A LOOK AT EVENTS THAT OCCURED BETWEEN JANUARY 1-10, 2014

January 1, 2014

This kind news just dey jolly my mind, most especially today, the first day of the New year, but na opinion sha, all the same, no lele… Writer and poet, Odia Ofeimun, rated the late Premier of the old Western Region, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, above late former South African President, Nelson Mandela. The social critic said although “Mandela was good for the liberation” of his people, Awolowo made far reaching impacts on the lives of many Nigerians. Ofeimun, while comparing the two leaders said the process leading to the independence in South Africa and Nigeria “followed exactly the same pattern” noting that the liberation struggle championed by Mandela did “not create the end of apartheid.” Ofeimun said Awolowo negotiated Nigeria’s independence just as Mandela did, adding that it would amount to a “hype” to think that there were differences in what the two leaders fought for in their respective countries to end colonization. His words however contradicted the statement of President Goodluck Jonathan when he said last year that Nigerian political leaders were yet to produce a great man like Mandela.  While choosing Awolowo above the late anti-apartheid leader, Ofeimun said the philosophical postulations about the workings of a state put forward by Awolowo were superior to those credited to Mandela. Insisting that Mandela could not match the stature of Awolowo, the Edo born poet said Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkurumah was the only African leader that could be seen to rival Awolowo. If na me talk dis one now dem go say I am sentimental…Up Awo! Sure say baba go dey smile as he watch Ofeimun speak.

 

January 2, 2014

Anyway, we are going to take them by their words and give them the benefit of doubt. Nigerians started the last year, 2013, on a very sad note, amidst the controversial New Year package of President Jonathan and his economic team when he hiked the pump price with over 100%. The Federal Government, this year however, said it had no plan to increase the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit from the current rate of N97 per litre. The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Mr. Danladi Kifasi, dismissed growing fears in some quarters of an impending price hike, describing it as unfounded. In his statement, “We will like to appeal to oil marketers to refrain from hoarding petroleum products and the general public from panic buying in anticipation of any increase in pump price. It is equally important to state that neither the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources nor any of its parastatals is under any instruction to activate a new pump price regime as being speculated’. The permanent secretary further warned petroleum product marketers to desist from creating artificial scarcity so as to induce panic in the system, with the aim of exploiting unsuspecting members of the public. “All petroleum product marketers are hereby advised to sell at government approved prices and desist from hoarding, thereby causing artificial scarcity and hardship to consumers. The DPR wishes to reiterate that there is adequate supply of petroleum products nationwide”, he warned.

 

 January 4, 2014

To be forewarned is to be forearmed. Primate Babatunde Elijah Ayodele, the founder of INRI Evangelical Spiritual Church, the prophet that predicted the breakup of almighty PDP is at work again. He predicted chaos and political revolution amongst many others. Meanwhile, he asked Jonathan to consult God on his second term ambition. “If Jonathan eventually becomes Nigeria’s president for a second term, he should watch his health. His second term will not be as peaceful as he expects. We should pray for the First Lady”, he said.  Hmmnn…If President Jonathan’s second term won’t be better than the first, he better not seek re-election o or what is your take on that? On the prayer for the First Lady, go tell that to Rotimi Amaechi. As a matter of fact, we’ve done that before and you and I know how she showed gratitude, so fasting and prayer is meant for them there.  The prophet further said Jonathan’s presidential economic team will fail him, hmmnn…to be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Ms Stella Oduah

January 5, 2014

This is a New Year prayer o, just spread your hands and receive the blessing why it is also expected of you to affirm the prayer by saying…Amen. The prayer is from the number 1 citizen of this country, President Goodluck Jonathan, he prayed that Boko Haram will soon be defeated. Did I hear you say a loud amen? God bless you. President Jonathan described the Boko Haram insurgency in some Northern states as a temporary challenge. He spoke at the Church of Christ in Nations, Garki, Abuja. “Boko Haram insurgency is a temporary challenge. Boko Haram will surely go. We will do all our best to ensure it becomes a thing of the past very soon. A number of countries have faced similar challenges and they have been able to overcome them. We will surely overcome Boko Haram. Life in the North must change. Development must go to all parts of this country and nobody or group can hold this country to ransom. We will collectively liberate this country from the hands of any evil person that is trying to set us backward. We will do our best and build a country that our children and our grandchildren will be proud of”, he said, and I say amen!

The security agencies in the country decided to widen the probe of Obasanjo’s security claims that about 1,000 Nigerians have been placed under watch by the Federal Government. The probe was coordinated by the Office of the National Security Adviser. Meanwhile, they decided to extend the probe to similar allegations raised by Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi and a former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai. The duo would be asked to oblige them information at their disposal in confidence as responsible citizens. The security agencies were reportedly mandated to go deep into the veracity or otherwise of the allegations. We hope for a positive result.

January 6, 2014

Now, I know why the Presidency wanted to charge the opposition with treasonable offence, because they won’t stop talking and big words for that matter. This time, the All Progressives Congress described as a “Cruel accusation of inconsistency and double standards levelled against its leaders by the Presidency, saying an incompetent and flip flopping administration has no moral authority to point an accusing finger at anyone, least of all the patriotic and respectable APC leadership. The two parties continue to trade words as always even in this new year with accusation and counter accusations from their apex quarters. APC National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed likened the Presidency to a punch-drunk boxer who clearly dazed by a barrage of right-on-target punches from the opponent, ran to the ropes and started punching the air, when he should be thinking of a comeback strategy. “This Presidency is definitely dazed from its own failings, the collapse of the party that sired it and the opprobrium being poured on it daily by Nigerians who are grossly disappointed at its woeful performance and clear lack of direction. We are therefore not surprised that in addition to incompetence and cluelessness, it has now resorted to twisting facts”, he said. The APC thus challenged the Presidency to tell Nigerians when the party called on President Goodluck Jonathan to respond to former President Olusegun  Obasanjo’s scorching letter, as claimed earlier by the Presidency. “Even though, our grouse about the President’s letter is not that he should not have responded, but he should have exhibited a high level of decorum in his response, bearing in mind that the Presidency is an institution that should not be dragged into the mud, while the President is only a tenant”, hmmnn…words of wisdom.

 

January 7, 2014

Hon. Friday Aderemi, does this name ring any bell at all? Ok, let me help you out, the former Speaker of Ekiti State House of Assembly, and a 3 day Acting Governor of the state when the former governor, Ayo Fayose was allegedly impeached. Anyway, it’s no good news though, the former lawmaker is dead. He passed on at the age of 74. The late Aderemi, a chieftain of All Progressives Congress died at the State University Teaching Hospital. Until his death, Aderemi was the Chairman, Ekiti State Education Trust Fund. May his soul continue to find rest in the bossom of the Lord.

 

January 8, 2014

The victims of the September 20, 2013 Apo killing in Abuja have demanded for N500 million in compensation from the Federal Government. Chidi Odinkalu, the Chairman, Governing Board of National Human Rights Commission, made this known at the public hearing organised by the commission. Odinkalu said the demand was made by National Commercial Tricycle and Motorcycle Owners and Riders Association of Nigeria on behalf of the victims in the course of the commission’s investigation. Reacting, Counsel to State Security Service, Charles Osagie said SSS had no problem compensating victims but it would depend on the verification that the victims were hit by bullets from security operatives, you dey hear? “Until we reach the conclusion and ascertain that those people killed were actually innocent individuals, you cannot be talking about compensation or damages. It is also necessary to ascertain the culpability of the individuals that died at the incident scene to determine their link with Suleiman, who is at large”. The commission however adjourned hearing to a later date, to be communicated to stakeholders. Anyway, they should please separate the innocents from the victims, na pray we dey pray o.

Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State had accused the State Commissioner of Police as always, Joseph Mbu, of working with the Peoples Democratic Party against his government. Amaechi said the commissioner prevented the state lawmakers from performing their legislative functions in the state. Amaechi made this allegation while assenting the 2014 Appropriation Bill passed by the State House of Assembly at its sitting in Government House, Port Harcourt. He said Mbu is not a complete policeman. “Mbu is a known PDP politician instead of executing his duties as head of police in the state”, he said. Mbu, this can’t be true, please tell us Amaechi was lying.

Another gbege today, as a copy of the “original” CV of the embattled Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah after a series of investigations revealed that she did not obtain an MBA degree from any university in the United States. The CV only shows that Oduah possesses a BSc in Business Administration from St. Paul’s College in Lawrenceville, Virginia in 1982 and St. Paul’s College closed down in June 2013. One person too many lies, I hope the Presidency will give this an attention or else…Oduah I dey hail o.

January 9, 2014

After serving the maximum of two terms of five years each, the Deputy Governor, Operations, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Tunde Lemo, said his exit from office would not affect his chances of possibly succeeding Governor Lamido Sanusi, even after retirement. While President Goodluck Jonathan has not given any indication of who will be the next governor, Lagos-based Vetiva Capital Management Limited said in an October report that potential candidates included Lemo and Sanusi’s three other deputies. Lemo said his departure “Doesn’t affect that speculation,” citing a previous case where a retired deputy governor became the Central Bank governor. He seems to be too sure. Although a statement from the CBN indicated that Lemo’s retirement was with effect from January 11, 2014, the Deputy Governor was expected to be pulled out of service on January 10, 2014, being the last working day before his retirement date. Prior to his appointment as a Deputy Governor in the CBN in 2003, Lemo was the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Wema Bank Nigeria Plc between 2000 and 2003.The retired Deputy Governor who was credited for playing a key role in the implementation of the banking sector consolidation resulting in the 24 stronger and well-capitalised banks with combined equity of over N1.6tn from 89 largely weak banks; formulation and implementation of the Microfinance Policy and Supervisory Framework both under the supervision of the governor was so sure of his ambition. Hmmnn…Any premonition, Lemo? But na Naija we dey o, death sure pass all dis yarn, man dey fail promise.

Serious wahala for debtors broadcasting stations this year as the National Broadcasting Commission said broadcasting stations indebted to it as a result of non-payment of licence dues will lose their licences by the end of January if the debts were not redeemed.The commission said no preference would be given to any broadcasting station, whether federal, state or privately owned. For this country, no preference, we shall wait and see. The Director-General, NBC, Mr. Emeka Mba, was quoted in a statement while addressing journalists in Abuja to have made this assertion. “By the end of this month, any company that has not paid its broadcasting dues to the NBC will have to lose its licence,” he said. According to him, the hammer will fall on players that have not substantially made commitments to paying the outstanding dues. You don hear now, if you sef dey owe media for advert, better go pay now because guys are not smiling o.

January 10, 2014

See confession, a pathetic story. “It was the day our ticket was booked. Nobody knew there was going to be a coup. My flight had been booked over a month before that 15th of January. On that day, the coup occurred. We woke up to go to the airport; some friends who were supposed to see me off to the airport told me the road was blocked because there had been a coup. All my life, I hadn’t heard what a coup was. I didn’t understand what they meant by coup. They said the government had been overthrown and there was no road to get to the airport. But I was to travel. I decided I must reach the airport, no matter what. The flight was to depart at 11am. Some of my friends decided to go with me. They didn’t think the airport would be closed just like that. On our way, we got stuck. Everywhere was blocked. There were soldiers everywhere. The traffic was so long. You couldn’t go forward or backward. We managed to get to Ikeja and we saw soldiers combing the bushes. They said they were looking for the corpses of the Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa and the others. We were still stuck till about 2pm. We had left the house as early as 8am for the 11am flight. But I saw a police van with the siren blaring. I just came out of our car and I flagged down the police vehicle. My brother was already the Inspector General of Police then. Most of the police officers at least knew my brother even if they didn’t know me. So, when the policemen asked me who I was, I told them I was Edet, the IG’s sister.” Now you know who the story teller is, Seventy-six year old Mrs. Eno Edet Traore, younger sister to former Inspector-General of Police, Louis Edet. Now, let’s continue with the narrative. “They asked me where I was going. I told them and they said they would take only me but not my friends who came to see me off. So, with the siren still blaring, they took me to the airport. The airport was like a market place when we got there. There was no aircraft. Incidentally, it was the Air France, the airline I booked, that was on ground. They said that other airlines had begged Air France to bring all the passengers. The British children were all going home. They decided to pack all the children inside the aircraft. This was around 5pm. There was no space for us again. They had to tie us somehow and we were just holding on. There was no food. The little food that was available was given to the children. There was no food for the adults. We didn’t sit on the seats from Nigeria to France. Some of us sat on the floor of the plane,” that was the story of her life. If na you, you go dey do yanga, dey form for BRT.

You need to listen to veteran movie producer, Tunde Kelani, he also confessed; he said that he is glad his children are not interested in movies. He explained that while growing, he was free spirited and his father encouraged him, so he was doing same for his children. “The interesting thing is that my kids are not interested in movie making and I like that. They know all about this; they grew in the studio. At least, they spent 10 years of their lives in the studio here and they took part in one or two things and so on but by the time they got ready to leave for university, they didn’t want to start their life thinking about how they want to be apprentice. They wanted to do greater things.” Are you sure Uncle Tunde?

Veteran movie producer, Tunde Kelani

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