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NIGERIAâ€™S GARDEN TO CELEBRATE BOY Dr. Ebikabowei Ben & Wife Sonia
he Garden City of Port Harcourt, Rivers State's glowing Capital came alive recently with a beehive of ceremonious activity as diverse people, from far and near--and from all walks of life trudged into the city to register their presence in what turned out to be a top-notch wedding ceremony of former Niger Delta freedom fighter, Dr. Ebikabowei Victor Ben to his heartthrob, former Ms. Sonia Bola Oloruntimilehin. Back in those days when he reigned supreme in the waterways of Niger Delta's
CITY PULL-OUT THE STOPS LOAF'S GRANDIOSE MARRIAGE Coaster State of Bayelsa, to save you the hassle of attempting in futility to pronounce his Ijaw name, Ebikabowei would simply and sacredly be referred to as Boyloaf. Boyloaf was a name which was, at a point synonymous with danger; the name of a militant leader who's ranting used to send fear down the spines of both the Government and Oil multinations in the region. But, all that was before he religiously forgave and surrendered all on the alter of Federal Government's Amnesty
programme. Boyloaf, now a retired creek Marine commodore would now rather be referred to as Dr. Ebikabowei Ben, especially on a day like this when he is tying the knots with his long time girl friend, Sonia Bola who inside sources say has been engaged to him for the past eight- nine years, just before he got involved in the Oil struggle in the region. Amazingly, there are human evidences to give credence to the 9-year love story: They are Prosper Ebiere and Isabella Eniola, two products of the union. Dr. Ebikabowei's marriage
SOCIETY ceremony was not lacking in any of the trademarks that should qualify it for a societal wedding. Stratified into dimensions. His wedding festivity spanned over 3-days, starting from Friday, the 22nd of July 2011 and culminated on 24th July, 2011 being the Sunday with the dedication of 3-month old Isabella Eniola. Friday prompted the inter-ethnic traditional union between Ebikabowei's Ijaw ethnicity and Igalla-born Sonia, the enigmatic love of his life at the residence of Sonia's family in Port Harcourt. That notwithstanding, Saturday, 23rd July 2011, turned out to be the explosive day, as family, friends, associates and representatives from both the Nigerian Government, Traditional Institution and the Oil Companies, pulled-out all the stops to give the former Boyloaf --who might now be referred to as manloaf a befitting wedding ceremony. The event which commenced around 2pm at Port Harcourt's aristocratic polo club, had former State Governor of his State, DSP Alamiesiegha as the Father of the Day, Chief Alabo Graham Douglas represented Chief E.K Clarke who was Special Guest of Honour, Hon. Kingsley kuku, SA to the president on Niger Delta Affairs, Chief of Staff, Bayelsa Government House, chief Samuel Ogbuku, Wife of Deputy Governor of Bayelsa, P.Z Aginigan, Executive Director Finance & Administration, Niger Delta Development Commission and a host of others. Many Governors, notably those of Rivers and Bayelsa States sent their representatives to the event. Music aces like Timaya, Waconzy, Baba Sempe and some others were also at hand to catapult the grateful audience to another realm of ecstatic frenzy. Later that evening, guests where treated to a cuisine reception with much more music and comedy at the Wine Bar, one of the Garden City's leading taverns. The next morning, all roads led to Shepherd Hills, the Province 8 Headquarter of the Redeemed Christian Church of God for the wedding thanksgiving and dedication of Eniola, after which the reception was held at the prestigious Aristo House in GRA axis of the city.
Savouring the joyful moment
Father & Son in their well-tailored traditional Ashoke
Excitement on the faces of the couple
Sonia radiates beauty and elegance
...and the Bride arrives Soniaâ€™s parents hands her over to Boyloaf
Dollar-rain on Sonia ...with a bevy of beautiful ladies
...as Timaya thrills the audience
Boyloaf with a Guest
Former Governor of Bayelsa State, D.S.P. Alamieyeseigha steps in
His Excellency, D.S.P. Alamieyeseigha & Ann Kio-Briggs ...with Her Excellency, Mrs. Seibarugu (wife of Bayelsa State Deputy Gov.)
Alabo Graham Douglas representing Elder-Statesman, Chief E. K. Clarke
Chief Samuel Ogbuku (COS Bayelsa Govt. House) & Mr. Austin ( PA to Gov. Sylva)
Hon. Mike Ogbolosingha (L) with others from Bayelsa State
Super Eagles Coach Samson Siasia (r) & Mengay Omemu
Anyila (r) with friend
Nigeria Ex-football star, Victor Ikpeba flanked by beautiful ladies
AT THE THANKSGIVING & BABY DEDICATION SERVICE
Dr. Ebikabowei Victor Ben (Boyloaf) & wife Sonia with Baby Eniola
Officiating Minister dedicates Eniola to God
Mummy and daughter Eniola XL
Sonia & Parents
Sonia & Baby Eniola with others
Mrs. Sonia testifying in Church
Sonia with relatives & well-wishers
Sonia & friends
Boyloafâ€™s brothers Friends of Sonia
FACES OF DIGNITARIES AT THE RECEPTION
Boyloaf & wife, Sonia
Chief Ebifemowei (r)
Boyloaf with friends
Officials of Shepherd Hills, RCCG
Ace Comedians, Bishop of Comedy, Boyloaf & Dan D Humorous
...With friends Sonia with friends
Reports by: Obinna Ebogidi
Sam Loco Efe: An Iroko Has Fallen departed hero. The situation was not different when recently, the Nigerian Movie Industry, otherwise called Nollywood, lost one of its finest ambassadors, and tele-screen divas to the cold but wicked and wretched hands of death.
he death of a loved one is always accompanied with palpable angst and anguish; sorrow and sadness, and at times with much trembling. Often times the loss might be grievous, especially when the dead victim is a bread winner, in which case the family is usuallynaturally thrown into a beehive of tears. Sam Indeed, a million tears might not suffice. That notwithstanding, when the loss visits the home of a popular personality, an icon, a veteran, philanthropist and perhaps, a source of joy and hope to many, the resultant grief that follows would normally transcend the immediate, or in a more African setting, the extended family of the deceased.
What follows is an unrestrained multilateral purgation of emotions, the birthing of an ocean tears. Dirge, elegies, and epics will be written by different authors to recount some of the deeds and achievement of the XL
Thou Life stealer; you have intruded into the sacred fallow and inflicted irreparable damages on one of the best palm trees breed. Now, you have succeeded in knocking down your victim. The Iroko has finally fallen, letting out Loco's sense a loud thud!
of humour was admired by millions of his fans. And today, we can think of a man who gained exceptional fame by not courting controversy. He acted effortlessly and resonated like a haunting bar of music.
There is usually this drumbeat of lamentation; a trumpet sound of sorrowannouncing the colossal loss of the individual. And then, from the four cardinal points; the East, West, North and the South, relatives, associates, government dignitaries, friends, colleagues, admirers, wellwishers, and even professional mourners and enemies would assemble at his residence to respond to the clarion call.
Oh death! That thief that visits uninvitedly and steals our most precious assets, you have struck again. Like a merciless tyrant, you have attacked your helpless subjects, leaving us helpless, dejected, and in a pool of our own tears.
Our friend, brother, father, uncle, mentor, helper, comforter in times of sorrow, distress and misery is gone. Oh Sam Loco Efe is gone, Sergeant Okoro is no more!
The Loco who cracked jokes that made us forget about our unpaid house rents, the children's school fees, the thought that we have not had NEPA light for the past two months, the fear of having to drive through that pot-hole devastated road to the office, is gone. Permit me to a short break: I too must take some time-out to weep and wail, to bawl and blubber. In this edition of Xcel Magazine, we mourn the demise of one of Africa's best actors whom has been accurately described as â€œpolyglot, actor extraordinaire, father to many of us, an intellectual man of immense artistic statureâ€? by the National Secretary of
the Actors Guild of Nigeria, Chuma Onwudiwe. Some of his fans even doubted if he was truly dead, as he was said to have been similarly rumoured dead a few years back, only for him to bounce back hale and hearty. Be that as it may, Sam Loco Efe passed away on Sunday, August 7, 2011 in Rapport Hotel, Amakohia, Owerri. The late foremost actor and one of the founding fathers of Nollywood died at the age of 66. He was reported to have traveled to Owerri to edit a movie 'Unknown Prophet' which was shot in PortHarcourt and directed by him. Osagie Alonge writes on tweeter that on Saturday, August 6, 2011, a day before he died, the 66-year-old veteran had told his crew to grab some sleep after a long day of work, they were meant to continue the following day. The next day, the crew waited for him to continue work but after sometime decided to go wake him up from his hotel room. Upon getting there, they heard no response after repeated knocks on the door. They were forced to open the locked door to gain entry, only to find the actor dead. Former Vice President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (South -East) and a close confidant of the deceased, Steve Eboh, told the Vanguard the events that led to the actor's death. He said: "On the night before his demise, he had, as usual, exchanged banter and jokes with friends and colleagues till about 11p.m. before retiring to his room. "But the next morning when he didn't come down for breakfast, worried colleagues went knocking on his door. Of course, they knew he was inside. And when no response came, they called me. I then advised that the hotel contact the police. And when the room
stubborn as well. As I was being admitted into one, I was being expelled from another”. Back in the '90s, his biggest movie was 'SERGEANT OKORO' where he realistically portrayed an incorruptible police officer made to retire after getting wounded in the line of duty and then had to struggle to feed his large family & at the same time keep his principles and dignity in a difficult and
certainly pulled through to become a household name. He dressed the way he wanted. He hated sophistication and formality. His lifestyle was Bohemian. And this sharp mind of his, stole the hearts of his fans. Sam Loco's sense of humour was admired by millions of his fans. And today, we can think of a man who gained exceptional fame by not courting controversy. He acted effortlessly and resonated like a haunting bar of music. As we honour him today, let's not forget the invisible thread that he has tied around us his Africanness.
was eventually opened, the cold body of Sam was found on a seat in the room”.
Even as we at Xcel Magazine celebrate this noble icon of repute and some of his achievements during his lifetime, there is a sad regret which we all must share with him; this being his inability to fulfill his dream of taking a deserved rest at his Abakaliki, Ebonyi State farm house.
Loco hailed from Edo State. He once told an online medium that people misplaced his background, thinking that his surname; Efe, gave him away as a Delta man. He had explained that Efe was a Benin name, although the Urhobos popularized it. His words: 'Efe means wealth in Benin and in Urhobo, but it means cloth in Igbo. My surname is fully pronounced Efeeimwonkiyeke, meaning 'wealth has no time limit.' One can be wealthy at 90 when people must have lost hope. What actually happened was that my grandmother was having only female children and after so many years, she gave birth to my father at an old age and when he arrived, the name given to him is “you see now my wealth has finally arrived.” I later inherited this from my father as I was the last of my parent's children and the only male child”. He also recalled some memorable days of his first contact with acting and also added that he used to be a good footballer. “I was born here in Enugu, but I spent my childhood in Abakaliki and a modest attempt at becoming an actor was what triggered my passion for the stage. There was a time, Government College; Umuahia came to Abakaliki with a production. We all got so excited and I said to myself that if these men can stay on stage before a large audience and render their lines without looking into any book or script, there must be something magical about it. A few bold ones among us asked them some questions after the production and they said it was a matter of training and perseverance. So, when they left, I attempted a play that was larger than our collegiate level. I decided to produce William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. I acted Caesar and also directed it without any formal training. “I was a very good footballer and so I went to almost ten secondary schools playing football and getting scholarships here and there and I was
uns ympathetic society. Sam Loco Efe is well known for his ability to make people laugh. One trademark many of his fans would probably miss about him was his dry humour. You most likely would have noticed that whenever he made a funny remark he always had a straight face. Loco was the lead character in Nigeria's drama entry called Langbodo in FESTAC 77; a world black arts festival were the Nigerian drama contingent came-out top. In fact, only last year (2010), he was invited as the special guest of Honour at the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG Science and Literature prize where he received glowing tributes for his efforts in the FESTAC movie. Nollywood was built on the strengths of stars like Sam Loco. He was an accomplished thespian and a master of his art. He understood the aesthetics of acting and was one of those who dominated the stage, because of his mastery of what he was doing. He was a truly renaissance man, a trendsetting actor and a public figure who pioneered modernism in linguistics. He carefully cultivated a cult following, laying an enigmatic persona on a sensitive level, with a cosmopolitan mind.
Sam Loco had, in an interview with a Newswatch reporter earlier in the year (2011), said that he was planning to build a farm in Abakaliki where he intended to take a break from the rigours of film shooting and editing. He had said: “But, because I personally have been around consistently since 1960, I'm now planning to build a farm in Abakaliki where I cut my teeth, where I hope to go into aquaculture, teleculture, grasscutter farming, piggery, poultry and fishery. Although I'm from Udeni, in Uhumwode local government area of Edo State, I lived my early years in Abakaliki. By this time next year, I would have gone into semi retirement. That's to say I would now become a passive actor, not an active one. Once in a while, I will just come out and share ideas with the younger ones”. As you already know, that would never happen.
The sensation Sam Loco created for himself, was because of the way he took himself to his arts and engaged his world. He revelled in flaunting his rustic, rural comedy with an urban feel. In fact, he could play any role he was given. Though there were rough edges at the beginning of his career, he XL
Sisters Rave! Condemn the Animalists of the Gang-rape Debacle
“You people should just kill me” Those were the words of anguish that escaped the lungs of the alleged rape victim, as five guys, purported to be students of Abia State University, Uturu, took turns at sexually abusing her. Many have seen the video which has gone viral on the internet, and the shame of this poor lady will be preserved on the World Wide Web for posterity. A section of the society has shown disgust at the incident, true, but the shocking part of this whole saga has been the response of my fellow sisters. Naturally, I expected an outburst of immense proportions from the female folks, both from those in the private sector and those in government. Some actually did, and I applaud this…but I expected more. Much more than I saw. For instance, at the height of the release of the video, many people sent emails to Hon. Abike Dabiri, the famous TV journalist now member of the National Assembly. E-mails, requesting that she should to take up the matter as a female member of parliament were sent to both her personal yahoo and national assembly address. However, as at press time, not a comment has been received either from her or her official spokesperson. The closest of such from her was from Chief Dele Momodu, Publisher of Ovation Magazine, who alleged that he spoke to her and claimed that she said the girl should make herself available so she can speak to her. I didn't know Hon. Abike Dabiri had guidance counseling as part of her skills. The naivety of that request is appalling, as she showed she could not see into what a victim of rape possibly goes through; the shame, the stigma, the psychological defeat and damage. How did our dear Honorable expect this girl to crawl out of wherever she is nursing the violation of her pride and come to her willingly? Honestly, I am burnt, and disappointed. Worse still, no other female member of the National Assembly or Federal Executive Council has come out to condemn the action, even when the matter had become an issue almost everyone that has access to the Internet and newspapers knows about? Is it that these women don't have daughters at home, or they have also concluded that the victim “waka-ed anyhow” therefore, deserves what has come upon her? Is this also because she isn't the daughter of a Permanent
It could happen to your sister, daughter, and friend or worse still, it could happen to you. “God forbid!” I can hear you say. Yes! God forbid, but remember that once it is done it is done; you will never be the same again! Secretary, a Minister, or the President? In fact, that is what I really think. I think it is simply because she is an unknown daughter of a certain Mr. Nobody: Some unaccounted-for-girl probably residing in a rural village surrounding ABSU, the controversy surrounding the location of the incident, not withstanding? It is disheartening that female lawmakers and Ministers, who keep clamouring for the government to reserve 35% government positions for women, have not even moved a limb. One expected that by now a joint press conference would have been organized, where they apparently would have asked the Inspector General of Police to leave no stone unturned until those five criminals are apprehended and made to face the full wrath of the law. This is a sad commentary on a nation and her womanhood. Take as another example, the social media network, Twitter. Several shades of comments have been posted on this matter; vehemently condemning the despicable acts of these shameless men at one end, while some have preferred to hail the men as heroes. I felt intensely disgusted at this. One would have expected female members of the social network to be the ones making the loudest noise, clamouring for justice in one accord and demanding that the authorities should expedite action in the protection of their rights so as to forestall a reoccurrence. That wasn't the case here. In fact, some girls actually went as far as asking why people are making a fool of themselves and making what they referred to as unnecessary noise out of nothing. Others were of the opinion that rape is nothing new, and that any girl that got raped should suck it in and watch where she goes next time. Dear Lord have mercy! How on God's green earth will sisters ever get the respect we deserve when fellow sisters do not see anything wrong in the continual dragging of our pride in the mud. How can we get empowered if we continually get sabotaged by our kind? It is noteworthy to mention here that the Liberian female activist, Leymah Gbowee was recently honoured with the
2011 Nobel Peace Prize because of her courageous campaign against the use of rape and child soldiers in Liberia's 14year civil war. Gbowee also played very prominent role in ending the Liberian War in 2003 by organizing a sex strike during which women refused to have sexual relations with men until the end of the civil war. She forced a meeting with Taylor that opened the gates to conflict-ending talks.
Indeed no other person is in a better position to address women problems other than women themselves and the Gbowee example has equally shown that there is no mission women cannot achieve, if only they put their hearts to it. In any event, kudos must go to everyone who have taken-up this matter. I say well done, to the Minister of Youth Development, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, I say thank you very much sir for your efforts in this case. I will not forget the Governor of Abia State, Theodore Orji. God sees your efforts and will in his time give you a just reward for the way you have conducted your investigation into this dastardly act. And to the victims of rape all over Nigeria, I feel your pain, though I dare not imagine the magnitude of humiliation, shame, and loneliness you have had to endure. But stay strong, and keep your head up. Not every man is a knave, I must equally add. Many men are noble and honest and believe in the sanctity of respect to womanhood. To the disgusting five, you might be feeling funnily proud with your despicable achievement, but do not forget that the law of Karma is still at work. One day, you will have to answer for your actions and inactions here on earth. I so wish this particular act, which you televised, will be the revolution that will end the menace of rape in our motherland. And finally, to the sisters who see no reason to rally support against this dastardly act of injustice, which I consider not only against a fellow sister, but an affront against the entire womanhood, one thing I want you to understand is that August 16th 2011 might have been that sister’s turn, but it could be any other person's turn tomorrow. It could happen to your sister, daughter, and friend or worse still, it could happen to you. “God forbid!” I can hear you say. Yes! God forbid, but remember that once it is done it is done; you will never be the same again! I humbly rest my case.
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Pix by: Eke Okoro
A Splendid Evening as Sir Celestine Omehia Fetes Nigeria Law School Class 86 in Port Harcourt
His Excellency, Barr. (Sir) Celestine Omehia Former Governor of Rivers State
t was an evening of posh and style and an avenue to catch-up with some old time friends and jokes when former Rivers State Governor, Sir Celestine Ngozichim Omehia recently hosted some members of his class, being the NLS Class 86 at the prestigious Hotel Presidential in Port Harcourt. The class members in attendance, numbering about 70 took some time to reflect on their days at the Nigerian Law School and also discussed about the welfare of its members who are spread across the length and breadth of the country. Chairman of the Class, K.T Turaki (SAN) used the opportunity to inundate the Class Members about their upcoming 25 years anniversary which they collectively agreed should be elaborately celebrated. They also agreed to take-up public interest litigations as a way of engendering good governance in the country and particularly chose to fight for the justice of the over 50 Nigerians who lost their lives in the AbujaOkene road incident as part of activities to mark the Silver Anniversary. The class says it will also go to court to challenge laws that do not ameliorate the suffering of Nigerian citizens like the, Nigerian Labour law. Host of the event and Leader of the All Progressive Grand Alliance in Rivers State, Sir Celestine Omehia used the platform to tell his Class colleagues about the upcoming launching of two of his books published by Author House in the United States of America. The books are: “Dismissal In Nigeria Labour Law,” which seeks to enlighten both the Nigerian employer and the employee about their individual statutory rights and obligations and “A Right to Be Wrong: A Reflection on the Supreme Court Judgement” with a rider, Appeal to God; a promisingly explosive book which will focus on his background, political life and a special exposition on the Supreme Court judgem ent which jolted him out of the Brick House in 2007. Class 86 which is made up of lawyers, numbering about 1,700 and who were called to Bar in the year 1986 is also called the centenary class because thei r call to Bar specially coincided with the year Nigeria marked its first100 years in Legal Practice. Some Class Members who spoke to Xcel magazine shortly after the gathering appreciated Sir Celestine Omehia for affording them the opportunity to see old friends whom they have not met in a very long while. They also showered glowing praises on him for his consistent and uncompromising commitment to the growth and welfare of the Class. We now bring you some memorable highlights of the event in pictures.
Chief J. K. Gadzama SAN, K. T. Turaki SAN & His Excellency, Sir Celestine Omehia
Hon. Justice Margret Apomiemie (L)
Other members at the High Table with Chief Duro Adeyele SAN Hon. Justice Margret Apomiemie
Hon. Justice M. Ayimieye XL
Barr. (Mrs.) Akaka Barr. Paul Akubo (SAN)
Hon. Justice Boma Diepin (2nd right) & others
Barr. Akaka, Barr. Chinwe Izegbu (standing) & Justice Grace Irikefe
Barr. R. N. Godwin (standing) with others
Barr. Idaimoh Richard-Koko & Barr. Nelson Nworgu
Barr. (Mrs.) Ezinwa Okoroafor & Barr. (Mrs.) Funmi Oluyide
Barr. Chinwe Izegbu (r)
AT HIS EXCELLENCYâ€™S G.R.A RESIDENCE
Barristers, Dennis Dema, Thelma Osammor, Celestine Omehia & Ezinwa Okoroafor
Alhaji Tukur & K. T. Turaki SAN
Chief Gadzama SAN, Chinwe Izegbu & Celestine Omehia
XCEL Publisher, Barth Emuekpere with Sir. Celestine Omehia
Hon. Justice Grace Irikefe, Chief J. K. Gadzama SAN & Thelma Osammor
Barr. Akaka & Hon. Justice M. Ayimieye
Thelma Osammor in a handshake with Chinwe Izegbu
Chief Duro Adeyele SAN (L)
Mohammed Monguno (r) XL
Alhaji Tukur with others wine & dine
Moving Up The Ladder
EMMANUEL AMEH email@example.com
DON'T BURST YOUR BUBBLE When you define your dream in life, many things will rush in to burst your bubble. Dream deflators are destructive behaviours that are part of each one of us, behaviours that we have to fight to overcome. Let's consider about six serious dream deflators: THE QUICK FIX MENTALITY cannot give you the formula for success, dreams because they are not connected Your dreams will never come true if you but I can give you the formula for failure to the people that can help them. We have a quick fix attitude. The attitude which is tried to please everybody”. need good relationships to help us grow, that you can't wait, you can't be patient, Avoid the trap of people pleasing. Some to enable us to see ourselves honestly, you don't have time to work hard and people won't like your dream. That's ok. and to give us encouragement. Don't be pay your dues, It is your dream, not so focused on yourself and your dream “l cannot give you the and you have to theirs and you need that you fail to work on your have everything formula for success, but I nobody's permission to relationships. A lot of marriages fail for right now. It is a can give you the formula fulfill your dream. the simple reason that those involved in dream deflator. for failure which is tried it don't work at it. So while you reach The principle of THE TRAP OF DECEIT your dream, make sure that at least to please everybody”. d e l a y e d You need the alliance of part of your dream involves your wife, gratification is other people to help your husband your children, your vital to the fulfillment of your dream. friends. you reach your dreams and build your goals into success and reality. Many people T h e n You must get rid of your quick fix You need their trust. Integrity m o r e are working importantly, you need mentality if you want your dreams to therefore becomes a major factor to work. You must have a long range vision fulfill your dream. When you hard on things t o d e v e l o p a to stick to your dream. If your goal is to manipulate the truth and people relationship also with that don't become wealthy, don't think it's going to can't trust you any longer, your God. Through Jesus count. You happen overnight. If you're trying to dream will burst. Christ, you need to become a good father and husband involve God in your life have been don't think that a few days of change The worst form of deceit is to lie to pumping away and let Him give you behaviour will turn around years of yourself. Most people deny the great dreams to strive and not neglecting your wife and children. Are truth; they don't tell them selves after and to achieve for you willing to shut down your need for the honest truth about their building on his glory. When you fail immediate gratification in order to wait situation. They have loads of in relationships, you your own for your dream to come true? Quick-fix excuses for the way they are. Lying will fail in reaching future. mentality will deflate your dreams. your dream. to yourself about the reality of your present situation is a THE TRAP OF PEOPLE WASTING ENERGY ON WHAT Let me suggest serious dream deflator. PLEASING DOESN'T REALLY MATTER Not everyone will be something; turn PLAYING THE BLAME GAMES Many people are working hard on things excited about your off your TV. You play the blame game that don't count. You have been dream. Some people will Instead, read w h e n e v e r y o u l o o k f o r pumping away and not building on your feel threatened because something or someone else own future. You need energy to drive some great you're going somewhere whom you can blame for you your dream. Don't ever waste that with your life, and they books, read the failure. You waste tremendous energy and vitality on stuff that doesn't are not. Some will not bible. Fill your energy pouring the blame onto count. Always work for what matters. agree with your dream other people which drains you Let me suggest something; turn off your life with stuff and and criticize you for alienates people from you TV. Instead, read some great books, that will help the people you need to make read the bible. Fill your life with stuff striving for something they don't agree with. If you gain weight your dream come true. Take that will help you gain weight you let this naysayer responsibility. If it is going to be spiritually, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, inside your head, you'll it's up to you. psychologically and financially. Don't mentally, never achieve success. be a feather weight. Travel more; give You'll never attain your emotionally, L A C K O F P O S I T I V E yourself to a tremendous purpose in dream. your life. Wasting energy on what don't RELATIONSHIP psychologically Many people fail to achieve their count is a dream deflator. Stop it. Herbert Swope said “l and financially.
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...Celebrating People, Events & Places
S a n u s i L a m i d o . . . O n t h e T h r e s h o l d o f H i s t o r y W
hatever opinion you may hold about it, it is clear that Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has influenced the news, for good or ill, this year. Despite the litany of controversy that has surrounded some of the policies he introduced to the apex bank in recent times, one cannot successfully take the shine away from CBN under the leadership of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, which has, within the last few months, released a series of fiscal policies in the banking sector to strengthen the financial system by pushing up the interest rates on deposits and loans. Encumbered with a banking structure bedeviled in the murky waters of financial scandals and illicit misappropriation of customers' deposits, the Nigeria's apex bank which is charged with the responsibility of administering the Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BOFI) Act (1991) as amended, with the sole aim of ensuring high standards of banking practice and financial stability through its surveillance activities, as well as the promotion of an efficient payment system in the country, set out to sanitize the system and restore the h o p e o f Nigerians and f o r e i g n investors on t h e reliability of t h e country's commercial banks.
in one form of policy formulation, reconstruction and at times, revaluation, in an attempt to make our banks stronger and insulated against incessant financial crashes occasioned by unexpected hypothetical global economic recession. Though the bank's helmsman insists that there is still a lot to do to position the country's banking system for greater economic value, one cannot, at this point, pay lip service to the notable achievements of the bank prompted by some courageous policies and decisions taken by the Sanusi-led regime on behalf of the Nigerian Government and its people. What readily comes to mind in this regard is the series of banking reforms that has been embarked by the apex bank which has led to the rescue of some hitherto troubled banks and saved Nigerian depositors from mental and psychological tsunami. In August 2009, the Sanusi led Central Bank of Nigeria bailed out Afribank, Intercontinental Bank, Union Bank, Oceanic Bank and Finbank with 400 billion naira of public money after it was discovered that the banks were almost at the brink of collapse. That led to the dismissal and prosecution of their chief executives. The bank repeated the same feat this year when it hurriedly rushed to rescue some failing and falling commercial banks and spearheaded the merger of some of them with the appointment of seasoned technocrats for them, in order to save the hard earned deposits of Nigerians. An international Financial Magazine only recently gave insight into how the Nigerian banking reform experience could provide lessons for other continents, especially Europe, that are still grappling with their own financial crisis. As it is, Nigeria has already began to enjoy the fruits of Sanusiâ€™s labour against financial ineptitude in the sector with the recent recovery of over 200 houses in the United Arab Emirates, United States and South Africa belonging to the chief executive officers of the failed commercial banks in Nigeria. The CBN said the houses were recovered when operatives took offshore its searchlight for the assets of the deposed bank chiefs.
To this end, the apex bank under the administr The CBN Act of 2007 of the Federal G o v e r n o r , C e n t r a l B a n k o f N i g e r i a ation of Republic of Nigeria charges the Bank Sanusi with the overall control and has been, administration of the monetary and involved financial sector policies of the Federal
S a n u s i L a m i d o S a n u s i
Government. The objects of the CBN are to ensure monetary and price stability; issue legal tender currency in Nigeria; maintain external reserves to safeguard the international value of the legal tender currency; promote a sound financial system in Nigeria; and act as Banker and provide economic and financial advice to the Federal Government. It will be recalled that the Nigerian apex bank recently threw the nation on a seemingly religious divide when Sanusi announced the plan of the bank to introduce Islamic banking; a financial system based on principles of Islamic business jurisprudence. Supporting its guidelines for Islamic banking operations as an issue of nonbias, the CBN said it recognized two types of non-interest banking: non-interest financial products and services based on principles of Islamic commercial jurisprudence, as well as financial products and services based on any other established rules and principles. It, however, promised to issue guidelines pertinent to other types of banking to individuals and groups wishing to practice non-interest banking based on established rules and principles other than Islamic Islamic banking has the same purpose as conventional banking, which is to make money for the banking institute by lending out capital. Since Islam forbids simply lending out money at interest, Islamic rules on transactions have been created to avoid this problem. In an Islamic mortgage transaction, instead of loaning the buyer money to purchase the item, a bank might buy the item itself from the seller, and re-sell it to the buyer at a profit, while allowing the buyer to pay the bank in installments. However, the bank's profit cannot be made explicit and, therefore, there are no additional penalties for late payment. To protect itself against default, the bank asks for strict collateral. Non-interest Banking, however, is not restricted to Islamic Banking. It includes other variants of non-interest banking not based on Islamic principle. Although Islamic banking has been on the statutes of the apex bank for over half a century, this is the first time the modalities are being worked out to put it into practice. Islamic banking has been in the works since the regime of the immediate past governor of the CBN, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo. The incumbent governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, is only implementing what he met on ground. Coincidentally and unlike the propaganda speculated by some misinformed religious fanatics, the deputy CBN governor, Financial Surveillance, Babatunde Lemo, who is responsible for working out the modalities of Islamic Banking, is a Pastor. Modest as it is, it will not be appropriate to highlight the achievements of the apex bank without giving credit to some
personalities who have been very instrumental to the formulation and execution of the reforms which has now become the hallmark of the Nigerian banking sector. It is necessary to point out, though, that without the courage and firmness of an administrator like the bank's governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, even in the face of daunting disapproval from forces who do not mean well for the country, the banking sector would probably still be helplessly swimming in an ocean of financial mismanagement and recklessness. It is true that Sanusi's critics are legion, add his recent threat that more former bank Managing Directors would be jailed for corruption; but so are his admirers. Such has been Sanusi's consistent stewardship in form of strong reforms in the bank sector that he has been able to attract international attention and recognition to himself. Recently, an international magazine -Emerging Markets honoured the apex bank helmsman with a prestigious award which he won also last year. As the story went, the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, for the second time in two years, emerged the winner of the 2011 Central Bank Governor of the year for Sub-Saharan Africa. A statement from the Head of Corporate Communications, CBN, Mr. Mohammed Abdullahi, quoted the Editor of Emerging Markets, Mr. Taimur Ahmad, to have explained that the firm recognizes and honours leading policy makers in each region as adjudged by its editorial team. This he further explained is done by taking into account, the views of leading regional experts. The Emerging Markets awards, an annual event alongside the International Monetary Fund (IMF)/World Bank annual meetings, was held on Saturday, 24th September, 2011 in Washington D.C. and attended by Central Bank Governors, Finance Ministers and Bank Chief Executive Officers from across Latin America, Africa, Middle East and Asia.
sector reform agenda, while having the courage to draw attention to corruption and misuse of funds,” he added. In his acceptance speech, Sanusi was also quoted to have attributed his performance to the collective efforts of the entire CBN staff, the support of the Federal Government and the members of the National Assembly. Truly, this aristocrat has restored substantial sanity to the banking sector such that, today, bankers have to think twice in taking lending decisions while businessmen/women and customers are now wary of taking loans without paying back. There is also Dr. Kingsley Chiedu Moghalu, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria in charge of the Financial System Stability (FSS) Directorate. He is responsible for the implementation of farreaching reforms to enhance the quality and stability of banks and other financial institutions, and supervises the following Departments of the Central Bank of Nigeria: Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Banking Supervision Department, Other Financial Institutions Supervision Department, and the Development Finance Department. Other members of the Board of Directors are Mr. Tunde Lemo, Deputy Governor, Operations Directorate, Dr. Sarah Alade Deputy Governor, Economic Policy, and Alhaji Suleiman Barau, Deputy Governor, Corporate Services Directorate. The CBN's Non-executive Board Members include Chief (Dr.) Joshua O. Omuya, Prof. Samuel O. Olofin Mallam Dahiru Muhammad, Stephen Osagiede Oronsaye, Mr. Danladi Kifasi and Mr. Jonah Ogunniyi Otunla. In addition to its core functions, CBN has over the years performed some major developmental functions, focused on all the key sectors of the Nigerian economy (financial, agricultural and industrial sectors). These mandates are carried out by the Bank through its various departments. All in all, judging by the journey so far, there is no doubt that the Sanusi-led team is desirous of weathering the Storm with dogged commitment and writing their names in tablets of gold.
According to Ahmad, Sanusi was honoured for the second year running “for his strong policy track record and continued bold reforms in monetary policy over the past year.” “Central Bank of Nigeria, under Governor Sanusi's stewardship, H a s consistently been ahead of the curve. Governor Sanusi has a l s o continued to push through a C B N B u i l d i n g , A b u j a radical financial XL
World's Most-Visited Attractions here we choose to spend our vacation says a lot about our value, taste and lifestyle. Nigerians may not be the best fun-seekers in the world, not with the lingering global economic crisis. That notwithstanding, we definitely rank amongst some of the best fun seeking people in the world.
here. Times Square can even be a convenient, if chaotic, base, thanks to hotels at every price point and easy access to public transportation: subways, rails, buses, and more yellow taxis than you can count. The Times Square is the world's busiest tourist site, playing host to over 39,200,000 visitors every year.
Fortunately, the Creator was quite benevolent to our country which only turned 51 a couple of weeks back, by depositing some very amazing sites of tourist's attraction in the country which attracts fun seekers from different time zones in the world. There are for instance, the Stone Cycle, Obudu Cattle Ranch and Tinapa in Cross Rivers State, the Kanji Dam, Yankari Games Reserve, to mention a few.
2. CENTRAL PARK, NEW YORK CITY
Be that as it may, this piece will not be dwelling on sites of tourist attractions in Nigeria. Rather it seeks to inform our dear readers about the world's ten most-visited tourist attractions. International tourist arrivals were up 6.6 percent in 2010, according to the World Tourism Organization. China ousted Spain as the third most-visited country with 55.7 million foreign arrivals, while France and the U.S. held tight to their first- and second-place rankings. To tally up the world's most-visited attractions, we gathered the most recent data supplied by the attractions themselves or from government agencies, industry reports, and reputable media outlets. So what is the most-visited tourist attraction in the world? And can 39.2 million people be wrong? Read on to see the results.
The Central Park plays host to over 38,000,000 tourists annually. New York has larger green spaces, but none is more famous than Central Park, which stretches across nearly 850 acres of prime Manhattan real estate, an oasis for both tourists and locals. You can ride in one of the famous horse-drawn carriages; check out the modest-size zoo; climb to the top of 19th-century Belvedere Castle; or take a break from pounding the pavement to sprawl on the Great Lawn, gazing at the skyscrapers above. 3. UNION STATION, WASHINGTON, D.C.
1. TIMES SQUARE, NEW YORK CITY Times Square Union Station
Tourists flock to New York's neon heart for the flashing lights, Broadway shows, megastores, and sheer spectacle. Pedestrian-only areas with cafĂŠ tables introduced in 2009 have only made it easier and more appealing to hang out
Opened in 1907, this busy station shuttles some 12,500 passengers daily in and out of the city. But it also handles serious tourist traffic: 37 million who pass through to take in the impeccably mixed architectural styles throughout the colossal building: from Classical to Beaux-Arts to Baroque. More than 70 retail outlets make Union Station a shopping destination, and it's also a jumping-off point for many D.C. tours. It hosts over 37,000,000 tourists annually.
4. LAS VEGAS STRIP Sin City was hit hard by the recession, but don't bet against this legendary destination, which got a boost from the summer 2009 blockbuster The Hangover. Last year, 79 percent of tourists (29,467,000 people) chose to stay at hotels right on the Strip like Caesar's Palace the choice
of the movie's zany four-pack. And why not? Roll out of bed and onto the Strip to catch the Bellagio fountains in action, shop, gamble, and, of course, people-watch (which can get especially fun later at night).
5. NIAGARA FALLS, NEW YORK AND ONTARIO Straddling the borders of the U.S. and Canada, this massive waterfall spills about six million cubic feet of water from a height ranging from 70 to 188 feet every single minute. While there are about 500 taller waterfalls in the world, Niagara Niagara Falls Falls is spectacular for its sheer power. It's also more accessible than many major falls, a short flight or drive for millions of regional tourists. The Niagara Falls ranks 5th with 22,500,000 annual visitors.
6. GRAND CENTRAL TERMINAL, NEW YORK CITY Unlike harried commuters, visitors take their time in the main concourse of this BeauxArts landmark, pausing to view its glittering Ariel view of Grand ceiling Central Terminal painted with a map of the constellations from the night sky. There are shops and events to distract your attention, and, a level below, the historic Oyster Bar featured on an episode of AMC's Mad Men serves two million fresh bivalves a year. It ranks 6th with a turn-over of 21,600,000 visitors yearly.
7. FANEUIL HALL MARKETPLACE, BOSTON We now make a trip to a special market in Boston. Dating back to 1742, Faneuil Hall (“the Cradle of Liberty”) an annual
host to 18,000,000 visitors, once hosted speeches by such greats as Samuel Adams and George Washington. Today, the downtown marketplace has more than 100 specialty shops and Faneuil Hall Marketplace eateries and occupies a pedestrian-only, cobblestone area that swarms with tourists and street performers.
8. DISNEY WORLD'S MAGIC KINGDOM, ORLANDO The Most Magical Place on Earth is high on virtually every family's to-do list and remains the most-visited theme park on the earth. The Kingdom's most notable feature, naturally, is Cinderella's Castle complete with a moat and built at special angles to appear even grander than its actual height of 189 feet. Paths branch out to classic rides (Dumbo, the Mad Tea Party) and newer additions like The Pirates of Disney World’s Magic Kingdom the Caribbean. Disney World's Magic Kingdom is placed 8th with an impressive 16,972,000 visitors every year. 9. DISNEYLAND PARK, ANAHEIM, CA Though not as massive as its Orlando counterpart, the original Disney Park which occupies about 85 acres of land welcomes enough thrill-seekers to qualify as the second most-visited theme park in the world. One of its coolest rides is still Indiana Jones Disneyland Park Adventure, careening over lava, past swarms of beetles, and under that 16-foot rolling boulder. CA's Disneyland's Park, a host to over 15, 980,000 visitors annually, settles for the 9th position. 10. GRAND BAZAAR, ISTANBUL Hand-painted ceramics, lanterns, intricately patterned carpets, copperware, gold Byzantine-style jewelry, and more eye-catching products vie for your attention within this 15th-century bazaar's vaulted walkways. It has since expanded and become increasingly touristy, but locals, too, were among 2010's 15 million bargain-hunters. If it all gets overwhelming, break for a succulent doner kebab or strong cup of Turkish coffee. This dazzling tourist site comes 10th with a turnover of 15,000,000 visitors Grand Bazaar yearly.
Ready to start your own business?
Vital Steps to Success Here are some facts that prevent most beginners from ever reaching that goal, and what you need to get started. The main question lies in the fact of whether you have what it takes to run a business?
sooner. Find out what it is you enjoy. Don't always go with what your heart tells you in business, or you may not survive. Be truthful and realistic with yourself when deciding your business. Be sure that you WILL NOT LOSE MONEY. If you LOSE money from your business, then it's pointless to start in the first place.
ake the first steps now to further than can be imagined. Imagine starting your own business for a second that all of your bills are fully a n d g e t s t a r t e d r i g h t paid, but don't stop there. Imagine all of immediately. The first rule is your bills are paid for the next 5 years self motivation. This is a key without a blink of an eye. Owning your Figure out what you want out of life. factor to getting started, so please don't own home, and maybe a beach house or What is your primary goal? What type of pass it off. You must motivate yourself to two. Drive anything you want, because it schedule do you require? You can find take action in your life by redirecting and didn't even chip your bank account to the easy life, if you dig deep enough. Do maintaining your attitude and ambition. purchase it. Basically, how far do you you have easy access to get started right want to go? Would this now? Be sure that you know exactly What drives you to push yourself to the limit when the â€œMoney management be considered greed? what you are plunging yourself into. chance arises? Is it your is VERY important. If Absolutely! That is the "Don't sink with a ship that has a nearr e a s o n f o r r a p i d l y sighted captain". What is the history of family, friends, certain e n v i r o n m e n t s , t i g h t you cannot control advancing technology, the businesses in the particular market schedules, love, or maybe your money, then you health-care drugs for that you're researching and what even the initial goal on will need to learn better longer survival and strategies were they using. You must everyone's mind - Money? patience. Patience with b e t t e r h e a l t h , a n d find out whether the profit potential is amazing opportunities endless? ...or does it have a cap-off point Whatever thrives you the most is what you need to money earned will keep that are available to the as well. How much time and work is it keep your mind set on you from losing it all, general public. going to take to setup and ultimately during the initial setup. This after it's been madeâ€? operate? Be sure to keep plenty of "you" is what can destroy a vast Money Management: time for yourself. You don't have to work majority of new business This is VERY important. 24 hours a day to achieve your goals. owners during the preparation process. If you cannot control your money, then Residual income is the key to making Don't ever lose sight on what is pushing you will need to learn better patience. effortless money and obtaining your your ambition to rise above. Patience with money earned will keep rightful financial freedom. Make your you from losing it all, after it's been business work for you, instead of the Attitude and Confidence. If you don't made. Control yourself, and control your other way around. Remember, you are have a strong business attitude, then money. Set your daily, weekly and the driver. You have the control to stop, you will not survive in the business monthly budget and enforce it! If you go, and turn things around at any given world. Be willing to do what it takes to cannot control your funds now, then point. You can start a business for less succeed and don't make room for start today and write a strict budget. than twenty thousand Naira and turn it excuses. Excuses don't get the job done. Keep your goals in mind into a multi-million Naira If something needs to be initiated, or always, so you don't Be truthful and realistic success. So, do your completed, then just do it and do it right. m a k e e x t r a v a g a n t research properly! This is where confidence comes into purchases that were not with yourself when play. You must be confident, but not necessary. If you do reach deciding your business. S c h e d u l i n g y o u r preferably OVER-confident in your high goals and use your Be sure that you WILL Business Plan: Write it, or journey to succeed. If you have money accordingly with type it, and record it. This NOT LOSE MONEY absolutely no confidence in yourself, i n v e s t i n g , o r o t h e r will take some time to then get some fast. Everyone can have resources, then you will think over and it definitely ambition to succeed given the correct have plenty of time to should. You should not rush this incentive and measurements. Make your "throw your money around". So, be sure process by any means, since it will be own destiny! Don't wait for it to knock your budget is set and let's move on to YOU taking the action which will result you down when you're not looking. You the next step. in the overall consequences or rewards. can take control and decide your fate for Figure out how much money you want to yourselves. Ambition is locked away in Research, Research, Research! This is earn on a periodic basis, and be sure to everyone's mind, so whatever it is you probably one of the MOST important set your goals into a progressive mode. need to unlock that particular door, get it steps that you are going to take in your Once you've reached this point, you will done. Clear your head from standard business planning. Do your research need to keep site of your goals and realize issues that will prevent you from thoroughly and make absolutely sure you are the ONLY one that is going to succeeding for your future. that your knowledge will cover make the difference. Time is much too e v e r y t h i n g y o u n e e d t o k n o w . important to waste in any circumstance, Goal Setting: Now, set your mind to goal Information is the most valuable so be very careful with your decision setting for a minute. What we want to do commodity and most everything you'll making performance. Always take care here is figure out what sort of goals need to know can be easily obtained of your well-being. Your health always you're looking to get out of life. Where online right now. Find out exactly what plays an important role when you are would you like to be right now? How you need to be happy in your life, and set taking a new leap in life. much money do you want to earn every your mind to it. What do you have easy week, month, or year? Have you reached access to? There may be many things Take care for now and good luck finding 50% of your goals yet? This is a critical right under your nose that you will kick your success! step in inspiration to push your agenda yourself later for not thinking about it