- Say it will be fight to finish
Any attempt by former Lagos State Governor and a national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu, to impose former Accountant-General of the state, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, as the next governor of the state would be resisted vehemently, a group, Visioners for New Lagos (VNL), has warned.
The group, which threatened that it would be fight to finish if Tinubu and his cronies insisted on imposing Ambode, noted that it had studied the body language of the APC leader and could tell where he was headed, especially since he was said to have confided in some of his confidants about the choice of Ambode.
A virologist, Dr Adekunle Adeniji, has said Nigeria is in danger of Dengue fever outbreak, another deadly fever in the class of Ebola virus disease, said to be transmitted by two types of mosquitoes now rife in the country.
Dr Adeniji, Director of World Health Organisation (WHO) National Polio Laboratory, Department of Virology, University of Ibadan (UI), named the mosquitoes as Aedes aegypti mosquito (yellow fever mosquitoes) and Aedes albopictusis (tiger mosquitoes), adding that the mosquitoes had been observed in Nigeria and that they spent their lifetime in or around homes.
•Urge INEC to sanction President, PDP •Party not campaigning yet –Plateau Chairman •Let Commission interpret rally, say lawyers
•INEC toothless bulldog, claims CNPP
Some groups and individuals have expressed divergent views on the “zonal unity rallies” currently being conducted by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) across the country.
While the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) described the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as a toothless bulldog for keeping quiet in the face of abuse of the Electoral Act by President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP under the guise of the “unity rallies”, others believe that no offence has been committed by carrying out the rallies.
CNPP believes that the unity rallies were being conducted in utter contravention of the 2010 Electoral Act, describing them as “huge drain on the resources of the Nigerian state”.
The umbrella body of registered political parties also noted that the cost of every zonal rally by the President and PDP in terms of logistics, honorarium and settlement run into billions of naira.
Spokesman of the group, Osita Okechukwu, gave this position in an interview with Daily Independent on Sunday.
That the Nigerian state under President Jonathan has failed is no longer controvertible. That is one transformation that President Jonathan has achieved with a distinction and history will forever remember him for that. But can the nation still be rescued? Yes, it certainly can. And this will take nothing other than observing the simple and basic rules of governance. Can President Jonathan rescue the country? Most unlikely!
But the president can do it if he chooses to. It’s just that he is too far gone to turn back now. But here are a few tips for whatever they may be worth:
Shekau says Boko Haram is in Abuja.
The leader of the extremist Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau, has dismissed Monday’s bomb attack in Abuja- which he claims responsibility for- as a “tiny incident” which would soon be followed by more attacks.
The group released its new video to journalists in northeast Nigeria Saturday, hours after AFP news agency published highlights of the clip.
Mr. Shekau, in the video, admitted responsibility for the Nyanya bombing which officials say claimed more than 75 lives and injured over a hundred.
Witnesses and reporters, however, put the casualty figure far higher.
We condemn President Jonathan’s political jamboree to Kano and Ibadan at a time of national mourning
Does President Goodluck Jonathan have empathy for human life? This question would have become unnecessary but for the frolicsome political visits the president made to Kano State and Ibadan, Oyo State, at a period that he should have led the country in mourning the several calamities that befell her within about 24 hours.
Firstly, the Nyanya motor park in Abuja was bombed by Boko Haram terrorists, which led to the death of over 71 people (officially) while unofficial figures stand at about 200, with about 200 others injured. Secondly, barely a few hours after this gory incident, about 129 students of Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, a town west of Maiduguri writing their Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations (SSCE) were abducted by Boko Haram terrorists, in Borno State.
AS Nigerians await the release of the 35-man provisional World Cup list from coach Stephen Keshi tomorrow, we can authoritatively inform that all the players who played at the Africa Cup of Nations victory in South Africa in 2013 except Ike Uche are included in the list.
Also, six home-based Eagles, Kunle Odunlami(Sunshine), Chigozie Agbim(Gombe United), Azubike Egwuekwe(Warri Wolves), Dan Akepei(Warri Wolves), Ejike Uzoenyi(Rangers of Enugu) and Abdullahi Shehu(Kano Pillars) are the lucky ones who would join the foreign legion for the Eagles’ friendly in London against Scotland and their camping exercise in USA.
A very competent source informed Sports Vanguard that Stephen Keshi has an impeccable belief in the team that won the African Cup of Nations in South Africa. ‘’He thinks that those who won the Nations Cup did so much and deserve to go to the World Cup since you don’t change a winning team’’, our source said.
Mr. Nyako’s first memo to colleague northern governors has stirred intense debate and controversy.
Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State on Sunday launched a fresh attack on President Goodluck Jonathan, describing the Jonathan administration as the “most arrogant, corrupt and confused ever”, in a bitter exchange of brickbats that began Saturday.
Mr. Nyako said in a statement that Mr. Jonathan’s reaction to his earlier memo- in which the governor blamed the federal government for Boko Haram and accused it of genocide in the north- lacked substance.
Mr. Nyako’s first memo to colleague northern governors, published Saturday, has stirred intense debate and controversy.
In the letter, the governor said the federal government under Mr. Jonathan was behind the spreading violence that has killed thousands in northern Nigeria. He dismissed Boko Haram as a “phantom” organization instigated by the government to massacre northerners.
The presidency’s reaction, issued by spokesperson Doyin Okupe, said the comments from the governor were a betrayal of trust by a major beneficiary of the Nigerian nation.
“The content of Nyako’s letter exposed him as lacking a sense of history as well as incapable of rising above parochial sentiments.
“The letter was extremely divisive and intentionally meant to incite one section of the country against the other.
“Nyako’s action is a pathetic embarrassment to the Nigerian military, from where he derives his career antecedents,” Mr. Okupe said.
In a reaction by Ahmad Sajoh, a spokesperson for Mr. Nyako, the governor said the presidency failed to respond to issues raised and resorted to name-calling.
Read Mr. Nyako’s statement below:
Presidency arrogant and confused
The response by the Presidency to Governor Nyako’s memo to Northern Governors has further proved that those running the Federal Government are arrogant and confused. They arrogate all knowledge and wisdom to themselves alone. We hold the statements we released as true and challenge those who claim to have a sense of history to cut-off the use of jaundiced semantics to address the issues raised in this and several other documents before it.
By telling black lies about the attack on Governor Nyako which was never investigated no ascertained, the Presidency is providing further proof that it knows more than it is willing to admit in the whole saga. Feeding the public with untruth is becoming a new culture in Abuja. The statement on the supposed rescue of the abducted girls is enough to prove that. It is a pity that responsible and supposedly educated people could manufacture statements and attribute them to others just to create an escape route from their glaring failures. None of the statements attributed to Governor Nyako by the Presidency were ever made by him. They were all manufactured for lack of a sound counter argument.
If indeed the Presidency is not complacent about the killings in the country how come the President went dancing a day after several citizens were killed in Abuja? If they claim that Nyako does not deserve to be Governor, are they fit to be where they are?
When we say the Boko Haram phenomenon is phantom we are talking based on several testimonies by the President. At one point he said there are Boko Haram in his Government, at another point he said they are ghosts he cannot dialogue with ghosts, yet recently he admitted that the young poverty-stricken persons so far arrested cannot afford the guns they carry. And we say to them you have full command and control of the Armed Forces and Security outfits with all the Intelligence units, investigate their activities, expose their patrons, sponsors and strategic commanders and arrest them. We also challenge them to expose their sources of arms. We still repeat the earlier questions we raised. 1. How come the insurgents move about unchallenged at night in our states under so called emergency rule when we have a night time curfew in place? 2. How come the insurgents operate for many hours unchallenged when we have military units all over the place? 3. How come the insurgents move with a large convoy of vehicles through routes that have 24 hours military checkpoints? 4. How come statements by the Presidency and other authorities in Abuja are always at variance with realities on ground at the theatres of conflict? We want answers not insults or empty rhetoric.
On the issue of creating divisions among the people, no one does it better than a Presidency that urges its backers to direct its people to implicate innocent Northerners in Bombings they know nothing of, or one whose known official uses online sources to implicate someone it chooses to hate for no just cause. This Presidency also encourages some of its spokespersons to speak ill of certain persons and religion without a reprimand. This is the most divisive leadership in the history of this country and it also the most desperate to cling to power even at the cost of several lives of innocent citizens. Unfortunately it is also the most inept, confused, greedy, corrupt and incompetent regime ever.
On the corruption mantra, while the Presidency is fond of asking Governors to account for allocations given, we challenge them to live by the same token, declare what you got and account for it. After all we now have proof that certain projects which are not executed have been announced as completed such as the Hong to Mubi road in our state which the Minister of Information announced its execution at their Bauchi Rally. Meanwhile, someone should help us ask the President under what Budget sub-head did he get the money he allegedly gave Governor Kwankwaso to bribe delegates to vote for him which was allegedly diverted. We think rather than vent their venom in insulting people, presidential spokespersons and media managers should do better by re-focussing the man to be more open minded and competent in grappling with the myriad of challenges facing the nation.
AHMAD I. SAJOH
Director, Press and Public Affairs
• Presidency saves Andrew Yakubu’s job
•Minister may sack two aides
•N1.5b debt still owed on aircraft expenses
Controversies over claims that Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, blew a whooping N10 billion on a chartered jet provided by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) appear to be spiraling out of control with the topmost figures managing the nation’s oil industry at each other’s throat.
Disturbed by leakage of information on alleged N10 billion expended on the chartered jet, Mrs. Alison-Madueke is poised to sack two of her Special Assistants. The aides on the firing line were after being linked with the leakage of information on the chartered jet.
• Reported multiple car gifts to the president’s daughter and her husband are a veneer covering systemic corruption in the country
The Edwards, new couple made up of presidential daughter, Faith and her husband, Godswill Osim Edward, a prince from Cross Rivers State, deserve all congratulations for their wedding.
That was a private affair, as any wedding ought to be. But that the bride is the president’s daughter puts the ceremony pat in the public space. Still, the newly wedded deserves everyone’s prayers and good wishes. We at The Nation therefore join other Nigerians in wishing the new couple sheer matrimonial bliss.
Gifts are legitimate parts of any wedding. It is friends’, families’ and acquaintances’ show of love and affection — and why not? Weddings, after all, other things being equal, come once in a lifetime. So, no one should ordinarily begrudge the couple whatever presents they got. It was their happy day and they perhaps deserved all of their good fortune.
Still, because the president was involved and because you cannot divorce the person of the president from the office of the president in this case, the matter cannot be left alone. Indeed, there are reasonable grounds to suggest that the quantum of the wedding gifts can be directly linked to the fact that the president’s daughter was wedding. Now, when does a present cross the threshold of love to subtle subversion bordering on corruption?
That is why every Nigerian must be bothered by reported obscene and cynical gifts reported to have changed hands, most probably from contractors, sundry business persons and politicians seeking presidential favours. Some media reports even claim a virtual armada of cars has been the lot of the happy couple, aside from other gifts.
Though this might not have been initiated by the president, and it is certainly no fault of the couple, the end result is subversion: that sooner than later would come to haunt the exchequer. It is yet another corruption of an otherwise solemn event by a greedy and corrupt elite.
True, such venal practices precede the Jonathan Presidency; and would appear institutionalised at every level of governance. Earlier, the whole country watched aghast as former President Olusegun Obasanjo suborned the business class and the elite public sector to “donate” money to his presidential library project.
It is the practice in the United States where the idea originated from to stage such launches after a president has left office. So, why did a sitting president insist on staging it? It was another Nigerian penchant to corrupt otherwise noble concepts. The victim, as usual, are the people, whose collective matrimony are raided for these subversive donors to recoup their money.
That is why we have no hesitation to condemn the cynical gifts by do-gooders at the wedding of the daughter of the president. If corruption is the bane of our underdevelopment and the sweeping poverty plaguing Nigerians today, Nigerian leaders must be more discerning in whatever gifts they allow themselves to receive.
Such gifts and their bearers are tantamount to the proverbial Greeks bearing gifts. It might cost the receiver more than he or she ever thinks!
Nigerian leaders must be wary of gifts sure to trigger corrupt practices, which further worsen the present mass poverty and underdevelopment. Those who literally pelt the first family with cars and expensive gifts, on the excuse that their daughter was wedding, certainly know where they will recoup their money.
It is the bounden duty of patriotic leaders that such hustlers are barricaded far away from the common wealth. But how can they do this if they had earlier fallen for their cheap, subversive and cynical generosity? LITERALLY.
•As party blasts him, PDP
GOVERNORS of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) have reportedly resolved to attend the Wednesday enlarged security meeting called by President Goodluck Jonathan over the Boko Haram insurgency, despite the misgivings over the botched Thursday meeting.
A source told Saturday Tribune on Friday that the governors decided to attend the meeting in order not to allow the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) pin the Boko Haram tag on them in the public space as being attempted by its chieftains.
A video showing a male Nigerian police officer, armed with an AK-47 rifle and brutalizing two women on a Lagos Street, is now circulating on YouTube.
The video clip, published on Apr 18, 2014, showed the police officer trying to drown one of his victims in a muddy pond while a crowd watched.
The officer, apparently on guard at one of the banks in the area, had his rifle dangling from his shoulder as the drowning victim struggled under his grip.
The officer then pounced on the second victim whom the video showed intervening to rescue the first victim.
The clip, published by Sahara Reporters, showed the officer pointing his riffle at his victims before shooting into the air to create fear and disperse the crowd that was beginning to gather at the scene.
Sahara Reporters identified the police officer involved in the incident as Tafa Mohammed, who was on guard at Lewis Street, Lafiaji, in the Obalende area of Lagos Island during the incident.
Witnesses told the newspaper the victim angered Mr. Mohammed after she failed to give him a piece of fish from a pot of soup in her restaurant.
Witnesses claim the police officer was drunk, but PREMIUM TIMES is unable to independently confirm that.
An online crowd sourcing website, Nigeria Police Watch, which documents excesses by the Nigeria Police Force said similar intimidation and abuse of police powers are common within the force.
Rather than engage Zimbabwe in an unnecessary acrimony, Nigeria should receive Mugabe’s statement as a wake-up call to redress the endemic corruption that has earned Nigeria global disdain.
The recent statement by President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe that Nigeria is a corrupt country has been eliciting reactions from Nigerians. While some feel Mugabe has provided the government and people of Nigeria the proverbial “food for thought” over the social ill of corruption, some others feel the aging Mugabe stepped out of diplomatic bounds by his comments. But this Newspaper feels that, rather than engage Zimbabwe in an unnecessary acrimony, Nigeria should receive Mugabe’s statement as a wake-up call to redress the endemic corruption that has earned Nigeria global disdain.
For the past three years, this column has remained constant in forecasting the potential unemployment plague that would be facing the aviation sector in Nigeria. But as usual, no one in government, not even the ministry of labour and productivity appears bothered about the scourge, and the possible repercussion that comes with youth idleness that usually leads to restiveness.
It is estimated that over 60% of Nigeria’s workforce is unemployed. The definition of a workforce is: total number of a country’s population employed in the armed forces and civilian jobs, plus those unemployed people who are actually seeking paying work. Sadly, the majority of Nigeria’s population seeking paying work is below the age of 40.
Tomorrow is Easter Sunday. The churches, synagogues and other places of worship will be full. Many of those in the congregation tomorrow go to church only twice a year— the other day being Christmas. Many will make it a family outing and an opportunity for the kids to show off their new Easter dresses.
Many, knowing the churches will be full, will attend to network— some of the prominent members usually hold court after service— or back slap. No matter.
All of them will hear the annual good news of a risen Christ in a fallen world, of the son of God who conquered death and removed its sting, of Jesus who died for our sins so that we will not be slaves to sin anymore; of unparalleled love— an agape, sacrificial kind.