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Monthly Archives: September 2013

FULL TEXT Of President Goodluck Jonathan’s Speech At The UN General Assembly

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The President of the 68th Session of the General Assembly;
Heads of State and Government;
The Secretary-General;
Distinguished Delegates;
Ladies and Gentlemen

Mr President,
1. On behalf of the Government and People of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I salute you as you preside over the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. I assure you of the full support and cooperation of the Nigerian delegation.

2. I also wish to extend our commendation to the Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-moon, and place on record, Nigeria’s appreciation for his focused and committed leadership of the United Nations system.

3. This Session is coming at a particularly trying period when our world faces a number of critical challenges which make it imperative for us to work within the Charter of the United Nations to meaningfully address them.

4. It is therefore apt that the theme, Post 2015 Development Agenda: Setting the Stage, signposts our desire and determination to actively cooperate for the improvement of the overall welfare and well-being of the most vulnerable citizens of the member-states of our Organisation.

5. Nigeria appreciates the consultative nature of designing the Post-2015 development agenda. Earlier in the year, we supported this global outreach through inclusive consultations and surveys of a number of Nigerians who have expressed their aspirations with respect to the world they expect beyond 2015.

6. A major highlight of this process, which has increased national ownership of the agenda, is the emphasis on the eradication of poverty as the overarching principle in the formulation of the successor framework.

7. Indeed, tomorrow, we will be hosting a side event on the implementation of the MDGs, in collaboration with the UN, a number of African countries, and our development partners.

8. As I had cause to say to this Assembly last Session, 2015 is not a destination but only a milestone to a better, safer, healthier and more compassionate world. Let us therefore renew our commitment to the processes that will develop the post-MDGs framework.

Mr. President,
9. This objective is of particular resonance to us in Africa where the challenges of poverty, illiteracy, food insecurity, and climate change continue to engage the attention of the political leadership.

10. The good news however, is that in the last decade, a sustained democratization process across the continent has made significant difference in governance processes, institutions and structures. Today, we have a renascent Africa that has moved away from the era of dictatorship to a new dawn where the ideals of good governance and an emphasis on human rights and justice are beginning to drive state-society relations. This is the present reality of Africa that must replace the old prejudices and assumptions about the continent.

11. We are firm in our conviction that democracy is fundamental to achieving the requisite stability that will enable the realization of a sustainable post-2015 development agenda in Africa.

12. This emergent Africa will require the continued support and partnership of the international community. An Africa that is no longer merely a destination for aid but one that is involved in constructive, multi-sectoral exchanges on the global stage. Our continent stands ready to continue to engage the rest of the world as a partner in formulating a global development agenda that will guarantee peace, security and stability.

13. I wish to express my appreciation for Nigeria’s selection as co-Chair of the Expert Committee on Financing Sustainable Development.

14. The importance of this Committee’s assignment cannot be overstated. For the post-2015 development agenda to be realistic, it must be backed by a robust financing framework which I hope will receive the strong backing of our Organisation’s more endowed members.

Mr. President,
15. Nigeria’s commitment to sustainable peace and security propels the country to action along with member states of our sub-regional and continental organisations, whenever stability is threatened in our continent. In recent years, Africa has had its share of conflicts notably in Mali, Guinea-Bissau, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic and Somalia.

16. It is noteworthy that African leaders, with the support of the international community, have demonstrated the capacity to work in concert and decisively in pursuit of long-term solutions in the affected States. While a lot more still needs to be done, we are convinced that progress is being made.

17. The recent Presidential elections in Mali herald a new beginning that should translate into peace and prosperity for its people and provide a stronger basis for stability within the sub-region. I congratulate President Boubacar Keita. Similarly, the political transition process in Guinea Bissau holds much promise. Among African leaders, there is a greater determination and focus on the transformation of the continent. This is the required impetus for the achievement of development objectives
that will benefit the people, and rebrand the continent even more positively.

18. Although our world has not witnessed a global war since the establishment of the United Nations, there have been several conflicts with devastating consequences and impact in virtually all regions of the world. As global citizens, we have a sacred duty to free our world of wars, rivalries, ethnic conflicts, and religious divisions. Our collective effort in our drive for a better world will continue to bind us together.

Mr. President,
19. Nigeria continues to support the efforts of the United Nations in addressing the global initiative to combat the menace of the illicit trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons. We have redoubled efforts to address this onerous challenge within our borders and across the West African sub-region.

20. In doing so, we also recognize the need for a broad-based global partnership in the on-going battle against trans-border crimes, including terrorism and acts of piracy. It is regrettable that these scourges are sustained by unfettered access by non-state actors to illicit small arms and light weapons with which they foster insecurity and instability across our continent. For us in Africa, these are the ‘weapons of mass destruction’!

21. It is therefore, in the light of our collective obligation and unceasing struggle to end this nightmare, that I congratulate Member-States on the adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) in April this year. Our hope is that upon its entry into force, the ATT would herald an era of accountable trade in conventional arms which is critical to the security of nations.

22. In line with our continued commitment to this project, Nigeria has signed and ratified the Treaty. We will continue to engage other Member-States for its successful implementation.

Mr. President,
23. Terrorism constitutes a major threat to global peace and security, and undermines the capacity for sustained development. In Nigeria, the threat of terrorism in a few States in the North Eastern part of our country has proven to be a challenge to national stability. We will spare no effort in addressing this menace. We are therefore confronting it with every resource at our disposal with due regard for fundamental human rights and the rule of law.

24. Nigeria will like to place on record its appreciation to the international community for its support in this regard. The reign of terror anywhere in the world is an assault on our collective humanity. Three days ago, the stark reality of this menace was again brought to the fore by the dastardly terrorist attack in Nairobi, Kenya. We must stand together to win this war together.

Mr. President,
25. Piracy, like terrorism, is another menace that has attained worrisome proportions, especially in Africa’s coastal waters. At the bilateral and multilateral levels, Nigeria has promoted cooperation to mitigate its impact and consequences on the security and economies of the affected coastal states.

26. Indeed, in June this year, the leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the Gulf of Guinea Commission met in Yaounde, Cameroon, and came up with practical steps to collectively confront the menace of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea. This effort will, no doubt, require reinforcement and wider support and collaborative action on the part of our international partners.

Mr. President,
27. The situation in the Middle East remains volatile. The reported use of chemical weapons in the Syrian crisis, is unacceptable. Nigeria condemns, in the strongest possible terms, the use of chemical weapons that are prohibited by International Conventions.

28. We applaud the current diplomatic efforts to avert further escalation of the crisis. We urge all parties involved to end the violence and seek a negotiated solution, including the instrumentality of the United Nations.

29. The threat which nuclear weapons pose to the survival of the human race is to be understood not just in the context of aspirational nations but also the nations already in possession of such weapons. Nuclear weapons are as unsafe in the hands of small powers as they are in the hands of the major powers. It is our collective responsibility to urge the international community to respond to the clarion call for a peaceful universe in an age of uncertainty.

30. We can attain this objective if we adopt measures and policies that will promote nuclear disarmament, protect and renew our environment, and push towards an international system that is based on trust, mutual respect and shared goals.

Mr. President,
31. I believe that I express the concern of many about the slow pace of effort and apparent lack of progress in the reform of the United Nations, especially the Security Council. We believe strongly, that the call for democratization worldwide should not be for States only, but also, for International Organizations such as the UN. That is why we call for the democratization of the Security Council.

32. This is desirable for the enthronement of justice, equity, and fairness; and also for the promotion of a sense of inclusiveness and balance in our world.

33. Our support for the United Nations Security Council in its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security has been total and unwavering. We have, in previous membership of the Council, demonstrated both the political will and capacity to engage in key Council responsibilities. Nigeria has therefore decided to seek election for the 2014-2015 Non-Permanent Seat of the UNSC.

34. I am pleased to state that Nigeria has received the endorsement of the Economic Community of West African States and the African Union. We urge this august Assembly to endorse Nigeria’s candidature.

Mr. President,
35. Our world continues to be confronted by pressing problems and threats. No statement that will be made during this Session can exhaust the extent of these problems. The world looks to us, as leaders, to provide hope in the midst of crisis, to provide guidance through difficult socio-political divisions, and to ensure that we live in a better world.

36. We have obligations to the present generation, but we have a greater obligation to generations yet unborn who should one day inherit a world of sufficiency irrespective of the circumstances of their birth or where they reside on the globe. We must work to make that world a reality in recognition of our common heritage.

37. We must strive to eradicate poverty, hunger, disease and human misery; we must eliminate the scourge of nuclear, chemical, biological, as well as small arms and light weapons. We must dedicate ourselves to working together to address global, regional and national challenges and deliver a more peaceful, equitable and prosperous world for all. It is our duty. We must not fail.

38. I thank you.

 

(Full text of Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan’s Speech At The UN General Assembly on Tuesday September 24, 2013)

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2013 in Opinion

 

Other Madness – by Femi Olabisi

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It is no longer news that Boko Haram conveniently overran a Nigerian military barrack and surrounding villages of Maiduguri, killings about 200 civilians and soldiers; it is no longer news that Al-Shabaab Islamist siege on Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya has (so far) led to the death of 62 people (I pray the madness that started three days ago end soon).  And it is no longer news that Nigeria offered to offer help to Kenya to fight terrorism (methinks Nigeria Boko Haram is a humanitarian organisation).

It is no longer news that the Nigeria military and the State Security Service (SSS) are considered culpable in the wrongful killings of hapless labourers in Abuja, and it is no longer news they are being fingered in a grand conspiracy to cover it up and label them members of Boko Haram terrorist group.

It is no longer news that government universities in Nigeria have been on ‘forced-vacations’ since June (and seems the government care less if they stay shut for life); and it is no longer news that lecturers in government Polytechnics and Colleges of Education just ended Warning Strikes to drive home their demands (they may resume the strikes anytime).

It is no longer news that the Nigeria legislators (totalling 469) legally take home N150,000,000,000 (One hundred and fifty billion naira) yearly aside from other ‘sidekicks’ while the entire higher institutions get just N450,000,000,000 (Four hundred and fifty billion naira) a year.

It is no longer news that a female minister spent N2,000,000,000 (Two billion naira) in two years on chartered jets when her ministry has one on standby and when Nigeria has one of the highest (if not the highest) number of presidential jets in the world.

It is no longer news that Mr. President expressly granted amnesty to convicted criminals (who should, in sane climes, have permanent resident in prisons); it is no longer news….

The above and other unstated madness are just part of Nigeria configuration.

The new madness?

President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan travelled to the UN in New York with ‘just’ 600 entourage.

Multiply that number with the usual over-blotted allowances for hotel, air transport, estacode, etc.  and make your conclusions.

The writer is on Twitter: @Femiolas

 
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Posted by on September 23, 2013 in Opinion

 

Untold Story Of How Boko Haram Overrun Nigerian Soldiers, Massacre Hundreds In Borno

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Dressed in full military fatigue and armed with anti-aircraft guns, rocket propelled grenades (RPGs) and a fleet of armoured tanks that they stole from Nigerian soldiers, the Boko Haram insurgents now stage bolder attacks and even overrun federal troops in northeast Nigeria.

There are fears that the continued attacks on the military and the looting of arms by Boko Haram also threatens the fragile peace being enjoyed by residents of Maiduguri in the past three months. There are also concerns that Boko Haram’s continued attacks on  towns and villages located around a 100 km radius of Maiduguri, could possibly weaken the defence around the capital city.

In the past month, Boko Haram has carried out several gory attacks on both civilians and soldiers on the five major routes that lead in or out of Maiduguri, and these point of attacks are all less than 80km away from, Maiduguri.

Last Tuesday, Boko Haram gunmen, in their hundreds, staged their second attack in a week on the town of Benisheik, 75 km away from Maiduguri. They left at least 140 persons either injured or dead. About a hundred homes and businesses premises were burnt and scores of vehicles, including military tanks, looted.

PREMIUM TIMES visited Benisheik and interviewed some eyewitness and victims of that bloody attack.

Carnage on the road

A commercial cab driver, Sani Babayo, said it was another day of horror along the Kano-Maiduguri Highway.

“We thought they were soldiers because their uniforms, vehicles and guns suggested so,” recalled Mr. Babayo. “But when they ordered us to come down from the vehicle and began to ask if we are residents of Maiduguri, it immediately dawned on us that we had fallen into the hands of Boko Haram.

“After separating the women and girls from the group, they ordered the men to run into the bush for our lives. No sooner had we started running than they opened fire on us. I saw many of my passengers fall after being hit by flying bullets. I kept running for my dear life until I was out of their range of fire.”

Mr. Babayo, who looked  dishevelled with tell-tale bruises on his skin and blistered feet, was among few of the very lucky travellers who escaped the Tuesday carnage. Many did not.

Most of the victims were those who had gone to make phone calls in the neighbouring Yobe State capital, Damaturu, 136 km from Maiduguri.

For four months now, telecom lines have been grounded as a security strategy to combat Boko Haram. Residents of Borno State, since the restoration of phones lines in Yobe State, had had to travel over there to make calls.

A young woman, Sarah Hyeladi, was returning to Maiduguri from Damaturu, where she and her elder brother, Markus, had gone to make phones calls when they encountered gunmen. Ms. Hyeladi was lucky but her elder brother was not.

“When our vehicle was stopped at about 6 p.m., and we saw how those ahead were being shot at, Markus and I had to run into the bush, but suddenly some uniformed gunmen appeared from the bush and ordered us to go back,” Ms. Hyeladi recalled.

“We had to comply because one man was pointing a big gun at us. As we were going towards where people were being killed, one of the gunmen dragged Markus and put a knife on his neck. Before I could beg them to spare him, my brother was writhing on the floor in a pool of his own blood.”

“Many people died from bullet wounds but a lot were killed by something that looked like an electric saw; the moment they put it on a person’s neck, the head will go off,” said a middle aged woman who was spared.

“They asked us to get out of the vehicle and ordered the men to start running into the bush, then they would shoot at them,” said the woman who wouldn’t say her name.

“They were heartless and wicked in the way they took people’s lives. Most of them speak Hausa, some Kanuri but others who don’t look like Nigerians speak some foreign language,”she said.

Fleeing soldiers

A soldier in Benisheik said they could not stand the superior fire power of Boko Haram.

“They were using anti-aircraft guns while we were using AK47 rifles and some RPGs. They came in droves driving about 20 pickup trucks accompanied by two light armored tankers, all wearing our military colours – desert-camo . We had to retreat to our base to reinforce after running out of arms. But they followed us down there, surrounded our base and began to to shell our building. We couldn’t stand the heat of their superior fire power. We had to retreat into the village after they killed two of our soldiers and three policemen. They left with an armoured tanker and four military patrol trucks,” the soldier said.

At the palace of the district head of Benisheik, where vehicles were taken away and one burnt, a staff, Abacha Wakil, narrated to journalists how the gunmen attacked and beheaded people in the village.

“The Boko Haram gunmen invaded the town at about 7:45 p.m., after attacking the military base at the outskirts of the town. The soldier ran to us here at the palace of the District Head and warned us to run for our dear lives. They said  they had ran out of ammunition and the terrorists are carrying sophisticated arms.

“No sooner had the soldiers warned us than the Boko Haram gunmen arrived in droves; all dressed in military uniforms and carrying guns. They came in about 30 vehicles. We had to run for our lives. I took refuge inside the millet plantation near the District Head’s palace. The gunmen spread out and began to shoot and set houses ablaze. They did not leave until about 3:30 am. We all spent the night inside the bush. In the morning, we found that they had beheaded 14 persons, mostly those in the Civilian-JTF, and left with at least 21 vehicles and a Tata truck filled with food items looted from the shops they also set ablaze.”

Mr. Wakil said most of the young men killed were beheaded.

“Their bodies were completely separated from their bodies. The death could have been more if the soldiers had not run down to warn us in good time that we should run for dear lives.”

Headless corpses 

Environmental health workers, who continued to pick corpses even as late as Friday, said they could not venture into the bushes to search for dead bodies.

“We only pick those not far away from the road sides. We understand most of them died while running away from bullets while others were found without their heads. Even if we later found the heads we often don’t know which head belonged to whom.

“We believe there could be more corpses ahead in the bush because others could have ran further before they died. But after today, Thursday, their bodies cannot be picked because even the ones we had picked now have decompsed already,” said the Environmental official who declined mentioning his name for official reasons.

Some of the corpses that were conveyed to Maiduguri could not be identified because they either had their heads cut off or their faces shattered by bullets.

It was an emotional sight when the  daughter of a woman, who had given up searching for the body of their father, suddenly pointed at a swollen decapitated body shouting, “Mummy, this is daddy’s shoe, this is daddy,”

And when the mother searched the pockets of the headless corpse, they found her husband’s ID card. The woman and her daughter caused everyone gathered to shed tears when the daughter tearfully asked, “Daddy where is your head?”

Hundreds of residents have since fled Benisheik in fear of another possible attack.

“If they could walk over soldiers and send them running for their lives, who are we to remain here?” Bala Sanusi, a local butcher said.

Promises and compensation

Borno State governor, Kashim Shettima, who visited the village on Thursday, pleaded for residents to remain in their homes and not to flee. He said more security would be provided to guard the community.

He approved the sum of N50 million for the reconstruction of the damaged towns, while the sum of N250,000  would be given as compensation to the family of the 14 people slain in the village.

The Brigade Commander of Borno State, Muhammed Yusuf, explained to the few confused villagers that the army did not abandon them, but only left to get more arms after running out of the ones they had.

There are lots of concerns by embattled residents of Borno State who see the Federal Government as playing lip service to the issue of insecurity. Many had wondered why the almighty Nigeria Army still found it so difficult dealing with Boko Haram once and for all.

Many are of the view that the military hierarchy, although losing personnel and equipment, are making huge pocket-lining gains out of the monies the Federal Government is pumping into the state towards tackling the violence and insecurity.

The Borno State House of Assembly, on Friday, faulted the way the Federal Government was dealing with the situation. The lawmakers felt the situation was getting worse; particularly, with the increasing attacks.

They urged the Federal Government to step up its act by giving the military a marching order to utilise modern and appropriate equipment and technology to solve the Boko Haram crisis once and for all.

A top public affairs commentator, who does not want to be named for fear he might be targeted by the military, told PREMIUM TIMES, “We, as group of concerned citizens, are compiling our dossier on how the military hierarchy may have been feeding fat on these crisis from the billions of naira federal government spends to end the insurgency.”

 

Source: Premium Times

 
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Posted by on September 21, 2013 in Opinion

 

September 11: Re-telling Dark Moment!

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September 11

National Geographic brings back dark memories of 12 years ago; live footage and re-enactment of actual crashing of hijacked planes by terrorists in into World Trade Centre in New York, Pentagon Building and a Pennsylvania field re-echoes tragedies of unimaginable proportions.

It re-tells moments when terrorists who hid under religion (a mere pretext I belief – true Islam and Muslims believe in peace), and hatred for anything Western brought the world to its knees.  It was devilish.

Four hijacked passenger airliners (American Airlines Flight 11United Airlines Flight 175American Airlines Flight 77 and United Airlines Flight 93), and 19 al-Qaeda terrorists were all it took to change everything.  Evil men destroyed the world peace.

Thousands died that day, thousands died after.  Thousands are still being killed today in war theatres across the world.  All precipitated by September 11, 2001 attack on the United States.  Revenge and reprisal killings (justifiable to some extent), and often disguised as the search for terrorists, are leading cause deaths in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, etc. today.

September 11, 2001 changed our world; it changed relations.  It was the day Osama bin Ladin’s al-Qaeda suicide terrorists murdered world peace.

9/11 changed our world, for the worse.

 

The writer is on Twitter:  @Femiolas

He Blogs at www.femiolas.wordpress.com

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2013 in Opinion

 

The “is equal to” – By Yinka Odumakin

NOTE: This heartrending piece, detailing how Nigeria got to this shamelessly sordid situation – as driven to the precipice by prebendal and satanic leaders of yesterday and today – was ‘borrowed’ from from a Facebook page. 

ENJOY!

My favourite Ijesa comedian is Baba Gebu who always ask: ati oke ati isale joined together kini is equal to?

The “is equal to” of this all is that we have erected a society on the foundation of injustice, inequity, and fraud. We have broken all the rules of success and we want to succeed. No way.

My late elderly friend Commodore Francis Ademoroti told me how he was to go to Harvard on scholarship in 1962 and the then Education Minister swapped his place for his kinsman not as brilliant him.

The late Ooni of Ife,Oba Adesoji Aderemi who was an Uncle to Ademoroti asked one of his chiefs to to follow him to the US consulate to lay a complaint.

The Ambassador saw merit in the petition and personally followed them to the minister’s office.

After listening to the envoy our minister responded that Nigeria was an independent country that takes no dictate from anybody.

The Ambassador got up and left but left some warning thus:this is August 1962.You guys are not even 2 years and you have started this way,great nations are not built on fraud”.

Ademoroti found other way to pursue his education and ended up in the Navy. He was outstanding in Royal Naval College. Bode George was his course-mate and he told me how the fellow copied the thesis of a Singaporean officer called Lai.

At the Staff College in Kaduna, Ademoroti had the best thesis while Bode George was caught with “green”. The rule stipulates expulsion but because he was doing some service for Aikhomu and co, he was shielded from the law.

In a society where the cream does not make it to the top, Ebitu Ukiwe noticed Ademoroti and appointed him his PSO when he became Chief of General Staff. One day he took Ademoroti before his boss and was commending his brilliance to the C-in-C who shockingly retorted “and who says we need brains here?”.

Ademoroti was retired a few months later and died in frustration about 2 years ago.

Bode George was promoted by the crooked system. He became governor in Ondo state and cleaned up the place. He later became PDP enforcer and NPA chairman, the rest is recent history.

So we can trace how we got here!

 

@Femiolas

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2013 in Opinion

 

The Opportunity Cost Of Tompolo’s Private Jet – Kikiowo Ileowo

ImageFor those who haven’t heard, 43 year old ex-militant, High Chief Government Oweizide Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo) on Monday 26th August 2013 received his Bombardier SE60 LearJet. The Jet according to aviation sources cost a whopping sum of $13.3 million (N2.12 billion).

The aim of this article is not to rubbish the person of Tompolo, [what is there to rubbish anyway] but to address inter alia; the scenarios that continue to play out in favour of his ilk, institutions and systems that perpetually endeavour to make his likes overnight celebrities. I would also analyse the opportunity cost of his latest toy.

The Man Tompolo

Tompolo was born Government Oweizide Ekpumopolo in 1970 into the family of Chief Thomas Osei Ekpempulo and Mrs Sologha Ekpemupol of Okorenkoko in Gbaramatu kingdom in Warri South-West Local Government Area of present Delta State. He attended Edah Primary School, Madagho and Kunpa Primary School, Kunukunuma before later proceeding to National Comprehensive College, Warri where he completed the SSCE in 1993.

After a brief stint as Managing Director of his father’s family business, Tompolo Nigeria Limited, his militancy career began in 1997, during the struggle to ‘liberate’ the Ijaws from the dominance of its neighbours — the Itsekiris. General Sani Abacha had then relocated Warri South Local Government headquarters from Ogbe-Ijoh to Itsekiri’s Ogidiben and thus, an Ijaw ‘Soldier’ was born.

After the struggle, he relocated to Oporoza due to threats to his life and there, he started the struggle against the oil majors and the federal government for what he perceived as injustice against ‘their land’–usually the rhetoric for Niger Delta militants.

True to his name, Government Ekpumopolo was an authority of some sort. Traditional rulers, local council men, lawmakers, governors differ to him. To show the power Tompolo wields, during the visit of then Vice President Dr. Goodluck Jonathan to his terrorist headquarters at the notorious Camp 5, he instructed all the Vice President’s entourage, security details, and other officials to stay outside the camp, allowing only Dr. Goodluck Jonathan in for ‘consultation’ (I wonder what they must have agreed in secret).

He led several ‘successful’ guerrilla attacks against Shell, almost crippling their production capacity in the Niger Delta. The company had no choice but to start paying some sort of ‘security fees’ to the warlord.

Tompolo started consulting in security matters for the oil companies, the Federal Government and the Joint Task Force to maintain some level of peace. Things got out of hand after his men beheaded 11 military men comprising of 1 officer and 10 rank and file of the Nigerian Army. That development forced the Chairman of the Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta, Brig. Gen. Sarkin Yaki Bello to declare him wanted, dead or alive.

His Entrance Into The Nigerian Billionaires Club

When the late President Musa Yar’adua took oath of Office in May 2007, he promised to bring an end to the Niger Delta insurgency, offering them a state pardon for all their criminal atrocities.

In June 2009 when the implementation of the amnesty programme started, thousands of youth surrendered their arms and ammunitions, with a report stating that Tompolo along with 1,500 militants handed in a cache of weapons that included general purpose machine guns, grenades, rocket propelled grenade launchers, explosives and a large number of assorted weapons.

Unfortunately, President Yar’adua who originated the idea died of some ailment and Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the Vice President as it then was, took the reins of power.

In what seemed like an opportunity-comes-but-once-so-lets-seize-it-and-settle-the-boys-bigtime-kind-of-contract, the Goodluck administration through NIMASA, headed by Ziadeke Akpobolokemi (said to be Tompolo’s candidate for the NIMASA job), awarded a contract worth $103.4million (N15billion) maritime surveillance contract to Tompolo’s company–Global West Vessel Specialist Limited (GWVSL). The contract stated that GWVSL will provide security for oil pipelines, repel pirates and oil thieves, guard the nation waterways and also (wait for this), COLLECT LEVIES ON BEHALF OF NIMASA. The agency said about N124billion is expected to be generated by GWVSL for the federal government.

In a memo dated 9 November, 2011 with reference number PRES/99/MT/61 and titled Award Of Contract For The Strategic Concessioning Partnership With NIMASA To Provide Platforms For Tracking Ships And Cargoes, Enforce Regulatory Compliance And Surveillance Of The Entire Nigerian Maritime Domain, President Jonathan approved the contract and it was rubber stamped by the Federal Executive council in one of its weekly contract awarding bazaars on 5 January, 2012.

The contract will run for 10 years, though President Jonathan through NIMASA has promised not to renew the contract after the expiration of its present term. But to show how desperate Jonathan was in securing the contract for his friend and personal confidant – Tompolo – he wrote to the National Assembly, withdrawing an earlier similar proposal submitted by his predecessor which sought to create a coast guard comprising of all the security agencies to man the country’s maritime domain. But why should he not, when NIMASA presently pays Tompolo’s GWVSL N49m weekly for vessel hired by the agency?

The Nigerian Debacle

We have heard over and over how the Nigerian system rewards honest labour with hardship and award criminal endeavours with the juicy contracts and patronage which only feather the nest of cronies.

Fellow militants who didn’t labour (killed) as much as Tompolo weren’t rewarded as much. I pity men of the Nigerian Military who daily sacrifice their lives for nothing. I hope Abubakar Shekau will not be given the same ‘heroic’ welcome whenever he leads his comrades-at-arms to accept the amnesty proposals of the Jonathan-administration.

Nigerians must realize that voting for Jonathan come 2015 is a vote for more money in the hands of those who have wronged and robbed Nigerians of our God-given resources.

Despite the huge amount being paid to Tompolo, Nigeria’s Maritime Domain has been less secure. Crude oil theft has reached an all-time high, threatening Nigeria’s income. Coordinating minister of the economy last July, lamented the alarming rate at which Nigeria’s income from oil was being depleted due to oil theft and bunkering. Tompolo’s militant colleague, Asari Dokubo has threatened to destroy Nigeria and march his opponents’ bullet for bullet, bomb for bomb, and missile for missile if Dr. Goodluck Jonathan isn’t re-elected in 2015, because only his stay in office will guarantee Tompolo’s business which will in turn guarantee continued oil bunkering and theft in the Niger-Delta.

This is the right time to revoke the Tompolo’s contract. Only a fool employs a man with a history of dubious character (though forgiven) into a position of trust, he will always stay true to who he is.

The Opportunity Cost Of Bombardier 60SE Learjet

Economist define opportunity cost as the alternative forgone. It is the cost of an alternative that must be forgone in order to pursue a certain action. Put another way, it is the benefit you could have received by taking an alternative action. In layman’s terms, opportunity cost is the other product that would rather have satisfied your want.

An Example: If you need a Plasma Television and an iphone; and you divert your limited resources to purchase the iphone, the opportunity cost (i.e. what it is costing you) is a Plasma Television set.

Investopedia cites this vivid example: if a gardener decides to grow carrots, his or her opportunity cost is the alternative crop that might have been grown instead (potatoes, tomatoes, pumpkins, etc.).

In both cases, a choice between two options must be made.

A bombardier SE60 cost $13.3 million (N2.12 billion), a N2.12 billion we could have invested into other productive ventures had the contract not been awarded to Tompolo in the first instant.

The opportunity cost of Tompolo’s private Jet are enormous, I have defined what opportunity cost is, please fill up the comment section with your suggestions of public goods we could have purchased with our collective N2.12 billion in the hands of an ex-militant.

 
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Posted by on September 9, 2013 in Opinion

 

PDP Candidate Rejects Own Victory In Offa Local Government Rerun Election

Councillorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Shawo South West ward in Offa Local Government Area of Kwara State, Mr. Afolabi Olawole, has rejected the victory attributed to him following the recent rerun election held in the local government last Saturday.

He, alongside other PDP chairmanship and counsellorship candidates , were declared the winners of the election by the Kwara State Independent Electoral Commission in Saturday’s rerun election.

He stunned his party, the PDP, and the public, when he declared that he did not win in the election.

According to him, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Mr. Adefioye Kayode, won the election.

He spoke during the APC’s media briefing in Offa on Wednesday.  He said he rejected his victory, as announced by KWASIEC based on what he described as his religious belief, “which forbids cheating.”

He added that his stance was also to ensure that his community did not witness violence and retrogression.

He said he was not influenced by anybody.  Olawole said,

“In all the eight polling units in my ward (Shawo South West) the PDP lost, while the APC won convincingly in all the polling units in the rerun election held on August 31, 2013. As a citizen of this great town, Offa, I know so well that the town stands for equity and justice.

“To me, I know that we shall give an account of all our acts on this earth one day. On that day, there will be no influence from anybody; be it Oba, governor, leader, elder, father or mother: but you will be left alone with your deeds. In this wise, I have resolved not be a partaker in getting what is not mine from anybody at all in Offa and in Nigeria as a whole. As a native of this town, I don’t wish my town bad fate.

“If something like this continues to happen and we decide to cover it up for one reason or the other; if not now in future, we will account for it. It is very good for us to call a spade a spade anywhere we see it.”

He added, “In the interest of peace and justice in Offa and Kwara State, KWASIEC should release the authentic results of the last Saturday council poll in Offa. The people of Offa have said that they don’t want the PDP. It is clear that Offa people want the APC. It is clear also that Offa people don’t want the PDP.”

Also one of the presiding officers, Mr. Oyetunji Akin, said the APC won in the councillorship and chairmanship elections in Shaw Central ward, where he presided.

But KWASIEC had announced that PDP won the ward.

APC’s chairmanship candidate in the Offa rerun election, Prince Saheed Popoola, called on President Goodluck Jonathan, the Inspector-General of Police, Muhammed Abubakar, the Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission, Prof. Attahiru Jegga, and all other well-meaning Nigerians, to intervene.

He stated that APC would adopt mature, peaceful and legal approaches, adding that his party had also petitioned INEC against KWASIEC.

However, Offa PDP Chairman, Goke Rabiu, claimed that that PDP won the election and that the claim by his party candidate and those made by APC were spurious.

 

@Femiolas

 
12 Comments

Posted by on September 5, 2013 in Politics

 
 
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