[ Masterweb Reports: Dr. James Chukwuma Agazie reports ] - Free at last! Free at last! Northern Nigeria is about to experience freedom at last if the news is true that Boko haram is laying down weapons. May God of Ndiigbo be praised and spirits of deceased Christian crusaders be given the highest commendation.
Those Igbo teachers and traders didn’t die in vain in Northern Nigeria. They were at the forefront of the struggle to educate and free Northern tribes from ignorance and the oligarchic education-is-banza clutches of Muslim sharia-type domination. Northern leaders refused to provide education for the masses; siphoned funds earmarked for education to Saudi Arabia; and effectively pushed the country into membership of Islamic League of Nations (work of Babangida and Buhari) . The North died painfully. Igbos refused to let the die be cast.
If you doubt it; check history and beginnings of Western education in Nigeria. Check annals of various Ministries of Education. Igbos were there being pilloried; castigated; dehumanized with the infamous Northernization Policy orchestrated by Premier Ahmadu Belo and Prime Minister Balewa. Those Igbos built primary and secondary schools ( CMS; Methodist; Catholic) to educate all Nigerian children whose parents cared to come.
We were there. We were the headmasters; teachers; catechists; preachers. Name it; and we were there in the trenches along with a few Europeans (Sudan United mission; Sudan Interior Mission at Gindiri; Keffi; Gboko).
While Igbo and Yoruba kids came to learn; Muslims kept their children away. Muslims wasted trillions of shillings. A few Northern children whose parents heard the call of Chineke (the true Allah) came to schools and you’ll find them as the elites of modern Northern Nigeria as Vice Chancelors; physicians; lawyers; bakers; and petty traders; at Jos; Bukuru; Makurdi; Kafanchan; Kwarra State; Igumale; Oturkpo; Utonkon; Egwugwuewu; Adoka; Igalla. Oh; my God.
Oh; my God! Oh; my God! We were there. I cannot continue . I’m in tears. But we were just there.
Dr. James Chukwuma Agazie, former Idoma-Headmaster ( Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ) reports.
*Photo Caption - Map of Nigeria showing Northern and Southern Nigeria.
[ Masterweb Reports: Press Release For Immediate Release ] - Igbo Union Atlanta USA, Inc., in collaboration with the Igbo Community and friends of Igbo people, will hold the 2014 Igbo Day Symposium on Friday, November 7th (8.00-10.00pm), followed by the main event on Saturday, November 8th, 2014, in the Igbo Community building [aka “Obi Ndi Igbo”] in Atlanta. Venue is at: Igbo Community Building [OBI NDI-IGBO], 5912 Mableton Parkway, Mableton, GA 30126.
This symposium is one of the activities marking this year’s 2014 Annual Igbo Day – “Celebrating the Dream and the Vision (Igbo Facility Transformation).”
In our quest to advance the collective interests and well-being of Igbo people (Ndi Igbo), this symposium will focus sharply on the imperatives of the daily challenges of Family Life & Marriage Challenges and “Umu-igbo” (Youth) who reside in the international community (aka Diaspora).
Therefore, we are looking for published authors who have written extensively – essays, articles, papers, etc. and dynamic presenters and creative, interactive presentations that can deliver unique insights and best practices on topics focusing on these three broad areas:
Igbo family and marriage challenges and how to mitigate them,
Domestic violence from legal perspective, and
Career guidance for success (Youth, Adult, etc.).
The Igbo Day Symposium Committee is now accepting presentation proposals that address any of those topics.
Please submit your presentation proposal for review to CFSNL@YAHOO.COM no later than Saturday, October 25, 2014.
Include the title and a brief summary or synopsis of your presentation. Selected presenters will be notified by email no later than Saturday, November 1, 2014.
The 2014 Symposium Committee will carefully review your title, synopsis to make the final selection.
We look forward to receiving your proposal as well as look forward to dynamic and intellectually stimulating insights on this year's symposium as always.
Rev. Dr. C. K. Ekeke (Moderator), Prof. Martin Okafor (co-Chair), Mr. Michael Brian Odiakosa, Mrs. Priscilla Madu and Dr. Nze Dan Onyeagba (2014 Igbo Day Event Chair).
*Photo Caption - Event flyer. Click link below for Enlarged Flyer.
[ Masterweb Reports: Ihechukwu Njoku reports ] - A picture of controversial Pastor T.B. Joshua carrying three bags of rice went viral this week within Nigerian social media and blogs. While most commended Joshua for his humility and humanity, there were suggestions that the picture was ‘photo-shopped’. Others insinuated the image was nothing but a tasteless publicity stunt in the light of the recent tragedy that befell The SCOAN where over 100 died in a building collapse.
As a viewer of Emmanuel TV, I have actually seen the video clip of this particular humanitarian mission previously and managed to find the footage on YouTube. For clarification, this did not take place after the tragedy last month, putting to rest the allegation that this was an ill-timed publicity feat. So, for all the doubters and skeptics, here is video evidence of Pastor T.B. Joshua carrying three bags of rice in one of his numerous philanthropic visits to less-privileged areas.
[ Masterweb Reports: Uche Nwosu reports ] - In his thesis The Decay of Lying, Oscar Wilde, an Irish writer (1854-1900) declared that, “The final revelation is that lying, the telling of beautiful untrue things is the proper aim of the art”. If we stress it further we can conclude that lying is the art of releasing information that is at variance or inconsistent with the reality.
Of recent, armed chair critics and political opponents of Gov TA Orji CON and his administration, in their uncanny attempts to sway public opinion against this performing governor of Abia – God’s Own State, have tried unsuccessful to present falsehood as facts. They have been telling weird tales to the gullible; relentlessly concocting and fabricating pictures (both still and video) to goad the naive into accepting their falsehood and make-believe.
Take Aba as a case study; this epicenter of Igbo entrepreneurship has recently had its kismet recede colossally; thus becoming the object of the vitriolic attacks from the opposition camp. Certainly, before Aba’s declivity, it served as a thriving municipality of commerce and industry. It held sway as the nucleus of small and medium scale enterprises in the West Africa sub-region. From 1960s till 1990s, Aba was a town that played host to all tribes and races of African descent who came from Lagos, Onitsha, Calabar, Kaduna, Kano, Cotonou, Yaoundé, Duala, Gabon etc to do business in it.
In retrospect, Aba’s structural outlay was like that of London, Paris, Washington DC, or some few European and American cities which are charily planned and kept. Its roads were neat; the gutters were cleaned, letting current of water to flow ceaselessly to the huge Aba gutter; that gigantic drainage that traverses the town and empties its contents into the Aba River (the waterside) whenever it rained. Its filths were carted away as they were dumped. Indeed, Aba was (and still is) an architectural masterpiece. It was an organized city. For instance each street is separated from the other by a column of ten houses and numbered like that, thus making easier for any JJC in town to trace his way without missing road.
The houses are separated from each other by well maintained sanitary lanes with scintillating walkways which were cleaned up at every now and then. The Aba master plan was strictly adhered to during construction of buildings or factories in the years mentioned above. But alas! Aba lost its glory when OUK who now champions the network of virulent spleen against Gov TA ORJI and his government in the Sun newspapers took over the mantle of leadership as the second executive governor of Abia State.
From 1999 to 2007 Aba lost its splendor, it lost its shine; it lost its beauty and became blemish. Aba declined so retrogressively that to rebuild it will take years to do. Orji Uzor Kalu’s administration encouraged the building of illegal structures such as shops, kiosks, motor parks, mini markets etc on the drainages, open spaces etc, including the Aba big gutter. His government then perfected the process of the blockage of the sanitary lanes which the military administrations before it started with the connivance of some dubious landlords and traders on the pretext of building more shops in the city and giving traders spaces to do business. The result was the colossal collapse of the fabrics of the town. Its aesthetics declined tremendously.
It turned out that what the drainages would have accommodated if they were open and scooped became the burden of the roads. Both the streets and roads suffered high degree of corrosiveness. His attempt to reconstruct and rehabilitate some of them was comical. The roads he tried to reconstruct or rehabilitate failed the test of road standard and quality. And because of their structural dubiety, Aba residents dubbed the roads he built in the city; “Dubai Roads” in derisive reference to some inferior goods (particularly shoes) were imported from Dubai, the capital of the United Arab Emirate.
It is ironical that the same man that laid the foundation for the present decay of Aba municipality under his watch as governor is the same man shouting blue murder against Gov Orji, who has carried out a lot of interventions to reclaim the city, preparatory to its holistic reconstruction.
Under OUK Aba ceased to have pipe-borne water. Other infrastructures like electricity that existed before he found himself in the apex political seat of the state were neglected. Certainly, Aba was worse under OUK. Roads such as: Ohanku, Obohia, East, Azikiwe, Ama Ogbonna, Ama Ikonne, Faulks, School, Clifford, Cameroon, Danfodio, Etche, Ulasi, etc were impassable before he exited in 2007; thus making him one of the most hated political office holders at that time.
In fact, the so called holocaust which he and his army of associates and writers claim Aba has relapsed into is totally of his own making. He is the architect of Aba’s infrastructural and social declivity. If he had done the needful ie laying a strong foundation for a modern Aba that could compete strongly with the modern day Dubai, Shanghai, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, etc which Aba was their industrial and economic prelude, what would have laid at the bosom of the present administration under TA Orji would have been to consolidate on the foundation already laid and work would then start from there.
Even as he was not doing anything towards the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Aba which he and his paid writers are describing as hell on earth; as one of the worst cities on earth, OUK, through his aggressive diatribes against Aso Rock frustrated federal government’s intervention on Aba or the entire Abia State. His regular vitriolic jabs against the federal authorities denied not only Aba but Abia its due share of the central government’s largesse.
Has he forgotten how he made Abia a pariah state; a state where no investor or any serious national or international economic player could do business? Until Ochendo entered the arena, Abia was out of the circle; groping in the dark, isolated and treated as a leprous victim. Even though, Aba has not yet been placed on the pedestal of infrastructural bliss, a foundation is being laid to make the city to follow the foot paths of cities of Asia earlier mentioned in this piece.
Ochendo’s administration has consistently rehabilitated federal roads in the city like Aba-Owerri road, Ikot Ekpene road, Azumini road, Port Harcourt road, Aba axis of Enugu- Port Harcourt expressway, without the central government giving it a dime. Presently, the government has set up another intervention task force led by the Commissioner for Works, Longman Nwachukwu and made up of crack team from the Ochendo’s cabinet, prominent and non partisan Aba residents, captains of industry and civil engineers to once more rehabilitate the federal roads in the city following the subsiding of the rains. The work done so far by the task force has been exceptional.
Indeed, the intervention on Aba has been tremendous; if not for the lifeline thrown to it by the Ochendo’s administration, Aba, would have been weighed down by the neglect of the past. The system of refuse disposal there has been outstanding; never mind some of the manipulated pictures being bandied about by the opposition camp.
However, like every other institution or city that is been started anew, the residents of the city has to endure some adversities. Everything has to start anew. The roads and other infrastructures will not have to be built overnight. It has to endure. What matters is the laying of the foundation. If Gov Orji, after laying a solid foundation for the reconstruction of Abia State does not have the time to start the proper reconstruction then the government after him will take off the gauntlet and do the needful.
But as for now kudos should be given to him for elevating and placing this state on the track of socio-economic recovery. He has laid the solid and quality infrastructural foundation which the government after him will find it easy work on and achieve decisive result that will be of immense benefit to Ndi Abia in particular and Nigeria as a whole. Abians are waiting for the person that will combine the dreams and forthrightness of Dr Michael Okpara; the resilience and accomplishment of Dee Sam Mbakwe, the vision and exploits of Chief TA Orji to take over from Ochendo.
For now, Ochendo has remarkably done well in all sectors. His seven and half years in office are not without concrete legacy projects: chief among them are the upgrade of the civil service, provision of quality education in the state, styling leadership that have compassed a new Abia. His administration has also restored sanity to the polity, empowered the women and youth as well as provided the road map for the much sought after Igbo unity and renaissance. No wonder he was elected as Chairman, South East Governors’ Forum (SEGF) and recently conferred with a national award of Commander, Order of the Niger (CON).
Uche Nwosu reports.
*Photo Caption - Orji Uzor Kalu
[ Masterweb Reports: Lawrence Chinedu Nwobu reports ] - Wherever you go and wherever Nigerians congregate the question is often asked; why has Nigeria failed? Why has a nation so blessed with abundant human and material resources failed? Why is Nigeria so disharmonious; crippled by tribalism, religious fundamentalism and bigotry? Why is Nigeria so corrupt and why can’t Nigerians work together for the common good of all? Why simple issues in Nigeria are politicised thus inhibiting possible solutions to identified problems? Why is a nation that has all the potentials to be one of the richest in the world a failed state? Why has Nigeria been cursed with an endless line of bad leaders? These haunting questions are ever so common while finding answers to them has proven a difficult task.
The search for the truth is a constant in a every society; It is thus pertinent at this point in our chequered history to seek the truth and provide answers to these questions thereby registering for all time the most fundamental factors that has cumulatively and progressively led to Nigeria’s failure. Nations do not succeed or fail by accident; any of both scenarios are determined by deliberate acts of leadership particularly in the foundational years. In the specific case of Nigeria the absence of nation building which is an indispensable prerequisite for every nation more so a heterogeneous nation with deep ethnic, religious and cultural divisions from the foundational years of independence provided the most important dynamic that led to Nigeria’s failure. Nigeria has uncannily been a very unfortunate and unusual nation, at independence she became one of the only nations led not only by leaders who opposed her independence but whom also rejected the very idea of her nationhood as constituted.
The duo of Ahmadu Bello and Tafawa Balewa who formed the core of the independence leadership were nothing other than leaders who “hated Nigeria as constituted.” In words and deeds they never failed to demonstrate their hatred for Nigeria. They so much abhorred the very idea of Nigeria that Ahmadu Bello in his book and autobiography “My Life” published in 1961; famously derided the amalgamation of Northern and Southern Nigeria as “the mistake of 1914.” They saw Nigeria not as a nation to build for the common good of all but as a nation to dominate by any means at the expense of other ethno-religious groups. In other words the project Nigeria was to be a continuation of Othman Dan Fodio’s religious jihad. This is evident from the statement Ahmadu Bello made in the Parrot Newspaper on the 12th of October 1960, just 11 days after independence where he declared that “the new nation called Nigeria should be an estate of our great grandfather Othman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We must use the minorities in the north as willing tools and the south as conquered territory and never allow them to rule over us and never allow them to have control over their future.”
This infamous statement by Ahmadu Bello revealed his outlook on Nigeria and his intention to treat it as jihadist booty rather than as a nation to build. His declared intent never to allow a shift of power is also revealing of his undemocratic leanings. Having won power at the centre at independence Ahmadu Bello began unfolding his jihadist project as declared. He refused to become the Prime minister preferring instead to nominate Tafawa Balewa because he loathed coming to or residing in Lagos. He was indeed notably absent at the independence celebrations in Lagos for the same reason of not wanting to step foot in the South. He refused all entreaties to change the name of his political platform the “Northern” people’s congress (NPC) to a name that is more reflective of the whole of Nigeria. He also infamously instituted policies of segregation that created a separate area of habitation (sabon gari) for southerners living in the North and introduced the “Northernization” policy that gave preference to Europeans and other foreigners in employment to Southern Nigerians.
Tafawa Balewa who became the prime minister at independence was no different. In 1948 while addressing the legislative council, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa declared that “Since 1914 the British Government has been trying to make Nigeria into one country, but the Nigerian people themselves are historically different in their backgrounds, in their religious beliefs and customs and do not show themselves any sign of willingness to unite. Nigerian unity is only a British intention for the country.” This speech, famously delivered to the legislative council underscores the deep resentment/hatred Tafawa Balewa whom together with Ahmadu Bello formed the post-colonial government in 1960 harboured for Nigeria. Since a man cannot give what he does not have, it was impossible and inconceivable for the duo who sufficiently demonstrated their hatred/rejection of Nigeria in words and deeds and who saw Nigeria only as the continuation of Othman Dan Fodio’s jihad to undertake any measure of nation building especially at those formative years that the nation needed it most. Both Ahmadu Bello and Balewa were opposed to independence and were consequently implicated in orchestrating the 1953 anti-independence Kano riots where scores were killed following the rejection of independence by northern lawmakers as requested by Anthony Enahoro in the federal parliament.
Thus, without any incentive to invest in nation building or to make the necessary sacrifices to consolidate the fledgling republic, the duo of Ahmadu Bello and Tafawa Balewa commenced on a relentless pursuit of narrow sectional, regional and jihadist interests at the expense of the rule of law, democracy and good governance. Ahmadu Bello had also previously declared in the Daily Times on May 3rd 1961, his intention “to conquer the Action Group, (AG) in the same ruthless manner his grandfather conquered Alkawa, a town in Sokoto province, in the last century.” The bid to actualise these declarations in advancement of narrow sectional interests led to the rigging of census results in favour of the North in 1962 provoking an early post-independence crisis. By 1963 a further bid to ensure Northern domination through the construction of a one party state led to the emasculation of the AG and the arrest/ conviction of Chief Obafemi Awolowo for alleged coup plotting. The final act of infamy was the unholy alliance between Ladoke Akintola and Tafawa Balewa leading to a massive electoral heist in the Western region in 1964 which in turn sparked violent riots and disturbances (wetie) which eventually occasioned the January 1966 coup.
No one can doubt the necessity of nation building, yet as necessary as nation building was for Nigeria from independence, only leaders who genuinely believed in Nigeria and who were liberated from the demons of tribalism, religious fanaticism, hate and bigotry could have invested in it. Nation building is not without sacrifices; it involves a sustained process of ethnic and cultural integration through deliberate policies of inclusion, social justice, mutual respect, equality, fraternity and even spread of development and opportunities amongst other pragmatic initiatives. It also involves a commitment to the ideals of democracy. An ideal nation builder must demonstrate in words and deeds a clear policy of total integration that forbids exclusion and all forms of discrimination as the likes of Julius Nyerere of blessed memory stridently cultivated in Tanzania.
It is obvious that because the duo of Ahmadu Bello and Tafawa Balewa who formed the government of Nigeria at independence hated Nigeria, they were loath to invest in policies that will actualise national integration and create a true Nigerian identity, just as they were also loath to uphold democratic principles of free and fair elections being determined as Ahmadu Bello had declared in his speech to prevent any change of power by all means. Therein lies the most important factors for Nigeria’s failure. Ahmadu Bello/ Balewa were not alone in the odious game of bigotry but they were by far the most important national actors who sufficiently poisoned the nation with tribalism, sectionalism and election rigging in the then Western region to the extent that nation building was simply impossible.
Overtime, the absence of nation building and the seeds of sectionalism, tribalism, corruption and disharmony cultivated by the duo of Ahmadu Bello and Balewa from her foundational years has become Nigeria’s status quo. Since a house divided against itself cannot stand Nigeria has since become a chaotic, corrupt and conflict ridden failed state all thanks to the hatred, divisions and disharmony planted by the independence leadership duo of Ahmadu Bello/Balewa. The Ango Abdullahi’s Adamu Ciroma’s Murtala Nyako’s and Arewa’s of this world who daily make bigoted statements represents Nigeria’s fatal fault-lines and reminds us that Ahmadu Bello’s doctrine/legacy of domination, jihad, hate and exclusion of other Nigerians is still alive and well.
Lawrence Chinedu Nwobu (Email: email@example.com ) reports.
*Photo Caption - From left to right: Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Alhaji Tafawa Balewa, Dr E.M.L. Endeley and Alhaji Ahmadu Bello.
[ Masterweb Reports: Gbenga Akinfenwa Interviews Mr. Theo Nkire ] - The burning need to promote harmony, ensure equity, fairness, and justice are some of the reasons Abia South senatorial zone should produce the next governor of Abia State in 2015. The president of Ukwa-Ngwa Professionals in Abia South, Mr. Theo Nkire stated this in an interview with Gbenga Akinfenwa. Nkire, the first Attorney-General of Abia wants the governor to come from Ukwa-Ngwa community. He says power shift is normal and natural in power sharing politics.
WHY has the Ukwa-Ngwa Professionals been silent on where the next governor of the state should come from?
It is not true. Ukwa-Ngwa people have remained united and determined in their quest for an Abia governor of Ukwa-Ngwa extraction in 2015. This is not to say there will not be dissenting voices. There surely will be. For example, there may be people to whom Ukwa-Ngwa interest is synonymous with self-interest. Such people are for Ukwa-Ngwa governor in 2015 provided they are the candidates. If they are not the candidates, then no Ukwa-Ngwa governor. Such people abound in every community and the Ukwa-Ngwa nation has her fair share of them. Luckily for us they constitute a very negligible minority; but even as we speak, we are still wooing them to our side. We have no reason to antagonise them. After all, this is a democracy and they are entitled to their opinion.
We at Ukwa-Ngwa Professionals are at the forefront of the movement for the actualisation of the dream. We lead the way even though a large majority of our members are from Abia Central. They agree that what is fair is fair. They understand it and they agree that power should shift to Abia South. Such is the nature of our struggle.
Why are so many Ngwa people opposed to the governorship being zoned to Abia South Senatorial District?
So many? It is not true. They are not many. They are very few; a negligible few. To be fair to them, quite a good number of those who at first were fizzled by the announcement are now back in our fold. They now understand that it is only fair for power to shift to Abia South. Do not forget that these are very intelligent people. As the days go by, we shall continue to plead with them and I am confident that before the party primaries, we shall all be singing with one voice again. Such is the beauty of democracy; you must respect those who disagree with you today for they may be your greatest supporters and allies tomorrow. All our people are coming together. We are not sleeping. We are working very hard to bring all dissenting voices back.
Some have argued that the division among Ngwa people on zoning could cost Ukwa-Ngwa the governorship.
No, it cannot. Ngwa people have never been as united as they are on the issue.
Why then is there confusion among Ngwa people about the zoning?
There is no confusion. It is not easy to build a consensus.
How could the Abia Charter of Equity which pre-dated the creation of the state ,still be relevant to 2015?
The beauty of the Charter is that it is eternal; it is forever. It is founded on equity, justice and fairness. So it can never grow old. This is because a cardinal principle of justice is fairness and as you know, equity follows the law. It is and so shall it remain for generations to generations. Fairness and justice are the guiding principles of all relationships; whether it is between spouses or friends, communities or nations what is fair is fair.
Those opposed to zoning say it is unconstitutional, undemocratic. Is zoning of political offices peculiar to Abia State?
Zoning is not peculiar to Abia. The governorship position in 2015 has been zoned in Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Enugu, and Ebonyi, indeed, in almost all the states of the federation. More recently, at a meeting with the President Goodluck Jonathan in Abuja, Adamawa PDP leaders reached an agreement and zoned the governor in 2015 to Adamawa Central.
Why is zoning important for the 2015 governorship race in Abia State?
Zoning is important because zoning is fair; zoning is just and zoning is equity. Zoning will reassure the people of Abia South that they truly belong; that they are not second class citizens. Abia North has been governor. Abia Central has been governor. Why not Abia South. Equality is equity!
Zoning will bring harmony. Zoning will bring more understanding. Zoning will bring peace to Abia people.
Fears abound that zoning could deny the race of quality candidates.
What a shame! Those who say so do not know the stuff of which Ukwa-Ngwa people are made. Here is a short list of what we offer Abia people and indeed, the Nigerian people:
Does Governor T. A. Orji still support the ambition of Abia South producing the next governor?
Governor Oji is a gentleman. He is solid in his resolve to support Abia South. There are no doubts about his determination to ensure equity, fairness and justice in this matter. Those who doubt his resolve are unfair to him. As recently as August 27, during the Abia Day celebration, he repeated his support for Abia South to produce the governor in 2015 in line with equity, fairness and justice. We salute his steadfastness.
How is Abia South generating support for its cause in 2015?
We cannot reveal our strategy on the pages of newspapers. Be sure that we are winning more support as Abia people understand the principles of equity, fairness and justice.
*Photo Caption - Mr. Theo Nkire
[ Masterweb Reports: Dr. Peregrino Brimah reports ] - In the current Ebola epidemic, Liberia happens to be the hardest hit West African nation. The leader of the nation is a Harvard-educated long-time member of the western corporate establishment, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who became president in 2005 after a Nigerian-led ECOWAS mission put an end to a spate of civil wars.
The Sirleaf reign as president, as her stint in America’s big corp. has been tainted with allegations of corruption and nepotism and now with the Ebola epidemic. Her handling of the epidemic in Liberia cannot be disconnected from her obligations as a western puppet and her training in corruption. Perhaps it is not a coincidence that Liberia is worst hit and that a colonial army has urgently set foot in Sirleaf’s Liberia.
As soon as she assumed office, Sirleaf quickly signed 100 year, binding deals with western governments depositing the nation’s abundant resources in the hands of the colonialist, despite them not playing a significant role in the stabilization of Liberia which was achieved by an African indigenous Nigerian-led effort.
Last week the Liberian Senate debated and overwhelmingly turned down a proposition by Sirleaf to restrict movement, "limit the right to assembly for any reason", and peculiarly, to appropriate property. Women Voices called it: "Tyrannical Times or Ebola Preventive Measures." Some have discussed the spread of Ebola in villages and farming communities more so than the big cities and suggested that like the Boko Haram crises in Nigeria’s northern farming communities and carbon credits across Africa, that the Ebola crises which threatens to diminish the population of locals by a least 55% is a weapon to possess for big corp., viable farming land owned and “misused” by these villagers for generations.
Quarantines of cities by the Sirleaf government have sparked serious riots, and now she additionally hurries to grab their land as the Americans settle in. Her approach to combating the Ebola crises has been deliberately ineffective. While having been largely unsuccessful in administrating, the Sirleaf government is postponing Senate elections which lawmakers decided must hold no later than December.
It is not surprising that Liberia is most seriously plagued with Ebola considering the level of corruption and nepotism that the Harvard-trained stooge president is involved and accused of. She has been battled for putting three of her sons in top government positions. One of the sons, Charles Sirleaf was appointed governor of the Central bank of Liberia, CBL.
Robert Sirleaf served as Board Chairman for the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) till 2014. Sirleaf’s son has been accused of holding dual citizenship which he denied. However the New Republic Liberia paper obtained evidence of his voting in US elections which is impossible for non US citizens.
A fourth son, Dr. Adama Sirleaf has just come to join the three. Dr. Adama Sirleaf had to “defend” himself this August against accusations that he was rushing over to the country to make his personal fortune and capitalize on millions of dollars pouring in from foreign sources for the war against Ebola (Liberian Observer, 08/29/2014).
Her history of corruption goes beyond her current years as president. Invited into the William Tolbert Richard administration as minister of finance, in 1979 Sirleaf was accused of stealing $3 million dollars. She was coming apparently well trained in colonial corruption from the World Bank, US “loan-shark” banks as well as other African banks.
Liberian Justice Minister Christiana Tah resigned early this month citing a litany of reasons including her inability to investigate the Liberian National Security Agency which is headed by President Sirleaf’s son who is accused of corruption and fraud.
As the US troops land in Liberia; Sirleaf’s radical and dangerous behaviors in sabotage of her nation cannot be ignored. She is known for her giving financial support to the bloody NPFL leader Charles Taylor, famous for his use of child soldiers. She actually defended his use of child soldiers at a US congressional hearing in 1990.
Quite similar to US President Barack Obama who was decorated with a Nobel for peace before he even drafted his global policies – which have now proven to be filled with war and crises – Ellen Sirleaf was decorated with a Nobel for peace in 2011.
To the ridicule of the Nobel prize committee, the next year, her fellow laureate who shared the Nobel prize with her, Leymah Gbowee could not take it anymore and quit her position as head of the government's Peace and Reconciliation Commission, telling the BBC: "I've been through a process of really thinking and reflecting and saying to myself 'you're as bad as being an accomplice for things that are happening in the country if you don't speak up… and when tomorrow history is judging us all let it be known that we spoke up and we didn't just sit down." Gbowee accused Sirleaf of nepotism – of course – and worsening the fate of the people, submerging them further in poverty – which has inarguably played a quintessential role in the epidemic spread of Ebola.
With the realization that the United States owns a patent on Ebola [# US 20120251502 A1] and as suspicions rise, even among top level global scientists, that the sudden new fast spreading, most virulent strain of Ebola which coincides in its emergence on the global scene, with the US patent, could be some form of ethnic and racial cleansing, it becomes necessary to cross-examine the African heads of state in Ebola plagued nations. If Ebola is a biological weapon, then Sirleaf is the perfect muzzle. Freeing Liberia from her dangerous leadership should be a priority at the next African Union meeting.
Dr. Peregrino Brimah ( Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ) reports.
*Photo Caption - President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia
[ Masterweb Reports: Chap. Nwonu Cornelius reports ] - Giving the definition from Wikipedia, Youth is the time of life when one is young, but often means the time between childhood and adulthood. Here, I would like to stress on the idea that a particular age period cannot be defined for being youthful. It is entirely dependent on one’s own idea of whether they still consider themselves as being a part of youth brigade or not.
Youths are the change agent who uses their voices and actions to create change, like three children in Kolkata, India who took it upon themselves to increase polio vaccination rates and help put their community on the map so that they could have access to clean water.
A change agent is someone like Jackson Merrick, a 5th grader from Virginia who happened to notice a Nothing But Nets sign at a basketball tournament. He was so inspired, after learning about the organization’s efforts to help end deaths from Malaria in Africa, he decided to raise money by selling African themed bracelets, key-chains and necklaces to purchase 18 insecticide-treated bed nets to protect a classroom of kids and their families.
THE BIG QUESTION IS “CAN THE NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT GIVE HER YOUTHS THIS PRIVILEDGE?” through empowerment programmes. I strongly believed that Nigerian youths are multi-talented. I learnt that our former President General Yakubu Gowon ruled this country at the age of 33. But today, the story is different, youths are denial of their legitimate rights, the Ward Councilor whose tenure is ending 2014 wants to contest for Local Government Chairman in 2015, L.G Chairman for House of Assembly and vis-a-visa. Where is the enabling environment for the youths?. Many talented and envisioned leaders from youths are uncountable in this country and yet no voice to speak to them. Where is the position of the youths as the future leaders?
How Can We Empower Youth?
They are various factors that play a major role in this process of building and structuring the very concept of youth empowerment which are:
Government sector ministries
• The government must develop a national youth policy that integrate with other sectoral policies such as that of education, health, employment, energy, environment, information etc. Wholesome development would be the result and youth can benefit from other sectoral policies as well.
• The establishment of Youth Council bodies must take place and all efforts must be made to strengthen and support the youth councils at national, district and local levels. It must be ensured that there is proper participation and representation of youth council at all levels of governance. The election period is approaching, it is therefore very important to train and re-train our youths through seminars, social media and Newspapers on their positive impact in the national development and not to be used as thugs in the pooling boots. Many of our youths destinies have been marred on the ground unemployment, imagining a graduate engaging himself as a thug in a pooling boot when he has so much to impact to this country? They are to be made known that youths are the vanguard for peace and social stability in this great NATION Nigeria.
• Industrial training institutes must be set up at the national, state and local levels to increase the employ-ability of the youth. There is no other better way of empowering our youths than Skill Acquisition Training. In visited one of the centres of Lagos State Skill Acquisition centres and I was amazed at what the governor and his government has done. I praise the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola (san) for his establishment of Skill Acquisition Centres in all the local government in the state.
My State governor, Chief Martin Elechi has also done well in empowering Ebonyi state youths through mechanized farming and many of the youths are now self employed. I strongly believe that if all other governors can engage in same activities. The issue of youth unemployment will soon be a thing of the past.
I am therefore appealing to all meaningful Nigerians especially the youth ministries, National Orientation Agencies and the NGO to join hand in this clarion call as NO YOUTH, NO NATION.
Chap. Nwonu Cornelius
Ebonyi Eminent Youths Association
*Photo Caption - Map of Nigeria
[ Masterweb Reports: Madubuko Hart reports ] - It was Mahatma Gandhi, the once reformist from India, who said that man often becomes what he believes himself to be. Gandhi goes further to elucidate that if a man keeps on saying to himself that he can or cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that the man may end up by really becoming capable or incapable of doing it. So, it was not out of place
when Governor Theodore Ahamefule Orji of Abia State announced on October 22 2013 in a press briefing by his Chief of Staff, Mr. Cosmos Ndukwe, saying that Mr. Charles Ajunwa is the Chief Press Secretary (CPS), replacing one Mr. Ugochukwu Emezue.
It is evident one year after that Ajunwa has proved himself capable of the position of the CPS, having done well as one of the humble and finest reporters in the Nigerian media industry when he pitched tent with the famous ThisDay newspapers. The governor was clairvoyance in seeing Ajunwa and appointing him to serve him as his CPS, a position that requires hi-tech diplomacy and leadership tactics, of which Ajunwa has been showing that he was grounded in all of that.
Ajunwa’s humility and total submission to Jesus Christ and with his utmost characteristic to being God-fearing endear him to all and sundry that have investigated him or have had the opportunity to be in contact with him or have heard about him. He is a man of few words, but with positive actions that have enlivened the government he serves and brought about media respect against dissenters. Unlike what it used to be before he came in: Dissenters to the government were hounded and labeled kidnappers and anything unprintable, which were not supposed to be so.
From all indications, Ajunwa is not representing his boss with brickbats and wickedness, but with respect to the individual’s right to freedom of speech, when any airs his or her opinion that may not be truth against the government he serves. Ajunwa comes out and responds to such opinion by pointing out what the government he serves has done right and has been doing right and intends to do right in respect to the opinion, thereby putting the dissenter through with the rightful information that the dissenter had lacked.
Looking at the obedience with which Ajunwa handles his office, it reminds one with the phraseology by one Israelmore Ayivor thus: “You are your own canoe and you are your own paddle, so paddle your own canoe. Society had taught us to give away our power and abilities by making us to believe that other people are responsible for our success and failure. That is not fair!”
Yes, since Ajunwa assumed office one year ago, he has seen that it is not fair to molest opposition politicians or writers, but to always inform them with the information about the government he serves they perhaps had, but pretend they do not have and prefer to cast the public against the government. This graduate of University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), Ajunwa who began his journalism career with the Daily Times in 2000 after his National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme at the
Guardian Newspapers, has lowered the tension that once circled around the government in Abia State, thereby making nonconformists to see the government of Governor T.A.Orji through the lens of objectivity and constructiveness, not through the destructive lens.
To be frank, with the information that circles around Ajunwa while investigating him in the cause of this essay, he is a prudent and prodigious man who is always concerned about his family name and his to always represent in the positive. Many people both in the ThisDay and Post Express Newspapers, where he later joined and worked in the Politics Desk before moving on to the African Economy, published by
Development Economic Resources (DER) from where he joined THISDAY in 2008, have all said that Charles Ajunwa is an enchantment; a man who uses his quiet and calm voice and enviable brain to disarm any riotous or calamitous situation. A peacemaker, they have said he is.
Like Robert Kahn would say that new capabilities emerge just by virtue of having smart people… it is essential to say that humanity and the people of Abia State are lucky with a Chief Press Secretary to the governor like Charles Ajunwa whose word is his bond; a man who does not tell lies just for the lucre of power and position. Ajunwa who was also the National Assembly Correspondent for The Country Newspapers before his appointment as CPS, have shown that he has the talent to unearth potentials. This is evident in the creditability that Abia State has been enjoying in and out of the media since his emergence as the CPS.
Again, with the dexterity with which Ajunwa works shows that he loves the government that appointed him and he is working for, showing the government that it is much more than the sum of its achievements. Possibly, Ajunwa is a student of Israelmore Ayivor thus: Those who mistrust their own abilities are being too wicked to themselves, discouraging themselves from doing what they should have been excelling in. If you are good at discouraging yourself, you can't be a good leader
because leadership is built on inspiring others to face challenges. Probably, Ajunwa has been applying the words of Thomas A. Edison, which says that the first requisite for success is the ability to apply your physical and mental energies to one problem incessantly without growing weary.
Ajunwa is not a man of small moments of honesty. He is always an honest man. He has been showing the clause in Orison Swett Marden’s “Learn to Expect a Great Deal of Life”, which is: “The greatest thing a man can do in this world, is to make the most possible out of the stuff that has been given him. This is success, and there is no other.”
Thanks to His Excellency, Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State for his prescience in exploring Charles Ajunwa and appointing him as his Chief Press Secretary. While he is showing that he is a man of honesty, the government and him are wished success, as the government lasts. According to Charles Luckman, success is that old ABC meaning ability, breaks and courage.
Madubuko Hart reports from Lagos, Lagos State.
*Photo Caption - Charles Ajunwa
[ Masterweb Reports: Ikechukwu Enyiagu reports ] - What a story! What a thought! The moment it entered into me I knew God was saying something again. Samuel and Saul, so it came. Why Samuel? And why Saul? We know they were both great men in their time but it's really much more; there was a relationship - a relationship birthed in love for God's word and from a passion to deliver the people.
Before we forget, prophet Samuel was begotten in faith by his mother Hannah and his father Elkannah after a period of groaning and desires. He, as his mother promised in pain and gratitude, had to grow up with prophet Eli's children; every christian and every history scholar have studied the three sons of Eli. Before I digress unintentionally, I only want to point out that it was through the young man Samuel who later became prophet to all that Saul got his kingly scepter. But he derailed. Therefore, through the same Samuel, the same Saul was brought back below himself - even yet below.
Having said enough, I implore, yet again, my brothers and sisters in positions of authority and responsibility to understand that God values accountability so much also. My God can give you anything. But He owns all and when His anger is aroused by your pride and foolishness, He will be there to take even the least from you. Be warned! Stand straight! Stand aside!
Ikechukwu Enyiagu ( Email: email@example.com ) reports.
*Photo Caption - Christian Symbol