Thursday, 20 September 2012

The Federal Government Has Secured A 500 Million Dollar Loan From The Chinese Government To Complete The Abuja Light Rail Project.

The federal Government has secured a 500 million dollar loan from Chinese government to complete the Abuja Light Rail Project. 
The over 131.6billion naira project which commenced in 2009 is expected to be completed by 2015.

Minister of FCT Senator Bala Mohammed who led journalists to the site, as part of activities marking the commencement of the good government tour,  said the project has achieved 23 percent completion with possibility of generating one million jobs when completed.

The Delegation also inspected lot one and  two of the Project as well as the central laboratory of the Chinese Construction Firm handling the light rail project and the National Space Research and Development Agency

information minister, Labaran Maku,  expressed the political will of the government to complete the rail project by 2015, noting that the Rail  Project alone is enough to convince  Nigerians that FCT administration has recorded remarkable achievement in the last few years

The Good Governance Media Tour of projects, the government added,  is not a partisan progrmme designed to score cheap political points

The visit to project sites would not be restricted to projects being executed by  the PDP led governments only  but the ones executed by state governments control by the opposition political parties

The objectives of the media tour according to Maku is to educate the people about government's programmes and policies and to show case projects being implemented by the different tiers of government.

He said it was wrong for critics to assume that nothing is going on under the present democratic dispensation without on the spot assessment of  on-going projects and completed ones


Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN (right) welcoming the President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Jonathan (left) on his arrival at the VIP Lounge of MIIA for the Tunji Braithwaite’s Iconic Book Launch titled, “The Jurisprudence of the Living Oracles’ at the Balmoral Hall, Oregun-Ikeja

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN (left), President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Jonathan (middle) and the Author, Mr. Tunji Braithwaite (right) during Tunji Braithwaite’s public book presentation titled, “The Jurisprudence of the Living Oracles’ at the Balmoral Hall, Oregun-Ikeja, on Tuesday

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN (5th left), President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Jonathan (5th right), former Common Secretary-General, Chief Emeka Anyaoku (right) Christain Association of Nigeria’s (CAN) President, Bishop Ayo Oritsejafor (2nd right), the Author, Mr.Tunji Braithwaite (4th right), his wife, Mr. Braithwaite (3rd right), Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sojuwade (4th left), Oba of Lagos, HRM Rilwan Akiolu I (3rdleft), Jaja of Opoba, King Badinson Jaja (2nd left) and Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe (left) during Tunji Braithwaite’s public book presentation titled, “The Jurisprudence of the Living Oracles’ at the Balmoral Hall, Oregun-Ikeja

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN (3rd left), President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Jonathan (3rd right), the Author, Mr. Tunji Braithwaite (2nd right), his wife, Mr. Braithwaite (right), Oba of Lagos, HRM Rilwan Akiolu I (2nd left), Jaja of Opoba, King Badinson Jaja (left) and the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe (left) during Tunji Braithwaite’s public book presentation titled, “The Jurisprudence of the Living Oracles’ at the Balmoral Hall, Oregun-Ikeja


 Plateau state governor, Jonah Jang has raised an alarm over an impending attack on some communities in Plateau state By Fulani Heardsmen.

Correspondent Samson Omale reports that, the governor made the disclosure when he met with stakeholders, on ways to end the incessant bloodbath and explore options toward permanent peace in the north-central state.

He noted that there is no state in the country without internal political difference but described the Plateau situation as peculiar because the state suffers from both internal and external aggression.
Governor Jang was also quick to add that the attacks on plateau state was sponsored by certain individuals

While explaining the controversial issue of indigenous people and settlers, the governor said the traditions and customs of the natives should and must be respected

The governor expressed concern over the lingering strikes over the payment of minimum wage to local government workers and teachers describing the state civil service as rotten and filled with ghost workers.

The governor blamed the poor revenue situation IN THE STATE on the massive corruption in the system, noting that some people were taking salaries they had not worked for.
The meeting was attended by elder statesmen, traditional rulers, religious leaders, top government officials, leaders of political parties, NGOs and businessmen.

Campaign To Reverse The Ceding of Bakassi Shifts to House of Representatives

The campaign to reverse the ceding of Bakassi peninsula Cameroon has shifted to the House of Representatives with prominent inhabitants of the area insisting that the Nigerian Government should appeal the 2002 judgment of the International Court of Justice.

Speaking at an interactive session by the House joint Committees on Foreign Affairs, Justice and Special Duties, Bakassi indigenes accused the Nigerian government of failing in its duties to protect its citizens in the wake of series of injustices meted out by the Cameroonian government.


 The National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) has  said that the law setting up regulatory agencies are too weak to catch crude oil thieves.

NOSDRA which raised the alarm over the frequencies of crude theft going on across the country and the resultant oil spills that followed said something urgent must be done to arrest it.

The Diector General of NOSDRA, Sir Peter Idabor who  made the revelations when he  appeared before the Senate Committee on Environment in Abuja said that over 5,000 barrels of crude theft from the facilities of the major oil multinationals were reported aside from those that took place within the facilities of Pipeline Products Marketing Company (PPMC).

Idabor said that the rate of theft of crude in the North Central, particularly Kaduna and FCT was alarming.

He noted that most of the stolen crude are being ferried to the major international borders for sale.

This is just as the Managing Directors of the major oil companies shunned the meeting but gave various reasons for their inability to come before the Senate to avail it of efforts being made to clean the various oil spills which the upper chamber puts at 172 million barrels  within one month.


The Federal Executive Council on Wednesday reviewed the state of tertiary education in the country resolving to map out an intervention strategy in the sector following intervention from the National Economic Council

Information Minister Labaran Maku said the decision of council followed the presentation of a report by the Minister of Education after meeting of stakeholders on the weaknesses of higher education in the country

The decision comes on a day the Federal Executive Council  approved a National Sugar Master plan

The last strike of the Academic Staff Union of Universities ASUU had impressed on President Jonathan to set up a committee to investigate fully the problems in higher education going beyond financial considerations

The report is going to the National Economic Council so as to involve State Governments in the intervention strategy 

The bottom line is that government is concerned with the systemic weaknesses that have been exposed in the higher education sector and is determined to do something drastic to arrest the decline

Also on Wednesday the Council of Ministers endorsed the National Sugar Master plan which seeks in the space of ten years to make the nation self sufficient in the production of sugar for domestic use and even for export

Minister of Trade and Investment Olusegun Aganga said the strategy to be used was the same backward integration policy that had achieved great success in the cement industry

But what are the mechanisms of this backward integration policy and beyond making the country self sufficient,will  sugar be affordable to Nigerians


 The Senate President Senator David Mark has called for collaboration between the Executive, Judiciary and the legislature in order to revive the ailing Nigeria.

Senate President stated this in his speech to mark the official resumption of the Upper Chamber from eight weeks recess.

Senator Mark noted that for Nigeria Nigeria to move forward all hands must be on deck while appealing to the nation's Economic Team not chase shadow but advise the President on policies in with the economic reality of Nigeria.

The Senate President also harpped on the need for the Executive to forward the 2013 budget on time saying that the National Assembly has resolved to ensure that the 2013 budget is passed before the end of this year.

In another development, President Goodluck Jonathan has forwarded to the Senate the medium term expenditure framework and fiscal strategy paper for 2013 -2015.

The frame work was part of  the preparation towards submission of the 2013 budget to the National Assembly by the presidency.

Also the much expected  Petroleum Industry Bill scaled through the second reading on the floor of the senate. 


The Catholic Church in Nigeria is set for a showdown with the management of Dstv over the unceremonious suspension of a religious channel, EWTN.

The EWTN, a religious channel that broadcast activities of the Catholic faith, was recently yanked off from the bouquet of the South African owned Dstv over what its management termed the unpopularity of the programme in Nigeria. In a release signed by the Director, Social Communications, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, Msgr. Gabriel Osu, the Church described the suspension of the religious channel as uncalled for and regrettable and vowed to challenge the action.

Similarly, in a swift reaction, the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria, in a letter signed by Most Rev. Emmanuel Ade Badejo Chairman, Directorate of Communications of the CBCN, described the suspension of the channel as an act of discrimination.

 “In the last two weeks Bishops offices in Catholic Dioceses across Nigeria have been besieged with calls from the faithful who hitherto have been able to receive EWTN on your Dstv bouquet in Nigeria. Upon investigation, we found that Dstv had decided to suspend this channel to the greatest bewilderment of thousands of your subscribers for whom EWTN had become their family and faith channel. We have received reports that EWTN which by the way was the only Catholic channel on your service, is the only religious channel that has been taken down.”

While describing as false the assertion by Dstv that the channel was unpopular, judging by the high volume of complaint received from Catholics against the suspension, the Church urged Dstv to review its suspension of Ewtn and give back the millions of starved Christian households the opportunity of continually nourishing their faith at the earliest possible opportunity.

Atiku Supports Restructuring of Nigeria

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has thrown his weight behind the current clamour for the restructuring of Nigeria in a way that would strengthen the federating units of the country.

Atiku expressed his support to the issue in a speech he delivered as the Chairman of the Leadership Newspaper Conference and Awards ceremony held in Abuja on Tuesday.
Atiku dismissed the fears that decentralization of power could threaten unity or lead to disintegration of the country.

While expressing his opposition to any agenda to hide behind restructuring to divide Nigeria by any groups, the former Vice President said the merits of restructuring in the light of changing realities of Nigeria should be carefully considered.

He said the excessive concentration of power at the centre, which was created by the military, had led Nigeria producing the most powerful President in the world.

With such excessive powers, he argues, the President could unleash security agencies on individuals or organizations, or turn the National Assembly as stooges in his hand.
The former Vice President said he is now converted to the idea of restructuring because rapidly changing realities make it inevitable.

According to Atiku, too much concentration of power and resources at the centre undermines the ability of other federating units to deliver social services effectively.
On state police, the Turaki Adamawa said there was nothing wrong with the idea as long as it might not be abused by state or regional governments.

Rather than abolishing institutions because of abuses or corruption, he argued that the best approach was to entrench constitutional safeguards to prevent such abuses.
The former Vice President called for an independent an efficient judiciary that could deliver justice faster like what obtains in the United States.

On party structure, Atiku called for an amendment to the constitution by the National Assembly to provide for two party system in the country because too many parties bring out ethnic, religious and regional fault lines of the country.

Specifically, the former Vice President said the restructuring he advocates should be done along the current six geo-political zones, a position once advocated by former Vice President Alex Ekwueme during the 1994/1995 Constitutional Conference.


 A don Professor Sabitu Olagoke has said that the introduction of new five thousand naira notes will serve the interest of the cabals and cartels with hyper-inflation as a consequence.

He stated this during an interview  in Ibadan

 Prof.Sabitu Olagoke who is an Islamic Cleric described as autocratic the way and manner the introduction of five thousand naira note is being handled 

He asked the Federal Executive council to respect the wishes of the people if democracy is to survive in Nigeria.

Prof .Sabitu Olagoke then urged Federal government to invite expert that knows about economy before introducing the new currency moreso that the federal government claimed it is practising a cashless  economy".

The Professor of engineering said further that Mr. president should think of more of legacy things than introducing things that are not of benefit to the masses because his administration is hanging in the balance.


 The senate has unanimously urged President Goodluck Jonathan and the CBN to stop all actions on the issuance of the    proposed  5000 naira note and all matters connected therewith. 

The directive followed the adoption of a motion sponsored by Senator Ita Enang and several other lawmakers. 

Leading debate on the motion, Senator Enang argued that the proposed policy is a direct negation of the cashless policy of this administration which discourages cash transaction in preference for electronic  transactions , now in operation. 

 A cross section of lawmakers who contributed to the debate alleged that the policy is Western agenda aimed at re- colonising Nigeria. 

In his remarks, Senate President Senator David Mark said contrary to the provisions of section 4 sub section 2 of the constitution, the CBN failed to consult with the National Assembly before embarking on new  naira policy.  

Senator Mark also stressed that the policy does not make any economy meaning at the moment. 

Monday, 17 September 2012

Oyo Pays N10m Bursary To Indigenes In Law School

The Oyo State Government has distributed cheques worth over N10 million as bursary awards to its indigenes at the Nigerian Law School totaling 101 for the 2011/2012 academic session.
The state Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Adetokunbo Fayokun, while distributing the cheques to the students in Ibadan said that the gesture was aimed at assisting them financially.
According to her, the state government was not unaware of the importance of their school programme, as well as the huge financial resources required for its running, hence the need to come to the aid of the students.
While pledging that government would continue to implement policies that would enhance the educational development of the youth in the state, Fayokun charged the students to reciprocate the gesture by being more committed to their studies.
The commissioner also charged them to be good ambassadors of the state and shun all acts that could bring disrepute to their families, the state and the nation.
The Chairman of the state Scholarship Board, Dr. Adekiitan Babalola, in his remarks, lauded Governor Abiola Ajimobi for approving the payment of the bursary to the students.
He said that arrangements had also been concluded for the payment of 2011/2012 bursary awards to final year students of Oyo State origin in all federal and state-owned tertiary institutions nationwide.

S/West PDP Decries Aregbesola's Refusal To Appoint Head Of Service, Perm Secs.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South-West has decried the refusal of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) governor of Osun State, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola to appoint a Head Of Service (HOS) and Permanent Secretaries in the State.

The asked well meaning Nigerians to prevail on Governor Aregbesola to stop running Osun State like his private estate, and respect the laws of the land.

The PDP said it was an aberration and outright illegality that Governor Aregbesola will also alongside his functions as a governor, be performing the functions of Commissioner for Works while his Deputy, Laoye Tomori holds the office of the Commissioner for Education in addition to her position as the Deputy Governor.

According to a statement issued today by the PDP Zonal Publicity Secretary, Hon. Kayode Babade, berated the government for not having Head of Service since the immediate past HOS, Mr. Segun Akinwusi retired two months ago, and no Commissioners for Works and Education since Aregbesola became governor 22 months ago while there are only six Permanent Secretaries left in the State Civil Service.

Quoting section 192, 193 and 195 of the 1999 Constitution, the PDP described as flagrant abuse for not appointing a single commissioner until August 12, 2011, eight months after he became governor

The PDP, which wondered why Aregbesola is obsessed with the Works Ministry, said the governor seems obsessed with the Works Ministry having been in that ministry since 1999 that he was appointed in Lagos State by former Governor Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Isa Yuguda Condemns Bauchi Attack

Bauchi State Governor,  Isa Yuguda has condemned in strong terms  Sunday evening attack on innocent people at the Zango area of Bauchi metropolis which claimed nine lives while a few others were seriously injured and are receiving treatment at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Teaching Hospital, (ATBUTH), Bauchi describing the attack as an act of terrorism which his administration and other governments in the country are fighting hard to eradicate.

Chief Press Secretary, to the Bauchi state Governor, Ishola Michael Adeyemi in a Press statement said,the governor condoled the families of all those who lost their loved ones in the barbaric act praying God to give them all the fortitude with which to bear the irreparable lose calling on them to take solace in God the giver and taker of lives just as he wished all those that were injured quick recovery.

Isa Yuguda who described the assailants as terrorists assured that government will do everything humanly possible to track them down and bring them to book because according to him, “there is no way we will allow criminals and terrorists to continue live among us terrorising innocent people, we must join hands to stop these heinous acts.”

He added that the terrorists acts are not directed at one direction either because of religion, tribe and or political affiliation but a general target at every citizen of the country saying that, “we must all come together to fight these evil men, they live among us and we must expose them at all cost, these wonton killing must stop now.”

He therefore appealed to all those affected not to do anything that will aggravate the already tensed situation which may lead to the breakdown of law and order because according to him, “let us allow the security operatives to do their work and eventually track down the criminals, we should please avoid anything that will lead to the loss of more lives and disrupt the peace that we are enjoying in the state.”


FRESH party chairman, Rev Chris Okotie has rejected the proposed introduction of the N5, 000 currency and the replacement of lower denominated currencies with coins.

In a dramatic move recently, the Central Bank of Nigeria announced what it called, Project Cure, a reform of the nation’s currencies. The action has provoked heated debate across the country.

In his reaction, Rev Okotie said: “Given the present economic indices, it is not fiscally wise to expend billions of naira on redesigning a local currency in a global economy, where paper money is on the verge of extinction.

“The same CBN had initiated a process that will evolve into a cashless society. I find this a contradiction that defies any political logic.

“The execution of the Project Cure lacks practical application because the generality of the Nigerian public has disaffection for transaction in coins. It would fail because it lacks practicality.”

The National Agency for the Prohibition of Traffic in Persons, NAPTIP, has evacuated Ten Nigerian girls allegedly working as sex slaves in Abidjan, Cote d’ivoire.

The girls who were brought into Abuja in two batches are from Edo State, Delta, Rivers and Benue States respectively

The Executive Secretary of NAPTIP,  Beatrice Jedy-Agba disclosed that the operation which was intelligence driven was done  in collaboration with the regional bureau office of Interpol in Abidjan and a Non Governmental Organization, family Essan for Protection and Promotion of Human Rights, FEPDH. 

Jedy-Agba who spoke while receiving the girls in Abuja lamented  that there are many Nigerian girls in bondage in the booming sex trade in Cote d’ivoire and Burkina Faso 

Statement signed by the Head of Public Relations unit of the Agency, Arinze Orakwe said the ten girls are presently undergoing medical screening and counseling with NAPTIP operatives after which rehabilitation will commence in earnest.   
The National Agency for the Prohibition of Traffic in Persons, NAPTIP, has  evacuated Ten Nigerian girls allegedly working as sex slaves in Abidjan, Cote d’ivoire.

The girls who were brought into Abuja in two batches are from Edo State, Delta, Rivers and Benue States respectively

The Executive Secretary of NAPTIP,  Beatrice Jedy-Agba disclosed that the operation which was intelligence driven was done  in collaboration with the regional bureau office of Interpol in Abidjan and a Non Governmental Organization, family Essan for Protection and Promotion of Human Rights, FEPDH. 

Jedy-Agba who spoke while receiving the girls in Abuja lamented  that there are many Nigerian girls in bondage in the booming sex trade in Cote d’ivoire and Burkina Faso 

Statement signed by the Head of Public Relations unit of the Agency, Arinze Orakwe said the ten girls are presently undergoing medical screening and counseling with NAPTIP operatives after which rehabilitation will commence in earnest.   

Nigerian Senate is now peaceful-Mark

Senate President, David Mark has said that wrangling and animosities which had been the feature of succeeding senate chambers have ended, positing that the nation can now boast of a united and indissoluble senate.

Mark at Igbojaye hometown of Deputy Senate Chief Whip, Senator Hosea Agboola, who interred his late mother, Alice assured that with the unity and cohesion on the upper chambers of the National Assembly, the lawmakers would be more responsive to their constitutional responsibilities more than ever before.

The Senate President who arrived the community in a chopper lauded Senator Agboola, whom he noted was the active chairman, secretary and member of the Senate’s Southwest PDP caucus; being the only PDP lawmaker from the region.

Mark reminded clerics that much as the lawmakers are ready to make laws for the improvement of the society, the clerics have the duty to ensure that they made heavens and urged clerics to be steadfast and consistent in preaching the gospel to all Nigerians irrespective of their status in the society.

Nigeria Vice President, Architect Namadi Sambo who was represented by the former chairman Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Iyiola Omisore urged Nigerians to lead a Godly life and imbibe in their children Godliness in order to be remembered by virtues.

The representative of the Vice President while reading from a letter sent from the Presidency, condoled with Senator Agboola, describing Mama Agboola’s exit as a glorious one.


 Youth in some parts of Jos who attempted to protest against a US-made film which mocks Islam were prevented from embarking on the protest by men of the special task force, STF, deployed to keep the peace in Plateau state after the Friday Jummat prayers.

Media and information officer of the taskforce, Salisu Mustapha, said men of the taskforce will remain in areas considered as flash points untill the peace of the areas is guaranteed

 He commended Muslim religious leaders in the state forcalling on all Muslims to remain calm and to be guided by the teneants of their faith which promote peace

 Spokesman of the Muslim Ummah in Plateau state, Sani Mudi told our correspondent that Imams and other religious leaders were advised to concentrate on preaching peace, while the youths were told to shun whatever protests as the film in question was not done by Nigerians
The Muslim leader said the peculiarity of the security situation in Jos does not permit any such protest if the relative peace being experienced in the city is to be maintained
There were sporadic gun shots in some parts of the city Friday afternoon



Ministers in charge of security services in ECOWAS Member States have called on the relevant authorities to improve the salaries, living and working conditions of internal security forces to enhance their effectiveness in the prevention and combat of crime in the region.
This was one of the key recommendations of the 4th Meeting of ECOWAS Chief of Security Services (CCSS), which was adopted by the Ministers at the end of the one-day meeting of their 9th Forum on Saturday 15th September 2012 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.
Another recommendation adopted by the Ministers urged Member States to outline short, medium and long-term National Security Strategy aimed at making the region safe and secure.
The Chiefs of Security Services also called on ECOWAS to allocate more financial resources to the Commission’s Departments of Human Development and Gender, and the Political Affairs, Peace and Security, to organize joint/simultaneous police operations against transnational organized crimes.
The Ministers further enjoined Member States to ratify the 2003 Police Intelligence Cooperation Agreement, and for a simplified approach to the exchange of criminal suspects/exhibits from one police force to another through the National Central Bureaus of INTERPOL. 
Member States were also urged to honour their financial obligations to the Regional Bureau of INTERPOL.
The Ministers equally adopted the recommendation of the 13th Annual General Assembly of the Committee of West Africa Police Chiefs (WAPCCO), urging the ECOWAS Commission to allocate an autonomous budget to WAPCCO, to enable it establish and operate at an optimal level.  The Committee’s permanent secretariat is currently domiciled at the Commission’s Regional Security Division.
Another recommendation of the CCSS adopted by the Ministerial Forum is that ECOWAS should take measures to mitigate the security impact on countries in the region in case of any intervention in Mali.  This is in reference to the regional initiative, in consultation with the international community to deploy an ECOWAS Mission in Mali (MICEMA) to assist Mali restore its territorial integrity and retake its northern region occupied by separatist rebels.
The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA), a specialized ECOWAS agency, is also urged to organize specific training on techniques relating to financial investigations for Law Enforcement Agencies in the region.
Cote d’Ivoire’s Interior Minister, Honourable Hamed Bakayoko, who chaired the 9thMinisterial Forum, commended ECOWAS, its Member States and the INTERPOL for their strong support to the platforms put in place for the deepening of cooperation and harmonization of strategies among the police and other security services for the effective combat and control of organized crimes in the region, including, terrorism, drug trafficking, piracy and money laundering.
In her remarks, the ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, Mrs. Salamatu Hussaini Suleiman, appealed to Member States yet to ratify the ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons to do so without further delay as the region moves towards the elaboration of a Regional Concept and Plan of Action for the Security Sector Governance/Reform, one of the components of the 2008 ECOWAS Conflict Prevention Framework, which focuses on human security.
The WAPCCO and CCSS Meetings as well as the 10th Meeting of the Ministers Forum are to be held in Niger in 2013.


An extra-ordinary meeting of the ECOWAS Mediation and Security Council, comprising Ministers in charge of Foreign Affairs and Defence in Member States, will take place on Monday, Today 17th September 2012 in Abidjan to review the political and security situations in Mali and Guinea Bissau.
The meeting will consider memoranda presented by the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Desiré Kadré Ouédraogo, on the political and security situations in the two countries. Likewise, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Burkina Faso and the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Nigeria will brief the meeting on the mediation efforts in Mali and Guinea Bissau, respectively.
Similarly, the Chief of Defence Staff of Cote d’Ivoire who is also the Chairman of the Committee of the ECOWAS Chiefs of Defence Staff will brief the Council on the outcome of the two-day Committee meeting which ended on Saturday, 15thSeptember 2012 in Abidjan.
The Defence Chiefs have held several meetings as part of ECOWAS efforts towards the resolution of the crises in Mali and Guinea Bissau following the coups d’état which interrupted constitutional rule in both countries, and the separatist rebellion in northern Mali.
The meeting of the Council comes in the wake of the formal request by the Government of Mali for ECOWAS military assistance to recover the occupied territory in the North of Mali and combat terrorism, as well as the unveiling by the Electoral Commission of Guinea Bissau of the chronogram for legislative and presidential elections in the country expected by April 2013.


President Goodluck Jonathan says it is important for.more biographies, autobiographies and historical accounts to be written by Nigeria authors to showcase the success stories of role models and inspire generations of Nigeria to replicate their success 
The President spoke on Saturday in Abuja at a book launch to mark the 77th birthday of the National Chair the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Bamanga Tukur 
This full hall is gathered to celebrate a man who has achieved success both within and outside politics and can be described as a role.model other successful people are trying to emulate
President Jonathan identifying with Alhaji Tukur's huge success says the man is in a position to mentor the nation's leaders 
And that is why he says more biographies are needed in the country to inspire generations of Nigerians about the importance of hard work in attaining success 
It is the same for everyone at this occasion, lavish praise
The man being celebrated preempts the critics, this occasion he says is not solely about being Chairman of the PDP
The moot point to note amid the celebrations has been by the President, who believes more success stories should be showcased to counter the stifling skepticism that has pervaded society that no good can come from Nigeria

Friday, 14 September 2012

Benin High Court Awards N5m Agaisnt Police To David Ugolor Over Unlawful Dentention.

A Benin High Court on Friday awarded five million Naira out of a five hundred million Naira relief, as damages against the Nigeria Police, for unlawful detention of a Benin based Human right Activist, Mr. David Ugolor in connection with the murder of the personal secretary to the Governor of the state Mr  Oyerinde Olaitan.
The Court also ordered the Police to stop forthwith any further arrest of the applicant.
The judgment followed an earlier ruling by the court on August 16 2012 wherein it ordered the immediate release of the activist.
 Justice Esther Edigin in her ruling observed that two weeks after the order, the Police held on to him explaining that it was not properly served.
Besides the security operatives sought for an extension of the time to enable it respond to the motion on notice brought against it by   counsel to Applicant , Mr Olayiwola Afolabi.
Afolabi had in the motion for deformation of the Character and breach of Fundamental Human rights of the Applicant stated that the Respondent had in continued to violate the Rights of the applicant even when the operatives of the Sate Security service had paraded the alleged killers of the slain secretary
Reacting to the Ruling Counsel to the Police Mr. David Abuo expressed disaffection announcing that the defendant will appeal the judgment saying there was no proper application upon which the court should have acted.
On his part the counsel to the Applicant Mr. Olayiwola AFolabi expressed appreciation to the Court saying once again the Judiciary has proven to be the last hope of the common Man.
Mr. David Ugolor was picked up by the Police on July 27th after one of the suspects in its custody allegedly identified him during a parade as an accomplice in the murder of the private secretary to the Governor, Mr. Adams Aliu Oshiomhole.


The Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria (ICAN) has appealed to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to have a second look at the proposed introduction of N5,000 note as it would lead to inflation and hinder the cashless policy being currently pursued by the government.

The National President of ICAN, Mr. Adedoyin Owolabi made appeal in an interview shortly after paying a courtesy call on the Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun in Abeokuta.

  Mr. Owolabi advised the apex bank to shelve the idea as it would further encourage people moving around with large sum of money and would also result to inflation.

  He also said that the Institute planned to sponsor Whistleblower’s Protection Bill at the National Assembly as part of its contributions to promote best practices in corporate governance and rid the society of corrupt and sharp practices which had accounted for the unacceptable rising misery index of the citizenry.

  Mr. Owolabi lauded Senator Amosun’s administration for its accomplishments in governance and commitment to the common goal of the people of the State.

  According to him, “as a chartered accountant, we are greatly enthused by your determination to eliminate of forms of corrupt practices in governance. In an era in which the level of integrity and accountability exercised by those in positions of trust determine the virility of the economic, your commitment to the enthronement of accountability and probity deserves not only recognition and commendation but also emulation by the larger society”.

  Responding, the State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun said that the nation public service now requires more professionals to institutionalize various policies and programmes of government to meet the yearnings of the populace.

Senator Amosun noted that the ICAN members serving in the State public service had distinguished themselves by being thorough professionals who imbibed the institute’s ethics of dedication, diligence and transparency.

  He seized the opportunity to canvass for support of all and sundry for the passage of the Whistleblower’s Protection Bill, saying it would help to attest to the transparent leadership style of his administration.


President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday night met with Governors from the Northern States to discuss issues of security and flooding especially in the region

Speaking with newsmen at State House, Abuja after the one hour meeting, Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu said issues of flooding in the states as it affects food security was discussed at the meeting

The Governors also reviewed the security situation in the country although its is not clear if they presented to President Jonathan  strategies they had resolved to evolve that would address the spate of terrorist attacks which seemed to be concentrated in the Northern part of the country 

At the meeting were Governors of Bauchi, Jigawa, Benue, Kaduna, Plateau, Niger, Kogi, Kebbi, Nasarawa, Kano, Borno while six other states were represented by their deputies

Governors of Sokoto and Taraba states were absent at the meeting which was probably called by the President to also deliberate on the unemployment and wealth creation especially as it affected the region


· As Governor meets with them, reports 94 percent success in DNA identification of victims
Families of the June 3, 2012 Dana Air crash victims were Thursday full of commendations for the Lagos State Government for the way it handled the aftermath of the disaster as the State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), met with them to give an update on the progress made over identification of the victims’ bodies.

Following the Sunday, June 3, 2012, Dana Air mishap at Iju-Ishaga, a suburb of Lagos, which claimed the lives of all the passengers and crew members, Governor Fashola, on June 10, 2012, convened a meeting with families and relations of the victims as well as officials of Dan Air to intimate them of the willingness of his administration to identify, through scientific tests, bodies of their relations, some of which were burnt beyond recognition.

Fielding questions from newsmen after the meeting on Thursday which was held at the Banquet Hall of Lagos House, Ikeja, Governor Fashola said 94 percent success was achieved with 141 out of 150 bodies successfully identified adding that only nine bodies have not been identified but that fresh samples had been taken from families of five of the yet to be identified victims for fresh tests leaving only four bodies.
According to the Governor, “If that is successful, we will be left with only four bodies that we will have to decide how we will proceed because we have not been able to identify them”.

“From what we have identified so far, we have a 94 percent identification and the bodies have been released to the families that we have identified and many of them have gone to bury their loved ones’’, the Governor said adding that out of 89 death certificates issued so far, 51 were yet to be collected.

Governor Fashola said the meeting discussed the various issues concerning the release of the bodies and how families of the victims could recover the personal effects of their deceased adding that the families were meeting again with officials of Dana Air to sort the issues out.

Other issues discussed, according to the Governor, centred on the way forward as to how to reform the Aviation sector so that travellers by air within the country could be assured of comparative safety adding that his administration would work with the families, in conjunction with officials of the aviation sector to tackle the problem.

“The Families have made it very clear that for them it is very important that we use this experience to reform the Aviation Sector irrevocably so that their loved ones would not have died in vain”, the Governor said adding that on that score government and the families had agreed to work in committees to engage the regulators in the Aviation Sector to work on the issue.

He said the idea of a memorial service and a memorial cenotaph for the victims also came up at the meeting adding, “For this, they will have to work with our staff and our colleagues and come back to us with the appropriate thing they think we should do”.

Describing the air mishap as “a story of mixed tragedies and grief”, Governor Fashola said the meeting was also to sympathize with families of the deceased adding, “It breaks one’s heart to see what they are going through”.

The Governor thanked all the medical staff, the police, the fire men and all others who contributed variously to achieve the level of success recorded by the Government.

“I think it is appropriate to take this opportunity to thank all the medical personnel, especially Professor Obafunwa who led the team of forensic experts from Universities of Abuja, Ibadan and Ife and other medical officers, the Chief Medical Director of Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, the Commissioner for Health, Mortuary attendants, fire men, Police men and all others who have helped to bring us this far”, the Governor said.

While noting that the journey is not yet finished, Governor Fashola declared, “But I think it is an appropriate milestone to acknowledge their selflessness and their commitment to care and to provide service”.

Some family members of the victims who attended the meeting also spoke with journalists commending the Lagos State Government for what they termed “historic in a country where victims of such disasters had always been given mass burial” adding that the State Government has also agreed to work with them to engage the aviation sector regulators to reform the sector for the safety of air travellers within the country.

One of the family members, Mrs. Onyinye Okocha who lost her husband in the crash, told newsmen, “The meeting was wonderful. We are happy with what the Governor has done so far. He has promised to help form committees to engage the aviation regulators. We thank the State Governor for his kindness”.

“This is our fight. We have to fight this cause in order to prevent future occurrences. If there had been things, appropriate things on the ground on that day, there would not have been as many casualties as recorded. We would not have had the magnitude of loss because the fire that roasted the victims did not start immediately”, she said.

She was full of gratitude to the Governor and Government of Lagos State saying, “We have a kind Governor, a feeling Governor and we are lucky to be in Lagos State. The Government is caring. They have paid for everything. This is the first time in the history of this country that crash victims are not given mass burial”.
Another family member, Mr. Seke Somolu, commended the State Government for doing “a lot more than the Federal Government has done”, noting that the Stake Government gave the families and relations of victims the opportunity to talk about how they felt about their loss.

On the need to reform the aviation sector, Somolu said, “The overwhelming emotion that came out of that meeting is the determination to have this kind of thing stopped. We know there is a problem in the aviation sector. It should not be that each time we get into a plane within the Nigerian borders; we have our hearts in our hands. The reason for the crash should be made public. There should be no attempt to conceal anything”.

Mrs. Chizoba Mojekwu of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), who came to the meeting on behalf of the staff of the apex bank who lost their lives in the crash, said in her response to questions from newsmen, “I thank the Lagos State Government for all it has done since the air crash”.

“For air crashes and the way they happen, sometimes they leave the bodies of victims unrecognizable or even unrecoverable. But the Lagos State Government, working closely with DNA experts, has been able to identify these bodies. 

In our aviation history, this is the first time we have not heard of mass burial. That is one of the emotions expressed at the meeting”, the CBN senior official said.

She said families of the victims were gradually coming out of their grief and learning to accept the inevitable adding, “I see signs of healing process. Even though the feeling of loss may still linger but there is improvement from what I saw the first time we held this kind of meeting here”.

She said the meeting also discussed the way forward “as to how we could partner with the Government to have a safer sky”. “It is all about safety of the people when we travel by air within the country”, she said.

Another family member, Architect Akinola Cole said, “We need to have more people like Governor Fashola. You see, it is not just the professionalism he is putting into this engagement but the human feeling he is also bringing to bear and his ability to know the feelings of the people”.

Architect Cole who said he was knowing Governor Fashola for the first time as a result of the incident declared, “For me, with 94 percent success with DNA in identifying the victims, it is a good score. And the offer that the Office of Public Defender will handle any case arising from the incident free of charge to me is divine”, adding that while praying for the repose of the soul of their loved ones, they also pray that God would sustain the Governor and his administration.

In his remarks the Commissioner for Special Duties, Dr,. Wale Ahmed, said the meeting was aimed at updating the family members of the victims of the June 3, air crash on the progress made so far by the Government regarding the scientific analysis of the bodies of their affected relatives through DNA identification and to give them the opportunity of having a say on how to move forward.

According to Dr. Ahmed, “All the family members of the victims unanimously expressed very high level of appreciation for the successes recorded by the State Government. They commended the Governor for the care and concern shown by the Government over their plight”.