Thursday, 12 October 2017

Atiku on the back of the Tiger





Atiku Abubakar was one of the key supporters of the Nigeria president Muhammadu Buhari, during the presidential election that brought the latter to power. The relationship between the duo has, of recent, reached rock bottom. This is not unconnected to Atiku Abubakar's not so secret intention to run for the president office come 2019. Immediately the administration saw the seriousness of Atiku's intention it went into overdrive to cut off Atiku's cash cow, the Intels Nigeria Limited, INL. The government terminated the Pilotage Agency Agreement with INL. The company has since termed the termination of the agreement as "preposterous" and "highly injurious" to Nigeria. Be that as it may, the fact remains that Atiku is the architect of his present predicament. He obviously has bitten more than he can chew. On the other hand, #pmb is being petty. The action is closely related to that of a junta and a dictatorship. In this fight it is the ordinary Nigerians that will suffer. The staff will be laid off and homes and the economy will be the worse for it.                         

   
This is a case of dog eat dog. Both parties are members of the #APC. If the administration can do this to one of their own one can only conjecture what it would do to the opposition. Running for the highest office in the land is the inalienable right of all qualified Nigeria citizens. This move against Atiku can only cement the negative reputation of the present administration as one that moves against real and perceived enemies. The main reason why most view the so called war against corruption as a lopsided one. Trying to ruin a company that has been doing business in Nigeria for the past 30 years because of the perceived transgressions of the chief executive is nothing if not ill-timed and I'll advised. It is high time Buhari rose above premordial sentiments and Ego-tripping and face governance without fear or favour.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

When Silence is not Golden


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        It is becoming an embarrassment the fact that President Buhari keeps eerily quiet whenever his vocal reassurance is needed. His communication with the citizens leaves a lot to be desired. If there is a shortcoming of this administration it is a paucity of timely and requisite information. Communication and information coming directly from the mouth of the President can not be substituted for that coming from another a la Lai Mohammed, the Information Minister, et al. Various serious issues like the Fulani herdsmen, Nnamdi Kanu's IPOB, Kachiku vs Baru, EFCC vs. NIA, DSS vs. EFCC, Babachir Lawal and NIA probe, the Senate vs Inspector General of Police,nature of his sickness, and EFCC vs. NIA, DSS vs. EFCC, Babachir Lawal vs NIA probe, the Senate vs Inspector General of Police,the issue concerning the Aso Rock Clinic. Buhari's wife and Zahra the daughter have been raising hell concerning the parlours state the Aso rock Clinic. Common syringes were not bought even after a lot of money was budgeted. Upwards of $3.2 bn was allocated to the clinic yet nothing to show for it. One would expect President Buhari to weigh in on the issue but as usual he has refused to join in the fray. The President must know that silence is not always golden. His words have a lot of weight. His words can assure a sceptical nation of the true thinking and position of the government. This is moreso that the President's wife and daughter are not government functionaries. They have no constitutional responsibilities as the former's office is purely ceremonial. Buhari should come out of his cocoon and let the nation know what his stand on   current issue is.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Ego-tripping and Governance

  



   
 





The Min. Of State Ibe Kachiku also accused Maikanti Baru of insubordination. This is a recurring decimal in the #pmb's administration. It is like some people believe they are superior to their boss. Maybe they believe that they have the hear of the President or the so called cabal in government. It could be recalled that the Nigeria Customs boss, Col. Hameed Ali, was accused by the Finance Minister of reporting directly to the Presidency instead of his immediate boss, the Honorable Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun. The Comptroller General of Customs was accused of promoting and demoting some men and officers of the Customs without recourse to her as  Minister of Finance. The intervention of the President is urgently required to cut the oversized ego of his appointees to size in order to engender a smooth administration. Buhari should also be seen to be up and doing. This have the effect of the people knowing that the State is working.
  Maikanti Baru, the GMD of NNPC awarded N9 Trillion-about $26b-contract without due process according to the Min. Of State Kachiku. The leaked memo by Kachiku on this matter should ordinarily jolt a nation out of her slumber. The amount involved is huge. Coming from the the person who should know, the President should ordinarily be up and doing after the receipt of this memo. However, the news making the rounds is that the President has not seen the Min. of State since the news broke. In order words the President Mohammadu Buhari does not regularly see his Min. of State for Petroleum. Don't forget Buhari is THE Min. for Petroleum. The Petroleum sector is is the goose that lays the Golden egg of the Nigerian economy and as such its welfare impacts directly on the well-being of the citizens.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Masari and his critic





It is 35 days now that a critic of Gov. Aminu Masari of Kastina state was incarcerated.
Ibrahim Bature is a 31 year old from Dutsinma who was arrested for allegedly criticising the Governor on Facebook on 28th last month. He was taken to court and detained in prison custody since then. Bature's allegedly offence is his call on the Gov. to desist from collecting a loan when the one he collected could  not be accounted for. This scenario is very alarming considering the fact that we pretend to be in a democracy. Or is Nigeria only having civil rule but not democracy. The law is clear on this. Bature can not be kept in custody on holding charge. You either arraign him or you release him within 48 hours. More so, the allegation of defamation of character is a tort. As such it falls under the civil rights of individuals. The Constitution is very clear per the rights and liabilities of individuals. Bature should be released forthwith.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

The Church and the People





   
   
Some people are complaining about the issue of tithing in church. They are of the opinion that they are unable to afford the school tuition for the Churches' Primary and University. The people allege these set of pastors are living large while the church members are languishing in penury.
   The pastors counter this saying the tithe belongs to God. It is an injunction commanded by God. My friend on Facebook declared last week his total rejection of the Christian Church as it obtains in Nigeria. He said he he still a Christian but would not be going to church henceforth. He is particularly piqued by the attitude of the pastors in not returning tithe paid into the church coffers by fraudsters and looters of the people's commonwealth. He believes the pastor should return stolen monies paid as tithe back to the government or the rightful owners. Meanwhile, the pastors claim they have no authority over tithes already paid in. They should go to God to collect it.

Herdsmen From Hell


 
    The treatment of the Fulani herdsmen with kid gloves should end henceforth. These Fulani guys have      their abode in the Northern part of the country but prefer to migrate down South with their herds of cattle in search of greener pastures. This would have been all well and go good if not for the fact that these herders are wont to clash with their hosts without any provocation whatsoever. Their hosts, especially the farmers, are the Fulanis frequent victims. The host is expected to keep mum when the Fulani cattle eat the farmers’ crops. If the farmers dare to complain they are promptly killed and the females raped or maimed. I think if the host is not the aggressor the guest should definitely not be.
  That the Federal Government is weighing in on the issue on the side of the Fulanis is rather unfortunate.  The F.G is proposing a National Grazing Reserve Council which would have the power to take away land from wherever, anytime they want and pay whatever they want as   compensation to the land owner.  The land when taken shall be assigned to the Fulani herdsmen who shall use the land for grazing purposes. If, as a landowner you object to this, you can go to the court but not before notifying and getting the consent of the AGF before you can sue. If the AGF declines consent to the suit you lose your land forever to the herdsmen. The Chairman of the National Grazing Reserve Council will be appointed by the President. 
  From the foregoing it can be seen that the aces are stacked against the land owners. The F.G is proposing the appropriation of lands from the Southerners but this time using the instrumentality of the law. This must and can not stand. Even though the proposed Bill has passed the first reading at the National Assembly it will be impracticable even if passed into law.
    Cow herding is just one of the different professions we have in Nigeria. We have the fishermen, the spare parts sellers, the farmers, the cloth weavers, etc, etc. why then is the issue of the Fulani herdsmen so important to the government as to deserve presenting a Bill on the issue. They are individuals doing their individual businesses to survive-just like the next guy.  The money they make is to their pockets so why the hue and cry?
   Countries that are known for exporting meat e.g. Australia, Argentina, and U.S etc. don’t move their cattle from one place to the other. They don’t take their cattle to the food but rather the food to the cattle. Water, hay, fodder, etc, are taken to the cattle in the pens and pastures. Science and technology has overtaken the need for cattle pastoralism. The F.G should introduce global best practice in cattle management to these Fulani herdsmen and spare us the constant headaches the activities of these herdsmen cause the nation. The government should tread cautiously on this issue so as not to create a monster they can’t control. A word is enough for the wise.

Monday, 25 September 2017

On Tinubu





   It is funny that Tinubu is agitating for Restructuring now. One would think Tinubu would have entered into an agreement with Buhari when the latter was supported by the former's political machine. It seems that there was unfortunately no agreement or PMB decided to implement the agreement In breach. Same with the issue of State police which Tinubu championed during the Jonathan Presidency. One would sincerely think these issues would be on the front burner in this Buhari administration. Politics is about give and take. Political alliance is all about supporting those who would advance one's political positions and interests. The tragedy would be a situation where there was no agreement in the first place or there was an agreement but the President decides to ignore such.








Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Facts or fiction?

     
             The latest news is that the government knows the sponsors of IPOB. This "truth" was disclosed by no less a personage than the Minister of Information, Mr Lai Mohammed. According to him the IPOB is being funded by the looters in the opposition. He should not stop there but should speedily name the culprits if he has his facts right. He should not continue to make allegations he can't back up. The faceless group - if there is one - should be named, arrested, and prosecuted. This is the way of responsible governments all over the world.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Madness & the Nigeria Nation

The classic definition of madness is said to be that of doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome. Why anyone bother to expect a different result of the status quo trumps me. From our paper Federalism to the quota system to the lowering of standards by JAMB etc, etc. Iam afraid things will not get better for Nigeria soonest. Mind you, I am not a naysayer but a realist. Things will simply not work because you will it to work. Nigeria have to walk the talk. We resort to the safety of our kit and kin when challenged. We are first and foremost local guys before being national. Millions of dollars are allocated to the Presidency clinic yet the occupants' medical expenses are picked up by the people. Pray, what is the need for the huge allocation in the first place? The state of Education continues to fall simply because the ruling elite have their children schooling in the best schools abroad. Devil may care is their approach. The pages of the newspapers are replete with our politicians felicitating with their children on the occasions of the later graduation abroad. If these state of affairs persist Nigeria can only continue to be the worse for it. A nation where a mark of 120 over 400 is regarded as a pass mark is a laughable one. The auguries do not bode well for the future.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

#Copied: Igbos and the South/South

The biggest crime committed against the Ogoni people was the killing of Ken Saro Wiwa and his eight colleagues. Their crime was that they mobilized their people against the exploitation of their land. The tribunal was headed by Justice Ibrahim Auta. Other members of the tribunal were Justice Etowa Eyo Arikpo, Lt Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (the incumbent Comptroller General of Customs), while the government prosecutor was Mr Joseph Bodurin Daudu SAN.
The Provisional Ruling Council (PRC), the highest decision-making body of the Abacha regime that took the decision to kill Saro Wiwa comprised General Abacha, Maj. General Patrick Aziza (Minister of Communications under Abacha); Major Gen. Tajudeen Olarenwaju (GOC); General Abdulsalami Abubakar (Chief of Defence Staff); Lt. General Oladipo Diya (Chief of General Staff); Maj. Gen. Victor Malu (GOC); Ibrahim Coomasie (Inspector General of Police); Mike Akhigbe (Chief of Naval Staff); Maj. General Ishaya Bamaiyi (Chief of Army Staff); Nsikak Eduok (Chief of Air Staff), and Lt. Gen. Jeremiah Useni (Minister of the Federal Capital Territory). There was no Igbo man.
It was Chief Emeka Anyaoku, an Igbo man, who as the secretary-general of the commonwealth of nations, that led a protest that made the Commonwealth of Nations to rise to the occasion, and warned Abacha not to carry out his wicked act. Although he later did, the Commonwealth under Anyaoku sanctioned Nigeria.
Today, ask an Ogoni man to show you his enemy, he will point at an Igbo man.
May the spirit of Saro Wiwa, and his eight colleagues hunt you for your foolishness.. An eye opener..
And we said;
Kenule Saro Wiwa was the champion of that foolishness. A man educated at the famous Government College Umuahia ( Fishers) and University of Nigeria,vNsukka. He led the federal forces against the Biafrans and for his betrayal was made Administrator of South east state. He asked that Igbo properties be declared abandoned properties and be forfeited to them. He personally took over Ojukwu father's property in Port Harcourt which he occupied at a time with a certain Lt. Sani Abacha his friend and killer. To rub in the humiliation of Igbos whom he hated so much, he wrote " Toad for Supper" which was a mockery of how they made Igbos suffer so much during the war that they fed on toads and lizards. He encouraged the Ikkwerres to deny their Igboness and assisted Elechi Amadi to invent the corruption of Igbo names by adding "r" and "y" to form jargons like Rumuokoro and Oyibo instead of Umuokoro and Obigbo. This they said is Ikkwerre a distinct language and tribe.
It is important to note that Ken Sarowiwa was not killed by his co travelers for agitating for environmental rights. Environmental rights was one of his pastimes which he used to extort money and exert influence on government and oil companies. He was killed for the murder of five Ogoni chiefs( Chief Fugbara, Kogbara Kobani et al) . These were men who were opposed to his immoral and outlandish lifestyle and actually wanted a more responsible engagement with government and oil companies. He labelled them vultures. Masterminded and led a mob attack on these men and killed the five of them in a single day. It was a murder trial and environmental issues was not on the charge sheet. He was found guilty, convicted and hanged. His friend and collaborator in arms, now Gen Sani Abacha was the Head of state. It was not in vain that Ojukwu, (may his soul find peace), made effort to see him at Port Harcourt prison before his execution. Of course all effort to save him by the emasculated Igbos had failed. Emeka Anyaoku did his best. God bless him. Ojukwu visited him and greeted him " Good morning" in broad day light. The Igbo spirit is a forgiving one, the day the Yoruba, Efik, Ibibio, Rivers, Ijaw people will come to terms with the Igbo, that will be when Nigeria will have everlasting peace.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

The State and the Coupist


     
Should former military heads of states continue to collect salaries and other emoluments from the Nigeria state? If it is agreed that Military regimes are aberrations on the polity it follows that coupists should be outcasts, to say the least, within a democratic setting. For a coupist to be drawing salaries and emoluments from the state is a misnomer and a contradiction in terms. For the very states these military officers overthrew to now turn around and be pandering to their needs is turning logic on its head. It just doesn’t follow. A former coup leader, Major General Murtala Mohammed’s face adorns our currency, Major roads and streets in Nigeria are named after him and other s in his circle. Late Gen. Abacha still has a stadium in Kano, his hometown, named after him. This is even after cases of fraud have been established against him. Switzerland and other countries in the West are still repatriating Abacha’s stolen wealth back to Nigeria.
   Our current President, a coupist, is also a beneficiary of the Nigeria State largess as he was being paid salaries and emoluments by virtue of his being a former Head of State. His vehicles were being replaced every three years or so. Now, he has even been compensated for overthrowing the state by becoming our President through the ballot box. Street names and buildings bearing the names of these coupists should be changed forthwith. They don’t deserve our appreciation.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Contradictions

CONTRADICTIONS
  Nigeria is a nation of contradictions. We import what we have and export what we don’t have. We are the top petroleum producer on the African continent yet we import a sizeable amount of our fuel. Every second tones of gas are being burnt off because the infrastructure required for liquefying it is either nonexistent or grossly inadequate. The attendant effect is the very high cost of cooking has in the nation. Nigeria has more gas deposit than petroleum. It is therefore a wonder that we find it hard to buy cooking gas to cook our foods not to talk of powering our houses with gas powered electricity from the electric generating station.  Every thing the nation needs has been benevolently deposited on and in our land by the Almighty. We have no reason importing vegetable oil because the northern region could still reproduce the miracle of the groundnut pyramid of yore. Ditto  with palm oil down south.  Nigeria claims it does not have money but still manages to keep the political class’ nest well feathered. To say the Nigeria political class is sitting pretty is to say the least. Life pensions here and there for the Governors and their deputies. Choice land in the choicest part of the country all paid for by the hoi polloi. Pray, were the politicians forced by anyone to run for office? Why are they now posturing as if they have done us a favour by being elected into office? Contradictions!

Political Greediness



The issue of salary for life and life pension for political office holders is fast generating discourse in the political space. For example, a retired General  gets his full salary for life upon retirement, governors either collects full salary or a portion of same or pension as long as they live. In a situation where a retired General ,for example, becomes a state Governor .At the end of his Governorship he still goes home each month with his full General’s salary and pension from his gubernatorial stunt. All paid for by the Nigeria hapless tax payer.
    It comes as a huge shock when the Nigeria Senate came up with a proposal to include the Senate leadership in the swindle called life political office holders. Do not forget that while in office the state caters for all these characters needs, nay, wanted. From the littlest pin to their first class air travels. From cradle to the grave, these political jobbers’ lavish lifestyles are borne by the bent backs of the citizenry. This is as selfish as it is immoral. The perks of office must be reduced to the barest minimum in order to deter charlatans and self serving people from seeking political office in the first place. Political office is very ‘juicy’ in Nigeria, the reason many will kill to attain office. Without the glamour and the lucre of office, political assassinations and brigandage would be reduced to a minimum as many would simply reason it is not worth the trouble. Alas, with the present resignation of the citizenry to their fate the political class will yet continue to have a free day many seasons hence.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Shame of the Senate

       In a civilised clime the sight of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, going to the Code of Conduct Tribunal from 10am to 6pm each day for his trial will be a misnomer.  You certainly can't be an accused and at the same time hold a political office as high as the Senate President.  A number three man should not be seen in this dock not once not to talk of everyday.  It cuts an unsightly spectacle. It demean the office to say the least.  But this afterall is Nigeria.  Where everything goes.  Where no one ever takes responsibility for any wrong doing, least of all resigning.  A country where the substantive Minister is left alone while the junior Minister is daily pilloried.  A country where blame is not apportioned judiciously.
       You daily see people fighting each other on petrol queues instead of rightly situating the cause and the blame where it should: the feet of the authorities.  In Nigeria the buck never stop at anyone table but is rather passed along in a curious game of ' tag, you are it'. 

Truly a Most Docile People

      Nigerians are truly the most docile people to lead.  We are always blasé and resigned to fate when action is sorely needed.  We resort to 'prayers'  when the situation warrants 'work'. Karl Marx must have had Nigeria 8n mind when he gave the  classical definition of religion as being the opium of the masses. It surely dulls one's faculty when issues concerning political misgovernance comes to the fore.
  Talk about the scarce petrol and some would tell you it is not the fault of President Buhari.  You will rather be told it is the fault of the State governor who is not managing the situation well.  Tell them about the increase in the price of virtually everything and you would be told it is the fault of ex President Jonathan and his party, the PDP, who (mis) ruled the country for  16 years.  They conveniently forget that it is on the back of correcting the so called misrule that got the current administration into power.  The ruling party and it's supporters should please tell us what we don't know. Alleviate people's suffering or get out of government.  The time for campaign is long gone. The government is not elected to whine and complain but to make life better for the common  man.  You either shape in or shape out.  Even if things get better tomorrow the increase in prices of commodities and services would not come back to the initial prices.  In Nigeria nothing ever comes down except the rain.  Even the rain is having to hard time coming down nowadays.
  Any attempt to demonstrate disapproval of the status quo is met by the administration supporters as an opposition to the government. With this state of affairs half the populace is seemingly cowed and rendered ineffective by the other half. For the fuel crisis to linger for so long and not a single demonstration to jolt power to action is nothing short of a miracle.  A miracle that can happen only in Nigeria. 

A Tale of Two Citizens

    Our law enforcement agencies should be up and doing regarding the fuel  crisis.  The fact is that some filling stations have the product but are simply not selling to the  public.  The product is being reserved for friends,  relations, and the VIPs.  This,  in my opinion,  is very wrong.  No petrol dealer who has fuel has the legal or moral right to refuse to sell same to the public. Petrol is an essential commodity and as such it is an economic sabotage to hoard it. It is either a filling station has fuel or hasn't. The public has a right to the fuel in your station.
    Nowadays it is common to espy a station selling to 5 or 6 vehicles only to be told after branching in that the station is not selling. Even though you can see these people buying the attendants and managers insists the fuel is not for the public. That is the sorry pass Nigerians find themselves.  The relevant agencies should be alive to their duties by arresting this ugly situation.  There should be no two tier citizenry.  While one tier citizens rough out the night and day on the queue, for the other tier it is come easy go easy. This must be stopped. 

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Muses on the Ese Oruru's Saga

      It is funny how the police operates sometimes  concerning the VIPs in our midst.  A case in hand is the  current case of Ese Oruru.  She was  abducted last August 2015 at the tender age of 13 years. She was abducted from Yenagoa, Bayelsa to Kano in Kano state. She purportedly changed her religion from Christianity to Islam. The last time I checked she was an underage ( at least in Bayelsa where she was abducted).  Yunusa , her abductor,  claimed he had married her and she had converted to Islam.  The constitution and the Child Rights Act however are explicit on the age of consent for girls which is pegged at 18 years even though these laws have (in the main) not been domesticated in the  North. This is because as a former Governor of Zamfara state and a Senator Mal. Ahmad Sani  Yerima said; once a girl has breast, public hair, and is menstruating she is marriageable e.  It is instructive to note the said senator married a 13 year old girl from Egypt.
     Sharia law  requires the parents' consent for a marriage to be valid.  With this knowledge it is therefore surprising that the Emir of Kano, Mallam Muhammad Sanusi ll, allowed the child to be kept under his roof in the palace for so long.  Agreed that he halfheartedly called for the girl to be released way back in September 2015 what he should however have done is see to it that his directive is followed to the letter and conclusively . After all, he is the leader of the Emirate and if his body language had shown seriousness I doubt if any of his subjects will defy his directive. He could have even gone further by handing over the said Yunusa to the security agencies.  Afterall, Yunusa had committed a crime by kidnapping and abducting Ese Oruru from her family back in Bayelsa state to Kano  state.  A leader is expected, at all times, to be above board and be seen upholding the law.  However, the buck lies ultimately with the police and the state security both which were aware of the case from day one.  They obviously knew a  crime had been committed yet they were powerless to bring the culprit to justice and also get the  hill released.  The  Inspector General of Police (IGP) was quoted as saying :
 "The Emir decided that he was going to mediate. But, because of his trip to Mecca with the president. That was what caused the delay. But now that he is back, we are going to sort it out as quickly as possible.” The IGP Solomon Arase further asserted that the release of Ese was dependent on the intervention of the Emir.
    Pray, is the civil authority now subjected to the whims and caprice of the traditional rulers?
This is definitely not good enough. In saner climes he wouldn't have resigned or booted out of the force for pandering to power and not upholding the law to which he was sworn.
  It was cheering news however, that the girl is finally on the way back to her family in Bayelsa. Thanks to  the #freeesenow movement on social media  and  the mainstream media.  This movement in no small way brought the plight of little Ese to the national, nay, international frontburner.
    I sure hope a lot of lessons have been learnt going forward. The family of Ese should be well   compensated by the  state for the unnecessary stress and trauma it was put through by the conspiracy of silence and the dilly dally of the security operatives. Punishment must of necessity be meted out to Yunusa for the kidnapping and abduction of Ese according to the extant law of the land.  This will serve as a deterrent for others who might also in  want to toe this ignoble path in future.  

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Demystifying Oil





The fixation with the Petroleum Industry by our leaders is simply mind-boggling to say the least.  The fact that a mono-economy has been shown to be a less than desirable state of affairs is immaterial to these set of people.  These leaders cannot be bothered that Petroleum has constituted more of a curse than a blessing to the nation. They still go  about as if our very being as a nation depend on the  black gold when the reverse is clearly the case.  I dare say without any fear of contradiction that without crude oil, Nigeria would have been a better country and a proud member of the world economic committee. We would be ranked up there with the world economic giants.
   With the avowed promise of President Buhari during the 2015 electioneering campaign, of improving the economic lot of Nigeria citizens,  one would have thought he would be proactive per the "oil conundrum." The first false step President Buhari took on assumption of power  is making himself the Petroleum Minister. This act, to all intents and purposes, shows that he is very much an "oil man." One would have thought he would have made himself the Minister of Agriculture to underscore the importance of the sector to his administration. The fact that billions of naira was budgeted to look for oil in the Chad basin is another pointer to the fact that crude oil still remain central to this administration policy thrust.
  At present President Buhari is in Saudi Arabia and later will be in Qatar on a week long meeting with the sole agenda of arresting the oil price free fall in the international market. This is coming at a time when the President's attention is sorely required at home considering the  current mauling of the naira by the dollar. N370 to the dollar for an importing country like Nigeria is enough reason for the President Buhari to stay put in Nigeria for now. Most developed nations like Japan, South Korea etc lack any sizeable mineral resources yet are wealthy through the conversion of imported raw materials into finished products. Rather than relying on crude oil Nigeria will do well to  invest massively in the agro-allied industry.  We have a huge comparative advantage in agriculture and common sense dictates this is the way to go. For our teeming unemployed youth the agriculture sector offers a veritable employment opportunities.  Figuratively speaking, what Buhari is looking for in Sokoto is right there in his sokoto pocket.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Wanted :A Visionary Leader

     It is a pity That Nigerians are still living on past glories. A nation that is a mono economy, whose main export is commanding a low price in the international market can I'll afford to live the way we are right now. People are going about as if it is business as usual. Looking round, one can see no sign of the sad turn of the economy in the everyday lives of our functionaries The National Assembly is carrying on as if all is well. At the last count oil per barrel is less than $ 30. Our naira is in a free fall at more than N300 to the dollar. It's southwards journey continues unabated. With this reality nonetheless , the Nass is planning on buy posh foreign made cars with money from the national coffers. With Nigeria's foreign reserve at a meager $29bn the planned purchases is one the nation can ill afford. Comparing this amount with close to $3bn James Cameron's film 'Avatar' grossed worldwide will give a scale of what the nation can make in other sectors when we really put our back to it.
 Opportunities however abound within the nation. Wither the groundnut pyramids, the textile industry, the real sector of the economy? Nigeria has no foundry industry to boast of. Since when was something invented in the country? The environment where excellence can breed is lacking. With a teeming population Nigeria should be coasting economically. However, this sorry pass we have gotten ourselves into was of our own making. Our so called leaders have failed us woefully. They've been superlatively lacking in vision and foresight. What you sow that you'll reap. This is an eternal truism. As a new oil producing nation Gen. Gowan, the then Head of State was said to have said money is not Nigeria's problem but how to spend it. What an unfortunate utterance as as at then a lot of towns and villages were still without roads, electricity, potable water, modern rail system etc, etc. This present parlous condition we find ourselves had been set in motion a long time ago. Where nations like the Emiratis where looking forward to a time when oil will lose it's shine, Nigeria was busy eating it's future. Those countries have diversified their economy to the extent that when you talk of those nations you don't think of oil but tourism, financial services and other allied activities.
  The earlier Nigeria invests in agriculture the better for everyone. I humbly believed that without the curse of oil Nigeria would have ranked high in the comity of nations. Where did the groundnut pyramids go, our cocoa, coffee. Our palmtrees? With our teeming population and our land and climate there is no reason why we should be feeding Africa, nay, the world. 

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Pilgrimage and the Nation

    At the last count about 66000 Muslims and 30000 Christians will be going on pilgrimage this year. A whooping N70 bn will be spent largely by the three tiers of government. This is a sum of money that should ordinarily be spent on the real sectors of the economy. Juxtapose this with the latest news where WAEC is threatening to withold the results of 13 indebted state and the criminality of the political actors in this farce called state sponsored pilgrimage is laid bare. These are the same states that throw money into the Pilgrim cesspool. Government - sponsored pilgrimage is a scam. It is both a religious and an economic scam. It is a religious scam in that Pilgrimage is a personal journey and should therefore be personally driven. It is more fulfilling when a pilgrimage is embarked upon solely by the individual devoid of government sponsorship.
It is an economic scam in the sense that their is no known criteria for inclusion into the scheme. Everything goes. Inclusion is based primarily on political patronage. An exercise where public money is spent on a scheme whose inclusion criteria is nebulous should be strongly discouraged.
      Nigeria is by no means a spiritual nation (what with a corruption ridden landscape) but only a religious one. Nigeria should divest herself from investing in non yielding ventures but rather invest in sectors like education where the results are positive and can be traced directly to the investment. Recently the Adamawa government voted N200m just to pray to end the Boko Haram scourge. N200m voted for so-called 'prayer warrior s'. These are all laughable misapplication of scarce resources that the people can jolly do without.  It is criminal to say the least. 

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Of flags and Correctness

     It is amazing the fact that seats (literally) of power do not show the proper coat of arms of Nigeria.The above is the picture of a Governor with the coat of arms on the back seat showing the horses in yellow colour. Sometimes the flag is shown with the coat of arms in the middle (of course with the horses in yellow). This state of affairs has unfortunately become the new normal in most state houses in Nigeria. The lecterns are also not left out.
They are most times emblazoned with this 'foreign' coat of arms.The horses in the normal Nigeria coat of afms should be white in colour. Can we safely say these public functionaries are aliens and foreigners? No wonder they don't represent the people in governance. If a student is asked the colour of the horses in Nigeria coat of arms and he answers yellow would you say he is wrong? How can our political office holders seat on chair's chairs with some alien coat of arms on the back. If these anomalies occur in such high settings little wonder that Nigeria is in such state she is. National Orientation Agency(NOA) over to you.

Buhari's Difficult Job

     President Muhammad Buhari rode to power on the strength of his anticurruption posture.  He has been in power in Nigeria since the 29th May 2015 without appointing key officers to his cabinet. Till date no cabinet exists, which means the retired General is currently at liberty to exercise some dictatorial powers as it were.  This means the President has free rein to arrest the decay  caused by corruption on the Nigeria psyche.
 
The moot question remains: can the General go far in his avowed anticorruption crusade?  I believe the President is damned if he did and dawned if he didn't. The simple reason being that Buhari rode to power with the active support of some known corrupt personalities. Buhari was (and is)  supported by politicians of questionable sources of wealth.  To move against such characters is to open Buhari to a campaign of being an ingrate. And no doubt these powerful politicians sure know how to manipulate the media to pursue their narrow and parochial agenda. If, on the other hand President Buhari decides to go after the opposition he would be accused of selective dispensation of justice.  It therefore seems the President is balanced precariously on the horns of dilemma.  How he chooses to move forward will, to a large extent, define his Presidency. 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Salary, Workers, and their Governor

  Salary, Workers,  and their Governor 

    Watching Coretv some days ago I saw some on obviously paid miscreants in Imo state demonstrating in support of the Governor,  Okorocha.  The kernel of their demonstration is that the striking workers of the state should be given the boot and that they should in turn be employed instead.  It is instructive to say here that the state workers are presently on strike due to the government inability to pay their five months (and upwards) salaries. It would have been laughable if not  for the seriousness of the matter.
 
That some group of people would want to take the place of workers who are presently on strike due to lack of salary speak volumes of their collective and individual intelligence. To think the Governor was on the entourage of president Buhari to the U.S last week.  Okorocha is however not the only Governor owing workers backlog of salary. I make bold to say these governors are either bad managers (read damagers).  Their respective administrations should be probed by the EFCC and allied anti-corruption agencies.  The livelihoods of untold numbers of workers and their hangers-on are  unnecessarily put in abeyance due to the actions and inactions of these governors


Sunday, 19 July 2015

As Buhari leaves for the U.S today



As Buhari leaves for the U.S today he should not not defer to Obama when he gets there. The is especially so on issues pertaining to what the people of Nigeria nay,Africa holds dear. The unnatural phenomenon presently sweeping the West is especially in mind. This is the homosexual movement that seems to be the vogue in the U.S and some European nations. To equate same sex relationship and marriage to its heterosexual counterpart is to stretch freedom to its elastic limit. Procreatively, homosexual relationship cannot produce children. Humanity as we know it can't last with homosexuality. It is an aberration. The problem lies with attempting to paint an unnatural act as being natural. Homosexuals have always been with us. They can jolly well survive like they have been surviving. Apart from the immediate problem of relationship, homosexuality throws up a lot of legal issues like sperm donor issues, calling a male a wife and vice versa etc. If the west will not give us aids because of Nigeria's refusal to bow to pressure then let them be. We should look inward and put our house in order. It may well be an opportunity to pick ourselves up, roll up our sleeves and do the needful to make our nation great again.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

NEPA Go NEPA Come



When NEPA was disbanded not a few of us shouted hosanna. We optimistically thought the new dispensation would herald an era of fresh breath in Nigeria power sector. We thought lessons have been learnt by the new Distribution Companies (DISCOS) as per the mistakes of their predecessors. With the advent of the DISCOS things have remained the same if not worse. Power outages are as frequent as ever. Outages remain a constant factor come rain or dry season. I believe due diligence was not properly undertaken by these DISCOS before the commencement of their homework before bidding for a piece of the defunct NEPA.

They now have assets which they obviously lack the knowledge of what to do with. The new power distribution companies can still be seen in town carrying ladders about, disconnection electricity to defaulting customers. If they had invested in pre paid meters their personnel would have been better allocated to other duties. The customers will also not feel shortchanged as they will be paying for electricity actually consumed instead of the current estimated bills. The backward looking concept of estimated bills should be discarded in favour of pre paid meters. This scheme will also conserve scarce power because consumers will be more prudent in their electricity usages. For examples they would not leave their houses with security lights on or over boil water etc. this will have an overall effect of conserving much needed power. People should pay for what they use for the sake of equity and fairness.

Friday, 6 June 2014

The Motor Dealer, The Buyer and The Custom Service

Imagine this scenario: you are travelling with your family in your newly acquired tokunbo car while enjoying the countryside. All of a sudden you are flagged to a stop at a Customs checkpoint. You are requested to produce the car documents which you confidently proffered. . to your utter dismay and horror the document are said not to be in order. You are told that your car was not processed legally. Despite your pleadings that your car is bought at a dealer’s forecourt it is impounded. Your journey is rudely cut short and you and your family left stranded. The above scenario plays out in one form or the other every day on our highways. Meanwhile the numbers of motor car dealers continue to increase daily. However, the argument remains that with the open display of Tokunbo cars on the dealer’s forecourts why do the Custom Service turn a blind eye only to embarrass defenseless buyers of such cars. 

Methinks the Custom Service will do well to impound these cars while they are still in the possession of such car dealers and not wait till a car is bought before swinging into a belated action. If an illegal product is being sold openly the onus lies on the concerned agency to arrest the seller and not wait till it was bought before doing the needful. Whatever the anomaly observed by the Customs it should be solved at the dealers’ and not subjecting the unwary buyer to unnecessary hassles after purchase. 

Come to think of it, what are the Customs doing in the towns instead of the International borders? If such unusual efforts and industry on the part of the Customs was put into policing our borders these cars would not have entered the country in the first place. I tried to check the papers of a car at the customs office before purchase only to be directed to the local airport where they demanded N5000 just to check the custom duty status of a car. This is not good enough. It is not encouraging people to know the status of car's duty before purchase. The appropriate authority should up to their duties.

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Petrol Palava

  Petroleum Pump Price

For a while now the pump price of petrol has been hovering any where above ₦110 per litre. Surprisingly, some South-South states buy at well above ₦130. This is happening in a country where the legal pump price is pegged at ₦97 per litre. It will take some hard argument to convince anyone that the FG is not tacitly condoning the situation. This is due to the obvious lack of interest of government to call the dealers to order. The petrol dealers are given free reinto fix the price of the commodity. If the government intends to remove the petrol subsidy it should just go ahead and do so.



  A situation where station owners are feeding fat on the general population should be arrested forthwith. The problem lies with enforcement. Some people are being paid with the tax payers money to enforce compliance but choose to sit on their hands. Nowadays they don’t even bother to bark not to talk of bite. The Directorate of Petroleum Resources (DPR) saddled with enforcing regulation is a toothless bulldog as regulations are routinely flouted by the filling stations operators. This is hardly surprising since most of the personnel has strings of filling stations. It is a clique thing. most commissioners and political advisers have filling stations hence the lack of political will by the DPR to do the needful. 

Sunday, 1 June 2014

The Loot Called Security Vote

The issue of the so called security vote in the Nigeria political reality is something of an anolamy. The security vote is the money ‘allocated’ to the Governors in Nigeria whereby they are meant to use the fund to deal with the security issues that may be bedeviling their respective domain. This is all well and good if not for the fact that the governors are not meant to account for the said vote. This obvious anomaly has continued to generate much discourse in the political space. As a matter of fact security vote is an alien concept to the Nigeria constitution.
     The Nigeria constitution distributes powers and allocates responsibilities. It matches perks of office with accountabilities. It is therefore strange that a concept like security vote, where the recipient owes NO ONE any accountability, has been allowed to take root in the Nigeria body polity. The so called security vote is therefore unconstitutional, illegal, and totally immoral in all its ramifications. Where the enabling powers emanate beat me. I challenge anyone to show me where the constitution mentions anything resembling the concept of ‘security vote’. What has it been able to achieve thus far except allowing the governors to extra constitutionally stash away at least N300 million every month in private accounts. Its proponents say the fund is needed in order to keep the level of crime and criminality down. But pray, why the secrecy? If the fund is truly being used to provide security why can’t they come clean and do the needful by accounting.
   The Governors of the North Eastern states collect same every month but has it brought any actionable intelligence to combat the militants operating in that corner? The truth is that the governors see the security vote as legalized loot and as the dividend of democracy. It comes with the territory as it were. This is an area the ongoing National confab should look into in order to correct this obvious anomaly. The issue should be put up to the light of the letter and spirit of the constitution.

Meanwhile: BringBackOurGirls

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Still On The Chibok Girls: A Nation Without Borders


   That about 300 school girls can just disappear into the thin air of Borno state is as mysterious as it is mindboggling. The Boko Haram insurgents came on that fateful day of April the 14th  to spirit away the young girls from Chibok to God know where. The level of impunity of these guys is just too hard to imagine. They came in a convoy and they left same way. This in a state under the cloud of a so called state of emergency. For criminals too operate for hours in normal times and climes are eyebrow-raising not to talk of during a so called state of emergency. It is obvious the Islamic militants are stealing a march on our security agencies and apparently tying them in a knot. They seem to have better intelligence, mobility, and motivation. 
Our borders are hopelessly porous. These are the same borders that are supposed to be manned by the Customs Service, Immigration Service, and other security personnel. The question that begs an answer is: where are the security guys when convoys of motorcycles and cars move so frefreely across our borders. If they can not spot and intercept a mass movement of people how can they be expected to put a stop to organized gun running across our frontier. If the criminal elements within the country continue to have access to guns and other offensive materiels, it is a no brainer to expect anything less than the current level of criminality and lawlessness currently holding the country by the jugular.

  • Meanwhile #BringBackOurGirls

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Collective Amnesia


Nigerians are a rare breed indeed. We tend to have the shortest memories of all humankind. You can always bet that a villain today will be the hero tomorrow. A known criminal will always be feted tomorrow. There was a time Sanusi was accusing the National Assembly of getting virtually all Federal allocation of financial resources. He was shouted down by the N.A. In a dramatic turnaround he is being heavily defended by the same N.A especially the lower arm. Ditto for Obasanjo. When he was in government he was hated by not a few for a myriad of perceived wrongs .He was accused of hounding his enemies with the E.F.C.C, and the third term debacle. They called for his head. He is now being invited to be the pathfinder of a party led by his former traducers. Week is really a long time in politics. El-rufai the former minister of the F.C.T was a pariah among the people for being elitist. his enemies cited his destruction of peoples’ homes and business in his pursuit of the F.C.T master plan, his riddance of okada riding business within the F.C.T metropolis, his allocation of plot to his family members on the very last day of his tenure of office. El-rufai has now somehow wormed his way into the peoples’ consciousness as the champion of the masses. It is a dramatic volte face to say the least. Bola Tinubu too was accused of cornering every juicy contract for himself. They said he has the contract for tax collection in Lagos, that his company collects toll on the Lekki-Ajah axis, that he made his wife a senator, his in-law a House of representative member, his daughter the Iyaloja of Lagos etc,etc. Apparently, however, the hoi polloi conveniently refuse to remember all these alleged sins in their desperate bid to oust one allegedly corrupt regime for the other. Saints are in short supply across the Nigeria political firmament. The ugly cream will always rise to the surface in our tolerant clime. The liver to come clean of the tainted political class is sadly lacking within the nation. Old wine continues to be recycled in new bottles. We continue to see the same tired and worn old faces. Nigeria surely needs a clean break with other soiled and sullied political class. The great impediment however, is our collective short memories.