Saturday, September 30, 2017

South East Governors, IPOB And Politics Of 2019

By Nnedi Ogaziechi
These are not the best of times for Ndigbo. The people under reference are the very ordinary people in villages, clans and streets of major capitals of the five states in the region. These are the people that are literarily hanging on the edge of the precipice. The IPOB discourse seems to have created a deeply blurry view of who those to be held accountable really are.
*South East Governors and Leaders meet with
IPOB Leader, Mr. Nnamdi Kanu
It is politically safe to blame the federal government for marginalization, to complain about lack of federal presence as regards the chronic absence of infrastructure in the region since the end of the civil war. But then, IPOB comes on the scene and the governors are somewhat glad for the seeming ‘alibi’ for lack of a strong regional economic plan for development of both human and natural resources that the region has in amazing abundance.
Since 1999, there has  been several economic summits, conferences and fairs by both independent and state economic think tanks. Most of these conferences had been targeted at educating governors from the region to form a stronger regional bond that would be beneficial to the region economically, socially and even politically.
The idea has always been that if the governors of the region can manage to look beyond politics and think of development of the region for the people, there must be a coordinated and deliberate effort by governors of the five states to harness to the maximum the resources available to the states which by the way had worked in the past with the past visionary leaders of the region.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Why I Joined IPOB: The Elite Vis-à-Vis The “Crazy Youths”

By Nathaniel I. Ndiokwere
 Preamble
I was the senior prefect of Bishop Shanahan College (BSC) Orlu that final year and there was an important Mc’Nulty Soccer Final March between BSC and College of Immaculate Conception (C.I.C) Enugu, the two giant and prestigious colleges those days, East of the Niger. In the field of soccer competition BSC and CIC used to be great ‘enemies’. The Rev. Brother Lewis, the principal as well as the BSC soccer master or coach, just to demonstrate ‘holy disapproval’ of what was called those days ‘rough play’ and misconduct in the soccer field, did something students thought was an abomination. And on account of the principal’s action, BSC witnessed the biggest students’ riot in history.
*Msgr. Nathaniel Ndiokwere
Though not the referee, Rev. Brother Lewis decided to call for the expulsion of the BSC most important brilliant defense player, aka ‘Tiger’ from the field . BSC students and soccer fans could not understand the madness of the white Scottish principal! BSC continued the march with ‘minus one player!
Let me cut the long story short!
BSC was defeated by the visiting team and for the first time in the history of the College the students rioted, singing war songs and threatened to set buildings on fire. They went out of control and sang songs : “Lewis must go. Lewis in a criminal. Death to the Scottish pig!”

Restructuring Nigeria: Decentralisation For National Cohesion

By John Nnia Nwodo
Paper presented by President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo at Chatham House, London, on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 
Let me begin by extending my deep sense of gratitude to the Royal Institute of International Affairs, for inviting me to participate in this current series of discussions on Next Generation Nigeria: Accountability and National Cohesion. The involvement of this reputable British Institute in discussing and proffering suggestions for extant Nigeria’s problems is not only commendable, but I believe most relieving for the British establishment, who must understandably feel a deep sense of vicarious responsibility for putting together a country confronted with such grim future.
 
*John Nnia Nwodo
Nigeria became a united British colony by the amalgamation of its Northern and Southern Protectorates in 1914. In 1960 it attained independence, fashioned a federal Constitution which had three and subsequently four regions as its federating units. The pre-1960 and the 1963 constitutions of Nigeria were fashioned by the people of Nigeria as represented by the leaders of their ethnic nationalities. The coup of January 1966 and the counter-coup of the same year occasioned by ethnic tensions and disagreements within the military-led our country to disastrous consequences.

Our first Prime Minister, Rt. Hon Tafawa Balewa and the then premier of Northern Nigeria, Sir Ahmadu Bello, as well as the then Minister for Finance Festus Okotie-Eboh, were murdered. A massive pogrom was unleashed on South Eastern Nigerians living in the Northern Nigeria. A sitting Head of State from the South East, Major General Aguiyi Ironsi and a governor from the South West Col. Adekunle Fajuyi were murdered. The military suspended our 1963 constitution and adopted a unitary system of government to fit their command and control structures. Opposition to this move by Southern Nigeria led to constitutional talks in Aburi, Ghana. The agreements reached at Aburi were jettisoned. War broke out and claimed more than three and a half million lives mostly from the South East.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Lai Mohammed Says US Non-Recognition Of IPOB As A Terrorist Group Is Unfortunate

Minister of Information, Mr. Lai Mohammed, said in a British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) interview in London on Wednesday that the refusal of the United States’ government to classify the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist organization was “very unfortunate”.
*Lai Mohammed 
“That’s very unfortunate because if countries decide to pick and choose which organizations are terrorists and which are not, bearing in mind that terrorism has no boundaries, I think what we should do is, every country should work together to ensure that terrorism does not strive,” Mr. Mohammed told the BBC.

Nigeria: Is The Past The Future?

By Paul Onomuakpokpo
Since the failure of the President Muhammadu Buhari government became intolerably manifest, a noticeable feature of discourse in the public space is its polarisation. In one camp are those who argue that the present status quo is precisely what the country needs and in the opposing camp are those who seek its replacement with a political system that existed in the past. Indeed, the Buhari’s years have been marked by the citizens’ hankering for the past and the rejection of the present. Having appropriated the past as the only means of corporate survival, they want to make it not only the anchor for the present but also the future.

Clearly, we are not witnessing this laudation of the past for the first time. Ever since the oil boom evaporated and the country has been afflicted with a governance crisis, the Nigerian people have often sought to recover a past that they consider a golden era. They do not seek the co-opting of only some useful values from the past into the enrichment of the present and the future. No, they want a wholesale displacement of the past with the present and the future. In this regard, their march to their collective destiny has often been disrupted by prolonged moments of contemplation of the desirability of replacing their present with the past. 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Dancing Python And The Smiling Crocodile

By SOC Okenwa

The reckless militarization of the South-East and South-South geopolitical zones of Nigeria never started today nor yesterday. The federal government has been accused in the past - and present - of treating Igboland as a conquered territory. I remember when I travelled back home in 2013 and was driving from Onitsha to Benin City I had encountered a monstrous 'go-slow' just before the Niger Bridge head. From Upper Iweka Road towards the major entry and exit point to and from the South-East I spent several hours in the artificial gridlock that stretched well over a kilometer! It was a disgusting, suffocating spectacle to behold as motorists heading towards the bridge were forced to drive at a snail’s speed. The heavily-armed soldiers were directing traffic and monitoring every vehicle that passed by, parking some for verification of documents or passengers or waving off others.
*Burutai and Buhari 
And again traveling from my hometown of Ihiala to Port Harcourt a few days earlier, I had met some gun-wielding military and paramilitary officers posted to mount roadblocks on the ever-busy Onitsha/Owerri Expressway. After an altercation with the officers at one of the many checkpoints, I wondered if in the northern states some Igbo soldiers or policemen could be drafted and allowed to do what the predominantly northern military elements were doing on our roads in 'Biafraland.' Or was that the price to pay for losing out in the 1967-70 pogrom? Was it a harsh reminder of defeat?

The ongoing Operation Python Dance 2 in the South-East and the imminent relaunching of Operation Crocodile Smile in the South-South areas of the embattled country are not only provocative but intimidatory. The so-called "show of force" is a show of shame that advertises our country to the outside world as a nation with the jackboot mentality. It is primarily meant to intimidate the people and silence them. We hold that in a democracy such an anti-constitutional demonstration of crude force that believes in 'crush-crush' policy in a time of relative peace is uncalled for and unnecessary.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Atiku Is A Scoundrel, A Bloody Nonentity...He Thinks He Will Become President By Insulting The North – Junaid Mohammed

*Atiku Abubakar 
Second Republic lawmaker, Dr. Junaid Mohammed, has dismissed former vice president, Atiku Abubakar as “a scoundrel and a bloody nonentity” who is nursing the false hope that “by insulting the north,” he would finally actualize his ambition to become Nigeria’s president.

Junaid’s remarks came in response to Atiku’s interview published in the Daily SUN on Monday (September 25, 2017) where he said that those scared by the widespread calls for the restructuring of Nigeria “must be lazy” people.

“We fought the civil war with the Igbo. Today, the Igbo have been completely rebuilt, but we still find mud houses in the north. Is it the fault of the easterners that the north is like that?” the former vice president said.

Remembering Christopher Okigbo Fifty Years On

By Kola Omotoso
Mbari Club was a natural draw for an aspiring writer. Situated a mere street walk from Mokola Roundabout, past the ancient Palm Chemist and you were there in the midst of Chinua Achebe, Ulli Beier, Amos Tutuola, Wole Soyinka, Duro Ladipo and Christopher Okigbo. Lindsay Barrett had arrived from Kingston Jamaica via London perhaps. Poetry published in their journal Black Orpheus was available at the counter bookstall. There was a bar somewhere at the back and a small performance and rehearsal stage, again somewhere in the two-storey building.
*Christopher Okigbo and Chinua Achebe



It was my second year as an undergraduate at the University of Ibadan. Student Union activities had been part of the life since my closest friend Ladipo was running for PRO of the student union government. Nigerian electoral politics was boiling over. The Action Group had imploded and the federal government of Ahmadu Bello in collusion with SLA Akintola had put Obafemi Awolowo out of action away in prison in Calabar for treasonable felony. Of course, nobody in Western Region believed any of this fable about treasonable felony. Awolowo as far as the region was concerned was still very much in action.
The federal elections of 1964 came and went. It was heavily rigged in the Western Region ensuring victory for the Akintola party now in alliance with Ahmadu Bello’s Northern People’s Party (jamiatu mutenen arewa). 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Time For Buhari To Reshuffle His Cabinet

By Oshineye Victor Oshisada
“Time changes everything,” was the title of Tummy Duncan’s song, recorded by Miki & Griff of Pye UK Recording. Truth to tell, there is time for everything and, indeed, “time changes everything.” There is the time for a motor driver to change the gear for effective acceleration; he cannot maintain the same gear for too long in the old manual gear lever. A school headmaster or principal changes his teachers for effectiveness, or even requests for his transfer to another school, if it is necessary to do so.
*President Buhari and his Cabinet 
In the same vein, I am inclined to reason that it is time for President Muhammadu Buhari to reshuffle his cabinet. But because sometimes not all the ministers are included in a cabinet, I shall generalise by the use of “ministerial reshuffle,” instead of “cabinet re-shuffle.” Be that as it may, the phrases can be used alternatively. President Muhammadu Buhari’s ministers came on board after the elections of 2015. The size of a cabinet can be large or small, depending on political and economic circumstances. Invariably, in war-time, cabinet size is small. For instance, during the Nigerian civil war of 1966 to 1970, General Yakubu Gowon, under Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s directives, himself an astute political leader with stickler for discipline, maintained modest cabinet size. Ministries were combined in one person -- Chief Anthony Enahoro, another shrewd politician, had the unique opportunity, variously holding Information, Labour, and External Affairs portfolios.

Contending With Upsurge Of Rape Cases

By Rasak Musbau
In recent times, the Nigerian media has reported the increasing frequency of rape cases across the country. The upsurge, especially of gang rapes and rapes of girls by miscreants, relatives and neighbours, should rightly become a source of concern to all. Though a global phenomenon, appalling side to our experience of its menace here has to do with impunity of the perpetrators, lackluster response of justice administrators and absence of institutional supportive system to help the victims. 

Perhaps more worrisome is the fact that large numbers of suspected rapists roam freely on the streets after committing the heinous act. Equally bothersome is that the act has now assumed a new dimension whereby victims are sometimes gang raped in broad daylight with crowds hanging around as mute spectators of a salacious drama while victims are groped, stripped and assaulted. Another sad aspect is that victim is occasionally blamed while little is done concerning our apparently weak law.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Nigeria: Understanding Restructuring Aright

By Arthur Agwuncha Nwankwo
Given the renewed momentum and calls for the restructuring of Nigeria, I am not surprised that it has dominated media headlines both in the one print and electronic media. Recently, I was watching and listening to a programme where the discussants dwelt extensively on the economy and what should be done. One thing that actually interested me was the various suggestions made by the panelists on how to move Nigeria out from the woods.
While the panellists were unanimous in their agreement that the economy has collapsed almost irretrievably, some of them recommended, as a way forward, that Nigerians should go back to the farms; others agreed that there is urgent need to restructure the country. Most of the discussants also dwelt extensively on the importance of restructuring. Even Vice President Yemi Osibanjo called in to make his position on restructuring known, though I find his explanation vague. 
But whether the Vice President agrees with restructuring or not, my happiness is that many highly placed Nigerians, both at home and in the Diaspora, who before now would hear nothing about restructuring the country, have become fiery apostles of restructuring. I have always known that we can never escape the route of restructuring because history is coterminous with the reality that restructuring is the only escape route for countries like Nigeria. In the past 35 years I have maintained this position.
However, it does appear that even when restructuring has become very trending today, many of the new apostles do not understand the full import of restructuring. I want to say for the umpteenth time, that what Nigeria needs now is not a back-to-land initiative (that is good in itself) but an urgent restructuring of the country. My worry actually, is the lackadaisical understanding of this process of restructuring, even by those we may regard as informed. 

Renegotiate And Restructure Nigeria!

By Arthur Agwuncha Nwankwo
The conduct of international relations among nations is anchored on the realist paradigm of “might is right”. This is the central thesis of Hans J. Morgenthau's seminal work on Politics among Nations. The motivating factor in relations among nations is the furtherance of their vital and strategic national interests. In these murky waters of international politics, the powerful states relate to other states on the basis of what they consider to be in the best interest of their states. It is in this context that I want to do a brief post-mortem of president Buhari’s recent tour of the United States of America.
*Dr. Nwankwo 
Not a few Nigerians believed that so much would come out of that visit. I am certain by now the reality of the failure of that visit would have disrupted such expectations. Buhari’s visit to the USA was programmed to stimulate a stiff in US policy towards Nigeria. On the cards for discussion was the issue of Boko Haram insurgency. While Buhari lacked words and technical depth to explain the implication of the insurgency to the strategic interest of the USA in Nigeria, a bemused Obama promised that USA and her allies would consider areas of cooperation with Nigeria especially in combating international terror. Back home, many Nigerians went to town with their cymbals announcing that Buhari’s visit would yield much result. Today, we have come to terms with the reality that Buhari went on excursion to the USA, used the opportunity to visit the White House – a pleasure he did not enjoy as a military dictator.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Thespian Buhari At The United Nations

By Paul Onomuakpokpo
It is not that we have ever doubted the thespian talents of President Muhammadu Buhari that render him eligible to assume the role of an actor before any audience. We have always known that he is like any other wily politician, especially in these climes, who can fit into any dramatic role before a given audience. Remember, in 2015 when Buhari had before him citizens who were desirous of a leader with democratic credentials, he offered himself as perfectly fitting that role. He regaled them about his mutation into a democrat since he was forced by Ibrahim Babangida and his co-travellers to pull off his military uniform and jackboots.
*President Buhari addressing
UNGA 2017
Again, before a south-east audience, he identified with them by dressing like an Igbo man. Still, before the general population as his audience, Buhari played the role of a charmer, the man with a magic wand to solve the nation’s problems and root out corruption in a short time. He made the audience swoon over him. And he was rewarded with the prime prize – the presidency – as the encore continued until it was disrupted by the subsequent months of the reality of hardship.
Now, Buhari has taken these dramatic skills onto the global stage. At the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly, Buhari took on a role that was totally alien to his personality. The meeting was about the wellbeing of people. It had the fitting theme of “Focusing on People: Striving for Peace and Decent Life for All on a Sustainable Planet.” Thus, Buhari played the role of an actor who wants to improve the wellbeing of the people and make them to live in peace and live a decent life. 

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Illegality Of Nnamdi Kanu’s House Arrest By The Army

By Femi Falana
No doubt, the federal government of Nigeria has the duty to maintain law and order in the country. But it is the duty which cannot be carried out outside the ambit of the law of the land. Last weekend, armed troops invaded Abia in Abia state to deal with the alleged threat of Mr. Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) to destabilize the country. It was reported yesterday that the troops have taken over the family house of Mr Kanu and put him under house arrest. I wish to submit, without any fear of contradiction, that the deployment of armed troops in Abia state and the house arrest of Mr. Kanu are illegal and unconstitutional on the following grounds:
*Nnamdi Kanu 
(1) By virtue of section 215 (3) of the Constitution the Nigeria Police Force has been conferred with the exclusive power to maintain law and order and secure public safety and public order in the country.
(2) Having filed an application in the Federal High Court for the re-arrest and detention of Mr. Kanu for allegedly breaching the conditions attached to his bail the federal government ought not to have presented the trial judge with a fait accompli by resorting to self help in the circumstance.
(3) Although the President is empowered by virtue of section 217(2) of the Constitution to deploy the armed forces for the "suppression of insurrection and acting in aid of civil authorities to restore law order" he cannot exercise the power until there is an insurrection or civil disturbance which cannot be contained by the police.

VIDEO 

Operation Python Dance Is Illegal 

- Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa 

Can Nigeria Become A Nation Under President Buhari?

By Steve Orji  

Listening to, and probing deeper into the sentiments of Nigerians, tells you something ominous and it’s the fact that there are yet very deep cracks within the notion of Nigeria’s nationhood.
*President Buhari
The ethnic sentiments often couched in speeches or responses to national issues, captured in the body language and emotional sensibilities of well-placed and common Nigerians, provides a gauge to touch and feel where we are in the march to becoming a nation.

Are we a nation? We have yet to be!

Nigeria: Pythons Need Not Dance In South-East

By Paul Onomuakpokpo 
Although there is a myriad of indicators of the failure of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, there is one that sticks out like a sore thumb. It is the inability of the government to effectively grapple with the challenge of making right choices in a manner that negates the social imagination that it is incapable of listening and ever doing what is appropriate. This incapacity has found expression in a brazen defiance of good proposals from the citizens to set governance on an even keel.
*President Buhari with the Service Chiefs
Or how do we explain the fact that despite the warnings from prominent citizens, the Federal Government has made good its threat to crush agitators in the south-east? But the government must not fantasize about its triumph over an already oppressed people. It should rather stop its troops in their tracks since the outcome of their misguided expedition in that part of the country would not only conflict with genuine efforts to bring peace to the region, it would aggravate the mutual distrust among people of different parts of the country.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Nigeria: When The Python Danced On A Barb-Wired Fence

By Arthur Agwuncha Nwankwo
The recent onslaught by the Nigerian military on Nnamdi Kanu’s country home in Abia State under the curious code name “Operation Python Dance” has once again demonstrated the naivety, ineptitude and insensitivity of the current Buhari administration on dealing with the incandescent ethnic nationalism that has ripped Nigeria apart in the past couple of years. Why this government or any other group in this country or outside would think that solution to the present impasse in Nigeria could be resolved through the barrel of the gun beats my imagination.

----------------------------------
*President Buhari and Chief of Army Staff Burutai
---------------------------
I have always maintained that Nnamdi Kanu and his Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPoB) is not a threat to Nigeria. Rather IPoB and its leaders represent the manifestation of a beleaguered people desperate for freedom. What Nnamdi Kanu has succeeded in doing is to gnaw at the conscience of the world to call attention to the plight of his people and the need to give the Igbo a better deal in Nigeria. And here I must say that Kanu is not alone in this feeling and factual knowledge of the truth that Ndigbo have become an endangered species in Nigeria.
The precarious situation of the Igbo in Nigeria has been worsened in an age of clash of civilizations when the forces of radical Islam are on collision course with western civilization. Like I have always pointed out, Boko Haram is a philosophy anchored on the rejection by Islam of anything western especially its religion and education. Apart from this warped religious inspired hatred of western civilization, Islam is anti-democratic and does not support the republicanism and gregariousness for which unencumbered societies like the Igbo are known for. Unlike western liberal democracy, Islam does not admit of question on its foundational principles; it regards Christians and Jews as “people of the Book” that must be destroyed at all level. The religion advocates the plundering of the riches of the “infidels”, slashing their throats and binding them as slaves and also compelling them to pay the “zakat”.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Aisha Alhassan’s Declaration

By Ray Ekpu
Aisha Alhassan aka Mama Taraba is the Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development in the cabinet of President Muhammadu Buhari. She is a lawyer and the first woman in Taraba State to hold the position of Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice. She also served as a Registrar of the Federal High Court, Abuja and as a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Mama Taraba also fought valiantly in the last election to register another first as the female Governor of Taraba State. She did not get there. But her political credentials are amply acknowledged by those who know her.
*Aisha Alhassan 
With such a formidable curriculum vitae and her acknowledged political battles many people have wondered why she made the unguarded public statement she made recently. Here are her words: “Atiku (Abubakar) is my godfather even before I joined politics and again Baba Buhari did not tell us that he is going to run in 2019. And let me tell you today that if Baba said he is going to contest in 2019 I swear to Allah I will go before him and kneel and tell him that Baba I am grateful for the opportunity you gave me to serve your government as a minister. But Baba, just like you know I will support only Atiku because he is my godfather. That is if Atiku said he is going to contest. As we are talking now Atiku has not said he is going to contest.”

Friday, September 8, 2017

Nullification of Kenya’s Presidential Election: Implications for Nigerian Democracy

By Arthur Agwuncha Nwankwo
The recent nullification by the Kenyan Supreme Court of the August 8, 2017 presidential election in Kenya has stolen the headlines in both local and international media and has dominated conversations among so many people and groups. While the courage and boldness of the Kenyan Supreme Court is emulative and instructive, one impression that the international media has tried to create is that this is not in the character of African politics- for the judiciary to affect the political process in the manner the Kenyan Supreme Court has done. I agree that this is the first time in Africa where the judiciary has stuck to its convictions and fended off executive pressure and blackmail to deliver what has reverberated across the globe as a historic feat.

In real terms, it is in the character of Africans to expose and distance themselves from evil and deceit. This character of justice and equity is woven into the African psyche and consciousness but was significantly eroded at the behest of alien values imposed on the continent by colonial experience; an experience that has elevated the warped and otiose idea of “political correctness” far and above moral conscience, truth, justice and equity. I am, indeed, overjoyed that in my life time, Kenya, through its Supreme Court has given me hope that African values of truth are still alive; it has pointed the way forward for other African countries; it has shown that our old values of speaking the truth at all times without really caring whose ox is gored can be reinvented; and that being politically correct at the expense of truth and justice is the perfect recipe for the death of nations.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Nigeria Police And Audacity Of A Squealer

By Paul Onomuakpokpo
After years of a tempestuous relationship with the police, the citizens have become very familiar with a plethora of cases that reify the ignoble identity of that security institution of government as a site of unbridled corruption. Thus, they were by no means suddenly hoisted onto an uncharted territory when the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) last month alerted them to the egregious indices of the corruption under which the police chafe. Nor did the recent allegation by Senator Isah Misau that the police reek of corruption expressed in cronyism, patronage and financial misdeeds come to them as a surprise.
*President Buhari and IGP Idris
Indeed, Nigerians live daily with a catalogue of woes the police inflict on them. We are quite familiar with these: the police shoot to maim or kill commercial bus drivers or motorcyclists popularly referred to as okada riders because of their refusal to part with N50. They do not respond to emergency calls when the citizens are under the siege of armed robbers. It is only when the armed robbers have finished their operations and gone that their victims would be harassed with the sounds of police sirens. And that is if the police come at all. In most cases, they place obstacles in your way: they tell you that they cannot respond to your call because they have no vehicles; if they have, they are faulty; and if they are not faulty, there is no fuel in them. If you go to make a report at their station, the police would ask you to pay for the pen and piece of paper with which to make your complaint. After the complaint, you need to give them money to investigate your case. On the walls and doors of a typical police station would be emblazoned the warning: bail is free. But you must pay for detainees to secure their freedom. 

Unlocking The Likes Of Prof Yemi Osinbajo

By Banji Ojewale 
Nigeria’s Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is the father of modern-day bureaucratic jurisprudence of Lagos State… He was discovered by Governor Bola Tinubu… He went on to become the state’s Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General in the Third Republic in 1999… He undertook notable reforms in grassroots judicature and in court room procedures… Through his prudent counsel coupled with Tinubu’s own smart politics, Lagos successfully launched the historic creation of 37 local Council and Development Areas and floored the mighty federal resistance of Olusegun Obasanjo’s government… The councils have come to stay due to the firm substructure Yemi Osinbajo laid… Later, he was retrieved from political retirement again by Tinubu to play a role in the central government in the current dispensation. 
*Osinbajo 
But let us be clear about this: history isn’t going to rate Osinbajo on Lagos only in the long run. The ruthless history we all know would demand more from Osinbajo. Had he stayed quietly in the background after his tour of duty in Lagos, he might have tamed the extinct records to favour him. However, having succumbed to the temptation to stage a comeback at a higher level, he must wrestle with the dialectics of politics of an upward plane. History is clad in an iron creed: to whom a higher measure of responsibility is given, less can’t be demanded. 

Nigeria: An Example Of Profligacy

By Oshineye Victor Oshisada
On August 16, 2017, there were news reports that some Federal Government officials took their documents to ailing President Muhammadu Buhari in London for his signature. That action was flabbergasting, because it was a clear case of bare-faced profligacy. They wasted money and time and insulted the intelligence of Nigerians.

When the President was travelling abroad for his medical treatment on May 7, 2017, he said that the length of his stay in London would be determined by his medical team. Therefore, he transmitted a letter to the National Assembly in that respect. The Senate declared that Professor Yemi Osinbajo would function as the Acting President pending the return of Buhari from the medical vacation. The upper legislative chamber appropriately over-ruled Buhari’s statement that Osinbajo would only “co-ordinate the affairs of government as Vice President.”

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Kogi State Is Bleeding: A Call For Collective Rescue Mission

By Usman Okai Austin
Today, empirical and observatory facts have clearly shown that Kogi State is in a state of coma and economic doldrums that require an urgent attention. On all fronts, Kogi State spells failure. The indices for any vestige of development remain abysmal.
*Gov Yahaya Bello of Kogi State 
Poverty rages, unemployment increases in astronomical dimension, Infrastructural facilities are in decay, education sector is struggling to survive, salaries are unpaid, hunger, despair and destruction now haunt the state. The people are indeed living in very trying times: dissatisfied with the present and face the future with much trepidation. If Kogi State today were a living entity, it would be perceived as a blind entity groping aimlessly without direction while pretending to be on a purposeful mission of institutionalising the change agenda.

Texas Not A Mere Geographical Space

By Chinedu Ogoke

[Texas] “is no longer a mere geographical space”— John O’Sullivan, 1845

[I]n my early youth,’ as a kid, two books I won in a competition brought some locations in America so close that I could physically touch those places. The names Colorado and Colombia rang in my ears like booming sounds at a distance. The abundance of water touching down from great heights was vivid. Everything could rank with paradise. I traveled freely in my imagination. Adventure stole my heart and took me away from my shadows.

Years later, as I watched late night movies, it began to settle in that films I watched were often about Dallas. Texas then occupied a place as an abode of the unscrupulous oil magnates. I recall a Texaco (The Texas Company) filling station close to our house. Decades later, when huge oil was discovered in São Tomé and Principe, there was outrage among some of us over that country’s links with Texas, which included sudden daily commercial flights.

I discovered another America in Germany. There, America found a fantasy land where life all seemed like bowling and filling a giant plastic cup with Coca-cola at the tap while you enjoyed a discussion. I interacted with Americans, who were mostly soldiers. Every American was bound to tell me, “You know what, Shinedu, you need to visit Missouri (or Atlanta or Virginia) at some time.”

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Nigeria: The Illegality Of Post-UTME

By Luke Onyekakeyah  
The confusion that has trailed the re-introduction of the post University Tertiary Matriculation Examination (post-UTME) in higher educational institutions across the country over the fees payable by candidates forced me to dig into the legality or otherwise of the test that now determines our children’s educational destiny. There should be an established law for post-UTME otherwise, it should be scrapped. The test has become so controversial and ought to be challenged in court of law.

Is there a law that established the post-UTME? I called some lawyers to get their view on the legality of the post-UTME. All the lawyers said, to the best of their knowledge, there is no known law that established the post-UTME in Nigeria.
If that is the case, why leave an illegality to rule the system and even truncate the aspirations of most candidates? Who introduced the post-UTME in the first place and for what purpose? 

Kidnappers And Ritual Killers In Lagos

By Hope Eghagha 
Kidnapping and ritual killing seem to be on the increase in Lagos and around the country. Another way to express this is that there are more reports of abductions for ritual killings these days than we used to have them. Red Cross says that it has received reports of 10,480 missing persons in Nigeria. Every other week or even day, we read reports about ‘ritualists den’ in Nigeria. Two channels, social media and personal testimonies do a better job reporting the incidents than mainstream media. 

While mainstream outlets can be controlled not to report the incidents (to give a good albeit false image of security) no one can really control reports in social media. The latter presents gory pictures of dismembered bodies. The most recent was that of a 200 level undergraduate at the University of Port Harcourt who butchered a neighbour’s seven year old daughter for ritual, removed parts of her body and attempted to dispose of the body in a garbage heap. Shocking! Horrifying!

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