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Gov. Wada undergoes 2-hr surgery Continued from page 1 Friday. Doctors at the hospital where the governor wasreceiving treatment hinted, yesterday, that Wada rejected the option of flying him abroad for further treatment after undergoing what was described as interlocking nail surgery on his thigh broken in the crash. The surgery, which lasted two hours, was said to have been successful. Spokesman for the governor, Mr Jacob Edi, echoed the doctors position when he said his principal was stable. “I saw His Excellency after the unfortunate accident. He has been stabilised since last night (Friday). I spoke with him and he shook my hands. It was after he stabilised that he was flown to Abuja,”Edi told Sunday Vanguard. The governor was said to have suffered a broken thigh among other injuries when his vehicle ran into a ditch after a burst tyre on Friday afternoon at Emi Woro village, about 12 kilometers to Lokoja, the state capital. His ADC died while his driver reportedly escaped
unhurt. Wada was retur ning to Lokoja from Kogi State University where he attended a function when the crash occurred. The governor was rushed to the Kogi State Specialist, Lokoja where he was treated before he was taken to Cedar Crest Hospital, Abuja for further treatment. Vice President Namadi Sambo; Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State; and a former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) national chairman, Alhaji Ahmadu Ali; were among those who visited the Abuja hospital to see the injured Wada yesterday. The Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Felix Ogodengbe, who spoke for the doctors handling the governor ’s treatment, confirmed, yesterday, that Wada suffered a broken thigh among other injuries. Ogedengbe said the governor ruled out the option of being flown abroad for further treatment of his injuries after a two-hour operation on the thigh on Friday night.
He stated: “When the governor was brought in at 8pm (on Friday), we were told he was involved in a car accident and we checked him and explained the nature of his injuries to him. We also told him about our ability to manage the injuries. He had a broken thigh and he was taken to the theatre. The governor has since stabilized and he had a nice night; he
said he would not be taken abroad for treatment because he has confidence in our capacity to manage him. There is no immediate need to fly him abroad.” The medical director could, however, not state the possible date when the patient would be discharged, saying Wada needed time to recuperate. He said, “The governor is quite happy to take treatment
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal (left), exchanging greetings with the Vice President, Arc Mohammed Namadi Sambo (right), while the Senate President, David Mark (middle), looks on, at the wedding reception of daughters of Niger State Governor, Babangida Aliyu, yesterday in Minna.
here; the treatment is ongoing. He needs some days in the hospital and I can’t give a date of discharge now.” Findings at the hospital indicated that the surgical procedure performed on Wada would enable him regain the full use of the affected thigh with interlocking nails. The use of the interlocking nails procedure, according to medical experts, entails intramedullary pin secured in position by proximal and distal transfixing screws which engage the bone to the nail to provide axial bending and torsional stability. Meanwhile, Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State, yesterday, prayed God to grant Wada quick recovery even as he urged Nigerians to also pray for the governor. Orji, who described the accident as “ ver y sad and shocking”, also commiserated with the family of the Kogi governor ’s ADC, who died in the accident. The Abia governor, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Ugochukwu Emezue, lamented the death of the ADC.
Tears flow as Azazi goes home •The ex-NSA I knew, by Jonathan •Amaechi names street after him in Port Harcourt BY SAMUEL OYADONGHA & AKPOKONA OMAIFURE
ENAGOA, the Bayelsa State capital, yesterday stood still as President Goodluck Jonathan led other prominent Nigerians to pay their last respects to the late former National Security Adviser (NSA), Gen Owoye Andrew Azazi, at the Heroes Park. Azazi, who died penultimate Saturday in a helicopter crash at Tombi, some distance away
from Okoroba in Nembe local government area of the state alongside five others including the former governor of Kaduna State, Sir Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa, was buried at the Heroes Park, Yenagoa. Azazi’s wife and children wept as they performed the dust to dust rites for the former NSA after the funeral oration by the Bishop of Bomadi Vicariate His Lordship, Most Revd Hyacinth Egbeboh.
Among the dignitaries at the funeral ceremony were, wife of the President, Dame Patience Jonathan; Bayelsa Governor, Seriake Dickson and his wife, Rachael; chairman of the Governors Forum, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi and his wife, Judith; Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State; former Bayesa State governor, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha; former Chief of the Defence Staff, Gen Alexander Ogomudia (rtd); Rear Admiral John Kpokpogiri (rtd); former governor of old Rivers State, King Alfred Diete-Spiff; former NDDC Managing Director and Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Timi Alaibe; former JTF commander in the Niger Delta, Major General Sarkin Yakin Bello (rtd); PFN/CAN President Ayo Oritsejafor; and former transport minister, Rear Admiral Festus Porbeni. Also present were former Governor of Cross River State, Donald Duke; Speaker of the Bayesa State House of Assembly, Benson Kombowei; Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke; Finance Minister, Dr. Mrs. Ngozi OkonjoIweala,;Aviation Minister, Ms Stella Oduah; Minister of Niger Delta, Elder Godsday Orubebe; and the National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd).
The casket, drapped in the nation’s green-white-green colours bearing the remains of Azazi, arrived the Heroes Park, venue of the funeral service, in a Nigerian Army ambulance marked, NA 459 E 01 at 10.02 am. When the casket was brought out from the olive coloured ambulance, it was carried by officers of the rank of Major General to the podium specifically set up for the purpose of the commendation service while a military helicopter was hovering over the arena ostensibly on reconnaissance mission and in honour of the departed fourstar general. The solemn ceremony commenced shortly after President Goodluck Jonathan, his wife, and Governor Seriake arrived the venue at about 10.30am. Azazi was a patriot-Jonathan In his remarks, Jonathan described Azazi as a patriotic Nigerian. The president, who relived his time with his former National Security Adviser said the late Azazi believed in merit and competence, noting that if only 50 per cent of Nigerians could imbibe his virtue, the country would be better off. He said, “Satuday, December 15, 2012 was a sad day in the history of Nigeria. Gen Azazi,
though we are from Bayelsa State and the Ijaw ethnic nationality, I never met him until 2004 when the then Brigadier Azazi was made the Director of Military Intelligence. I was then the deputy governor of Bayelsa. Somebody came to me to say one of our own had been made the DMI boss and that was a prestigious posting in the army. And I decided I was going to receive him and have a little party for him. I hosted him one evening in Abuja at an Officer ’s Mess. From that time, we remained in touch; then he was promoted to Major General and made the GOC One Division, Kaduna and then he was also made the chief of the army staff. That was another level of our interaction in 2006, by which time, I was the governor of Bayelsa State. I also hosted him as chief of the army staff alongside the current Minister of Petroleum Resources (Diezani Alison-Madueke), then as the first female executive director of Shell. It was also my first time of meeting her. “He was made chief of defence staff in 2007 when I was vice president to the late President Umaru Musa Yar ’dua. I also made him the NSA when I became president. I saw him as somebody who meant well for this country. Sometimes,
Continues on page 6
PAGE 6—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Ekiti varsity warned against unauthorised fees
Tears flow as Azazi goes home Continued from page 5 people wonder why good people die, it is quite touching.” While urging Nigerians to imbibe the qualities of Azazi, the president said, “If we change our attitude to do what is right, the country will change for the best.” We have lost a hero Dickson Lamenting the demise of Azazi in the ill-fated helicopter crash, Dickson said, “Truly, we have lost a visionary leader and statesman and there may be no greater tribute to General Azazi’s illustrious military career than the fact that he was a first class military officer, who rose through the ranks as a professional soldier and
duly earned his place in the history of the Nigerian Army as the only decorated four-star general who truly earned his rank”. The governor assured that the life and times of Azazi would be documented by his administration to serve as inspiration for the youths and generations yet unborn. Amaechi names street after Azazi Amaechi described Azazi as his elder brother whom he looked up to for advice whenever he was t r o u b l e d . The Rivers governor announced the naming of a street in Port Harcourt in honour of
the former NSA and thanked the Bayelsa State government for giving him a state burial A big tree has fallen in Ijawland-Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke ”A big tree has fallen in Ijawland and the clay pot that supported the state has fallen,” lamented the petroleum minister as she fought back tears. A former governor of B a y e l s a , Alamieyeseigha, had, on Friday night eulogized Azazi, as a man who lived a life of service to humanity, noting that his demise is an indication that all mortals are on a journey on earth, which will come to an end one day. In his homily, His Lordship, the Bishop of
Bomadi vicariate, Most Revd Hyacinth Egbeboh, described death as a puzzle to man and stressed the need for mankind to exhibit kindness at all times as death can come calling anytime. He urged Nigerians to imbibe the qualities of Azazi and carry on with his legacies of service to humanity even as he lamented the deplorable state of the East-West Road which has claimed the lives of several road users and called on the authorities to take urgent steps to rehabilitate the road. The cleric also enjoined the family and people of the state to take solace in the fact that Azazi lived a fulfilled life and left behind worthy legacies.
BY GBENGA ARIYIBI
HE Alumni Association of Ekiti State University (EKSU),Ado Ekiti has kicked against unauthorised fees in the i n s t i t u t i o n . The association noted that school fees outside the official N50,000 approved by Governor Kayode Fayemi were illegal. Speaking with newsmen after honouring 16 professors that were products of the university,the national president of the Alumni Association ,Mr Bola Ogunlayi, advised the management of EKSU not to add to the burden of students. Ogunlayi, however, added that the management of the
university would not unilaterally add to the burden of students without clearance from appropriate quarters. EKSU students had alleged that the management of the university indirectly introduced fees of about N100,000 contrary to the N50,000 announced by Fayemi during his inauguration on 0ctober 16,2010 ”Any public statement issued by the authorities must be obeyed. Once the governor has announced the reduction of fees,the order must be obeyed”,the Alumni Association boss said. Commenting on the destruction of the university properties during a protest by some students of the institution,Ogunlayi condemned the action.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 — PAGE 7
Friends, family bid Vanguard photojournalist, Sylva, farewell By INNOCENT ANABA, UDUMA KALU & WAHAB ABDULLAH
The Marketing and Technical Assistant Director of UniCem, Mr. Vipul Agrawal presenting an award of appreciation to a customer, during the end year party organized by the company for its customers in Calabar.
he remains of the late Vanguard photojournalist, Mr Sylva Eleanya,were, yesterday, laid to rest in his home town, Umuogi, Umuakwune in Ngor/ Okpala Loca Government Area of Imo State, amid tears as the family and friends paid him their last respects. Speaking at the burial, Mr Tony Ubani,
Piracy: Navy seeks modern security devices on vessels BY UDEME CLEMENT
he Nigerian Navy (NN) has called on the Federal Government to direct the relevant agencies, especially the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), to enforce the installation of latest security devices on all vessels plying Nigerian waters to stem the tide of pirate attacks. The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Amin Ikioda, who was represented by the Command Intelligence Officer, Commander Usman Bugaje, said this, during a paper presentation titled ‘Measures to Check Piracy and other Illegal Activities on Nigerian Waters’ at the sixth Ships & Ports Annual National Essay Competition and prize presentation ceremony in Lagos . He went on: “Government should give attention to the coastal states in the Gulf of Guinea region to develop a robust regional maritime security strategy through capacity building, intelligence sharing and logistic support to enhance sea patrol and surveillance of territorial waters. Greater attention must be given to capacity of the Nigerian Navy, through acquisition of more functional ships, boats,
offshore patrol vessels (OPV), helicopters and back-up facilities to enable them perform their statutory role of hunting down sea pirates and smugglers, including combating other forms of maritime threats in the nation’s waters”. “Nigeria ’s waters is fast becoming very dangerous in terms of piratical violence against vessels and illegal activities. Government must act quickly to combat the scourge of piracy. Piracy is a crime
under customary and international law, which affects all countries. It can occur in a state’s territorial waters, neighbouring jurisdictions and on the high seas. All stakeholders in Nigerian maritime industry must take reasonable steps to protect the maritime domain in order to achieve maximum economic and social gains.” Also, the director general of NIMASA, Mr. Patrick Akpobolokemi, who spoke on, ‘How to Check Piracy and Other
Illegal Activities on Nigerian Waters’, said, “The resurgence of pirate attacks in African waters is now a subject of serious concern to African states and indeed the international community. Piracy in African waters for the last decade is concentrated in three regions namely, the Somali Coast/the Gulf of Aden along the East African Coast, Nigeria’s territorial waters in West Africa and the Mozambique channel/ Cape sea route in Southern Africa.”
Four killed, 10 injured in accident along Benin-Ore Expressway
to his friends and colleagues not to forget the lovely family he left behind.” Sylva’s uncle, Sir Emma Eleanya, said that he (Sylva) was an accomplished photojournalist, community leader, peace-maker, adding that he would be missed. Rev Stone Stone, who conducted the funeral service, said the deceased was a man of integrety. He said, “if people say he was a man of integrity, then what will God say? It is good for people to always be associated and remembered for their good deeds. He warned that people should pause from their pursuit of material things to ponder where they would end up when they die, adding that Sylva accomplished a lot at 50, as he was known accross the country for his hard work and outstanding performance while he alive. Vanguard NUJ Chairman, Mr Innocent Anaba, on his part, called for support for the family, noting that the widow of Sylva and children should not be forgotten with the deceased’s burial.
Vanguard Sport Editor,who represented V a n g u a r d management, said Sylva, who was, until his death, the Vice Chairman of Vanguard Chapel of Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ, would be missed by colleagues as he was friendly with all and bore no malice or grudges against any one, even when offended. He promised the family of the continued support of the Vanguard management to the widow and children, noting the d e c e a s e d photojournalist Sylva took his work very serious, which won him awards and recognition in the countr y. Mr Ubani said: “The late Slyva did everything well in his profession and became an international photojournalist, as he could write stories well and was very good in photography. We are sad that he left us. It will be difficult to fill the void created by his demise. We shall all miss him. ”He (late Sylva) loved the family and joked with them. He was too fond of his wife and children. We appealed
A year of unfulfilled promises
O much was promised by the F e d e r a l Government, but hardly any was fulfilled, as insecurity, epileptic power supply and fuel shortages and a host of other issues frustrated the business environment in 2012, even as economic players set agenda for President Goodluck Jonathan, on how to avert these challenges in the New Year. Although the NERC Chair man, Dr. Sam Amadi, wrote that predictions came
through with regard to power supply, but every Nigerian know that was not the case. In spite of the unfulfilled promises, operators believe that Nigeria holds enormous potential for rapid economic growth, if only government can institute the right policies and the right caliber of people to execute them. Read about all these and more in your favourite industry magazine, Sweetcrude. It is a bumper New Year package, don’t miss your copy!
were four men, four women, and two children. The FRSC said the accident involved a truck with registration number XW 471 ABC and a Toyota Hiace bus with registration number XA 911 AAH. The accident occurred
BY GODWIN OGHRE
Religious leaders cautioned on hypocrisy
t least four people were killed and 10 others injured when two vehicles collided along the Benin-Ore Expressway, the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, has said. The dead include two men and two women while the 10 injured
iery preacher, Mr C h a d w i c k Akpurhie, in Sapele, yesterday, urged religious leaders to shun hypocrisy and concentrate on brotherly love and tolerance as a way of fostering socioeconomic development of the nation. Akpurhie
gave the charge in a nondenominational lecture, entitled, “Unity in The Body of Christ”, and said religious intolerance and killings in parts of the country were capable of scaring away investors and also capable of slowing down economic
at Igbogui Village on the Benin-Ore Expressway yesterday evening. “The corpses and the injured have been taken to Shiloh Medical Clinic, Igbogui. Clearing of the road is ongoing,” the FRSC said on its facebook post.
and infrastructural development of the country. According to him, events of recent times have shown that religious leaders do not know what love is, hence the outbreak of religious killings and unwarranted wanton de-
struction of life and properties across some parts of the country. He said killings encouraged by the teachings of some religious leaders in some parts of the world were not the teachings of Jesus Christ who is the bedrock
of Christianity. The cleric urged religious adherents to be wary of the religions they pledge their loyalty and service with a view to quitting the ones which support killing of one another and embrace the true worship of God.
PAGE 8—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
The Pere of Akugbene-Mein kingdom of Bomadi, Delta State, HRM S.P Luke, Kalanama VIII, flanked by his wives ,Queen Gloria Luke (left) and Queen Tina Luke, during his 15th year anniversary.
Obasanjo, Shonekan, Amosun reconcile Alake, Olowu, Osile, Agura BY DAUD OLATUNJI, Abeokuta
ORMER President O l u s e g u n Obasanjo; Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, and exHead of Interim Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan; yesterday, met with the four traditional rulers in Egbaland following the lingering supremacy tussle among them. The meeting, which lasted three hours, was held at Government House,Oke-Igbein, Abeokuta. Also in attendance at the parley were an industrialist, Chief Olatunde Abudu and Deputy Governor of the Central Bank (Operations), Mr. Tunde Lemo. The warring Obas are the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo; the Olowu of Owu, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu; the Agura of Gbagura, Oba Halidu Olaloko and the Osile of Oke-Ona,Oba Adedapo Tejuoso. Addressing newsmen after the closed-door meeting, Obasanjo, who is the chairman of the reconciliation committee, described the truce brokered by Amosun as genuine. According to the former president, wherever human beings coexist,there is bound to be friction. “The most important thing is that the people must constantly work out solutions to such challenges through sincere dialogue, communication and discussion,”he stated. “Where you make dialogue the oil reducing friction in human
relationships,then you have gotten the solution to disagreement.” He disclosed that the reconciliation was like the ones he had resolved between the late former governor of Ogun State , Chief Olabisi Onabanjo, and the Awujale of Ijebuland,Oba Sikiru Adetona; the people of Ife and Modakeke in Osun State and others in foreign countries. Obasanjo therefore expressed optimism that the step would engender lasting peace in Egbaland, saying the monarchs displayed sincerity and determination at various meetings held before the peace was brokered. “I was with the Obas, and I read their lips and observed their body language and I can assure you that they are sincere and genuine,” he said.
R-L: The D.P.O Badagry, Alh. A .M Dankoli ; Area Commander, Area K. Adeshina Soyemi (ACP); and Chairman, Badagry Local Government, Hon. Husitode Moses Dosu, when Dosu donated patrol vans to the Nigeria Police, Area “K” Command last week.
Merger talks tear CPC apart BY JIDE AJANI
HE proposed merger of the Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, and two other political parties is brewing tension in the camp of the former and is threatening to stall activities pursuant to accomplishing the merger objective - the two other parties in the merger talks are the All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP, and the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN. This is because a section of the leadership of CPC is not happy with the choice of the former deputy governor of Bauchi State, Garuba Ghadi, as Chairman of the CPC Negotiating Team to the Joint Negotiating Committee on the merger. Indeed, Ghadi’s choice
by General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), national leader and presidential candidate of the party, is not going down well with the likes of Alhaji Buba Galadima, Secretary General of the party; Mustapha Saliu Bello, Deputy National Chairman; Sule Yahaya Hamma (Dr), General Buhari’s Advisor; and Murtala Usman Aliyu. The quartet, Sunday Vanguard learnt, held a meeting on Wednesday in Abuja where their concerns were tabled. At the meeting, each lamented the developments in the party regarding the proposed merger with the consensus that the choice of Ghadi would not do the CPC any good because he was not particularly suitable. Interestingly, it was also
observed that “of all those who started on this political journey with Buhari since 2002, only Hamma and Galadima” remain in the leadership cadre of the presidential candidate’s associates. In fact, Galadima, who is one of the hardliners in the CPC, lamented that the Bola Tinubu-led ACN that have since hijacked the proposed merger succeeded in blackmailing Buhari into believing that without a merger, he can not become president of Nigeria. At some point during the meeting, Galadima himself was blamed for the current turn of events in the CPC. One of the participants insisted that Galadima’s fishing expenditure for membership brought in all manner of characters
Ogun PDP leaders, ex-president meet over crisis BY ISHOLA BALOGUN
O retore peace to the crisis-ridden Ogun State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), some leaders of the party have met with formerPresident Olusegun Obasanjo in Abeokuta, the state capital. The meeting, held at Obasanjo’s Hilltop residence on Thursday, had in attendance a former Minister of Commerce, Senator Jubril Martins-Kuye; a former Chairman of the Senate Committee on Interior, Senator Lekan Mustapha; and two party leaders from Ogun
Central Senatorial District, Chief Dayo Abatan and Chief Niyi Adegbenro, among others.
According to a source privy to the meeting, the former president reiterated his commitment to resolving
the crisis bedeviling the state chapter of the party, notwithstanding his decision to steer clear of local politics.
2014: It’s undemocratic to give governorship to Anambra North — Ngige BY VINCENT UJUMADU, Awka
ORMER governor of Anambra State and the senator representing Anambra Central senatorial zone, Dr. Chris Ngige, is not amused by the on-going campaign in the state that Anambra North senatorial zone should produce the next governor of the state in
2014, describing such argument as undemocratic. Though Ngige has not declared interest in the election, which is expected to take place in December next year, his political associates have been pressuring him to contest to enable him complete the journey he ended in 2003 when he was removed from office
by the court after three years in office as governor. The incumbent governor, Mr. Peter Obi, and many politicians from Anambra North are among those in the forefront of the argument in favour of the North senatorial zone to produce the next governor because the area has not done so since the creation of the state in 1991.
“ who have now turned their backs on him”. On the merger talks, it was disclosed at the meeting that “the planned political merger has rather and, unfortunately, brought them more crisis in the party and that the CPC is consequently divided”. Sunday Vanguard discovered that whereas Buhari and Prince Tony Momoh are on one side of the divide, the likes of Galadima, Bello, and Hamma are on the other side. Galadima reportedly told the gathering that the planned Joint Negotiating Committee meetings of the three concerned opposition political parties would not immediately be on the issue of political merger as is being envisaged in some quarters. According to him, the three parties would rather be discussing and concerned with the underlisted issues: *Political power structure and sharing; *Harmonization of the constitution and the manifesto of the parties involved; and *Programmes and development plans while the concerned political parties would be in power. While these preliminary arrangements are on, a new political party would be registered, after which CPC, ACN and the ANPP would eventually abandon their respective parties to join the newly registered party that would emerge, after which leaders and foillowers would align.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 — PAGE 9
Between Ojukwu’s Will and the Codicil
Isoko backs Anioma for governorship 2015
BY TONY EDIKE
BY TONY NWANKWO
HE late Ikemba Nnewi, Chief Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, apparently modified his Will via a codicil. In the codicil, exclusively published by Sunday Vanguard, last week, the former Biafran leader restated his position in the Will that the bulk of his properties should go to his wife, Mrs Bianca Odinaka Olivia OdumegwuOjukwu. He declared that two of the properties he willed to Bianca had already been transferred to her by a Deed of Gift (Gift inter vivos). Whereas Ojukwu gave “the property known as Jubilee Hotel on Jubilee Road, Zaria, Kaduna State to my daughter, Tenni Hamman” in the Will, he disclosed in the codicil that he had since sold the property. Tenni Hamman is, however, compensated, according to the codicil, with a share of her father ’s real estate properties. Meanwhile, the Will has run into a legal storm with the eldest child of the late Ikemba Nnewi, Chief Debe Odumegwu-Ojukwu, filing an action at the High of Enugu, praying that the Will be set aside. According to the suit in which Bianca and the probate registrar, High Court of justice, Enugu State are respondents, the Will is fraudulent and incompetent. Other grounds of Debe’s application are unmentioned child (in the Will) and pretermittant child. Find below the unedited version of the Ojukwu controversial Will read on Nov. 28, 2012 by the probate registry of the High Court of Justice, Enugu State. THIS IS THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT of I, DIM CHUKWUEMEKA ODUMEGWU OJUKWU, EZEIGBO GBURURU, of 4, Isiuzo Street, Independence Layout, Enugu, ENUGU STATE I REVOKE all t e s t a m e n t a r y dispositions previously made by me and declare this my last will and testament. I appoint my wife, Mrs. Bianca Odinaka Olivia Odumegwu - Ojukwu, Igwe Oraukwu, Chief Emeka Ogbunude and Mr. James ChLikwunenye Ezike of NO. 24 Campbell Street, Lagos
(hereinafter together called “my trustees and executors” which expression where the context admits shall include the Trustees and executors hereof for the time being whether original or substuted) to be the executors and trustees of this my will GIVE ABSOLUTELY to my wife Mrs. Bianca Odinaka Olivia Odumegwu - Ojukwu of No.4 Isiuzo Street, Independence LayoLlt, Enugu, the following real properties: (a) The real property located at NO. 7 Forest Crescent, Enugu, Enugu State otherwise known as “Casa Bianca”. (b) The property known as Plot NO. 20 Cadastral B9, located in JAB I DAM, Abuja, and covered by Certificate of Occupancy NO. AN4405.
he property located at KUJE, in the Federal Capital Territory Abuja, covered by Customary Certificate of Occupancy NO .KACV.FCDA/LP & S/MISC.834 conveying the Right of Occupancy to PLOT FL 161 at GAUBA FARM LAYOUT, KUJE, I hereby declare that the following, and no others, are rny children 1.TENNI HAMMAN (daughter) 2.CHUKWUEMEK ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (son) 3 . M M E G H A ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (daughter) 4 . O K I G B O ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (son) 5 . E S E L E ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (daughter) 6 . C H I N E M E ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (daughter) 7.AFAM ODUMEGWU - OJUKWU (son) 8 . N WAC H U K W U
ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (son)
I GIVE the property known as Jubillee Hotel on Jubille Road, Zaria, Kaduna State,to my daughter Tenni Hamman I give to my first son C h u k w u e m e k a Odumegwu - Ojukwu, my landed property at Olie Uru, Umudim, Nnewi, Anambra State. I bequeath and device my property at Thinker ’s Corner Enugu, Enugu State, to my son, Okigbo Odumegwu - Ojukwu. To my son Afam Odumegwu - Ojukwu I bequeath my landed property at “Traffic Light” Nnewi, Anambra State.
o my son Nwachukwu, I device 1 (one) hectare out of my 6 (six) hectares of land located at Umuezena Nnewi. I device to my daughters Mmegha, Ebele and Chineme 1 (one) hectare each of my said 6 (six) hectare of landed property located at Umuezena Nnewi. I give to my said wife, Bianca, the remaining 2 (two) hectares of my aforementioned property at Umuezena Nnewi, so long as she does not remarry after my death. If she remarries, the said 3 hectares will become part of my residuary estate. I give and bequeath my interest in my mothers property at Onwuduwe Street, Uwani, Enugu, Enugu State, to my nephew, Torn Bigger. 13.- I give my interest in my late mother ’s property at “Thinker ’s Corner ” Enugu, Enugu State, to my other nepew, Robert Bigger. 14 - I give all my personal effects and cars
as well as moneys in the
banks, namely, Equatorial Trust Bank, Union Bank Plc, U.B.A Plc, Hallmark Bank Plc and S.G.B Plc to my said wife Bianca Odinaka Olivia Odumegwu Ojukwu. 15 - My Trustees shall hold the remainder of my real and personal property upon trust to sell the same with power to post-pone such sale for so long as they think fit without being liable for loss. 16 - My Trustees shall hold the proceeds of sale and all unsold property and my ready money upon the following trust: (a) To pay all my debts and funeral and testamentary expenses. 17 - My Trustees shall hold my residuancy estate UPON THE FOLLOWING TRUSTS: (1)Upon trust to pay the income thereof to my said wife during her life and subject thereto: (2) Upon trust after the death of the survivor of my self and my wife, for all my children then living and if more than one in equal shares so however that the education of my children who may be under the age of 18 (eighteen) years should be given priority. 18.Any trusties being a professional or businessman may be employed or act and shall be entitled to charge and be paid all professional or other charges for all businesses or acts done by him or his firm in connection with the trust hereof including acts which a trustee cold have done personally.
HE Isoko Political Movement, IPM, will support the Anioma Agenda led by Mr. Alex Nwadiamu for the Delta State governorship in 2015. An interactive meeting of the 24 wards of the Isoko North and South Local Government Areas, for the purpose, was held, Saturday, December 22, 2012. Addressing the meeting, Nwadiamu said the Anioma agenda was set up to bring all the Aniomas to speak with one voice and to sensitize the entire State on the need for Anioma to produce the next chief executive of the State. He therefore solicited the support of the Isoko people and indeed the entire state to vote for an Anioma son come 2015. He further said that though they were
working within the PDP as the majority party in the State, the Anioma Agenda covered all political parties in the Sate. In his own remarks, leader of Isoko Political Movement, Chief Goodnews Agbi, said the Movement, and indeed the entire Isoko Nation believed in justice, equity and fair play. “Justice demands that this time around, the governorship should go to Delta North, but the individual must be a person of integrity and of i m p e c c a b l e antecedents”, Agbi said, pledging on behalf of the Isoko Political Movement and indeed the Isoko people to partner with the Anioma people for 2015 Governorship election. He advised the leadership of the Anioma Agenda to work within PDP as membership of Isoko Political Movement were PDP.
Youths laud NIMASA boss
HE Niger Delta Youths Peace I n i t i a t i v e Movement, a political pressure group, has commended the Director-General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Mr. Ziakede Akpoboloukemi, for transformating and sanitising the waterways. The commendation was contained in a statement signed by Comrade Ebikabowei Edon, President and Comrade Etite Akpoebi Donald, Publicity Secretary of the group respectively. According to the group, “We commend the NIMASA boss for his transformation policy and for sanitising the waterways. Since his coming into office, sea piracy has been reduced to the barest minimum,
our water ways are now safe for marine operation. ”He has also embarked on human capital developmental projects which have seen many youths being sponsored abroad for competency training. His administration has also given out scholarship to would-be seafarers so that the industry will not lack manpower. ”Akpoboloukemi has set a pace since coming on board and he deserves commendation. We hereby urge him to do more, because he has started well. We are solidly behind him and urge all to support him.” The youths also commend President Goodluck Jonathan for deeming it fit to appoint him as the DirectorGeneral, saying, “His appointment is a round peg in a round hole.”
Ex-Vanguard chief, Kola Animasaun’s car stolen BY BASHIR ADEFAKA
wine coloured 2004 model T O Y O T A CAMRY saloon car, registration number JJJ 400 AT, belonging to veteran journalist and former Chairman, Editorial Board of Vanguard Newspapers, Alhaji Kola Animasaun, has been stolen. According to the retired media chief, the
car was stolen at LTV 8, Lateef Jakande Road, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos on Saturday, December 22, 2012. At the time of theft, the chasis number was 4T1BE32K62UO86786 and engine number 2AZ7222199. Anyone with relevant information about the vehicle is implored to contact the owner on 0 8 0 3 3 4 4 7 0 8 8 , 08023023525 or report to the nearest police station.
PAGE 10—SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012 N65 per litre to N141 per litre or 170 per cent increase authorized by a President who went to school shoeless.
Was it a good year; 2012?
n power generation O and distribution, the Vanguard reporter, Clara
Nwachukwu, provided us with this depressing revelation on December 24, 2012 on page 1. “No fewer than 38 electricity generating turbines are grounded in various power plants in the country”. Perhaps that is all we need to know about power. Still, we remember that there was once a Minister of Power called Professor Bart
Can someone wake up Jonah? "How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong, Because someday in your life you will have been all of these."George Washington Carver
O President Goodluck Jonath an went on to address a Christmas service in Gwarinpa, Abuja. Because his government appears slow he says that does not mean that his administration is not working. On the contrary, his government is taking its time to take action on urgent social and economic issues but he would not
be rushed ! The people, he said do not understand the way government works. Will someone tell this Jonah that Nigerians have been so patient and any more will require the patience of a saint and Nigerians are not that way inclined. So he goes on to say that the apparent slowness of his administration in deciding on major national issues was to avoid costly mistakes. Well, let us look at what has gone wrong on his watch: it is too numerous to enumerate and the evidence are all to see except to the president. So he is irritated and would not be rushed, so can I ask what he is waiting for? So while Nigeria disintegrates, our
Nnaji, who, shortly after his appointment as Minister promised to deliver 5,000MW of power by December 2011. The year ended and the nation was still stuck with about 4,000MW – approximately the same as in 1999. Instead of an apology in 2012, the former Minister issued another promise; an empty one it has now turned out to be. This time it was to increase power supply to 6,000MW by December 2012. As you are
er, it was discovered that the nation had been defrauded by fuel marketers with close links to the corridors of power. Still, Nigerians have been forced to live with a 49 per cent increase in fuel prices. So if you spent N20,000 in 2011; you would have spent N29,800 this year. Since Jonathan became President in May 2010, no major case, involving multi-billion naira embezzlement of private or public funds, has been concluded; and no one had gone to jail. In fact, this has been the safest period for safe-crackers in the history
The year started with an antimasses fuel price increase from N65 per litre to N141 per litre or 170 per cent increase authorized by a President who went to school shoeless
reading this column, Nigeria is again generating less power than the single largest power plant in South Africa. The 5,000MW target is proving to be a mission impossible. Meanwhile, between January 1, 2012 and today, this country has added another 4 million people needing power supply. Are we better off today than on the first day of January this year? The score card on corruption is easy to place on the table for all to see. The year started with an anti-masses fuel price increase from
of Nigeria. Money laundering, pension funds scam, crude oil theft, fuel subsidy swindle, MDAs larceny have all yielded “dividends of PDP democracy” to criminals with strong links to the corridors of power; they have also ensured that “Fellow Nigerians” and “Fellow widows” continue to be impoverished. Foreigners tell us that an estimated $750 billion had vanished from our shores; while government is begging for a mere $9 billion loan. Are you better off? The expanded Presiden-
president is waiting to make an executive action. The people are tired of waiting for a change and he does not appear to be listening to the voices of the people. If only, he used the same swift executive decision and zeal that he used when requisitioning the senate for the aggrandising of the presidential palaces, salary, lifestyle, perks of the jobs, banqueting hall, fleet of presidential cars, jets and annual budgets. The rest of the country has inadequate health, social care, high
Of course there are road fatalities, perpetual power outage, inequality, poor health, and the list goes on. Can someone wake Jonah up and tell him he has failed Nigerians and that he should get going and make good the promises, which was the ticket on which he was elected . They say a poor workman quarrels with his tool. Now this poor workman now blames his customers, the citizens for his failure. This is not the mark of a good and effective leader. Jonathan, who said no nation could be properly
murder and extortion, bombings of places of worship and innocent Nigerians are all indicators of a failing state”. The year, which started with an economic crisis, ended with an explosion of kidnappings. Somebody estimated the price Nigerians paid as ransom at close to N750 million in 2012. Yet, since October 1, 2010, when the first major bombing took place in Abuja, till now, nobody had been successfully prosecuted – despite repeated assurances by the President that the culprits will not go unpunished. The mother of the Finance Minister was kidnapped a few days after President Jonathan had assured foreign visitors that Nigeria “is safe”. Obviously a President, so far removed from reality about security, might also be selfdeceptive about other matters and should not be believed. Do you feel more secure today than this time in 2011?
“Are you better off this year than four years ago?” US President Reagan,19811989. HEN Reagan was contesting against Jimmy Carter, US President, 19761980, he asked Americans the same question over and over again, “Are you better off this year than four years ago?” Much as I hardly supported Reagan’s approach to governance because it represented “government of the rich by the rich for the rich” – a bastardisation of democracy, he left us with a metric for judging whether or not we had been well-served by governments, at Federal, States and Local government levels in 2012. With only two days left in the year, that is a question which each of us can reasonably answer for ourselves without waiting for governments’ spin doctors to tell us what to think. However, please permit me to provide a guide for our decision making by pointing to certain areas of our collective lives about which we can obtain some consensus. On security, the former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Dahiru Musdapher, had this to say on the rising insecurity in the country. “Boko Haram insurgency, political violence, corruption, nepotism, tribalism, indiscipline, abduction and kidnappings, armed robbery,
he nation was thrown T into a political crisis which lasted for weeks. Lat-
The people are tired of waiting for a change and he does not appear to be listening to the voices of the people
youth unemployment, training or education, needless accidents, human rights violations, and preventative accidents. There are kidnappings, sectarian killings, and youth on youth crimes, insecurities and Boko Haram.
transformed without reformed citizenry, stated that the church had a great role to play in making the transformation agenda a success.
He said, "You can't transform a country without the people being re-
tial Airline fleet, and the nation’s largest, was depleted by one military helicopter which was deployed to ferry people whose tummies were full of choice food and drinks; not to protect the pipe lines or fight kidnappers. Only God knows how many times bombers have been flown to bring amala and okro soup until a tragedy exposed the impunity. Anyone who fell for the crocodile tears flowing at the funerals must step up for MUGU OF THE YEAR AWARD. Why? Nollywood actresses drop phony tears every hour on our television sets for the fun of it. It is possible that as you are reading this piece another one is on the way to an island to carry crayfish. God help us. But, are you better off this year than last year? That is the issue. eanwhile, we start M ed the year with DANA Airlines, AIR NI-
GERIA, AERO CONTRACTORS, and four or five others, easily forgotten. Now the Federal government has taken control of AERO without telling us. That means that the airline, now down on its knees, will soon be flat on its back. Governments have never managed anything successfully and this one is not different from the rest. Increasingly, Nigeria is becoming a four airline nation – Arik, IRS, Overland and Presidential. I can assure you, as a regular traveler by air, that Molue drivers and conductors, ruffians as we call them, treat their passengers with more courtesy than any Nigerian airline – without exception. No nation among the top twenty would have allowed the atrocities committed by our airlines to go unchecked. Meanwhile, take another look, a close look, at the new airports in La-
formed. I call on the church to come up with programmes on how Nigerians can be reformed". He does not get it: we look up to our leader to show and lead by example and if people behave the way they do, it is because of the people we have become. So he thinks we need to be reformed? And the pot calling the kettle black. So he adds salt to injury. Like any abuser it is always the fault of its victims. Educate a woman. You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation."-Brigham Young Some say having a girl is like tending a neighbours' garden. This is so narrow-minded and condescending perspective of the level of low sense of value placed on females in our society. This is borne out of the way people react to the arrival of the birth of a baby boy: that of jubilation and in contrast, the arrival of a baby girl is often with muted commiserations from friends and family. If the truth be told the mother is often made to feel a failure if she does not pro-
gos and Abuja and you would wonder if the Ministry of Aviation has any competent civil engineer. Am I better off this year, with respect to air services? The answer is definitely NO. But, are you? VOTE OF THANKS Another year ends and God in his infinite mercy had spared our lives – from the President of Nigeria to the president of area boys, as well as 167 million Nigerians. We thank Him most sincerely. Yes, we disagree but we don’t want anybody dead prematurely. Next, our gratitude goes to the readers of VANGUARD newspapers; we cannot exist without you; we know you have a choice. We are grateful you chose our paper. Irrespective of whether you agreed or violently disagreed, let me assure you that there is no malice; no rancor. To those who agreed with me, let me confess that we might be wrong. And for those who disagreed, I grant that you might be right. A newspaper is a market place of ideas. Nobody has monopoly of knowledge, truth or ideas. We are all learning to live and to create a better Nigeria. hen, we must express T our profound gratitude to the Publisher. It had
been a particularly difficult year for all papers. But, our dear Uncle Sam had continued to put the paper on the news’ stands with courage and fortitude which needs to be chronicled in the near future. Have a pleasant 2013. P.S. We will start out by declaring a war on GSM (Great Society of Monsters) Operators who are defrauding us mercilessly and government is looking the other way. Believe me, we will defend ourselves the Area Boys way.
vide the family a male and a heir. It seems to me, the girl is disadvantaged right from the onset. So when I read that the Principal of Ajuwon High School, Ajuwon in Ifo Local Government Area of Ogun State, Mrs. Olufunke Aladeojebi, without the consent of the parents conducted a virginity test on young girls in her school, I was revolted and enraged. I felt compelled to register my abhorrence and contempt for a system that allows such flagrant abuse of power. So, she was feared and known for being a tough disciplinarian, sorry, she was aperpetual abuser of vulnerable young people and, as result, the young girls were threatened with suspension that they submitted themselves for this forced examination. Apparently, she took this decision because of the level of immorality amongst young people.As always, the young women are to be blamed! What makes a change was that the children reported their ordeal to their parents, who reported her to the police and led to her suspension.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 11
Best State Governor in 2012 decided to be ethical in the business. As a result we dropped Governors Uduaghan of Delta, Aregbesola of Osun, Lamido of Jigawa, Amosun of Ogun, Shema of Katsina and Yuguda of Bauchi who are either our friends, relations or clients. We had to drop Governor Ramalan Yero of Ka-
ARLY in the year, this columnist and 5 of his friends set out to determine the best of our 36 Governors in year 2012. Each of us was to follow the activities of 6 Governors. The assignment ended a few days ago with a few complexities. First, we found a common public feeling that to describe any Governor as the best for the year would not be well received. This is because many people see Governors as responsible for the nation’s woes. This damaging but widely held view almost pushed us into aborting our plan but we remembered that even among the bad there would still be a best. We then proceeded with the job using the process of elimination. Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers, Chairman of the Governors Forum and Babangida Aliyu of Niger, Chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum were the first to go on the basis of vicarious liability as leaders of a despised team. We also
The last time he was seen in Enugu was September 19, 2012. Having thus been off duty for over 100 days we were being persuaded to see him as incapacitated. Notwithstanding the commendable health care strategy evolved by Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo, we were unable to allow his participation. The problem was that Mimiko was yet to perfect his victory at the election tribunal. The situation was the same with Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State who
We do not expect people to readily accept any Governor that we consider to be the best
duna who just assumed the post. Also dropped were Danbaba Suntai of Taraba who had been involved in a plane crash and Liyel Imoke of Cross River who was said to be on a two-month cumulative leave. It was significant that Imoke missed even the colourful Calabar festival. The case of Governor Sullivan Chime of Enugu was slightly more striking.
was being required on the basis of Section 182(j) of our constitution, to prove his ownership of his professed educational certificates. We were not quite sure if Governor Nyako of Adamawa was fully out of election petition. Whereas we didn’t get much from Zamfara and Kebbi, it was even more difficult to consider ‘troubled’ Governors like
Kashim Shettima of Borno and Musa Kwankwaso of Kano. Only last Monday, the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) discovered and detonated explosives planted in strategic locations in Kano. Yobe State was not that lucky as gunmen attacked a Church at Piri village near Potiskum and killed the pastor, Yohana Sini and five other worshipers in the early hours of Christmas day. We could not give due consideration to Governor Jang of Plateau whom many believe is unmistakably maligned and detested by some interest groups. He has himself alleged severally that his life was under threat. Similarly Governor Gabriel Suswan of Benue told a Church in Makurdi last week that “going by security reports available to me, I may be attacked any day, anywhere, anytime and this is the reason I call on you Christians to pray for me and my family”. With such a terrible frame of mind no Governor can be a winner in this special contest. Even those who face mere political blackmail like Al Makura of Nasarawa State cannot win either. His State House of Assembly made up mainly of the opposition party will not allow him to even source for loans to prosecute developmental projects. From the findings of our research team, we do not expect people to readily accept any Governor that we consider to
be the best. If we pick Governor Fayemi of Ekiti because of his care for the aged, teachers who are upset over his ‘Teachers’ Development Needs Assessment Test’ which makes them look like pupils will kick. PHCN workers allegedly manhandled by the Governor’s aides in June will also disagree with us. But the PHCN would prefer Fayemi to Governor Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State who reportedly flogged one of their managers on October 20, 2012. Governor Ajimobi of Oyo State does not need to win any award because his party members in no less than eleven local government areas in his State have already endorsed him to be Governor again in 2015. At the time of our compilation the entire government apparatus of Imo State was in limbo following the strange innovation of Governor Rochas Okorocha to send all his workers on a two-week Christmas holiday. Accordingly Imo had no contestant. Another Governor with a ‘senior prefect’ posture is Martins Elechi of Ebonyi who sent 3 of his commissioners on a three-month suspension for not dressing his own way. Half way through, he recalled them in the spirit of Christmas. May be Elechi would do with a Father Christmas award. In order to reduce wage bill, Governor Idris Wada of Kogi successfully uncovered over 2,000 ghost
workers in his education sector, but he must have been overwhelmed when over 800 ghost schools (not teachers) were also found! Both Wada and Governor Peter Obi of Anambra would obviously be more interested in the struggle to claim ownership of some recently discovered oil wells, than our award. We suspect that Governor Ahmed of Kwara State would prefer to meet the convention of completing a befitting home for his predecessor than showing interest in our award. The contest for the best Governor of the year ought to have a level playing field. Last week 3 States- Enugu, Niger and Bayelsa announced their budgets. The money available to Bayelsa to prosecute capital projects alone was about the same as the total budgets of Enugu and Niger put together. Would it be fair for Governor Dickson of Bayelsa to be declared a winner under the circumstance? It appears rational not to allow Governor Fashola of Lagos State that can have almost twice the budget of Bayelsa to be in the same race. For the same reason, Governor Akpabio of Akwa Ibom whose activities get daily media LIVE coverage should not be in the race. Instead, Nigerians should look towards Governor Dankwambo of Gombe who does so well with the little he has.
tion, that there is no “vacuum” in Enugu.
ecutive Council has, by law under the current supervision of the acting governor of the state, Mr. Sunday Onyebuchi, the responsibility to call for votes to replace the governor of the state in the face of his continued absence from his public duties outside of the specified number of days allowable for such an absence.
tees of the people’s interest must either commence impeachment moves against the governor or nudge him gently into dignified rest if indeed it is true, as the rumors go, that the Governor is in no physical or mental state to continue in office. He should also come out publicly in a press conference to dispel these rumors of his ill-health for both his sake and the sake of the administration, already compelled to make interminable excuses for an inexplicably absent governor. We need full disclosure. We must move away from the tradition of silencing and cover-ups long associated with such offices in Nigeria.
o one knows the true state of Chime’s N health because it has be-
Governor not-on-seat spent leave. The only problem with this is that Mr. Chime, a Lawyer before he became a governor, knows well the constitutional limits or requirements incumbent on a governor who is deemed no longer capable of carrying out his sworn responsibility to the people as a result either of physical or mental debility. A governor who runs mad in office is a danger to that office; as much indeed as a governor who develops fullblown AIDS in office, or who in the course of driving to the office one day gets into a freak accident that renders him permanently, physically incapable of carrying on with the tasks of the rather demanding office of governor. The evidence of Chime’s real health situation is hard to come by; there is no medical records – particularly since state officials travel now to India or Germany or some such places to receive treatment – more so because the sheer weight of executive power makes their actions unaccountable and their Medical his-
tory indisclosable. As a result, far too little is available to the media which have either been gated from the facts, or have remained in a convenient fog of impotent but complicit distrust,
HERE is Gover nor Sullivan Iheanacho Chime? Is he dead? Is he alive? There is clear indication that in Enugu state, a cabal of state officials has taken government hostage by their complicity to stage what might be the most scandalous and most elaborate cover-ups in Nigeria’s public administration. There have been indication that Governor Sullivan Chime is not in good health; the grapevine, usually more reliable in these matter than the more established media is rife with the rumour that Mr. Chime is in harrowing and terminal ill-health. The word thrown-about is “terminally ill” and it has gained momentum in the last month when the governor’s absence became quite stark. The administration in Enugu has repeatedly doused the chatter with its own talk that the governor is in fine and dandy health; he is merely vacationing; taking an extended vacation from a backlog of un-
There is no public officer who overstays his or her leave without consequence and Governor Chime has broken a cardinal rule of his obligation
and who have chosen to swallow fully and with a satisfied belch, the hook, the line, and the sinker thrown by our friend, Mr. Chuks Ugwuoke, Enugu’s commissioner for informa-
come “a security risk” to know such detail. The governor is a god, his powers are sublime and limitless, and as a result the people on whose mandate he purportedly remains in office must be kept in the dark of convenient ignorance. But what is very clear is that Sullivan Chime has been serially absent from his duties. This is troubling. He has been away from his job since September, over ninety days; well past the statutory period allowed for the governor of a state to be constitutionally away from office. The constitution is not silent on this. In fact, the constitution makes a provision for dealing with a governor whose duties are impaired by a continuous and sustained absence from office as a result of illhealth. But the executive council in Enugu has not deemed it necessary to make full disclosure to the people of Enugu State. The absence of the governor from the public in the last ninety days has also not compelled the Enugu State House of Assembly, to raise the question on behalf of the people and to take appropriate action as the demands of the constitution warrants. This is irresponsible. The Enugu state ex-
t this stage, it is im perative for all who A are committed to good
governance to say without ambiguity that Governor Sullivan Chime seems permanently impaired and therefore incapable of continuing in the office of the governor of Enugu state and that the Deputy Governor of the state has the constitutional right and obligation to assume full duties as governor forthwith. Even if the governor appears publicly on Monday morning hale and hearty, he has demonstrated with his long absence from office, a lack of interest and a lack of judgment. Staying away for so long from his job makes his tenure in that office untenable. There is no public officer who overstays his or her leave without consequence and Governor Chime has broken a cardinal rule of his obligation as Chief Executive of the administration of Enugu State. We, the people, who recruited him to that job and the State Assembly, as the key trus-
he governor’s health is no security matter. T It is, or ought to be against
the law, for government officials to feed false information to the public about the state of affairs in any administration. Information sent out to the public, if found to be false, even if to protect an administration or the government should be fully prosecuted. It ought to earn such an official a long term in jail who retails false information to the public. So the question again: where is Governor Sullivan Iheanacho Chime? Is he dead or alive? Can he continue as the governor of Enugu? We ask because it is long past time to tell the truth.
PAGE 12—SUNDAY VANGUARD,DECEMBER 30, 2012
Belongingness, gratitude and New Year prophesies (1) animal world (and, indeed, from the rest of the universe) are primarily social. The capacity to invent and use language (both written and spoken) is clearly based on the sociality of man. Consequently, a sizeable number of philosophers, such as Marxists and
somewhat odd, incoherent and historically unrealistic. For one thing, it takes a man and a woman to produce another human being, which implies that at the very beginning of a person’s life, the existence of others is presupposed. And given that every human being is,
AN (in the sense in which it includes woman of course) has been characterised in different ways by philosophers since antiquity. For example, man is said to be a homo faber, homo economicus, homo politicus, and homo sapiens. These definitions highlight various capacities and potentialities of man, with the implication that the human species is a bundle of actualisable possibilities. From a slightly different perspective, the question has been raised in connection with the mode of being characteristic of the human essence: is man essentially an individual that happens to exist in the midst of others or is he fundamentally a social being, or what some existentialists call “abeing-with-others”? Delineating and characterising the dialectical relationship between the individuality and sociality of man is one of the central problems of socio-political philosophy, ethics and the philosophy of law. Certainly, a human being is an individual entity that can be differentiated from other entities, with unique biological attributes and mental dispositions. Yet, man’s most distinctive attributes which set him apart from the rest of the
Without the sense of belonging to a social oup,, a per person would group son w ould lonely,, isola isolated become lonely ted and disoriented, for it is in the company of others that he can actualise latent possibilities of being human embedded in him
existentialists, claim that man is primarily a social being, and have constructed elaborate weltanschauungs which seek to describe and justify their claims. Inasmuch as no one can deny the individual dimension of man, it must be acknowledged that without others a human being is completely helpless. As Aristotle, the ancient Greek philosopher stated, a man who has no need of society is either a god or a beast. In fact the concept of a man totally isolated from others seems
at any point in time, the joint product of “nature and nurture,” there can be no doubt that belongingness is at the very core of human existence. Despite his occasional flight of fancy into the arcane world of transcendental reduction executed by pure consciousness, Edmund Husserl, a patron-saint of phenomenology, recognises the importance of man’s sociality by positing that I, we and the world belong together. Maurice MerleauPonty, in his Phenomenolo-
isolated and disoriented, for it is in the company of others that he can actualise latent possibilities of being human embedded in him. We are what we are to a large extent because others are there to help and encourage us. It is true that one would be better off without people of questionable character such as liars, cheats, back biters, haters, hypocrites, enemies of progress and so on. Still, there are great human beings that have added value to our lives one way or another; people who through one word of encouragement or simple acts of kindness have moved us to a higher level in the journey through life. In line with the above, and as is customary with me in the New Year, I wish to acknowledge and celebrate those that made a positive difference in my life the preceding year. First and foremost, I wish to express sincere appreciation and gratitude to my wife, Ijeoma, and my two daughters, Nwanyioma and Nwadiuto. There is no doubt in my mind that 2012 would have been existentially hollow for me without their love, support and occasional disagreements. Sometimes family life can be demanding, stressful and annoying; but these are inconsequential in comparison with the joy, laughter and belongingness that a peaceful home brings. I am not a perfect husband and father; but my spouse and children know that I am trying. My sister, Ihuoma, and Emeka, together with Vivian and Dr. Amankwe have been providing much-needed care for my father in the village. I thank them profusely. I painfully remember the late Vice-Chancellor of the great University of Lagos, Prof. A.B. Sofoluwe. Even
though he is no longer with us, I still admire his humility, kindness and desire for progress in my academic career. Prof. Sofoluwe is an inspiration to many, and I hope those of us that knew him have learnt the necessary lessons about life from his down-to-earth lifestyle. My sincere gratitude goes to the new Vice-Chancellor, Prof. R.A. Bello and the Dean of Post Graduate School, Prof. L.O. Chukwu, for their kindness to me last year. They are hardworking good men and I wish them success in all their endeavours in 2013 and beyond. Bashorun Innocent Egwim, Ralph Obiduba (a student of the occult sciences), John Ikube, Mike Enyinnaya Charles Edosomwan and Dr. Isaac Nwogwugwu – you are friends indeed. I appreciate the Dean, Faculty of Arts, Prof. Duro Oni; my colleagues Peter Osimiri, Debo Gbadebo, Philo Egbe, Dan Ekere, Drs. Chukwuemeka Isambor, Adeyemi Daramola, Ropo Akinsoji, Uche Udeani, Emeka Ezike (and his wife), Chris Osegrenwune, Modestus Onyeaghalachi, Ademola Adeleke, Iwu Ikwubuzo, Nkem Onyekpe, Tony Okeregbe, and many others. Profs. H.O.D. Longe, Princewill Alozie, Agwonorobe Eruvbetine, Duro Ajeyalemi, Ben Oghojafor, Ngozi Osarenren, R.T. Akinyele, Olu Obafemi – thank you for your encouragement. Uncle Sam Amuka-Pemu, publisher of Vanguard Newspapers, acting big man Fred Udueme (AGM Brand), Jide Ajani (Editor, Sunday Vanguard), Abel, Kundus, and all the good people that assisted me one way or another whenever I visited Vanguard Newspapers – thanks from the bottom of my heart.
your workouts because even mild dehydration can affect your performance and fat-burning potential. If you need another reason to drink up, swallow this: the best way to rid yourself of excess water weight is to flush your body with water.
take of natural diuretics. These are foods that increase the speed at which fluids pass through your body to help you de-bloat. Natural diuretics include cucumbers, asparagus, lemon, green tea, and any foods with a higher concen-
on a packaged item list more than a few ingredients--or anything you can't pronounce--don't eat it. Instead, opt for a serving of one of the many fresh fruits and veggies now in season, with lean protein to keep you satisfied. 6. Reduce your alcohol intake. If you're used to having a glass of wine or pint of beer every night, try cutting back to two or three nights a week. You'll reduce your total calorie intake and set yourself up for a better night's sleep to energize you for your workout the next day. Tip: When you do indulge, always sandwich your drink with a glass of water before and after to avoid alcohol's dehydrating effects. 7. Stand up taller and engage your core muscles. Think about tucking your hips underneath and tightening up your stomach as if you were going to be punched. Improving your posture will instantly make you look thinner--even if you haven't lost a pound yet!--and train your body to hold everything in once you're in a swimsuit. Every 15 minutes, set an alarm for a "posture check" to train your body: If you're standing, stand up straight and hold everything. If you're sitting, pull your shoulders back and engage your stomach muscles.
PhD, Department of Philosophy, University of Lagos,
gy of Perception, suggests that a phenomenological description, instead of disclosing isolated, self-sufficient subjectivities, reveals continuities between intersubjective life and the world. Also Martin Heidegger, despite the headache-inducing terminology he uses to project his philosophy, hammers on the same theme as Husserl and Merleau-Ponty. Heidegger says that the life-world is an interpenetration of three domains, namely “surrounding world,” “ with-world,” and “self-world.” Accordingly, dasein (man), as world-experiencing is always already “being-with.” The idea that the self, the world, and others belong together, reciprocally illuminate one another and can only be properly understood in their interconnectedness is not exclusive to phenomenologists. The existentialist philosopher, Martin Buber, made the social dimension of man the centerpiece of his influential work, I and Thou, whereas D. Davidson, in Subjective, Intersubjective, Objective, affirms that the basic problems of how a mind can know the world of nature, how it is possible for one mind to know another, and how it is possible to know the contents of our own minds without resorting to observation or evidence are inextricably interwoven. Our brief excursion into the rarefied field of philosophy provides a solid foreground for understanding belongingness as an essential feature of human existence. Every human being belongs to, or is a member of, a family, social group and, since the evolution of civil societies, countries. Without the sense of belonging to a social group, a person would become lonely,
You need a trimmer figure this season
HE weather is hot and it is the holiday season in December, which means you will have to pull off your clothes soon at the beach or the swimming pool. You have been eating and indulging all through the year and knows what you've been hiding underneath all those layers, you're not the only one who feels insecure at this time of the year. Although you can safely lose some weight each week, you can feel more confident if you start making a few changes now. 1. Develop lean muscles that are better than flab! If you want to feel good in your bathing suit, this is non-negotiable: Fit your workout in, and commit to a full-body strength-training programme at least three times a week to burn calories during the work-
out, boost your metabolism's calorie-burning power for 24 to 48 hours after, and develop lean muscles that look and feel better than flab. Perform exercises that use more than one muscle group such as squats, push-ups, rows, and lunges in a circuit to make your workouts most efficient. Tip: Try working out in the morning to get your metabolism revved up for the rest of the day. 2. Make your butt and belly your top priorities. Your buttocks muscles are the biggest muscles in your body, so working them out is one of the best ways to burn calories--and prevent a saggy butt. (There's nothing worse!) Of course, everyone knows that the real key to looking great in a bathing suit is having a flat belly! Give both areas extra attention during workouts leading up to and dur-
ing bikini season by performing the bridge marching exercise right after warming up at the beginning of each workout, 2 to 3 times a week: Bridge Marching: Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Lift your hips off the floor so your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees, keeping your hips parallel to the ground. Maintaining that straight line, lift your right knee upward, so that your foot comes up off the ground. Then, return it to the starting position and lift your left knee the same way. Continue alternating (as if you are marching in place), keeping your butt muscles contracted the entire time for a total of 10 on each leg. 3. Drink iced water. Skimping on water can reduce the effectiveness of
If you're used to having a glass of wine or pint of beer every night, try cutting back to two or three nights a week. You'll reduce your total calorie intake
You should drink at least half your body weight in ounces each day (e.g., a 150-pound woman should drink 75 oz. or the equivalent of about four and a half 16.9 oz. bottled waters a day). Just don't skimp on the ice! Research has shown drinking ice-cold water causes your body to work harder (i.e., burn more calories) to maintain its ideal core temperature. Drink more (iced) water. 4. Increase your daily in-
tration of magnesium, potassium, vitamin C, and/or caffeine. Tip: Try adding cucumber or lemon to water. 5. Cut back on processed, starchy carbohydrates such as breads, pastas, doughnuts, cookies, and crackers. Most of these foods are loaded with extra sodium and preservatives that can contribute to water retention and bloating. If the ingredients
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 13
his is the untold story of the hardship faced by the aban doned families of the Hercules C-130 Crash of 1992 (some 20 years ago). Though they were promised quite a lot, most of the widows are still languishing in despair as the Federal Government their husbands served has abandoned them to their fate. T
They were told not to re-marry! At least, that was the claim made by Mrs. Risikat Mukoro. To Mrs. Mukoro, life couldn’t have been crueler. Her late husband, then a Major in the Nigeria Army, V. U. Mukoro, was on that ill-fated Hercules C-130 aircraft that crashed into the swamp of Ejigbo, a suburb of Lagos on Saturday, September 26, 1992. She said she had written several letters to former President Obasanjo and General Abdulsalam Abubakar (rtd) without any response. She said she had not collected any money from the authorities since the army headquarters relocated from Maloney Street in Lagos to Abuja. “I have not collected any money from them. They asked us not to marry other men, but they refused to cater for our families,” Mrs. Mukoro lamented. She also lamented the discrepancies in the way state governments handled building accommodation for the widows, stressing that many states have not redeemed their promises till today. “Many widows did not get any landed property from their state government as promised. Initially, the then
THE WIDOW MAKER
C-130 Crash: The Forgotten Wives
BY JIDE AJANI & WAHAB ABDULAH
I was 14 years old when my father died. In fact, I went to school and we were summoned from the school to inform us of the tragic story. Few days later, the military authorities directed us to quit our apartment
military government promised to give all of us landed property in Lagos. Later they directed military governors of our respective states to redeem the promise, but many states have not fulfilled that promise. Some states gave landed
property to victims without any C of O”. When the widows converged in September to mark the 20th anniversary of the disaster, human rights lawyer and former President of West African Bar Association (WABA), Mr. Femi Falana, SAN, assured the widows of his preparedness to use the instrument of law to get justice for them 20 years after the death of their loved ones. He lamented neglect of the families of the officers who lost their lives in the incidence by successive military and civilian administrations, saying it is regrettable that government that claimed good governance for the people should abandon victims to their fate with little or no compensation since 1992. Falana noted that one would have expected Obasanjo, who was a victim of a phantom coup, to correct injustice against affected families of the victims of the air crash, but he turned his back against the widows when he was needed most. “It is very sad that you have been abandoned for about 20 years by suc-
cessive governments in the country. They made promises when the incident happened, but they didn’t do anything to correct this injustice. We take up this challenge to take up your matter and correct the criminal neglect of military authorities. American soldiers are dying in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places during operations, and their families were duly compensated, but soldiers, officers are dying in Nigeria and nothing is being done,”Falana stated. “Is it not an irony of life that Obasanjo, who was tried illegally for phantom coup, pardoned to contest would spend eight years ruling the nation without addressing your plight (Falana asked the widows rhetorically)? When he was there, one would have thought that he knew where the shoes pinched others. If the military failed to address this injustice before the end of this month (Sept, 2012), we will be compelled to use the instrument of law to seek redress. We shall call on those in authority to correct this criminal neglect. We want to assure you that the human rights community and progressive arms of the law are behind you.” JOURNEY TO DEATH Rewind to September 26, 1992: A Hecules C- 130 air plane was waiting for its human cargo at the VIP/Air Force tarmac of the local wing of the Lagos Airport. The signs were ominous. This was a plane that was supposed to have taken off the previous day, a Friday. But it developed a fault and, therefore, could not fly. By the following day, it was reportedly fixed and the intending pasContinues on page 14
PAGE 14 — SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
We shall get justice for the widows – Femi Falana, SAN BY WAHAB ABDULAH
AN we have an update on the letter you wrote to the government on behalf of the wives of the military men that died in the C-130 crash at Ejigbo, Lagos, in 1992? I have been told that the letter is receiving the attention of the relevant authorities. But the patience of our clients is understandably running out. How would you describe the attitude of the government to the family and dependants of the slain military men? The attitude displayed to our clients by the military establishment has been hostile, inhuman, wicked and unjust. Most of the women were aged between 20 and 30s when they lost their husbands in the plane crash over 20 years ago. To claim their legitimate entitlements they were told not to remarry. So they have had to remain single through no choice of theirs. Barely three months after the tragic incident the widows together with their young children were kicked out of the official quarters allocated to their husbands in the barracks. They were compelled to send SOS to the Ibrahim Babangida junta. Embarrassed in the circumstance the junta directed the military governors in charge of the
Those who are punishing the widows may end up in a worse situation if the institutionalised injustice in the armed forces is not challenged once and for all Femi Falana....For the widows it has been a tales of sorrow and tears. states of origin of the deceased officers to give a house to each of the families. A few complied while others ignored the directive. The education of the children has been disrupted because the scholarship promised them was not forthcoming. The compensation due to each of the widows has not been paid. They were also not paid insurance benefits. We are just trying to find out
THE WIDOW MAKER
C-130 Crash: The Forgotten Wives Continued from page 13 sengers returned to the airport for their flight to Kaduna. For Major Mukoro, he had bade his family farewell. He was the benefactor of the family; he would fly and land safely in Kaduna. Almost all of those on board were students of the Senior Course 15 of the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, AFCSC, Jaji, Kaduna. They included 104 army officers, 17 naval officers, 17 Air Force officers, eight foreign officers, 11 Nigerian Air Force crew and nine others. There were a few civilians who had been caused to join this free flight which turned out to be a flight of death. The aircraft finally took off about 4:15pm. But it was a flight of no return because, just a few minutes after take off, it plunged into the swamp of Ejigbo. It killed everyone on board. The consensus at that time was that there may have been survivors but Nigeria’s typical shambolic emergency response cost all on board their lives.
20 YEARS AFTER
But echoing Falana’s position during the 20th anniversary of the crash, Barrister Kabiril Akingbolu, Esq. said failure on the part of government to adequately compensate the affected widows was “ wicked and an injustice to committed officers who lost their lives in active service”. He said that in line with the Nigerian Army Code, affected widows should be commended because they had honoured their own part of contract that barred them from marrying other men after the loss of their loved ones”. While expressing their readiness to fight the battle to the logical conclusion, Mrs. Didi Feruke-Bello, the wife of the late Lt. Commander Kareem Bello, said the battle was not a personal one but one aimed at upholding the ideals of their late husbands. “We are not fighting for ourselves, but we are fighting for the dead. They made them to die and rendered us useless. If you have forgotten I did not forget because the dark era is still fresh in my memory,” Feruke-Bello said. Lamenting her grief since the inci-
if the aircraft was insured as required by law. So for the widows it has been a tales of sorrow and tears. Assuming the government eventually refused to compensate these families as indicated in your last letter, what remedies that are open to them? We shall drag the Federal Government to the appropriate court. dence, Mrs. Olusanya Johnson said that she lost her mother due to the military authorities’ neglect, saying lack of adequate care and psychological depression led to the death. Crying profusely during the event, Mrs. Johnson recalled that she was 14years when she lost her father in the crash, stressing that her mother was faced with the trauma of carrying the burden of taking care of her children. She spoke of how her mother made several appeals to former governors of Lagos State to provide their family with the landed property promised in the wake of the crash as she called on military authorities to pay her father’s entitlements. “I was 14 years old when my father died. In fact, I went to school and we were summoned from the school to inform us of the tragic story. Few days later, the military authorities directed us to quit our apartment. “My mother died because of the trauma she went through since the demise of my father. My mother carried the burden to her grave. One thing which these wicked leaders should realise is that the pain which they made us go through their own children will go through it,” she said. That was a curse. Corroborating Mrs. Olusanya, Mrs Stella Onabolu, one of the affected widows, said they had made several attempts to convince the military authorities as well as the Ministry of Defence, but received little attention from relevant government agencies.
of such settlement. My experience with the elite in Nigeria is very interesting. It is generally believed that you can never be a victim of injustice. I handle many cases in the military courts otherwise called courtsmartial. The officers who engage our services to defend them in military or regular courts often tell me that they had thought that we usually set out to embarrass the military authorities. They never believed that they could be victimised by the system. But as a people we must not wait to fight injustice until we become victims. Injustice to one should be seen as injustice to all and collectively fought. Those who are punishing the widows may end up in a worse situation if the institutionalised injustice in the armed forces is not challenged once and for all. Can you believe that President Olusegun Obasanjo who was pardoned by General Abdulsalami Abubakar abandoned those who were illegally convicted with him by the Sani Abacha junta? We have just taken up their case with President Goodluck Jonathan. We are still pursuing the case of the 27 soldiers. The list of victimised military officers and soldiers is a long one. The widows of the 103 military officers who were killed in the Hercules 130 plane over 20 years ago have been left in the lurch. Whoever says they have been paid compensation should produce the evidence. As i said the case is receiving attention of the relevant authorities.
She explained that while their colleagues from the Navy and Air Force had prompt attention from their corps, the army had turned deaf ears to their case, adding: “As at today, I have not received the school fees of my children from the army headquarters for 2011 not to talk of 2012. We met the Minister of State for Defence in 2010, but nothing has happened and nothing is happening. “Last year, the President made a statement on the issue, promising to offset all our entitlements, but the presidential pronouncement was just an empty promise like his predecessors’. We are praying silently. The army is the worst corps because they don’t want to see us. They are behaving as if they have something to hide, but we know that God will fight for us. Several times, they had threatened us. They asked us not to marry and we are living without men. This is sad. It has been tough and my husband served the Nigerian Army for 20 years.” But the military has done something. It remembered the “fallen heroes”, contrary to the impression being created by the widows. In a newspaper advertorial placed by AFCSC, on Wednesday, September 26, which announced an Islamic prayer for Friday, 28; and a Christian prayer for September 30, for the deceased, signed by Brigadier-General Tanko Gaiya, it described the victims of the crash as fallen heroes. Some rememberance!
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012 — PAGE 15
PAGE 16 — SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 17
News: 2013 will be better than 2012— President
"Oh Lord! I endured the corruption, the bombings, the kidnappings and the deprivations.... Now the DEBT CAMP! Is this your wish or the GOVERNMENT'S? All letters bearing writers' names and full addresses should be typed and forwarded to: The Editor, Sunday Vanguard, Kirikiri Canal, P. M. B. 1007, Apapa, Lagos. E-mail: email@example.com
Obahiagbon: From lawmaker to Chief of Staff Dear Sir,
HE write-up by Sheyi Oriade titled “Hon Patrick Obahiagbon – Farewell to the Federal House of Reps” published online immediately after the elections of 2011, makes quite an interesting reading. In fact, one would take it as not only a worthy tribute to a man who, for four years, stood like a colossus in the House of Representatives but also as a prediction given the current development in the life of the former lawmaker. This is what he wrote in part; “In surveying the assembly of Federal representatives for 2007 – 11, one would struggle to find many of that political intake who towered above Patrick Obahiagbon in the public eye. Not even the Speaker of the House with whom Pat Obahiagbon shared the distinction of being one of the most visible of that legislative congregation, towered above him”. Then he predicted, “Wherever his political future leads, I, for one, do not believe that the nation has heard or seen the last of him. And if the Grand Geometrician of the Universe has anything to do with it, he will be back before long”. And, indeed, he is back in grand style, so to say. Today, less than a year after he failed to gain a second tenure to represent his Oredo Federal Constituency, Honourable Patrick Obahiagbon is back to political reckoning where he could represent his constituency even better. He is currently the Chief of Staff to the Edo State, Governor Adams Oshiomhole.
But, Obahiagbon still remains today the most flamboyant, and colourful legislator that has ever threaded the hallowed chambers of the Nigerian Parliament, at least in a long time. Perhaps, if one makes a little research one may come up with two or more other names of men like him; Mazi Mbonu Ojike, Chief Felix Okotie-Eboh and may be one or two more in the First Republic. They were, as records show, quite colourful and eloquent in both appearance and expression. But the comparison ends there because these men immediately thin to insignificance when compared with Obahiagbon in terms of grandiloquence. Perhaps, I may add here that as a result of this particular endowment, Obahiagbon stood head and shoulder higher than all his peers and colleagues He never lacked words to describe or challenge when necessary any situation that arose on the floor of the House. Although his colleagues were, sometimes, intimidated, nay overwhelmed by his grandiloquence, there was never a single doubt that they held him in something akin to adoration. In spite of his oftentimes bombastic and hyperbolic renditions, his contribution in any matter on the floor of the House was something to look forward to both by his colleagues and spectators both in the gallery and those watching live debates whenever the opportunity arose. And, in my view, it will be doing Hon. Pat Obahiagbon a great dishonor if I fail to include in this write up some of his views on some matters of national importance. For example, on Nigeria’s 52nd Independent Celebration, the
lawmaker had this to say, “As we celebrate our flag and shambolic autarky at 52, we must realize that Nigeria is still more of a geographic contrivance as has been rightly posited by Chief Obafemi Awolowo. Not with our centrifugal excrescences preponderating over our centripetal proclivities. It’s a matter for mental pabulum that we are daily drifting into our ethnic cocoons. We still remain one country with disparate ethnic agenda and I can say it for the umpteenth time again that we must sit down in a
sovereign national colloquy to discuss the basis for our nationhood. Anything short of this is just vacuous scahiamachy”. Another key political issue is the one involving the various political parties in the country. Obahiagbon said of them; “There is a palpable lack of ideological underpinnings among the main political parties to the extent that not much differentiates one from the other” Charles Afe Ikhaghe, an author, is resident in Lagos
A woman tipped to succeed Gov Obi Dear Sir,
woman has been tipped as a possible successor to Governor Peter Obi in Anambra State
come February 2014. This is against the preferred choice of the governor that the person should come from Anambra North Federal Constituency. The timing is right for the first time in our history, majority of voters are surprisingly ready for a woman in the governor ’s lodge. No major political party has ever nominated a woman for governor. Prof. Dora Akunyili's nomination for governorship by a major political party would generate extra-ordinary excitement. She is likely to defeat any male candidate that would emerge. There is only one viable candidate to counter her whose name is still withheld from the press. If both are to lock horns it would be one of the classic bouts in history. Both are from Anambra Central. Other political parties would
have no choice but to respond by nominating a similarly compelling and popular one who would counteract the certain shift of women voters. Her accomplishment as a DG NAFDAC and Minister of Information made her a national figure. She reached her position of power in the strength of her own achievements. She has never sought to profit personally from her position. Her step by step preparations have made her nomination almost inevitable, she has a master plan and she follows it religiously. Above all I know that the rank and file of the party would give their all for her, whom every one admired for bearing her suffering on the last senatorial contest with such heroism never complaining but never concealing either. Only some one with high profile already can capture the coveted seat. Cletus Okereke is a public analyst.
PAGE 18—SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
A day with an angel BY SAM UMUKORO
f Fontana in California is a kit ten, Los Angeles is an attractive beautiful cougar. LA is associ ated with Hollywood, movie stars, glitz and glamour. I set out for the city with the excitement of a young man on a first date with a desirable beautiful older woman. I got to the station in Monte Claire to board the 9 a.m bus to LA. Being my first time, I decided to cross-check the bus schedule I got from the internet with a lady who wore the uniform of an official of the station. Politely I made my enquiry and her response left me mouth agape. “I can’t help until after mybreak in 10 minutes time”,she told me rudely. Momentarily my excitement retreated like the sun behind the clouds and I was left with the thought that this woman wasn’t an angel. I resolved not to allow her dampen my mood to the city of angels. Luckily for me, a man who overheard our conversation directed me to a queue in front of the door of a parked bus. I joined the queue and when the door of the bus was flung open, i was surprised to find that the driver of the bus was the same woman who I had spoken to earlier.
The one hour journey to Los Angeles was hitch-free. We arrived in the city as scheduled and I faced another dilemma; I was supposed to meet a friend in Universal Studio and didn’t know what bus-stop to alight. I was forced to return to the driver for help and once again, she told me she couldn’t help me. I was tired of the antics of the bus driver so I pulled the buzzer and alighted in an area that looked like Downtown LA because of the skyscrap-
driver asked me. “London” I replied with pride. “No I mean where are you from originally?” he asked again probing further like a detective from the famous Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) we see in movies. I told him I was from Nigeria but reside in England. We drove past the LAPD building and excitedly I muttered under my breath “Famous LAPD” Trust taxi drivers not to miss anything, immediately the driver respond-
Politely I made my enquiry and her response left me mouth agape. “I can’t help until after my break in 10 minutes’ time”,she told me rudely. Momentarily, my excitement retreated like the sun behind the clouds and I was left with the thought that this woman wasn’t an angel ers. “Excuse me, please where can I get a taxi around here?”, I asked a middle aged man dressed in suit, he ignored me and walked away briskly. Americans are known to be very friendly and I was taken aback by the unfriendly behaviour of the bus driver and the man I just met. I decided to walk to an intersection that was about a 100 meters away from me, and was relieved to find a taxi parked in a street corner. “Where are you from?”, the taxi
ed. “My friend I would say the infamous LAPD. In movies, they are the good guys, in real life they are bad”. I chuckled at his comment and a likeness for him was beginning to envelope me. I decided to share with him my experienceswith the bus driver and the man on the street. The taxi driver told me the bus driver’ behaviour was strange;however, the man on the street was not. I learnt from him that because of the preponderance of homeless people in downtown LA, most peo-
ple are not in the habit of talking to strangers. Our conversation was interrupted when my phone rang, it was my friend asking me to make a detour and meet him in Hollywood Boulevard. Now all my Christmases were coming at once. Hollywood is the mecca of the movie industry and its most famous street is the Hollywood Boulevard. My pilgrimage to the city has been fasttracked to the highpoint. I met up with my friend and began a walk on a 31/2- mile loop around Hollywood Boulevard that’s known as the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It was a memorableexperience. Over 2000 stars featuring various celebrities were inlaid on the side walk along the walk of fame. Other attractions include Kodak Theatre and the nearby Universal City - I had initially planned to visit. Los Angeles has many attractions but the walk of fame was the main attraction for me. Truth is, it is not a city you explore in one day, but after the walk of fame, the city didn’t hold much attraction any longer. I was ready to return another day to explore the other attractions. Moreover, this is my first visit and Los Angeles is not a ‘cougar’ of spent energy.
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012— PAGE 19
How Obasanjo, ninth time lucky, escaped
Smoke billowing out of a section of former President Olusegun Obasanjo's Hiltop mansion as the fire raged Photo: Wunmi Akinola.
BY DAUD OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA
t is no news that the palatial building of former President Olu segun Obasanjo was gutted by fire. What is news is the mystery that pervaded the life of the former president in the past couple of years. Obasanjo had been in the news for his rumoured deaths since 1999 when he became president and even after he left the mantle of leadership in Aso Rock. Hardly did a year pass without Obasanjo being rumoured dead. He was rumoured dead in 1999,2002, 2003,2006, 2009, August 10,2010, January1, 2012 and recently on December 15,2012 which he had all dispelled, claiming that ‘he dey kampe’.The former president escaped unhurt in the Thursday fire which razed his confidential secretary’s office located nearby his bedroom in his Hilltop building at OkeMosan, Abeokuta, Ogun State capital. The fire, which did not spare anything in the office, occurred 20 minutes after he stepped out of the house. He was reported to have also held a meeting with some people before he left the palatial building for Ita-Eko, Abeokuta. His wife, Bola, children and grandchildren, reported to be holiday, were hurriedly evacuated from the mansion as the fire raged. Obasanjo had, in one of his reactions to his rumored deaths, said, “I think people take delight in speculation and rumour. A friend of mine broke to me
the news of my death this morning. He was trying to confirm, and he said he had counted seven times that I have been rumoured dead since the eve of my inauguration as a democratically elected president of Nigeria in 1999. ”Those who indulge in this will not give up. And there are those who have the superstitious belief that when there are rumours and speculations like this, it means longevity.”Whether longevity or not, what I know is that until the good Lord, who has created me, decides to say yes, I have reached my take-off point to return to Him, people may speculate, people may rumour, and that will be their own handicap.” However, a spiritualist, sighted around the partially-burnt residence
eigners. Sources close the mansion said the fire could have been caused by an electrical fault as computers and office appliances were among items said to have been destroyed in the inferno. One of the officials of the rescue team, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, identified as Kunle Famakinwa, sustained injury while joining his colleagues to put out the fire. The fire, which was said to have started around 4:30p.m, destroyed some documents and household items. It took security agencies 30 minutes to put out the fire. Two fire fighting trucks of the Ogun State Fire Service, marked OG 122 AO9 and OG 127
However, a spiritualist, sighted around the partially-burnt residence of the former president after the Thursday fire occurred, disclosed that the fire had to occur to save Obasanjo’s life of the former president after the Thursday fire occurred, disclosed that the fire had to occur to save Obasanjo’s life. According to the spiritualist, who pleaded anonymity, as a Yoruba man, when you are rumoured dead and you are alive, you must lose some of your property or something substantial. Sunday Vanguard gathered that the fire started during a party in the building that had in attendance the former president’s wife, Bola and children as well as visitors who were mostly for-
A09, arrived the scene one hour after the fire had been put under control. The development forced the former president to return to the mansion to ascertain the level of damage. Addressing newsmen, Obasanjo expressed appreciation to God, explaining that the fire did not affect the entire building. He said: “You have seen that it is only the office of my secretary that is burnt. The house is almost intact.” Singing in Yoruba language, the former president said: “Ile Obasanjo
to jo ewa lobu kun, ile Obasanjo to jo ewa lobu kun, eyin Press ema wibe, ewa lobu kun”(which when translated means “fire that gutted Obasanjo’s house has only made it more beautiful, you pressmen sing along with me”). Meanwhile, there was a mild drama when Obasanjo’s son, Oba, seized and smashed the phone of a journalist taking pictures of his father’s burning house. Mr. Dimeji Kayode-Adedeji of the Premium Times and Johnson Akinpelu of Alaroye newspaper incurred the wrath of Obasanjo’son who transferred his anger on them and destroyed their equipment. Oba descended on Kayode-Adedeji when he was taking pictures of his father’s house. He grabbed the photojournalist’s phone and smashed it on the ground. According to Kayode-Adeniji” he (Oba) just approached me and before I knew what was happening he had collected my Blackberry phone from my hand and the next thing I saw was my phone scattered on the ground.” Speaking with Sunday Vanguard on the fire incident, the Public Relations Officer of the NSCDC in Ogun State, Olanrewaju Kareem confirmed that one of his men sustained injury in the cause of saving Obasanjo’s house. Kareem disclosed that, the Corps got the hint of the fire incident through some of his men attached to the former president’s house,saying, the fire was quenched by his men with the support of other agencies that were present.
PAGE 20 — SUNDAY VANGUARD,DECEMBER 30, 2012
2012: A year of rude shocks for many! View-Point T
RAVAILS and trials around the world this year has made 2012 a most unpopular year for many. If it were within the power of some to cut its tenure short, they would readily do so. Poor 2012! “Auntie, mum, 2012 has been quite a hell of a year,” said a cousin’s son, when we were all discussing current events. “Let it just pack up its packages of tears, woes and fears, and get out of our lives. What a year!” “How come?” I asked in surprise. “I think we should consider this a very good year for your family. I know there’s been some challenges like in other families, but right from the beginning of the year, members have been recording successes and pleasant events. Glory be to God. I wouldn’t have expected you to regard this year a bad year. God has been kind and gracious to us all. Let’s be grateful.” “Coz, that’s what I keep telling him. We have a lot to be thankful for in our little corner – for life, health and food. But he seems to consider himself the general manager of the entire world, and he takes very personally, whatever distress there is out there. I think that’s wrong. Why carry the burden of the whole world on your shoulder when you’re not the Creator? I don’t know why he thinks this is the worst year ever. I agree that there’s been many tragedies for quite a while now, but is the year to blame? Good things have happened too. We have to be thankful.” “Mum, I sure am grateful for all the good things God has put in the way of this family, but that doesn’t mean that we should omit to feel the tears and woes out there. I know that leap years are supposed to bring more bad news than other years, but 2012 has been exceptionally vicious in dishing out woes all over the world, particularly in Nigeria. This no longer seems the Nigeria that I was born into. It’s been woes after woes in all areas of life. This year can’t end too soon for me. It’s like living in a dark tunnel.” I’m sure many people share this young man’s view of our current life. Still this year has not been all gloom. It has brought great joy to many too, but since bad news tend to have a bigger impact on our emotions, we’re overwhelmed by them. Nigeria has had its share of this year’s woes. Things we never expected to happen to us in this country, have been happening at an alarming regularity, and citizens and the government are completely helpless! God has immensely blessed Nigeria, but what has been happening this year is beyond our understanding. The rich keep getting richer, while the poor keep getting poorer. This alone has brought on huge problems. Then the destruction of lives! Even if one’s family has been spared, news of calamities has a way of taking the joy out of living as you begin to fear for your own security and survival. This year collapsed buildings have taken people’s lives and rendered many homeless. This is in addition to the destruction/loss of their property and belongings; many of which can never be replaced. In several States across the country, terrible floods have wreaked havoc and whole families have become refugees, living on handouts of food and clothing from the government, NGOs, private companies and helpful citizens and some foreigners. Erosion has deprived some communities of their means of livelihood. These natural disasters have always been
Helen Ovbiagele Woman Editor
As we wait for 2012 to end, let’s all sincerely ask God to save Nigeria and give us better times with more good news than bad. This is the only country most of us can confidently call our own. there, but they have been more intense this year. Still, we thank God for survivors. That unfortunate plane crash mid-year which took all the lives on board, and some lives on the ground plunged the nation into mourning. Numerous fatal road and boat accidents occurred almost every month throughout the year. Hospitals in the cities are full of accident victims, and with the dismal healthcare at the disposal of the masses, many may suffer permanent disability. In a country where there’s no social security system to take care of the poor, the unemployable and the unemployed, you can imagine what future awaits such people, as some will have to be heavily dependent on their families for life! Violent attacks and escalated heinous criminal activities have brought much sorrow. Security and peace are so fragile these days that anything can tip the country overboard. We’re believing God to come to our aid. But then, there have been worse and more frightening misfortunes around the world – suicide bombings, earthquakes, mudslide, blasts in mines, violent hurricanes, air, sea, mountain and land accidents, crimes which shocked humanity, etc. God, in His mercy, spreads these things around and no country is immune from them. There’s no longer a safe haven in the world that you can run to, in order to feel safe and at peace. We can’t blame the year 2012 for all these happenings. Nei-
ther can we commend any year for being good to us. Years are just periods and what happens in them are either God ordered, or human ordered. Most of the evil on earth is perpetrated by human beings. I’m sure that if the year 2012 can feel and talk, it would express great anger at all the horrible things we’ve done during its tenure to defile it and tarnish its image. We should blame ourselves for most of the evil in the land. God has put in us the notion of what is right and what is wrong, what pleases Him and what doesn’t; but He has also given us tremendous freedom of choice. Barring natural disasters, wrong choices are what are turning the world upside down and making it hell for everyone. That young man was right to be concerned about the misfortunes in the world, because even if we live in opulence and in fortified residences, our hearts would tremble whenever we hear of blasts and violence. We should not only feel concerned about victims, we should do all in our power to help. But most of all, we should ask ourselves
what can be done to avert these occurrences and make life more pleasant and peaceful in our country once more. On the part of our rulers, there should be alertness and preparedness, and a great ability to manage crisis. We shouldn’t be caught napping when turbulence comes. When hurricane Sandy swept the West Indies and the eastern part of the U.S., recently, notably the State of New York and its environs, causing devastating floods that took lives and property, the government swung into action at once, sending help by land, water and air. In earth-quakeprone areas over there, families are advised to pack emergency bags in readiness in case one occurs, and they have to head for shelters. I know of a family who has been in this state of readiness for over thirty years and they’ve had no need for those bags. Still, they remain in their garage, anyway. As we wait for 2012 to end, let’s all sincerely ask God to save Nigeria and give us better times with more good news than bad. This is the only country most of us can confidently call our own.
LITTLE BLACK DRESSES www.elle.com/fashion/trend-reports/Photo: Splash News
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 21
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org This is the first time we’re having past Rotarian presidents coming together to form a team; what inspired the launch of the Forum of Able Presidents? We want to be able to encourage upcoming Rotarians. As Presidents of various Rotary clubs in 2009/2010, we all had very successful tenures, and we believe we should let others learn from that. Rotary is about continuity of service, and that’s what we hope to achieve through this Forum of Able Presidents. We want to continue serving humanity. Considering your antecedent, one would expect you to have refrained from activities by now; what keeps you going? To keep going, you must feel the need to keep going. When you see other people who are not as fortunate as you are, you see the need to help! That alone is something to keep one going! Now that you’re retired from fashion, what are you into? I belong to a few NGOs and other kinds of social clubs. Also, I still design from time to time. I also like writing, and that takes my time. Selfless service requires funds, and you’re practically retired from paid jobs; how do you finance y o u r projects? There is a popular saying that says “I cannot do it, *Shade Thomas-Fahm....I’ll blame some mothers; they’ve neglected their duties.
Rotar y is about continuity of ser vice vice—Thomas-Fahm Chief(Mrs.)Victoria Folashade Thomas-Fahm’s may be taking a back seat on the fashion-designing scene these days, but she laid the platform for the Nigerian fashion industry. She was Nigeria’s first fashion designer and the first to own a boutique(Shade’s Boutique) in Nigeria. Her trademark was using traditional fabrics to create diverse styles. Multi-talented Mrs Thomas-Fahm designed, cut, sewed, modelled and produced fashion shows! Her name is in the Nigerian women hall of fame. These days, she’s cheerfully rendering selfless services through several service clubs. She served as president of the Rotary Club of Victoria Island from 2009-2010, achieving giant feats. Recently, her fellow 2009/2010 Rotarian presidents gathered in Lagos to inaugurate the Forum of Able Presidents. At the function, she
had a chat with Vista Woman about how her past has been of great influence in her service to humanity. She also blames Nigeria’s woes on mothers who have neglected their traditional roles.
HAT do you remember about your tenure as Rotarian President? The year was a very successful one. I did a project on kidney, and we built and donated a fully equipped kidney dialysis centre to the Island General Hospital, with two machines installed. It was the first of its kind, and it operated free-of-charge for two years. The project was actually sponsored by Alhaji Aliko Dangote. Now, it’s been handed over to the Lagos State Government and they’re running it. The club also engaged in various other projects. For instance, we fed the poor for 22 months instead of the stipulated 12 months designed by the district.
BY JOSEPHINE IGBINOVIA
To keep going, you must feel the need to keep going. When you see other people who are not as fortunate as you are, you see the need to help! That alone is something to keep one going!
but I know who can”. In life, it comes to a point where you use your popularity and influence to achieve desired results. I remember when I had to build and equip the kidney dialysis centre. God brought a friend of mine, Prof.Elebute, to whom I spoke and from there, everything started spinning; we had Dangote who keyed in and gave us a substantial sum of money. Many others were there for us to get that project done, and before we knew it, the project was done! You mean that you’re reaping from the platforms and network you’ve built over the years? Yes, I would say. It is important to always let people believe in you. You have to earn people’s interest, otherwise, they won’t trust you with their money; especially money of such magnitude. They should know you for keeping to your words, and this is what I would always encourage everybody to do. You might not be able to do everything, but you have to ‘earn’ the people who can. When you look back to your 20s and 30s, what memories come to mind? Hardwork, focus, and truthfulness! Those are the words that come to mind. It’s not possible for you to go through life comfortably or successfully if you’re not able to tell the truth, or if people find you wanting. People have to know you for telling the truth, and for being a man or woman of your words. You were one of those people who enjoyed the serenity Nigeria once enjoyed; could you compare that Nigeria with what we have now? I think I’ll blame some mothers; they’ve neglected their duties. You have to spend more time with your home and family because it gives you the opportunity to influence their morals. A lot of mothers abandon their children to drivers and house helps, and do not return home until late at night. No family can grow that way! Money is good, but the end result of neglecting your home is worse than anything. But how feasible is your point in this day and time when women are clamouring for gender equality? I know you would say it’s not easy to stay at home, be at work and still be equal to men. But the fact is that the priority of a woman should be her home; every other thing can be fixed around this. You can take a 9am-5pm job! When you continue staying away from home because of work, will you buy happiness with the money earned when the children are already wild? No! How then can we gain the better representation we seek in a society where female politicians have to attend meetings at odd hours? One thing I noticed when I was abroad was that when women get married, they stayed close to their families for a period of five years before going back to demanding careers. It is true that we want to have equality with men, but the fact is that it is not possible. Even western women have not been able to achieve that! But the thing is that these women are able to set their priorities right. If you look at the age group of women in politics abroad, you’ll find that they start from 40 upward. Hardly will you find younger women engaging in active politics. Even if you do find, you will notice they’re career women who hardly have time for their homes! What’s your advice for younger women? You have to earn your own living, cherish your integrity and love other people. When you see something going wrong, do not join in. That’s how we can actually help Nigeria as women.
PAGE 22—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Is this his interest in me, love? Dear Rebecca am a 19-year-old undergraduate. I met this guy in my first year in school and class. He later became my admirer and not too long ago, we became friends . We started sharing ideas and other things together and we became very close. My friends think that he (the guy) loves me and so do my classmates but he (the guy) hasn’t told me . He calls frequently and often sends me-e- mails. Aunty , despite the fact that other guys are asking me out, I want to give him a chance. Should I judge him based on his actions? Do you think he is interest in me? Ceejay, Abuja.
REPL Y REPLY
on’t rush things. Why must this boy tell you that he love you now ? Sometimes it is girls who lead boys into deceiving them. Some do their best to extract ‘I love you’ or a marriage proposal from a boy when he doesn’t feel that way. I know it is nice for a girl to be told she is loved, or to be proposed marriage to, but it is best to allow these come naturally from the man. This boy is doing the right thing. He is allowing a good friendship to develop between you. Enjoy it is and don’t long for something else . Stop discussing any relationship you are hav-
ing - romantic or platonicwith your friends. Their advice or comment may lead you astray. A relationship is a personal thing which has to do with your own feeling . Why should other people tell you what the boy feels for you or doesn’t? You should be left to find out for yourself . If you have to discuss it at all, do so with your mother or an elderly female relation; or even your dad. Your parents should know who your friends are. I’m sure this boy will let you know somehow later if he has a romantic relationship in mind . When you push a boy to say ‘I love you; he could assume that you want intimacy in the relationship. What will you do if he asks for sex? Don’t allow friends to push you into what may ruin the close friendship with this boy at present. Every relationship with a a boy doesn’t have to be a romantic one. Some boys can make very good confidants for girls, and vice versa. At 19, you should have several so that you can have the opportunity to study and understand the boys. When you are more mature, you can start having a romantic relationships. It could be with this boy or another boy. Don’t get upset if he has other girls as friends .He has every right to do so . It is when you and a boy decide to go steady and head for marriage that you should not date other people . Don’t allow sex until marriage.
Should I encourage this man? Dear Rebecca
am a girl of 17 years and in S.S2. I am in love with a man who is about 29 years old. He came into my school as a corper. He got to know me because other teachers told him I was brilliant. Every girl in my class admire him because he is handsome. One day, he sent for me. He gave me his address and wanted me to visit him where he was living with other youth corpers. He has finished his service and has returned to
Can I get my size in condom?
his State . He writes to me all the time . He says he will come for me when he gets a job . Aunty, I still have a long way to go and besides, I don’t think my parents will allow me to marry a man from another State.. I think I led myself into this mess. I love him and wouldn’t like to lose him. But I can’t tell my parents about this . They will bury me alive . May be I should call it quits by writing him a harsh letter or simply telling him I have another boyfriend just to get him off my mind. Please help. I don’t know what to do. Worried precious, Kaduna REPL Y REPLY
am in my mid-30’s. I have this embar rassing and psychological problem. My penis is so small that I think it will not fit into a condom. I have not tried it though but I want to space m y children and I’m afraid of using other methods which may have negative effects on me. Please, how do I I use the condom? Can I get one for the size of my penis? I really need your help . I am not a pastor but I am such a reserved and God-fearing person. Worried man. Philip.
REPL Y REPLY
ou did not say whether you are married or not , and if you would not mind your wife using a contraceptive recommended at a family planning center . An expert in family planning says you are wise in wanting to space your children well, by the grace of God, because that would enable your wife to rest and recover properly in-between having babies and hopefully enjoy good health. Child-spacing would ensure that your kids come when you can cope financially .
The expert says that apart from abstaining from sex, the condom is the safest and most convenient ontraceptive for a man. It is usually a one size product in latex rubber which can fit the smallest organ and expand to fit a large one. You wear it on your organ when you have achieved erection , not when it is soft. The expert says that when in erection, the male organ fills out stiffly and will fit into the condom according to its size. I suggest you visit the family planning center nearest to you.
our letter is not clear. You did not say whether you honoured his invitation and went to visit him where he and the other youth corpers
were living , and if both of you are actually boyfriend / girlfriend . What you feel right now is not love; you have a crush on him. That is, you are infatuated with his looks, the fact that he was popular while serving in your school and most girls wanted him, and perhaps because he is a graduate. All these don’t make him your ideal man, for you are far too young now to indulge in a romantic relationship with a boy, let alone, a mature 29- year -old man. The age gap of 12years is too much for your 17 years . If you were in your twenties and ready for marriage, it would have been all right if you love him, for you would be mature enough to handle the relationship. You are only 17. You can see that you still have a long way to go in your studies. As a brilliant pupil, you would
Your relationship with boys now should be casual and only for the purpose of getting to know and understand them
want to go to the university and embark on a career. Would this man wait for you? Won’t he want to settle down in marriage when he can afford to? Many men his age are already married with children. On your part, you don’t have enough experience of romantic relationship with boys to know who to marry right now and you are going to meet much younger boys as you grow older. Write just once to this man to say you appreciate his interest in you, but you have promised your parents not have any romantic relationship for a couple of years , and you want to end communication with him. Thereafter, don’t reply any mail from him, or take his calls. After a few more attempts he would stop. Your relationship with boys now should be casual and only for the purpose getting to know and understand them. Have several as ordinary friends, and even when you begin to have romantic relationships much later in the university, don’t visit boys in their rooms, don’t promise marriage and don’t allow sex . Preserve your body for the man you will marry. Move with responsible boys aand girls who are focused and known to your parents.
•All letters for publication on this page should be sent to: Dear Rebecca, Vanguard Media Ltd, Kirikiri Canal, P.M.B 1007, Apapa, Lagos, Nigeria. E-mail: email@example.com
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 23
The wages of sin is sweet revenge!
T’S often said that trouble always comes in threes, and that no matter how terrible your situation, there are thousands of other problems that would make yours pale into insignificance. Not so long ago, I had to see Dedun, a good friend, for a favour. NHave you heard about Iyabo?”, she asked excitedly. Iyabo is another member of our group. A very enterprising lady, she’d been the rock behind her husband’s success. Thanks to her and her late father’s muscles, Lekan, her husband rode rapidly up the ladder of success in the telecommunications company he worked for, and he’d just been posted to Ibadan to head the South-West operations of his company. He’d left lyabo in the big company house they lived in Oregun whilst he I) tried to find his feet in his new job before sending for his wife and two of the six children he’d had from four different women. “Well, what about her?” ‘I asked. Surely, she couldn’t have been pregnant after all these years? That would have been the icing on the cake of her relationship with Lekan. Instead of playing mother to his ‘sullen’ overgrown kids, it ~uould be nice
that her own child should benefit from her maternal talent. “Lekan has moved in with anotherwomanl” Dedun dropped the bombshell. “Moved in where’ I” I was still very confused. The last time I saw Lekan before he moved, he was his flamboyant self, playing at being a responsible married man. “Lekan’s company lodged him in an hotel pending when a suitable accommodation could be found for him, but he moved in with this buka owner mother-of-three and says he’s in love with her. The woman was abroad with her husband until a year ago when she rushed back home after the husband was arrested for drugs dealing.” “”’I was in shockl Do people actually behave in this heartless way? One minute, you believe you have a rock-solid marriage and the next, it’s come crashing round your ears. I was enraged at the unfairness of it all. Who did he think he was? Where did Dedun get her story from? “Iyabo called me herself,” she said,” and I promised we would both come to see her. She’s really distraught.” I bet she is, I fumed. The energy I’d thought had deserted me after a
day’s hard work instantly bo~umced back. We got into Dedun car and didn’t mind the traffic. When we eventually got to Iyabo’s house, I marvelled again at the madness that would possess a father of six to leave a mansion and go to live with a mother of three in a coopl When Iyabo let us in, she burst into tears. She’d lost a lot of weight and was a shadow of her vivacious self. After all she’d sacrificed for her husband, she wailed, this was how he treated her. Now his office had gotten in touch with her, giving her three months to pack up and leave the house so its new owner could move in. “So what plans do you have?” I’d wanted to
know. She told us of her efforts to locate her husband in the h~u_l.the was now living and how he’d humiliated her in the presence of his trollop. He was in love he told some of his co-workers from Lagos that offered to come with her to intervene, and the sooner she got that into her head, the better it would be for her to move on. liThe woman he moved in with looked brash and wild,” Iyabo continued. “I was shocked and traumatized by it all that I lashed out at Lekan and, but for the quick intervention of the people around us, he would have beaten me to a pulp:’ “You still haven’t answered my question; I reminded her, boiling with concealed rage: “What plans do you have?” “What plans could. have except to
move my things? That’ why I need you people to let me move into one of your boys’ quarters.” “Why would you want to move to a boys’ quarters from a sprawling house like this?” I asked her. “Listen, you shouldn’t be the one to suffer because of your husband’s recklessness. From this moment, you have to make an inventory of all the things in the house and we would pass copies to our friends who would be interested in buying. And for starters, I’m interested in that new computer - and freezer I What about you Dedun, anything you particularly fancy?” They were both wide-eyed and looked at me with the respect gangsters regard their leader. “You have two months to move out. By the time you finish flogging all of the beautiful things in
this house, you will have more than enough money to rent and furnish a decent flat. As for those Alsatian dogs that are hiS pride and joy, find a good vet to help you sell them off - you should get a tidy sum for them. The giant generator would be the last to go ... “ By the time Lekan got wind of what was going on weeks later, most of the items in the house were sold. He rushed back to a house he hadn’t visited for close to five months and found it bare. Even the furniture had been carted away as Iyabo didn’t want any reminder of what she went through in her new house. She was pondering on what to do with the pistol she had discovered hidden in the room when she heard Lekan raving and ranting downstairs at the only domestic lef\. liTo this day, I don’t know what propelled me to do what I did,” recalled Iyabo later. “l’d never seen a gun in my life. But I gingerly walked downstairs with the pistol, which was heavier than it looked, and aimed the gun at him. It was a pleasure to see the great fear in his cowardly face. He did a quick about-turn and bolted out of the doorl It was later I learnt the gun wasn’t even loaded I “By the time I finally left the house, only books and our wedding photographs were left. Let him get rid of those himself. ,.
Science researches Yoga
CCORDING to r e s e a r c h
psychobiologist and Iyengar Yoga teacher, Roger Cole, “ yoga and science go together very, very nicely.” A scientist with a doctorate in Health Psychology, Cole’s studies involve the interface between physiological and psychological processes, specialising in research and biological relaxation, restoration, and biological clocks. A gymnast when he was in high school, he has been practising for over 20 years and says that yoga offers “a vast storehouse of wisdom” about the body and mind that modern science can draw upon. In his work as a researcher, Cole has documented the effects of
various yoga postures on brain waves particularly relaxation poses such as Viparita Karani (Supported Inverted Pose) and Setubandhasana quickly manifested the data brain waves associated with deep relaxation. He has also delved into the physiological effect of inverted poses, which he says dramatically affect hormone levels, brain arousal, blood pressure, fluid balance and a host of other factors among other changes. When the body is turned upside down, the heart rate slows and the blood vessels dilate. The extra blood in the trunk stimulates the baroreceptor nerves in the aorta and neck, which in turn signals the central nervous system to lower blood pressure
and slow down brain waves. Modern science offers Yoga, Cole says, a precious way of observing and qualifying such subtle phenomena, thereby broadening the body of yogic knowledge. “Some people look at the system of yoga as static-they think its perfect as it is,” says Cole, who teaches at the North country Yoga Studio in San Diego, California, USA. “But yoga is still evolving and we are still inventing yoga today. “Science can manipulate matter and energy but it doesn’t discriminate between what is beautiful and sacred and what is not,” he enthuses. “ Yo g a b r i n g s t h a t beauty, turning our investigation into a living art.”
The shoulder stand Technique: Lying on your back, draw up your knees, and place both hands at the back with the thumbs to the hips. With a bit of momentum, raise the legs up and point the toes skyward. For the beginner, a half-minute in this posture will do until over the longhaul you can say for upwards of two minutes. The Bridge Technique: Lying on your back, draw your knees up a bit, placing the hands by the lower flanks raise the body and support it on the elbows, shoulders and back of the head. Retain the pose for say half a minute, rest and repeat a few times.
* The Soulderstand
Yoga classes at 32 Ademola Adetokunbo Victoria Island, Lagos, 9.10am on Saturdays
PAGE 24 — SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Want to improve your love life? Here’s the A - Z of how!
ECENTLY, I had been inundated by requests from you readers on how to improve your love life. And what better time to start than the beginning of a new year. I was musing on this when I came across an A to Z guide to a sexier you by a sexologist, Catherine Hood. So I’ve decided to adapt it for readers’ delight. You’ll definitely find the tips worth trying. Enjoy! A - is for Aphrodisiacs: Food can spice up lovemaking. Include plenty of suggestively shaped nibbles you have to eat with your fingers like asparagus and bananas and add a little luxury with juicy grapes, and, of course, chocolate. B - is for Bondage: We have five senses, all used in love-making. Using a blindfold can heighten other senses like touch. Go further and use restraints and your victim is powerless to resist. C - is for Contraception: Unless you’re planning to get pregnant in 2010 get yourself some effective contraception. D - is for dating: The internet has opened up new ways to meet sexual partners chatting online. Or take up a hobby or an activity that will help you meet new people. E - is experimentation: Add something new in 2010. If you are usually passive in bed; take the lead and surprise your partner. F - is for fantasy: Most men and women, use fantasy in bed. Sometimes the story lines are extreme, at other times more tame and predictable. Thinking about another person while having sex is not infidelity. G - is for sex god or
goddess: Great sex starts with knowing yourself. Get in touch with your desires through selfplay. Sex toys can help you explore your erogenous zones but you can use them on your lover to discover theirs too. H - is for hair and makeup: Being sexy isn’t about having a perfect physique, it’s about being confident in your own skin. Tone up your muscles through exercise and smooth your skin with exfoliation. I- is for Infection: Don’t become another sexual health clinic statistic. Whether you plan to have multiple partners in 2010 or to meet just one special person, don’t take risks until you’ve both had an infection screen. Insist on condoms. J - is for jealousy: There is little that will ruin a relationship quicker than jealousy. Keep your cool. K - is Kissing: There is nothing sexier than a really good kiss. Get back to basics and improve your kissing techniques. Involve your tongue and your teeth by nibbling around their lips. Make kissing a central part of your love-making. L - is for Libido: Stress and anxiety are the biggest passion killers so try to reduce the worries in your life and priorities some time and space for sex in 2010. Make a resolution to tackle any discord in your relationship rather than letting resentments gather. If you’ve been feeling low, see your GP and get some help. M - is for Massage: Massage is a wonderful addition to foreplay. What better way to chase away the stresses of the
working day in preparation for an erotic evening? Touching and caressing your lover ’s body helps you get in touch with their feelings and can ignite the erogenous zones making them more receptive to love making. You don’t have to be an expert masseuse, simply caress the skin and ask your lover to give feedback about pressure and how quickly to move your fingers. Start with small circular movements with your thumbs and don’t press too hand. Begin with the shoulders, move down the back and then from the ankles up to the thighs. N - is for New Start: If you’re pining for a lost love or holding out for a reluctant beau, then make 2010 the year you move on and find a partner who gives you some love in return. Who knows what wonderful surprises 2010 has in store? O - is for Oral: Oral sex is one of the favourite foreplay techniques. Arguably
it’s a more intimate act thantlaving penetrative sex and many find it just as physically:satisfying. But not everybody enjoys oral sex and it’s important to respect your partner’s wishes. To protect yourself from sexually transmitted infections use flavoured condoms with new partners. P - is for Positions: Try some new positions this year. The angle of penetration can altersexual stimulation. Q - is for Question: We are all experts in what turns us on, so when you have new lovers take time to ask them what they like. We give feedback in bed not only by what we say, but also in how jour body moves. If you’re too shy to ask directly then pay attention to what your lover ’s body is telling you. R - is for Romance: Whether you’re dating
flowing towards my heart which I cannot express in words, you have a special place in my heart & please forget me not, you are mine and will be yours. Ify firstname.lastname@example.org 08032638739
OUR column to express your loving thoughts in words to your sweetheart. Don’t be shy. Let it flow and let him or her know how dearly you feel. Write now in not more than 75 words to: The Editor, Sunday Vanguard, P.M.B. 1007, Apapa, Lagos. E.mail: email@example.com Please mark your envelope: “LOVE NOTES"
My love for you
Prince Charming, in the city of Love, in the home of beauty, when I think of you, I feel a deep ocean
I want real love
I am sending this message to that special lady that is still single just because of me, that real love is not based on romance, candle light dinner and walks along the beach. In fact it is based on respect, compromise, care and trust. Love is loving someone not just for the good things about them but embracing their flaws and imperfections as well, beep me if your are the one, real love is all I want. Osademe Joseph,Ozoro, Delta State. firstname.lastname@example.org, O803606530
or in a long-term relationship there should always be a place for romance in your sex life. Romance feeds the emotional aspect ot your sex drive in the same way intercourse satisfies the physical urge. Small acts can be just as romantic as big gestures - cook your lover a meal, send them a few romantic texts or run them crrelaxing bath with scented candles. S - is for Seduction: All good things come to those who wait. If you’re single and dating then boost your success rates by brushing up your seduction techniques. let your eyes do the talking by holding your intended lover’s gaze for a tittle longer than normaL Take time to listen to what your lover is saying to you and show you’re interested in more than just their body. T - is for Technique: It can boost your sexual confidence to know you
can perform a particular erotic signature move. Choose a sex act you enjoy giving to others and perfect your technique so you can perform with confidence with a new partner. U - is for Underwear: Is your knicker drawer looking tired, grey and uninspiring? Then invest in some new lingerie or underwear. Many men like to see their ladies wearing something facy and seductive ... but women too like to see men looking trim in their grundies. v - is for Vulval Pain: Painful sex is a common complaint among women. If you’ve been suffering in silence to and seek help. There are many potential causes, from fungal infections that are easily treated to psychosexual problems that can be improve by therapy. W - is for Water: If you want to enjoy a really indulgent and prolonged sex session with your partner then incorporate a shower or bath into your foreplay. Giving your love a good soap and scrub can be very seductive. x - is for Love Letters: With e-mail, messaging and texts it’s easy to lose the art of writing a love letter but there is nothing quite like receiving a hand-written note. Y - is for Yes: Embrace new experiences in 2010. If you’ve got stuck ina rut with a relationship or being single then resolve to change your situation. Z - is for Sleep: Don’t burn the candle at both ends. Make sure you get enough sleep to enjoy life in 2010. Your sexual appetite will suffer if you’re too tired.
To you all, in love
Have you ever wondered how life will be without love? Have you ever wondered how decembers will be without the celebrations of xmas? Have you ever wondered how your life will be wothout the one you love? Then imagine how I feel right now. . . Empty. . . Hollow. . . Alone. . .But despite all, I celebrate; I jubilate. After all,it' s Xmas. I rejoice with all in love this season... I wish I had a bit of what you have...right now. I say may the new year rekindle the burning desires of your loving hearts and bring great expectations for sm of us lonely...at heart. I am happy for you all in love. Stan Stan. email@example.com 07035709315 08182459176
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 25
BY EVELYN OISA
HEY all wore swollen faces, with tears trick ling down their cheeks. Some stood with hands akimbo and others placed their hands on their heads, watching as their goods were destroyed by fire. No thanks to the explosion that rocked Jankara Market in Isale-Eko area of Lagos State on Boxing Day. Worst hit were residents of the affected buildings who have been rendered homeless by the inferno which lasted over ten hours, defying efforts by fire fighters to contain the situation. Gboom! Gbaam! Gbooaaa! The sounds from number 45, Ojo Giwa Street at about 10a.m. Were deafening. The explosions resulted in a fire that engulfed the three-storey building. The sounds, initially mistaken to be bomb blasts, sent residents of the area scurrying out of their apartments in fear. They ran in different directions. Some parents even left behind children. Reminiscent of the January 2002 Ikeja Cantonment bomb explosions when residents of adjourning areas panicked and rushed out of their houses – many residents again began to flee their homes. But while this rush was on Boxing Day, one of the victims, who was apparently fast asleep in one of the affected buildings, was burnt to death. News later filtered round that it was a bomb blast, with men of the Anti Bomb Command, Ikeja invited to come and do their job. There were, however, different accounts about how the incident, which changed the course of the day for the affected persons, occurred. A version said some youths were competing with fireworks and, in the process, one of them threw it into the warehouse said to have been stocked with assorted fireworks. The raging fire, therefore, spread to other buildings and cars parked around. At press time, twelve buildings were declared affected by the fire, with the death toll put at four. Some of those later confirmed dead in the hospital, as gathered, died out of exhaustion. Some of them were reportedly trampled on during the stampede. One of them, a 65-year-old woman, told Sunday Vanguard she was saved by divine intervention. Speaking in Yoruba dialect, Iya Agba, as she is pop-
Scene of the Boxing Day explosions
DEADLY FIRE FROM FIREWORKS IN LAGOS
People kept trampling on me – 65-year-old survivor *Widow suffers double tragedy, loses all to disaster **Buildings that fail integrity test will be demolished —Commissioner ularly called, said she had gone to the market that fateful day to get some food stuff when she heard the bang. Asked why she did not send her children to the market, she replied: “I live alone. My children are all grown up. My grand children only left three months ago to join their parents. “On that day, I decided to go to the market to get some food stuff before it becomes sunny. “But hardly had I reached where I was going when I heard a loud bang. “I stopped and asked my customer what the problem was and she said she did not know. “Then, all of a sudden, people started running. “They said terrorists had invaded the area. “As I turned to return home, they pushed me down. “I attempted to get up and another set pushed me down again. “I could not get up until one young man lifted me up and took me to a corner. “Meanwhile, the incident did not even happen close to where I was. “I only thank God that I did not die”.
Meanwhile, some traders of the affected shops, who had traveled for Christmas celebrations, returned on Thursday, barely 24hours after the disaster! Among them was one Mrs. Christy Nduma. The woman, too stunned to speak, vented her anger on anyone who attempted to find out whether her shop was among those affected. It took a while to deci-
pher the cause of her anger. Mrs. Uduma, it was gathered, lost her husband, recently, in an auto accident. She had reportedly gone to the village to pull off her mourning clothes when news of the fire incident reached her. Those close to her said she stocked her cosmetic shop before traveling, with the hope of starting life on her arrival only to be befallen by another
Another scene of the tragic incident
Most of the affected traders, it was also learnt, are on the trail of the owners of the warehouse where the fire crackers were stocked, as they blamed them for their woes. “Had they not stockpiled such quantity of fireworks in the warehouse, such thing would not have happened. In fact, if I get them, I will personally hand them over to the police and be made to pay for the damages done to my goods”, one of the traders charged. But at that point, another man came out of the crowd and attributed the cause of the fire to their inability to report to the police. “Are you people trying to say that you did not know fire works were stocked there?,” he stated. The question almost resulted in a fight between the man and some of the affected traders. Sunday Vanguard gathered that a container load of fire crackers were discharged weekly in the warehouse from where people bought whole sale and then sold to retailers. Inspite of the incident, it was observed that some of the traders who could salvage some of their wares took them elsewhere to sell. Lagos State Commissioner for Home Affairs, Oyin Danmole, who visited the scene of tragedy, lamented that during this festive period alone, about three dozens of distress calls were made and received by the Department of Fire Service in Lagos – all within a week. A breakdown showed that on Saturday and Sunday, December 22 and 23, 2012, respectively, there were 22 fire calls; while on Wednesday, the day of the incident, there were 11 fire calls; and, on Thursday, there were 12 fire calls. Danmole, therefore, called on Lagosians to be very conscious of safety. “The hands of our men are full but they are up to the task”, he declared on Thursday at the scene of the disaster. He also made it clear that some 20 buildings in the affected area would have to go through a test with a view to ascertaining their structural integrity. If found defective, the building may be demolished to avert further loss of lives and properties Also, the NEMA information Officer, South West Zone, Ibrahim Farinloye, said 11 buildings suffered direct impact from the fire, while four streets were cordoned off to allow emergency officers carry out their work.
PAGE 26 — SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Monarch lands in trouble with Oba of Benin A
ll has not been well in Evbuovbioba in Oredo Local Government Council of Edo State after what the palace of the Oba of Benin, Oba Erediuwa Uku Akpolopolo, alleged as disregard for the custom and tradition of the Benin Kingdom by the Enogie, His Royal Highness Edwin Izevbokun Aigbe, and the Odionwere, Mr John Egharevba. Their alleged action attracted the anger of the Oba of Benin who allegedly suspended them. Trouble started in the community in 2010 when the Enogie allegedly gave out some parcel of land without consultation with some people in the community according to custom and tradition. Sunday Vanguard learnt that the Oba of Benin invited the Enogie and other leaders of the community to a meeting where he reminded the Enogie that all land belongs to him (the Oba )and, therefore he must give out land only after consulting the relevant people. But the Enogie allegedly didn’t heed the warning following which Oba Erediuwa suspended him and the Odionwere, who allegedly collaborated with him, in May 2011, through a letter signed by ten palace chiefs including the Iyase of Benin Kingdom, Chief Sam Igbe, on behalf of the Oba. According to a subsequent statement, “ the general public is hereby informed that the Enogie of Evbuovbioba, Aigbe Izevbokun, has been suspended by the palace of the Oba of Benin. This is sequel to his total disrespect for Benin custom and tradition and undermining the authority of the Oba of Benin. Consequently, Mr Edward Okunzuwa (Ozukpegieva) and Mr Lucky Enobabor (Okaighele) are to take charge of the community”. On 20 November, 2011, the Enogie accepted the suspension and vowed not to query the decision of the Oba. According to his acknowledge-
ment letter, “I wish to acknowledge my suspension aired in the news media by the Association of Enogies and the Benin Traditional Council and I thank you for such palace decision. However, I am using this medium to put on record that I am a descendant of Obanosa and therefore a descendant of Erinmmindu authority. Therefore, I cannot do anything that could bring the royalty to disrepute. At the moment, I make bold to say that the directive of the Oba is being complied with to the letter. The people mandated to handle the affairs of the village are fully in charge. Consequently, I have relocated to my house in Benin- City and wish them well in this new assignment. Before leaving, I did not forget to urge the elders of the village to extend maximum support to the new leaders of the village so appointed to run the affairs of the village in peace and harmony. At the appropriate time, I shall seek the support of wellmeaning Oba’s subjects to help me plead for your royal forgiveness and subsequent lifting of the suspension presently placed on me”. But tension heightened few days after the new leaders took over, when armed thugs allegedly invaded the community unleashing mayhem on perceived supporters of the leaders. At the time of filing this report, the new leaders of the community, Mr Edward Okunzuwa (Ozukpegieva) and Mr Lucky Enobabor (Okaighele), as well as hundreds of their supporters and family members have fled the community due to the attacks. Although the sponsors of the attacks were unknown, on 30 November, the son of the suspended Enogie was allegedly arrested in connection with the crisis in the community. He and two others were allegedly
Oba of Benin... owns the land
BY SIMON EBEGBULEM, Benin City
Trouble started in the community in 2010 when the Enogie allegedly gave out some parcels of land without consultation with some people in the community according to custom and tradition
handed over to the police at Airport Road, where they were reportedly taken to the Edo State police headquarters in Benin City. But to the chagrin
of the new leadership of the community, the suspects were released on bail rather than charging the matter to court. Speaking to Sunday Vanguard, Okunzuwa, explained:” The problem was that the suspended Enogie and the Odionwere went contrary to the tradition of the kingdom. They disobeyed the Oba and they were suspended. They gave out land to three or more persons without following the tradition of the land. But since the Oba appointed us,some people have not allowed us to work. They have attacked us several times, destroying our cars, houses and shooting all the time to scare us. We have informed the Oba and he has warned them to desist from causing further trouble in that community. On 30 November, thugs came again with guns. They took us to the police station
and locked us up. They are using their connection with the police to intimidate us. That is why we are appealing to the Federal Government, the Inspector General of Police and others to come to our aid. The police have to help us enforce the decision of our respected father, the Oba of Benin. The Oba’s decision is final. We can no longer go to our community due to constant attacks”. The acting Enogie further narrated: “The tradition is that any time you want to give out land in the community; you will give what belongs to the family, some to the owner of the land and some to the community. But the suspended head failed to abide by the tradition and he continued to give out land any how he deemed fit. So when he gave land to one Idahosa, the community queried why doing so without doing the right thing. But he claimed that he did not give the land to Idahosa while Idahosa insisted that the land was given to him and gave evidence. That was how the matter was reported to the palace. The Oba mandated him to go back and give the land to Idahosa and go and share a portion of the land to members of the community which is what is due to them. But he refused to share the land. The Oba continued to remind him that he is not the owner of the land, that he the Oba owns the land. For over two years, the Oba has been talking to him but he refused and that was what led to his suspension by the palace.” Sunday Vanguard learnt that the Oba of Benin invited the acting Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Muhammad Hurdi, on the issue after the monarch expressed disappointment with the way the police was handling the crisis in the community. When contacted, the Edo Police Public Relations Officer, Anthony Airhioyo, said he would find out the details before making comments on it.
Bleeding commonest cause of death among pregnant women —Experts BY VINCENT UJUMADU, Awka
EDICAL experts have observed that bleeding is the commonest cause of death among pregnant women in Nigeria, especially in the low income areas, due to lack of the necessary equipment to monitor their situation at the right time. They made the observation at a lives- saving skills training for health workers for 113
health workers drawn from the 21 local government areas of the state yesterday in Awka on the use of Anti Shock Garment, ASG, which is a device for controlling obstetrics hemorrhage and reducing the rate of maternal mortality. The procurement and distribution of the device in Anambra State is a joint venture between the state government and the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF.
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 27
.... CRIME AND NATIONAL SECURITY
Regional Editor, South-South
ome weeks ago, Sunday Vanguard broke the story of a judge of the Delta State High Court, Justice Flora Azinge, who was compelled to stop sitting for almost two months because of the threat to kidnap her and demand for N20 million ransom from her by a kidnap gang. Police officers officially deployed to protect her, her driver and others were alleged to be members of the kidnap ring. However, right inside the police cell, where they were detained, the police officers, who denied knowledge of the kidnap after one of them was caught where he came to pick ransom,allegedly contrived a plot to terminate the life of the judge through food poisoning. Delta State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ikechukwu Aduba, who confirmed the arrest of the police officers for questioning to Sunday Vanguard, assured he would not sweep the matter under the carpet, but would want to be sure of his facts before charging the accused person to court. This may not be our last report on the Azinge kidnap saga, but it is the concluding part of the end of the journey for the alleged kidnap band.
JUSTICE AZINGE KIDNAP SAGA:
TWO police officers fingered in the kidnap attempt and demand for N20 million ransom from a Delta State High Court judge, Justice Flora Azinge, have allegedly hatched an ingenious plot from the police cell to exterminate the judge through food poisoning. However, the plan boomeranged; instead of the judge being killed, the facade the police officers used was unmasked and they were fired from the force. More suspects were also arrested, including the driver of the judge, who was earlier released by the State Security Service, SSS, for want of evidence to link him to the kidnap saga. Investigations by Sunday Vanguard showed after we broke the story, the police officer, who acted as the leader of the syndicate, The Don (not real name), who was caught by a soldier when he came to pick N20 million ransom, denied complicity in the sordid affair. With his calls and messages wiped from his phone, he believed it was difficult to pin anything on him. The police orderly to the judge also denied being a member of the kidnap group. It was their resolute denial, amid lack of strong evidence, which made Aduba to say that he would want to get details of the call logs from the service providers before deciding the next line of action. Nevertheless, the police were taken aback following alleged incontrovertible evidence that one of the police officers made a phone call from the cell to the driver of the judge that was
Syndicate in fresh offensive to poison judge from police cell earlier released by SSS, to poison the food of the judge so as end their ordeal finally. An informed source said the Delta police commissioner, who was open in his handling of the matter, directed an orderly room trial of the police officers. Meanwhile, the third police officer that was identified has been on the run for about four months running.
Plot from the dungeon
ing so would not have enabled investigators to get to the root of the matter”. “Unknown to the police officer, the army had obtained the call log, which he believed he had cleverly wiped out from his phone from the service provider and they confronted him with his several calls to the judge and her husband, threatening them and demanding for ran-
Two police officers fingered in the kidnap attempt and demand for N20 million ransom from a Delta State High Court judge, Justice Flora Azinge, have allegedly hatched an ingenious plot from the police cell to exterminate the judge through food poisoning
War of words
At the trial, The Don met head-on the army officer, who arrested him when he came to pick the N20 million ransom, saying he was not a member of the gang and was merely passing by. Though he did not give a cogent explanation as to why he left his beat at the Federal Prisons, Okere, he asked why he was not shot if, actually, the army officer caught him picking ransom. “The army officer”, said our source, “told him that he did not want to shoot him because do-
som. “He was also confronted with the communication between him and the driver to the judge pertaining to the kidnap bid, which he never knew could be retrieved. “At this stage, he claimed he was not the one that originated the kidnap. He said it was the idea of the driver of the judge”. Ever since the saga and even with the release of the driver for lack of evidence, as well as pressure on the SSS by his lawyers, the family of the judge no longer trusted him and ordered him out of her residence. Armed with fresh informa-
tion from the police officer implicating the driver, whom Sunday Vanguard confirmed actually originated the business after he sighted photocopy of a cheque, running into millions of Naira with the judge, the army quizzed him afresh. Told pointedly that the police officer named him as the originator of the business and other circumstances of his suspected involvement, which only an insider could disclose, the driver buckled.
He dramatically revealed that the police officer who, all along, denied knowledge of the kidnap attempt, called him from police cell earlier that day, asking him to put poison in the food of the judge to end the matter for everybody. It was a bombshell. The army officers could not believe what they heard either and they took the driver to an Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP, who also marveled as to how the police officers in the cell were able to have a phone in the cell with which they were making calls. The driver squealed the beans completely on the kidnap threat and demand for ransom from the judge.
Face to face with themselves after the lid had been blown open, the two police officers started accusing each other of
writing the threat letter. However, what was obvious from the call log was that the police officers were the actual culprits and their denial all this while was to bamboozle the police. A probe was ordered into how the police officers were able to acquire a phone with which they make contact with people outside from inside the police cell. No police officer admitted knowing anything about the phone, but it was discovered that phone belonged to a suspect, who was granted bail in a case involving the theft of N13.8 million, allegedly kept by the Delta State Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Frank Omare, in the booth of his car. The suspect, who was working for the commissioner at the time of the incident, was reportedly granted bail by a magistrate court, which assumed jurisdiction over the matter.
Arraigned in court
The police arrested him after it established that the phone belonged to him and charged him along with the police officers and driver for attempt to poison the judge, while others were facing more charges, including attempt to kidnap the judge and demand for N20 million. Aduba did not waste time as soon as he discovered that the police officers were convincingly involved, despite their denial, to direct that the appropriate disciplinary measures, according to the rules of engagement in the force, be applied. They were dismissed from the police and arraigned before the court, while the driver and additional suspect were charged with them. The third police officer remains on the run.
28 â€” SUNDAY, Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Adediji A dedo yin mar ked 80th bir thda Adedo dedoyin mark birthda thdayy in style It was indeed a day to remember for legal luminary, Omo Oba Adediji Adedoyin when he celebrated his 80 th
From left; Omooba Adebayo Adedoyin; Mrs Bolajoko Adedoyin, wife of the celebrant, Justice Christopher Segun, former Chief Justice of Lagos State; Omooba Adediji Adedoyin, celebrant; Princess Adeyinka Adedoyin, daughter and Olori Bamidele Adedoyin, wife of the celebrant
R-L: Aderemi Adedoyin; Prince Adediji Adedoyin, celebrant; Mrs Bolajoko Adedoyin, wife; Adekanbi and Banke Adedoyin, children of the celebrant.
birthday over two days in Lagos some fortnight ago. The celebration began with Order of Service at his Surulere residence led by the clergy from Folawiyo Bankole Memorial Methodist Church (Ikate Circuit) on Friday, December 21st. The following day, Saturday, Dember 22 nd , was the crowning moment which saw several of his notable friends from far and wide converged on his Palmgroove Estate residence for a lavish reception which would be remembered for its sheer opulence, class and panache. Photos by Joe Akintola, Photo Editor
From left; Ms Toyin Alade; Princess Adeyinka Adedoyin; Mrs Celina Adeoye and Mrs Sade Fajemiisin
From right; Mrs Rita Amuka and Mrs Ufuoma Efekodo
From left; Dr Wole Shojobi; Omooba Adediji Adedoyin, celebrant and Justice Christopher Segun, former Chief Judge of Lagos State
Toyin Imo Imoyyo @ 50
R-L:Otunba Yinka Lawal Solarin; Mrs Adebo Famubo and Bjorg Lawal Solarin
hen Toyin Imoyo clocked the golden age of 50, the occasion was marked with merriment and prayer at her Surulere residence in Lagos th on the 8 of December. Family and friends were there to honour her with their presence and share in the delightful joy of the day. Photos by Bunmi Azeez
From left:Chief [Dr] Muinat Forsyth, celebrant's mother, Mrs. Toyin Imoyo, celebrant and Alh. Adebimpe Bello
L-R: Mr. Mayowa Imoyo, son, Mrs. Toyin Imoyo, celebrant and Mr. Kunle Imoyo,husband
L-R:Ms Titi Jolaoso, Financial Controller, Vanguard Media Limited; Omooba Adediji Adedoyin and Mrs Helen Arowolo, Vanguard Media Limited.
Mrs. Toyin Imoyo, celebrant, cutting the cake with husband, Mr. Kunle Imoyo (r)and son, Mayowa Imoyo (l).
From right; Omooba Adediji Adedoyin, and Prince S A Adekoya
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 — 29
Glitzy wedding of Ishola Balogun’s daughter
rom Ikorodu to Ikeja G.R.A, the glitzy weddin g train of Miss Simbiat
Abiola, daughter of Otunba Adegboyega Ishola Balogun, a prominent businessman and Balogun Adinni of Oriwu Central Mosque and Mr Babade Olalekan, son of Mr Olumuyiwa Adebule moved in pomp and pageantry, leaving in its wake memories of splendour and panache. The engagement ceremony took place at Musical Village in Ikorodu on 23rd of December while the Nikkah ceremony which drew the presence of the top Imams in Ikorodu town held at the Haven Event Centre in Ikeja G.R.A on 26 th of December. Both events were graced by notable personalities from different strata of the society. Photos by Lamidi Bamidele.
From left; Mrs Ade Shode; Mrs Dupe Olokunola and Pastor (Mrs) Tai Balogun
The couple, Mr and Mrs Babade Ayanbule during the engagement ceremony
From left; Mrs Linda Ajibode; Mrs Sunbo Goke and Mrs Olufunke Lawal
From right, Governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, his wife, Florence; Otunba Ishaq Ishola Balogun, bride's father; Mrs Adebola Ayanbule, groom’s mother, the couple, Mr and Mrs Babade Ayanbule; Ayinba Tinu Josephine Balogun, mother of the bride and Mr Olumuyiwa Ayanbule, groom's father
L-R: Princess Adefolake Marquis-Adenuga; Arc. Dada Marquis; Mrs Margaret Koshoni and Ms Jumoke Domingo
L-R: Dr Adeniyi Balogun; Deaconess Ibidun Balogun; Elder (Mrs) Abimbola Alausa and Prof. Nurudeen Adedipe
Mr Bayo Adeola and his wife, Debo
Mr Eze Phil-Ebosu and his wife, Lydia
L-R:Sheikh Abdul Quadri Olomu; Sheikh Yahya Osaala, Chief Imam of Oriwu Central Mosque, Ikorodu, Chief Imam Abdul Rafiu Abiodun; Alhaji Aremu Sule, Chairman, Anwarul Islam, Ikorodu Division and Alhaji Tajudeen Ojifinni
L-R: Olori Titilola Akiolu; Chief Ayeni Sasore and Chief Durosinmi Suenu
L-R:Otunba Kunle Ogunade; Prince Gabby Yadua and Alhaji Rafiu Williams
PAGE 30—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012,
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012,PAGE 31
PAGE 32 — SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Suspects arrrested with arms and ammunitions
Chilling confessions on bloody Sunday in Lagos z Police were our targets - robbery suspects z ’How prison experience aided operations’ BY IFEANYI OKOLIE
4 members of a suspected noto rious armed robbery gang that specialized in killing policemen and carting away their rifles are currently cooling their heels in the cells of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, Ikeja, Lagos State. The suspects are believed to be members of an 18-man robbery gang that carried out attacks on 11 policemen in Lagos and OgunStates between October and November 2012. Their goal was to kill anyone who tried to render their mission unaccomplished. Not even the sight of policemen, no matter the number, could deter them. Some of them confessed to have learnt robbery skills while serving jail terms. Rather than escaping at the approach of policemen, the dare-devils, usually armed with sophisticated weapons, would position themselves and tackle policemen fire for-fire, killing them (policemen) sometimes. A total of nine police AK 47 rifles, two English pump action pistols, 37 magazines fully loaded with 30 rounds of ammunition and two cans filled with 750 rounds of 7.36mm live ammunitions each; and eight vehicles were recovered from the suspects during raids of their hideouts in Lagos
and OgunStates. Sunday Vanguard also gathered that members of the gang took part in the September 9 bloody Sunday robbery attacks in LagosState, during which two policemen and other persons were killed. Few weeks later, precisely on October 23, they struck again. This time, it was in Abeokuta and Ibafo in OgunState, leaving in their trail the death of five policemen and carting away their rifles. The gang did not stop at that; they struck again in Lagos, last month, killing over six policemen and many others.They confessed during interrogation to have been responsible for the robbery attack on Regal Seaview Estate, Lekki, Lagos, on November 10, 2012. In that operation, members of the gang, numbering about 20, reportedly carried a house-to- house raid on about 10 buildings,dispossessing their victims of cash and valuables. During the operation, policemen attached to Maroko Division, alongside those of the Rapid Response Squad, stormed the scene in six vans and an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC). But the dare-devils, said to have had the advantage of superior firepower, reportedly, deflated the tyres of the APC and, at the end of the shoot-out, escaped with their loot. Lagos CP Wades In Worried by the dexterity with which the gang op-
erated, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Umar Manko, reportedly, directed operatives of the Special AntiRobbery Squad, SARS, to launch a manhunt for the gang, following which the officer in-charge, Mr. Abba Kyari, mobilised his men, who combed some hideouts in Abeokuta and Ibafo at the end of which 12 suspected members of the gang were arrested. The first suspect to be arrested, as gathered, was identified as one Gbenga Oni, (27). He was said to have been apprehended on his way back from an operation. On interrogation, Oni reportedly confessed to all the robbery operations he had participated in, before taking the operatives to a forest in Ifo, OgunState, where he claimed the gang kept their arms and ammunition. When SARS operatives stormed the place, however, most of the arms had
disappeared, with only 1,500 rounds of 7.36mm live ammunition recovered. At that point, it became apparent that the gang had got wind of the operatives’ move. But a police source said the information Oni provided aided the bursting and subsequent arrest of some top members of the gang at their hideouts in the Ikotun area of LagosState. ”While we were working on the informa tion Oni provided us, we tracked a Honda Baby-Boy car that was snatched by the gang to AnambaraState. We later found the car at the home of one Ejike Mbogu, one of the gang’s leaders. We met his mother with him who told us that the car was given to her by her son as a gift. We retrieved the car and returned to Lagos. ”Acting on the information she gave us, with that from Oni, we stormed one of the gang’s hideouts at a hotel along Abaranje Road, Ikotun. We learnt that Ejike and three other members of the gang were using that hotel as their base and that the hotel also served as a rendezvous for other gangs. ”We lured Ejike out of the midst of his members, with a view to apprehending him quietly. But the moment he noticed we were policemen he made an effort to escape by grabbing one of our rifles. In the process, he was shot by another operative covering up for Continues on page 33
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 33
Police were our targets
—Robbery suspects Continued from page 32 us. Wreathing in pains, Ejike swore never to suffer alone and, therefore, told us to move quickly into the hotel, that his colleagues might become suspicious if they do not see him within a short period. ”So, we proceeded to the hotel but, on getting there, we discovered that the whole place was crowded and, if we must arrest any of his colleagues we would need to cordon-off the whole place, which means we would need more men. ”We briefed our OC, Kyari, who deployed more men to the place but, unfortunately, they were trapped in traffic at Oke-Afa. We were then left to move in our number and, immediately, we entered the hall and ordered everyone to lie-down. Three members of Ejike’s gang swiftly made for the fence. Two of them managed to escape while the third one was shot. We succeeded in arresting him and two others who identified themselves as Ogbona Ekene and Paul Ofule. Ejike later identified the injured man as Dada who has been on our wanted list while others who escaped were identified as Paul and Tosin.
n his confessional statement, Ejike told us that a member of their gang was arrested and detained at Badagry Police Station. He gave the identity of the man as Alhaji Mumuni and informed us that Mumuni told the policemen at Badagry that he was a car smuggler and that they are currently trying to secure his bail. ”We immediately contacted Badary Police Station and they transferred him to us. While we were on this, policemen in OgunState also arrested two members of the gang; Ope and Eso, at a party in Ifo area of OgunState”. The Squad further made an arrest of seven other suspected members of the gang in Lagos and OgunStates whose identities were given as Oyedele Yemi (25), Shola Ayodele( 32), Seyi Aluko (33), Ganiyu Moshood( 25), Samuel Sulaiman ( 28) and Kunle Bello said to have sustained bullet wounds during gun battles with the operatives. Their confessional statements, as gathered, led to the arrest of the gang’s armorer, one Oyebanji Seun. Seun reportedly took the operatives to a mechanic workshop at Oyingbo area of Lagos where he kept the gang’s arms and ammunition in a blue car. Confessions 23 year-old Ejike, a native of Amaiko in Awka South of AnambraState, told Sunday Vanguard that he moved to Lagos in 2008 to live with his elder brother who
Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Umar Manko
men for treating me badly while I was in their custody. They became our targets because we knew if we were caught, they won’t spare us. Whenever we saw a policeman , we would open fire on him, whether he was armed or not. We would make sure they are dead before leaving the scene. And if they were armed, we would take their rifles. ”I did same at Oko-Oba, Ibafon, Abekuta, Lekki, Isolo, Ejigbo and several other places. Some times I sold some of the rifles to other gangs that didn’t have AK-47 rifles. I was enjoying myself without knowing I will be arrested someday. And I was very careful too. But I don’t know how the police knew I was in Ikotun on the day I was arrested. Since I have been arrested, I won’t shield anyone. We have all done evil and we must all pay for our sins”. ’In Abeokuta alone, we killed six policemen’ 27-year-old Oni , a former driver and private security guard at GSM mast in Abeokuta, told Sunday Vanguard that some operations he participated in included one “at a filling station at Ibafo, where we snatched two cars and a Jeep.
sold refrigerator parts in Mushin and Lawanson, and later went into petty theft after his brother moved into provision. sales. He said he later met one Segun who claimed to be a soldier at Ijesha, Surulere, and got acquainted with him because of the way he spent money. ”I came back from the market one day without any money. When Segun came to visit, he told me to get into his car and we drove to a beer parlour at Ijesha, where he bought me a plate of pepper soup and a bottle of beer. Later, he asked if I had been involved in any crime in the past and I told him no. He then said I do not have experience for the kind of job that fetched him and his friends money”, the suspect said. ”Again, he asked if I could ride a motorbike and I said yes. Few days later, he bought me a new motorcycle and said I should be working with it, but that whenever he need-
the ropes, I was attached to Alhaji Mumuni who was into car snatching. ”We went as far as going to Cotonou and told some car dealers that we could get cars for them from Nigeria. They bought the idea and gave us locally made guns to rob cars and bring to them. But it later became difficult to take stolen cars to Cotonou and we devised another method by dismantling stolen cars and taking their parts there. Along the line, Mumuni was arrested because one of the stolen cars was found with his younger brother. And during interrogation, he mentioned my name and three others. We were all arrested and taken to jail. Payment for freedom ”While in prison I paid the sum of N200,000 to regain freedom. Dada and others did same and came out too. But while in prison, we got contacts of a gang that used AK-47
Payment for freedom ”While in prison I paid the sum of N200,000 to regain freedom. Dada and others did same and came out too. But while in prison, we got contacts of a gang that used AK-47 rifles; so when we came out, we contacted them and joined them ed me he would call me. He called me one day and said I should convey him and his friend, one Shina, to work. That was how I was introduced into robbery. ”He told me our targets were people going to withdraw or deposit money from the bank. I worked with them for a while before they split and shared their guns. Segun later left for BeninRepublic to operate and, because I was still learning
rifles; so when we came out, we contacted them and joined them. I can’t count the number of robberies I have participated in. ”We were responsible for the September 9 and 11 robberies in Lagos and KwaraStates. It was after those two robberies that I lost my fear and respect for policemen. Policemen as targets ”I personally decided to get back at police-
hen we got there, Gwoke and Dada opened fire on some policemen who came to contain the situation and they died on the spot”. The suspect continued: “We also operated in a bank in Abeokuta, where we killed policemen who wanted to intervene. It was Ejike, Dada, Gwoke, Kazeem and Tosin that killed the policemen. Two of the policemen ran into the bush and escaped. In Abeokuta alone, we killed at least six policemen” As for 48-year-old Taofeek Mumuni, a native of Odogbolu, OgunState, his role was to drive the gang to operations at the end of which he would be given his own share of the loot. ”We used Pathfinder and Infinity Jeeps as our armory. I was arrested last year for robbery and served a jailed term at Ikoyi Prison.” The gang’s informant, Shola Ayodele, who lives in Ikotun area of Lagos, revealed: ”My job is just to supply them with necessary information for robbery operations at Liasu Road”. For 23 -year-old Ogbonnaya Ekweye, a native of AbiaState, he was a barber when he was with his in-law in Lagos before he joined the gang. He disclosed that his first outing with the gang was in Ekiti. He got N20 million for participating in the operation. Since the incident of the Black Sunday, the Police in Lagos have revved up their anti-robbery activities and a path on the back by Inspector General MD Abubakar would go a long way to further boost morale.
WEAPONS OF CRIME
*39 AK47 Rifles, *3 General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMGs), *1 Rocket Launcher, *2 Rockets, *12 Dynamites, *403 AK47 rifle Magazines, *Over 20,000 rounds of AK 47 live ammunition.
PAGE 34 — SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Ahead of new year, petrol shortage takes toll on Nigerians
Long queue at a Nigerian petrol station. Fuel scarcity, another New Year gift for the masses?
HERE is no doubt that the persisting petrol scarcity, which hit several states across the country since the second quarter of 2012 is biting harder, as many filling stations are completely out of product. While black marketers in Lagos State are taking advantage of the scarcity to exploit the masses by selling petrol at, expensive prices in Jerry cans, the service stations still dispensing the product have long queues within their premises and even spilling to the major roads. Obviously, the statement by the Petroleum Resources Minister, Mrs Deziani AllisonMadueke, assuring that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), through the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC), would ensure sufficient stock of the product to prevent scarcity during this festive period has not yielded any positive result, as the situation is getting worse by the day. Aside from the assurance given during the Christmas period, which made no positive impact, the Minister earlier made similar statement during the Sallah celebration, stressing that government had stepped up supply and distribution of petroleum products across the country to curtail shortage, but nothing
pragmatically was done to tackle the perennial scarcity of petrol. When Sunday Vanguard visited petrol stations across Lagos, it was observed that Total along Lagos- Ibadan Expressway had no product at all, Conoil within the same location sold fuel with long queues from the service outlet to the highway. It was also observed that while MRS stations at Ojota and Palmgrove sold fuel with long queues, most MRS stations along Akute area of Ifo local government area of Ogun State had no product. Conoil and Total at Onipanu did not open because they had no product. Mobil at Onipanu sold fuel with long queues, while Total and Oando at Fadeyi, along Ikorodu Road had no product. Some members of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), who spoke with Sunday Vanguard, blamed the lingering scarcity of petrol on inability of government to tackle the problem. A top official of IPMAN said, “There are many issues about fuel scarcity in this nations, but, ultimately, government is not sincere about the whole thing. Aside from that, the existing refineries in the country are producing quite below capacity. For instance, recently, the Department of
Petroleum Resources (DPR) and our members had serious disagreement about the issue of fuel scarcity and overpricing of product in Delta and Edo states.” He went on, “At that time, our Warri Chairman, Chief Edward Akpovire, also said that overpricing of the product at stations was done by private depots, because they illegally
BY UDEME CLEMENT
and Nigerians should expect worst scarcity in 2013. The reason is that, at present, there is no sufficient stock of fuel in the country. Most people still driving their cars now are using their influence to get fuel and government is not doing enough to find a lasting solution.” He added, “Before now, government was complaining
Incessant fuel crises with long queues of vehicles at the petrol stations have permanently become part of our system and government is yet to proffer a lasting solution
hiked loading price for the price of product to skyrocket. Also, we discovered instances where some private depot operators sold petroleum products to the highest bidders, not minding if such individuals were authorised petroleum dealers and not. So, we are also saying that DPR must monitor sharp practices within private depots in the country” . Also speaking, the Western Zonal Chairman, National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Alhaji Tokunbo Korodo, said, “Petrol scarcity may go beyond 2012 to 2013
about the breakage of Arepo distribution pipelines, which were vandalised by hoodlums, but Arepo is not the problem anymore. The reality is that there is no sufficient stock of product in the country. The scarcity may go beyond 2012 if government does not take proactive steps to address the situation as a matter of urgency. How long will Nigerians continue to suffer because of petrol scarcity? The scarcity of petrol is taking its toll on the masses especially during this festive season. Sunday Vanguard learnt that transportation fares have increased by over 30 per
cent, even as the prices of food items like rice, beans, yam, garri and vegetable oil are also increasing by the day. A member of Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD), who spoke with our correspondent in Apapa, said, “In the first quarter of 2012, government said that some marketers were deliberately creating artificial scarcity in the system, but what we are experiencing now is beyond artificial scarcity. The situation is so bad that you have to know either a station manager or an attendant at a service outlet to be able to get fuel for domestic use. The most annoying aspect is that some stations that manage to sell at about N150 and above per litre still under dispense to cheat the public.” He continued, “It is very sad to hear that Nigeria, which is a leading member of Oil Producing and Exporting Countries (OPEC) and also has a large percentage of its foreign exchange earnings generated from the sales of crude oil is facing this kind of challenge, while many consuming nations buying crude oil from Nigeria have sufficient fuel for domestic and industrial consumption. It means incessant fuel crises with long queues of vehicles at the petrol stations have permanently become part of our system and government is yet to proffer a lasting solution”.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 35
Brand Positioning and Consumer Expectation B
Data fact for this week Data supplied by Media Planning Services Limited. KNOW YOUR CUSTOMER. He looked at the importance of consumer insight from the position of the brand owner and the brand manager. Often times, taking the consumer for
RANDS’ advertising or marketing communication is not given to assumption. We have written well over three articles on the professional imperatives for a successful advertising/campaign because of its importance. The creative process lends itself to so much freedom. It is about selfexpression. Consequently, if unguarded, the individual or team behind any assignment or process will likely express his/herself or itself, FREELY. One very interesting thing about advertising creative process is that it begins and ends with the target-consume; the market…people. It is about behavioral pattern, trend and perception. The end-result of advertising campaigns or brands communication is based on accountability, and so, we often have to look at the BOTTOM-LINE. The figures must tell a good story to justify the strategic platform and focus, the creative process, the execution plan and the investment (time and finance). It all comes with a huge responsibility on the Adman. Yet, it is all so glamorous and permissive. Most times, and especially in our local market, clients do not have adequate understanding of the advertising process and duty to ask questions. So, they do not bother to stretch the Adman’s responsibility to the point of result evaluation or effectiveness check. Unfortunately that is an aspect of the client’s responsibility of ensuring quality assessment among practitioners in brands management or marketing communication/advertising (since the regulatory authority responsible for advertising quality-check seems to have failed). If clients make their rightful demands, most of the ads today would not have been thought of. Over 75% of corporate advertising or brands management service providers in this market today do not adhere to the rules of practice because it is demanding of the same reasons for which it is a professional discipline. Adam Richardson wrote a paper on what I refer to as the power of articulate planning, to say “DON’T ASSUME YOU
Ideally, the creative process starts and ends with the target market or consumer. No matter the robustness of the client’s brief, the creative process starts by critically examining
Every brand is sold on the basis of positioning. In turn, it is the duty of the creative process to properly position a brand for the desired result – whatever that may be
granted does not come as a deliberate occurrence, but the consequence of system failure or self confidence. Assumed familiarity could result in process-compromise. For instance, a campaign development process faced with an assignment similar in many respects with a past experience is likely to make deductions and draw conclusions from the past engagement to execute the current assignment. In which case, so much happens in the negative, as consequences. Hence one of the competitive advantages of a creative system I know is the philosophy of “no two briefs are the same”.
it in line with established facts in the market place (what the people know). It is never about what the brand know, thinks or say…its always about what the market thinks. But unfortunately, the opposite happens today. Professional adherence to the ideal creative process is important and profitable for its roles. It is functional, critical, systematic, and analytic; it guides creative interpretation of derived strategic focus. Here, the creative brief form is imperative. The creative brief forms contain every relevant question that systematically lays out the
duties, obligations and expectations by which the practitioner must perform his/ her duty. If we carefully run the creative process through the creative brief forms, we would achieve a true and thorough investigation of the brand, answer questions about the market and competing brands, properly articulate the challenges facing the brand, clearly understand the target consumer and creatively select the words, pictures/images and symbols with which the creative products and communications materials are developed. Every brand is sold on the basis of positioning. In turn, it is the duty of the creative process to properly position a brand for the desired result – whatever that may be. The ideal creative process guides against wrong positioning. It helps in aligning the brand person, position and offer with the consumer expectation while protecting the brand from competition. Hence it requires careful market and consumer information gathering and analysis. The Adman must commit to scientific and careful study and interpretation of research data. He/she must evolve a working strategy from the data analysis to sell the brand or idea. The critical point is when there is a DISCONNECT
between the brand’s positioning statement and the consumer expectation and/or experience. When that happens, the brand fails. This can happen either due to improper process adherence or non-application, but except clients begin to hold agencies responsible for advertising campaign failures, we shall continue to waste time and money, and continue to see and hear adverts that are deceitful, meaningless, and to no purpose. At about 10.34am on Monday December 17, 2012, I heard a radio campaign from RED BULL brand of energy drink on Radio Continental 102.3 FM. What struck me is the promise it made “RED BULL MAKE YOU WIN”. There is so much to say, looking at this claim and brand position as could be derived, but we shall leave it to our readers, considering the importance of the ideal creative process as captured in this piece. However, we must say the creative process that threw up this RED BULL promise is certainly not the ideal process demanding of a brand in the stature of this brand. A brand’s promise must be true and in line with consumer experience to help the given brand achieve set marketing objective. That is instructive.
PAGE 36 — SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
BY CLIFFORD NDUJIHE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR
ORMER Vice Presi dent, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, at a recent event in Enugu, left no keen observer in doubt over his intention to seek the highest office in the land in 2015. At the 13th anniversary lecture and National Conference of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) at Nike Lake Resort, Enugu, Atiku, the 2007 presidential candidate of the Action Congress (AC), said, if elected, he would pursue resource control and devolution of power to the federating units. His words: “Presently, our state and local governments look up to Abuja for monthly allocations. That kind of dependence does not make for any meaningful autonomy and surely will not bring about meaningful development. Every tier of government should be reasonably self-reliant in terms of revenue. The revenue it gets from other tiers should be supplementary, otherwise, it will lack reasonable degree of autonomy irrespective of what the law says. That is the reality of human condition and politics. “That is why I have been calling for devolution of more powers and revenues from the Federal Government to the states and regional governments. It is not political posturing, it is a critical condition for deepening our democracy and promoting national development, peace and security. “You know what, if I am president, what is it? Coal? Enugu State take your coal! Oil? Niger Delta take your oil! But I have the power of taxation. If your income from coal is N1 trillion I will say pay the Federal Government 70 per cent. That is your business. If you raise N10 trillion from oil, take your money but pay 75 per cent to the Federal Government.” Atiku made the declarations while speaking on how to strengthen the local councils and enhance their delivery of democracy dividends to the grassroots.
Oil, Military rule negative influence
oting that the local councils used to be very strong before the advent of oil and military rule in Nigeria’s polity, he stressed the need for improved taxation and governance. “In the days when I was growing up and when there was no oil, the Local Government system was funded by
ernments and fund them accordingly in accordance with their historical and cultural peculiarities and development needs. Our focus should be on ensuring a more effective local government administration, a responsible fiscal management and accountability. The proximity of state governments to the local governments makes them more suited to understand the local governments. All politics is local. The Federal Government lacks the capacity to monitor every local government development or issue in this country. In a federal system, it is in our collective interest to strengthen the local level,” he contended. He continued: “The central government did not create local governments prior to military rule. We had a more effective and responsive local government administration then. I am a product of my Native Authority. I never knew anything about the regional government for my primary and secondary education until I went to the university. The Federal Government started creating local governments at the same time we lost our heads to oil revenue. Local
Atiku back in presidential race? Promises 100% resource control, 70% resource tax taxation. There were radio tax, bicycle tax, etc and everybody paid. With the money the local governments built roads, primary and secondary schools and provided healthcare delivery that even the current state governments don’t provide in some cases. That was what we did prior to military rule and oil significant contribution to our national revenues. That is what makes people hold their government to account,” he argued.
n how to strengthen the local councils, the former Vice President said a number of questions needed to be answered. “Should we continue with the practice of the Federal Government creating local councils across the country and allocating resources to them directly? Should it be left in the hands of federating states to decide for themselves the system of local government
and number of local governments they need because of our historical and cultural differences? Remember: in the First Republic, we all had different system of local government administrations. The one in the North was different from the one in the East and the East was also different from the one in the West.” He continued: “In my view, there are three critical issues here. First is the structure of the federation. The second is our political practice. The third is our disregard for rules and regulations. In a federation, Local Government administration ought to be left in the hands of the federating states or regions. Rather, there is the awkward situation where the local governments deal directly with the Federal Government side-tracking the state governments. “The federating units should be left to determine the system and number of local gov-
governments have become more dependent on the Federal Government than on the state governments. That is an anomaly. It is our over centralization of power, excessive concentration of resources at the federal level and the abandonment of due process and regulations under military rule that led to state governments’ abuse of local administrations. That is what led to direct federal allocations to local governments and its subsequent provision in the constitution. “If we amend our constitution to have a genuine federal system rather than the near unitary system that we currently have, there will be no need for statutory and mandatory direct federal allocation to the local government; there will be no need to enshrine the number of local governments in the constitution. Other than direct fiscal allocation to the local government what other
rationale exists for enshrining the number of local governments in the constitution and making the creation of new ones virtually impossible for state governments? What if a local government experiences rapid growth in population, for administrative convenience and effectiveness, the state government wishes to split it into two or more local governments, why should such a split be made difficult for the state until the constitution is amended? How many times are we going to amend our constitution? “I believe that the federal share of national revenue should be whittled down while the allocation of states and local governments should be increased. All over the world, serious governments tax their citizens and corporations to raise revenues for development purposes and service delivery. For that reason, governments work hard to promote economic development so as to create a strong tax base. I am opposed to this indigene, indigene thing. We should feel that Nigeria is our own no matter where we come from. Where we reside should be our home. I was discussing with the US Consul General to Nigeria and he said in the United States, it is where you pay your tax that determines your citizenship. If we want to have a joint ownership of this country let’s abandon indigenship.”
Effect of godfatherism
he veteran presidential aspirant identified godfatherism as a major hindrance to council autonomy. “On the question of political practice, for as long as our party politics remain the domain of controlling godfathers at the federal and state levels devoid of internal party democracy, so long will our local government remain at the beck and call of whomever chooses contestants for local electoral offices. The point is that even if local government funds come directly from the Federal Government without state/local government joint account, the dominant role of governors rather than party members in selecting candidates for electoral offices will still not ensure autonomous, effective and responsive local government administration. “So, we need to find ways of ensuring internal party democracy so that the selection of candidates for elections to local and other levels will be carried out by the generality of party members rather than a few godfathers. At the local government in particular, we should encourage independent candidates.”
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 37
Childhood tragedies prepared me for life’s challenges
—Ify Akerele •Lost dad at thirteen •Became teen-mother to shattered mum, siblings
XPERIENCE, they say, is the finest teacher. This statement has literarily played out in the life of the Director-General of the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping,NCS,Mrs.Ify Anazonwu-Akerele, who cleverly made lemonade from the lemons life had thrown at her at a tender age. Unknown to Ify, she was being acquainted with skills that would shape her destiny! Looking back now at how those organisational skills have contributed tremendously to her success as the pioneer DG of the NCS, transforming the chamber from a one-room office into a key player in the maritime industry, Ify has got every reason to be grateful for those bitter childhood pills. She is our inspirational icon today.
ervice employed Ten years ago when she was entrusted with the task of setting-up an organisation that would facilitate indigenous participation in the Nigerian maritime industry following the pas-
BY FEYI BANKOLE
During the war, we got separated from our mother, so, I and my siblings had to live with relations in England and France, until she came to join us
sage of the Cabotage Law, Ify was mystified as she couldn’t figure out why she had to be the ‘chosen one’. “I looked at the documents, studied them, but they were all Greek to me! I somehow got very interested and knew I would need a group of dedicated hands. What helped me was my networking skill because I’m a very sociable person. So, I got a group of very solid Nigerians to be on the board, and that set the ball rolling”, she humbly revealed.
anagerial background Realising that she had always found herself in managerial capacities, Mrs.Akerele replayed how she had gone to study international relations and corporate administration after obtaining a degree in sociology from the University of Lagos. She had begun her career at the Nigeria Institute for International Affairs (NIIA) but left five years later when she got married, to set up the Institute of Directors along with some others. From there, she moved to the Nigerian Institute of Management, and then to the Presidential Liaison Office in the senate during Obasanjo administration.
olded by childhood Ify believes that this organisational flair stemmed from her childhood. As a thirteen-year-old girl, she had lost her father who was a prominent medical practitioner. The death was a rude shock to the closelyknitted family and everyone found it difficult to cope with, including Ify’s mum who was still quite young. As if that wasn’t enough, one month later, the civil war broke! “I automatically grew up fast
•Ify Akerele, DG, Nigerian Chamber of Shipping
and learnt to look after my siblings and mum who was quite shattered. I just found myself being strong for other people, hardly remembering my own self. That’s a challenge now because I’m just beginning to learn how to let other people see my weakness. I don’t know who gave me the mandate, but I felt I was the one to protect the family. During the war, we got separated from our mother, so, I and my siblings had to live with relations in England and France, until she came to join us. Before then, I had to be mother to my four siblings. We were living with an uncle, so, I grew up very fast because it wasn’t really comfortable. Looking back, I would say we could have been worse-off! Luckily, mummy had a twin sister and very nice siblings, so, they really rallied round her. She also had good inlaws who cushioned the pain. Anyway, she’s also late now because she really could not get over it all.
elf-discipline “All my life, I’ve always sort of stayed focus even when having fun. I must confess that I had a very happy youth. Returning for my university degree at University of Lagos was fun and I had a lot of friends, but I just always reminded myself that I must stay focused. This was why when though the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping looked like impossibility when I came in, I wasn’t scared”, she
explained. “I love challenges, I love pioneering things, and, in fact, I am one of such people that set up things, leave them, and then move on without looking back; knowing that they’re working well. So, I guess that’s what shaped me”.
oping in maledominated terrain However, aside her flairs, Mrs.Ify Anazonwu-Akerele was frank to reveal a salient factor that has also fuelled her success in the chamber since she assumed office as its pioneer Director-General in 2002. “A major strategy was acknowledging that the maritime sector is a maledominated industry and that typical men like to take the lead. One of the secrets was therefore to go in, bearing this in mind. I practically learnt a lot more that way. I found that even when I knew the solutions to issues, I always threw them open and let-in suggestions, and then, in a very wise manner, I would then slip-in my decision. That way, it really does not offend anybody. I however cannot negate the fact that I learn better by listening to them since they are the ones practically involved in the business; I’m more of an administrator. They ’ve always been quite helpful, but when it comes to situations where I have to put my foot down, I do so”, she revealed.
PAGE 38 —SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
I do not know why Bianca conspired against me -- Debe Ojukwu z’I am Biafran zOpens up on
household zReveals how civil war scattered Ojukwu’s family
It was an interview that had to be conducted. After the declaration that the late Chief Emeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, Ezigbo Gburugburu’s Will had been announced and a lion share had gone to Bianca Odinaka Olivia Ojukwu, the deceased’s wife, Sunday Vanguard set out to get all sides of the story, especially after the statements by Emeka Ojukwu, one of the children. Last week, we published the CODCIL verbatim. Today, we bring you an extensive interview with Chief Debe Ojukwu, the disinherited first child of the late Biafran warlord. He spoke about the Ojukwu Nigerians and Igbos never knew, just as he spoke about Bianca, his father’s wife, and her role as a small mother in the house. This is a first part. Excerpts: BY CHARLES KUMOLU & GBENGA OKE
ow was it like growing up with you father, Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, at the time when he was the leader of Biafra, particularly given that he had multitude of challenges to contend with as the leader of the Biafran nation? My name is Chief Debe Ojukwu, I am the eldest child of the late Chief Emeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu. I am a lawyer. I am a community leader. I did not stay with him during the war just like every other person. Where were you at that time? Because it was reported that you had to change from the school you were attending in Lagos to Government College Afikpo? That was not what happened. I schooled in Lagos. I had gained admission into some elite school in Lagos at a very young age of nine. Then the war interrupted that progress and we all had to relocate to
leader’s son’ the trouble in the
the East. I am telling you about 1965. I was born on August 3, 1956. By 1965, I was nine years old and had taken the common entrance examination. Because of
her. Being with her shielded me from my father ’s personality, because it would be easy to attack the son of my father during the war. After the war? When the war ended in 1970, I got into Saint Mary’s Uwani. After that, I entered Government Secondary School Afikpo. Then the school was temporarily quartered in Enugu at the Institute of Administration, which is now Enugu State University of Science and Technology, because soldiers were living at the premises of Government Secondary School Afikpo. We were there until 1973 when the soldiers left there. I left and traveled to see my father, who was in exile in Ivory Coast. I visited him a couple of times. He asked me what I wanted to do; I told him I wanted to go to Harvard. I applied and they said I met their criteria. I took my London GCE in class three because I had lost three years
‘The first one happened with Emeka’s younger sister. I understood there was a day she and Bianca fought in the kitchen. Yes, they fought in the kitchen, so I was made to understand’ the crisis that broke in 1965, I could not carry on with that, we had to relocate to the East. You would have lost some years Yes. Most of us lost three years because of the war. Most of us did not go to school between 1968, 1969 and 1970. Where were you all these while? I was all the time with my mum in Enugu. Why your mum? Yes because it was safer to be with
because of the war and I wanted to regain those three years. I was always the first in my class. When I took it (London GCE) in class three, I entered for only five papers, which were English, Physics, Maths, Chemistry and Biology. Then in Afikpo, our pride was reading the sciences. My father okayed my going to Afikpo, after spending some time with him in Ivory Coast, I came back to Nigeria and discovered that I made four papers out of five. That was what hindered my go-
ing to Harvard. Since I couldn’t proceed along the line I’d wished for, I decided to join the Nigeria Police Force. Police Force? How were your days in the police? The aim of joining the police was to make money and pay for my private tuition because I felt that one could make it by dint of hardwork, instead of the stereotyped way. It was an adventure. I trained at Police College, Ikeja, after which I was posted to Aba. From there, I was posted to Afikpo. After that, I was called back by the Force to do the Inspector course because my four credits qualified me to join as a cadet Inspector rather than constable. I went to the college and had people like Hafiz Ringim, Saleh Abubakar, Audu Abubakar, Abinu Shawa and others as course mates. I could have stayed back with the four credits, but I went to the University of Nigeria, Nsukka,UNN, to study law in 1981. I got my LLB after four years as the first known name to do that without troubles. I finished my studies at the appropriate time. I went back to the police after graduation and at the expiration of my study leave. How did the Force treat you? Were there prejudices? The Force was very cagey, I lost promotions on certain occasions because certain interests felt I was there to finish what my father could not accomplish. Because of that I was drafted to go for cadet training, which I should not have gone for because I was already an officer. However, I proceeded and graduated as the best student. I was the first police officer that got a presidential commission because of my
Continues on page 39
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012—PAGE 39
Chief Debe Ojukwu.... When Bianca came in, I was too old to start expecting maternal care, because I was like a big brother to her.
’I am Ikemba Nnewi’s son’ Continued from page 38 performance. We were the first set of the Police Academy. I was in police until I was now invited to come and manage my grandfather’s properties. Actually it is the management of the properties that is the cause of the whole hoopla. Before we get to the issue of the hoopla, you just told us that you visited your dad in Ivory Coast on many occasions. Can we know how your father’s family operated while he was in exile in that country? When he went on exile, he had a woman who was with him. That was Emeka’s mum and people took her as the First Lady of Biafra. Her name is Njideka. But while they were in exile, they fell apart and she came back to Nigeria. She did not come back with her children. Emeka and his siblings remained with my father in Yamoussoukro, Ivory Coast. It was when she left that Stella Onyedor stepped in. He came back from exile with Stella. He stayed with Stella and, after her, Bianca came in. I had always stayed with my mum. And we occasionally visited dad. Ideally, when a child is small, the custody is granted to the mother until the child becomes an adult. I always visited and stayed with my father in Ivory Coast, he stayed in Cocoordi and Benjaville. Then my grandmother was staying in Gwake. The family had always been there. It was like a war situation, the family was scattered like that until he came back in 1982 and started bringing the family together in Nigeria. Coming back, can you recollect how it was for him in the early days of his return? When he returned, he found out that most of his family things and issues
were not well organised. You know what it means for a man to be away from home for thirteen years under those circumstances. That was why his children lived at variance – scattered. What was the relationship between you, your siblings and your father before Bianca came into the family? It was a very cordial relationship. I did not suffer because my mother shielded me and that is why I am very level headed. For the other children, my father started playing mother and father ’s role until Stella stepped in. Stella will pretend to play mother but it could not be like their own mother.
tected his wife. She could not understand that till date. That is the kind of attrition then, because all of them were age mates. Chukwuemeka was born in 1965, the sister Mimi, was born 1966 and Bianca was born in 1967, so it was easier for me to put in authority because I was much older than them. This is a follow up to that question. Did Bianca’s coming create any frosty relationship between your father and the larger Ojukwu family? It did not. The larger family was not united then for certain reasons. My own father was the first natural child of my grandfather. That was the
only concerned with the ones in the East which they were using for their immediate needs. My father was writing letters from Ivory Coast to them, telling them to go and recover the seized properties. Maybe some thought he would die in exile, but God,in His infinite mercies, made it possible for the Federal Government to grant him pardon and he came back to Nigeria. If you check, you will discover that most people that fought civil wars in history died in exile. Robert Lee of the United States of America and others died. But if you check, you will discover that my father led with justice, equity and kindness. And that contributed to making the pardon he received from the Federal Government possible. For instance, history has it that sometimes he would come to share relief materials to the populace because he felt that the officials were not doing enough. When he came back, the issue at stake was the properties, but the properties were abandoned properties. And nobody did anything about them in his absence until 1993 when then President Babangida released the properties to him. It was after the release that the litigation started. And they started laying claim to them. After the war they started arguing about who was going to be the executor. They had running battle for the properties. The same people, who are with me in court today, were the same people fighting him in court then. So, the larger Ojukwu family had always had friction about properties. And when the properties were released to him, he refused to administer them with the family. It was based on that refusal that they approached me, and said they trusted me. They said they were going to surrenContinues on page 40
My father came into the kitchen and took sides with Bianca and that was what made that girl to live the house till date. She was expecting her father to protect her, but the father turned and protected his wife There could always be friction under such circumstance. But my father has always been overtly protective of his children. So, I can figure that when Bianca came in, I was too old to start expecting maternal care, because I was like a big brother to her. When she came in there was this war of attrition. Please give an instance of this? The first one happened with Emeka’s younger sister. I understood there was a day she and Bianca fought in the kitchen. Fight! How? Yes they fought in the kitchen, so I was made to understand. Was your father not in? How could that have happened? He was in. He came into the kitchen and took sides with Bianca and that was what made that girl to leave the house till date. She was expecting her father to protect her, but the father turned and pro-
bone of contention. They were not of full blood. Based on that, there had always been petty jealousy among them. My father had always argued that they were not his brothers, but he went on to make a name for himself outside my grandfather ’s name. That fame definitely attracted envy from some members of the larger family. So, during the war they could not talk to him. But after the war, they started gaining their voices. During the war, some of them were working with the Red Cross in Biafra. He never betrayed his brothers because he was the Head of State. And that was the benevolent attitude he had. But after the war, some felt that the giant had fallen and it was time they have their own pound of flesh. After the war, they did not make attempts to recover my grandfather ’s assets in most parts of the country. They were
PAGE 40—SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Debe Ojukwu....When you marry a woman of a certain age which is at variance with your age, the drive would be fast but it leads to accident
‘How civil war scattered Ojukwu’s family’ Continued from page 39 der the ones they were holding and begged that I manage all the properties. That was how I started administering it to preserve my grandfather’s legacy. When I was doing it successfully, my dad was happy. They will come behind my father to instigate me against him, saying that he maltreated me and he did not pay my school fees, but I was not interested in that. They will also go back to him to tell him that a child trained by a poor teacher could not be successful. Bianca was not instrumental to the quarrel in the larger Ojukwu family. But when she now saw the problem brewing, she bought into it. Could you expatiate on this issue of your father being a natural son of the late Sir Louis Odumegwu Ojukwu? There is a way natural issue comes up. Natural one is when you meet a woman and copulate with her in order to produce a child. That is a natural child. There are children you adopt from the motherless babies home. There are children your wife may have had before marrying you and you automatically become their step dad. The one you adopted is your adopted son; the one from your wife is your step son. There is also another one called foster child. There is even the one they call professional son. So the natural son is the one you had through the natural means of coitus. Even if you have a child through artificial insemination, people might say he is not your natural son. So when I say natural, I know what I am saying and DNA can confirm that. But no matter any means you get a son, once he calls you father, you should treat him as a son. That was why in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo was told not to have a hand in the kill-
ing of Ikemefuna because the boy called him father. What would you say Bianca brought to the family, having known your father as a man who fought hard and survived and needed comfort? She brought comfort, youth and vitality. But then it drove my dad, because I had always been of the opinion that if my father had a woman of my mother ’s age living with him, things would have been different and stablised. But then when you marry a woman
restaurant at that age. On the issue of the Will, you will agree that since it was read in Enugu it has been generating a lot of controversies. Your younger brother, Emeka, does not also seem to reckon with the Will. Can we know if you have reservations on the contents of this Will? I do not know why she conspired against me. The first reservation is that it is no Will. That thing is a forged document. I have already filed a caveat, so there is no Will. It is when the caveat will go to trial
This question would have been okay if I was satisfied that what is contained in that document was the wish of my late father. It is someone’s Will, so it is left for that person to come and tell us how he acquired the property of a certain age which is at variance with your age, the drive would be fast but it leads to accident. Accident, how? For instance, the younger girl might want to go to a party and you will not have any option than putting on jeans and attending the party with her at the age of 60. There was a day we went to Eko le Meridian Hotel. The hotel had a restaurant at the sixteenth floor. It was for Valentine and other expensive dinners. I went with my wife, then she was my girlfriend and my father came in with Bianca. I hope you understand how I would feel in that situation. You know, ideally, I should not be running into my father with a young lady in a
and I give my voice alongside whomever that is championing it, then it would be tried. On the surface, you will find out that it is a forged document. In law, there is what we call Nemo dat quod non habet. It means that you don’t give what you don’t have. But if Ojukwu shared his properties the way he wished, why should that be anybody’s problem? It is your right as an individual to acquire and dispose property. If that is how he has chosen to dispose his properties, there is no problem. My only reservation is some of my properties were among those shared. There was the one my grandmother gave me when she was alive.
Are these properties located in Enugu or where? I am talking about the one at Nnewi. She told the whole family that she had given the land to me. She took about eight of us to her village and introduced us to her family. Emeka was also there. I am her eldest grandchild from Nnewi, but I am not her eldest grandchild. She had three children. One daughter and two sons! The daughter had one son and three daughters. And Tom Biggard, who died during the civil war, had one daughter and three sons. Then my father is in the middle. So being the eldest of the grandchildren in Nnewi, she gave me the land she bought at Nnewi and she told everybody. You have dismissed the Will as a forged document. Can you really tell us your position on how the properties were distributed in the document viz a viz who got what? It is a forgery. In law, Will is called Volonte in French. It means wish. This question would have been okay if I was satisfied that what is contained in that document was the wish of my late father. It is someone’s Will, so it is left for that person to come and tell us how he acquired the property. That is not my father’s Will because he could not have devised my property. That was my first reaction before I discovered that it is a fraud, which the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Police should investigate because anybody that does that is a petty criminal. And there are pre-conditions for occupying public office. If someone has been proved to have contravened any of the pre-conditions, that person should be stripped of whatever has been given to the person.
Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012,PAGE 41
Marrying a military officer toughened me —Fadunsi, MD, A.O. Demarg ‘How power farm will stem electricity crisis’
RS. Olufunmilayo Fadunsi is the wife of Brigadier General Ade Fadunsi, an infantry officer serving as Deputy Director in the Department of Veteran Affairs of the Nigerian Army. She is also the Managing Director of an engineering firm, A.O. Demarg,which donated solar equipment to be used in resolving power challenges faced during military operations. In this interview, she bares all about the solar power business and what it feels like being married to an infantry officer of the Nigerian Army.
What it is like marrying a military officer? Marrying a military officer has toughened me over the years. You have a man as your husband who doesn’t own himself, rather the Nigerian Army is the owner of this man. He is never there in the house. So, you become a man, you have to do a lot of things yourself, so you have to be tough. The situation I found myself toughened me to be who I am today. So in military tradition, you are a Major General? If you say so, no problem. The power industry is not a place where you will ordinarily find a woman. How did it start? I will just say we started by divine intervention, it’s God’s direction, nothing more; because if I start from my own educational background, I shouldn’t be in the engineering industry. I’m a graduate of education. I have combined honours in science education, that is, biology education, but, here I find myself in a technical world being the Managing Director of an extremely technical business. If I start talking about how it started, it will really be a long story. It is better I conclude that it is just by divine intervention. In the quest for what I could do as a military officer ’s wife with all the troubles of moving up and down, today this state, tomorrow another state and, every state where I get to I become a nonindigene in my own country, I didn’t have prospects for my profession. But as God will have it, I came across something in the newspaper, and that was the beginning of A.O. Demarg. You said you are an educationist and you found yourself in a technical business (engineering).How have you been able to cope? It is the passion, the focus, that has brought me this far, the love for what I’m doing. Maybe initially I wanted to nip poverty in the bud, but, along the line, I discovered the passion, I discovered the focus for it and the aspect of engineering we are talking about is very interesting, captivating; so that pushed me into digging for more knowledge C M Y K
because technology improves by the day. There is a very big problem in Nigeria and that is the problem of power; coincidentally your business is into power. How have you been able to contribute to the improvement of the power sector in the country? I want to believe the government of the day, unlike in the past, knows the importance of renewable energy or alternative energy. Over the years A.O. Demarg has not been doing any other business than solar energy and, in so many ways, we have contributed into the oil and gas sector. A.O. Demarg is a household name when it comes to organisations like Shell, Sapiem and all that. Our clients also include individuals who know the value of comfort, who know what it is to have gone through the stress of the day and coming back home to meet blackout instead of relaxing with a good program on the TV or even to listening to the radio. We have contributed our own quota and we are still contributing. What encouragement have you been able to receive for your efforts? Well, there are quite a lot of encouragement because people have been making enquiries about our service and you now discover that, in the long run, the technology is much more cost effective than running diesel generators. Not only that, there is nothing like environmental pollution, there is nothing like noise pollution, rather we are talking about green energy which is environmentally friendly. It has quite enormous advantages over generators because this system, once installed, there is nothing like maintenance cost, you go to sleep and you have light as you press the switch. There is no problem of,’this light is low
Olufunmilayo Fadunsi...I want to believe the government of the day, unlike in the past, knows the importance of renewable energy or alternative energy. there will be ready to part with their money. It may be difficult individually, but, if you have a good idea in place, most of these financial institutions will be ready to fund it, because life itself is a risk. It’s been rough though, but we thank God. Initially, the banks will take their money back, but I can say to the glory of God, today, the banks are now begging to have A.O. Demarg money. It wasn’t really easy at the beginning, the fund wasn’t there, really, like you said, it is quite capital intensive. You must have traveled around the
‘We are trying to see if we can establish a power farm, a solar farm. The solar farm is going to be a sort of location where we produce power through the sun and sell to the national grid to ease the power problems facing Nigeria’ voltage’, ‘ok we have to reduce, it can’t carry our refrigerator ’. With the few people that have embraced this technology, I think it is encouraging. We believe from there other people will also come to know and, with the enlightenment it is attracting, we believe there will be more encouragement from people getting to know the system, appreciating the advantages that surpasses getting a generator. Being a capital intensive project, how have you been able to cope financially? When you have good ideas, definitely, there will be finances, people out
world especially to Europe,Asia,Middle East.Do they rely on solar energy as back-up system for light? In Germany , Israel , they generate their energy to feed their national grids while their governments help to subsidise consumption. So, in essence, it is a sort of trade by barter. You contribute energy into the grid, which supplies even to the person who is not producing it. Then my bill at the end of the month or what should have been my commitment to the government in terms of power consumed, we will rate
it, what did I produce and give to you? What did I consume? And it is harmonized like that, so that I don‘t pay much for energy consumption if am a producer of renewable energy. What efforts are you making to get us to adopt this system in our country? A.O. Demarg is trying to see if we can establish a power farm, a solar farm. The solar farm is going to be a sort of location where we produce power through the sun and sell to the national grid to ease the power problems facing Nigeria. How soon will the project come to fruition? I can’t really say, but I know we have gone very far, we already have partners overseas, specifically in France and Germany who are interested in this project. What is the Nigerian government involvement? An application form has al-
ready been picked up and other commitments with government are in progress. What have been the challenges that you face in A.O. Demarg? There have been so many challenges, first, is acceptance of my products by cliets who actually need solution to their power problems, yet there is this wonderful solution with all skepticism attached to it. Another thing is that, these days we don’t have graduates that are employable, even those who claim they went to the universities or polytechnics to have degrees in electrical/electronic engineering.
PAGE 42—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Navy arrests eight for oil bunkering By JOHNBOSCO AGBAKWURU, Calabar
Cedar Crest Hospital, Graki, Abuja where Governor Idris Wada of Kogi State is receiving treatment following his involvement in an auto crash, Friday. Photo by Abayomi .
ARELY four days after the Joint Task Force, code named Operation Pulo Shield, arrested an A s s i s t a n t Superintendent of Police for alleged bunkering and discovered illegal oil depot in Calabar, the Cross River State capital, officers of the Nigerian Navy have arrested eight persons with over 220 drums of illegally produced diesel. Parading the suspects allegedly engaged by the sponsors of the
bunkering business within the Eastern waterways, the Commanding Officer of NNS Victory, Calabar, Commodore Kingdom Itoko, said the suspects were arrested between Igbani station and Parrot island with the products to be sold in Calabar. Itoko noted that some persons were recently arrested over the illegal business within the
Calabar area and were handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for more investigations to unravel the sponsors. He said that the navy will not relent in the bid to rid the Eastern maritime environment of criminal elements, stressing that bunkering was economic sabotage to the nation.
Group okays senator for Delta 2015 BY FESTUS AHON
ELTANS under the aegis of ‘Ekuewe Vanguard’ has
adopted Senator Ifeanyi Okowa as their gubernatorial candidate ahead of the 2015 general elections. The group leader, Mr Smart Meka, said Okowa was a man with great heart, adding that he assisted victims of the recent flood disaster in the state. Meke, who spoke during the end of year meeting of the group, said Deltans needed to elect the senator in the 2015 gubernatorial election, if Delta must move forward. He commended Okowa for his contributions towards the development of the state, adding that; “the good representation and recognitions enjoyed by the people of Delta North is the handwork of Senator Ifeanyi Okowa.”
Fayemi mourns Adegbonmire, ACN leader
KITI State governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has desc ribed the late chieftain of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Chief Wumi Adegbonmire, as one of the pillars of democracy in the South West in particular and Nigeria in general. Fayemi, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Olayinka Oyebode, said Adegbonmire was one of the most reliable Awoists who never wavered in the cause he believed in until he breathed his last. He said Adegbonmire believed in the ideology of the progressives which he preached throughout his l i f e t i m e . The governor noted that Adegbonmire excelled in all the responsibilities given him in the party and government, most significantly as the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) under the Adebayo Adefarati administration. Fayemi also recalled roles played by the late Adegbonmire in the last governorship election in Ondo State in which party members looked up to him for direction and wise c o u n s e l .
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 43
FUNERAL SERVICE FOR LATE GEN. ANDREW AZAZI AT HEROES PARK, YENAGOA, BAYELSA STATE, YESTERDAY
President Goodluck Jonathan and Dame Patience Jonathan. From right; Mrs Alero Azazi (widow), Prof. Tamunopreye Abiobelemuo, Mrs. Akpo-Olade AzaziOkoro (daughter), Owoye Azazi Jnr. (son) and others.
Chief Timi Alaibe, Kingsley Kuku and General Shoot-At-Sight.
From left: Hon. Justice F.F. Tabai (rtd); Hon. Justice Kate Abiri, Chief Judge of Bayelsa State and Hon. Justice Daniel Ayah, President, Customary Court of Appeal, Bayelsa State.
From right: Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Onyeabo Azubuike Ihejirika, Mrs Ihejirika, and Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral D.J. Ezeob.
PAGE 44 --- SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
08023145567 (sms only)
Oritsejafor extends Christ's love to the needy...doles out 6 cars, 15 tricycles, 100 grinding machines to the poor BY SAM EYOBOKA & JOSEPH ERUNKE
ANIEL Okoro is 15 years old now. He had lived on Iyara Street, Warri in Delta State with his parents for about 13 years without the ability to walk on his own feet. If you call him a cripple or a lame you may not be wrong though he was not born so. When he was about 16 months old Daniel fell ill and was rushed to a medical centre where he was given an injection that turned out to be deadly. After the treatment he became crippled. On Boxing Day, Daniel was full of excitement as he became one of the over 250 persons who went home with so much enthusiasm and hope of a better future. The case of Pa Chikale Sunday, residing in Warri with impaired vision is a story to behold. At over 60 years old, he became a sudden owner of a brand new Hyundai car courtesy of Word of Life Bible Church in collaboration with its subsidiary, Eagle Flight Micro-Finance Bank.
*Chairman of occasion, Mr. Tony Elumelu (2nd l) helping the first winner of a brand new car at the 2012 Word of Life Bible Church/Eagle Flight MicroFinance Bank poverty alleviation programme, Mrs. Jennifer Tejiri Osatemu (left) to open the car while initiator and CAN president, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor (2nd r) and wife, Pastor (Mrs.) Helen Oritsejafor (right) watch with keen interest.
Unprecedented crowd Like it has always been on every 26th of December in the last seven years, Ajamimogha Road, Warri, Delta State was not different this year. The only thing that stood the street out among the previous years was that the crowd that greeted it was unprecedented! As early as 6.00 a.m. that fateful day, even when some people were still in their beds, following the previous day ’s activities, thousands of others had already converged on the street, waiting anxiously for the day ’s event to kick-start. The event was the 7th anniversary of a yearly poverty alleviation programme of Eagle Flight Micro-Finance Bank, solely owned by Word of Life Bible Church, founded by current Na-
*15-year old Daniel Okoro receiving one grinding machine from one of the chiefs at the Word of Life Bible Church/Eagle Flight Micro-Finance Bank poverty alleviation programme on Boxing Day. tional President, Chris- could not stand the un- KVA power generating tian Association of Ni- imaginable crowd, went plant, Omega gas cookgeria, Pastor Ayo Oritse- some metres away to ers, three deep freezers, watch activities of the a set of crystal glass dinjafor. Those who couldn't ar- day through large pro- ning set, 32 LG LCD Tv rive the venue before jectors stationed some set, washing machines 7.00 a.m., ended up distance away. and 200 bags of rice as Just as the event had consolation prices, climbing tall gates and trees to catch a glimpse always brought sur- amongst other items of what was going on, prises to the people all were given to the needy just as security person- over the state, this year’s through raffle draw. nel, fearing that there did not only replicate Among those in the could be a stampede, had the feat but went further crowd who had come a herculian task wading in volume and scope as with expectation, and off the unpresidented it increased the number who was not disappoincrowd of expectant men, of gift items that were ted at the occasion was women and youg people dished out. In all, six Mrs. Osatemu Tejiri who were eager to celeb- brand new Hyundai Jennifer. Through the rate an unusual Christ- cars, 15 tricycles, 100 draw, she became the mas, while those who grinding machines, 3.8 first car owner to the be-
wilderment of her husband, Mr. Osatemu. The 31-year old mother of one was short of words when she found her way to the stage as she placed her two hands on her chest, unable to speak for several moments over fate that had befallen her. When she finally found her voice, Osatemu, a teacher in a private primary school in Okwagbe, one of the riverine communities around Warri, was full of appreciation to Pastor Oritsejafor in particular and by extension God, for the car gift which she disclosed, would be deployed into commercial venture to generate income for her family.
Thought it was a gimmick Emmanuel Tijere, 46, was until recently had fed his family with proceeds from ridding okada in Effurun, until November 1, when the Delta State government outlawed the ubiquitous motorcycle in Asaba, Warri and Effurun area of the state. After the ban he had no visible means of keeping his family until a friend told him of the poverty alleviation programme of Word of Life. He promptly applied and won a tricycle for which he was very grateful to the first couple of Word of Life Bible Church. The member of Deeper Christrian Life Bible Church, Effurun District, said: "I thank Papa Ayo and Mama Helen for the generosity. I thank God for the using Pastor Ayo to bless the people of this area. I never thought that things like this can be true. I thought that if it is tyrue it is only for members of Word of Life Bible Church. But what I have seen today, I can boldly say that what they are doing here is real and not one of those boju boju thing that people do these days." Speaking at the event held at the instance of the Eagle Flight MicroFinance Bank, National President of Pentecostal
Fellowship of Nigeria and Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, said the gifts were his own way of giving back to the society, especially the less privileged; noting that the essence of waelth was all about sharing with the needy. He appealed to governments at all levels in the country as well as corporate organisations to be more proactive in coming up with similar empowerment programmes that could help cut down the poverty rate in the country. He said the level of poverty in the country prompted his intervention and tasked churches to start looking towards such direction. While stressing that the responsibility of government at all levels was to cater for the welfare and security of the citizenry, he regretted that some companies operating in the country and in particular, were making money without giving back to their host communities.
Challenge corporate organisations “Why is it that wealthy Nigerians and corporate organisations cannot do much more than what the church is doing in terms of bringing succour to the people? Is it the church that people should really be concerned about? There are institutions, corporate bodies, industrial establishments that are entrenched in different communities and are making millions of naira. You want to look at how much some of these companies are putting back into the communities; it would be ridiculous how meagre it is”, he lamented. “I will personally use this opportunity to challenge corporate organisations, micro-finance and commercial banks and all different kinds of organisations to look again at this very impor-
Continued on Page 45
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 45
Adeboye tasks Nigerians on righteous living By OLAYINKA LATONA
ENERAL Over seer of Re deemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has urged Nigerians especially Christians to forsake their sinful ways and embrace righteousness so as to
attract God’s favour and mercy in the coming year. Adeboye said this at the church's December Lets Go A Fishing programme entitled: “Highly Favoured” organized by the RCCG National Headquarter at the Centre for Management Development, Shangisha Lagos.
Describing righteousness as the only foundation that can exalt a nation, Adeboye said that any nation that has the fear of God and is filled with righteousness must attract Gods’ favour, adding that God’s favour can change the destiny of any nation for the better. In his words: “When
God decides to favour one it does not matter where you are, the favour of God will surely locate you. God’s favour empowers one with mi-ghty anointing, takes away reproach and chan-ges your destiny. Because of the favour of God we are going to reach the top and the blessing will flow to others.
WINN committed to promoting good living----Gordon-Osagiede
POSTLE Eunice Gordon-Osagiede of the Spirit and Life Bible Church is the initiator of Women in the New Nigeria for Empowerment and Positive Change, WINN, a nonprofit, non-governmental, interfaith organization. She believes in the progress of Nigeria. Recently, she was in Lagos where she inaugurated WINN. Several women from different backgrounds at the inauguration/workshop were taught different skills. She took time to visit the Oba of Badagry inaugurated the Egba branch of WINN. In this chat with PRINCEWILL EKWUJURU, the woman of God proffered solutions to the numerous sociopolitical challenges facing the country. Objectives of WINN WINN stands for empowerment and positive change. WINN wants to see Nigeria as an egalitarian society, free from corruption, where peace, tranquility and equality prevail. Its mission is to empower Nigerian women to change the battered image of the country, to eradicate corruption through enlightenment programmes, training, rallies, micro-credit schemes, advocacy and networking with diligent leadership and committed members. Women empowerment I am a stakeholder in Nigeria who wants to alleviate poverty. Poverty is the root of corruption and other social vices in Nigeria. Corruption is becoming an institution in Nigeria. Reason for doing this The good Lord gave me a heart-threatening revelation about Nigeria. It painted a grave picture of how Nigerians would go through terrible times and He wanted me to salvage the situation. The revelation showed that God was angry with the nation as it is heading for a very terrible time. I don’t want to go into details of the revelation. I asked God what I should do and He said; 'fill in the gap', and that if I fail to fill in the gap, that is it. Seven months into a one year prayer intercession at the National Christian Centre in Abuja, God directed that I should start a church community-based national programme. Because I love my country and have no other nation except Nigeria, I had to follow God’s instruction. The dream of this organisation is coming to reality with the promotion of good living through self reliance, like free skill acquisition. Recently, we returned from Benin where the Oba of Benin gave his blessings to the organisation. Our experience in Benin showed that community leaders in the country still have conscience
and Custard manufacturing. We also teach them groundnut frying, Aso oke weaving. The programme is broken down to sections in accordance with the choice of the women. Volunteerism In Badagry, we are given a free hall to carry out our activities. If we have a hall like this, it will ease the bottlenecks we encounter while trying to teach the women the various trades. With a hall like this, every month, we will come to monitor and review how the women are faring. If we are able to change their mindset, valApostle Eunice ues will change. We Gordon-Osagiede will like to reach a situation where we and that there are those will go house to house re-orientating committed to the betterment of their mindset. The women involved in this their people. For us at WINN, mission are volunteers who contribute it is our duty to promote good their experiences in various trade to help living through self reliance. the less privileged. The women are from Our aim is to go to communi- different churches and mosques across ties and give them free skill the country. acquisition. Source of fund The organisation has not gotten any grant States visited and impacted We have been to several states or fund from any international organtrying to change the thinking isation or the Nigerian government. We of women, their mindset and believe in sharing what we have; that is re-orientate their thinking. If the spirit of volunteerism. Even at the their mindset changes, the grassroots level, mothers bring in what value changes. The change of they have. mindset will also affect their children. We have impacted Partnership with banks on thousands of women. The We would like to interface with banks if women will take advantage of the need arises, but presently we do not the programme to have a have that plan. We have also encouraged change of mind. We are the women to come together to form inculcating the habit of proper groups where they can contribute to raise upbringing of the children their businesses. This will help them in particularly now that our setting up their small businesses from the cultural values are being contributions made. eroded. Challenges A lot of challenges exist. Because of what Skills acquired We teach them Bead Making, some persons have been doing with Pop Corn frying, Yoghurt and NGOs, I thought it wise not to ascribe Ice Cream manufacturing, the title NGO to WINN; but we cannot Shoe making, Liquid soap run away from the name NGO.
“The favour of God empowers you to reach the top, it turns you into anointing and it brings you in contact to greatness. When God decided to favour David, He gave him power. The man of God urged the congregation to live
a holy life, saying anyone who aspires to be great in life must live according to God’s principles. Earlier the participants prayed for the country, appreciated God for His love and mercy upon the leaders and the masses.
'Moral education, key to nation building'
ISTRICT Su perintendent of the Apostolic Faith Church, West and Central Africa, WECA, Rev. Adebayo Adeniran has described early moral upbringing of children as one of the ways of curbing corruption and other challenges facing the country, reports OLAYINKA LATONA. Speaking during the
church annual Christmas Concert entitled; “Unto us a child is born” that featured song renditions, orchestral display and prayers at the church Campground, Anthony Village, Lagos, the man of God advised parents not to neglect to give moral and spiritual upbringing of their children and wards the priority it Continued on Psge 46
Oritsejafor gives out 6 cars, 15 tricycles Continued from Page 44 tant issue. If we have done this little and another does the same thing, when you add all of them together, you will be surprised how many Nigerians will be out of the poverty level”, he noted. On her part, Chairman of Eagle Flight Micro-Finance Bank and wife of the founder of Word of Life Bible Church, Pastor (Mrs.) Helen Oritsejafor, said the gesture was in collaboration with the Word of Life Bible Church, in fulfillment of her husband’s desire to minister both to the spiritual, physical and economical aspects of human existence. She disclosed that in order to enhance the service delivery of the bank to its numerous customers, certain related banking operations such as Eagle Square Wing Insurance Company which avails opportunity to insure companies, businesses, properties, staff, children for indemnity in the event of fire, burglary or death of loved ones, had been introduced. “Also, Eagle Flight Bureau De Change came on board on the April 19, 2007 and was granted license to operate June 6, 2007 by the Central Bank of Nigeria. Presently, we are a sub representative of Western Union Money Transfer. We provide foreign currencies at competitive rates. We have done all these to demonstrate our commitments to poverty reduction which we are set to achieve by the grace of God”, she said. The event which witnessed the presence of ministers of God, traditional rulers, civil commissioners, local government chairmen, captains of industries and non-Government Organisations, was indeed one that would be forever remembered, giving its importance in the lives of the people. Chairman of the occasion, Mr. Tony Elumelu keyed into the dream of taking the Eagle Flight Micro Finance Bank national, because "when we took over a distress bank in 1997 we dreamt a similar dream but many people didn't believe it but by the grace of God it came to pass. What I have seen here today, is quite humbling, informative, educative and in fact is worthy of emotion by all corporate Nigeria. I said to myself, imagine the number of micro finance banks we have in this country, and if each of these banks can do 10 per cent of what Eagle Flight has done today, it will go a long way in helping to alleviate poverty in this country. Two, to inculcate entrepreuneuring spirit in our people," he said. He described the event as a memorable one, stressing that the essence of living is not to accommulate wealth for yourself, but God sometimes chooses someone for specific roles in life.."It is only the myopic that thinks that wealth is just for himself," he ended, thanking Pastor Ayo and Mama Helen.
PAGE 46 -- SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
At perilous times, turn to God, Ifeacho tells Nigerians *As GKS marks Feast of Tabernacles By LAJA THOMAS
HRISTIANS have been admonished to continually look up to God for hope and salvation because His promises of deliverance anytime they are in trouble are sure. Also those who have become hopeless and depressed because of the trouble of this evil world should turn to God, our fortress, shield and saviour on the day of affliction and calamity. These were the words of Bro. Godwin Ifeacho, chairman, Executive Board, God's Kingdom Society, GKS, at the 2012 Christian Feast of Tabernacles held at St. Urhobo Square, Salem City, Warri, Delta State penultimate week. Speaking on the topic, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee,” Bro. Ifeacho told the multitude of worshippers who attended the weak-long festival that, “God Almighty will never abandon those who look to Him for sustenance and salvation by His grace. But while He will always guide, protect and care He will also not fail to hold them to account whenever they walk contrary to His laws,” adding that, “all true Christians must go through a fiery trial but God Almighty will certainly deliver us from such situations in His own due time, by His grace, when we trust in Him." (I Corinthians 10:13; I Peter 4:12-13). Exhorting on the importance of faith and patience in the midst of tribulations, Bro. Ifeacho stated that, “those whom God has called to serve Him must have strong faith in Him and exercise patience in order to be in close fellowship with Him. We must be determined to remain on the Lord's side no matter the situation, believing that there is no difficult situation God cannot reverse. This calls for good heart condition and the doing of righteousness at all times.” Quotiong from the scriptures, Bro. Ifeacho explained to the faithful the admonition of St. Paul. “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” He further admonished us not to be overly
anxious because of the wants of this life but to make the quest for God's kingdom our priority. Bro. Ifeacho who warned on the perils of the last days stated that, “this exhortation is even more pertinent at this age known as the last days, the most turbulent time in the history of mankind. Apart from resurgence of such vices as kidnapping, there have also been revolutions in various parts of the world as well as economic crises that exposed the frailty of man and utter helplessness in dealing with the problems of the word,” adding that, “here in Nigeria we have had our share of political, social and economic problems as well as natural disasters, the most recent of which have been the floods that affected no fewer than 28 states.” Continuing, he said, “it was reported that four farmers in Kogi State and another in Delta State committed suicide because flood had over run the farms in which they invested loans taken from banks. Let us therefore forge ahead without fear, without doubt and with complete assurance of God's power to serve and not be dampened in spirit in any way by the troubles that may come our way." Addressing newsmen on the importance of the Christian Feast of Tabernacles, the Laity Chairman of the GKS, Bro. Emmanuel Ogidi said; “the feast is ordained by God Almighty. It is a feast of rejoicing, celebration. It is a gathering of Christians to show appreciation to God for what He has been doing in the lives of His people,” adding, “the Laity as an organ of the church, is supporting the church spiritually, morally, financially and otherwise. The job of the minister is to preach the sermon but we, members of the Laity can support, most importantly whatever they need. We have to use our resources to help the church. These ministers are fully devoted to the work of God. He advised the celebrants to reason over the sermon they've heard and implement them. That is the only way we can get the blessings we are looking for from God.” While another elder of the church and a former Com-
L-R: Bro. Felix Adedokun, Vice Chairman, Executive Board, GKS; Bro. Godwin Ifeacho, Chairman, Executive Board, GKS and Bro. T.M. Ekiseowei, Secretary, Executive Board, GKS, during the 2012 Christian Feast of Tabernacles held at St. Urhobo Square, Salem City, Warri, Delta State on Sunday, December 23, 2012.
*Efik Orchestra, God's Kingdom Society, GKS, Port Harcourt, Rivers State performing during the Christian Musical Festival of GKS to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles in Warri, Delta State. cance for Christians and missioner for Finance in is the message, the reading Nigeria as a whole is that all Delta State, Bro. Love of the laws of God to His nations, whether Christians Ojakovo explained that the people, the teaching of the or not, are enjoined to celeFeast of Tabernacles is "a rules, the commandments, brate the feast. They should feast ordained by God the ways and purposes of remember their God and to Almighty that His children God Almighty to His people, get the blessings, the promfrom the very beginning; the to remind them why they are ises of celebrating the feast. time of Moses up to this day, created that they should not Zech 14:16-19 summarizes should celebrate. Most forget to serve God Alall what I am telling you.” important aspect of the feast mighty,” adding, “its signifi-
Salvation Army marks Christmas with patients
N the spirit of the sea son, The Salvation Army, Igbobi Corps recently visited the Somolu General Hospital in Lagos to celebrate Christmas with patients there. The church also visited Onipanu Divisional Police Headquarters where some items were distributed to the policemen, reports ETOP EKANEM According to the head of the organisation, Commissioner Mfon Akpan, “Christmas is a season of giving and we in turn need to emulate this by using the yuletide season to touch the lives of those who for no reason of theirs are not privileged to be with their
loved ones at this time. We hope this will help put smile on the faces of our less privileged/fortunate members of our society, especially those on sick beds in hospitals around our corporate headquarters. He said: “We wish to express our deepest gratitude to all our partners and donors who have seen us to be trustworthy with their donations and have extended their love and support to humanity in need by giving to the work of God through The Salvation Army ministries. The exercise catered for about 500 recipients who received various items including
beverages, tissue papers, sanitary products, towels, washing soaps, bathing soaps, bleach among other items. In his response, the Medical Director of the Somolu General Hospital, Dr. Oluwatoyin Adelaja described the gesture as wonderful and prayed that the good gesture would continue and "God will continue to help you for the support you have rendered to the public and the less privileged in our society." He advised other organisations to emulate to good gesture of The Salvation Army.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 --- PAGE 47
Only true gospel can push transformation-–Gbile Akani ...Suswam urges more prayers
WOE TO THE RICH
HICH is better: to be rich or to be poor? Jesus’ answer is without ambiguity; according to the dynamics of the kingdom of God, it is better to be poor. Jesus says: “Woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.” (Luke 6: 24). When you bring these ominous words of Jesus to the remembrance of Christians, they attack you as if they were the words of Satan. It is one of those paradoxes of Christianity that Christians are among those who hate the words of Jesus the most. Anticipating this, Jesus warns: “Whoever is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38). Jesus is unrelenting in his attacks on the rich. In his most damning proclamation, he says: “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:24). W h e n Peter heard this, he became completely demoralized. He complained to Jesus: “See, we have left all and followed you. Therefore what shall we have?” (Matthew 19:27). However, Jesus had little to offer him in this life but the cross. The main prize is eternal life in the age to come. This message that the rich will not enter the kingdom of God is rarely preached in churches. The usual practice is to give it a non-biblical sugar-coating so as not to offend the rich and those who aspire to be rich. Some will tell you it means everybody must enter the kingdom by the grace of God. But Jesus does not talk about everybody; he singles out the rich. According to him, rich men who are not prepared to give away their wealth on earth cannot inherit the kingdom of God and lay hold on eternal life. Jesus says: “If you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?” (Luke 16: 11).
The kingdom of God that Jesus proclaims is only for the poor and the needy. Kingdom for the poor
hristians need to be told the truth: the kingdom of God that Jesus proclaims is only for the poor and the needy. Therefore, he says specifically: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.” (Luke 6:20). James reiterates this: “God (has) chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which he promised to those who love Him.” (James 2:5). This implies in plain commonsense: God has not chosen the rich. Indeed, the gospel itself is essentially for the poor. In declaring his ministry, Jesus said: “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.” (Luke 4:18). What about the rich? John says they are appointed to wrath. (Revelations 6: 15-17). James says they will be humiliated. (James 1:10-11). Mary says: “The rich he has sent away empty.” (Luke 1:53). Jesus says: “Many who are first will be last, and the last first.” (Matthew 19:30). Since the rich are the first in this world and the poor the last; that means the rich will become last and the poor first. That is kingdom dynamics. “Every valley shall be filled and every mountain and hill brought low.” (Luke 3:5).
God despises the rich
o matter how hard you search, you will not find any good news for the rich in the bible. In-stead, Amos says: “Woe to those lounging in luxury at Jerusalem and Samaria.” (Amos 6:1). Neither will you find any biblical instance of anybody
coming into wealth as a result of righteous living. The general assumption is that wealth is ill-gotten by the rich. Argumentative Christians will tell you Abraham was “very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.” (Genesis 13:2). However, he came into wealth fraudulently by selling his wife into a king’s harem. When God rescued her, Abraham did not give the king his refund. Jacob also came into wealth by conning his uncle out of his sheep. We are not told how Job came into his great wealth, but the counsel of God ensured that he lost everything so that, in the end, all that he had would come from God. The rich are responsible for most of the problems in this world. We get rich at the expense of the poor. We buy cheap and sell dear. We lend money and make borrowers repay with interest. We employ the poor to do the work but we get a bigger share of the returns. All this is contrary to the ways of God. As a result, in James, the terms ‘rich’ and ‘brother’ are mutually exclusive. He asks the rich to weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon us. (James 5:1). What is our offence? We heap up treasure. We live on earth in pleasure and luxury. We withhold the wages of our workers. (James 5:2-5). The rich will be barred from heaven because Jesus says: “I was hungry and you gave me no food; I was thirsty and you gave me no drink.” (Matthew 25:42). How can true disciples of Jesus be unconcerned about the anguish of the poor? The rich man in Jesus’ parable fed his dogs while poor Lazarus went hungry. Rich people spend a considerable amount of money on our fancies and foibles instead of supplying the
needs of the poor. According to Jesus, we have a case to answer before God.
The hard truth
esus did not tell the rich young ruler that salvation is by grace through faith. (Ephesians 2:8). He did not say eternal life is a gift of God (Romans 6: 23). On the contrary, he told him it would cost him his riches. When he heard this, the rich young ruler lost all interest in eternal life and walked away. Jesus’ approach would be unacceptable in most churches of today. Frankly, when was the last time you heard of a church turning away a rich man, how much more one who expresses nominal interest in eternal life? This explains why many churches today are apostate In their money-mindedness, they disregard the true message of Christ. When Zacchaeus understood message, he said to Jesus: “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.” (Luke 19:8). Then Jesus said to him: “Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham.” (Luke 19:9). Zacchaeus acknowledged the injunction of Jesus that most so-called Christians ignore today: “Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Luke 12:33-34). But it was not only Zacchaeus who understood and obeyed this; so did the other early disciples of Jesus: “All who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.” (Acts 2:44-45).
IGERIAN ministers must push forward the true gospel of Jesus Christ if the Fed eral Government’s transformation agenda and the church’s mission to transform lives are to succeed, reports EMILY OFIDE. The co-ordinator of Peace House, Bro. Gbile Akanni said this in Gboko, Benue State just as Governor Gabriel Suswam expressed concern on the growing spate of insecurity in the land. The duo spoke at a Ministers' Leadership Retreat, MLR, the annual gathering of Christian workers from across the country co-ordinated by Mr. Akani’s Peace House. This year’s gathering drew participants from the US, UK, Italy, Pakistan, India, South Africa, Malawi, Cameron, South Sudan, Ghana among others with the brethren pledging their allegiance to spreading the gospel of Christ. Speaking on the theme of the retreat, “This Gospel Must be Preached”, Akani regretted that despite the proliferation of churches and the abundance of Christian preaching, there is little or no change in society. He thus canvassed the need for ministers of God to preach the true gospel which only, according to him, has the capacity to genuinely bring about the much-needed transformation in Nigeria. The minister who lamented that the true gospel is not being preached by many who claim to be preachers, said the gospel is nothing other than the Good News of the saving power of the Lord Jesus Christ. “There are so many problems in Nigeria today despite the proliferation of churches and Christian groups because the gospel is not being preached. Many preachers have deviated from preaching the true gospel to preaching power, miracles, faith and several other topics; things that are the ‘fall-outs’ of the true gospel if preached faithfully," he said, adding “ we have a mandate from God to preach the gospel that saves; it is through Jesus Christ that people are saved. "The gospel is incomplete without talking about and living out the implications and the application of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus,” Bro. Akanni lamented, noting that many preachers have through deceptive messages made salvation more difficult for their hearers. Gov. Suswam, in his remarks at the plenary session, expressed concern over the growing spate of insecurity that has engulfed the nation, warning that the trend could lead to the disintegration of the country. He thus appealed for prayers from the Christian community. “We appeal that Christians should continually pray for this nation because it is under attack”. Dr. Suswam also stressed that the Word of God is key in transforming Nigeria, pointing out that “the word of God can transform our nation if Christians show commitment”.
'Moral education, key to nation building' Continued from Page 45 deserves, as it is fundamental to both family and nation building. Lamenting that despite huge sums the Federal Government has budgeted on its anti-corruption drive the situation has not changed, hence the need to give priority attention to the younger ones and teach them moral principles that will guide them throughout their lifetime. The cleric added that such children will become men of passion and integrity who will not only be useful to their families but also become leaders that will serve the nation passionately. His word: “We have been spending a lot of money on anti-corruption drive in this county and yet we are still where we are today. But if we cannot change the minds of adults let us begin to train the younger ones, in the ways of God. Teach them moral principles and educational programmes that will sink into their hearts.” Air Vice Marshal Ernest Adeleye urged every stakeholder in the country to take God first in their endeavour and contribute their quota towards youth development, saying any nation that wants to grow will develop its youth.
PAGE 48—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 firstname.lastname@example.org 08026350360
Panel of discussants during the festival
Garden City Literary Festival 2012 Rapporteur’s Report on the Symposium At the 2012 Garden City Literary Festival, Veronique Tadjo presented a keynote paper on the theme, African Women and Literature. The event, which held at the Cinema Hall, Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt was robustly discussed by a panel of discussant that comprised; Prof. Onyemachi Udumukwu, Ms Doren Baingana and Miss Chibundu Onuzo and was moderated by Chioma Opara. Today, Vanguard’s arts presents a rapporteur’s report on the Symposium as recorded by Dr. Obari Gomba and Mr. Ene Igbifa.
HIOMA OPARA: Your Excellency, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi; Distinguished writers, Elechi Amadi, Gabriel Okara, Emeritus Prof. E. J. Alagoa, Prof. Molara Ogundipe; Fellow panelists; The lady who has made it possible today, Mrs Kalango; Distinguished ladies and gentlemen. We have listened to our keynote speaker and we are going to start this discussion by looking at the questions which her paper has raised. Let’s look at those questions: there are about seven seminal questions. The first one is, is there such a thing as female writing? The second one is, what is the role of African writers in this continent? And this other question: who is an African writer? Is it the person living in Africa? Do we call Joyce Carey who wrote Mr. Johnson an African writer? Do we call Chimamanda Adichie, because she is living in the United States, an American writer or an African writer? So what makes an African writer? There is also the issue of commitment to woman and to society.
Let me begin with you, Onuzo. You belong to the third generation of our female writers. What do you think of commitment in African women’s writing? CHIBUNDU ONUZO: A writer cannot run away from commitment. But art comes first. I have to pay attention to art. CHIOMA OPARA: Are you in for Art for Art’s Sake? CHIBUNDU ONUZO: It is not selfish to think of art first. The message emerges from the art. CHIOMA OPARA: Now, to you Baingana. What is commitment to a female writer? DOREEN BAINGANA: I remember a South African writer who had said “I am not a female writer; I am a writer.” I was going to respond to her. The fact of womanhood matters to every female writer. CHIOMA OPARA: Let us hear from Professor Udumukwu whom I consider a gynandrist. What has informed the gynandrism in your works? O N Y E M A E C H I UDUMUKWU: I am not a gynandrist. I am a teacher. I
love literature, no matter who writes it, even a child. I study literature as one who has to impact the right knowledge. Now, to the issue of commitment. Commitment is that to which the writer is answerable. Every writer tends to be answerable to something. To be so, the writer must know her craft.
But craft is not enough. Commitment is important. My interest in women’s writing stems from this. When I wrote Signature of Women, I took my bearing from the context of the bank. Anyone who goes to the bank is required to present a signature, and that becomes an announcement of identity and presence. The same issues of identity are evident in the writings of women. There are artistic challenges; there is point of view, the manipulation of issues via craft. All these amount to the peculiar flair of women. CHIOMA OPARA: It has been said that women use a lot of interjections and the first person.
O N Y E M A E C H I UDUMUKWU: Yes. Most women write from the first person because of the burden of experience. INTERLUDE: THE GOVERNOR’S ADDRESS [The summary of the Governor ’s address is that literature cannot be divorced from the society. The issues of class and gender are central to the writer. He cites the example of Buchi Emecheta who writes like one who is at war with men. Most women write from experience, and most female writers are those who have been hurt by men.]
To be continued
Nike set to open art village in Abuja
he Nike Centre for art and culture owners of Nike art gallery Lekki, Lagos, arguably the biggest gallery in Nigeria with a collection of over 6000 art works as part of its mission of promoting art and culture is set to open the Nike Art village in Abuja. This was disclosed by the patron of Nike Center for Art and Culture, Mr. Rueben Okundaye during the end of year interactive session with art writers, artists and friends of the gallery in Lagos. In his remarks, Okundaye who thanked all for their support confessed that the year 2012 has been a very eventful year as the centre successfully exhibited many artists. He pointed out that the centre have lined up a lot of activities for next year and disclosed that as part of the vision of the centre to promote artists, empower the rural women and provide training for hundreds of aspiring
young performance artists and craftsmen on the practical aspect of art, the centre with branches in Osogbo, Abuja and Ogidi Ijumu is set to establish an art village to be known as Nike Art Village in Abuja. The art village when completed will comprise of a bigger gallery, a museum, studio, library and hostel that will accommodate many artists and students. All these, he said will enable the centre cater for the teeming young Nigerians who are desirous to know more about art. Continuing, Okundaye, who is also a culture enthusiast stated that the centre have many laudable plans but the greatest challenge have been in the area of funding but that notwithstanding, the centre will go ahead to establish the art village. The event which was attended by writers, artists, culture lovers also afforded most of the guest opportunity to exchange ideas about art in general.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 49
Conquering Witches, Corruption and Armed Robbers BY CHIKA ODUAH
y brother propped his coarse-haired arms on the seat’s leather armrest and shook his head. “I don’t think you should go, Chika. But no one listens to me,” he said. I watched his eyes. He watched my face. I asked him, “why?” Why shouldn’t I go to Nigeria? “You can’t trust anyone and there are too many witches,” he said. I chuckled and assured my younger brother that I will be protected from witches…and from wizards. “Whatever,” he said. “I’ll be safe,” I said. In a hushed tone, a dear confidante once advised me that Nigeria is not the best place for me. “I’d rather you go back to Kenya,” she told me. “Forget about this Nigeria thing.” They said I could be killed, kidnapped, cursed, persecuted, scorned, taken advantage of. They told me everyone in Nigeria is corrupt, no one is to be trusted and your friends and family will not hesitate to arrange armed robbers to attack you. In Nigeria, anything goes, I heard. They told me that nothing, absolutely nothing is working in Nigeria, that the entire country is a disaster, a time bomb waiting to explode, a heap of rubbish with the rancid stench of Obasanjo, Buhari, Babangida, Tinubu and so on. “I will never go back to that God forsaken country,” pronounced a deacon at my church in Atlanta, shaking her lace- wrapped body with a conviction that I cannot forget, have not forgotten. This is the perpetuating dialogue that I had grown accustomed to hearing throughout my 24 years of life in America. A bulk of Nigerians abroad concluded a long time ago that Nigeria is a failed nation. That’s why many of them left the country. That’s why many of them have stayed out of the country. Expat rejection, we may as well call it. But, despite the prophesies of Nigeria’s total destruction and the condemnation of the giant of Africa, I wanted to live there. I wanted to be home.
My occasional two-week excursions had fueled my curiosity, my need to understand the place I had left as a two-year-old kid. The thought of leaving the U.S. and moving to Nigeria had kept me awake at night in recent years. My career as a journalist had taken me to places around the world…but Nigeria remained a no-go area. It was Nigeria’s witches, corruption and armed robbers that kept me away to a certain extent. I had yet to conquer the fear of them. In fact, those three forces had conquered not only me, but are still defeating many of us who call ourselves Nigerians. Because every Sunday at the U.S. -based predominantlyNigerian churches I attended and in such churches throughout this planet someone raises the topic of witches. Some say witches are attacking them, not the witches in the Nollywood movies (those are fake, you
know) but the witches with four dragonheads and eyes like coal. Someone’s friend was married to a mermaid or an evil spirit had prevented someone from getting the coveted job promotion. Everyone seems to be losing the war against witches. A crippling brand of “Nigerian religiosity” promotes a myth that witches and spirits are the source of all one’s problems. I know quite a number of American-raised Nigerian youth who have no plans of visiting Nigeria partly because of their prevailing fear of witches. They hear about them in church, they see them in the
movies, they talk about them with their friends. They are terrified and so was I. Corruption, the toxin killing Nigeria inside out, stupefied me as I read about it in the news stories over the years. The brazen personality of corruption in Nigeria astounded me. And those armed robbers, I learned are not simply “area boys,” but some of them are vagabonds in power in the most elite political circles. Armed to rob the country of a transparent democracy. I stayed out of Nigeria, handicapped by my fear of witches, corruption and armed robbers. “Nigeria is doomed,” I read
in a 2009 editorial written by Emeka Njoku, published on Nigeriaworld.com. Yet three weeks ago, I found myself stuffing my suitcases with shea butters, satin dresses, electronics, and everything else that would fit and not tip my bags beyond the 50-pound capacity limit. I had finally succumbed to that voice I had been hearing for the past two years, the one telling me to move to Nigeria and conquer my fears. Chika Oduah is a freelance journalist.
Convergence: Wedlock of art and designs BY JAPHET
t was indeed a unique exhibition, the first of its kind as Omenka gallery, as part of its bid to put art works in many homes in collaboration with Svengali Designs, a notable furniture home last week organised an exhibition tagged Convergence: an exhibition of art and design objects. The exhibition which opened on the 15th of December at Svengali Home in Victoria Island, Lagos can be described as another creative way of bringing the two creative products, art works and
The checkered Hat by Gary Stephens
design pieces in one platform as virtually all the floors were adorned with artistically designed furniture and art works. The opening which was well attended by many notable Nigerians, captains of industry, art lovers and others saw the people jostling for works to buy. Viewers were welcomed to the floor of the house with beautiful furniture designs, while the first floor saw a marriage of furniture and some art works, the Pent floor was filled with specially selected art works from Omenka gallery and some selected furniture designs. The exhibition featured about 15 works from different artists. Some of the works include: Teddy Sideview, The Checkered Hat by American Gary Stephens, Excellencies, Unity in Progress, Stepping Stone by Fidelis Odogwu, Head, Lady, Black Series by Duke Asidere, Blue Abstract by Olu Ajayi, Beneath The Veil, Lets discuss about Nigeria by Zinno Orara and Interdependency, I know your mind by Ghanian Kofi Agorsor.
In his comments, Oliver Enwonwu, Chief Executive Officer of Omenka gallery and President of Society of Nigeria Art (SNA) said that the exhibition was a joint collaboration between Svengali designs and Omenka gallery and the first of its kind. “we are trying to see how art can be used positively to shape the society. Art is just more than decorative needs and there are different types of creativity and we feel that the better we merge the two for the industry the better for Nigeria because both are very strong foreign exchange and economic potential earner”. He said. Anselem Tabansi, the Chief Executive Officer of Svengali Designs and President of Interior Designers Association of Nigeria (IDAN) was also of the view that the idea was to bring together an art form that people are very familiar with, art works for the home and also furniture pieces for the home. According to him, “ you obviously know that you can’t have an interior with furniture without things that adorn the house which are artworks. So, convergence is basically a creative way of bringing the two art pieces together, art works and design pieces in one platform”.
PAGE 50—SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Justice Oyewole: Needless controversies BY IBRAHIM LAWAL VIEWPOINT IN BRIEF The merit in the nomination of the chief judge from outside of Osun State
NYBODY with more than a dilettante’s knowledge of administration of justice would agree that an efficient, effective and credible judiciary requires, most importantly, committed, principled and incorruptible judicial officers. It has often been said that it is more preferable to have a bad law than a bad judge, for the latter can interpret the imperfect statute with a human face. But no society can safely put up with a bad judge, because if the judge is incompetent, biased, or worse still, corrupt, even a good law will be interpreted in a way that will induce miscarriage of justice. This informs why there are always sustained public interest in judicial appointments, especially those relating to the superior Courts of Record in Nigeria.. The issue relating to the transfer of a well-known judge of Lagos State Judiciary, Justice Joseph Olubunmi Kayode Oyewole, from Lagos State Judiciary to the State of Osun Judi-
ciary understandably elicited considerable interests in both the legal and wider circles. I have read many of the reactions on the issue and would have to say it is very disappointing that quite a number of commentators are unfamiliar with the issue they glibly commented on. Many others still allowed their views to be compromised by personal bias or political sentiments. Justice Oyewole is one of the most respected judges in Nigeria today. His visibility stemmed from serendipitous handling of majority of sensational cases in recent years while he was at the Criminal Division of the Lagos State Judiciary. Of course, it is not so much the sensational nature of the cases themselves that fetched Oyewole popularity, but the way he handled them. The highly industrious Ila-Orangun-born judge is reputable to be principled, cerebral, brave and incorruptible. Some of the cases he handled included the famous case of Emmanuel Nwude and his two cohorts, Mrs. Amaka Anajemba and Mr. Nzeribe Okoli. The trio were convicted and sentenced to varying terms of imprisonment by Oyewole of the Ikeja Division of the High Court Lagos State, between April and November 2005 for defrauding a Brazilian banker, Mr. Nelson Sakaguchi, and his bank, Banquo Noreste, Sao Paulo, Brazil, to the tune of approximately US$242 million. Oye-
wole also handled the case of former Deputy Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party and one time Chairman of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Chief
Most of Oyewole’s judgments have been affirmed on appeal and even the few ones that had been sent back for retrial were eventually decided the same way he had initially adjudged them
Olabode George. George was found guilty in the 68-count charge preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The offences included fraudulent contract splitting leading to loss of billions of naira and disobedience to lawful order. He was sentenced to 30 month
imprisonment by Justice Joseph Oyewole on October 26, 2009. The famous case of Pastor Emeka Ezeuko, aka Rev King, was yet another matter he handled. King was arraigned on September 26, 2006 on a sixcount charge of attempted murder and murder. Five years ago, precisely on January 11, 2007, Oyewole convicted Ezeuko and sentenced him to death by hanging, for the alleged murder of a church member, Ann Uzoh. H Most of Oyewole’s judgments have been affirmed on appeal and even the few ones that had been sent back for retrial were eventually decided the same way he had initially adjudged them. The sterling qualities of Oyewole must have inspired the Governor of the State of Osun, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, to nominate him to the National Judicial Council (NJC) as the new Chief Judge of Osun, following the recent retirement of the incumbent. In doing this, the governor was superimposing what he believed to be merit over the conservative consideration of seniority. This is not unprecedented as the order of seniority had been breached in judicial appointments in the state even before Aregbesola assumed power. For example, Justice Adetotun Sijuwade was number four in the seniority list of judges in Osun State when he was appointed the Chief Judge.
However, the PDP saw in this innocuous move an opportunity to create disaffection among the judicial officers in the state. The main opposition party in the state challenged the government over the preference of Oyewole to other judges on the bench in Osun State. It was particularly alleged that Oyewole was being favoured for the position by the government for political reasons. A petition was even sent to the NJC by a sponsored group or vested interests with a view to block the judge’s elevation. Eventually, Oyewole’s nomination was rejected by the NJC. By that decision, the coast was clear for the most senior judge in the Osun State Judiciary hierarchy, Justice Gloria Oladoke, following the rejection of Justice Bola Ojo by the state House of Assembly. The latest development is that Oyewole, who was appointed a judge of the Lagos State Judiciary on May 22, 2001, has opted for his service to be transferred to Osun State Judiciary based on the advice of the NJC. All the procedural formalities for this transfer have been completed. As the legal community in Osun welcomes this quintessential judge, one cannot but wish him well as he enters another phase in his professional life. Lawal is the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Osun State on Legal and Judicial Reform.
away. Okotie says Jesus Christ has to be celebrated in such a big way because what he did to save mankind is unprecedented and unique. Like Jesus his Savior and mentor, Okotie’s ministry and life are unique. His philanthropic bent shapes his world view to a large extent. In 1996, he expanded the GRACE vision, when he introduced the KARIS award and then subsumed it in the GRACE programme. KARIS is an award that is given to the Nigerians you may call unsung heroes and heroines. Sometimes, by pure errors of omission or commission, certain worthy individuals escape the glare of appreciation of their generation who sometimes undeservedly celebrate lesser heroes or under-achievers in their stead. So, KARIS captures such individuals. Since inauguration in 1996, 15 distinguished Nigerians among them, Aminu Kano, Gen. Murtala Mohammed, Margaret Ekpo, Gani Fawehinmi, have benefitted from this award, which initially carried a cash prize of N500, 000. 00, but was raised to N1million a few years ago. For this year, the posthumous KARIS award went to Prof. Ishaya Shai’abu Audu, the medical missionary from the north, who was also the pioneer indigenous Vice Chancellor of the Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria. It was re-
ceived by his wife, Victoria. Audu, a former Minister of External Affairs in the Shagari Administration, also served as Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations. Although, he was given the National Merit Award of OFR. However, nobody could dispute the merit of Prof. Audu’s award, going by his pedigree and conduct in public life. His excellent career as a scholar is also public knowledge, as the then President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote in this condolence: “I recall that, in his life time, Professor Audu served Nigeria in many capacities and thus made invaluable contribution to national development. Among other things, he was the first indigenous Vice Chancellor of the Ahmadu Bello University ABU, Zaria, where he had, in fact, spent his earlier professional years as a lecturer of Medicine with specialization in Pediatrics. During the Second Republic, he was appointed Minister of External Affairs, a responsibility he discharged with due diligence and which brought Nigeria much respect and goodwill from the international community.” Karis 2012 brings his memory alive coincidentally in ABU’s jubilee year. *Gidado, a public affairs analyst, is based in Lagos.
Xmas at the Household BY TAIWO GIDADO VIEWPOINT IN BRIEF Celebrations galore at the Household of God to mark the birth of Jesus Christ
HE haunting melodies of twinkling little lights hung on trees on the well paved street can be heard by passers-by on the quiet Household of God Street where the 5-star worship centre of the church is located. A trek along this path is like a visit to paradise. Okotie, famous for his large heart, launched the GRACE programme barely three years into his ministry in 1990, as an annual love feast to reach out to four charitable organizations – the Pacelli School for the Blind and Partially Sighted, Sunshine Foundation, Spinal Cord Injuries Association, and the Little Saints Orphanage. Initially, they each got N250, 000. 00 , but was increased to N500, 000.00 a few years ago. This year, the prize money was increased again to N1million. Representatives of these organizations got their cheques at the colourful GRACE event, held recently. According to Rev. Okotie, the donations were his Church’s
way of giving back to the society, which has seen a small fellowship which started from his duplex at the Obasa Street, in Ikeja, grew into one of the biggest congregational ministries in Nigeria. Today, Okotie is widely regarded as the Paul of this generation for his rare revelation of complex Bible truths; and if you listen to his awe-inspiring teachings, you’d agree that Okotie’s comparison with the legendary Apostle who authored about two-
leader conducts the praise session during the first segment, with the large congregation joining in the chorus, rendering songs, mostly canticles, composed by Rev. Okotie himself, before the Pastor takes over and begins another round of worship. Coming from a Catholic background into the Pentecostal Church Ministry without a thorough grasp of traditional Church hymns, Okotie had to fall back on his singing talent to compose, arrange and produce songs and music for his
Jesus Christ has to be celebrated in such a big way because what he did to save mankind is unprecedented and unique
thirds of the New Testament is not misplaced. What makes Okotie’s meetings fascinating is the glorious worship and praise sessions that never fail to create feelings of divine presence. The Household of God is the only Church in living memory that has no standing choir and, one where the chief worship leader is the Pastor himself. Before he comes to the pulpit, one worship
Church’s worship sessions. He teaches the large choir (congregation) each new song like a choir master conducting his small orchestra, and then gets the congregants to sing it until everyone grasps it. In the Household of God, Christmas begins around late October, with the installation of the lights, and it ends around February when they are taken
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SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 51
RIGHT OF REPLY
VIEWPOINT BY OSAGIE IDEMUDIA
Matters arising from the Land Use Charge Law in Edo State
ECENTLY, the Edo State House of Assembly passed an executive bill tagged, “Land Use Charge, Bill”. The bill was introduced on the floor of the House by Honourable Phillip Shuaibu, the Majority Leader. The bill had a rough ride through the House with some members vehemently opposing it on behalf of their constituencies. The Land Use Charge seeks to impose tax on landed properties. Upon its first and second readings at plenary, the bill elicited spontaneous reactions from the general public in Edo State most of whom denounced it. The opposition to the bill was so loud and strong that the Speaker of the House, Hon. Uyi Igbe, attempted to calm frayed nerves by pledging that public hearing would be conducted on the bill. Rather than further enlightening the public on the bill by holding the promised public hearing, however, parliament went to sleep and, to the chagrin of the people of Edo State, they woke up one morning to find that the bill had been rushed through the third reading and final passage, thus dealing a fatal blow to democracy and the much-trumpeted slogan of the Oshiomhole administration: “Let the people lead”. Within 24 hours of the passage of the bill by the House, Governor Adams Oshiomhole signed the Land Use Charge bill into law, threatening fire and brimstone on any one who dared to oppose the law. Imprisonment was one of the options he promised anyone who proved recalcitrant in respecting the new law. As a responsible citizen, I want to say there is nothing fundamentally wrong with the Edo State Land Use Charge
The tax war in Edo Law 2012. The purpose of government globally is to improve the standard of living of the people through the provision of basic infrastructural facilities and amenities such as good roads, electricity and, of course, security of life and property. To achieve these goals, government needs money. This is why apart from
VIEWPOINT IN BRIEF
Those who have had the privilege of reading the law will tell you that it covers almost all citizens everywhere in Edo State except churches and palaces of traditional rulers
government depending on the natural resources of a country, it also goes the extra mile to impose tax on individuals and corporate citizens. In introducing the Land Use Charge bill in parliament, government put the wrong foot forward. Yes it is a fact that it is the Majority Leader of the House that introduces government’s bills. This task rightly fell on Shuaibu on that fateful day, but to the disappointment of the discerning people of Edo State, the lawmaker performed the as-
signment so badly. Shuaibu’s performance was even more unbecoming when protesters against the bill came calling at the House. Decked in the same apron of “Edo Youth Congress” that some of the protesters were donning probably as a ploy to show esprit de corps and win their sympathy and understanding, the Majority Leader told the protesters that the new law had nothing to do with them because they were poor (as if poverty is itself a virtue). The new law, he added, was aimed at “Esama” Chief Igbinedion who, he asserted, owned property “from street to street” in the GRA (Government Reservation Area), Benin City. He repeated this insult several times in halting English in the course of his reckless, undiplomatic defence of the new law and his principal. This unmitigated insult to a great son of Edo State further angered the protesters. As the interaction progressed, Shuaibu told the protesters that they were unlimited! While it is true tax policies are generally aimed at taking from the rich to give to the poor as a way of creating an equitable society and sustaining peaceful co-existence among citizens across the socio-economic strata of society, it is also true that government must not target a single individual in order to press home its point. Oshiomhole has been seen to spiritedly counter all opposition to the new law which the people describe as draconian by holding town hall meetings with selected party loyalists. During these meetings, the governor always launched thinly-veiled attack on Chief Gabriel Igbinedion, Esama of Benin Kingdom and his television station
– ITV. He demonizes the chief and his broadcast medium as those responsible for his travails. As far as Oshiomhole is concerned, Igbinedion is his political enemy who never wanted him to have a second term and the man sponsoring protests against his government on the new law. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Those who have had the privilege of reading the law will tell you that it covers almost all citizens everywhere in Edo State except churches and palaces of traditional rulers. Oshiomhole ought to be told that a law that targets one individual in conception and birth is tainted and cannot be actionable. It is a still-born child that cannot stand the test of time. My advice to the governor is that he should quietly dump the Land Use Charge Law which has already attracted so much public odium to the government of Edo State. With regards to the insult and disrespect heaped on Chief Igbinedion by Shuaibu and his mentor in the Land Use Charge Law altercation, I can only express the profound sorrow, disapproval and anger of all true Bini sons and daughters. This is one man who has taken the name of Benin Kingdom to difference places on the globe. Apart from the fact that he achieved the singular feat of establishing the first private university in Nigeria, he is the highest employer of labour in Edo State. He is a tireless and quintessential giver. He regularly donates his personal funds to the cause of charity, to churches of various denominations and to public and private institutions/ organizations. As part of his birthday celebration every year, he commits millions of naira and qualified professional medical teams to offer free medical services to his fellowmen and women who are sick but cannot afford the cost of treatment. Who can boast of paying at a point in his life wrote and acted a play entitled: “Yoruba Ronu”? In the same vein, I say to my great Edo people: “Edo ruiro”. *IDEMUDIA is Secretary, Edo Unity Club, Lagos.
Tsav to Jonathan: You lied to Nigerians BY PETER DURU
former Lagos State Commis sioner of Police, Alhaji Abu bakar Tsav, has blamed Nigeria’s woes in the last 12 months on President Goodluck Jonathan’s lack of political will to tackle corruption in high places in the country. Tsav contended, yesterday in Makurdi, that Jonathan lied to Nigerians when he promised in his Christmas massage that he would provide the
people better governance next year. He stated that the “same massage is usually passed to Nigerians at this time of every year but it is all lies. President Jonathan lied to Nigerians because we all know that he lacks the capacity to fulfill the promises and to rule this country”. ”The man was not prepared to be President of Nigeria, but former President Obasanjo imposed him on Nigerians and we are all suffering today,” the former police boss added. Tsav continued: “His government has totally failed Nigerians, he has not impacted positively on the lives of the people and today there is so much poverty in the land, no work, bad roads, no electricity; nothing is working yet he comes to make empty promises to Nigerians. ”The ordinary Nigeria is suffering in the mist of plenty because Nigerian leaders are paying lip service to the issue of good governance and the war
against corruption which has become a source of embarrassment to every discerning mind in this country ”. ”They have incapacitated the ICPC and the EFCC to the extent that these anti-graft agencies will apprehend corrupt government officials and, after so much noise, the suspects would be released unannounced, it is as bad as that”. Tsav however advised, “If this administration is determined to make progress in 2013, it should show greater determination to the fight against cor r uption in this country.
”Corruption is the bane of our development as a nation, we all now it. As a country we are blessed with both human and natural resources that can be harnessed to improve our wellbeing as a people, but our leaders must stand up against corruption and every other thing will fall into place”.
Families enjoying the yuletide holiday at the Children Park and Zoo, Asokoro, Abuja, yesterday. Photo by Abayomi Adeshida
Botched bid to kidnap judge: Court adjourns suit against DESOPADEC BY EMMA AMAIZE
HE legal suit by Itsekiri host com munities against Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, DESOPADEC, over alleged diversion of N1 billion meant for development of oil-bearing communities has been adjourned, following a failed attempt to kidnap the judge handling the case, Justice Marshall Umukoro The judge was coming from Ughelli to Warri to preside over the matter and other cases when gun-totting bandits attacked him on the road. He escaped death by the
whiskers, while his SUV was riddled with bullets. The case was adjourned to January 17, 2013 as a result. The plaintiffs, Prince Ikenwoli Emiko and Godwin Omamogho, had, for themselves and on behalf of Itsekiri host communities (oil and gas), dragged the oil commission to court for alledgedly diverting funds meant to develop the oil-bearing communities to funding private and federal government projects in Warri. Specifically, the oil communities said they were aggrieved that the defendant “recklessly” diverted the funds allocated to Itsekiri ethnic group, which was wallowing in abject poverty as a result of oil exploitation, to build and renovate Warri Club, a privately owned recreation club
and the Nigeria Police Barracks in Warri. According to the chair of Itsekiri Host communities, Prince Ikenwole Emiko, the commission, by its action, has taken back the little gains of the oppressed oil communities, which are plagued by coastal erosion, oil pollution, spillages and other ecological/environmental challenges. Consequently, the plaintiffs urged the court to direct that the money expended on such projects by the commission be refunded to the Itsekiri oil -producing communities. They also asked for N100 million compensation for and deprivations suffered by the plaintiffs.
VANGUARD, DECEMBER, 30, 2012
readers, in March 2010, we received an invite from a couple in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria to attend their wedding. They wished that we could be a part of their celebration because they had met through the help of the page. Though we could not attend, we were very happy to share in their joy and to know that the purpose of writing this is not lost. We are aware that this couple’s story is not an isolated one. Just as we want to know about your challenges, we would also love to share in joys. So, if you have found your spouse or girlfriend through this link, or your request for sponsorship or networking has been successful, please share your story with us. You can be assured that we will celebrate you with style. Looking forward to read from you. Do have a lovely Sunday! •Ifeyinwa, 24, sweet natured, Networking/ Sponsormannered, pretty, well enship •Prince Ogbodu, an author, needs a kind hearted person to publish his edifying books, God’s word written under wisdom focus wisdom reality, for sponsorship. 07031897587, 08163898931, Jchoeprince@yahoo.com •Suave, resides in Abia, a music artist, needs a record label to sign him in. 07036906171 •Anthony, 26, a student from Delta state, needs a caring woman who can sponsor his education.07038502535
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SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 — PAGE 53 emphasised on improving,” he says. “We wanted players that were able to play to their best at full speed. We were not seeking a specific style because every coach has his own ideas. We wanted players who could perform in any system.” For former Fulham player Carlos Salcido, who participated in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups and at the 2012 Olympic Games as an over-age reinforcement for the under-2 3 side, those are the main advantages of the new Mexican talents. “They adapt so easily because they come with lots of experience,” says the 32-year-old. “Even when they receive their first senior cap it seems that they have been with us for a lifetime - because they have been through it all with the age-limit teams.”
n 1988 Mexican football fell to the lowest point in its history. After fielding four overage players in the qualifiers for the Under-20 World Cup, FIFA decided to ban all the country’s national teams from international football for the next two years. Apparently, the men in charge at the time didn’t trust the quality of young talent in the country and resorted to cheating in order to achieve decent results in the international arena. Now, nearly 25 years later, “El Tri” can justifiably boast some of the best young talent in the world. Since 2005 Mexico have twice won the Under-17 World Cup, finished fifth and third in Under-20 World Cups, and won gold at this summer’s Olympic Games, beating Brazil 2-1 in the Final - marking what could well be considered a changing of the baton in terms of youth power. What has been the formula for such a dramatic change? Why has Mexico succeeded where other countries have failed in tournament after tournament? And how did Mexico develop the blueprint that has transformed an entire country?
he story begins with Mexico’s first major international victory: the 2005 Under-17 World Cup in Peru. Decio De Maria - then secretary general of the Mexican FA and now president of the domestic game’s top-flight Liga MX explains how the project started. “Before this victory there was a structure that had been created in 2002, but it was not professionalised,” says De Maria. “The title in Peru helped us to understand that there was a great amount of talent in the country and, if we handled it properly, we could generate triumphs constantly”. As a result, the Mexican FA created a Sports Development Committee, whose first decision was to implement a radical measure: each top-flight club had to field a player aged under 20-years-and-11 -months for an average of 45 minutes per-game across the season. The move was harshly criticised, especially by club coaches who argued that they were forced to use players not yet ready for the highly competitive domestic game. Nevertheless, the committee didn’t relent. The first division’s youth teams had competed in regional tournaments and easily dominated their weaker, amateur rivals. But now two youth tournaments that imitated the professional league system were created. Every game in the first division would be preceded by a match
WORTHY CHAMPIONS... Mexico’s Olympic team celebrate after beating Brazil to pick the gold at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
between the under-17 and under-20 sides of the two clubs. The contests were to be played in the same stadium and under the same conditions as the senior teams’ game. Consequently, clubs were forced to invest in their youth academies - and, in some cases, even to create them. Former Mexico midfielder Guillermo Cantu, who was then the director of national teams, saw the change in mentality. “When I was a player, I had to knock on the doors of clubs to be given a chance,” he recalls. “Now, every team has a professional scouting system, even in the second division. And the scouting is on a local and regional basis. “With the large outfits, such as America, Guadalajara and Cruz Azul, the range is even greater. They have schools all over the country, and even in the United States”. Although the under-17 side failed in its attempt to qualify for the 2007 World Cup, and then two years later also missed out on a trip to the Under-20 World Cup, the Mexican FA continued its project.
hey invested in dedicated coaches and full-time scouts for every national team “The talent spotting process
•Mexico’s national coach, Jose Manuel De la Torre became easier as we implemented our youth tournament set-up”, says De Maria. “And then we invested a large amount of resources to the development of the agelimit national teams. “We started knocking on doors to get invited to tournaments around the world. As a consequence there are years when their budget has reached BOOmillion pesos [£14.5m].” Mexican teams not only started to travel but also started to win and generate their own income. According to the Mexican FA, the triumphs of the Under-17WorldCupin2011 and the gold medal in the London Olympics drew their own sponsors and are proof that the process works. And the actual under-15 side is the best
of them all according to several staff members of the country’s national teams’ set-up. In Mexico scouting begins at the age of 14. All clubs have under-15 teams that participate in a summer and the winter tournament. The FA also organises a tournament called “Mundialito” which involves eight teams from different parts of the world with plans to expand it to 12 for the next edition.
he result is that when a Mexican player reaches an age-limit World Cup he does so with vast international experience. “Since we created the project we realised that, to succeed on the biggest stage, our players should know what and who to face,” explains Cantu. “Therefore we concentrated on tours and matches outside the country. Now, a Mexican player reaches an Under-17 World Cup with 50 international matches to his name - and double that for the Under-20 version.” As its former head, Cantu also reveals the criteria used to develop the players in the national set-up. “From the beginning of our analysis we realised that, physically, the Mexican player was at a disadvantage compared to the world powers, so we’ve
In addition, all Mexico’s national team coaches work in synergy. When the under-17s finished their participation in the World Cup, their coach became assistant to the under20 coach, who in turn became second-in-command of the Under-23 side, whose coach, Luis Fernando Tena, is the assistant of the senior coach Jose Manuel de la Torre. And the communal work is not limited to the bench. Each of those coaches can access specialised software in which they introduce reports on each player that has been called-up in any age bracket. The national teams committee, therefore, has a huge database that is also available to the club that own the transfer rights to each of those players. However, the Mexican model is not for everyone. Although the directors of the Mexican FA are full-time staff, the ones who really make the decisions are the owners of the Liga MX clubs. They meet twice a year but do not experience the same conflicts of interest between the league and the national teams that happens in much of Europe. The reason for that is purely financial. According to a study, the income of the Mexican national teams between 2006 and 2010 was $550million. The club owners, who are also the owners of the country’s largest companies, such as media giants Televisa and TV Azteca, or the cement mogul Cemex. know that the only way to maintain income is with victories on the pitch. And now that they have started to arrive they have also changed the expectations of the Mexican fans, who have seen their national team fail to make it past the round of 16 in five consecutive World Cups. “Now there is a lot of pressure from the media and the fans every time a Mexican national team steps on a pitch”, says Cantu. “Everyone expects Mexico to win every tournament they take part in. For many years we spoke badly of ourselves but not anymore. We now want to eat the world.”
PAGE 54 -- SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012 Hotspurs. In fact, almost every stakeholder in Spurs looked up to Ginola in every matched as he was the catalyst needed to win during this time in Spurs. However, in face of all these qualities found in Cantona and Ginola both at home and abroad, Coach Jacquet said he was not interested in making them part of his team to France’98. Coach Amie Jacquet surprised the football world, especially the French football followers with his list of the final 19 man squad which included the likes of –Bernard Lama, Vincent Candela, Bixente Lizarazu, Patrick Vieira, Laurent Blanc, Youri Diorkaeff, Didier Deschamps (captain), Marcel Dessially, Zinedine Zidane, Robert Pires, Thierry Henry, Lilan Thuram, Emmanuel Petit, etc. This was quite a surprise team, in that under every normal circumstances, Eric Cantona and David Ginola would had been considered before most of the players that made Amie Jacquet’s list for France’98. However, that was not to be as the Coach had his game plan to his chest and the quality of players he considered worthy of his team; what a way of being a gang-leader, and football and coaching is all about guiding gangsters, which is the basic way to achieving football success; if you are in doubt, please ask Jose Mouriho.
Much Ado about Osaze’s exclusion from the Eagles BY CHARLES OGUO
t is believed in many quarters that one of the cardinal keys to success in every field of endeavour in life is to learn from those who had succeeded in that particular field, or those who are currently succeeding in that same field. Towards the preparation for FIFA World Cup in the year 1998, which was hosted by France, and was tagged France’98; the Coach of Les Blues as the French national team are popularly addressed, Coach Amie Jacquet took an unassumingly bold step and shocked almost the entire French football fans and the world when he announced the exclusion of the two most outstanding players from
France then, in the persons of Eric Cantona and David Ginola. Eric Cantona and David Ginola were both captains of Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur respectively. These players were quite skilled and in-form; and were very central to the successes of their teams respectively. It was said of Eric Cantona that ‘Eric Cantona was Manchester United and Manchester United was Eric Cantona’, that goes to tell how vital he was to his team then. In fact, because of his unique role to the team, Sir Alex Ferguson allowed him wear a unique collar jersey which made his No 7 shirt outstanding. David Ginola on his part was a one-man-riot squad for team, Totteham
clinical and critical look at les blues squad for France’98 reveals a well selected and blended team made of experience and mobility, home and foreign professionals, young and old players were moulded to play for one another rather than show casing individual skills. Most of the players were making it World Cup level for the first time, yet the experienced ones were there to motivate and guide them while on the field of play. Little wonder France hosted and won the World Cup, and Coach Amie Jacquet became a hero against all odds. Now, Nigeria seems to be treading the same path with France in that Coach Stephen Keshi in his preparation towards AFCON 2013 to be hosted in South Africa have decided to exclude some established Super Eagles players in the persons of Osaze Odemnwingie, Obafemi Martins, Taiye Taiwo, Obinna Nsofor, etc. and many football fans are calling for the head of Keshi, even when the tournament is yet started to at least to give us room to assess his selection and coaching ability.Besides, it is without doubt an act of insubordination for some of these players rush to the media and began to throw stones at the coach as if he is an ancestral enemy. In the case of France, Eric Cantona and David Ginola did not at any time take a personal fight with Coach Jacquet nor with French country.
NFF, Villarreal reach deal on Uche
igeria Football Federat ion and Spanish divisi two side, Villarreal ha on ve reached an agree to allow striker, Ikech me nt ukwu Uche shuttle be tween his club and the camp of the Super Eagles in Faro Po Super Eagles coach St rtugal. ephen Keshi is expecti ng Uche to star for his team in the January 2 clash against a Catalonia side on Janu ary 2. The striker is als o needed by the struggling Club to play against Barcelon a B team on January 5. Under the arrangeme nt, Uche will resume training with the Eagles on De cember 31 in Faro, Po rtugal and after the friendly to be decided in Barcelona, expected to travel to Uche is Villarreal for the game the Barcelona B team. against The player is expecte d to rejoin the Eagles for their final preparation for the Nations Cup wi th a game against Cape Verde in Portugal. The team wi ll finally leave for South Africa on January 16. Nigeria’s opening Gr ou Faso on January 21. Za p C match is against Burkina mbia and Ethiopia are the other teams in their group. The Eagles arrived Fa ro, Portugal, Friday an already started their tra d have ining.
Chelsea keep NFF in dark over Mikel, Moses movement
igeria football federation have not received a n y communication from Chelsea regarding the release of players John Obi Mikel and Victor Moses. Chelsea boss Rafa Benitez was quoted as saying that he will delay the duo till January 9, when their FA Cup tie against Swansea and Southampton are decided. “The tournament starts on the 19th (January), so they will go one or two weeks before,” he said. “Maybe we can manage to keep them a little bit longer. We will talk with them. They know
sometimes the players do not need to go early. “But at least one week before the 19th, they have to be there.” N F F spokesman •Mikel A d e m o l a O l a j i r e confirmed that the federation is in the dark over the players’ movements. “We have not been contacted by Chelsea over their wish to delay the release of our players for the Nations Cup,” stated Olajire. “The players are expected latest by January 4 according to the plan and schedule of the coach, so if anything will change, we have to be notified by the club.”
Virus forces Nadal out of Australian Open
rench Open champion Rafa Nadal has been forced to withdraw from next month’s Australian Open because of a stomach virus that has disrupted his recovery from a long-term knee injury, the world number four said on Friday. “My knee is much better and the rehabilitation process has gone well as predicted by the doctors, but this virus didn’t allow me to practice this past week,” the Spaniard, who has also pulled out of the Qatar Open in Doha, said in a statement. “Therefore I am sorry to announce that I will not play in Doha and the Australian Open, as we had initially scheduled.”
Nadal was due to make his competitive comeback after the knee injury sidelined him for six months at this week’s Mubadala World Tennis Championship, an exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi that is not part of the ATP Tour. The 26-year-old won the event in 2010 and 2011 but withdrew on December 25 citing the stomach virus. He has not played since June when he suffered a shock defeat in the second round of Wimbledon to Czech Lukas Rosol.
SUNDAY VANGUARD, DECEMBER 30, 2012, PAGE 55
C M Y K
SUNDAY Vanguard, DECEMBER 30, 2012
Keshi gives up on Shittu S
UPER Eagles coach, Stephen Keshi has given up every hope of having Danny Shittu in his squad for the 2013 Nations Cup. Keshi had wanted the big defender in
Isima blasts Keshi over dropped Osaze, Obafemi BY JACOB AJOM
HE hornet’s nest was ruffled when one of Nigeria’s most gifted footballers, Osaze Odemwinge was left out of the 32 man preliminary list for the 2013 Afcon camp in Faro, Portugal. Osaze was not alone as other names like Obafemi Martins, Obinna Nsofor, Taye Taiwo,Uche Okechukwu, Chinedu Ogbuke Obasi among others were also not in Keshi’s list. In the face of this, Keshi has shown maturity, pleading for understanding, saying that there were a lot of competitions ahead. “I can’t take everybody to the Nations Cup,” the coach said. “We still have the World Cup and a host of other competitions.” But former Green Eagles player, Okey Isima says Keshi’s decision to drop Osaze was wrong. “He should have accommodated Osaze in the team,” Isima insisted, in a chat with Saturday Vanguard Sports. “If it was based on current form and experience, I feel Osaze should have been among the first set of invitees.”
Isima would have none of the argument that the player may have been ignored because of his antecedents and poor relationship with other players in camp. “Keshi should have found a way to manage him. Despite the stories we have been hearing about him and former national team coaches, Osaze has been a consistent performer under them,” Isima argued, pointing out that, “everybody is taking his best to the Nations Cup and Osaze, to me is good enough and Obafemi Martins too is tested. They should have been in Keshi’s team to South Africa.” He wrote off Eagles’ chances in South Africa because, “a lot of countries are going with experienced teams that have been campaigning in the Nations Cup. Countries like Cote d’ivoire, Ghana, Zambia have better chances than the Super Eagles. “Keshi is taking a young team with very talented players to the tournament but there is a limit to what they can achieve because they are yet to blend as a team.”
his team. But Shittu requested that he should be left out of the Nations Cup to enable him concentrate on helping his club Millwall in gaining promotion to the English Premier League. “Keshi has agreed Shittu can stay away from the Nations Cup after he called him,” said team spokesman Ben Alaiya. Shittu was named in the Super Eagles’ initial squad of 32 players. Millwall boss Kenny Jackett had earlier said he expected Shittu to turn down Nigeria. Shittu has not played for the Eagles since 2010. He showed some radiance in the Eagles back-line at the 2010 Nations Cup in Angola and the World Cup in South Africa where he virtually pocketed world player of the year Lionel Messi during a game against Argentina. Shittu was not invited to the Eagles by Samson Siasia who took over from Lars Lagerback nor was he invited by Keshi when he became Eagles coach in 2011.
Results …... Squeezing... Nigeria’s Ikechukwu Uche put under pressure by Ghana’s defender John Mensah. Uche is in Keshi’s list of priority players for the 2013 Nations Cup
Sunderland Aston Villa Fulham Man U. Norwich Reading Stoke Arsenal
1 0 1 2 3 1 3 7
Tottenham Wigan Swansea West Brow Man City West Ham Southampt’ Newcastle
Moses, Anichebe go head to head in ‘Blues’ battle N
igerian strikers Victor Moses and Victor Anichebe will be on opposite sides as Chelsea visit Everton today in a winner takes it all English Premier League match. Everton currently sit fifth in the table after a solid first
ACROSS 1. House of Reps Speaker (8) 5. Assistant (4) 7. Praise (5) 8. Upright (4) 9. Lantern (4) 11. Tradition (6) 13. Lagos masquerade (3) 15. Exclamation (2) 16. Pig’s nose (5) 18. Agent (3) 20. Glitters (6) 24. Forward (5) 25. Nigerian state (6) 27. Boring tool (3) 29. Ghanaian fabric (5) 31. Perform (2) 32. Oshiomhole’s state (3) 34. U.S. currency (6) 36. Vow (4) 38. Musical quality (4) 39. Inclination (5) 40. Eager (4) 41. Damages (8) SEE SOLUTION ON PAGE
DOWN 1. Sample (5) 2. Niger state town (4) 3. Observe (5) 4. Lecture (6) 5. Everyone (3) 6. Use (6) 10. Inquires (4) 12. Carpet (3) 14. Colour (6) 15. Resistance unit (3) 17. Coax (4) 19. Rollicked (6) 21. Hatchet (3) 22. Satisfied (4) 23. Nigerian state (3) 26. Cry of derision (3) 27 . African country (6) 28. Endure (4) 29. Child (3) 30. Spoke (6) 31. Adorn (5) 33. Baking chambers (5) 35. Asterisk (4) 37. Possessed (3)
half of the season and they will leapfrog Chelsea if they take all three points. Anichebe who has scored three premier league goals from eight matches is expected to lead Everton’s attack, while Moses who has started in all games under Rafa Benitez will once more strive to prove why his manager has so much faith in him. Benítez admits he is expecting a hostile reception from the Everton faithful. The Spaniard, who spent six seasons on Merseyside as Liverpool boss, is still trying to win over his own club’s fans due to perceived criticism levelled at them during his time in charge at Anfield. “I don’t think they will be supporting me the whole time but the main thing for me is that my players do their job,” he said. “I have a good relationship with people in the city and what I expect is to find a manager up there with a team who want to win.”
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