awolowo saw the northern soft belly in the middle belt and even in the north eastern part of Northern Nigeria. It also championed the cause of minorities in the Niger Delta and the CalabarOgoja part of Eastern Nigeria’
UNDAYS have a way of announcing itself in a big way in this business. It is the day big news usually choose to break, sending reporters scampering for details. It was on one such Sunday two years that Boko Haram bared its fangs in the Northeastern part of the country. The group struck almost simultaneously in Maiduguri, Damaturu and Bauchi, leaving death and destruction in its wake. Since that incident in July 2009, Boko Haram has maintained its deadly presence nationwide. The fear of this Islamic sect which name translates to ’’western education is sin’’ has become the beginning of wisdom because of its capacity to wreak untold havoc. That Boko Haram has become a monster is not in dispute. It got its monstrous powers with the connivance of those who should ordinarily protect the people from its bestial acts. These powerful individuals were unknown to the public the patrons of Boko Haram. They found the group’s members useful in attacking, killing and maiming their political opponents. It was with the support of these people that Boko Haram members could not be arrested for long. The gullible public were told that Boko Haram is a faceless group, a big lie considering that these people have a way of contacting its leadership when the need arises.
case of tyranny of numbers! Real elections into the regional Houses were held in the North and the West in 1956 with the NPC and the AG being returned with greater majorities, while election into the eastern House was delayed until after the FosterSutton Commission of Enquiry which investigated Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe’s conduct in connection with the affairs of the African Continental Bank which he founded and in which the finances of the Eastern Region were kept. The report published in January 1957 had said among other things that Azikiwe’s conduct in connection with the affairs of the bank fell short “of expectations of honest reasonable people.” The crisis was however resolved politically by the NCNC when it advised Azikiwe to transfer all his rights and interests in the Bank to the government of Eastern Nigeria. Azikiwe in March 1957 sought a new electoral mandate. Although the NCNC was weakened by this scandal, but it did not prevent the party from being in power in the Eastern Region as well as controlling the majority of Western parliamentarians in the federal legislative capital. It used this power to deny the Action Group its desire for Lagos merger with the West in the London Constitutional Conference of 1957. The federal election of 1959 on the eve of independence scheduled for October 1, 1960 was fought with everything the three main political parties had. The NPC was not interested in fielding candidates in the South. Even though some elements in the Niger-Delta sought alliance with it, the NPC merely wanted to be left alone in its northern redoubt. The A.G under Awolowo saw the northern soft belly in the middle belt and even in the north eastern part of Northern Nigeria. It also championed the cause of minorities in the Niger Delta and the CalabarOgoja part of Eastern Nigeria. The A.G was particularly well organised and primed for campaigns all over the country with aeroplanes and helicopters and sophisticated gadgetary the like of which had never been seen in Nigeria. It forced the aristocratic leaders of the NPC to campaign in the dusty small and large towns of northern Nigeria to its great discomfort and embarrassment. Allegation of voting and ballot stuffing within the
confines of the palaces of the emirs were made after the A.G. lost the elections in the North. The NCNC kept hold of the East and made gains in the West but at the end of all the efforts the election was deadlocked and the Jide British, showing Osuntokun favours to the NPC, called on Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa who had been Prime Minister since 1957 to form a new government. This led to recriminations and futile attempt by the southerns political leaders to form alliance while each of them or elements of them were negotiating coalition agreements with the NPC. Obafemi Awolowo’s attempt to serve under an Azikiwe led government was doomed from the beginning, because like an elephant, Azikiwe never forgot what he called Awolowo’s perfidy of 1951 rightly or wrongly. The Action Group grudgingly went into opposition blaming its electoral debacle on rigging in the North, an accusation which a renegade British colonial official later confirmed. Suffice it to say that the 1959 election foreshadowed the future of electoral malpractices in Nigeria. At least the restraining hands of British officials ensured some semblance of sanity in the conduct of elections up till the coming down of the Union Jack on October 1, 1960.
‘The 1959 election foreshadowed the future of electoral malpractices in Nigeria. At least the restraining hands of British officials ensured some semblance of sanity in the conduct of elections up till the coming down of the Union Jack on October 1, 1960’
Boko Haram The extra-judicial killing of Mohammed Yusuf, the Boko Haram leader, opened the group’s eyes to the wily ways of the northern oligarchy, which is fond of using and dumping people. For the North’s leadership, this was a misjudgment which it would pay for. Since Yusuf’s death, the nation has known no rest because of the unrelenting mindless attacks by Boko Haram. Our leaders put us in this Boko Haram mess. They knew all along the enormous capacity of the group to do evil, but shut their eyes to its atrocities to protect their political empire. The confessions of a leader of the group, Aliyu Tishau, is an eye-opener. Tishau, who shed light on why Boko Haram is aggrieved, accused northern governors and the security agencies of contibuting to the problems we are now witnessing. Tishau said a lot. But rather than address the issues raised by him, those he accused are busy trying to divert attention from this all-important matter. Tishau, according to his own admission, was once arrested by the police and detained for 10 months. For the months he spent in police custody, was he not grilled for insider information on Boko Haram’s operations? Was he just held in deten-
‘The Boko Haram menace has lingered because of the incompetence and incapability of the leadership of our security organisations and the lack of political will of the powers-that-be to do the needful. Can any group or individual, no matter how powerful, be above the law in a society where there is law and order?’
tion for detention sake? What is the essence of arresting a suspect if not to obtain vital information from him? Of what use is the information, if any, that the police obtained from him while in their custody? Even when he was purportedly ‘’transferred to a sister security agency’’, was such information shared to enable them collaborate to get to the root of the Boko Haram menace? It appears they did no such thing. Tishau has exposed the underbelly of our security agencies which rather than work towards fostering national security are only interested in writing false intelligence reports about those perceived as government’s enemies. In most cases, such individuals are the political opponents of their principals. The damage done by these false reports cannot be quantified. Many innocent people have rotted away in detention for nothing because some people want to give the impression that they are working when they are doing nothing. If we really have a security system, should the threat posed by Boko Haram be too hard for it to crack? The truth of the matter is that our security system failed the nation at a time it should be on top of intelligence matters. Rather than bury its head in shame, the intelligence community is making excuses for its failure. If at this age and time, all we can boast of is an ill-prepared national security apparatus, shouldn’t we just disband the group and bring in more serious people to protect us? We have been told all we need to know about the kind of secu-
rity we have in place. According to the Presidential Committee on Security Challenges in the Northeast otherwise called the Boko Haram Committee, the national security system failed in intelligence gathering and monitoring in checking the Boko Haram menace. ’’On the part of the security forces, there are palpable operational lapses, service rivalry, underfunding, under-equipment and lack of collaboration...’’, the panel said, adding: ‘’The committee discovered a general failure of effective and co-ordinated intelligence gathering and its deployment to forestall events with undesirable consequences in the country. ’’There was no high level security network/forum (outside the statutory national security institutions) that could enable an informal meeting between the president and the governors as well as other top level security stakeholders’’. The Boko Haram menace has lingered because of the incompetence and incapability of the leadership of our security organisations and the lack of political will of the powers-that-be to do the needful. Can any group or individual, no matter how powerful, be above the law in a society where there is law and order? The answer is no. The fault is in our leadership and not in Boko Haram that it has become such a terror before which we must all cringe.
Nigeria @ 51
N Saturday, we will turn 51. One year ago, we cel ebrated our 50th with pomp and ceremony. In the past
one year, can we sincerely say that we have made progress as a nation? We thank God for everything though that despite the state of security, we still have a country to call ours. As a nation, we have the potential to become a world beater but we lack the leadership to take us there. This brings us to the question: what kind of leader does Nigeria need? A Pharaoh, a general, a lion or a tiger or the kind of kings in biblical times? To my mind, Nigeria needs a leader that can cope with the present times. Whether he is a Pharaoh or a lion or a general does not really matter as long as he can deliver the goods. Not too long ago, a general was in charge and we all know how he ended up. Some ’’bloody civilians’’ can make the difference in the presidential mansion, if they have the will to discharge their executive functions.You don’t need to be a Pharaoh or a general to do that. Happy anniversary, Nigeria. SMS ONLY: 08056504763
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
RESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan often resorts to diversionary tactics whenever attention is called to his inadequacies. He becomes the only patriot while his opponents become subversive elements. This time around, he had deliberately chosen the occasion of the 51st independence church service at National Ecumenical Centre, Abuja to react to criticism of his administration’s inept handling of our pressing socio economic problems. Surrounded by pastors and congregation, he conjured the metaphors of the triumph of Biblical David over Goliath, and the Egyptian enslaved Israelis over powerful Pharaoh. ‘God knows why I am here. I don’t need to be a lion, I don’t need to be Nebuchadnezzar.I don’t need to operate like the Pharaoh of Egypt…but I can change this country without those traits’ Then turning to Rev. Yusuf Turaki, the officiating pastor for good effect, he said, ‘the only thing I ask you to do for me …is prayer for God to use me to change this country. And doing what by his calling he does best-Yusuf Turaki offered a powerful prayer for the president. At the end, he reassured the president that ‘there is hope for Nigeria and Jesus is the hope, He has established His authority over the world including Nigeria’ Tony Momoh, the helmsman of Buhari’s CPC is accusing Goodluck of counting on luck to rule Nigeria. But I think he has gone beyond that. He is testing God. Jesus himself laid equal emphasis on faith and resourcefulness in His parable of the talents, Matthew, 25. In the same vein, Apostle Paul in his Epistle to the Galatians, IV, 7: had said ‘be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap’. Critics are merely asking the president to govern after analyzing his speech on a wide range of issues from the state of insecurity to the poor state of the economy. But he is finding this simple prayer unsettling. On security for instance, the president said ‘we are working on changing the security architecture of the country’ …the security challenges will be brought under control’. Critics however were quick to remind him that ‘Boko Haram’ had operated in the North east especially Borno -Bauchi axis for over two years before descending on Abuja where they first bombed the Police headquarters and later the UN Abuja headquarters where about 23 workers were killed. On the Jos war of attrition between mostly Christian Berons and Muslim Hausa Fulani settlers which resulted in loss of lives and
HE framers of the military-imposed 1999 Constitution attempted to provide a system of check and balance on the three arms of government to reduce to the barest minimum the emergence of dictatorship and tyranny in their working relationship. Part 1, Section 88 of the 1999 Constitution provides that Power to conduct investigations (1) Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, each House of the National Assembly shall have power by resolution published in its journal or in the official Gazette of the Government of the Federation to direct or cause to be directed an investigation into: (a) Any matter or thing with respect to which it has power to make laws; and (b) The conduct of affairs of any person, authority, Ministry or government department charged, or intended to be charged, with the duty of or responsibility for: (i) Executing or administering laws enacted by the National Assembly; and (ii) Disbursing or administering moneys appropriated or to be appropriated by the National Assembly. (2) The powers conferred on the National Assembly under the provisions of this section are exercisable only for the purpose of enabling it to: (a) Make laws with respect to any matter within its legislative competence and correct any defects in existing laws; and (b) Expose corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it. In other words, each house of the National Assembly is empowered by the constitution to oversight both the executive and the judiciary with respect to activities for which it has competence to legislate. In modern states, the legislators, because they come from their small constituencies are closer to the grass root than the Governor or the President. That is why their meeting venue can rightly be called peoples parliament if at each session, they try justify the peoples trust and confidence. For example, the award of huge allowances to for themselves to the extent that senators have at least N18million and House members have N16million to themselves quarterly as allowances cannot be justified when the states are finding it difficult to pay N18,000 minimum wage.
Nigerians voted Jonathan, not Pharaoh properties in 2001,2004,2008,2010 and indiscriminate killings this year, the president had this to say, “efforts are on to engage all stake holders to ensure permanent solution to the crisis in Plateau state which has claimed many lives’. But critics pointed out that his administration is in possession of reports of various commissions set up and the recommendations submitted including those by a joint Christian/ Muslim committees. In their view, the cycle of violence has continued because the president has no liver to implement some of the recommendations for fear of stepping on some powerful toes. On his proposed constitutional amendment for provision of a single seven years term for president and governors and multiple tier of six years for legislators, the President said ‘I have no regret over the single tenure proposal because it will stabilize the polity’ But critics have said that will only stabilize graft for seven years by legislators who will be guaranteed of their outrageous and indefensible salaries\ allowances and constituency contracts that are hardly executed. They also suggested he should go beyond self serving arguments of his PDP legislators to avail himself of some of the reasons advanced by developed democracies for institutionising periodic mandate renewal for elected officials. For those calling for a national dialogue to resolve the ‘national question’, he has said much as he shared their views; his administration would rather sift through records of past
dialogues for recommended solutions. For him, ‘the level of economic and social integration achieved by the people does not indicate that the country will disintegrate’ On the crisis in the judiciary, critics say they could read mischief to the president tongue in cheek insistence that ’We should allow the judiciary to reform itself’ after acceptance of National Judicial Council (NJC} recommendation whose ‘propriety has been placed before a court of competent jurisdiction’. This they said was ‘a contravention of constitutional necessity to protect the sanctity of the court.’ They therefore advised that ‘the wisest thing to do is for the president to reverse his decision and allow the law to take its course in court’ Curiously, the President blamed the state of our collapsed infrastructure especially ‘roads on high cost of cement’. Critics are saying such statement is an indication that this administration is clueless about the best way to address the nationwide infrastructural decay. He was reminded of his meeting and personal appeals for a price reduction to a cartel of cement importers and manufacturers in February this year following protest by Nigerians. The president cannot feign ignorance as to why government’s fraudulent privatization and commercialization exercise have become source of misery for Nigerians. The president during the press interview also promised the construction of second River Niger Bridge and dredging of waterways. The
Can Nigeria survive? By Ayo Opadokun Most reported cases of graft, and corruption are usually buried and abandoned. Take for example, the leadership of committees for electricity and powers initially deceived Nigerians as they went about visiting power stations with strong media coverage. They claimed that they were probing how the executive utilized over USD16 billion on power supply but they themselves eventually became part of the corruption they were to oversight. There were reported cases of how the committees of both the Senate and House of Representatives and their leadership connived to award bogus contracts to empty the treasury of Nigerian Electricity Commission of over N5billion naira. Again, Nigerians cannot forget too soon the many cases of impunity that characterized the various scandals in the house, e.g. the over N2billion naira vehicle purchase for the House, the reported cases of over N9 billion naira which the leadership failed to account for until the parliament got dissolved, the scandal involving Senate committees on healthcare, education etc in the last parliament that have been swept under the carpet. The above summary of the very poor image of the National Assembly is just to underscore the fact that given their level of involvement in corruption, the parliament cannot faithfully investigate, uncover and expose various cases of corruption and perversion in the country, not to talk of recommending implementable sanctions. Arising from the norm in presidential system of government, the executive interaction with the people through out its tenure is relatively unhelpful. In the parliamentary system, the executive and the parliament are in daily and regular contact and interaction. Motions for vote of confidence on the government can be moved as soon as the opposition feels the executive is no more popular as to remain in office. There cannot be undue delay to investigate and effect sanctions as they may be warranted in the particular circumstances.
The fact that many awarded contracts remain unexecuted or half-heartedly done and no one is punished for such glaring cases of outright failure is because our National Assembly has turned out to be undeserving of being called honourable. The point one is making here is that the Nigerian annual budget proclamations have remained mere rituals which for many decades have never be executed. There are many scandalous abandoned projects in many part of the country. The many cases of corruption in the country will remain as they are now until the Nigerian peoples proactively prevail on the assembly men and women to perform through street actions, regular visitations to the parliament and by the usage other forms of social media. A situation whereby contracts approved and appropriated for in many ministries and other statutory bodies remain unexecuted and the public officials and the various contractors are not apprehended and punished is only possible because the National Assembly members are shamelessly part of the rot. One is not unmindful of the yearly dubious invitations of ministers and chief executives of parastatals and other agencies to defend their budgets. The popular understanding in the country is that the various committees use such occasions to bargain for their selfish portion in the budget. Furthermore, it is the unfortunate belief that the presented budget is unreasonably inflated to provide for their own portion of the budget. Our constitution places the responsibility of execution of the budgets on the executives which also should be answerable for failure. Therefore the regular virtual re-writing of budgets by the assembly members since 1999 is part of the shame of our so called legislators. The public will recount that huge sum of money appropriated on various social services and infrastructure remain unexecuted. For example, the PDP’s Mr. Fix it, Chief Tony Anenih as Minister of Works received between 150 and 200 billion for road
President was immediately told that the past PDP government of contractors had more than once awarded contracts for the same projects and carried out foundation laying ceremonies. Finally, the president promised to ‘award Lagos-Ibadan rail contract soon’. Again he was reminded of similar exercise carried out under Obasanjo with the Chinese. The problem, he was told is the continued existence of the moribund 1956 Railways Act which places rail system on the exclusive list. Critics have not accused the president of mischief. They merely tried to educate him in case he was misinformed about the enormity of the problems facing our nation. I think the president should regard his critics as stakeholders in the Nigeria project and not as subversive elements. Contrary to the president assumptions, Nigerians know him. We know he has been part of PDP 12 years of locust. We equally know he was once a barefooted primary school pupil. We know of his humility, decency and apparent sincerity. Indeed these are some of the attributes that endeared him to Nigerians. If Nigerians had wanted a General or a Pharaoh, Jonathan would never have stood a chance. Buhari is one of the most patriotic Nigerian leaders who got things done. In eight months, he fought a cartel of wheat importers and petroleum products to a standstill. In eight months, he produced enough wheat that our problem became that of storage. He obtained refined petroleum products by exchanging crude oil with South American nations putting Nigeria’s parasites and their foreign collaborators out of business. But Nigerians think he is ill tempered to manage society after killing people through retroactive decree and jailing journalists for writing truth about our paid servants. We elected Jonathan to govern. He should do exactly that and leave the churches and their pastors out of it. If we wanted pastors, we would have gone for Bishop Oyedepo or Pastor Enock Adeboye. Both have established themselves as accomplished men of God and successful managers of men and resources.
‘We elected Jonathan to govern. He should do exactly that and leave the churches and their pastors out of it’ construction, between 1999 - 2003 yet no one single road was competed. Today, he is as usual, the current chairman of Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA which has been held unproductive and prostrate by PDP party stalwarts. Whether or not Nigeria will go under will to an extent depend on the level of fidelity of the legislature, in performing the legitimate roles assigned to them by the constitution. Nigeria has earned over 230 billion USD from General Obasanjo’s emergence till now under Dr. Jonathan. The worry is that there is no trace of how such huge resources has been utilized. Rather than making life better for Nigerians, as we, the campaigners for restoration of democracy to Nigeria hoped for, the level of poverty and misery in the country is now too worrisome and intolerable to ignore. The fact is that President Jonathan need not be a military general to be able to perform well, but he should realize that his regular promises of transformation in the last one year has not improved the living standards of Nigerians. Nigeria now has over 10 million unemployed graduates. The façade of the rising GDP has not positively impacted on the citizens practically, yet, the President has acted militarily to approve the suspension of Justice Isa Ayo Salami in an undue haste when in fact he knows that the jurist is presiding over the presidential tribunal dealing with the petition of Gen. Buhari against the President. Someone ought to have advised the president that he cannot be a judge in his own matter, ‘nemo dat quo non habit’. Those who want to sustain this lopsided national structure should realize that undermining the judiciary and the operation of the rule of law as manifested by the conduct of the former Chief Justice of Nigeria as the chairman of the NJC is injurious. Justice Katsina Alu resorted to self help when he set up Justice Babalakin, Dahiru Mustafa and finally Auta panel respectively to achieve his working to the answer objective to replace Justice Salami. Furthermore, that Justice Katsina Alu’s NJC failed to take judicial notice of the pending suit against the body is an open invitation to anarchy. The unfortunate incident has eroded the confidence of the public in the judiciary as the last hope of the citizen. For how long can this charade go on? • Opadokun is the National Coordinator, CODER
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NPL CRISIS Okorocha rewards Maigari sues for peace Heartland •Naze Millionaires get 1 million naira, new bus •Promises to offset players’ sign on fees balance
MO State Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha has showered monetary and other incentives on the players and officials of 2011 Federation Cup winner, Heartland FC which last Sunday defeated Enyimba FC of Aba to achieve the feat. Okorocha made this donation on Tuesday at the Government House, Owerri during the reception held for the victorious Naze Millionaires who added another silverware to their trophy cabinet after the 1988 and 1993 Challenge Cup and League titles respectively then as Iwuanyanwu Nationale. The Imo State Helmsman rewarded the players and officials one million naira each and has also promised to clear the balance of the players sign on fees couple with the donation of another official bus for the team as a replacement for the one the team is presently using which has been bequeathed to the team’s Supporters’ Club. He charged the team to continue to write the name of the State in gold, assuring the players and the officials of the team of handsome rewards. Speaking on the gesture by the Imo state governor, the general manager of Heartland FC, Fan Ndubuoke expressed his gratitude to governor Okorocha . According to the Heartland boss,“I will express my thanks to the Governor for all that have been pledged to the team. It is not easy clearing all the remainder of the sign on fees of the players which will go a long way to assist them to do their basic necessities coupled with the one million naira each to all the players too. “It is a welcome development. Also we need a bigger bus and I have told the state Governor that we would prefer a Marcopolo bus and he has approved it. I am happy the boys are also happy. “It is not as if the Federation Cup victory is a big deal but the celebration that greeted this
From Tunde Liadi, Owerri Federation Cup win was brought about by the so many trophy-less years the club had had in recent past. The distraction by some indigenes of the State on the club to ensure Heartland fails. These are people who are making you look as if you do not know what to do to achieve results. ‘We think this is the time for sober reflection and by the time the league season ends we shall all sit down to look at the entire team. We shall scrutinize the playing and the technical crew to see areas amendments will have to be made so as to get the desired results.” The Skipper of Heartland FC, Chinedu Efugh whose goal delivered the Cup to the Naze Millionaires, also commended the gesture of the Imo Governor stating that the latest action by the State will go a long way to spur the players on for more successes in the near future. Before the cash reward presentation, The players and officials of Heartland were paraded in a motorcade round Owerri and its environs shortly after their arrival from Lagos.
• Chibuzor Okonkwo
ITF to close entries September 29
Nigeria loses hosting bid to South Africa N
IGERIA has seen its hopes of hosting the African Cup of Nations in 2013 dashed following the decision of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to allow a swap between Libya and South Africa for the 2013 and 2017 games. The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) last month challenged CAF to hand it the hosting rights to the 2013
games considering the ongoing civil war in Libya, since it was placed on standby by the continental body, while announcing the hosting rights in 2006. South Africa had made a separate arrangement with the Libyan federation to take charge of the games whiles Libya could then host the 2017 tournament instead. Even though CAF denied knowledge of the previous agreement between
urge the new leadership to carry everyone along and shun personal interests. Instead, we must be mindful of the several challenges ahead of us because Nigerians are watching us and we cannot afford to fail”, said Maigari as he held a no-holdsbarred meeting with the NPL board members. NPL chairman, Chief Rumson Victor Baribote thanked the NFF President for the Federation’s role in resolving the leadership impasse at the NPL and assured that the protracted crisis had made him a more matured persons. “In the interest of peace and tranquility and the Nigeria game, I earnestly appeal to everyone who might have been offended by my action or the actions of other persons during the prolonged stalemate to forgive and forget, and let us concentrate on helping the domestic game
By Innocent Amomoh was won by Slovak Zuzana Kucova who defeated her French opponent, Natalie Piquion in straight sets of 62,6-0. The duo of Amir Weintraub and Boy Westerhof walked over Laurent Rochette of France and Diels Desein of Belgium to win the Men’s Doubles, while the pair of Nina Bratchikova of Russia and Agnes Satmari of Romania beat Anna Brazhnikova of Sweden 64, 6-3 to win the Women’s Doubles. The second leg of the Men’s Singles was won Indian boy, Karan Rastogi, who upset South African Raven Klaffner in a game that ended 6-2, 6-7, 7-5. In the Women’s Singles, tournament favourite, Slovak Zuzana Kucova was stopped by Russian Nina Bratchikova in straight sets game of 75,6-1. In the doubles finals, the pair of Boy Westerhof and Amir Weintraub beat Raven Klassen and Ruan Roelofse in 5-7, 6-4 (10-6) in the Men’s category, while women event was won by Karolina Kosinka and Melaine Klaffner after defeating the duo of Nina Bratchikova and Agnes Szatmari in 3-6,7-5(10-7) match. Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola, the Asoju Oba of Lagos, Chief Molade Okoya Thomas, CEO of Etisalat, Mr. Steve Evans and representative of the Managing Director of FCMB, Mr. Peter Obaseki were some of the dignitaries that graced the closing ceremony.
both countries, it announced on Wednesday that the swap will now take place. The continental body also decided that Namibia would host the 2014 African Women’s Championship, Niger would host the 2015 CAF Under-17 Championship, Madagascar the 2017 U-17 Championship and Senegal would host the 2015 U-20 Championship.
Lagerback strongly linked Oliseh disappointed with Austria Job with loss to Inter Milan
ORMER Nigeria helmsman Lars Lagerback is close to taking over the Austrian national football team, reports fotbollskanalen.se. According to the football website, Lars is in Austria negotiating the final details of his contract with the Austria Federation. Lagerback led Nigeria to a disastrous world cup last summer in South Africa. Since then, he's not had a job, though he is not lacking suitors. He has been linked with the Wales, Iceland and Ukraine jobs. If Lagerback takes over Austria, his main task is qualifying the National Team for the Brazil 2014 World Cup. Austria are in the same group with Germany and Sweden. Austria have in their ranks two players of Nigeria descent playing for the National Team - David Alaba and Rubin Okotie.
Ahmed Musa fancies Arsenal move
VV Venlo striker Ahmed Musa admits he fancies a move to Arsenal, TribalFootball.com is reporting on its website. The Nigeria international was rated as one of the top youngsters in world
football. Asked who he would eventually like to play for, Musa was adamant: "That's Arsenal. "That's because I have always been a big fan of Nwankwo Kanu."
LONDON 2012 OLYMPICS QUALIFIERS
Five players for South Africa
Eucharia Uche invites 27 for Cameroon
• Camp opens Sept. 29
AIRTEL RISING STARS FOOTBALL CLINIC
GOVERNOR’S CUP NTERNATIONAL Tennis Federation, ITF, has given all players wishing to take part in the 11th edition of the Governor’s Cup Lagos Tennis Championship till Thursday, 29 September to file in their entries or forget about the tournament. The competition, which is sponsored by FCMB and Etisalat, will hold at the Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan, from 15-30 October. According to the website of the world tennis governing body, the tourney with the keys W-C25-NGR-01A-2011 for the women’s events and M-FUNGR-03A-2011 for the men’s category, will be played on hard court. The ITF says that while entries close on 29 September, withdrawal deadline is fixed for Tuesday, 4 October. The competition, which annually draws tennis players from more than 40 countries of the world with over 200 taking part, will have 32 draws on the Main Draws and 32 draws on the Qualifying Draws for both Futures 1 and 2. A total package of $80,000 are for grabs in the championship with women's category gulping the sum of $50,000, while men's category gets $30,000. The Men’s Singles of the first leg of the 10th edition held last year was won by Amir Weintraub of Israel who beat Karan Rastogi in straight sets of 6-4,7-5, while the Women’s Singles
RESIDENT of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Alhaji Aminu Maigari on Wednesday charged members of the board of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) to eschew rancour and mischief, and instead embrace the virtues of collaboration and co-operation in the interest of the domestic game. Speaking during a courtesy visit by the board members to the NFF Secretariat in Abuja, the NFF President said he was very much interested in reconciliation of all parties and interests within the Nigeria game in order that everyone can work as one towards the progress of football in the land. “Football is all about team-work; that is why 11 players make a team. No man can do it alone. The questions that should agitate our minds should be: How do we truly develop the game? How do we bring the fans back to the stadia across the country? “We need to get our people showing more interest in our domestic football than foreign matches and teams, as it was in the old days. We must bring back the old glory of the domestic game, and all these can only be possible if we work as one without rancour or acrimony. “I am happy that you have all agreed to work together despite initial misunderstanding here and there, and we must all thank God for bringing this rift to an end. Now that reconciliation has been achieved, we all must, in the interest of the game, in the interest of generations yet unborn and in the interest of our great country, put heads together and work towards the real growth of the Nigeria game. “Power derives from God Almighty. I
NATIONS CUP 2013
FTER months of rigorous screening exercises and competitive football matches in the on-going Airtel Rising Stars (ARS) football tournament, five players - two boys and three girls – have been selected to attend an exclusive football clinic at the prestigious South African Institute of Sports in Cape Town, South Africa. The players who emerged after a careful selection conducted by officials from the Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria (YSFON) will join talented youths from select African countries for an intensive football development programme that will last for a full week. The names of the Nigerian players who made the short-list of five include: Muri Lawal, a Port-Harcourt based attacker; Chibuzor Obasi, a midfielder that represented South East Zone in the ARS National finals and Adamu Abubakar, a goal keeper who played for South East Zone at the ARS
National finals. The girls selected for the clinic were: Onwuana Ngozi, an Owerri based midfielder and Josephine Mathias, a midfielder that represented North Central Zone with Kaduna at the ARS finals in Lagos. All the five players were selected based on their youthfulness; strong technical, physical and mental abilities; good tactical abilities and general discipline. They also participated at all the screening levels of the Airtel Rising Stars programme including an open camp where over 3,000 youths participated nationwide, and a closed camp that featured 480 talented footballers under the age of 17. Speaking on Airtel’s role in the international football clinic, the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director of Airtel Nigeria, Deepak Srivastava said the company is passionate about creating exciting platforms and the right environment to develop and inspire talented Nigerians.
Clubs jostle for Samsung Cup in Port Harcourt T
HE train of the annual celebration of the Samsung Week moved to Port Harcourt, the River State capital as eight teams converge at the Liberation Stadium for the maiden football championship tagged Samsung Cup With Edwin Collins FC winning the Lagos edition, the jostle for the title in the Garden City will be among Macjef FC, Globek FC, Bethlehem Angels FC, Masgulf FC, Orlando FC, Port Harcourt Junior FC, Port Harcourt City FC and Legend FC. The tournament kicked off yesterday with the teams divided into two pools, while winners in each match proceed to the semifinal stage, which holds today while the final and third place matches take place tomorrow. Speaking at the draw, the River State Football Association scribe, Ibigoni Ben-Akobo, lauded Samsung for staging the competition saying apart
from bringing out the best in the players, it would engenders friendship among the participating teams. “We are happy that Samsung deem it fit to help in promoting football at grassroots level and we believe this will be a continuous event that will help to unearth new players for the state and the country at large. We want other corporate companies to take a cue from this gesture, as this will help in youth development,” Ben-Akobo said. Head, Samsung Electronics West Africa, Nicholas Shin said that the grassroots football competition is going to be a continuous process, adding that participants should expect more in the coming year. He however, enjoined the teams to conduct themselves in orderly manner and to observe fair play rules.
• Ahmed Musa
WENTY seven home based and six foreign players have been called up to Super Falcons camp by coach Eucharia Uche, to prepare for the must win return leg match against Cameroon in preparation for the London 2012 Olympics games qualifier. The match which comes upon the 22nd of October in Cameroon will seal the qualification ticket for any of the teams. Though the Falcons' won the first leg in Abuja by 2-1, pundicts have predicted a tale order for the African Champions as they confronts the Indomidable Lioness of Cameroon. Called to camp are: team captain, Precious Dede(Rivers Angels), Tochukwu Oluehi (Sunshine Queens),White Ebubeleye(Rivers Angels), Ezinne Mbalisi(Delta Queens), all goalkeepers. The defenders includes, Josephine Chukwunonye(Rivers Angels), Gladys Akpa(Sunshine Queens), Blessing Edoho(Rivers Angels), Gloria Ofoegbu(Rivers Angels), Joy Jegede(Delta Queens),Rose Umeh(Nasarawa Amazons), Chinaza Nhetewesi(Sunshine Queens), Augusta Egwim(Delta Queens), Osinachi Ohale(Delta Queens). Others called for the midfield position are, Gloria Iroka(Rivers Angels), Ebere Orji(Rivers Angels), Martina Ohadugha(Rivers Angels), Francesca Ordega(Bayelsa Queens), Evelyn Nwabuoku(Rivers Angels), Rebecca Kalu(Rivers Angels),Stella Mbachu(Rivers Angels), Cecilia Nku(Bayelsa Queens), Vera Okolo(Delta Queens). The attackers will be led by Delta Queens Desire Oparanozie,Amenze Aighewi of Rivers Angels, Oshoala Asisat of FC Robo,Lagos , Chioma Nwagwu who plies her trade for Sunshine Queens, and Esther Edem of Sunshine Queens.
The Foreign base players invited are led by old war horse, Perpetua Nkwocha of Sunnana SK –Sweden), Faith Ikidi(Pitea IF –Sweden),Onome Ebi(Atasehir Belediyesi Sports Club –Turkey), Rita Chikwelu(Umea IK – Sweden),Helen Ukaonu(Sunnana SK –Sweden), Uchechi Sunday(FC Neunkirch –Switzerland) The camp which will be in two phases will open on the 29th of September at Millenium hotel Abuja while the second phase will be at Abeokuta,Ogun State.
SKA Moscow midfielder Sekou Oliseh after the defeat to Inter Milan in the Champions League on Tuesday expressed his disappointment with the outcome of the result. ''Inter quickly led by two goals. We tried really hard to win. Certainly, we did not deserve defeat. When Wagner scored the second goal we were all very happy,'' Oliseh was quoted as saying by Russia's number one sports daily Sport-Express. He added: '' It's great to come back from two goals down. After the goal we made a small mistake and it cost us a defeat. Defeat disappointed us terribly.Well, that's football''. Joel Obi was involved for 90 minutes in yesterday's encounter. The gritty midfielder had shrugged off a muscle complaint.
Yobo set to break record
ENTRAL defender Joseph Yobo, who this year celebrated ten years with the National Team, would soon beat the record for appearances for the Super Eagles, coowned by Muda Lawal and Pompey's Nwankwo Kanu (86 caps). The Fenerbahçe man has 82 caps with the Super Eagles, a total that would come to 84 after next month's matches against Guinea and Ghana. If as expected the Super Eagles qualify for the next Afcon, and that's almost guaranteed because they could also qualify as the best second placed team, Yobo will break the record. Joseph Yobo is on official leave and did not participate in Fenerbahçe's training on Tuesday.
Five-time European Champion tops Obudu elite race
UROPE'S mountain running legend,Ahmet Arslan of Turkey is desperate to be among the cast of elite runners who will be competing for the $50,000 top prize on offer at the 7th Obudu international mountain race which holds on Saturday November 26 at the Obudu Ranch Resort in Obudu,Cross River state. Arslan,a five-time European Mountain Running Championships champion and silver medallist at the recently held 27th World Mountain Running Championships in Tirana, Albania,according to William Archibong,chairman of the Local Organising for the Obudu race revealed that the Turk will be extended an invitation to be a part of the race come November. 'We are very delighted that a mountain running legend and five-time European champion has indicated interest in competing at the 7th Obudu mountain race.This is a confirmation of the growing popularity of the race the world-over as well as the confidence the world mountain running family has in our ability to roganise a world class event',said Archibong. Patrick Ugbe,the chief media officer
for the race who is also the Honourable Commissioner for Information and Orientation in Cross River state also expressed delight at the coming of Arslan and heaped plaudits on senator Liyel Imoke,the Cross River state governor for providing the LOC for the race the support and the enabling environment for the race. 'His Excellency has been the pillar behind the successes we have recorded so far.He has made the race one of the most anticipated races in the calendar of the world mountain running association.He is leaving no stone unturned at ensuring that the Obudu Ranch hosts the 30th edition of the World Mountain Running Championships in 2014',said Ugbe. The Obudu 2011 race already has the defending men and women champions from last year,the Ethiopian duo of Abebe Dinkesa and Meselech Haileyesus confirmed for the November 26 race. Dinkesa,an Ethiopian who set a then race course record of 41:45mins when he won his first Obudu title in 2008 and became a two-time winner last year is desirous of making history as the first man to win the men's title three times in under 10 years.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
The decision of the Ogun State government to revoke the return of mission and private schools to their owners is causing ripples among stakeholders, reports ERNEST NWOKOLO.
•The school owners and parents during their protests in Abeokuta
Ogun, missions fight over schools •Govt: some owners have been compensated •Missionaries: Obey courts
HE feud between the Ogun State government and missionaries/individuals over the ownership of some secondary schools is not likely to abate soon. It is deepening by the day and has put the secondary school sub-sector and the 120-day administration of Senator Ibikunle Amosun on trial. Only last Monday, the feud took a twist with the missionaries taking to the streets of Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, to protest the revocation of the return of the schools to their founders. But the protesters, under the aegis of Egba Diocese of the Catholic Church, were prevailed upon by the Commissioner of Police, Mr Nicholas Nkemdeme, to leave the streets and seek alternative means of resolving the issue. In 2009, 23 secondary schools in the three senatorial districts of the state were returned to their original owners – missionaries and private individuals – by the administration of former Governor Gbenga Daniel. Some of the schools include Abeokuta Girls Grammar School, Abeokuta; Anglican Girls Grammar School, Ijebu-Ode; Adeola Odutola College, Ijebu-Ode; Mayflower School, Ikenne; MacJob Grammar School, Abeokuta; Our Lady of Apostles, Ijebu-Ode; and African Church Grammar School,
are surprised at the turn of events. All what is happening from ‘theWeside of the state government contravenes the position of an Ogun State High Court which directed that since the issue is before it, nobody should take any further action until it decides
Abeokuta (where Amosun had his secondary education), among others. In returning the schools, Daniel said: “it followed the outcome of wide consultation with stakeholders as well as the need for proper funding of education since government alone couldn’t finance it amid dwindling revenue.” While the affected missionaries and a few individuals applauded the policy, an unofficial source put the number of secondary school pupils, who dropped out of school in the last three years following the return of the schools, at over 19,000 while registration by Ogun State indigenes for public examinations, such as the Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) conducted by the West African Examination Council (WAEC), National Examination Council (NECO) and the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) also
dropped. But, because of the prevailing situation then which made expression of dissenting views risky, many, including parents, who were opposed to the return, could not raise their voices above a whisper. It was not surprising that when the sixth legislature of the State House of Assembly, under Speaker Tunji Egbetokun, resumed plenary in June, after a six-month break, it reversed the decision and also enacted a Bill to that effect which was signed into law by the new governor. In setting aside the policy, the legislature argued that the owners had already been handsomely compensated in 1976 when the schools were taken away from them. The lawmakers also said the enabling laws, which empowered the government to take over such
schools from their original owners in 1976, are still in force. Egbetokun said the laws have to be repealed or amended by the House before the schools can be returned to their owners, stressing that Daniel unilaterally ceded the schools in flagrant breach of the laws and due process. But, this was condemned by a coalition of the churches – Anglican, Methodist, African Church and Catholic – at a press conference they addressed in Abeokuta in June. Bishop Alfred Martins (Catholic), who spoke for the group, said Christians would fight the reversal “with all their strength,”warning that the move could distrupt the peace of the state. On June 23, 10 churches dragged Amosun, the Executive Council and the House of Assembly to a High Court in Abeokuta over the “Reversal of policy of Return of Schools to initial Owners.”
Prof Akin Mabogunje, proprietor, Adeola Odutola College, Ijebu-Ode and Chief A.E.O. MacJob, proprietor, Macjob Grammar School, Abeokuta, are co-plaintiffs in the suit. The churches include the five dioceses of the Anglican Church, two dioceses of the Catholic Church, the African Church and Methodist Church. They are seeking a declaration that the schools were duly released to them on October 15, 2009. Regardless of the suit, parents and teachers of pupils in Catholic Mission Schools, took to the streets, protesting Amosun’s decision to reclaim the schools. Their placards read: “Amosun should respect the law; “Ogun State should follow the path of justice; “Amosun return our schools”; and “Amosun is a beneficiary of Mission school.” The leader of the protesters, Rev. Father Patrick Feyisitan, urged the government to respect the law. “We are surprised at the turn of events. All what is happening from the side of the state government contravenes the position of an Ogun State High Court which directed that since the issue is before it, nobody should take any further •Continued on Page 26
•NANS FACTIONS REUNITE - Page 27• UNICAL STUDENTS TO PAY N10,000 RIOT DAMAGES - Page 37
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EDUCATION UNILORIN FILE Security assured at convocation THE Ceremonials Committee of the University of Ilorin, has assured gradutes, parents and guests of adequate security during the 27th convocation ceremonies holding between October 17 and 25, this year. This was given during a meeting of the committee members. Though details of the security arrangements were not made public, all visitors to the university are enjoined to cooperate with the university on security on the convocation days. The implementation of the security arrangements that will be in place. The Committee, chaired by Prof. J. O. Atteh, has also concluded arrangements to ensure the smooth flow of traffic. A new parking space is to be created while plans are in place to reduce the number of vehicles that will be at the convocation ground. According to him, only vehicles with special stickers will be allowed to cross the university bridge while other vehicles will park and the occupants will have a free ride in buses that will be provided to convey them to the convocation arena.
35 Profs, 31 Readers confirmed THE authorities of the UNILORIN have elevated 66 qualified academics to professorial and associate professorial cadres. Addressing a press conference at the University of Lagos Council Chamber after the 128th Council Meeting of the university that ratified the appointments, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, noted that the elevated dons “have excelled and we have no reservation in proclaiming and appreciating their excellence.”
Lagos pupils learn how govt runs
Y the time secondary school pupils left the Lagos House, venue of the launch of the Eko Corps Exercise Books on Monday, they were armed with information on how agencies of the government operate. They learned about the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), Lagos State Water Corporation, Lagos State Signage and Advertising Agency (LASAA) and the Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS). In addition to watching documentaries on the agencies, the pupils, drawn from public and private schools in the six education districts, interacted with chief executives of these agencies who gave insights into how they operate and answered their questions. Chairman of LIRS, Mr Tunde Fowler, said the initiative was to help the pupils understand the role government plays in their lives and their own responsibilities. “What you are seeing here today is part of government. We want to have a session with you where you understand the role government plays in your life everyday and what government expects from you,” he said. Speaking on LASTMA and corrupt tendencies of some of its officials, its Chairman, Mr Young Arebamen told the pupils that the agency arrests men who take bribe, as it is not condoned. He added that erring officers are dismissed and prosecuted. He urged the pupils to cooperate
•Cross section of pupils at the event. By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie
with the government by reporting unscrupulous LASTMA officials after identifying their names, location and time of the offence. “The Provost Marshal goes round Lagos physically arresting men that take bribe. In the past 12 months, we have dismissed 156 LASTMA men. We don’t condone bribe. One of our officials was recently sentenced to four years for taking bribe. You can also help us by reporting men who take bribe. Call 08023386921,” he said. Responding to questions on the punishment for littering the roads, LAWMA, boss Mr Ola Oresanya,
PHOTO: OMOSEHIN MOSES
said the agency has started doing so on a small-scale by compelling those caught in the act to pick litter for up to one kilometre on both sides of the road. Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola, who launched the Eko Corps Exercise Books, described the programme as a platform to bridge the gap between the government and the governed, and for the pupils to learn that governance is not for a few but rests on the shoulders of people like their parents. He underscored his commitment to ensuring that public education competes favourably with private education, adding that efforts by government in this regard are al-
ready yielding fruit. “The books are a token of our commitment to improving education. Our constitution forbids me as governor to compel public servants to enroll their children in any school. But I have made a promise to ensure that public education can rise and compete with standards in private schools. What I seek to achieve is to maintain a balance between public and private schools. “The performance is already improving in public schools. We have moved from mass failure to mass success. In 2007, the percentage that made five credits was seven per cent. In 2008, it was 10; in 2009, 18 and in 2010, it was 21 per cent,” he said.
Ogun, missions fight over schools •Continued from Page 25
action until it decides,” Feyisitan said. Eighty-seven year-old widow and co–founder of Mayflower School, Ikenne, Mrs Sheila Solarin, wife of the late social critic, Dr Tai Solarin, had earlier staged her own protest against the government’s decision at Ikenne. She was joined by her daughter, Corin, and a handful of members of the school’s PTA. Mrs Solarin said private ownership of some schools would not constitute“harm to the educational system in Ogun State” and asked the government to effect full handover of Mayflower to the Solarin family. She said it was strange that Mayflower and other mission– owned schools in Ogun, which are committed to improving and supplementing the services of the Ministry of Education, are being treated harshly by the government. Since 2009, Mayflower has been running as both public and private school. While the state government, by virtue of a Memorandum of Understanding reached with the Solarins, operate the senior classes, the junior arms were managed by the family. Mrs Solarin said the move by Amosun’s administration to reclaim the schools was wrong. “In 2009, the state government asked the Solarin Family whether we would be willing to take back Mayflower School and run it as a private institution again. A few years earlier, a Commissioner of Education had asked me the same question and I declined.
“However, the continuing deterioration of the school was markedly accelerated by 2009, and so we agreed to do our best to resuscitate the school. My daughter left her career and family in the United States to return to Ikenne to join my son and I in the effort. It was August, 2009 before we were assured that the handover was to be effected,” she stated. She said the Family had invested time and resources into resuscitating the school, hoping to take full possession by last July in line with the agreement reached with the previous administration. She urged Amosun to honour the promise he made during a private visit to the Solarins to return Mayflower to them. The League of Imams and Alfas of Yorubaland, Ogun State Chapter, has thrown its weight behind the new administration’s policy reversing return of schools to their original owners. The body urged Amosun to remain resolute in his decision and shun “intimidation and blackmail” by anybody or group if he must succeed in the “mission to rebuild” Ogun. It said returning schools to missionaries would imperil citizens’ right to education. In a statement, spokesperson of the group, Sheikh Sodrudeen Biobaku, said the policy on the return of schools to the original owners in 2009 only succeeded in meeting the predetermined wish of the former governor and jeopardised the poor’s access to education in Ogun. In an interview, Education Commissioner, Mr Segun Odubela, said what the owners of returned
school are asking for amounts to eating one’s cake and having it. He said the government had identified 10 of those schools which would not be returned to other owners because they had collected compensation. He said some of the affected schools have been rehabilitated, developed and equipped over the years by old students and PTAs to the tune of over N1 billion and wondered why the missionaries were desirous of wanting to reap from where they did not sow. Odubela pledged that some schools would be returned to their owners but after the law which gave birth to their takeover by government in 1976 is repealed or amended by the state assembly. He said the previous administration violated the law and also bypassed due process when it transferred public schools to missionaries owners, stressing that the purported handover cannot endure until there is a relevant law to support it. And speaking during the inauguration of the state’s first woman Chief Judge, Justice Olatokunbo Olopade on Monday, Amosun said he was not interested in taking over any school but condemned a situation where the owners of the affected schools want to fatten themselves at the expense of the poor. He said he was uncomfortable with a situation where just five or seven pupils will be in one class while thousands roam the streets because they cannot afford the exorbitant fees demanded by private schools.
“But we are also concerned about providing equal opportunities for the children in education in the state. About 23,000 of other children are outside there looking for admission in other public schools while in these schools, only 25 are in a class, because their parents could afford N70,000 to N90,000 school fees. We cannot accept this. There should be equal opportunities for all. “What I’m interested in is providing equal opportunities for the poor and rich children. Our new Chief Judge attended Odutola
College, where opportunities were provided for the children of the poor and rich. If not for the step we have taken, about 23,000 will be out of these schools; that is not what we planned for,” he said. Amosun vowed to send private owners out of business,as he intends to rebuild and equip public schools to take them to a competitive height. “We want to build our new schools because we want to take private ownership in schools out of business. Give me three months to reform the education sector in the state,” he said.
“... I thought something was missing from the semester!”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NANS factions reunite • New president emerges • ABUAD gets 'fastest growing varsity' award
HE factions of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) put aside their differences to inaugurate Comrade Muhammed Dauda as President of a united body in Abuja last Friday. The students group also presented the Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD) with the Most Progressive, Dynamic and Fastest Growing Varsity award at the ceremony held at the Musa Yar’ Adua Centre. One of the former factional Presidents, Jude Imagwe, said divisive politics within NANS is now a thing of the past. Polarisation had dogged the students’ body with the emergence several factional leaders including Jude Imagwe and Ini Ememobong during NANS’ convention held in Abuja in 2009. During their tenure, there were accusations and counter accusation as each faction claimed superiority and questioned the legitimacy of the other. This ugly development dragged their tenure
By Adegunle Olugbamila
beyond 2010, stalling the possibility of another convention. However, it took the intervention of past leaders of NANS and some distinguished Nigerians to compel the two leaders to sheathe their swords. Another convention organised by the duo and tagged ‘Unity Convention’ took place in Bayelsa between August 27 and September 3 and produced Dauda an undergraduate of the University of Jos as President. Little wonder all the students in attendance were happy that a consensus President acceptable to all his cocontestants eventually emerged. In another vein, the students were also hopeful that the new leadership will put an end to spurius awards to undeserving individuals with questionable track record just to get cheap favour. The choice of ABUAD as the only recipient this year was a step in this direction.
JAMB to register cyber cafés • Offers admission to 64,000
HE Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) is planning to license cyber café operators in Nigeria to prevent candidates from being exploited during Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) registration exercise. The JAMB Registrar, Prof Dibu Ojerinde spoke at the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), during the second combined technical committee meeting on admissions into degree-awarding institutions, National Diploma (ND), National Certificate in Education (NCE) and National Innovation Diploma (NIDA)-awarding institutions. Ojerinde said the board is already holding meeting with legitimate cyber café operators. He said: “We want to safeguard the interest of our candidates. Some of the cyber café operators exploit these candidates. Some take as much as N7,500 in registering them. What is more, they even give them fake registration. In Abuja last year about eight candidates came to examination hall with fake registration details, which unfortunately disqualified them from taking the examination. Thank God we had the biometric exercise where they thumb printed and the rightful people came out. “If we can solve that problem by licensing cyber café operators it will be better for the candidates. What we are saying is that they should not go to cheat.” The JAMB boss added that the board had about 500,000 spaces for candidates in all the tertiary institutions across the country, but said only 64,000 have so far been offered admission. His words: “About 64,000
From Adekunle Jimoh, Ilorin
candidates have been offered admission. Their admission letters are ready on the internet. But the Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) is trying to increase the current capacity of some universities. By the time NUC finishes investigation and accreditation we are hopeful that more people will still go to university. “About 98,000 candidates applied to the University of Lagos in this session, though only 59,000 scored 200 and above. The current capacity of UNILAG is just about 6,500, so 53,000 will not be able to go UNILAG. They can go somewhere else, after all, they have chosen other institutions in their second choice. The advantage of UTME is for candidates to have six levels.” On the post-UTME screening conducted by instiutions, Ojerinde said: “As far as I am concerned post-UTME is not necessary. But it is the society that will determine whether it is necessary of not. In a society where nobody is faithful, a society where everybody is cheating, where everybody is looking for shortcut, in a society where parents are encouraging their children go and cheat. A society where parents pay the friends of their children to go and do examination, so how do we stop postUTME? It is we who are calling for exploitation.” Earlier, the Chairman, Governing Board of JAMB, Prof Sam Ukpabi represented by a member of the board, Chief Adeniyi Falade said all admissions must end November 25. “All institutions are hereby requested to adhere strictly to this date. Late submissions as was the case last year will not be accepted by the board,” he said.
Imagwe said indeed that era is gone. He added that ABUAD was chosen because of the speedy development of the young university. He said: “We are happy that only Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti emerged this year for this prestigious award. This, we believe, is in respect of the proprietor and legal luminary Aare Afe Babalola’s passion for education. After a tour of universities in Nigeria, what we saw when we visited ABUAD made us marvel. The rate of development in the university is surprising. “Besides, he (Babalola) is a noble and generous man who has given numerous supports to students, especially indigent ones. He also assisted financially students’ union associations. We also know of his contributions when he was the Pro-Chancellor of the University of Lagos (UNILAG). And let me also say this that, henceforth, we (NANS) are not just going to be giving awards the same way other executives had done in the past. We will be doing it with scrutiny, after a thorough finding. This is a new dawn in NANS.” Minister for Police Affairs, Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade (rtd), explained the choice of ABUAD by NANS was no error at all. Olubolade added that though he is not close to Babalola, he has heard and seen imprints of his generosity in Ekiti State and Ni-
•Prof Osho displaying the certificate ...on Friday
geria as a whole. “I think I can count the number of times I’ve met Chief Babalola, but I often remember him whenever I see his great works and impacts, among the people either in his home state or in Nigeria generally. His recent feat is the university he has set up and what I keep hearing about what he has put into the university in its few years of existence tempts me to want to be there to see things myself,” he said. Aare Babalola, congratulated NANS leadership for a successful election, saying it has justified his stance that youths can do well in gover-
nance if given a chance. He urged the new NANS leadership to ensure there is no more polarisation within their ranks. Babalola, who was represented by the ABUAD ViceChancellor, Prof Sidi Osho, challenged the students to work towards one united Nigeria. He lamented that most upheavals in the country today are engineered or executed by youths. He therefore urged them not to be cheap instruments in the hands of opportunists who want to merely use them to achieve their ends. Babalola said he was challenged to establish ABUAD in
2009 as a reference point for a quality university with stateof-the-art facilities, having seen the rot in public education when he was the ProChancellor of UNILAG. “What we need is 21st Century modern universities. We need universities which are universities in fact and in name. The guiding principles of our universities are discipline, determination, service, integrity, sound education, and quality leadership. These have been incorporated in the university anthem drafted by the founder and which students are enjoined to sing every morning before the commencement of work,” he said.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EDUCATION ACE FILE
Management visits OAU THE Management of Adeyemi College of Education (ACE), Ondo State, has visited the Vice-Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Prof Bamitale Idowu Omole. The Provost of the College, Prof Adeyemi Idowu, led the management team which included the Deputy Provost, Dr Olufemi Olajuyigbe; Registrar, Mr Felix Aderinboye, Librarian; Mr Rotimi Egunjobi and the Acting Bursar, Mr Olaniyi Abdul to felicitate with Omole on his appointment. “Our visit today is serving a dual purpose of thanking God for your achievement and also to consolidate the existing relationship that was established 39 years ago between our college and the University.”
Festivities for World Teachers Day THE College will on October 5 join other institutions world to celebrate the World wide Teachers’ Day. Activities has been lined up for a three-day event including sensitisation, procession around the college and press conference at the S.K. Babalola Conference Centre. The press conference will be addressed by the Provost, Prof Idowu. On the second day, a lecture will be delivered by Farouk Lawan, member, House of Representatives, while some Nigerians will be given awards of education excellence. Besides Lawan, Dr Joseph Sunday Oke, Rector Federal Polytechnic, Ede, Dr Olatunde Aworanti, Registrar, National Business and Technical Examination Board, (NABTEB) Benin City, Edo state and Mrs. Aralola Faturoti, Proprietor, Hallmark Secondary School, Ondo will be presented with the awards.
Provost seeks better security
THE Provost, Prof Adeyemi Idowu, has enjoined workers of the College to be security conscious given the prevailing situation in the country. The provost spoke during a meeting of the College Management and all workers at the Babatunde Ipaye Hall. He called on all workers and students to adhere strictly to the wearing of the College lanyards and the Identity cards as they serve as security measures.
•A cross section of Rectors of Polytechnics and Colleges of Technology in Nigeria. On the front role sitting are Chairman of COHEADS (middle) Mr Ella, Chairman, Committee of Federal Rectors, Prof Joseph Oke, Rector, YABATECH, Dr Margaret Ladipo, and Acting Rector, Kaduna, Mallam Aminu Aliu who is the former Rector of Fed. Poly, Bida and others
Rectors of polytechnics seek pay parity
HE Committee of Heads (COHEADS) of Polytechnics and Colleges of Technology is seeking parity in the remunerations of all workers in federal and state polytechnics and colleges of technology this, it says, is to avoid migration to federal institutions where the pay is better. Forty Rectors or their representatives were present at the 123rd meeting of the COHEADS at the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH) where the decision was taken. In a communiqué signed by the Acting Chairman of the Committee, Dr Masa’udu Kazaure, the Rectors urged
By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie
the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) to make efforts in this regard so state polytechnics, in particular, can retain quality workers. “COHEADS also resolved that the National Board for Technical Education should advise all Polytechnic Proprietors especially State Governments to ensure that there is parity in the remuneration of all staff of Polytechnics and Colleges of Technology to avert a situation where quality staff in the State Polytechnics drift towards the Federal Polytechnics,” the statement said. The Rectors also want the National Assembly to expe-
dite action on the agreement with tertiary institutions regarding the extension of retirement ages for some cadres of workers. On the problems of factions in the National Association of Polytechnic Students (NAPS), the Rectors resolved to have no dealings with any splinter group claiming leadership of the body and referred the matter to the COHEADS Committee of Students Affairs to deal with. Meanwhile, the Rectors have been advised to furnish the NBTE with details of their staff and students population. At the opening ceremony of the COHEADS meeting last Wednesday, NBTE Executive Secretary, Dr
Mohammed Kazaure announced that training of workers to man equipment provided to 51 polytechnics under the Presidential Initiative for the Revitalisation of Technical/Vocational Education and Training (TVET) would begin next month and last till March next year. He also informed of the publication of a Directory of Accredited Programmes, which was launched on Monday in Kaduna along with the presentation of two studies: “Determination of Technical Manpower Needs in Nigeria” and “Determination of Technical Manpower Supply in Nigeria” Also speaking at the opening, YABATECH Rector, Dr
Achievers Varsity programmes gets NUC’s nod
HE National Universities Commission (NUC) has accredited all the academic programmes by the Achievers University, Owo, Ondo State. According to a letter by Prof Julius Okogie, Executive Secretary, NUC, the programmes are in the College of Natural and Applied Sciences (CONAS) and the College of Social and Management Sciences (COSMAS). Those in CONAS are Biochemistry, Computer and Information Systems, Industrial Chemistry, Medical Laboratory Science and Microbiology. The accredited programmes in COMAS are Accountancy, Business Administration and Economics. The accredited programmes were the first set of courses patronised, out of a total of 19 programmes approved by
the Commission at inception in 2008. Other programmes, which have since come on board afterwards, will undergo accreditation when they are duly mature. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof Adebayo Odebiyi, who was happy with the news, informed anxious parents and sponsors to note that the programmes in a university do not necessarily mature at the same time. The determining factor, he said, is the time when each programme commences so long as it is not allowed to run beyond three years before it is ac-
credited. He assured all of the University’s readiness to comply with NUC regulations, and its commitment to give its students quality education within a socially and academically conducive environment in line with its vision to produce a total person, morally sound, properly educated and entrepreneurially oriented. Achievers University obtained its operating licence on December 11, 2007 and commenced activities on April 7, 2008. The pioneer set of “Achievers” students have completed their programmes after four ses-
Finance VP, CIO join AUN
T •Prof Odebiyi
sions of academic pursuit, and are ready to serve their fatherland. The convocation is to hold later this year.
Benue Varsity students win SIFE
OR winning the 2011 national competition of Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) co-sponsored by FirstBank of Nigeria Plc, of seven students from the Benue State University, Makurdi will fly Nigeria’s flag at the SIFE World Cup holding in KualaLumpur, Malaysia next week. The winners emerged after a keenly contested exercise in 38 tertiary institutions the country. Their pet project: “Kick Out Malaria” was adjudged the most innovative and outstanding among many presented by students from other universities. The Executive Vice-President, Private Banking, Mrs
Bernadine Okeke, reiterated FirstBank’s commitment to helping youths develop entrepreneurial skills through business projects execution and seminars, thus developing their managerial and business management skills. “At FirstBank, Entrepreneurship and Youth Empowerment is one of the core areas of our corporate social responsibility and this is demonstrated in our partnership with SIFE Nigeria, among several entrepreneurial interventions. In maintaining a long-term perspective to our CSR, we engage with society on a significant level, with a view to empowering and developing the communities in which we operate.” she said.
Margaret Ladipo who expressed delight at hosting the meeting, urged her colleagues to reposition their institutions to be competitive by embracing collaborations with other institutions. “My fellow Rectors, let us brace-up to the challenge of making a meaningful impact on the nation’s drive to the actualization of the Vision 20:2020. We can achieve this by encouraging scholarship among the staff and students and establishing academic fellowships with established institutions and research centres across the globe. Similarly, our students should be encouraged to aspire for academic excellence by adequately rewarding outstanding performance,” she said.
Mrs Folake Ani-Mumuney, FirstBank’s Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications said the Bank’s partnership with SIFE would make the participating students ambassadors of the Bank. “FirstBank has also through its sponsorship of SIFE programmes been able to export Nigerian creativity to other parts of the world”, she said. Established in 1975 by Robert Davis, an American national, SIFE was founded on behalf of the National Leadership Institute. The programme started in Nigeria in 2001, and currently has 1,547 active students in the 38 tertiary institutions across the country.
WO new persons, Mr Alan Austin, Jr and Mr Julius Ayuk Tabe, have joined the workforce of the American University of Nigeria (AUN), Yola. Tabe, an engineer, computer scientist and mathematician, comes in as Chief Information Officer (CIO), while Austin, the new Vice-President for Finance & Administration, replaces Mr Joe Johnson, whose contract expires at the end of the 2011 fall semester. The new VP is an experienced chief financial and business officer, having spent much of his career in higher education. He holds an MBA from University of Houston with a concentration in Finance, Statistics and Operations Research, and BS in Statistics from Brigham Young University, both in the United States. His previous experience in higher education include helping to start the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi, and senior positions as Vice-President for Finance& Administration at the Desert Research Institute and Chief Operating Officer for Administration & Finance at The University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston.
Protest against ‘organ snatcher’ turns awry
Plight of indigent students
*CAMPUSES *NEWS *PEOPLE *KUDOS& KNOCKS *GRANTS
0805-450-3104 email: email@example.com
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NIGERIA AT 51 Activities have been on since Sunday to mark Nigeria’s 51st Independence anniversary. Students told VINCENT NZEMEKE (400-L Mass Communication, DELSU, Abraka), FAITH OLANIRAN (500-L Biochemistry, FUT Minna), EMEKA ATTAH (Political Science, UNIZIK, Awka), HANNAH OJO (300-L English, OAU Ile-Ife) and HABEEB WHYTE (400-L Law, UNILORIN) what they think of the event.
•Students of the Adekunle Ajasin University (AAUA) during a previous ASUU strike.
Our T blues, by students
HIS is not the first time lecturers have been on strike almost at the same time the nation is marking its Independence anniversary. For many students, the strike has “worsened an already bad situation”. The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) gave notice of the one-week warning strike about three weeks ago - the second time in three months. The first time, it was prevailed on to cancel the plan, to give the Federal Government “more time” to keep to the terms of an agreement both parties reached in 2009. This time, ASUU, through its President, Prof Ukachukwu Awuzie, warned that after the warning strike, the body would “reconvene to take a (more) drastic action”. From the Nnamdi Azikiwe University (UNIZIK), Awka, Anambra State, came these comments. Chinenye Nnamani is in 300-Level Microbiology: “President Goodluck Jonathan established nine new universities while the existing ones are not doing well. It is clear that 51 years after independence, we have failed. My cousin whose parents can afford it is in a university in
PHOTO: SHOLA ILESANMI
Ghana and I feel terrible when she tells me her experience - no strike, there is quality education and functional facilities. ASUU or not, we need revolution in this country”. Enyinna Onwusonye, graduating student of Political Science, blames the government. “Who is thinking of Independence celebration? The strike shows lack of direction in Jonathan’s administration. How else can we explain the decision of Mr. President to build more schools when existing ones are nothing to write home about? It is just too sad that when two elephants fight, the grass suffers. We keep praying for our Nigeria as we clock 51; but we need actions to give bite to the prayers.” For Kenneth Ujummadu, in 400-Level Mechanical Engineering, there is “nothing to cheer about”. He added: “Nigeria at 51 is a celebration of failed promises; education is still in doldrums. Research projects are wishy-washy while laboratories and technical workshops for students’ practicals are in decaying across the nation. As for ASUU, I can only say that the strike is wrongly timed and smacks of selfishness”
Nelson Omenugha, in 400-Level Mass Communication, is the past Student Union president at UNIZIK. He said: “Nigeria at 51 has undergone both positive and negative developments. We are still growing and considering we have just had 12 years of democratic rule, one could see that we are not fully out of the woods. As a growing nation, we have to understand that there are things we can’t wish away. These include industrial unrests, security problems and conflicts of interests. Even in developed countries, these problems exist. The world is not a bed of roses and one can see that government is not sleeping. We need to pray and support government to be more responsive to its duties. Leadership is very tasking and requires people’s goodwill. Government should continue to chart a positive course to tackle ASUU’s demands. Government alone cannot be blamed. What have we done, as individuals, to make this nation great? Let us reflect on our actions.” •Continued on page 31
•BUS KILLS TWO STUDENTS - PG32 • SUG PRESIDENT LAUNCHES SCHOLARSHIP SCHEME - PG33
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
A depressing Pushing anniversary Out
HIS morning, the fourth day of public universities’ lecturers’ strike and with just two days to Nigeria’s 51st Independence Anniversary, I take an objective look at the path taken by President Goodluck Jonathan at last Sunday’s commemoration service of the event. Venue was the Ecumenical Centre, also called the National Christian Worship Centre, in Abuja. Dr. Jonathan had thanked the church for praying for him, and urged her to continue in the prayers. He then went into what is perhaps his most caustic response thus far to critics who complain of his “indecisiveness”. The President declared that he does not have the qualities of a lion, an army general, a Pharaoh, a Goliath or a Nebuchadnezzar; but even at that, God made him President “through the prayers” of the church. He then called for more prayers, urging “God to use me to change this country”. Perhaps Jonathan had at the back of his mind President Barack Obama’s words on his first visit to Africa, after assuming office. In Accra, Ghana, Obama had told Africans that the continent no longer needed strong men; what it needed was “strong democratic institutions”. I agree with Jonathan that prayers must be persistent for the country. However, in addition, we need a charismatic figure, with clearly and compellingly stated goals, who can spur us to positive actions. Prayer, which must be done in faith, without corresponding action or work - in other words, well defined objectives - is useless. The Bible is clear on this: “Dear friends, do you think you’ll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, ‘Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!’ and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup— where does that get you? Isn’t it obvious that
Ngozi Agbo 08054503104 (SMS only)
•firstname.lastname@example.org •email@example.com God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense? (James 2: 14-17, The Message)” A weak, hesitant leader cannot institute, let alone establish “strong democratic institutions”. In the last 51 years, Nigeria has been governed by both burly and diffident characters, but sadly, we still lack what the priest at that Sunday service, Rev. Yusuf Turaki, called a “national ethical system”. It is this, I believe, that will guide our individual conducts, as people with responsibilities (including the parent in the nuclear family). It is this, also, that will develop the requisite character needed to build and sustain “strong democratic institutions”. The “ethical system”, I insist, is the same as the “tough-minded discipline” I quoted last week (from The Message Bible) needed to cure our young and our land of the “foolishness and fads” of the day that have their minds bound (Proverbs 22"15). Let us start with the ongoing ASUU strike (NASU and SSANU, other unions in the universities, have threatened to start theirs next week). In 2009, the government reached and agreement with ASUU, which stands for Academic Staff Union of Universities. The terms include raising the retirement age of lecturers from 65 to 70. Others are improving funding to the universities, and allowing for increased autonomy and academic freedom. It is two years since, but the government is yet to implement any of these. Not too long after the agreement was reached, Jonathan, who was vice-president, became President. Exactly a year ago, at the
He is an influential figure in the Students Union politics of Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU). He is also a writer with two books to his credit. Victor Ogbonna (who recently graduated in History and International Relations) has just released his debut album. IHEANYI IGBOKO (Microbiology graduate) met him.
‘My blessings flow like water’
OW did you develop interest in music? I have been a musical person from childhood. At 12, I was a member of my church band and choir. I started doing music professionally three years ago. What genre of music do you do?
I do gospel hip-hop, sometimes, with a fusion of soul and rap. With this album, does it mean that you will abandon writing and politics? Far from that! I was the band leader of the Assemblies of God Church, Okigwe circuit, before I even went into writing and politics. I started my first book, Determination: A recipe for success, in SSII at the Federal Government College, Okigwe. It was published in my second year in the university. My second book, on history, was released three months later. My third book, The Three Ds of Success: Discover, Develop and Deploy, will be out in the next couple of months. Politically, I have been active as well. Within the same period, I have held positions as the SUG Director of Welfare, High Commissioner of the Department of History and International Relations, President of Humanities and Social Science Students, South east Chapter. Also, I am a Rotaractor and a presidential nominee of the Rotary Club. So, apart from them being my hobby, they are things that are innate. Like I tell people, I will always be in politics to affect lives, keep writing and doing mu-
University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), he promised what some described as a radical transformation of the education sector. There would be a reclamation, restoration and sustenance of quality and ethics in education, he declared. Rather than the establishment of nine new universities, nothing is yet to be seen of this promise. The new varsities’ creation, meanwhile, is a move I have described as purely political and self-serving. In a report carried last week on our Education pages, virtually all are already inviting admission-seekers to sit for their postUTME screening when they lack the most basic of facilities – classrooms.
Now, the President has called for more prayers (and patience, I guess), without giving us any hope in his actions to clutch on. Before he made this speech, ASUU already gave notice of the ongoing one-week strike which it said is a “warning”. The notice was given twoweeks ago, yet the government did not deem it fit to address the lecturers’ grouses. Last Sunday, Jonathan did not refer to ASUU at all. This week, students have been deprived of lectures. So, where is the tough-minded discipline needed to change Nigeria? To build strong democratic institutions? To galvanise our young towards positive acts? To reclaim, restore and sustain ethics in our nation, not just the education sector? It is clear that here, we are full of Godtalks; there are no God-acts. But we do not have to remain at that level of “outrageous nonsense”. People close to the President, especially his speech-writers, should help him to understand that a leader needs courage – loads of it - and firmness to achieve anything. He needs to inspire his team, not demoralize them by wailing of his helplessness. He also needs vision. Vision must be well-defined. It must be broken into identifiable deliverables and bound by time-lines. The Biblical Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar and Goliath are not good examples for anyone, inspite of the fact that they were audacious; this is because theirs bordered on foolhardiness. But the lion? This is the king of the animals. As a person who admires this animal and follows it closely on the Nat Geo Wild channel, I know that the lion is bold, intelli-
sic to inspire people. How do you balance all these with your academics? The truth is finding the right balance for everything we do and giving it proper attention. Thank God that I am through with my academics for now; every other thing will follow naturally. Why did you choose “My blessings flow like water” for the album title? When I reminisce on the uncountable and unmerited favour I receive from God, I cannot thank Him enough. God has always kept me safe from dangers, delivered me from a robbery attack, a fire and even a road accident. God has been gracious. It is in appreciation of God’s goodness that this album was so titled. Now that the promo copy is beginning to gain acceptance, when is the full album billed for release? By the special grace of God, the album will be released before the end of March 2012. You are more popular as “Vicky Endo”. What does the name mean? “Vicky Endo” is coined from my first two names, Victor Chinedu. What makes you different from other gospel artistes? The unique thing about my music is not only that it is motivational; it also gives hope to the hopeless. Where does your inspiration come from? My inspiration revolves around God, my environment and the music that I listen to. What is your message to your fans? I appreciate all my fans and I want them to know they are the reason for my consistency. I also want them to strive for greatness because we all are born great. When you put a date on your dream, it becomes a goal. When you aim for that goal, it becomes a challenge. But when you beat that challenge, the reward is success. Permit me to appreciate the efforts of my sponsor, Mr. Chinedu Nwankwo, and my mentor, Comrade Fortunes Okoronkwo.
gent, works well in a team, is very protective of its clan members, and brooks no nonsense when it is out hunting (you can say when there is a job to be done). Jonathan also dissociated himself from the qualities of an army general. But he is superior; he is the Commander-in-Chief to whom generals answer. Boko Haram may be the monster threatening our security today; it is not the only monster confronting us. From our President we want to see positive action; not flailing of the hands. Ciao
3rd CAMPUSLIFE Annual Awards Entries are now being received, from our correspondents, for the 3rd Coca-Cola/NBC CAMPUSLIFE Annual Awards. Award Categories: There are eight prizes up for grabs. The first seven are: Culture Report Prize, Investigative Report Prize, Entertainment Report Prize, Campus Politics Report Prize, Campus Personality Profile Prize, Opinion Writing Prize and Campus Sports Report Prize. The last and overall, CAMPUSLIFE Reporter of the Year, will be awarded by the judges on the correspondent whose entries make the most impression on them. Eligibility: Entries must be sent in by the particular writer who authored the article. Articles must have been published between September 2010 and August 2011. Deadline: Nominations will be received between September 8 and 30, 2011. Guidelines: • For each category, only ONE entry will be allowed from each nominee • A nominee can apply for all categories. • No nomination sent after close of work on Friday, September 30, 2011, will be accepted. • Each entry, with the title and date of publication as well as category on it, should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The email must have as title: 3rd CAMPUSLIFE Awards. A panel of judges, made up of senior editors and journalism teachers, will decide the winners. The Awards ceremony will hold in November; the date will be announced. Good luck to all our correspondents.
‘With a plan, you can succeed’
OU have compered many events on campus, most recent being the cultural carnival. When did you start? I have been into comedy for five years. This means that I started before I gained admission into Benson Idahosa University (BIU). But as a freshman then, I stayed quiet until I understood the environment. Apart from that, I needed to ensure my studies were on the right path before I could allow anything else. Don’t forget that I came here primarily for study; anything else would take second place. It is almost a trend now for many people to take up occupations different from the course they studied. You are studying Physics Electronics; you seem set on that path. Well, you could say I am trying to diversify... My philosophy is this: if one is already good at a thing, why go to the university to study same? I intend to separate my talent from my credential. I am gifted as a comedian; I am taking special training in Physics Electronics as a foundation to becoming a pilot. As a pilot, I can
Bright Chinule is a 300Level student of Physics Electronics at the Benson Idahosa University (BIU), Benin. He is popularly known as “Mc Bryte” on the campus. He tells JOYCE MARCUS (400-L Mass Communication) how he blends his love for comedy with his desire of to be a pilot. make money and plough it back into entertainment. Being a pilot and comedian, how do you think your audience will picture you? It will help stop the stereotype where people see artistes as mediocres. Artistes - comedians, actors, musicians - are responsible people so what they display on screen is an attitude, not necessarily who they are. Pilot and comedy; how do you blend both? The basic challenge to everything is a plan and I already have one. With a good plan, one can succeed. When I am in job I stay as a pilot but while on leave I do comedy. My life, everything I am, is comedy. If I end up not being a pilot due to unemployment, I will stick to comedy.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Poly elects new union leaders New leaders have emerged for the Student Union at the Federal Polytechnic, Auchi, Edo State. ‘TOSIN AJUWON and OLAWOLE OLASUKANMI (HND I Mass Communication), who monitored the election, report.
HE Federal Polytechnic, Auchi, Edo State, was agog when students went to the polls to elect leaders for the Students Union Government (SUG). The election, described as the best in the history of the institution, saw many candidates jostling for various positions. It all began with the manifesto day at the School Pavilion where contestants engaged in a war of words. Each had two minutes to read out his or her manifesto while students were also given the opportunity to ask questions. Expectedly, the event was not without drama. Some of the aspirants quoted American and British statesmen like Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill. Aristotle, Plato and other Greek philosophers were mentioned randomly. Some also quotes were muddled up and the authors also mixed up, but their supporters were either too carried away or ignorant to notice. Before the manifesto day, the Dean of Students Affairs (DSA), Mr. George Umoru, advised the students to comport themselves and desist from violence during and after the election. The Auchi Polytechnic Electoral Commission (APECO), also gave directions and guidelines on how •Continued from page 29
Respondents from the Delta State University (DELSU), Abraka, are divided on whether to support ASUU or government. Darlington Eghosa, in 400-Level Chemistry, said: “I agree that it is wrong for the government to renege on the agreement it had with ASUU, but the body should also be considerate about the plight of students. “Will embarking on another strike really solve the problems on ground? Many of us have been delayed already and are eager to graduate. I’m appealing to the body to call off the strike and dialogue with government once again.” Marian Okitikpi, a 300-Level Library and Information Science student, is the daughter of a lecturer. She said: “I am in total support of the strike; it is the only language the government understands. If lecturers don’t go on strike, nobody would listen to them. My prayer is that after this warning strike, ASUU should not begin an indefinite strike until I have written my second semester examinations in October.” From the Federal University of Technology (FUT), Minna, Damilola
the election would go. On the day of election, students trooped out in large numbers to exercise their franchise. The institution’s security personnel, in conjunction with some para-military clubs such as Man-O-War, Savannah, Red Cross and Faisal Security Guard were stationed at each polling unit and strategic locations to maintain law and order. Voting started about 9:55am, following an instruction from the APECO Chairman, Mr. Sunday Afolayan, to the presiding officers in various units. While the students voted, Afolayan, accompanied by other electoral officers, toured the various polling units. Later in the day, the presiding officers began to collate results under the watchful eyes of students and agents of the contestants. The exercise ended about 9:30pm. APECO said Louis Osaro, with 2,718 votes, was elected President; Queen Sunday, 1,706 votes, VicePresident; Kafeel Sanni as Secretary-General; Harrison Ossai, 1,684 votes, Director of Welfare. In a chat with CAMPUSLIFE, Afolayan charged the winners to work hard in ensuring that the challenges confronting students are addressed, “just as they promised during their campaigns”.
•APECO chairman, Mr. Afolayan (right) announces the results as agents and security personnel look on.
•Students keep watch over “ballot boxes” as collation goes on.
Our blues, by students Adejola, in 300-Level Computer Science, said the educational sector is in disarray. “Our leaders do not want to breed literate people as tomorrow’s leaders. When enough is not invested in education where do the leaders come from? At last year’s independence, Boko Haram struck. Now, it has become even worse. There is nothing to celebrate in this country. Even life has become very unsafe.” Temi Ipinmoroti, a 400-Level Geology student, said: “A society where politics has taken the order of the day; it has eaten into the education sector whereby if you are not part of the know-how you can’t be in the doing process. They have made it a ping-pong game, using the most important and vital sector for their selfish end. They can’t pay lecturers well; the lecturers in turn pour their aggression on innocent students whom they either collect money from or force the girls to go to bed with them. And students now know they just have to play by this just to pass which leads us to having quack graduates.” Abisoye Biobaku is in 200-Level History and International Relations. “The last one year has been full of intrigues, suspense, legislative indolence, executive incapacitation and judicial face-off. Nigeria has been confronted with serious problems that I doubt the competence of the current administration to lead the country to any height”. Ife Makinde, 300-Level Mass Communication: “Nigeria at 51 is not worth celebrating. Millions of naira were spent on the last celebration and no improvement. The nation remains static and while the government said our (GDP) is rising, there is no improvement in the lifestyle of the man on the street. Our president should take drastic
measure on issues affecting our welfare.” Students of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, pride themselves on their “aggressive political consciousness and awareness”. They also expressed feelings. Gbenga Awoseye is in 500-Level Law: “Nigeria at 51; a good people, yes. But good enough that Asia’s small scale industries grow big on our backs, flooding our own country with their overly under-standard products such that getting a genuine original has become a Herculean task. A great nation? Definitely no!” Oluwaloseyi Babaeko is of the department of Local Government Studies: “I love Nigeria and I am proud to be one despite her shortfalls! However, it is crystal clear that there is urgent need to readjust our collective socio-political ‘potentiometer’ to a reasonable socio-political voltage as our dear nation clocks 51. I have no doubt that Nigeria will be great and Nigerians will smile if governments at various levels are committed and sincere. God bless Nigeria.” For Gbenro Oladipo, in 300-Level English, there is nothing impressive about the country and the leaders. “No nation in the world can experience corruption at its peak, bad leadership of the highest order, superlative insecurity and still be as ‘sane’ as we are. Some nations of the world didn’t experience a quarter of that before they fell. Our greatest impediments are the idle old men at the seat of power. They suck. “We embraced democracy without building the institutions and discipline that go with it. This is one of the most terrible things that happened to this country. It is time we stopped running rat races.”
•Some BUK students in class.
Some students come from privileged background; others have always looked for their needs, including food. ZEENAT IBRAHIM (400-Level Mass Communication, Bayero University, Kano) examines the plight of students who come from humble background.
Plight of indigent students
GROUP of 300-Level Mass Communication students of the Bayero University, Kano (BUK) was seated, waiting for one of their lecturers. This gangly fellow, a classmate, walked in. Midway into the classroom, he collapsed. Pandemonium broke out. “It was a most pathetic and pitiable sight which I pray never to witness again,” said one of the girls in the class. “We were confused; while some said he was sick, others began to scream that a bomb had been detonated by the dreaded Boko Haram sect.” Eventually, some students went to his aid. It was gathered that the
boy had not eaten for days. He fainted because he was weak. Many students, from poor homes, go through very hard times to keep body and soul together. Sadly, it is those who are frivolous or get entangled in criminal activities that tend to get more attention. This gives the impression that a considerable number is “managing” considerably well. The scenario painted abobve is not isolated. There are several unreported cases of severe hardships being experienced by indigent students on the campuses. •Continued from page 34
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
CAMPUS LIFE Catholic students celebrate
EMBERS of the Nigerian Federation of Catholic Students (NFCS), Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) chapter, have celebrated their yearly harvest in style. The event took place at the St Joseph Catholic Church, Oru, Ogun State. The theme was: “Harvest of praise thanksgiving and love”. It started with a mass service anchored by the officiating Priest, Reverend Father Chris Nze.
Ex-rector dead •Members of the fellowship’s choir rendering a song.
Fun as fellowship sends off shepherd
CAMPUS fellowship, Fellowship of Christian Students (FCS), at the Federal University of Technology, Minna (FUT, Minna) has sent off its graduating students. The Chapel of Grace, venue of the event, was filled with students, who came to felicitate with their senior colleagues. In a sermon, David Egbunu, a former president of the fellowship, said the world needed a generation that would bring salvation to it.
From David Osu FUT MINNA
“Aside the fact that lack of knowledge is the reason people perish, the dearth of righteousness is yet another undeniable cause of the current decadence and depravity,” he said. He admonished his listeners to ensure that the “much-awaited transformation and revival” areattained. Clad in colourful indigenous attires, the graduating students
marched to the stage and sang praise songs, which threw the congregation into rapturous jubilation. In a chat with CAMPUSLIFE, a graduating student, Greg Elkan, in 500-Level Mathematics and Computer, said: “Words cannot quantify my joy”, adding:“the world awaits our impact”. Queen Adamu, 500-Level Chemical Engineering, said: “I am grateful to God; I am joyful.” Paul Itor, 500-Level Mechanical Engineering, said: “I want to be a job creator.”
From Tosin Adesile UNILAG
Students Affairs (DSA) was determined to frustrate members of staff who wanted special preference for a particular hostel. But students of the institution, who spoke to
CAMPUSLIFE, said anyone who wanted to change a system has to step on toes. The student and members of staff who benefited from the initiative are grateful to Amund. The students hope the challenges they encountered in the exercise would be addressed.
Fellowship gets new president
HE University Joint Christian Mission (UJCM), a campus fellowship at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, has concluded its annual Missions Week. The theme of the event was: “In the days of His power”. Part of activities included the inauguration of a new leadership. The event started with a drama night, where the UJCM drama unit performed two plays: Watchman at ease and Where are the sons? The plays centred on the need for Christians to reach out to lost souls. The choir also thrilled members with beautiful renditions. Pastor Joel Oke, a minister from the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), urged the stu-
Bus kills two students
Varsity reforms hostel allocation
Parliament suspended HE crisis rocking the National Association of Political Science Students’ Association (NAPSS), Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), IleIfe chapter, took another dimension when the congress unanimously suspended the NAPSS parliament for “gross misconduct”. Their suspension followed a petition by some members of the association. They were said to have flouted the order of the Head of Political Science Department, Dr.
•King Jaja Hall, one of the male hostels at UNILAG
HE era of manual allocation of halls of residence to students of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) seems to have gone. The Prof Kayode Amund-led Students Affairs office now allocates hostels to students electronically. Rumours were rife that the Dean of
FORMER Acting Rector of the Auchi Polytechnic (AUCHI POLY), Edo State, Mr Luis Remi Akhagbosu, is dead. He died on September 11, after a brief illness, a family source said. His remains have been deposited in an undisclosed mortuary in the state. Akhagbosu, who was a onetime head of Mass Communication Department and former Dean of School of Business Stud-
From Caleb Adebayo OAU ILE-IFE
dents to recognise their part in bringing back lost or backsliding souls. The new leadership is led by Pastor Olajide Olagunju. Meanwhile, the awards presentation for the First Thrill House Annual Bible Quiz held on August 17, was conducted last week. It was held at the Biological Sciences Lecture Theatre. Twenty students were given prizes. Laptops were given to the first three positions; 17 runnersup got books. Olalekan Adegbola, who came first, said he was proud to have won the contest and gave thanks to God.
•O. Kolapo, the assistant pastor.
•SUG aspirant dead
RAGEDY hit the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) penultimate week. The institution was thrown into mourning when a private bus hit a motorcycle carrying students of FUTO to Umuchima, a nearby village. The accident occured in front of the FUTO Primary School. An eyewitness said the driver was a learner. “The students were badly wounded,” said the eyewitness. But while being taken to the FUTO Medical Centre, one of the injured, Joe Martins, a 100-Level student of Industrial Microbiology, died. He was said to be the only child of his par-
From Modestus Diko OOU
In a sermon, he urged the students to help the needy, saying “whenever you save a soul by attending to his or her need, a million souls have been saved.” After the service, the students went to the bazaar market. Speaking to CAMPUSLIFE, the harvest chairman, Francis Akhator, thanked God that “after many challenges”, the harvest was a success.
From Nosakhare Uwadiae AUCHI POLY
ies, was Acting Rector between 2002 and 2007. The deceased was noted for his defence of students who practised journalism on campus. A lecturer in Mass Communication, Mr Usman Momoh, expressed sadness. Valentine Oronsaye, a student, told CAMPUSLIFE that Akhagbosu’s death was a monumental loss to the students. Josephine Olorunloju said: “His death is very sad. What a paradoxical life we live in.” From Sikiru Akinola OAU, ILE-IFE
Sat Obiyan, who doubles as the patron of the association. Also, they were alleged of undermining the power of the congress by allocating sitting allowance for themselves. In a letter dated September 13, 2011, which was jointly signed by the president and secretary of the association, Richard Onatunji and Julius Megbojini, it urged the parliamentary arm of the association to desist from holding any meeting as they would not be recognised, pending the determination of the petition filed before the disciplinary committee of the association, which have two months to complete its findings.
From Mabel Opara and Obinna Ufomba FUTO, ABSU
ents. The other passenger, who was a girl, died the following day but the okada rider survived. It was gathered that the girl was a student of the Federal Polytechnic, Nekede, who visited a friend. In a related development, an aspirant for the post of financial secretary in the Student Union Government (SUG) at the Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU), Chukwuemeka Otusi, is dead. He died of injuries sustained in an accident involving the motorcycle on which he was riding and a bus. It was a head-on collision. He was taken to an undisclosed hospital where he died the following day. Chukwuemeka was the treasurer of the SUG and a 400-Level student of Urban and Regional Planning.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
CAMPUS LIFE Terrorism is alien to Islam, say Muslim students •Ajimobi, Dangote hailed HE Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN), Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) chapter, has praised the President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, for assisting victims of the Ibadan flood. A statement by MSSN leadership, reads: “The society appreciates the philanthropic gesture of Alhaji Aliko Dangote towards the victims of the Ibadan flood disaster. We pray Allah to reward him and others who have contributed to this cause with good intentions.” “We pray Allah to make our nation a better place to live, keep our lands safe from destruction, forgive us our sins, have mercy on us and guide our leaders. It is important for individuals and organisations to render support and expertise to alleviate the sufferings of the victims of the flood.” The MSSN has condemned the Boko Haram sect, accusing it of hiding behind religion to shed blood. In a statement, the Muslim students criticised the killings of innocent citizens and other attacks being carried out by the sect, which perceives western education as “sin.” The students lauded the managements of the University of Ibadan (UI) and University of Benin (UNIBEN) for the security measures they took to ward off the al-
•Some members of the FUTO SIFE contingent.
Idah Poly students win SIFE competition
TUDENTS in Free Enterprise (SIFE) has organised the 2011 national competition for its members in various institutions. The event, held at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, was attended for the first time by some schools. Forty institutions competed for the prize, which included repre-
From Gerald Nwokocha LAGOS
senting Nigeria at the international competition next month in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Federal Polytechnic, Idah, Kogi State contingent, won the competition. Students of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri
(FUTO), who won last year’s edition, came second this year. Last Thursday, the FUTO team, led by its President, Samuel Igbokwe, visited the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chigozie Asiabaka. He expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the tournament and pledged continued support for the student entrepreneurs.
From Sikiru Akinola OAU
leged bomb threat from Boko Haram. They urged security operatives to be on the alert and avoid overzealousness so that individual rights and integrity would not be trampled upon. The MSSN statement reads: “We condemn all violations on the sanctity of human life. Anyone who kills an innocent, or condones such acts should be ready to stand before Allaah on the day of recompense when they will be called to account for their past misdeeds on every soul killed.” Palpable tension has enveloped OAU following the rumoured threat by Boko Haram to attack some universities. Security operatives have been stationed at the campus gate while movement in out and of the university is being monitored. Students who spoke to CAMPUSLIFE chided the Federal Government for what they called “weak” security measures. Olatunji Abidoye, in 200-Level Microbiology, said: “The president has failed within his 100 days in office to justify the mandate and confidence reposed in him by Nigerians. The threat by Boko Haram to detonate bombs in Nigerian universities shows the inability of the presidency to arrest insecurity in the land.”
VC includes students in committee
From Steve Igboko ABSU
O carry students along in the administration of Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU), the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chibuzo Ogbuagu, has set up an 11-man committee on hostels and upgrading of municipal facilities. Students are part of the members. Part of the committee’s job is to identify needed repair to be carried out in the hostels and to get estimates for the work. The committee is mandated to complete the assignment two weeks. Members include Prof Adolphus Udensi, Deputy VC (Administration), Mr. Ernest Onuoha, Registrar; Mr. Ndukwe Dibia, Bursar; Mr. Udo
An exciting Students’ Week
•Some of the students who benefitted from the scholarship.
SUG president launches scholarship scheme
HE Students Union President of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Michael Obiukwu, has flagged-off an annual scholarship scheme for undergraduates. The event started with FUTO students. Obiukwu said: “Though tongues and tribes may differ, but in brotherhood we stand. Let us forget our differences; we must remember our common humanity and dedicate ourselves to the tasks that lie ahead of us which is love for one another.” He said the scholarship scheme is a vision he had nursed for a long time, saying lending a helping hand to people was another way of serving God. Eighteen indigent students, mainly orphans, benefited from the scheme. They qualified after going through oral and written tests. The beneficiaries received N10,000 each, which was paid into their bank ac-
TUDENTS of the Federal University of Technology, Minna (FUT MINNA), Niger State, were excited as they marked the 2011 Student Union week. The week-long celebration opened with a marathon. The winner was given N 10,000. There was also the old school day and students were clad in various outdated attires. A programme was also held to sensitise the students on the dangers of drug abuse andHIV/AIDS. Mr. Femi Oluseyi, who came
From Gerald Nwokocha FUTO
counts. They were also issued certificates by the SUG president. The students, who said they initially thought it was a joke, thanked Obiukwu for the gesture and hoped the programme would be sustained. The beneficiaries include: Anthonia Odor, 100-Level Biology; Chijioke Nwaeke, 100-Level Polymer and Textile Engineering; Stanley Odinmba, 100-Level Transport Management Technology; James Okoro, 100-Level Materials and Metrological Engineering; Michael Egwuonu, 100-Level Information Management Technology; Onyeka Nwabudo, 100-Level Mechanical Engineering. Others are Sarah Peter, 200-Level Environmental Technology; Obinna Anyanwu, 200-Level Petroleum Engineering; Chukwukadibia Ukwuije,
Nwokocha, Dean of Students’ Affairs; Mr Onyeka Nwosu, Deputy Director of Works Department and Mr. Uduma Okwor, Christian Afulike, Students’ Union President; Amarachi Okoroafor, SUG Vice President; Ikechukwu Agwuogu, SUG Speaker; Nobel Emenike, SUG Director of Welfare and Samuel Enyinnaya, SUG Director of Health. Barely nine months after assuming office, Ogbuagu has bagged an award from the Students’ Representative Council (SRC) as the most student-friendly VC. Receiving the award, Ogbuagu thanked the students for the honour. He urged them to ensure that they make laws for the peace, order and good governance of the SUG.
200-Level Environmental Technology; Christian Ndukwe, 200-Level Elect Electrical Engineering; Elvis Adiele, 100-Level Food Science; Paul Okereke, 100-Level Industrial Chemistry; Goodluck Nwachu, 100-Level Landscape Architecture; Juliet Njoku, 200-Level Biochemistry, Stephen Onwe, 100-Level Biochemistry.
From Faith Olaniran FUT, MINNA
from Niger State National Primary Care Development Agency, told students various ways to contract the virus. The SUG also held an inter-faculty debate, which was won by the School of Engineering. The schools of Environmental and Environmental Technology came second; the School of Information and Communication Technology was third.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
When girls fall in love Matters of the heart affect girls in various ways. HANNAH OJO (300Level English, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife) captures the drama of campus love.
HERE comes a time when the heart beats, the head spins and the tummy bubbles with butterflies just like a budding flower waiting to be pollinated. Some describe it as a madness which may last for minutes, months or even years. Not many girls escape it. It is a bug that drives many girls crazy. It is the magical four-letter word, LOVE. What happens when female students fall love snared? Bukola Aborode, in 400-Level Computer Engineering Science at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife, Osun State, said: “Mummy’s words become old school, auntie’s experience turns to ‘that was then’ and the five-word sentence: It won’t happen to me becomes self affirmation. But when the scales fall from the eyes and the fantasies crash, reality dawns and then a heart is broken. This is the plight of many girls on campus”. There is more to the obsession with love, says a 300-Level English student, who did not want her name in print. “For a girl, hate her less but it can’t be helped. She has found the incredible. Words fail as they are not enough to express the feeling. She takes extra care in looking good. She spends more on recharge cards and never let go of her phone; she even compromises some of her values and thinks less about her aspiration in life as distractions are many. Some alienate friends as they want only the lover’s company. Tears are shed; at the slightest provocation and at any little misunderstanding, she gets mighty worried.” Incredible things surely do happen on campus; here girls are in emotional imprisonment. Right from their 100-Level days, some make their primary assignment sec-
Plight of indigent students •Continued on page 31
•A group of girlfriends, all undergraduates.
ondary. Some play the housewife role even from the hostel. A source who pleaded anonymity, said she has a friend who brings in her boyfriend’s cloth to wash in the hostel and spends considerable time daily cooking for him. She sometimes performs what students call “the night duty” by spending the night with the boy. You think that is weird, then wait for this. A girl pressured her parents to give her money for bed space; she comes to school and decides to squat in a friend’s corner which she poses as her own whenever her parents come visiting. Where has the over N50,000 money for rent gone to? Answer: her boyfriend’s pocket - a final year student who eventually graduates and leaves her to paddle her own canoe. Is love simply an obsession? What won’t girls do for love? Which extent will they not go just to satisfy the one whom some affectionately call B-POM (meaning Best Part of
Me)? Oyindamola Adedeji, in 400-Level Zoology, offers her thoughts. “At this stage, love shouldn’t be an obsession. Could you believe some girls even have insomnia when they hear gossips about their guy? Girls are easily distracted; it’s only those of them who are strong that can combine love affairs and acada (studies) demand perfectly. This end credence to the discovery that an average trader on the streets of Lagos could be more enlightened than some female students when it comes to matters of the heart.” The cost of loving is often inestimable as it runs to both ends. Just as guys jilt girls, some girls too do have their turn in times of sweet revenge especially by making mugus (fools) of some boys. But sometimes, a girl’s lost is often inestimable. Some lose their dignity and never fully recover until they graduate; something that affects their final result.
With the economy in a shambles and the standard of education declining, it is evident that the worst hit is the poor, who struggle to acquire formal education. “The situation is not helped by the fact that some lecturers always try to extort money from these students. To worsen the predicament of poor students, after they struggle against all odds to get their degrees, there would be no jobs to help those who borrowed pay off the debts.” This was the submission of Amina Abubakar, in 300-Level Accountancy in another northern university. Aside being unable to feed well, these students cannot afford decent accommodation, have limited means of combating health- related problems, and lack the financial capability to access the internet for research studies to aid their studies. Those, who spoke to CAMPUSLIFE, said if nothing was done to alleviate the challenges confronting less-privileged students, there would be “a complete erosion of confidence and hope in Nigeria.” They added that the unlucky flock could easily be misled to hold the view that life is only for those who could fight dirty and rough to eke a living, thereby leading to robbery and other vices. Zainab Ibrahim is in 400-Level Mass Communication at Bayero
University, Kano (BUK), she said: “It is people who have been neglected like this who will take the lead in wreaking havoc on the society through robbery, scams and fraud. They also become good recruits for bloodletting escapades and other anti-social activities. In the end, the society which should feel proud to have brilliant persons to carry its dreams to greater heights will be compelled to reap the odious and unpalatable harvest of neglect by our leaders.” George Adedayo, a 200-Level student at the Kogi State University, Ayingba, said: “Nigerian leaders should encourage students to concentrate on their studies by giving them monthly stipends which would naturally reduce cases of hunger on campus. As the saying goes, a hungry man is an angry man. If food is deleted from the myriad of problems facing students on campus, the cases of students collapsing in lecture rooms and begging for alms would naturally disappear”. Halimah Muhammed, in 200Level Accountancy at the Ibrahim Babangida University (IBBU), Lapai, said: “Vacation jobs should be created for students so that petty needs like food, clothing and accommodation can be solved from the stipends they would be paid. In a situation where there is no job for them to pick, some welfare programmes to enable them make ends meet could be established.”
Re: “Expelled medical students allege victimisation” RUN on this page in our December 2, 2010 edition, Dr. A.A. Akande of Chemical Pathology and Immunology, College of Health Sciences, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, was linked with allegations of sex-for-marks business with some female students and the subsequent victimisation of 37 students who were expelled from the school on the ground that they were the ones who reported the incident of sex-for-mark to the ViceChancellor. We do not have proof that Dr. A.A. Akande was in anyway involved in any act of these allegations and we hereby retract the said publication and apologise to Dr. A.A. Akande, the University of Ilorin authority/ community and the general public for the embarrassment caused by the publication. - Editor
It was the last day for the annual post-UTME screening for admission-seekers at the Federal Polytechnic, Bida, Niger State. The day started well, but events that followed have led to students being sent home. BOLA-IGE ALABI (HND I Mass Communication) reports.
Protest as woman ‘snatches’ man’s organ L AST Saturday, students of the Federal Polytechnic, Bida (FEDPOLYBIDA), Niger State, barricaded the popular Doko Road, shut down its two main entrance. They were protesting the “management’s inaction against the disappearance of a student’s organ”. The incident occurred during the last post–Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinatiion (postUTME) screening, when a final year student of Office Technology and Management (name withheld) claimed a female postUTME candidate had caused his manhood to disappear.
Speaking to CAMPUSLIFE, the victim said he was directing the lady to the venue of the screening after which both of them shook hands. “I was only trying to be of help. But, a few minutes after she left me at the (Poly’s) Small Gate, I found out that my manhood was missing. I had to alert the people around who helped in arresting the lady.” CAMPUSLIFE gathered that the female candidate who gave her name as Linda confessed to the act. She reportedly told her captors that she was sent by her masters, who empowered her to snatch the manhood. She said the
penis could not be restored. The polytechnic authority handed her over to the police. But this did not quite appease the protesting students who said the inability of the school to prevail on the lady to return the student’s organ was “not acceptable”. The Rector, Engr. Sule Abdullahi, who came to address the protesters, pleaded for calm. He promised that “as the lady was still in police custody, the organ would be restored.” By Monday, about five more students have reported missing organs. Fellow students were fingered as responsible in these cases. By this time, the first victim complained of weakness and had to be taken home to his family to seek a remedy. Before noon, students gathered
•The Rector, Engr. Abdullahi, addressing the students after the initial protest on Saturday.
again for another protest. This became vioolent as they vandalised some polytechnic property. Mobile policemen were rede-
ployed to restore order. In a circular, management announced a compulsory mid-semester break, in a bid to restore normalcy.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Y face is wrinkled and my bones frail. I am a giant in my 50s but still totter with the soft legs of a child. I nurse a deep pain in my inner recess; this has made me a sad being. In April, the nations of the world extended goodwill messages and, sincerely, I lost sleep as I kept on musing over those wonderful lines in the confines of my room. My heart pulsated and the air around me was fresh and promising. I told the rest of the world I had found love again; after years of sorrow and dashed hopes. So far, I am yet to get over the heartbreak I suffered when Baba Segun came around. I mean, my friend who has since moved back to his farm in Ota. I gave him my heart twice, despite his status as an ex-convict. I had been warned never to trust him. But I turned deaf ears. Baba Segun promised me schools in my compound would change to Harvard. He boasted there would be uninterrupted power supply by the end of 2007. He made it clear to me that I would never go hungry again. That all I needed was to stretch forth
I am a sad being my hands and my basket of hope would be filled. Baba promised to change the condition of my funeral homes called hospitals. He pledged to turn my roads to the sparkling streets of New York. But, years later, it dawned on me that respite was far. I was deep in the woods. Yet he kept on assuring me that all would be well. When it appeared his grand scheming had failed him, he crawled back like a green snake into his farm. I would not allow him play with my heart a third time. That was not all. He quickly devised another trick. He asked a goslow fellow to try his stroke of luck. Of course, he knew I am vulnerable to such shenanigans. Perhaps, that was my Achilles Heel as I fell flat for the trick. In his inaugural speech, the slow-motion man told me that in 2020, economy would stand shoulder-high with that of Singapore and China. I was happy. He assured me
that graduates without jobs should heave sighs of relief. Few years later, the slow-motion man succumbed to a physiological condition. I have forgotten the name our family doctor called it. As custom demands, Mr Goodie-Goodie had to take over. But I am afraid the same spate of disappointment and abuse may continue. I am scared because he doesn’t look different to me. I am no Nostradamus but I could see through his “I-had-no-shoes” cliché. His disguised smile had not convinced even the marines. I guess he feigns simplicity and modesty to win acceptance. A goat that hunts with a lion is bound to end up in the big cat’s stomach. It is close to two years but nothing has really changed. Still, I drink agbo (traditional herb) whenever I am sick because hospitals here are mortuaries. I have no food and my
water is not safe. I pay much for electricity but darkness is what I get. My boys have taken to guns, drugs and “runs” because there is no glimpse of hope. My girls now walk naked, selling cheap sex on the streets of Spain and Italy. I am a sad being. My children go to schools where there are no competent teachers except underpaid misfits. My kids sleep in the cold under bridges and open stalls because they have no roof over their heads. There is disquiet in my land. I cannot sleep with my two eyes closed because the police are now robbers, breaking into my house at will. There is blood on the streets and smoke in the sky. I am a sad being. Now, what has Mr Goodie-Goodie achieved after months of doublespeak? Violence, inflation, poverty and Harams of all kinds. Can you see why I am a sad being? Mr Goodie-Goodie’s wail “I had no shoes,” no longer makes sense to me. He has been carried away by perks of office. That is why he could not gauge the pain in the land. Or can he imagine how it feels to spend several years in school only to become beggars, petty thieves stealing on-
All hail Nigeria at 51
By Tunmise Oladipo email@example.com
HEN Nigeria celebrated her 50th independence anniversary last year, many
including I knew that the best is yet to come for the country but anxiously hoped that, by 2011,when we will celebrate the 51st anniversary, the nation would have reached the height that Nigerians would be proud to say we are, indeed, the giant of Africa. But, unfortunately, at 51, there are few things we can point to as reasons to celebrate. Gone are the days when the Independence anniversary is marked with devotion and communal spirit by Nigerians; now, many would rather spend the holiday staying indoors with their families than hanging out with friends because of insecurity. Nigeria is a country blessed with huge human and natural resources but, unfortunately, she has fallen into the hands of scavengers who are selfish through and through, with no
thought of moving the country forward. Resources have thoroughly been mismanaged, electricity is in comatose, hospitals are run as mortuaries, education is in decay and corruption seems the way of life. Our problem is simply lack of visionary leadership. I doubt if there can still be selfless leaders like Dr. Nnamdi Azikwe, Chief Obafemi Awolowo and Gen Murtala Muhammed, all of blessed memories. These were leaders who were not particularly concerned about themselves but about the people they governed. In today’s Nigeria, charisma and character have totally disappeared in governance. Why have today’s leaders failed to follow the path of our past heroes? Why have they refused to serve Nigeria with love, strength and faith? In fact, it is no news that
corruption is a cankerworm that has eaten deep into the roots of this nation and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) charged to tackle the malaise is in deep slumber. Nigerians are tired of listening to empty promises of lying leaders. Instead, they want leaders who can address their welfare. This year’s anniversary should, therefore, be a period when serious actions are taken. They should go into schools - primary, secondary or tertiary institutions most especially the public ones and see the condition in which the students are learning. They should also extend their visit by going around hospitals to see why Nigerian medical doctors would prefer to practice in other countries rather than contribute to
For the love of country
OR the love of our country; through prayer? Through fasting? Through persistent grumbling and complaints? Through killing? Through Boko Haram? Or through bombing? If there is a line I like in the National Anthem, it is: “Oh God of creation, direct our noble cause/Guide our leaders right, help our youths the truth to know”. It goes on and, at the end of the anthem, I let out a sigh of relief, renewed with faith and confidence in my country. Then I wonder in my subconscious:“Nigeria, a country that strongly believes in God. When you move to this place, they call on God, you move to another spot, the name of God is mentioned. People put all their hopes in God, good! But will God come down to set things right for us?’ I am not anti-God. I just feel that when people want to familiarise themselves with the Creator, they should also be catalysts in any place they can function effectively. I was at a forum penultimate Thursday and I admonished the youth gathered in the hall to rise up to recite the National Anthem and the next thing was murmurings from them. Worried, I asked what the problem was. Retorts flew back at me: “What has Nigeria done for us?” Stunned,
I fired back: “What have you done for Nigeria?” There and then a flurry of responses came from them, turning a seminar into a discussion class. The youth felt so pissed and stood their ground and at the point of reciting the National Pledge instead of them saying “...To serve Nigeria with all my strength”, they said: “To serve Nigeria is not by force”. I chuckled and let them be opinion, since I have been taught in the school of journalism that opinions are free and facts sacred. Though their act may not be news, the truth remains that things said, with time, penetrate the subconscious paving the way for acts that one might not have envisaged. The National Anthem and pledge are meant to create a bond between an individual and his country, but in a situation where the individual’s mind is set for negativity and hatred towards the country, when will change set in? Terrorism, militancy, bombings, killings, uncontrollable rainfall leading to massive destruction of the country’s assets, kidnapping, the almighty Boko Haram, all these and many more are things that came up as a result of the intense hatred individuals have developed for the country. Individual’s unquantifiable love for money leading to
siphoning, the unbeatable corruption, rage has taken the hearts of men and women. Many die innocently, wining and dining somewhere are the key nation movers, eating, embezzling the national cake and giving the left-over to billions of people to share. God is love. If the position of God is identified then we can easily figure out where love stands in the country. It is said over and over again that in a lawless country, there are no sinners. Nigeria has rules and regulations but many flout them and no one reprimands. Who is blameless? Can we find an upright man? Nigeria is not the worst or best country on earth, but for us, it is our home and there is no where we can run to. The affluent can always take turns to fly out of the country within a twinkle of the eye; but where would the poor and average man stay? Nigeria of course! Ironically, it is the voice of the poor and afflicted we hear more. The rich and affluent are at one corner enjoying their “cool cash”. The President, his vice, the governors, ministers, local government chairmen and women, members of the House of Representative, the Speaker of the house, rectors, vice-chancellors, commissioners,
By Gilbert Alasa firstname.lastname@example.org
ions and salt at Idumota market? I have been used, abused and bemused. Yet nobody cares. That is why I am a sad being. Gilbert, 200-L Foreign Languages, UNIBEN the father land. After this might have been done, they should think deeply how Nigeria can overcome poor governance, abject poverty how she can find lasting solution to insecurity and the steps to be taken to fight corruption. By the time they might have gone through this tour, they would be able to see that Nigeria does not have any cause to blow her 51st independence anniversary If all the aforementioned points had been thoroughly examined before, Nigeria would have had every cause to count her blessings but in spite of all these shortcomings, I still have hope and pray that a time will come when every Nigerian will wake up each morning to say God bless Nigeria! Wishing all Nigerians happy Independence anniversary, in advance. Tunmise, recently graduated from English, UNILORIN
Tackling indecent dressing
By Adenike Ashogbon email@example.com
senators, those in the cabinet, the lawmakers, the judiciary, the police amongst others; even fourth unconstitutional arm of government - the media - are not the best. We all have a part in the guilt. As a matter of fact they all have one issue or the other, but must we dine and rejoice or blow the trumpet all the time? Let us ask ourselves what we stand to gain after much criticisms and condemnation of those in power. Let’s ask ourselves what we want to do, write it out and work things out for our good. The present condition of the country is not the best but it can get better with God and individual determination. Adenike, HND II Mass Comm., LASPOTECH
CCORDING to the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary 7th edition, “indecent” means showing that part of the body that is usually covered. Thus, “indecent dressing” is a dressing that exposes some parts of the body that ought to be covered by clothing. Indecent dressing is really a problem facing virtually all the higher institutions. It has become a culture for girls on campus to expose some parts of the body like cleavages, in transparent wears in the name of fashion. The question is, must ladies dress indecently before they will be admired, their shapes and beauty seen? The answer is a capital NO. Rather, indecent dressing attracts insult, assault and even sexual harassment. On campus, we normally hear cases of rape, sexual harassment and threatening statements or words from lecturers and male students. These are, sometimes, caused by indecent dressing. Whoever exposes any part of her body is advertising herself to the public; and we all know what advertisement does. It is a notice, picture or film telling people about an available product, service or job opening. Some cases of sexual harassment and rape are traceable to the exposure of the sensitive parts of the body, which sends the
By Ogechi Ajah firstname.lastname@example.org
information to men’s brain and triggers their emotion. Men are motivated by sight. Some students dress decently at home but, once on campus, the reverse will be the case. In a bid to “belong”, their mode of dressing will totally change. How do we stop indecent dressing? To stop indecency in dressing on campus, there is every need for us to start it at home. Parents especially mothers should be careful on the type of clothes they buy for their children when they are young. As the child becomes a young adult, excesses should always be checked. This is because the time tested maxim says “charity begins at home”. Campus managements, on the other hand, should bring out a compulsory mode of dressing and ensure that every student abides by them. Lecturers too should always see that no student enters their office or class without being properly dressed. I strongly believe that when these suggestions are strictly adhered to, there would be modesty in what our girls wear on and off the campuses. Ogechi, 300-Level Educational Administration and Planning, FCE Pankshin
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Neurobics -taking your brain to the gym VER heard of aerobics? Well, when you work out your brain with an aim to exercise certain portions which ordinarily have been left docile, you talk about neurobics. It is immensely important to engage your brain in work outs; doing this regularly actually helps prevent mental cognitive decline. Researchers say that the brain is probably the most By Uche Ogbonna effective organ in the human body and has capacity email@example.com to create new neurons even at a person’s old age. 08055061278 While severe mental decline is usually caused by sensory associations important enough to engage disease, most age-related losses in memory or the circuitry required to really exercise your brain. motor skills simply result from inactivity and a Let us take a look at some common mental lack of mental exercise and stimulation. exercises that will help us stir up that box of genius In other words, if you do not use your brain, you called the brain. Something that all students can will lose it! engage in and have results! The key to neurobics is tasking the brain to They can be fun things too. Let us see some: process and perform new tasks and assignments •Get dressed for class with your eyes closed which are not regular or routine. This stimulates •Take an entirely different route to your class or certain parts of the otherwise dormant parts of the the library or hostel brain. •Try and feel your way through your handbag Routine actions become so automatic to the for your keys without looking inside individual that most of his actions are done largely •Use your non dominant hand to brush your unconsciously. Such automated or unconscious teeth or eat or comb your hair actions require less activity in the brain, and •Engage new smells. Go to a bakery. Smell a exercise it less. With the help of neurobics, it is flower claimed that one can stimulate the brain effectively. •Shop somewhere different Neurobics as a term was coined by late •If your habit is to eat early, break the routine neurobiologists, Lawrence Katz and Manning for a change and instead go for a walk Rubin, in their book Keep your brain alive to describe •You always take your bath with warm unique mental exercises designed to keep the brain water….try out an ice cold bath alert. The term was popularized by Lawrence Katz •Stop and have a chat with someone you do not as early as 1999 and since then has become a have any discussion with common phrase in cognitive memory treatment •You totally love your room all quiet and serene, and enhancement. try playing some music The fundamental principle here is that by trying •If you go out every weekend, stay indoors for out new tasks, certain docile areas of the brain are the next forced to work and therefore more activity is •You spend leisure moments watching movies achieved. This enhances cognitive functions of the now try reading a book brains and improves memory retention. These •If you are naturally fast walker, try to walk at activities need not be strenuous and some are quite half speed and vice versa simple to do from time to time, for example dialing •Try out a new hobby. a phone number or brushing your teeth with your •Do something totally new today. Break your non-dominant hand, i.e. for a right handed person, routine dialing or brushing with your left hand etc These are very simple and fun stuff that we can Not everything that is new provides the kind or all do from time to time to rejuvenate our brain strength of nerve cell stimulation that is necessary cells and refresh our cognitive responses. to activate new brain circuits and enhance This is crucial for students because they need neurotrophin production. For example, if you their brains to be kept vibrant. These exercises can normally write with a pen and one day choose to help grow and sustain retentive memory write everything in pencil, you’ve broken your advantages and this will definitely be an advantage routine and are doing something new. So, in some for the student who wants to remain outstanding. small way, you’ve changed the patterns of activity This article has been sponsored by the Fidelity in the parts of your brain activated by touching. Flex account. Do you have the Flex Factor? But such a small change wouldn’t recruit new Sign up now!
On and Off Campus
By Solomon Izekor 08061522600
•The new queen, Chinenye, flanked by her friends.
A new queen for Hall D There was much excitement when Hall D (a female hostel at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) unveiled a new queen. GERALD NWOKOCHA writes on the interesting pageant.
T was another exciting time for many, not just residents of Hall D, a girls’ hostel at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO). The girls proved that it is not for nothing that they are called the Dynamic Ladies. The week-long programme of events, aimed at producing the queen, was tagged “Dynameek Reloaded”. The first day, a Monday, saw residents dressed in secondary school girls’ uniform. This followed the unveiling of the crown at 6pm, dancing competition and other activities at the hall’s quadrangle. Tuesday was “colour riot day” where every resident dressed in multiple colours. It was followed by Oto carnival in the evening where a Garri drinking competition was held. Wednesday was the old school attire. The residents of the hostel appeared in the dressing code of our mothers. They went to lectures in that manner. This was followed by a hot tea and Indomie eating carnival. The ladies also held a singing competition. On Thursday, the girls adorned sporting attire. Funny enough, they also attended their various lectures in that attire. The lecturers and fellow students who saw them could not control their laughter. In the evening, they held a football match between them (Hostel D) and Hostel C (another girls’ hostel known as Cute Ldies). The match ended 2-1 in favour of Hostel C. The fifth day was the hall T-shirt awareness. In the evening, the hall night and unveiling of
the queen held at the Hall of Mercy. The event kicked-off at 11pm and ended at 6am. There were seven contestants. That night, the contestants appeared on stage in five attires: choreography, sports attire, corporate wear, traditional and dinner gowns. They were also asked questions, especially on current affairs. Chinenye Igwe, a 100-Level student of Statistics, carried the day. The night was filled with lots of fun with various performances from different dance groups. Awards were also given to leading student politicians. In attendance were the SUG President, Comrade Michael Obiukwu and some members of his executive. The FUTO Military Students Association was led by the Head, Mr. Ernest Nelson. In a chat with the organiser, who is also the Governor of Hostel D, Miriam Kanulor, she thanked God that the programme was a success. She also thanked the Dean of Student Affairs, Dr. Remy Uche, for giving approval. She thanked members of her executive for making the event a success. The new Miss Hall D, Chinenye, said she won because she prepared for the competition. She said what gave her an edge over other contestants was her confidence and that she ensured she smiled all through. She added: “My costume was good, and I won over the crowd, in fact, all admired me”. Her next target is to become the next Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria.
•Some of the Opobo students at the end of the event.
Opobo students mark day
TUDENTS of the Opobo and Bonny Kingdom at the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT), last Friday, rolled out the drums to celebrate their cultural day. Opobo was founded in 1870, by a former slave, King Jubo Jubogha, popularly known as King Jaja of Opobo. The Choba campus of the university,
From Chris Okafor UNIPORT
where the event took place, brimmed with students who dressed in Opobo traditional attire. Jennifer Cookey, one of the students, portrayed the joy of the students. “I am extremely happy to be an Opobomite. I could not have been anywhere better,” she told CAMPUSLIFE. Kenneth Peterside said: “I am very proud of my roots and the reason I am dressed like this today is to send that message out.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EDUCATION FUTA FILE
Row over Ekiti federal varsity •Oye, Ikole are site settled joint campuses
HE controversy over the site of the Federal University for Ekiti State has been resolved. The institution will be jointly sited in Oye-Ekiti and Ikole-Ekiti. Oye will host the Faculties of Science and Humanities; the faculties of Agriculture and Engineering will be in Ikole. This decision was taken to relieve the tension over which of the communities should host the university following the Federal Government’s establishment of such institutions in nine states. The Vice-Chancellor Prof Chinedu Nebo, broke the news
From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
of the location of the university at Ikole during inspection of the site. Nebo, who described the choice of the Agriculture Development Programme (ADP) site for the takeoff of the varsity as fantastic, promised to turn Ekiti into the food basket of the nation and Africa, considering the fertile nature of the large expanse of land in Ikole. His words:“With what I have seen today, I am determined to make Ekiti the food production centre in Nigeria. I will put up facilities that can make our students to be globally competitive and relevant. “I am also happy that neither Oye
nor Ikole-Ekiti lost out in the struggle for the location of the university so, what we need now is convivial environment to operate.” The Elekole of Ikole Ekiti Oba Adewumi Ajibade Fasiku, expressed the hope that the modern structures at the ADP site would enhance a stress-free take off of the institution. Oba Fasiku, who led other traditional rulers in the Egbeoba Kingdom to receive Nebo, noted that the community had earmarked suitable buildings to accommodate principal officers and other senior members of staff of the university. The monarch said 15 houses had been provided to accommodate the pioneer workers.
Fasakin is DVC
UNICAL students to pay N10,000 riot damages •Resume Oct 24 OR alleged massive destruction of properties during a demonstration last month, students of the University of Calabar (UNICAL) are to pay N10,000 damages on resumption on October 24. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof James Epoke, at an emergency congregation at the Faculty of Arts auditorium, said the damage would be used to effect repairs and replace damaged properties. The protest fellowed the death of a student and the imposition of late registration fees on students defaulting. Epoke said instructions on payment would be published on the institution’s website. He said the Senate has instructed that for the remaining session, students would live offcampus to allow for renovations of the hostels to be completed. The authorities, he said, would no longer tolerate the reselling of hostel spaces by students, noting that most of those who buy spaces are not bonafide students. Such students constitute the core of those who foment trouble and lawlessness, he said. Epoke, who regretted the death of the student allegedly shot by armed robbers, explained that registration deadline is aimed at
Lawyer donates books to varsity
•Lecturers’ vehicles vandalised by the students.
ensuring that, students follow order and also check the activities of those he referred to as “charges racketeers”. He said the Investigative Panel of
Inquiry decried the security lapses on campus and recommended an overhaul. Other panels are expected to look into the remote causes of the violence, unmask those behind it
and make recommendations. On August, 26, the students went on rampage, destroying cars and buildings. They also reportedly looted valuable materials worth hundreds of millions of naira.
UK Higher Education boss for OOU lecture
O support law students, a Port Harcourt-based lawyer, Sebastine Tar Hon (SAN), has donated books worth N2 million to the Benue State University (BSU). The lawyer said the donation was his modest way of contributing to the study of law and also maintain the academic standard associated with the university. He said the books are also used in courts by legal practitioners. Hon said he has also subscribed to three years’ supply of the Nigeria Weekly Law Report (NWLR) to the university’s Law Faculty. He described the institution’s law graduates as the best in the country. Hon paid tribute to the late Governor Moses Adasu, who established the institution during his tenure, and lauded the university management for the post humous award on him. Responding, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Charity Angya,
Mimiko launches greening campaign ONDO State Governor Olusegun Mimiko has advised Nigerians to sustain the environment and stop activities that can cause disasters. Mimiko spoke during the tree planting campaign at the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA). The governor, represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Mrs Olufunmilayo Osundolire, attributed disasters, such as flood to human activities, arguing that people are ignorant of the hazards their negligence could pose to man. Mimiko said his administration would work with the Federal Ecological Fund to avert all environmental hazards caused by climate change and human activities. He said the donation of 4,000 tree seedlings to FUTA was deserving, giving its commitment to the sustainability of human environment. Earlier, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Adebisi Balogun, said the university was committed to tree planting to orientate both the students and members of staff on the need to take environmental maintenance seriously.
From Kunle Johnson, Calabar
THE Management of the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA) has appointed Prof Emmanuel Adedayo Fasakin as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academics). Fasakin joined the university on October 2, 1992 as Lecturer II in the then Department of Fisheries and Wildlife (now Fisheries and Aquaculture Technology) and rose to Lecturer I in 1995. Fasakin, who had his early education at Omuo Comprehensive High School, Omuo-Ekiti (1970 – 1974), bagged a Ph.D in Fish Nutrition/Management from FUTA in 1997 and became a Senior Lecturer on October 1, 1998. He was Co-ordinator of the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife; later Acting Head and Dean, Students Affairs.
•Hon with Prof Angya shortly after the donation From Uja Emmanuel, Makurdi
praised Hon for the kind gesture and called on other Benue indi-
genes to emulate him. She said the books would convince the National Universities
Commission (NUC) that the faculty is ready for the final phase of its accreditation.
HE Chief Executive Officer of United Kingdom Higher Education Academy, Prof Craig Mahoney is to deliver the first Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) Faculty of Education Distinguished Lecture today at the Equity Resort Hotel, Ijebu-Ode, OgunState. Prof Lasun Gbadamosi, Dean of the Faculty of Education OOU said he will speak on: “Globalization and Higher Education: Challenges and Management of Quality Control”. Gbadamosi revealed that the crave for the professionalism of teaching and the need to prevent discrimination against certificates issued by Nigerian Universities abroad informed the choice of Mahoney as the lecturer. Gbadamosi said Mahoney, as the Chief Executive Officer of United Kingdom Higher Education Academy, is in position to educate his audience which will include Vice- Chancellors, Provost, Professors and other members of the academia what they are doing about quality control in the United Kingdom that we are not doing here. Mahoney is an Australian who has lived in the UK for the past 24 years. He is a graduate in Chemistry and Maths from the Tasmanian College of Advanced Education (now the University of Tasmania).
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EDUCATION AAUA FILE
Varsity donates bus, ambulance THE management of the Adekunle Ajasin University, AkungbaAkoko (AAUA), Ondo State has donated an 18-Seater Toyota Hiace bus to the Students’ Union Government, (SUG) and a Toyota Hiace ambulance to the Health Centre. Inaugurating the vehicles on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Femi Mimiko, the Deputy ViceChancellor, Prof Rotimi Ajayi, said: “The procurement of the two vehicles is proof of management’s commitment to the plight of students and improved health services to the university community.”
‘Sport panacea to youth restiveness’
NIGERIA’S Olympic Medallist and Founder, Chioma Ajunwa Foundation, Chief Superitendent of Police (CSP) Chioma AjunwaOparah, has said insecurity would be redressed if youths engage in sports. The athlete spoke on the topic, “Nigerian athletes and Olympics: The Importance of sports as an entrepreneurial tool and Development; a complement to socioeconomic and political development” during a sports seminar and launch of a Year Book for Graduating Students of the university. Mrs Ajunwa-Oparah said: “All the acts of militancy, Boko Haram and youth unrest can be put to rest if our leaders will re-focus their attention on youth development through massive provision of recreational facilities and sporting activities that will keep the youths busy at all times to re-direct and rechannel their energy toward positive thinking.”
APPROACHING DEADLINES PhD Scholarships “Global Food Security” at the University of Hohenheim, Germany for Students from developing countries. Study Subject(s):Global Food Security Course Level:PhD Scholarship Provider: FSC Scholarship can be taken at: Germany Eligibility: Besides the general selection criteria for the PhD program “Global Food Security” (see announce-ment of the PhD program “Global Food Security”), the following criteria have to be met additionally, if applying for an “Excellence scholarship” : – Latest academic degree completed no more than 6 years prior to start of scholarship ; – Indication for return to his/her home country and institute; – Be a national of a developing country according to OECD DAC list. Scholarship Open for International Students: Yes Scholarship Description: FSC awards 10 scholarships for PhD students from developing countries (see OECD DAC list) for a period of 36 months, beginning September 01, 2012 (with a month German language course). The Center wishes to attract outstanding PhD students pursuing a career in academia or development collaboration. The scholarship aims at increasing their previously gained scientific knowledge and skills relevant to food security related issues. The successful candidates will receive scholarships for participating in the PhD program “Global Food Security” to conduct their doctorates. The scholarship is given for a stay at the University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany. The monthly grant is EUR 1,000 (for the time in Germany, EUR 500 for the time of the field research). In addition, FSC pays for traveling to/from Hohenheim. Health insurance and other costs must be paid for from the stipend. How to Apply: Please send your application (only!) to: fsc-scholarshipsat-uni-hohenheim.de Scholarship Application Deadline: October 26, 2011 PhD Sandwich Scholarships for visiting PhD students from developing countries to conduct research at a national or international research institute in a developing country. Study Subject(s):Issues of sustainable food availability, food access, food use, and food utilisation Course Level:PhD Scholarship Provider: FSC Scholarship can be taken at: At a national or international research institute in a developing country Eligibility: The applicant must provide proof of: • outstanding study performance in agricultural, nutritional, natural, social, economic or political sciences, or related disciplines with specification on food security related issues with a minimum MSc grade of 2.5; • working on doctoral studies at her/his home institute by the time of application and by the time the scholarship program commences; • latest academic degree completed no more than 6 years prior to start of
scholarship • agreement on project proposal with host institute in the field of the own PhD thesis; • confirmation of support of the host institute in a developing country; • track record of knowledge in the proposed field of study; • plan to return to his/her home country / country of residence and institute; • excellent proficiency in oral and written English. Scholarship Open for International Students: Yes Scholarship Open for Students of Following Countries: Developing Countries Scholarship Description: FSC awards up to four visiting Sandwich scholarships to PhD students from developing countries for a period of six months in 2012. The Center wishes to attract outstanding PhD students pursuing a career in academia or development collaboration. The scholarship aims at increasing their previously gained scientific knowledge and skills relevant to food security related issues. Successful candidates will receive a scholarship for conducting PhD thesis research studies and hence adding value to the PhD thesis and contributing to the mission of FSC. How to Apply: Please send complete applications only to fsc-scholarshipsat-uni-hohenheim.de. Scholarship Application Deadline: September 30, 2011 Scholarship Description: The purpose of the ESED scholarship is to support outstanding students pursuing advanced studies in sustainable energy development and to encourage meaningful contributions to the collective body of knowledge about this subject. The Global Sustainable Electricity Partnership considers an outstanding student to be one who: • graduates with excellent grades in the top 20% of her/his class • is determined to advance her/his knowledge and understanding •has a history of community involvement •is committed to sustainable energy •is committed to return and contribute to her/his home country How to Apply: By Post Scholarship Application Deadline: March 9, 2012. September 1, 2011 Undergraduate Scholarship for Australian and International Students in the field of Audio Engineering and Sound Production , Digital Film and Television Production , Digital Media at JMC Academy in Australia Study Subject(s):Audio Engineering and Sound Production , Digital Film and Television Production , Digital Media and 3D Animation , Popular Music and Performance , Entertainment Business Management Course Level:Undergraduate Scholarship Provider: JMC Academy Scholarship can be taken at: Australia Eligibility:To be considered for this highly competitive scholarship: -You may be an Australian citizen or permanent resident. -Eligibility for overseas students is based on successful application of a student visa. -This visa must be processed and finalised four weeks prior to course commencement.
Degrees that matter Thinking about going back to school? Keep in mind that some degrees are more marketable than others. Degrees in health-related fields, business, and technology, for example, are linked to a higher likelihood of employment, according to a survey by consulting firm Challenger, Gray and Christmas. Bachelor's in Business Administration
BACHELOR'S degree in business administration can help students cultivate a variety of business-related skills, such as employee management, customer relations, finance, microeconomics, and more. Why it matters: About 18 per cent of the human resources managers surveyed by Challenger, Gray & Christmas stated that candidates with business degrees were in the best position for employment. What's more, average salary offers to business administration degreeholders rose 2.2 percent since last year, according to a July 2011 report by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). Potential careers: Business administration degree graduates could go on to a variety of positions, including accountant, management analyst, and insurance underwriter.*
Bachelor's in Computer and Information Sciences If you're an aspiring computer whiz, consider honing your skills with a bachelor's degree in computer and information sciences, which can teach you how to create systems for finding and storing data. Why it matters: Technology is one of the specialties currently in highest demand and will remain in de-
mand in the near future, says career expert Laurence Shatkin. The Department of Labor notes similar findings, with several careers in the computer and information science field projected to grow 20 percent or more between 2008 and 2018. This degree is also linked to growing earning potential, according to NACE's July 2011 report, which found that the average salary offer for information sciences and systems graduates grew by 4.4 per cent. Potential careers: Computer systems administrator, database administrator, and computer programmer are just handful of the many techsavvy potential career opportunities available for computer and information science degree grads to pursue.
Master's in Business Administration (MBA) Already have a bachelor's degree, but want to further your leadership and innovation skills? An MBA program, where you'll likely take classes that present students with real-world guidance through case studies and actual business problems, can help. Why it matters: Opportunities also look bright for MBA grads, who have a 17 per cent projected employment increase, according to a 2005 Forbes article, "Best Master's Degrees For Jobs". The same Forbes article notes that the mid-career median pay for these
degree-holders is $109,000. Plus, it's often a preferred degree or requirement for many leadership positions, in a variety of industries, according to the Department of Labor. Potential Careers: Depending on your concentration, an MBA degree could prepare you to pursue a wide range of management-track careers in the corporate world, including financial analyst, marketing manager, and database administrator.
Bachelor's in Health Care Administration If you're interested in a career in health care, but want to avoid handson patient-care, a bachelor's in health care administration could be a great option for you. With this degree, you'll learn all aspects of overseeing health care facilities through courses in financial management, human resources, and policy making. Why it matters: Health care is among the most desirable higher education routes in the current economy, as skilled professionals in this field are and will remain in demand, says Shatkin. According to the Department of Labor, several careers in health care, including health services management, are expected to grow 14 percent or more between 2008 and 2018. And as the health care industry undergoes rapid changes, administra-
•Excited students of Afe Ba balola University, Ado-Ekiti, during their matriculation last year.
tors and managers with health carespecific degrees that prepare them to meet these changes will be increasingly important, says the Department. Potential career: While a master's is a common credential, the Department of Labor notes that grads could pursue entry-level medical and health services management positions in smaller facilities and health information management.
Bachelor's in Marketing/ Communications A bachelor's degree in marketing or communications could help students develop skill sets relating to identifying customer needs and effectively marketing a product or ser-
vice to a desired audience. Why it matters: If you're already media-savvy, and looking for a career path with staying power, a bachelor's degree in marketing or communications could give you that vital extra edge with employers. The Department of Labor, U.S, notes that the marketing and communications fields are among the last to be downsised, even in an economic downturn, because so many companies rely on advertising revenue to stay afloat. Potential careers: This degree could prepare you for a career as a marketing, public relations, or advertising and promotions manager. •Called from www.yahoo.com
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
King’s College seeks N1.5b grant yearly
TAKEHOLDERS of King’s College, Lagos want the Federal Government to spend N1.5 billion on the school yearly. They made the recommendations at a stakeholder’s forum held at the school hall last week during which parents, old and present boys, among others, gathered to chart a course for the 102-year-old institution for the next 25 years. In a communiqué issued at the end of the two-day programme on Tuesday and Wednesday, the forum urged the Federal Government to provide the fund as a grant for a fiveyear pilot period. Part of the communiqué, signed by the King’s College Principal, Otunba Dele Olapeju, and the Chairman of the School-based Management Committee, Prof Akintunde Cole Onitiri, read: “Government should use King’s College as a pilot school for yearly grant-in-aid of N1.5billion for fiveyear experimental phase.” The stakeholders are also seeking some form of autonomy for the college. They said: “Some heritage colleges, beginning with King’s College should be allowed some measure of autonomy in running their affairs and choosing its developmental strides like the reintroduction of Higher School Certificate, which King’s College pioneered in the 1950s.” Other desires of the stakeholders include that the SBMC be upgraded to a governing board, that all workers undergo training yearly, among others.
By Seun Olalude
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the forum, Olapeju urged the governemnt to employ more teachers. He said the school needs over 200 teachers. He also sought training for the current ones for better performance. “The government needs to see to the training of teachers because children of the days are clever. This is why teachers must be ahead in all areas. We need first class teachers to provide first class pupils and this can only be achieved when they are exposed to what they need to know,” he said. The school, he said has recorded excellent performance in the junior and senior school certificate examinations. He also urged the Federal Government to see to the rehabilitation of aged infrastructure. “A significant part of the school is in a state of disrepair and requires rehabilitation or outright replacement. Some of the facilities need expansion to meet the purpose for which they were originally built. The Federal Government should provide funds for the maintenance of the infrastructural facilities in the college,” he said. Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu, who donated N1 million to the school, urged parents and pupils to work for peace in the country. His words: “Parents, pupils should continue to work for the peace of this country through education; pupils you must pass through the school
and also allow the school to pass through you and seek the peace of your fatherland.” Also speaking, the SBMC Chairman, Prof Cole Onitiri, said Unity Schools have benefitted the education system. “We are enjoying what the United Kingdom parliament made possible. There are benefits to have KC and other unity colleges. This school
must remain and not only that, it should be what other schools should look up to. You are to keep it up,” he said. King’s College Old Boys Association President, Mr Hakeem BeloOsagie said the state of education determines the success of a nation and promised the school the old boys’ support. “Education is central to the success
of our nation. You cannot have successful economy without great men and women who have passed through reputable schools like KC. We support what is going on in this school but yet there is need to reposition the school. We will continue to support its development,” he said. The Minister of State for Education, Mr Nyesom Wike, who was represented by the Special Assistant, Dr Olu Ehis Ayewoh, urged old boys to arise to the support of their alma mater.
•From right: Erik Gregory, Pearson Foundation; Emeka Oparah, Director, Corporate Communication and Corporate Social Responsibility, Airtel Nigeria; Atinuke Adelekun, Coordinator, Bridge IT project; Kamarudeen Abatan, Deputy Director, Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB); and Osagie Ogunbor, Head of Communications, Nokia West Africa, during the final day of the teacher training programme in Lagos.
EKSU alumni laud merger From Sulaiman Salawudeen, Ado-Ekiti
•The teachers learning to make shapes
Assessment helps school boost teachers’ skills
XECUTIVE Director of Mind Builders School, Ikeja, Lagos, Mrs Bolajoko Falore, is thankful she invited independent assessors to assess her teachers. Their recommendation that the teachers be trained to deploy instructional media in teaching, led to her contracting View Point Educational Services to mount a workshop for the teachers. Sixty teachers of Mind Builder and Taqwa Private School, Agege participated in the training held at Mind Builders school hall in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos during which they learnt to use overhead projectors, produce posters, charts, flash cards, improvise with local resources as instructional media, take pupils on field trips, source information on the internet, and engage experts within the community to serve as resources. Mrs Falore sat through the training with the teachers and participated
By Kofoworola Belo-Osagie
in all the activities they undertook. She described the training as an eyeopener. She said: “Every session we do assessment for our teachers. I called external assessors to assess my teachers and they told me they are good, know their subject matter but that their use of instructional materials was limited. I asked around and was referred to View Point. “This is a worthwhile programme. There were things I did not know myself. The teachers have been taught to use motivation to catch the attention of their pupils. I am expecting a drastic change in how they teach and deploy instructional materials.” A teacher at Mind Builders, Mr Olajide Jimoh described the session as mind blowing. “The training has been explosive. We have learnt so many new things
about using instructional materials. Many things are within our environment that we ignore. It only requires thinking and getting ideas. The erroneous thinking we had before was that to get instructional materials is expensive but with this training, we know we can improvise,” he said. Technical Drawing teacher at Taqwa Private School, Mr Oyedele Adejare, said what he learnt would change the way he teaches. “It will change how I teach. Making use of instructional materials makes teaching interesting. The students see the object and it tends to pass the information across better,” he said. Mrs Sidikat Abiola, Chief Exexcutive Officer of View Point who anchored the training with other facilitators underscored the importance of instructional media in teaching and learning. She argued that if teachers would deploy
instructional media, more pupils would pass the Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE). She said: “We feel that most students fail WASSCE because teachers are not using instructional materials. They need to dramatise, use films, relia, and models that make teaching interesting and help retention. A student that goes on excursion is better than one who does not. Such trips bridge the gap between the society and the school. We taught them the importance of community resources – like inviting a Divisional Police Officer (DPO) to talk about crime. We also taught them modern ways of using Information Communication Technology (ICT) to generate instructional media. It is a sin for a teacher not to know how to use the computer. A teacher that uses instructional media, also gets students involved in its use,” she said.
KITI State University (EKSU) Alumni Association has praised Governor Kayode Fayemi for merging the three state-owned universities. The association said the merger was in the best interest of the state considering the financial implication of running the three institutions against a weak financial base. Based on the recommendations of a Special Panel on Education and the State Education Summit, the government merged the University of Ado Ekiti (UNAD), University of Science and Technology, Ifaki-Ekiti (USTI) and The University of Education, Ikere Ekiti (TUNEDIK) required named them Ekiti State University (EKSU). In a statement by Secretary, Incorporated Trustee of the alumni body, Asiwaju Oludotun Adetunberu, the alumni urged the government to seek a competent university administrator to head the institution, given its new status as a mega university, with special challenges of a large population of students and workers The association noted that although the 10-year requisite experience required could be considered sufficient, government should give stricter conditions for qualification to ensure the best candidate emerges in the best interest of the state. The Association, which advised that selection/appointment of a vice-chancellor should not be based on political/ethnic considerations, cautioned that the goal of taking the institution to academic excellence would not be served if priority is given to vested interests over enduring virtues.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
HE National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has approved a radio licence for Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo (RUGIPO) in Ondo State. The proposed “RUGIPO FM” will soon begin operation at the Mass Communication Department studio. Making this known at the 18th Matriculation for the 2011/2012 academic session, the Rector Prof Ajibefun Igbekele, said other required formalities were being processed to ensure that the FM radio was well established. He said the purpose for the establishment of the station is to inform
From Leke Akeredolu, Akure
the society about the activities of the institution and also allow students in mass communication to have more practical knowledge of their profession. Igbekele praised the state Governor, Olusegun Mimiko, saying he has been making resources available for development of infrastructure in the institution. “A state-of-art complex for Information Communication Technology (ICT) has been built and is ready for opening. With this development, the
institution’s decision that every student must be ICT compliant has become easy to implement. “A new 800-seater auditorium is being constructed and it will be completed and opened in due course. Also, the institution is collaborating with the Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (OSOPADEC) to build a modern hostel complex for students and this project is already ongoing”. The Rector urged the new students face their academic activities and avoid all acts capable of breaching the peace on campus.
•Some of the beneficiary pupils at Model Secondary School, G.R.A Phase 11
Rivers distributes free school bags, books, others
HE Rivers State Ministry of Education has started the 2011/2012 session with the launch of the second phase free books, uniforms, bags and sandals for secondary school students. The Education Commissioner, Dame Alice Lawrence-Nemi, who flagged-off the project at Model Junior Secondary School, GRA, Port Harcourt, said it is in line with the free education policy of Governor Rotimi Amaechi. On his assumption in office in October 2007, Amaechi promised to revamp the education sector . This led to the introduction of a free education policy at primary and secondary levels. Through this policy, free school materials were given to primary and junior secondary school pupils in October last year. Also, infrastructure were developed in over 400 model schools with Information Communication Technology (ICT) facilities, libraries, sick bays and offices. The second phase of the project, for secondary schools, was held last
week. Mrs Lawrence-Nemi urged the beneficiaries, their parents and guardians to take care of the items. advised the pupils to pursue academic excellence to justify government’s investment in the sector. She also warned school administrators against selling the items to pupils. “As we commence the 2011/2012 academic year with the distribution of free books, bags, uniforms and sandals, we urge the beneficiaries of the programme and also parents and guardians of the pupils, to handle government properties with care. We also use this opportunity to advise the pupils to take their studies seriously to complement government’s investment in education. The Ministry of Education is calling on parents and guardians who have not taken their wards to school, to do so. “The Ministry of Education will also use this medium to warn school administrators, who are selling the free uniform to their pupils to de-
sist from such acts. The ministry will not spare any one found guilty of these offence,” she said. In his welcome address, the Permanent Secretary, Rivers State Ministry of Education, Mr Richard Ofuru, urged the students to make use of the library. He said the students could learn more by making research at the library. Replying Miss Laura Aggo from Oromenike Girls Secondary School D/line, Port Harcourt thanked the government for the free education policy. Aggo promised the commissioner that the pupils would be very serious with their studies. The Commissioner also visited the State School at Olanada, in Rumuola, Port Harcourt, where she also flagged-off the launch of free books, uniforms, bags and sandals for primary pupils. She also lauded the teachers for their commitment and dedication in delivering quality service to the pupils. Mrs Lawrence-Nemi said the government would continue to appreciate the teachers’ good works.
Don urges varsities to engage foreigners
Ondo Poly gets radio licence
ROF Siyan Oyeweso of Department of History and International Studies, Osun State University, Osogbo has urged universities to keep their doors open to foreign scholars during staff recruitment. He spoke during the 2011 Diplomat’s Award of the Students’ Society for the Study of History and International Studies (SSOHIS), Lagos State University (LASU) Chapter. Oyeweso, who delivered a lecture entitled: “Building a world-class university: contours, strategies and prospective”, said it was better to attract brilliant men and women from anywhere in the world because of its
By Musa Odoshimokhe
advantage to scholarship. He said: “The government must be careful not to discourage the teachers and researchers who are not resident or citizens of the country, as the example of elitist institutions globally have shown their advantages.” The Professor of History stressed that a policy which equally restricts the admission of foreign students or discourages competition for admission could be counter productive on the long run. He maintained that the issuance of research grant to staff, scholarship to students by government and of mergING existing universities
could make them stronger by taking advantage of the combined human and financial resources they generate. According to him, it is not out of place for government to allow a favourable taxation policy for corporate bodies to secure their support as well encourage philanthropists who will be willing to assist in university development. He referred to his undergraduate days when he met notable foreign scholars that shaped his perspectives. According to the paper, society expects its universities to produce highly skilled personnel which such cross-fertilisation can amplify.
Lessons from IMT’s mistakes
COMMEND the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) for writing the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) on the unusually large number of graduates sent in by the Institute of Management Technology (IMT), Enugu. I also commend the Executive Secretary of NBTE, Dr Masa’udu
Belo-Osagie Kofosagie@yahoo.com 08054503077 (SMS only)
Kazaure for taking prompt action to investigate the excesses of the institution. Not only did the board find the polytechnic wanting regarding to its carrying capacity (which figures were different from those it presented to the NYSC), the institution also fell short of accreditation requirements for its programmes, leading to the withdrawal of accreditation for all its National Diploma (ND) and Higher National Diploma (HND) programmes. However, while it is good that the board has taken drastic steps to get to the root of the matter, including reporting the issue to the Enugu State government, proprietor of the institution, the Executive Secretary should also look into the lapses on the part of its officials, probably past accreditation/resource teams that may have failed to highlight the institution’s problems. I have heard how members of accreditation teams are induced by the management of the institutions they visit to influence them (the teams) to give favourable ratings to their programmes. They pay for hotel accommodation, treat them to lavish dinners, as well as give them a little ‘something’ to take away. Apart from that, institutions cut corners to meet stringent accreditation requirements such as borrowing equipment and lecturers from other institutions. Regulatory bodies – the NBTE, National Universities Commission (NUC), and the National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) – overseeing our tertiary institutions must intimate officials that serve on resource teams to lay aside selfish gain for the overall interest of the institutions they visit. They should be thorough in their assessments of programmes and scrutiny of necessary books to ensure that what they see is for real. I know the agencies cater for the needs of the teams they send on these trips. However, I do not know whether whatever they give is attractive enough to keep their people’s minds on the job they are sent to do. This may be a good time to review the allowances so that members of the accreditation teams have no reasons to accept bribes. After doing this, they should ensure that those found wanting are disciplined. Also, the bodies should find a way of detecting whether the institutions they visit borrow equipment and manpower from others. They could create a database of academic and non-academic staff of each institution, their areas of specialization, qualifications, and other places where they work on part-time basis so the regulators know who is where. This is a wake up call for all managers of tertiary institutions, especially those among them that like cutting corners. When things are done properly, institutions are able to produce superior graduates trained in the right environment. Running an educational institution is not all about generating internal revenue. When this is the focus, institutions tend to admit more students (especially for part-time/sandwich programmes) than it can cater for because of the fees they would pay. However, overpopulation puts undue pressure on available facilities. Unfortunately, even when money comes in, the management forget to expand and maintain facilities, despite population growth. Also lecturers find it difficult to cope with large numbers of students. Usually, the amount of practical exercises they give to students reduce when they are too many because they find it difficult to cope with assessments. Given the poor funding of most tertiary institutions by their proprietors, I know some mangers are forced to over stretch themselves to make things work. So, while the Enugu State government might want to wield the big stick by sacking the principal officer(s), it should also check whether its financial obligations by way of subventions/grants for capital projects and research are not inadequate.
‘Given the poor funding of most tertiary institutions by their proprietors, I know some mangers are forced to over stretch themselves to make things work. So, while the Enugu State government might want to wield the big stick by sacking the principal officer(s), it should also check whether its financial obligations by way of subventions/grants for capital projects and research are not inadequate’
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THURSDAY, SEPTEM BER 29, 2011
POLITICS THE NATION
PDP, CPC test strength in local polls Globally, municipal and rural elections attract the highest attention. The contestants, their programmes and manifestoes of their political parties influence voting in many localities. JIDE ORINTUNSIN looks into the factors that will determine the forthcoming Niger State local government elections.
NE week to Niger State’s October 8 local government elections to the 25 councils and 274 wards, political activities are yet to attract the much desired attention, but for the posters of candidates, the frills and razzmatazz that go with grassroots elections have been conspicuously absent. The State Independent Electoral Commission (NSIEC), the umpire for the grassroots polls, has since July rolled out its timetable for the election at a meeting with all stakeholders, which included the leadership of all the registered political parties, security agencies and officials of NSIEC. The electoral body, according to Mohammed Alli, its spokesman, has on its part, carried out extensive mobilisation in all the local government areas and also sought the support of the traditional institution. The ruling party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu administration has also shown its commitment to the elections by approving over N300 million, N520 million short of the staggering N820 million initially requested by NSIEC to conduct the election. Initially, 12 political parties signified intention to contest for the 25 local government chairmanship seats and the 274 councillorship seats. But at the close of nomination, only seven parties submitted names of candidates for the election. Leading the pack of parties is the PDP, Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). They filed candidates for all the elective posts. Surprisingly, other parties fielding candidates for all the posts are Action Alliance (AA) and Social Democratic Mega Party (SDMP), while the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) is only fielding candidates for some councillorship seats. Governor Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu has told his party members that he has no anointed candidates for the elections. He however challenged the party to ensure that only electable, credible and reliable candidates are presented for the polls. Aliyu’s critics are quick to refer to the riot act he (the governor) recently read to all political appointees in his administration to deliver their local government or be ready to be shown the way out. It was also gathered that all the appointees have been directed to go to their wards and mobilise their people and ensure that the party maintains its stronghold on the state. As the time inches in for the election, only the ruling PDP and CPC are the most visible of all the political parties in contention for the souls of the councils. To many political watchers in the state, the October election is a litmus test for the two political parties. While the ruling party wants to prove that its victory at the April general election was not a fluke, the CPC is set to reaffirm its claim to grassroots popularity as shown by the reception that the party enjoyed during the last election.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) While the ruling party is parading mostly incumbent chairmanship candidates, the self acclaimed largest political party in Africa, and indeed the state, is no doubt the one to beat. Presenting most candidates that are already “tested” on the job as immediate helmsmen of their various councils, the party looks set to further stamp its dominance on the political landscape of the state. Basking on the success of the Ward Development Project scheme, through which all the
While the party may not be as solvent as the ruling party, it has the support of the electorate. Its foot soldiers may be ready to make the necessary sacrifice. The major albatross to the success of the party is the wanton destruction of voter’s cards by supporters and members of the party in protest of the outcome of the April Presidential election, which the party’s candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari lost to the PDP’s Dr. Goodluck Jonathan. The destruction of voter cards by CPC supporters may deny the party reasonable number of votes, as NSIEC intends to use both the last voter register and cards for the local polls. Despite these odds, CPC remains a credible and formidable alternative to the ruling party.
Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN)
274 wards have, in the last three and half years, directly felt the state government presence through one project or the other. The ruling party says, in the 35 years of existence of the state, no party has ever touched the lives of the people at the grassroots like the PDP through the ward development projects. Unlike other political parties, the PDP has a very strong financial muscle to prosecute the electioneering campaign and the elections proper. Its control of the councils in the last four years also put its candidates in better stead to win the election. Aside this, the party has also perfected the ward structure through the ward development projects schemes to penetrate most communities over time and was set to use the instrumentality of the scheme to reach out to the electorate in the rural areas. The party however has a high hurdle to scale, as all the other parties contesting the election are working on the possibility of coming up with a single list of candidates. It was reliably gathered that the opposition could come up with a working arrangement to step down for one another in areas where any of the opposition party is strong. Aside this, the enemy from within may work against the victory of the party at the polls. The bad blood generated by the party’s primaries may still work against the party. Many aspirants and their supporters who alleged that they were edged out of the primaries are waiting to deal with the party, by working against the success of the party. It was gathered that the party may suffer such reprisal in Chanchaga, Kontagora, Lavun and Suleja council areas during the election. Another fundamental issue being raised by the opposition against the ruling party that may affect its fortune is the raging controversy on the State/Local Government Joint Account. In the vanguard of the campaign against the PDP is the CPC. The state Chairman of CPC, Mallam Shuaibu Umar and it’s only Senator, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa, are the arrow head of the battle. The duo has made the joint account a campaign issue. According to them, a vote for PDP candidates is a vote for those who connived with the state government to continue to deny the grassroots their legitimate allocation, under the guise of the joint account system. Despite all odds against the PDP, the party which currently has all the car taker committees in place at the councils remains the party to beat.
Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) The emergence, popularity and acceptance of this party during the last general elections may still work for it. This explains why it is fielding candidates for all the seats. A source in the party said that the October 8 election is a strategic and constitutional launch pad for the eventual take-over of the state by the party. To this end, deliberate efforts were made at ensuring that only popular and credible candidates are its standard bearers for the 299 elective offices in the election. The adoption of these criteria has helped to drastically reduce postprimary crisis, thereby going into the election a united house. Another factor going for the foremost opposition party in the state was the deal it struck with other opposition parties. It was gathered that two other parties Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) have agreed to join hands with the CPC. If the deal works, then the fortunes of the party may be brighter. Believed to have a very strong presence in Niger North and an appreciable influence in Niger South the party’s popularity in Minna, the state capital and Suleja city (both municipalities are in Niger East seems to still be intact. The party’s followership in the major cities of the state has remained the nightmare for the ruling PDP. The party’s strategy of reaching out to non-indigenes by adopting some as chairmanship running mates or offering juicy appointment such as council Secretary may further boost the chance of the opposition party. This singular act has further boosted the support base of the party. The recent defection of more than 8000 members of the ruling PDP from Suleja, Tafa and Kontagora to the opposition party has further enhanced the chances of CPC. Though PDP has debunked the claim, the fact remains that CPC is set to give the ruling party a run for their money. But for its only seat in the upper chamber of the National Assembly, two seats in the House of Representatives and similar number in the state legislature, the party is yet to control any elective office at the grassroots.
The abysmal performance of ACN at the last general elections in the state has continued to haunt the party, but members of the party are set to use the forthcoming elections to redeem the party’s image. Its members and supporters in Rafi, Mokwa, Lavun, Lapai, Gbako and Tafa councils are poised to bring the party back to reckoning by wresting power from the ruling party. The party is equally set to regain Mashegu local government area. Though the party has shown interest in contesting elections into all the councils, political observers doubt if it can make much impact in the elections.
All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) The fortunes of the party may have waned somewhat with its poor performance in the last general elections. Even then some of its members still remain loyal to the party, and are bent on keeping its flag flying by fielding candidates for the elections. The main factor working against the party now is the crippling intra-party crisis. However if the working arrangement of the opposition parties sees the light, ANPP may re-enact its good showing in some local councils in Niger East.
Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) Except for the secretariats of the party that dot many local government areas, the party has never been a political force to reckon with in Niger State. The last time the party played any significant role in the state was in 2003, when it presented Alhaji Mustapha Bello to contest the governorship seat against former Governor Abdulkadir Kure of the PDP. The only showing the party had then was the election of Hon. Mahmoud Foster as member representing Chanchaga federal constituency. The party has no base and may not pose any threat to the ruling party.
Other parties The fortunes of both Action Alliance (AA) and Social Democratic Movement Party (SDMP) are bleak as the two are seen as appendages of the ruling PDP. Political watchers can hardly pin the two parties down to any geo-political zone of the state. The battle is being approached by the major parties with all seriousness as the grassroots could prove important in deciding how future elections will go.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NATURAL HEALTH E-mail:- firstname.lastname@example.org
‘How good food aid longevity’ Poor diet poses health hazards. OYEYEMI GBENGA-MUSTAPHA reports on the benefits of proper nutrition. NUTRITIONAL herbal medicine practitioner, Yinka Fashipe, has said limiting or avoiding one’s intake of unhealthy substances can help one reduce one’s risk of weight gain and chronic diseases. According to him, these substances include sodium, solid fats and added sugars. “Sodium is a mineral you need to regulate blood pressure. Yet, consuming an excess amount of salt can increase one’s risk of high blood pressure and stroke. Consuming less than 1,500 mg of sodium per day can improve one’s cardiovascular and cerebrovascular health. He said: “Saturated fat and trans fat are solid fats that can clog your arteries and increase your risk of a heart attack and coronary artery disease. A healthy diet includes fats from olive oil, vegetable oils and avocado. Added sugars in processed foods and beverages increase your caloric intake and your risk of gaining weight and fat. Instead, consume whole grains, such as brown rice, to obtain your carbohydrate needs.” According to the practitioner, who is the Deputy at Rodwell Healthcare Services, achieving great health through nutrition also requires that one consumes foods that are prepared safely in a way that reduces ones risk of food-borne illnesses. “You can re-
duce one’s risk by washing your hands before touching foods, rinsing fruits and vegetables with salt in water, cooking foods, such as meats, to safe internal temperatures and promptly storing perishable foods. Avoid consuming raw eggs, unpasteurised dairy and undercooked meat,” he added. He pointed out that healthy eating pattern is a balanced diet composed of nutrient-dense foods and beverages that provide sufficient amounts of nutrition and energy to support growth and maintain proper functioning of your cells, tissues and organs. Nutrient-dense foods and beverages include fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes, olive oil, low-fat or fatfree dairy, fish and lean meat. Eating healthy also requires that you limit or avoid solid fats, sodium, added sugars and high calories. His words: “Proper nutrition is a key element in leading a healthy lifestyle. Most experts agree that the formula for a fit, healthy body is 80 per cent nutrition, 10 per cent exercise and 10 per cent genetics. No one can control the genetics, but you can certainly control the other 90 per cent. The best way to control the nutritional part of this equation is by developing a clean eating lifestyle.” Fashipe added: “A clean eating lifestyle follows these principles: Eat five or six
•Seven servings of fruits
small meals every day; than eat massively at each traditional meal time- breakfast, lunch and dinner, eat every two to three hours. Combine lean protein and complex carbs at every meal. Drink at least two litres, or eight cups, of water each day. Never miss a meal, especially breakfast. “Also avoid processed, refined foods, especially white flour and sugar, avoid
saturated and trans fats and sugar-loaded sodas and juices. Consume adequate healthy fats each day. Avoid alcohol – another form of sugar and all calorie-dense foods that contain little/no nutritional value. Depend on fresh fruits/veggies for fibre vitamins and enzymes and stick to proper portion sizes – give up the supersizing,” he advised.
Healing effects of colour therapy
MAGINE the difference between driving a bright red car and a navy blue one, or how it feels to see a bright blue versus a dark night sky. The colour of the clothes we wear, the colour themes in our homes, and the colours in the natural environment influence us in profound ways. Colour affects us in both subtle
and obvious ways throughout each day of our lives. We respond differently to various colours almost by instinct, and the colours around us affect everything from our mood to our energy levels. Colour therapy or chromotherapy focuses on the physiological effects colours have on people. Specially trained
health practitioners can use colour in therapeutic applications to help us achieve mental and physical health. It can help balance our emotional lives, relieve stress and tension and enable the body to heal itself of discomforting symptoms and illnesses. How does colour therapy heal? Colour therapists make use of a
•Former president, Pharmaceutical Sociaty of Nigeria (PSN), Mr Anthony Akhimien (left) presenting a plaque to the Chairman, Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board (LSTMB), Dr Bunmi Omoseyindemi at an event in Lagos. PHOTO: ABIODUN WILLIAM
person’s sensitivity to colour to balance the flow of energy throughout the body. They believe that colours affect the vibration energy that flows throughout every organ and system of the body. Accordingly, colour therapy can be used to calm and soothe or stimulate and enhance mental, physical and spiritual energies. Wellness is achieved as energies throughout the body are balanced through colour therapy. Scientists explain the effects of colour on our moods, thoughts and behaviour in terms of physiological processes. Colours are light energies of certain wavelengths, and studies have confirmed that exposure to colours has a direct effect on the pituitary and pineal glands. Stimulation of these glands affects hormonal production and their release, and this affects the systems of the body in a variety of ways. As an example, scientific studies conducted in 1942 demonstrated that the sympathetic nervous system is stimulated by exposure to red light, and the parasympathetic nervous system is stimulated by exposure to white and blue light. Although colour is visible light energy, scientists believe it is not necessary to see colour for it to affect the body. The body can sense and react to colour through energy vibrations, so even the blind are affected by colour. Colour therapists and scientists may not agree on precisely how colour can help improve physical and mental health, but they do
agree that the effects colours have on people are significant. Colour has real physiological effects on people, and it can be used to help treat a variety of conditions as well as to promote general health. •Source: www.theresaann.hubpages.com
•All colours vibrate through the body
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Low blood sugar, male sexual vitality L
IKE sex, diabetes now rules the sick care landscape. I say “like Sex” because this once hallowed relationship between a man and a woman has become so cheap it can now be gotten within one hour of two strangers meeting and striking a relationship deal. Sex is the cornerstone of men’s and girl talk. Even polished corporate firms fuel it. Check their documents. Where they ask you to state if you are a woman or a man, they ask not for your gender, which is either female or male but your SEX. Certainly, they want to know nothing about your sexual appetite or capacity. It is just that the thought is deeply engraved in most people’s brain. It fills language, screams through body hog and all-revealing dressing, dominates gait and gesture, and is reported in the hospital through urinary tract infections and sexually-transmitted diseases (STD). In the hospital these days, ever popping feature are diabetes and diabetesrelated health discomfitures such as hypoglycemia or low blood sugar, as reported by this column last week in RAVAGES OF DIABETESTOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT. This column generated many touching responses which advised this follow up. Erectile Dysfunction One lawyer sent about 10 cell phone text massages, one by the hour; I guess he became combative when he thought a reply was not immediately forthcoming. He had diabetes, high blood pressure and erectile dysfunction that had become so bad that he had cause to believe his life was helping herself out somewhere also. Another diabetic reader who appears unable to give up alcoholic drinks sent the following massage: “ “I just finished reading your educative piece on diabetes. Kindly let me know, from medical point of view and not moral or religious grounds, how much alcohol consumption affects diabetes” Yet another message read: “I just spoke to you about erectile dysfunction. I want to let you know I am also managing hypertension. What can be done about my erectile problem? I am 57 years old.” A father of five, diabetic at49, is searching for a cure. Another man wish is to know the Yoruba name of bitter melon and chromium picolinate which, as he observed, this column suggested as remedies for diabetes. Well, the Yoruba for bitter melon is EJINRIN, one of the many components of AMAZON PANCREAS ESSENTIALS and, along with CINNAMON, CHROMIUM PICOLINATE and FENUGREEK, mentioned last week, one of the nine ingredients in BLOOD SUGAR CONTROL from Bell Lifestyle Products of Canada. More men than woman seek help for diabetes, in my view. Perhaps this is because, for them, it is a double jeopardy. As sugar floods the blood, thickening it and impairing blood circulation, with damage to the brain, eyes, nerves, kidneys, they care less about these matters as they do of the impartment to their sexual agility caused by less blood delivery to the penis. Additionally, thick blood means more work for the heart which is overworking and enlarging to sustain blood supply to critical organs. The doctor diagnoses elevated blood pressure and tries to stop the heart from killing itself with overwork by prescribing anti–hypertension drugs. These slow down the heart. In a system where blood delivery is already poor due to blood thickening by sugar flood, slowing down the heart further reduces blood delivery, which is why the penis goes limp despite the best of arousal. This matter goes beyond the heart, however. Excess sugar latches on to all molecules, cells and tissues, damaging them through the process of glycation. When the endocrine glands are affected, they cannot easily male hormones, such as sex hormones, and, without sex hormones to stimulate and sustain desire and arousal, erection and staying power are compromised. If worsed do not complain of sugar imbalance problems, it is possibly out of ignorance. What lies behind their hormonal imbalances and menstruation problems? Why are some of them frigid? This column once advised that overconsumption of sugar, and perhaps inability to efficiently and effectively handle the glut, disturbs the pituitary gland located in the brain, which controlled the sex organs. This column once invited attention to the size of the breasts of today’s young woman and her mother’s or grandmother’s. The older women, who did not consume as much sugar as do today’s woman, have bigger, buxom breast which remains supple and robust for a longer time. Today, girls have tinier breasts sometimes hardly visible in their body hogs. Above all, the older woman suffers less from breast problems, including cancer, than today’s woman. I’ve seen young woman who did not menstruate for months resume their cycles within months of giving up sugar. I never tire from explaining to women that candidiasis and vaginal discharges can be overcome if they kick sugar. And since viruses, bacteria, fungi and yeast flourish in a sugar embalmed environment, and these parasites have been found in cancerous breast tissue to the point that one author entitled his book CANCER IS A FUNGUS, is it not reasonable to suspect a link and to kick sugar?. Before I return to those questions of erectile dysfunction and sugar blues, here are some gifts for the woman who wishes to touch up her breast. The first comes from Prof. Samuel Oluwalala of the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (UNAB) in his booklet, and MEDICINAL uses of onions. His formula is: Sagging breasts Honey + Tumerk + Onion Juice Massage the lotion deep into the breasts regularly. A second recipe is groundnut oil massage, which I picked from EDGAR CAYCEE’S readings. The one I’ve found really works is GRAND brand made by UAC Nigeria. It is fortified with vitamin A. Perhaps that’s the magic wand. When a 50 plus woman in Abuja telephoned me that her nipples appeared to be withering, I suggested it to her, and it worked. In the Edgar Caycee Readings, groundnut (Peanut) oil helped to stimulate tissue filling for the skin of a diabetic woman, who developed dimples here and there that were sometimes large enough to sit a table tennis egg. Soon, I am told, a natural supplement named BREAST CARE from Canada - based Bell. Lifestyle Products will be selling in Nigeria, to the relief of women who wish to protect their breasts from all kinds of troubles which always menace mammary glands. We must quickly regain focus and return to sugar blues. But before we confront the hypoglycemia monster, I wish to address those ques-
tions which another column on diabetes inspired this week. To the reader who seeks a scientific explanation on the effects of alcohol consumption on diabetes, I say: • Many authorities believe reasonable amounts of alcohol can be consumed without dangerous effect • Perhaps an equally large number believe doing so can be calamitous • Between both extremes must be researchers supportive of the liquor industry and independent investigation • Personally, I’d advocate abstinence from alcohol on the following scientific grounds. i. Alcohol is diuretic and leaches potassium, especially from the tissue and blood. ii. Sugar acidifies the body, damaging it. Water is needed to dilute blood sugar load and, thereby, reduce acidosis. Alcohol eliminates water in dieresis, concentrating sugar load iii. Diuretics excrete potassium from the cell, upsetting the potassium-sodium balance (the “K” factor) in favour of sodium. Potassium holds water in the cell, sodium between the cells. Water loss in the cell causes its shrinkage which is why many alcoholics are shrunken. Excess sodium leads to water accumulation outside the cell, and possible water-logged cells which are inefficient and age rapidly. iv Water is needed by the pancreas to make insulin. Dehydration inhibits this function as Dr. F. Batmanghllidj argues persistently in his books. YOUR BODY’S MANY CRIES FOR WATER and YOU’RE NOT SICK, YOU’RE ONLY THIRSTY. v. Alcohol impairs liver functions, one of which is to convert excess blood sugar into glycogen, a form of sugar which it stores for releasing into the blood circulation on a rainy day when the body needs immediate energy.
deficient liver inhibits the capacity of the nerves and adrenal glands to handle emergency. LOUISE TENNY says in her booklet, HYPOGLYCEMIA, A NUTRITIONAL APPROACH: “Frequently hypoglycemia is found in individuals who suffer from sluggish liver function. Anyone who has a thyroid disorder can also suffer from liver impairment. The liver is our storage and filtering plant. It releases food elements on demand as needed by the body. Starches are changed to a type of sugar called glycogens in the liver which is released when the body needs an immediate source of energy. A poorly functioning liver can stress the adrenal glands and the nervous system thus impairing their ability to handle internal emergencies” We must quickly address erectile dysfunction in these circumstances Erectile Dysfunction Ordinarily, a thickening of the blood slows blood circulation, and slow blood flow hardly delivers enough quantum of blood to the spongy tissue of the penile shaft to cause erection and staying power. When diabetes is compounded by high blood pressure in which pharmaceutical drugs are used to force the heart to work less, this is double jeopardy of sorts for male virility. As stated earlier, herbs can normalise heart function and elevated blood pressure. To correct erectile dysfunction, hormones must be balanced, and nerves in the pubocoxygeal region must communicate effectively with the penis. This region comprises the lower sacral, anal and pubic areas. This interconnection is why defecation is accompanied by urination, however little. This is also why injury to nerves during surgical removal of pile may cause erectile problems. Spinal subluzation, if any, need correction. For a healthy balance of the nerves, Kegel’s exercise may help, as it also may in premature ejaculation, a nightmare of many men, and their women. Dr Kegel gave this exercise free on the internet to men and women, for women to help firm up loose or flabby vaginal tissue. The nerves done with, the arteries must be clear of deposits to make blood circulate freely, unhindered. They must not be too contracted or too relaxed, a balanced state which products such as HEALTHY VEINS help to build. There are many virility enhancing herbs for men. Many of them are combined in proprietary formulas such as LIBIDOMAX, LIBIDO TONIGHT, STEEL LIBIDO, VIGRIX, DAMIANA GINSENG, L-AGGINNE, ADRENAL ESSENTIALS, THYROID ESSENTIALS, etc. The thyroid gland, which surrounds the neck, is important to male sexual virility as are the adrenal glands, which sit atop the kidneys. If the adrenals are burnt out, there is little or no sexual fire. Luckily, they respond to Vitamin B5, Licorice, Ginseng and herbs which clean out and invigorate the kidneys, such as the kidney bean pod tea, water melon seed tea and Bell’s Kidney Cleanse and Function tea. As for the thyroid, under
e-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
functioning (hypothyroidism) of this gland slows down body process, including the sexual process. A laboratory thyroid test does not always catch this problem. Chlorinated water, bromine from bread and toothpaste chase out iodine from the thyroid and cripple it. The proprietary product IODORAL and/or LUGOL’S OIL can often jumpstart the thyroid. Suddenly L-Tyrosine, an amino acid can restore early morning turgidity, with burgeoning self-confidence as fire- power improves. So mush about men‘s and girl talk. We must hurry back to hypoglycemia or low blood sugar as foundation of diabetes. Anyone who doesn’t wish to become diabetic should avert hypoglycemia Hypoglycemia I used to be hypoglycemic, and once fainted in hospital after taking an anti-malarial injection. Hypoglycemia comes from the words “hypo”, which means “low”, and glycemia (sugar) and thus means low blood sugar, a condition as dangerous, if not worse than high blood sugar. In enervated blood sugar, you can easily guess what is amiss, in low blood sugar; you may be widely off the mark. LOUISE TENNY, whose book has sold millions of copies, lists about 28 symptoms of hypoglycemia, most of these symptoms possible signs of other illnesses. And this is what makes correct diagnosis sometimes difficult. The 28 symptoms she lists are… “Amnesia, Anxiety, Antisocial behaviour, breathing difficulty, confusion, constant worry, crying jags, depression, digestive disorders, drowsiness, emotional instability, exhaustion, headaches, heart palpitations, impatience, inability to cope, intense hunger, internal trembling, irritability, lack of concentration, nervousness dizziness, seizures, severe sweating, fainting -and tremours”
HUS, many people, who cannot sleep at night or who tremble when hungry or who always crave sweet things may be hypoglycemic without knowing it. As stated last week, their pancreases may have become filled with viruses, yeast, especially Candida. These parasites may have found their way there on their own or they may have been introduced to the pancreas by worms in vegetables or flesh food. It is possible, also, that the hypoglycemic has been consuming simple carbohydrates for many years. The pancreas may have become irritated by parasites and other poisons or by simple sugar to overwork, overproducing insulin which constantly wipes out blood sugar. Many doctors dismiss hypoglycemia with a wave of the hand. That was why many experts in America branded Dr. Gyland a neurotic (last week’s column). The five-hour glucose tolerance test (GTT), more reliable than the fasting blood sugar test, doesn’t always catch it. What may appear more reliable is the Dr. BRODA BARNES thermometer test (see Dr. Broda Barnes in the internet). The self-test is performed by taking armpit temperature without turning in bed on rising on three consecutive days and finding the average temperature. Menstruating women perform it from the second day of their period. If the mean is below a certain reading, that suggests hypoglycemia, if above hyperthyroidism. Low thyroid – predisposes low blood sugar. Children Many researchers have linked hyperactivity and learning disability in children to hypoglycemia, but as Louise Tenny says: “Ironically, if you suffer from low blood sugar, the more depressed you are the more you crave sugar. Sugar addiction is a common factor in hypoglycemia; must people who suffer from this disease have a severe sweet tooth. They craze sugar because it increases their blood sugar Case study This book cites the case of a woman named Darla, who suffered her first panic attack in 1885. She felt her “blood running in my veins, a crawly feeling”. She often felt light headed. She felt like eating but was unable to, and her ears would begin to ring. Someone advised her to drink water and honey for her low blood sugar. Her symptoms would disappear within 15 to 20 minutes of drinking this recipe. But the attacks began to come more frequently and became more severe. Her ears would “shut off” and her breath would be short. She would experience numbness in her hand and feet and she would emblem. One doctor diagnosed “nervous breakdown” and suggested she learn to relax. Darla thought otherwise. And the attacks continued. She lost weight, stopped going to church, felt crazy and feared going anywhere. Another doctor advised she eats small meals every two hours to control hypoglycemia. She carried a can of pineapple juice about. But this helped only temporarily. What finally helped Darla were Licorice, Dulse, Cayenne, Dong quai, Evening Primerose Oil, GLA (Gama-Linoleic Acid) Garlic, Ladys Slipper, Lobela, Senna tea, Ginger, Vitamins A, B12, C and E, Lecithin, Calcium Magnesium, Boron, Manages, Chromium, Potassium, fruit, goat’s milk cooked millet, buckwheat brown rice, oats and olive oil, among others. Licorice boosted the adrenal glands. Dulse helped thyroid function with natural. Iodine, Cayenne improved blood circulation and improved effectiveness of other herbs. Dong quai balanced the hormones, relaxed nerves and muscles. Mood swings, anxiety, irritability, headache and fluid retention were helped by Evening Prime rose oil. Its GLA helped the endocrine glands. Garlic, a natural antibiotic doubled as a minerals source. Lady’s slipper, high in calcium, also relaxed nerves and muscles and, with high amounts of selenium and zinc, supported immune function Lobelia, a tranquilizer, improved stomach, lungs and circulation functions. Ginger prevented cramping while senna lubricated the bowels and improved intestinal movement (peristalsis). For that man who told me his blood sugar is 8.7 who says he cannot do without pap meal, a simple carbohydrate which as a staple meal may cause hypoglycemia and diabetes, here’s a cornmeal recipe from LOUISE TENNY which retains all the wholeness of corn. In her words…. ¼ cup cornmeal/one cup pure water/ boil water and gradually add boiling/water/cover and cook for about 30 minutes./You can also cook overnight in a thermos. /Cornmeal is a laxative starch and is high in magnesium which is useful in constipation./It will not produce catarrh/yellow cornmeal is best”. With the best wishes for your health, bon appétit
Tel: 08034004247, 07025077303
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
e-Business Path to ICT growth, by stakeholders Amid growing challenges, which have impeded growth in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), stakeholders have outlined a roadmap for sustainable development of the sector, ADLINE ATILI reports
HE advent of ICT and the digital revolution have impacted every aspect of existence in this knowledge-based information age. There has been rapid shift from voice to data and analogue to digital technologies as well as the increasing role of wireless that creates greater mobility for users. ICT is also shaping the future of young people. Today, ICT is a booming business that not only creates new grounds, but also new business opportunities. This boom has resulted in greater usage of ICT, increased communication services, online information gathering and research, e-learning, e-commerce, e-banking and other services that are expanding access to the digital world and opportunities. While changing the way individuals live, interact, and work, ICT has also proven to be a key precondition for enhanced competitiveness and economic and societal modernisation, as well as an important instrument for bridging divides and reducing poverty. However, in spite of its achievements and contributions to development across the world, development of the sector in Nigeria remains slow and hard. Stakeholders have identified increasing cost of doing business; weak inter-organisational linkages that are key to a robust national ICT industry; insufficient management of critical resources and facilities and un-co-ordinated development of ICT skills as major challenges of the sector. A Senator representing Ogun Central Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Senator Olugbenga Obadare said at a post-conference interview recently that if the national momentum on global ICT leadership must be sustained, consolidation in the sector is vital. According to him, this is the only way the sector can effectively contribute to the economic development of the nation, in the face of the harsh operating environment. Obadara said ‘mergers and acquisition’ of ailing operators would ensure that resources are optimally utilised for cost-effectiveness and national growth. He said: “A lot of operators in the ICT sector can’t stand on their own. How many Internet Service Providers are working today? If we have only five strong companies that are bringing billions of Naira in return, that is better than having one hundred operators that are worth nothing. 100 per cent of nothing is nothing. Operators should start thinking of mergers and acquisition. It will help the individual, the industry and the nation.” According to the President of the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, Mr Titi Omo-Ettu, about 45 per cent of indigenous ICT businesses have folded up over the past few years due to the operating environment. He said 65 ICT companies were ‘under lock and key.’ He noted that of the 145 indigenous operators licensed by the NCC and registered by ATCON, 65 had gone under due to what he described as the ‘vicissitudes of the business environment.’ He said the remaining operators were increasingly finding it difficult to compete with bigger players in the industry, adding that: “In the 17 years of our association, our membership has risen to 145 and dwindled to 80. Sixty-five of these, an awesome 45 per cent, actually went under due to the vicissitudes of the business environment.” For the Chairman of Zinox Computers, Leo
• Mrs Johnson
•Executive Vice-Chairman, NCC, Dr Eugene Juwah
Stan-Ekeh, the ICT industry can only realise its full potential seamlessly, especially the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Vision 20:2020, if critical sectors of the economy are built on Information Technology (IT), chiefly Nigerian technology. ICT, he noted, offers the foundation for major leaps in almost every area of human activity. Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson, has promised that her ministry would ensure the country leapfrogs from a resource-dependent economy to a knowledge-based one. According to the World Development Report, for countries in the vanguard of the world economy, the balance between knowledge and resources has shifted towards the former, so far that knowledge has become the most important factor determining standard of living, more than land, tools, and labour. Mrs Johnson said though the nation has had tremendous success in telecommunications as a result of liberalisation of the sector, the same cannot be said for the IT sector which had lagged behind many nations for years. According to her, despite overtaking South Africa to become the largest telecom market in Africa, Nigeria ’s ICT sector accounts for only 3.5 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product compared with South Africa ’s 10 per cent. She noted that the success of the telecom sector is, in reality, in voice communication, saying there was need to move to increased data services and penetrate the rural and semi-urban areas to drive further growth. Aware of the critical role of ICT in national development and competitiveness, the minister said the opportunity for Nigeria lay in building a more robust and successful IT industry to enable cost effective access to communications infrastructure. She said the mandate of the ministry in building a successful IT industry will include facilitating universal, ubiquitous and cost effective access to communication infrastructure including a national fibre optic backbone. She added that the administration would also focus on promoting the utilisation of ICT in all spheres of life to optimise the communication infrastructure; increase the contribution of the industry to the GDP and deploy ICT to drive transparency in governance and service delivery. She said: “Though Nigeria has had tremendous success in the telecom sector as a result of the liberalisation, the IT sector for a variety of reasons, has not been as successful. There is the
need to replicate the success in telecom, in the IT sector. Our aspirations for what ICT can do for Nigeria are ambitious. “We believe that policies, programmes and plans that will be embarked upon to deliver on this mandate will provide a launch pad for Nigeria to leapfrog from a resource-dependent economy to a knowledge-based one. “Nigeria can be transformed into a major ICT hub where knowledge, technology and innovation are used as tools to not only drive wealth creation and empower citizens of the country, but also deployed to provide security, promote efficiency and national competitiveness for sustainable socioeconomic development.” Mrs Johnson said the ministry would work closely with the private sector, international partners and other supporting governments through its implementing agencies to deliver on its mandate. At a roundtable workshop with industry stakeholders, organised by the ministry to outline policy direction and intervention (2011 to 2015), the minister maintained that issues that have stunted ICT growth in the country would be effectively addressed during her tenure. She noted that the ICT sector, which is a predominantly service-based industry, is characterised by highly fragmented markets, exemplified by proliferation of small players with low-value offerings; limited growth of the manufacturing/assembly sub-sector due to lack of essential support infrastructure which limit opportunities and raise entry barriers and underdevelopment of the software market due to paucity of skill. She said one of the mandates of the ministry was to support the use of ICTs for the facilitation of efficient, effective and transparent governance, stressing that to achieve a digital economy that will accelerate the country’s developmental goal, the Vision 20:2020, in the next five years, the ICT sector will be focused on software development, especially by raising the awareness that will strengthen the implementation of intellectual property laws; call centre operations by stimulating the broadening and deepening of ICT infrastructure; device assembly, sales and distribution by advocating for local assembly of devices, promoting markets for locally produced devices, while avoiding protectionism. She regretted that the country does not have skills and capacity for offshore businesses because of its nature as a business of volume, promising that there would be policy directions and interventions to address the trend. She prom-
ised that she would use her new assignment to promote Foreign Direct Investments inflows into the nation’s ICT industry, while stimulating local demand and engendering favourable competition among the indigenous and foreign companies operating in Nigeria “Nigeria will not stop foreign companies and foreign investors from coming to Nigeria to come and invest in our ICT industry but what we would be doing is to ensure that the activities of those foreign companies are aligned with our ICT industry while promoting local competition,” she said. The minister, who pledged to work with other ministries to achieve the target, noted that the communication technology ministry has converged, saying: “We will articulate e-government and m-government requirements; create an ICT centre in all ministries to ensure quality and value-driven ICT services as well as refocus and strengthen agencies and parastatals under the new ministry’s supervision.” While making projections for the sector, she said by 2015, ICT would have contributed five per cent to the Gross Domestic Product of the country. She hinted that the current GDP is 3.5 per cent, and in the next three years, ICT contribution would have increased by 1.5 per cent. She added that Internet users will increase by 70 million people (the number of Internet users in the country stands at 33.5million), mobile penetration will also jump to 80 per cent, fixed penetration by two per cent, Internet penetration by 34 per cent while broadband penetration will increase by 12 per cent, up from the current six per cent. Mrs Johnson, who spoke for over an hour on the way forward in the ICT sector, while making technical and graphic presentations, revealed that the Federal Government may scrap the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) or simply streamline its activities into that of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC). Tentatively, she added that the NCC may soon become the regulator of all other agencies including Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT), the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), and the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), among others. She explained that streamlining activities of the NBC and NCC would free up scarce spectrum resources for digital migration and broadband provisioning. “Stakeholders’ call reverberate the need to merge the two agencies for appropriate utilisation of the digital dividend that will result from the migration of broadcasting from analogue to digital by 2015. The freed up frequencies could be licensed to telecom operators to provide services especially to drive broadband penetration,” she said. She said the ICT industry, which is predominantly service-based characterised by the dominance of basic voice and data communication services provided by telecom companies, in particular mobile (GSM) operators; limited manufacturing and assembly capabilities for ICT equipment and devices, would be further liberalised to ensure the targets are met. The minister also pointed towards the direction of valued added services to contribute to the sector’s target of $370 billion in the next five years. One of the ways this would be achieved, according to her, would be to advocate the enactment of a legal framework to facilitate egovernment and e-commerce initiatives. Mrs Johnson stated that the ministry will also contribute to the creation of an enabling environment by among other things, collaborating with other ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to create an investor and business friendly environment, including the acceleration of provision of enabling infrastructure, especially power. She said the targets would also be to promote regulation to increase competitiveness in the market and achieve level-playing field in broad range of sub-sectors. She explained that the government’s direct intervention, which is of • Continued on page 48
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
e-Business Telecoms Compare: Is your pre-paid tariff truly the best?
•Ebonyi State Deputy Governor, Mr Dave Umahi, cutting the tape to inaugurate a Glo World outlet in Abakaliki. With him, from left, are Commissioner of Police, Mr Adeola Adeji; Globacom Head of Operations, East 1, Dr Prince Dimkpa and Ali Odefa.
Airtel targets $5b from Africa
ROM its operations in Africa, Airtel is expecting about $5billion in revenue by may 2013, its Chief Executive Officer/Joint Managing Director, Manoj Kohli, has said. Addressing the media in Gabon, Kohli said: “We are extremely satisfied with our African acquisition. There was an expectation I had given that by May 2013, we will achieve $5 billion revenue and $2 billion EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation) and we are on track for that target.” Last year, in the largest telecom take-over by an Indian firm, Bharti had acquired Kuwait-based Zain Telecom’s African business for about US $140.70 billion. The closure of the deal implied that Bharti had received approvals from the governments and regulators of each of these 16 nations. On acquiring top position across Africa, Kohli said MTN is very
Stories by Adline Atili competitive but “we are digging our heels and are trying to get our foundation, network customer services, right. If foundation is right, leadership is not far away.” Currently, MTN holds the leading position in Africa’s mobile market. “We have to bring in our business model, all our business partners like Nokia, Ericsson, Huawei and many others,” said Kohli. “Our first objective is to build our own tower company, which is in the process. In the next few months, we will have our tower company ready, registered, all the staffing completed and all the legal approvals and so on, being done and that is moving quite well,” he added. Kohli said the new tower company will improve its cost efficiency “because as you build (tower company), share tower,
‘Firms lose N30b to cyber attacks yearly’
HE high rate of cyber attacks without corresponding laws to address the menace is causing Nigerian firms a loss of over $200 million (about N30billion) annually. However, those mostly affected are Information and Communications Technology, banking, manufacturing and oil and gas firms. Ernst &Young’s Senior Managers, Advisory Services, Mr Tal Mozes and Amir Rasilevski disclose this at a one-day workshop in Lagos on cyber hacking. According to Rasilevski, due to lack of awareness and negligence of some indigenous and multinational companies, infiltrators are allowed access into companies’ database, causing damage, including hacking, virus infiltration, among others. Rasilevski said there was need for proactive measures by companies in the country to put up a defensive mechanism against these attacks, urging government to ensure that there is legislation in place to oversee various cyber activities in the country. He added that doing this will strengthen Nigeria’s fight against cybercrime. He noted that in most of the attacks analysed, attackers took advantage of a hybrid approach that merges technical merits alongside human weaknesses to carry out crime. He hinted that since the electronic market is open to every-
body, it gives room for eavesdroppers and criminals, who capitalise on various human deficiencies to launch attacks and run down businesses. Rasilevski, who noted in his presentation that Nigeria ranked third in Internet money fraud, said within the last one year, fraud and forgeries in Nigerian banks were put at 329 cases with about N1.15 billion monetary loss and still running. He advised the Federal Government to set up a monitoring team through legislation that will monitor various cyber activities in the country, stressing that the bandwidth capacity brought in by the various submarine cables, including MainOne, Glo 1 and others in the country must also be put to judicious use to avoid abuse by cyber criminals. Commenting, Mozes noted that the most common attack against companies often involve application vulnerabilities, adding that these attacks often leverage well-known issues to steal data and compromise users. He added that, to protect against these threats, companies need to identify the issues within their applications, fix the coding flaws that create the vulnerabilities, train their developers to avoid future issues and build security into their software development life cycle process.
the fuel cost comes down, cost of tower comes down. So, definitely we are looking at cost efficiency.” He, however, said there are no plans to have any joint venture for the tower company. On the scope for increasing tariffs in the African market, Kohli said there are opportunities to increase the rates in some places. This year, Bharti Airtel would invest between $1-1.2 billion, said Kohli. “Africa has been very satisfying. This is the last frontier of the global markets, specifically telecom market, and I think Bharti’s entry has not only been right, but also tangible. You will see in the next 5 -10 years,” Kohli said. Kohli said the African market is under-penetrated and there are some places where there is only 25-30 per cent penetration. Kohli noted that the market has one billion population with an average age of just 18 and clearly, it needs voice communications, wireless broadband. ODE Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operator, Starcomms, has introduced two new data plans to provide affordable Internet access to customers during the weekends and for students. The student data plan will save customers N3,000 from cost of procuring a modem and one month Internet access. The objective, according to the company, is to enable Nigerian students, unlimited Internet access to aid scholarship. Chief Executive Officer of Starcomms, Mr Logan Pather, said the student data plan will serve as a ‘welcome back to school offer’ for students while the weekend data plan is a competitive data tariff plan
VERY individual is faced with the challenge of choosing the best pre-paid package that meets not only his personal, but also business needs. No doubt, the various pre-paid packages are exciting and intriguing with all their benefits and accessibility. Telecoms Compare gives you four of the best pre-paid offers in Nigeria, hoping that you make the best decisions when choosing your pre-paid packages. As the word Infinito implies, Glo Infinito avails you the opportunity to make calls to infinity. Of course as long as your credit can take you, with its 25k per second tariff to call any network in Nigeria and other benefits like free mid night calls. This is cheap and outstanding as it is without any access charge. Glo has actually broken the jinx by offering low call rates without daily access charge and also with the same call rate from the very first minute. Airtel’s 2Good Xtra is an outstanding pre-paid package which offers a 20k per second rate to all networks in Nigeria, and very cheap international calls to USA, Canada, UK (fixed
lines), China and India, with 20 free monthly on-net SMS and just N25 daily access charge. This is definitely a revolutionary new plan and it’s simply 2GOOD. As the name implies, life is actually made easy with Etisalat’s Easy Life 2.0, which gives the opportunity of 20k per second to call all networks in Nigeria, 20k per second to call anyone, anytime in US (mobile and land line) and the UK (land line) and various bonuses, with only N25 daily access charge. It’s a basic plan that gives you the cheapest rates on the Etisalat network. This, of course, will not be complete without mentioning the almighty MTN’s superb Funlink Reloaded package. This package offers 17k per second and 30k per second for on-net calls during peak and offpeak periods respectively and 30k per second and 40k per second for off-net calls during peak and offpeak periods too. This is a big leap as MTN is starting to make efforts at reducing its off-net call rate. This is, indeed, a journey to True Value.
MTN rewards trade partners
IANT Telco, MTN Nigeria, has rewarded 15 of its trade partners with 2011 model KIA Sportage Sports Utility Vehicles (SUV) for being part of the company’s success story in its 10 years of operation. Speaking at the award in Lagos, Chief Executive Officer of the company, Brett Goschen, restated MTN’s commitment to investing in people and infrastructure in Nigeria . He said: “As market leader in Nigeria, MTN is an economic driver; contributing to the socioeconomic growth of Nigerians.The industry is dynamic in view of customers’ needs and competition. Because of this, we will continue to invest in people and infrastructure and enhance our service offering.” Goschen disclosed that MTN,
apart from building infrastructure, will not relent on innovation for the benefit of subscribers. He said rewarding its 120 trade partners across the country was a way of appreciating their contributions to the company’s achievements in ten years of providing telecom services to Nigerians. “There is no where you’ll go in Nigeria today, without getting MTN products and services; this is made possible through them. This is our own little way of saying ‘thank you’.” Also speaking at the ceremony, General Manager, Sales and Distribution, Richard Iweanoge, noted that the trade partners were chosen because of their long partnership with MTN, adding that some of them had been with the company since inception.
Starcomms introduces students data plans for customers, who want to make the most of weekend Internet surfing. He explained that the student data plan comprises a USB plus 2 GB data plan valid for 30 days at N8, 999, adding that Subscriber Identification Module registration would be done for the student once verification of identity card is completed. He said the weekend plan will run from 9pm on Friday to 6am on Monday, on an unlimited data cap at a competitive rate. The weekend data plan, according to him, comprises a ZTE USB modem
+ Weekend Plan, valid for 30days at N9,999 while renewal plan will also be valid for 30 days at N4,999. He said: “The weekend plan is aimed at new subscribers, especially the segment of consumers that may have full Internet access in the office during the week but will also need access during the weekends. This plan is only valid for 30days and is renewable by sending *253*data device number*1234# to 37938 for IZAP, or *153*data device number*1234# to 37938 for 1X.”
Path to ICT growth, by stakeholders • Continued from page 47
immediate priority would include to harmonise the various disparate policies that govern the ICT sector and develop a national ICT policy. Others are to accelerate the rollout of broadband infrastructure; increase online presence of Nigerian businesses and institutions through collaborations and partnerships, especially through Public-Private Partnership (PPP), among others. A stakeholder at the workshop and Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Mr Gbenga Adebayo, said for the targets to be met, there should be a centralised inter-ministerial body that will see to the multiplicity of regulations and taxes that threaten the sector daily. He stressed that
frequent closure of telecom cell sites by especially states and local governments should be looked into. Former president of ATCON, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem said there is need to create room for local content development to stimulate targets of the industry. “In the last few years, how have we embraced ‘Made-in-Nigeria’ products from the ICT sector? How has government, its agencies, private sectors, utilised our locally made software? We need to assemble manufacturers,” Ekuwem asserted. Omo-Ettu in an interview with eWorld, said to deliver on the mandate of the ministry, Mrs Johnson needs the full support of all stakeholders. He said: “To the extent that government has realised the need for a
restructuring of our industry and responded, I think the creation of the Ministry of Communications Technology is good for our industry. The new minister strikes me as cerebral and intellectually ready. As industry players, government appointment needs not satisfy us. It only needs to be good. “It behoves us to assist government to make our industry strive and progress in the belief that government has chosen who it thinks can deliver its mandate to the people. In this particular case the appointment is good because someone who knows the subject has been appointed and the remaining is for us to work with her. Our attitude is to hold her to her mandate and help her to succeed so that we can succeed and our industry and our investments can flourish.”
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
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THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
39m adult population excluded from financial services, says CBN •Funds switch to bonds as stocks falter
HE Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said a large percent age of Nigerians remain excluded from financial services. The 2010 Enhancing Financial Innovation and Access (EFInA) study revealed that 39.2 million adult population, were financially excluded in the country. CBN Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability, Dr. Kingsley Moghalu, said a marginal increase occurred of those served by the formal financial market from 35.0 per cent in 2005 to 36.3 per cent in 2010. When those that had financial services from the informal sector, such as savings clubs/pools, Esusu, Ajo, money lenders are included, the total access percentage for 2010 was 53.7 per cent. Moghalu, who spoke at the 2011 Global Policy Forum of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) held in Mexico, said Financial inclusion, alternatively characterized as “access to finance” has been defined as “universal access at reasonable cost, to a
By Collins Nweze
wide range of financial services to every one needing them, provided by a diversity of sound and sustainable institutions.” He said the global average of financial inclusion levels is only 46 per cent, adding that the problem is even more acute in developing countries and in Africa in
particular. He said the CBN has pursued a programme of vigorous reform of the banking system since June 2009 following the crises faced by eight of Nigeria’s 24 commercial banks in the wake of the global financial crisis and as a result of self-induced weaknesses. Meanwhile, Nigerian fund manag-
ers have been switching into government bonds in recent months, boosting liquidity in the domestic debt market, as stocks struggle to recover from a 21-month low touched two weeks ago. Pensions funds and asset managers in Nigeria are buying government and corporate bonds, despite bullish buy recommendations on equities, to try to recoup losses from the coun-
try’s stock market, down 18 percent this year, analysts say. Sub-Saharan Africa’s second biggest index gained 19 percent in 2010. Mayowa Ogunwemimo, Head of Nigerian asset management firm, FSDH, which manages N50 billion ($340 million), said it was tough to predict a bottom for equities and that her firm had switched focus to fixed income for higher yields.
ETI shareholders approve Oceanic acquisition
HAREHOLDERS of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI) yesterday approved the bank’s resolution to acquire Oceanic Bank Plc as part of strategic transactions for which the bank is raising $3 billion. The board assured shareholders that Oceanic Bank has been rid of bad debt by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON). The board also insisted that Oceanic remained strong in assets with wide spread network. Approving the resolution in an Extra-ordinary General Meeting (EGM)
•FCMB/FinBank EGM holds today By Tonia Osundolire
dressing shareholders at the meeting, ETI board chairman, Kolapo Lawson, said the approval would enable the bank pursue its expansion agenda in Africa, particularly, Nigeria and Ghana. Expressing his satisfaction with the shareholders’ approval, the chairman said: “The general meeting approved the resolution reaffirming the authorisation earlier granted to the board in 2008 to raise up to $3 billion in equity, debt, quasi equity global depository
in Lagos, an overwhelming 93.332 per cent of shareholders voted in favour as against 6.667 per cent that opposed the resolution, while 0.001 was void. Shareholders of Oceanic, had a day before, overwhelmingly approved the transaction. With shareholders of both banks giving their nod to the acquisition, the coast is now clear for 100 per cent acquisition of Oceanic Bank by ETI. Ad-
receipts (GDR), or a combination of any or all of these as the board of directors may deem appropriate.” Meanwhile, EGM of First City Monument Bank and FinBank will hold today as scheduled. FCMB’s Director of Communications, Kenny Aliu assured shareholders of both instituions that arrangements for the EGM have been finalised and have the blessings of relevant regulators. “All is set and we look forward to welcoming our shareholders to the EGM today,” he said.
Naira gains 42k at official market, loses 35k at interbank
HE naira yesterday gained 42 kobo at the official market, and lost 35 kobo at the interbank. This came after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sold $700 million at 154.60 to the dollar at the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS), firmer than at the previous auction, but traders remained skeptical about the regulator’s intentions to defend the local currency. But the appreciation in naira at the official window, failed to excite dealers as the local currency weakened further to 158.45 to the dollar at the interbank market from 158.10 per dollar on Tuesday, losing 35 kobo at a go. The apex bank had on Monday, sold $350 million at N155.02 to the dollar , with the local currency depreciating FGN BONDS
3.3 per cent beyond the bank’s 150 baseline target. The regulator has set a target of maintaining the naira within the range of +/- 3 per cent band around 150 to the dollar. Traders said demand for the dollar remain strong despite the increased supply at the bi-weekly auction as forex end users were not taken by the apex bank’s move to return the currency back within band. “We are yet to see a clearer move by the CBN to defend the naira in spite of today’s increased in dollar supply,” one dealer said. Dealers said officials from the CBN called round to instruct some banks to limit their buying at the official window to around $50 million in its
today’s (yesterday’s) auction was meant to take into account a public holiday on Monday, when the auction will not hold. In actual fact, the CBN did not really increase supply,” the dealer said. The regulator has con-
bid to curtail demand at auction. “The naira will continue to depreciate unless the Central Bank shows commitment to defend the naira,” another dealer said. “The increase in dollar supply at
StanChart partners PwC
sic financial management and accounting training as well as cover the bank’s processes and the products and services available. The bank’s plan is to increase its customers’ capacity to access more loans and services to grow their business, as well as offer them the opportunity to network with other business owners. Regional Head of Consumer
TANDARD Chartered Bank and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) have announced a partnership to provide training for small-and medium-sized (SME) enterprises in Ghana, Nigeria and Zambia. The Nigerian session will take place on 29th and 30th September 2011. The sessions will provide Standard Chartered’s SME customers with ba-
3-Year 5-Year 5-Year
35m 35m 35m
11.039 12.23 13.19
19-05-2014 18-05-2016 19-05-2016
WHOLESALE DUTCH AUCTION SYSTEM Amount
Initial Current Quotation Price Market N8250.00 5495.33 N1000.00 N552.20
Price Loss 2754.67 447.80
INTERBANK RATES 7.9-10% 10-11%
PRIMARY MARKET AUCTION (T-BILLS) Tenor 91-Day 182-Day 1-Year
Amount 30m 46.7m 50m
Rate % 10.96 9.62 12.34
Date 28-04-2011 “ 14-04-2011
GAINERS AS AT 28-9-11 SYMBOL ROADS FIRSTBANK ACCESS NCR IKEJAHOTEL REDSTAREX ETI CONOIL JAPAULOIL UNTL
O/PRICE 4.43 8.50 4.90 4.75 1.96 2.20 11.16 33.00 0.73 0.78
C/PRICE 4.65 8.92 5.14 4.98 2.05 2.30 11.65 34.36 0.76 0.81
CHANGE 0.22 0.42 0.24 0.23 0.09 0.10 0.49 1.36 0.03 0.03
LOSER AS AT 28 -9-11 SYMBOL NEIMETH DIAMONDBNK STERLNBANK DANSUGAR BERGER ETERNAOIL ECOBANK LONGMAN OANDO MAYBAKER
O/PRICE 1.00 3.61 1.21 7.73 9.38 5.38 2.53 5.08 22.03 3.19
C/PRICE 0.95 3.43 1.15 7.36 8.92 5.12 2.41 4.84 20.99 3.08
Offered ($) Demanded ($)
OBB Rate Call Rate
Banking, West Africa, Carol Oyedeji, said SMEs are the backbone of economies worldwide and a key driver of growth and job creation. Managing Partner PwC Nigeria, Ken Igbokwe, said his firm’s support for SMEs goes back a long way because it recognises that the sector in Nigeria is an important building block for the transformation of the economy.
sistently sold $350 million at each auction in the last few months, and dealers said unless the CBN increases supply at its next auction, demand for hard currency will continue to outpace available currency in he market.
EXHANGE RATE 26-08-11 CAPITAL MARKET INDEX Currency
Year Start Offer
C u r r e n t CUV Start After %
Bureau de Change 152.0000 (S/N)
NSE CAP Index
NIGERIA INTER BANK (S/N)
13-09-11 N6.7026tr 21,018.52
14-09-11 N6.760tr 21,199.16
% Change -0.87% -0.86%
MEMORANDUM QUOTATIONS Name
DISCOUNT WINDOW Feb. ’11
Standing Lending Rate ,, Deposit Rate ,, Liquidity Ratio Cash Return Rate Inflation Rate
8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 1.00% 12.10%
8.50% 4.50% 25.00% 2.00% 12.10%
9.50% 5.50% 30.00% 2.00% 9.4%
9.17 1.00 117.72 107.46 0.78 1.02 0.94 1,628.78 8.24 1.39 1.87 7,417.23 193.00
9.08 1.00 117.46 107.10 0.75 1.02 0.93 1,625.40 7.84 1.33 1.80 7,190.00 191.08
ARM AGGRESSIVE KAKAWA GUARANTEED STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND THE LOTUS CAPITAL HALAL BGL SAPPHIRE FUND BGL NUBIAN FUND NIGERIA INTERNATIONAL DEB. PARAMOUNT EQUITY FUND CONTINENTAL UNIT TRUST CENTRE-POINT UNIT TRUST STANBIC IBTC NIG EQUITY THE DISCOVERY FUND • ARM AGGRESSIVE • KAKAWA GUARANTEED
CHANGE 0.05 0.18 0.06 0.38 0.46 0.26 0.12 0.24 0.04 0.15
• STANBIC IBTC GUARANTE • AFRINVEST W.A. EQUITY FUND
NIBOR Tenor 7 Days 30 Days 60 Days 150 Days
Rate (Previous) 24 Aug, 2011 9.0417 9.6667 11.2917 12.1250
Rate (Currency) 26, Aug, 2011 10.17% 11.46% 11.96% 12.54%
OPEN BUY BACK Previous
04 July, 2011
07, Aug, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS VISAFONE opens retail outlets VISAFONE has opened seven new outlets in Lagos, Ogun, Edo and Rivers states. The outlets were opened as part of Visafone’s strategic expansion plan and the need to provide quality services, VISAFONE Head of Corporate Communications Joseph Ushigiale said yesterday. The grand gala opening ceremony took place at Visafone Retail Outlets on Nnebisi road, Asaba, Delta state. Ikota, Ajah, Ikorodu, Badagry, Agbara, Mission Road and Aba Road are among the retail outlets. Ushigiale described the opening of new retail outlets as another customer service initiative deployed by the company to ensure subscribers get a feel of unique and excellent customer service delivery. Managing Director of Visafone Sailesh Iyer said: “Our new retail outlets are equipped with complete bouquet of services from Voice, Data Activation, SIM Registration, Handset Choice, Data Modems to After Sales Services aimed at serving the needs of the customers.”
MTN hosts customers MTN’s High Value customer lovers of old school music got the thrill of their lives last weekend when they were treated to nostalgic music featuring the SOS Band, a chart bursting musical group of the 1980s. Number 10 Lounge, Victoria Island, Lagos, Venue of the riveting event was packed full with captains of industry and celebrities who subscribed to the MTN network, including Ben Murray Bruce, Chairman of the Silverbird Group, Olu and Joke Jacobs and many Nollywood Stars. The SOS band was barely done with their third song when the crowd of dignitaries, led by Ali Baba, started chanting and calling for the group’s all time classic, “O Baby You’re the finest”, which they obliged.
Funeral for ex-teacher MADAM Caroline Chinwe Maduka, former headteacher of Udoozor Primary School, Awka, Anambra State, is dead. She died on March 3 . There will be a wake-keep at her home in Umuona, tomorrow. The valedictory service is schecduled for St.Mathias Anglican Church, Umuona, at 10 am, followed by the interment. The outing service comes up on October 2 at the same Church. She is survived by her husband, children and grandchildren.
Funeral for ex- pastor PASTOR Mabayoje Fayehun is dead. He died on July 13. The wake-keep comes up on September 30 at his home, EC 29B, Ilaje, Ilesa, Osun State. The remains of the late Fayehun will be buried on October 1 at his home. The outing service will hold at Divine Christian Hope Evangelical Church. The late Fayehun is survived by children and grandchildren.
Protests in Anambra over pre-paid meters
LECTRICITY consumers in Azu-Borromeo community, Odune, Obosi in Anambra State yesterday stormed the Ogidi office of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), to protest the organisation’s billing system and the unavailability of pre- paid metres. The protest came on the heels of another petition by the Civil Liberties Organisation (CLO) to the Minister of Power and Steel Bath Nnaji on the same issue and allegation of corrupt practices by PHCN workers in the state. Addressing reporters at the PHCN premises, where the protesters had gone to show their grievances, leaders of the Odume community, Comrade Silas Anode and C.N Umeji alleged that PHCN workers in Ogidi have been extorting them through estimated bills. Anode and Umeji said over seventy percent of bills are generated by the consumers in Odume, adding that it did not reflect the electricity consumed by them monthly. “The marketers have taken the undue advantage of consumers, who are unable to pay the excessive bills, to enrich them-
The protesters....yesterday From Adimike George, Onitsha
selves through covert and overt means. They fraudulently collect N1000 bribe monthly from consumers who are unable to pay the excess estimated bills; otherwise the customer will be disconnected,” they alleged. “Another unexplainable issue is of the consumers that are placed on fixed consumption of about N3000 monthly, without
any reason. The maintenance of the transformers has been unofficially transferred to the consumers,” they said. Chairman of Civil Liberty Organisation (CLO) in Anambra State , Comrade Aloysius Attah, in his petition, said electricity consumers on Ofordum Street, Onitsha, have been subjected to serious extortions from PHCN workers. “Issues ranging from non reading of analogue meter bills,
issuance of crazy bills and mass disconnection of energy sources of various homes and shady deals in the procurement and installation of prepaid meters have all been elevated . “ CLO, therefore, called on the government to probe the Onitsha
PHCN, to clear the conflicting reports surrounding the issuance of pre-paid meters to buildings. The organisation also called for the abolishment of estimated billing system in Onitsha business unit,” he said.
Abia rape: Assembly summons police chief, VC
HE Abia State House of Assembly has summoned the Commissioner of Police Bala Hassan and the Vice-Chancellor of the State University Prof Chibuzor Ogbuagu over the alleged gang rape of a female student of the institution. Addressing reporters after meeting with the lawmakers, Ogbuagu said there was no clear cut evidence that the incident took place in the university. He said the institution had conducted its own investigations into the matter and found that the incident never took place in the university. He said: “Our investigations into the rape case has shown that the ugly incident never took place in our institution. But in view of the outcry and the smear campaign aimed at destroying our reputable institution, we want to call on all security agencies in the state to investigate the case to a logical conclusion. He said the institution would
From Ugochukwu Eke, Umuahia
no longer comment on the rape issue, “We will only comment after the security agencies would have finished their investigation, even as we have been trying to stop the students of the institution from going on protest march as they feel that their image have been tarnished.” The Vice -Chancellor said mischief makers, whom he described as ‘monkey’s hand’, were the brains behind the act of tarnishing the image of the institution. Ogbuagu urged the people to volunteer information to the university authorities and security agencies to help in unmasking the rapists. Hassan said the police are on top of the situation, adding that Zacky and Uchenna have been arrested in connection with the case. Hassan said despite the arrests, “the evidence before us does not show or prove that the two committed the act, but
we are doing our job of investigating the case and I assure you that we will do a thorough job”. The police commissioner said there was no evidence to show that the incident took place in Abia State University Uturu, adding that it could have taken place elsewhere in the country. Hassan said the rape victim has not shown up since the incident took place. He said the non appearance of the rape victim has been slowing down the investigation of the matter. The lawmakers have commenced investigation into the matter to ascertain whether the rape took place in the state or not. The House, through a motion moved by the member representing Aba North state constituency and Chairman House Committee on Women Affairs, Blessing Nwagba asked that the VC and the CP be invited to tell the members what they are doing to unravel those behind the rape case.
Group petitions Jonathan, Mark, over NDDC nominee A BIA State nominee to the Board of the yet to be constituted Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has triggered off protests by people of the state. In a move to prevent President Goodluck Jonathan from forwarding the nomination of Aloysius Nwagboso to the Senate for screening and possible confirmation, the people of Ukwa West have petitioned President Goodluck Jonathan and the Senate President David Mark, opposing his nomination. This is the second time a nominee from the state on the NDDC Board is attracting wide spread protests. The Ukwa West Youth Assembly, the arrow group of the opposition, claimed in the protest letter that the choice of
From Onyedi Ojiabor, Assistant Editor
Nwagboso could threaten peace and security in the state, if allowed to sail through. The petitioners said: “For fairness and honesty and to preserve the existing peace in Abia State, Aloysius Nwaghoso should be dropped without further delay.” The petitioners said any other name submitted by Governor Theodore Orji should be chosen. The protest letter was signed by the President and Secretary of the body Ndukaku Nwamuo and Victor Uchemadu. The first time Nwagboso was nominated to be on the board of NDDC in 2007, his
nomination was opposed by the Abia caucus of the House of Representatives and others. Nwagboso’s nomination subsequently went to court in two different suits. According to Ukwa Ngwa people, Nwagboso is not a quality representation. His name was later substituted with that of Jacob Anuruegbu by the late President Shehu Yar’Adua. But following the recent dissolution of the NDDC Board by President Jonathan and call for nomination into the new board, the people of Ukwa Ngwa said since the governor has sent three names to the president, any other person should be sent to the Senate for screening and confirmation, not Nwagboso.
PUBLIC NOTICE FEMI ADESANYA FOUNDATION. This is to inform the general public that the above named foundation has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission for registration under Part C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act of 1990. THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. STELLA ADESANYA 2. ADEDAYO ADESANYA 3. ISAAC ADEYEMI 4. FRANCIS IGBEKOYI AIMS&OBJECTIVES ARE: 1. TO HELP THE NEEDY IN THE COMMUNITY. 2. TO SUPPORT INDIVIDUALS AND ORGANIZATIONS WITH MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS. Any objection to this registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General ,Corporate Affairs Commission,Plot 420 Tigris Crescent,Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street,P.M.B 198,Maitama,Abuja within twenty-eight(28)days from the date of this publication. SIGNED ADEKUNLE ADENIYI 08023916606.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
NEWS 2, 527 prison officers promoted From Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
HE Nigerian Prisons Service has promoted 2,527 officers. Those promoted include 54 Deputy Comptrollers who were elevated to Comptrollers. NPS Comptroller-General Olusola Ogundipe, who decorated some of the officers with their new ranks in Abuja on Tuesday, urged them to direct their energies to the service of their fatherland. Ogundipe said: “Let us not forget that promotion comes from God. “I want you to see it as such and desist from arrogating such elevation to your strength or brilliance. “I congratulate you and implore you to direct your energies to the service of the fatherland.” One hundred and forty three Assistant Superintendents of Prison II were promoted to Assistant Superintendents I and 147 Deputy Chief Inspectors to Chief Inspectors. Three hundred Assistant Chief Inspectors were elevated to Deputy Chief Inspectors; 398 Principal Inspectors to Assistant Chief Inspectors and 627 Senior Inspectors to Principal Inspectors.
Rivers to reform civil service From Clarice Azuatalam, Port Harcourt
HE Rivers State Government has said it would reform its public service for better service delivery. Governor Rotimi Amaechi spoke when he inaugurated a 10-man committee that would lead the transformation process in the state public service. Represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), George Feyii, Amaechi decried the rot in the system and urged the committee to chart a course that would re-engineer the public service for better service delivery.
Two ex- PENGASSAN chairmen kidnapped in Delta
NKNOWN gunmen have abducted two former chairmen of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association (PENGASSAN), Petroleum Institute, Effurun, Delta State, branch. The Nation learnt that the exchairmen were abducted at different locations in Effurun, Uvwie Local Government. The whereabouts of the abducted ex-chairmen, Taju Bello and Ben Etanabena, remain unknown. It was gathered that Etenabena was abducted at 4pm after which his successor, Bello, was kidnapped at about 6:30 pm. The PTI Chairman of PENGASSAN, McPaul Bolarin, regretted the kidnap of his colleagues. He said a committee had been set up to work “within the ambit of the law” to secure their release. Bolarin lamented the inability of security agents to protect citizens, adding that the association would react appropriately soon. He said over 10 workers, including a former principal of PTI, have been abducted in
Bayelsa monarch freed From Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa
BAYELSA monarch, the Obenibe of Atissa Kingdom, Godwin Igodo, has been released after a month in captivity. The monarch was kidnapped late last month from his Ogbogoro Community Palace. His whereabouts were not known until recently when negotiations with the hoodlums commenced after they contacted his family. A ransom of N25 million was initially demanded by the kidnappers who later agreed to collect N10.2million. It was not clear if the amount was paid before he was freed. Sources said he was found around the Kalabari community of Degema, from where he was brought to Yenagoa. It was learnt that his family and well wishers went in a motorcade to receive the King at Mbiama, a boundary community between Bayelsa and Rivers states on Tuesday night. But yesterday morning, he was reportedly taken to an undisclosed hospital for treatment. Sources said in the process of paying the ransom, the gunmen were overpowered and killed, though this could not be confirmed. Police spokesman Emopae Egwavon confirmed the release. From Shola O’Neil, Warri and Bisi Olaniyi, Port Harcourt
the last one month. Similar abductions took place at a facility of Nigerian Agip Oil Company in Kwale. Sources said three oil
workers were abducted last weekend. It was gathered that one of the workers was released after his family paid N1 million. Sources said the latest kid-
nap was carried out by youths dressed in military uniforms and wielding automatic weapons. The kidnappers of the Legal Officer of Rivers State Road Traffic Management Authority (TIMA-RIV), Ms. Cleverline Brown, have demanded N150million. TIMA-RIV’s Head of Media Victor Iyalla confirmed the ransom demand in a telephone interview yesterday. Iyalla, however, stated that he could not give the details, especially if the ransom demand was made to TIMA-RIV or the victim’s family. Police spokesman Ben Ugwuegbulam said the command was still investigating the incident. He said the TIMA-RIV official would soon be rescued and the hoodlums apprehended. Ms. Brown was kidnapped in Port Harcourt around 10 pm on Monday, by a gang of four armed hoodlums, who operated in a red Volkswagen Jetta saloon car, while she was driving to her house at Iwofe area of the Rivers state capital.
Oshiomhole calls for unity in ACN •Amaechi
The committee is headed by a former Permanent Secretary, Christopher Obinna. Permanent Secretary in the office of the SSG, Ms Kadilo Brown is secretary.
DO State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has reportedly asked members of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) to desist from undertaking any action that will destabilise the party in the state. Sources at a meeting of
From Osagie Otabor, Benin
ACN leaders held at the residence of Chief Tom Ikimi on Tuesday night said Oshiomhole was peeved at the lingering fracas between Deputy Governor Pius Odubu and the party’s Southsouth Vice Chairman, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu. Ize-Iyamu is leading a group pushing that Odubu be dropped as Oshiomhole’s running mate in next year’s governorship election. A source said Oshiomhole reminded the leaders that it is his right to choose his deputy and so should be allowed to make the decision at the right time. Among those present at
the meeting are state Chairman Tom Okosun, Women Leader Mrs. Modino Emovon, Chief of Staff Osarodion Ogie, Edo South Leader Amos Osunbor. The source said the governor told the gathering that the demand on him to drop Odubu was unnecessary and uncalled for. Oshiomhole was said to have told the ACN leaders that allegations that the deputy governor has not attracted development to Orhionmwon Local Government was designed to indict his government and embarrass him. The source further added that Oshiomhole said the party must remain united, focused and steadfast.
Monarchs to monitor projects in Delta
RADITIONAL rulers of communities where government projects are cited in Delta State will monitor such projects to check excesses of contractors, Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan said yesterday. He spoke when the traditional ruler of OruariveAbraka, Akpomeyoma Ma-
joroh, Ojeta 11, visited him at the Government House, Asaba. He said traditional rulers are expected to raise the alarm, if contractors refuse to execute the job after collecting mobilisation fees. Uduaghan said their involvement has become important to avoid a situation
where contractors collect money and abandon the projects. “The new strategy we are using, we will try as much as possible to involve the traditional rulers in the monitoring of projects in the communities, especially if the contractor is an indigene,” the governor said.
Edo gets Head of Service
DO State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has sworn in Mrs. Ekiuwa lnneh as the Head of Service. He urged her to work towards the advancement of the Civil Service. Speaking at the Government House, Benin, the governor said the
appointment was based on merit. “Our capacity to deliver on our obligation to our people depends on the quality of leadership and the quality of judgment of leaders. “Since I assumed office, I had the opportunity to work with a number of
senior officers, including permanent secretaries and directors. “Each time we had an assignment we considered difficult and require people with drive, energy, creativity initiative we had always identified Mrs. Inneh for such assignments.”
Bayelsa NLC gives strike notice
HE Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Bayelsa State has issued a seven-day ultimatum, following the non-implementation of the minimum wage. In a statement at the end of a joint meeting with the Trade Union Congress
From Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa
(TUC), the NLC said if government fails to implement the minimum wage in seven days, members of both unions will embark on a three- day warning strike . NLC Chairperson Mrs. Ebiuwou Koku-Obiyai said
the strike will start on October 7. At the end of the meeting, the NLC commended Governor Timipre Sylva for setting up the tripartite committee but requested that he should “immediately implement the recommendations of the committee.”
THE NATION THURSNDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
FOREIGN NEWS NATO planes hit Gaddafi’s stronghold of Sirte
Michael Jackson full of energy before death, promoter tells court
ATO planes have bombed targets in one of the last proGaddafi strongholds, Sirte, as government forces continue their assault on the city. Soldiers of the National Transitional Council (NTC) have been facing fierce resistance and deployed tanks to fend off sniper fire by Gaddafi loyalists. NTC forces have seized the port as they move towards the centre of Sirte - the birthplace of Libya’s ousted leader. Civilians have been leaving the city, as water, food and medicine run low. Britain’s ministry of defence said Royal Air Force and Nato aircraft had been “very active” over Sirte on Tuesday, destroying military targets including ammunition storage facilities. They also conducted strikes on a vehicle storage depot that has been serving as one of the main pro-Gaddafi bases. The air strikes continued on Wednesday. Along with the city of Bani Walid, Sirte is the last major area under the control of Gaddafi loyalists. Both cities have been the scene of intense fighting in recent weeks. In Bani Walid, according to one report, at least 11 NTC fighters were killed by rockets fired by pro-Gaddafi troops on Wednesday. All night bombs struck the centre of Sirte as Nato aircraft tried to weaken defensive positions held by pro-Gaddafi troops. More civilians left the city at first light, but people are still reporting food and water shortages, as well as the obvious dangers of being caught up in the battle for Sirte.
MEND vows to bomb Eagle Square
T A TIME the Federal Government is making efforts to end bombings by Islamic Sect Boko Haram, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has said it will bomb Eagle Square, Abuja on October 1, during the 51st independence celebration. Explosions near the Eagle Square on October 1 last year during the country’s 50th anniversary celebration led to the death of many persons and destruction of valuable property. MEND claimed responsibility for the Eagle Square attacks, leading to the arrest of one of its leaders, Henry Okah, who is still standing trial in South Africa. MEND, in an online statement yesterday night by its Spokesman, Jomo Gbomo, said that the militant group intended to place bombs within and in the immediate vicinity of Eagle Square.
From Bisi Olaniyi, Port Harcourt
It said: “After 51 years of Independence, Nigerians still have nothing to celebrate. “The general public is strongly advised to consider this as a first and final warning. “No additional warnings will be issued subsequent to deployment or detonation of these devices, which will be novel in nature.” Militancy subsided with the 2009 offer of amnesty to repentant militants by the Federal Government, with many of them either acquiring skills or schooling within and outside Nigeria. The Spokesman of the Joint Task Force (JTF), Timothy Antigha, had earlier assured of peace in the Niger Delta, stressing that the main militants had embraced amnesty, while urging the people not to panic because of threats from some “disgruntled” elements.
•The late Jackson
WO days before he died, Michael Jackson appeared strong during one of the final rehearsals for his highly anticipated comeback concerts, a promoter told jurors yesterday as the involuntary manslaughter trial of the pop superstar’s physician entered its second day. Paul Gongaware, an executive for AEG Live, said Jack-
son appeared engaged and energetic during the session. Prosecutors called Gongaware to show the importance of Jackson’s comeback concerts and in an apparent attempt to show that both the singer and his physician were deeply engaged in preparations for the show before Jackson died on 25 June 2009. Gongaware also testified that he saw Dr Conrad Murray at one of Jackson’s rehearsals after people affiliated with the planned concerts complained that the singer had been missing some of the sessions. Prosecutors wrapped up their direct questioning of Gongaware before defense attorney Ed Chernoff briefly questioned the executive. Under the cross-examination, Gongaware acknowledged the concert giant is being sued by Jackson’s mother for negligent supervision of defendant Murray when he
worked with Jackson. Murray has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter in connection with Jackson’s death. Prosecutors allege Murray caused Jackson’s death by providing him with a lethal dose of the anesthetic propofol and other sedatives without the proper lifesaving equipment or skills. Another AEG employee, attorney Kathy Jorrie, testified about drafting a contract for Murray to work as Jackson’s personal physician. At one point in negotiations, Murray requested his contract be modified to allow him to hire another physician in case he was tired or unavailable while Jackson was performing in London, she testified. “He wanted to make sure that there was somebody else available to be of assistance,” Jarrie said. Prosecutors also planned to
call one of Jackson’s bodyguards and his personal assistant, who Murray frantically called after he found the singer unconscious. In opening statements on Tuesday, deputy district attorney David Walgren said Murray delayed summoning emergency crews and lied to doctors and medics when he failed to reveal he had been giving Jackson the medications to try to help the entertainer sleep. Chernoff claimed Jackson gave himself a fatal dose of medication in a desperate attempt to get some sleep. He said Murray had been trying to wean Jackson off propofol, but the entertainer kept requesting it on the day he died. “Michael Jackson started begging,” Chernoff said. “When Michael Jackson told Dr Murray, ‘I have to sleep. They will cancel my performance,’ he meant it.”
US Embassy warns of abduction in Saudi Arabia
HE United States embassy in Saudi Arabia said yesterday it had received information that a terrorist group may be planning to abduct Westerners in the capital, Riyadh, and
urged US citizens to exercise caution. “US Embassy in Riyadh advises US citizens in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that we have received information that a terrorist
group in Saudi Arabia may be planning to abduct Westerners in Riyadh,” the embassy said in a message posted on its website. “The US Embassy in Riyadh reminds all U.S. citizens
to exercise prudence and enhanced security awareness at all times,” the message said. The message goes on to suggest “good personal security practices”.
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
EQUITIES NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 28-09-11 2ND-TIER SECURITIES Company Name ADSWITCH PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 1
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 500 815.00 500 815.00
AGRICULTURE/AGRO-ALLIED Company Name LIVESTOCK FEEDS PLC PRESCO PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 6 7
Quotation(N) 0.50 7.05
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 2,000 1,000.00 18,335 126,273.90 20,335 127,273.90
Quotation(N) 1.95 5.40
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 9,000 17,640.00 1,013,049 5,402,587.79 1,022,049 5,420,227.79
Quotation(N) 0.50 1.35
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 100 50.00 309,373 418,548.44 309,473 418,598.44
Quotation(N) 5.14 3.43 2.41 3.87 2.03 8.92 12.05 8.65 4.98 1.15 3.52 2.09 0.76 0.65 11.97
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 37,633,970 185,098,931.31 6,638,316 22,769,673.88 333,133 804,171.53 1,338,709 5,010,263.40 65,532,218 130,993,181.63 21,504,014 188,357,372.66 16,004,363 192,230,151.02 765,115 6,799,233.90 9,106,097 43,220,012.28 1,372,805 1,650,824.05 18,484,858 64,695,023.36 1,432,113 2,993,116.17 2,440,394 1,792,357.64 2,691,100 1,750,715.00 7,246,481 86,167,934.01 192,523,686 934,332,961.84
Quotation(N) 217.95 6.06 79.00 0.97
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 205,314 43,990,400.88 42,000 241,920.00 782,573 61,617,480.87 1,000 970.00 1,030,887 105,850,771.75
Quotation(N) 16.11 7.30 99.75 40.00
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 159,947 2,476,863.03 159,695 1,108,283.30 9,640,438 961,677,456.84 343,490 13,310,298.16 10,303,570 978,572,901.33
Quotation(N) 8.92 17.85
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 140,262 1,251,137.04 129,978 2,216,708.86 270,240 3,467,845.90
AIR SERVICES Company Name AIRLINE SERVICES AND LOGISTICS PLC NIGERIAN AVIATION HANDLING COMPANY PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 86 87
AUTOMOBILE & TYRE Company Name DN TYRE & RUBBER PLC R. T. BRISCOE (NIGERIA) PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 17 18 BANKING
Company Name ACCESS BANK PLC DIAMOND BANK PLC ECOBANK NIGERIA PLC FIRST CITY MONUMENT BANK PLC FIDELITY BANK PLC FIRST BANK OF NIGERIA PLC GTBANK PLC STANBIC IBTC BANK PLC SKYE BANK PLC. STERLING BANK PLC UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA PLC. UNION BANK OF NIGERIA PLC UNITYBANK PLC WEMA BANK PLC ZENITH BANK PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 105 45 35 45 105 642 556 14 124 28 254 25 35 25 262 2,300 BREWERIES
Company Name GUINNESS NIGERIA PLC INTERNATIONAL BREWERIES PLC NIGERIAN BREWERIES PLC PREMIER BREWERIES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 73 3 108 2 186 BUILDING MATERIALS
Company Name ASHAKA CEMENT PLC CEMENT CO. OF NORTHERN NIGERIA PLC DANGOTE CEMENT PLC LAFARGE WAPCO PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 49 9 28 39 125 CHEMICAL & PAINTS
Company Name BERGER PAINTS NIGERIA PLC CHEMICAL AND ALLIED PRODUCTS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 11 33 44
COMMERCIAL/SERVICES Company Name COURTEVILLE BUSINESS SOLUTIONS PLC RED STAR EXPRESS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 2 15 17
Quotation(N) 0.50 2.30
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 43,000 21,500.00 762,327 1,704,793.57 805,327 1,726,293.57
COMPUTER & OFFICE EQUIPMENT Company Name NCR (NIGERIA) PLC. OMATEK VENTURES PLC THOMAS WYATT PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 1 1 3
Quotation(N) 4.98 0.50 1.38
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 50,000 249,000.00 30,000 15,000.00 7,086 9,353.52 87,086 273,353.52
Quotation(N) 1.90 6.51 30.00 6.11 0.75 35.22 27.50
Quantity Traded Value 1,000 23,196 184,332 200 3,374,587 40,942 402,538 4,026,795
Quotation(N) 49.64 4.65
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 86,500 4,079,340.00 90,000 418,500.00 176,500 4,497,840.00
Stock market records marginal recovery T HE Nigerian stock mar ket witnessed marginal recovery yesterday as upsurge in demand for banking stocks helped the market to break a six-day bearish spell. The All Share Index (ASI), the benchmark value index at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), inched up to 20,029.66 points from its opening index 0f 20,015.63 points. Aggregate market capitalisation of all equities increased marginally as well, from N6.383 trillion to N6.387 trillion. The positive overall market situation was driven largely by gains from banking stocks. The NSE Banking Index rose to 277.74 points compared with its opening index of 272.48 points. The performance of the banking subgroup, reflected gains by several banks including First Bank of Nigeria, which gained 42 kobo to close at N8.92 per share. Other banking stocks on the upside were Access Bank, with a gain of 24 kobo to close at N5.14; First City Monument Bank, which added 14 kobo to close at N3.87; Skye Bank added 18 kobo to close at N4.98, United Bank for Africa rallied 12 kobo to close at N3.52, Guaranty Trust Bank gained 15 kobo to close at N12.05, Zenith Bank added 10 kobo to close at N11.97, while Unity Bank and Fidelity Bank gained one kobo each to close at 76 kobo and N2.03 respectively. However, beyond the generally positive outlook indicated by the key indices, the market remained largely bearish with all other sectoral indices closing on the negative.
By Taofik Salako
The NSE Food and Beverages Index, dropped from 660.93 points to 654.78 points, reflecting losses suffered by Dangote Sugar Refinery, Cadbury Nigeria, Dangote Flour Mills and Honeywell Flour Mills. The NSE Insurance Index also slipped from 141.62 points to 140.34 points. The NSE Oil and Gas Index, fell to 229.94 points from 231.60 points, reflecting continuing decline in share price of Oando Plc. Oando recorded the second highest loss yesterday dropping by N1.04 to close at N20.99 per share. Nigerian Breweries, led the decliners with a loss of N2.30 to close at N79. Guinness Nigeria dropped by 55 kobo to close at N217.95. Cadbury Nigeria lost 53 kobo to close at N13.91. Berger Paints dropped by 46 kobo to close at N8.92 per share. Dangote Sugar Refinery lost 38 kobo to close at N7.35, while Eterna dropped 26 kobo to close at N5.12 per share. Meanwhile, Conoil led the gainers with a gain of N1.36 to close at N34.36 per share. Nestle Nigeria followed with a gain of 90 kobo to close at N402, while Ecobank Transnational Incorporated added 49 kobo to close at N11.65 per share. Total turnover stood at 275.73 million shares valued at N2.25 billion in 4,159 deals. The banking sector topped the activity chart with a turnover of 192.52 million shares valued at N934.33 million in 2,300 deals. Insurance sector followed with a turnover of 41.98 million shares worth N31.83
million in 283 deals, while the building material sector recorded a turnover of 10.3 million shares worth N978.57 million in 125 deals. Meanwhile, the board of Royal Exchange Plc has said its subsidiary, Royal Exchange Life Plc has proposed to undertake a capital restructuring transaction. The capital restructuring will be by way of cancellation of about N3.67 billion book debt in the revenue reserve account from its share premium account (SPA) of N4.08 billion as indicated in the company’s balance sheet. The proposed transaction is expected to leave a balance of N414, 736 in the account. The board said the proposed capital restructuring is fully allowed by law under the provisions of sections 106 -120 of the CAMA, stating that the company will undertake the restructuring following the procedure outlined in the law, including seeking and obtaining the sanction of the shareholders and of the Federal High Court as stipulated by CAMA. The board said it has already informed the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) and the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). According to the board, the capital restructuring is intended to deliver real benefits to shareholders as well as clean up the books of the company. The restructuring will not involve any distribution or repayment of capital to any shareholder or other person, and will not affect the company’s net asset position, the company stated in a notice to the investing public.
CONGLOMERATES Company Name A. G. LEVENTIS (NIGERIA) PLC JOHN HOLT PLC PZ CUSSONS NIGERIA PLC SCOA NIGERIA PLC TRANSNATIONAL CORPORATION OF NIGERIA PLC UAC OF NIGERIA PLC UNILEVER NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 2 45 1 40 25 56 170
of Shares (N) 1,810.00 143,583.24 5,533,153.63 1,162.00 2,533,108.62 1,398,393.16 11,043,451.24 20,654,661.89
CONSTRUCTION Company Name JULIUS BERGER NIGERIA PLC ROADS NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 15 2 17
NIGERIAN STOCK EXCHANGE DAILY SUMMARY AS AT 28-09-11 LAW UNION AND ROCK INSURANCE PLC. N.E.M. INSURANCE CO. (NIG.) PLC. REGENCY ALLIANCE INSURANCE COMPANY PLC SOVEREIGN TRUST INSURANCE PLC UNIC INSURANCE PLC. UNITY KAPITAL ASSURANCE PLC UNIVERSAL INSURANCE COMPANY PLC INTERCONTINENTAL WAPIC INSURANCE PLC Sector Totals
ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGY Company Name CUTIX PLC INTERLINKED TECHNOLOGIES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 6 1 7
Quotation(N) 2.10 4.90
No of Deals 22 51 135 30 39 20 3 20 42 3 1 3 369
Quotation(N) 45.50 13.91 6.19 7.35 65.85 3.10 1.62 4.48 402.00 22.61 0.50 0.50
Quantity Traded Value 21,908 388,757 3,475,914 1,090,387 132,910 315,669 800 188,500 115,818 3,200 10,000 3,372 5,747,235
of Shares (N) 962,413.07 5,419,088.25 21,698,356.21 8,014,344.45 8,365,060.80 985,293.76 1,232.00 844,715.71 46,554,504.63 68,736.00 5,000.00 1,686.00 92,920,430.88
HEALTHCARE Company Name EVANS MEDICALPLC. FIDSON HEALTHCARE PLC GLAXOSMITHKLINE CONSUMER NIG. PLC MAY & BAKER NIGERIA PLC. NEIMETH INTERNATIONAL PHARMACEUTICALS PLC UNION DIAGNOSTIC & CLINICAL SERVICES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 10 7 10 20 4 1 52
Quotation(N) 0.90 1.22 27.00 3.04 0.95 0.50
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 186,324 163,085.40 171,300 208,986.00 61,738 1,735,811.00 591,650 1,800,187.00 80,000 76,000.00 6,080 3,040.00 1,097,092 3,987,109.40
Quotation(N) 7.50 2.05 4.32
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 100 750.00 929,954 1,906,405.70 200 822.00 930,254 1,907,977.70
Company Name C&I LEASING PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 17 1 19
No of Deals 4 13 17
Quotation(N) 6.95 5.70
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 103,053 716,218.35 292,274 1,663,324.40 395,327 2,379,542.75
INFORMATION & COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY Company Name CHAMS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 4 4
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 6,570,000 3,285,000.00 6,570,000 3,285,000.00
INSURANCE Company Name AIICO INSURANCE PLC. CONTINENTAL REINSURANCE PLC CUSTODIAN AND ALLIED INSURANCE PLC GOLDLINK INSURANCE PLC GUARANTY TRUST ASSURANCE PLC CONSOLIDATED HALLMARK INSURANCE PLC INTERNATIONAL ENERGY INSURANCE COMPANY PLC
No of Deals 193 12 32 3 21 1 2
626,152 20,086,000 1,000 1,000 75,000 2,000 1,000 1,200,000 41,975,821
313,076.00 10,043,000.00 500.00 500.00 37,500.00 1,000.00 500.00 600,000.00 31,829,363.91
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 210,000 181,400.00 210,000 181,400.00
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,369,627 1,030,545.34 1,369,627 1,030,545.34
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 3,000 1,500.00 3,000 1,500.00
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,052,379 1,730,524.22 1,052,379 1,730,524.22
MARITIME No of Deals 53 53
Company Name AFROMEDIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 1
PACKAGING Company Name NIGERIAN BAG MANUFACTURING COMPANY PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 35 35
PETROLEUM(MARKETING) Company Name MRS OIL NIGERIA PLC CONOIL PLC ETERNA OIL & GAS PLC. FORTE OIL PLC MOBIL OIL NIGERIA PLC. OANDO PLC TOTAL NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 1 13 1 30 13 152 8 218
Quotation(N) 63.86 34.36 5.12 10.98 148.00 20.99 203.32
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 200 12,134.00 80,584 2,720,385.79 176,400 903,168.00 81,250 866,178.58 20,753 2,931,471.80 1,062,894 22,543,876.88 3,949 762,788.84 1,426,030 30,740,003.89
PRINTING & PUBLISHING
INDUSTRIAL/DOMESTIC PRODUCTS Company Name B. O. C. GASES NIGERIA PLC VITAFOAM NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 7 7
Company Name JAPAUL OIL & MARITIME SERVICES PLC Sector Totals
HOTEL & TOURISM Company Name CAPITAL HOTEL PLC IKEJA HOTEL PLC TOURIST COMPANY OF NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50
LEASING Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 279,998 573,696.02 3,351 15,615.66 283,349 589,311.68
FOOD/BEVERAGES & TOBACCO Company Name 7-UP BOTTLING CO. PLC CADBURY NIGERIA PLC DANGOTE FLOUR MILLS PLC DANGOTE SUGAR REFINERY PLC FLOUR MILLS NIGERIA PLC HONEYWELL FLOUR MILL PLC MULTI-TREX INTEGRATED FOODS PLC NATIONAL SALT COMPANY NIGERIA PLC NESTLE NIGERIA PLC NORTHERN NIGERIA FLOUR MILLS PLC TANTALIZERS PLC UTC NIGERIA PLC Sector Totals
4 6 1 1 4 1 1 1 283
Quotation(N) 0.61 1.03 2.30 0.50 0.99 0.50 0.50
Quantity Traded Value 2,600,435 14,157,604 1,101,303 130,000 1,773,925 100,000 120,402
of Shares (N) 1,638,015.71 14,707,452.77 2,540,095.53 65,600.00 1,771,922.90 50,000.00 60,201.00
Company Name LONGMAN NIGERIA PLC UNIVERSITY PRESS PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 3 12 15
Quotation(N) 4.84 3.80
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 400,000 1,936,000.00 839,792 3,200,081.60 1,239,792 5,136,081.60
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 56,851 684,079.83 56,851 684,079.83
REAL ESTATE Company Name UACN PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT CO. PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 14 14
ROAD TRANSPORTATION Company Name ASSOCIATED BUS COMPANY PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 10 10
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,397,427 746,082.04 1,397,427 746,082.04
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 80,353 65,085.93 80,353 65,085.93
TEXTILES Company Name UNITED NIGERIAN TEXTILES PLC Sector Totals
No of Deals 5 5
THE FOREIGN LISTINGS Company Name ECOBANK TRANSNATIONAL INCORPORATED Sector Totals Overall Totals
No of Deals 64 64
Quantity Traded Value of Shares (N) 1,267,251 14,302,340.11 1,267,251 14,302,340.11
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
THE NATION THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Tomorrow in THE NATION ‘If in over half a century, the nation is not genuinely free, it becomes cumbersome to predict whether it would ever be free’
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2011 TRUTH IN DEFENCE OF FREEDOM
VOL. 6, NO.1,898
C OMMENT & D EB ATE EBA
•This is a paper delivered at the All Nigeria Editors’ Conference of the Nigerian Guid of Editors in Benin, Edo State, on September 23.
FROM THE SUMMIT
IGERIA is a state of wide cultural diversity consisting of several distinct ethnic groups. What role do these ethnic groups play in Nigerian politics and what impact do they have on political developments in Nigeria? The issue involved here is whether or not the Nigerian federation is being hobbled by the centrifugal tendencies and activities of these ethnic groups. In this connection, the paper will seek to examine how the various ethnic groups that constitute the Nigerian federation compete for power at the national and regional levels, and the effect of this competition on the political stability and the democratic process in Nigeria. Specifically, we will seek to explore how the various ethnic groups use the existing political parties to promote their ethnic interests in Nigeria.
The ethnic factor in Nigerian politics
Federalism in Nigeria Nigeria developed over time as a federal state consisting of various ethnic groups. The British colonial power recognised the ethnic diversity of Nigeria and, with the support of the various Nigerian leaders in colonial times, decided that the federal system of government was the best political and constitutional arrangements for Nigeria. Only one political party, the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC), later the National Council of Nigerian Citizens, formed in 1944, pressed for a unitary form of government. But this idea found very little support among the leaders of Northern Nigeria and Western Nigeria. In his Path to Nigerian Freedom, published in London in 1947, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, who emerged as the leader of the Action Group and Egbe Omo Oduduwa, rejected the idea of a unitary system of government for Nigeria, arguing that in view of Nigeria’s ethnic diversity, a federal system of government best suited Nigeria’s condition. Both the Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello, and Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, later Prime Minister of the federation, shared Awolowo’s views regarding the preference for a federal system of government in Nigeria. It was the only issue on which they agreed with the AG leader. They rejected a unitary system of government in Nigeria because they believed it would not adequately protect perceived Northern interests. By the 1950s, two major regional political parties embracing the idea of a federal system of government in Nigeria had emerged. These were the Northern Peoples Congress (NPC) in Northern Nigeria and the Action Group (AG) in the Western Region. By 1951 it was clear that federalism had been broadly accepted as the system best suited to Nigeria’s ethnic diversity and plurality. The
•Map of Nigeria
McPherson Constitution had firmly established the foundation for a federal system of government in Nigeria. In view of the ethnic plurality of Nigeria the development of a federal system for Nigeria was broadly accepted by all the ethnic groups as it reflected the cultural diversity and political realities of Nigeria at the time. A few radical politicians mainly in the so-called Zikist movement preferred a unitary system of government. But they were a hopeless minority.
Ethnic groups or tribes in Nigeria In view of the large size of some of these ethnic groups, (the Yoruba, the Hausa-Fulani, and the Igbo), many analysts prefer to describe Nigeria as a federation of sub-nationalities. Colonial and European ethnographers and demographers prefer to use the word “tribe” in referring to African linguistic groups. But this term is generally unacceptable to educated and enlightened Africans.
RIPPLES PDP WILL RECLAIM EDO, says Anenih
... at GUNPOINT?
They consider it pejorative and intended to emphasise a lower ranking for Africans in the general scale of human development and civilisation. Ethnic groups existed in Nigeria long before the advent of colonial rule. But contacts among the various groups were limited. Many of them, particularly the smaller ones, had only limited trade contacts with other groups. In most cases, they were self sufficient as their main occupation was farming and hunting for games. The advent of colonial rule was to change all that as the introduction of colonial institutions on a national scale brought the various ethnic groups increasingly into contact with one another. It made the various ethnic groups increasingly aware of their distinct and varying cultures. This integrative process was facilitated by the building of infrastructure such as roads, the railways, electricity, communications, and public transportation in the colony, which became increasingly integrated. The emergence of urban centres in colonial Nigeria, itself a response to colonial rule, brought many migrants into the new urban areas to look for employment following the introduction of a tax regime by the colonial government. Economic integration made colonial rule easier and more profitable. But this development set in motion a process that was to lead to greater contact and competition among the various ethnic groups for dominance and the economic advantage over other ethnic groups that would accompany such dominance. As linguistic and socio-cultural entities, each ethnic group in Nigeria can be identified with a specific geographical territory or space, while allowing for diffusion and migration. But how many such groups exist in Nigeria or can be identified? Estimates of this vary. The United Nations says there are 250 ethnic groups in Nigeria. Many consider this as underestimated. A federal government demographic survey in 1976 identified 394 language groups. One estimate put it as
HE issue of federalism has continued to rear its sublimely stubborn head in virtually every aspect of public debate of late. We have seen it in the pursuit of fiscal federalism and the bloating of Federal Government’s budget. Recently, the federal allocation and the payment of the new minimum wage have forced the political elite to focus attention on the need to tweak the present unjust formula that gives the centre a lopsided concentration of cash while the states pine desperately for lifelines. A recent development in Bayelsa State has brought again to public focus the abuse of security by the abuse of the federalist principle. The Inspector General of Police, Hafiz Ringim, last week announced the dissolution of the Bayelsa State security outfit. This was set up by the state government as a means of shoring up security in the state whose volatility made news in the pre-amnesty days. The need for this outfit, according to the state government, is to ensure that the state kept the peace. This step has predictably drawn outrage among stakeholders in the state who see it as an infringement and reckless show of force.
high as 400 with the highest density of languages in Taraba and Adamawa states. From these figures, Nigeria can be described as one of the most diverse ethnic states in the world, only surpassed by India and Indonesia. Nigeria’s share of African ethnic groups has been put at over 40 per cent. The sheer number of different local languages in Nigeria and the consequent cultural pluralism makes the Nigerian political scene very complex. This immense cultural diversity and the tension it generates among the competing ethnic groups makes the country look increasingly difficult to govern and politically fragile. One foreign observer of the huge ethnic diversity in Africa, Arthur Lewis, asserted that “Africans differ more from each other than Europeans—one can find within a hundred miles two tribes whose thought patterns differ from each other more fundamentally than those of France and Germany”. Many Africans will consider this observation an overstatement as, despite their seeming cultural differentiation, African tribes do have a lot in common and share certain values. In fact, all the various linguistic groups in West Africa have a common source, the Kwa group of languages. But the seemingly unending political crises in Nigeria may be attributed to this ethnic diversity and the failure of the Nigerian political system to contain the fissiparous and centrifugal tendencies of these ethnic groups as they jostle for power among themselves. Nigeria, particularly under the long and politically debilitating period of military rule, has been run as a quasi-federal system, or a medieval autocracy in which the aspirations of the various ethnic groups have been ignored. The ruling national elite in Nigeria is ethnically stratified. It is not based on a consensus or sharing of values and it tends to be contemptuous of the demand of the ethnic groups for openness, fair competition, local autonomy, and accountability. In a setting such as Nigeria’s cultural pluralism, these are values that are absolutely necessary to provide a level playing ground for all the various ethnic groups. But can Adam Smith’s ‘unseen (economic) hands” be replicated in Nigeria’s cultural pluralism? In Nigeria, the political hands are too visible and tend to give some ethnic groups undue political and economic advantage over the others. It is this situation that creates political tension in Nigeria. The introduction of the principle of federal character in employment in the public sector is intended to ensure fairness in employment in the public sector. It seeks to ensure that the interests of all the ethnic groups in employment are fully protected. The problem is that there are never enough jobs to go round on the basis of ethnicity. •To be continued • For comments, send SMS to 08054503031
•Hardball is not the opinion of the columnist featured above
Police meddlesomeness in Bayelsa By dissolving the outfit, Ringim and his force are trying to use force to weaken the state’s ability to enforce the peace. But Ringim’s police saw it differently, and this violates the principle that makes the state governor the chief security officer of the state. The police have a lot on their hands. The relentless harassments with bombs and killings by Boko Haram partisans have made the police supine and ineffective. Recently, one Tishau went on air to show that Ringim’s police was warned ahead of the bombing of the police headquarters. He also revealed that the police have been aware of the activities of the sect. Rather than concentrate on the matter and find ways to deploy men and resources to nip this group and its subversive work, he is meddling in a state that spent a good part of its years from 2007 to 2010 fighting the scourge of militancy. Now that things are relatively calm, he is fishing for turbulent waters. Those who understand the need for state
governors to play pivotal roles in their local security cite their understanding of the local sensitivities and their ability to mobilise locals to track culprits and despatch unwanted elements. That is the reason for local efforts like the one in Bayelsa. We are facing the same story in Jos where Governor Jonah Jang has not been allowed to take charge in the fight against insecurity in the state. This makes a mockery of this democracy and the meaning of security. Not too long ago, we witnessed impotently as former Anambra State Governor Chris Ngige was hostage to the police even though he was the chief security officer. He had to set up his own protection squad. Ringim should restore the state’s security council where the governor is the head. We need to take the issue of federalism seriously. The IGP should stop playing the meddlesome game and concentrate resources on restive waters rather than stir new troubles in the polity.
Published and printed by Vintage Press Limited. Corporate Office: 27B Fatai Atere Way, Matori, Lagos. P.M.B. 1025,Oshodi, Lagos. Telephone: Switch Board: 01-8168361. Editor Daily:01-8962807, Marketing: 01-8155547 . Abuja Office: Plot 5, Nanka Close AMAC Commercial Complex, Wuse Zone 3, Abuja. Tel: 07028105302. E-mail: email@example.com Editor: GBENGA OMOTOSO