...towards a better life for the people VOL. 25: NO. 61632
ONLINE | www.vanguardngr.com
TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
Two cols, 12 others face •P.6 court-martial Judiciary needs sanitation — CJN •P.6
Gov Ahmed hosts Vanguard From left: Vanguard deputy Editor, Mr Eze Anaba; AGM Brands, Mr. Fred Odueme and Gov Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara State during a courtesy call by the management of Vanguard Media Limited on the governor in Government House, Ilorin.
PINI JASON: Power, generator mafia and political will
Presidency, NASS differ on performance
•Lawmakers 'll live to their billings — Mark •Tinubu, Labour groups speak on democracy
BY BEN AGANDE, HENRY UMORU, INALEGWU SHAIBU & VICTOR AHIUMAYOUNG
B U J A — ACTIVITIES marking this year ’s Democracy Day celebration kicked off on a combative note yesterday as President Goodluck Jonathan tackled the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal over which arm of government should be blamed for the failure of government policies. This came as Senate Continues on page 5
Mr & Mrs
—From left: Former Vice President Alex Ekwueme; ex-President Shehu Shagari; Chairman of the occasion, Chief Emeka Anyaoku; President Goodluck Jonathan, and Speaker, House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, at a National Symposium marking the 2012 Democracy Day Celebration, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: NAN.
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Presidency, NASS differ on performance Continues from Page 1 President, David Mark pledged that the National Assembly on its part will live up to its billings by enacting laws for good governance. Leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu in his own assessment of our journey so far argued that Nigeria is not moving forward just as Trade Union Congress of Nigeria and Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN said democracy as it is today is not what Nigerians fought for. The exchanges between President Jonathan and Speaker Tambuwal took place yesterday at the Banquet hall of the Presidential Villa where a symposium was held as part of activities to mark 2012 Democracy Day celebration. While the Speaker accused the President of failing to sign bills passed by the National Assembly into law to further the advancement of policy implementation, the President in a direct response accused the
National Assembly of working at cross purposes with the executive in the over dramatization of the separation of power principles. Hon. Tambuwal who spoke on “Our Democracy: Progress and Challenges,” expressed the worry of the parliament at the failure of the executive to sign bills passed by the National Assembly. He noted that “in as much as it is the constitutional duty of the legislature to pass laws, it is equally the constitutional responsibility of Mr. President to assent to same. It is however disturbing to note that the Executive has shied away from this responsibility by not assenting to bills passed by the National Assembly. This makes the legislative process cumbersome because some of these bills have to be re-introduced DE NOVO. This is not a healthy situation for the Executive-Legislature relationship neither does it portray our democracy in good light amongst the
LIFEWORDS BY PASTOR ITUAH Change does not roll in on the wheels of probability, but comes through continuous struggle. So we must straighten our backs, square our shoulder, work and fight for our freedom "A man can’t ride you unless your back is bent” says martin Luther King Jr. To change from the known to the unknown is usually a difficult task, to change the status quo requires determination. Resist evil for good, servitude for freedom, oppression for liberty, despotism for democracy! You need to dig your heels deep into the soil of life and be set for a long marathon, for the oppressor will not hands off without any fight. Be consistent, unrelenting and have a positive attitude that freedom is attainable. You need to lift your head high and humbly believe in yourself.
TAKE HEART BY ELLA RANDLE
In one moment your entire life can change course. The moment you decide where you are going because you refuse to go back to where you have been —Barbara Rose. ID anyone ever tell you that adversity can cause you to triumph? Did anyone ever tell you that your endeavours, no matter how large or small are actually needed? Did anyone ever tell you to ask yourself - how you really feel about any concern you have? And to follow your actual feelings. Even the most daring and accomplished people have undergone tremendous difficulty. In fact, the more successful they became, the more they attributed their success to the lessons learned during their most difficult times. Adversity is our teacher. When we view adversity as a guide towards greater inner growth, we will then learn to accept the wisdom soul came into this life to learn. And no matter what difficulty you are facing, it is coming from Divine Light to bring you to a higher place within. Babara Rose, brilliant author sums it aptly: “Write down every conceivable reason that your current situation can contribute towards your growth. Write down every way this experience can possibly set the stage for serving to uplift others. When you are complete, and have come to the other side of this experience, you will then know ‘why’ it happened.”
comity of nations” he noted. But the President who also spoke on the occasion accused the National Assembly especially those of them in the same party as the ruling party of working at cross purposes with the executive in the misguided notion of separation of power. According to President Jonathan, while the Judiciary as an arm of government can afford to be separate entity because they are not members of a political party, the executive and the legislative arm of government must work in tandem to achieve the manifesto of their party under which platform they were elected into office.
Jonathan on Separation of Powers “If it is the policy of PDP to carry out a programme in agriculture, it is the executive that would come up with the programme. My thinking is that the legislators who are members of PDP are supposed to support that programme because we are there, because we contested election on the platform of a particular political party, the PDP. But in Nigeria sometimes, you see the anomalies. Sometimes, people play into separation. “If you send your budget to NASS and they tear it to pieces and package what they like for you, you start planning and managing the economy. We have challenges every year. Budgets are not created from the moon. It is based on projections, commitments and funding and what you see sometimes could be disturbing. This has been a major conflict between NASS and the Executive. The Speaker mentioned it that is why I am raising it." On the specific allegation by the Speaker that the executive has failed to assent to bills passed by the Legislature, the President said “every political party has a manifesto and those who contest elections to hold any office whether in the executive arm of government as President, Vice President, Governor
or those who contest election to be in the legislative arm of government either as a legislator or councillor, are supposed to campaign based on the party manifesto and that is why individual governors don’t have their separate manifestos. “Let me talk about separation of powers which in some cases sounds even absurd. How separate are these powers? Yes, you can separate the judiciary to some reasonable level but can you really separate the parliament from the executive and have a stable government? That is one of the greatest challenges we have and especially in Nigeria. “I believe if the parliamentarians and those in the executive maintain that theoretical separation of powers as if there is a wall separating the executive from the legislature, then this country will continue to have problems If we begin to see this clear division, we are exposing the National Assembly for people who are antigovernment to use. It is not good to always celebrate the separation, when we begin to celebrate the separation, those outside government would use National Assembly against the Executive,” he declared. On campaign for 2015 elections, the President warned that elected officials should be allowed to do their job since they are just one year into their tenure of four years, pointing out that “We are just talking about one year of government for a government of four years. Why should we begin to talk about 2015. Let us keep away from whether someone is going to contest or not. Let us focus on governance. It is not yet time for anybody to declare or not to declare interest” he said.
Democracy should be a way of life – Mark In his own contribution Senate President David Mark said that all Nigerians must work towards ensuring that democratic institutions were nurtured and sustained In a democracy message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Paul Mumeh, Senate
President also urged Nigerians to participate actively in the democratic process as well as collaborate with government to strengthen the institutions in order to reach the Eldorado. According to him, it was by deliberate decision and design that Nigeria chose democracy as the best form of government suited for our pluralistic society, adding that democracy should not be seen or perceived as those in government versus those outside government, saying “we must all keep faith”. Senator Mark who stressed that democracy is participatory and representative enough to cater for all interests where no one or group would be marginalized or oppressed, said, “Whether in or outside government, everybody is a stakeholder in the democratic process. Both the ruling party and opposition parties are stakeholders in the democratic arrangement. Everyone is important and every role is relevant.
Nigeria must chart a new course —Tinubu Meanwhile, ACN leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, argued that Nigeria needs to chart a new course in order to move forward in solving her problems. According to him, “Nigeria is not moving forward. We are stuck in improving power generation. Millions of Nigerians are slipping into poverty. “ We must begin to chart a new course for Nigeria now. We must stop this reversal and rally all progressives to the national cause of liberating Nigeria”. Tinubu who also spoke on the opposition's plan to capture power and turn Nigeria in the direction of growth and development
decried the lack of capacity in governance. He argued that “without capacity you will end up with a visionless and directionless government. Right now we are headed in the wrong direction and our current leadership must apply itself to the task of nation building. Thirteen years of PDP leadership have seen us making little progress. We have had years of waste and little growth. How can Nigeria still be fluctuating between 1,200MG and 4,000 megawatts. We have witnessed deficiency in leadership, intimidation and abuse of rule of law and transparent corruption”. Tinubu maintained that “Nigeria is worth dying for ” and urged all Nigerians not to give up on Nigeria.
TUC, PENGASSAN thumb down for democracy Also, Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, yesterday said Nigeria’s democracy had become an alibi for looting and wiping the treasury clean as Nigerians mark the nation’s return to civil rule after long years of military rule today. TUC, the umbrella body for senior staff associations in the country in a statement to commemorate the country ’s democracy, lamented that what was going on in the Nigeria in the name of democracy was not the democracy Nigerians fought and died for. This came as the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, said Nigerians were no longer interested in promises by political leaders, but performance and improvement in their living conditions.
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No sealing of base stations, unless.... — FG Reduces EIA window to 12 weeks BY ADEKUNLE ADEKOYA
AGOS — FORTH WITH, no telecom base station may be sealed by any government agency without first reverting to the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, and the Ministry of Environment. Also, the 18-month period during which it takes the Ministry of Environment to process Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) reports in respect of base stations has been reviewed to 12 weeks. These directives came at the end of a meeting between two ministers, Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafia of the Ministry of Environment, and Mrs Omobola Johnson of the Communications Technology ministry. Both ministers met in furtherance of efforts to resolve the conflict in regulatory roles between two government agencies, the National Environmental Standards Regulatory and Enforcement Agency (NESREA), and the telecoms regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC. It would be recalled that a few weeks ago, NESREA sealed a base
COURT-MATIALLED: A cross section of accused officers of the Special Task Force and Operation Save Heaven, at the inauguration of General Court Martial At 3 Division Headquarters, in Jos, yesterday. Photo: NAN.
Army court-martials 2 colonels, 12 others for alleged misconduct OS — THE Nigerian Army, yesterday, began the court-martial of 14 soldiers serving in Special Task Forces in Maiduguri, Jos and Bauchi for alleged misconduct. The accused included two Colonels, a Master Warrant Officer, seven Lance Corporals and four Privates. The GOC, 3 Armoured Division, Maj. Gen Jack Nwaogbo, while inaugurating the court at the 3 Armoured Division in Jos, said the trial was to determine the culpability of the accused in the charges brought against them. He said: “Court-martial is one of the procedures in the Armed Forces to right some of the perceived wrong-doings by either officers or soldiers who may have erred or allegedly erred in the course of performing their duties. “This court-martial is meant to try alleged offences committed by officers and soldiers serving in 3 Armoured Division, the Special Task Forces in Plateau and Bauchi, and the Joint Special Task Force in Maiduguri.” Nwaogbo explained that the 3 Division was the only location in the North authorised to set up such court to try erring personnel. The GOC urged members of the public to always report cases of abuses and misconduct by military personnel, pointing out that such reports would help the authorities enforce discipline and the rights of victims. According to him,“for now, all of them (accused) are presumed innocent until proven otherwise by the
court; it is not my duty to pronounce any one of them guilty for now. “That is why in line with my responsibility as the GOC, and also in line with the Armed Forces Act CAP A-20 laws of the Federation of Nigeria, I have set up this court to look into these cases and to adjudicate as appropriate.” Nwaogbo charged the defence counsel to look into the charges preferred against their clients to en-
sure that justice was done, while also urging the prosecuting counsel to cooperate with the court. Earlier, Lt. Col. Stephen Andow, General Staff Officer, 3 Division, explained that the offences levelled against the accused were beyond the powers of their various commanders. The President of the sixman court, Brig-Gen. Adamoh Salihu, pledged to be fair and just in the discharge of their duties.
NAN reports that details of the charges were not given. One of the defence counsel, who spoke on condition of anonymity, however, said the accused were facing a two-count charge of negligence in the performance of military duties and miscellaneous offences relating to service property. The offences are punishable under sections 62 (b) and 58 of the Armed Forces Act CAP A-20.
Judiciary needs sanitisation —Musdapher Urges review of processes for appointment of judges BY IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI
BUJA — THE Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Dahiru Musdapher, yesterday, stressed need for an urgent review of processes for the appointment of judges in the country, saying appropriate and necessary steps must be taken towards sanitising the judiciary. The CJN, who made the call while swearing in 12 newly appointed judges of the Federal High Court, insisted that “in the very near future, as part of the reforms undertaken by the judiciary, processes for appointment will be more rigorous and may include tests and interviews in order to choose the most suitable Nigerians to man the courts.” Warning the new judges to extricate themselves from politics, Musdapher emphasized that “allegations
of impropriety against any judicial officer to the relevant body must be substantiated with evidence by the party who alleges same.” According to the CJN, “one of the most important rules of conduct for a judge is to guard against bribery and all other forms of corrupt practices. Doing contrary would amount to unlawful gain, unfaithful conduct, divine transgression and offending the judicial oath and the trust of the common man. Hence, I urge you to shun corruption and shrink from all actions, inactions, omissions or commissions capable of bringing the judiciary into disrepute. “The legal profession and, indeed, the judicature is a noble calling. In truth, the nobility is more exemplified in the personality of a judge, for in reality, the idea of submitting our failings, our vulnerabilities and
frailties for determination before a human arbiter underlines the need for the exercise of the highest standard of professionalism, in fulfillment of this noble role. “I, therefore, charge each of you to be dedicated and discharge your duties without fear or favour, affection or ill-will. For as Ministers in the Temple of Justice, we must do justice to the satisfaction of not just the parties but the public as well. We must remember that as we sit at trial, we also stand on trial. “We must never be complacent in our observation of moral values, as behaviour you exhibit in-curiae and ex-curiae is the foundation upon which the public will accord the institution of the judiciary respect or disrespect. “My learned brothers, avoid all elements of impropriety in your dealings both in your official duties and
in your personal lives. I must emphasize that this will require that you remain politically neutral and defend the constitution and safeguard our young democracy at all times,” he added. Meantime, the CJN, yesterday, said henceforth, some judges would be exclusively assigned to try high profile corruption cases on a day to day basis, noting that “the Federal High Court is now properly staffed to deal without any delay, cases filed by the EFCC and ICPC.” “At present, there are about 150,000 pending cases at the Federal High Courts and the state High Courts throughout the Federation. Permit me to acknowledge the support of the National Assembly as they had given the nod to increase the number of judges of the Federal High Court from 70 to 100."
station belonging to one of the top telcos for not adhering to its 10-metre setback to property rule. NCC responded by unsealing the station, while NESREA went back and re-sealed the station. No communique was issued at the end of the ministers’ meeting which took place at the Ministry of Environment. Chief executives of both NESREA and NCC, Mrs. Ngeri Benebo and Dr Eugene Juwah respectively, were in attendance. However, a source told Vanguard that NCC at the meeting insisted that it had the right to set regulations for the telecom industry and that its five-metre setback prescribed more than eight years ago, met with internationally acceptable safety and health standards. NESREA countered this and stood its grounds that its 10-metre setback, prescribed about two years ago, must be complied with. The source added that NCC cited security implications and quality of service issues resulting from the closure of live base stations whose installations it had approved after compliance with its five-metre setback. Further, the source disclosed that the meeting agreed that base stations to be built in the future must comply with NESREA’s 10-metre setback prescription, until NCC and NESREA regulations are harmonised and the impact of this prescription experienced along the way. While controversy ignited by the actions of the two agencies of government was on-going, EVC of NCC, Dr. Juwah alerted the nation of dangers posed by any agency or government at any level sealing base stations as it not only has security implications, it helps degrade quality of service and connectivity around the country. He condemned resort to sealing of base stations for whatever reason as there were other ways to enforce sanctions against operators in the industry. The reduction of the 18month EIA window to 12 weeks by the Environment Minister will be welcome by operators; it had taken about two years hitherto for a base station to come to life as NESREA’s EIA procedures are carried out during rainy season, dry season and interfacing weather conditions.
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BRIEFING: From left, Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, University of Ibadan, Dr. Segun Ajiboye; ASUU National President,Professor Ukachukwu Awuzie, and former chairman, ASUU, University of Ibadan, Dr. Ademola Aremu, at a briefing on the lingering face-off between Lagos State Government and medical doctors in its employment, in Ibadan, yesterday.
FG owes N185bn judgment debts —Jonathan BY BEN AGANDE B U J A — PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, disclosed that the Federal Government owed N185 billion in judgment debts due to decisions taken by government officials that were not thoroughly thought through and were challenged in court by aggrieved parties. He spoke at a symposium as part of activities marking this year’s Democracy Day celebration where the former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, enjoined political leaders in the country to focus more on how to tackle the destructive challenges facing the nation like oil theft, insecurity, lack of employment opportunities rather than dissipating their attention on 2015 election. President Jonathan said Nigeria had cause to celebrate 13 years of stable democracy, emphasising that the worst democratic government was better than a dictatorial government because “we have a tenure and democratic government gives a little more elastic for people to criticise government, that is why people believe that the worse democratic government is better than a dictatorial dispensation.” He said rather than hold government accountable to the rule of law, Nigerians expect their leaders to use executive fiat on certain issues, which he said cannot work in a democratic set up. The chairman of the occasion Anyaoku, appealed to politicians and media to focus less attention on the debate for
the 2015 election. He stated: “I have only two messages in my brief Chairman’s remarks. The first is to urge our politicians, and here I must also add our media too, to spare the nation the distraction of engaging now in public debate on the 2015 elections. This is only the first of a four-year political dispensation. We must not allow preoccupation with the 2015 elections to confirm the view that our politicians are only interested in selfaggrandisement, with the result that our national politics is bereft of active ideas on how to uplift the country and improve the quality of life of our citizens. “The main focus of our public debates at this time should be how to tackle the massively destructive challenges facing the nation. Our democracy, like democracy in many other countries, has over the last year faced serious challenges. We, the government, the corporate sector, the civil organisations and the citizenry-must in all our activities be driven by the commitment and desire to work for the good of the majority of our citizens. It is only this way that we can be confident of continuing to celebrate in years to
come, our democracy day in a united and indivisible country,” he said. President, Guild of Editors, Mr. Gbenga Adefaye, who spoke on behalf of the media, commended the administration for expanding the scope of democracy by identifying with the media, noting that this had demonstrated a realisation by government that the media are major pillar for democratic development. He, however, charged the government to pay more attention on security, employment generation and development of key infrastructure, particularly power. Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega, said while the country had made progress in the conduct of free, fair and credible elections with the 2011 general elections, the lack of internal democracy in the political parties still constitute one of the major challenges of the commission, while the prosecution of electoral offences was another key area that should be looked into with the creation of Special Electoral Offences Tribunal.
Five killed in Edo auto crash ENIN—NO fewer than five persons, on Saturday, lost their lives in a multiple road accident, near Okpella, on the Benin-Auchi- Okene highway in Edo State. Also, three persons were killed in separate incidents in Warri, Delta State, among them, the owner of a popular drinking joint near Sedco Junction in Udu area, who was killed by suspected
cultists. On the Benin-AuchiOkene highway auto crash, it was gathered that the accident, involving four vehicles, occurred in the early hours of Saturday, as motorists from the Abuja and Benin end of the highway were left stranded for several hours due to gridlock caused by the accident.
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142 Nigerian policemen for Guinea-Bissau
Train crushes Okada rider, passenger in Lagos BY OLASUNKANMI AKONI
BY EVELYN USMAN A G O S —A C T I N G Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, weekend, in Lagos, said 142 policemen had been deployed to GuineaBissau for peace operations. There had been unrest in that country, aftermath of last month's military coup. The policemen, according to Abubakar, would remain in the country until peace was restored. Describing the Nigeria Police Force as one of the best in the world, Abubakar said: “The advance team left on Thursday. A total of 142 policemen were deployed to GuneaBissau to maintain law and order because the United Nations believes that the Nigeria Police is one of the best in the world. Therefore, they want our officers and men to render same service we are rendering in Haiti, Somalia, Sudan and other parts of the world there. The policemen are of different ranks and they will remain there as long as it takes.”
Adeboye to pray for parents AGOS—THE General Overseer of Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, will hold a special prayer session for parents and intending parents on Sunday, June 3, at the church's national headquarters, EbuteMeta, Lagos. The prayer session, tagged, “Rehoboth Now we shall be fruitful in the land” is part of the church's monthly special prayer meeting. At a briefing, Assistant Pastor of RCCG National Headquarters Parish, Pastor Goke Aniyeloye, said: “In order for parents and intending parents to be fruitful and also build good families and society, Pastor Adeboye is ready to hold a special prayer for this special group so that their lives and purpose of being created may materialise.”
KEJA—TRAGEDY struck in the early hours of yesterday, when a fast-moving train crushed an unidentified Okada rider and his passenger at the railway crossing of the Nigerian Railway Corporation at
Guinness Road, off Agege Motor Road, Idimangoro, Agege, Lagos. According to eyewitnesses, the accident occurred at 11.15 am, when the train, heading towards Oyingbo area of the state, crushed the duo. The Okada rider, who was said to be impatient, was
said to have ignored the instruction of the flagman, who had stopped vehicles and Okadas for the train to pass. An eyewitness said: “He (Okada man) had made a quick dash but was unlucky, as all of a sudden, we heard the sound of broken bones and saw dismembered
body scattered all around the area.” When Vanguard visited the scene, the badly crushed Boxer model motorcycle was seen at a corner, while the corpse of the passenger was covered with a cellophane, awaiting removal by the police. The dismembered body
of the Okada rider, who was said to be a Malian , had been packed and taken away to an undisclosed place. The tragedy led to a gridlock on the axis, as sympathisers bemoaned the fate of the victims. It will be recalled that a similar incident occurred recently at Ikeja Along railway crossing, where another impatient Okada rider and passenger were crushed.
419: Man docked over N5.9m BY ONOZURE DANIA KEJA—A 49-year-old man, Alakpa Anthony, has been arranged before an Ikeja Magistrate's Court, Lagos, for defrauding two men of N5.9 million. He was accused of collecting the money from one Ifeanyi Amaku and one Chukwudi Uzodemma at different times. According to the prosecutor, Mr. Barth Nwaokeye, the accused had on April 4, 2010 and February 14, 2008 collected N5.9 million under false pretence, adding that Anthony had claimed that he was a food technologist and promised to help get contracts for the victims. The accused pleaded not guilty. The magistrate, Mr. Olufemi Isaac, granted the accused bail in the sum of N500,000 with two sureties.
From left, Nike Osinowo; Ogun State Deputy Governor, Prince Segun Adesegun; Governor Ibikunle Amosun; Miss Nigeria 2011, Oluwafeyijimi Sodipo; Governor's wife, Mrs. Olufunso Amosun and others, during the home-coming ceremony for the beauty queen in Abeokuta, weekend. BY MONSUR OLOWOOPEJO
KEJA—GOVERNOR Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State, yesterday, justified why the Federal Government must accord the state a special status in the revenue allocation formula, stressing that “Lagos is to Nigeria what the neck is to the body.” Fashola spoke at a state banquet to mark the 45th anniversary of the creation of the state in Victoria Island, which was attended by former governors Alhaji Lateef Jakande, BrigadierGeneral Mobolaji Johnson, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and others. The governor said despite the relocation of the seat of power from the state in 1991, Lagos State had remained the focal point for economic and financial activities. He recalled that “in 1976, 10 days before the demise of General Murtala Muhammed, in his speech to announce the relocation of the federal capital from Lagos, he said there was need for the Federal Government to maintain a special status for the state.” Fashola noted that despite the statement by the late head of the state, the Federal Government
Why Lagos deserves special revenue allocation, by Fashola had failed to accord the state the require preference. He said: “In other countries where the seat of power was relocated, the government does not abdicate its responsibilities to its former host because often time, the former capital still holds some historical, cultural and socioeconomic relevance.
“Despite our important status, the Federal Government has left the state out of any attempt to increase its revenue allocation from the federal coffers by conferring it with the promised special status. We have grown in population without corresponding increase in infrastructure because
funds are just not available and the Federal Government has refused to support the state with the wherewithal to do more.''
Report corrupt policemen for sack, says Manko BY EVELYN USMAN KEJA—LAGOS State Commissioner of Police,
Court to rule May 30 on Akingbola's no-case submission BY ABDULWAHAB ABDULAH & ONOZURE DANIA
KEJA—AN Ikeja High Court, Lagos, yesterday, adjourned till May 30, to rule on the no- case submission by former managing director of Intercontinental Bank (now acquired by Access Bank), Dr. Erastus Akingbola and General Manager of Tropics Securities Limited, Bayo Dada, against the charges against them. Trial judge, Justice Habeeb Abiru, adjourned for ruling after parties concluded their argument. Akingbola, who was expected to open his defence in the charge
against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, stunned the prosecution, when his lead counsel, Mr. Deji Sasegbon, SAN, informed the court that he had filed a no-case submission in place of his defence. The duo are standing trial on a 29-count charge of stealing and diversion of N47.1 billion belonging to the bank. At the hearing in the case, Sasegbon contended that the prosecution had failed to establish any prima-facie case against his clients, adding that it did not also prove the ingredient of stealing as
specified in Section 383 (2)(f) of the Criminal Code Laws of Lagos State. He argued that it was wrong for the prosecution to accuse Akingbola of stealing and Dada of obtaining by false pretence, contending that there was no where in its case, the prosecution proved the allegations. He argued that, “The defendants cannot be accused of stealing the bank’s money. Some of the transactions have to do with loan. The common denominator in loan is that the money will be returned. Once there is intention to return the money, they cannot be accused of
Mr. Umar Manko, yesterday, charged members of the public, including school children to be on the look out for policemen who indulge in corrupt practices and report same personally to him. He assured that such offences would lead to outright dismissal from the Force and subsequent prosecution in court of the culprit. He spoke in Lagos, at the Children Security Summit /Inauguration of the Nigerian Young Protectors, organised by Security Watch Africa in partnership with the Nigeria Police Force and Mirrow Communications Limited. The Project Coordinator of Security Watch Africa, Mr. Omotayo Animashaun, explained that the summit was aimed at creating security consciousness in the children, with a view to making them agents of positive change.
10— Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
H E A R T Y T A L K S : Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State and the Soun of Ogbomosoland, Oba Jimoh O l a d u n n i O y e w u m i , Ajagungbade III, at the book launch to mark the monarch's 86th birthday in Ogbomoso, weekend. Photo: Oyo State Government House.
Ajimobi, Fayemi, Aliyu hail Soun of Ogbomoso at 86
Daniel nearly dethroned me over bad road comment — Alake Amosun inaugurates N1.3bn road Awujale advises gov to prune LG workers BY DAUD OLATUNJI
BY OLA AJAYI
B A D A N — GOVERNOR Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has said his government would continue to accord due respect and recognition to the traditional institution. He said this just as governors of Ekiti, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Osun, Mr. Rauf Aregebesola and Niger states, Dr. Babangida Aliyu, commended Soun of Ogbomosoland, Oba Jimoh Oladunni Oyewumi, for his role in the development of Yoruba tradition and national peace. They said these at the formal presentation of a book, “The Merchant Prince and the Monarch” commemorating the 86th birthday of the monarch in Ogbomoso. According to Ajimobi, royal fathers in the state would not be left to their fate, but their welfare would be given the deserved attention by his administration. Gov. Ajimobi described the Soun as a quintessential monarch, an accomplished Nigerian and an exceptional entrepreneur as well as an epitome of royalty. He said: “I find him to be not only a hardworking individual but also a perfectionist.” The governor noted that Ogbomoso had flourished during the reign of Oba Ajagungbade, stressing that there had been relative peace in the ancient town.
B E O K U TA — SPEAKING for the first time about the controversy that dogged his comments on the terrible state of roads in his domain during the immediate past administration of former governor, Gbenga Daniel, the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, yesterday, recalled his ordeal, saying his harmless, candid appeal almost cost him his throne. Oba Gbadebo, while speaking during the commissioning of the 2.5 kilometre Ibara-Ita-Eko road constructed at over N1.3 billion in Abeokuta, lamented that he made the comments to charge the government to repair the road but, he was brandished as playing to the gallery. It will be recalled that Alake had made comments that all the roads in Abeokuta were in the state disrepair, which pitched him against then governor, Daniel, who complained through his former Commissioner for Information, Mr. Kayode Samuel, that the Alake was playing to the gallery. Vanguard, however, gathered that Alake would have lost his throne for making the comments against the government, but, for the intervention of his chiefs who worked towards the resolution of the crisis. According to Alake: “This is the road I made comments over that the government said I was playing to the gallery.” At the event, the Awujale
of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona, urged Gov. Amosun to continue obtaining loan for the development of the state through infrastructure. Awujale said: “This is a very good beginning for you. During the time of Olusegun Osoba, there was not enough money like this then, but yet he made remarkable achievements, particularly on education and that is the starting point for Amosun this time. “If there is the need for us to obtain loan for projects, Your Excellency, go for it. We are going to support you because there is no government that has enough revenue. “To obtain loan for projects is not a new thing but people need to see what you have spent the money on. If not that such money will be expended on jamboree. A government that does not borrow has not done anything.” The monarch, however, advised the governor to prune the number of local governments workers, so as to check idleness. He said: “Other area is that we are having a lot of excesses at the local government level. You need to see the parade of workers in that place, but are idle. It is not too much if they are sent to farm. That is why local governments are not doing any meaningful development because there are too many idle workers there.” Before the commissioning, Amosun said the road would serve as a model of the highways that would dot the nooks and crannies of the state in the months to come.
The event was attended by former governor, Aremo Olusegun Osoba; Olowu of Owu, Oba Gboyega Dosunmu and Olu of Ilaro Oba Kehinde Gbadewole.
Musa, Aregbesola, others extol Ola Oni's virtues BY GBENGA OLARINOYE
S O G B O — N AT I O N A L Chairman, Conference of Nigerian Political Pa r t i e s , C N P P, a n d former Kaduna State g o v e r n o r, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, yesterday, in Osogbo, blamed Nigerian leaders for the current problems in the c o u n t r y, s a y i n g t h e problems would persist unless the Federal Government provided permanent solution to unemployment. The former governor, who identified unemployment as the major cause of the country ’s crisis, maintained that “there may not be peace in Nigeria unless the government provides solution to the high level of unemployment in the country. This is the singular solution to our many
problems.” Musa, while speaking at the inauguration of the Comrade Ola Oni Centre for Social Research in Osogbo, noted that the high population of Nigeria would make it impossible for any nation of the world to intervene in the current challenges facing the country. Osun State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, who was special guest at the event, said the government needed to proffer permanent solution to all the problems confronting the c o u n t r y, for Nigeria to regain its glory before the i n t e r n a t i o n a l community. While extolling the virtues of the late Oni, Aregbesola described him as a socialist who abandoned his wealth to fight for the interest of the masses till he died.
VANGUARD, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012—11
N32.8BN PENSION SCAM:
Accused beg court to quash charge BY IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI
From left: Governor Liyel Imoke of Cross River State; former Governor of the state, Mr Donald Duke, and his wife, Onari, during the public presentation of a book "Born to Serve" on Imoke's life and politics, at the Kolanut Conference Centre, Calabar, Cross River State.
Sanusi, Ciroma, NLC kick against removal of CBN’s autonomy Say politicians 'll settle differences with it BY HENRY UMORU & INALEGWU SHAIBU
BUJA —Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi; former governor of the bank, Dr. Adamu Ciroma and the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, have rejected a proposed law by the Senate to compel the apex bank to submit its annual budget to the National Assembly for approval. Sanusi told the Senate Joint Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, and Judiciary that the amendment to the CBN 2007 Act was undesirable and against global best practices as it sought to put CBN at the mercy of politicians who were capable of using the bank to score cheap political points. Sanusi who was joined by Ciroma, NLC and other financial experts at a one-day public hearing on "Central Bank Amendment Bill 2012" said the proposed law would remove the autonomy of CBN and compromise the apex bank in monetary policy formulations. He listed 40 countries where their central banks do not submit annual budgets to parliaments for approval except Zimbabwe, adding that the economic situations of Zimbabwe do not encourage any kind of emulation. The governor also cleared the misconception that nobody approves budget of CBN, maintaining that the apex bank sub-
mits its annual approved budget by its Board of Directors to the Budget Office of the Federation. According to him, “the question is: of all the functions of CBN, why should it be budgetary independence? There is not a single Central Bank in the world that the budget goes to parliament for approval. “Now the interest rate is too high, we have to keep it high because we have to check inflation. Now, if the budget was under the control of political authorities, it is very easy, they will say fine, you have the interest rate, we will see when you come for your budget. And maybe because we need the approval of budget, we go and compromise on that.” He referred to the Federal Reserve Bank of United States, the Bank of England, Reserve Bank of South Africa, and the Central Bank of Ghana among others as banks that have the budgets approved by the Board of Directors. According to him, “in each of these Central Banks apart from one, the budget is approved by the board; the annual account is approved by the board. The one Central Bank in which the budget is prepared by the board and approved by the minister is the central bank of Zimbabwe. “I think it is important that when we talk about legislation in central banking to benchmark the CBN and see whether we are benchmarking against 39 or against the central bank of Zimbabwe and then look that economy and currency
of that country.”
Nobody should interfere with CBN — Ciroma Ciroma in his presentation to the committee said the CBN should be left to operate without political interference, adding that political interference will erode the powers of the bank especially in crisis situations. He said: “Unless you can deal with the economy and monitory policy right when things go wrong with the CBN, I don’t know where the country will be. Let us not bring a policy that will open the system to things that we cannot predict. “They (board of Directors of CBN) are made up of people with knowledge and integrity. Why do you want to do something different, leave the CBN well alone. What is important is ensuring that the right thing is done and that there is trust in the internal monetary system. We should not unnecessarily tamper with what is working.”
Amendment may affect economy adversely—NLC The NLC in its presentation described the bill as retrogressive, saying the amendment may affect the economy adversely. Vice President of the NLC, Mr. Isa Aremu, urged the Senate to drop amendment to CBN 2007 Act, saying: “We must have the independence of the judiciary, we must have the independence of the CBN, and we need the independ-
ence of the labour movement. We support that the CBN should be autonomous without eroding the powers of the National Assembly to do a rigorous oversight.”
Mark reacts But the Senate President, David Mark, who declared public hearing open said the amendment was not meant to clip the independence of CBN but ensure that the bank conform to global best practice in the execution of its duties. Mark represented by Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma Egba, said: “We do not have a pre-conceived position. I want to give that assurance that the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria does not have a pre-conceived position. “We will be guided by incite and the input and the best interest of Nigeria and I want to believe that those of you that will be speaking to us will provide the necessary justification for whatever position you canvassed. Let us know what the global practices are, we will be guided by the best global practices. So, I want to reassure everybody that this Senate is approaching the bill with an open mind.” Co-chairman of the Committee, Senator Umar Dahiru said the bill was not about removing the powers of CBN put to ensure accountability and openness in the operations of the apex bank. According to him, “the issue of submitting budget to the National Assembly is an issue of checks and balances, accountability, and openness."
BUJA — THE six civil servants accused of complicity in the illegal diversion of N32.8 billion from the Nigeria Police Pension funds, yesterday, approached an Abuja High Court at Gudu, begging it to quash the 16count criminal charge preferred against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Those on trial are a Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. Atiku Abubakar Kigo; Esai Dangabar, Ahmed Inuwa Wada, John Yakubu Yusufu, Mrs Veronica Ulonma Onyegbula and Sani Habila Zira. Justice Abubakar Thalba had on March 29 remanded them in prison custody shortly after they pleaded not guilty to the charge. Though the court subsequently granted them bail on April 3 after they de-
posited N10 million each, as well as produced two persons on Grade Level 14 in the civil service that stood surety for each of them, the accused persons, urged the court to discontinue further hearing on the matter. Thalba, who earlier ordered EFCC to produce its witnesses in court for fullblown hearing to commence in the case, yesterday adjourned the matter till June 25. Specifically, the accused persons are contending that the EFCC failed to either establish strong prima-facie evidence capable of warranting their prosecution, or show the nexus between them and the alleged scam. EFCC had alleged that the accused persons conspired and sequentially withdrew monies from Police Pension funds in an account domiciled at FirstBank of Nigeria and shared it among themselves, adding that the 3rd accused person, Inuwa Wada, collected N18 million from Unity Bank Plc as his reward for retaining the Police Pension Account with the bank.
Soldiers, ex-militants turn flow station to battlefield EMMA AMAIZE, REGIONAL EDITOR, SOUTH-SOUTH
ENAGOA — A FLOW station belonging to Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company, SNEPCO, in Ekeremor Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, was Sunday night, the battle ground between soldiers of Joint Task Force, JTF, on the Niger Delta, codenamed, “Operation Pulo Shield” and a cluster of ex-militants, who invaded the oil facility with explosives. At the end of the hostilities, the ex-militants, who came in a 200 - horsepower fibre boat to blow up the Benisede Flow Station, belonging to SNEPCo, succeeded in destroying two oil wells that were suspended on water, but it was not known if there was any casualty. An account said the exmilitants struck at 8 pm, while another version had it that they stormed the flow station, between the boundary of Delta and Bayelsa states at 10.30pm. Spokesman, Shell, Mr. Precious Okolobo, told Vanguard when contacted, yesterday, that he had no information on the attack.
JTF spokesman, Lt-Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu, said he was in a meeting and could not confirm the story, but promised to get back to this reporter. A dependable military source, however, said the task force was hunting for the leader of the group that attacked the flow station. Apparently, the invading ex-militants did not know that soldiers were on guard at the flow station and were confronted by the JTF operatives, resulting in a gun battle. According to a source, “the ex-militants met soldiers in the yard and a shoot-out ensued. Both sides exchanged gunfire for some time before the ex-militants, numbering about eight, blew up two wells. “Gun shots echoed from the direction of the flow station, we don’t know those who were shooting, but we knew it was a serious battle,” an indigene of the neighbouring Ojobo community in Delta State told Vanguard on phone. The source added: “The ex-militants came to sink the entire flow station, but when they got there, they met to their chagrin, men of JTF, who repelled the incursion. However, they destroyed two oil wells.”
12—Vanguard, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
Tuberculosis infected beef allegedly sold in Edo BY SIMON EBEGBULEM ENIN—OFFI CIALS of Edo State Veterinary Services have raised alarm over alleged sale of tuberculosis infested beef in the markets by traders who bought them from unapproved slaughter houses in the state. Director, Veterinary Services in the state, Dr. C. Aibaogun, who raised the alarm weekend, while displaying some infested organs of some slaughtered cows, sold in some abattoirs in Benin City, Edo State, explained that official of the service had uncovered what he de-
PRESENTATION: From left: Winner and student, Mr. Tony Willie; Dean, Student Affairs, Prof. Akporuno Temi; Director of Sports, Mr. Achugbue Tony; Vice Chancellor, Prof. Eric Arubayi and Analyst, Social Media, Etisalat Nigeria, Ms. Onyinye Egwudo, during the presentation of a brand new Hyundai i10 at the Etisalat Cliqfest campus tour in Delta State University.
Group tasks Jonathan on N-Delta devt
Communal clash: 40 feared dead, M village head, 4 policemen beheaded BY JOHNBOSCO AGBAKWURU
ALABAR—OVER 40 persons are feared dead, while four Mobile Policemen and the village Head of Ntan Obu Ukpe in Eniong, Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State, were allegedly beheaded in a renewed communal clash between the Ntan Obu and the Ikpanya in Ibiono Local government Area of Akwa Ibom State. Already, about 2,000 indigenes of Ntan Obu are now refuges in nearby communities of Odukpani council, while houses, including churches were destroyed by the invaders, who allegedly had the help of Fulani herdsmen. Confirming the report, Chairman of Odukpani council, Mr. Stephen Asuquo, said the people of Ntan Obu were attacked by the Ikpanaya neighbor-
ing community of Akwa Ibom State, last week. Asuquo said: “The remote cause, I can say, is the struggle by people from the Ikpanya for the land that belongs to the Ntan Obu. Ikpanya is in Ibiono council of Akwa Ibom State while Ntan Obu is in Odukpani council in Cross River State. “Something similar took place last year and the deputy governors of
the two states met and agreed that everything should return to what it was before the crisis, while they looked into it and the Supreme Court judgment had ruled that the land belonged to Odukpani and the people of Odukpani are Cross River State indigenes. “So people from Ikpanya had tried to lease out Ntan Obu land to cattle
Edo guber poll: Police boss alleges plan by politicians to wreak havoc BY GABRIEL ENOGHOLASE ENIN—AHEAD of the July 14 governorship election in Edo State, the state Police Command, yesterday, in Benin, alerted citizens of the state of moves by
some politicians to recruit thugs to unleash terror in the state before the election. Commissioner of Police, Mr. Olayinka Balogun, in a chat with newsmen, also alleged that some wealthy politicians were sewing police uni-
Nigerian Content: Petroleum Minister urged to enforce compliance ARRI—NIGER Delta Indigenous Movement for Radical Change, NDIMRC, has urged the Petroleum Minister, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, to sanction multi-national oil companies, which fail to implement the Nigeria's Local Content Law. The group, in a state-
rearers. You can appreciate it because it is a flop play; once the rain subsides and the water recedes, the land leaves alluvial product on the surface which acts as a natural fertilizer to the vegetation. So I am appealing to the cattle rearers, we don’t mind cattle rearers being there but they must recognise the overlords and not that of the neighbouring community."
ment by its President, Nelly Emma, praised the Petroleum Minister for her transparency in the industry and encouragement of indigenous companies, but urged her to sanction multi-national oil companies over their alleged continued subversion of the Nigerian Content law.
The group said two years on after President Goodluck Jonathan signed the Nigerian Content Bill into law, most multi-national oil companies were still carrying on their operations as usual and had allegedly refused to carry indigenous companies along.
forms, noting that the terror to be unleashed by the thugs would lead to destruction of government property. He further alleged that some politicians were planning to destroy billboards and posters of opposition political parties. Balogun said that the police also discovered plans by politicians to import arms and ammunition into the state, adding that armed youths from neighbouring states were being recruited for the governorship election. He assured that the police would rise to the occasion by ensuring that those fingered in the allegations were arrested, stressing that the police will ensure success of the election in the spirit of one man one vote.
scribed as a generalised case of tuberculosis infested beef, which on inspection revealed modular lesions (or infested sites) which enveloped on the surface of the various organs of the slaughtered cow. He noted that these nodules are not easily destroyed by the normal cooking process, adding that it was only the inspectors that could identify the problem and eliminate the disease. He admonished people of the state to be vigilante and ensure that they purchase their beef in government approved abattoirs.
OVEMENT for the Actualization of the Dreams of Niger Deltans, MADND, has urged President Goodluck Jonathan to expedite developmental projects in the Niger Delta region. President of the group and former leader of Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, Mr. Josiah Oyakonghan, expressed worry over the slow pace of developmental
projects in the region, saying that the confidence Niger Delta youths have on him was fast fading away. He said: ”The prayers and sacrifices made by the people of Niger Delta are not just to rule the country because the region has not produced president since independence, but to use this opportunity we have to develop the marginalised and impoverished region."
Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012—13
Pipeline vandalisation: Orji to hold LG bosses, monarchs responsible BY ANAYO OKOLI
MUAHIA—ABIA State Governor, Chief Theodore has vowed to hold transition committee chairmen and tradition rulers of the three oil producing Local Government Areas in the state responsible for future cases of pipeline vandalisation in the area. The three Local Government Areas are Ukwa East, Ukwa West and Ugwunagbo. Governor Orji gave the warning while speaking at the Aguiyi Ironsi Cenotaph during the inauguration of 3,000 phones, 1,000 Keke, 1,000 umbrellas, 1,000 tables and 1,000 chairs as part
of the government’s empowerment programme. According to the governor, the state would no longer tolerate indiscriminate vandalisation of oil pipelines in the area, saying the reasons for the empowerment programmes was for youths to be gainfully engaged and desist from crime. He maintained that his administration would continue to pursue people-oriented programmes and would partner with concerned organisations to further empower youths in the state and urged the youths to desist from negative behaviours.
Democracy Day: We've cause to celebrate— Lar
VERDICT: From left— Most Rev. Patrick Ajibogun, Retired Archbishop, United African Methodist Church, and Dr. Paul Adekunle Onanuga, newly consecrated Bishop, Diocese of Lagos, the First African Church Mission Incorporated, marking the Lagos High Court verdict in favour of the United African Methodist Evangelical Church, Abule Ijesha, Lagos.
BY TAYE OBATERU OS—ELDER statesman and former Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, National Chairman, Chief Solomon Lar, has said there is cause for celebration of the sustenance of democracy in the country, noting that the future was bright. In a statement to commemorate Democracy Day made available to journalists in Jos, yesterday, he said Nigerians should not despair about the imperfections in the journey so far, expressing confidence that things would continue to improve. He said: “May 29th has
come to stay as Nigeria’s Democracy Day, a day set aside to reflect on our resolve to embrace democratic governance and ensure that there is no return to any form of undemocratic governance in Nigeria again.” “Every Nigerian must celebrate this day with a sense of patriotism, nationalism and democratic spirit. We have a lot to celebrate when we reflect on the journey so far from 1999 to date. I, therefore, urge all Nigerians and friends of Nigeria to focus on the progress we have made during these years of unbroken democratic governance.”
Obi appraises Nigerian democracy...says it's promising BY VINCENT UJUMADU
WKA—ANAMBRA State governor, Mr. Peter Obi yesterday appraised the 13 years of the country’s democracy, describing the period as challenging and promising. Speaking with newsmen, Obi said Nigerians were understandably eager to see that the country emerged as
one of the great nations of the world, but observed that neither development nor democracy was a one-stop journey. He said: “We have made gains since the emergence of the present democratic process in 1999 and indeed in the past one year, which are worthy of celebration. The fact that there are still areas of unfulfilled aspirations did not render our progress meaningless. Not even the so-called devel-
Gombe trains, employs 1,997 youths in YREP programme BY JOHN BULUS GOMBE—GOMBE State government has given immediate employment to 1,997 youths who have
successfully completed their training under the state government Youth Rehabilitation and Empowerment Programme, YREP.
In the past three weeks, the youths were camped at the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, Orientation Camp, Malam Sidi, Kwami Local
Ebonyi women hail Dame Jonathan ABAKALIKI— EBONYI women have lauded the First Lady, Mrs Patience Jonathan for craving peace for the people of the state and Nigerians in general. Speaking in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, some of the women acknowledged that only when peace reigned could the nation enjoy and experience peace. Mrs Cecilia NkanmaUde, wife of the Chairman of Afikpo South Local Government, told NAN: “I
think this advocacy for peace is timely looking at our situation in the country today. ” “We have had communal clashes and several cases of kidnapping and this does not speak well of us as a people. I think that the state will move forward if we had more awareness programmes like this. We would also like to thank the First Lady for her donations to the women; every Ebonyi woman will smile today. We will nominate 10 indigent women from each ward who we
will in turn empower with these gifts.” In her opinion, wife of the Chairman of Afikpo North Local Government, Mrs Rebecca ChineduEkho said, “everyone is aware that it is women that suffer from violence and conflicts”. We plead that the men should sheathe their swords and embrace peace for the sake of our children and the generations unborn. We are tired of hearing of bombings in this country, it really sounds strange.
Government Area of the state for the training exercise. In his speech during the passing out ceremony yesterday, Commissioner for Youth Empowerment and Poverty Eradication, YEPE, Alhaji Sani Labaran, said the occasion marked “the passing out of the reformed youths who for the past three weeks have passed through training programmes that have transformed them into useful citizens of the sate.” He further stated that 500 of the youths had been deployed as environmental marshals, 500 others as Ward Marshals, while 197 were Traffic Marshals. “The training programme consisted of paramilitary drills, emergency response, disaster management and raffic
oped countries have stopped developing as they are still engaged in the task of transforming their societies". The people and government of Anambra State therefore join other Nigerians to congratulate President Goodluck Jonathan and ourselves at the turn of another year of democratic rule. It has been a fruitful year that has seen Mr. President taking necessary, but sometimes, difficult decisions towards the well-being of our country and people. I have no doubt in my mind that these decisions
will eventually launch Nigeria into sustainable growth and unity.” Obi called on Nigerians to contribute their quota in the current efforts at good governance, economic prosperity and social security. He expressed happiness at the on-going work at Enugu International Airport and the assurances that work would soon start on the second Niger Bridge, and called on Nigerians to support the President as he works assiduously towards surmounting the challenges facing the country.
...commends Cardinal Okogie Conference of Nigeria
WKA—GOVERNOR Peter Obi of Anambra State, yesterday, commended the contributions of the out-going Archbishop of Lagos, Anthony Cardinal Okogie, saying under his leadership, Lagos Archdiocese recorded a phenomenal growth in both physical and spiritual terms. In a statement, Obi said Okogie’s informed and bold commentaries on socio-political issues helped to advance positive national consciousness. He recalled that as an Archbishop of Lagos Cardinal Okogie headed the prestigious Bishops’
and the Christian Association of Nigeria – CAN, from 1994 –2000, a period, he observed, Okogie proved himself a true apostle of Christ by the apostolic zeal with which he faced his responsibilities. The governor assured the Cardinal of continued prayer for the peace of God to remain with him throughout his life in retirement. Meanwhile, the governor has congratulated the newly appointed Archbishop of Lagos, Bishop Adewale Martins and expressed optimism that he would give a good account of himself as he did as the Bishop of Abeokuta Diocese.
14—Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
Nigeria's Victor Olisa appointed London police commander UK-bASED Nigerian, Mr. Victor Olisa, has been appointed first black commander for the Bexley local council in London. Olisa, a Chief Superintendent with the London Metropolitan Police, whose grandfather was a police officer in Nigeria, said his focus was on the job rather than on being the ‘first black’ to hold the position. He pointed out that his ethnicity never affected the way he carried out his duties. “Policing runs in the family and I have always wanted to be a police officer and ethnicity does not affect that” Olisa told reporters in London, in his reaction on the appointment. “I consider myself first and foremost a police officer. If (being black) is an advantage, then brilliant; If it’s a disadvantage, I will have to deal with that, I can’t hide it.” Olisa said a lot was being done to address racism within the force, adding
COMMISSIONING—Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State (middle); Speaker, Abia State House of Assembly, Ude Okochukwu (right); and Kingsley Mgbeahuru, Commissioner for Works during the commissioning of Mbom Ibeku road in Umuahia.
NAFDAC uncovers illegal drug factory in Onitsha ...seizes N20m fake drugs BY ENYIM ENYIM
NITSHA—THE Na tional Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, has uncovered an illegal drug factory in Onitsha, Anambra State, even as it seized fake drugs and equipment worth over N20 million in Onitsha. Deputy Director of NAFDAC, Special zonal office, Mr Benson Kine told newsmen that the illegal factory had been functioning as a family cottage business. Kine said the factory, following a tip-off by publicspirited individual, was discovered at a residential duplex on Commercial Avenue, Fegge, Onitsha, in the Federal Housing Estate of Fegge community. He said NAFDAC and the police team apprehended a woman named (withheld) who claimed her husband owns the house and the illegal factory. The NAFDAC Director said the woman's husband had been at large for some time now abandoning his family after NAFDAC and the police team raided their house and confiscated the fake drugs and equipment. According to him, “we are yet to get her husband, who she alleged owns the house and illegal factory as well as do the supply of the fake drugs and procures materials for their manufacturing. From available sales receipt recovered from them; they supply the products to Idumota Market, Lagos, Kano as well as Maidugiru in Borno State and they had been in the business for some years
now. The suspect, her children and relatives have not found anything wrong in running an illegal and fake drug factory all these years.” Kine said the suspects had been transferred to the agency’s investigation directorate in Lagos for further investigation and prosecution. The fake drugs recovered are as follows: Minadex Tonic and Multi-Vitamin for
Children - 100 cartons by 12 bottles by 200 mililitres and Merit Liquid Quinine - 17 cartons by 40 bottles by 200 mililitres. Other are: Festdrine (Anti-malaria) - 16 cartons by 100 bottles by 100 mililitres; Glibebenclanide (Antimalaria) - 37 cartons by 1000 tablets by 5 mililitres and Geofage 500 (Anti-Diabetic) - 70 cartons by 500 tablets by 500 militires. The equipment included:
three hot-air-gum machines for shrink wrapping, two cartons sealing machines, improvise vice device for printing numbers and a nylon sealing machines. Other are: a full keg of chloroquine Forte, rolls of taper prove nylons, five sack filled empty pack of Merit Quinine and insert label containing fake NAFDAC numbers and manufacturer addresses.
Ezeship tussle: Awo Mbieri denies Nwaozuzu kidnap saga BY NNAMDI OJIEGO OLLOWING the tradi tional stool crisis rocking the Awo Mbieri Autonomous Community in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo State, the community has restated that Nze Oliver Nwaozuzu is not its Eze-elect and warned him to stop parading himself as such. The community also asked the general public to disregard the rumour that Nze Nwaozuzu was kidnapped
and money given to his abductors to kill him after election to the traditional throne of the community and called on the security agents to thoroughly investigate the matter. The community in a statement through its apex body, Awo Mbieri Autonomous Community Progressive Union, AMACPU and signed by the President General and the General Secretary, Mr J.N.J Ewurum and Mr Chiemeka Eronini respectively, described as embarrassing,
the attitude of Nze Nwaozuzu which it said was portraying the community in a bad light. “To put the record straight, Nze Oliver Nwaozuzu is neither the Eze-elect nor the monarch of Awo-Mbieri Ancient Kingdom. He did not apply for the Ezeship form. He was not screened and identified when the community conducted an election on March 2011 to fill the vacant Ezeship stool created by the death of HRH Eze Dr. Emma UmezEronini.
Financial prudence: Obi lauds Jonathan NUGU—GOVER NOR Peter Obi of Anambra yesterday applauded President Goodluck Jonathan for his prudent management of the country’s finances. Speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, the governor said the country’s level of borrowing had reduced drastical-
ly in the last one year, adding that it would help the country to build a better future. Obi, who is a member of the National Economic Management Team, admitted that past administrations tackled challenges of the country wrongly, but expressed delight that they were gradually being corrected.
“His government means well because they are now beginning to do things rightly, but they are looking at the way things can be done and done correctly. If you look at the area of power for example, what we did in the past was that we went the wrong way. That was why we still have so many IPP projects that are not completed.
that it was the responsibility of the force to correct wrongs and not an institution for people with racist views. “I am impeccably against anyone who uses racist language or behaves in a racist manner. This will not be allowed under my watch…I believe that everyone should be treated with dignity wherever they come from,” Olisa said. Olisa, 52, was born in Warri, Delta State, Southern Nigeria. He is one of the three chief superintendents from black minority ethnic background working for the Metropolitan Police. He started his career in Surrey Police in 1982 before transferring to the City of London Police in 1990 as a detective inspector in the fraud squad. After a spell at the Home Office, he transferred to the Metropolitan police in 2006 as a superintendent in Southwark Council before his recent appointment.
Anambra NULGE canvasses true federalism BY ENYIM ENYIM
NITSHA—NIGERIA Union of Local Government Employees, NULGE, in Anambra State, yesterday, joined Nigerians and organisations, calling for a true federalism as a panacea to the security challenge facing Nigeria. President of the union, Mr Jerry Nnubia who spoke against the unabated attacks and killings of innocent citizens by the Boko Harem sect, said the only solution was for the six geo-political zones in the country to become federating units. He argued that the ongo-
ing security problem was occasioned by the centralization of power with less political power in the states , saying that with federating units in place, the centre would become less attractive thereby reducing agitations by some tribes and ethnic groups to control the central government. According to him, “ this type of political arrangement is the best if this country must continue to exist as one corporate entity because what has actually caused most of the problem in Nigeria is the craze for power at the center by politicians from a particular zone.”
Yar'Ádua canvasses for Child's right S Nigerians join other countries of the world to celebrate the Children’s Day, parents, guardians and Nigerian leaders have been called upon to encourage policies and values capable to guarantee the rights and future of Nigerian child. Making the call yesterday, Amb. Asabe Shehu Yar’Adua said this will reduce youth restiveness that has characterised most parts of the country adding, “At the moment, many adults in our country have abandoned this critical, natural and godly role of serving as agents of moral regeneration, self-discovery and actualization. We have continued to leave undone the duty of nation-building
through proper, sound and pious up the singular duty of moldings their characters, vision and ways to become good leaders for the next generation.” Yar’Adua also stressed the need to nurture and protect the Nigerian child as the veritable asset of the country. According to her, a child represent the dream, wishes and aspirations of what our potentials must be in the future. “As adults and parents, we have had out time, our primary responsibility and duty now should be to groom our children, whom we dedicate May 27 to celebrate every year, to hero, visionary and patriots,” she said.
Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012—15
N44m SEC scandal: Ruling on Hembe, Azubogu's objections for July 2
BUJA—AN Abuja High Court, yester-
day, slated July 2 to rule on two separate preliminary
BY IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI objections, seeking to abort the prosecution of the former Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Capital Market and Other Institutions, Mr. Herman Hembe and his erstwhile deputy, Mr. Chris Ifeanyi Azubogu over their alleged complicity in a N44 million bribery scandal. Trial Justice Sadiq Umar fixed the date after the embattled lawmakers, yesterday, challenged the powers of the court to try them on the basis of the two-count charge that was preferred
against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. While contending that the court was bereft of the jurisdiction to compel them to enter plea to a charge they said was grossly incompetent, the accused persons further queried the legal propriety of the leave the court ab initio granted to the anti-graft agency to dock them. Relying on the decided case-law in Abacha vs. State and Ikomi vs. State, 1986, 3-NWLR, the lawmakers insisted they would not mount the dock pending the determination of their
respective preliminary objections before the court. Despite frantic efforts by EFCC to persuade the trial court to take the plea of the accused persons first before delving into the issue of jurisdiction, trial justice Umar declined, stressing that contrary to the position of the prosecuting agency, Section 187 (1) of the Criminal Procedure Code, CPC, which allows for arraignment of accused persons before hearing of objections, would be inapplicable in the instant case. Citing the case of El-Rufai vs State, Justice Umar maintained that conceding to the request of EFCC by
okaying the lawmakers for the dock yesterday, would be tantamount to “sacrificing justice at the altar of speed.” Consequently, he overruled EFCC and ordered the accused persons to address him on why the court cannot try them. Arguing through his counsel, Chief Jibrin Okutekpa(SAN), Hembe, urged the court to quash the charge in its entirety, saying the House of Representatives Committee on Ethics and Privileges is still investigating the uncanny feud that had ensued between him and the Director-General of SEC, Ms Arunma Oteh, whilst he presided over the House panel that probed alleged rot in the capital market.
Stop heating up polity, IG tells politicians BY KINGSLEY OMONOBI BUJA—AHEAD of today’s democracy day celebrations, Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, has warned politicians and political stakeholders to stop heating up the polity by their utterances and to eschew acts capable of endangering the survival of democracy in the country. The IG gave the advice just as he urged political actors in Edo and Ondo states, whose gubernatorial elections are scheduled to take place soon, to “conduct their electioneering campaigns in a decent, orderly and civil manner as well as guard their utterances.” To ensure a hitch-free Democracy Day celebration, the IGP directed all Zonal AIGs and Command CPs to ensure that adequate security is provided at all venues of celebrations, including venues of workshops and symposiums. He also directed that adequate security should be provided at all key government installations and vulnerable points across the country. In a goodwill message to mark the occasion, the IG warned against all forms of electoral violence, thuggery and lawlessness in the forthcoming gubernatorial elections, vowing to bring the full weight of the law on anyone found breaking the law.
16—Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
ABU lecturers give FG 4-week ultimatum on subsidy probe 2011 stood at N2.5 tril- erations of Nigerians, BY LUKA BINNIYAT
ADUNA—LECTURERS at Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria, have given the Federal Government a four-week ultimatum within which to commence trial of those involved in the N2.5 trillion fuel subsidy scam or face trouble from them.
Addressing a news conference in Kaduna, yesterday, the lecturers contradicted the figures released by both the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and the Accountant-General of the Federation on the amount spent, saying that the figure allegedly involved from 2009 to
lion. In statement by 16 lecturers and read by Dr. Usman Ladan of the Department of History, under the aegis of Concerned Lecturers of ABU, they said: “We, the undersigned lecturers of ABU, being free-born citizens of Nigeria and parents/guardians of present and future gen-
5m farmers register for FG's fertilizer scheme BY EMEKA MAMAH
OVERNOR Patrick Yakowa of Kaduna State has said that five million farmers have so far registered under the Federal Government’s Fertilizer Voucher Scheme, FVS. Under the scheme, each registered farmer is expected to get two bags of fertilizer, of which one would be paid for and the other given free. Yakowa also said that his government would establish three fertilizer blending plants to ensure all year
farming, pointing out that his administration has awarded contracts for the construction of 24 dams and irrigation schemes to further boost dry season farming in the state. He spoke while launching the Federal Government’s Growth Enhancement Fertilizer Scheme at Kagoro, yesterday. According to him, the dams, which were being constructed at Hunkuyi, Kufana and Kuzuntu had reached between 70 to 90 percent completion, while
eight irrigation schemes across the state were under construction, with 16 other irrigation schemes at the planning stages. He said: “If completed it would enable our farmers to produce all year round and reduce the level of idleness, especially during the dry season. “Agriculture is our area of comparative advantage and we have to take its development with all the seriousness it deserves and back the Federal Government’s initiative in the drive to uplift the sector."
hereby express our shock, profound indignation and total condemnation of all individuals, corporate firms and government agencies or departments that connived to defraud the government and people of Nigeria of hundreds of billions of Naira between 2009 and 2011 in the name of fuel subsidy claims. “This despicable and ungodly act has visited incalculable damage on the Nigerian economy, threatening the survival of millions of our countrymen and pushing our nation to the edge of near moral and financial bankruptcy. “The fact of the matter is simple and straight forward. The House Committee report in question has established a clear and unambiguous prima facie case of corruption and fraud against those indicted. No amount of propaganda or blackmail can reverse or deny this.
“The fuel subsidy swindle is one of the most shocking incidences of public rip-off in Nigeria since independ-
ence, exceeding the celebrated cement racket of 1975 in its monstrosity."
Tension in Adamawa as Igbo protest killings BY UMAR YUSUF
OLA—TENSION is mounting in Adamawa State as Igbo traders, yesterday, shut shops and other businesses to protest the killings of their kit and kins. The protest over the killing of an unidentified Igbo man almost turned violent as the protesters clashed with security agents. Most of the major streets in Yola, the state capital, were deserted even as economic activities were paralysed. The traders, in their hundreds, matched through the major streets, chanting solidarity songs to register protest. They appealed to the state government to address the insecurity situation in the state as the ugly situation had made them to live in fear both at home and in the markets. The situation, however, heightened when three Igbo traders were killed by
unknown persons at about 1pm in the commercial area of Muhammed Mustafa way. The state Police Public Relations Officer, Nemuel Yoila, was said to be with the state Police Commissioner for a security meeting when Vanguard contacted his office for his comments on the issue. Meanwhile, Adamawa State government has banned the use of commercial motorcycles, popularly referred to as Achaba in the Northern part of the country, in Yola. Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Chief Ari Timnu, in a statement, yesterday, said the government had considered it necessary to ban commercial motorcycles in five major towns in the state because most crimes and security breaches were committed by men of the underworld on motorbikes in those areas.
Vanguard, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012—17
WEEK ago, I read a story in a newspaper that I found very interesting. Nigerian traders in Ghana were appealing to the Federal Government to intervene on their behalf over Ghana’s refusal for them to sell generators in Ghana. If Ghana does not want Nigerians to sell generators in their country it is because every country has the right to make laws, and enforce it, for the good of its people. If you recall, when Ghana struck oil in commercial quantity, the first statement former President of Ghana, John Kuffour, made was that Ghana will not make the same mistake Nigeria made with her oil wealth. So Ghana has taken steps that will lead it away from our dubious petrol subsidy rot. Niger Republic has taken similar resolution and even went ahead to build a refinery targeted at Nigeria, instead of importing what it should be exporting! Nigeria today suffers from the curse of oil. The more money we make, the more Nigerians fall below the poverty line and the more we suffer from infrastructure deficit! We have fought a civil war, we have suffered Niger Delta militancy and now we are aping Somalia, all because of the curse of oil. So any sensible nation would be right to avoid the perilous and slippery road that our oil has led us. It seems that our oil mistake is not the only thing Ghana wants to avoid. It appears Ghana does not want to develop a culture of running its economy on generators. That makes sense. I said it way back in the seventies when the electricity situation was not even as bad as it is today, that to solve our power problem, we should BAN the use of all generators (except for those used in manholes) starting from the State House. I believed then, and I believe so now, that unless we are all affected equally by the torture of PHCN, there would not be a solution to our power woes.
ow can any President appreciate how bad the situation is if he does not know when the State House is on public power, generator or inverter source? How can those entrusted to solve our power problem be doing so using two automatic soundproof generators to power their homes or
Power, generator mafia and political will
Lesson for govt
offices? Is it not immoral to find PHCN offices powered by generators? What of some PHCN offices using candles and lanterns? If all of us, Heads of State, Governors, Ministers, Industrialists and the advocates for the masses had raised our voices against NEPA then, things would not have degenerated to the sorry state we are today! We would have all known that industries were closing down because of NEPA and jobs were being lost; we would have all known that using generators was adding to our costs; we would have known that our economy was running aground because of NEPA. It is my firm belief that the introduction of the generator culture as a relief worsened our case. What was supposed President Goodluck Jonathan
PHCN's immoral action
forgotten the ignoble role of the workers in the power sector and their incessant strikes? Has anybody tried to find out why a nation with so much gas that we flare it cannot generate power due to lack of gas? Have we asked why every time there is a glimmer of improvement, the gas pipelines supplying the power stations are vandalised? Have we pondered the possibility of mischief by vested interests that benefit from the present condition? Have we considered the effect of steady power on those who sell generators? Do we have anything in our plans for uninterrupted power to deal with possible sabotage by generator mafia?
We make so much noise about our problems but lack the will to deal with them because, in the first place, we are very, very ambivalent about dealing with our problems
to be a temporary relief became a permanent solution. Generators were a mere placebo that gave us phony relief. And because we did not fight the scourge, we created a monster that is preying on the present valiant effort to
give Nigeria steady power. That monster is the generator mafia. Nigerians glibly talk about the billions of dollars poured into the power sector with nothing to show for it. Don’t they know why? Have people who say so
hy do Nigerian traders in Ghana want a Federal Government crippled by the generator culture to intercede on their behalf? Is it so that they can hook Ghanaians unto the generator culture and divert their focus from proper planning for electricity power? Is it so that Ghanaians can waste their oil wealth on generators? Is it so that a generator mafia can emerge in Ghana and hold the nation to ransom? One lesson our government must learn is how to nip a deviance in the bud timely and firmly. Our problem today is that we are taking liberty for licence! Nigeria is in a state of near anarchy. During the two years of Morarji Desai’s Janata Party rule in India (1977-1979), things went so bad that onions were being sold in black market. Onion mafia emerged to prey on the poor masses of Indian. When Indira Gandhi returned to power she dealt with the scourge the very firm way Gen. Buhari dealt with foreign exchange racketeers and drug pushers. The method was a bit unorthodox, that even lawyers who came to India police stations to bail arrested onion mafia, were asked to go behind the counter! But it worked for India. Here we make so much noise about our problems but lack the will to deal with them because, in the first place, we are very, very ambivalent about dealing with our problems. Many aspects of our national life are today plagued by criminals. We must step out and deal with them. That is the raison d’eter of a government.
Learning from terrorism INCE the 9/11 attack, America has changed the way it lives and the way things are done in America. America has also changed the way we live. For example, travellers are today stripped naked at airports. It is difficult to do business today in America without a credit or debit card that tracks your activity. You cannot pay for a hotel accommodation with cash or check in without presenting a photo identity. You cannot enter any public building without a photo ID, even if you work there, even if the security guy there knows you! There must be a record that you entered the building at a particular time. In many nations today, they have developed systems that make it possible to zero in on criminals with the aid of finger prints and Close Circuit Television and can identify a criminal in less than 24 hours. And some of these systems require no more than entering the head of the criminal, thinking differently and merely shuffling an existing system around to fit the new criminal trend! I have been watching our response to terrorism since the last few years. Today one thing the authorities have repeatedly said, without realising how ridiculous, is that the terrorists should identify themselves! Haba! Such a call points to systemic failure. We are installing CCTVs in Abuja, which we
do not know whether they work or, in typical Nigerian way, will ever work. I take it that once Abuja, where our big men live, is safe the rest of the country does not matter. We have conducted SIM cards registration that is almost ending in the same scandalous way as the national ID card. The best answer we have today against terrorism is to block off roads and divert traffic away from police stations and sensitive public buildings. Is the current experience not enough to teach us to begin to re-think so many things
we are currently doing wrong? Our public buildings today are constructed without adequate car parks away from sensitive buildings. Vehicles litter vicinities of our sensitive public buildings, not only attracting indiscriminate parking but making it possible today for terrorists to head straight at such buildings. We must now rethink our public building plans to minimise terror attacks. Car parks, like the Marina car park in Lagos, should be located away from public buildings, with a system that can identify those
From My Mail Bag Sir, I READ your piece in the Vanguard of today (22nd May) and your points were quite understood. However, my problem with your submissions is that you have not done justice to the General because you did not hear him directly. You solely depended on what non-Hausa reporters wrote about the said statement made by the General. You would have done yourself and your readers some good if you had listened to him directly or gone down to Kaduna or Abuja to meet him oneon-one so that your perception of the matter will be first-hand. Relying on others, especially mischievous journalists, to make your assertions is faulty and conclusions drawn there from are wrong. For the avoidance of doubt, General Muhammadu Buhari did not say there will be bloodshed in 2015 if the election is rigged! What he did say was that THE ELECTION OF 2015 WILL BE FIERCE AND THAT IF THE ELECTION IS RIGGED, THEN PDP WILL NOT HAVE IT EASY AND WILL HAVE A FIERCE BATTLE! Please be just in what you report. Thank you very much. Jauro Bose Hammadu.
who use them. For the big men who cannot, like their counterparts elsewhere, walk a few meters to their offices, floors of car parks can be built under their offices and they must be properly identified. Hotels can have a few floors of parks underground for identified customers only.
e must not continue to tolerate habits of deviance such as driving against traffic or using negative gangways. From now on such must be regarded as a serious security breach no matter how highly placed the offender. Unfortunately our security people and big men are guilty of this serious breach. The greatest offence you can commit in a US airport since 9/11 is to drive in reverse. If you do, you attract security attention! If a man is driving against the traffic or is trying to enter a public building through an exit gate, that is odd and should alert us that he is up to no good! If a man insists on driving into a restricted area, that is enough security breach and he must be arrested! And please, people, those policemen guarding their own premises should be more alert. I see some of them on sentry duty reading newspapers or buying and eating food while on duty. There used to be things you never did while in uniform, let alone while on sentry duty!
18 — Vanguard, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012 NIGERIANS like debates. If you ask, some of them would tell you that it is the most tangible dividend of democracy. There are still debates about what dividends of democracy mean and whether it is only civilians, who can deliver these dividends. Dividend of democracy is the euphemism for developments, mostly roads, a few schools that are renovated, regular payment of salaries (in few instances), vehicles bought for the judiciary, and endless training programmes that change nothing. The biggest asset of May 29 is the belief of Nigerians in democracy. Those who equate developments with dividends of democracy, tend to forget some states had more developments under the military than civilians did in 13 years. Dividends of democracy must mean more. Democracy is about the vast expanses of liberties. They are about choices, including the peoples’ right to choose who leads them. The choices extend to the right to where we live, which schools our children attend and the right to security of lives and property. Our Constitution freely grants these and
May 29 – Just Believe more rights. How have these rights prospered in the last 13 years? Why are more people agitating for splitting the country? Why are more Nigerians retreating to their parts of the country? Is there more justice? Are there any signs that leadership thinks of improving the welfare of the people? Debates have not ceased about what democracy should deliver and in what portions. If an undemocratic government develops the country, would its efforts qualify as dividends of democracy? What is not debatable is that Nigerians seem to prefer a system of government that comes with the four-year chance to renew or retire mandates. The appeal of democracy is great, it offers hope, it generates high expectations and the people delight in
their right to be heard. People are, however, dismayed that governments are not harnessing these positive attitude to democracy. Disappointments about diminishing involvement of the people in politics, violence and mounting insecurity have made people despair about the propensities of democracy. No new frontiers remain for democracy where democracy minimises the involvement of the people. The collective quest for improvement in their circumstances would continue providing challenges that would advance democracy. It is no longer enough to mark May 29 as having any meaning if there are no visible incremental gains from democratic governance. May 29 is a ritual, a sadder reminder that things are not about changing or more optimistically, more work is required to get things done. May 29, unfortunately, is just one of the many holidays Nigerians enjoy. For a day that started so well, May 29 needs to be remembered beyond the day Nigeria got new rulers.
OPINION BY ONORIODE GEORGE
Continued from yesterday N the last 12-years, the NTDC has not added any value to Nigeria’s tourism development, marketing and promotion efforts, rather, the leadership has been a burden on the sector. From one director general to the other, it has been a house of division and deception. As a marketing and promotion agency for the tourism ministry, the NTDC has done nothing to justify its existence; this has nothing to do with the quality of man-power available in the corporation, but a lack of leadership. I have been to all the travel fairs around the world where Nigeria’s delegation is led by the NTDC leadership; where other African countries that we should compete with sell and promote their countries with good and colourful brochure, Nigeria’s officials serve food, as if a tourist can be wooed with a mere bowl of amala or pounded yam. Credit to Chief Samuel Alabi, FTAN president, noted that, Nigeria’s stand at every international event is usually filled with journalists and civil servants, whilst in some cases only pictures of hotels are on display. These journalists who are friends of the NTDC return and feed Nigerians with bags of lies. One of such incidents was that Nigeria came top as best exhibitor at the 2011 ITBBerlin International travel fair in Germany, when in reality, it came 13th out the 15 African countries that participated at that fair. As for NIHOTOUR, the training services it renders cut across training the trainers; Basic Certificate and Professional Management Courses; Mobile training workshops and consultancy services in Hotel, Catering, Travel and Tourism specialised operations.
The Oronsaye Committee's recommendation to merge NIHOTOUR and NTDC (2) Since its inception, the institute has produced well over 5,000 skilled and craft trainees servicing the various subsectors of the Nigerian travel, tourism and hospitality industry. For those who conceptualised the idea of the institute , it is meant to provide improved and quality service in the hospitality and tourism industry by introducing professional, technical and specialised training as well as post-graduate course in the travel and tourism and hospitality fields, to provide short and long term managerial and supervisory training for the development of specific skills as well as to enhance the quality and efficiency of senior functionaries in the hospitality and tourism industry and to co-operate with relevant bodies to organise and facilitate staff development programmes for teachers and supervisors in polytechnics and the tourism industry.
thers are, to co-operate with relevant bodies in developing and updating national training curriculum for all levels of personnel in the industry, to provide a forum at which representatives of both public and organised private tourism sectors and tourism institutions can exchange ideas and information on development in the industry, keep and maintain a register of travel and tourism training institutions, their training programmes, subjects, locations standards, durations and type and to develop a
learning resource centre for the production of audio visual aids, collection and dissemination of learning materials as well as to source funds and technical assistance for the promotion of its objectives. Presently, NIHOTOUR offers courses in Post Graduate Diploma in Tourism and Recreation; Post Graduate Diploma in Hospitality Management; Diploma in Tourism & Recreation; Diploma in Hospitality Management and Diploma in Transport & Travel Management; Other courses offered are Professional Diploma Tourism & Hospitality in Data Processing and Information Technology; Diploma in Travel and Tourism Management (IATA/UFTAA Foundation); and Certificate in Tourism & Hospitality Data Processing and Information Technology. Apart from the aforementioned activities and responsibility, the institute have a good relationship with FTAN and its 12 registered associations as full members; namely; Nigerian Association of Tour operators [NATOP], National Association of Nigeria Travel Agents [NANTA], Association of Nigerian Tourism Journalists and Writers of Tourism [ANJET], Nigeria Hotel Association [NHA], Association of Tourism practitioners of Nigeria [ATPN] and Nigerian Hotel and Catering Institute [NHCI]. Others are, Africa Travel Association [ATA], Nigerian Youth Tourism Organisation [NYTO], Hospitality Personnel Services Employees Associations [HOPSEA], Hotel Owners Forum of Abuja [HOFA], Travel and Tourism Lawyers Association [TATLAN] and Hospitality and Tourism Management Association of Nigeria [HATMAN].
Concluded *Mr. George, publicity secretary of FTAN, wrote from Lagos.
Vanguard, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012— 19
, Continued from last week E noted that of the three amalgamation of the British colonial government, India, Sudan and Nigeria, only Nigeria stands at present… “We can’t ignore these facts. We can’t take these facts for granted. We either sit down and talk on them or we will wish them away as our leaders are trying to make us believe”. Prof. Ango Abdullahi provides an explanation for the present state of affairs, especially the agitation for the break-up of Nigeria and a policy for responding to the agitation. The crises in the polity, Ango Abdullahi explains, is the result of bad governance and corrupt government. He proposes a conference for dealing with these two issues. The first observation we make on Prof. Abdullahi’s thesis is that agitation for the break-up of Nigeria cannot be explained by bad governance and corrupt governments. He must first explain why electoral democracy results in bad governance and the
enthronement of corrupt governments. He must explain why elections are ineffective for removing corrupt office holders and establishing governments responsible to the Nigerian voting electorates. He must, in addition, explain how the breakup of Nigeria has become the remedy for bad governance and corrupt government. Finally, he must explain the relationship between movement for secession and bad governance and corrupt leadership. Is the Prof. explaining the separatist movements of Scotland and Catholic Ireland as a function of his two variables of bad governance and corrupt governments? Is he saying these two variables explain the dissolution of British India and Sudan? Obviously arguments by analogies beg the question. General Useni’s explanation is both cryptic and economical. He says negotiation is what is needed. “If our brothers say today there should be security, there
will be security. How can we say we don’t know those who are Boko Haram and yet they are killing us every day? The problem is the people they should go and meet; they are not going there”. The General amplifies the call for negotiation between the Boko Haram and the Federal Government. The General, it must be assumed, appreciates the implications of this insistence on negotiation. The first is that negotiation means that the Federal Government admits that it recognises the Boko Haram as a political equal, and accepts that its conflict with the sect shall be resolved through political means.
he second implication is that government admits the legitimacy of the Boko Haram views on how government and Nigeria are to be reconstituted to accommodate the political interests of the Boko Haram. Negotiations among parties at war are always carried on where neither party has been defeated and the parties are in war condition of stalemate. Does General Useni want to buy
Buhari, Tinubu and the rest of us BY JACKSON EKWUGUM
WAS shocked beyond words when I read the statement by former Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari that “if what happened in 2011 (allegation of election rigging) should happen again in 2015, by the grace of God, the dog and the baboon would all be soaked in blood”. I honestly thought the General was misquoted after reading the initial media reports and was looking forward to his rebuttal. But, alas, it turned out not to be so. Instead, the General has stuck to his guns and left it to his party, the Congress for Progressive Change and the Action Congress of Nigeria to return fire for fire. In the meantime, the spokesmen of both parties have attempted, albeit unsuccessfully, to put a spin to the dog and baboon metaphor. It is inconceivable – and perplexing -that any right thinking Nigerian, no matter his party affiliation, would try to explain, justify or rationalise those incendiary comments from Buhari, especially in the context of the nihilistic violence that has been unleashed on the nation by Boko Haram. Although he has not hidden his disrespect and disdain for any President from the ruling PDP since he joined the political fray in 2003, there is still a measure of decency and decorum that is expected from Buhari as a former head of state even if he is in the opposition. For a man touted to be a very disciplined person, the dog and baboon outburst is the height of indiscipline. It is uncouth, odious, disgusting, and a throwback to the Hobbesian state of nature.Contrary to what the CPC and the ACN would have us believe, this threat from Buhari is an invitation to chaos and anarchy; it is a ticking time bomb. Before, during and after the 2011 elections, the CPC presidential candidate kept issuing
provocative statements concerning the elections and, for good measure, stirred the people to rise up and defend their votes if, in his opinion, they were rigged – meaning if he did not win. His supporters (mostly almajiris) got the message, and as soon as Buhari was not declared winner, they went on rampage in some states in the North, destroying lives and property. The Federal Government’s 22-man panel of enquiry headed by Sheikh Ahmed Lemu to investigate the mayhem in the North was not in doubt that “Buhari’s provocative remarks played a significant role in the bloody violence”. It was their view that his fire and brimstone comments provided a trigger for the violence that ensued after the elections. With his latest 'Improvised Explosive Device', it means that if Buhari doesn’t win in 2015, the elections were rigged, with the consequences all of that portend for the security of the country. As things stand now, we would only have free and fair elections – and therefore be safe if Buhari is declared winner. Ostensibly, after years of hearing people refer to him as “forthright,” “honest,” and “incorruptible,” Buhari has, as it were, developed a self-righteous, messianic complex. Somewhere in his mind he believes that he not only won the 2003, 2007, and 2011 elections, but that he also has the answers to all of Nigeria’s problems. But I don’t see anything in his track-record as a military head of state and Chairman of Petroleum Task Force Fund to suggest that he has the magic wand to turn Nigeria around. Instead, his legacy in either front remains one of arbitrariness, highhandedness, arrogance, and vengeful persecution of those with dissenting viewpoints. For an innocuous article in the defunct National Concord in 1984, this writer became the target of the secret service under his dictatorship.
Lamentations and explanations of current insecurity(2)
How far should government bend backwards; the aggrieved in this insurgency is also the aggressor
security at the expense of the reduction of the Federal Government to a party in conflict and the Boko Haram as an equal party in the conflict? El Rufai’s conclusion in the Lead City University 2012 annual May Day lecture is a statement providing a perspective on General Danjuma’s portrayal of the security condition of Nigeria. We quote Ola Ajayi’s report in the Vanguard, Wednesday, May 2, 2012. Ajayi reports in the following: Former Minister of Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, yesterday, warned the Federal Government to review its stance on the security situation in the country, but if it fails, 'they will not be in government for too long'. He also disabuses the minds of many Nigerian that the insurgence of the sect was the handiwork of some Northern leaders to make the nation ungovernable for President Goodluck Jonathan. The exMinister who was the guest speaker at the Lead City University spoke on the topic entitled: “Between Terrorism And Corruption: Implications for Nigeria”, ruled out the use of force to silence the aggrieved sect. El Rufai said: "There is nowhere insurgencies like Boko Haram have been defeated purely through military force and occupation. Those who are saying 'crush them' should know that recent history of the war on terror is not on their side. We want a country that works for everyone, and this senseless loss of lives must end soon. The government that has the responsibility for our security must bend over backwards to deliver it. If they continue to fail in this regard,
Buhari’s desperation for power has reached an alarming proportion; this latest threat from him is against all Nigerians
ow sad that a former head of state and a current member of the Council of State would descend so low as to adorn the garb of a village tyrant and call for the destruction of the people he aspires to lead if he does not win an election. Buhari’s desperation for power has reached an alarming proportion. This latest threat from him is not just against INEC or the PDP-led Federal Government, itshould be viewed for what it is: a threat against all Nigerians and, therefore, he should be regarded as Nigeria’s Public Enemy Number One. Those trying to make light of, or rationalise his statement will do well to take a look at the list of those who lost their lives and property in the 2011 postelection violence. They were innocent citizens going about their lawful businesses – traders, businessmen, civil servants, construction workers, students, youth corps members, transit passengers on the road, pastors, women, and children. You won’t find a single politician or government official on that list. Perhaps the most puzzling – and troubling – response to the dog and baboon metaphor is that from the ACN and its leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. After conceding defeat in the 2011 presidential elections and slamming the opposition for their uncoordinated efforts at wresting power from the PDP (a fact well known to many Nigerians),Tinubu and his ACN now say the 2011 elections were “the most systematically rigged elections” in the
they will not be in government for too long”. The core issue addressed by ElRufai is on the policy the Federal Government should adopt in responding to the Boko Haram insurgency. He argues for a mix of instruments, military and “trade-ables”. Nowhere in ElRufai is there a suggestion that the Boko Haram should lay down its arms as a precondition to any negotiation. He lays the full burden of peace on the Federal Government who must bend over backwards to accommodate the insurgent sect. He provides an explanation for the current situation inferentially in his plea- “ we want a country that works for everyone”. It must therefore be asked- Are the Boko Haram taking up arms because they want a country that works for everyone? How far should government bend backwards before “this senseless loss of lives must end soon”. The aggrieved in this insurgency is also the aggressor. Has there been any case of insurgency where the terms of peace are imposed by an armed insurgent group? It is our conclusion that government can find no safe way of securing the country from the explanations on review. Yet the urgency of the crises cannot but be acknowledged. General Danjuma and El-Rufai have described the situation that call for strategic review of the Nigerian security situation by the Federal Government and the warning should be heeded that failure to do so carries the cost of “not being in government for too long”. Concluded
history of the country.They appear to have shot themselves in the foot with this volte face.Are they now telling us that the governorship and National Assembly elections in the South West, which the ACN won convincingly, were systematically rigged in their favour? If that was so, how come they did not reject the outcome of the elections? Looks to me like our politicians are just sore losers; if they win, everything is fine. But once they lose, the elections were rigged.I am even more concerned that Senator Tinubu would attempt to sacrifice his democratic credentials earned from his days in the trenches with NADECO and in several electoral battles, on the altar of political expediency. It is ironic that the ACN, which has been the beneficiary of court victories in three election disputes, would support an invitation to jungle justice as a way of seeking redress. It is very disappointing andexposes the hypocrisy, double-standard and chicanery of our politicians.If anybody should have faith in the judiciary at this point in time, it should be Tinubu and the ACN. I believe it is the dream and desire of every Nigerian for a free and fair election where the will of the people reigns supreme. That is the beauty of democracy. The 2011 elections had their fair share of electoral irregularities in some areas but, by and large, they were much better than the 2003 and 2007 elections. The political maturation process is still on; it is not yet a finished product. To a large extent, the 2011 elections reflected the wishes and aspirations of Nigerians. What I expect from the opposition now are fresh ideas on how we can improve the electoral process. For instance, do we have to be accredited and go home only to come back and cast our votes? Why can’t we vote immediately we are accredited? What are the main flaws in the way votes were collated and announced? I expect to hear credible, verifiable, and measurable alternatives from the opposition on how we make the electoral process more reliable. *Mr. Ekwugum, a journalist, wrote from Abuja.
TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
being handcuffed and forced into a truck. Helen said: “Otu, who took the white men to the Akpabios’ compound was also handcuffed but was later released and started discussion with the policemen while the policemen opened fire on the rest of the youths. They carried the three brothers to their father’s house in the village where they ransacked everywhere searching for Chief Akpabio and when they couldn’t find him, the armed policemen dragged his two sons, Charles and Joseph to a plantain plantation where they were badly beaten and eventually killed in the presence of their aged mother, Mrs. Atim Akpabio. “The other four youths, including Emmanuel Akpabio were taken away and were The Slain Brothers: (l-r) Charles, Joseph and Emmanuel Akpabio subsequently executed and dumped by the roadside and labeled armed robbers by the SSS operative and the Police." Helen further alleged that the security team has one of the corpses and has refused to release him to the family for burial adding that President Goodluck Jonathan should urgently intervene in the matter and order those still in possession of Emmanuel Akpabio’s corpse to release it to enable the family give him a befitting burial, The Akpabio: Evangelist Helen Akpabio with her lawyers during and to beef up security a press conference on the case. Emmanuel and Joseph around herself and her By SAM EYOBOKA Akpabio. The three brothers aged parents as their thought it would be nice to lives are seriously under threat. HE circumstances were allegedly killed in the matter. Narrating the sordid tale of invite the youth of the surrounding the brutal presence of their aged mother, how the brothers were slain, community for the meeting Dare devil murder of three blood brothers Mrs. Etim Akpabio. Helen said on Saturday, March which was fixed for the next Helen said the brothers were at their family house in Ikotkiller squad Ekpene, has continued to murdered on Sunday, March 24, some white men purportedly day, March 25 at his residence generate tension in Akwa-Ibom 25, 2012 in their village, an working with AG Vision in Ikot Ekpene, an hour drive Speaking further on the threat State following allegations by incident which has thrown the Nigeria Limited handling the from his village in Nkari Clan. to their lives by a daredevil the family of the victims that villagers into confusion as they construction of a dam in Nkari But unknown to Joseph and his killer squad determined to some security operatives were cannot understand why three Clan, visited the village in two other brothers, they were wipe out the entire Akpabio responsible for the death. In brothers could be dispatched to company of a very close friend allegedly being lured by their family, the lady preacher friend, Benjamin fact, a prominent member of the world beyond with such to the late Akpabios, one best revealed that her father has 80 Christopher Otu, into the Benjamin Christopher Otu, to the family and founder of impunity. She said: “I have per cent of the total land mass Liberty Foundation Gospel never seen such a callous thing solicit the support of Chief hands of the SSS and the Police where a dam is being by a security team led by one Ministry, Evangelist Helen constructed in Nkari Clan and Mr. Noel Nduka.” Ukpabio, on behalf of the family the Federal Ministry of Water The evangelist noted that of Chief Essien Akpabio of Resources had approved about during the meeting at Joseph’s Mente Village, Nkari Clan, Ini N500 million (Five Hundred residence in Ikot Ekpene, the Local Government Area of the Million naira) as compensation three white men excused state, has dispatched a petition to the owners of the themselves to hold consultation to President Goodluck construction site. outside and as soon as they Jonathan, Director of State She added: “We are aware stepped outside the house, Security Service and the acting that a serving senator in the “they met with over 20 armed Inspector General of Police, seventh Senate in conjunction policemen and one SSS Mohammed Abubakar, with a former governorship operative called Noel Nduka. appealing to them to wade into aspirant in Akwa Ibom State The three white men who what she described as ‘the were behind the plot to wipe pretended they wanted to hold barbaric’ killing of her three before, three corpses from one out the entire family to pave the family in one day? Even if they Essien Akpabio, father of the a meeting with the youths now way for them to share the brothers in one day. Addressing newsmen in had something against them, murdered brothers, in shook hands with the SSS compensation in respect of the Lagos, Helen Ukpabio, mother they should have arraigned connection with the proposed operative, Nduka and left.” land where the dam is being She noted that the policemen of three and elder sister to the them before a competent court dam, which they claimed would built,” noting that despite three slain brothers, accused of jurisdiction for them to have be a source of employment/ and Nduka immediately several petitions to the Police for the rounded up the youths, and security agents, “the the Nigerian Police and State the opportunity of defending empowerment including the three young community youth. Security Service, SSS, of themselves,” stressing that all fellows are mobilizing Akpabios and ordered She said: “Being the responsibility over the death of conscionable people to come to resources to frustrate the her three brothers-Charles, the aid of her family to ensure community youth leader, my everyone in the compound to inquisition of this cruel and that justice was done in the late brother, Joseph Akpabio, lie face down while they were barbaric murder.”
Puzzle for security agents in Akwa-Ibom
Who killed these 3 brothers? T
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Challenges of one year in office BY OCHEREOME NNANNA
IGERIA had a uniform electoral calendar until the landmark case of Mr Peter Obi of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and Dr. Chris Ngige of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) who was initially returned as winner of the 2003 gubernatorial election in Anambra State. The Court of Appeal, however, on March 15th 2006 ruled Obi was the winner of the election. From that moment on, a precedent was set whereby states where governorship elections were decided at the Election Tribunals in favour the candidate other than the one in office automatically exited the May 29 th date for assumption of gubernatorial power in Nigeria. During the 2011 gubernatorial polls, seven new governors began their first terms in office. These were: Governors Kashim Shettima of Borno (ANPP), Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo of Gombe (PDP), Rochas Okorocha of Imo (APGA), Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara (PDP), Tanko Al Makura of Nasarawa (CPC), Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun (ACN) and Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo states (ACN). As we mark their first year in political power there is a natural impulse to take stock and assess their effectiveness and ability to live up to their campaign promises or the aspirations of their people.
In most advanced democracies of the world, effective governance starts almost immediately after the governor is sworn-in. But in Nigeria, the story is not as simple as that. Even those who are resuming after being re-elected still often face stiff hurdles, particularly the spectre of being dragged to the electoral tribunal. Some of these electoral battles can be highly intractable and distracting. One of the most bruising and long-drawn electoral battles at the Tribunal was that of Peter Obi versus Dr.Chris Ngige, which lasted from June 2003 to March 2006. Also Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State suffered a deadbeat electoral melee at the hands of his PDP counterpart, Dr Onyema Ugochukwu between June 2007 and February 2009. The suit that holds the record as the dirtiest and most ridiculous was that between former Governor Ikedi Ohakim (Progressive People’s Alliance
•Fashola: Set his path in his first year
•Gov. Al-Makura: Confronting hostile legislators
•Oshiomohole: Putting godfathers out of work
but later decamped to PDP) and Ifeanyi Araraume (factional PDP) and Martin Agbaso (APGA). The suits went all the way from the Tribunal to the Appeal Court, and pre-electoral matters were picked up and pursued to the Supreme Court and back to the High Court. There were a total of 29 lawsuits! Ohakim only came out of the last of them victorious a few months to his failed quest for re-election in 2011. Apart from the tension and distraction the election tribunal cases bring, it also occasions massive drain on the public treasury, as governors fight their political battles with public funds in Nigeria. A governor faced with the more elaborate election tribunal headache finds it difficult to do much within the first year in office, what with the growing uncertainty brought about by the fact that the Court of Appeal has sacked so many governors or sent them back to the polls. To curtail this problem, the last National Assembly amended the constitution to peg the highest number of days within which cases at the tribunals
must be decided at 180 days. After that, such cases would be deemed by the courts to have expired. That has accounted for the fact that today, for the first time in Nigeria’s renascent democracy, not a single case is still pending at the tribunals,
•Jonathan: Where is the fresh air?
godfathers, who may be political speculators (financiers) or professional politicians who know how to pull the ropes to get their preferred candidates into office. Some of the most celebrated godfathers in Nigerian politics include Chief Tony
The first year in office is the period of youth and romance; it is probably the best period in which to catch a politician at work for the public good
as all have expired. The new law appears to favour the incumbents, but it has also given them a breathing space to face the work they were elected to do. Another major challenge of the first year in office has to do with sorting out the sponsors of a governor or even the president. Many governorship candidates get the tickets through the “good graces” of political
Anenih (PDP Edo State), Chief Chris Uba (PDP Anambra State), Dr Olusola Saraki (PDP Kwara) and Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu (ACN national leader), among the others. Since 1999, the first year in office for most governors is often a period to test the viability of the relationship between the usually demanding godfathers and the executive governors. Almost in all cases, the gover-
nors use their power of incumbency to turn the table against the godfathers and in most cases render them toothless, as was seen in Edo (Governor Adams Oshiomhole versus Anenih) Enugu (Governor Chimaroke Nnamani versus Chief Jim Nwobodo) Jigawa (Governor Sule Lamido versus Alhaji Saminu Turaki) and Kwara (Dr Olusola Saraki versus his son, Bukola Saraki). The only clear case where the godfather was able to hold on, survive and expand his empire was in the case of Lagos where after a flare-up between Governor Raji Fashola and his godfather, Tinubu, both settled into a détente. With the menace of godfathers getting less problematic, Nigeria’s democracy is actually improving gradually, even though not much note has been taken of this positive trend by political analysts. Another major challenge of first year in office is the rare case of lame-duck governors. In states where electoral contests were very close, the Continues on page 78
TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
Transformation agenda: The road is still too far BY OMOH GABRIEl BUSINESS EDITOR
look at the direction of the Jonathan administration indicates that the government has good intentions of transforming the nation’s economy. The key policy framework is aimed at a baseline GDP growth rate of 11.7 per cent per annum for the period 20112015, as it hopes that it will translate to real and nominal GDP of about N428.6billion and N73.2trillion respectively at the end of the programme period. It assumes that the projected GDP growth of the period will be driven largely by the oil and gas, solid minerals, agriculture, ICT equipment and software, telecommunication, wholesale and retail trade, tourism and entertainment, manufacturing and building and construction sectors. One year down the line it is difficult to assess the administration’s impact on the economy. Provisional data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) suggest that appreciable progress has not been made in the last one year. The data indicate that real gross domestic product (GDP) in Q1 grew by 6.17 per cent, down from 7.68 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2011 and 7.13 per cent in the corresponding period of 2011. This continues a disturbing and unbroken trend of decline in growth going back to Q1 2010. Overall, real GDP growth for fiscal 2012 is projected at 6.50 per cent, down from 7.45 per cent in 2011. Crude oil production was estimated to have declined by 2.32 per cent in Quarter 1, 2012 compared with a marginal increase of 0.05 per cent in the corresponding pe-
riod of 2011. Non-oil real GDP growth estimated at 7.93 per cent in Q1 of 2012 was much lower than the 8.73 per cent recorded in Q1 of 2011. Growth in agriculture decelerated in Q1 to 4.15 per cent compared with the 5.54 per cent in Q1 of 2011 and 5.74 per cent in Q4 of 2011. Agricultural growth rate has not been this slow in the last seven years at least. In general, the paradox of rising poverty incidence in the face of impressive economic growth further underpinned demands for the implementation of the appropriate structural reforms in the key sectors notably agriculture, power and petroleum sectors, to stimulate productivity.
Prices Inflationary threats reemerged in Q1 2012, having moderated in Q4 2011. The year-on-year headline inflation which was 12.6 per cent in January 2012 moderated to 11.9 per cent in February but rose to 12.1 and 12.9 per cent in March and April 2012, respectively. Similarly, food inflation which was 13.1 per cent in January 2012 fell to 9.7 per cent in February but increased to 11.8 per cent in March before declining slightly to 11.2 per cent in April 2012. Core inflation, which declined to 11.9 per cent in February from 12.7 per cent in January, rose sharply to 15.0 per cent in March before moderating to 14.7 per cent in April
2012. On a month-on-month basis, inflationary pressure was rather benign between March and April, and the rise in yearon-year figures largely reflects the base effects in January from fuel subsidy removal. Overall inflation numbers remain within our forecast range”. Besides, the proposed upward review of electricity and import tariffs on wheat and rice as well as the rising global food and energy prices could further put upward pressure on prices in the near-term. Notwithstanding this, the lingering impact of the aggressive monetary tightening measures undertaken since 2011 and the general slow growth in monetary aggregates and the impact
of rising fuel prices in consumer spending, may moderate the pressure on domestic prices in the near term. CBN staff projections indicate that headline inflation is projected to peak around 14.5 per cent in July 2012 before moderating steadily till the end of the year. These are not positive signs of any impact the policy of government has made on the economy. This government by its agenda hoped that by 2015 a total investment of N40.75trillion in nominal terms. The public sector will account for N24.45trillion or 60 per cent, while the remaining N16.30trillion or 40 per cent is Continues on page 79
Challenges of one year in office Continued from page 77 party that produces the governor might find itself with a minority of legislators in the House of Assembly. For instance, Governor al-Makura of Nasarawa State is today overwhelmed with a seemingly hostile House of Assembly dominated by the PDP. The PDP caucus in the House at one time even attempted to foist its nominees as commissioners on the governor and only relented because of the strong opposition of the governor. All these and other challenges contribute in no small measure in whittling down the ca-
pacity of a governor or even president to give of his best in his first year of office. Most governors are able to overcome these challenges. But in a few cases, governors have been known to have been swept out in a vortex of, particularly, judiciary hurricanes within the first year. For instance, Dr Andy Uba set the record as the governor with the shortest tenure ever in the entire history of Nigeria. He lasted only 16 days before the Supreme Court ordered the reinstatement of impeached Governor Peter Obi. Similarly, Sir Celestine Omehia of Rivers State lasted only four and a half months before
he was removed by the same Supreme Court in November 2007. However, in spite of the many challenges that face governors and presidents within their first year in office, this period has always stood out as the most productive for the more enterprising and visionary newcomers.
ithin his second one hundred days in 2007, Governor Fashola redesigned the scenery and restored sanity to Oshodi and with it commenced a legacy ofincandescent performance in the state. The same went for Governors
Oshiomhole, Akpabio of Akwa Ibom, Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers, Sule Lamido of Jigawa and (in the current dispensation) Owelle Rochas Okorocha of Imo State. This is the period of zeal and hunger for achievement. For most of these governors, the verve gathered in the first year of office often becomes the threshold upon which the leap into a second term in office – godfather or not – is established. And in most cases, it is after the first year of office that the politics of second term begins to weigh heavily on the mind of the governor. He begins to look for ways of putting aside
the funds to pursue the second term. He begins to put money in schemes other than developmental ones. He begins to “invest” politically. He begins to irrigate his party, his platform and his followership with “empowerment” which often leads to many socially relevant projects being neglected. The more politics takes the centre stage as from the second year on, the less is devoted to developmental issues. The first year in office is the period of youth and romance. It is probably the best period in which to catch a politician at work for the public good.
Vanguard, TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012—79
INSECURITY: No more the happy people BY EMMANUEL AZIKEN
T was a sharp twist for a people repeatedly classed as the happiest people on earth. Nigerians were said to like life so much that they would rather suffer brutal dictators than allow themselves to be inconvenienced by tear gas from demonstrations against bad government. But no longer. In the last year Nigeria turned into a haven for suicide bombers even conceiving the horrific idea of video recording a suicide bombing. The bombing of the Thisday, Abuja office complex by the group, Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad, popularly known as Boko Haram on 26th April was the only known terrorist action of the group known to have been recorded on video camera. But it may not have been its most audacious. While every single life taken away in the course of the group•fs violent actions have been heart wrenching, some actions, however, rise above the ordinary. Among the most daring actions of the group in the last year was the attack on the headquarters of the Nigerian Police in Abuja on June 16, 2011. That attack which missed the InspectorGeneral of Police by whiskers was believed to be the first act of suicide bombing ever recorded in Nigeria. The then Inspector General of Police, Hafiz Ringim had few weeks earlier publicly declared in the stronghold of the terrorist group in Maiduguiri, Borno State that the days of the group were numbered. Within days
Jonathan visits Kano after the multiple bomb blasts the group responded in an attack that inevitably made it that Ringim's days as Police boss were numbered. Beside the suicide bomber, a traffic policeman on duty at the police headquarters was also killed with scores injured and dozens of vehicles destroyed. The terrorist group set itself firmly on the international watch list with the bombing of the United Nations building in Abuja on August 26. A car laced with explosives that Friday rammed through the protective barriers at the UN building and exploded killing at least 19 persons on the spot and causing grievous body damages to scores more. “It is an attack on the global community,” Prof. Viola Onwuliri, the Minister of State
for Foreign Affairs said that day as she joined rescuers and others who rushed to the scene that morning. Her allusion to an attack against the global community was to be given fillip when President Goodluck Jonathan visited the scene the following day. “Of course, where ever you have terrorist attack in any country Nigeria is not an isolated case. Many countries have suffered from terrorists attacks may be it is the turn of Nigeria. But we are on top of the situation” the President sated. His comment that it was happening everywhere and in other lands was, however, to receive strong condemnation from his domestic critics some who noted that it was not
happening in any of the countries neighbouring Nigeria. Repeated bombings and attacks using high caliber weapons continued to happen across many states of the north notably in the Northeast on a daily basis. The bombing of a Roman Catholic Church building in Madalla during Christmas service on December 25 shook the nation and again reinforced international focus on the country. At least 25 worshippers were killed in that attack that inevitably stretched the patience of the Nigerian Christian community. Appeals for calm from some within the Christian community and the Muslim community helped to sooth tension and stop what some saw as an attempt to drag the
country into a sectarian crisis. The Christian virtue of patience was further stretched in the first week of January 2012 with repeated almost daily attacks in Gombe, Adamawa and Adamawa States. In a remarkable incident in early the first week of January members of the Igbo community who had gathered to plan burial arrangements for 3 members of the Igbo community killed by the terrorist group themselves came under attack leaving at least 19 of the mourners dead. The tide of the attacks, however, lost religious colouration on January 20 when the terrorist group staged a daring attack against Police formations and other security offices in Kano leaving at least 185 persons killed out of whom 150 were civilians. It was an attack that shook the ancient and cosmopolitan city of Kano. The traditional ruler of the ancient city, Alhaji Ado Bayero was brought to great distress over the incident. Among the civilians killed was Eneche Akogwu, the award winning broadcast journalist who worked for Channels Television. The government•fs response has been a zigzag of carrot and stick. With calls on the government to go into dialogue the administration has sometimes stretched out hand of dialogue but that has also been accompanied by retaliatory actions by the security agencies that have increasingly pinched away the strength of the terrorist group. Such actions have compelled the group to denounce the administration as insincere in its proclamation of dialogue.
Transformation agenda: The road is still too far Continues on page 78 expected to be invested by the private sector. Overall, public sector investment plan is made up of N11.59 trillion for states and local governments respectively. So far there seems to be no sign that the required resources are available to meet this target. In 2011, the capital budget of government was N1.09 trillion a far cry from the projected investment. The government had planned to review the budget process to provide greater clarity of roles between the executive and legislature and to ensure that the appropriation bill is enacted into law within the first month
of any year. This was not achieved in the first year of the administration as the budget was assented in April as a result of disharmony between the executive and the legislature. In its bid to transform the economy, the administration said it will institutionalise the culture of development planning at all levels of government and ensuring that the annual capital budget allocation takes a cue from medium and long term development plans. This measure has been introduced at the federal level. The medium term strategy was forwarded to the National Assembly for consideration along the 2012 budget. States and local gov-
ernment however are yet to take follow suit. Job creation The Jonathan administration said that the government would pursue certain policy measures to reinvigorate various sectors of the economy and enhance their employment generating potentials, including implementing a youth employment safety net support programme that includes conditional cash transfer and vocational training; development of industrial clusters; reviewing of university curricular to align with industry job requirements and promotion of apprenticeship/work experience programmes and joint ventures; enforcement of
mandatory sub-contracting and partnering with locals by foreign construction companies and implementation of mandatory skills transfer to Nigerians by foreign construction companies. Within the one year period the government has embarked on agricultural reforms, attempt at resuscitating ailing textile industries, small and medium scale enterprises, youth empowerment programme among others. So far the outcomes are yet to be determined. Power Power undoubtedly remains the most mitigating factor against the growth of the Nigerian economy. The adminis-
tration’s efforts at solving the problem of irregular power supply with the injection of trillions of naira into the power sector have, however, remain largely unfruitful. Power supply in the last one year has dropped lower and the National Electricity Regulatory Commission is about implementing the multi year tariff which it hoped will spike investment in the sector to provide 24 hours power supply. It is targeting that in the next 18 months all consumers will have been metered. However the much talked about privatization of PHCN is taking longer than necessary due to bureaucratic bottle neck.
80—Vanguard , TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012
Zamfara gov's wife vows to reduce prevalence of malaria
Ex-militants allege exclusion from amnesty programme ...petition National Assembly BY FESTUS AHON
BY SAMINU IBRAHIM USAU—WIFE of Zam fara State Governor, Hajiya Hadiza Yari, has reiterated commitment of the state government to create an enabling environment that would reduce the wide-spread of malaria in the state. Speaking at this year's World Malaria Day, she said Zamfara was close to reaching its target of 90 per cent of households with at least one treated net, up from zero per cent in 2010. She said:‘’I want to make the case that we have a real chance to build the partnerships, generate the political will, and develop community breakthroughs we need to end malaria” s, noting that the more successful prevention of malaria is, the fewer malaria patients would become.
Obong Paul Ekpo (middle), presenting Akwa Ibom Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chairmanship candidate, Tony Akan and running mate to Uruan people.
Students of Laureates College, Adeyemi Akinyemi, Godwin Clement and Seun Daniel at the Queens Palace in London during an excursion.
Ogun PDP condemns plot to hold fresh congresses BY OLAYINKA LATONA GUN State chapter of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, has accused the national leadership of the party of making mockery of the rule of law, saying that the party choses what court judgment to obey or disobey. State Chairman of the party, Mr Bayo Dayo, who made this known in a statement, while reacting to the directive by the National Chairman of the party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur for fresh congresses to be held in the state, described it as an attempt to undermine the judiciary and give vent to imposition. He also said the order by Alhaji Tukur was “undemocratic, despotic and antipeople.” Dayo wondered why the national headquarters of the party would disobey three court subsisting orders because of the fomer President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, who he said, ‘’does not control up to two per cent followership in the state but thrives on illegalities, imposition and raw use of power.’’ According to Dayo, "Obasanjo was rail-roading the
national leadership of the party into taking actions that could bring the party and the judiciary into disrepute. “Alhaji Tulkur is a respectable man who has built a name for himself in the society. He should not to allow some people to tarnish his hard-earned reputation whereby he will be docked for illegalities. “A case in point is the illegal imposition of Mr. Bode Mustapha, a non-accountant, as National Auditor of the PDP. This imposition by former President Obasanjo should be reviewed and the judgment of the court recognizing Mr. Fatai Adeyanju, a chartered accountant, as the authentic candidate implem e n t e d " . “It stands to reason why the party would want to deliberately disobey three subsisting court judgments that have been duly served on its principal officers. ’’No stay of execution has been granted neither have they been set aside. Besides, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and the relevant security agencies monitored our congresses and wrote their reports.
“We recall that a few days ago when there was a lot of hue and cry over the seeming delay of President Goodluck Jonathan to implement the recommendation of the National Judicial Council, NJC, that the suspended President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami should be re-instated, the national leadership of the party issued a statement saying since the matter was in court, it should be left to run its full course. “Is it not ridiculous that the same body could be planning to hold fresh con-
gresses when there are court judgments against such an act? It is actions such as these that have continued to portray our party as a lawless organisation without any modicum of respect for the rule of law. “Our take is that such a step is not only contemptuous of the court but also an exercise in futility as we will not hesitate to go court to nullify the contrived exercise and make the fake state Executive Council and their collaborators pay for the consequences of their action.”
GHELLI—EX-MILI TANTS in the Niger Delta region, yesterday, petitioned the National Assembly over what they described as undue exclusion from the third phase of the Federal Government’s Amnesty Programme. The group under the aegis of the Niger Delta Development Ex-militants, which cuts across Delta, Edo, Bayelsa and AkwaIbom states, said they were being frustrated and dehumanized in the programme. According to the National Secretary, Tam Odogwu in the petition, copy of which was made available to newsmen, the group handed over 21,000 different ammunition to the Joint Military Task Force, SSS and the Nigerian Police
Akpabio's wife to sponsor winners of essay competition YO—WIFE of Gover nor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, Mrs Ekaette Akpabio, has said her non-governmental organisation will sponsor winners of the essay competition organised for public schools on study trips a b r o a d . Mrs Akpabio disclosed this while presenting the winners of the competition with their awards. The winners of the essay competition, drawn from the three senatorial zones in
WKA—NO fewer than 60,000 maternal deaths occur in Nigeria annually, most of which were due to ignorance, President of the Gynaecological Association of Nigeria, Prof Brian Adinma said yesterday. Adinma, a one time Commissioner for Health in Anambra State, who spoke during a community sensitization on prevention of maternal death from un-
wanted pregnancy, said the position put Nigeria as second highest, while India records the highest maternal mortality in the world. Delivering a lecture at a seminar organised by the National Council of Women Societies, NCWS, Adinma added that countries like Sweden and Northern Ireland record only one maternal mortality each in every five years. According to him, five important cases that kill women during pregnancy in-
the state, were rewarded with an all-expense paid trip to ‘digitest 2012 Pretoria’ computer training programme in South Africa. The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that the essay competition was in primary, junior secondary and senior secondary categ o r i e s . She said the competition was organised in commemoration of the Children’s Day to encourage students to be serious with their acad e m i c s .
ADC chieftain urges FG not to hike electricity tariff BY DOTUN IBIWOYE ORMER Presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress,
Nigeria records 60,000 maternal deaths annually—Don BY VINCENT UJUMADU
Force in the affected states. Odogwu said, “all our peaceful efforts to make the authorities see reason with our plights have failed. But we still trust that your reputation for fairness, justice and equity remains our last hope in redressing this act of discrimination and injustice. “We believe in the National Assembly to examine our petition and proffer appropriate solution with a view to assuaging the pains and grievances of the third phase members. “It is on record that the series of peaceful protests, including the East-West road and Lokoja-Abuja expressway traffic blockades on 7th September and 8th December, 2011 respectively were unavoidable as a result of our exhaustive use of peaceful and legitimate means.''
clude bleeding and ecclesia, obstructed labour, unsafe abortion or miscarriage and anaemia (low blood), regretting that many women became victims because they failed to attend ante- natal, which he said, was due to high poverty rate in the country. He warned against hiding incidences of rape in various communities, adding that exposing the incidence of rape would help reduce maternal mortality in the country.
ADC, in the 2011 general elections, Prof. Peter Nwangwu, has urged the Federal Government not to increase electricity tariff now because the conditions were not ripe for such a move. The government had announced an increment in electricity tariffs from June 1 this year. However, in an interview, Nwangwu stated that there was no justifiable reason for the increase in electricity tariff because it is known universally that electric supply to Nigerians is very erratic and unreliable. He said: “People are not billed for what they use, right now the government makes people pay for estimated bill every month, rather than for actual electricity consumed.''
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MAY 29 AS DEMOCRACY DAY: What’s in a date? How did the military administration of General Abdulsalami Abubakar come about May 29 as handover date? This piece explores the issues around May 29. BY JIDE AJANI
HE workings of their minds may never be known. General Abdulsalami Abubakar ’s Provisional Ruling Council, PRC, had an idea of what Nigerians wanted and was very eager and willing to give it to them. With the demise of General Sani Abacha on June 8, 1998, and the continuing agitation for a return to civil rule, Abubakar ’s administration understood the concerns of Nigerians and the international community: Handover power as quickly as possible. And if there was only one thing in the minds of members of the PRC, it was the need to handover in about a year’s time. Although Vanguard has not been able to lay its hands on the minutes of the rash of meetings held inside Aso Rock Presidential Villa in the wake of Abacha’s death and in the early days of the Abubakar administration (particularly in June and early July of 1998), a number of those who attended such meetings told Vanguard that the major reason the administration of Abubakar chose May 29, 1999, as its handover date is that “it did not want to stay in power beyond one year”. In fact, when May 29 was announced as Democracy Day, there was opposition to the date from members of the National Democratic Coalition, NADECO, the umbrella body of prodemocracy and civil society groups, which had all along been agitating for the actualisation of the June 12, 1993 presidential election mandate. The election was rendered inconclusive as the electoral body did not announce all the results of that election. And whereas late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, was presumed to have won that election, he was never declared winner; and he was to die in detention exactly 29days after the demise of Abacha on July 7, 1998 _ His death created a vacuum. The least person Nigerians expected to die at that critical time was Abacha. But the man died! While the PRC did not want to pick a date that would push its stay in office beyond 51 or 52 weeks. Counting from the week of June 9, 1998, to May 29, 1999, there were just between 51 and 52 weeks. May 29, 1999, a Thursday, was chosen by the PRC. In fact, for that reason, TIME Magazine chose Abubakar as a runner_up in its choice of Person of The Year for 1999. The NADECO chieftains actually wanted a
•Abdulsalami: Didn't want to stay in office beyond one year
•Abacha:Died suddenly Sovereign National Conference, SNC, to be held first before the political transition programme time-table would be released. They also wanted a Government of National Unity, GNU, instituted in place of the military. Then there were those who felt and, therefore, insisted that even if the military was to relinquish power, it should not be on the terms of the NADECO leaders. There were also some hot heads in the military, who wanted a slightly longer time in office. The western powers wanted the military to leave office as quickly as practicable without leaving behind a fractured polity. Confronted with all these, and especially because he was an unwilling leader, Abubakar looked for the quickest exit date, which would not make the military stay in office beyond one year of his taking over. Chief Ayo Adebanjo, one of the leaders who were in consultation with the military, said: “We kicked against that date of May 29, 1999, as Democracy Day. For us, the argument was simple and straight enough. If there had been no June 12 Presidential Election of 1993, there would have been no new arrangement whereby the military would be
•Adebanjo: May 29 can never be Democracy Day; without June 12, there can't be May 29.
•Abiola:Mandate never reclaimed seeking a hand-over date. We also made it clear to them that the May 29 date has no significance in the history of Nigeria in any way”. However, Vanguard learnt that some people kicked against the May 29, 1999 hand-over date because it had a close association with the dates Chukwuemeka Odumegu Ojukwu made his now famous ‘Secession and Declaration of the Sovereign State of Biafra’ and ‘On Aburi We Stand’ speeches. Both were made on the 30th day of the month of May, 1967 and 1969, respectively. On the secession issue, he declared thus in 1967, “Fellow countrymen and women, you, the people of Eastern Nigeria: Conscious of the supreme authority of Almighty God over all mankind, of your duty to yourselves and posterity; aware that you can no longer be protected in your lives and in your property by any Government based outside Eastern Nigeria; believing that you are born free and have certain inalienable rights which can best be preserved by yourselves…. “Now, therefore, I, Lieutenant_Colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu
•Ojukwu:Delivered "ON ABURI WE STAND" Speech on May 30, 1967
Ojukwu, Military Governor of Eastern Nigeria, by virtue of the authority, and pursuant to the principles, recited above, do hereby solemnly proclaim that the territory and region known as and called Eastern Nigeria together with her continental shelf and territorial waters shall henceforth be an independent sovereign state of the name and title of “The Republic of Biafra…. ”Long live the Republic of Biafra! And may God protect all who live in her!” On the ‘On Aburi We Stand’ speech, he insisted: “Anybody who was present at the Aburi meeting or has read the minutes, the communiqués, statements, and verbatim reports would be surprised that a person who calls himself a head of state could so deliberately mislead accredited representatives of foreign governments by saying that the implementation of each item of the conclusions required prior detailed examination by the administrative and professional experts in the various fields. The conclusions in Aburi were no proposals but decisions taken by the highest authority in the land. “We in the East are anxious to see that our difficulties are resolved by peaceful means and
that Nigeria is preserved as a unit, but it is doubtful, and the world must judge whether Lieutenant_Colonel Gowon’s attitudes and other exhibitions of his insincerity are something which can lead to a return of normalcy and confidence in the country. “I must warn all Easterners once again to remain vigilant. The East will never be intimidated, nor will she acquiesce to any form of dictation. It is not our intention to play the aggressor. Nonetheless, it is not our intention to be slaughtered in our beds. We are ready to defend our homeland. “Fellow countrymen and women, On Aburi We Stand. There will be no compromise. God grant peace in our time”. And whereas pro_democracy activists largely in the Yoruba_speaking South West geo-political zone still celebrate June 12 as their own Democracy Day, the Federal Government of Nigeria continues to declare May 29, the hand-over date to civil rule since 1999 as Democracy Day. But for ordinary Nigerians, the dates make no meaning to their stomachs; their concern would be to live a prosperous life in peace and unity. So, what’s in a date?
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MAY 29, 2012
Group offers access to free healthcare for indigent women ...Unveils rural help maternity project in Lagos BY CHIOMA OBINNA & GABRIEL OLAWALE OOPS I’m pregnant, 37 years- old Mrs. Angelina Okoh retorted. It was seven years after she married her heartthrob, Ogu Okoh, who was filled
with joy at the news. But few months after, the worst happened. Ogu lost his shop and everything in it to a fire. Hardship set in. Ogu could no longer support his pregnant wife. The couple was thrown out of their rented apartment and the journey back to the village started.
In the village, Angelina decided to patronise one a traditional birth attendant, but almost lost her life in the process. She developed complications during labour and only the quick intervention of a skilled birth attendant at a General Hospital in the area, saved her from
becoming one of the 52, 000 Nigerian women who die of pregnancy related problems annually. Today, reports show that every day, 145 women die in Nigeria giving birth to a child. In recognition of the role of poverty in fueling maternal deaths in the
• Executive Director, Rural Help Maternity Project, Dr. Uchendu Alaefula making a presentation to one of the beneficiaries of the project in Lagos last week. country, a non g o v e r n m e n t a l organization, Dr. Nothing dey Happen, initiated a save live today programme tagged, “Rural Help Maternity Project.” Unveiling the project in
Lagos, the Executive Director of the programme, Dr. Uchendu Alaefula who decried the incidences of maternal mortality in the country regretted that maternal mortality rate has not improved in Nigeria in the last decade.
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Enyeama grabs captain's band •Utaka, Ejide in UPER Eagles yester day commenced final dress rehearsal for their World Cup qualifier against Namibia on Sunday in Calabar. Head Coach, Stephen Keshi, wasted no time in naming Vincent Enyeama, as the skipper for the duel against the Southern Africans. Enyeama is expected to continue in that role until substantive skipper, Joseph Yobo recovers from his injuries. At the morning training session inside the University of Calabar mini stadium, Keshi, simply addressed Enyeama as captain and all and sundry concurred. The training, which was conducted under the early morning sun had 22 players in training, with only one of them, Papa Idris, not fully involved in action as he was still recovering from past knocks. He was however able to jog and run around gracefully under the supervision if Physiotherapist, Olawale Oladejo. The foreign based professionals who trained yesterday are Sone Aluko, Victor Moses, Ikechukwu Uche, Efe Ambrose, Fengor Ogude, Elderson Echejile, Gege Soriola, Ekigho Ehiosun, Ahmed Musa and Vincent Enyeama. They were joined by the 12 home-based stars unveiled at the weekend and led by Warri Wolves goalie, Chigozie Agbim. Later in the afternoon, Montpellier of France league 1 championship hero, John Utaka and Israeli based goalie, Austin Ejide joined camp.
ON TARGET . . . Super Eagles goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama (C) reaches for the ball during the Group B first round 2010 World Cup match against Greece at Free State Stadium in Mangaung/Bloemfontein. Photo: AFP
NFF Contnues from BP eration, we gathered, earlier advised that there was nothing wrong if Keshi invited 23 players for each match but warned that having 28 players for each match was wrong. But for peace to reign and for the technical crew not to have any excuse to fail Keshi and his crew have been allowed 27 players in camp. Chairman of the Technical Committee of the federation, Barrister Green had this to say yesterday: “On a personal note, I’ll do everything humanly possible to ensure Keshi and his crew succeed. On the side of the federation, we are committed to developing football in Nigeria and qualifying for the Nations Cup and World Cup is a task that we will never compromise: We are, there-
We're not with our best — Keshi Uke Uche, Enyeama, Moses lead Eagles training
BY JOHNBOSCO AGBAKWURU, Calabar
UPER Eagles players filed out at the Abraham Ordia stadium, University of Calabar, Cross River State, Monday morning for their first training in preparation for their match against the Namibia national team on June 3, at the U.J. Esuene stadium Calabar. Speaking in an interview, the Super Eagles Head Coach, Stephen Keshi promised Nigerians
that the team will not disappoint them in their qualifying series against Namibia. Keshi said that though the home based and the professionals’ players to be used in the match may not be the best the country has, the players will not disappoint the country as they have the high spirit to make the country proud. “Well the truth is that first of all, the home based players we have here are not the best of the home based players only that they are privileged and the professionals are not the best of the professionals that we have. “We have to blend t h e m t o g e t h e r. We
SMILES . . . GM, Supersports Nigeria,Felix Awogu (2ndL) Presents DSTV decorder to Chairman, Lagos SWAN, Fred Edore (2nd R) with Marketing Manager Bede Nwokoye (L) and Ms Itu Senne, Communications Manager (R) at the SWAN secretariate, Lagos. Photo by Sylva Eleanya. have to seekr a balance and create opportunity for other home based players and other younger professionals playing in Europe who have not been seen and have been neglected. “This is a nice opportunity for them, we are not
experimenting, we know the capabilities of the players and what they can do and we just want to give Nigerians good football and Nigerians will have players that will be sort of competing for each wing.”
Marriage best contract ever — Osaze B L I S S F U L UNION....Peter Odemwingie and Sarah Fallon tie the knot surrounded by family and friends
EST Bromwich striker Peter Odemwingie has said that getting married to fiancée Sarah Fallon is the best contract he’s ever signed. Even though the 30 year-old Baggies striker has said he wants to move away to a bigger club next season, it was with great joy that he tied the nuptials with 22 year-old Sarah whom he had been dating for two years. “Thank you all for the
congratulatory messages. It was the most beautiful day of my life! A contract I signed with the biggest joy ever!” Odemwingie tweeted to his followers on Sunday. Apparently the striker who is supposed to be on honeymoon in Venice, Italy still has the time to check up on social media. The Birmingham Mail reports that it was a nice small wedding that had 150 guests at the church.
‘The ceremony was followed by a fourcourse wedding breakfast then “nightclubstyle” entertainment with a DJ in a marquee in the grounds of the castle,’ wrote the paper. It published a picture of the newly-wed couple alongside their train. Odemwingie wore a cream-coloured suit with white shirt and tie while Sarah had a boob tube wedding dress that looked amazing on her petite frame.
fore, ready to make any sacrifice that will see us not only qualifying but doing well in those competitions.” On Keshi’s relationship with the technical committee he said this: “We don’t have any problem with Keshi. We are working together and providing him with everything he needs to succeed. We have played six friendly matches in six months that he has been in charge. How many countries have played more? We have played a total of seven matches, six friendlies and one competitive match in Rwanda. We lost two, won two and drew three. I feel that with these we should now begin to have some picture of a near consistent team that two or three additions or exclusions could be made from now till when we build a solid team. We are in total support of the building programme but what we are simply saying is that for the qualifiers, we don’t want to gamble. The President(Aminu Maigari) has made it clear that we must not gamble in the qualifiers. We need to field our best so that we will take three points and as many goals as possible for every match so that if goals will decide anything we will be there. Nobody in NFF has imposed or tried to impose any player on Keshi. Nobody will do so in our tenure. We are committed to professionalism but we will ensure that the right thing is done.”
Keshi Contnues from BP His training was also targeted at getting goals, as he said the Namibians, who have been training in Germany for the qualifier must not be underrated. “They say we are the super power and Namibians are minnows, those are only words, and until we show it on the pitch we will just be living in a fool’s paradise”. The Super Eagles train twice daily at 7:30 am and 3:30 pm inside the UNICAl Sports Ground. That will continue until the team moves to the UJ Esuene Stadium on Thursday, to perfect strategies against Namibia.
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Keshi seeks aggressive scorers S UPER Eagles boss, Stephen Keshi, has unveiled an ambitious programme aimed at ensuring that the national team, scores plenty goals not only against
Namibia, but against any foe in the qualifiers for the Nations Cup 2012 and the World Cup 2014. For Keshi, no matter how pretty a team plays, goalscoring abilities re-
No gambling, NFF tells Keshi BY ONOCHIE ANIBEZE THE Nigeria football Federation has passed a message to Stephen Keshi, the Eagles manager. “We are determined to qualify for the World Cup and the Nations and will do our best to support you to achieve this and go to the competitions to do well.” NFF was reacting to feelers from the camp that the Eagles crew was not happy over the number of players that should be invited to execute matches. Keshi was said to have wanted 28 players and the NFF reminded him that only 23 players are allowed for a match by the football governing body, FIFA. Keshi had argued that since he had three matches to execute he should be allowed an increased number for wider options. Musa Amadu, Secretary-General of the Fed
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CONTROL•••Super Eagles Ejike Ozoenyi controls the ball in the air during last week’s friendly match against Peru in Lima. Peru won 1-0. PHOTO: AFP
Continues on page 90 TODAY'S
main the ultimate decider of matches hence his charge to strikers not only to be aggressive in front of goal but to ensure that they are 70 per cent on target at all times. “In our time, matches against teams like Namibia are not discussed in terms of whether we will win but how many goals we will score and that is what I want us to return to in the new Super Eagles”, he told the players on Monday morning.
QUICK CROSSWORD ACROSS 1 Trial (6) 5 Scrutinise (4) 8 Flashlight (5) 9 Child (3) 10 Shortly 11 Attack (4) 12 Tender (5) 13 Niche (6) 16 Cast (4) 18 Cheese (4) 20 Novel (3) 22 Be indebted (3) 23 Noise (3) 24 Broad (4) 25 Hire (4) 28 Objective (6) 30 Senior (5) 32 Warmth (4) 33 Cut (4) 34 Fitting (3) 35 Animals (5) 36 Victim (4) 37 Erase (6)
DOWN 1 Clamour (6) 2 Discovered (8) 3 Rate (6) 4 Assured (9) 5 Twisted (7) 6 Scorch (4) 7 Naked (4) 8 Also (3) 14 Abbreviated (9) 15 Pale (3) 17 Sheep (3) 19 Shame (8) 20 Pinch (3) 21 Rich (7) 26 Confront (6) 27 Figurine (6) 29 Lash (4) 30 Relax (4) 31 Tear (3)
YESTERDAY'S SOLUTIONS ACROSS: 4, Chair 7, Agency 9, Foe 10, Tar 12, Mania 13, Loud 15, Refer 17, Cuddle 19, Trap 20, Deter 22, Elk 24, Tingled 27, Pea 28, Erode 31, Seed 33, Atoned 35, Often 37, Wilt 38, Abode 39, Dub 41, Gap 42, Salute 43, Beset.
How to Play Sudoku
DOWN: 1, Pallid 2, Deduct 3, Act 4, Come 5, Heart 6, Imitated 8, Yard 11, Relegated 14, Duet 16, Fell 18, Drip 21, Ensemble 23, Keen 25, Neat 26, Drew 29, Odious 30, Esteem 32, Dodge 34, Onus 36, Feat 40, Bad
Place a number (1-9) in each blank cell. (No line can have two of the same number). Each row (nine lines from left to right), column, (also nine lines from top to bottom) and 3 X 3 block within a bold block (nine blocks) contains number from 1 through 9. This means that no number can appear twice in any block, column or row. No mathematics is involved – no adding, subtraction, division or multiplication, just plain logic and your imagination. Printed and Published by VANGUARD MEDIA LIMITED, Vanguard Avenue, Kirikiri Canal, P.M.B.1007, Apapa. Phone: Newsroom: 018773962. Deputy Editor: 01-8944295. Advert Dept: 01-7924470; Hotline: 01-8737028; Abuja: 09-2341102, 09-2342704. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org. Advert:email@example.com Website: www.vanguardngr.com (ISSN 0794-652X) Editor: MIDENO BAYAGBON. Phone: 01-7742861, All correspondence to P.M.B. 1007, Apapa Lagos.