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05/10/11

Permalink 08:03:00 am, by admin Email , 133 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, World News, African News

*Libya: NATO Bombs Gaddafi's Compound, Tripoli TV Offices

By Aljazeera Africa

NATO launched missile strikes overnight against targets in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, with blasts heard near Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's compound, according to witnesses. They said jets carried out eight strikes in roughly three hours in an unusually heavy bombardment of Tripoli, with four explosions rocking the Libyan capital shortly after 2am [0000 GMT] on Tuesday. They were quickly followed by two more blasts. A resident told Al Jazeera that an intelligence agency was also targeted by the strikes. Late on Monday, witnesses reported two explosions in the capital as jets flew overhead, adding that smoke was rising from ......Read More

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05/09/11

Permalink 09:10:00 am, by admin Email , 110 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Nigerian News, African News

*Nigeria: CPC Goes To Court, Alleges Electoral Fraud

By BBC Africa

Nigeria's biggest opposition party has gone to court challenging President Goodluck Jonathan's election victory and alleging electoral fraud. The Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) wants elections to be rerun in several southern areas, which voted overwhelmingly for Mr Jonathan. The CPC's Muhammadu Buhari gained 32% of the vote, while Mr Jonathan got 59%. The announcement of these results sparked widespread unrest in northern areas which had backed Mr Buhari. An estimated 500 people were killed, thousands of people forced from ......Read More

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05/08/11

Permalink 08:34:00 am, by admin Email , 138 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Nigerian News, South East News, African News

*Nigeria: How Jonathan Brokered Deal Between Ohakim, Araraume

By Gbenga Ogunbufunmi

The intervention of President Goodluck Jonathan was the magic that saw Governor Ikedi Ohakim regaining his confidence once more and hoping that the supplementary election ordered by the Independent National electoral Commission (INEC) may go in his favour. Ohakim almost lost to Rochas Okorocha, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) governorship candidate for Imo State during the April 26 Governorship poll. The election was declared inconclusive in the state with INEC calling for a supplementary poll in some areas which held on Friday. The apprehension created by the few results that were released after the April 26 poll was interpreted by many to mean that ......Read More

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05/07/11

Permalink 11:49:00 am, by admin Email , 143 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Nigerian News, South East News, African News

*Okorocha wins Imo Governorship Race

By Chidi Nkwopara

Imo State capital virtually stood still as loyalists of All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, stromed the streets of the municipality to jubiliate over the declaration of their principal, Chief Rochas Anayo Okorocha, as the winner of the governorship election in the state. Motorcyclists, who were hitherto banned from plying the streets of the municipality defied the order and displayed all manner of acrobatics in the process, while emergency dancing troops emerged and danced to their rhythmic tunes. Traders in especially the New Market, Owerri, hired several commercial buses and headed for Ogboko, Ideato North local council area country home of Chief Okorocha. Many drinking places in the municipality were filled to ......Read More

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05/06/11

Permalink 02:13:00 pm, by admin Email , 132 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Nigerian News, South East News, African News

*Nigeria: Fraud, Fights Mar Imo State Re-Run Election

By Anamesere Igboeroteonwu

Fist fights and fraud marred Nigeria's final state governorship election Friday, a re-run of a vote which was declared inconclusive last month because of widespread irregularities.Africa's most populous nation held presidential, parliament and state elections in April but the governorship race in Imo state, on the edge of the oil-producing Niger Delta, had to be held again in some areas after no winner could be declared. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ordered a fresh vote in four local government areas (LGAs) after ballot boxes were stolen and fake voting materials used. But Friday's re-run appeared to face similar ......Read More

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05/03/11

Permalink 03:45:00 pm, by admin Email , 677 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, World News, African News

*Nigerian Born U.S. Boxing Champ Lends His Voice On Bin Laden's Killing

By Masterweb News Desk

The current USA Wisconsin State Heavy Weight Boxing champion, the Nigerian Born Mr Enobong Umohette a.k.a The Nigerian Gentleman (TNG) in an interview with Masterweb, reacted to the killing of Osama Bin Laden commending the U.S. and its counter terrorism allies, while condemning the violence in certain parts of Nigeria.

Hear him:

"It is a day of joy, to join the millions of Americans and lovers of peace around the world to celebrate the killing of the mastermind of the September 2001 attacks on the USA. On that fateful day, thousands of Americans, innocent citizens; citizens of the world met their unfortunate and untimely death through the mindless slaughter that was orchestrated by Osama Bin Laden.

"Indeed the world was united in grief and rose to the challenge of serving justice to the fugitive Osama Bin Laden who has caused the brutal killing of thousands of innocent people irrespective of race and religion while eluding capture for a decade.

"Osama Bin Laden was not a religious leader, but a selfish mass murderer, who incited violence and killings for the warped purpose of instilling fear and undermining, global peace, democracy and fundamental freedom; the real definition of terrorism.

"As a former security and intelligence agent, the pain staking collaboration of both the United States and its allies who partnered and carefully worked through the thousands of reports and leads which culminated in locating the fugitive denotes nothing but professionalism, courage and service to humanity. ( Continues below….. )

Enobong Umohette

Photo Above: Enobong Umohette, The Nigerian Gentleman (TNG)

"May the souls of those departed in the fateful 9-11 attack, those who have risked their lives in pursuit of global peace and security and victims of all terrorist attacks all over the world rest in peace.

"No true religion preaches violence or murder and any proponent of such, irrespective of man-made doctrinal rationalization must not be seen as anything different from Osama Bin Laden and terrorism personified.

"To the women who were widowed, men who lost wives, children who became orphaned and many who lost loved ones in that particular attack, in the words of President Barack Obama; "justice has been served". While the threats to democracy, peace and global security still exists and has mutated in many forms, spreading and fanning the embers of hate, violence and terrorism in the gullible minds of many, Osama Bin Laden's killing is an important milestone in reminding mass murderers all over the world, that retributive justice will hunt and eventually catch them for their crimes.

"On the Nigerian front, I stand in unity with visionary like the people's servant Charles Okereke and many who have condemned the mindless carnage that besieged certain parts of Nigeria in the course of the recent electoral process.

"Having personally lost dear and loved ones to violence, I must note with sadness that several Sovereign states in our world of today are guilty of turning the agencies, agents and weapons of state coercion and protection on their own citizens for the sinister reason of retaining power, silencing opposition and persecuting dissent voices.

"Resources and might that should have been deployed to protect its citizens, have been turned on them to stifle their inalienable rights to freedom of speech, choice and existence. 'State Terrorism' perpetrated in different levels and magnitudes, with victims forgotten, prisoners of conscience hounded into the darkness of void and heroes unsung.

"Today I speak up once again not as a pugilist but as a voice backed by a deep yet humbled spirit of humanity in the crusade for global peace, respect for the fundamental rights of freedom, liberty and democracy.

"May the fight against tyranny and oppression continue to yield a much better and peaceful world for all mankind.

Enobong Umohette surrounded by fans

Photo Above: Enobong Umohette surrounded by fans after victory March 20, 2010 by TKO and declaration as new Wisconsin State Heavyweight Boxing Champion. Click For More Photos

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05/02/11

Permalink 04:06:00 pm, by admin Email , 191 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: World News, African News

*Osama Bin Laden Killed in Pakistan

By Al Jazeera & Agencies

US president Barack Obama said bin Laden, the most-wanted fugitive on the US list, had been killed on Sunday in a US operation in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad, about 61km north of Islamabad. "Tonight, I can report to the people of the United States and the world, the United States had carried an operation that has killed Osama bin Laden, a terrorist responsible for killing thousands of innocent people," Obama said in a statement. "Today, at my direction, the United States carried out that operation... they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body. "The death of bin Laden marks the most significant achievement to date against al-Qaeda. "We must also reaffirm that United states is not and will never be at war against Islam. Bin Laden was not a Muslim leader, in fact, he slaughtered many Muslims," Obama said. Four people, including one of bin Laden's sons, were also killed in the operation. According to ......Read More

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Permalink 02:22:00 am, by aviationreport, 621 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, World News

*Nigeria: Germany Donates Vehicles To NDLEA

By Nosa Osula-Aituamen

The German government has donated two Toyota Hiace buses to the Canine Unit of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA). The vehicles are to facilitate the easy movement of the agency’s dogs to operational areas. The German Consul General, Mr. Walter Von Den Driesch while making the presentation at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport Command’s office in Lagos on Thursday March 17, 2011 noted that the donation was pertinent to enable the NDLEA maximise the use of the sniffer dogs.

“In 2009, BKA Germany organised a sniffer dog handling training course for 3 NDLEA officers which took place from 2nd November until 19th January in Dresden/Saxony, Germany. The twelve weeks course covered building of trust between animals and people as well as ability and capacity to handle sniffer dogs in complex police situations. After the successful completion of the training, the officers returned to Nigeria with 4 sniffer dogs (Belgian Shepherd dogs) with each dog valued at between 1,500 and 1,800 Euro. These vehicles are to enable the NDLEA convey the dogs to their operational areas” Walter stated. ( Continues below..... )

NDLEA logo

Photo Above: Nigeria "National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)" Logo

He also pledged to assist the NDLEA in capacity building to address the drug problem. Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Giade while receiving the vehicles thanked the German government for the kind gesture and promised to judiciously utilise the vehicles. “On behalf of the management of the Agency and indeed the Government of Nigeria, I sincerely appreciate this donation and kind gesture to the Agency. In line with our tradition of commitment and dedication, these operational vehicles will be utilized strictly for the purpose for which they were given. The effective use of these vehicles will make it difficult for the merchants of death to smuggle drugs into the country undetected as the canines can now be moved around our operational bases more conveniently” Giade stated.

The NDLEA boss called on governments, organisations and individuals to assist the Agency. In his words, “It is no longer debatable that the challenges of drug control are quite enormous and it becomes even more compounded when our counterparts and other donor organisations fail to come to our assistance at our critical moments. Globally, it is known and accepted that drug control is a shared responsibility as no country can go it alone. We would be doing great service to humanity if we join hands to counter the activities of the merchants of death”. ( Continues below….. )

A Belgian shepherd dog

Photo Above: A Belgian shepherd dog

Giade also promised that the capacity of the dogs will be optimised now that they could easily be moved around. “The capacity of our Department to confront operational issues such as drug supply reduction through interdiction activities will be greatly enhanced if our partners come to our assistance in terms of equipment and capacity building. The difference in our airport operations became visible even to the greatest pessimists when the United States Government supported our efforts with the donation of modern scanning machines” the NDLEA boss stressed.

The dogs and the vehicles are not enough, because we hope to use them at other airports in the country as well as in other neighbouring countries of West Africa whenever the need arises. “On invitation, we have taken the dogs on assignment in other countries and we hope to expand such operations as the German Government has promised to foot the bill of joint training programmes in the region” Giade stated. The NDLEA officers carried out a field demonstration of how the dogs detect drugs and in turn rewarded by their handlers who give them toys and play with them.

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05/01/11

Permalink 12:21:00 pm, by kali Email , 1066 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News

*NPLF, Jonathan, North And The Rest of Nigeria
( Article submitted April 5, 2011 )

By Kali Gwegwe

It will be difficult to dispute the widely held opinion that Dr. Goodluck Jonathan’s emergence as Nigeria’s president is a divine interjection. In less than one year as president, the Bayelsa State born president has given hope to the mostly disillusioned Nigerian masses. For the first time in the history of Nigeria, fuel is being sold at a uniform price all over the federation. Electricity generation and distribution has improved significantly.

By the time the sector is fully privatized, power outage will be a thing of the past. With a population of about 150m, Nigeria is unarguably the most populous Black Country on earth. This massive population presents an attractive climate for commerce and foreign investments that would have driven away unemployment and poverty. Unfortunately, poor infrastructural development has greatly hampered the country’s socio-economic growth. This could be conveniently linked with the high level of corruption in government businesses and the deep culture of tribalism.

For most part of Nigeria’s fifty years as an independent nation, successive governments have been run like secret societies. The level of secrecy in government businesses has made it almost impossible to effectively fight corruption and other social maladies plaguing the country. In most cases, it is members of the ruling “cartel”-not the constitution that decide the fate of the nation. Sensing that Goodluck Jonathan will not maintain the “old tradition”, this powerful “cartel” that has been running the country all these decades immediately went into battle against him.

It started with a fierce attempt to prevent the then vice president Goodluck Jonathan from acting on behalf of his boss, even when it had become very inevitable. When it became obvious that they have lost out to the Senate’s “Doctrine of Necessity”, the “cartel” quickly resorted to high level blackmail, intimidation, and slander. After all of their plots had failed, the “cartel” went on to instigate tribal and religious sentiments against President Goodluck Jonathan. ( Continues below….. )

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

Photo Above: President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria (2010 - present)

It was at this sad point that the Northern Political Leaders Forum (NPLF) led by Mallam Adamu Chiroma came into the fray. The NPLF took the issue of zoning in PDP to the level that it gave rise to deep suspicions among many stakeholders in the north that prefer “One Nigeria” to the “Two Nigerias” literally being championed by the minority apostles of zoning. This was the strongest reason why the NPLF’s sole candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar failed woefully during the PDP presidential primaries.

Still refusing to accept the “One Nigeria” option, the NPLF went ahead to appeal to northerners to vote for only northern candidates even though Jonathan has the best of credentials among all the presidential aspirants. This is most regrettable. While not attempting to dismiss the zoning arrangement in PDP, the NPLF should not ignore the fertile fact that it is only God that gives power. The facts are clear enough for everyone to see that God has a hand in the emergence of Jonathan as president. It will therefore be proper that they accept what nature has arranged.

Perhaps, it will be necessary to note here that a greater percentage of northern political stakeholders do not even see the NPLF as a consensus body. They rather see it as an attempt to perpetuate the “old order”, where just a few privileged northerners walk the corridors of power and line their pockets and those of their cronies. This is responsible for why despite the clear fact that northerners have dominated Nigeria’s seat of power, the north is mostly underdeveloped. ( Continues below….. )

Map of Nigeria

Photo Above: Map of Nigeria showing its 36 states and capital (Abuja or FCT)

The vast majority of northerners are living in abject poverty and abandonment. As part of efforts to address the problems of crass underdevelopment and poverty in the north, President Goodluck Jonathan has introduced a special educational programme to cater for the vast population of almajiris. As you read this piece, three new federal universities have been established in the north to address the educational challenges of the high number of youths seeking tertiary qualification.

The federal government has also made available funds to resuscitate the moribund textile industries mostly located in the northern part of the country. Same thing applies to the leather industry. Dredging of the River Niger is also a top priority of the Jonathan led administration. The aim is to promote economic and commercial activities in the north through the citing of a port in Lokoja.

Furthermore, President Jonathan has sent an executive bill to the National Assembly seeking to establish a Hydro-Electric Power Producing Areas Development Commission (HYPADEC) to cater for the needs of the host communities of Nigeria’s hydro power plants just like the NDDC is doing for the oil producing communities in the Niger Delta region. Clearly, President Jonathan has done for the north what nine northern heads of government refused to do for their people. Jonathan is a positive story of hope for the poor, ignored, and downtrodden.

He represents the vision of our forefathers and that of future generations. President Goodluck Jonathan is a symbol of national unity. Even though, Nigeria’s economy rest on oil and gas revenue from the Niger Delta region where he hails from, President Jonathan has never a day reminded Nigerians of this pregnant fact. This is because, he sees himself as a Nigerian- not an Ijaw man, not a Niger Deltan. This is the truth- so bitter that the Adamu Chiroma led NPLF has refused to accept. Unknown to many, one of NPLF’s major grudge against Jonathan is the latter’s choice of Architect Namadi Sambo as vice president. Right from the onset, Sambo has shown that he is not a fan of “Two Nigerias.”

The NPLF would have preferred a northern vice president that will be in Aso Rock to pursue the interests of a few northern elites. The average northerner is now wise enough to read the hand writing on the wall and has decided to jettison the “old order” that had confined them to the dustbins of their few selfish elites in the corridors of power. This is a new Nigeria.

Kali Gwegwe (CEO, Nigeria Democracy Watchtower 2) writes from Yenagoa, Bayelsa State and can be reached at kaligwegwe@yahoo.com ( 0806 407 4810 )

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Permalink 01:01:00 am, by kali Email , 861 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News

*Nigeria: Why Some Northern Political Leaders Fear Jonathan
( Article submitted April 5, 2011 )

By Kali Gwegwe

For the very first time in many decades, northern political leaders were told the home truth. This was made by no smaller a personality than the Sultan of Sokoto himself, His Eminence, Alhaji Muhammad Saàd Abubakar. He was of the strong opinion that northern political leaders have failed the north; pointing out that the late premier of northern Nigeria, Sir Ahmadu Bello, “sacrificed his life for the North and Nigeria in the pursuit of the ideals which bind us together as a nation.” He was therefore forced to ask his northern brother this direct question: “...what has happened to Sardauna’s cherished legacy of unity in diversity and being your own brother’s keeper?”

In the Sultan's opinion, hatred has taken over the place of love while violence has become very fashionable. The same sentiments have been raised by youths from the northern part of the country. Under the leadership of Mallam Ibrahim Waiya, the Northern Youth Assembly blamed political leaders from the north for being responsible for the sad tale of underdevelopment and widespread poverty in the region. Since assuming the presidency about nine months ago, President Goodluck Jonathan has made concerted efforts to reform the nation's social, political, and economic sectors.

Unfortunately, many individuals and organisations have hidden under different platforms to sabotage these noble efforts. The opposition of Jonathan's candidature even after the PDP primaries is one of the efforts aimed at salvaging the north from the claws of a few but powerful cliques that has for centuries thrived on the ignorance of the masses. One can clearly see the influence of Robert Greene and Joost Elffers' "48 Laws of Power" in the way and manner northern political leaders have related with the masses. ( Continues below….. )

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

Photo Above: President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria (2010 - present)

In the book, law 11 states that, "To maintain your independence you must always be needed and wanted. The more you are relied on, the more freedom you have. Make people depend on you for their happiness and prosperity and you have nothing to fear. Never teach them enough so that they can do without you." The ongoing reforms will put an end to all of these and the apostles of "48 Laws of Power" in the north are not comfortable with this emerging trend. Fearing that their foundation would be unearthed, they resorted to hiding behind all sort of banners to derail the good intentions of the president.

Education is a foundational effort to fight ignorance and poverty. President Jonathan appreciates this fact and decided to liberate the Almijiris with a special educational programme aimed at improving literacy in the north. In order to reduce poverty in the region, the president also approved the release of about N30b to bail-out the textile industry based mostly in the north. A similar fiscal policy has been extended to the leather sector also in the north. The lower Niger is being dredged to stimulate massive economic activities in the north. President Jonathan has also directed that oil and gas exploration activities be intensified in the north.

This is aimed at increasing the nation's foreign exchange earnings and also indirectly improve the federation account allocations to mineral-producing states in the north. Furthermore, President Jonathan has sent an executive bill to the National Assembly seeking to establish a Hydro-Electric Power Producing Areas Development Commission (HYPADEC) to cater for the needs of the host communities of Nigeria’s hydro power plants just like the NDDC is doing for the oil producing communities in the Niger Delta region. With all the above and other noble efforts of the president in mind, it will be safe for one to argue that Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan is more Hausa/Fulani than the immediate past and present generation of northern political leaders. ( Continues below..... )

Map of Nigeria

Photo Above: Map of Nigeria showing some major cities, including the Federal capital (Abuja or FCT)

He has shown enough will to liberate the north from social, political, and economic bondage. It will be rewarding therefore for the north to support his presidential ambition. Unknown to many, one of the strongest reason why a section of northern political leaders are against Jonathan's candidature is the latter’s choice of Architect Namadi Sambo as vice president. Right from the onset, Sambo has shown that he is not prepared to promote the "old order" in the north.

Groups like the NPLF would have preferred a northern vice president that will be in Aso Rock to pursue the interests of a few northern elitist "old brigades." The average northerner is now wise enough to read the hand writing on the wall and has decided to jettison the “old order” that has confined them to the dustbins of their few selfish elites in the corridors of power.

This is a new Nigeria. This is the reason why most northerners are singing, “I am Goodluck Jonathan. I was not born rich. If he can make it, I too can!”

Kali Gwegwe (CEO, Nigeria Democracy Watchtower 2) writes from Yenagoa, Bayelsa State and can be reached at kaligwegwe@yahoo.com ( 0806 407 4810 )

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