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2—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012


citizens as the 3,000- strong membership of the NUP, Tuesday demonstrated over alleged non-settlement of the entitlements amounting to over N5.3 billion.


BOUT 259,000 retired state teachers and civ il servants in the 36 states and Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, are literally eating from the dust bins due to non-payment of their pensions and gratuities.The number of retirees which range from 6,000 to 12,000 in each state, excludes retirees at the federal level, who are being owed entitlements; some for a period of 10 years.

It’s suffering galore in Enugu

Arrest Maina, Senate directs IGP

This is coming on the heels of last week’s directive by the Senate, asking the police to arrest the Chairman of the Federal Task Force on Pensions, Alhaji Abdulrasheed Maina over alleged missing N195 billion Pensions Fund. Senator Kabiru Gaya, PDP, Kano South, who asked for the rules to be applied on Abdulrasheed following Maina’s absence at the Senate to answer questions on the missing fund said, “I think we have the rules and we have the power. We have the power to request the police to arrest Maina and bring him before us here.” The Chairman of the Joint Senate Committee, Senator Aloysius Etok, PDP, Akwa Ibom North-West, said ‘’we request the Inspector General of Police to arrest him.’’ According to Senator Etok, “ we have sent the warrant of arrest to the Senate President to sign to be forwarded to the Inspector General of Police for necessary action.”

Retirees live in penury

However, a random survey carried out by Vanguard across the country showed that apart from few states like Anambra, Lagos, Edo and Delta, retired workers are living in penury as both the federal and state governments have abandoned them to their fate.

Uduaghan approves N1.2bn in Delta

In Delta State, although government was owing the retired workers some arrears of pensions and gratuities, the Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan last week approved N1.2 billion for the payment of arrears to about 12,000 retirees. Uduaghan said, “we will pay you the arrears; we are working out the modalities for the payment. The N1.2 billion had been approved since August 2011; we will begin the payment this month. We have

Pensioners clustering for verification


259,000 pensioners abandoned to die • Senate orders IG to arrest Maina over missing N195 bn pension fund conducted screening exercises in the state. In the first exercise about 5,000 pensioners were captured while in the second exercise, we got about 9,700 pensioners but only 7,000 were physically sighted.” Section 173(3) of the 1999 Constitution stipulates that entitlements of pensioners must be reviewed upwards once every five years but the constitutional provision is

obeyed in the breach, as none of the three tiers of government had ever complied with it.

11,000 retirees lament in Ogun

In Ogun State, no fewer than 11,000 retired civil servants are lamenting their alleged continued neglect by state government. The state Secretary of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, Mr.

Bola Lawal, said many pensioners had died without gratuity while several others were on their sick beds as their pensions and gratuities had not been regular in the last three years. Lawal told Vanguard in an interview in Abeokuta that none of the pensioners on the former employment of both the Federal and state civil service had also benefited from the six and 15 per cent increase in pensions since 2003.

It’s gloomy tide in Oyo, Plateau

Retired workers in Oyo State were being owed several months of their entitlements, even as the issue reached a crisis point during the last administration of Governor Christopher Alao-Akala, who failed to pay the senior citizens as at when due. Also, in Plateau State, the situation is even more complicated as those still in the service of the government had not been paid in the last six months, not to talk of the retired workers.

Bauchi: NUP protests N5.3 bn arrears

In Bauchi State, Vanguard learnt that the story of the neglect of the nation’s senior

According to the findings, the Enugu State government had not paid any entitlements to its teachers and other civil servants who retired since 2010 even as those who left service earlier were being owed 27 months arrears between 2002 and 2004. Retired primary school teachers in the state said that the NUP agreed with Governor Sullivan Chime to discuss the modalities for the settlement of the 27 months arrears on May 11, 2009, adding that Chime promised to off-set the backlog of arrears within 14 months from then but reneged on his promise. Both federal pensioners and their counterparts in the Abia State civil service were also full of lamentations over their plight saying that the were being weighed down due to the hardship they go through on account of non-payment of their monthly pensions, which arrears had run into several months. For 77 year old, Pa Stephen Onuoha who retired as a Railway staff, life has been like hell as his pensions have not been paid for over four months. He told Vanguard that, “ we are not talking about harmonization as we have not seen the old one. You can see me, in my condition, I struggle to queue up to do one clearance or the other, and most times after the so called verification nothing comes. We are suffering”. However, on gratuity, the retired federal worker said, his gratuity was paid ‘’on time and at once because, things were not as rotten’’ as they were today. “I do not know the legacy the governments at both the state and federal levels want to leave if they can not pay old people who laid the foundation of what they are now destroying instead of building. My son, it is only God that will save us. It is difficult for us”, Onuoha lamented. According to the retirees, the ugly situation in which retired workers at both the federal, state and local governments had made people, especially young civil servants to get involved in corrupt enrichment to prepare themselves for their own retire-

Continues on page 3

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—3

259,000 PENSIONERS ABANDONED TO DIE Continued from page 2 ments.

Retirees praise govt, seek review in Jigawa In Jigawa State, the NUP said that although they were being paid their pensions, the government had failed to review their entitlements in accordance with the provisions of the constitution. However, the state chapter of

NUP has suspended its planned protest following the intervention of the state Head of Service, Alhaji Mustapha Aminu, who assured them that the state government would look into their grievances with a view to addressing them. The state chairman of the NUP, Alhaji Mohammed Ayuba, said the decision to suspend the planned protest as directed by the national leadership

of the association was because of the timely intervention of the State Head of Service According to Ayuba the NUP was however enjoying cordial relationship with the state and local governments in Jigawa State. Said he: “State and local governments in Jigawa State are enjoying good relationship with us because the government ensured that all pensioners get their pension and gra-

tuities as at when due. We get our pensions paid before other civil servants get their salaries in the state. The state government has even assured pensioners in the state that in accordance with the provision of the 1999 Constitution as amended, pensions are subject to review every five years, and the governor has assured that our pension will be increased next year.”

Poor records hurt retirees in Sokoto

Vanguard was told in Sokoto State that retired teachers were not paid for upwards of 15 years before the administration of Governor Magatakada Wamakko.’’For about 15 years, there was no Teachers’ Pension Board, TPB, to oversee the plight of retired teachers. Because of this, there was no records of retired teachers, hence a good number of them have not enjoyed their pensions and gratuity till date,’’ Alhaji Umaru Bagida, 70, from Tangaza who retired from service six years ago said, adding that that since he retired, he had not been paid his gratuity. ”I retired from teaching service six years ago but have not been paid my gratuity although I receive my monthly pension regularly,” he said. Sokoto state chairman of NUP, Alhaji Ahmed Ciroma said that there are about 2,000 retired teachers in Sokoto state, adding that the state government released between N25 million and N30 million monthly for the payment of pension to retired teachers.

Retirees smile in Anambra, Edo

Investigations showed that for many years between 1999 to 2003, pensioners in Anambra State bemoaned their fate as they had no hope of receiving their monthly pensions. Those who were due to retire from service then were always afraid of the uncertainty they were going to face, as government could not pay their pensions and gratuities. During the administration of Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinuju, pensioners were always embarking on demonstration to the seat of government to prevail on the authorities to pay them. Mbadinuju, who governed the state from 1999 to 2003, was said to have described pensioners in the state as dead woods and urged them to leave government alone, although he later debunked the report, saying the it was the handiwork of his political opponents who were bent on tarnishing his image. His successor in office, Senator Chris Ngige however, reversed the ugly trend, which has been maintained by Governor Peter Obi.

Sat human extra


4 — SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Funeral Service for Late Hope Harriman Funeral Service for late Chief Hope Harriman was held in Warri, yesterday. Photos: Akpokona Omafuaire

Justice Roli Harriman (Widow) being consoled by friends and relatives

From Right: Chief Edwin K. Clark; Chief Olufemi Adesonya and Otunba Funso Lawal


From Right: Mrs. Irene Harriman (Widow), Hon. Temi Harriman, Mr. Tuoyor Harriman, Mrs. Ete Ayida-Harriman, Mr. Abi Ayida and other children.

From Left: Prince Earnest Okojie; Sen. Rowland Owie and Mrs. Helen Owie

From left: Mr Victor AwadginThomas and Arc. Femi Majekodunmi

From Right: Kayode Egbekunle, Mohan Noir, Emmanuel Agbamogun, Fatai Sholanke, and Tosin Taiwo, Staff of Harriman Group of Companies.

Alaowei Broderick Bozimo, former Minister for Police Affairs and his wife, Justice Roseline Bozimo

HRM Oba Adebolu Fatunmise and HRM Oba Tajudeen Adebowale, representative of Ooni of Ife

Dr. Alex Ideh and Mr. Sunday Daibo

From Left: Bunmi Olaopa, Victor Eburajolo, Mike Ajofo and Adeoye Oyewo, Directors of Evans Medical PLC

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 5

INEC de-registers three more parties BY JOSEPH ERUNKE, Abuja


NDEPENDENT National Electoral C o m m i s s i o n , INEC,yesterday,axed three more political parties even as the recent de-registration of 28 others continues to generate controversy. The present action has brought the number of de-registered political parties to 31. INEC,in a statement in Abuja, said the action was in continuation of the exercise of the powers conferred on it by the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and the

Electoral Act, 2010 (As amended). The statement, signed by Abdullahi Kaugama,Secretary to the Commission named the latest affected parties as African Renaissance Party,ARP; National Democratic Party,NDP and National Transformation Party,NTP. According to INEC, “the de-registration of the parties was based on the ground that the compositions of the parties’ National Executive Committee,NEC, fails to meet the requirements of Section 223(1) and (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As

Amended),just as it said it lacked verifiable headquarters offices, contrary to Section 222(f) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As amended). The other sin of the parties,according to INEC,was that they have not won a seat in the National and State Assemblies. ”The Commission reiterates its commitment to relating with all registered Political Parties as specified by the extant laws of the land”,the statement said.

Nigeria is an indivisible nation — Mark BY HENRY UMORU, Abuja


ENATE President Senator David Mark, yesterday pleaded with Nigerians from all walks of life not to give up in their belief in the unity of the country, just as he stressed that the country was indivisible. Senate President Mark who spoke when he visited Agatu, Apa and Ohimini local government areas in Benue South Senatorial of Benue State during this year ’s thank you constituency tour in the district, noted that through fervent prayers and supplications to God, the nation will overcome, adding, “We are all partners in progress of our dear country. This country belongs to every one of us, so we should not let it fail. ”We should stand firm and rally our support round all our leaders in order to succeed in their endeavour. It is when they succeed that we can talk of development and peaceful co-existence among various ethnicities in the country. ”Our prayers are paramount at this particular period in our land. We should pray for stability, peace and progress. We should pray for our leaders and Nigeria to continue to be an indivisible nation.” According to a

statement by the Senate President’s Chief Press Secretary, Paul Mumeh, he was represented by his wife, Mrs. Helen Mark and was overwhelmed by the turn-out of people from the three local councils visited on the first day of the threeday visit. He urged the people not to relent in their prayers for Mr. President, the Vice President, Senate President and other leaders at every level of governance, adding that the people should believe in the present administration of President Goodluck Jonathan saying, the Transformation Agenda was poised to bring Nigeria out of the woods. In separate remarks, the Chairmen, Agatu, Apa and Ohimini local government areas, Stephen Dutse, Oyi Owoicho and Sunday Mark respectively thanked the Senate President for his gesture at reaching out to the needy during the festive period, just as they assured him of their unalloyed support and prayed God to continue to guide him in the onerous task of building a prosperous Idoma nation. According to the statement, during the first day of the visit, 110 bags of Rice and N200, 000 were distributed to each of the three local government areas in the

Constituency for the festive season. Other councils to be visited are, Ogbadibo, Okpokwu, Ado, Oju, Obi and Otukpo all in Benue South Senatorial district.

(L-R) Executive Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Raji Fashola; The Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu; the Corporate Affairs Adviser, Nigerian Breweries Plc., Mr. Yusuf Ageni and Mr. George Noah, the Managing Director, Lagos State Signage and Advertisement Agency, LASAA, during the media briefing to flag off the countdown to the Lagos Crossover Festival held at the Eko Atlantic City, Lagos

CBN gives Mobile Money operators Feb. 28 deadline tto o connect


HE Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned all Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) to fully connect

to the National Central Switch (NCS) to ensure effective and robust mobile payments system or face sanctions.

C/Riv er organises Charity Concer C/River Concertt to fight pneunonia go a long way in eradi-


N a concerted effort to increase awareness among stakeholders on pneumonia which is responsible for over one million deaths among children annually in Nigeria, the Cross River State Government has organized a charity concert, tagged “Governor ’s Masked Fete” to raise fund in support of the cause. Speaking at the concert, which is one of the programmes of the ongoing 32-Day Calabar Festival and a pet project

of Mrs. Obioma Liyel Imoke, the Acting Governor, Mr. Efiok Cobham, said the prevalence of the disease was unacceptable especially in a state that is giving free medicare to children under five years and pregnant women. Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Mike Aniah, the acting governor lauded the initiator of the charity concert, Mrs. Obioma Liyel Imoke, for conceptualizing the idea, stating that the effort will

cating the disease and free children, who are the future hope of the state from untimely death. The acting governor stressed that a preventable disease like pneumonia cannot be allowed to blight the future of children and that government will not rest on its oars until it is totally eradicated in the state. He thanked donor partners for their support and solicited for more assistance to surpass the current effort at all levels.

According to a statement by the apex bank signed by Director, Banking& Operation, Dipo Fatokun, yesterday, “in furtherance of the CBN’s efforts at ensuring effective and robust mobile payments systems, all MMOs are hereby directed to fully connect to the NCS on or before February 28, 2013 to ensure interoperability and interconnectivity of their schemes” The bank stated that appropriate sanctions will be imposed on any Mobile Payment operator that fails to comply with the order. It will be recalled that the decision to connect to National Central Switch was reached at the Mobile Payment Forum held on November, 29, 2012.

Group urges Amaechi to investigate violation of rights of HIV woman BY JIMITOTA ONOYUME, Port Harcourt


non government organization, Social Action, has called on Governor Chibuike Amaechi to investigate allegation by an HIV patient Mrs Chidinma Maureen Lucky that she was chased out of Okwuzi flood relief camp set up for those displaced by

flood in Ogba/Egbema/ Ndoni local government area by the Rivers state flood management committee because of her health status. Briefing newsmen yesterday in Port Harcourt, Head of Communications of Social Action, Vivian Belonwu said the lady who later gave up the ghost at an uncompleted building in the area was allegedly chased out of

the camp with her three children on the orders of the Deputy governor of the state, Engr Tele Ikiru. While calling for a thorough probe into the allegation, the NGO feared that the eviction was largely responsible for the death of the HIV lady. According to the group, she became dejected and abandoned at the uncompleted building where she

reportedly gave up the ghost. The group further demanded for redress for the children of the deceased lady whose ages were put at 9, 3 and 2, stressing that the alleged action of the state flood management committee violated the rights of the children and their late mother to shelter, human dignity, protection against discrimination.

6 — Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Sharia court revokes bail to Marabout T

HE Kaduna Sharia Court II, Magajin Gari, yesterday revoked the bail granted a Marabout, Hambali Ahmad, 66, in a case of criminal breach of trust, conspiracy and cheating. Ahmad and Nafiu Iliyasu, 33, were in court for misappropriating N1.56 million worth of telephone recharge cards belonging to one Ahmed Abdullahi of Ibrahim Taiwo road in Tudun Wada, Kaduna. When the case was mentioned on Dec. 10, Ahmad had agreed to have collected N300,000 cash and another N380,000 worth of recharge cards from Iliyasu, the principal suspect. The Marabout, who hailed from Duba village in Batsari Local Government, Katsina State, however changed his plea yesterday, claiming that the amount was payment for his professional services. He claimed that the N680, 000 were payment for the “spiritual work” done for Iliyasu to enable him get married in 2008. The prosecutor, Cpl. Bitrus Kwaji however countered the claim, reminding the court that the offence was committed in 2012. He noted that the court had fixed this Friday for judgement and urged it to discountenance the submission of the accused person.

The judge, Malam Ibrahim Inuwa revoked bail granted to Ahmad on Dec. 10 “in view of the fact that you have now changed

your plea.” The judge set a new bail condition for the Marabout, who was ordered to produce a surety re-

siding in Kaduna with verifiable fixed asset. Inuwa adjourned the case to January, 17, 2013.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the principal accused person in the case, Iliyasu, had been in prison cus-

tody since Dec. 10 for failure to meet bail conditions.

10 killed, eight injured in Bauchi auto crash BY SUZAN EDEH Bauchi


O fewer than 10 people were killed while eight others sustained serious injuries in an auto crash along Bauchi— Gombe federal highway yesterday. Some of the victims were from a condolence visit in Jigawa State. The crash was said to have involved 18 people near Alkaleri Local Government Area of Bauchi State, when two cars including a Volkswagen Golf and a Honda had a headon collision. Briefing newsmen over the incident in Bauchi, the Acting Sector Commandant of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Mahmud Kachalla said the accident occured in the afternoon between Tsohuwar Gwaram village and Alkaleri town in Bauchi state and it involved 18 people in both the Volkswagon Golf car, a Honda and a motorcycle. Kachalla said, among the 10 people that lost their lives were five female adults, three male adults, a boy and a girl. He also said that out of the eight that sustained injuries,

‘’five were male adults and one a female adult and two boys.” He attributed the cause of the accident to both over speeding and over loading, adding that the Golf car had eight people who were coming from a condolence visit in Jigawa State and on their way to Alkaleri. Kachalla said that FRSC personnel stationed in Alkaleri rescued the the injured victims and rushed them to the Alkaleri General Hospital for medical treatment. He then advised motorist to always obey traffic regulations to reduce the rate of accident along the highways especially during this festivity period when there is mass movement of people.

From right, former Governor of Ekiti State, Chief Niyi Adebayo; Deputy Governor of Osun State, Chief Mrs. Titilato Tomori-Laoye; Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and wife of Oyo State Governor, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi at the funeral service for late Hon. Justice Kayode Eso (rtd) held at Anglican Church of the Holy Trinity Omofe, Ilesa Osun State yesterday. PHOTO BY SHOLA OYELESE, IBADAN

Nigerian Police Colleges graduate 18,357 constables in the performance of


O fewer than 18,357 constables yesterday graduated simultaneously from the seven Nigerian Police Colleges nationwide, the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports. In the history of police training, the constables were trained for a period of 13 months, against six months in the past. The Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, who was represented by Deputy Inspec-

tor-General (Training), Mr. Marvel Akpoyibo, noted that the training was to enshrine effectiveness and efficient service delivery. “All of you came into these colleges and training schools as fresh recruits without basic knowledge of police duties. “You are leaving as trained police constables and you will be deployed to the field to serve. “I implore you as trained policemen and women to be diligent, mentally and

professionally prepared to surmount these challenges. In doing this, our primary and sacred function of protection of life and property must not be compromised. “You are to take cognisance of the fundamental human rights of every citizen, which must not be infringed upon so as to gain the confidence of members of the public. “You must also eschew every form of corruption

your duties, “ Abubakar said. The Commandant, Police College, Ikeja, Commissioner of Police, Irimiya Yerima, said that two officers died during the training. “As training pro gressed, 69 recruits disengaged from the training, 61 were dismissed for gross disciplinary offences, six recruits left for Police Academy, Kano for Cadet Inspectorate training while two died.”

FG inaugurates Lagos-Kano intercity services


HE Federal Govern ment yesterday in Lagos inaugurated the Nigeria Railway Corporation’s Lagos-Kano intercity passenger train services and haulage of petroleum products. The Minister of Transport, Sen. Idris Umar, said at the event that the government was still committed to revamping the transport sector, particularly railway services, because of its importance to Nigeria’s economic development. The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that the NRC revitalised the Lagos-Kano intercity train services to complement the existing Lagos- Ilorin and Minna-Kano intercity train

services. Umar said: “This segment holds the key to the development of the econ-

omy of the nation from the commercial Port- city of Lagos to the commercial hub of northern Nigeria in

Kano. This is vital to the start-off of the transformation of the Nigerian economy.”

Jonathan meets leadership of N/A, PDP governors


RESIDENT Good luck Jonathan yesterday met with the leadership of the National Assembly and PDP governors to review the implementation of the administration’s programmes in 2012. The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that the review meeting, also attended by the PDP leadership, lasted for over three hours at the Presidential Villa, Abu-

ja. Speaking to State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, PDP National Publicity Secretar y, Mr Olisa Metuh, said the meeting deliberated on national issues; xrayed the year 2012; and projections for 2 0 1 3 . ”We want to assure Nigerians that the PDP is ready and able to satisfy the aspirations of Ni-

gerians. We are going to produce a lot of reforms and innovations in the New Year to ensure that the people of Nigeria will be happy with the party in government.” On the nature of the reforms to be expected in 2013, Metuh said President Jonathan would unfold the nature and structure of the reform programmes in his New Year nationwide broadcast to the nation.

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 7

Civil war soldiers yet to receive pension after 58 appearances in court By OLA AJAYI, Ibadan


OME retired military men who fought during the Nigeria civil war have complained about delayed justice having appeared in courts for 58 times. The ex-soldiers under the aegis of Able Voluntary Retired or Discharged 10 Years and Above Military Service, said they have been denied their pension for about 35 years. The ex-warlords who made this disclosure in a statement by Sergeant Kasali Busari (rtd), said they have been parading the courts for almost 11 years just for the interpretation of a Federal Government circular No. 4/

1977 and Decree 102 of 1979. They are praying the court to interprete the Decree for them to enable them qualify for inclusion on the payroll by the Ministry of Defence Headquarters and Directorate of Military Pension Board. According to them, they have not been collecting pension since 1978. They said hearing on the case has been concluded and they are now waiting for judgment. They explained that they do not have anything against the Ministry of Defence as they have agreed to pay them. What has become a source of worry to them is the constant transfer of the judges handling their

Another crisis brews in Plateau By TAYE OBATERU, Jos


NOTHER trouble is brewing in Plateau State, this time between the legislature and the ruling PDP which has threatened to sanction some members of the State House of Assembly for not attending the presentation of the 2013 Appropriation Bill by Governor Jonah Jang. The presentation of the bill on December 13 was almost aborted as striking workers took over the house barring members and other workers from getting in. It was speculated that the Speaker, Mr. John Clark and few members were driven into the premises in disguise as the

angry workers pounced on any top government official who attempted to get in. As a result, only about nine of the 24 members were present when the governor who was driven into the premises amidst tight security presented the bill. However, the state chapter of the PDP to which most members of the house belong, is alleging that the members “ refused” to attend the sitting and has asked the affected members to appear before the party’s disciplinary committee. Those summoned include the Deputy Speaker, Mr. John bull Shekarau, the Chief Whip, Mr. Timothy Golu and the Deputy Chief Whip, Mr. Ado Adere.

case each time they are about dispensing judgment. They further explained that the Federal Government circular marked 63216/S/1/X/T/8 and dated 22 July 1992 is being used to exclude them from the pension payroll. This treatment, they noted further, had caused untold hardship for them. They now called on the Honourable Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta to help them so that judgment on the interpretation of the decree and FG circular could be given without further delay.

NERC reels out new guidelines for investors


HE Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, on Thursday, said there were new guidelines to be followed by investors in the electricity sector next year. The commission’s Chairman, Dr Sam Amadi, made the announcement at a news conference in Abuja. Amadi who spoke at the National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, yesterday assured that no staff of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, would be sacked without payment of their entitlements. Mr Joe Ajaero, General Secretary, NUEE, however warned in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Lagos that no staff of PHCN will be sacked without his/her emolument paid. But Amadi disclosed that it was part of the mandates of the commission to update the public

Ekiti honours 90 years old mat weaver, 19 others


KITI State Govern ment has bestowed award on 20 prominent indigenes, including a 90-year-old local mat weaver for distinguishing themselves in their various fields of human endevours. Those who received the award included Professors Oluwakayode Osuntokun; Sam Aluko and a former deputy governor in the Old Ondo State, late Chief Akinwale Michael Omoboriowo were honoured post humorously. Others are Prof Emeritus Adelola Adeloye; the winner of the 2012 Caine Prize for African Writing;

Mr. Rotimi Babatunde; a popular mat weaver in Ogotun-Ekiti, the 90-year old Madam Ayoola Ajayi; Chief Julius Ajayi, popu-

larly called Little by Little Photo, and a popular pot maker in Isan Ekiti, Mrs Aina Olajide.

Dele Sodje dies at 65


renowned philanthropist, Mr. Dele Sodje of Aghalokpe in Okpe Local Government of Delta State is dead, aged 65. He died on 28th November, 2012. A statement by his family said burial rites begins Friday December 28th, and other funeral activities follow immediately the same day at Macpherson/ Boyo road, Sapele, in Sapele Local Government Area.

Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun (Right), exchanging banter with the Chairman, Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM), Ms. Olubukola Onabanjo, shortly after being honoured as the Best Teacher Friendly Governor at the TESCOM’s 1st Award/Gala Night in Abeokuta yesterday.

*Late Dele Sodje

on the commission’s critical areas of development. “The new guidelines are part of what we are doing to prepare the market toward privatisation. “We have been doing this to prepare the rules for successful post privatisation market and one of

the rules is the one on rate application. “We want a regulation that will allow companies to apply for any rate increase, change customer classes, change tariff and change regulator. “We also want a regulation that will back the review of everything and our requests are current-

ly waiting for approval.” Amadi said that the commission had also prepared regulations to guide investments in the sector and to reduce the cost of energy. “Investors must obtain approval from NERC before making such investments.

Ondo retains lead in polio eradication


NDO State has retained its lead in the Quarterly Performance Assessment score sheet on immunization against polio in the Federation in the last three quarters of the outgoing year 2012, the State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko has revealed. He noted that the routine immunization coverage in Ondo state is 85 percent going by the third quarter of 2012 assessment by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation released in October, in which the state ranked first in the Federation. Dr Mimiko disclosed this during the flag-off of the second round of 2012 Local Immunization Days in Ondo State held at the State Specialist Hospital, Akure. The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Alhaji Ali Olanusi, at the flag off ceremony on yesterday, said the exercise is aimed at eradicating the crippling disease of polio from the entire state and Nigeria in general and to protect children against other childhood killer diseases such as Tuberculosis, Diphtheria, Pertusis, Tetanus and Measles among others. Mimiko stated that the Local Immunization pro-

gramme have been conducted in the state with tremendous success, stressing that the commitment of the federal, state and local governments as well as Donor Agencies has greatly assisted in the fight against polio. According to him, the ‘Ondo State Routine Immunization Reaching Every Ward Always,’ (ORIREWA) initiative was another giant stride taken by the state government to, among other things, make vaccines

against these childhood diseases available and accessible at all times and to ensure all the children in the state are vaccineprotected from childhood infections. The governor revealed that the routine immunization coverage in Ondo state is 85 percent going by the third quarter of 2012 assessment by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation released in October with the state coming first in the entire nation.

Security firm unveils new logo BY PEACE ONYEUKWU


N order to reposition and re-brand in the private industrial security sector, a foremost security company, Kings Guards has unveiled a new logo in Lagos to mark its 20th anniversary. According to a top manager, Mr. Sam Olaniran, “Our re-branding is not just a logo change; it is an affirmation of a new culture of more dedication to our core values of excellence, quality and credibility. It is another way of re-establishing our brand as the first to come to mind whenever and wherever

private security is the topic.”

Mr. Olaniran disclosed that Kings Guard is set to intensify its effort more in the professional training of its personnel in effectively tackling emerging and potential security challenges. “We have always been interested in customer satisfaction in order to have a lasting and sustained business relationship with the clients through an impressive delivery on our promises and this

informs the company’s mission statement.”

8— Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

WAEC records 62.03% failure as blind students top performance list BY DAYO ADESULU


HE West African Examinations Council, yesterday in Yaba, Lagos, said that about 62.03 percent of students who wrote the November/December 2012 West Africa Seniour School Certificate Examination failed the test as only 37.97 percent or 150,615 obtained five credits including English Language and Mathematics. Blind students performed better than those without sight problems as 46.93 percent of 49 students that registered for the examination obtained five credits including English Language. Blind candidates do not sit for Mathematics and Science practicals in WASSCE examinations. According to the Head, National Office of the Council, Mr Charles Eguridu, out of 396,614 candidates who sat for the examination, about 47,289 candidates’ result, representing 11.04 percent were being withheld in connection with various cases of examination malpractices. This even as a comparative analysis of candidates’ performance in the November/ December 2010 - 2012 WASSCE, showed that there is an improvement in candidates’ performance. He explained that in 2010, only 24.16 per cent passed just as 36.07 percent passed in 2011. Eguridu disclosed that cases of examination malpractices were being investigated, pointing out that the reports of the investigation would will be presented to the

Nigeria Examination Committee, NEC, for consideration and final decision would be communicated to the affected candidates through WAEC zonal and branch offices across the country. His words, “A total number of 49 blind candidates registered for the examination. Out of this figure, 23 candidates, representing 46.93 per cent obtained credits in five subjects including English Language. A total of 413,266 candidates registered for the examination, out of which 396,614 candidates consisting of 216,600 male and 180,014 female candidates sat for the examination. Out of the total number of candidates that registered, 406,108 candidates representing 98.27 percent have their results fully processed, while 7,158 candidates representing 1.73 per cent have a few of their subjects still being processed as various errors and omissions mostly traceable to candidates are being sorted out by the Council.’’ He said these errors were committed during registration and the actual conduct of the examination. He added, “Out of 161,706 candidates that sat for the examination, 40.77 per cent obtained six credits and above. While, 268,688 candidates representing 67.74 per sent obtained credits and above in four subjects as 309,706 candidates representing 78.10 per cent obtained credits and above in three subjects. A total of 343,352 candidates, representing 86.57 per cent obtained

credit and above in two subjects. Candidates are expected to visit the council’s website for their results, even as Eguridu lamented the dearth of qualified teachers, inadequate and dilapidated classrooms and appealed to the federal, state government as well as other school proprietors to address these challenges. He also urged the Ministry of Education to ensure that only schools with the necessary facilities to function as schools will be duly registered.

Carnival Calabar Queen contestants performing at the Governor’s Masked Fete, one of the charity event at the ongoing 32 Day Calabar Festival to raise fund in the fight against pnuemonia in Calabar, recently

Cour s IG tto o in tigat e DPO Courtt order orders invves estigat tigate BY VINCENT UJUMADU, Awka


HE Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the Inspector General of Police, IGP, to investigate the activities of the Divisional Police Officer, DPO in Ogidi Anambra State over allegation of kidnapping and robbery levelled against a community leader and businessman, Chief Okechukwu Nwafor Agu. The police had, in a paid advertisement, declared Agu wanted over alleged kidnapping activities, a development that made him to sue the IGP, the Anambra State Commissioner of Police, the DPO in Ogidi and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice. Agu also accused the DPO of fueling the killings and destruction of property in Abor Akuzor in Umusinu village, Nkpor and Ogidi in Idemili local government

area of the state which had been enmeshed in a protracted land tussle. In his ruling on the matter, the presiding Judge, Justice G. O. Kolawole said that in view of the seriousness of the


HE Nigeria Bar Association, NBA, Warri, Delta State has directed lawyers not to offer legal representation to any person(s) arrested and charged with the offence of kidnapping in the state. NBA’s tough resolution

recent arrest and arraignment in court of a Warri-based lawyer and activist, Mr. Casely Omon-Irabor by the police for allegedly offering N700,000 bribe to a police officer, Inspector Samuel Imana, to induce him to release a kidnap suspect, Vincent Akpokona. A statement by the chair and publicity secretary,

Ediagbonuwie, the association said, “Any member of the branch, who provides legal representation in this case, would be a clear breach of the subsisting resolution of the branch.” However, sources close to Omon-Irabor maintained that the whole thing was an orchestrated frame-up.

DPO from arresting and detaining Agu without reasonable or probable cause to avoid infringing on his fundamental human right as enshrined in Section 41 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria.

Akwa Ibom features 9,999 Christmas Carol singers remarked that Christmas country to rise up and come


HE fifth edition of Akwa Ibom Government Christmas Carol Night featured 9,999 choristers, the biggest assembly of carol singers this year was marked with pomp and pagentry last night in Uyo. Great artistes as Alvin Slaughter and Donnie McClurkin from the United States of America; Aity Dennis-Inyang, Pat Akpabio, Anne Inyang and Linda Etukudoh as well as International Choir Performance from Congo Brazzaville and Ibom Unity Brass Band performed at the occasion. Akwa Ibom Governor, Sir Godswill Akpabio

Warri NBA withdraws legal service to kidnap suspects came on the heels of the Messrs. Ben Oji and S.G The association BY EMMA AMAIZE, Warri

allegation against the DPO, the attention of the IGP should be drawn to the matter to enable him stem the tide of killing and destruction in the area. He also restrained the

however, declared, “Our stand does not in any way infer an acceptance of the veracity. We would expect the police, having charged the matter to court, to prove the said allegations in accordance with the provisions of the law. We shall follow the proceedings with keen interest.”

celebration by christians all over the world, must be a period of togetherness and peace amongst Nigerians, for the country to move forward. He noted “As we celebrate Christmas, this should be the time for the

together as one. We must put a stop to envy and jealousy for the country to have peace. As we sing to the Lord today, let us all sing to break away ethnic barriers, tribal feelings, kidnapping and also break all barriers to prosperity.’’

Delta holds workshop for LG caretaker committees BY AUSTIN OGWUDA, Asaba


ELTA government holds orientation workshop for newly appointed LG caretaker committee members The workshop which was designed to acquaint the newly appointed local government caretaker committee members with requisite knowledge of their roles and responsibilities of council administration, was held in Asaba. Addressing the participants, the State Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, Mr. Newworld Safugha charged the participants to “demonstrate high sense of responsibility and enthusiasm in all the

lectures. He expressed optimism that the participants would implement the knowledge and experience garnered during the workshop in the performance of their duties back in office to justify their participation in the programme”. Thecommissioner noted that the success of the Federal system for effective governance “depends on an appropriate division of responsibilities and resources between the Federal, State and local government councils, which should be supported by a sufficient institutional capacity at each level to carry out its assigned functions to the benefit of the citizens”.

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 9

Al-qaeda kidnapped Frenchman in Katsina – Hollande operate. Nigeria’s Islamist militant group has not staged many attacks in Katsina. Boko Haram, which is fighting to impose Islamic law in Nigeria, has killed some 3,000 people

BY UDUMA KALU with agency report


RESIDENT Francois Hollande of France says a French engineer kidnapped in Katsina Wednesday was “without a doubt” seized by a group linked to al-Qaida’s north African wing, or its jihadist affiliates. The French leader told Europe-1 radio on Friday that “powerfully armed” assailants captured the engineer two days earlier. Nigerian police have said that about 30 attackers stormed the French man’s home in the northern town of Rimi. They also killed two Nigerians — a neighbor and a security guard of the engineer with French energy firm Vergnet SA. The kidnapping occurred in a quiet area close to Ni-

XMAS: America warns citizens BY UDUMA KALU

T Gov. Obi (m) flanked by Gov. Jang (r ) and Gov. Fayemi (l) during the requiem mass for late Governor Patrick Yakowa of Kaduna State at Kagoma on Thursday. ger. France has been among the Western countries pressing for international action to rid northern

Mali, to the north, of alQaida-linked jihadists who have controlled the vast, arid zone for months.

Katsina state, which shares a border with Niger, where al-Qaeda’s North African wing is known to

Oshiomhole signs 2013 Appropriation Bill into law BY SIMON EBEGBULEMA


OVERNOR Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State yesterday, signed into law the 2013 Appropriation Bill, and vowed that the state government will pursue very aggressively, the property charge with a view to boost the Internally Generated Revenue of the state. The governor had earlier submitted a budget proposal of over N150billion to the state House of Assembly but after altering the budget, the lawmakers approved N149.4billion, maintaining the ratio of about 60 per cent of the budget for capital projects and 40 per cent for recurrent as earlier proposed by

the state government. Oshiomhole who commended members of the House for their expeditious handling of the budget,

assured that the budget will be implemented to the letter in a way that it will positively impact on the lives of the people of the

state. “I want to assure the good people of Edo state that we will sustain and infact improve upon our level of performance.”

Lagos to hammer hoteliers, hospitality operators over licensing law across the state in order that implementation of proceedings against the proprietors of such establishments should commence.

HE United States Em bassy has issued travel warning to its citizens in Nigeria ahead of the Christmas and New Year holidays. The warning which was posted on the Embassy’s website and tagged “Security Warning For U.S Citizens” reminded “U.S. citizens to maintain a high level of vigilance during the holiday because of continued security concerns in Nigeria.” The message reads inter alia: “we recommend U.S. citizens remain vigilant during this holiday season given the deadly attacks which were conducted the previous two years over the Christmas holiday. All U.S. citizens in Nigeria should be particularly vigilant around churches and other places of worship, locations where large crowds may gather, and areas frequented by expatriates and foreign travel-

lers during the upcoming holiday season. U.S. citizens should pay attention to their surroundings, and keep their cellular telephones in close proximity for use in cases of emergency. The Nigerian Security Services have heightened security measures in Nigeria as a result of threats posed by extremist groups and U.S. citizens can expect to see additional police and military checkpoints, additional security, and possible road blocks throughout the country during the holiday season. This year, extremists attacked many locations in Nigeria, killing and injuring hundreds of people. They have threatened churches, mosques, media houses, police stations, immigration and customs offices, transportation centres, financial institutions, large hotels, shopping malls and markets, state government offices, communications centres, beer gardens, and nightclubs.

AGOS state govern ment has begun moves to sanction owners of hotels, event centres, bars, clubs, fast food outlets and other hospitality and tourism establishments and operators that have failed to comply with the provisions of the state’s Hotel Licensing Law (as amended) 2003.

Senior Special Assistant to the Governor/Secretary, Lagos State Hotel Licensing Authority, Ms Aduke Gomez, said the measure was in line with the government’s resolve to sanitize the tourism industry in the state. According to her, the names of identified non-compliant hospitality and tourism establishments have been filed at courts within various magisterial divisions

Businessman drags Bank to court over alleged damage to property

of Boko Haram bombing before he was eventually removed by President Goodluck Jonathan called on International Aviation experts under a global body to probe the acci-

dent. According to Evah “I’m a very sad man today and I know this tragedy has plunged Niger Delta into mourning. There are no words to express the sadness of

this unthinkable tragedy. This news is just awful and unbearable at festival period like this. How best can I describe this calamity. It is Niger Delta horrific christmas gift.”




A Hospitalised Ijaw leader mourns Azazi T HE Coordinator of Ijaw Monitoring Group (IMG) Comrade Joseph Evah currently receiving treatment in Dubai hospital has paid tribute to the late former National Security Adviser, General Owoye Azazi. Speaking from Dubai hospital, the former Publicity Secretary of Ijaw National Congress (INC) who campaigned rigorously against the removal of Azazi as National Security Adviser because

in numerous attacks across northern Nigeria since 2010, human rights groups say. But BBC Hausa’s Aliyu Tanko says the group does not normally kidnap people.

N Onitsha –based businessman, Chief

Ignatius Atueyi has dragged Fin Bank Plc to an Anambra High Court sitting in Onitsha and claiming the sum of N13.126 million over alleged damage to his property situated at No 9 New Market road in the commercial town. Details of claim showed that N7.026 million is estimated expense he said he would incur in repairing the damage and removing the partitions done to the leased

Benue govt sacks 3,000 LG staff, source for N7 billion loan to pay arrears of pension an interview with newsBY PETER DURU Makurdi


BOUT 3,000 local government workers have been compulsorily

retired by the Benue State government, even as efforts were being made by the government to borrow N7 billion from commercial banks to pay retired staff their accumu-

lated pensions in the state. Chairman of the Benue State Local Government Service Commission, BSLGSC, Comrade Richard Gbande who made this known in

men in Makurdi, said that those affected had either attained the mandatory 60 years retirement age or 35 years in service in the 23 local government councils in the state.

property by the defendant, N5 million as general damages done to the property, N100000 as expenses incurred in executing the consent judgment and N1 million as loss of two months rent on the property at the rate of N500000 per month for September and October, 2012, as well as five percent of the awarded cost at the prevailing bank lending rate. In the claim, Atueyi said that he had to file a case against the bank in court to recover his property when the bank allegedly reneged on the terms of their agreement, adding that when the court gave judgment in his favour, bailiff was sent to recover the property.

10—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Nigerians to mark bleak Christmas

As the Christmas draws close, Nigerians cry out with a mighty voice from the abyss of their miseries to God over their dwindling fortune. CHARLES ADINGUPU writes, that a bleak Christmas celebration stares the people in the face.

Warri, Delta State, said he lost his bank job during the Mallam Sanusi Lamido’s endless reform. Unfortunately for him, no entitlement was paid to him and his contemporaries booted out of job. For him, Christmas day may just be like any other.



n the struggle of this life, man is not discouraged because he clings to the hope the Lord has in store for him at the end of his conflict – a trust without limit. But that is not the case with Godwin Nwaoboshi, who has tasted despair, broken by sorrow and weighed down by humiliation. Until recently, Nwaoboshi was an Accountant working in a manufacturing firm domiciled in Lagos. He manages his meagre income with his proportionate family of four. But just one day, he was kicked out of his job in a questionable circumstances. Two years afterwards, he’s yet to get another job. All his efforts to secure another job came to naught. But as the Christmas bell jingles, Godwin now remains awake to his enormous family responsibilities starring at him, moaning like a lonely bird on a house top as his days vanish as a shadow at night. “This is the second time in a row I will celebrate Christmas with my family, begging for their understanding over my jobless state. I can’t even afford to provide decent meal for them on Christmas day talkless of buying them good clothes so that they too, can look like their peers; he lamented to Saturday Vanguard. But the story of Efe Goodnews who resides in

Christmas in Nigeria today has lost all the splendour that accompanies it. He lamented that since his motorcycle, otherwise known as Okada was impounded and eventually smashed by the Lagos State Government, life has become unbearable for him

“Business is dull. There is nothing in the air to suggest that Christmas is around the corner. But we should thank God we are alive to witness it as Christmas is not all about buying of new clothes for the children and feasting on rice and chicken


“I mange with some casual jobs here and there just to eke a living with my family members. But how long will this be, is what I can’t say. My elder brother assisted me by providing some good and decent clothes for my kids. As for the rice which is the ritual meal on Christmas day, God will provide,” he said. Again, Dotun Banjo said

and his entire household. “I don’t no where to begin now. I’m a National Diploma (NND) holder in Estate Management. Since I can’t secure a job, my elder brother assisted with motorcycle to use for commercial purpose. But suddenly, the Lagos State Government cut short our joy, only means of livelihood without alternative. I don’t

know how to celebrate the Christmas with my family except God intervenes,” he said. For Edwin Nwabudike, the vagaries life has dealt a serious blow on him. First, he lost all his belongings to the insurgence of terrorism in Jos, Plateau State where he lived with his family before they relocated to Lagos. The proceed he realises from his makeshift provision store is barely enough to sustain his family. “Business is dull. There is nothing in the air to suggest that Christmas is around the corner. But we should thank God we are alive to witness it as Christmas is not all about buying of new clothes for the children and feasting on rice and chicken,” he said. David Metu believes that the general atmosphere suggests that Nigerians will celebrate a low key Christmas due mainly to the poor economy. “It is only federal and state government workers who will celebrate this year’s Christmas with funfair. Most of them if not all have been paid one

bonus or the other for yuletide. But for self-employed who relied mainly on the patronage of other Nigerians, it will not be easy at all. About two years ago, by this time, people will be preparing to travel to the village with their family members to celebrate the Christmas with their relatives. But this is not the case today. Since schools vacated, the traffic on the highways has not recorded any appreciable difference. For me, I don’t have the money to travel alone talkless of doing so with my family members,” he said. Also for Phillip Ugbomah who has been jobless three years after he graduated as a Geologist, his only dependent, the elder brother was recently thrown out of job. This has further compounded his plight. “At least by now I should be of help to my elder brother and his family. He saw me through the university. Today, he’s jobless, and I’m yet to secure a job three solid years

Continues on page 12

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—11

Christmas:Celebration acrossreligiousdivide BY EMMANUEL EDUKUGHO


ROUND Nigeria, although a multi-religious country, with an estimated population of 167 million, about 100 million people are expected to celebrate Christmas on December 25 which falls on a Tuesday this year 2012. The bottomline is that those who celebrate Christmas to mark the birthday of Jesus Christ are basically Christians of all denominations — orthodox (Catholic), Anglican, Pentecostal, Methodist Baptist, Presbyterian, white-garment churches, Celestial, spiritual and others who belong to Christendom. Even Moslems, African traditional worshippers, Oriental faith adherents, atheists, agnostics, free thinkers, and others tend to associate with Christmas celebration as the government usually declared public holidays for all and sundry irrespective of religious belief. Why Christendom settled for each December 25 as the birthday of Jesus Christ has generated controversy over the years because there are no biblical or historical evidence or reasons to put the birth of Jesus on December 25. According to legend, the origin of Christmas celebration can be traced back to pagan Rome where the people marked several festivals to honour Saturn, the agricultural god and the sun god. Some Anthropologists in their writings have argued that like many pre-Christian customs and beliefs, the old feast marking the yearly return of the sun was rededicated to the birth of Jesus Christ. Putting this antecedent aside, including the controversy over the date of Jesus’ birth, some believed it was in January, others holding to October, the fact is that most of mankind have now acknowledged and settled for December 25. Millions of people looked up to this date to celebrate Christmas – the birth of Jesus Christ with so much joy, happiness, fun, family togetherness, reunion of friends relatives, loved ones and even heal old wounds, bury old animosities and foster friendship. Even nations at war may cease fire during the yuletide period of Christmas. As the Christmas season draws near, the atmosphere dramatically changes – ushering in the Christmas spirit of love, forgiveness, rejoicing, merry making, shopping for new clothes to wear especially children and young people, giving homes and buildings some facelift, decorative lightings for homes, exchange of gifts, greetings and felicitations through sending of Christmas cards. Special songs, films, TV and Radio programmes are promoted in the spirit of Christmas, holidays are arranged, churches come out with activities – both spiritual social, humanitarian and so on to commemorate the event, highlighted by the joy of giving, helping the needy, underprivileged, disabled, poor homeless, disadvan-

Christian worshippers taged, jobless, orphans , widows and even widowers. Those in prison, hospitals, at old people homes, remand homes, detention centres, pensioners are also made to have a taste of the Christmas season. Because Jesus Christ helped the poor, hopeless, sick and afflicted,

many people who are blessed, righteous and selfless tend to follow the example of Christ. So for such people and organisations, the best time to do that is Christmas. However, in the context of the Nigerian situation, Christmas season is period of maximising profits for

traders by increasing prices of goods, especially food items, hike in transport fares as many people would travel to their villages, towns and hinterlands to reunite with their families, fuel scarcity, rise in crime wave murder, armed robbery, ritual killings and kidnappings.

Fun centres reposition for big business this yuletide By Olayinka Ajayi bisola Adefaye, a nine-year-old girl kept bother ing her mother about where to celebrate the Christmas as her father had blocked every plan made by the family to visit the Bar-Beach, Lagos which most times play host to fun seekers. The fears of her father was borne out of the risk of ocean surge as it occured recently. But Mum was already considering other less-risk-prone places in Lagos for a big treat. One of such places is the hitherto notorious Oshodi which has been transformed into tourist attraction centre. The lights and decoration on the Oshodi Heritage Park are enough to announce to funseekers what the place is ready to offer. The twinkling little lights hung on manmade tree, the electronic billboard with different slides, green vegetation, bouncimg castle, grotto, swings, and other facilities in a well lit and barbecued environment can be seen by passers-by and motorists on Oshodi road before the bridge. Managed by Clear Edge Media Limited, the amuse-


ment park though was yet to be commissioned but was open to funseekers. When Saturday Vanguard visited the place recently, some schools have taken the advantage to host students and pupils for a end-of-the-year party. Kids were seen having fun using the facilities in place. Patrick Chukwuemeka, the manager of the park said the manangement is poised to making the park the best in West Africa with modern equipment, adding that this is just a tip of the ice berg. He further added that the Oshodi Heritage park was an initiative of the Ministry of Environment in partnership with Clear Edge Media Limited. “The Oshodi heritage park is a new amusement park that is highly secured with a Police Station directly behind the amusement park as well as being under the vigilance of a private Security Company - Harry Com Security Company,” he stated.

12—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Marking bleak Christmas

years overdue house rent and consider payment of their children’s school fees within the next three weeks from now and plan to survive the beginning of the year. Almost three and half years her husband lost his job, life has never been the same for Mrs. Alice Njukama. Their plight however, peaked when their properties were thrown out of their house at Owode by the landlord who insisted in collecting the accumulated three years rent owed him. “Christmas is not in the least of our priorities right now,” she lamented. I’m glad schools have vacated and I’ve sent my children to join my mother in Benin, Edo State. It’s obvious we can’t cope anymore here. Since my husband lost his job, life has become unbearable. My business crumbled like a pack of card. Too many people indebted to me, and worse of all, my landlord has thrown our properties out of his house mainly due to our inability to pay our rent. I’m looking for a place to store my properties and thereafter join my children in Benin till further notice.

Continues on page 10 after graduation, all because I don’t have a godfather up there. For us, the Christmas is a sad reminder of our hapless state, he lamented. “Is there anything like Christmas? Just look around you will know that people are less perturbed about Christmas. Even most of these firms as well. In the past, you will find banks and other corporate organisations spending lavishly on decorations of their office buildings. But today, the story is different. Companies which attempt to do so only did light decorations just to fill the vacuum of nothingness, enthused Tayo Wasiu who works in the Island. Madam Augusta Wamiko, a single parent who runs a hair saloon at Ketu, Lagos, said the poor state of the economy has made most Nigerians to forget about the Christmas. According to her, the government has failed to encourage artisans and other self-employed Nigerians in their various trades. “For almost three weeks in a stretch, electricity supply in this neighbourhood has been at its low ebb. How can I operate my saloon if not to rely on a generator set which guzzles fuel that is not even available at the moment except

in the black market. I think most Nigerians are suffering similar fate as well. The barbing saloon operator needs electricity, wielder, business centre and many others. But what has the government done? I’ve spoken to my children, and I know they understand. No new clothes and shoes this Christmas, but we can manage to prepare the regular meal for the Christmas – rice, even if it may not be as sumptuous as it used to be in the past,” she said. For Mathias Borisade and his wife, their immediate preoccupations at this season are how to settle their two

Bend down boutique

Mummy please remember my new shoes

Show little kindness to weary hands


or Reverend Father Cyril Mbata, the Parish Priest of Good Shepherd Catholic Church, Owode, Lagos, Christmas celebration is not all about festivity but rather a season to share with one another the good things of life. He told Charles Adingupu, that Nigerians must use the season to remember the poor in their midst. The significance of Christmas cannot be overlooked irrespective of the harsh realities of the time. This is so because it heralds the birth of our Saviour Jesus Christ – meaning God Himself dwelling among us in human form. Jesus is indeed a wonderful gift from God. So, as we celebrate His birth, it means we need to be more Godly in our dealing with one another and approach to life generally because God is with us in spirit. What should people do this Christmas? Though festivities as cooking and eating special meals and drinks are some of the major hallmarks of Christmas celebrations but Christians must remember that the very essence of the Christmas is sharing with one another, particularly with

the poor ones in our midst. This is the season to remember them. We must all strive to show little kindness to the under privileged in our midst by sharing whatever we have particularly material things with them. This dominated the sermons of Christ – if you have two pairs of shoes, give one to your brother who has none, and if you have two bags of rice, give one to your brother as well. This should be the very significance of Christmas. Christians should look around their neighbourhood, they will find out that most of them have none to eat or drink. In other words, they are excluded from the celebration of the birth of Christ. Therefore, our duty here, is to ensure that everybody enjoys the celebration. Ironically, even though we may refer to these people as the poor in our midst, they still have something to share. They too must endeavour to share the inherent love, wisdom and peace that make up their persons. Afterall, Jesus came into this world so that we may have life in abundance. For non-Christians Christmas celebration has come to be accepted as a universal festival. The birth of Christ is celebrated by virtually almost everybody. It cuts across religious divide.

People who practise other religion also share the joy of Christmas with us.For instance the business boom experienced by traders during the yuletide, both Christians, Muslims and other religions share partake in the boom emanating from high sales recorded during the Christmas season. However, overtly or otherwise, everybody share in the joy which heralds the Christmas.

Reverend Father Cyril Mbata

For a while, Mrs. Victoria Nwaboshi was transfixed on how to manage the little resources in her disposal to make her three little children feel the pulse of the Christmas without invoking pain in the mind of her jobless husband. Though, she had assured the children of a wonderful Christmas. Therefore, when her little girl of four, Nneka heard that her mother was going for Christmas shopping, on that ill-fated day, she dashed out of the bedroom and shouted at the mum who was already a the middle of the compound, “mummy, please don’t forget my new shoes.” That innocent request almost drew tears from Mrs. Nwaboshi’s innocent eyes not necessarily because she could not afford it at the moment but because, she and her husband have failed in their family responsibilities. “I almost wept when Nneka asked for Christmas shoes. They (children) know we always buy them new clothes and shoes but not this time. Can you imagine that my elder brother who use to render assistance to us in moments as this just lost his job? I just manage to put together little proceeds I realised from my petty trading business to buy few things us to eat for the Christmas,” she said. Though for children,

Continues on page 13

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—13

BLEAK CHRISTMAS Continues on page 12 Christmas means wearing of new clothes and shoes. But Dotun Banjo says this may not be the case with his children this Christmas because the money is not there for such luxuries. “They have been wearing new shoes and clothes every year, so, if this Christmas is an exception, therefore, there is nothing wrong with it. This is an opportunity to make the children understand the vicissitude of life,” he said.

Bend down boutique to the rescue

Most spots where fairly used clothes otherwise known as okirika are sold in Lagos, witnessed a beehive of activities as buyers besieged them in preparation for the Christmas. At the popular Tejuosho Market along the railway, which houses many makeshift stores where fairly used clothes and second hand shoes are sold, business booms unhindered as parents scout for near quality stuff for their children. These days nobody talks about quality. Whether China or America, new clothe is new clothe. At least the child has never worn it before,” said Mrs. Madubueze. Mrs. Borisade who had bought clothes for her children two months before now, was at the Yaba market to search for fitted shoes for her two children. However, success attained her efforts as she got two different pairs of China made shoes at N1,200 and N800 respectively. At Balogun Market The general atmosphere at the popular Balogun market in the Island does not convey a true picture of the Christmas seasons. The usual heavy human traffic at the market was conspicuously absent. Traders who usually display their wares at the street corners and along Broad Street were not there, no thanks to the hired tugs by the Lagos State Government to chase them out. From the beginning of Broad Street to the extreme towards the Great Nigerian Insurance building, was empty, except some women who paid dearly to display hot drinks on their makeshift stalls. A second clothes dealer at the market who gave his name simply as Nnadi, told the Vanguard that the little profit he realised after mid-day sales was forcefully taken away from him by an C M Y K

Santa Claus

‘Santa Claus is dead’ emergency patrol task force raised by the Lagos State Government to chase traders along the road. “They are area boys, alayes, tugs who pound the streets of Balogun market to harass and intimidate traders. Many traders goods were seized. They go on a danfo commercial bus. My wares were impounded by these faceless Lagos State Government officials. But I’ve to pay N1,500 to them to secure the release of my goods,” he told the Vanguard. Mrs. Essien Ufot though hailed the Lagos State

Government for chasing the traders off the street, but lamented that the development has created more difficulties for buyers as well. I’ve to move from one extreme to another before I can get what I wanted to buy. In fact, it’s not a pleasurable experience but the government should also know that not everybody can pay for rent in Balogun market. Therefore, they (government) should exercise caution in the implementations of some of these laws particularly in a season like this where everybody struggles to meet

up with one pressing need or the other,” she said.

Santaclaus is dead

Little Nneka was bursting with excitement as Christmas is just barely three days away; she thought of merriments that herald the Christmas celebration. But the most of them all is the family regular visit to Santaclaus. At the early evening on that fateful day, she reminds the Daddy, Borisade of their usual visit to Sanctaclaus. The father looks at his little daughter intently, and said “Santaclaus is dead.” Nneka who was transfixed,

requested to know who killed Santaclaus. “One Mr. Money, a wicked man killed Santaclaus,” the dad replied convincingly. She left the Dad without a word. Earlier, Borisade explained to his other children that the money is not there for them to visit Santaclaus. “Though, it’s true we visit Santaclaus every year but this one must be an exception,” he said. Metu, another parent said that most primary schools organize Christmas parties for their pupils where Santaclaus visits the children for a token fee. At least, this has assisted some of us who cannot afford to pay the spurious fee charged by corporate and other individual private concerns whose main preoccupation during this Christmas season is to organise Santaclaus for children,” he said. However, investigations revealed that the ritual is gradually fading away, mainly due to low patronage. Although, some broadcast media houses still arrange Santaclaus for kids at a fee. One of the organizers of Santaclaus and Christmas party is one of the private broadcast houses who will not want his names in print, lamented that this year ’s Christmas party suffers abysmally low patronage. According to her, despite the good packages lined up and advertised severally on their medium, most parents still

A season of high patronage for second-hand wares BY EBUN SESSOU


visit to some of the mar kets in Lagos including Oyingbo, Katangora, Yaba, Ojuelegba, Ikeja, Mushin, Oshodi, Mile 2, Iyana-Iba, where secondhand wares are the order of the day has shown that this second-hand culture is already enjoying more patronage in Lagos than the brand new ones. In their hundreds, most parents, were selecting clothes, shoes and even handbags to celebrate the season. Even dealers of fairly used materials are thanking God for this rare opportunity. At Oyingbo, a clothes dealer told Saturday Vanguard that they are experiencing more patronage in 2012 than previous years. Mrs Uchechi Ogbonna, a trader in the market, said she had since the beginning of December had more patronage from people who preferred the clothes due to their affordability. She, however, said that prices of the fairly-used clothes were gradually increasing since it became more

popular than the new ones, adding that she only traded in first grade secondh a n d clothes. Ogbonna said that “a first grade bale of second-hand clothes from Cotonou goes for N45, 000, as against N25,000 it was previously sold.” She said children’s jean trousers and shirts were sold for N700 and N400 respectively as against the N400 and N250 pre-Yuletide price. “In fact, there is not much difference between the first-grade second hand clothes and the new ones; even the fairly used ones are more durable than the so-called new ones,” adding that most of her customers were already aware of the days she opens new bales. She said that ahead of this year’s Yuletide, her shop had witnessed influx of

customers who came to patronise her. Another trader at Yaba market, Mr Uche Ezeigo, said his bale of clothes consisted of children’s’ wears, trousers, skirts, gowns and shirts. Adding that some of his customers had called to book for children’s clothes. Ezeigo said children’s stocks now ranged from N700 to N1,000, adding that the price depends on the quality. He said that prior to Yuletide, she sold children’s wears between N400 and N600.

14—SATURDAY Vanguard,DECEMBER 22, 2012 he original reason for the celebration of Christmas is believed to be the commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who came into the world to save humanity from our sins, and return us to the loving arms of our maker. It could therefore be consigned, as a festival, to the concern of Christians, at least mainly. But it is clear that more people take part in the festivities today more than Christians themselves. A number of so-called Christians even dispute the validity of the time of year in which the mainstream Christians celebrate it. The twenty-fifth day of December seems to have been arrived at by tradition, in a way. Some people dispute that it is hardly what might be described as “the cold, midwinter”, generally, and would shepherds be “ watching their flocks by night” in such a weather? A Christian sect has even gone so far as to declare another time of the year for their own observance of the birth of Christ. All this leaves the source of the Christian faith somewhat woolly especially in the minds of people who have come to the religion second-hand, as it were, in countries outside Europe through the efforts of missionaries. When we also take a second look at the story of the birth of Jesus in the gospels, it is from the very beginning that faith encounters a mixture and bewilderment and misgivings. St. John proclaims that the Word, which was at the beginning, “became flesh”. The interpretation has always been that the Word of God, which is the same with God, became man “and dwelt with us”. But we failed to recognize Him for what, and who he was and little wonder. For when one considers that he chose the humblest of entries imaginable to make His way into •the birth of Jesus Christ, the Son of God the world, it would be only natural for humanity to pass Him by. A Prince from the ceearthly sojourn is here establestial realm would have been -indeed toned down to bare lished as the central theme. level expression when the Son expected to descend from the However, the joy of salvation, God appeared to take on the heights in a chariot of fire, not so much the sacrifice and sin of the world. Of course, that heralded by blazing clouds the sorrow that it would demay in fact be the reason for with a throng of angels singmand, takes the front burner at ing His praises. and chanting the lowliness of the entry since Christmas. This is an obserit was purposed to presage the halleluiahs! In stead of which vance that illustrates, more suffering and death that was his parents could not even than any in other example, ahead. The humiliation and find “a room at the inn” where how the admixture with the torture that was to crown the the Holy Baby could be detraditions and cultures of varijourney which began at livered in a dignified surous lands has become a worldwide aspect of Christian practice. The worship of Jesus, the Son of God, should be the central theme that unites Christians together, but it is there that divisions are most prominent today. The liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church is difrounding. Christmas could hardly be ferent But those who knew the prepared for by an inordinate from that of the Baptists and monumental import of the grandeur. The contrast would divergences occur from one event at that moment traveled probably have been unsup- denomination to another. And from a far land to acknowlportable by any faith. so go their celebrations of edge the awesome occasion, As it was, Isaiah had even Christmas. In another direction, one is and came to worship Him. But wondered if anyone would then again, they came followever believe the entire circum- totally bewildered at times, ing a star, an object that canstances of the appearance of what the connection of Father not be touched or appreciatthe Messiah in the role He Christmas is with Christmas. ed at close quarters, of light had to play on earth. The Let us start there and wander but of no sound, an ephemprophet was writing some six through the Scriptures. Do we eral messenger barely capacenturies before the event. find Father Christmas, loosely ble of motive power. That was The simplicity of his message identified with the character of their guide - not a blare of was soaked with the passion- Santa Claus, in any part of the trumpets in the hands of archate intensity of his proclama- Bible? Even the practice of giving presents at Christmas has angels, or the rumbling of tion (Isa 53: 1-5) to the extent only a very thin strand connectthunder and streaks of chain that the joy of his Christmas ing it with the Christmas stolightning. Everything was so is totally left behind and the ry, beyond the gifts brought to laid back, relaxed, subdued essence of the Saviour ’s the Child Jesus by the Magi.


*the season for all reasons

A number of so-called Christians even dispute the validity of the time of year in which the mainstream Christians celebrate it


It is, of course, wildly popular in European countries and is widespread in the commercial ethos of the US. Commercialism has really taken over the spirit of Christmas now in these places. People are so concerned about what to get for Christmas that few people really worry any more about what to give to Christmas. The stores are full of gift items; the carols in the shops are louder than those in some churches; the cash registers sing out loud. This is the season for buying - for giving and buying; for buying for yourself and giving to others. This is also the season for merriment, of course. It is the time for parties, and religion has nothing to do with this. The point is to mark it down that this is the period when appeals ring out from many directions to drink less or not at all, if you are going to drive. It is therefore a time when some permissive behaviour is expected as a part of the season. And the younger elements are not left out. A few years ago, it appeared that the proliferation of fireworks was being discouraged. No one in his right mind would think of banning “bangers”, of course, since

they have become so popular among our youngsters. But there was a glimmer of hope that the nuisance of the noisemakers would be reduced to some extent in order to somewhat preserve an environment of decency around the yuletide. In Lagos, it can be safely stated that it will not happen this year. Already the surroundings are reverberating to the sound of “bangers”. And the noise pollution is increasing with the approach of Christmas. The police do not feel impelled to do anything about it. This is the season of the “bang-bang-bang!” We may not entirely forget the Christmas story in the midst of the hubbub, though. It is still there at the centre of it all - the sound of the parties, the screech of the traffic, the noise of the cash register, and the crash of the “bangers”, all surround and subside at the feet of the soulful carol empowered by the spirit of the Christmas story. It is, and shall always be “the greatest story ever told”. Indeed, many activities are invoked during the yuletide, and Christmas may have become the season for various reasons. However, Christ remains the reason for the season. Time out,


SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—15


y heart goes out to Prof Okonjo, the by now distressed husband of the 82-year old woman who was kidnapped in broad day light and right in front of his palace too. As an enlightened, educated and cultured man, his distress would probably go beyond the fact that his companion and mother of his children was held hostage for a week to the despairing fact that the whole country is being held hostage still by the many forces of darkness that are controlling the country. This certainly could not have been the country he dreamt of as a young student and a young graduate rubbing shoulders with intellectuals of like minds. Yes, long before his wife was taken hostage, his beloved country had been taken hostage by greed, by corruption, by ostentatious lifestyles, by crimes in high and low places, by men of God and politicians who have become gods of men. One of his children, the renowned and highly cerebral, Dr OkonjoIweala, has been in the corridors of power for the better part of twelve continuous years. I wonder how much she tells her parents of what is happening to their beloved country. I wonder if they sometimes (or often) bend her ears to tell her about the suffering of the ordinary people in their domain. I wonder if they see themselves as a privileged family and therefore entitled to the many fringe benefits of governance. Or, a concerned family that has the opportunity to make inputs that can bring Nigeria from the brink. I wonder if they realise that their daughter, as the unofficial Prime Minister, can not be removed from the drift and rot in the country. In other words, I wonder what they discuss when they hold family meetings. Is it how to settle a cousin or nephew with contracts or how to settle the country with good governance.

everyday. These people belong to Nigerian families too, and many are quite decent and upright by Nigerian standards. But they, like Prof Kamene Okonjo, are the collateral damages that we have often written about. Prof Okonjo’s kidnap was the closest to power so far given her daughter’s role in this administration, but it does not, by any means, signify the last attempt unless the elites in politics, in business, and in the religious change their lifestyles.


or starters, Nigeria must shift from the primitive acquisition of money and its citizens must stop respecting money irrespective of how it is acquired. I have told my children many times that success is not defined by wealth. I have also said this to my favourite employees and colleagues (those who are more likely to listen to me). I wish many more Nigerians can live and preach this message. My Nigerian role models—and they are just about five— are not defined by wealth because that’s not what you notice when their names are mentioned. Nigerians must also eschew ostentatious living. The race for private jets, expensive houses and cars, is to me, a sign of emptiness. I am not against wealth. But if God blesses you with wealth, then make it count by touching lives. Nigerians must constantly look for ways of redressing the gap between the rich and the poor. The alternative is that neither the rich nor the poor will sleep. Our religious leaders must stop recognising only the rich and must stop emphasising tithes, harvests, first fruits etc. None of these was emphasised by Jesus on the famous ‘sermon on the mount’. So why is our own ‘sermon’ different? Our leaders must at all times, promote transparency and accountability in governance. Hard work pays. It is fulfilling. It is also easy on the conscience. Unless and until we consciously decide to redistribute wealth, our ill educated and disadvantaged youths will continue to look for ways and means of getting their share of the national cake. Some of these methods might be callous, violent and criminal.


Her daughter, Dr OkonjoIweala can be that catalyst for change


rom all accounts, theirs is a good, old fashioned upper middle class family that should know the importance of orderliness and good governance, and its therefore a pity that the old lady has to be traumatised in her old age. I imagine that there will be nightmares and a certain vulnerability long after her release. The fact that many families have been similarly traumatised and are still being daily traumatised, is of little consolation. The trauma can only be worth it if it leads to a paradigm shift in the way we run the affairs of the country. Her daughter, Dr OkonjoIweala can be that catalyst for change. The likely fall-out from this will be an increased surveillance around her family, but that will not solve the problem. How many families are you going to individually secure? People, high and low, are being kidnapped C M Y K



rich acquaintance of mine was scammed by some of those he grew up with in Isale Eko, in central Lagos. When the ‘high flying project’ his childhood friends brought to him to finance crashed, he shrugged and said ruefully, ‘the boys have come for their share’. I am sure there must be better, more equitable and more decent ways of ‘sharing’ and ‘redistributing’ wealth than through scams, kidnaps, armed robberies and terrorism.

Caring for the poor G od wants us to care and show compassion to the poor. Know that every human being is made in the image and likeness of God. Therefore everyone is special, their present position notwithstanding. The truth is that you cannot afford to ignore them because if you do, you will be missing a glorious goldmine. The one you refer to as the poor is a glorious opportunity given to you by God for prosperity. The way we help those in need ought to reflect and mirror God’s love and concerns. Make it a practice to help those in need around you. Today we shall look at various scriptures from the word of life and be able to find out the mind of God concerning the poor and how to relate with them, as well as the benefits to you. In Ps. 28:27, the bible says “He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack: but he that hideth his eyes shall have many a curse.” Thus, God wants us to identify with the needy not ignore them. Those who open their eyes to human needs shall be blessed. To avoid lack in your life, care for the poor. If we help others when they are in trouble, they will do whatever they can to return the favour. Prov. 11:24-25, says, “There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. The liberal soul shall be O



















One way of honouring God is by showing mercy to the poor because God is the one who created them. You are not permitted to look down on them. God has a special concern for the poor. He insists that those who have material goods, should be generous with those who are needy. In fact providing for the poor is not just a suggestion but a biblical command that may require a change of attitude on your part. Jesus said the poor you have with you always (Matt. 26:11). This does not justify ignoring the needs of the poor. Let’s read Deut. 15:11, where Jesus quoted from. It says “For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee,




































































saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in the land”. Don’t invent reasons for not caring for the poor. We are to respond to their needs no matter whom or what is responsible for their condition. Remember that I said earlier that caring for the poor is a goldmine. it is an investment that is guaranteed a return. There is no threat or fear of you not getting your money back with interest. The reason I

Make it a practice to help those in need around you















made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself”. We become richer by being generous. When we give, God supplies us with more so that we can give the more. With God, when you give to the poor, your finances get better. You will know why I said so later. What can you do to help God supply someone’s need? Prov. 14:31, says, “He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor”. When you honour God, you shall be honoured.


The boys have come for their share






say so is simple. Let’s read Prov. 19:17. “He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again”. So you see, when you give to the poor, you are actually lending to God who will pay you back. Stop thinking of what benefit you can get from the poor. Rather know that it is an opportunity given you by God to turn your situation around. Know that the bible says that the borrower is a slave to the lender. If my giving to the poor means that I lend to God, it therefore means that God is indebted to me. The question now will be, do you think that God can be your slave? The answer is NO. if God becomes your slave then He is not qualified to be God. The poor may not be able to pay you back but God said He, the owner of the silver and gold, the possessor of heaven and earth, will pay you back so that His position as God will remain. When we help the poor, we show honour both to the Creator and to His creation. God accepts our help to the poor as if we had offered it to Him directly.

For more details, contact us at Christ Reality Church, beside Gossard Hotel, opposite First Bank Sports Ground, Community Road, Satellite Town or P.O.Box, 3196, Yaba Lagos. Tel: 07029235279, 07029235280. E-mail: Website: Our account details are Pastor Johnson Omomadia, Guaranty Trust Bank, A/C Nos. 0005171407. Worship with us on Sundays, 1st Service: 745am-9:15am; 2nd Service 9:1511:30am. Wednesdays Word Revelation 6pm. Counseling days Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. 11am-5pm daily or by appointment. Showers of blessing every 2nd - 4th Sat. of each month, 6 a.m - 7.15 am.

16—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012


Traders groan under low patronage Continues from page 12 shun Santaclaus. “It is obvious there is no money. The state of the nation’s economy says it all,” she said.

Where are the hampers?

Yet another ritual of the Christmas that is going into near extinction, is the exchange of hamper packages. The Saturday Vanguard investigations revealed that sales and distribution of hampers this Christmas is at its lowest ebb. In the past, hampers adorn every nooks and crannies in most popular markets in Lagos. But today, the story is different. Balogun Market At the popular Balogun market starting from Akpogbon down to Broad Street, Martins Streets Isah Williams and stretching to the extreme of Great Nigeria Insurance building, not much hampers were on display for sales. However, those who made bold to venture into the once lucrative seasonal business lamented poor patronage as most people look the other way for goods of pressing needs. Lady Titilayo is one of those trading on hampers at the Balogun market. She puts her story this way: “Since last year, the sales of hampers has reduced drastically. This year is the worst. Though, I was cautious not to include perishable items among them, so that I can eventually disposed the items one by one if the hampers fail to attract ‘potential buyers,’ she said. But Biola whose shop is located at Isah Williams Street blamed the poor sales of hampers on the deplorable state of the economy.

Samson Chiama

Essentials of Christmas

“Despite the reduction in prices, customers still won’t come, not everybody seems to be interested in the business anymore. In the past, it was almost an all comers’ affair. Today, the smallest of them goes for a token of N2,500, the medium seize and giant one go for N7,500 and N12,000 respectively,” Biola said. At the popular Yaba market, the story is almost the same. At the Tejuosho road which displays many Christmas items, hampers were scantily displayed by some traders. A shop owner who proffers to be anonymous, said people are no more interested in buying hampers anymore but just to keep the business going, hence, some of us just arranged about three to four packages of hampers for display,” he said. At Ketu, the numbers of shops with hampers displayed can be counted with the fingers. Available sur vey

reports by Saturday Vanguard, showed that most corporate organizations seemed to have jettison the idea of using hampers as corporate gifts to their clients and well wishers.

Traders groan under low patronage

A visit to most markets, shows that traders still have large quantity of their wares. Most of them who spoke to Saturday Vanguard lamented the low patronage. Apart from onions, the prices of other good items did not experience any noticeable increase. Mile 12 Market A bag of rice, brand elephant gold otherwise called Amino sells for N9,500 while Super Eagle and Agric rice, a bag goes for N7,500. A bucket of ofada rice sells for N1,500. Groundnut oil

5 litre of groundnut oil goes for N1,400, while sealed up Gino, 5 litres is N1,900. 25 litres Gino King size is N6,600. Turkey brand 5 litres is N1,700; Sonola brand sells for N1,400 1.5 litres. A bag of beans sells for N20,000 while Oloye brand of beans is N11,200. A bag of garri is now N8,500, previously it was sold for (garri) N6,500. 25 litres of palm oil is now N8,500,it was previously sold for N6,500. Fresh tomatoes and pepper A big basket of tomatoes sells from N3,500 to N6,500. The prices are determined by the freshness and seizes of the

tomatoes. They are readily available as trucks load of tomatoes keep trooping into the Mile 12 market to offload their wares. The medium seize baskets are sold for N4,500. Also, a bag of pepper goes for between N5,000 to N6,500. A trader, Mrs. Patience Nwabudike who deals on bags of rice, garri and other food condiments lamented that sales during this year ’s Christmas has been very poor. “We complained that last year’s sale was poor. This year is worse. I can’t remember having my shop stocked with many bags of rice at this time of the year when the Christmas is just three days away,” she said. But Mr. Chiama Samson who owns a poultry lamented poor sales of chicken this year. “Despite the low prices fixed for these chickens, people still prefer frozen chicken to life ones because they are cheaper. The prices range from N1,500 smallest, N2,500 and N3,500 for the medium and large seizes respectively,” Mr. Chiama disclosed to the Vanguard. Transporters Hike Fare Apart from the lingering fuel crisis, transporters in the spirit of the yuletide hiked transport fare to various towns and villages across Nigeria.

Disappointments at Mile 2 park as people travel for Christmas BY ANOZIE EGOLE


t is another Christmas again, excite ments everywhere as people are expect ing the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Tourist areas, beaches, amusement parks, cinemas, all fully decorated and filled with fun, excitement and merriment. If you say that school children are the people enjoying this celebration much, you might not be mistaken as visits to various cinemas and event centers show that this group is really being carried along in this wonderful celebration. The Lagos state government is playing its game well as far as this preparation is concerned as a visit by Vanguard Metro to Victoria Island revealed that you can hardly find out that you are still in Lagos with the level of decC M Y K

oration the state government put in place in the major streets even under some bridges and avenues. Banks, fast food, hotels all with decorations just to show that it is all about celebration and it worth’s to be celebrated. Amidst all these preparations, a visit to the Mile 2 park showed that though others are busy with decorations, some are staying back in the state against their wishes as they cannot afford the transport fare to go and visit their loved ones in some other parts of the country. Emeka Dick could not believe what is happening this season. The driver with one of the major transportat companies in the country, expressed disappointment at the turn up of passengers in the park unlike every other Christmas. The 40 years old father of four Emeka, was loading his bus that was going to Benin and Ekpoma. He said previous Christ-

mas, he is not supposed to be in the park by that time of the day. He supposed to have left the park but because of the level of hardship in the country, there is no passenger. They are still there scouting for passengers and that did not influence their fares. He said that they still collect their normal fare of N2050 to Ekpoma. “Just like other Christmas it is just that, things are not the way they used to be before. Because as you can see, there are no much passengers as before. This Christmas is unusual, on a good day, you do not supposed to see any motor here by this time of the day, we are all supposed to be on our way down to our destinations, but you see, we are still here and there are no passengers. We are still running around still, it has not made the fare to increase. The fares are still the way it is because, the passengers are much. If you increase the fare, they will go” he said.


Vanguard , DECEMBER 22, 2012, —17


He’s very jealous, how can I get him back? Dear Julie, dated a guy for two years. We recently broke up and it’s tearing me up inside. I love him a lot but everytime we got into an argument, I would tell him that I’m leaving. Eventually he got tired of me saying this and he helped me move. How can I get him back? I left several large items at his home and I have been over there three nights a week since we broke up. Do I continue this cycle in hopes that we will get back together or do I leave him alone? He only calls me maybe twice a week. I normally call him. He’s very jealous and still says things that let me know he cares but we are still not together like I want. Please help. Bob-Manuel , Sapele


Hello Bob-Manuel, Don’t just resign yourself to wait or leave. Be proactive and communicate on a real deep and meaningful level, and then see what his response is. Take responsibility for your part in what happened. Suggest remedial measures you commit to take. Ask if he is willing to reconcile with you and give that a shot. Take responsibility for your part in what happened and do not refer to what you think his

part in it was. Stay focused on being honest about yourself. Many couples fall in love, but split up later because they end up blowing it and do not have the right tools to deal with problems and they never open themselves up to learn what they need to know in order to overcome a problem. So instead of consciously seeking out and learning the right means to work through issues, things get undealt with and turn into longterm grudges and stuckness. And a marriage seems to get permanently cemented into unhappiness and unfulfillment , tragically unnecessary and quite a waste of good heart and loving potential, simply because people don’t know the right strategies to get through their issues. We know all this from personal experience. In a real sense, we are all taught to think and feel about love in a way that leads us to fail in longterm relationships. That’s why our

divorce rate is sky high, and so many couples are far less happy than they could be.

I feel jealous around his ex... Dear Julie, y boyfriend (now fiancee) of two years is the love of my life and after some time, I accepted he loves me just as much. It took me so long to believe he loved me because of his exgirlfriend whom he was with for five years. They are no more together. Whenever I was out with him and she was at the same gig or party, he would always stare at her or go over to where she was standing even if she was with her new man. It really did my head in and so, I continued to ask him why he was doing it. He said he had no feelings


for her and they were ‘just friends’. Now every thing is alright in that department as he has proven to me he loves me now in so many ways and I trust him. The problem is her, she bitches about me and I even got turned down from a job because she works in the same company, but it’s not that, it’s just I am so jealous of her: she’s pretty, has nice clothes, a good job and she is so confident. I always compare myself to her and copy her. I can’t help it, I just want her to be jealous of me for a change. I don’t think I am ugly or a bad person. So, what is happening to me?? HELP Monica, Lagos Dear Monica, The issue here is how YOU feel about YOU. That is the entire issue. See it in that light, and you can begin to solve it. The solution will not be found in your fiancee’s love. Nor will it be found anywhere outside of yourself. It will not be found in looking at what the ex is saying or doing. It is strictly between you and yourself. The

only way I know to change one’s relationship with oneself is to find a mentor or coach or counselor who can guide you to make new connections in your internal landscape , connections where you form stronger bonds of self-love with those parts of yourself that feel insecure. The mental mechanism of making comparisons between yourself and the ex is a product of your own mental - emotional patterns. These patterns live inside of you, inside of your head. Again, the solution is to change those patterns within yourself, and there is no better way than to find a good mentor to help you. Your problem is a very common one, and with good guidance, you can change your inner worldview. This, in turn, will make everything work better on the outside. I always find that once a woman makes that shift inside where she learns to connect up her love with those parts of her that need it , everything gets better on the outside — relationships, career, everything.

I tip-toe around my partner and he slams doors and will twist and turn whatever I say Aunty Julie, y partner and I have been togeth er for six years. Over the last year, I have started to feel that I have to tip-toe all the time and be so aware of what I say. A comment I might make about a TV programme or a friend can all of the sudden be blown out of context. He is a “devils advocate” and will twist and turn whatever I say. He will slam doors, and mutter and behave in a mentally violent way . I have explained how frightened this makes me feel, but this only seems to make things worse. I have also tried to confront him and take a dis-


cussion, but again my words gets twisted, and I end up feeling lower than low. I have tried to say “Sorry I said that, I did’t mean it like THAT”, or “I didn’t mean it so seriously, it was just a comment” but this just makes him more furious. Please help me, as I love this man more than anything. Bashirat, Lagos

Dear Bashirat, It sounds more like you are only one of two people. Are trying to do something better and different and he is resisting as it were? This is a sad indication to me that you do not really have a two-way interest in change and improvement;

That you are acting like the sole agent of positive change, and he is trying to keep things the same, unconsciously destructive, and in his control.

Your attempts to discuss this with him to some extent , to tell him how you feel , are being met with further destructive behaviour on his part. He gets outraged and defensive, and acts this out by attacking you for mentioning anything — as if it is your job to pretend you have no feelings or at least not talk about them if you do. This is not partnership. This is unhealthy. Anyway, it is the FEAR of

the other partner which allows the angry, controlling partner to keep acting out their destructive behaviour with no idea that they are risking the relationship and destroying it. When such a partner suddenly loses the relationship, they always say the same thing. It just happened out of the blue. And they cannot understand why their partner is not willing to “work on it” now that it is over. Accept him fully as he is, incapable of changing and love him exactly as he is. Work on your own self-esteem independent of the relationship. Build a life for yourself outside the relationship. Eventually you will

probably be fed by outside friendships (not romances, just genuine supportive people in your life). And you will grow, your self-esteem will improve. Then you will probably leave, because the relationship no longer is the source of what makes you feel good about yourself, or he will leave out of jealousy. Put an ultimatum before him , one last chance , to participate in positive change or lose you. If he says no, blows up, does the same old pattern, then you know for sure he is absolutely incapable of change and so you do one main important thing. Move on.

C O C K - T A L E S The millionaire A woman was telling her friend: “It is I who made my husband a millionaire.” “And what was he before you married him?” the friend asked. The woman replied, “A multimillionaire.” Wrong man At a cocktail party, one woman said to another, “Aren’t you wearing your wed-

ding ring on the wrong finger?” The other replied, “Yes, I am. I married the wrong man.” Marriage cost A little boy asked his father, “Daddy, how much does it cost to get married?” And the father replied, “I don’t know son, I’m still paying for it.” Happiness When a newly married man looks happy, we

know why. But when a ten-year married man looks happy, we wonder why. Affair? Classified A man inserted an ‘ad’ in the classified : “Wife wanted”. The next day, he received hundreds of letters. They all said the same thing “You can have mine.”

SATURDAY Vanguard DECEMBER 22, 2012—19

She actually laughed when I broached the subject


Women are too trusting with their so-called friends! W

someone who spills others’ secrets will invariably reveal yours. Would Desmond hit the roof if he found out that his wife had talked about the rest of their life together, without the sex? Or is it just sex that’s off limits? The fact is, not all women discuss their sex lives with their friends but a lot do— and usually in a lot more details than men. All men often do is boast about conquests, how often or where and how they did it, but it’s women who go into the nitty gritty detail, giving a blow-by-blow description of the session .

omen have been known to be the worst kind of blabbermouths—they tell each other everything and anything. “But to the point of discussing intimate bedroom secrets of their partners?” gawked Desmond when I reminded him of this fact. Married for 16 years, he’d had a bit of a misunderstanding with his wife. Again! Was he doing something wrong? Did Labo, his wife’s best friend have an insight into what his wife believe he should be doing? Taking courage in his hands, he recently had a word with Labo. As their little ‘talk’ progressed, he squirmed as Labo proceeded to confide in him some of the things that were bugging her friend. ow we’re being onest about problems in your marriage,” Labo whispered conspiratorially so her husband wouldn’t hear, “Dedun (Desmond’s wife) always gets apprehensive when you have sex. She says you go on and on to the point of making the whole thing look tedious. “I was shocked and annoyed”, Desmond said. “Most of the time when we made love,I sort of held back so she could reach a climax. Not knowing I was irritating her. Why couldn’t she tell me? What other






Not all women discuss their sex lives with their friends but a lot do

intimate secrets has she shared with this so-called best friend of hers? I know Dedun is an incurable gossip, and I’ve had ear full of some of the shenanigans her friends and their husbands were up to. But to actually table my sexual prowess in front of her friend? I was

really furious and took it up with her as soon as I got home. “She actually laughed when I broached the subject. She said I was being silly that all women talk about sex. with their friends. Up to the intimate details of their sex lives? What was there not to talk

about?she asked. What I would really want to find out is if it’s true that women are shameless gossips. If they are as my wife alleged, how do I get her to stop? Poor, poor Desmond! He’d just admitted his wife was a gossip who blabbed about everyone’s business, she’d even entertained him with some of her friends’ escapades. So,why was he so surprised she’s blabbing his as well? Smutty tit-bits always oil the gossip machinery. Just as a person who bitches about others will bitch about you to others,

t’s not just gossip, but to seek reassurance that what they’re getting up to is “normal”, or to ask advice on how to fix any problems. I told Desmond that if he thought his wife was boasting about what a super stud he was, he wouldn’t be so outraged, or was Dedun talking about other problems she was having in her marriage or other sexual issues that could be really sensitive? A man would naturally be upset if that’s the case. Gossiping is fun but spilling sexual secrets is disloyal, leaving partners embarrassed and exposed. Dialogue is the best weapon here. While Desmond can’t stop his wife talking behind his back, he should let her know he finds the idea disrespectful and hurtful. Knowing everything he does will be reported back to her ‘gang’ might stop him from wanting to have sex with her at all and this could be detrimental to their marriage if it continues. Some gossip is harmless but a lot of it isn’t, it hurts people.

Are you a born flirt?



lirting is an act that gives your morale a lot of boost if you know how to do it right. Some people are natural flirts while some would rather melt into a wall than flaunt whatever it is they’ve got. Fancy yourself a flirt? Millicent Browers gives these dos and donts tips on successful flirting: “Do decide that flirting is a positive activity that will help you meet people. Don’t think negative feelings about it. Do be yourself and emphasize all your good points. Don’t be a phony, projecting an image that’s not the real you — most people will recognise a put-on like that immediately. Respond to a person who’s

Don’t be a phony, projecting an image that’s not the real you — most people will recognise a put-on like that immediately

interested in you by nodding or smiling. Don’t panic when the other person responds to your flirting. Instead try to ask:”00 you see something you like?” Keep the conversation light and lively by bringing up topics like a person’s


job, hobbies or sports they find interesting. Don’t get into heavy controversial subjects like politics. Project a light upbeat attitude and don’t act unhappy by

dredging up past romances that failed or your personal problems. Encourage the other person to open up and talk about whatever they love and don’t just talk about yourself. Look graceful and relaxed. Don’t appear stiff. If you are tensed, walk around until your tension disappears. Accept any compliments you get on your appearance and don’t apologise or make excuse for the way you look.


inally, keep an open mind about the type of person you want to meet. Don’t have a mental image of what kind of person you’re looking for. You might overlook a fine person who simply doesn’t meet all your requirements.

20—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22 22, 2012 ary had been married to Jim for 12 years when she discovered a necklace in his jacket pocket. She was surprised at first, but put it away and forgot about it. Several months later, Jim asked if she had found a necklace and described the one she had stumbled upon months earlier. Jim told Mary that he had found it at work the day before and needed to return it to office security. Now Mary became alarmed. Not only was Jim carrying around a woman’s necklace, but he was lying to her as well. She then remembered seeing an odd telephone number appearing repeatedly on his cellphone. She also noted that their usual pattern of intimacy had ceased around the time she found the necklace. Jim said he was tired from working overtime at the office. Mary became hostile toward Jim, but never addressed his lying, nor did she approach him with her suspicions about an affair. Instead, she showed her disapproval through her behaviour, alternating between emotional distance and irritability. As Mary’s anger grew, Jim began to justify the affair in his own mind. He reasoned that he was entitled to the affair, since Mary had been treating him in a cold, hostile manner. Mary has been shutting me out, he explained and, indeed, she had. Mary’s response is fairly typical. IniThis pattern continued for several tially, she denied the problem, overmonths until, one day, Mary received looking obvious clues that something a phone call from the distraught hus- was wrong in her marriage. band of the woman with whom Jim was having an affair. By that time, pouses in denial, like Mary, of Mary and Jim were barely speaking ten remain aware of the indiscreto one another. Their emotional hostil- tion on another level and, in response, ity was apparent to their two young may behave in a cold, angry manner. daughters, who had become disrup- Some by pass the denial stage and tive at home. become enraged or depressed upon The discovery of an affair is often a discovering the affair. Others enter a traumatic, stressful experience, and state of shock, finding it difficult to fol-


ed recitation of facts and conjectures grueling. Suspicions are heightened and the betrayed partner often demands a full itinerary of their spouse’s daily activities. There may also be bouts of crying as the full weight of the betrayal is experienced.

I s he/she betraying you?



’ ve been living with a guy for about three years. I have been with him in a relationship for almost two years. His wife and mother of his kids died three years ago but from what his side of the family told me and what the kids told me, they never had to do anything anyway.They have no chores or repercussions ever! The house is disgusting. I'll clean for hours and by the time they get home, you wouldn’t even know that I did. His son is failing in school but yet, can sit on the computer all weekend instead of doing his work. His daughter is terribly spoiled and is becoming more nasty by the day. Her grandparents on her dad’s side are growing more concerned by the day as I


low a daily routine. Their concentration may become poor, and they often forget what they are doing in the middle of a task. They may head to the market and wind up at the bank. Sleep and appetite changes are common. Some people become ravenous and others lose the desire to eat much of anything. As the shock wears off, obsessive ruminating about the details of the affair may begin. The betraying partner and others may find listening to this repeat-

f course, the marital partners are not the only ones to suffer. As can be seen in the case of Jim and Mary, affairs affect every member of the family, including the children. About 30 percent of those who experience a marital crisis of this type become clinically depressed. Symptoms of depression include the loss of interest and pleasure in life along with several of the following symptoms: irritability, sadness, bouts of crying, as well as changes in appetite, sleep patterns, and activity levels. Problems with concentration are frequently reported, along with feelings of guilt and worthlessness. Decision-making can become impaired. Suicidal ideas or thoughts can arise and are reasons to seek professional help at once. The severity of the depression and its duration must also be considered. Most affairs happen when there have been problems in the marriage for some time. Most couples will make some attempts to improve the situation on their own, since it is very difficult to maintain a hostile atmosphere for long, either beginning the reconciliatory process or initiating plans to live separately. In many cases, however, outside intervention is necessary. Mary had to undergo counseling and through it, she was able to achieve personal stability . Jim and Mary waited until they were on the brink of divorce and their children were affected before seeking help. It would have been wiser to seek help earlier. If you or a person you love is being affected by an affair, seek counseling.

Am I wrong to give up on my guy and his three kids? am. But they run this house and since he doesn’t want them disciplined, I have pretty much removed myself from everything. I’ve become depressed and only really see my boyfriend when he comes to bed. He wants me to care for them but there will be no discipline. They have no respect for me because of that. I have a 14 yr old son who has been through a lot. He does not live with us. My guy’s oldest child is begging for normalcy . I feel so bad for these kids. And it’s what’s causing tension between their father and I. He gets defensive if I bring it up. I love him so much. He’s 41, I’m 32. We’ve both been through a lot but even if I was an

*Femi, 40, single, Yoruba, graduate, divorcee with two male children,resident in Ibadan, is searching for a seriousminded lady who is elegant and from any part of the world for a relationship that would lead to marriage on 08034019208 08068747575

outside party, I'd still want him and the kids to get help. I don’t know where else to turn. Please help. Benita, Port-Harcourt Ans: Dump this ungrateful guy! And because of his poor parenting and ungrateful attitude, his children have learned it as well. So, it is time to dump this ungrateful, disrespectful, advantage-taking bunch. You can’t help people who don’t want help. It is unfortunate, but he’s not going to change, nor does he want your help in the matter. All the help he wants from you is to be his maid.

If you stay, shut up about it because you’ve chosen to stay and can’t complain and thereby get what you deserve. Yeah you “love him” but he certainly isn’t treating you with love. And only when you know you deserve better will you get out of this dead-end relationship. Hell, he hasn’t even married you, yet the way he treats you says it all. Plus, I bet the kids have told him he better not since they have nothing but disgust for you. Don't put up with this garbage or crappy relationship. Certainly not for three years.

Ogun-State, single, wants to meet a certified professional lady of above 35 years who is also single on 08164178084 •Henry, male, from Anambra, based in Abuja, graduate, fair, is searching for a lady of 23-31 who also lives and works in Abuja on 08033723650

*Uli,33, from Yala, Cross-River State,wants a wealthy •Segun, 38,businessman,graduate, resident at Ifo, lady, preferably a divorcee or a widow of 18-38 on 08121444610 Do you have reactions to our stories or have you any experience you want •Murphy, 34, from Edo State, Christian, lives and works in Lagos, needs a Godfearing tall, slim lady for a marriage-bound Do you want to be linked? relationship on 07030842596 Neither Chioma Gabriel nor Saturday Vanguard has any relationship with anybody wanting •Onyemaechi, from Ebonyi State, wants to to be linked. We have no agents anywhere and charge no fees. We have no personal informameet a Godly lady of 20-30 who is employed tion of people who have been linked or want to be linked and therefore, are not answerable for and from Delta or Edo State for marriage on


•Vincent,male, 32, from the South-East, employed, needs a working class lady from the South-East of 2325 for relationship on 08099138605



t has been a year of mixed feelings for me in Nigeria. I have been particularly saddened by the many lives that have been lost. A search light has been beamed and especially brought to the fore is the growing spectre of mob action/ jungle justice/self help judge and jury system. Perpetrators of this dastardly acts get away with murder literally which has led to the lack of trust in our security agencies and judiciary. The murderers of a beautiful young lady, Cynthia, were so emboldened with their act that they did not bother to conceal their identities. The gruesome killing of the four University of Port Harcourt students by the residents of ALUU community was carried out

Good tidings in broad day light, recorded blatantly with a rapt audience looking on, without fear or favour. This incident still leaves a bad taste in the mouth of many Nigerians, I inclusive. Not much has been heard about prosecution of the criminals. Still we await justice. Nollywood has not been left out of the mourning season as



t is that time of the year again where festivities are in full swing. The air is filled with expectations of celebration from all over the country; young children eagerly awaiting new outfits, presents and the aged who look forward to receiving their family who will spend quality time with them and pamper them with gifts and love. I have done my bit already. Visited my parents and made sure that their Christmas is filled with goodies and also to thank them for their love, prayers and support throughout the year. A lot of people are already making the journey to their different destinations in time for Christmas day. Driving out to anywhere these past few days is now a herculean task as heavy traffic is the order of the day.

Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—21

been too many senseless killings and kidnappings this year, too much sorrow in the land.


he latest lives lost being, the deaths of the former security adviser, General Azazi and the Executive Governor of Kaduna State, Yakowa. Despite all these, life must go on. Only those who are closest to the loss mourn for long. We must seriously

Let every heart, prepare Him room for it is when we open up our hearts that it is filled with good things

we have lost a few: Pete Eneh and Enebeli Elebuwa. Some are still ill with different types of ailments and in dire need of financial assistance. It pains my heart when those who have given their lives to bringing joy to viewers have to go cap in hand pleading for help. It just shows the reality of the life in Nigeria where it is every man for himself and God for us all. There have


do more to safeguard the lives of our citizens. The year draws to a close with mixed feelings, but it must end definitely. People are all over shopping for food stuff, hampers and all the trappings for a Christmas day celebration. Different shows are being organised to fuel the Yuletide cheer, and for some moments all will be forgotten and geared towards loads of merriment, travel plans and felicitations. For those who have lost their


stole that line from Sound Sultan –remember his hit track 2010? It underscored the many failed promises of our leaders. Remember our nation was to undergo a major transformation and everything was supposed function well —albeit miraculously!


2012 don go!!


utside of ‘2000’ and ‘2010’, I don’t recall a year (in this millennium at least) that was so anticipated, so talked about, so ‘prophesied’ about… I would say it more than lived up to expectation. All over the world, right here at home; drama. Everywhere you turned, there was something going on. If it wasn’t a natural disaster, it was a couple of people holding entire nations to ransom. Look in another direction you will find some of these same people literally at each other’s throats because contrary to the saying (at least where these ones are concerned) there is no honour amongst thieves. If it’s not that, it’s someone walking into an elementary school or any other kind of public place and killing five year olds; innocent people because he was ‘disturbed’ and having a bad day. Right here at home the blood flowed freely right through the year… I doubt that a month went by without an incident, be it an act of

Right here at home the blood flowed freely right through the year… I doubt that a month went by without an incident, be it an act of terror or as a result of human negligence

terror or as a result of human negligence or just by some freak accident that cost the loss of human lives. Not to mention the daily waste of resources of every kind. At a point it seemed relentless, and as each one landed like a body blow you curled into


yourself a little bit more trying to hide from the images and the sheer knowledge of what’s going on literally in our backyards. Without a doubt there were moments of glory both home and away… isn’t that what life is about; the good and the bad? Thing is, as I sit here in its closing days looking back, it’s all a haze. Other than

loved ones to the cold hands of death, Christmas only reinforces their absence and what would have been if they were present. This article is dedicated to those who will not feel like celebrating despite the atmosphere. I want to encourage them that time will slowly but surely heal their wounds and soothe the deep pain. They will not be forgotten but will be remembered. This is what I told a young lady whom I met the other day at a beauty salon.


he started our conversation by paying me a compliment on my work. I asked her what plans she had for the holiday and she said she was travelling to Dubai. She had lost her mum this year and had not been able to comprehend nor deal with the deep loss. As she spoke to me, tears glistened in her eyes. I told her to make sure she enjoyed herself, that her mum would have wanted that for her. I said:“ if you feel like crying, by all means do so...” It is better to have a release than to bottle things up inside”. I encouraged her that as long as there is life, there is hope and that she should make the most of her time here on earth. I bring good tidings to all my readers this Christmas season and charge each and every one of us to spread love to those who need it the most. It is a time of giving but not only gifts but ourselves. Joy to the world, the Lord is come. Let every heart, prepare Him room for it is when we open up our hearts that it is filled with good things. Merry Christmas to all... .

those that hit close to home, the kind that made you inhale sharply, pause and think, as I look back all I can feel is a wave of gratitude that given everything that has happened one is still standing. Life and limb intact; and still in stewardship and in some cases, able to multiply the things that the Almighty has placed in ones hands. I wonder though if that isn’t unhealthy and kind of selfish…The fact that one has become so inured to the destruction that exists all around… what about the greater humanity? There has to be more to it than getting up in the morning, putting one foot in front of the other, taking care of one’s ‘business’ and ensuring that a least the ones that exist in your immediate circle are taken care of… abi?


erhaps that’s another reason to be grateful. That we are still here standing, means we’ve got a little more time; to do better, be better, contribute more, give more, learn more,expand, renew, regenerate, restore… And that is my prayer for you this season… that there be a restoration and regeneration in every area of your life and in our nation. I pray that you have more, so you can give more. Merry Christmas!

22 — SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 23, 2012

How to find a sexual frequency that works

Secrets of great intimacy after 40 W

ith a few minor adjustments, lovemaking after 40 can be the best of your life. Intimacy after 40 doesn’t get the attention it deserves. The bad news is that the second half of life brings sexual changes, and changes are never easy. But here’s the good news: with simple adjustments, physical intimacy after 40, 50, 60 and beyond can feel as satisfying as ever or even better and deepen the love you share. Age-related sexual changes begin between 40 and 50. These are women’s “peri-menopausal” years, when estrogen starts falling and periods become less regular. Many women also start to experience vaginal dryness, which can make intercourse uncomfortable. Fortunately, a personal lubricant is usually a quick, effective fix. Meanwhile, between 40 and 50, most men start to experience erection changes. Erotic daydreams are no longer enough to raise one. Men need direct genital fondling ,with vigorousness increasing with age. When erections appear, they’re not as firm as they were back in men’s twenties, and minor distractions may wilt them. This is not erectile dysfunction (ED). It’s middle-age erection dissatisfaction. Erection dysfunction means an inability to raise erections during sustained masturbation. Still, to older men with erection dissatisfaction, those balky erections can be unnerving. Upsetting as sexual changes after 40 may be, they make evolutionary sense. The biological purpose of life is to reproduce life. As women leave their reproductive years, there’s no longer an evolutionary imperative to continue reproductive sex, i.e. intercourse, so there’s no biological reason to make it comfortable through continued production of natural vaginal lubrication. Meanwhile, men can father children into old age, but until fairly recently in our species’ evolution, few men lived beyond 40 and even fewer fathered children late in life. As a

result, there was no evolutionary reason to preserve reproductive function past that age. Biologically, older men who no longer father children, don’t need intercourse or the firm erections that make it possible. But these days, as age-related sexual changes occur, most older couples keep trying to have intercourse. Lubricants and erection drugs usually help for a while. After 50, sexual changes continue. Intercourse may become increasingly uncomfortable for women, even with lubricants, and even with drugs, many men suffer increasingly balky erections, and some develop erectile dysfunction. These changes make intercourse more problematic and for many older couples, impossible. Unfortunately, many people believe that sex and intercourse are synonymous, that if they can’t enjoy the old in-out, sex must be over for them. That’s a shame. Retiring from being lovers makes relationships less intimate and ignores the deep human need to experience gentle, sensual touch. Other couples decide to adjust their lovemaking to accommodate age-

related changes. Doing so means evolving lovemaking away from intercourse and substituting more kissing, cuddling, whole-body massage and oral sex. Recent studies show that older couples who remain happily sexual evolve their lovemaking away from intercourse. Two studies of thousands of men over 50 show that, despite extensive advertising and media hype, only about 10 percent have even tried erection drugs, let alone become regular users. Many older men figure: If I’m not having intercourse, I don’t need erections, so why take the drugs? Finally, men don’t need erections to have orgasms. That’s right. Even with an older, balky, or even flaccid penis, a comfortable setting, vivid erotic fantasies, and a woman’s loving and vigorous caresses are enough to trigger climaxes that feel as enjoyable as ever. Change is challenging, especially sexual changes. But when older couples help each other through the transition away from intercourse, they often discover a deeper, richer eroticism and love each other even more.

XPERT E S E H T K AS: I am 30 years old and I’m getting

Ques h. M y rig ht te sti cle ma rr ie d ne xt mo nt ig ica me do ub le its or ha s sw ol len an d be rie nc e pa in ar ou nd na l siz e. I al so ex pe w, I wa s av oi di ng th at re gi on . Un til no it wi ll he al au to ng th is pr ob lem , th in ki ’t. I am wo rri ed . sn ha ma tic al ly bu t it tomatic healing if you Ans: Don’t expect au to solve the problem. have not done anything w before your bride r no Please visit your docto . led gets puzz

is s old and my penis Ques: I am 19 year s ha er ec t. M y fri en d th re e in ch es wh en rd sta ag e it wi th mu ad vi se d me to ma ss g. ke it str on g an d bi oi l ev er y da y, to ma

“You’re insatiable!” “You never want to!” If this sounds familiar, there’s hope. New lovers can’t keep their hands off each other. But the “hot and heavy” period ends after a year or so, and almost inevitably, sexual frequency declines. If both partners’ libidos subside identically, there’s no problem. But typically, one partner wants sex more than the other, and in long-term relationships, desire differences often become festering sores: “You never want to!” “You’re insatiable!” Who wants sex more? If you’re thinking that men want sex more often, you’re almost right. According to sex therapists, the man has more libido in two-thirds of cases, but surprisingly, in one-third, it’s the woman. When the man has more desire, it causes stress, but “everyone knows” that men are horny, so people expect this, it’s culturally normal. However, when the woman wants sex more, it’s culturally unexpected, more stressful for the couple and may lead to name-calling. “Nymphomaniac!” One largely overlooked aspect of desire differences is that they eliminate nonsexual affection. Those with greater desire eagerly initiate hugging, cuddling, and kissing in part because it’s emotionally nourishing, but also in hopes of getting lucky. Meanwhile, those with less interest withdraw from kissing and hugging for fear that it might be misinterpreted as a green light for sex. Today, desire differences are a leading reason why couples consult sex therapists. Therapists typically ask, “In your relationship, who controls the sex?” Each person points to the other and both are astonished that their partner thinks they are in control when each of them feels powerless. The one with more libido feels eviscerated by every cruel “no.” And the one with less feels emotionally battered from constantly fending off advances. Fortunately, desire differences can be resolved. Here are the steps sex therapists recommend: • What do you really want? Is it sex? Or other needs: more fun together, nonsexual affection, or proof of your partner ’s love? Despite desire differences, couples usually feel closer when they cuddle more, make social plans, and treat each other compassionately. • Negotiate a compromise frequency. If one wants sex twice a week while the other prefers once a month, their average is four or five times a month. But averages don’t matter.

co rr ec t? Is th is in fo rm at io n

e with bility of growth, so liv Ans: There is no possi sure as n use of your penis. I ca it and make the best lot with it. you that you can do a with ago, I had oral sex ’t Ques: Seven months dn di I d an e, first tim I a woman. It was my , er lat ys da few wever, a I know her well. Ho s. on ar ou nd my pe ni s ili de ve lo pe d an in fe cti ph sy et th at it co ul d be lp re ad on th e in te rn he se ea Pl out and cried. or HSV2. I freaked me. e a dering to help. Please se Ans: Tears are not go an STD to go es STD cases, or matologist who also se . ed os gn dia spital and get it clinic at a general ho

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 23

Olivia Culpo crowned Miss universe By IYABO AINA


livia Culpo beat out 88 other beauty queens from six continents at the Planet Hollywood casino on the Las Vegas Strip to take the title from outgoing champion Leila Lopes of Angola. Culpo’s coronation ends a long losing spell for the U.S. in the competition co-owned by Donald Trump and NBC. An American had not won the Miss Universe title since Brook Lee won in 1997. No one seemed more surprised than Culpo’s family, who looked at her like she had three heads when she told them she was entering the Miss Rhode Island contest last year, her father Peter recalled,”We didn’t know a thing about pageants,” he said.

She won that contest in a rented $20 dress with a hole in it and then began working out, dieting, and studying current events on flashcards to compete for the Miss USA crown. Culpo was good enough during preliminary Miss Universe contests to be chosen as one of 16 semifinalists who moved on to compete in the main show. Her bid lasted through swimsuit, evening wear, and interview competitions that saw cuts after each round. She also won over the judges after tripping slightly during the evening gown competition. Moments before she won, Culpo was asked whether she had ever done something she regretted. “I’d like to start off by saying that every experience no matter

what it is, good or bad, you’ll learn from it. That’s just life,” she said. “But something I’ve done I’ve regretted is probably picking on my siblings growing up, because you appreciate them so much more as you grow older.” Miss Philippines, Janine Tugonon, came in second, while Miss Venezuela, Irene Sofia Esser Quintero, placed third. All the contestants spent the past two weeks in Sin City, where they posed in hardhats at a hotel groundbreaking, took a painting lesson, and pranked hotel guests by hiding in their rooms. After the show, Culpo appeared wearing a white gold


crown and told a group of reporters she hoped to bring the country some good news in the wake of the deadly school shooting in Connecticut. “It’s such an honor to be representing the USA in an

2 1 0 2 n i t s o l s b e l Ce Whitney


LTHOUGH Whitney Houston’s troubles were never a secret, her death, which occurred over Grammy weekend on February 11, shook the music world. As details unfolded of how the iconic superstar known simply as “The Voice” died, in a hotel bathtub after using cocaine and accidentally drowning, the story was even more heartbreaking. Only 48, the sixtime Grammy winner, whose record sales in the U.S. alone totaled $55 million, left behind an untouchable musical legacy



ICK Clark, who was nicknamed “America’s

Oldest Teenager,” died on April 18 at the age of 82 after suffering a massive heart attack. A breakout star after being tapped to host “ A m e r i c a n Bandstand,” an afternoon dance show for teenagers in the 1950s, he went on to form his own C M Y K

Clarke Duncan

Jenni Rivera



ENNI Rivera shared her personal struggles in her songs, which endeared her to her fans through the years. Beyond her Latin Grammynominated hits, the 43,California-born singer launched a successful TV career, appearing on her own reality show, “I Love Jenni,.” as well as Mexico’s version of “The Voice.” She also starred in the indie flick “Filly •Whitney Brown,” which was shown at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year and will be released in 2013. Rivera with songs including “I Will parlayed her success into Always Love You” and several other business “Greatest Love of All.” ventures as well including her own fragrance, cosmetics line, production company and put and clothing label. Rivera, who was divorced out popular shows, including “TV’s Bloopers and Practical Jokes” and “The $25,000 Pyramid.” In later years, he became known for his annual “Dick NTOINE Ashley, who Clark’s New became known as Sahara Year ’s Rockin’ Davenport on “RuPaul’s Drag Eve” special, Race,” died of heart failure on h e l p i n g October 1. He was 27. A trained A m e r i c a n s dancer, he started his career countdown to performing in New York City midnight as the clubs. In addition to his role on ball dropped in “Drag Race,” Ashley appeared New York’s Times in “15 Films About Madonna,” •Clark Square.

Antoine Ashley


international beauty contest in spite of all the tragedy that’s happened in this country lately, and I really hope that this will raise everybody ’s spirits a little’’ she said.

•Jenni three times and had five children, was traveling from one concert venue in Mexico to another when the small plane she was traveling on with her team including her publicist, makeup artist, and lawyer crashed shortly after takeoff on December 9 without any survivors. “One Life to Live,” and “Magnificent Obsessions.” He also released a single, “Go Off,” which reached No. 35 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs chart.


ICHAEL Clarke Duncan was an imposing figure in movies including 1998’s “Armageddon,” 1999’s “The Green Mile,” and 2001’s “Planet of the Apes,” but the 6foot-5 movie star was known as a gentle giant, who gushed about his love of animals to PETA and called his fiancée “Apprentice” villainess Omarosa Manigault “perfect.” While starting out in showbiz, Duncan moonlighted as a bodyguard for stars including Will Smith and LL Cool J. His role opposite Tom Hanks in “The Green Mile” later landed him an Academy Award nomination. Duncan was 54 when he died from respiratory failure in Los Angeles on September 3. He had been in the hospital following a heart attack nearly two months earlier.


24—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

I must not be rich or a political figure bef ore I do some thing before something —Amb. Inalegwu frank uji


mbassador Inalegwu Frank Uji is a winner of the prestigious LEAP Africa award. He was born without a silver spoon and had to do several menial jobs to secure what he calls his ‘glorious destiny’. Over the years he has garnered experience in Project management including programme design, planning, implementation, mobilization,monitoring and evaluation using participatory rural gender, sensitive and multi-cultural approaches. Please read on…

Background I was born into a polygamous and large extended family at Otukpo, Benue state and I was first of my mum, Growing up wasn’t that easy but educating and not much of enjoying childhood. But in all I tried to struggle and I attended primary school and after that I joined my father in Otukpo, to follow up with my Secondary education (GSS, Otukpo, Benue state) 1992. I worked in the rice mill, served and mixed concrete to enable me pay my school fees. While working and schooling I learnt a lot that the world is a better place if we can stand up and do the little we can. My father of blessed memory was a disciplinarian who made sure we read our books every day and before we go to bed; he must check our note books and help us do our assignments. Later I realized his position which was that if we get our education right, every other thing shall be ours. While in secondary school, I joined so many clubs and I found one that targeted HIV/AIDS prevention called (Sweep AIDS Away from Africa) in 1997 with the support of the School principal and the Dean of studies – Late Mr. Garba. The club did very well and we were able to educate and recruit more members. I got my 1stPeer education training in 1998 while in school with support from SWAAN and Pathfinder International. After my secondary school in 1998, I started work with Dolphin Hotel as a laundry assistant and later I was posted to the bar, kitchen and restaurant. While serving in the hotel, I was fully involved in community sensitization and a volunteer for PPFN. I got trained again as out of school peer educator and coordinator for peer education program. After series of trainings and workshops, I bought my oven and started producing snacks (meet pie and fish roll). I did my supply in the morning and checked back in the evening if they would need supply the following day and I used this too to support our peer education activities within the community. Through out the project year, I recruited more youths and designed programmes for the project. I was selected for the state of the ART Adolescent Reproductive health Conference in 2001 and that was the beginning of my connection and sustaining my desire to be part of the change process. It was my first time to know about e-mail and how it works. They organized e- mini varsity with support from Journalist Against AIDS in Nigeria. After the conference I couldn’t pay for the computer lessons because the fee was about 35,000 naira. All I did was to purchase the training manual and I started going to the cyber café to buy air time. Though funny and hard but today I am a C M Y K

•Inalegwu Frank Uji computer literate and the things I do and learnt are based on information shared on the internet. Thereafter, I got admission into Benue state University where I studied Social works and Development for the love of development and service to humanity. I also have an ND in Business Administration and Management. I founded Society for life and Human Development Initiative in 2003 to help bring the youths together on a platform for a better integration and contributing to development of their communities. In all, I have spent 15 years in development and working with youths. This has contributed to my present position as African Regional Director for Nile African Development, UK and coordinating the African Development Ambassadors and African International Achievers Award Greatest motivation to remain a change agent Thinking big and starting small. My growing up challenged me to do more as I was planning to read medicine in order to help people, although I look forward to building a hospital for my community one day. I later changed to art class; I was always in the art studio as I draw and carve too. I see that I have a role to play in contributing to the change in my community and this begins with me. I must not be that rich or a political figure before I do something. Life is not full of bed of roses but with determination faithfulness and sincerity, you will do something. Reformer in the Nigerian Prison Service I joined the Nigerian Prison Service in 2001 as a reformer; I see the prison not in isolation from the community and it’s a place to work as you have every character in the society locked

up behind the prison walls. Though joining the prison was not easy then as we had issue of short falls and half salaries. So most of us were not comfortable but that was later resolved and some of us stayed in the service. Working in the prison was anchored on following standing order and as a reformer I tried to do my best. I once shared with one of the senior officers on my wish to help improve the prison system. This was later reported to the Officer in charge of prison then, that I wanted to destroy the system. When I was matched to the officer’s office, I explained my idea, he understood it and made me his personal assistant. I partnered with PPFN to train the staff of Otukpo prison on HIV/AIDS prevention and organized world AIDS day with inmates sharing their ideas in 2002. Working in prison gave me the idea on how to improve on my support to humanity as the inmates’ reformation and rehabilitation, affect me directly and indirectly. My organization and its impact Society for Life and Human Development Initiative (SLHDI) is a non profit community based/NGO established in 2003 with a primary focus on Youths, women community development and contributing to positive change in the community. It is registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission CAC/IT/NO 29605 SLHDI has trained so many youths in ICT, HIV/AIDS prevention, Leadership, mindfulness and mentoring. Most of our volunteers are working with other International NGOs while others are CEOs of their Business and Community based organizations so the network is sustained and on incentives, some staff and youth volunteers benefit from sponsored trainings and scholarships abroad. My work with young people As a youth, I see that there is need to carry other young persons along and sometimes the problem we found ourselves is caused by us. So working with young people gave me the privilege to learn and identify ways to supporting them. This I do through participatory learning, mentoring, counseling, peer education class, support for improved capacity and I contribute to their development through referral for services we could not render. Most of them are inspired through sharing a role model’s story and other also check on how I work and have been achieve so far with the resources available in the office. Through peer to peer learning has also contributed to improve young people’s participation in our project. The centre is called Youth Embassy (ie Youth Place) and within the management are young persons leading the change. Hope for young people in Africa Yes there is a greater hope for young people in the continent of Africa as there are many young persons involve in development and are identifying possible ways to improve livelihood. Young persons are championing the change today and forming coalitions from the rural to the urban and at the international level. Though, there are some challenges where adult speak for young people and do not allow them to participate in issues that concern them especially on policy



ld Students of Ajeromi Ifelodun High School (1993 set) commissioned a computer library last Thursday for the Ajeromi Ifelodun Junior School. The library is equipped with ten(10) computers singlehandedly funded by the 1993 Alumni. Emmanuel Egbele cuts tape for the commissioning of the Computer library while Mr. Ben Ogugua (1985 set) looks on with others Victor Gotevbe and Badmus Raimi Adebayo congratulating each other for a job well done

Cross section of junior students

Michael Adeyemi with junior students of the school

Ndidiamaka Olisakwe, Michael Adeyemi and Victor Gotevbe reviewing the M.O.U. of the Computer project formulation, good governance and accountability. I thank God for African children as they are learning fast and the network is growing and together we can make the difference. A tree can’t make a forest but allowing others to share with us will make us better leaders as I am here because you are there. The way to go… Think big, start small, know your goal, be

focus, sincere and humble then you will get there. Another thing is that lives is not full of bed of roses let’s give life a human face and believe in our dreams. Information is for sharing, please be open as young persons to learn and share. Always read and do something, and the world will be a better place as we all have a role to play in issues that concern us. Our leadership starts today and not tomorrow.

Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012—25


Joshua Awesome, set to conquer mount ain Everes mountain Everestt J


D’ Banj clashes with Naeto C, Ikec hukwu, other s @ Koko concer t B

asking in euphoria of the s u c c e s s f u l launch of his new single ‘’Bachelor”, multi talented and award winning music master, Dapo Oyebanjo aka Dbanj will be performing among other musical artistes at this year’s edition of the Koko concert. The event has been scheduled for 27th of December will bewill be hosted by British actor, Idris Elba. The concert parades good music artistes like, Big

Sean, Pusha T, Tinie Tempah, Naeto C, Ikechukwu and others at the Prestigious New Expo center, Eko Hotels and suite. This would be the first Koko concert since Dbanj split from Mohits. Already, preparations are in top gear to ensure a hitch free concert. The talented singer whose last Koko Concert in August at the HMV Apollo London locked down the British capital has promised to replicate the same

oshua Awesome is the only Nigerian that has been able to get to the peak of the African highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, which is about 19,340 meters above the sea level with the flag of Nigeria planted at the peak of the mountain. He is again on the move to surmount the world’s tallest mountain, Everest by 2013. The mountain climber made his intentions known at the media unveiling of a book he co-authored with Brain Tracy titled, the secret of winning big held recently in Ikeja. Recounting his story, the adventurer said that he was able to climb the mountain because of the passion he has for this country. He said that he believes that Nigeria has many talents and it will be wise for the citizens to take time to do this.

Joshua Awesome

in Lagos.For a musician who has continued to reinvent himself in oeder to remain relevant in the music industry, Dbanj has managed to engage his numerous fans across Africa and beyond. He has bagged several awards this year including Channel O and MOBO awards as well as being nominated four times at the upcoming World Music awards 2012 holding in Miami Florida.

Gr ace Amah regre ts? Grace regrets? T

Grace Amah C M Y K

hat Grace Amah is a single mother is no longer news, what makes the news is that the talented actress has expressed her regrets of having a baby without saying “I DO” and no one to call a husband. After a short break due to childbirth, she is back to thrill her numerous fans. But the mother of one has disclosed that her only regret is being a single mother. Hear the beautiful but diminutive actress ,”I’m not struggling with anybody. I am Grace Amah; what I can do, I can do, what they can do, they can do as well. My coming back into the industry by God’s grace will not be a problem, and I’m not going to find it difficult, because I know I’m going to come back. In fact, I have fully bounced back for good. And with time, everyone would surely know that Grace is back.

Rukky Sanda

Ruky Sandra steps up with her N35M Range Rover Evoque ans of the talented actress, quired a N35m latest Range F Rukky Sanda are actually Rovers known as Evogue. The left with no option than to question the source of income to this Nollywood actress as she was spotted recently with a car worth, N35M. The fans are a bit confused as if their Nollywood star, who has not had one endorsement in her career, is living flamboyantly apart from the money she’s making as an actress or she’s just doing some dodgy business by the side to have ac-

not-too-fantastic an actress, Rukky has just joined the clique of Nollywood actresses with Range Rover SUV. If you remember, for sometimes now, the actress has not appeared in any movie neither has she done anything to have earned her such a ride. The question now is,how did she get this kind of money to spend like this?

26 — SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Jubilation as Nkiru Sylvanus, Okoli regain freedom




ollywood burst into wide jubilation last Thursday night after Nkiru Sylvanus and Kenneth Okolie were freed by their abductors in Owerri. The Government House also was not left out in the celebration. The actress who

doubles as Special Assistant to the Imo State Governor on Public Affairs was abducted alongside a male colleague, Kenneth Okoli last Sunday in Owerri, while filming a special public relations project for the state. HVP investigations revealed that the actors were released at about 10.30pm Thursday night and this may not be un-

connected with the “communication government entered into with the kidnappers soon after their kidnap”. The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Chinedu Offor, who confirmed the initial contact between government and the kidnappers, equally affirmed the development to HVP yesterday morning. “This is to confirm that Nkiru Sylvanus, Special Assistant to the Governor on Public Affairs, kidnapped several days ago, has been released”, Mr. Offor said. While confirming that some arrests were made in connection with the kidnap of the soft spoken Nollywood actress, the Commissioner equally affirmed that investigation is still continuing to unravel the brains behind the sordid act.

“The Imo State Government assures all Imolites of its commitment to the safety of lives and property at all times, especially during this Christmas and New Year festivities”, the Commissioner said. He stoutly resisted the temptation of being drawn to disclose more facts on the issue, stressing that “further inquiries on this case should be forwarded to the Imo State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO”. However, when contacted on his mobile line, the PPRO, Mr. Vitalis Onugu, a deputy superintendent of police, asked to be given about one hour before he can speak authoritatively on the issue. Reacting to their release, the National President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria(AGN), Ibinabo Fiberesima said she is excited and relieved. “I’m excited, Ï thank God for their

s n r u t e r a c i r f A r Big Brothe H

AVING recently cele brated its’ 9th birthday, AfricaMagic is heading into 2013 determined that its 10th year on air will be memorable. In addition to its first ever AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards which it creates in association with

THE increasingly popular lifestyle entertainment television programme, Glo presents, The Big Friday Show, has emerged the FAB Awards Television Show of Year 2012. The show which is produced by entertainment powerhouse, MTV Base, and sponsored by

MultiChoice, AfricaMagic has confirmed that it will also screen a new season of the hit reality super-series Big Brother Africa . Exactly a decade after Africa pioneered the world’s first-ever continental Big Brother, the show will return to DStv and GOtv

screens next year with more of the must-watch entertainment, drama and excitement that it’s famous for. And once again, there is a secret twist that producers have worked on to ensure that the new season will capture audience attention

The Big Friday Show wins TV show of the Year Award

leading telecom operator, Globacom, won the award at the 3rd edition of FAB Magazine’s annual awards and fashion show, FAB Night Out, held at Landmark Village in Lagos recently. FAB Night Out is organized by FAB Magazine, a quarterly fashion and lifestyle magazine with eighty percent (80%) African content. It is intended for the young, aspiraWinner of the Prank Yo Peoples segment of Glo tional, urban Big Friday Show, Michelle Ijeh Udoka (left), male and female receiving a Blackberry Bold and Glo SIM from professionals Julia Mbaebie of MTV Base.

and those aspiring to be like them. The publishers of the magazine said Glo Presents The Big Friday Show was chosen ahead of others such as Tinsel, Project Fame, Nigerian Idol and Ultimate Search. The organizers observed that the show had, since it hit the TV screens, grown in popularity among television viewers and entertainment lovers due to its rich content and uniqueness in presentation. Hosted by ace comedian, Basketmouth, The Big Friday Show is a lifestyle entertainment magazine, which features celebrity appearances, top 10 music video countdown sessions, celebrity and fans meet, among other ex-

citing highlights. It also features SMS and Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) trivia/competitions and prize-winning opportunities. It transmits on cable television on MTV Base Channel 322 and on terrestrial television on Silverbird TV and AIT. The show also runs on ORTB in Benin Republic and ViaSat1 in Ghana. One of the most popular features of the show is the Prank Yo Peoples! segment which offers viewers an opportunity to prank their friends and send in their pranked video by MMS or by uploading it on facebook. The funniest clips will be played on the show. The overall best ‘Prank’d’ clip will stand a chance to win a grand prize of US $2000 (about N320,000) at the end of the quarter!

release. In fact, since their abduction, I have put my Christmas celebration on hold, pending when they will be freed,” she said. Meanwhile, the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Southeast Zone, has called on the five South Eastern governors to stand up to the challenges of fighting insecurity in the region, which according to them, affects the safety of their members. However, with the recent abduction of Nkiru and Okoli, the fear of return of kidnapping of Nollywood stars in the southeast has become inevitable. Only few years ago, veteran actor, Pete Edochie and Nkem Owoh were kidnapped and subsequently released after ransoms were paid. Also, John Okafor a.k.a Mr Ibu had his wife kidnapped in the same manner.

once more! “The demand from audiences for Big Brother Africa continues undimmed. In some ways, it really is astonishing to see the enthusiasm for this particular series, but in other ways it is to be expected,” says M-Net Africa Managing Director Biola Alabi. “Viewers want to see unscripted television, as it happens, with normal people that they can relate to dealing with completely familiar emotional concepts – happiness, frustration, success, failure, hope, anxiety, friendship, opportunity and of course, love. Big Brother continues to be a ratings sensation from Australia to India, and in Africa, for exactly this reason. And the format’s flexibility is a producers dream because you can do something different every time!” Given her comments it’s easy to understand why, when questioned about whether the new season will be fresh, fun entertainment, producers Endemol South Africa are confident of another successful edition.

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 27

How celebrities plan to spend Xmas holiday however I don’t publicise or make people see that side of me” Lola Alao The beautiful Lola Alao has what can be described as a social diary for the Yuletide holiday with almost each day with something different to offer. Her itinerary will make any flight manifest look like a Kindergarten painting on the wall. “ On December 20th will be at Ikeja G.R.A. For a programme. On 21st at 68 in Adeniran Ogunsanya. On 22nd at Ife in Osun State. On 24th at Majenta Hotel, Isheri. On 25 th at Okla Hotel, Egbeda, Lagos. On 26th at Warehouse Hotel, Toyin Street, Ikeja. On 27th at Gani Adams party. On 28th at Bobby’s Nite Club, Ikorodu. On 29th at Lekki for opening of a new hotel.”



HERE is always a plan for Christmas. Almost everyone has one plan or the other to wrap up the year in grand style. But oftentimes, the anxiety of the Yuletide catches us below the belt and abandons in the creek without paddle as to what to do, where to be, who to be with, and other one million naira questions. Sometimes, it helps to know what the Joneses have up their sleeves or where the next door guy or gal is hanging out. Just about any tip to make this Christmas as special as any will help but everyone dreams of the glam Christmas with fairytale-like details and probably will knock over a bank to know what the average celeb star will be doing that day. But these movie stars aren’t entirely different from the average man in the crowd. Quite a number of them plan what the rest of us do every Christmas with no sense of the dramatics. Simple breakfast of rice and chicken, cosy drinks with friends and family and probably push out for some fun in some bars or beaches or a fast trip to the village to see ‘’home people’’ you haven’t seen all year long. To get the picture that Christmas isn’t all that is extra-terrestrial, be it a star or schmuck, some of your movie idols share how they plan to spend Christmas holiday: Bob Manuel-Udokwu: For actor, Bob Manuel, Christmas isn’t going to be a long trip in some far away fancy fun-seeking spot, like a true Igbo man. Bob plans to spend his Christmas holiday in his country home, in Ogidi “ I will spend my Xmas with my family in my home town, Ogidi in Anambra State. Attend thanksgiving, weddings and other functions till the first week of 2013 then, return to Lagos.”


ctress Uche Joan Iwuanyanwu Uche who made a big hit in movies like ‘’Under My Pillow’’, ‘’Queen’’s Island, has a different ideas about how she is going to spend the Xmas. For her, the holiday begun long before Christmas comes knocking. “ This Xmas I will be doing a lot! Got lots of family events to attend. Meanwhile I already spent the first two weeks of December relaxing in Dubai. Just got back. Where to next depends on my events”

Doris Simon I would be seeing my family members. You would agree with me that my job is so timedemanding that I don’t have time all the time to see them. Aside that, I would be doting on my son as well as my


younger ones, who have always stayed true to me. Lastly, I would be giving back to society that has been there for me via the less privileged,

mpress Njamah isn’t planning a White Christmas neither is she dreaming of another homecoming, family reunion thing. She wants an exotic Christmas away from the country. “ I am trying to spend my Xmas

away from the regular noise (bangers) in Nigeria and go somewhere quiet but not snowy too. Still planning”, she said but it seems Europe is not in the cards this time around as most parts are snowing their hearts out at the moment. Foluke Daramola I will be spending Xmas with my family in Ghana. We just want to take time out to reminisce and reflect about life and also be together as a family. We also intend to visit the less privileged and friends too and give them gifts. Ebube Nwagbo I will be travelling to the East . Laide Bakare Her hands are full as she would be looking forward to seeing her new mega bucks movie “Jejere” make a tour of the cinemas this Xmas through to New Year. Benita Nzeribe who is presently shooting a new weekly game show for Malta Guinness Low Sugar has said after she completed the shooting, she hopes to travel to the United Kingdom for a week-long holiday. And thereafter, return to the country refreshed and ready for the next year.

Stakeholders applaud grand programme for Nollywood at 20 I

T was a strong statement on Who is Who in Nollywood as stakeholders, Heads of Guilds and Associations as well as major Nollywood players gathered at the exotic Zenith Water Margin Chinese Restaurant in Surulere penultimate Wednesday to celebrate the industry at 20. The gathering cuts across all Nollywood bloc. Those present included, Andy Amenechi, President of the Directors Guild of Nigeria, Zik Zulu Okafor, President, Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Iyen Agbonifo, President, Creative Designers Guild of Nigeria (CDGN), Greg Odutayo, President, National Association of Nigerian Theatre Artistes (NANTAP) Faith Eboigbe, Chairman, NANTAP, Lagos state and Osezua StephenImobhio Osazuwa, President, Independent Television Producers Association of Nigeria (ITPAN).

Others included, Frank Dallas, National Public Relations Officer of Actors Guild of Nigeria, (AGN) representing the President, Ibinabo Fiberessina, Emma Isikaku, Tunji Bamishingbin, Mahmood Ali-Balogun, Ralph Nwadike, Pat StephenImobhio, Vice President, DGN, Famous Walter Mc-Roy Otakponwen, Sunny McDon, Yemi Sodimu, Franca Brown, Joe Dudu, Secretary, AMP Board of Trustees, Arike Oladapo of Dear Mother fame, Jeff Obahon, Francis Onwochei and AMP Executives that include Mike Nliam (Treasurer), Chinasa Joy Onyechere, (Financial Secretary), Franklin Okoro (Secretary General) Femi Ogedegbe (Provost), Neville Ossai (PRO) and Dan-Chris Ebie (Publicity Secretary) among others. The purpose of the historic gathering was the presentation of the programmes for Nollywood at 20 to the stakeholders and Heads of Guilds. The

impressive gathering inspired by AMP president, Zik Zulu Okafor had met in the same venue in April, this year, to exchange ideas. They agreed that it was laudable and a think-tank comprising Fidelis Duker, Zeb Ejiro, Fred Amata, Okey Ogunjiofor, Zik Zulu Okafor, Victor Okhai and Francis Onwochei was set up to develop an agenda for the celebration. A communication expert and Chief Executive of HQSC, Nnanke Harry Willie later joined team. At the event, the stakeholders expressed delight over the envisioned celebration and called for the mobilization of all the artistes in Nigeria for the great event. They condemned the recent attempts of Nollywood practitioners to fragment the industry by forming rival guilds and called for unity in Nollywood and transparency in the management of the celebration of Nollywood at

20. AMP President, Zik Zulu Okafor, who anchored the event, urged stakeholders to ensure that the celebration is a re-enactment of FESTAC 77 if not surpass it. He listed Thisday and Vanguard Newspapers, Nigeria Television Authority and DSTV as potential partners for the celebration.

•Zik Zulu

28 — SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 29

30 — Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

English Premier League power poll Q

UEENS Park Rangers finally won their first match, Arsenal finally took some heat off Arsene Wenger, and Aston Villa finally scored two goals in one half. All of those accomplishments counted in the English Premier League table. So how much did they count in this week’s B/R EPL Power Poll? Read through to find out where your team ranks this week.

Complete rankings

1. Manchester United 2. Manchester City 3. Tottenham Hotspur 4. Arsenal 5. Norwich City 6. Everton 7. Chelsea 8. Stoke City 9. West Bromwich Albion 10. Aston Villa 11. Swansea City 12. West Ham United 13. Liverpool


14. Southampton 15. Fulham 16. Queens Park Rangers 17. Newcastle United 18. Wigan Athletic 19. Sunderland 20. Reading


Points: 144 Result: Won 5-2 at Reading Up next: At Wigan, Saturday Winning 5-2 at Reading was nice, but a couple words of caution are in order. First, it was Reading. Second, we all know Arsenal are perfectly capable of following that with a loss to Wigan this weekend.

Manchester City

Points: 167 Result: Won 3-1 at Newcastle Up next: Home to Reading, Saturday Mario Balotelli almost took Manchester City to a tribunal over a fine before backing

down, according to reports. Yes, this ended better than originally anticipated.

Norwich City

Points: 136 Result: Won 2-1 home to Wigan Up next: At West Brom, Saturday Norwich’s rise through the table has been astounding. After losing to Chelsea on Oct. 6, the Canaries were 19th. This weekend, they’ll head to West Brom, only one spot below the seventh-place Baggies. They’re the new Swansea. Who may be the new West Brom? Who may be the next Stoke?


Points: 131 Result: Drew 1-1 at Stoke Up next: At West Ham, Saturday So that’s how Marouane Fellaini overpowers opponents. Yikes.

Fellaini’s three-match ban is going to hurt Everton a lot worse than Ryan Shawcross’ head felt on Monday morning.

Chelsea Points: 129 Results: None Up next: Home to Aston Villa, Sunday

Chelsea’s trip to Japan for the FIFA Club World Cup was supposed to serve as a chance to win a trophy and rediscover form. Instead, the Blues return with more negativity after losing to Corinthians in the final.

Stoke City Points: 113 Result: Drew 1-1 home to Everton Up next: At Spurs, Saturday

Stoke’s run of seven matches without defeat has been built on a miserly defense and a stagnant offense. The Potters have allowed only 13 goals all season but have scored only


West Bromwich Albion Points: 99 Result: Drew 0-0 home to West Ham Up next: Home to Norwich, Saturday

West Brom have won eight matches. That’s more than Arsenal or Everton. Unfortunately, the Baggies have lost six. That’s more than Stoke, Norwich or Liverpool.

Aston Villa Points: 97 Result: Won 3-1 at Liverpool Up next: At Chelsea, Sunday

Fun facts abounded in Aston Villa’s 3-1 away win over Liverpool. For starters, Villa scored three goals for the first time this term. For another thing, Paul Lambert’s side scored twice in one half— something they hadn’t done all season.

Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 31

Serena has surgery on her big toes



EIRD news abounds around world football. Tanning beds at Old Trafford? Lionel Messi only the third-best sportsman in Argentina? What’s become of the world? Fortunately, this edition of Off The Pitch has plenty of familiar names, from Radamel Falcao to Daniel Sturridge, to Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. Read on for all the updates.

Chelsea escalate interest in Radamel Falcao?

Chelsea are “stepping up” their interest in Atletico Madrid’s Colombian forward Radamel Falcao, according to reports. Chelsea have reportedly agreed to sell English forward Daniel Sturridge to Liverpool and hope to reinvest the money from the sale in the potential purchase of Falcao. Falcao, 26, has scored 20 goals in all competitions this season for Atletico. Chelsea are reportedly ready to make a £48 million bid and pay him £175,000 per week.

Serena Williams has had surgery on her big toes and withdrew from an exhibition match against top-ranked Victoria Azarenka in Thailand this month...

Daniel Sturridge’s move to Liverpool hits snag?


USGA, R&A would be dead wrong to ban anchoring putters F

OR those that follow the links closely in the offseason, you may have heard about the proposed ban on anchoring putters that’s being considered by the USGA and the R&A. Known as rule 14-1b, the proposal essentially disallows the usage of an “anchor point,” as mentioned by a previous B/R piece on the subject. For the most part, the press’ initial reaction to the potential rule change has been relatively supportive, claiming that belly putting is only used as a cure for the yips, or worse, it will lead to drastic changes to the game down the road. Even major PGA Tour players are getting in on the action.

Off The Pitch

Tiger Woods voiced his opinion in November, saying the technique is “something that’s not in the traditions of the game,” adding that “we swing all other 13 clubs. I think the putter should be the same. It should be a swinging motion throughout the bag.” Other golfers who have spoken against anchored putters include Steve Stricker and Tom Watson, with the latter saying, “I firmly believe it is not a stroke.” With all of this in mind, however, there are still some compelling reasons to consider striking down proposed rule 141b while it’s still in its 90-day grace period.

In the early-eighties, drivers in the 150cc range were commonplace, and stainless steel drivers had just begun to catch on in the professional circuit. As this technology improved, particularly from steel to titanium, the size of driver heads began to increase, with some models hitting 500cc in the early-2000s. To reign in this cubic expansion, golf ’s governing bodies limited driver size at 460cc in 2003-2004, and according to reports, the move was preceded by the 460cc Cleveland Launcher, which “had been released as a 330cc model” one year earlier.

England forward Daniel Sturridge’s proposed move to Liverpool has reportedly stalled over agents’ fees. Sturridge, 23, is reportedly on the verge of joining Liverpool in a £12 million move. He was reportedly expected to undergo a medical on Wednesday but the procedure has been delayed.

AC Milan to move for Momo Sissoko?

AC Milan are set to move for Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Momo Sissoko, according to reports making the rounds. Sissoko, 27, formerly played for Liverpool and Juventus. He is a Mali international with 28 caps. Milan reportedly believe their relationship with Leonardo—a former Milan player who is now PSG’s director of football will help the deal go through.

Juventus, AC Milan interested in Boca Juniors Midfielder?

Juventus and AC Milan are watching Leandro Paredes, an 18-year-old attacking midfielder at Boca Juniors, according to reports. Juventus have reportedly scouted Paredes four times in 2012. Real Madrid are also thought to be interested. It is speculated that Boca Juniors would let Paredes go for about 5 million. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar to sign new deal with Schalke? Dutch forward Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is set to sign a new contract with Schalke 04, according to German reports cited by Metro . Huntelaar, 29, had been linked with Arsenal and Liverpool. His current contract expires at the end of the season.

Ronaldo and Marcelo spotted dancing SAMBA hilarious

Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcelo shake what their mamma gave them! To celebrate CR7’s first goal against Malaga this past Saturday, Cris and his bestie Marcelo busted out a dance. Apparently, this is the dance to the song “Ai Se Eu Te Pego” by Brazilian singer Michel Teló. After the game, Cris explained, “it’s Brazilian music that we like.”

Tito Vilanova takes leave as Barcelona Manager due to chemotherapy

Tito Vilanova will be taking a leave of absence as the manager of FC Barcelona, according to a statement released by the club. After surgery, Francesc “Tito” Vilanova will undergo chemotherapy and radiation treatment for approximately six weeks. During this time, and depending on how well he recovers, Vilanova’s treatment may be compatible with his work life. C M Y K

32 —SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

AMARACHI UYANNE Ready to fly ‘I’d have been angry if I had not won the show’ When she strolled playfully into the premises, not many people believed she was the newly crowned youngest non-inheritor millionaire in Nigeria, having broken the previous record set by Solomon Ebuka Nwanke Ubani who became a millionaire at age 20. Amarachi Uyanne, the 8-year old girl who emerged winner of the maiden edition of Airtel Nigeria sponsored Nigeria Got Talent is already dreaming big. The young lad who has been dancing and singing since age 5, but only recently came into limelight after winning the show was the guest of Vanguard Media Limited last Tuesday. She stormed Vanguard Head Office, in Apapa, accompanied by her mother, Mrs Uyanne and a team from the Airtel Nigeria. In this engaging interview, she shares the story of her journey into the competition as well as what she plans to do with her prize money.





ow old are you? I am 8-year old. How did you get into the show? My mum bought the form and filled it for me. That was how I got into the show. What was your audition experience? It was good. How many of you went for the audition? We were many. Where you surprised that you won the reality show? Yes. Did you work for it? Yes, I worked for it. I rehearsed for almost one hour every day. We always wake up at 6.00am, go into the studio to rehearse after which we return to our hotel rooms. When you were announced as the winner, what was your reaction? I was so happy but a little nervous. Why were you nervous? I was nervous because I didn’t know I was going to win. Why didn’t you know you were going to win? Because when Andy Blaze, the moderator came on stage, he stood by the side of Godwin. I taught Godwin was going to be the winner. Later, he said everybody should stop, I didn’t know he was going to kneel down to announce my name as the winner, that is all. When you heard you name Amarachi announced as the winner, how did you feel? I felt so happy and excited. Have you heard about the show before? Not all. My mum bought the form, filled it on my behalf and said I would be going for a talent show. When she was filling the form, I asked her, where would I be going to, and she replied me saying that I would be going

for a competition. I was now very happy to be part of the talent show. Then, she told me that the name of the competition is Nigeria Got Talent. That I would be going to show my talent that God has given me. How did you develop all those good dancing steps? My mum and my dance instructor taught me how to dance. I am a born dancer. At what age did you start dancing? I started dancing when I was five years. I dance when they are playing music. I like dancing a lot. How are you going to spend the money? I will use part of the money to support the orphans in our society. Also, I will pay my tithe in my church as well as fund my education and that of my siblings abroad. When do you hope to travel abroad for your studies? I want to have my secondary education abroad.

Are you the first daughter? Yes, I am the first daughter. I am planning for my siblings now. What special skill did you learn while the show lasted? I learnt Sasa and Brake-dance. Was there anything they did that was strange to you during the show? No, I am at home with everything they did in the cause of the show. Were you friendly with other contestants? Yes, I was friendly with everybody. I am already missing them now. Chuka, Bose Salami among others. What new things did you learn while in the house? I learnt to be friendly to other people. What would you have done if you didn’t win the prize? I would have been very angry. I was so sure of myself that by the grace of God, I would smile home with the prize. Is it allowed for somebody to come back and contest? No, they will not vote for the person.

Our plans for Amarachi Mrs Uyanne briefly explains how she intends to manage her daughter to realise her dreams. As the pillar behind your daughter’s success story, how were you able to achieve this great feast? It’s by the grace of God. I thank God for helping me discover the talent in her. I have always known that she is the showbiz type, though this is not her first competition. She is into beauty contest, apart from that; I also noticed she can also dance very well. She is the princess of her school, she

will be handing over next year. She also Miss 7 UP in Edo State. I didn’t really think of the competition when I was filling the form for her. I just wanted her to get use to crowd and learn to conquer stage-fright . But you can see where it has landed us today. I thank God for everything. Were you surprised that your daughter won the star prize? Not really surprised. She was progressing day by day in the house. I noticed only one thing, everybody there was very talented but Amarachi was outstanding. She was very conspicuous that the grace of God would see her through and she held unto that.

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012



EAR 2012 is almost pass ing by. But before its map is rolled up, one mustn’t fail to point out the most exciting songs that shook its ground. Those songs gladdened hearts. They also top as club rockers, sending dancers winding their waists. Chop My Money(remix)- PSquare When the duo of P-Square dropped the remix of this song, it was received with open arms. It rocked, especially with input from Senegalese-American R&B singer-songwriter and Konvict record label boss, Akon. The fine video which opened with lines from Akon, “first of all you’re the kind of lady who stays on my mind...”, sent anyone and everyone who cared to listen shaking to the hard beats. Then came in Peter and May D’s verses- an undisputed Nigerian mix. The chorus “chop my money cos I don’t care, I get am plenty”in itself, endeared its listeners, then the party scene, made it one of the songs that moved the year. Superstar - Ice Prince

• Inyaya

• Chidinma


— 33


10 biggest hits of 2012 Directed by Katung, Superstar was dropped in the early part of the year. Ice Prince who at that time just made his debut with this song, got song lovers spinning around with ecstasy. “Life couldn’t have been better than this as a Nigerian”, a fan of Superstar remarked as he watched Ice Prince do his thing in the video. “Better cars, better clothes on me. Better house, better girls on me. See I can take you

there, champagne everywhere...”, he killed the song with his unique rap prowess. And the chorus comes like “feeling my superstar...e!” Another catchy input to behold is the video- of course it was party scene too. Decked in his usual pants tucked into his boots, the video comes out clear, with beautiful girls, cars and a champagne party. Bottom Belle- Omawunmi

Right from when she took part in the 2007 Nigerian Idol, Omawunmi has been outstanding. She auditioned for Idols West Africa and 6 months later, after dazzling her audience with captivating performances, became the 1st Runner-Up, Idols West Africa. Since then, she has dished out hits like In The Music, If You Ask Me, and now, it’s Bottom Belle. As one of the fe-

male shakers in the industry, Bottom Belle, she says means when a man goes extra mile to make his woman happy. Featuring Flavour, the song strikes one like a gentle rockd-show melody. “Oga buy me bottom belle kulu my hearti e!...Azikiwe...a yo, a yo o.” Flavour ’s unique lyrics added body to it, giving the song a High-life feel. •To be continued

Osadebe returns with “By Fire By Force.” BY IYABO AINA


ENNIS Osadebe is a businessman. Aside this, he is also the force that drives the entire DCS entertainment machine with some of his movies such as Beyond conspiracy, Christ kingdom and By fire by force. His outfit which is based in Asaba, Delta State, Nigeria is called DCS Enter-

tainment LTD. They are into music, movies and publishing. The record label currently have 2 hot artistes Wandy Boy and V2K whose singles Go Gaga and Gbaskelebe have been enjoying rave reviews in the media and heavily promoted. Osadebe returned to Nigeria after being away to Turkey for three months with

his friend Abdulkadim to complete his new movie ‘’By fire by force ‘’ which he said will soon hit both national and international cinemas . He is also venturing into publishing with his new partners, Lurrenzinc Concepts to develop a new magazine called Nollywood Angels . Mr Dennis in an interview, disclosed reason he choses to in-

i— Mrs Uyanne Whenever you speak with her, she would tell you that by the grace of God, she would win the show. I believe that if you believe in God, He will not fail to provide you whatever you ask of him. I believe also that if she holds on to God at this early age, God will not let her down. Now that you have discovered her talent, how are you going to manage that talent? Well, we have already started the journey. We are starting a personal dance school for her where I am going to bring in dance instructors to take her on dance. I believe that the more you teach her, the better understandC M Y K

ing she gets. Do you still want her to go into singing too? Yes, she has to combine everything. Has she composed any song before? Not really. But she sings in our church. I had in mind of managing her myself so that she will not be distracted from her education. She talked about travelling abroad to continue her education. How are you going to help her achieve this dream? I will relocate with her. That’s why I advised her to

wait until she completes her primary education. All of us are going to relocate with her. After the show, what is the next plan for her? I know we are going to be getting calls which has already started. That’s why I want to manage her personally. I don’t want any distraction. When she was announced as the winner, how did you feel? I was overwhelmed, I couldn’t utter a word.

rchi •Ama

& her


vest in the entertainment industry was not only to make money but help move the entertainment industry forward. For him, entertainment is something he likes doing . Unveiling Wandy Boy and VK2, Dennis Osadebe, the immensely gifted CEO of DCS Group of companies, says, he signed the young boys because he believes in them. He also added that his young artists are ready to take over the music scene.

34—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Aspiring entrepreneur s mus t be focus — Feyisola Abiru


ow would you describe these past fifteen years of being an entrepreneur? It has been tough but very interesting and extremely rewarding. The Nigerian climate is not one of the best places to operate business wise. But we have been able to survive. It is interesting in the sense that many a time when we look back at where we started from, we started from nothing, now we have a thriving factory, we have a showroom, we have our products in a lot of homes and we are building another factory presently at Lekki. So all these put together has made the journey interesting and gratifying to an extent. It is nice when I walk into, sometimes a complete stranger’s home, and find our products. It makes me feel we are adding value. Tell us about your challenges and how you have been able to cope with it? You know how it is in the Nigerian terrain.There are certain things that are within your control. There are certain things that are absolutely outside your control. Rather than sit down in one place moaning and groaning, it is better to find a way around it but it has been tough. There are some things that we hope will change, for instance power supply. It is changing hopefully but, it is still a source of concern. And then, what we consider more challenging is finding skilled artisans. If we are serious about industrialization, the government should pay more attention to our vocational schools. A lot of people are setting up universities and other academic institutions which is a good thing but the vocational schools are also as important as formal institution. That way, we would be serious about industrialization. What gives your brand an edge over other products in the market? First and foremost, our products are proudly made in Nigeria. That should encourage any patriotic Nigeria to want to patronize. Our products come in beautiful designs that are very durable. How durable? They are quite durable, they stand the test of time, they are strong, and if there is a problem, we have a return policy on ground to cater for such issues. And we have good number of satisfied clients.


Feyisola Abiru

Feyisola Abiru is an Entrepreneur the CEO Home & you, a company with its innovative “proudly made in Nigeria” products that are specially and creatively designed to meet the specific needs of clients. Established in 1997, to cater for the needs of the Nigerian people with the objective of being the foremost, one stop interior design and furniture manufacturing company in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Fifteen years down the line, Feyisola, an alumni of Obafemi Awolowo University and Lagos business School, has built a firm with an exceptional reputation for designing of premium furniture and interior design solution, as an indigenous Nigeria company committed to international standards. In this chat with Esther Onyegbula, she shares her journey as a Nigerian entrepreneur in a not too friendly business climate, in the past fifteen years. Enjoy!!! What has kept this business afloat for fifteen years considering the peculiarity of Nigerian business terrain? rior sector. I am not an interior designthere. Resilience and determination. Most How have you been able to man- er, I am more of an interior decorator. people who have known me over the age and coordinate your staff? I put things together and I have enyears know that this is all I have been Again, I won’t say it is easy, because gaged the services of interior designdoing, although I have diversify. At you have people from different back- ers to work here because of the desome point, one thing about home and grounds but what we have done is that mands of clients. you is that we have had the capacity to at some point, I tried to micro-manSometime, you go into an expensive evolve and quickly respond to the needs age, but then, I realized it wasn’t some- home and you find so many things put of our clients. At a point, we were sell- thing I can do on my own, so I have to together, and it loses it beauty and valing accessories and the market expand- engage the services of professional ue but there are some home you go into ed and we were able to accommodate consultants to manage my staff. They that is not too expensive but it is well soft furnishings and that also got to a have been doing that and they have put together. stage and we were able to incorporate been doing a good job.Now, my staff furniture.Right now,we have a total see themselves as stakeholders in the What can the government do to enpackage. company and everybody understands courage entrepreneurs in Nigeria? If you have not really heard of Homes the fact that everybody’s contribution Government should encourage enand we have been on for fifteen years, no matter how little is important and trepreneurs with their policies. There that should tell you that we have a good will add to the success of the compa- is no point for the government leavcommitted client base. We have sur- ny. ing us open to the wolves; by openvived basically on referrals, satisfied How would you describe your ing our floodgates. But I will comclients keep sending referrals. But now product designs and collections? mend the previous regime of former They are modern, we do more of the President Olusegun Obasanjo, which clean-cut designs. We don’t do designs placed a ban of furniture importation. that are bogus, and our product designs That helped to checkmate and also are stylish, functional and durable grow the local industry. Also the government should come up with initiawhich makes them affordable. Government should tives to encourage SMES with faciliWhat inspires your designs? encourage Simplicity. I love things that are sim- ties like loans . Sometimes, the funds ple. I don’t like things that are too loud. are available but are not accessible entrepreneurs with I love to make my things simple because because they will demand so much in their policies, there is I believe that less is more. Because of terms collateral. Also, the governour product simplicity, people are able ment can render support in terms no point for the of knowledge and capacity buildfocus more on the quality. government leaving us toWhat does it to be a professional in- ing, and establishment of functional vocational schools and organise semopen to the wolves; by terior decorator? and workshops where people First and foremost, what is important opening our floodgates is the passion; you must have the de- inars can acquire and understand the basire to want to do this. You must have sic principles of how to run a profitan eye for details and putting things able business at a subsidized rate. I actually studied Dramatic arts. together. And of course, you must it is known that the business cannot What I do is borne out of passion, have an eye for beautiful things. There survive on only referrals. We need but it is a passion that I have been are so many areas of expertise in inteto take it to the next level, create able to develop into a profitable busimaximum awareness of our brand ness. and for more people to enjoy our Generally, what has life taught products. you? What is your advice for young Life has taught me that there is entrepreneurs who want to toe enormous power in being focused. this line? If you had a chance, will you I am actually a facilitator and a still do this over again? mentor for Fate foundation. From I probably will do this over and over time to time, they send mentee to again but maybe differently.I like the me and I coach them on how to setway I have evolved, because I have up their business and how to get learnt something from everything started. For anyone who is aspiring that I have gone through. Like I said, to be an entrepreneur, it is to remain it has been an interesting journey focused and have clear-cut goals. It and I wish it could have been easier, is tough. I am not going to say it is but I am not sure that I could have easy but it is better if you hang on


learnt as much.




ronically, what exist now are only military era pronouncements by Gen. Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida. His pronouncements directing all employers of labour to reserve 2% of their workforce for qualified Nigerians with disabilities and that 10% of a disabled persons annual income or N2,000.00, whichever is less, should be treated as tax relief concession to him/her. Of course, you know that since this is a policy statement, it does not carry the force of law and its effectiveness is limited. However, it is important to note that it has had some positive impact on our lives and we are eternally grateful to Gen. Babangida for his good intentions and his effort to create an enabling environment for persons with disabilities to actualize themselves. One would have expected that with the enthronement of democracy in


hy do some people balloon from a once-slender figure? Is that what nature intended the body to become? If the answer is in the negative, how then do we regain youthful proportions? With most people when school or college days are over and work rewards them with appreciable measure of success, what happens? The begin to enjoy their newly acquired material blessings to the point where they become a curse. Food is eaten in excess of what the body actually needs for the day. Over feeding the body on a daily basis is the chief cause of the decline in the number of slender, healthy bodies. The evil of overeating coupled with the demons of slothfulness is turning a considerable chunk of the human race into obese and unhealthy individuals. Admitting that there’s a problem and also having the faith that the situation can be reversed is the very first step.

Lac k of legislation tto o pr otect Lack pro the disabled,our Achilles HeeI Nigeria over 13 years ago that a comprehensive bill would have been enacted into law to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. About 6 years ago, as the president of Association for Comprehensive Empowerment of Nigerians with Disabilities (ASCEND), I led the organization to draft a comprehensive bill and mobilized other stakeholders comprising of organizations of and for persons with disabilities for their input to the draft bill. We gathered at the Spinal Cord Injuries Association of Nigeria’s Centre at Amuwo-Odofin and deliberated on the draft bill which we submitted to the Senate through Senator Bode Olajumoke and to the House of Representatives through Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa. At this point, Joint National Association for Persons with Disabilities (JONAPD) came in with the support of Coalition for Change (C4C) and International

Republican Convention (IRI) and a host of other organizations and personalities and worked assiduously to ensure that the bill was passed and harmonized by the two Chambers of the National Assembly and sent to Mr. President for his assent.


his was the last that was heard of this bill. Today, I understand that we have been asked to go back to the drawing board to craft another bill. You can be sure that it is practically impossible for all the organizations and personalities who ensured the successful drafting, passage and harmonization of the bill Mr. President refused to sign into law, will muster yet again, the time, resources and energy to successfully get another comprehensive bill passed and harmonized. Because, there is no guarantee that the new bill will not be treated with levity again and nobody has told us what was wrong with the bill presented to the President for his assent.

Towards a permanent body weight to your ideal body weight unless you’ve left things too late which I doubt. The body almost always responds favourably to all the good things we can give it. The recuperative powers of the body are varitably amazing. I have seen wellnigh hopeless cases retrieved back to very appreciable health and wellbeing.. There’s only danger if and


ne cannot emphasize enough the colossal loss we are suffering as a nation due to the continued lack of legislation to protect the rights of Nigerians with disabilities. Think of the enormous manpower we are losing as a nation by not empowering over 22 million disabled Nigerians through legislation. If you imagine that about 50% of this population which is 11 million are adults who could be employers of labour or employees, tax payers and wealth creators, rather than being unemployed adults, dependent on others for their daily bread which in most cases are the situation now, then you will begin to appreciate what we are losing as a nation.

•The Spinal Twist


when we declare our cases to be beyond redemption. None should ever lose hope. It is the truest capacity for living. No case is


•The Reed

About nine years ago, there was a bill on making all public buildings accessible to Persons with Disabilities. I had followed this bill closely as it was read and re-read in the House of Representatives and Senate respectively; until it was passed by both legislative chambers and sent to the then President Chief Olusegun Obasanjo for his assent. He did not sign that bill into Law until the life span of that National Assembly expired and this invalidated the bill. Then Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa advised me to mobilize my people and get a more comprehensive bill drafted. Given the fact that, that bill was very defective, I saw it as an opportunity to get a comprehensive bill drafted, which was exactly what we did. This is a sad commentary on how slowly the much vaunted dividends of democracy have failed to trickle down to over 22 million Nigerians with disabilities.


appeal to Mr. President who has shown unprecedented love to persons with disabilities with his reception to the London 2012 Paralympians, to as a matter of urgency, recall the comprehensive bill passed by the last Senate and tell us what he does not like about the bill, so that we can make our input that will enable Mr. President to get the National Assembly to amend any offensive part of the bill and send back to him for his assent, since bills passed by the National Assembly, no longer expire after the life span of the National Assembly. This will be a step in the right direction in ending the social exclusion and hardship the disabled suffer today in Nigeria.

irretrievably lost. We just talked’ about healthy eating.

There’s only danger if and when we declare our cases to be beyond redemption


next step is to begin immediately to act towards the body’s improvement. The regimen for this longed-for proportions of youthfulness will comprise of exercise and a renewed habit of appropriation. Exercising moderately but regularly and eating healthily, will ensure that within six months to a year you should be back

Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—35


hat does this actually mean? It means eating wholesome foods in moderation and knowing when to refrain from eating. For most people eating fruits exclusively before midday, when solid foods can be indulged in, will do. But I have come across a lady who said to me that fruits upset her stomach in the mornings. So, I suggested she foregoes fruits in the mornings and eat them either for lunch or dinner. Her problem was not that she couldn’t stand fruits, it was that she couldn’t tolerate them well enough in the morning. Anybody desirious of losing weight should try as much as possible to refrain from eating after 6 p.m. If after 8 p.m. you feel like a bite it should just be a bit of fruit just so you don’t go to bed with hunger. The good news is that when you exercise regularly you don’t feel so easily over-powered by hunger. It’s when you lead a lazy slothful life that you tend to be eating all the time. When we become mindful of what goes into our bodies and also help it along with exercise, the body reciprocates by finding its way back to its optimum weight . Yoga Classes @ 32 Adetokumbo Ademola, Victoria Island Lagos. 9.00am — 10.00am on Saturdays

36—SATURDAY Vanguard , DECEMBER 22, 2012

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—37


38 —Vanguard, SARTURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

At 20, people still treat me like a little girl — Sharon Ezeamaka S

haron’s got a boyfriend!’ would be a colourful way to introduce this piece. It would help you transcend beyond the kid actor image of the five year old talent who starred in the 1997 movie, Narrow Escape, to the 20 year old young woman who took time off her busy schedule to share her story with Showtime Celebrity. Of course, Sharon’s got a boyfriend. But that’s just a tiny portion of the maturity that this quintessential actress exhibits. As the Dear Mother star talks about her past, present, and future as well as romance, Nollywood and fashion, see for yourself how grown up she has become.


hat was it like as a kid actor? It was fun. My mum always tells me that if you do what you love, you’ll never have to work a day in your life. I love hitting location, going through my script and interpreting my role. Combining it with my studies wasn’t really easy, but God saw me through. I had amazing grades in school, and I was one of the best in my class. What is the difference between when you were growing up and now? I think people are beginning to take the industry a lot more seriously. I remember when I

was still a kid actor, people thought Nigerian movies were jokes and nothing to write home about. But now, it’s so good when you go to the cinemas and you see people going to see Nollywood movies. People are beginning to see Nollywood movies and know that we are not here to play, that we are here to provide Africa with this amazing movie industry. There’s still so much we have to do, and we need to work on, but we’re getting there. Now, we have really good movies that we can be proud of, script writers that are amazing and directors that are awesome. Do you think there are




Yes, I want to go into directing before I turn 25. That is why I want to go to the New York film Academy, at least before I get to that age. I know I’d be ready to start directing my own projects at 25, so I want to get a lot of experience.



some things you missed out on as a child because you started your career early? My parents were very supportive, and they knew that being a child actor was going to take up a lot of time, so in their own way, they helped me have a normal childhood. I did everything a child is supposed to do. I played with my friends, I had a very good childhood, I didn’t miss out on anything. We heard that you took some time off to ‘reinvent’ yourself, what was that about? I have been acting since I was 5, and even though I’m 20 now, people still see me as

that little girl. So, I took a two year break to do other things, get more mature, and explore other areas of the media. I worked in a fashion magazine for about a year, FAB magazine. After that I took a break before I debuted on the M-net show, The Johnsons. On the Johnsons, I play a really young character who is fifteen. How difficult has it been for you to prove to people that you’re no longer a kid actor? It’s not such a big issue for me. I know it’s not going to be so easy to shed off that kid actor image. I’ve realized that a lot of kid actors especially outside the country tend to go the

exact opposite route so they can get out of that image. But I don’t plan to that because I’m not a loose person. But it is sort of weird when people say things like: “You’re so grown up now.” And I’m like “ yeah, I’ve been acting since I was five, I was supposed to grow up.” It is funny, but it’s to be expected, so it doesn’t really surprise me. It’s not like I’m tired of playing young characters but it would be nice to play older characters because I’m getting older. I’m trying to get my management team to get me projects that I can play older characters. What’s your dream role at the moment? Fifty shades of grey. I would give an arm and a leg to play Ana Steele, the lead girl in the movie, because I love the progression of her character. It’s just that the production is all the way in Hollywood and the character is white. More realistically, I am looking forward to playing roles that will challenge me. Roles that are different from who I am in real life. And there are very few characters like that. Naturally

Vanguard, SARTURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012 — 39


I’m daring, adventurous, simple, nice; I’m a whole lot of things put together, and I would love something that would push me beyond my limits. Creativity should not have limits or boundaries. You should be able to push beyond what you think you can do or what you’ve done before. So, whatever I haven’t done before is ideal for me. Do you have any plans to further your education outside the movie industry? I finished secondary school before I was sixteen, but I decided not to go to the university. The reason is that there are no higher institutions that teach film making as a course,but Theatre Arts. I didn’t want to study Theatre Arts. I want to study film making from a director’s perspective. I already know what I want to do with my life, that’s something I think a lot of young people lack. I have friends that tell me how lucky I am that my parents are very

understanding, how they wish they didn’t go to school to waste time on something that they don’t love. What’s the point in going to school for four years, studying something that you aren’t going to use, and then dumping the certificate somewhere? It doesn’t make any sense. Do you want to go behind the camera anytime soon? Yes, I want to go into directing before I turn 25. That is why I want to go to the New York film Academy, at least before I get to that age. I know I’d be ready to start directing my own projects at 25, so I want to get a lot of experience. I think directing is way more serious than people think it is. So I’d like to learn it from professionals, and then try out experiments of sort, before I do something of my own I write, but I don’t really enjoy it as much. I’m an imaginative person, so of course I need to put my ideas down. But when I do, I get bored. So it’s much easier to work with someone that writes, and I can tell the person what’s in my head. What else do you plan to do before you’re twenty five? Get married, have kids? I’m not in a hurry to get married at all. Hopefully if everything works out, I’d settle down before I’m 27. Don’t you have a boyfriend ? I do have a boyfriend. But I’m not saying anything about him. I am keeping my private life out of my career. All I can say is that he’s a guy, and he’s a couple of years older than myself. We just started dating. Is he someone you can marry? I can’t really say for now. I’m not ready to go into marriage now. I still have about seven years before I get to that point, so when we get to that bridge, we’ll cross it. Marriage is supposed to be a lifetime commitment. I still have so many years ahead of me, so I don’t see why I should rush into marriage and start having kids. I still have a lot of time to do that by God’s grace. Can you marry someone in the industry? Yes I can. I would actually love to marry someone who does what I do; who is somehow involved in the media. Because I have found out that only someone who is involved in the business can understand what we do, and I wouldn’t want my husband to complain about how I’m never around, or how I travel too much. I can’t deal with that kind of pressure. Have you ever had a crush on anyone on set? No I haven’t. The thing is, I’ve been working since I was two. I started out as child mod-

el before I went into acting, and I have learnt over the years to handle my work professionally. I do not mix business with pressure. Who would you choose as a male co-star for a romantic movie? From Hollywood, it would be Robert Pattinson. I love him, he takes my breath away. In Nollywood, I don’t know. Most of the guys that do all the romantic scenes are older than myself. We don’t have a lot of young actors in Nollywood, and I can’t say that I want to play a romantic scene with Ramsey Noah, that would just be weird. Hopefully, very soon, there’d be one. Who are you looking forward to working with? There are quite a number of people, but topping my list is Nse Ikpe Etim. I love her. I only started watching her movies earlier this year, and she’s flawless. I would really like to work with her. I’d love to work with Genevieve. She’s a living legend who’s been there for so long, but is still very relevant. The directors I’m looking forward to working with are Kunle Afolayan, and Mildred Okwo. I always go to see a Kunle Afolayan film. He does amazing work. Those are the ones I can remember for now, but there are lots of people. Who do you look up to at the moment? Natalie Portman. She’s really versatile. I fell in love with her in Black Swan. I like the different actors in Nigeria for different reasons, but I’m not sure if there’s anyone who entirely embodies all that I see in my future. What do you see in your future fifteen years from now? I see a girl who is going to be a living legend. I work really hard, and hopefully God will reward my hard work. I also see myself married with a couple of kids. There’s so much I want to do; own my media company, own a fashion line because I love fashion. We’ll just have to wait and see. Tell us something that people don’t know about you? People don’t know that I’m a very quiet person. I’m extremely quiet. A lot people think I’m a snob, but when they get to know me, they realize that I really am a nice person. Nollywood recently lost a veteran actor, Enebeli Elebuwa, did you ever work closely with him? When I heard what had happened, I was very sad, because he was a fantastic actor; very amazing to work with. I hope that God comforts his family and help them get through this difficult time, because I know it must be really hard to lose someone that you love.

facebook page Afrocandy Desperate women!


merican based Nigerian singer and actress, Opara Mazagwu a.k.a Afrocandy writes: Ladies stop making yourselves “Bottom Bitches” because you are so desperate to marry, try to love yourselves before you expect a man to love and respect you. A man that doesn’t really want you will still not want you even if he puts you in the house and you wear “Mary Amaka” or cover yourselves in veils. One day, he will look for an excuse to beat the crap out of you or even bath you with acid when he is fed up, that man that wants you will love and respect you even if you walk naked on the street.....Learn from me, I got powerful men lining up to put a ring on my finger but I chose to

be single for now cos I got to do what I do and got no time for “DRAMA”


J Martins ...Looking ahead


ust doing my thing and mak ing my fans happy all the time, a very big thank you to every one that have stayed with me all through these years. Thank you Lord for taking me round the World through out this year. I look forward to new places next year already because I can see ... May God almighty bless and keep us all. Amen

From Benjamin Joseph to fans


easons greetings to all, hope y ’all had a fabulous weekend. This is weekend, my advice let every man be diligent. Whatever you set out to do this weekend, do with a positive mental attitude. No one can define your path for you but you alone, always aspire to stand out.

Benjamin Joseph

40—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Eat health healthyy, sta stayy health healthyy


hristmas season comes with lots of surprising and exciting moments. It is a season when people will be wining and dining with families, lovers and friends. However, one thing that should not be left out is the habit of eating good and healthy food. The season is a time to think of good diet and stay healthy. It is not the end of one’s diet or a struggle through January to compensate. It is important to keep the diet healthy during the Christmas season. Every food should be taken in

Christmas Special moderation this festive season. You must ensure you are getting a balanced meal and not overloading on a fatty or high carbohydrate food. Always look for the healthier alternative to prepare and serve food. Likewise, make suggestions to other people who will be feeding you over the holiday period. This is a good opportunity to make Christmas a bit different this year .For instance, try a picnic this year with lots of salads rather than huge roasts or do an activity with friends instead of having a Christmas drinks night. Some ways to reduce the fat content and

increase the nutritional value of Christmas foods include keeping vegetable as close to you as possible. Consider a salad rather than baked-in-fat vegetables. Steam vegetables rather than boiling them, it is healthier and tastier, consider a spicy potato salad instead of a mayonnaise based potato salad. Try lemon or lime juice, vinegar and fresh herbs.

Fruits juice that rock the season

Salad that rocks the season


ruits and vegetable fruits including oranges, watermelon, pineapple, grape, lemon, mixed fruits, carrots, cucumber, mixed vegetable, smoothies among others will be nice this season.


he place of salad should not be ignored as we will be celebrating this festive season. Salad including green, vegetable, mixed vegetable, dessert, egg, spice, pasta, fruits, legumes salads should be incorporated with fish, meat, poultry and seafood. It is a mixture of cold or hot foods, often including vegetables and fruits. It is important to note therefore that indulging in salad this season will be of an advantage. You can also make all kinds of healthy salad for the families, friends and relations.

Another season of lo lovvely and health healthyy hampers


Mixed Vegetable Salad Recipes

Cabbage Carrot Cucumber Lettuce Sweet corn Green peas Kidney beans Baked beans Macaroni Irish potatoes Eggs Corn beef or boiled fish (Titus) Salad cream Fresh tomatoes


Wash and slice cabbage, dice carrot and lettuce. Cut cucumber into halves and remove the seed, then cut into another halves and cube. Boil macaroni, boil egg and potatoes. Then dice potatoes and eggs. Arrange in salad tray or bowl. First arrange cabbage, carrot, cucumber and then the can ingredients, then egg. Add the lettuce to garnish and tomatoes. Serve with salad cream.

hristmas season comes with all kinds of hampers. But it is not enough to give hampers at this season. It is important to know that our hampers should be lovely and healthy for consumption. A hamper full of all kinds of fruits will be of a greater advantage.

Foods that gain more patronage at this season


ots of foods will be calling for attention at this festive season. More than every other food, rice might probably be gaining more attention. Rice can be cooked and served with beef and chicken stew and vegetable sauce, pepper soup for extra effects. Popular side dishes are fried plantain, peppered gizzards or moi-moi.


SATURDAY, Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012—41

Sapele Boma Bo ys Club’s Xmas par ty Boys party Christmas is in the air, the fever is taking over the land with its attendant spirited mood of excitement, merriment and the innate need of man to seek one another out to share love, affection and great moments. For Sapele Boma Boys Club, SBBC, last Saturday, was the day they came together to savour the joy of Christmas, not only amongst themselves but with family, friends and well-wishers of the Club. Photos by Kehinde Gbadamosi.

R-L:Dr. Matthew Eshalomi, Mr Edema Ogbuagu and Mrs Isabella Agbahor

From Left; Prof. John Amuda, Mr Sam Amuka, Chairman of the Sapele Boma Boys Club [SBBC], Mr Tani Molajo[SAN], and Mrs Eriwu Molajo L-R:Mrs Rita Amuka, Madam Yeye Rewane and Mrs Ufuoma Efekodo

L-R: Dr. Matthew Eshalomi, Prof John Amuda and Chief A.B Oseragbaje[Apollo]

L-R:Mrs K.A Sota, Mrs Tobi Odunaiya, Mrs Alero Edu and Mrs A. Abudu

L-R:Mr Emmanuel Adokpaye, Mr Sonny Aminaghan and Mr Kofi Teye.

Yetunde &T oba in Ak ure &Toba Akure


f love is one of life’s most wonderful experiences then Yetunde Famosaya, daughter of Sir Bunmi Famosaya and Oluwatoba Omotosho, son of Chief Adebayo Omotosho, had more than a blissful day in Akure on November 10, 2012 when they were joined together as man and wife. It was indeed a blissful day of glamour and glitz a at Mary Queen of Angles Catholic Church where the couple were joined together.

Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State with couple, Mr and Mrs Tobi Omotosho

L-R: Ayo Falope, Tony, Dr. Bola Famosaya, Bunmi Famosaya Jnr., Babafemi Famosaya and Omorinsola Famosaya C M Y K

Ekiti State Dep. Gov., Mrs Funmi Olayinka, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, Ekiti State First Lady and Lady Kehinde Famosaya.

Couple’s parents; Chief and Mrs Adebayo Omotosho (Embassy J.P.), groom’s parents with Sir and Lady Bunmi Famosaya, bride’s parents

Bride’s mum, Lady Kehinde Famosaya flanked by Justice and Mrs Segun Oguntoyinbo

42— Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Dismissed soldier, three others arrested for allegedly hijacking trucks I went into it out of frustration — dismissed soldier BY IFEANYIN OKOLIE O peratives of the Special Anti-Robbery Sqaud, Ikeja, Lagos , have smashed a syndicate which specialized in hijacking trucks loaded with goods and selling same at give away prices, arresting four suspected members of the gang, among them a dismissed Private from the Nigerian Army. The gang as gathered, operated in a patrol van , pretending to be Military men on patrol. They would position their patrol van at the Apapa port, waiting for their prey. And on sighting a truck leaving the Port, they would reportedly follow it and midway, hit it from the side. But rather than admitting their fault, they would block the truck and rush out of their vehicle, claiming the truck hit their patrol van. This will be followed by intimidation and outright assault on the truck driver and his conductor. They would thereafter, bundle the truck driver and his conductor into their patrol van , pretending to be taking them to their base, only to dump them at a remote location along the Lagos/Ibadan expressway, while a member of the gang would drive the truck to their hideout, from where the goods would be transferred into another vehicle for onward sales to ready buyers. Activities of the gang had reportedly been on for long, before it met its waterloo. Sources at SARS told Crime Guard that information was received recently that a truck loaded with Tinplate coil,(material used for industrial cans) heading for Benin City, Edo state, was diverted from Amuwo Odofin and all the goods carted and sold to one Taureed Ayinla. “ We gathered that Ayinla is a notorious receiver who has been on the command’s wanted list for over two years.And in some of our previous cases of hijacks,arrested suspects have mentioned his name as the receiver of all their stolen goods. We were also informed that he owns a warehouse at Ogun state where he hides stolen goods before they are disposed off. We therefore, laid ambushed for him


Ayinla through one of his staff and arrested him. During interrogation, he confessed to the crime and gave us information that assisted us in arresting one Ozor and two members of his gang identified as Amechi Nnome and Bayo Gani. To our dismay, Ozor was discovered to be a dismissed soldier. He told us that he went back to hijacking after his release from prison because the business was easy and lucrative” sources at SARS said. In an interview with 37year-old Ozor, , he said, “ Yes, I was dismissed from the Nigerian Army in 2009. Then, I was approached by two men; Timothy and Emeka who unknown to me were robbers. They requested that I should assist them escort a trailer load of goods and I agreed but didn’t know that the goods were stolen. When the robbers were arrested, they implicated me and I was subsequently arrested when the news reached the Army headquarters. I had only spent nine years in the Nigerian Army before I was dismissed as a Private. “After my dismissal the

Army took me to court but I later got bail but went back to the business because there was nothing I could do after I got out of prison. I was frustrated at that time. “Along the line, I formed my own gang because the business is lucrative and we started operating on the highways”. 45 year-old Taureed Ayinla alias Alfa said he was introduced into robbery by Ozor. “I am a transporter with Dangote Cement Company. I met Sunny Ozor in 2012 and he told me he had 300 pieces of tinplates coil for sale. I brought in a trailer and sold it for N1.2m. I also received a trailer load of vegetable oil from the gang which I sold for N3 million. But I stopped receiving goods from them two years ago because I was afraid it would get me into trouble some day”. For 30-year-old Amechi Nnome, who hails fromEbonyi, he had this to say: “ I was introduced into this by the same Emeka who introduced Ozor. I was jailed in 2010 for stealing a container.”


Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012 —43

BY PETER DURU, MAKURDI They are five in number , of different heights and complexion. But they have one thing in common; Vandalism! They allegedly specialized in vandalizing cables belonging to the Power Holdings Company of Nigeria in Benue state, a worrisome development that has thrown several areas around Naka, Makurdi into darkness. The gang as gathered, stormed the PHCN sub station along Naka road, Makurdi , Thursday, to carry out the illicit act. But luck ran against the gang after one of its member was caught right on top of the high tension electricity pole in his attempt to disconnect armored cables from electricity sources. Time was 2am. The 16-year-old suspect, Terseer Iorparegh said to be leader of the gang, reportedly climbed the pole while his partners in crime held unto the ladder and at the same time, kept watch. Then, all of a sudden, there was a spark of light which ignited fire from the naked wire, followed by a shout of help from Terseer. His cry for help reportedly alerted the residents. But none of them could initially come out for fear of the unexpected. Confused, Terseer partners in crime reportedly bolted away, apparently thinking he had been electrocuted. A resident who pleaded anonymity told Crime Guard that :“ We were woken up from sleep following the shout of help! help! Fire! When it continued, some of us decided to go and see what was happening and to our surprise, we found someone at the top of the ladder, with burns all over his body. “At that point, we started making calls to PHCN officials and the Special Assistant to the Benue State Governor on Public Utilities, Hon. Gadaffi Asemanya who has been in the forefront of campaigns against vandalism of public utilities in the state. Hon Gaddaffi came to the scene first and thereafter, mobilized the Police, PHCN officials, the Fire Brigade and Civil Defence officials who came and rescued the vandal , who was at the point of death”, the resident said. Speaking on the issue, Mr. Gaddafi Asemanya said the suspect suffered first degree burns, adding that he had successfully removed the lower cable before climbing the PHCN pole to vandalize the upper cable, during which his leg mistakenly touched a line which caused a spark of fire that spread over his body. . Security operatives , among them , Policemen and officials of the National Security and Civil Defence Corps reportedly arrived the scene and brought the suspect down,

Suspect whil

e on the ladd


Caught in the act! 16-yr-old suspected vandal burnt while disconnecting cable

two hours after the incident occurred.. “ At that point, he looked pale. Everyone thought he was dead until he was brought down before we discovered he was still alive”, he stated, lamenting that “vandalism of PHCN property has become a

serious issue in Benue State. In the last one year, we have apprehended over 30 vandals, while some were prosecuted. But many of them were set free because PHCN has no legal team to ensure the prosecution of these suspects”, he said.

It was gathered that on noticing that the suspect was alive, members of the community attempted to lynch him in order to serve as deterrent to others. But their attempt was frustrated by the operatives who rushed the

suspect to the Federal Medical Centre, Makurdi. At the hospital, the suspect was discovered to be a bus conductor. But he found it difficult to speak with Crime Guard as he was still wreathing in excruciating pains. It was gathered that since he got to the hospital, noone had gone to visit him nor identified him either as a relative or an acquaintance. Spokesman for the Benue State Police Command, Mr. Daniel Ezeala, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said the Police was on the trail of other fleeing members of the gang. On his part, the Benue state PHCN Public Relations Officer, Uche Oranya, while lamenting activities of cable vandals in the state, estimated stolen cables so far at N200,000 million, calling on security operatives to intensify patrol on PHCN facilities with a view to checkmating activities of the vandals. He however, debunked report that PHCN staff were conniving with cable vandals. “ How can a PHCN staff encourage the destruction of the company’s property when we all earn our living from carrying out our services efficiently to our numerous customers”. He asked,expressing appreciation over what he described as prompt action of the residents as well as those of the security agents.

The suspect , after he was brought down from the high tension electricity pole

44 — SATURDAY Vanguard,DECEMBER 22, 2012 ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○


○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○

Compiled Richard Okotie

Chinese women while washing their hair in the river


he Red Yao women, a minority ethnic group from Huangluo Yao Village in China, have an average hair length of 5.5 feet. The longest locks measure more than 6.8 feet. The Red Yao women grow their hair, cutting it only once in their lives. The village has made the Guinness World Records as the world’s first long hair village. It was once so sacred only their husband and child could see it. They believe long hair brings longevity, wealth and good fortunes.

Tool used by ancient Egyptian embalmers to remove BRAINS discovered in the skull of a 2,400 year old mummy...


three-inch brain-removal tool (pictured top right) was found lodged in the skull of a female mummy (bottom right) who lived 2,400 years ago, after it showed up on CT scans (left). Experts said the discovery reveals new facts about the embalming process - a part of which involves puncturing the skull, inserting a special tool and liquifying and removing the brain

Look but don’t touch! are glimpse of the gold R bullion worth £197BILLION hidden

deep under the Bank of England Cavern hidden deep under London holds gold haul weighing 4,600 tonnes Gold bars are displayed ‘just like dutyfree chocolate at the airport’ Professor given access to nation’s extraordinary wealth for documentary. Each shelf is worth £35million but exact location cannot be revealed.

World’s smallest girl


orld’s smallest girl who measures just 68cm starts first day at British primary school. Five-year-old Charlotte Garside (pictured), from Withernsea, East Yorkshire, is just 68cm tall and smaller than her favourite teddy. Last week, she joined kids her own age in the classroom for the first time. The day marked a milestone for proud parents Scott Garside and Emma Newman who have battled to give their daughter as normal a life as possible.

Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012 —45

Why it’s impossible to cheat in NECO exams —Okpala, Registrar THE National Examinations Council (NECO) has the mandate to conduct five major examinations, namely, National Common Entrance Examination (NCEE), National Entrance Examination into Federal Unity Senior Secondary Colleges (NEEFUSSC), Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) and Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) (Internal and External). At a recent media parley, Professor Promise Nwachukwu Okpala, Registrar/ Chief Executive, National Examinations Council, NECO, Nigeria explained major achievements and activities of the Council in 2012, efforts in effectively tackling certificate forgery and problem of examination malpractice. By Emmanuel Edukugho On conduct and Release of Results The results of the 2011 SSCE (External) November/December were released on 28th March 2012. About 110,724 candidates in the 36 states and FCT in 978 centres sat for the examination. The 2012 National Common Entrance Examination (NCEE) for Primary School Pupils for admission into Federal Unity Colleges involving 81,497 candidates in 456 centres across the 36 states and FCT, while results were submitted to the Federal Ministry of Education, Abuja within seven (7) days. Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) in which a total of 113,056 candidates in 2408 centres took the examination from 21st May to 5th June 2012 and the results released on 20th July, 2012 to schools. The 2012 National Entrance Examination into Federal Unity Senior Secondary Colleges (NEEFUSSC) conducted on 7th July 2012 throughout the country and results released within seven (7) days. The Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) for School-based candidates took place from 1st June to 12th July, 2012 involving 1,122,084 students in 13, 496 schools. Results tificate, but very difficult to forge corwere released on 27th September, rectly. What are the Challenges and Con2012, just within 60 days. straints NECO is facing? A total of 83,755 candidates in 422 Our achievements, as highlighted centres in the 36 states and FCT took the 2012 SSCE (External) for private above, were not without some chalcandidates which commenced on 29th lenges and constraints. These chalOctober, 2012 and ended 6th Decem- lenges include: Funding, insufficient manpower of experts as commissioned ber 2012. item writers, employing senior staff to monitor marking of scripts done by On Accreditation of Schools The first phase of accreditation of senior academic staff of universities. Inadequate infrastructural facilities, schools for 2012 took place from 27th equipment and materials, inadequate th January to 12 February, 2012 in 500 Senior Secondary and 250 Junior Sec- utility vehicles, poor logistics. Still ondary Schools for SSCE and BECE highly needed are state offices, stores, respectively. This is a Quality Assur- storages, vehicles, boats. About 60% ance measure which ensures that of our vehicles are sourced from outschools/centres comply with require- side. If these challenges are tackled, ments for NECO’s examinations in NECO will provide more efficient serterms of adequacy of school facilities, vices. Government should give specarrying capacity and process of gen- cial consideration to council to buy utility vehicles for our operations to erating continuous assessment data. reduce reliance on hired vehicles. About 80,000 graduates who mark On Release of NECO SSCE Certifour scripts are poorly paid. They are icates The Council successfully printed and doing the work just to get experience distributed a total of 971,090 SSCE (in- which is a kind of encouragement. ternal) and 280,582 SSCE (external) They are paid N20,000 in four weeks. certificates for year 2007 to schools Quality of work can only be equated through its state offices since 10th Feb- to good pay. In 2011, we’ve increased ruary, 2012. The 2008 NECO SSCE the pay by 30-40%. Getting profession(Internal and External) certificates al experience is not enough. You canhave been printed and will be released not get quality service without good to candidates in the next couple of pay. So we need increased funding. weeks. We want to close the gap in Training of staff essential through workshops, seminars and short term backlog of certificates. It is more difficult to forge our cur- national and international prorent certificate than the national, cur- grammes on how to conduct examirency notes. There are 15 security de- nations. How are you tackling exam malvices on the certificate. Even if we canpractice? not stop people from forging our cer-

zProfessor Promise Nwachukwu Okpala

We are using the Nigeria Security and Defence Corps (NSCDC) and lecturers of tertiary institutions to effectively monitor examinations. Deploying Senior staff to “man” custodian points, adopting daily distribution of sensitive examination materials


In keeping with our mission of delivering examinations whose results are trusted worldwide for their credibility, we’ve put in place some measures to check examination malpractice. In the first place, we are using the Nigeria Security and Defence Corps (NSCDC) and lecturers of tertiary institutions to effectively monitor examinations. Deploying Senior staff to “man” custodian points, adopting daily distribution of sensitive examination materials. Using coded and customised answer sheets or booklets for different subjects provided only on the examination day thereby eliminating importation of answered sheets into the examination halls. Providing effective logistics as over 400 vehicles and 52 boats carry materials to examination centres and adequately control their distribution across the country. Also, is the use of Biometrics/Validation Data Capturing Technology which identify persons by their unique physical characteristics. More so, our papers arrive on exam day, not sleeping anywhere not even in Banks because parents can besiege them and bank staff can bargain the papers. If examinations are properly, conducted and well organised, there won’t be malpractice, Our procedure is tightier. Can you attribute these measures to the mass failure by candidates taking NECO? Students don’t actually feel comfortable with us. They now prefer other examination bodies. Our procedure has become stringent. People use an-

swer sheets to cheat. But our coded answer sheets change from year to year. Our zeal in combating malpractice may be responsible for this difference. We bring in invigilators to check excess of students. If not there, it means that the examination is managed by the school. Most teachers cooperate with students. But we insist we want people responsible to NECO to be represented in the examination hall. There are rules and regulations in examination. Students are supposed to be obedient. We tell them not to get answer sheets from outside. We can provide extra sheets if needed during the examination. Invigilators know the rules clearly. They cannot turn round to satisfy the intention of candidates. We don’t allow use of calculators. What about Miracle Centres? I can’t explain. Are these examination centres? Unless there is evidence of approval by government to be a centre, then it is difficult to say. Who approved them? I think it’s a loose term. There is no evidence that miracle centres exist. Let those who know tell us. It is a loose terminology. If seen in Aba or anywhere in the country, let’s know and we will move in. May be it’s a place where malpractice is widespread. Do you have withheld results? Nothing like that. What we have is: Result released, pass, failed or canceled. But there are committees to look at the level of candidates involvement in malpractices. We don’t act without the committees’ recommendations. Are you thinking of e-testing in NECO also like JAMB is trying to do? Not now. E-testing is possible in multiple choice examinations, but in NECO we do essay-type. We can do a lot of examinations through etesting. Is it possible to implement e-testing now with biro and paper? Only possible 100% in multiple choice exams.


46—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

2015: President Jonathan’s lonely walk • I will not stop criticizing you—Obasanjo • He may not go beyond 2015 —Dokubo Asari The political feud between incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan and ex-President, Olusegun Obasanjo has apparently deepened. Worst still is that President Jonathan’s strong supporter and kinsman, Alhaji Mojahid Dokubo- Asari may have also ditched him, saying the President may not go beyond 2015. Saturday Vanguard’s JOHN BULUS analyzes the situation and its consequences.

The Big Issue:

The name of the game is politics. The interest is the presidency of Nigeria and the time is 2015. This is the big issue that has generated so much dust. There is no gainsaying of the fact that Nigerian political gladiators in the ruling Peo ples Democratic Party (PDP) are falling over each other on who grabs the ticket for the Presidential

contest in 2015. While President Jonathan is still keeping mum on the issue of a possible re-contest, speculations are rife that he is seriously contemplating another shot at the Presidency. But powerful vested interests are losing sleep over his “gluttonous” ambition. These are people in their estimation think that the President may not have lived up to the expectations of most Nigerians who voted him to power in 2011. They have their points: insecurity, growing rate of unemployment, total collapse of social infrastructures, policy inconsistency,

President, late Umaru Musa Ya’Adua in the 2007 PDP primaries as against the presidential ambition of Sir Peter Odili (Rivers State Governor then) and others. Analysts say President Jonathan was nowhere close to the scene of presidency but for the circumstantial event that threw him up. Essentially, much of Obasanjo’s role was to be seen in 2009 and 2010 when late Ya’Adua became sick and was hospitalized abroad. At a time the issue became highly politicized, it was Obasanjo who spoke out in his usual candour and advised late Yar’Adua to take the path of honour and relinquish



ong before now, the atmosphere has been heavy with a possible eruption of face-off and rancor between the godfather and the godson. Unfortunately, such has come to define the African political landscape, Nigeria inclusive. The surprise, however, is that the face-off was not expected this soon. But some analysts believe that the sooner it happens, the better for the warring parties, and then, the rest of the polity. President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan may just be currently running the risks of losing his staunch supporters who have, understandably, given all to see him rise to the top of his political career. Regrettably, the situation has escalated that it could not be hidden from the public glare anymore. To this end, two names stand atop in the discourse of President Jonathan’s geometric rise to politics. They are: Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the Leader of Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force (NDPVF) and former President of Ijaw Youth Congress (IYC) Alhaji Mojahid Dokubo Asari. This is outside volumes of other names which included those of ‘ordinarily’ Nigerians who paid the supreme price in Bauchi State and beyond in the course of executing the election that brought Jonathan to power. But at the moment, it does appear that things have indeed, fallen apart between the President, his political godfathers and allies.

President Goodluck Jonathan is not decisive in tackling the menace. Obasanjo then asked Jonathan to learn from the measure he (Obasanjo) took to end the militancy in Niger Delta precisely in Odi, Bayelsa State in 1999


corruption, non-decisiveness and loss of touch with the people. And consequently, their anger had risen, thereby necessitating a thought to shop for a replacement.

Obasanjo and Jonathan’s Relationship

To state that former President Olusegun Obasanjo was not instrumental to the Presidency of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan is to be tacit with the obvious truth. As a sitting President in 2007 and a smart party man, Obasanjo ensured the nomination of Jonathan (Governor of Bayelsa State then) as a running mate to former

power. Though this singular comment drew the ire of Yar’ Adua’s handlers against Obasanjo, one thing stood tall in the minds of many analysts: Obasanjo by implication advocated the handing over of reins of power to Vice President Goodluck Jonathan then which later consummated his presidency. Yet again, Obasanjo would not stop. In the build-ups of 2011 elections, Obasanjo defiled all odds, opted and supported the candidacy of President Jonathan. Surprise was later to greet the faces of most Nigerians when it became

news within the public spheres that a face-off was brewing between the power-brokers over 2015.

Obasanjo’s Outburst/ The Feud

Former President Obasanjo is widely known for his candour. Recently, at a function to mark the 40th anniversary of Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor ’s call to ministry at the Word of Life Bible Church, Warri in Delta State, he ventilated his feeling on the Boko Haram insurgency, stressing that President Goodluck Jonathan is not decisive in tackling the menace. Obasanjo then asked Jonathan to learn from the measure he (Obasanjo) took to end the militancy in Niger Delta precisely in Odi, Bayelsa State in 1999. “They (Boko Haram) stated their grievances and I promised to relay them to the authorities in power, because that was the best I could do. I did report. But my fear at that time is still my fear till today. When you have a sore and fail to attend to it quickly, it festers and grows to become something else. “Whichever way, you just have to attend to it. Don’t leave it unattended to. On two occasions, I had to attend to the problem I faced at that time. I sent soldiers to a place and 19 of them were killed. If I had allowed that to continue, I will not have authority to send security whether police, soldier and any force any where again. So, I had to nip it in the bud and that was the end of that particular problem. “If you say you don’t want a strong leader who can have all characteristics of leadership including being God fearing, then have a weak leader and the rest of the problem is yours.” He further argued that “the beauty of democracy is that power rests in the people, and every elected person Continues on page 47

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012 —47

I will not stop criticizing you —Obasanjo would seek your votes to come back. If you don’t want him, he won’t come back. He noted that people had been saying that he brought President Goodluck Jonathan but what they have failed to admit is that he didn’t give all the votes that brought the man to power”.

Jonathan’s Reply

Barely a week after Obasanjo made the statement, President Jonathan in his Presidential Media Chat last month replied him, saying that the military measure taken by Obasanjo did not yield any positive result as innocent people, including women and children, were killed. “It was old men,women and children that were killed. None of the militants was killed. Bombarding Odi was meant to solve a problem but it never solved any. The attack on Odi never solved the militancy problem.” The President also stated that there was no negotiation going on with the Boko Haram sect because it remains a faceless group. “Presently, government is not dialoguing with Boko Haram. There is no dialoguing between Boko Haram and government. Though there was a news item talking about dialogue, but Boko Haram is still operating under cover; they wear masks; there is no face. So, we do not have anybody to discuss with.”

I will not stop talking—Obasanjo

But Obasanjo won’t stop talking. He said early in the week when he played host to the National Chairman of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, in his Hilltop country home, Abeokuta, Ogun State capital that he has the obligation to express his concerns on issues in the country. “The country, the party and government would remain my primary concern, because, if there is no Nigeria, there will not be a party, and if there is no party, there will be nothing to govern on the platform of the party. If there is anything that requires my own comment, position or views, I will say it. It is only when you kill me that I will stop doing so. It is my passion, patriotism and love that will continue to make me say my own. If it is the party that I see that something is inimical to the growth, I will talk”.

Dokubo Asari’s Meal of Surprise

Alhaji Mohajid Dokubo Asari is not just President Jonathan’s kinsman. He is also his Man Friday and dependable ally. He may not be traced to partisanship in politics, but Asari is a die hard supporter of Jonathan’s presidency consequent upon the fact that they are both Ijaws from Niger Delta community. Earlier this year, Asari,

former Ijaw Council leader and freedom fighter in the midst of growing controversy surrounding 2015 stated that President Jonathan will occupy Aso Villa for eight years. Even when Boko Haram told Jonathan to convert to Islam as a condition for cease-fire, Asari described that as ‘arrant nonsense’ and threatened war with the North should threats against Jonathan persist. But to everyone’s greatest chagrin, in a manner akin to that of Obasanjo on the Presidency of Jonathan, A s a r i made a u-turn last week and declared in a Press Conference in Abuja that the President may not go beyond 2015, saying his government has lost touch with the people. He said: “I want to start with an Ijaw proverb which says: the eye watched its seven children to death, instead of advising them, it was just looking at them until they died; while the mouth talked its only child to life and success. We have continued as Ijaw people and the entire Niger Delta and South-South to support the presidency of President Goodluck Jonathan, but a time has come when silent cannot be golden. We have to speak out on issues that are very critical on the survival of our


Continued from page 46

“The country, the party and government would remain my primary concern, because, if there is no Nigeria, there will not be a party, and if there is no party, there will be nothing to govern on the platform of the party. If there is anything that requires my own comment, position or views, I will say it. It is only when you kill me that I will stop doing so


people, the survival of the people of the South-South and the South-East which is the political base of Goodluck Jonathan. Jonathan is surrounded by very greedy people who are only in the presidency to enrich themselves at the expense of


Alhaji Mohajid Dokubo Asari Goodluck himself. This brings us to another Kalabari proverb which says: where there are elders, a goat cannot be allowed to deliver tied to a stick. If we don’t talk and we continue to brush it aside, tomorrow, we will be blamed and people will say: Mujahid Dokubo-Asari was around when Goodlcuk Jonathan was president, and he didn’t talk, then I will be an accomplice and accessory after the fact. “I have benefited immensely from Goodluck Jonathan with my stake, but benefit alone is not enough to make me to keep quiet when the period is very challenging for our people. First, there was no need for Goodluck Jonathan whatsoever, to disagree with Olusegun Obasanjo. I don’t like Obasanjo, I don’t like his face, I hate him, but he was instrumental in bringing Goodluck Jonathan to power. And the greedy people around Jonathan have not managed him enough, to the extent that the president and people around him will allow Jonathan to disagree with Obasanjo openly. “And if you check, all the people who supported Goodluck Jonathan and fought to bring him to power, have openly disagreed with him, what was the cause of these disagreements. These are the questions we want to put out to the president. “It is alarming because the South-South must have its uninterrupted eight years tenure which is constitutional, but with how things are going under Jonathan’s watch, we are afraid that we may not be able to have our eight years tenure, because there will be no magic about it, if

it is going to be one man one vote. “Some people say Obasanjo is manipulating Goodluck Jonathan, that is why Jonathan is disagreeing with him, and we ask: what has Goodluck Jonathan’s government achieved to show that it is a departure from other governments that have existed since 1956? For us, nothing has changed. It is still business as usual. So what are the advice that Obasanjo gave to Jonathan that were so difficult for him to fulfill, that made him decide to fall out with Obasanjo? “Obasanjo was instrumental and manipulated the process that illegally removed Diepreye Alamieyeseigha as governor of Bayelsa State and installed Jonathan as governor, made him Vice President, fought for him to become acting president and also fought for him to become president of Nigeria. Apart from Obasanjo, there are so many people who supported Goodluck Jonathan, some have been pushed out by those who were not there to give him any support, while some others are trapped and they cannot talk. Monkey no fine, but the mama like am. But then, if the ugly monkey becomes so rascal, the mother will desert it because if the mother continues liking the ugly monkey in it rascality, she too will die with the ugly monkey, after all she has more than one monkey child. Asari continued: “I have known the president for more than 20 years, and I know he is a very simple, humane man, but he has allowed himself to be imprisoned by people around him, and this is what we are saying that this must stop.”

48—SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

How to save Nigeria — Igbo leaders * Kanu, Chukwumerije, Ozobu, Ikedife, others speak

Let’s fight graft, insecurity frontally – Ozobu



ISTURBED by the parlous state of affairs in the coun try, some eminent Igbo leaders have proffered suggestions on how to get the country back on the track of socio-economic and political development. The suggestions ranged from convening national dialogue to restructuring the country into true federalism, combating corruption and insecurity aggressively and ensuring equity and transparency in governance. Notable Igbo leaders, who shared their thoughts on the way forward for the country, include Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu (rtd), former Ohanaeze Ndigbo presidents-general, Justice Eze Ozobu and Dr Dozie Ikedife, Senator Chukwumerije and Prince Emeka Onyesoh. They spoke at the 2012 end-of-theyear colloquium of the Igbo Youth Movement, IYM held at the Nike Lake Resort Enugu, under the theme: “Nigeria: In search of true federalism.” The Guest Speaker, Senator Uche Chukwumerije (PDP, Abia North) opened up the conference with a thesis on the possibility of a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction in 2015, if Igbo elite close ranks and sink their differences.

Only national dialogue‘ll save Nigeria from implosion – Kanu Speaking at the forum where some

of the country was lopsided and demanded restructuring along the lines of true federalism. He noted that Nigeria would not go far unless equity was enthroned and corrupted was fought head on.

Justice Eze Ozobu, who chaired the occasion, thanked the IYM for its yearly colloquium in pursuit of a more perfect union. He also demanded the enthronement of true federalism in the polity and agreed that corruption and insecurity must be addressed frontally.

Onyesoh urges return to transparency in govt

On his part, Prince Emeka Onyesoh canvassed a return to the old path of truth and transparency in governance. He insisted that Nigerians must engage in soul searching in order to tell themselves the truth, that all is not well with Nigeria.

Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu (rtd) prominent Igbo sons such literary giant, Professor Chinua Achebe, Dr Okechukwu Ikejiani, Senator Chukwumerije and Prince Emeka Onyesoh were honoured for distinguishing themselves and making Ndigbo and Nigeria proud, Rear Admiral Kanu, who was also honoured stressed the need for a national conference to save the country from imploding. Kanu, who was the special guest of honour, insisted that only a National Dialogue of ethnic nationalities and stakeholders to discuss Nigeria would save the country at the moment. He

Senator Chukwumerije

said the only road to salvation was to enthrone true federalism, where the federating units would be semi-autonomous, in order to engender economic growth and stable polity. He said the country’s potential was being stifled by the present unitary structure.

Nigeria must be restructured into true federalism – Ikedife

Also speaking at the event, former Ohanaeze President-General, Dr Dozie Ikedife insisted that the structure

Nigeria joking without equity – Ucheya

Rev. Ukandu Ucheya, who prayed to God to help Nigeria survive these turbulent periods, maintained that only equity would engender growth and development in Nigeria. Speaker after speaker at the colloquium demanded the enthronement of true federalism just as the Convener of the conference and IYM president, Evang. Elliot Uko said the people of the South-East were not excited about piece-meal amendment of the constitution. He canvassed a fundamental restructuring of the country into six regions.

New digital lifestyle for Nigerian workers



he Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, described it as a valuechanger for the Nigerian worker. The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar, said labour would embrace it wholly because the Nigerian worker deserves a decent living which is what the scheme guarantees. And you wonder, what would bring Oshiomhole, the energetic and outspoken immediate past president of the NLC and the incumbent, the taciturn but highly efficient Omar under one roof? It was the unveiling of the Nigerian Employee Digital Welfare Scheme (NEDWS), the Nigerian worker-centric initiative which seeks to empower Nigerian workers with the requisite digital gadgets for homes and offices without putting a strain on their pockets. The endorsement of NEDWS by Oshiomhole and Omar, two accomplished protagonists of workers’ welfare, underscores its nexus with the welfare of the average Nigerian worker. But the scheme is beyond welfare in the social sense of it. It is about empowerment of the Nigerian

worker; it is about improving the entire value chain of the working class by giving them the basic tools for selfrealisation, self-improvement and for staying competitive in an increasingly sophisticated marketplace. NEDWS enables a worker to own digital appliances from computers through phones to sundry domestic electronics through a carefully worked out process that makes it possible for the worker to own digital gadgets and pay in instalments over a period at zerointerest. It is a template for empowerment and social security especially in a country where matters of social security are not considered critical by government. NEDWS may be new in Nigeria but its template is richly rooted in the welfare mores of advanced nations where consumers are encouraged to own electronic gadgets or any other item including automobiles through a credit system that enables the consumer to take possession of goods while making payments in instalments rather than the usually frustrating and difficult to achieve single lump sum payment. It is an initiative of Buyright Africa, an ambitious and innovative Nigerian firm which enjoys strong international financing. The initiative fits firmly into the

mould of the International Labour Organisation, ILO, which promotes the right to decent living and collective bargaining among workers. The NEDWS concept encourages cooperatives and organisations to negotiate payment plans at zero interest for their members and workers respectively as much as it also allows individuals a hand in the welfare pie. The ILO is a champion of labour rights including the right to association, decent wages and decent living. Unlike other United Nations specialized agencies, it has a tripartite governing structure made up of representatives of governments, employers and workers. This special structure underscores the importance of workers in the global productive chain. It is therefore imperative that workers all over the world should get the very best of what humanity can offer. In the advanced societies, workers’ rights are preserved and protected. There are clear legal frameworks put in place to check employers’ excesses and indulgence in acts that tend to undermine the worth of the worker. Functional mortgage institutions guarantee a worker with stable income at least a roof over his head. State-sponsored social security and a carefully

organised private sector-driven economy ensures that any worker at any level (or workers just shoved out of job) can conveniently access the basic things that make life worth living. Unfortunately, this is not the story of most workers in Africa. In Nigeria, the night is much longer for the worker. Most times under-paid, without a functional mortgage system and worker-friendly credit facility, a worker is expected to at least rent a house, acquire household properties, own contemporary digital gadgets including laptops and other electronic appurtenances all with down payments in cash. For any low income earner (most workers in Nigeria are in this bracket), this is herculean. Whereas a worker in the developed nations would be able to acquire these in one day and pay painlessly over a period, his counterpart in Nigeria would need many years of hard labour and rigorous regime of self-denial to save the cash that would be just enough to buy these needs. It is a real cycle of pain.

· Ugbechie is Editor-in-Chief of Political Economist magazine.

Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012 —49

We are not militias, we are a prayer group —Ombatse cult in Nasarawa State

The OMBATSE traditional prayer group of Eggon people of Nasarawa state has been described by other ethnic groups in the state as a militia group which is being linked with the crisis that has bedeviled the state in recent times. In this interview with Zachary Zamani Allumaga, our correspondent in Lafia, ABEL DANIEL seeks to unravel the secret behind the OMBATSE group and their activities.


he ombatse group has been linked by many to a militia group in Na sarawa state, how would you react to that? When you find such violence involving Eggon people in the state particularly the southern senatorial zone of Nasarawa state, it means their population is very much. I want you to understand that violence is one of those things that is not acceptable to azhili.But putting azhili aside, all Eggon indigenes are not members of ombatse group . As it is normal to find Christians and muslims in any society in Nigeria, the same applies to Eggon people in Nasarawa state who might be members of azhili. I don’t think if a Christian or a muslim is caught in any crime, then such Christian or muslim was sent or represents the church or the mosque? The same thing is what is happening. According to the Police, they have arrested over 19 suspects in connection with the recent Agharagu feud. Let them carefully carry out their investigation and tell us if any Eggon person who is involved will claim he is from ombatse or whether ombatse sent them to go and fight. The reason why there is serious animosity against the ombatse group is simply because they are aware that we went to azhili and prayed for the po- that the security agents heard and litical landscape of Nasarawa state to without proper investigation, just change for good, and indeed it came and invaded the azhili shrine for changed. Our prayer is working. As the purposes of arresting one person 2015 is approaching, we are aware according to them. Over forty secuthat some people are planning to en- rity agents just invaded the shrine on sure the Eggon nation is dislodged that fateful day and shot sporadicalfrom the political landscape of the ly for hours. Unfortunately for them, state, so they call us all kinds of the god of azhili was there and no names so that they can hang us. But I member of ombatse was hurt. It was can assure you, we are prepared to the security agents themselves that pray to azhili with all legitimacy. secured the injuries and fled . If we are a problem group or militia Sooner or later, everything will come group as they tag us, those security out clear. agents who invaded our shrine would What happened at Nasarawa Eggnot have survived. But none of them on leading to road blockage was was hurt or beaten by us. I assure also connected to the azhili as you that we are a peaceful group. The an attempt to cause crisis that security agents while trying to run would cause bloodshed. away when they discovered they It was the German war General Jocould not achieve their aims, left one seph Govle of the German Nazi who of their operation vehicles and we did said and I quote ”if you tell a lie and nothing to their van after all they did wants people to believe it as truth, all in our shrine. If any one was hurt by you will do is tell it several times”. us, let them come out and tell the These people who do not want us in world. So how do you then link us to the state have said so many things a militia group? against us, that we are the ones fuelWe on the other hand are giving God ing the entire crisis in Nasarawa state. thanks for making it very safe for them Infact, right now, it is difficult for anyto leave the shrine unhurt because it one to believe that we are not responwould have been difficult to explain sible for any of such things. What we to anybody. If it was in us to do harm keep telling people is that it is not as they accuse us, look at the distance possible for ombatse to engage in all from Alogani village to the express that. way, it is about eight km, and from I think it is in this mistaken belief

Zachary Zamani Allumaga

If we are problem group or militia group as they tag us, tell me how those security agents who invaded our shrine had survived. But no single one of them was hurt or beaten by us

announcement. What did they see that makes us look like we are militia?


Alogani village to the bottom of the mountain where the shrine is located is another two km. You can see how far they went into the interior. It would have been easy for us to ambush them if we are really a militia group. The crowd you saw that day blocking the road at Nasarawa Eggon did not use even a single tyre or wood or any metal to block the road. The members just came out and stood on the road, and that was enough to block the road for four hours demanding the governor who is the chief security officer of the state to explain to us why our shrine should be invaded by armed security operatives. What happened that day at the azhili shrine when the security operatives invaded us was reminiscent of what terrorists would do by using a suicide bomber to bomb a church. I can’t still imagine how armed security agents numbering forty invaded a shrine, shooting sporadically to kill. It brings doubt to our minds whether or not the security agents are the Boko Haram we hear about. And when they got to the shrine, what did they see to show that we are a militia group? When they got there, they ordered all of us to kneel down and we all obeyed as law abiding people. They even went ahead to use our microphones to make

But why did you choose to return to the shrine after a very long time, don’t you think that might be the reason behind people linking your group to all crises in the state? Well, something has to start at any time and now is the material time, and now is the time. Let me take you a little back to history. The invasion of the Europeans, Christianity and the Islamic jihad, all these influx changed the status quo. Our forefathers had their own way of worship which is the traditional way of worship before the influx. The coming of these foreigners infiltrated the place and consequently affected their style of worship. My father who is still alive practiced both the traditional religion and Christianity and he is still alive. I also have an uncle who is a muslim and at the same time practices the traditional religion. These have all tested the two divides. I am a confirmed communicant catholic and at the same time too, a traditional worshiper. Now, what led to us bringing back this traditional worship to our people is because of the complaints we receive every now and then from our people about the evil and vices that have pervaded our society and our state. These things were not there according to what our fathers told us. The society used to be serene and orderly till the advent of the foreigners. Some of those societal ills include murder, theft, rumour mongering, secret society and witchcraft. Some of these evil were not there before now and even where they existed, there are Continues on page 50


50—Vanguard, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012

Continued from page 49 quick ways of punishing people who were involved which was based on the azhili occult who through intercession, mediate between the people and the god of azhili. One thing you need to know about this cult is that it has no form of moderation unlike what the Christians or muslim will tell you that God will punish anyone who commit atrocity and may be forgiven if they ask God for forgiveness or that God can allow them live until the judgment day, thereby allowing the offender to move about freely. Like other religions ,azhili was a place where people go to pray for prosperity, progress, success, good health and every good thing. Some elders from Eggon land have received instructions by one form of inspiration or the other to resort to azhili who can bring back sanity to the land again. We also discovered that some politicians from Eggon nation, the likes of Solomon Ewuga, now a serving Senator, who aspired to be governor of the state, was rigged out by Alh. Abdullahi Adamu, the first civilian governor during the PDP governorship primary election. As I am talking to you now the result of that primary election has not been declared apart from simply saying Abdullahi Adamu won it. Nobody has told anybody what margin he won with. As if that was the end, when his government got to power, he conspired with other tribes in the state and brought up a policy he called the DEPLOYMENT POLICY. In other words, according him, all Eggons should leave wherever they are settled in the state to Nasarawa Eggon. A decision that was challenged and we went as far to the Supreme Court and the judgment was delivered April this year in our favour, declaring such directive as illegal. It was an infringement on the fundamental right of the Eggon people. They all know that the Eggons were on ground before whoever arrived in Nasarawa state did. And now, you are the one telling us today that we should go to Nasarawa

We are not militias, we are a pr oup praayer gr group —Ombatse cult in Nasarawa State Eggon. That was one big dead slap we have ever received and the consequence was bad. I can assure you that not less than twenty of our people died as a result of resisting that policy and the hardship it created. Yet no one is ready to apologize to anybody. Again less I forget, in 2007, these same people in their conspiracy still rigged out Solomon Ewuga in the governorship election, this time around in ANPP. That again was not an easy one. Al these put together made us put heads together to resolve to pray to azhili. But do you think as a retired magistrate that your spiritual prayer group has any constitutional backing? I don’t seem to understand what you mean by legal backing. As a lawyer, I know that the constitution gives right to assembly. Freedom of assembly you may call it, though the constitution did not specify how long the assembly. Infact we are in the process of registration of members for the purpose of complying with what the constitution says about who to register. We equally have our constitution too. Don’t you think that this cultural group you

are part of could eventually emerge to be another militia group like the MOSSOB, OPC? The leaders of those groups you mentioned did not in their wildest imaginations plan to use the group for killing; but some people hijacked the group to perpetrate all kinds of evil. But one thing I will also want you to understand is that the leaders of those groups are still very much on ground. The azhili is quite different in formations and purpose. Azhili is purely a prayer group and not for any selfish or ill motive. People are seeing the results of our prayers in the political landscape of the state and are not comfortable with the outcome because the Eggons are taking the rightful place in political leadership. It is believed that governor Al-makura is romancing with ombatse group, don’t you think so? Ignorance is a bad disease. I told you from the beginning that the membership of ombatse is only meant for Eggon sons alone. Women are not even allowed. Is governor Al-makur an Eggon indigene and son? The answer is no, so how come they are saying he is romancing with ombatse.

because our right was trampled upon and the governor came to calm us

What happened that day at Nasarawa Eggon that led to our blocking the road was because we as law abiding people felt violated and we resolved to block the road, calling on the governor who is the chief security officer of the state to come and explain to us why some armed security agents will come and invade our shrine for just no cause. When the governor eventually came, he insisted he wanted to go and see the shrine but we said no because he is not a member and therefore he is not in the position to visit azhili shrine. That was why the governor was led to the chief ’s palace to address the people. That was not the first time the governor would respond to an angered group. When the Polytechnic students demonstrated the other day, the governor went and addressed them in person. The same was the case when NURTW blocked Makurdi road the other day, the governor was there to address them. Now that Eggon people did it

down. It is now interpreted to mean the he is romancing with us. It goes well to tell you how some people are out to frustrate the Eggon nation but they have failed already. Now that things are the way they are,what is your advice to government? I don’t want to pretend to hold brief for the government. I strongly believe they know what to do. When the governor came to talk to us when we stopped movement of vehicles at Nasarawa Eggon, we told him what we want. We are not hiding, we are out, we are not faceless; we are the leaders of ombatse, the azhili traditional prayer group. We have visited the state director of SSS, we are still talking. We shall also meet with police and the commandant of the Army and other security agents to let them know who we are and what we are out for so that people will not go about peddling false story against ombatse group.


Clergyman promises to revive Nigeria’s handball By OSARETIN EMUZE


HAIRMAN of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Plateau state branch, Reverend David Bamidele has lamented the falling standard of Handball in Nigeria, despite the abundance of talents in the country. Speaking with Saturday Vanguard Sports during the male handball final of the just concluded National Sports Festival in Lagos, the former national handball captain expressed shock at the standard of handball in Nigeria. “It is sad that handball is at is lowest ebb right now in the country. After watching the final match of the festival between Lagos and Borno, I wept because handball standard is gone. This is not the

fault of the players but that of the Association officials who refused to improve on the once enviable sport in Africa. During my time, handball was high up there, we played across the world and represented Nigeria in major competitions. We had competitions every other month, but today the reverse is the case,” he stressed. The former Handball chairman of the Plateau State Sports Council said the lukewarm and I-don’t-care attitude of the executive members of the Association contributed immensely to the fallen standard of handball. “There are no commitments from those who run handball in Nigeria. They are no longer interested in the sports as it was in the past. When General Ishola Williams was the

SANDWICHED... A female handball player sandwiched during a handball match in Abuja. Reverend David Bamidele, a chairmanship aspirant promises to revive the sport if voted in as the new Board chairman next year. chairman, companies fell head over hills to sponsor handball. We moved from competition to competition, our standard was very high because we competed with the very best in world handball,” he lamented. He however, said there will soon be light at the end of the tunnel. “We can no longer fold our hands and watch handball die in the country. I have decided to cease the bull by the horn by taking over the chairmanship position. Handball must not die, the only way is not to stand aloof and watch it degenerate but to

be part of the revival. As a clergy man, I have told my God that I want to take handball to the next level. I have discussed with former players on the way forward for handball and we have resolved to be involved. General Williams was an exemplary character, he took handball to high heavens and made it a house hold name. I am going to copy his style of administration; I will bring back sponsors to the sport that was one of the best in this part of the Nigeria,” he emphasized.

Reverend Bamidele said handball gave him life and the only way to pay back is to takeover the Federation and return it to winning ways. “The youths are no longer encouraged to play handball because of lack of sponsorship. As a clergyman, I will use my connection to attract sponsors for the federation. I played the game to the highest level, I captained the national team at the junior and senior levels, at both the African and world championships. I am aware of the problems of the federation,” he said.

52 — SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012



eace is an indispensable tool in the socioeconomic development of any nation. Hence Bishop Felix Onomeregbor a Nigerian and the United Nations representative for the United Peace Federation (UPF) opted to engage in aggressive campaign and crusade for peace in crisis ridden communities in Delta State and beyond. In this interview with Saturday Vanguard, the Niger Delta opinion leader who advised government to partner with licensed NGOs in Nigeria, insists that job creation is the only panacea to check youth restiveness. What is your advise to government on youths unemployment, restiveness? In every country, the first thing the government should do is to lay good foundation for youths. They are the ones that make a nation. A government that plans for the youths remains active and records mile stone development in areas of infrastructure, education, health, technology, economy and so. Insecurity in the land, any end to it? The inability of any government to plan for youths gives to terrorism insurgence. Unfortunately it’s threatening peace and development today not only in Nigeria, but in other countries even though Africa frequent occurrence of it. At the moment, the situation has degenerated into youth restiveness. When youths are abandoned, such country can never know peace. Therefore, to save youths from their troubled zone, government needs to get to the grassroots. I mean in every community, their leaders who would help government to identify the problems of their youths. For instance, government can’t do it alone and that is why there are NGO’s all over the world to assist government and that

DECEMBER 22, 2012—53

Job creation panacea for insecurity—Onomeregbor

is why in other parts of the world, government empowers them. Government must empower opinion leaders to look into the grassroots, the communities who understand these youths appreciate their immediate needs are. If the government had channelled development into the rural areas the incidences of rape, kidnapping, Boko Harram wouldn’t have existed. These boys were good but somehow they become bad because the presence of government is not effective at their end. What I’m saying is that government can’t do it alone. In some civilised nations of the world, there are a lot of government licensed NGOs and these NGOs are also collaborating with United Nations and other organs that foster peace and unity in the society. I advise Nigeria look into this area of NGOs that are working with the United Nations. As an ambassador of peace though under the UPF, Universal Peace Federation, UPF and also Nigerian Peace Federation. We are composition of seasoned ambassadors under the United Nations. Our preoccupation is mainly as how to sustain peace and tranquility in the society and put up machineries to fight against corruption and as well as tackle crisis related management problems. We also had drawn plans to help

Onomeregbor: When there is peace in the land, development will be achieved

government on development. In what ways can the youths benefit from the activities of UPF? Before the death of late President Yar’Adua, he had it in his agenda - clamouring for peace in the country. You see, the truth remains that without peace, there will be no development. So any nation that wants to move forward in life, must ensure peace. How did government react

at the launch of the peace NGO? When we talk about United Nations, they have more than 200 embassies in the world. Universal Peace Federation and Nigerian chapter has a lot of seasoned ambassadors licensed, who can carry out their own individual search on how peace can reign and develop human management. At the moment, they are into empowerment and nation

Many hopes, challenges of Nigerian maritime industry A gain, the bane of the Maritime industry has come to the fore as stakeholders and government officials at the just concluded a three day conference attempted to x-ray the multiple challenges confronting the sector. Stakeholders who besieged Tinapa Hotel, Calabar, Cross River State in their hundreds reviewed the performance of the Nigerian Maritime industry in the last seven decades as well as proffer practicable solutions that will leapfrog the sector. The Chairman,Organising Committee, Prince Andy Usanga in his welcome address and presentation title, “An Economic Summit to revolutionary assess the challenges of the Maritime sector, under the auspices of Global Bond Intership Limited and the Nigeria Institute of Shipping, implored the participants to mainly focus on how to evolve a comprehensive policy that will reposition the sector for a profitable economic growth and development Special guest of Honour and national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), Alh. (Dr.) Bamanga Tukur, said, there is need for the federal government to build additional

ports in the country due to increase innovation in the world of maritime Turkur who listed, government bureaucracy, mismanagement of public assets, poor maintenance, lack of experts, manpower and private capital as major challenges militating against the operation of the sector and he advised that proper steps be taken by all and sundry to reposition the operation of the maritime sector, stated that we must compete and meet international standards. According to him, if the sector must experience enhanced efficiency and effectiveness in operation, regulatory agencies must exert their official responsibilities as stipulated by law that would yield economic growth. He posited that until regulatory agencies perform their duties professionally, the industry will not deliver desired results. Turkur, however, emphasised on the need to revisit Calabar, Warri and Port Harcourt ports so that efficiency and effectiveness will be attained in the maritime industry, insisting that if we must achieve results, there is a need for a total review of our transport network system; rails, roads at the coastal areas

and the need to promote interregional trade with visible role of Nigeria in maritime development. While he highlighted the issue of maritime security as a strong content in the development of every sector of the nation’s economy. In the same vein, National President of the Nigerian Institute of Shipping, John Patrick Oguejiofor, said, if the industry must operate well, it must evolve a private-public partnership (PPP) participation with special credit to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr.

Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, Honourable Minister of transport, Alh. Idris Umar and the Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Mr Patrick Z. Akpobolokemi as Apostles of Maritime Development for their concerted efforts towards this direction. He also agreed that the emergence of shipping trade characterised by hatch design, cargo handling gears, navigational aids, improved information and communication technologies and containerization as well as the need to comply with

L-Managing Director, LAPO Microfinance Bank Ltd, Godwin Ehigiamusoe; Communication Executive, Maria Tofowomo (middle) and Tochukwu Uwah, during an interactive session on the company's activities in Lagos.

building. So, any area government needs their help they are available to render any help. It has the technicality of bring peace in a troubled areas where government cannot penetrate so that government can step in to govern. Having seen what is obtainable in our environment, do you think UPF can survive here? This is one of the challenges we have in Nigeria, not everybody in leadership wants to work. They know the right thing to do and they will not do and will not allow those who can do it work. That is why many NGOs that are out to help the society can’t operate because government is not supporting them. They think if we approve some of these NGOs who will receive the glory? The coming into the country will help government to succeed in its primary responsibility to her citizens. I advise that government look inwardly and call for National Assembly for peace ambassador all over the country and let them come and shape the country in every facet of human endeavours particularly in crisis areas. Why don’t UPF look for level ground to partner FG for survival? UPF is already in the country with its officials. As a Nigerian representative, I base in Delta State. I also order my pet world campaign: Wake up Peace and Unity Development in the rural area, organising campaign, crusade in trouble zones, discussing with opinion leaders for peace and tranquility. So UPF and NPF under United Nations are in to campaign on behalf of our government to the grassroots on the essence of having peace, and if peace is allow, government will move towards development as well as sustain it.

international regulations ranging from conventions on Load lines, International Convention for Safety at Sea (SOLAS), prevention of pollution from ships, prevention of collision at sea and merchant shipping standard are necessary, pointing out the need to address port infrastructures, piracy issues, institutional development for better and achievable operational system in Nigerian maritime. In a closing remark, the chairman organizing committee, Prince Andy Usanga announced that the the post conference honorary awards of Best Economic sectoral Transformation award will be bestowed on Mr. President, DR Good luck Ebele Jonathan (GCFR), Nigeria maritime development pillar, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur(CON), Alhaji Dikko Dangote, Nigeria Maritime Development partnership award to Intels Nigeria Limited and Nigerian maritime development icon, Sir (Dr) Obong Godswill Akpabio, the Executive Governor, Akwa Ibom State over Ibaka Deep sea port Project development. The date for the maritime industry Gala night will be announced later.


FRSC deploys more personnel, vehicles for Xmas patrol


•Toyota Avenza

BOUT 31,500 personnel has been deployed to the highways by the Federal Road Safety Corps, commenced 26 days’ nationwide special patrol in line with its continued drive to reduce the spate of road traffic infractions on the nation’s highways during the yuletide. Speaking during a media chat at a stakeholder’s forum in Abuja, the FRSC Corps Marshal and Chief Executive, Osita Chidoka said “ we have deployed 800 vehicles and 13,500 personnel with effect from today (19th December, 2012) for intensive patrol and rescue activities from this period upto the point of return, to calm down speed and ensure traffic control” Details of the special patrol tagged “Operation Zero Tolerance”, the Corps’ operational focus will be on traffic control/ calming, clearing of obstructions, checking speed limit and overloading violation, dangerous driving, use of phone while driving, light signal violation and other road vices. According to the Corps Public Education Officer; Jonas Agwu, Corps Commander, “ 23 corridors such as Sagamu-Ore-Benin, Lokoja-Benin-Auchi, Onitsha-Ihiala-Aba, Abuja-Keffi-AkwangaHawan Kibo-Jos, MinnaBirnin-Kebbi-SokotoGusau-Funtua-Zaria, Kabba-Umuoke-EkitiIdo-Ilesha, Benin-WarriPatani-Portharcourt and urkpoits historically bland M a k u r d i - O t th Mile styling, especially for its Obollo Afor-9 highways and 65 routes Lexus luxury division. identified Toyota now accounts for have nationwide for this 14.4 percent of the U.S. exercise”. auto market, up from 12.6 percent during the first 10 months of 2011. In retail—not including rental and fleet sales— the Toyota brand is the biggest in the U.S., outselling GM’s N recognition of his Chevrolet. transformational leadership role in the Lagos State Transportation system, the General Manager Lagos State Traffic Mr. Demola Ade-Ojo ex- Management Authority plained that the promo (L ASTMA), Engr. was conceived to thank Babatunde Edu was the Almighty God for conferred with a having kept them in fellowship award by the business for over four Nigerian Institution of decades and to say a big Mechanical Engineers thank you to their (NIMechE) recently. esteemed and loyal The event took place at customers and friends for the Sheraton Hotels and their unalloyed support Towers, Ikeja, Lagos. so far. The National According to him in Chairman of the forty-plus years of doing institution, Engr Ayo business in Nigeria, Fanimokun, described Elizade has seen it all. the gathering as a forum The ups and downs, the where opportunities are good and bad, the great placed before the and the nont-so-great, members and also an indeed we have avenue for mechanical navigated various seas engineers to meet and and the Almighty, in his interact with members of kindness and mercies, other professional bodies has continued to keep in the public and private us.” sectors.

Toyota poised to outpace all, despite challenges T

OYOTA Motor Corp. appears poised to regain its position as the world’s largest automaker, a remarkable turnaround after years of safety recalls, huge federal fines and the Japanese earthquake last year. Reports reaching Vanguard Auto has it that Toyota is likely to sell 9.7 million vehicles this year, surpassing second-place General Motors Co. by more than 1 million vehicles and setting a record for annual auto sales. That’s generating huge profits, with earnings tripling in the latest quarter to $3.2 billion and sales surging almost 20 percent compared with a year earlier. The U.S. — where Toyota’s reputation suffered most through the recalls — is now a cash cow. Through the first 10 months of the year, the Japanese automaker sold more than 1.7 million cars and trucks in the country, a 30 percent gain and more than double the industry growth rate. “Toyota has done some smart things,” said

Rebecca Lindland, an analyst with IHS Automotive. “They have concentrated a lot of time and effort on the U.S., which is incredibly important because they make so much money here.” The Japanese automaker has launched 11 new or completely redesigned models in the U.S. in the last year,

including new station wagon and commuter versions of its popular Prius hybrids. On Wednesday, the first day of the Los Angeles Auto Show, it launched a newgeneration RAV4 sport utility vehicle. The current model is an aging vehicle facing stiff competition from newly redesigned offerings such as Ford Motor Co.’s

Escape and Honda Motor Co.’s CR-V. Toyota has ramped up its factories in the U.S., opening a Corolla plant in Mississippi and expanding pickup truck manufacturing in Texas. And at the urging of Chief Executive and founding-family member Akio Toyoda, the automaker is looking to inject some panache into

Elizade Motors floats Toyota used car company


OREMOST Toyota dealer, Elizade Motors has conclude plans to open a used car company to market used (Tokunbo) Toyota products in Nigeria. The new company CarsUTrust will be offering Toyota used car with warranty. Disclosing this to Motoring Journalists recently in his office in Lagos , the Managing Director Elizade Nigeria Limited, Mr. Demola Ade-Ojo, said that the used car company of Elizade would be running the business in a very professional way like never done before in Nigeria. “We want to run the

business the way it has never been run before,”he said. Continuing, he said “ we shall be offering used cars with certification and warranty. The benefits of course, you would agree with me are unprecedented in the used car market.” The Managing Director however used the opportunity to reiterate that Elizade would continued to offer first class service to its customers saying “We promise you that whether you purchase a brand new car or a used one from us, you will always get the best.” Meanwhile, Peace Mass Transit Limited and

Infrastructure Bank Plc have emerged winners of Elizade 40 + 1 Anniversary Promo by winning three brand new Toyota Avensis cars, valued at over N15 million. Peace Mass Transit won two of the cars by emerging the highest buyer from Elizade from July 16 to August 15 (100 vehicles) and September 16 to October 15 (101 vehicles) while Infrastructure Bank Plc emerged winner with 43 vehicles purchased from August 16 to September 15, 2012. Speaking during the presentation of the prizes at their Anthony, Lagos, office, the Managing Director, Elizade Motors,

LASTMA boss conferred with fellow of NIMechE


to be wary of thir opponents in the Africa Nations Cup next month. Nsofor, who last played for the Eagles over a year ago said even though he has confidence the Eagles will do well at the competition, he would advise the team to take all their opponents with all seriousness. “I always have the confidence that we can do well but the most important thing is for us to pray for each other, playing with commitment and being fully aware that there is something at stakes because Nigerians are craving for this trophy for a long time now, so I believe Nigeria can win the trophy. In the game of football nowadays, everybody is a threat and so they have to take all opponents with all seriousness but I don’t want to start mentioning names but we all know the big countries when it comes to football in Africa”, he told Brila FM radio in Lagos. Nsofor, who once starred for Italian club, Chievo said even though no invitation has been extended to him by Keshi for the Nations Cup camping exercise, he would “still do my best to support the team” when hostilities start in South Africa. While nursing hope of being invited to join the team’s training, Nsofor said, “It’s been a year since I haven’t been invited to play for the Super Eagles but right now am on holidays and am still expecting a call but my chances are very slim”.

Nations Cup: Nsofor cautions Eagles on opponents A S Super Eagles Chief Coach, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi gets set to name the Europe-based players he expects to join their home-based colleagues for the team’s training camp in Portugal, the team’s winger and Locomotive Moscow player, Victor Obinna Nsofor has cautioned the team

•Nsofor, missing out from Keshi’s plans, warns Eagles to be wary of their opponents

Nations Cup: Samsung unveils plans for African football


OOTBALL fans at the Africa Nations Cup holding in South Africa will have much to savour as Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a global leader in digital media and digital convergence technologies, will leverage its smart products and technology to engage them and create platforms to share their passion for football during the event which will be held from January 19 to February 9, 2013. An official sponsor of the competition since 2008, Samsung will engage fans in and around the stadiums to further the excitement surrounding the tournament. Under the theme of ‘Our Passion Powers Africa’, Samsung will take a leading role in engaging the region by holding pre-tournament campaigns in seven countries, namely South Africa, Angola, the DRC, Ghana, the Ivory Coast, Nigeria, and Zambia. “Our sponsorship of the Orange AFCON SOUTH AFRICA 2013 is about bringing the passion and excitement of African football and this tournament to consumers,” said Mr. Sunny Hwang, Senior Vice President and Head of Global Sports Marketing at Samsung. “We are excited to be a part of this legacy and will provide fans with new experiences and opportunities to share their passion for football and the AFCON.” Football fans and consumers will be given unique opportunities to engage in the build-up to Orange AFCON SOUTH AFRICA 2013 with Samsung. The company will create 20 themed brand stores in six countries, namely the DRC, Ghana, the Ivory Coast, Nigeria, South Africa, and Zambia. These platforms will allow fans and customers to engage in

various events and unique fan experiences before and during the tournament. Additionally, Samsung will use different online programs to ensure that fans and customers are connected across the continent while sharing their passion for football and Orange AFCON SOUTH AFRICA 2013.

Algeria’s 24-man squad


LGERIA coach Vahid Halilhodzic has named his provisional 24man squad for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations. Notable absentees are Olympiakos striker Rafik Djebbour and Lekhwiya defender Madjid Bougherra, who has been told to be on standby. The list will be reduced to 23. Goalkeepers: Azzeddine Doukha (USM Harrach), Rais Mbolhi (Kryla Sovetov Samara, Russia), Cedric Si Mohammed (JSM Bejaia) Defenders: Essaid Belkalem, Liassine Cadamuro, Faouzi Ghoulam, Rafik Halliche, Carl Medjani, Djamel Mesbah, Mehdi Mostefa, Ali Rial. Midfielders: Djamel Abdoun, Hameur Bouazza, Ryad Boudebouz, Sofiane Feghouli, Adlene Guedioura, Foued Kadir, Medhi Lacen, Khaled Lemmouchia, S a a d T e d j a r Forwards: Yacine Bezzaz (CS Constantine), Hilal Soudani (Vitoria Guimaraes), Islam Slimani (Chabab Belouizdad), Mohamed Amine Aoudia (Entente Setif).


CAA urges Nigeria to make a good show of AYC


ONFEDERATION of African Athletics (CAA) has tasked the A t h l e t i c s Federation of Nigeria, AFN not to make a mess of hosting the maiden African Y o u t h Championships billed for March 2013 in Warri, Delta State. CAA secretarygeneral, Lamine Faty who led a sixAthletes man delegation to inspect the Warri Stadium last athletics since the stadium was weekend madethe charge after the predominately football oriented. Warri Stadium was declared fit “We are also going to put tracks on enough to host the championships. the training pitch to have a warm up AFN technical director, Omatseye area. In February we will have a test Nesiama stated that Nigeria is highly run competition, where all the prepared to host the championships officiating officials will participate and adding that the Local Organising there, we will give them orientation of Committee will meet the set what we want to achieve at the standards. championships,” said Navy “The CAA has asked us to put up a Commodore Nesiama. good show. It is the first edition and Delta State is solely sponsoring the they want us to make it world standard championships. However, it was and set a precedent. gathered that the AFN marketing “The Warri Stadium was okayed for committee is also knocking on the the championships, but we had to doors of other prospective sponsors. make some adjustments to suit

Cross River athletes are unpoachable, Ijirigho declares Cross River grassroots athletics development coordinator, Bruce Ijirigho has stated that the State will do everything to protect its athletes from been poached by big spenders like Delta and Rivers States. He was speaking against the background of random poaching of athletes by States that have no grassroots development programmes as witnessed at the just concluded 18th National Sports Festival in Lagos. Ijirigho was forced to watch as Cross River athlete Peace Uko, won gold for Ondo at Eko 2012 but said thereafter that the programme Cross River has

put on the ground will make almost it impossible for its athletes to be poached. “It was painful watching Uko run for Ondo. We did everything to persuade her to stay, but she left all the same. “However, we have other junior athletes who did well for us at the festival. In another two years they will be champions. “It will not be possible for any state to poach them. This is because Cross River has put in place a comprehensive training and academic programme that will make it impossible for them to represent another state,” said Ijirigho.

Athlete’s 2005 sample test positive to dope


USSIA’S Olga Kuzenkova, the retired 2004 Olympic hammer champion, is under investigation for doping after a retest on her urine sample from the 2005 World Championships came up positive. She also won gold at the Helsinki world championships and, if she loses her medal, silver medalist Cuba’s Yipsi Moreno stands to be upgraded. The news means that the 12 Russian women throwers from the 2004 Olympics have amassed eight doping violations between them. The others

who have been found guilty or are under investigation are: Svetlana Krivelyova (under investigation), Irina Korzhanenko (two offences), Natalya Sidova (two offences), Tatyana Lysenko and Oksana Yarygina. Meanwhile, Russian race walkers Tatyana Mineyeva and Sergei Morozov have also been in the news. Mineyeva was recently banned for two years after failing a drugs test, while Morozov received a lifetime ban for a second doping offence.

SATURDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 22, 2012

TODAY’S MATCHES Wigan Man City Newcastle Southampton Tottenham West Brom West Ham Liverpool

v v v v v v v v

Arsenal Reading QPR Sunderland Stoke City Norwich Everton Fulham

1.45pm 4pm 4pm 4pm 4pm 4pm 4pm 4pm


IGERIA coach Stephen Keshi has listed 32 players to battle for 23 shirts in the Super Eagles’ squad to the 29th Africa Cup of Nations finals in South Africa, taking place between 19th January – 10th February next year. Following a meeting with the NFF Technical Committee in Abuja on Friday, where he defended the list, Keshi rolled out a squad containing 14 homebased professionals and 18 overseas-based players. Skipper Joseph Yobo, who is Nigeria’s record international player with 89 caps, tops the list. Africa’s football-governing body, Caf has given all 16 teams playing in the final tournament of the 29th Africa Cup of Nations, South Africa 2013 until midnight of January 9 to submit their final list of 23 players for the showpiece. Following Friday’s meeting, chairman of the NFF Technical Committee, Barrister Chris Green explained that 14 home boys will travel to Portugal to be joined by 10 oveseas-based professionals for the clash with Catalonia on January 2, with the remaining eight foreign-based stars to link up with the squad on January 4.

EYES ON BALL... Super Eagles and Chelsea forward, Victor Moses in action for fatherland. Coach Stephen Keshi says he doesn’t expect him and other invited players for the Nations Cup to have problems of early release by their respective foreign clubs.

THE FULL LIST OF PLAYERS: Goalkeepers: Vincent Enyeama (Maccabi Tel Aviv, Israel); Austin Ejide (Hapoel Be’er Sheba, Israel); Chigozie Agbim (Enugu Rangers, Nigeria); Daniel Akpeyi (Heartland FC, Nigeria) Defenders: Elderson Echiejile (FC Braga, Portugal); Juwon Oshaniwa (Ashdod FC, Israel); Benjamin Francis (Heartland FC, Nigeria); Joseph Yobo (Fenerbahce, Turkey); Efe Ambrose (Celtic FC, Scotland); Solomon Kwambe (Sunshine Stars, Nigeria); Azubuike Egwuekwe (Warri Wolves, Nigeria); Danny Shittu (Millwall FC, England); Kenneth Omeruo (ADO Den Haag, Netherlands); Godfrey

Nations Cup 2013

Keshi picks 32 for Faro camp *Leaves out Odemwingie, Martins Oboabona (Sunshine Stars, Nigeria) Midfielders: Mikel Obi (Chelsea FC, England); Nosa Igiebor (Real Betis, Spain); Ogenyi Onazi (SS Lazio, Italy); Raheem Lawal (Adana Demirspor, Turkey); Obiora Nwankwo (Calcio Padova, Italy); Fegor Ogude (Valerenga FC, Norway);

...Banks on Euro clubs for players early release


AGLES coach Stephen Keshi has said that all the Euro-based players to be invited for the 2013 Nations Cup have been contacted and he does not expect any problem securing their release. The Eagles foreign pros are expected to join the local Eagles on December 29 in Faro, Portugal and there are fears that their clubs, most especially in England may likely hold them back as they

chase league points in a busy January fixtures. The Nations Cup begins on January 21 for the Super Eagles with a game against Burkina Faso and Keshi has said that he expects all his players to be in camp two weeks prior to the tournament in line with the FIFA rule which mandates clubs to release players to their countries two weeks prior to tournaments.

Reuben Gabriel (Kano Pillars, Nigeria); Rabiu Ibrahim (Celtic FC, Scotland) Forwards: Ahmed Musa (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Emmanuel Emenike (Spartak

Moscow, Russia); Brown Ideye (Dynamo Kyiv, Ukraine); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Uche Kalu (Rizespor, Turkey); Bright Dike

CROSS WORD PUZZLE Across 1 Lagos State Commissioner for Transport, Mr. Kayode – (6) 4 L.G.A in Cross River State – (6) 7 Japanese Currency — (3) 8 Imo State Deputy Governor, Jude – (6) 10 Ethnic Group in Nigeria – (6) 12 Gombe State Governor, Ibrahim – (9) 13 Former PDP National Chairman, Ahmadu – (3) 15 CBN’s Director of Currency Operations, Muhammad – (3) 17 Taraba State Capital – (7) 18 Venomous Snake – (3) 20 Flamingoes (U-17) Goalkeeper, Amina – (3) 22 Sweden Capital City – (9) 23 Uruguay Striker and Liverpool FC Forward, Luis – (6) 25 Former Nigerian Star Actress,s Liz – (6) 26 Yoruba god – (3) 27 Country in Africa – (6) 28 France “Ligue One” Club Side – (6)

(Portland Timbers, USA); Shola Ameobi (Newcastle FC, England); Ikechukwu Uche (Villarreal FC, Spain); Ejike Uzoenyi (Enugu Rangers, Nigeria); Sunday Mba (Enugu Rangers, Nigeria)

Down 1 L.G.A in Abia State – (6) 2 Flying Eagles (U-20) Striker, Edafe – (6) 3 Yoruba word for “Happiness” – (3) 4 Former Ekiti State Governor, Olusegun – (3) 5 Monkey – (6) 9 L.G.A in Rivers State – (6) 11 Former Anambra State Governor, Theophilus – (9) 14 Zodiac Sign – (3) 16 Record – (3) 18 Guinea Bissau Capital City – (6) 19 Eritrea’s Capital City – (6) 20 Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle 21 Solar Planet – (6) 24 Bangladesh National President, Khaled – (3) 25 Lever – (3)







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SOLUTION on page 15

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